Just got back from Adventure of the Seas where you were given the option of added gratuities to your bill. It was $70 per person for a 7-day cruise. That includes your waiter, assistant waiter (serves drinks only), head waiter, and room attendant.
I spoke with a couple waiters who both told me that their salary was only $50 a month. For early dining our waiter only had 4 people since the other people came only once or never at all. I think some people forget to tip the assistant waiter.
Both the waiter and room attendants told me that their rarely go into port because they have little time during the day and only ports where the town is walking distance from the ship are feasible. For instance waiters work 2 meals a day and the cabin attendant cleans your room twice a day so they only have a small window opening of free time. They are not allowed in public areas of the ship unless they are in uniform and serving some purpose. It costs them a lot of money to send money home to their families abroad.
But I was very happy with the service level in the lunch buffet Windjammer even though those waiters do not work for tips at that time. As was so impressed by our room attendant saying hi to everyone my name.
Post Edited (07-02-03 13:11)