I am getting away from tipping above the recommended amounts. The cruiselines understand that most of us are inclined to tip beyond the recommended amounts, so they are in no rush to better compensate these employees. Instead, they'll increase the suggested or pre-tipped amounts in increments. (Remember when restaurant staff were tipped 10%? 15%? 18%? Now it's 20%. Same thing with cruising. A dollar more here and there over the years.) I haven't minded tipping beyond the recommended amounts wherever I've had good sevice in the past, but I'm becoming inclined to stop sending a message to the cruise lines that I'm willing to make up for *any* amout of their shortfall to their employees, that there is no limit to how much I'll be willing to pay in tips, and that I'll be tipping whether the service is good or not. It's become an obligation, not an opportunity.