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San Diego Ellie

What Gratuity to Leave at Specialty Restaurant?

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On 11/14/2018 at 9:22 AM, johnatsis said:

When you sign the bill for the cover charge, there is a place for tip amount, if you add the tip to the bill it goes into the “tip pool” shared by all the waiters - if you leave a cash tip ( what we do) it goes directly to your waiter and not the pool.... We normally give them $10 cash depending upon service 

 

Is that $10 for each waiter who serviced you?  How do you give it?  Do you just hand them the cash at the end of your meal?   Do you tip in cash, the maitre d’ and sommelier as well?  When?

So, the amount you tip is not dependent on the length of cruise?  You always give $10 per person?  Is that the standard tip for exceptional service?

I’m always confused how to provide an extra tip to staff for exceptional service over and above the automatic daily gratuity tacked on to my final bill.

Thanks for clarifying.

King

Edited by Kingofcool1947

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2 minutes ago, Kingofcool1947 said:

Is that $10 for each waiter who serviced you?  How do you give it?  Do you just hand them the cash at the end of your meal?  

So, the amount you tip is not dependent on the length of cruise?  You always give $10 per person?  Is that the standard tip for exceptional service?

I’m always confused how to provide an extra tip to staff for exceptional service over and above the automatic daily gratuity tacked on to my final bill.

King

I tip the waiter $10 (not Asst. Waiter) only in the "specialty restaurants" Crowne Grill, etc not the MDR - I give him the money when he brings the bill to sign if service was excellent...

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16 minutes ago, johnatsis said:

I tip the waiter $10 (not Asst. Waiter) only in the "specialty restaurants" Crowne Grill, etc not the MDR - I give him the money when he brings the bill to sign if service was excellent...

Thank  you.

It’s  clear to me now.   Give $10 cash, if service was excellent,  to the main waiter who serviced you in “specialty restaurants”.  No need to tip the assistant waiter.  

Give the tip at the end of dinner when the bill is presented to sign.  

Not applicable for dining in the MDR.

King

Edited by Kingofcool1947

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18 minutes ago, johnatsis said:

I tip the waiter $10 (not Asst. Waiter) only in the "specialty restaurants" Crowne Grill, etc not the MDR - I give him the money when he brings the bill to sign if service was excellent...

Curious........why would you not tip the asst. waiter? They are a team.  🤔

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11 hours ago, rockdoctor said:

Not true. The ship knows where you are eatting. Those serving you get the gratuity. Whether it is MDR for breakfast or ATD or Suite Breakfast in Sabatini DR or Club Class or Pub lunch, the appropriate staff get their due. We tip extra when due.

 

They do not know where you are eating except for the specialty restaurants. (And since the reservation might not be in your name and the charge possibly not going to your account, they may not even know that.)

 

They have no idea where you eat breakfast or lunch. And even if you are in traditional dining, they have no idea what evenings you decided to eat at the buffet instead. And if you are in Club Class, they do not know if you chose to dine elsewhere with non-Club Class friends,

 

So your "auto-tips" do not go directly to the waitstaff who served you, but indirectly as their share of $$$ in the tipping pool.

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Oh please - tipping again?  Do what is customary in the country/city you are in.  Here in NYC standard is 20%.  My budget always includes tips for our cruises.

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The question of tipping only one's "main DR Steward" or the "main Cabin Steward" when often they work in teams is an excellent one.  I have decided offering a nice gratuity in an envelope addressed to both of the Stewards is sufficient.  My expectation is that the money will be shared. 

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On 11/17/2018 at 10:12 PM, johnatsis said:

I tip the waiter $10 (not Asst. Waiter) only in the "specialty restaurants" Crowne Grill, etc not the MDR - I give him the money when he brings the bill to sign if service was excellent...

 

i leave the money on the table because thats how we do it in my part of the country. they can fight over it however they want after i'm gone. 

