America's Best (and Worst) Tippers

Jan 14, 2016, 07:13 ET from Lavu, Inc.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., Jan. 14, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- 2015 has come and gone, and with the no-tip movement generating what seems like a headline every day, it sounds as though the custom of tipping in restaurants may be on its way out as well. In reality, the no-tip movement is practiced only in a handful of restaurants and tipping contributes billions of dollars to the economy each year. 

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Thousands of employees rely on the generosity of tippers to make ends meet, which inspired us to look at the tipping habits of Americans. The chart below pulls dining transaction data from thousands of restaurants across the U.S. that used Lavu's iPad point of sale system in 2015. 

While informative, these overall tipping statistics don't tell the whole story. People tend to apply different tipping standards to each type of establishment. For example, some people still apply a 20% tip rule at coffee shops, while others tip a nominal amount every time, and some nothing at all. To get a feel for the truly generous, we split our data into three categories: restaurants, bar/lounge and coffee shop.

We know that everyone has their own set of rules for tipping in restaurants. Some tip the same percent every time, while others base the amount on the level of service they received. After combing through the data we decided to take a look at America's favorite rivalry: East Coast vs. West Coast. It's fitting that the region which brought tipping to America would be the most generous. New Englanders were the top tippers in two of the four categories and thumped the west coast by over 1% in the average, tableside and tab categories. The east coast completely falls off when it comes to coffee tips, allowing the west coast a solitary win.

Some states, such as Oklahoma, which was top 10 in every category (21.17%, 23.96%, 20.68%), are consistently good tippers regardless of the service type. Utah is also very consistent, but on the other side of the spectrum as their averages of 18.66%, 13.82% and 14.09% place them near the bottom of each category. Wisconsinites' generosity appears to be dependent on the service type, as their tips are near the low-end for restaurant and bar tabs, but jump to the top for coffee shops. 

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SOURCE Lavu, Inc.