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Jan 9, 2013 10:00 AM

Eden Wok (Midtown Manhattan)

Eden Wok just instituted a $25 minimum order, plus a $3 delivery charge, not including tip, if you're ordering online with Seamless. That seems... excessive.

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  1. Delivery charge not including tip?! What exactly is the tip for, if not for the delivery?

    23 Replies
    1. re: zsero

      I believe the OP means the $25 minimum order does not include the amount you may wish to tip or the delivery charge

      1. re: bagelman01

        But what is the tip for if not delivery? So if they're charging for delivery, why would you add a tip on top of that?

        1. re: zsero

          A restaurants charge for food includes the salary of the waiter/waitress, why do you tip them? You pay your barber for a haircut, so why you do tip him? Do you really think your tip amount is enough to cover the time it takes the delivery person to get to your house and back to the restaurant?

          1. re: avitrek

            You tip a waiter/waitress precisely because the charge for the food does *not* include their pay. They get paid very little, and you are expected to pay them the bulk of their fee directly. If they were paid a normal salary then there would be no reason to tip them, and in countries where they are paid normally it is not usual to tip them unless they've done outstanding work, beyond what's expected.

            And no, I have never tipped a barber, and it would never occur to me to do so. Do you really do that? Why?

            And yes, a tip to a delivery man covers the value to you of the service he's providing by carrying it. That's what it's for. What else would you pay him anything at all? He doesn't get paid by the restaurant, does he?

            1. re: zsero

              Yes I tip a barber because that's what is expected. The same way I tip a cab driver, a parking attendant, or a shoeshiner. They all are paid a salary/fee, but it is expected to tip them extra above that. It's no different from a waiter. And yes, a deliveryman is supposed to be paid minimum wage ($4.65/hour for tipped employees). He gets that for sitting around waiting to work, and then expects to make up the balance through tips.

              1. re: zsero

                #1 I always tip a barber who does not own the shop. The owner takes a 50% cut of the amount the patron pays in shops where the individual barber does not rent the chair, but it an employee.

                #2 deliveryperson>>"He doesn't get paid by the restaurant, doies he?" That all depends if he is an employee (who must be paid a wage by the restaurant, or works for an outside delivery service, in which case he may be either an employee or an independent contractor. Then his pay structure may vary and be by agreement. Either way they deserve tips for tgheir service, getting the food to you in all kinds of weather and traffic, shlepping it up to your office and/or home, etc.

                1. re: bagelman01

                  How do you know whether a barber is an employee, or an owner, or a chair-renter?

                  As for delivery people, as far as I can see the tip *is* the delivery charge. That's what it's for. So if the restaurant charges for delivery then I've already paid for it, so why should I pay twice? (BTW, do you also tip delivery people a percentage of the order? I always base my tip to delivery people on the distance and the weather, not on the value of the order. If the restaurant is close by and the weather is nice, then the tip is $2; if it's further away, or it's raining, then the tip goes up accordingly. They're doing exactly the same work no matter how expensive or cheap the order, so why should the charge vary? )

                  1. re: zsero

                    while this discussion rewally should be split off and moved to the Not About Food board, I'll answer you.

                    as to the barber, I ask. Growing up, I was taught never to tip the owner, or the first chair barber, as they took a cut of all the money taken in. Nowadays, I ask if I don't know. If The name of the barbershop is Phil's and Phil is in the first chair and cutting my hair, no tip.

                    As to restaurant delivery tip, I base it on the order, not the dollar value, but number of bags, boxes, etc. and where the delivery takes place. Did the delivery person have to park? cross the lobby and come up 50 floors in an office building carrying 4 bags for me, if so, then $2 or 3 is not enough. Is the pizza joint just down the block from my house and total delivery takes only 3 minutes, then $R3 is fine.

                    Most importantly, the OP says this restaurant is adding the delivery charge for those placing their order on line through a THIRD PARTY called Seamless. The $3 charge is probably what Seamless charges Eden Wok for taking the order and dispatching a delivery person (who shoul be tipped).

                    1. re: bagelman01

                      Seamless is not a delivery service, and does not have any delivery people!

                      When you go to a barber shop with so many barbers, do you get a choice of who cuts your hair? I don't, so why should I pay more just because I got the owner's helper instead of the owner himself? That's not very fair, is it?

                      1. re: zsero

                        Thanks for the info about Seamless.

