When cabs were cash only, cabbies got short shrift. Now, the digital age is putting cash in their pockets
Tipping: It's a pain. Not so much because we don't like rewarding good service — we absolutely do — it's just that we never have any idea what's customary to tip for service outside a restaurant. I mean, what do you tip a New York City cab driver, 10%? It turns out that's exactly what most people used to tip cabbies — 10%. Used to, that is, until cabs were forced to install touch screen payment systems that accept credit cards.
See, those screens offer you four different potions for tipping: a 30% tip button, a 25% tip button, a 20% tip button, and a keypad for entering in your own tip. It turns out that people are lazy and love using those buttons — according to research from NYC developer Joshua Gross, the average tip has more than doubled to 22% since. That's a total of $144 million of additional tips per year.
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