With everyone's busy schedule most people go out to dinner fairly frequently. According to Katie Bogue a registered dietitian at the University of San Diego "Americans eat out an average of 4-5 times a week." It amazes me with this frequency, people still scratch there head in puzzlement when trying to figure out how much money to leave as a tip. I might be unfairly judgmental, having spent many years as a waiter myself, but tipping your waiter can be easily calculated in your head.

In the United States it is customary to tip between 15%-20% of the total bill. I tend to tip 20% because I know what it's like to work for tips. If someone does a horrible job, I will leave them 15%, and in extreme catastrophic situations I have been known to leave even less. By using the method below you should be able to accurately calculate the waiters tip in a few seconds:

1. Round to whole dollars

If your bill is $56.13, just think of it as $56. If if your bill is $56.63, think of it as $57.

2. Find 10%

Finding 10% of any number is as simple as moving the decimal place one digit to the left. 10% of $42 is $4.20. 10% of $127 is $12.70.

3A. Double for 20%,

If 10% of your bill is $4.20 than 20% is $8.40. If your total bill is $33, than 20% would be $6.60. I try to encourage a people to tip 20% when the service is good, and because it's easy to calculate. Tips can also be rounded up to the nearest dollar if you don't want to deal with change.

3.b Add Half for 15%

If the service was bad, and 15% is more suitable. Find 10% and add an additional half. If 10% of the bill is $4.20, than add $2.10 to equal $6.30. $6.30 is equal to 15% of the bill. Here is an example to further clarify:

Example:

The bill is $122.13.

$122 x 10% = $12.20

$122 x 20% = $12.20 + $12.20 =

__$24.40__

or

$122 x 15% = $12.20 + $6.10 =

__$18.30__

If you want to get more complicated you can split the difference. Suppose a 20% tip is $12 and the a 15% tip is $9 you depending on the service you could leave $10 or $11 to more accurately depict their performance. Comment on how much you tend to tip or other methods you may use.

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