Tips? No Thanks!

Here’s a tip for your trip: don’t tip.

On April 1st, Viamede is going tip-free. The reasons for this are many and various, from fairness across departments to a more consistent and transparent price for our guests.

When we get great service at the dentist, the mechanic’s shop, or from an accountant, we don’t tip. We tell our friends and use that business again and again in the future. We think the same should be true of hotels and restaurants – we want you to tell everyone how great of a time you had, and to come back.

You see, there is a whole team of people who contribute to your experience, but you may only meet your server. Consider the cook who made your meal, the dishwasher who made sure your wine glass was sparkling, and the runner who helped bring plates to your table. These wonderful people play a part in ensuring your meal is amazing, but tips are usually heavily influenced by the performance of the server. The earnings of the behind-the-scenes staff is somewhat reliant on a part of the dining experience that they don’t have much control over. And that’s not really fair.

Tipping also isn’t really fair to the guest – when a price tag says $10, it should cost $10. (Well, except taxes, but I’m not sure Viamede’s ready to stand up to the CRA. We love you, auditors!) Guests shouldn’t have to get out slide rules and actuarial tables to figure out our staff’s income.

So, we’re getting rid of all that. Any price you see, just add the tax and that’s your total. The sticker prices are going up a tiny bit to make up the difference, but since there’s no tip, it works out about the same as before. As part of this change, we are raising the wages of all staff by several dollars per hour.

No tipping means a fairer system to our servers, our other staff, and to our guests. Happy staff, happy guests, happy vacation!