BY Dollita Okine, 12:15pm July 05, 2024,

Mississippi woman says restaurant manager caused a scene following her $150 tip to a waitress 

According to Montgomery, the situation became even more distressing when the manager "made a scene" and pretended that the tip would not be accepted. Photo Credit: X/@_dawnmontgomery/Atlanta Black Star

Dawn Montgomery sparked an online controversy after stating that she and her group left a hefty tip for an Applebee’s waiter, prompting the restaurant’s manager to inquire about the amount.

Montgomery, upset and startled by the manager’s alleged conduct, took to social media to share her story. She stated that she was part of a group of 14 people who went to Applebee’s in Laurel, Mississippi, for dinner. At the venue, she said that she was told that her server, Melissa, was new and nervous about serving large parties. Despite Melissa’s initial concerns, Montgomery remarked that she performed an excellent job waiting at her table.

But when the grateful customer left a $150 tip, the manager showed up and informed her that the restaurant would have to check with corporate to be sure they could take such a large tip, which was out of the ordinary for Montgomery.

According to Montgomery, the situation became even more distressing when the manager “made a scene” and pretended that the tip would not be accepted. Montgomery said that before she could leave the restaurant, she had to give the manager her phone number and two signatures on the bill.

The Atlanta Black Star reported that her shared encounter shocked millions of viewers, who then tagged Applebee’s in search of clarification.

Some netizens suggested that this was a blatant example of racism, as Montgomery was questioned about her ability to afford the tip amount. Others, including former workers of Applebee’s, argued that the manager adhered to a routine procedure that is followed by many restaurant chains, which is to have a bank conduct a fraud check if a customer leaves a sizable tip using a card rather than cash. To avoid this process, several people highly advised tipping generously with cash.

Montgomery made it clear that she wasn’t accusing the manager or Applebee’s of racism concerning the tipping experience; rather, the manager’s behavior had made her question whether the protocol existed.

She also stated that she spoke with other waiters and waitresses at the restaurant, who informed her that the manager was merely required to verify the tip amount and not make a big deal about it.

Montgomery said the manager eventually apologized to her over the phone, and a corporate Applebee’s corporate team member verified that the company was giving managers additional training in response to this occurrence.

“The manager did call me to APOLOGIZE. He realized that we were former HS classmates (South Jones) & stated, ‘had he recognized me then he would’ve known it was cool.’ Me to him: it didn’t matter who I was because when you came out causing a scene that was unnecessary!” she wrote.

She added (), “I spoke w/ Terri from @Applebees corporate. They are handling this by training regional managers & local restaurant management. Melissa is getting her full tip! I accepted their full apology and they will inform me with updates on the training. The end.”

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: July 5, 2024

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