Woman talking(l+r), Kid eating pizza(c)

Andy Shell/Shutterstock @moe.makes.magick/Tiktok (Licensed)

‘I refuse to work somewhere that does kids eat free specials’: Server says ‘kids eat free’ specials are ‘abusive’

'Those specials attract people who don’t tip.'


Jack Alban


Posted on Dec 28, 2023   Updated on Dec 28, 2023, 10:21 am CST

TikToker and restaurant server Moe (@moe.makes.magick) ignited a heated discussion with her video, which was viewed 456,000 times, on the long-standing “kids eat free” restaurant promotions.

In her video, Moe expresses her strong stance on “kids eat free” specials while speaking passionately to camera.

“I don’t deal with the whole kids eat free thing. Like, I refuse to work somewhere that does kids eat free specials,” she says. “Those specials attract people who do not tip. … Those places attract a clientele of people who tip based on the whole discounted price and not what the full price would have been, which, by the way, that is what you tip on.”

She continues, “You tip on the full price of a meal before any discounts and specials and deals and stuff and gift cards. You tip on the full price before gift card use, not the after. Just because you pay less does not mean that the server works less.”

@moe.makes.magick Replying to @kelleykr #fundie #fundiesnark #cult #iblp #ati #advancedtraininginstitute #billgothard #jimbobduggar #duggars #duggarfamily #duggarsnark #duggartiktok #joshduggar #moemakesmagick #michelleduggar #peoplenotpotential #instituteinbasiclifeprincipals #advancedtraininginstitute #homeschool #19kidsandcounting #tlc #jillduggar #jillduggardillard #jilldillard #derickdillard #countingthecost #quiverfull #server #serverproblems #waitress #waitresslife #waitressproblems #kidseatfree ♬ original sound – Moe

She further elaborates on the challenges servers face.

“Those kinds of specials attract people who think it’s a fair thing to give their kids a million different baskets of tortilla chips,” she says. “You end up with all those damn waters on the floor. Those specials will always result in abuse [of] servers, and I want nothing to do with it.”

In response to Moe’s video, parents in the comments section expressed a range of opinions. One parent shared, “My fam uses kids eat free, bc we have 2 kids. We buy the 2 adult meals and kids eat free. And tip based off full price.”

However, some criticized tipping culture in general, telling Moe that “If you’re going to complain that much about it, there’s a ton of other jobs out there.”

Another shared their personal experience, writing, “Kids eat free is what kept me fed.”

This opinion shows the other side of the coin: Yes, kids make messes, but these deals can save struggling families from breaking the bank.

The concept of “kids eat free” promotions started as a marketing strategy in the late 20th century to attract families to dine out. While these deals benefit families, they often bring challenges for servers like Moe that include messes, longer sitting times, and fewer tips. 

Moe’s video also highlights the importance of fair tipping practices in the U.S. In a country where the federal wage for servers who receive tips is at $2.13, tips sometimes mean life-or-death for servers and their families’ livelihoods.

Moe’s insights shed light on the realities of restaurant promotions from a server’s viewpoint. Her plea is for diners to be mindful of the effort servers put in and to tip appropriately, not just based on the discounted meal price.

The Daily Dot has reached out to Moe for comment.

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*First Published: Dec 28, 2023, 2:00 pm CST