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Woman Says She Refuses To Tip Anywhere She's Not Actually Being Waited On — 'I'm Not Paying To Work Here!'

Photo: Andrea Piacquadio / Pexels 
barista at coffee shop with customer

Tipping culture has turned into a contested issue, one where lines are being drawn in the sand: Either you support leaving a tip, or you don’t, at all.

One woman said she refuses to tip anywhere she’s not actually being waited on by a server.

Comedian Robby Hoffman made an appearance on fellow comedian Kareem Rahma’s series, "Subway Takes," in which he interviews people while riding the train from borough to borough in New York.

Hoffman took a staunch anti-tip stance, specifically at self-service restaurants. 

   

   

RELATED: Server Explains Why She's Done Tipping Other Servers 20%

“If I have to go up to order, I’m not tipping,” she said boldly, as Rahma looked shocked.

“0%?” He asked incredulously, and Hoffman confirmed that she tips absolutely nothing at self-serve establishments

“At this point, I work there,” she exclaimed. Rahma laughed, conceding to her perspective: “You’re doing the work, you should get tipped.”

“They have the nerve on the iPad to do 15% tip… 20% tip,” Hoffman exclaimed. “Tip you? Why don’t you tip me? Take 15, 20% off the bill.”

Woman Says She Refuses To Tip Anywhere She's Not Actually Being Waited On Photo: Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock

Jokes aside, Hoffman made a very valid point: Tipping has become a stand-in for paying workers fair wages.

“No, literally, just pay people a living wage and leave us alone already,” she stated. 

Hoffman imagined a future world a year from now, in which we’re tipping 45% while making the food ourselves — a possible version of reality that doesn't feel so far away. 

Rahma then asked Hoffman how much she tips at coffee shops, to which she replied, “Zero!”

“The business must pay their employees,” she reiterated. “They continue to levy more and more on the consumer.”

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Rahma jokingly said Hoffman was engaging in “peaceful protest” by not leaving a tip at self-service restaurants.

“You tip where you have service,” she said, which makes a fair amount of sense. If someone is providing you with a service, leaving them a tip is apt. If you’re picking your own food up from a counter and bussing your own table, should you really leave a tip?

   

   

Rahma shared his personal tactic for tipping, which is to “leave a pity tip.”

“That’s what it should be,” Hoffman replied. “If you’re feeling a tip, give a tip! But a mandatory tip, now we’ve lost the essence of the tip. Now we’re doing wages.”

“Now I work there and I’m paying to work there,” she continued, commenting on the audacity of expecting an exchange of money when no service was provided.  

“Pay your people and leave us alone already,” Hoffman concluded. “Bring back the $2 tip.”

Hoffman’s ultimate viewpoint centers around equity. Service workers deserve fair wages, especially as the cost of living continues to rise at astronomical rates. Employers should care for their employees, and not expect tipping to make up the gaps in their paychecks. 

RELATED: Frustrated Man Criticizes America's 'Out Of Control' Tipping After Traveling Abroad Where Gratuity Was Rejected

Alexandra Blogier is a writer on YourTango's news and entertainment team. She covers social issues, pop culture, and all things to do with the entertainment industry.