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Why a Kentucky Restaurant Eliminated Tipping

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Photos: Packhouse Meats/Facebook

A Kentucky restaurant has banned diners from tipping its servers. According to the Cincinnati Enquirer, when Packhouse Meats owner Bob Conway opened the restaurant in January, he prohibited tipping because he believes it "takes advantage of the servers." To compensate for a lack of tips, Conway has implemented a system where servers earn either $10 an hour or 20 percent of their individual food sales per shift, depending on which is higher. There's even a large image on the floor of the restaurant depicting the policy that features a hand with a fingertip cut off (get it) and "No Tipping" in large red letters underneath. Even the credit card receipts do not have lines for tips. Conway notes that this approach offers servers "reasonable compensation based on sales" and "takes the whim of the customers out of it."

Conway says he got "pummeled" on Yelp for his no tipping policy. While a few note that they like the system, other customers believe it results in poor service. Yelper Steve K. writes that the "no tipping concept" results in "no incentive to provide good service" at the restaurant. Other customers point out that even though tipping is technically banned many servers have been accepting cash tips anyway. Yelper Alyssa F. called the concept "less of a policy and more of a convenience for the business owner" noting that her server "explained that the credit card machine they have doesn't have a way to add a tip on after the transaction, but that she could accept a cash tip."

Packhouse Meats is one of several restaurants across the country looking for a way around tipping servers. Restaurants like Brand 158 in LA and Sushi Yasuda in NYC, and even Smoke and Water in Canada have eliminated tipping all together. It appears that even more restaurants will also be tip free in the future: Major chefs and restaurateurs like Danny Meyer, Tom Colicchio, and David Chang have also publicly noted that they have considered eliminating tipping. Other restaurants like Next in Chicago and Alma in LA have skirted the issue all together by implementing a ticketing system that includes the tip in the price.

· Why Newport Restaurant has 'No Tipping' Policy [Cincinnati Enquirer]
· Packhouse Meats [Yelp]
· All Tipping Coverage on Eater [-E-]

Packhouse Meats

1004 Monmouth St Newport, KY 41071