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A friend just took the same cruise and itinerary that we are taking next month (well, 39 days, but who's counting?).

 

When I talked to him about it, he said he went to Guest Services and asked them to remove all of the gratuities that were charged automatically, and that he would tip on his own for the entire cruise at the end.

 

Is it possible to do that?  Is it considered a little rogue?  I'd rather tip my attendant and probably my dining room servers on my own, since they are the people with whom I've interacted with.

 

 

 

Also - is there a template or something where you cool people share your cruise experiences down in your sig line area?

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Yes, you are allowed to have the automatic gratuities removed in lieu of providing gratuities on your own.

 

Also - is there a template or something where you cool people share your cruise experiences down in your sig line area?

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A friend just took the same cruise and itinerary that we are taking next month (well, 39 days, but who's counting?).

 

When I talked to him about it, he said he went to Guest Services and asked them to remove all of the gratuities that were charged automatically, and that he would tip on his own for the entire cruise at the end.

 

Is it possible to do that?  Is it considered a little rogue?  I'd rather tip my attendant and probably my dining room servers on my own, since they are the people with whom I've interacted with.

 

 

 

Also - is there a template or something where you cool people share your cruise experiences down in your sig line area?

 

Yes you can do it I have done this and guest services never questions  my actions. Once I told them it was because of service, (Bad Cruise) all the other times I said I want to tip in cash.  And yes the people who have earned tips are tipped in cash, in hand. I really never have like the pooled tip and let the company split it up.  Someone it seems one amount goes in and then the people I want tipped get a much smaller amount.  With cash my intentions and rewards for service are very clear and direct. 

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I have heard that lists of those who cancel auto gratuities have been seen in employee areas of the ship of another crise line (even though they are not suppose to) I've even seen a photo of such a list posted in galley on another cruise line. Whether or not you do in fact tip appropriately at the end of the cruise, the perception will be that you are a cheap a#& and I am not willing to risk bad service for an erroneous assumption. Additionally, I think it's a hassle dealing with guest services and I am certain it's a hassle for them.

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I have heard that lists of those who cancel auto gratuities have been seen in employee areas of the ship of another crise line (even though they are not suppose to) I've even seen a photo of such a list posted in galley on another cruise line. Whether or not you do in fact tip appropriately at the end of the cruise, the perception will be that you are a cheap a#& and I am not willing to risk bad service for an erroneous assumption. Additionally, I think it's a hassle dealing with guest services and I am certain it's a hassle for them.

 

As I posted no problems from Guest Services. If a cruise ship did allow such lists I know a few lawyers who would love to see those list and introduced that cruise line to the class action law suit. I do not believe Royal would ever put itself into that position because of the risk involved. It would be a public relations nightmare. Again I'm not against tipping for service. I am against pooled tipping and Royal or any company saying part of my tip should go to a dishwasher, or to a cabin house keeping manger. I want my tips to go directly to the people that provide direct face to face service.

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Interesting comments.

 

Back in the day, you would tip on the last day of the cruise, in cash, to those who served you. The chef or dishwasher didn`t get tipped. You tipped your cabin steward, waiter, head waiter,busboy(s) and the wine steward if you use thir services. Envelopes would appear in your cabin along with a sheet of paper with tipping guidelines.

 

The cruise passenger demographic has changed quite a bit over the years as cruises got less expensive. Most cruisers have no idea of how crusing was meant to be. I don`t know if people were not tipping or if the cruise lines saw an opportunity to give their staff a raise at he passenger`s expense.

 

I would rather tip those who served me in cash, based on the service I received.Tipping hem directly means it goes straight in their pocket, where it belongs.

 

I understand with the anytime dining, you could get a different waiter every night. That makes it hard to tip, unless you tip at each meal.

 

I see the automatic gratuities in the same light as the Las Vegas hotel resort fees. They advertise a low room rate, but there is a mandatory resort fee. The cruise fare may be low, but you have an additional $90 in gratuities.

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I don't personally see the auto gratuities as the same as resort fees as gratuities have always been extended and an expected part of the cruise costs. Resort fees, and baggage fees for that matter, are fees charged for things that use to be included.

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Prepaid gratuities are the only way to go.  If  it comes down to "nickel and dime"ing  every one of the service personnel, maybe you really can't afford to travel on a cruise.   Pay the prepaid..and you will have one less thing to be concerned with.  It's taken care of and everyone will be happy.  

