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Specialty Restaurant Tipping

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I just booked our Specialty Restaurant Dining Package.  It says the gratuities were included but there is no way that was sufficient for all nights.  How much additional gratuity do you give?  Thanks!

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2 hours ago, cruiserandrews said:

I just booked our Specialty Restaurant Dining Package.  It says the gratuities were included but there is no way that was sufficient for all nights.  How much additional gratuity do you give?  Thanks!

It was less than 18%?

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We usually tip $5 pp extra and the waitstaff seems more than happy with that. However, if you feel the service is exceptional, you can tip more. They work so hard and are very appreciative of whatever you tip.

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48 minutes ago, FLACRUISER99 said:

It was less than 18%?

 

They don't add anything when you book the package in your Cruise Planner.  If you just go to a restaurant on board, they add 18% to your tab.

 

There is no way that there are appropriately compensating the staff when you pre-book.

 

 

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Just now, WVHillbilly said:

Did you hand the waiter the extra tip or did you just leave it on the table?

 

You receive a bill (which can be zero, if you booked before your cruise) in a folder.  You can put a tip on the slip or leave cash, all inside the folder.

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Just now, Merion_Mom said:

 

You receive a bill (which can be zero, if you booked before your cruise) in a folder.  You can put a tip on the slip or leave cash, all inside the folder.

Okay, thanks doing specialty restaurants for the first time on the Harmony in February.

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My sons are on board the Anthem right now, and asked me exactly this question.

 

This was my text to them:

 

If service is fine but nothing special, $10 for the two of you.  If really good service, $20.

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Just now, WVHillbilly said:

Okay, thanks doing specialty restaurants for the first time on the Harmony in February.

 

Have a great cruise.  The Harmony is magical.  🙂 

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1 minute ago, Merion_Mom said:

 

They don't add anything when you book the package in your Cruise Planner.  If you just go to a restaurant on board, they add 18% to your tab.

 

There is no way that there are appropriately compensating the staff when you pre-book.

 

 

I was just curious I never prebook just use a bogo coupon,double the tip and add around $10.

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On 10/8/2019 at 10:50 AM, cruiserandrews said:

I just booked our Specialty Restaurant Dining Package.  It says the gratuities were included but there is no way that was sufficient for all nights.  How much additional gratuity do you give?  Thanks!

"gratuities were included"

I trust RCCL knows what they are saying

Edited by cruisegus

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We tip $10 per person for dinner and $5 a person for lunch.  On our last cruise, which was Allure in June, we had the best server in Chops.  We ended up having dinner there 4 nights because of him.

 

We also had non-refundable OBC, so I wanted to use mine for tips in the specialty restaurants as we had the UDP.    I got no receipt and had to ask for one.  The waiter said you don't owe anything, so that's why you didn't get a receipt.  I told him I wanted to tip him and I didn't feel comfortable just leaving it on the table.

 

He brought a receipt for me and another for my son and his family so they could also tip extra.  I don't know how much is included in the price of the package and someone tried to tell me that the receipt they got, and they put it on another site, said 18% was included. I do believe that is the case when someone books onboard, but I am not sure that 18% is what's included in the UDP. 

 

Even if that is the amount, and we had a total of 10 meals with that, making our price of $126 for the last cruise only $12 per meal including tip.  Is that fair to the waitstaff?  I don't think so.

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The "fee" includes the tip.  If you have a dining package, the tip is added to the cost of the package.  The servers get what they're supposed to get.  If you buy a drink (or drink package) tip is added to that as well.  You certainly CAN tip additionally, but it's not expected or required.

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When tips are "included", it means you are neither expected or required to tip more.  You already paid it.  This is really simple. Now, if you normally tip more than 18%, than you would do the same on the ship.  So, dinner is $40.00.  The tip is $7.20 at 18%.  You leave another $10.00.  That makes it $17.20.  The tip is 43%.  Some will argue they work hard.  I argue so do I.  I would love a 43% tip.  What about all these packages with reduced amounts.  Well, before the package, the restaurants were empty so they made less.  Now they are packed, so they make more even though it is less per person.  So tip more if you want, but for every person that says they tip more, there are 10 that tip the 18%.

