Are restaurants in northern New York and Vermont forcing French-speaking Quebecers to pay more because they are lousy tippers? The weekly magazine 7 Days and the Montreal Gazette say yes.
At least two eateries admit they allow servers to add an automatic gratuity on the bills of diners who appear to be Québecois. Why? Because Canadians are presumed to be bad tippers. A few local servers even have a nickname for the surcharge: They call it the “Queeb tax.”
The Montreal Gazette picked up on this story and found restaurant owners in Burlington and Plattsburgh, some of them speaking on condition of anonymity, who acknowledged that sometimes Quebecois get singled out.
“A few times a week, we get tables that will eat for $100 and leave, like, three bucks or $5. And 100 per cent of the time for stuff like that, it’s French Canadians. Not all French Canadians do that, definitely not, but when it happens it’s always French Canadians. Basically, it’s large bills that get loose change as a tip.”
Ouch. Maybe Quebec diners don’t realize that servers on our side of the border earn peanuts and don’t usually have health insurance or other benefits?
What do you think? Is the anti-Quebec tourist grumbling that we hear so often justified? Visitors from across the border drive a lot of our prosperity.