Would you give someone a better tip for delivering your food in a blizzard?

Steve Miller

Owner Emeritus
Staff member
Food orders increase when bad weather hits -- as do tips, according to online food delivery company GrubHub. But severe winter weather can push tips up even higher.

This year, tips in New York City increased 9% during the Jan. 26 snow storm compared to the city's year-round average. In Boston, tips rose 6% during the Feb. 2 blizzard and gratuity jumped 12% in Chicago during the Feb. 1 storm.

Even extreme cold is enough to make some customers more generous.
"If the temperature drops significantly, or there's something out of the ordinary, we see a high correlation with tip percentages and temperatures," said Allie Mack, a spokeswoman for GrubHub.

For example, during the 2013-2014 winter season, the company said the average tip was 14.1%, only a slight increase from the 13.9% average over the rest of the year. But during the Polar Vortex in January 2014, average tips jumped in some colder cities. Tips were more than 15% higher than average in Detroit and Minneapolis on certain days of the month.

The tips are analyzed as a percentage of the overall order, and cash tips can't be tracked. At the end of ordering process, GrubHub customers can select to add a 10%, 15% or 20% tip or add their own amount.

For the entire 2013-2014 winter, the highest tipping cities were: Denver at 15.7% of the total delivery price, Dallas at 15.1% and Charlottesville, Virginia, at 15%.

Early deliveries also tend to get higher tips. Tipping percentages increased 7.3% from the daily average from 6-9 in the morning in the winter season. "Perhaps people are being more generous because they aren't ordering as much," Mack said.

Article: http://money.cnn.com/2015/02/19/pf/...e-grubhub/index.html?section=money_topstories
I have done this. I even wrote him a little note. I believe it was a 25$ order that I tipped him at least 50% of and simply said "Thanks for coming out in nasty weather, so my lazy fat self didn't have to"
I am actually afraid to order food in an actual blizzard, to put someone in a bad driving situation. However, if I order in other crap weather or cold weather I always tip higher. Usually close to 40%, or around $10. It's the least I can do for someone bringing my lazy patootie food in crappy weather!
I would if I went that route, but 99% of the time if I'm craving takeout in crappy weather, I'm just gonna battle the roads and drive myself. It's just more fun.

I've been on the delivery driver side of things too. One particularly nasty night, I walked in during a heavy snow night. My manager said "are we delivering tonight?" to which I replied "I'll let you know after the first few deliveries." Basically, it was my call based on if I felt whatever tips I received would be worth the risk.
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I've never ordered fast food in bad weather, but I would definitely tip higher if the driver was in rain, snow, etc...
Simple answer, yes. However, I am more inclined to go out myself as I am like Brindley and would rather not put someone else in to that position. However, having been in pizza delivery for many years, I usually eagerly volunteered to drive those nastier nights because the tips were generally higher. It was rare to get a less-than-average tip on those nights for me, so it was worth it as I would easily make 50% or better more than a usual night during bad weather shifts.
I am a good tipper regardless...especially if they are worthy. If they are delivering to me during inclement weather, they get more than my 20% average
"Sorry sir but we do not deliver that far out of town" is the the answer I get here in OK and when in MI. However, when at a hotel I do if weather is not favorable
We tip good regardless - but if it's during a blizzard, I certainly would tip more than 20-30% average. It's not like these folks get hazard pay.
I can't even remember the last time I had something delivered. But as others have said I always tip good anyway, so I know I would in a case like this.
If I had to put in a delivery order during adverse weather conditions I would certainly tip well but I would avoid making such an order as I wouldn't want to feel responsible for putting the delivery driver in peril.
Back in my college days I bartended, catered and delivered pizzas so I learned to appreciate at a young age the value of tips and have always been conscious about tipping well. Someone delivering through a blizzard has earned a better than average tip in my book and they’ll probably need it as they’ll likely have less deliveries due to both lower order volume and slower deliveries. But as others have mentioned I probably wouldn’t order out in a blizzard, not only to spare the driver the hazard but to spare me a long wait for some not so piping hot food.
Yes. Just did last night, when we ordered a pizza in the middle of our 19-inch snowstorm, on Oscars night. And kudos to the driver; the wait was no longer than usual. Probably helped that we are less than half a mile from the pizza place.