Read as much as you want on BostonGlobe.com, anywhere and anytime, for just 99¢.

For waitstaff, 20 percent is the new 15

Imagine, for a second, that every job’s salary is determined by a tip. How much would people tip the car mechanic, a child’s teachers, the Red Sox? It’s likely that service (and maybe even games won) would improve. But who would want to put up with that kind of pressure to make a living?

Luckily, most people don’t have to worry about giving perfect service in order to earn a salary. And people only enjoy the privilege of determining someone else’s income on a few occasions: most commonly, when they dine out, like most Americans do an average of nearly five times a week. Fifteen percent has long been considered a healthy tip for waiters, but many now say they expect closer to 20 percent for satisfactory service. Meanwhile diners are trying to cut down on check costs. That makes a tricky situation for servers, who are 9 percent of the state’s workforce.

Your comment is subject to the rules of our Posting Policy

This comment may appear on your public profile. Public Profile FAQ

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week