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So lets review the tradition of tipping on cruise ships.  Once upon a time the cabin stewards would leave white envelopes in each cabin.  They were often imprinted with "Cabin Steward,"  "Assistance Steward."  "Waiter" and "Assistant Waiter."  Over time some lines added more envelopes for the Maitre'd and even the Cabin Stewards Supervisor (I kid you not).  The lines also gave you info on "suggested gratuities" for each position.  Then the cruise lines started with all the alternative dining and open sitting stuff and direct tipping no longer worked.  So they changed to an auto tipping scheme which was intended to "replace" the traditional envelope thing.  So now on Princess, we all pay those auto tips (except for the few who demand that it not be paid).  

 

So now, we have folks thinking, I will tip 20% in the alternative restaurants after they have already paid tips through their auto tips and also paid an extra fee to dine in that restaurant.  Other folks feel obligated to tip their stewards and waiters, even though they have already tipped those folks through the auto tipping pool.  Our attitude is that we will give extra personal tips (normally slipped to the individual via a handshake) to only those crew members that have given us extraordinary service.  On our past 2 cruises (both with Princess) our cabin stewards have been amazing....so we did give them some "amazing" extra tips :).  But normally we see no reason to give out any extra tips.

 

Hank

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53 minutes ago, Hlitner said:

So lets review the tradition of tipping on cruise ships.  Once upon a time the cabin stewards would leave white envelopes in each cabin.  They were often imprinted with "Cabin Steward,"  "Assistance Steward."  "Waiter" and "Assistant Waiter."  Over time some lines added more envelopes for the Maitre'd and even the Cabin Stewards Supervisor (I kid you not).  The lines also gave you info on "suggested gratuities" for each position.  Then the cruise lines started with all the alternative dining and open sitting stuff and direct tipping no longer worked.  So they changed to an auto tipping scheme which was intended to "replace" the traditional envelope thing.  So now on Princess, we all pay those auto tips (except for the few who demand that it not be paid).  

 

So now, we have folks thinking, I will tip 20% in the alternative restaurants after they have already paid tips through their auto tips and also paid an extra fee to dine in that restaurant.  Other folks feel obligated to tip their stewards and waiters, even though they have already tipped those folks through the auto tipping pool.  Our attitude is that we will give extra personal tips (normally slipped to the individual via a handshake) to only those crew members that have given us extraordinary service.  On our past 2 cruises (both with Princess) our cabin stewards have been amazing....so we did give them some "amazing" extra tips :).  But normally we see no reason to give out any extra tips.

 

Hank

 

A very good historical summary of cruise ship gratuities, I think.  One addition related to Holland America Cruises (now Holland America Line), there was a time period when "tipping was not required" which was part of their marketing as HAC.  And, there was no auto gratuities added to one's account.

 

If the service that I receive from whomever on the ship warrants an additional reward, I offer it.  

 

Doing so, since it is unexpected by the person(s), their reaction adds to my positive memories of that particular cruise experience.

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We were at the crown grill a few cruises ago and I went to leave a tip and the waitress said not to because it gets split just like the auto tipping. We had always tipped the specialty restaurants and apparently it just goes into that massive tip pool we all pay. 

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IMO, the auto-tipping covers waitstaff in all dining areas, so there is no need to extra-tip in the CG anymore than in the MDR.  That said, if a passenger feels they had some exceptional service or attention or some extra goody, then why not provide some additional thanks with some cash.  But the idea of tipping after a CG meal is to me no different than plunking down five bucks after dinner in the MDR.  Same idea for cabin stewards - we have already auto-tipped, so did we get service above the norm?  If so, then I am happy to provide some additional green (which we have done sometimes). 

 

What I prefer to do is fill out staff comment cards in detail and leave at the PSD.  These have more impact on their jobs than a few dollars extra.  I consider the comment cards a performance review report from customer perspective and I like to point out what we consider the outstanding performers - be they among those who receive tips from the pool or among staff who do not receive tips.

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What constitutes exemplary service, that is above and beyond the auto tip and up charge? It would REALLY have to be over and above the usual great service we receive. If it's just being attentive to your needs while dining, how is that any different from what you would expect and have already paid? 

