Fair tips for waiting staff

Fair Tips logo 2018It's been over two years since the former business secretary, Sajid Javid said these words at the launch of the government consultation into restaurant tipping abuses in May 2016. Unite hailed it as a massive, rightful victory for working people. 

But 730 days later (and counting!) nothing has been done! (The consultation closed on 27 June 2016). Rogue bosses are still finding new loopholes to exploit. Workers are still being cheated out of their tips!  

Take action

Help us, finally, get justice for workers and customers alike. Please email your MP, asking them to put pressure on the government to take action on tips and publish its report!   

It's quick and easy -we've drafted a message, simply copy and paste it into the message box, enter your postcode in the form below to find your MP and press send. And please watch and share our film below! 

Tip in cash...

A cash tip is more likely to go to the person that served you. They will than make sure back of house staff get a  fair share! 

Email your MP to demand #FairTips

Please use this sample text to demand that your MP tells business secretary Greg Clarke to end the delay in #FairTips for restaurant and hospitality workers. Go to to email your MP - just make sure you include your postcode and your name and email address - and get your friends to email them too.
It has been over two years since the former business secretary, Sajid Javid, launched a consultation into tipping abuses, with the words ‘tips should go to workers, not employers.’
I couldn’t agree more, so why after two years has nothing been done? 
The consultation closed on the 27 June 2016, yet despite all the promises to crackdown on the worst practices in the UK hospitality, workers are still being forced to hand over some or all of their tips and customers are no clearer on who is actually getting their tips. 
There is one thing that is clear, industry self-regulation has failed. What now needs to be done to eliminate the confusion around tips is for the government to legislate to make clear that 100% of tips left by customers for staff, belong to staff with no deductions or meddling by management. 
I am urging you as my MP to ask Greg Clark, the secretary of state for Business, Energy, Innovation and Skills (BEIS) to publish the consultation into tips, gratuities, cover and service charges. 
Yours sincerely,

What else you can do to help

You see the problem is that tips paid on a credit card and service charges are the property of the employer. As they own them they can do what they like with them. So until staff are given 100% ownership rights over their hard earned tips with complete control over how they are shared out, rogue employers will continue to cream off staff tips.
  • Please tip in cash - leaving cash means the whole amount will go to the person that served you. They will then make sure to share with back of house staff!
  • Confused by the service charge? You don't have to pay it. Ask for this to be removed & leave cash instead 
  • Share your story- Fed up of your employer taking a slice of your hard-earned tips? Tell us about it.
  • Work in the hospitality sector? Then we want to hear from you. Contact us. Get organised with Unite on your side 
  • Follow Unite's hospitality branch on Facebook and Twitter using #FairTips 
  • Not in a union?The join Unite - Your union. You voice
  • Confused by tipping? Read our Fair Tips Guide

Our story....

Unite has been exposing rip-off tipping practices in the hospitality industry since 2008. In May 2015 we turned the heat up on Pizza Express over the 8 per cent so-called 'admin fee' it was taking from staff tips paid on a card.
We won at Pizza Express! Our summer of campaigning sparked a massive media blitz. The huge public backlash forced many more restaurant chains to abandon their unfair tipping policies - it even prompted the government to act with the launch of its consultation! But here we are over two years later (the consultation closed on the 27 June 2016) and still nothing has been done! Rogue bosses are still getting away with keeping hold of staff tips or taking them away from one group of low waged workers, (who had come to rely on them) and giving them to another, instead of paying them a wage they can live on. 

Beware of the scams!

  Employers hold onto staff tips in all kinds of ways, often without customers' knowledge including:

1. Charging a fee - employers taking a cut from customer tips paid on a credit or debit card as an administration fee. Typically between 8%-15%.

2. Charging waiters to work - deducting a percentage of between 2%-3% from waiting staff table sales. If staff don't make enough money in tips to cover the levy, then it comes out of their wages.

3. Employers pocketing entire or hefty chunk of the 'optional' service charge that increasing numbers of restaurants are automatically adding to customer bills, instead of giving it to staff. Typically between 10%-15%.

4. Using tips and service charge payments to cover the cost of breakages, till shortages, customers doing a runner, paying credit card transaction fees or quite simply to boost their own profits. They could even be used to boost senior managers' wages.

5. Bogus tronc schemes - a properly run tronc scheme - a pooling system used by employers to distribute non-cash tips to employees -should be genuinely independent, free from employer interference and involve staff. But many aren't - too often staff get no say in how non-cash tips and service charge are shared out or who gets a share.

Fair Tips film

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