Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Danny Meyer on tipping: It's a broken system

Danny Meyer, head of the New York City-based Union Square Hospitality Group LLC, set off a nationwide conversation last week when he announced that he planned to do away with tipping at his 13 full-service operations.

Numerous restaurants across the country add standard service charges of around 18 percent to 20 percent, particularly for larger parties, to their checks, and a few restaurants, such as Alinea in Chicago and Lazy Bear in San Francisco, have done away with traditional reservations and have switched to all-inclusive, non-refundable tickets. Meyer is taking a different approach by raising menu prices and telling his customers that “hospitality” is included in the price.

“I’m not waging a campaign on behalf of our entire industry. I’m doing what I think is right for our company,” Meyer told Nation’s Restaurant News. However, Meyer clearly hopes to change the way full-service restaurants compensate their employees. In fact, he said for his plan to work, his staff needs to love the new system, more guests have to come through his doors, and other restaurateurs need to come on board.

More from Nation’s Restaurant News

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