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Is tipping in cash still preferred by cruise staff ?


runningtide
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Pre-Covid I was sitting next to the HR Director at a Zenith lunch and I asked her specifically about tipping extra and charging it to my account using the form you can get at the front desk.  

 

She said that if I just put in an amount for the particular category (Room Attendant, Wait Staff etc) it went into a pooled tip.    If you write the individual's name then it goes direct to the individual and they would be notified of it.    She laughed and said - since she is the one that applies the tip to their pay checks she is 100% certain.  

 

How they handle cash tips I didn't ask her about that as I had a large NRC that I needed to spend and wanted to give to those that served us well instead of just wasting on junk. 

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1 hour ago, zitsky said:

 

What's the point of AI with gratuity (or service charge) included if you are going to tip extra?  I consider myself a generous person but I don't want to tip twice unless the service is really, really good.

Why does it always go down that road…?

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1 hour ago, Pinboy said:

LOL---- To be honest, or, sort of --- Pinboy has been on lots of cruises--- and ONLY one time I " Almost  " found an " excuse " ( ??? ) to remove ALL the Gratuities of our 14 day cruise  !!!

Our Waiter , The Bum , forgot to bring my 3rd shrimp cocktail with the 2 other appetizers I ordered !!!

Lucky for him, " Someone " just stared at me --- That , changed my mind !!!

 

 

 

 

In the beginning of the cruise, I stop by Guest Services to pick up the packet of envelopes.  I include extra gratuities in cash at the end of the cruise in these envelopes for staff.  It is a way to show my appreciation for excellent service. Of course, I live the automatic tips in place.  But it is sad to see so many people having them removed right before the deadline.

 

Pinboy,  I am going duckpin bowling tonight.  Sorry, the lanes are automated now. 

 

 

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5 minutes ago, keesar said:

 

In the beginning of the cruise, I stop by Guest Services to pick up the packet of envelopes.  I include extra gratuities in cash at the end of the cruise in these envelopes for staff.  It is a way to show my appreciation for excellent service. Of course, I live the automatic tips in place.  But it is sad to see so many people having them removed right before the deadline.

 

Pinboy,  I am going duckpin bowling tonight.  Sorry, the lanes are automated now. 

 

 

OMG, I'll bet there's load of people on this board who have no idea what Duckpin bowling is...

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2 hours ago, zitsky said:

 

What's the point of AI with gratuity (or service charge) included if you are going to tip extra?  I consider myself a generous person but I don't want to tip twice unless the service is really, really good.

What's the point not to if you get good service.   Choice.....

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2 hours ago, zitsky said:

 

What's the point of AI with gratuity (or service charge) included if you are going to tip extra?  I consider myself a generous person but I don't want to tip twice unless the service is really, really good.

IMO There is nothing at all wrong with your approach because as you say, with AI, gratuities are always included and you will have paid them.  Some, myself included prefer to tip additional cash as well, for what to me is above and beyond service.  Again either approach is personal decision.  It’s the gratuity removers who irk beyond reason.

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For our sailing last week, I gathered that just tipping at the bar was pulled because it went into a common container. 

 

We went to guest relations and got a bunch of envelopes, wrote names on each, and inserted our "last night" gratuities. I was under the impression those were not pooled.

 

Even if they were, so be it. It's a rare case that they all haven't earned it. I wouldn't be surprised if it all pretty much washed out. 

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I head to the dollar store before my cruise and pick up a couple packs of thank you cards ( they come 8 to a pack ). I like to write a little something in them and put a tip in those. I try not to forget the people behind the scenes such as the people I send my laundry to and that person you pass in the stairway keeping those handrails all clean.And I never remove the gratuities , EVER ! 

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1 hour ago, zigdilcru said:

I head to the dollar store before my cruise and pick up a couple packs of thank you cards ( they come 8 to a pack ). I like to write a little something in them and put a tip in those. I try not to forget the people behind the scenes such as the people I send my laundry to and that person you pass in the stairway keeping those handrails all clean.And I never remove the gratuities , EVER ! 

Now this person has true class !!!

