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Gratuities raised


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Great question @Maggie M. I think you may be charged the difference at time of upgrade. In this scenario it would be another 4.50 per night, I believe you are correct in your above assertion. I wish you crazy luck for a great upgrade!!!!

* I don't think it will be added to the bid amount but your OB folio.

 

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  • 2 months later...

I just called to pre-pay gratuities on an upcoming b2b. I was charged $16 per day.

It appears that if the cruises were booked prior to the November change…and if I pre-pay prior to the sailing…then the previous charge of $16 per day is valid. If I don’t pre-pay…then I’m charged $18 per day onboard.

I didn’t pre-pay on my previous cruises that were booked prior to November but sailed after the November raise and I was charged $18 per day onboard.

I misunderstood the email. I thought if I called to pre-pay prior to the November raise date, only then would I get the $16 charge. Oh well… guess I’ll start pre-paying prior to sailing as virtually all of my pending cruises were booked prior to November.

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20 hours ago, BrianB said:

I just called to pre-pay gratuities on an upcoming b2b. I was charged $16 per day.

It appears that if the cruises were booked prior to the November change…and if I pre-pay prior to the sailing…then the previous charge of $16 per day is valid. If I don’t pre-pay…then I’m charged $18 per day onboard.

I didn’t pre-pay on my previous cruises that were booked prior to November but sailed after the November raise and I was charged $18 per day onboard.

I misunderstood the email. I thought if I called to pre-pay prior to the November raise date, only then would I get the $16 charge. Oh well… guess I’ll start pre-paying prior to sailing as virtually all of my pending cruises were booked prior to November.

Interesting, because I did the same thing Friday and was charged the $18 (and this was a cruise that was booked back in June 2022 when it was $14.50 - I have the original confirmation that says that amount). I had them add the gratuities when I paid the final payment.

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9 hours ago, BrianB said:

I’m hoping it’s not just a glitch. These two cruises are also paid in full and the first one sails next week.

It's not a glitch. It is well known to TAs that as long as you booked the sailing before the change in November, you can still call and get the old rate grandfathered any time prior to sailing. I am about to call my TA to pre-pay my gratuities for Icon inaugural.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 1/22/2024 at 5:09 PM, Lovetocruise2002 said:

It's not a glitch. It is well known to TAs that as long as you booked the sailing before the change in November, you can still call and get the old rate grandfathered any time prior to sailing. I am about to call my TA to pre-pay my gratuities for Icon inaugural.

Did you get the previous rate? 

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1 hour ago, sleepy425 said:

Did you get the previous rate? 

Yes. My TA added it last Tuesday, the day after I made the previous post, and I sailed Saturday. As long as you booked before they changed the rate, and you pre-pay before sailing, the old rate will still be honoured. 

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  • 4 weeks later...

We just got back from several BtB's, (2 months straight of sailings) and the gratuities are getting out of hand. So, I went to guest services to ask just where tips are going. They handed me a pre-printed list and I was very surprised. Back in the day, tips were split between the Cabin attendant, Waiter, and assistant Waiter. Now...if you look at the list, there are several others added, such as " other hotel services" staff and others behind the scenes we never see or use directly. @ $6.50 per day per guest. If we order something to the room, there is already a 18% tip added to the bill. So why are we paying it twice? (Royal, though making it what seems easier to get it pre-paid so it is out of our minds...but as a way for the guest to subsidize the payroll system) So I asked them to remove all the daily gratuities, and we went back to doing it old school. We went back to handing out cash again. Because of all the changes in the MDR, and reduced quality of the meals and reduced options. We find that we are using the MDR less and less. Maybe a small inconvenience, but when I use the MDR, I hand the tips directly to the recipients just prior to leaving from dinner...just the way we do it when we go out to eat at home. I knew that the staff would like this, but was surprised that they were more excited about it more than I thought they would be. Of course, I informed them how I would be handling it from the start, so that they did not think they would be getting twice the amount. You would be surprised just how much what I consider as "fluff" in the amount you tip per day.  $6.50 per day x 2 = $13.00, for 7 days = $91.00

Royal-Caribbean-Gratuities-Breakdown.jpg

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46 minutes ago, RorySC said:

