Forever Torn About Tipping

I’m not sure if I’m ever going to feel 100% comfortable with tipping.

It’s not that I don’t necessarily think that the recipients deserve said gratuity (sometimes), but there’s just so many different scenarios – as soon as I think I’ve got them all under wraps, along comes something new to throw me for a loop all over again! Last year, our ginormous road trip had us staying at a lot of hotels that required valet parking, something which I’ve hardly ever had to deal with before, and even one particularly upscale establishment in Washington, DC that basically required the use of the hotel staff for just about anything … including when I wanted a simple, ordinary bucket of ice, which really bugged me, but I got through it just the same.

Today’s situation that I encountered most certainly threw me off guard, namely because I do it all the time and have honestly just never given it a second thought up until now.

Specifically – are you supposed to give a tip when you’re picking up a pizza for carryout at a pizza parlor???

My gut instinct at first was no, but then I remembered that recently I came to terms (thanks to some friendly feedback via Facebook) that it’s still decent to tip a couple of bucks when you pick-up a to-go order from someplace like Chili’s or Applebees or the awesome Chinese place nearby that I don’t indulge in nearly enough these days. The logic there is that the same wait staff normally waiting tables, where people usually tip at, also have to take time to put together the to-go orders as well. And so while I don’t give 15-20% or more like I would for good service sitting down, I still feel justified in adding a couple of bucks to the takeout receipt for their efforts.

Should I be classifying my pizza tipping experiences into this very same bucket?!?!?!

Mind you, I don’t think I’ve ever tipped at the counter for carryout before, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that I shouldn’t be! And I know that technically those credit card machines just spit out receipts with the Tip line on them because the restaurant is setup to do them for everybody … but what if there’s a handful of people/suckers who do give a tip for carryout orders simply because there’s a line on the slip to do so?

Help me, Internet! I don’t mind tipping for good service, but I also don’t want to be taken like a fool with an open wallet…

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