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Using OBC to pay for Princess Daily Gratuities


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My apologies if this question has been asked and answered before. I did a search on this forum and came up with nothing.

 I just put a deposit down for a couple of cruises and got OBC (non-refundable) of approximately $500US per cruise.  My TA asked if I wanted to pre-pay gratuities as part of my final payment. I was wondering if it is possible to not do this and instead have the daily gratuities covered by my OBC once I'm on the ship? As a solo traveller who doesn't drink, completely using up $500 US OBC in a week or 10 days will be impossible so thought using it to pay daily gratuities would be a good use of the extra OBC.

TIA for feedback.

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  If you want to pre-pay gratuities, you can do so via  your Cruise Personalizer using your OBC, or you can wait until you're onboard and use OBC.  But it sounds like your travel agent was asking whether s/he wanted you to add the gratuities to your credit card charge, in which case, say no.  Since, as you point out, you have ample OBC to cover them one way or another.  TAs don't get commission on gratuities, so there's no reason to have him/her run the charge for you. 

 

Hope this helps. 

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Any OBC is simply a credit applied at the start of the cruise to your folio.  Every day the daily gratuity will be added to your folio as a debit.   Anything you buy on board such as drinks, special meals (CG for instance), ship excursions, etc will be added as debit items to your folio.  At the end you will owe Princess money if your folio has a negative amount which usually for most is the case.  Most OBC is not refundable so be sure to spend the money while onboard.  

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1 hour ago, cruzgryphon said:

My apologies if this question has been asked and answered before. I did a search on this forum and came up with nothing.

 I just put a deposit down for a couple of cruises and got OBC (non-refundable) of approximately $500US per cruise.  My TA asked if I wanted to pre-pay gratuities as part of my final payment. I was wondering if it is possible to not do this and instead have the daily gratuities covered by my OBC once I'm on the ship? As a solo traveller who doesn't drink, completely using up $500 US OBC in a week or 10 days will be impossible so thought using it to pay daily gratuities would be a good use of the extra OBC.

TIA for feedback.

Yes you can.

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11 hours ago, rdsqrl said:

  If you want to pre-pay gratuities, you can do so via  your Cruise Personalizer using your OBC, or you can wait until you're onboard and use OBC.  

This is good to know. When we looked at prepaying for our gratuities in our Cruise Personalizer, it initially only displayed paying for them via a CC or PayPal, so we stopped at that point and figured we’d just pay for them with OBC while onboard. But, we would much prefer to prepay them using the OBC and be done with it. 

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11 hours ago, rdsqrl said:

  If you want to pre-pay gratuities, you can do so via  your Cruise Personalizer using your OBC, or you can wait until you're onboard and use OBC.  But it sounds like your travel agent was asking whether s/he wanted you to add the gratuities to your credit card charge, in which case, say no.  Since, as you point out, you have ample OBC to cover them one way or another.  TAs don't get commission on gratuities, so there's no reason to have him/her run the charge for you. 

 

Hope this helps. 

This is misleading. You can not pre-pay gratuities using OBC. If you pre-pay gratuities the amount, US$145, ($10 higher if you are in a mini suite, $20 higher if you are in a full suite) will be charged directly to your credit card.

The on board accounting system works this way. Your account will begin with a US$500 credit. Each day your on board expenses, including the gratuity, will be added to your account and your account will have a net balance.

If you want to use up the remaining OBC, approximately US$355, you may want to consider a ship's tour, coffee package, non-alcoholic beverage package. These can all be purchased on boarding day.

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If you want your OBC to cover it, wait till you get onboard. Anything charged to your room the OBC is what is used first, before any actual charges are made to your credit card. First non-refundable OBC, then refundable is used second followed by credit card on file. 

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9 minutes ago, skynight said:

This is misleading. You can not pre-pay gratuities using OBC. If you pre-pay gratuities the amount, US$145, ($10 higher if you are in a mini suite, $20 higher if you are in a full suite) will be charged directly to your credit card.

The on board accounting system works this way. Your account will begin with a US$500 credit. Each day your on board expenses, including the gratuity, will be added to your account and your account will have a net balance.

If you want to use up the remaining OBC, approximately US$355, you may want to consider a ship's tour, coffee package, non-alcoholic beverage package. These can all be purchased on boarding day.

Thanks for clearing that up and it explains why I only saw the CC and PayPal options for prepaying for the gratuities. 

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1 hour ago, Ken the cruiser said:

Thanks for clearing that up and it explains why I only saw the CC and PayPal options for prepaying for the gratuities. 

FYI, they allow prepaying shore excursions with OBC in the Personalizer...

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Note that a prepayment must be paid immediately with a credit card. I did it since I was able to get it at the lower rate. If not prepaid then the daily amount is posted every night on your account.

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16 minutes ago, Cruiser411 said:

FYI, they allow prepaying shore excursions with OBC in the Personalizer...

Thanks. Our initial strategy was to use OBC to prepay the gratuities and then use our CC, if needed, to pay for excursions. This way if we decided while on the cruise to cancel an excursion, it would be refunded in the form of refundable OBC. However, since that’s not the case, that shoots that strategy out of the water.  

 

But no worries, I’m sure one way or another we’ll use our $1,000+ in OBC and then some up prebooking excursions, paying for gratuities as well as for multiple bags of laundry and specialty restaurants before the cruise is over. 

Edited by Ken the cruiser
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We were going to use OBC to pay the gratuities. Then Princess announced an increase in Gratuities, and gave you a window where you could pre-pay at the old rate. I decided to prepay to save a few bucks. If there was a risk of not spending all the OBC, then I would have waited to use OBC.

 

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4 hours ago, skynight said:

This is misleading. You can not pre-pay gratuities using OBC. If you pre-pay gratuities the amount, US$145, ($10 higher if you are in a mini suite, $20 higher if you are in a full suite) will be charged directly to your credit card.

The on board accounting system works this way. Your account will begin with a US$500 credit. Each day your on board expenses, including the gratuity, will be added to your account and your account will have a net balance.

If you want to use up the remaining OBC, approximately US$355, you may want to consider a ship's tour, coffee package, non-alcoholic beverage package. These can all be purchased on boarding day.

Chef's Table!! Sanctuary. Crown Grill. Sabatini's. Excursions. Stuff from one of the stores that you like, but wouldn't use actual $$ to buy.

We've done ALL of those.

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