Q: A regular client has offered to have me and two other employees in the firm go to lunch ‘on him’ as a holiday gift. He will not accompany us, but has told me to let him know when we are going, and he will make arrangements with the restaurant to pay the bill. I feel that we should pay the tip, since we are the ones who are receiving the service, but the other two disagree with me. Should we pay the tip, or leave it for the giver to include it when he pays the bill?
A: Since the client made the arrangements with the restaurant for paying the bill, you should inquire if his payment includes the tip. If it does, you aren’t obligated to tip but certainly may add to the tip if you feel you received exceptional service. If not, it would be appropriate for the three of you to leave a tip.