Go Back   Cruise Critic Message Board Forums > Cruise Critic News & Feature Articles
 
Register here!
Forgot Your Password?


Notices

Cruise Critic News & Feature Articles Up-to-the minute News & Feature Articles from Cruise Critic

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old November 30th, 2010, 05:20 PM
LauraS's Avatar
LauraS LauraS is offline
Sr. Manager, Community
Cruise Critic
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Pennington, NJ
Posts: 13,061
Arrow An Insider's Guide to Cruise Tipping

Check out this brand-new feature article from Cruise Critic:

An Insider's Guide to Cruise Tipping
Reply With Quote

Ad Sponsored By
  #2  
Old November 30th, 2010, 06:50 PM
Cuizer2's Avatar
Cuizer2 Cuizer2 is offline
20,000+ Club
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 28,004
Default

Well, the author is entitled to his opinion regarding tipping. I don't agree with everything he said and I'll just leave it at that.
Reply With Quote

  #3  
Old November 30th, 2010, 06:59 PM
smeyer418's Avatar
smeyer418 smeyer418 is offline
20,000+ Club
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 20,803
Default

interesting. Thank you. On some ships there is no head waiter- the maitre d serves the same function(trains the service crew and supervisors). If you leave the DSC/autotip on they are included. In any case your waiter is expected to tip them(as well as the line chefs and dishwashers) out if you remove the tip(and may in fact have to turn in all the cash if the tip is removed). Ditto with the room steward(the assist head housekeeper-laundry room and supply room)....

adding to the fare would accomplish the same thing but then it would never be removable-even for bad service- and people would just complain about something else.
__________________
Proud charter member of the PPS-Passport Pusher Society

smeyer418@yahoo.com
Carnival, Celebrity, NCL, RCCI, Cunard, Viking Overnight Ferry(Finland-Sweden), hydrofoil between countries(Estonia,Jersey) car ferries and three river cruises(Egypt, China and the Danube) and of course the Staten Island Ferry
NCL Gem 2/2015
Reply With Quote

  #4  
Old November 30th, 2010, 07:05 PM
smeyer418's Avatar
smeyer418 smeyer418 is offline
20,000+ Club
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 20,803
Default

I have taken my grandson on a cruise. I spoke with one of the children's staff at the Cruise critic meeting. We spoke at length and I saw her a few other times(she appears in my youtube/smeyer418 website in the Waters on the Majesty)....I asked about tipping. She tells that most people don't tip them at all and they are paid somewhat better than the crew. I asked what she considered a good tip and she told me and I left that for my grandson. It wasn't $15 per day per kid.....
Reply With Quote

  #5  
Old December 1st, 2010, 06:44 AM
Marysunshine Marysunshine is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Brooklyn, New York
Posts: 826
Default

I like to think I"m a good tipper, but the reviewer appears to be very generous, more than doubling the suggested gratuities. I'll have to stick with my own judgement.
__________________
Serenade of the Seas-Southern Caribbean
Reply With Quote

  #6  
Old December 1st, 2010, 09:27 AM
Dan Askin Dan Askin is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 1,075
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by smeyer418 View Post
I have taken my grandson on a cruise. I spoke with one of the children's staff at the Cruise critic meeting. We spoke at length and I saw her a few other times(she appears in my youtube/smeyer418 website in the Waters on the Majesty)....I asked about tipping. She tells that most people don't tip them at all and they are paid somewhat better than the crew. I asked what she considered a good tip and she told me and I left that for my grandson. It wasn't $15 per day per kid.....
Appreciate your insight, smeyer. The author, who without a doubt is one of the most generous tippers afloat, doesn't have kids -- thus the inclusion of comments from Ms. Koubek, a family cruise expert whose work has appeared in the Washington Post, Budget Travel and, of course, Cruise Critic.
__________________
Dan Askin
Senior Editor

Click to Play!






