The biggest change for the service staff is the amount of money they receive - or don't receive.
Ten years ago, with traditional tipping, an average 30% of passengers on mass market ships tipped nothing at the end of the cruise.
For many tipped employees, that number reduced their overall earnings by as much as 50%.
Many of our best staff resigned and found jobs on land that paid them more. They never returned.
The auto tipping has shamed many of the more frugal cruisers into leaving the auto tip in place. Today, the average cruise has about 5% who leave no tip. General earnings for tipped employees are still much lower now than they were 10 or 20 years ago, and the quality of service staff we attract is much lower than we had before, but it is at least affordable to work on a cruise ship again.