We just got back from several BtB's, (2 months straight of sailings) and the gratuities are getting out of hand. So, I went to guest services to ask just where tips are going. They handed me a pre-printed list and I was very surprised. Back in the day, tips were split between the Cabin attendant, Waiter, and assistant Waiter. Now...if you look at the list, there are several others added, such as " other hotel services" staff and others behind the scenes we never see or use directly. @ $6.50 per day per guest. If we order something to the room, there is already a 18% tip added to the bill. So why are we paying it twice? (Royal, though making it what seems easier to get it pre-paid so it is out of our minds...but as a way for the guest to subsidize the payroll system) So I asked them to remove all the daily gratuities, and we went back to doing it old school. We went back to handing out cash again. Because of all the changes in the MDR, and reduced quality of the meals and reduced options. We find that we are using the MDR less and less. Maybe a small inconvenience, but when I use the MDR, I hand the tips directly to the recipients just prior to leaving from dinner...just the way we do it when we go out to eat at home. I knew that the staff would like this, but was surprised that they were more excited about it more than I thought they would be. Of course, I informed them how I would be handling it from the start, so that they did not think they would be getting twice the amount. You would be surprised just how much what I consider as "fluff" in the amount you tip per day.  $6.50 per day x 2 = $13.00, for 7 days = $91.00

Royal-Caribbean-Gratuities-Breakdown.jpg

This is the same list they gave out about a year ago, same people listed.  Other Hotel Services would mean laundry of the sheets\towels for your room. It goes to the laundry room attendants, I would assume.  I also believe a lot of people are doing both, myself included- pre paying then also giving the MDR servers cash a few times a week.  You can tip how you want, I consider these daily gratuities part of my fare and don't even count them as tips, and will leave room attendants and servers additional cash as the week goes on. 

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5 hours ago, RorySC said:

 

Royal-Caribbean-Gratuities-Breakdown.jpg

 

I'd be interested to know what, if anything, gets shaved off the top. Like when you donate to a charity and they say "100% of your donation will go to...", does any of that money end up with Royal as some kind of administration fee to the workers?

Going through the trouble of removing daily gratuities and doling all that money out individually seems like a lot of work (and you miss tipping some of the people you may not see, like laundry workers). But I'd be inclined to try doing it if it's not all going to the workers.

 

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1 minute ago, jeffmw said:

 

I'd be interested to know what, if anything, gets shaved off the top. Like when you donate to a charity and they say "100% of your donation will go to...", does any of that money end up with Royal as some kind of administration fee to the workers?

Going through the trouble of removing daily gratuities and doling all that money out individually seems like a lot of work (and you miss tipping some of the people you may not see, like laundry workers). But I'd be inclined to try doing it if it's not all going to the workers.

 

I assume virtually 100% is going to the workers.  Anything else is unethical, and while business-oriented, Royal appears to be ethical.  Folks who cancel gratuities and hand out cash are going down the wrong path because of the "invisible cruise ship workforce", in my opinion, but they have the right to do that.

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4 hours ago, ChessE4 said:

I assume virtually 100% is going to the workers.  Anything else is unethical, and while business-oriented, Royal appears to be ethical.  Folks who cancel gratuities and hand out cash are going down the wrong path because of the "invisible cruise ship workforce", in my opinion, but they have the right to do that.

I've read elsewhere that Royal takes a percentage for processing and handling the money. Can I prove the person's who have written that are correct? No? Royal Caribbean charging folks a fee for doing something? Hmmmmm. Sure sounds like a possibility. 

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16 hours ago, jeffmw said:

 

I'd be interested to know what, if anything, gets shaved off the top. Like when you donate to a charity and they say "100% of your donation will go to...", does any of that money end up with Royal as some kind of administration fee to the workers?

Going through the trouble of removing daily gratuities and doling all that money out individually seems like a lot of work (and you miss tipping some of the people you may not see, like laundry workers). But I'd be inclined to try doing it if it's not all going to the workers.

 

Something nice i stumbled on, the Concierge in the D-lounge has the ability, and power to handle many or most things that we would normally stand in line at guest services for. It took me less than 5 minutes to have them remove the daily from my account, and I handled everything with cash. Including tipping out that particular Concierge who was very helpful to us, and with whatever anyone needed from what I seen. As far as tipping out the laundry staff...that seems very far fetched to me. Have you ever been asked by a hotel or resort to tip out the laundry staff? Maybe, they added verbiage such as service fee's? I think that there should be no more tipping at all. Just give us a price for the cruise as a whole and the cruise line handle all of that back of the house agenda.  

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13 hours ago, RorySC said:

the Concierge in the D-lounge has the ability, and power to handle many or most things that we would normally stand in line at guest services for

i often wonder what i should be bringing to the crown lounge concierge instead of trying to time my visits to guest services at off-peak times. i usually forget about seeing them entirely. 😅

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20 hours ago, RorySC said:

I think that there should be no more tipping at all. Just give us a price for the cruise as a whole and the cruise line handle all of that back of the house agenda. 