Reply With Quote

  #7  
Old December 1st, 2010, 12:36 PM
Two Tumbleweeds's Avatar
Two Tumbleweeds Two Tumbleweeds is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: St. George, UT
Posts: 337
Default Two Tumbleweeds

We tip our cabin steward at the end of the cruise, however, we tip the steward who brings us our morning coffee each morning, and that works wonders in the timing.
__________________
Orinoco, 1932, HAL, to Mexico
Nieuw Amsterdam,1938, HAL, to U.S.
Veendam,1952, HAL, to Holland
Maasdam,1960, HAL, to Holland
Noordam,1999, HAL, to Alaska
Golden Princess,2007, PCL, To Mexico
Rijndam, 2008, HAL, to Mexico
Golden Princess, 2009, PCL to Hawaii
Coral Princess, 2009, PCL to Panama
Island Princess, 2009, PCL to Alaska
Island Princess, 2009, PCL to Canada
Island Princess, 2009, PCL to San Francisco
Sapphire Princess, 2009, PCL, to Mexico
Island Princess,2010, PCL, to Alaska
Sapphire Princess,2011,PCL, to Mexico
Star Princess,2011,PCL, to Caribbean
Sapphire Princess,2011,PCL, to South Pacific
Coral Princess, 2012,PCL,East Bound Panama
Coral Princess, 2012,PCL,West Bound Panama
Crown Princess 2012,PCL, Meditteranean
Crown Princess 2012,PCL, Western Caribbean
Star Princess 2013,PCL, to Hawaii
Golden Princess 2014,PCL, S. America-Cape Horn
Sun Princess 2014,PCL, New Zealand

EMAIL
Reply With Quote

  #8  
Old December 1st, 2010, 12:46 PM
WeLuvVacation's Avatar
WeLuvVacation WeLuvVacation is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: North Massapequa, NY
Posts: 576
Default

Great article!

Quote: "Because tips are technically voluntary, many cruise lines allow passengers to opt out of the automatic service charge and to tip by themselves. The chief reasons for this, according to fellow cruisers, is that they consider them too high. These cruisers invariably tell me they will tip the persons who serve them, and save money to boot."


Save $$$ means to me "stiff the help."

The guidelines provided by the various cruise lines are not exorbitant at all, and I'm quite sorry but anyone who says they are needs to take the proverbial step back and reexamine their way of thinking AND go to work as a waitperson, room steward, etc. and see how tough of a job these people have!

The same goes for those who conveinently go to the buffet or have room service on the last night of the cruise to PURPOSELY stiff the waitstaff! Not cool at all!!!

And don't even try to attempt to "explain away" those cultures who do not tip as the norm. ANY person who has cruised more than ONCE knows exactly what the tipping policy is! First timers can be cut slack!

Any lastly for those who claim that they cannot affort to tip, either get a cheaper cabin so you can tip or stay home!

Sorry if this ruffles any proverbial feathers but this is my OPINION and I'm STICKING TO IT!

Have a nice day!
Reply With Quote

  #9  
Old December 1st, 2010, 01:04 PM
jimmyp80's Avatar
jimmyp80 jimmyp80 is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Cleveland, OH
Posts: 10
Default

I am going on my first cruise and it is on the NCL SKY. So with Freestyle Cruising I was curious how tipping would work. I thought the $12 per day would be enough and just tip a few dollars if I got room service. Am I being cheap? Should I be tipping bartenders, waiters, and room steward too? The author does seem very generous.
__________________
Reply With Quote

  #10  
Old December 1st, 2010, 01:13 PM
fareast fareast is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 16
Default Tipping Confusion abetted by this article

The cruise lines that automatically add a per day gratuity to the account should also state that their policy is that tipping in addition to the gratuity charge is not required or recommended.

Otherwise, the cruise line is just hiding the true cruise cost in a separate charge and expecting the passenger to come forth with the tipping as usual. This is at best a disingenuous marketing attempt to make the cruise price look lower than it really is.

Added to the complexity of all this is that many cruisers buy their cruise package from a travel agent, who will offer as an incentive to sell you the cruise at a price that includes the payment of the automatic gratuity. I have wondered whether the money for the gratuity is used by the cruise line to pay ship staff or not.

