TikToker Chelo Abbe has sparked a viral debate about the economics of tipping culture in the United States in a recent video. In the clip, he urges businesses to stop forcing point-of-sale systems to ask customers to tip on every transaction. He says having to reject tips whenever he purchases something turns many interactions into awkward ones.
Abbe cites a recent conversation he had with an employee at a checkout counter as an example of a discussion he would rather not have in person. When his “No Tip” selection didn’t go through, he had to verbalize to the worker he didn’t want to give them a gratuity.
Chelo adds that he knows it isn’t the fault of workers and states that he believes there are probably tons of folks who work in the service industry who feel the same way.
@cheloabbe I just want my coffee mannnnn #fyp ♬ original sound – Chelo Abbe
“This tipping stuff is getting so out of hand and so awkward,” Abbe says in the video. “I literally just handed the lady my credit card and she goes, ‘hey it’s gonna ask you a question so I can finish up here.'”
Abbe continues that he tried to hit the “no tip” option but missed, leading the employee to ask him which option Abbe wanted to pick. He says, “I had to answer her, I had to be like, ‘no tip.'”
“I can’t do these interactions anymore, these interactions are so awkward and I know it’s not the employees’ decision, like I know it’s the higher-ups, but I just, I can’t tip for everything, I order,” Abbe vents in the TikTok. “Like I can’t, I can’t tip on every single thing I purchase in my life. I can’t do this anymore.”
“I just want my coffee mannnn,” Abbe added in the caption.
A Starbucks Barista recently went viral for stating that the coffee chain’s decision to automatically ask customers if they want to tip at the checkout counter has made their job more difficult. She claims they are forced to explain the new payment structure to customers and reset their registers due to glitches. Customers have also lambasted the digital exhortations to add gratuities to their orders as well, so Abbe certainly isn’t alone in this sentiment.
It seems several viewers who saw his video are also on board with the TikToker’s frustrations as well. Many users echoed that it isn’t financially viable for them to add gratuities to every single thing that they purchase. They also state it turns them off from going to coffee shops and businesses that automatically have the gratuity option built-in completely.
Some argued they could simply hit “no tip” and go about their day because it’s their money. Other TikTokers strongly believed that the only scenarios where they should tip is when they’re eating at a restaurant and their server is doing more involved work, like bringing them food and drinks and/or making recommendations.
“I hit no tip and i dont care if they’re feelings are hurt because its my money and thats that,” one top comment read.
“Tipping should only be for sit down restaurants,: another wrote. “When someone actually serves you not when you order coffee or a donut over the counter.”
“Unless ur a waiter or driver No tip. I mean should I tip the cashier at Home Depot?” another stated.
Other contextualized tipping by comparing it to other industries.
“I work at a hospital.. i get no tip for helping keeping people alive,” one user claimed.
Others stated that competitive salaries should become the norm for all jobs and tipping should be summarily banned.
As one user wrote, “Tipping should be banned and workers should be paid properly.”
The Daily Dot has reached out to Abbe via email for further comment.