In fact, over-tip them handsomely. If you’re dining alone and paying diner prices, it’s not amiss to tip them as much as your meal cost.
My father taught me this when I was young. He also taught me to make steady eye contact with breakfast servers, and to strike up friendly conversation with them when they have the time.
Why go to this trouble?
- They don’t make much money. Their wages are low, and — unlike your server when you sit down to a fancy dinner — they can’t expect a lot of large tickets that will call for large tips at 15%.
- It’s often the best job they can get. Think about how you’d make ends meet if you lived off of tips from breakfast patrons.
- They get up early. By the time you roll into the diner, they’ve already gotten up, maybe taken care of their kids, cleaned up, traveled to work, and served however many patrons got there before you.
- You’re a perfect sweetheart, but some of their patrons aren’t.
When I was traveling earlier this week, I had a kind waitress who kept a smile on her face while she did the work of a couple of people. I had the cashier add a $10.00 tip to the cost of my food.
I’m hoping it put a smile on her face when she found out. She deserved it.