I have been reading a lot of threads about how people on cruises insist on tipping the crew the minimum amount regardless of the service. Lets not forget what the word tip stands for:
"To Insure Promptness" For those who "feel sorry" for the crew members because they have to be away from their family..work double shifts..., please remember that they are getting to see the world for free, living basically free for 4-6 months @ a time, and a good percentage of them, if not all of them, are making a better living than they would be if they were home withg their families. I am a firm believer of giving credit where credit is due. If the service is above par, I tip above par, and vice a versa. If you feel the need to tip regardless of the service, I as a crew member, would soon realize that, I can do less and less and still get my reward @ the end. Maybe, that's becoming the trend aboard some of these ships that people are complaining about.
Just to nit-pick a bit: those crew members don't get to see very much of the world. Most of the time in ports they are working; during the few hours they have off, they may see a little of the dock area of the port, but they don't have the time to really explore.
And the rest of the time, with very long hours, 7 days a week for months on end, they are dealing with passengers who - compared to them - are billionaires, often demanding, often disrespectful of them. They may very well be making a better living than in their home countries, but they sure do earn it!!
But out of 1000 crew members, how many do you think get to see the sky in a given week? I am asking, I really don't know the answer. I have been awake and on the decks for each and every one of the 24 hours in a day, and I have never seen anyone besides the waiters, cruise staff, child care staff and various people sanding paint or screwing in a lightbulb here or there. I know ships have a separate outdoor deck for crew but every time I have looked down on those decks they are empty.
In port I will see a handful of crew get off. Turnaround day is of course a madhouse for them.
Just wondering when the 900 other crew members see the light of day.
Carlalena, I have travelled on British Thomson/airtours ships,these are quite small ships so I suppose it means that there is less distance between passengers and cruise employees. I have frequently seen staff of all grades on the crew decks. Even spent an afternoon watching several on one cruise fishing a few years ago. (a little bit of bread and a piece of string)
I have to agree, what Middy said. We have been one different cruises with different cruiselines and in every port, a part of the crew was allowed to go in town or even joining some shore excursions.
I talked to different crew members during tendering or waiting for the next tender boat. People you will normally not see on the ship, because they are working in the enginerooms, as technicans, as cleaners, and, and, and.
Some of them prefer staying in the port, to use the local telephones there to call back home, but many of them has been in the cities for shopping. For example in St. Maarten many of them bought a new piece of luggage or electronic stuff.