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Who uses tips as a reward for service and when? An examination of potential moderators of the service–tipping relationship

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  • Lynn, Michael
  • Jabbour, Patrick
  • Kim, Woo Gon

Abstract

Consumers in many countries often give voluntary payments of money (tips) to the workers who have served them. These tips are supposed to be a reward for service and research indicates that they do increase with customers’ perceptions of service quality. This paper contributes to the service–tipping literature by examining numerous potential moderators of this relationship in two studies. Results indicate that the service–tipping relationship is robust across meal type, day of week, sex and race of server as well as customers’ alcohol consumption, education, income, race, worship frequency, and hospitality work experience, but that it is stronger for older consumers than for younger ones and for parties with large bills than for parties with smaller bills. The practical and theoretical implications of these and other findings are discussed.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Psychology.

Volume (Year): 33 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 90-103

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Handle: RePEc:eee:joepsy:v:33:y:2012:i:1:p:90-103

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/joep

Related research

Keywords: Tipping; Service; Relative thinking; Social norms; Service industry;

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References

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  1. Azar, Ofer H., 2005. "Incentives and Service Quality in the Restaurant Industry: The Tipping – Service Puzzle," MPRA Paper 4457, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2006.
  2. Azar, Ofer H., 2011. "Do people think about absolute or relative price differences when choosing between substitute goods?," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 450-457, June.
  3. Ofer H. Azar, 2007. "Do people tip strategically, to improve future service? Theory and evidence," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 40(2), pages 515-527, May.
  4. Saunders, Stephen G. & Lynn, Michael, 2010. "Why tip? An empirical test of motivations for tipping car guards," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 106-113, February.
  5. Azar, Ofer H., 2011. "Business strategy and the social norm of tipping," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 515-525, June.
  6. Azar, Ofer H., 2007. "Relative thinking theory," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 1-14, February.
  7. Lynn, Michael & McCall, Michael, 2000. "Gratitude and gratuity: a meta-analysis of research on the service-tipping relationship," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 203-214.
  8. David L. Dickinson & Jill Tiefenthaler, 2002. "What Is Fair? Experimental Evidence," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 69(2), pages 414-428, October.
  9. Conlin, Michael & Lynn, Michael & O'Donoghue, Ted, 2003. "The norm of restaurant tipping," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 297-321, November.
  10. Ofer H. Azar, 2004. "Optimal Monitoring with External Incentives: The Case of Tipping," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 71(1), pages 170-181, July.
  11. Garbarino, Ellen C & Edell, Julie A, 1997. " Cognitive Effort, Affect, and Choice," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(2), pages 147-58, September.
  12. Ofer H. Azar, 2003. "The implications of tipping for economics and management," Others 0309002, EconWPA.
  13. Kahneman, Daniel & Knetsch, Jack L & Thaler, Richard, 1986. "Fairness as a Constraint on Profit Seeking: Entitlements in the Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 728-41, September.
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Cited by:
  1. Lynn, Michael & Flynn, Sean Masaki & Helion, Chelsea, 2013. "Do consumers prefer round prices? Evidence from pay-what-you-want decisions and self-pumped gasoline purchases," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 96-102.

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