Why Gen Z Is Out-Tipping Every Other Generation

Posted by Sheena Allen in EconomyDecember 6, 2021(Last Updated December 11, 2022)4 min read
Key Takeaways
  • A recent study released by CreditCards.com showed that people are increasing the amount of tip money they leave for service and retail workers.
  • Out of the four generations that are tipping more, Gen Zers were the ones who were increasing their tip amounts the most.
  • Many Gen Zers know how difficult it is to be working in the service and retail industries, and by increasing the tip amounts, they are looking out for workers in similar situations.
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A survey conducted by CreditCards.com, showed that Gen Zers tip more than previous generations. For example, in the study, it was determined that during the holiday season, 51 percent of Gen Zers tip more, compared to 48 percent of millennials, 43 percent of Gen Xers, and 42 percent of boomers. 


History of Each Generation


Before understanding the reasoning behind why members of Gen Z are more likely to give out higher tips compared to the older generations, it is essential to know the different generations and how they are identified, according to the Pew Research Center. 


Baby Boomer (57 - 75)


Baby Boomers were born between 1946 and 1964 and are the children of those who experienced the Great Recession. As the Great Recession was a financially difficult time for a large portion of the population, many who endured this financial hardship became more careful with their money. According to the CreditCards.com survey, Baby Boomers are the generation with the fewest number of people saying they would increase the amount they tip. 


Gen X (41 - 56)


The generation after the Baby Boomers is Gen X, and this generation’s birth years are between 1965-1980. Many people from the Baby Boomer generation have been influenced by their parents to save money. As a result, during the survey, they had a similar percentage to the Baby Boomers regarding how many of them will be increasing the amount they will be tipping. 


Millennials (25 - 40)


Millennials are members of the generation born between 1981-1996. Similar to Gen Z, many Millennials have worked in the service and retail industries. Due to these reasons, it is speculated that this generation had the second-highest percentage in increasing the dollar amount on tips for workers.


Gen Z (9-24)


Lastly, Gen Zers are the ones who are currently in school and are looking to or already are part of the workforce. Gen Zers are those who were born between 1997-2012. Furthermore, many of this generation have a job in the service or retail industry. Therefore, many of them know the struggles that come with the job, which is why they have the highest percentage of increasing the amount they leave as tips during the holiday season.


Who Are The Tips Going To? 


Many survey respondents stated that they would be increasing their tip levels this holiday season. Based on the survey participants' answers, here are the types of jobs that are expected to receive an increase in tips. 


  • Waitstaff of restaurants is expected to receive a 27 percent increase in tip amounts.
  • Hairstylists and barbers are expected to receive a 19 percent increase in tip amounts.
  • Food delivery drivers are expected to receive a 16 percent increase in tip amounts.
  • Bartenders are expected to receive a 10 percent increase in tip amounts.
  • Coffee shop baristas are expected to receive a 9 percent increase in tip amounts.


Why Gen Z Tips More


When asked about their intentions behind leaving a substantial tip during the holidays, many Gen Zers cited being in the workers’ shoes as their main reason. They explained that as having worked in the service industry, they know the struggles the workers are going through, and leaving behind a large tip is their way of taking care of each other. 


Although a slight increase in their tips may not seem as much, the difference between a small and a big tip determines whether some have enough money to put food on the table. Many Gen Zers stated they have personally experienced this struggle. Therefore, Gen Z has the highest percentage of increasing the dollar amount of tips they pay to ensure others do not end up in a similar situation. 


How To Be Considerate Of Others During the Holiday Season


Not everyone can give out more tips during the holiday season, but that does not mean you cannot take steps to ensure workers in the service and retail industries are treated well.


Treat Everyone Kindly


Everyone is fighting their own battles, and the added stress of the holiday season does not help. If you cannot support these workers financially, make sure you treat them with respect and kindness. In addition, many people in the service and retail industries typically work in high-stress environments. Those working in retail may encounter an increasingly challenging environment, especially during the holidays. Therefore, being considerate of workers is important when doing your holiday shopping. 


Another way you can be considerate to the workers during this holiday season is through social media. If you cannot reward someone for their service towards you financially, use social networking to promote their place of work and help them receive the recognition they deserve. 


The Money Wrap-Up


As the holiday season is the season of giving, it is essential to look out for people who may be in a different position. Therefore, it is crucial to help out those who may need it most, especially during the season of giving. Your small gesture of kindness could have a lasting effect on the person.


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