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I leave the auto gratuities in place, because I think Royal has a better idea of how tips are distributed and who they should go to then I do. There is some percentage of how it's distributed that I saw on their tv channel. It's split with your steward and dining staff I think... and one other.

 

I also tip my steward in cash, and my wait staff additionally on the last day/night of the cruise, not of these people provide extremely personal service to me, and it feels right to me.

 

My first steward also told me he only gets paid for the rooms that are full... so if he has 12 rooms assigned, and only 10 are filled, then he's losing money. They work awlful hours too; my stewards always look like they never sleep a straight 8 hours. And my assistant waiter for dinner, was handing out juice at breakfast!

 

P.S. I heard they pool their tips anyway, so even if you hand a direct cash tip, it goes into the pool. If they don't hand money to the pool they can be terminated for hiding money. That was on a Podcast interview... so not sure if that's the same on all cruise lines, but if it is, you're not gaining anything by removing the tips if you are just going to hand out the same exact money anyway. e.g. $12.95 x 2 x 7 days or however long your cruise is. I think... :)

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I leave the auto gratuities in place, because I think Royal has a better idea of how tips are distributed and who they should go to then I do. There is some percentage of how it's distributed that I saw on their tv channel. It's split with your steward and dining staff I think... and one other.

 

I also tip my steward in cash, and my wait staff additionally on the last day/night of the cruise, not of these people provide extremely personal service to me, and it feels right to me.

 

My first steward also told me he only gets paid for the rooms that are full... so if he has 12 rooms assigned, and only 10 are filled, then he's losing money. They work awlful hours too; my stewards always look like they never sleep a straight 8 hours. And my assistant waiter for dinner, was handing out juice at breakfast!

 

P.S. I heard they pool their tips anyway, so even if you hand a direct cash tip, it goes into the pool. If they don't hand money to the pool they can be terminated for hiding money. That was on a Podcast interview... so not sure if that's the same on all cruise lines, but if it is, you're not gaining anything by removing the tips if you are just going to hand out the same exact money anyway. e.g. $12.95 x 2 x 7 days or however long your cruise is. I think... :)

Agreed on all accounts.

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Royal and the other cruise lines have pulled off a great con game and scam, it is not tipping it is part of the cost of that employee. A tip is a optional payment made by the person giving it. What Royal is doing is a service charge, which is fine but don't try to say it is a tip. All these cruise lines that add these fees so they can hide the real cost. The more they try to mandate these fees the less I will pay them. If other quest want to be scammed and conned that is their choice. As it is my choice to always remove the auto tips from my account and tip as I see fit for service that deserved a gratuity.

 

You hear the lines say these are third world workers and they work very hard for little money. Little money in US terms but to them it is not little money, it is more money than they would make in their home countries. To raise the issue of how hard they work or that it is just a small amount is nothing short of a con. And what is a con it is to persuade someone to do or believe something, typically by use of a deception. 

 

The day they make the gratuities mandatory is the last day I will cruise with that line. If you want to pay your employees raise the cruise rate  and give them a "so called" fair wage. My maid here in the Philippines  works for me about 4 hours a day, she is paid about $7.50 cents per day, on the surface and by Western Standards makes me the worst boss in the World. But I pay her more than she would make working a 8 hour full time shift in a hotel. She is happy and loves coming to work for the last six years.

 

These are not US workers, they are not slaves, they take the jobs because they are great jobs. So please if you want to pay auto gratuities, service, fees, extra tips, do this and that is your choice. But you need to respect that it is your choice and others are free to do as they choose and believe is best.
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Just want to chime in here; as an American who has been living in Asia for over 18 years with some years in Europe as well; tipping is a VERY American concept. It is almost non-existent and rare in Asia, want to see more about why the concept of tipping is so American please check this out

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Just want to chime in here; as an American who has been living in Asia for over 18 years with some years in Europe as well; tipping is a VERY American concept. It is almost non-existent and rare in Asia, want to see more about why the concept of tipping is so American please check this out

By the way.. just to add in; I remove the auto tipping off my master bill and tip cash accordingly to the staff that I feel deserve the extra money. Additionally, I always bring a goodie bag for the steward and give it to him/her at the beginning of the voyage. This is gesture always ensures a bit of extra special attention to our cabin in my experience. 

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I pre-paid gratuity is NOT a tip according to the definition or the spirit of the gesture.

