Now Even Self-Checkouts Are Asking Us to Tip!?

Here’s a hot new term:  “Tipping fatigue” is when you’re sick of constantly being asked to leave a tip in situations where it used to be considered weird.

The Wall Street Journal just did a big write-up on how we’re even being asked to leave tips at self-checkouts now!

They talked to a few people who’ve recently encountered the prompts.  Here are two examples . . .

1.  Someone bought a $6 bottle of water at a self-checkout kiosk at the Newark airport, and it asked them if they wanted to leave a 10% or 20% tip.  They said it felt like “emotional blackmail.”

2.  A baseball fan grabbed a beer from a self-service fridge at Petco Park in San Diego, and it asked him to leave a tip.  He said he was confused, because he didn’t know who the money was going to , but he still left a 20% tip.

Both organizations said the money DOES go to employees.  But it just feels weird to leave a tip when you didn’t actually interact with any employees.

There are even landlords out there who think THEY should be tipped! (By God, I hope that’s satire).

@twoguystakeonrealestate When you’re paying your landlord the rent and a tipping screen appears… #investmentproperty #realestateinvesting #passiveincome ♬ Cooking Time – Lux-Inspira

I have to say I agree with the emotional blackmail aspect of this. I never used to tip unless I was at a restaurant being served by staff, or other traditional tipping situations. Now, we get asked to tip all over the place. And I usually do! I’ll admit, a lot of why I do is because I would feel guilty if I did not, given how hard it’s been for businesses over the last few years, and I don’t want to look like a cheap skate! “Emotional blackmail” sounds harsh, but it also sounds pretty accurate.

Sure, I could just NOT tip and make a stand, but would that message get through, or would I just look cheap?!

Besides, I don’t mind helping out the employees of my favorite local businesses, even if it’s a bit unconventional. That said, if the tipping option disappeared from POS systems, would I still tip? Probably not…and maybe that’s the real answer to this question.