                        and Yes, I always have the ability to choose who cuts my hair as opposed to taking the next available chair, I just have to wait longer that way. Why would you accept just anyone to cut your hair?

                        1. re: bagelman01

                          A barber is a barber, after all. If he was bad he wouldn't be in business. In any case I can't remember the last time I was in a barber shop that had more than two chairs.

              2. re: avitrek

                As a former waitress... I was paid ~$3 an hour. It was nothing. I lived off of tips. One table's tip didn't make or break me, but if everyone thought as stingy as this, I wouldn't have been able to make a living.

                1. re: bethanyshondark

                  And was there a service charge on the bill? No, there wasn't. That's why people tipped. If there's a service charge on the bill, then there should be NO tip unless the service was extraordinary.

              3. re: zsero

                A delivery charge includes the cost of processing a to go order, the cost of take out packaging and possibly the vehicle, gasoline, etc, and base wage for the delivery person. The tip is for the individual who provides the service and the amount is solely at the patron's discretion.

                1. re: zsero

                  The delivery charge is going to the restaurant. The tip is going to the delivery person, in theory.

                  1. re: CloggieGirl

                    If the restaurant charges me for delivery, then I expect that they will pay the delivery person whatever they think is appropriate, but it's no longer any of my affair. Once I've paid them for the service I expect to get the service with no extra charge. If, like most places, they're not charging for delivery, then I assume I have to pay for it myself, so I do, according to what I think the work was worth, which varies by the distance and the weather.

                    1. re: zsero

                      Do you tip a cab driver? After all, you just paid him for the ride. What about an attendant in a parking garage?

                      1. re: avitrek

                        Cab drivers, like waiters, are in an industry where the standard is that the charge does not include more than a small portion of their pay, and it's set with the expectation that you'll pay them yourself. Almost all the fare in a cab goes to the owner, just as almost all the restaurant bill goes to the restaurant. The full price of the meal or the ride is higher than the quoted price. That's just how it is in this country, just as airfares were until recently always quoted as "one way" and without taxes and fees. So you have to pay the rest, and you expect that.

                        But where there is a service charge at a restaurant then that's the service charge, and there's no reason to tip, just as one doesn't usually tip in places where waiters are paid properly and their pay is included in the price. And the same applies to delivery people. For that matter, it would apply to cab drivers too, if a cab company were to impose a "driver fee" on top of the fare.

                        1. re: zsero

                          Maybe it's different in different places but AFIAK cab drivers pay the cab company a flat rate for the use of the car plus their expenses (gas). Any amount they make over that is their pay (and if they don't make enough to cover the fee and gas, they eat it).

                          As for delivery fees, it is very simple. It goes to the restaurant, not the directly to the delivery person, so tip is still expected. I don't like high delivery fees either, and avoid restaurants that have them, but what you are paying for is the additional service itself, not the gratuity. $3 is on the the high side but not exorbitant. $25 minimum is very high but for some restaurants dealing with the hassles of providing delivery service on small orders might just not be worth it to them (insert rant about kosher restaurant business practices here). Seamless also charges a small flat amount per order, but restaurants using the service are not allowed to charge additional fees they wouldn't if you called them directly, so a minimum order helps mitigate that (insert another rant about kosher restaurant business practices).

                          What high minimums and delivery fees really do is keep delivery in the realm of parties and office catering which is much more profitable for the restaurant.

                          1. re: barryg

                            As I understand it Seamless doesn't charge a flat fee, they charge a steep percentage of the bill; they try to pitch it just low enough that it's still worth the restaurant's while to keep using their service.

                            And taxi owners often do the same with their cabs; they charge the driver so much that almost all the fares go to them, and the driver is left to live on tips. Again, they try to set it at a level where if they raised it any higher the drivers would quit.

                          2. re: zsero

                            "just as one doesn't usually tip in places where waiters are paid properly and their pay is included in the price"

                            I'd be very interested to know if any of these places are in the US. In New York, their pay is $2.13 an hour, which is the NY state minimum for 'tipped' workers. Even in 'fancy' restaurants, many workers (particularly bussing and delivery) are paid this and the waiters' hourly wages still aren't above double digits.

                            1. re: CloggieGirl

                              In San Francisco restaurant staff makes the state minimum wage, plus tips.

                              1. re: CloggieGirl

                                Exactly, and that is why tipping is so common in the US. In most other countries waiters are paid properly, so there's no need to tip for normal service, and people only tip if the service was special.