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Tips on tipping: How much and to whom

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Nearly 52,000 people work in food services in Austin. Waiters and bartenders make up most of those jobs, and for the most part they make less than minimum wage. Surviving solely on the tips they earn from you.

FOX 7 found just by talking to people on the street that many don't know exactly how much to tip.

Those in the food industry say 15 to 20% is the standard and that should be based on the total bill, not the amount before tax.

As one could probably imagine, tips can range from anywhere to zero to 100%. Nick Fazio is a bartender and waiter at the Old Pecan Street Cafe in downtown Austin. He says one mistake can cost you.

"The worst tip was nothing. I just forgot a guy's side salad by accident. Big deal I guess for him. Enough to make a scuff about it and walk out rudely," he said.

But it's not just those who serve food and beverages that rely on tips. Tim Birdwell is part time pastor who also owns

He and his friend 'Bear' see each other a few times a week for half hour walks. It's just enough time for Bear to stretch his legs and take care of business, and for Birdwell to make a little cash.

"$18 for a 30 minute visit," he said.

While Birdwell says he never asks for a tip, he says most customers add one in.

"The clients that have been with me longer that have seen the service and appreciate it and know it's quality and those people to tend to tip more than the new. They're kind of feeling it out for a little bit," said Birdwell.

According to there are certain services one should always tip for...

Valet parking $1 to $5

Hotel concierge--$2 to $10

Flower delivery--$5

Furniture delivery--$5 to $10

Hairstylist—15% to 20%

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