I believe most cruisers want to pay their fair share of added gratuity for salaries to ship staff. The policies on tipping need more transparency and explanation. This article doesn't do that.
Reply With Quote

  #11  
Old December 1st, 2010, 01:26 PM
SMA9497's Avatar
SMA9497 SMA9497 is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Savannah, GA
Posts: 150
Default

Although I do think the author tips more than I would, we always tip at least our waiter, room steward, and favorite bartender/bartenders extra. Quite honestly I think the daily amount that they have in the auto-tips is extremely low based on the service some of these people provide. However, having worked as a server in a restaurant before, I know the hard work it takes and regularly tip 20-25% in restaurants and bars. I only tip 10% if the service is bad- I think only once have I left a restaurant and not tipped anything.
__________________
Sailed
Carnival Legend- April 2008
Carnival Inspiration- July 2009

Upcoming
Celebrity Solstice- January 2011
Reply With Quote

  #12  
Old December 1st, 2010, 03:24 PM
Cuizer2's Avatar
Cuizer2 Cuizer2 is offline
20,000+ Club
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 28,004
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmyp80 View Post
I am going on my first cruise and it is on the NCL SKY. So with Freestyle Cruising I was curious how tipping would work. I thought the $12 per day would be enough and just tip a few dollars if I got room service. Am I being cheap? Should I be tipping bartenders, waiters, and room steward too? The author does seem very generous.
The $12 per day covers the dining room staff and the cabin attendants. If you buy a drink, and drink that you pay for, including soft drinks, a 15% gratuity will be added to the bill. The only one you have to go out of your way to tip (because the food is free) is room service. $1 or $2 should cover it.
Reply With Quote

  #13  
Old December 1st, 2010, 04:03 PM
smeyer418's Avatar
smeyer418 smeyer418 is offline
20,000+ Club
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 20,803
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Askin View Post
Appreciate your insight, smeyer. The author, who without a doubt is one of the most generous tippers afloat, doesn't have kids -- thus the inclusion of comments from Ms. Koubek, a family cruise expert whose work has appeared in the Washington Post, Budget Travel and, of course, Cruise Critic.
LOL I always love experts...because sometimes they know so little. $15 a day is almost what my son pays for preschool...and no tips there. Its just too much when these are salaried employees. When NCL raised its DSC from $5 to $12 for 3-12 year olds, the tipping suffered. I wrote NCL and suggested that at least a portion of the increase should go to the Kid's crew. It was considered and rejected. But I do think they should be tipped. If the recommended amount for the Butler is $5pdpp(per day per person) $15pdpp is just not an amount that most people will leave. I was told about what some people left but I don't want to get the staff in trouble and sometimes it was less than $15 per child for a week or more....
Reply With Quote

  #14  
Old December 1st, 2010, 04:07 PM
smeyer418's Avatar
smeyer418 smeyer418 is offline
20,000+ Club
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 20,803
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by fareast View Post
....

Added to the complexity of all this is that many cruisers buy their cruise package from a travel agent, who will offer as an incentive to sell you the cruise at a price that includes the payment of the automatic gratuity. I have wondered whether the money for the gratuity is used by the cruise line to pay ship staff or not.

I believe most cruisers want to pay their fair share of added gratuity for salaries to ship staff. The policies on tipping need more transparency and explanation. This article doesn't do that.

I am an attorney and monitor the websites where it is reported when employees sue the cruise lines. There is not one report that the prepaid tips goes anywhere except the crew- in full without deduction for so much as the cost of the credit card fee. Employees of cruise lines sue the cruise lines all the time(class actions too) and there has not been one report of any skimming at all. On each cruise I have been on where the tips were prepaid a list is circulated to the crew- so they in fact know. Its also true that if you remove the tips the crew is also made aware of it....
Reply With Quote

  #15  
Old December 1st, 2010, 04:13 PM
Alcarondas Alcarondas is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 188
Default

At first glance, the author does seem (perhaps overly) generous, but I think his point is the distinction of a "gratuity" for merely performing a service, and an extra "tip" for performing it well.

I got the impression that the amounts he recommended were discretionary tips given as rewards for exceptionally fine (rather than merely competent) service. Those who simply performed their jobs to the minimum necessary standard should be content with the auto-gratuity, while those who found ways to do more than the minimum in a pleasing and engaging way should get the bonuses.

Ultimately, I think there's a chicken-&-egg conundrum here. Does the writer tip heavily because he consistently receives exceptional service, or does he consistently receive exceptional service because he tips heavily?

I think it has to start with the staff; they need to demonstrate early and often that they are willing and happy to go beyond minimum standards simply for the sake of rendering good service. Once the traveler begins to recognize their efforts with appropriate discretionary tips, the staff are further encouraged to keep to a high standard in order to keep the tips flowing.

