Tipping Etiquette: Restaurants, Takeout, Fast Casual Restaurants and More

What to tip at a coffee shop

The tipping issue has been a hot topic lately because everywhere we go it seems you we are asked to tip! The good news is that you do not need to tip for every single thing. Our guide to tipping etiquette when it comes to restaurants and grocery delivery orders is here to help! 

Tipping is traditionally based on service and that still applies. When looking at the below amounts, tip on the higher end of the range (or more!) if someone is really polite or goes above and beyond. If we want good service at restaurants we need to reward good service!

A few general “tips” on tipping that also might help avoid panic tipping:

1. Tip on the pre-tax amount.

2. Liken the tipping screen to the mason jar next to the register. How much would you tip if you only had cash? Don’t feel guilty for tipping 50 cents (10%) on a $5.00 coffee.

3. Know before you go! Have an idea of when you want to tip and when you don’t want to (self-service kiosks, for example) to avoid impulse tipping.

4. Consider if the receiver of your tip is paid minimum wage and depend on tips. Wait staff and bar tenders are often minimum wage.  

Please note: many factors go into tipping. Service level, timeliness, friendliness, and our own financial means — and this is meant to simply serve as a guide to take the stress or confusion out of how much to tip in different dining situations. Use your own best judgement in each situation. 

Tipping Etiquette Guide:

Seated Restaurants:

15-20% is considered to be the standard for tipping at a seated restaurant. At a fine-dining establishment, or if you have excellent service, consider tipping more (however much over the standard 20% you feel is appropriate).

Fast Casual Restaurants & Coffee Shops:

You are not obligated to tip. However, if you do choose to tip — perhaps you’re a regular at a neighborhood coffee shop, or you’ve gotten to know the staff at a favorite burger spot — 10-15% is sufficient. For a $10 Starbucks order, $1 is sufficient. But if your drink order is super complicated and takes more time you might want to add a little more! 

Take Out Orders:

Tip 10-15%, as typically a server is packaging takeout orders. And many times these tips are split among servers, bus boys, and kitchen staff.


Tip 15-20% depending on level of service, and how long you’ve been seated. This amount is standard for anyone who receives minimum wage and relies on tips. 

Food Delivery Drivers:

Tip 10-15%, or more for a large or complicated order. Grocery delivery and food delivery service is a luxury service and tip are expected. And remember that a delivery fee is not the same as a tip!

Let us know how you handle restaurant and food delivery tipping below! 

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