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BillHana

Suggestions for stateroom attendant extra tipping?

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3 hours ago, notyours75 said:

He said that working on cruise ships had provided him a much better standard of living in his country than he could have ever made by staying there.

 

1 hour ago, not-enough-cruising said:

If it wasn't a good job to have there wouldn't be so many people making a long career of it.



Gonna chime in and also agree -- had a waiter on Navigator who was in his TWENTIETH YEAR working for Royal Caribbean.  He was able to put all his children through school, thanks to this job, and he was happy with the payoff between being home and the standard of living that the job allowed him.

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6 minutes ago, brillohead said:


Actually, that's not such a great idea.  The bills are such a novelty that many people/places think they are fake and refuse to accept them.

 

Having done so on several cruises I disagree, that's exactly the point of using them. I'm not talking about giving someone $40 worth of 2's, I'm just talking about for individual drinks and small transactions. I've seen staff trade them off to others, show them off and even had a crew member approach me and ask to trade some $1 bills for some 2's. 

 

No one wants a fist full of them but they like the novelty a few of them. 

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4 minutes ago, notyours75 said:

 

Having done so on several cruises I disagree, that's exactly the point of using them. I'm not talking about giving someone $40 worth of 2's, I'm just talking about for individual drinks and small transactions. I've seen staff trade them off to others, show them off and even had a crew member approach me and ask to trade some $1 bills for some 2's. 

 

No one wants a fist full of them but they like the novelty a few of them. 



Silly of me to think that an actual crew member discouraging their use would be good enough for someone on Cruise Critic.

If it's going to be used as a novelty rather than as actual cash, what's the difference between giving a $2 bill and giving a candy bar or beer coozie or other "gift" that is just going to take up precious space and not go into the crew member's pocket?

 

 

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9 hours ago, notyours75 said:

Another quick tip is use two dollar bills.  The crew doesn't see many of them so they are a bit of a novelty and helps them remember you throughout the week. 


And for the record, I give $1 bills when I get my soda cup filled up at the bar.... trust me, the crew has no problem remembering me throughout the week, and I often get served first, called by name, bigger smile, etc.  

Cash is king....

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6 hours ago, SRF said:

If you leave auto grats in place, and tip extra in cash, the worker gets to keep it.

 

If you remove auto grats, they have to turn them in, and they go into the pool with the auto grats.

Yes, I understand that. It doesn't really matter then if you auto grat or give cash, it's all pooled. I am saying that they aren't going to receive less than they should because you tipped in cash vs auto grats.

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On 1/23/2020 at 9:52 AM, BillHana said:

I always pre-pay gratuities long before boarding and I intend to keep this up because I want to  support the hardworking folks. I accept this help the cruise line meet the guaranteed agreed upon wage but I would hope once this is met the worker gets extra.

 What is the tactful and effective way to give the stateroom attendant extra? The obvious is to leave cash in the envelope the last night of the cruise but I would like to let them know sooner than the last day that I care (and maybe get extra attention).

Any suggestions on how to accomplish this? Give a cash tip the first and last day? Leave an envelope with cash every day? What have others done?

I think you are over complicating it. If I ask for anything like extra towel pillow, soap ect I will tip a few bucks at the time of the service. Otherwise I just leave $20-30 with a thank you note on the last day. I think it's tacky to hand someone money as a tip on the first day before service is performed. To me it reads, "I'm high maintenance, kiss my a$$, here is your bribe". 

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On 1/23/2020 at 5:50 PM, Bookster99 said:

My wife and I have discussed bringing a small gift along on the cruise as a small added incentive above and beyond the tips. Good chocolate or something like that. What are your thoughts?

 

We've never done it: It's always the pre-paid gratuities plus a little more we slip in their hands. Just an idea. Thoughts?

I know it's all good intentions but I have seen YouTube videos where people prepare for their cruise by going to the dollar store and fill a goodie bag full of crap to give to their room steward.  One person even gave stationary so they can write home. Hello.... it's the 21st century. Nobody sends notes in a bottle anymore.  The staff all know where the hot spots are in port to send a text or email correspondence. There is no need to make it personal. Just give cash and let them buy what they want. Just think about how you felt when someone gave you socks or pajamas for a birthday or holiday gift.

