How much are you guys paying for a shoe shine? Was in LGA paid $12 plus $1 tip and the guy gave me attitude. Didn’t even say thanks as if I should have tipped more? What is a fair amount?

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I think OPs question makes sense and liked McK1’s answer the best. The tipping standards seem to vary so much, from a barber to shoe shiner to waiter to pizza delivery. You have to literally carry a tipping rate card to know how much to tip for each type of service. I also think that looking at the total cost of service (including tip) before purchasing is a good idea. The service providers will be forced to compete by lowering their prices. It would be best if there is one price (with the tip or whatever included) so that people from different cultures aren’t confused about tipping.

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Funny thing is that if I’m overseas, there is a general assumption that if you are American, you will tip and if you are not. You won’t. It’s crap. I’ll tip if the service was amazing. Tipping 20% on a $4k overseas trip is a lot of money and some service providers expect it.

I usually don’t tip when overseas. Sometimes especially if the service provider owns his own company. That’s what the service fee is for.

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$1? Come on now...

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When you handed him the dollar did you say “don’t spend it all in one place” like a geriatric?

I don’t see how $1 tip is ever justified, but the fact you did it in NYC makes his that much worse.

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No, that's not how that works. That's like saying you aren't going to tip for a haircut bc the place you went is more expensive than another place. You chose to get a service provided to you, knowing the price. Pretty crappy to not tip properly...

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Honestly didn’t think a tip was needed. The price was so inflated I assumed that is what he wanted (as in tip included because I’m in an international airport with people from cultures that don’t tip at all). As stated earlier, tipping is a risky game. He may consider himself burned but that’s the cost of the tip game.

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Haha this is hilarious. OP knowingly gives shitty tip, asks if it’s fair, then gets offended and defensive when there is a consensus that it was a shitty tip.

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I feel sorry for OP. He didn't know what was appropriate and asked people, everyone is now calling him a dick/jerk.

I moved to the US fairly recently and I find tipping very confusing too. So I totally understand the explanation OP posted. Once you all chipped in, OP did say at the time he thought it was fine but now guess not.

Stop picking on someone for not understanding tipping customs. It may be normal for Americans, but are totally bizarre for someone coming from a country of all included pricing.

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I shine my own shoes and found the OP's question/confusion understandable.

From others' responses, even the standard 15-20% isn't the right convention for shoe shine. People suggested $5-$8, instead of the $2 or so bucks that would have been convention at a restaurant. There isn't an obvious reason that the shoe shine guy would get a bigger tip than a server or delivery guy. As far as I know the shoe shine guy gets a full, not tipped minimum wage.

The OP was far closer to the standard tipping convention than the suggestions and everyone jumped on him like he is an idiot. If $2 bucks would have been a perfectly acceptable 15%, it is hard to freakout over a $1 difference. It sucks to work at a job and depend on tip if the service is very cheap. If there is some additional addendum to the standard tipping rule, you are taking a big risk that a new customer won't know it.

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If you’re going to defend what you did so strongly...why did you ask here in the first place? Feels like you already believe your actions were appropriate

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Agree with SC1 a $1 tip. Nothing would've been better.

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The payment basically covers the rental of the space. In LGA, it is more expensive. These guys basically work for tips. I would have given him a $20 but a $5 tip is fair.

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Either you didn’t read my posts SC1 or you’re thick. I clearly knew the price and I paid it in full. I didn’t understand the tip custom. That is why I’m asking. Stop being a jerk about it. If is was that important him, hewould have instructions. This is an international airport with other cultures that may or may not have similar pricing schemes.

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I usually pay $10 all in. Thought $13 was fair. Guess not. Although I do think if you play the tip game (price discrimination instead of just charging a fair price) sometimes your get burned.

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At certain price levels and for certain services you throw out the percentage calculator and tip $5

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SC1 getting so hot and bothered about being American in America while dropping “your in America!”

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Oh I read your posts. You're the one yo tipped $1, posted about it, and are now getting defensive. It might be an international airport, but your in America! You know how things work here! Ugh...

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DD1 when did I say $1 was a fair tip? Obviously I thought so at the time but that was because I had no clue. I was thinking total price. I guess most people here don’t realize that in a lot of the world, tipping doesn’t exist as it does in the US. Price discrimination is not practiced universally in other cultures as it is in the US.

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ZS, it is great that you are generous to servers but your method is very much not the standard. Most people do base a tip on the cost of the service. They tip $1-2 on a $5-10 breakfast and $5 on a $25 breakfast.

They also expect different service standards at the $25 a plate place.

My personal opinion is that the constant one way ratchet of tipping culture is ridiculous. The expected tip % has almost doubled in my lifetime and now the expectation is that you tip for counter service and basically anyone who provides any service to you in any setting. Plus if the service is bad and you tip <20% you are stiffing them on "their wage".

Everyone wants more money than they can negotiate from their boss, well this is the devil's bargin you make. It isn't on me to have an exce with every possible service I might need and the expected tip, with regional and class of service adjustments. That is dumb.

Uber drivers piss and moaned about the lack of tips and low pay until they got tipping in the app. They also could have simply had a lot fewer driver show up at the airport, lengthen the pick up times and have dissatisfied customer until Uber raised prices. Then there is no stiffing anyone on the tip.

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OP, no need to get so defensive and lash out dude. Here's a bit of advice, if you don't know something (like how much to tip), do some research to educate yourself. Usually that works out better when you research beforehand, not after the fact too. Whenever I travel overseas I read up about local customs and culture. Pleading ignorance is not a great excuse which is why so many people in this thread are calling you out so harshly.

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Tips are not intended to be mandatory. Don’t stress because employers have convinced customers that it’s normal to subsidize their employees salaries.

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Tips and the US tipping culture suck. OP: I would also have no idea and found this conversation useful...

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