Agreed... just include everything in the price, and call it a day, that way it doesn't come off as a gratuity as much as just part of the fare and they can disperse it however they want. THEN you can still give cash to those who you feel deserve it without feeling like you are double tipping if that's what you want to do. 

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9 hours ago, asquared17 said:

i often wonder what i should be bringing to the crown lounge concierge instead of trying to time my visits to guest services at off-peak times. i usually forget about seeing them entirely. 😅

Other than changing some bigger bills to ones for on-the-fly tipping purposes, we default to asking the concierge first. If the concierce CAN'T help, they can usually get you a faster response than waiting in line at Guest Services.

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I love having the CL concierge. When I needed to change my reservations on Wonder, the concierge did it in a few minutes and I enjoyed my donuts and hot chocolate while she did it. If I can avoid guest services, I will.

But I also agree they should just charge a service fee in the fare. Instead of calling them gratuities. To each their own but I don't care that money goes to laundry or people cleaning the stairs and bathrooms. They work hard.

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3 hours ago, HeWhoWaits said:

Other than changing some bigger bills to ones for on-the-fly tipping purposes, we default to asking the concierge first. If the concierce CAN'T help, they can usually get you a faster response than waiting in line at Guest Services.

I've found myself asking a concierge questions knowing they can't answer, but more in a "who do you suggest I talk to about..." Sometimes they would call that person directly on our behalf.

My favorite "I know this isn't your area but who should I talk to" story was for some significant OBC that disappeared in the days leading up to the cruise (and I didn't notice it until boarding). I asked her who I should contact, but she tracked it down herself. She totally didn't have to peel that onion, but did.

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There's an elephant in the room here. The entire cruise industry and its profitability is built upon cruise lines paying workers wages that, in the First World would not be considered a legal or viable wage. This has been interpreted by lots of mainstream media and investigative journalists as exploitation -- and I understand that conclusion -- but that's First World-centric view.

Cruise lines hire people from places where what they pay is considered good pay and a good opportunity. When people go to a resort in Mexico or any other country where low-level workers are paid low wages, it's seldom they stop to question the ethics. The cruise lines are held to an inconsistent standard because they operate out of the US, even if they aren't hiring American workers.

Everything is a function of the economy of a particular place and context. Tucker Carlson recently went to Russia and raved about how a week's worth of groceries that would've cost $300 in the US only cost $175 in Russia. That seems like an indictment of the US economy until you consider that the average American makes in a week (~$1,100) what the average Russian makes in a month. Their groceries cost 60% of ours, but they make 25% as much as we do. With that bit of knowledge, their groceries cost far more than ours. It's all context. 

Long (long) story short -- small amounts of money that mean very little to us mean a lot to the people from places like India and the Philippines, who work on these ships in the menial roles. Any amount of cash you can give any of them is extremely worthwhile to them.

 

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Shareholders should vote to take less profit and increase wages to first world minimum wages. This would be a step in the right direction. You are first world passengers. The laundry workers should be paid a minimum like any first world worker who takes care of you. Those making a profit off these hard working people's backs should make the first move. Anyone?

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1 hour ago, CanHardlyWait said:

Shareholders should vote to take less profit and increase wages to first world minimum wages. This would be a step in the right direction. You are first world passengers. The laundry workers should be paid a minimum like any first world worker who takes care of you. Those making a profit off these hard working people's backs should make the first move. Anyone?

There's a reason the crew signs up to spend 6-8 months away from family. Because it's good money. Not good money for Americans, but good money for their own country.

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2 hours ago, CanHardlyWait said:

Shareholders should vote to take less profit and increase wages to first world minimum wages. This would be a step in the right direction. You are first world passengers. The laundry workers should be paid a minimum like any first world worker who takes care of you. Those making a profit off these hard working people's backs should make the first move. Anyone?

Welcome to the advent of interior staterooms for $500 per person per night, if you got your way.

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54 minutes ago, HeWhoWaits said:

Welcome to the advent of interior staterooms for $500 per person per night, if you got your way.

No no no. I said lower profits. Not raise prices. LOL.

My point was some people on here cannot be bleeding hearts for hard working crew and also be part of the pay scale problem as shareholders. 

Sadly we are heading towards $500 pp per night anyway. 

I'm just a believer in cash in hand = knowing where it's going. 

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