I just read Kuki's very good article about remembering the crew with a token gift if you're cruising over the holidays. We're going over New Years and would love to hear any ideas out there that others have done for the crew in the past. Thanks!
. You know something else, Kuki, I was at a local watering hole this afternoon here in Pensacola, FL called McGuires Irish Pub, very well known here and very unique, dollar bills hanging off the walls, Irish memorabilia etc. Well back to my point, while I was standing to pay for my bill, lo and behold I looked up and there was a LARGE moose head hanging on the wall, and a sign that stated it's an original moosehead from Canada, and it's selling for $3,900.00. Seeing this ugly thing (not you, the moose) made me think of you since you are from Canada. What I need to know is, how can I verify if this is an original moosehead from Canada and how do you determine value? (lol)
What about Reindeer Candy Canes. You know, the ones crafted. They have pipe cleaners for antlers, pom-pom nose, google eyes and a red bow for a tie.
Everyone got these when they were kids. Us room mothers made them for Christmas parties.
Debbie from Missouri
Rick, for the same reason you might tip or present a gift to any of the people who provide personal services to you on land. Some people (but by no means all) tip their newspaper carrier, their mail carrier and any other service provides during the holidays. I usually bring a nice bottle of wine to my barber when I get my pre-holiday haircut. Why? Well, because I want to and, thank God, I can. My way of saying thanks for the great service during the past twelve months.
I can't even begin to imagine the holidays being thousands of miles away from my extended family, but that's the situation cruise staff find themselves in and they're surrounded by a couple of thousand people who are celebrating a holiday. As a tip or a gift is always voluntary, it's entirely up to the individual giver as to whether or not they want to give something, but I think it's a kind thing to do.
Some lines don't allow crew to keep food in their cabins, so food gifts may not be practical. Also, the giving of ornaments kind of presumes the crew to be Christian and celebrating Christmas, and that may not be the case. The presumption may possibly even be insulting to them.
Rick, I think this act of kindness at Christmas would make me personaly feel good. The crew members are a long way from home and I am sure they are missing their families at the holidays.
I once gave a flower (a carnation) to a young lady who was helping clean our room. She bowed, thanked me and then cried.
Back in the day when I was a very junior flight attendant and worked flights on holidays because the people with more seniority had those days off, there were passengers who gave us little gifts. Nothing more than a candy cane or so ... but it meant so much.
It would have been very easy to be resentful that THEY were going to their families and I wasn't ... but the sweet nature of the people who figured it out raised MY Christmas spirit a LOT !!!
I still remember an older lady (when you are 21, everyone is "older") who showed me pictures of her family and a new grandbaby whom she was going to see for the first time. I was doing the admiring thing when her eyes flew open to the max and she said, "Oh. You're not going to be with your family, are you?" She gave me the biggest hug in the world. It was almost as good as being home.
These days, now that I am "older" I keep a stock of candy in my jacket pockets and give the candy to people who look distressed or hassled. And to little kids, after asking their parent's permission. Makes me feel like Santa, and that's good.
I thoroughly agree with rewarding the crew with a gift but, personally, I think the best gift you can give them is a very, very generous tip! I wouldn't want to try to guess what kind of a gift a crew member may like so if you give him/her an additional monetary reward they can buy something that they really want for themselves. Perhaps putting it in a Christmas card and giving it to them on Christmas Day would make it more special rather than waiting until the last day at which time you could give them your usual tip.