Stiffing a waiter may soon get a lot more awkward, thanks to the transition to chip debit cards and credit cards.

Merchants that haven’t upgraded to an EMV chip card terminal may have to pick up the cost of fraud, rather than the bank that issued the card.

Chip card terminals (once properly activated) work differently than the swipe terminals, and as Ian Kar over at Quartz points out, that’s going to cause some awkwardness when it’s time to pay at your local restaurant.

Basically, instead of taking your card away and bringing it back with a receipt for you to leave the tip amount and sign, the waiter will bring a wireless chip card terminal to the table. You’ll plug your card in, sign or enter a PIN, and have to leave the tip amount then and there.

That’s fine if you’re planning on leaving a tip that will leave a smile on a server’s face, but in cases where a server provided subpar service, or if you’re just a bad tipper, you’ll probably miss the privacy you enjoyed before.

I don’t know about you, but I can see quite a few confrontations between angry servers and patrons starting this way.

What do you think? Will entering your tip in front of your server be awkward? Would you leave a bigger tip than you would on a paper receipt after the fact?

Follow me on Twitter: @ClaesBell.

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