We have always tipped at the end of the cruise in cash, but I would like to pre-pay ahead of time and not have to worry about it. My TA can't do it because we are a large group. Can I do this myself before we board? Also, my boys will be in a second cabin right across the hall from us, can I combine tips? Thanks, Nat
RCL Nordic Empress 80's
RCL Monarch of the Seas 1990
RCL Mariner of the Seas 2006
DCL Wonder 2007
RCL Enchantment of the Seas 2008
Princess Diamond 2009
RCL Oasis of the Seas 2010
Mike is right about going to the guess relations desk during your cruise to pre-pay gratuities. They will just charge them to your seapass credit card. The vouchers will be delivered to the staterooms on the last day of the cruise.
We never pre pay the gratuities before the cruise. When you check in, they should ask you if you want to do the automatic payment (charge to your sign and sail account) in which case you will get paper vochures to give out the last day indicating you pre-paid. So you have something to hand out AND you don't have to worry about having cash. So definetly ask as you are checking in.
So this might automatically happen for you, but if you don't see the tip charge on your account after the first day, you can do as Sonny said and ask the guest relations desk to set it up for you.
I'm not sure that they would allow you to specifically pay tips before you board, but you can add money to your ship board account. You secure you on board account with either a credit card or with cash, so they can set up your on board account with a credit before you leave. Then you will know you'd have your tips covered. Hope this helps.
What happened when I went on my cruise (The Majesty back in October of 2007) was the third day of the cruise they had a flier with information on it, and you had until the end of the day of when they delivered it (example, flier was delivered Wednesday morning, have until Wednesday night) to drop it in the box near the guest relations desk. The next day, they will deliver vouchers to your room. It may be different depending on the length of the cruise, so I would ask when you check in, or at guest relations once you're on the ship.
2007 - Majesty of the Seas (Bahamas)
2009 - Enchantment of the Seas (Western Caribbean)
2010 - Freedom of the Seas (Western Caribbean)
2013 - Golden Princess (Alaska, roundtrip from Seattle)
We did a Carnival cruise last Aug.& they automatically put the tips on our sea pass. I don't like that & would prefer to give the cash myself. Is this a mandatory thing that is just started or will we always have a choice?
For credit cards they simply put a hold on a pre-determined amount, not a charge but a credit line hold. For cash you'd have to fork over the amount in advance whether you intend to spend that much or not. I think with most lines it's about $60. a day that they hold. So if you're willing to hand them cash at boarding time for charges you may or may not incur go for it. I prefer the CC route. That way they only bill what I actually charge, I can review the statement and if there are ever any discrepencies (I've never had any) I have recourse. What happens if you lose your sign and sail card and someone uses it to drain your cash account at the casino? The CC company can play go-between in the case of disputed charges. If you hand over the cash and there is an issue with your bill... good luck! You'll be in line at the Guest Relations/Pursers Desk on the last day of the cruise (one of the busiest times, long lines) and hoping for the best without any recourse if things don't go as you expect. Please use a CC if possible.