ASHBURN, Va. — A group of friends stopped by an Ashburn IHOP Wednesday with a taste for breakfast and a big surprise up their sleeves: every person at the table had brought along a $100 bill to each tip their waiter at the end of the meal.
“I have the best friends in the world,” one of the diners posted on Facebook in celebration of their act of kindness while sharing that her friend had the idea to get a group together and make one waiter’s day.
“Our wonderful waitress . . . got a $1900 tip. I can't stop smiling!” Tanya Johnson said in her popular post.
Johnson shared that a waitress named Rosa received the big surprise.
In a heartwarming video on the post, the group claps for Rosa as she puts her hand on her chest and thanks them while the women shout out her “exceptional service.”
Just weeks prior, a worker at Silver Diner in Columbia, Maryland served a group of seven, who'd come in just for coffee. Their total bill was $25. But they left Roxanna Salinas a $910 tip in cash. She immediately shared the news with her family in El Salvador.
"My mom was crying, she was so happy. She said 'God bless you daughter!'" Then, Salinas was crying too. "I feel so blessed. It doesn't make me a millionaire. But it's something to make you feel appreciated," she said.
The grand gestures come in the midst of a holiday season in a year that took a brutal toll on restaurants and staff. The industry navigated all of the challenges the COVID-19 pandemic brought their way, from restrictions and mandates to shipping challenges and rising prices.
Even items like silverware, glassware, food ingredients, and parts for kitchen equipment at times took far longer to arrive.