Should Australian Pub And Restaurant Workers Be Tipped?

Australia is one of the few Western nations where tipping isn’t expected — but this could soon be set to change if the results of a new national survey can be believed. According to bar tab app Clipp, nearly 60 per cent of Australians regularly tip, despite often making less money per hour than their servers. What do you make of all this? Cast your vote in our poll!

Barmaid image from Shutterstock

Clipp — which we have reviewed in the past — surveyed more than 2000 pub- and restaurant-going Australians about their tipping habits. It found that almost 60% of Australians are on the tipping bandwagon, with fast and attentive service the main motivator. Other factors that contributed to tipping included great meals, special privileges (such as a nice table) and attractive wait staff.

When broken down by age, older customers are the most likely to tip, with 71 per cent of surveyed Australians in their 50s tipping at restaurants, compared to just 29% of people under 20. As you’d probably expect, high income earners (over $150,000) are most likely to tip, but the average amount they tip is a paltry 5-10 per cent of the bill.

“While Australians aren’t obliged to tip, our survey suggests we are happy to as a reward for wait staff for great customer service,” said Clipp co-founder Greg Taylor. “Generally, most Australians believe tipping between 5-10% is considered reasonable, with the survey identifying one in three (37%) tipping this much.”

Personally, I’m not certain that tipping culture belongs in Australia. After all, our minimum wage is significantly higher than in the US and we currently pay generous weekend penalty rates. A part of me thinks this trend has been caused by American TV shows and movies which frequently discuss tipping: monkey see, monkey do.

On the other hand, bar and restaurant staff are among the hardest working in any industry. It could be argued that the tip jar is adequate compensation for the sore feet and stress. We’re keen to hear what you guys think: should tipping be expected or something that only happens on special occasions? Cast your vote below!

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