Iowa Couple's Big Tip For Bad Service Goes Viral

Makenzie Schultz wrote that she and her husband used to be servers too.

ByABC News
September 29, 2014, 2:11 PM
An Iowa couple's generous tip has gone viral because of the reason behind it.
An Iowa couple's generous tip has gone viral because of the reason behind it.
Makenzie Schultz/Facebook

— -- The Iowa woman whose Facebook post about leaving a generous tip for awful service has gone viral says she hopes her example will encourage others to have more compassion and smile more.

“If we all could do that, imagine what a beautiful world it would be,” Makenzie Schultz, 27, told ABC News.

Schultz was out do dinner in Cedar Rapids Saturday night with her husband, Steven, to celebrate their sixth wedding anniversary when they found themselves waiting 20 minutes just for their drinks alone in an understaffed restaurant with “pretty terrible” service.

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“We could hear the other tables around us making negative comments about the service,” Schultz said. “One table walked out and another stood up and told a group of people waiting for a table to leave.”

“For a while we sat back and got that negativity too,” said Schulz, who met her husband eight years ago while both worked at a restaurant and who now owns a local barbeque restaurant with her husband.

“I finally said to my husband, ‘Well, we have nowhere to be and everything is usually so rushed in our lives that this is kind of nice,” Schultz recalled.

“We tried to be as nice to him as possible and he was so nice to us,” Schultz said of the single waiter who was handling nearly the entire restaurant.

At the end of the evening, the couple left a $100 tip on their $66 tab. When they arrived home, Schultz posted a photo of the receipt on her Facebook page, along with an explanation of why they left the tip.

“I just thought people give generous tips all the time and you see it on Facebook, but I wanted to post it because we had poor service and usually people will post about it, complaining. And I thought, let’s do the opposite,” Schultz said.

By the time Schultz checked her Facebook page the next day,Sunday, her post had thousands of likes and she had received hundreds of of messages from people around the world.

“I posted it thinking my family and friends would get something out of it, but it just kept getting shared and more comments and more likes,” Schultz said. “I couldn’t believe the response, but it made me realize even more that people are relating to that post.”

“People can put themselves in our shoes and say, ‘I have been there before and I have not tipped because of bad service,’” she said.

Schultz said the story of a 16-year-old boy who took his girlfriend to dinner and doubled the tip after seeing her post stuck out to her, as well as a message from another complete stranger.

“One message said, ‘A little love goes a long way,’” Schultz said. “Obviously this post went a long way.”