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Old 03-17-2010, 02:59 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 7
Hi, I'm going on my first cruise later this year leaving from Galveston. I'm Australian and in Australia tipping is not common so any advice on who to tip, when to tip, how much to tip etc, would be greatly appreciated!!
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Old 03-17-2010, 06:09 AM
penny3333's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Alabama
Posts: 10,602
Hi AussieGirl, welcome to Cruise-Chat! Congratulations on your up-coming cruise, just be warned, cruising is addictive On most lines now, you can just do the auto-tipping. They add $10-$12/pp per day to your shipboard account. The amount varies from line to line, but it usually averages out around $10.50-$11.00/day per person. We also tip for room service, $2-$5 per delivery depending on the amount of food ordered. All sodas, alcoholic beverages, etc., bought from one of the bars will have an automatic 15-18% gratuity added to the bill. If someone gives you exceptional service, you can certainly give them extra. Tipping is always YOUR decision. If you prefer not to do the auto-tips, then go down to the purser's desk and have them removed before the end of your cruise, the best thing to do is go down the first evening. If you remove them, it is customary to tip your dining room waiter/assistant waiter, cabin steward, and your servers on deck. The maitre d', too. Again, this is up to you, totally.

We normally leave the auto-tips on, then give extra to those who give us excellent service. I tip in the casino, too. If I need to get my machine fixed, someone delivers a pay-out(which doesn't happen very often), or someone delivers a drink to me(which also doesn't happen very often since I play the machines and not the tables).

Again, tipping is NOT mandatory, it is to show appreciation for those who work so very hard for so little money. Often you will find your dining room waiter/assistant waiter at the buffet lines serving, cleaning tables, bringing around beverages, sweeping, mopping, etc. The crew are amazing and once you witness it, you'll understand what I'm saying. Be sure to smile and ask them about where they come from and their families. They're so very happy when they have people take an interest in them instead of griping at them.

Make sure you try the chocolate melting cake at least one time, it's wonderful!

Have a great cruise!
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Old 03-17-2010, 06:17 AM
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: birmingham, al
Posts: 1,843
Welcome to cruise chat, AussieGirl!! Happy St. Patrick's day to you. Hit a pub or two for me and don't forget to wear your green apparel. Penny did a great job answering your question and I have to second her endorsement of the chocolate melting cake. I am just curious of your choice for your inaugural cruise. There are so many wondrous cruise opportunities around your continent as well as the nearby Polynesian New Zealand. Galveston is a wonderful home port but it intrigues me why you chose it. Were you already going to be there or was it perhaps the itinerary of the cruise? Again, welcome, and feel free to ask as many questions as necessary.
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Old 03-18-2010, 03:56 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 7
Thanks for the advice it was very helpful!!

We chose that cruise because we are visiting my parents in Texas later this year and they offered to look after our kids while we went on a cruise. Now I'm not one to turn down an offer like that!!! We are celebrating our tenth wedding anniversary...if we enjoy it hopefully we can explore some of the cruise destinations on this side of the world I'm already looking forward to trying the chocolate melting cake (but I think I will have to try it more than once...just to make sure it really is THAT good lol).

Thanks again for the advice and the welcome!

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Old 03-18-2010, 05:14 AM
penny3333's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Alabama
Posts: 10,602
Happy Anniversary! Great way to celebrate, too! What a wonderful gift from your parents. We love our children, but it really is nice to get a break once in a while
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Old 03-19-2010, 06:51 AM
LHP's Avatar
LHP LHP is offline
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 1,560
Welcome to the boards....

as stated earlier, Carnival handles all this for you. They automatically place it on your Sail and Sign card after you board for your cabin steward and wait staff and on each drink for your bar staff.

So no worries....

Another note...it is customary to tip $1 if you order the free room service and to tip $1 per bag when you hand them other to the porters at the beginning of the cruise.
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