Customers Are Being Asked To Tip Even At Self Check-Out – And They Are Not Happy

The rise of digital self-checkout kiosks in cafés, sports stadiums, and airports is causing frustration among customers who are being asked to give tips to machines.

According to a report by The Wall Street Journal, many customers are confused by tip prompts on machines where they have had no interaction with workers. Although some people are willing to pay extra fees, the majority are unsure where the money is going.

One customer in San Diego was asked to tip when he took a beer from a self-service beer fridge at Petco Park. “I was confused because it wasn’t entirely clear who I was tipping,” he said. A spokesperson for the stadium clarified that all tips went to employees.

Another Newark Liberty International Airport traveler was prompted to include a tip on a $6 bottle of water. The customer did not tip, calling it a “bit of emotional blackmail.” A spokesperson for the airport gift shop explained that all tips were pooled and paid out to the staff members working that shift.

The debate over tipping has been increasingly controversial, with many Americans experiencing “tipping fatigue” due to inflation and the expectation to tip at more places. However, tipping is still prevalent, with total tips received by full-service and quick-service restaurants up in the fourth quarter of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021.

As digital self-checkout kiosks become more common, businesses need to clarify their tipping policies and ensure that customers understand where their money is going. Moreover, the debate over tipping in the US shows no sign of slowing down, with many questioning the expectation to tip in various situations.

Ultimately, it is up to each individual customer to decide whether or not to tip, but it is important for businesses to make the tipping process as clear and straightforward as possible.

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