To Tip or Not to Tip @ Coffee Shops?


Mar 7, 2003
Coffee Shop
Visit site
Seems everyone has a tip jar in the small stores and even the large chain stores. Doesn't matter what the store is there is a tip jar. Do you think that tipping at a coffee shop is appropriate? It is one thing if the person comes to you, refills your cup and waits on you but its another when you wait in line and wait for your coffee and leave or sit down where no table service is present.

Each worker for any store that has a tip jar has their own feelings why they deserve tips and how they're not like the other people but how do you feel about the tip jar at coffee shops. What makes you tip and why?

Personally I'll leave a tip if I get waited on, if the person is doing something out of the ordinary but coffee is part of my life. I am addicted to coffee more than fast food :p


New member
Mar 25, 2003
New Jersey
Visit site
I only tip waitstaff, about 20-25%. I tip them because they only make half the minimum wage. I might tip a mom-n-pop coffee shop, but I *never* tip Starbucks because $3.40 for a large coffee is already highway robbery, LOL.


New member
Mar 7, 2003
Visit site
My common tipping practice is as followed.

%20-30 if it is a cafe with a menu and I get served at my table.
My coin change at places where I order, pickup, then leave. I sometimes add an additional dollar if I feel it.

The weird thing is at the cafes that I realy like their service but they have no tip jar. I've inquired about how I shld go about leaving a tip and the employees are generally confused at the notion of me leaving them money. Odd, but true.

Coffee Guy

New member
Oct 19, 2003
Seattle,Washington USA
Visit site
Being in the land of Latte :-D rather it be drive thrus, coffee carts, or cafe settings, most do tip. Most baristas are minimum wage and supplement their wages with tips. However, tips are a privilage not a right. Sometimes I hear baristas talk badly about customers because they don't leave tips. Some assume that all customers are suspose to tip. Not even understanding the reason that tips are awarded in the first place. When I train and consult new owners of espresso and or coffee shops, I stress good customer service as being right up there with great drinks. And if the barista doesn't understand this, then they are in the wrong business. As a customer, I like to tip those that attend to my needs, everything from knowing my drink each time I'm there, to preparing it properly each time. Personally, I don't feel that tipping should be done just for the sake of tipping. Would you tip someone that makes a lousy drink each and every time, or better yet, why would you continue to go there if they continue to make a lousy drink?

Tipping in any service industry is something that's earned, not assumed. Just my thoughts.


Super Moderator
Staff member
Aug 14, 2003
Boca Raton
Visit site
I have heard alot of people ask this..some say(resevoir dogs) I don't tip at a fast food joint....but that is something completely different...this is an art....I guess the best way to put it is do you tip your bartender?


New member
Sep 8, 2003
Visit site

I guess I've always used the effort rule: if someone actually brings me something to a table or place setting (not just to the "wait here for order" stand), I tip.


New member
Re: Tipp'n'

tintinet said:
I guess I've always used the effort rule: if someone actually brings me something to a table or place setting (not just to the "wait here for order" stand), I tip.

I concur with your effort rule. I also diminish the possible tip in regards to how much effort i put in to get their attention. If I am unable to get a refill on my coffee, I take it out on their tip very quickly. :x