Should you tip for coffee because a screen asked you to?
If you've ever paid for a coffee with a card you've probably seen the "add tip" screen.
That screen is forcing you to make a choice. Do you tip because you're asked to? Should you tip for caffeine like you would for alcohol? Or do you need to see more than basic service before you fork over something extra?
A viral TikTok video is igniting some fierce debate online after a user tried to shame someone for hitting the "no tip" option on a coffee order.
The video shows a man working his way through the digital payment terminal at a coffee shop. "When he takes you for coffee but doesn't tip," the text-to-speech caption reads, in a post that's tagged with a red flag.
The guy's coffee comes to $3.39 and he's presented with the option of leaving a $1, $2, $3 or custom tip. He hits the "no tip" button several times but for some reason, it doesn't work and he remains stuck on the same screen.
The video didn't show how he resolved the issue, but it was still enough to stir up more than 3.7 million views and some major feelings in the comments.
"Who tips when getting coffee?" read the top reply, which had more than 95,000 likes.
"You have too much money if [you're] tipping for coffee," another user replied. "It's literally just poured from a coffee pot."
A third person simply asked why they should tip at all. "For what ... taking my order?"
"If you think this is a red flag, then YOU ARE the red flag," someone else said.
Others chimed in to support employees in the service industry who've had some major struggles due to the pandemic.
"Guys tip," one person wrote. "It's been an extremely hard year for service workers."
"[I don't care] how broke I am," another woman wrote. "I will always tip as someone who's worked in the food industry."
Many pointed out that the real solution is to fight for workers to get a liveable wage, rather than trying to get them a bit of extra cash through tips at the coffee shop.
"Normalize not tipping and demand your workplace pays you better," one user said.
"Gonna have to start tipping at grocery stores at this point," another wrote.
This article’s left-hand cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.