Thursday, 6 November 2008

14.99 = 15.00 ?


What is the default facial expression that you’d receive from ANY employee in Jordan if:

1. Your bill was 1.5JD and you paid him a paper of 50JD waiting to give you back the 48.5JD change?

2. The price of an item is 14,99JD and you paid him exactly 14,99 not 15JD??

3. You asked the waiter to give you back the 2JD change without leaving any tip behind after having  a delicious meal at any respectful restaurant??!!! 

Of course if the employee was someone patient and he doesn’t usually say it direct in the face, he will only give you this bothered shocked angry blaming facial expression that is telling you ARE YOU CRAZY??!!!

Yes, it is WELL-KNOWN that we shouldn’t bother employees to look for 48.5JD change in order to give it back to us. Also, 14,99  ALWAYS means 15, who said that there is something on earth called 14,99!!! Or you had a delicious meal and you don’t even care to give this little tiny tip for the person who served you??? What a shame!!!!

These are what I’ve always thought as the default rules, or the least thing we can do as a social etiquette. And people who do such things deserve such a reaction. But for my cultural shock, the first thing I’ve learned when I came here to Japan is that those rules DO NOT apply. A client is always honored and whatever he does he should be always thanked and appreciated.

199 yen really mean 199 not 200 yen. So you should always wait for the employee to give you back your ONE and only YEN without forgetting the wide smile and the many thanks you will receive from him/her! I remember that my husband laughed out loud when I told him I want to leave the 10-yen change, it doesn’t really count as we always say for the employee it’s for you!! I discovered that if you did, the employee wouldn’t really understand what you mean!! It’s your right and you should take it.

You don’t have to be worried if you entered a taxi cab or a market for having a 10000 yen paper (almost 100$) and paying only 800 yen or even 110 yen (around 1$), on the contrary, the employee will apologize for making you wait to give you back the change!

Also, tips in Japan never exist, you only pay for what you eat and staff is meant to serve you respectfully in order to make you satisfied!!

Well, it is a cultural shock but the basic rule says 1+1=2, so in Japan it is never considered rude to say it is TWO.. (^_^*)



Kanji_chan said...

ahaha! :D
Bluerose san, a perfect post!

Actually I'm bad at spending coins they accumulate easily! That's why I get rid of them when paying for my room rent.
The first time I went to pay, part of the money was a full 1000 yen in 100/10/5/1 yen coins.
I went to the desk and with a "sumimasen there are a lot of coins" face.
The telller responded with a smile
"wait our honored customer, we need to count these using the coin counting machine" :D She just poured the coins inside and voila! we are done :D

Since then, I have no problem bringing a bag full of coins (sometimes up to 3000 yen) and just "pour" the coins in front of the teller :D

Blue Rose said...

hahahaha kanji_chan!!!!! Isn't that great!!! I just love being a customer!!

Anonymous said...

i like the way, "14.99=15"!
it is much more easier for me.
but another side, as a japanese, as a person who comes from "no tip" country, i am always not convinced in abroad if i gave them appropriate amout of tip or not.


Dragon Hunter T said...

Bluerose san, Thank you for the post it have been a long time,don't forget that in Jordan even if you pay more you'll get Jordan's trade mark service with a frown

Blue Rose said...

Actually, I don't like the idea of tips although i have to deal with it sometimes, but I think that what you give them as a tip is always satisfying, because after all your bill already contains the restaurant's service, and the waiter already takes his salary for serving you..

dragon hunter t san,
This is really funny, you are totally right, unfortunately it is our trade mark service!!

Gomennasai for the late addition to the blog (u_u), we will try to post more threads in the few coming weeks.. inshallah..

Kawachan said...

Interesting post!!

Yes, Japanese people don't have the custom of tipping. And there is no plan it will be introduced in the future because it will make people feel they need to pay extra and hesitate to dine out..which is not good for economy eventually.
No tipping is simple and easy. But because of the non-tipping culture of Japan, the Japanese often forget tipping abroad and frowned upon. lol
I don't like tipping either, and hope it will disappear in the world,:D but unless the minimum wage of the waiters is guaranteed by the government, it won't come true in other countries..

In Japan, unlike some other countries like U.S., there is less hierarchy in occupations and even waiters don't regard themselves as doing a bottom job..and many them have pride in their job and don't like to be tipped, I think..

Blue Rose said...

Yes you're right, I've noticed that! They are really dedicated to their jobs and you can feel their pride in doing it!!
Kawachan I really like your posts, I feel you have a very strong background about Japan!! Please always share us what you know, it's really useful for us!!(^_^)

guntur said...

yeah agree with u

guntur said...

some jordanians use to call foreigners as ali baba