I happen to find and carry around a lot of loose change (the lowest denomination especially abundant) and frequently dispose of it in favor of coins more usable in vending machines, using cash purchases rather than coin counting machines as the medium of conversion. Unfortunately this habit does not seem to be commonplace at sit-down restaurants, if yesterday’s lunch at TGI Friday’s was any indication. As a general question, I would like to know which of the following procedures best approximates the expectations of restaurant waitstaff for cash payments of the bill. If the answer varies from restaurant to restaurant, please indicate the class of establishments for which your reply is valid.
[ul][li]Customer receives bill, counts out bills and coins to pay it. Server comes to collect payment, returns with change, if necessary. Customer thanks server and leaves the appropriate gratuity on the table upon exit. (Note the similarity between this method and the more common procedure for credit card payment, or even the procedure for tipping a hair stylist after a haircut.)[/li]Customer receives bill, decides how much gratuity to add, and pays both the tip and the cost of the meal in one lump sum when the server comes to collect the money.[/ul]