NATIONAL PULSE – Most would scrap gratuity system for higher wages
By ANGUS REID INSTITUTE
February 16, 2023 – Canadians have reached a tipping point when it comes to gratuities.
New data from the non-profit Angus Reid Institute finds so-called “tip-flation” a key pain point. Most Canadians report being asked to tip more (62%) and more often (64%), and in several cases, they are obliging.
In 2016, 43 per cent of Canadians said they left a tip of less than 15 per cent when they last ate at a restaurant. Now approximately half as many (23%) say the same. Meanwhile, one-in-five (21%) say they left a tip of 20 per cent or more when they last dined out, more than double the rate (8%) of those who said so in 2016.
Canadians also report “tip creep” – where locations that previously may not have prompted for a tip have added the request to digital payment machines – as a source of fatigue.
Four-in-five (83%) say too many places are asking for tips these days, including at least three-quarters across all regions and demographics. Meanwhile, few (13%) believe customer service has improved as tips have increased.
The result: a significant increase in the number of Canadians who say they prefer (59%) a “service included” model, which would see an end of tipping and higher base wages for employees. ARI polling from 2016 found respondents were more likely to prefer tipping (46% to 40%).
More Key Findings:
- Those who previously worked a job that received tips (58%) are as likely as those who have not (59%) to support a move to a “service included” model.
- Past CPC and Bloc Québécois voters are divided as to whether they prefer the current system or to move away from tipping. Three-quarters of those who voted Liberal (73%) and NDP (76%) in 2021 would like to see the end of tipping.
- Those in British Columbia are the most likely to report “tip creep” (74%) and “tip-flation” (73%). Atlantic Canadians are the least likely to say they’re being prompted for an increased tip (42%).
- More than four-in-five (86%) Canadians who want to do away with tipping believe the current system allows employers to underpay their employees. Half (53%) of those who want gratuities to stay agree.
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