Originally Posted by ThomasOrtiz
I have mixed feelings about the automatic tipping. It is convenient and assures the staff gets something. I wonder if cruise staff gets more tip money today or less. Knowing an automatic tip is being paid probably stops many passengers from tipping anything additional. The automatic tip becomes an expected cost of the ticket and an expected part of the paycheck.
Tips are for service beyond what you earn for doing the minimal tasks of your job. The automatic tips do not bother me, but we always make sure to tip people that provide excellent service extra. That is whom we want to reward.
I suggest setting aside another $10 per day as your "bonus tip" money. Reward the people that provide special service to you and you get even better service. It is just like in a good local restaurant. Service is always superior for people a waitress, or waiter, knows tips well.
If you read my post directly before yours, you will no longer have to wonder if the staff makes more or less with auto-tipping.
Although it would seem logical that knowing an auto tip has already been paid might prevent passengers from tipping anything additional, the reality is quite the opposite. The cruising public has an extremely short memory. That auto tip is very quickly forgotten, and many satisfied cruisers are happy to tip additional to their favourite service staff.