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Average Canadian tips at going rate

Average Canadian tips at going rate

After dining on an especially tasty meal or experiencing high-quality customer service, it's customary to tip servers for their efforts, the amounts of which provide plenty of currency, including polymer notes, for money counters. For the most part, Canadians are sure to leave a little something on the table before they depart. But how much they leave varies considerably, according to polling conducted last summer.

Most tip 11 per cent to 15 per cent

A solid majority of Canadians (54 per cent) tip between 11 per cent and 15 per cent of their meal's overall price, Maclean's reported, based on a survey the publication conducted last June. But 1 in 5 typically reach deeper into their pockets when service is impeccable, tipping an average of between 16 per cent and 19 per cent.

How much do servers think they ought to be tipped? Much like restaurant patron's tip inclinations, their answers vary.

"Customers should tip on the service they receive," Caitlin McCarthy, a pub server from Regina, Saskatchewan, told Maclean's. "If I only did an OK job, then 10 per cent. If you were happy with my service and you think I did a great job, or I made your night more enjoyable, then I would recommend 15 to 25 per cent."

With the economy on firmer footing, many Canadians have extra cash to spend. The typical employee in Canada makes around $1,000 per week, according to the most recent earnings report from Statistics Canada. That's an increase of approximately 2.3 per cent compared to the same month in 2016. Canadians are also working longer, averaging 33 hours per week from 32.8 last year.

Minimum wage levels are higher

The discussion of how much to tip is rather germane to the current economic environment as several provinces have implemented changes in their minimum wage rates. In Ontario, for instance, the minimum wage rose to $14 per hour as of Jan. 1. It's due to rise again in 2019, moving to $15. Waiters and waitresses frequently earn minimum wage, due in part to the tips they receive.

However, with restaurant owners spending more on personnel, some are offsetting these cost increases by raising the price of their menu items. Food prices climbed 2.3 per cent in January, Statistics Canada reported, the biggest year-over-year uptick in nine months.

As the year progresses, and restaurateurs and customers adjust to price changes, restaurant cash counters may end up processing elevated amounts of currency, including polymer notes.