Cruise Fanatic - I'm glad for them then. The point I'm trying to make is that it is not a tip if I'm told what I'm giving. It's a fee. How often do you go to a restaurant at home and have them tell you how much you are to tip? I realize the scenario is different on a ship. I'm not against tipping in any way. I just do not like being told how much I am going to tip. It should be my choice.
So why don't the cruise lines just add it to the cost of the cruise in the beginning? Charge an extra few dollars per person and be done with it? Why this ridiculous practice of telling guests who gets a tip and how much it will be and we're charging you for it anyways routine? It serves no useful purpose. If they have a hard time getting people to work certain ships, then raise the rate, raise the pay, and it all comes out even.
me too did not mean to downgrade workers I feel the same way if they tell you how much to tip I perfer to tip by the services I recieve, I found on ncl it is a prepaid and the service was really bad, on the ncl seas I tip accordly to the great service we recive, oh and dj I know the waiters and waitress work all different jobs I have two friends that are officers on ships and I know the scoop, on how many hats the crew wears I know that they work in the buffets and bars etc. I was just commenting on the nature of what 1800 pax pay on the prepaid gratuity Fran
I finally got the answer I was looking for! On the sail & sign card, if you have 3 cards, you can authorize for only 1 card to be charged on, and if paying w/cash, you only need 1 $200 deposit (for 5-8 day cruises). If you are gonna charge on 2 cards, then it is 2 deposits, if you are using all 3 cards to charge on, then it is 3 $200 deposits. Finally got the answer I was looking for!
Originally posted by peachcrek:
...we choose to eat Buffet the rest of the cruise then there are times we could not wait to get into dinner to see the staff as they were over and above the service we expected I tip to the way we are treated and the service, the only time I tip the matri"de is if he has done us a favor like changing our table or something out of the ordinary unexpected,...
On our cruise on the Conquest last October we befriended our head waitress and found out that they don't have much time off. When there are not serving you at dinner, they are working in the buffet areas (clearing tables puring drinks etc.) or working the dinning room for lunch or dinner. So not tipping at all because you used the buffet during the cruise may be short changing them a bit. However, I agree with most of the posters in this thread that the tipping should not be "automatic". I have been letting the charge go until the end of the cruise and if I feel it needs to be adjusted up or down, I do it.
The part that distrubed me is I remember them stating in their "tipping guidlines" that the bar staff are not included in the $10 per day tips and should be tipped individually as used. I had giving out several tips to bar stewards before I actually looked at a receipt and found out that their tip was automatically added to the bill.
I say tip as you see fit. Good service warrants a good tip unless you know that tipping is not the custom. But its your money and if you feel like rewarding someone for outstanding performance, that is your choice.
DJ- its even harder going from the states to the UK. You feel strange not leaving a tip because you are not sure if you are supposed to or not.
I agree with Cruise Fanatic, these wait staff do double duty, they work at the buffet as well.
The evening staff do either the breakfast or the lunch as well, so their day is longer than 4-5 hours! If they get $5.50 per day (and there is two of them to share it, that works out to $2.75 each, WOW isn't that a pile of money!!! How many of you would go to a land
restaurant and have that kind of attentive service, be served a 5 course meal and leave
$2.75 for a tip? The Cabin attendants work 16 hour days with no days off. Trying to make up beds and clean bathrooms in a small space when in most rooms, it look like a cyclone has struck it!! Hats of to them. So now we have $4.50 devided between them (and the laundry crew) Do the math. I have never been on a cruise line with as friendly a crew as Carnival. The first day we were approached by the cabin steward and asked if we would sign a paper to state that she had met and spoken to us. It is part of their job to be friendly, and the "boss" wants to know if they are doing their job!! Let me say that on our way home we missed our connecting flight and I have never met so many rude, crude, and full of "tude" people as work for AA and JFK airport. Maybe they should be made to work for Carnival Cruise lines for a while to see what customer service is all about. Here in Canada where I come from we are very customer orientated, so found this attitude to be condesending as I was not mean or rude to them. This automatic tipping has come as the result of people who think they can get away with out tipping because who will know? $70.00 a week is not a big deal for the kind of service you receive on a cruise ship.
