Restaurants may be banned from adding tip to your bill

Restaurants may be banned from adding tip to your bill

Is this good or bad news?

When I head out for a meal I always base my tip on the service I receive from the waiter/waitress rather than how good (or bad) the food is. If you have a poor meal then it is down to the kitchen staff but the servers usually have to put this right for us.

Also, did you know, if you are paying for your meal by card and the card machine asks you if you want to add a tip on, the company does not have to pay that tip to the staff as you have paid it directly to the company? For this reason, I always pay cash and leave it on the table.

When resturants automatically add a tip to the bill it is called a discretionary service charge – you can ask for this to be removed.

However this could soon be a thing of the past as the Government plans to remind consumers that they do not have to tip when eating out and will ban the discretionary service charge.

Sajid Javid, the Business Secretary, is concerned that restaurants are confusing customers by not being transparent about the charges and who actually receives any tips. Sajid will today launch a consultation on tipping to make things clearer in the future.

One option under consideration is to make the discretionary service charge and ”opt-in decision” rather than an automatic charge.

The discretionary service charge is usually set between 10% – 15% of the total bill and some resturants add it to the bill of any large groups in their resturants.

This can often lead to ‘double tipping’ as many people don’t realise they have paid the service charge.

Last year some of the country’s most popular restaurant chains including Pizza Express, Strada, Zizzi, Ask Italian and Giraffe were all accused of keeping all or part of the service charges which were automatically added to bills rather than passing them on to staff.

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