 

I understand this is the norm now in the cruise industry....but really its just an extra fee added to the total cost. Just like many airlines and vacation package companies hide a lot in their "taxes and fees" portion of the fare.

 

I can think of NO other industry or situation where I would be pre-tipping someone or a company before ever using their service or product.......it defeats the whole idea and premise of a tip.

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By the way.. just to add in; I remove the auto tipping off my master bill and tip cash accordingly to the staff that I feel deserve the extra money. Additionally, I always bring a goodie bag for the steward and give it to him/her at the beginning of the voyage. This is gesture always ensures a bit of extra special attention to our cabin in my experience. 

 

This is interesting.  Just what types of "goodies" do you put in this bag?

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This is interesting.  Just what types of "goodies" do you put in this bag?

 

I'm not sure what Jamie puts in the bag.... But here in Asia many things the average America takes for grant it are welcome and special. Anything with the American Flag, US Sports Teams, American Chocolates, etc. They love American products, even if the items are not made in America but come from the United States. Coffee, Biscuits Cookies, Peanuts, or any Snack Food. Hershey's Chocolate Bars are really liked here. And if you produce a larger size bar 6 or 8 oz. the reaction is always all smiles. 
 
It is also the idea of this person took the time to bring me a gift. Not reached into their pocket and took out cash. They still love cash, everyone does.
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That video pretty much hits the nail on the head.  I have no issue with the money at all, it's mostly just the annoyance of it and a little bit the principal of it.  Just charge me the all inclusive price for the service provided and leave me alone.  Anyone in the service industry (waiter / waitress / bartender) has to deal with the general public, and a good portion of the general public are idiots, so they certainly deserve more than $7.50 per hour.  A big issue for me is what professions society deems tip worthy.  Where the line gets drawn sometimes makes no sense.  You order a beer from a bartender, he/she gets it, opens/pours it, hands it to you.  Total transaction time is about 15 seconds, they get a tip.  The fast food worker takes your order, gets your food, hands it to you, total transaction time is longer than the bartender, they get no tip.  Both likely make minimum wage.  Why is one tip worthy and one not?  Just pay them both a fair wage, remove the tipping, and let capitalism take care of the rest.

 

I stayed at a Beaches all inclusive once and we were told at check in that tipping is prohibited.  I doubted this and attempted to tip a few servers and bartenders.  Every one of them refused to take it, and all of them had the same response.  "Thank you sir, but tipping is not allowed here".  I inquired further of one of the bartenders (after a session at his bar) and he told me that accepting a tip is grounds for immediate termination.  This was the most expensive all inclusive I ever stayed at, but it truly was all inclusive, and the service I received from everyone was outstanding.  I wish it was like this everywhere.             

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By the way.. just to add in; I remove the auto tipping off my master bill and tip cash accordingly to the staff that I feel deserve the extra money. Additionally, I always bring a goodie bag for the steward and give it to him/her at the beginning of the voyage. This is gesture always ensures a bit of extra special attention to our cabin in my experience.

I too am interested in the "goody" bag. I would love to do that too.

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I'm not sure what Jamie puts in the bag.... But here in Asia many things the average America takes for grant it are welcome and special. Anything with the American Flag, US Sports Teams, American Chocolates, etc. They love American products, even if the items are not made in America but come from the United States. Coffee, Biscuits Cookies, Peanuts, or any Snack Food. Hershey's Chocolate Bars are really liked here. And if you produce a larger size bar 6 or 8 oz. the reaction is always all smiles. 
 
It is also the idea of this person took the time to bring me a gift. Not reached into their pocket and took out cash. They still love cash, everyone does.

 

 

Fantastic idea.

 

Thank you so much for that information!!  We'll definitely do that.

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While I do not remove my automatic gratuities, I have also starting giving my room attendant a "treat" every day.  A candy bar, some kind of nuts or whatever I brought.....just left it on the foot of the bed every morning with a note to the attendant telling him or her to please take it and enjoy.  if I hadn't of put that note there, they would not have touched it.

 

Then it becomes like a little game....what's today's treat going to be ?  On my last cruise (Allure), my attendant (Rod) would see us leaving or b'fast and say....ooohh...you're leaving.  I can't wait to go and see what my treat or the day is !  He was sooo cute.

 

The last day he got a treat plus a nice tip.  He did so much extra work for us that week.....parties in the room and eating out on the balcony.  He definitely deserved it....and I get a kick out of doing it !

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