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Price Hike: Gratuities for 2018


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2 hours ago, Sabrinaklai said:

Hmm...all these cruises and that never once crossed my mind.  That is a very interesting point and now I am wondering if you can go to guest services at the end of a cruise and add extra gratuities for a specific crew member instead of giving them cash?

Sabrina,

You can do that anytime during the cruise. At the end of a cruise there will be a lot of folks in the guest services line and each one will have a different problem they need to get resolved and that can take some time. It has been our experience that after a couple of days we know who the star performers are for us, ie, cabin attendant, waiter, etc. and who the not so star performers are. I usually hit the guest services desk about half way through the cruise and increase/decrease the gratuity accordingly. Just be sure you get crew members name correct! Oh yeah, forgot to mention before that at the end of the cruise, I always tell the cabin attendant, waiter, etc. that I have pre-paid their gratuity. That way they won't think I have stiffed them.

Happy New Year!:27_sunglasses:

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This is a Celebrity breakdown..would think Royal would be pretty similar?img011.pdf

You do have to call (or ask your travel agent) to prepay gratuity.  My understanding was you had to do this by Jan. 2, 2018 to secure the old rate. 

Nope, old rate is still honored as long as you booked before Jan 2 and pre-paid before sail date. Just did this on Thursday for my Freedom sailing in 75 days.

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2 hours ago, Allen2 said:

Tips going up $2 per person per day.  Only way to avoid increase is to prepay tips by January 2, 2018.  Basic tips now will be $14.50 pp per day (Suites more).

If you have booked a cruise BEFORE January 2nd, you are grandfathered in at the old gratuity rate of $13.50 per person per day. Any cruises booked AFTER January 2nd will have the $14.50 gratuity fee.:27_sunglasses:

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Hmm...all these cruises and that never once crossed my mind.  That is a very interesting point and now I am wondering if you can go to guest services at the end of a cruise and add extra gratuities for a specific crew member instead of giving them cash?

 

I did this on one of my recent cruises...

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1 hour ago, BobNoxious said:

Article has one factual error. It says you have to pre-pay before Jan 2 to lock in the old rate; the official email from Royal Caribbean specifically stated that you pre-pay any time until 3 days prior to sailing date for any cruise booked prior to Jan 2 and still get the old rate. Only cruises booked after Jan 2, or before then but not pre-paid, will be subject to the new rate.

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The way it was explained to me, you had to pre-pay before 1/2/18 to get the old rate.

Email from MEI travel on 12/26/17:

Hello!

Royal Caribbean will be raising its automatic daily gratuity amount that guests pay per night of their cruise beginning on January 2, 2018. Beginning January 2, guests will pay a $14.50 per guest, per night service charge in Standard staterooms, and $17.50 per guest, per night in Suites (current daily gratuity amounts are $13.50 and $16.50).  If you have already prepaid your gratuities, you will be grandfathered into the current rates.  

Guests currently booked that have not yet added gratuities to their reservations may add them at the old rate up until January 1, 2018. The cost of the gratuities will be added to your final payment. 

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1 hour ago, Floski said:

Okay, call me an idiot (not literally, rjac!), but how do I pay for my gratuities in advance?  

I can't find it anywhere on the website.  Do I have to call?  We sail next week!

 

You do have to call (or ask your travel agent) to prepay gratuity.  My understanding was you had to do this by Jan. 2, 2018 to secure the old rate. 

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44 minutes ago, ellcee said:

I added my gratuities when I booked last August but won't be paid in full until April for a July cruise - I must have been grandfathered in since the charges never changed.

Yes, the gratuity will be part of your final payment at last year's rate.  You are spared from the increase.  

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1 minute ago, D Murphy said:

We were informed by email that gratuities were going up..But this was after we had already booked our cruise...Seems like this should not be allowed if you are already booked..

 

Anyone?

Did you book it before January 2018?  If so, then you should still get the old rate.  If not, then it's going up.

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7 minutes ago, D Murphy said:

We were informed by email that gratuities were going up..But this was after we had already booked our cruise...Seems like this should not be allowed if you are already booked..

 

Anyone?

Welcome to the message boards!

If you booked in 2017 you can call your travel agent or RC directly (if that is how you booked) and pre-pay gratuity at the old rate.  If you wait until on-board, you will pay the new rate.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Just spoke with RCCL -- it was confirmed to me that as long as I prepaid 4 days before sailing, I would be paying the old rate -- I have a reminder in my calendar to do it about 12 days before, so I don't have to add something else to my credit card -- between booking with deposit in December & adding drink packages, spa services, excursions & finally paying it off over the last 2 months, my credit card needs a break!!!

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Update for non-US cruisers: If you want to benefit from the old gratuity rates, talk to your local RCI subsidiary. If you are a German resident you have to pay the new gratuity rates even if you pay in advance. I know it isn't that much money but I get annoyed when companies aren't true to their word.

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