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Is tipping in cash still preferred by cruise staff ?


runningtide
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15 minutes ago, Eglesbrech said:

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.

Yes, but in much of Europe, they're (technically - legally) working to very specific measures in a glass (e.g., 100ml wine, 30ml booze)!  Here, you won't find a line with numbers on much of anything, shot glasses are often filled and 'overflowed', and no laws to enforce pour size, so those extra tips can lead to better pours!

 

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1 minute ago, zitsky said:

I forgot.  What is your profile pic?

"No WD-40"?  Dates back many years here at CC to a series of events that got half the Night Owls (now Morning Doves group) kicked off CC for a few weeks!  I won't mention the name, but there was a lady who was dis-invited from ever cruising with X again that changed up to WD-40 when legally prohibited from carrying mace. 

 

If anyone remembers the saga, fine, and you can still have a good chuckle at the memories.  If not, oh well - better to leave this one alone!

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26 minutes ago, m8zenblue said:

 

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.

 

Why do these employees work for nothing for months at a time?  For the chance to get tips from a small percentage of the passengers?  I really don't know. 

 

Edit: my tipping routine at home is 20% to the waitstaff and $1 per drink at the bar.  If it gets pooled, I couldn't tell you.

 

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55 minutes ago, Eglesbrech said:

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.

A few years ago our daughter was working in the UK, so we spent a few summers visiting with her and traveling, predominately in England and Ireland. As you say the tipping is less predominant, and at a much lower level. However, we did notice is some of the "nicer" restaurants and hotel dining rooms, a service charge did appear on the bill, and it was usually in the 10% range.

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1 hour ago, Eglesbrech said:

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.

 

X is US and uses USD as currency.  In the US, it state or county/city level to dictate the minimum wage laws and a third of the states allow for waitstaff to make as little as $2.13/hr with the idea that tipping will offset their low wages.  Cruise lines take advantage of this system to pay the staff less.

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44 minutes ago, canderson said:

Yes, but in much of Europe, they're (technically - legally) working to very specific measures in a glass (e.g., 100ml wine, 30ml booze)!  Here, you won't find a line with numbers on much of anything, shot glasses are often filled and 'overflowed', and no laws to enforce pour size, so those extra tips can lead to better pours!

 

We have visited the US a number of times (and really, really enjoyed every single visit)  but we found your wine and spirits measures to be what we would describe here as a “dirty glass”. Perhaps we needed to tip more, we will know the next time! We did the standard 15% as advised by the tour guides.

 

Wine measures here are usually 175mls but more normally 250mls. Spirits are a quarter Gil (minus 0.5mls when the law changed) so usually 35mls unless you are in a tourist area. Bars and restaurants are required by law to display their measure for the price you pay, some tourist areas serve a measly 25 mls.
 

Tip or no tip that’s what you get but it is still a generous pour and most places go slightly over to ensure a fair measure.

 

 

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20 minutes ago, ScubesDad said:

A few years ago our daughter was working in the UK, so we spent a few summers visiting with her and traveling, predominately in England and Ireland. As you say the tipping is less predominant, and at a much lower level. However, we did notice is some of the "nicer" restaurants and hotel dining rooms, a service charge did appear on the bill, and it was usually in the 10% range.

Yes Michelin star and top end restaurants here add the 10% automatically but it is unusual in more normal dining or bars.

 

We did a long amazing tour across Canada and quickly discovered that we should expect to add a third of the cost to the bill on top of the price advertised to cover local tax and a normal tip. 
 

I asked a staff member what was normal and was advised that their Granny did 15% but most folks do 17.5% or more as standard. When in Rome…..

 

 

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13 minutes ago, NutsAboutGolf said:

 

X is US and uses USD as currency.  In the US, it state or county/city level to dictate the minimum wage laws and a third of the states allow for waitstaff to make as little as $2.13/hr with the idea that tipping will offset their low wages.  Cruise lines take advantage of this system to pay the staff less.

The very minimum legal wage for an adult here is £8.91, approx $12.35 so over 5 times the rate you describe. Most get the living wage which is higher and top up benefits to assist families with rent etc. Pub and restaurant prices reflect these minimum rates.

 

We also have the NHS so health insurance is not required.

 

$2.13 is absolutely shocking.

 

 

 

 

 

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It's none of my business how much they are paid,  just as it's none of their business how much I make. 

 

Celebrity has a set amount of gratuity which they automatically add to the cruise fare, the combination of which is used to compensate their employees.

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4 minutes ago, Eglesbrech said:

The very minimum legal wage for an adult here is £8.91, approx $12.35 so over 5 times the rate you describe. Most get the living wage which is higher and top up benefits to assist families with rent etc. Pub and restaurant prices reflect these minimum rates.

 

We also have the NHS so health insurance is not required.

 

$2.13 is absolutely shocking.

 

 

 

 

 

 

It's far more complicated than a single number, of course. In general, the employer is responsible for ensuring the employee receives at least minimum wage, but they can pay a tipped worker wage and "take credit" for tips. In theory, if the employee doesn't meet minimum wage with tips, the employer is still responsible for any difference. At least under the federal law. 

 

The system survives because "most" tipped employees make more money in salary + tips than they'd make in salary, and the tips are essentially passed through and don't become income to the business (although in 2021, they all track credit card transactions...). And of course at higher end restaurants, employees are usually already making more than minimum.