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From RCL website:

 

“Meals from many onboard venues, such as the Main Dining Room and Windjammer Café, are included in the price of your cruise. Reservations are only required for dinner. There is a service charge per person to dine at Chops Grille and Johnny Rockets. Prices are subject to change.”

 

So, those that don’t want to add additional tip should not feel bad.  Those that give extra are free to do so & it will be appreciated, but not necessarily expected.

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7 minutes ago, mitz18 said:

From RCL website:

 

“Meals from many onboard venues, such as the Main Dining Room and Windjammer Café, are included in the price of your cruise. Reservations are only required for dinner. There is a service charge per person to dine at Chops Grille and Johnny Rockets. Prices are subject to change.”

 

So, those that don’t want to add additional tip should not feel bad.  Those that give extra are free to do so & it will be appreciated, but not necessarily expected.

 

There is nothing in your post that suggests that the servers are being tipped at specialty restaurants.

 

In that sentence, the words "service charge" refers to the fee to eat there.  I can't even quote current prices because they keep going up.  (but JR is about $9.95 and Chops ranges from $39 to $49)

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Normally, we tip an extra $20 at our specialty dining bookings, but on Vision this last cruise in Chops, no, because we felt that we were being rushed through the meal.

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46 minutes ago, Merion_Mom said:

 

There is nothing in your post that suggests that the servers are being tipped at specialty restaurants.

 

In that sentence, the words "service charge" refers to the fee to eat there.  I can't even quote current prices because they keep going up.  (but JR is about $9.95 and Chops ranges from $39 to $49)

 

The fee to eat there could/might/should include "gratuity" for the servers.  Do you really think that the cruise lines are not giving gratuity to the servers?  Of course they are.  There is a fee to eat in specialty restaurants because they can charge it & because they have separate staff for these areas.  If the servers were not getting gratuity, they (the servers) would find a way to tell us - believe me.   Extra tipping is a personal choice - always should be.  You are charged for gratuities by the line and part of what you pay for specialty dining is gratuity.  If you want to give more, it will be appreciated.  But no one should feel like it is expected.  If we have service we feel is beyond what is considered "normal" we will tip extra.  However if service is just ordinary, we don't.

 

Again, personal choice

 

 

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1 hour ago, Merion_Mom said:

 

There is nothing in your post that suggests that the servers are being tipped at specialty restaurants.

 

In that sentence, the words "service charge" refers to the fee to eat there.  I can't even quote current prices because they keep going up.  (but JR is about $9.95 and Chops ranges from $39 to $49)

 

Ok, let's try this, also from RCL website:

Gratuities are included in all dining packages that are purchased via Cruise Planner. Dining packages purchased onboard will have an 18% gratuity added to the purchase price.

 

Again, extra tips will always be appreciated, but they will be "extra" tips.

 

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27 minutes ago, mitz18 said:

 

The fee to eat there could/might/should include "gratuity" for the servers.  Do you really think that the cruise lines are not giving gratuity to the servers?  Of course they are.  There is a fee to eat in specialty restaurants because they can charge it & because they have separate staff for these areas.  If the servers were not getting gratuity, they (the servers) would find a way to tell us - believe me.   Extra tipping is a personal choice - always should be.  You are charged for gratuities by the line and part of what you pay for specialty dining is gratuity.  If you want to give more, it will be appreciated.  But no one should feel like it is expected.  If we have service we feel is beyond what is considered "normal" we will tip extra.  However if service is just ordinary, we don't.

 

Again, personal choice

 

 

Perfect response. And definitely, personal choice. We too, only tip more when services are worthy of it. Typically, it's above and beyond! Just not in Chops on our recent cruise!

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