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4 hours ago, jgmorgan said:

We have always considered the included gratuities to be for the ship-wide hospitality crew.  We always give end of cruise gratuities to the folks who deliver direct service to us for the duration of the cruise (room attendant, waiters and their assistants, sommelier, restaurant hostess or host, and the Maitre d’). Based on conversations with them over the years, we believe they get to keep that money individually.

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Hello, "jgmorgan."

 

We may be misunderstanding your first two sentences -- and, if so, please excuse us -- but it appears that you do not think of "the folks who deliver direct service to us" to be part of the "ship-wide hospitality crew."  In case that is what you have been thinking, then we wish to say that you have been mistaken, because those "who deliver direct service to us" are part of the "ship-wide hospitality crew" and do receive all (or most) of the pre-imposed service charge [which some people call a gratuity]. 

 

To confirm that last statement of ours, we tracked down and copied the following words from Celebrity's FAQ on this topic (with our emphasis added):

 

"Guests that booked prior to Nov. 17, 2020 (without Always Included) or booked [under] Simply Sail pricing:  For your convenience, we automatically add gratuities for your restaurant and stateroom services to your onboard SeaPass® account on a daily basis in the following amounts, which may be adjusted at your discretion:

• $15.50 USD per person, per day for standard accommodations [etc.] ...
This gratuity is shared by Dining Services Staff, Stateroom Attendants, and other Stateroom Services Personnel that work to enhance your cruise.
"

 

Consequently, when you (and we) freely give cash -- i.e., a true "gratuity" -- during or at the end of a cruise, we are enhancing the amount that we have already given to those same good young people previously -- either as part of the cruise fare or as part of daily charges.

.

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These are always fun threads. Who knows? The whole tipping thing is largely a US thing, and under US labor law, all those back of house people (cooks, dishwashers, etc.) that always come up in these threads aren’t part of the tipped employee population. You have to pay them at least minimum wage. 
 

The language used by the lines is just ambiguous enough to let me think they’re largely following US precedent, and others to assume they don’t. And I assume a bartender making money on cash tips is smart enough to pass some on to busboys because they would like clean glasses. It’s a system that seems to work for the employees, and the details really don’t concern me. 

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11 hours ago, Auntiemomo said:

Good, let's keep it going.

 

Well, if you insist. 😂

 

12 hours ago, jg51 said:

Consequently, when you (and we) freely give cash -- i.e., a true "gratuity" -- during or at the end of a cruise, we are enhancing the amount that we have already given to those same good young people previously -- either as part of the cruise fare or as part of daily charges.

 

Yes, that is also my understanding.  Our intention is to enhance the amount received by the crew we to whom we most closely relate which sometimes includes good older people as well.

 

 

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12 hours ago, markeb said:

The whole tipping thing is largely a US thing

It would appear to be very much a US thing, it is certainly not a big issue here and the only time I have ever heard it discussed is in relation to cruising. All staff get a minimum wage and so tipping is a personal choice and usually restricted to waiting staff, we generally don’t tip bartenders for example. It is also a lot less than in the US, here 10% (or thereabouts) is seen as a perfectly acceptable tip. 

 

When in Rome I do as the Romans do so the standard ship board gratuities are and always have been paid in full. We also leave a bit extra in cash at the end of a cruise for good service and the service is generally good. I have never known if the extra I leave for the staff is good, bad or indifferent when compared to the levels given by those across the pond but I don’t stress over it. 

 

I do find it jarring to see some people flamboyantly dropping bank notes at a bar or discussing in minute detail what they are leaving as additional tips but each to their own culture and it is very much a minority pastime.

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18 hours ago, zitsky said:

 

What's the point of AI with gratuity (or service charge) included if you are going to tip extra?  I consider myself a generous person but I don't want to tip twice unless the service is really, really good.

 

18 hours ago, m8zenblue said:

Just a note.

We always give our cabin attendant, waiters, sommelier and all bartenders tips at the end of our trip.

I was told they keep all cash tips given to them.

Thats the point, we have ALWAYS had exceptional service.

Just think most of theses workers get paid next to nothing, countless hours, away from family for months but they still great you with a smile, never complain, will do anything you ask of them, so no, tipping beyond what you have already paid is a no brainer for me.

And then there are those cheapos who expect for the price of fare and a small gratuity that they have paid belittle, and abuse workers and attempt to treat them as slaves.

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