My issue is that this is called a "tip". "Tip" implies service above and beyond what might be expected.
Why not just eliminate this ridiculous tip policy, and pay the staff more? Just raise their salaries, and stop requiring "tips". Anytime I am charged a certain amount, it is not a "tip", it is what it is - a CHARGE. A FEE.
If I stay in a hotel, I typically leave the maid $5.00 or more per day for cleaning the room. THAT is a tip. It is not required. It's a smaller amount than the ships charge, but I don't mind. Why? Because it is my choice. I have not had $5.00 added to my bill and told that it is a tip. Which is what the cruise lines do. Add an amount they have deemed reasonable to my bill, and then classified it as a "tip".
Oreo, you've made a good point. $2.75 per day is not a lot - however, in your calculations, you didn't multiply that amount by the number of guests the waiter has between all their tables and the number of seatings. 50? More? It does add up. Regardless - if I weren't told how much I was leaving I'd be inclined to give more.
You asked, "How many of you would go to a land restaurant and have that kind of attentive service, be served a 5 course meal and leave $2.75 for a tip?" I wouldn't. But if I did not go to that land restaurant and eat that 5 course meal I certainly would not expect to tip the waiter who didn't serve me for the 5 course meal I didn't have.
As for getting away without tipping - it's rough on the staff, but tipping is supposed to be optional. I am just tired of being charged extra money and having it explained as a tip.
On NCL, they don't call it tips or gratuities. It's a 'service fee'. It doesn't go to an individual, isn't divided up among certain people in various amounts. According to them, it goes into a 'fund' and is used to reward staff. Vacations, bonuses, and so on. So my cabin steward might not get a penny out of what I am charged. My waiter might not get a dime of the money I've left.
I'd prefer they just stop calling this a tip. Charge a bit more per person on a cruise, pay the staff more, and leave tipping as a choice and reward for good service. Period. I still think they (the cruise lines) get some kind of tax advantage for doing it this way, so that's the real reason. Nothing to do with the staff themselves. If every fare industry wide was raised by $70, I bet the staff on the ships would make out much better. The lines would have the extra $70 to cover the "tip", (more on a longer voyage), and the staff could still receive tips on top of that. Is there one person here who would stop cruising if their fare went up $70? We'd still be charged the same in the long run.
Have been to restaurants where the tip is automaticly included in the bill, wonder how one would have this removed if they were not in favor of a set tip? Our waiter had 20 people at 3 different tables. I also forgot to mention that $1.00 of the $5.50 perday does go to the buffet wait staff. In the 7 days at sea I never seen one of them engaging in any meaninful conversation with the passengers, and all looked like they wished to be somewhere else. (Just my observations) while in the dining room the service people was outstanding.
I am not a fan of how NCL is doing its "service fee" Have you noticed that the cruise lines fill these service jobs with people from very poor countries. I would be very curious to know if they really do receive all that is given in "tips, "services fees" etc. What ever it is called, how ever we pay for it, it still comes down to the same thing.
well I hate to keep beating a dead horse here , but my opinion is to take the charge off at the day I arrive and I tip according to what they suggest in the capers and the hand book and if the service is exceptionaly well in dining room we give extra and as far as the room steward we give him extra always, I prefer to hand over the tip directly to the person, so I know that they actually receive it, the only time we did not tip was on the Miracle dining room as we went to dinner twice and the service was so poor we choose to dine Buffet and we never went back to the dining room, we did take care of our steward and his helper, I felt that the service was not fit for us to tip, i have done 7 cruises and the Miracle was the first that I had not tipped the dining room, by the way we have aways tip the Matri'de altho sometimes I wonder why, unless he has done us a favor like moving us to a better spot or different dining time, so Evry one has there own thoughts about tips I tip where the service is. fran