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A man left a $10,000 tip on a $32 bill at a Michigan restaurant. The manager says it was a tribute to a friend who recently died.

A cup, a $10 bill, a muffin broken in half.
A man left a $10,000 tip on a $32 bill at a restaurant in Michigan (not pictured).megaresp/Getty Images
  • A customer tipped a server at a Michigan restaurant $10,000.

  • The server shared the tip with eight other staff members.

  • A 2023 survey suggested people in the US tipped about 16% of a bill.

A man left a $10,000 tip on a $32 bill while dining out at a restaurant in Michigan.

In a Facebook post on February 6, The Mason Jar Cafe in Benton Harbor said a customer left a massive tip after having breakfast at the restaurant.

"I'M CRYING, YOU'RE CRYING, WE'RE ALL CRYING," said the post, which had garnered more than 3,100 reactions and 360 comments. The restaurant also shared a picture of the receipt, which showed the transaction occurred on February 5. The customer's full name is blurred out, and he is identified only by his first name, Mark.

The photo indicates the bill was $32.43. The suggested tip on the receipt was $5.95 to $7.44.

But the customer didn't take those suggestions. A sum of $10,000 was written in as the tip, bringing the total bill to $10,032.43. Business Insider could not independently verify the receipt.

"In a time where so much is happening, we wanted to share and thank the person who did this life changing act," the Facebook post said.

The restaurant's manager, Tim Sweeney, told local news outlets that the man made the tip as a tribute to a friend who had recently died. Sweeney said the man was in Benton Harbor to attend his friend's funeral.

Sweeney told the broadcaster WOOD-TV that the staff would "every now and then" see a $100 tip, "but not ever anything of this gratitude or magnitude."

The $10,000 tip meant the man had tipped about 30,835% of his bill.

Sweeney said the server shared the tip with eight other staff members who were working that day.

One of the staff members, Paige Mulick, told WOOD-TV, "It was just really an act of kindness that impacted so many people." Mulick, a recent graduate of Western Michigan University, said the money would help pay off some of her student loans.

"We work hard," she added. "We know that some days you're going to make more and some days you're going to make less. That's just part of how it goes. But we hustle hard and I think that a lot of people really deserve this."

A 2023 Forbes survey suggested that, on average, people in the US tipped about 16% of a bill.

It's not the first time a customer has left a thousand-dollar tip on a small bill. In September, a group of people dining at a Mexican restaurant in Utah left a $10,000 tip. And in July 2022, a customer at a Pennsylvania restaurant left a $3,000 tip on a $13.25 bill.

The Mason Jar Cafe did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider sent outside regular office hours.

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