Tipping culture has gotten out of control since Covid, with the rapid rise of checkout payment prompts guilting more consumers into adding a tip for no reason whatsoever. Now, Americans say they’ve had enough.

According to a new survey by WalletHub, nearly three-quarters of Americans say tipping has gone too far.

What’s more, nearly three in five respondents said businesses are using tips to replace employee salaries—choosing instead to gouge their customers instead of providing their workers with competitive pay.

When presented with on-screen tip suggestions instead of automatic charges, one in four consumers said they’re likely to tip lesser amounts. Meanwhile, 78% of respondents said automatic service charges of any kind should be banned.

In theory, it should be easy to shrug off automatic tipping prompts, especially when the employee hasn’t done anything to deserve it. But in reality, these annoying digital screens have succeeded in shaming customers to add tips.

According to WalletHub, half of the survey respondents said they often leave a tip because of social pressure.

A separate study by financial news publisher PYMNTS reached a similar conclusion, arguing that “the convergence of digital payments, social dynamics, and consumer expectations have shifted tipping norms, birthing a new era of tipping complexities.”

Unfortunately, the era of tipflation probably won’t end anytime soon, as PYMNTS found that digital screens are the most common way to ask for tips in eight out of nine normal tipping scenarios it studied.

Tipping on the rise everywhere

Tipping is a long-held American custom—and rightfully so.

According to a survey by coupon finder CouponBirds, six out of ten U.S. service workers rely on tips for more than 30% of their income. Without tips, a large majority of them would make less than $10 an hour.

The CouponBirds survey also found that Americans generally have no problem paying for restaurant services, hairdressing services, and food delivery. But tips need to be commensurate with effort and service quality.

“Customers are being asked to tip at the more traditional service encounters [and] also app-based services, ride-share and delivery apps. This gives the perception that tipping is everywhere, which does seem the case,” Tim Self, an assistant professor of hospitality at Austin Peay State University, told CNBC.

Unfortunately, consumers aren’t just being asked to tip for good service when the cashier flips over a digital payment screen. When that happens, “the guilt kind of washes over you,” Self said.

A Pew Research study reached similar conclusions, with “a broad majority of Americans [saying] they’re being asked to tip service workers more frequently than in the past,” especially before Covid, the report said.

“Around two in ten Americans (21%) say it’s more of a choice, while 29% say it’s more of an obligation,” Pew Research said of tipping. “The largest share (49%) say it depends on the situation, underscoring the lack of a single set of rules or expectations.”

Tipflation has become a sore spot for many Americans because it adds to an already growing list of expenses since Covid. And unlike the pandemic, their wages are barely keeping up.

More Americans are struggling financially

For all the talk about a resilient economy, strong job growth, and moderating inflation, most Americans are struggling to get a grip on their finances.

A recent survey by Capital One and The Decision Lab found that a staggering 77% of Americans are anxious about their personal finances. Respondents said they’re most worried about not having enough money to retire, keeping up with the high cost of living, and managing their growing pile of debt.

But in an ironic twist, Americans continue to spend more and save less—a trend that economists say re-emerged around the middle of 2023.

By January of this year, the personal savings rate was 3.9%, well below the historic average of 6.2%, according to Gus Faucher, chief economist of PNC Financial Services Group.

“I’m concerned, Tomas Philipson, a public policy professor at the University of Chicago, said of rising inflation and a declining savings rate. “People are hit on both fronts—lower real wages and higher rates.”

“There are some who are working on a tighter household budget and haven’t really adjusted their spending, as much, with the rise of inflation, so they haven’t been able to save more, even though they know they need to,” according to Winnie Sun, co-founder and managing director of Sun Group Wealth Partners.

Data from DollarGeek shows that the average savings rate of Americans is 32% lower than what it should be when factoring in their salary.