We have sailed twice. Each time we had our gratuities included in our fare. At the end of the cruise, we tipped extra because the service was worth it. Our room was kept spotless. We didn't have to ask for extra towels. Tissue was always available. The ice bucket was never empty. Our dining room service was excellent. Maybe we are a sucker for people remembering our names, that we liked tea with our meal, and to always bring two shrimp cocktails. I like my napkin placed in my lap. Its those little things that make the trip enjoyable for us. We are planning our next cruise and will again add our tip to our fare. But, we will also have extra cash for our servers. We tip at restaurants and if your party is over a certain number, they automatically add 20% now. So, when all is said and done, tip, and have a great time. I always say choose your battles, and this one isn't worth fighting.