Edited by Iamcruzin

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7 hours ago, notyours75 said:

 

Trust me that's not what happens, at least with the crew.  I tell them "this is a deposit on excellent service yet to come" and follow that back up at the end of the week (assuming excellent service) with a follow up tip.  It simply tells the crew member up front that if they take care of you, you will take care of them.  A bit of a social contract if you will.  I believe that doing some part of it up front better establishes your expectations for the cruise as well. 

 

I do agree with some of the comments, tipping culture in the USA is getting excessive.  You should not get a tip just because you did your job (except for restaurant workers because they are paid a different hourly rate because of tips.).  If your job is to hand me a fork and you give me a fork then you don't deserve a tip.  If you hand me a fork, knife, spoon, polish them up so they are nice and shiny and explain how to best use said fork, knife and spoon then that's tip-worthy service. 

 

I agree with your comment that tipping is out of hand with tips cups at every counter nowadays.  However, my perception of great service has evolved in recent years.  My service expectation goes beyond timeliness, or correctness, or quality but also to friendliness and enthusiasm.  Compare recent experiences at some fast food chains and tell me part of Chick-fila's allure is not the friendliness and enthusiasm of the entire staff.  Over 90% of the time, if you say "thank you" at the end of the interaction they will follow up with a smile and a "My pleasure".  I have tried to tip some of these young people and they always reply "we are not allowed to accept tips".

I used to think "why should I tip for people justing doing their jobs?" but I now find myself rewarding folks that are friendly and genuinely concerned with my satisfaction regardless of what service job they are providing.  This extends to in-home service folks.  I never would have tipped these folks in the past.  If they go through the motions then I don't tip.  

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24 minutes ago, Iamcruzin said:

I think it's tacky to hand someone money as a tip on the first day before service is performed. To me it reads, "I'm high maintenance, kiss my a$$, here is your bribe". 

 

Funny how, for some people, as soon as they step on a cruise ship, they start acting like Boss.   ***cue the Rat Pack swagger ***

 

Although I have to be honest. First two cruises I took, I tipped the stateroom attendant in advance. Probably read that advice here (this was before I registered as a user).  Never have done it since and have not noticed a difference in service. Once they did have an extra lounge chair delivered to my oversized balcony. I guess that was worth the extra $20 although I can't remember how many times I used it.

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10 hours ago, tcmagnum said:

Remember their rooms are even smaller than ours.  Cash is always greatly appreciated.  I do hand out chocolate, but it's with the cash.

 

Just to tack onto this, their room a really small. Think of the smallest closet you have in the house, divided in half and then share it with someone. That's how small. They barely have room for themselves and their toothbrush so they definitely will not have room for any trinkets, decorations, tchotchke's or souvenirs from home. 

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1 hour ago, HBE4 said:

 

Just to tack onto this, their room a really small. Think of the smallest closet you have in the house, divided in half and then share it with someone. That's how small. They barely have room for themselves and their toothbrush so they definitely will not have room for any trinkets, decorations, tchotchke's or souvenirs from home. 

I always wondered how to spell tchotchke's. I bet some are struggling to pronounce it and have no idea what they are.

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7 hours ago, brillohead said:

Gonna chime in and also agree -- had a waiter on Navigator who was in his TWENTIETH YEAR working for Royal Caribbean.  He was able to put all his children through school, thanks to this job, and he was happy with the payoff between being home and the standard of living that the job allowed him.

 

I have run into multi generation RCI crew.  Grandfather or grandmother or both, were and may be are crew.  Father/mother are crew.  And several kids are crew.

 

That does not happen if they are not being paid fairly well to THIER standards.

 

Realize that in many countries, monthly salaries are in the low 3 digits.  As in less than $500 per month.  And in some, less than that PER YEAR for a family.

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8 hours ago, brillohead said:


And for the record, I give $1 bills when I get my soda cup filled up at the bar.... trust me, the crew has no problem remembering me throughout the week, and I often get served first, called by name, bigger smile, etc.  