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20 minutes ago, Eglesbrech said:

The very minimum legal wage for an adult here is £8.91, approx $12.35 so over 5 times the rate you describe. Most get the living wage which is higher and top up benefits to assist families with rent etc. Pub and restaurant prices reflect these minimum rates.

 

We also have the NHS so health insurance is not required.

 

$2.13 is absolutely shocking.

 

Totally agree, here are the states and the wiki link https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tipped_wage:

 

image.thumb.png.9a6acf61d9efdff33ca2f591aa054404.png

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19 minutes ago, zitsky said:

Does anyone actually know how much staff are paid on X ships?  I see some speculation but I'm not sure how much is certain and how much is hearsay.

 

$2600/mo which is $6/hr average (most work 100 hours a week) according to 2018 regulatory filings; most receive near zero benefits, no health care (can only see the ship doctor when sick) and don't even get free wifi.  With that being said, for many this is far more than they could possibly make in their home country.

 

image.thumb.png.c4825da36b23a00b5515901a1eb9ef4a.png

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When the cabin steward does a fantastic job, I do like to leave a little cash on the bed about every other day.  But in addition to this I leave him/her a few mini candy bars.  I get more "thank yous and big smiles" when I do this.  I got the idea from a previous poster about 5-6 years ago.  This poster said they enjoy Snickers the most, even though I do not know this for a fact.  I will continue to do this, as I think this little surprise brings a little joy.

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The couple in the next cabin  to us mentioned that they give special items to selected crew.  This included candy  and treats from their area and  also givea  a photo of them taken during the cruise.  Those are nice gestures but I think they would appreciate money as some are supporting families back at home.  

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14 minutes ago, NutsAboutGolf said:

 

$2600/mo which is $6/hr average (most work 100 hours a week) according to 2018 regulatory filings; most receive near zero benefits, no health care (can only see the ship doctor when sick) and don't even get free wifi.  With that being said, for many this is far more than they could possibly make in their home country.

 

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Correct look at the avg wage in countries thy are from, for example Philippines; many cruise employees,  around 3500 year for people who work in the Philippines.  I always leave auto tips on n will give cash tips at end if warranted.  

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2 minutes ago, zitsky said:

I see suggestions of tipping $10 pp pd.  How does all included factor in?  Is this too much?  Too little?

 

No universal answer.  Also if for a cabin steward you'll probably receive the best experience if you tip them ASAP.  For dining service, particularly dinner, if you leave a few singles every MDR meal you'll basically be treated like a VIP.  Like it or not, the crew always gossips about the passengers and the staff always shares the names of the passengers who tip in cash.

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7 minutes ago, zitsky said:

I see suggestions of tipping $10 pp pd.  How does all included factor in?  Is this too much?  Too little?

If you are talking about $10 pp pd  for you cabin attendant, that is too much IMHO. If you are thinking of spreading around the extra $20 per day to include wait staff, bartenders, room attendant and others around the ship, it’s probably OK. In might even be a little low. Just depends on who you want to include in your extra tipping and who you interact with. And remember the special cards that are available at Guest Relations where you can compliment staff by name. They receive special recognition that can include extras from their management. They go a long way in addition to extra cash. 

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4 minutes ago, NutsAboutGolf said:

 

No universal answer.  Also if for a cabin steward you'll probably receive the best experience if you tip them ASAP.  For dining service, particularly dinner, if you leave a few singles every MDR meal you'll basically be treated like a VIP.  Like it or not, the crew always gossips about the passengers and the staff always shares the names of the passengers who tip in cash.

I totally agree with tipping the steward ASAP, rather than wait till the end of the cruise. I budget a set amount for each day if the service is really great, and always try to leave the tip at least every other day in an envelope with the stewards name on it. This practice always works out to motivate the steward to provide " a little extra care" for us. I know some guest may disagree with this practice, or for that matter tipping extra for service you expect, but its a personal choice for us. I find the really good stewards become like friends during the cruise, since more than other crew members, you usually see them several times a day. 

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2 hours ago, canderson said:

Yes, but in much of Europe, they're (technically - legally) working to very specific measures in a glass (e.g., 100ml wine, 30ml booze)!  Here, you won't find a line with numbers on much of anything, shot glasses are often filled and 'overflowed', and no laws to enforce pour size, so those extra tips can lead to better pours!

 

Why are people so concerned on what you tip to cruise staff ?

Your money, do what you want, my money I do what I want.

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1 minute ago, zitsky said:

At the bar is there a receipt I can sign to leave extra tip or is it all digital, room card etc.   I usually carry a few singles.  Only been on one X cruise.

Yes but cash is king 

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2 hours ago, zitsky said:

Does anyone actually know how much staff are paid on X ships?  I see some speculation but I'm not sure how much is certain and how much is hearsay.

 

In Club Points?

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The employees may act appreciative but they don't really want your candy or snacks or knicknacks from your hometown or any other junk that will take up space in their tiny accommodations.  Most of that stuff goes straight in the trash. Some of them have dietary restrictions, too.

 

It might be acceptable to offer to pick something up for them while you're in the port but even that is a bit much.  The gesture is probably more appreciated than leaving them a photo of themselves, the idea of which made me LOL (can you imagine?).  Most appreciated will be giving them the money you would otherwise spend on something they don't really need or want or can buy for themselves if they do.

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