Celebrate National Wait Staff Day with Our Tipping Cheat Sheet


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May 21 marks National Waiter/Waitress Day — a day for diners everywhere to recognize the work a restaurant’s wait staff does to make your dining experience pleasant and memorable. One of the best ways to recognize and reward them for their hard work is by leaving tips, but determining how much to leave can be a bit confusing.

In many states, employees who make tips are not paid as much in hourly wages as their non-tipped colleagues. Some states require employers to pay workers the full state minimum wage before tips, some states require employers to pay above the federal tipped minimum wage, and some states require employers to only pay workers in accordance with the federal tipped minimum wage ($2.13 per hour). You can determine where your state falls in this lineup here.

With that in mind, it’s customary to leave a tip that’s at least 15 percent of the diners’ pretax bill, but exemplary service, or large groups, could warrant a tip upward of 20 percent. Looking for a handy reference to give you a good estimate of what your tip should be? Check out our chart below, and be sure to let your waiter or waitress know how much you appreciate them!

Bill 15% tip 20% tip



Briana Fabbri is head of marketing for NetCredit.