Originally Posted by Shananahan
This is absolutely the way to go.
I've tended bars and served at many different restaurants and the concept of a flat, mandatory tip seems insane to me. It would be awesome for the servers, but it's ridiculous. Nothing made me madder as a server than to work with some lazy, careless slacker who was making as much or more than I was while I busted my ass for the customer.
Honestly, even the 15% thing is pretty absurd to me. A guy who sells a bowl of soup and a soda, then provides countless refills and crackers, etc shouldn't automatically be tipped less than a dude who sells a fancy filet and then just walks away.
I travel a lot internationally. Without a doubt, service in the US is second to none. This is a direct result of our tip structure. I like it.