Restaurateur Michael Miller said servers from other restaurants — some of them out of work themselves — would come into his Tiki’s Grill and Bar in Waikiki to support his staff.
“Everyone knows that waiters tend to overtip other waiters because they know what they are going through, but during the pandemic their tips to their colleagues were bigger than normal, even though the people giving so generously were struggling themselves,” said Miller, director of operations and a partner in the popular restaurant on the second floor of the Aston Waikiki Beach Hotel.
He said some customers have given such huge tips that his servers went back to the table to ask if it had been a mistake.
Tiki’s Grill waiter Colby Harris told me in a phone call about the party of 10 from Texas who tipped him $180 on a prix fixe Thanksgiving dinner. Then, after paying their bill, they ordered another round of drinks and paid him another $200 tip.
“My tip from that one group was almost $400. I was super surprised,” said Harris.