Tipping in American is quite different from tipping in other countries. I had issues with my hubby wanting to tip everyone in Italy. I knew tipping was either included in the bill or not expected. So it's interesting to hear from people not from the USA and get a different idea about things.
On a cruise ship I have always had excellent service with no reason to remove the auto tip. I find it odd to remove the auto tip in order to hand the tip to the person in cash.
I guess I would want to know from the staff if it makes any difference to them. Auto tip vs cash tips. I know there are cruisers who hate auto tips, I prefer the auto tips it's easier for me. If I feel someone went above the norm then I would add an extra cash tip at the end of the cruise.
I worked as a hairstylist for 14 years some people would announce before the hair cut that if I did a good job I would get a large tip.
I always found this offensive like I would only deliver quantity if I got a lot of money. I spend a lot of my life at work I want to be proud of what I do regardless of the amount of money I'm paid. My sense of the people on cruise ships is they feel the same. Pride in your job is it's own motivation.