Just got back last weekend from a cruise on the Oosterdam.
Since we were used to the "old way" of tipping on the ship, we weren't real clear about the new method.
My husband went down to main deck office twice to ask about the tipping.
We intended to leave the $10/per person/per day on our bill. However, he wanted to know what happens if we give extra to some of the crew members.
On both occasions he was told that we could give extra tips, and the crew members did not have to turn the $ in.
"But how does our cabin steward or waiter know we've paid the $10/per day charge, and therefore they can keep the money?" my husband asked.
Their answer, both times: "We've never had a problem with this."
Neither person directly answered my husband's question.
Yes, we did put our room # and names on the envelopes, as we always do.
And with our cabin steward, we actually told him we paid the $10/pp/day, so he could keep the money.
We also gave extra tips to the wine steward, the head waiter and the waiter.
And a tip to the waiter in the piano bar, where we spent many nights.
Somehow, I can't imagine our cabin steward meeting with someone in billing to go over which pax gave him extra $, so they can compare the names to the list of people who paid the $10/pp/day.
When is there time to do that? For every member of the crew to do that?
As far as in the Lido -- I can't imagine a server there being able to identify me [among so many pax] as a person who gave him $5, then tracking me down to what room I'm in, then verifying that I'd paid my mandatory tip so he can keep the $5.
It just doesn't make sense.