If the staff do their part and go beyond, and the guest merely takes their efforts for granted and does not respond with a suitable reward, what incentive does the staff now have to continue to operate at a higher-than-necessary standard?

I think in many cases, the expectations of guests concerning the level of service they should be "entitled to" without further contribution are too high. I see many posts concerning allegely poor service where it seems to me that the guest was expecting a level of deference and servitude such as might be found on a personal yacht with private salaried staff, and not on a mass-market cruise ship trying to accomodate thousands of guests, most of whom probably used every trick in the book to get the cheapest fare possible.

Two truths: Good help is hard to find, and you get what you pay for.

This entire post is JMHO and of course YMMV.
__________________
All my Dam cruises:


Maasdam TransAtlantic 1999 - Maasdam New England 2000
Veendam East Carib 2001 - Maasdam West Carib 2002
Veendam Central America 2003 - Zaandam East Carib 2004
Oosterdam Alaska 2005 - Oosterdam Mexican Riviera 2006
Westerdam So. Caribbean 2011 - Maasdam East Carib 2012
Reply With Quote

  #16  
Old December 1st, 2010, 04:37 PM
bionicman97's Avatar
bionicman97 bionicman97 is offline
Blue Ribbon Cruiser
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Crystal River, FL
Posts: 3,494
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cuizer2 View Post
Well, the author is entitled to his opinion regarding tipping. I don't agree with everything he said and I'll just leave it at that.
That sums it up very well for me.
__________________
Curtis

"Wisdom is conspicuous through modesty & silence" - but it makes for a boring message board.


Photo Gallery - http://www.flickr.com/photos/therealdanielfamily/
Learn About Me - http://www.about.me/curtisleedaniel

RCI - Majesty of the Seas 9/06 - Bahamas
RCI - Sovereign of the Seas 5/07 - Bahamas
RCI - Mariner of the Seas 9/07 - Western Caribbean
RCI - Mariner of the Seas 11/07 - Eastern Caribbean
RCI - Navigator of the Seas 3/08 - Western Caribbean
RCI - Mariner of the Seas 9/08 - Eastern Caribbean - We survived Hurricane Hanna!
RCI - Voyager of the Seas 11/08 - Western Mediterranean
RCI - Liberty of the Seas 9/09 - Eastern Caribbean -- Review
RCI - Monarch of the Seas 7/10 - Bahamas -- Review
RCI - Freedom of the Seas 8/10 - Eastern Caribbean / No Wait! It's Western Now. -- Review
RCI - Grandeur of the Seas 10/10 - Western Caribbean -- Review
RCI - Radiance of the Seas 12/10 - Western Caribbean -- Review
RCI - Jewel of the Seas 4/11 - Southern Caribbean -- Review
RCI - Freedom of the Seas 9/12 - Western Caribbean -- "First Family Cruise" -- Review
RCI - Navigator of the Seas 12/12 - Western Caribbean -- No Review
RCI - Oasis of the Seas 11/13 - Eastern Caribbean -- Review
RCI - Allure of the Seas 9/14 - Eastern Caribbean
Reply With Quote

  #17  
Old December 1st, 2010, 04:45 PM
Comptech's Avatar
Comptech Comptech is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
Posts: 575
Default

On my upcoming cruise I am tempted to give the cabin steward a 20 on the first day to ensure better than average service. Does this sound like enough for a 14 day cruise? And how should I approach the topic? I can not say here is some money now I expect great service.... Some ideas???
__________________

Ms Eurodam 2012 E. Caribbean (Free Bingo Cruise)
Ms Amsterdam 2011 S. Caribbean
Grand Princess 2010 S. Caribbean
Ms Noordam 2009 S. Caribbean
Ms Ryndam 2008 Mexican Riviera
Ms Veendam 2008 W. Caribbean (Free Bingo Cruise)
Ms Noordam 2007 S. Caribbean
Ms Maasdam 2006 S. Caribbean
Dawn Princess 2005 Mexican Riviera
Sun Princess 2003 E. Caribbean
Sun Princess 2002 Mexican Riviera
Regal Princess 1998 Panama Canal
Regal Princess 1994 S. Caribbean
Reply With Quote

