Currently, it takes some time to respond to comments because I have some other things I have to prioritize.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Tipping custom in Japan?

Traditionally, Japan does not have the tipping custom. You have no need to tip workers because the service industry offers relatively higher salary for service workers in Japan compared to service works in countries with tipping custom. That means the tip is included in the price of the service or product. Since the tip is included, you can expect the best service anytime without the concern about the amount of money you tip (Stress-free life!). If you generously offer a tip to them, most of them will take it gladly. Some Japanese-style hotels might not receive tips, but don’t worry it will never offend workers.

Here I’ve come up with a question.
Do you regard the tipping custom as a good culture?

Here's my opinion:
I think the system results in the different ways of treatment for people with different socio-economic status. If a tip always guarantees faster and more dedicated service, it makes more sense to me, but I don’t think it’s guaranteed for every single case. Then the tipping custom sounds like mere self-satisfactory system designed only to make oneself feel richer and kinder.
Judging from what I've written, I'm not really supportive of the tipping system.

I look forward to opinions from visitors.

P.S.
Thanks for the question Sakurablank! :D

6 comments:

  1. I never tip. Tipping itself ain't a mandatory in my country so I'm not even used to it. Of course, there are places when tipping is a matter of being cultural, like hotels and such.
    But in general, I'm against tipping, people should be treated equally, but of course, money rules the world and those who are richer or paid more will have better service than the rest. Can't do nothing about it.

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  2. I've always been taught to tip between 10-20% of the total meal's cost. From what i have learned, tipping is supposed to be a way to show your appreciation and satisfaction with the service you received.

    Tipping is completely voluntary, but almost everyone dose it and is the reason why most waiters and waitresses are paid minimum wage, as they often make 100-200$ a day in tips. (for a mid-class restaurant, and assuming they are nice people of course :P)

    People who do not tip, and receive good service are (at least to me) considered very rude and unthoughtful. Even if the service is bad i try to always leave a small tip, but i can remember a few times when it was so bad i just paid my bill and left!xD

    You're right too, it is very self satisfying to leave a tip and makes me feel kinder, but i don't think it's a way to show how rich you are (though I'm sure some of the really high class palaces think otherwise :P)

    It's much more common in American society than European society. From what i understand, the only tip you are supposed to tip is in high class European restaurants. (which is quite odd to me, because i would think it would make more sense if it was the opposite! :P)

    I think it's odd how often the small things we take for granted as 'normal',only apply to us. :P

    Thanks for answering my question too! I always learn somthing new when i come here. :D

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  3. I agree with Sakura, although I also see the merits of a tip-less system. My sister worked as a waitress at one point, and she wasn't raking it in. Sometimes waitresses and waiters also have to share their tips with bus-boys and bartenders.

    There are some jobs in Japan where tipping is common. My girlfriend is a pianist at a club, and although she gets an hourly wage, she does get tips from time to time that are a great help.

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  4. [Can't do nothing about it.]

    I am not really into the system, but I do not criticize the system. As long as everybody, regardless of socio-economic status, feels comfortable with the system, it should go on.


    [I've always been taught to tip between 10-20%. Tipping is completely voluntary, but almost everyone dose it.]

    It's surprising to me that the variable system still exist in some most industrialized countries like US. I wonder if it amplifies economic movement both in good and bad ways.


    [As they often make 100-200$ a day in tips]

    Seriously? I have to take the kind of job into account as an option.


    [People who do not tip, and receive good service are (at least to me) considered very rude and unthoughtful.]

    I can't but think "why won't they simply include the tip in the price?" A system that leaves the room for discord among people doesn't sound like a good system to me.


    [You're right too, it is very self satisfying to leave a tip and makes me feel kinder, but i don't think it's a way to show how rich you are (though I'm sure some of the really high class palaces think otherwise :P)]

    So, the system has a lot to do with customers’ subjective feelings. Interesting


    [I think it's odd how often the small things we take for granted as 'normal',only apply to us. :P]

    I love the moment when what is normal is found to be abnormal in other countries. The more we experience the moment, the more tolerant we become, usually.


    [Thanks for answering my question too! I always learn somthing new when i come here. :D]
    I learn a lot too. :)

    [There are some jobs in Japan where tipping is common. My girlfriend is a pianist at a club, and although she gets an hourly wage, she does get tips from time to time that are a great help.]
    I see, thanks for sharing your knowledge.

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  5. [Seriously? I have to take the kind of job into account as an option.]


    Hehe yeah..thats what my cousin told me she made, she worked at a I-hop part time.(breakfast restaurant- really yummy pancakes! :P) 6 hours a day with 50 people served, who spend 15$ per person. If each person taped 15%, the you would make 45$ in minimum wage, plus another 112$ in tips, for a total of 157$ a day.

    Yup! Good waitresses/waiters can make quite a bit of money, and i would imagine if you put 12 hours a day into it (as a full time job) you could really have a pretty good life! :P

    It's one of the best uneducated jobs available, around the equivalent of a 30$ a hour.


    [I can't but think "why won't they simply include the tip in the price?" A system that leaves the room for discord among people doesn't sound like a good system to me.]

    Now that you mention it, the Japanese steakhouse we have near us dose that. The tip ( i think it was 30%)is pre-paid into the final bill, that is then split between the cook, waitress, and busboy. It seemed very odd to me that it would automatically be included, but it didn't dawn on me why until now.

    I'm not sure why it's our custom to tip, maybe it's just one of those old things that had it's original purpose lost to time. It could have started back before the implication of minimum wage, with people tipping money to help others supplement their income as those types of jobs that did not require education would have been paid very poorly.

    It might also have it's roots in motivational practices. People are motivated to do better when presented with a chance for reward and maybe rewarding good service with money is a way to promote good work ethics toward customers voluntarily. Sorry..thats not much of an answer :P

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  6. Thanks for your candid comment.
    Just in the same way, there are some Japanese cutures I have trouble explaining.

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