NH citizens do not support higher restaurant prices & wages to eliminate tipping - 258 citizens, 646 responses

Aug 24, 2015

As states and municipalities across the nation consider minimum wage increases, some restaurants are eliminating tipped positions and raising prices to cover the cost. In light of this development, the Live Free or Die Alliance (LFDA) asked Facebook members, “Would you be willing to pay higher restaurant prices if tipping is eliminated and servers get higher wages?” 

A total of 81% of respondents answered the question directly or with a concurrence, and of these a 64% majority said they would not support higher restaurant prices to eliminate tipping with 36% in favor of it. Of the remaining respondents, 17% opted to discuss the subject in broader terms while 2% commented on unrelated issues. In sum, 258 citizens participated in the discussion with a total of 646 responses. 

Many of those arguing against higher restaurant prices to eliminate tipping cited concerns that servers will make far less. “I'd rather give a server a bigger tip for better service,” remarked one gentleman. “Servers can make good money on tips and will most likely make far less if they are paid a 'regular' wage.’” Others said service will suffer as a result, including one gentleman who said, “A good server will get better tips overall—why take away the incentive to do better? I will not patronize a business that raises prices to cover salary increases for that purpose.”

Several respondents who expressed support for the notion of raising prices to eliminate tipping at restaurants cited their experience in Europe to debunk the notion that service would get worse. “I am used to the ‘Service Included" pricing that is customary in Europe and do not see any decline in service,” one respondent remarked. Others noted restaurants should pay a living wage with which to begin, while one gentleman added, “It would eliminate the ridiculous social-pressure approach to making consumers primarily responsible for servers' wages, which is a plus in my book.”

For those who did not provide a direct “yes” or “no” to the question, some said higher restaurant price will keep people away, while others debated whether race affects the tips a server receives. Others remarked on the larger social context, including one respondent who said, “Waiters and waitresses should be more focused on the people they are serving and not their phones or social media.”

Click here to read the full Facebook discussion for this question. 

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