service industry

12 Stories

Why an NYC Restaurant Pays Servers $25 an Hour

And why some restaurants are abandoning tipping

(Newser) - With many big cities upping the minimum wage, restaurant owners have to contend with higher labor costs—which has led some to abandon the practice of tipping in favor of raising menu prices or adding a mandatory service fee. At Dirt Candy, a Manhattan eatery, a 20% administrative fee is... More »

Portland Woman Wants $100K for Bad V-Day Service

Having made reservations for 2, she tried to dine alone on Valentine's Day

(Newser) - Was it bad service, bad timing, or blatant racism? Either way, Kathleen Hampton, a self-described small-business owner, is suing Enzo's Caffe Italiano in Portland, Ore., for $100,000 for the way she was treated on Valentine's Day, reports the Oregonian . Having made reservations for two, but arriving alone... More »

How You're Coming Across to Your Waiter

Restaurants increasingly training waiters to 'read' tables

(Newser) - Gone are the days of, "Hi, my name is Tom and I'll be your server tonight." Restaurants are increasingly moving toward a less scripted approach, teaching waiters how to "read" tables and subtly mold their service to fit each individual group. The Wall Street Journal offers... More »

We're All JetBlue Attendants Now

Shift to a service economy has left us ticked off

(Newser) - America has become a country of harassed JetBlue attendants longing to pull the emergency chute and tell everybody to go to hell, writes Peggy Noonan. Steven Slater's story has struck a chord with the public because the shift to a service economy combined with a decline in manners has left... More »

How to Tip Like a Local

Rules vary by country, region, scenario

(Newser) - Sure, you’ve mastered tipping etiquette in the good old US of A. But what happens when you go abroad? Not only do tipping rules vary by country, they also vary by region and scenario. Condé Nast Traveler has you covered with a new tipping guide. Highlights:
  • Dubai: You can
... More »

'Insourcing' Is Recession's DIY Buzzword

From hairdressing to gardening, 'insourcing' is hot

(Newser) - The recession is prompting Americans to forgo luxuries—and that means doing for themselves what they would once have paid someone else to do, the Washington Post reports. Starter sewing-kit sales have soared 30%; landscapers are losing business; customers are forsaking salons to dye their own hair. The trend is... More »

Slowdown Scraps Busboy Jobs

Dishes pile up as servers are forced to do double duty

(Newser) - Plates are piling up on restaurant tables across America as full-service eateries seek to save cash by axing busboys, reports the Wall Street Journal. Servers take food orders, then scramble to clear tables, fill bread baskets, scrape plates and perform all the other tasks once done by bussers. The change... More »

Waiter Serves It Up in Tell-All

Behind the scenes at a New York bistro

(Newser) - A waiter known for grumbling about his work online has now recounted his misadventures in a book, Waiter Rant. Steve Dublanica tells Bloomberg about its highlights: runaway rodents, crazed customers, and his background in the mental health field. "Dealing with rabidly insane psychopaths is perfect training for dealing with... More »

Service Sector Sees First-Hand the Economy's Tipping Point

Tough times making for less generous patrons

(Newser) - Restaurants across the country have been dealing with shrinking dinner rushes as the economy slows, a trend that's hit their waitstaffs flush in the wallet. Though exact figures are tough to come by, anecdotal evidence suggests tips are falling, the Los Angeles Times reports—a big problem for the third-largest... More »

Guests Want It All at Lux Hotels

Rising prices, competition, encourage heroic feats of service

(Newser) - Luxury hotels don't bat an eye at charging $500 a night, and guests are responding with increasingly zany requests, W reports. Concierges, once downright neglected by the average customer, are now routinely tasked with the impossible: Deliver an unspecified amount of breast milk, or procure a rub-down for a dog.... More »

Soaring Costs Force Workers Out of Key West

Few remain to service the island's tourists and millionaires

(Newser) - High Key West housing costs are sparking an exodus of residents and leaving the island's tourists with too few people to serve them, the Los Angeles Times reports. Some 2,000 workers have fled in the past 7 years, a crushing blow to a county that houses 75,000 residents... More »

Service Sector Records Shocking Contraction

January stats fan recession fears

(Newser) - US service industries took a staggering and unexpected plunge in January, contracting at a pace not seen since the last recession. In today’s non-manufacturing report, which leaked nearly an hour early, the index plummeted from 54.4 to 41.9, far more than the 53 analysts forecast. Stocks fell... More »

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