  #18  
Old December 1st, 2010, 06:28 PM
Cuizer2's Avatar
Cuizer2 Cuizer2 is offline
20,000+ Club
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 28,004
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Comptech View Post
On my upcoming cruise I am tempted to give the cabin steward a 20 on the first day to ensure better than average service. Does this sound like enough for a 14 day cruise? And how should I approach the topic? I can not say here is some money now I expect great service.... Some ideas???
Why don't you just be honest and tell the cabin steward that you are offering this bribe (which is what payment before the service is rendered is - since a tip is supposed to be thanks for good service) since you don't think (s)he will provide you good service unless you offer the bribe.
Reply With Quote

  #19  
Old December 2nd, 2010, 09:46 PM
Inlyk Inlyk is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Australia
Posts: 45
Default

I reckon that tipping is a throwback to the days of slavery. People should be paid a proper wage and that's that. I feel awkward giving a grown fellow-man or woman a few dollars.

The cruise line, showing no pity, demeans them by paying them peanuts for being from a less fortunate country; then they tug at our sensibilities to give these people charity, when what they crave for, and should be getting, is equality.

Tipping makes me feel an accomplice in demeaning their worth as human beings; by tipping I am confirming their inferiority and that they are not worth a proper wage in the first place.

But having said all this, I know I must tip and I do; otherwise I would be robbing them.

I hate the idea of tipping but there is no way I wouldn't pay it in these circumstances. I also advise other first time Aussie cruisers to pay it even though it is so much against the grain of Aussie sensibilities and workplace culture-where everyone gets a proper wage. (Restaurant waiters would get $30+ per hour in Australia). Some cruise lines operating out of Australia are now adding the tip into the overall price of the cruise.

A few times I considered "doing my own thing" on tipping but I was told that whatever I give one person in their hands has to be put into the "tipping heap" and shared equally any way. I was told this by senior pursers on Holland America and Princess more than once.

The author's "Tipping Table" is just too hard. I don't want to go round the ship dropping cash and envelopes so I just pay whatever the ship says I should pay and let them work it out. I don't care if they double it or triple it as I know that really it's part of the price of the cruise and they separate it to make the advertised price look cheaper.

I also don't believe that the Europeans started this but that it is a US custom.

I would much happier to pay a bit more for my cruise to enable the cruiseline to pay the crew a proper wage.
Reply With Quote

  #20  
Old December 2nd, 2010, 10:33 PM
smeyer418's Avatar
smeyer418 smeyer418 is offline
20,000+ Club
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 20,803
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Inlyk View Post
I reckon that tipping is a throwback to the days of slavery. People should be paid a proper wage and that's that. I feel awkward giving a grown fellow-man or woman a few dollars.

The cruise line, showing no pity, demeans them by paying them peanuts for being from a less fortunate country; then they tug at our sensibilities to give these people charity, when what they crave for, and should be getting, is equality.

Tipping makes me feel an accomplice in demeaning their worth as human beings; by tipping I am confirming their inferiority and that they are not worth a proper wage in the first place.

But having said all this, I know I must tip and I do; otherwise I would be robbing them.

I hate the idea of tipping but there is no way I wouldn't pay it in these circumstances. I also advise other first time Aussie cruisers to pay it even though it is so much against the grain of Aussie sensibilities and workplace culture-where everyone gets a proper wage. (Restaurant waiters would get $30+ per hour in Australia). Some cruise lines operating out of Australia are now adding the tip into the overall price of the cruise.

A few times I considered "doing my own thing" on tipping but I was told that whatever I give one person in their hands has to be put into the "tipping heap" and shared equally any way. I was told this by senior pursers on Holland America and Princess more than once.

The author's "Tipping Table" is just too hard. I don't want to go round the ship dropping cash and envelopes so I just pay whatever the ship says I should pay and let them work it out. I don't care if they double it or triple it as I know that really it's part of the price of the cruise and they separate it to make the advertised price look cheaper.

I also don't believe that the Europeans started this but that it is a US custom.

I would much happier to pay a bit more for my cruise to enable the cruiseline to pay the crew a proper wage.

It was started by Samuel Cunard....a UK citizen born in Canada.
Reply With Quote

Reply

Bookmarks


Ad Sponsored By
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 08:24 PM.


© 1995 - 2014, The Independent Traveler, Inc. All rights reserved.
"A Community of People Who Love To Cruise"
All of the information contained within Cruise Critic is protected by copyright. You may, however, download a single copy only for your personal use.