Cash is king....

This is exactly the attitude of bribing and competing that from my point of view should not happen in a nice world...
 

This „I enter a ship, give everyone a fifty upfront, expect to be served better and tell everyone without being asked that I always distribute a lot of fifties all over the place to make people like me....“ attitude is really disturbing for many people from other cultures. If you do something nice just do it but don‘t be a show off.

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On 1/23/2020 at 5:22 PM, DaKahuna said:

On embarkation day, we have a couple of things that we like to convey to our stateroom attendant.  We normally hand him a $20.00 and inform him of our wish list (ice twice a day, extra towels, sheets to cover the sofa and any chairs, etc.) 

Just chiming in here with a different question.  Our sofa appeared to be extra dusty, and I'm allergic, so we used our lint roller.  Was your sheet to cover the sofa for a similar reason?

Thanks!

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Depends.  We have had many who go above and beyond and truly help to make our vacation special and might give as much as $50 in addition to the scheduled tips.  We usually hand the cash and say Thank you!

 

 

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We usually give $20 tip upfront and have found we get better service by doing that.  If everything was great then we leave $20 last day.  Plus I always pack my own shampoo/conditioner/body wash and leave them too.  Couple years ago I asked our stateroom attendant if she would like to have them as I didnt want to repack them as I was concerned about luggage weight with our souvenirs and gifts

   She said Yes she would love to have whatever leftovers we had since they have to buy all of that for themselves.  We even gave her a bottle of champagne we were given on the ship.   She was thrilled

We saw her on our last cruise in january.  Unfortunately she was on a different deck but the night we packed up everything I took a bag with all of my leftovers for her along with bottle of red wine we got from casino.  She loved it!!  Hope to see her again and have as our attendant again.

 So now I always leave extra toiletries that I dont feel like packing.

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1 hour ago, red-dragon said:

Just chiming in here with a different question.  Our sofa appeared to be extra dusty, and I'm allergic, so we used our lint roller.  Was your sheet to cover the sofa for a similar reason?

Thanks!

 

Not that we noticed.  We always get a sheet to cover any furniture in the room. 

It is more of a - we don't know when was the last time it was cleaned and how it was cleaned so we prefer just to cover any furniture where we might sit while not being fully clothed with sheets.

 

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On ‎1‎/‎23‎/‎2020 at 4:22 PM, DaKahuna said:

We always pre-pay gratuties. 

 

On embarkation day, we have a couple of things that we like to convey to our stateroom attendant.  We normally hand him a $20.00 and inform him of our wish list (ice twice a day, extra towels, sheets to cover the sofa and any chairs, etc.) 

 

Depending on the level of what we believe to be 'over and above services' we normally provide a cash tip on the last night of the cruise or failing to see him that night, the next morning.   

 

There has only been one time when we did not give our stateroom attendant cash at the end of a cruise.  

 

We also make it a note to take down names of everyone who we believe went above and beyond and make sure to mention them  by name in our post cruise review. 

 

 

 

This is mostly how I handle it as well.  Additionally, I like to leave a $5 in the room each day too. I leave a little note, with the attendant's name on it, thanking him/her for all of their hard work.

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31 minutes ago, DaKahuna said:

 

Not that we noticed.  We always get a sheet to cover any furniture in the room. 

It is more of a - we don't know when was the last time it was cleaned and how it was cleaned so we prefer just to cover any furniture where we might sit while not being fully clothed with sheets.

 

Thanks for clarifying!

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Just off 12 days on Grandeur.  What I did:  Embarkation day I was greeted by cabin steward, who was gracious in asking about special requests.  I also informed steward about my expected schedule.  Day 2 I expressed my appreciation with care taken in making my cabin comfortable, and satisfying initial requests, plus the little extras.  $40 and a heartfelt thank-you.  Friendly greetings, and superb care throughout the cruise.  2nd to last day another thank-you and $60.  Cabin stewards are part of the total vacation experience just like sushi chefs or stage performers.  My steward excelled (as has each one on every previous sailing).  

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