About 88% of Star Online poll respondents say they don't want a service charge to be imposed on them when they dine at restaurants.
Out of the 1,761 respondents, 1,552 voted for the service charge to be scrapped.
However, in the same survey, when asked if they would prefer to tip workers, only 60% or 1,058 responded ‘yes’.
Most respondents shared the same view that tipping would encourage better services and the amount could vary depending on the level of service rendered.
Many felt despite paying the 10% service charge, they still received poor service at eateries.
“Tips are not fixed. At least we can decide how much we would want to tip based on the quality of the service,” said a respondent.
Many also said that Malaysian customers were not big or habitual tippers and never will be.
A respondent said the 10% service charge must be abolished since the seller would have taken into account the overall profit.
However, the same respondent said given a choice between tips or 10% service charge, the absolute 10% service was better rather than arbitrary tipping.
“The amount of tips varied among the consumers, hence naturally it will affect the service quality of the service providers.
“There is a high possibility that the richer customers would tip handsomely, and thus receive ‘better’ treatment. This will lead to double standards and favouritism,” said the respondent.
Many respondents also shared the same sentiment that service staff in Malaysia earned a pittance and without service charge, they would earn a lower basic salary.
Respondents suggested that the Government carry out better enforcement to regulate and enforce the existing laws to protect the service industry staff and ensure they received what was due to them.
StarMetro reader Allan Fernandez said the tip jar sounded great in theory, but the tipping culture would be difficult to inculcate and enforcement would be tough.
“Is it justifiable for an employer to pay one category of employees less simply because they receive tips from customers? And if they don’t, is it fair to the other employees that work just as hard with no tips?
“Interestingly, why is it an issue now when the service charge has been around for decades?” said Fernandez.
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