I just read this entire post and I must say it astounds me how anyone can complain, no matter the semantics; tip, service charge, whatever for helping someone from a (usually) third world nation make a better life for themself.
Try this, sit back and close your eyes, imagine leaving your family, your friends and your homeland to sail around the world day in and day out. Imagine putting up with nit-picky cruise passengers who 9 times out of 10 have more money than you will ever see in a lifetime and then think about how minuscule $10 per day is.
I'm by no means rich but for the services one receives on any cruise ship, $50 a day seems more reasonable!
you miss the point, I'm afraid. NCL's new "service charge" policy is so intransparent that it is actually not possible to see who is getting the money. When asked whether 100% of the service charge would be given to the employees, NCL decided to not comment.
Hence, I stand by my opinion that the cruise lines should pay their employees decent wages (even if that means increasing the fares), and that gratuities should be what the word tip suggests - rewards for more than average service and not the kind of "moral blackmail" they are today.
I have to agree with Raoul on this one. Whilst i appreciate your point in someone topping up the fridge at what point do you draw the line? Should we go and tip the cleaners or some of the folks who work in the engine room? Every member of staff works hard to make sure the passengers are looked after because if they don't the don't have a job.
Paul and Darryl there are a lot of crew on these ships from not so wealthy backgrounds however does that mean we should just tip them because we may be wealthier than them? What about the all Amercian crew on NCL going around Hawaii, does anyone know about the tipping policies for these people?
I agree with Raoul, cruiselines should pay decent wages to their staff and crew even if it means more expensive cruises.
I dont want to sound miserable, however if i receive good service (which we have normally always done) then I would like to show my appreciation for that person by financial reward which is usually far more than the recommended amounts.
My wife called NCL on our return to ask them about the gratuity policy. She was told by NCL that all crew have set payments from NCL regards tips and salary which NCL pay directly to them. The money that passengers pay is put into a seperate fund and paid out periodically to the crew who are entitled to money from tips.
However, when pressed, NCL said that if there was not enough money in the fund to cover these costs then NCL would make up any shortfall.
The point that I am trying to get across is would you rather walk to the bar and get a drink and then pay the 15% gratuity or have it available in your room? I guess the other option is if you want a drink in your room you can call for room service and then you can feel that you are getting your 15% worth.
Your reference to tipping the cleaners or engine crew members is a little of base because they are paid competive wages and do not have to depend on tips as do the service employees. I am sure that most service employees would rather have the tips instead of a set wage because they know that if they give good service they will be rewarded more for their efforts. The set gratuity is just to make sure that they do get minimum. As for tipping more there is nothing stopping you from giving anyone a little extra. I am sure that they appreciate it.
I agree with you 150%. The cruise lines should pay a decent wage.Especialy since they have raised the rates as high as high as they have.I will avoid all cruise line with the auto gratuity. I have tried it, and every time have been disapointed in the service.It is a socialist way of doing things. You see some do a good job while others stand around. But yet they all get the same tips.Doesn't make sense for any one other than the cruise lines. If they really want to go this way raise the wages for the employees and make the cruise all inclusive.That would work for all involved except the cruise line would have to be more competitive.J M H O.
it was me who started this topic again. @rosey3 and Paul and Darryl:
We have no problem paying gratuity. We have no problem with NCLs old policy with 10$/day. We did not change this, we also tipped our steward additional to this because he has done a great job. No question/discussion about this.
But if I understand the policy of NCL right, they will change this 10$/day to a not adjustable service fee and the passenger should now tipp again for service.
Old fee: 10$/day gratuity for the crew, and additional gratuity for room steward and a special friendly waitress
New fee: 10$/day service fee for? and gratuity for all stewards, waitress, etc
please correct me if I am wrong. this is not about tipping, this is about a hidden price increase.
it's not 100% as you understood it. While the service charge is non-adjustable and further tipping is allowed, it is no longer expected. It's tipping like it is handled in Europe. Fully voluntary - but then the service charge already covers the "mandatory tipping", anyway.