Joe’s Crab Shack gives no-tipping a try

Joe's Crab Shack experimenting with no tipping

AMHERST, N.Y. (WIVB)- Restaurant chain Joe’s Crab Shack is following suit of a New York City restaurateur, and experimenting with no tipping.

Joe’s Crab Shack is doing away with the practice at 18 of its national stores, but none in New York at this point.

The thought behind it? It’s no longer the customer’s job to pay a living wage, it’s the restaurant’s.

The locations that have implemented this policy on a trial-run basis are starting off servers at $12 per hour; experienced ones make as much as $17 per hour, said a company spokesperson.

According to Restaurant Business, the wage hike will raise prices by as much as 15 percent, but a company spokesperson said in the long run, it will lower customer spending, especially for those who are more generous with their tipping and leave 20 or 25 percent.

News 4 asked Western New Yorkers what they thought.

“Yes! It is an old fashioned idea that should be put to rest ASAP. People should earn a true wage, no matter their job,” said Debbie Caruana via Facebook.

Robert Caple posted  “I think if they do away with tipping people are still going to do it.”

Jamie Joy posted “People better be ready for a major increase in prices then, for a restaurant to pay waitresses at least min. wage and then get raises as well, prices will continue to go up…”

The no tipping policy puts servers in line with Gov. Cuomo’s suggested $15 per hour minimum wage. Republican Sen. John Flanagan did not endorse that wage hike proposal, and said Tuesday he predicts a compromise. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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