If your server does any of these, they're probably trying to get a 20% tip

@haileyy.lynnnn/TikTok BearFotos/ShutterStock (Licensed)

‘All of these could go so wrong’: Server shares what secret things she does to get customers to tip 20%

'My dad would eat all of these up.'


Jack Alban


Posted on Feb 11, 2024   Updated on Feb 14, 2024, 12:51 pm CST

We’ve all probably come across servers who rattle comments that are seemingly off the cuff. Oftentimes, these zingers are “bits” that they use as a means of connecting with guests to entertain themselves at work or in the hopes of securing a better tip.

Restaurant server and TikTok user Hailey (@hailey.lynnnn) uploaded a viral clip that’s garnered over 1.1 million views as of Sunday where she shared some of her favorite bits. The TikTok kicked off a wave of other food service industry workers who commented their own personal favorites.

“These are my server bits that get me an immediate 20% tip,” she begins. “Number one: ‘Oh, you need some more ranch? Yeah, let me go grab that for you real quick.’ I come back, they’re praying…as soon as they’re done praying, set that on the table. [I tell them] ‘Your prayers have been answered.'”

Her second “bit” is if a guest is a veteran, she thanks them for their service and hits them with: “‘I promise my service will be excellent today as well.’ When I tell you 25% easy.”

Another bit she pulls with church folk is when she offers margaritas and they decline since the customers just came back from church.

“Well, Jesus drank wine,” she tells them, adding that the line gets her a 30% tip.

The last two she shares are commenting that an empty plate must’ve meant the customer “hated” the food, earning her some laughs. Finally, anytime someone says they want a water, “I’ll grab that water on the rocks for you right now,” she says she tells them.

She further explained in the caption for her video, writing, “These are honestly just glorified dad jokes.”

So it’s no wonder so many of Hailey’s diners, upon seeing her attempting to lighten the mood, leave her a gratuity she’s happy with.

@haileyy.lynnnn these are honestly just glorified dad jokes #greenscreen #serverlife #serverbits #tips #resturantlife ♬ original sound – Hailey&lt3

This idea is further supplanted in an Indeed article that shares some ways food industry service workers can expect to create a pleasant atmosphere for guests.

In the piece, “maintain[ing] friendly professionalism,” was at the top of the list, stating that while ensuring all customer guests are being taken care of, keeping a jovial, upbeat attitude is the mark of a great service at a restaurant.

The article also extolled the benefits of “communicat[ing] authentically,” something that Hailey appears to be doing by relaying a bunch of jokes she personally finds hilarious, and “greet[ing] customers with enthusiasm,” which is pretty much implied with the approach she’s adopted in making people laugh.

This isn’t the first time that servers have hopped on social media to share the “bits” that they engage in during their shifts to better connect with customers.

One waitress went viral after sharing some of her own recurring talking points/quips with customers, as did this Hooters server who detailed her own favorite prompts.

And then some servers have found that even changing aspects of their physical appearance, like putting their hair in pigtails while on the job, has increased the amount of money that they earn in tips by a significant amount.

Viewers had varying opinions on the bits Hailey shared in her TikTok.

“All of these could go so wrong,” one person said, seemingly thinking that not everyone would find her commentary charming or funny.

Another person thought that the prayer remark she makes is a high-risk/high-reward move, writing, “Your prayers have been answered is sending me bc I’m thinking about how wrong it could go with the wrong table.”

Hailey admitted that yes, she has dropped this line on tables before and folks were not entertained at all. “IT HAS i just laugh it off,” she wrote.

And then some had their bits they shared with other TikTokers online.

“Also with a table of older ladies ‘y’all staying out of trouble tonight?’ They eat it up,” one wrote.

Someone else replied, “The best is asking old people if it’s a first date, then they get to say their little love story.”

From the customer’s perspective, there was a viewer who shared the line a server told them that they hadn’t forgotten for a very, very long time.

“A server told me ‘here’s your complementary glacier cocktail’ when he he handed me my water at Olive Garden in about 2009,” they said. “I still think about it.”

The Daily Dot has reached out to Hailey via email for further comment.

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*First Published: Feb 11, 2024, 2:00 pm CST