We’re in Nagoya, Japan and its hot. Its mid-September and its a lot warmer here than Honolulu. The moment you step outside, you get a blast of humidity.
Its refreshing to be in a place that you don’t have to worry of tipping or driving. In Japan there is absolutely no tipping. I find it ironic that countries that require tipping provide the worst service and countries that don’t require tips provide the best service. As usual the food is great here…gyoza, breads, soba, unagi, cakes, coffee…all excellent.
It also nice to be in a place where its more convenient and efficient to take the train and subway that to drive.
We spent some time window shopping for household goods.
I hope you enjoyed the $30 – 45% higher prices and the 10% mandatory service charge. Don’t believe me about the prices? Check out an Outback menu in Tokyo and in a state like Tennessee where they only pay their wait people 2.13 an hour and see how much a $19 strip steak costs there. Would you believe $34 (including the 5% sales tax but NOT including a 10% automatic service charge – in other words, an involuntary tip).
Yeah yeah, I know – why eat at Outback when you’re there? I only use Outback as a concrete example about the higher prices you paid for the privilege of not tipping. It’s hard to make a cross comparison of prices between two such divergent culinary cultures (but I’d note that from what I’ve read on the Internet, the Bento box that I’d get at my local Japanese restaurant for $6 – $8 costs $11 or more over there). I hope it was worth spending the extra money just so you didn’t have to worry about tipping. Good thing the service was good. otherwise you would have been forced to “tip” basically at gunpoint.
I’m just sayin’…