do you tip a waiter if it's buffet style, & the waiter has only served u water?

United States
July 31, 2009 12:28pm CST
I always wanted to know what the etiquette thing to do. I frequent a chinese buffet once a week...and for the most part, all the waiter does is seat us, gives us water, and the bill when we are finished. I know most waiters deserve the tips they get, but at a buffet...what do you do?
7 responses
@ShellyB (5243)
• United States
31 Jul 09
I tip if I have the money, because they do clear the dishes for us. But if I am short in cash I ignored that and moved on. Tho the last time I went to a buffet I could not leave a tip because all I had was a debit card. Eeek!
1 person likes this
• United States
31 Jul 09
At this particular restaurant, the waiters do not clear the tables...it is the bus boys that do...thus leaving the waiters with less to do. If I have only a debit card, I tell the cashier to add my tip to the bill when I pay it.
@ShellyB (5243)
• United States
31 Jul 09
The particular restaurant where we went we pay before eating. And if the bus boys do most of the job, then I would not leave a tip at all.
1 person likes this
• United States
31 Jul 09
Thanks for your input!
@dlr297 (5418)
• United States
1 Aug 09
If they bring me a drink whether it be water, or a soda, and if they check back, and clean away the empty plates. Then YES i do leave a tip, not as much as i would leave in a full service restaurant, but i do leave them something. because they were doing a service to me.
1 person likes this
• United States
1 Aug 09
I do as you do...I leave a tip, but the usual amount. Thanks for your input.
@dlr297 (5418)
• United States
6 Sep 09
Thank you so much for the Best Response..... It is very much appreciated..........You have added a bright spot to my day.
@dorannmwin (36698)
• United States
1 Aug 09
I always tip at a buffet style restaurant, but I never tip as much as I do at a more traditional type restaurant. We typically tip between 10-15 percent at a traditional restaurant, more if the service is really good (a rarity). However, when we go to the buffet restaurants, we typically tip between 5-10 percent. The thing that I've noticed is that it is even less rare to have very good service at a buffet.
1 person likes this
• United States
1 Aug 09
Well for the little things the waiters do, it's not bad service, it's just that do very little. Matter of fact they don't even give us water, it is the Bus boys that do that, and it's the host that seats us. So basically all the waiters do at this particular restaurant is give us our check at the end of the meal. They come over and ask us if we want more water, but some of them don't even do that. I would hope that whatever tip we do give them, that they share it among the busboys...because they seem to do more.
@playapal (894)
• United States
31 Jul 09
I always leave a little something, not as much as I would a waiter that provides major service, but a little. It also depends on how nice they are to me. If they are very friendly and helpful I will leave more. If not I will just leave a little bit.
1 person likes this
• United States
31 Jul 09
I feel just like you do...thanks
• United States
31 Jul 09
I do. They bring water or tea and coffee. As long as they served the table well I leave a tip. It's fair to leave a tip if they serve good. Even if they come back and check to see if we need anything during the meal.
• United States
31 Jul 09
Thanks for sharing.
• United States
31 Jul 09
I do not eat at a buffet frequently, only a few times a year for birthday parties or baby showers. The ones I went to automatically charge a 15% gratitude which is included in the grand total. On the receipt there's always an option for extra tips but we do not give it. I agree that waiters deserve all the tips possible but a buffet location, I think it's not necessary for extra tipping. However at other locations, we do tip for their service because they come by the table much more often. If I was rich, I would give a nice tip of course!
• United States
31 Jul 09
Thanks...I kind of feel like you do, however, I don't think this particular restaurant builds in a tip on their check; if they do, they don't state it.
@bunnybon7 (39294)
• Holiday, Florida
6 Sep 09
you know i have often wondered myself if its the norm. even tho i always tip them myself because my late hubby, who was a great tipper, always did. I think they do deserve tipping a little these days as they are probably not making very much and they do stand and walk a lot for us.