Honestly, short of a back rub and foot massage while dining, I can't see why one would tip extra.:classic_blink::classic_blink:

Edited by TriumphGuy

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3 minutes ago, TriumphGuy said:

What constitutes exemplary service, that is above and beyond the auto tip and up charge? It would REALLY have to be over and above the usual great service we receive. If it's just being attentive to your needs while dining, how is that any different from what you would expect? 

Honestly, short of a back rub and foot massage while dining, I can't see why you would tip extra.:classic_blink::classic_blink:

To each his own brah.

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27 minutes ago, TriumphGuy said:

What constitutes exemplary service, that is above and beyond the auto tip and up charge? It would REALLY have to be over and above the usual great service we receive. If it's just being attentive to your needs while dining, how is that any different from what you would expect and have already paid? 

Honestly, short of a back rub and foot massage while dining, I can't see why one would tip extra.:classic_blink::classic_blink:

Sometimes it's not describable and it's a compounding over several days as well.  No, not for bringing an extra dessert nor for remembering water no-ice.  If you have worked anywhere, chances are you recognize an outstanding performer from the normally expected.  Anyway, like I said, I prefer to take the time to fill out a review card and leave it at the desk.  Sometimes, I have directly spoken with a supervisor and expressed my opinion of someone who reports to them. 

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4 hours ago, qqwer123 said:

We were at the crown grill a few cruises ago and I went to leave a tip and the waitress said not to because it gets split just like the auto tipping. We had always tipped the specialty restaurants and apparently it just goes into that massive tip pool we all pay. 

Did you try to tip by putting it on the bill for the meal or by leaving cash?

 

In the past it has been posted that the staff can keep cash, but if the tip is on the bill it does go into the pool.

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10 hours ago, Colo Cruiser said:

To each his own brah.

Well yeah, I get that. But my concern is tipping over and above sets an expectation or precedent that not all wish to follow. I despise the tipping culture in this country. I always have and I am a US citizen who has lived here all my life.

Princess,  to their credit has tried to ease the tipping problem somewhat with the autotip system. Yet there are still those who feel they have to tip additionally for ordinary service.

I wish Princess would just add the autotip into the price of a cruise and institute a "No Tipping" policy. But people would still try to tip so I guess it's an uphill battle.

But, as you say, To each their own. My opinion only, fwiw.

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On ‎11‎/‎4‎/‎2018 at 10:40 AM, San Diego Ellie said:

We do not usually eat at specialty restaurants when we are cruising, but our booking includes one.  What gratuity is it customary to leave ?  Thanks for any  replies.

From reading the responses, it seems that "Customary" depends on the country of origin of the responder.  For Aussies, it's obvious you leave nothing because they feel whatever you get is good enough.  For Americans, it seems you give something extra if, and only if, you feel generous and want others to be blessed by your generosity.  I always tip based on the quality of the service and the fact I like to share the wealth to those not as fortunate in their life circumstances.  I say do what makes your heart feel right.  Who really cares what the others (including me) think. 

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When I log into my Personalizer and pretend to book specialty dining, under the price of $29 per adult it says "Price excludes gratuity". I've never noticed this before.

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13 hours ago, TriumphGuy said:

Honestly, short of a back rub and foot massage while dining, I can't see why one would tip extra.:classic_blink::classic_blink:

OK, so you give the waiter a foot massage ? 🙂

 

 

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44 minutes ago, Bollycats said:

When I log into my Personalizer and pretend to book specialty dining, under the price of $29 per adult it says "Price excludes gratuity". I've never noticed this before.

 

That is interesting - at first glance I thought it just clarified that 15% was not automatically added as it is in bars. Hmmmm.

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5 minutes ago, Tedferg said:

 

That is interesting - at first glance I thought it just clarified that 15% was not automatically added as it is in bars. Hmmmm.

will that will be the next hammer to drop - 15% grat added to all specialty restaurants.??..:classic_sad:

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2 minutes ago, voljeep said:

will that will be the next hammer to drop - 15% grat added to all specialty restaurants.??..:classic_sad:

:classic_laugh: that'll break your bank account

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