Could someone please explain the concept? If I choose to keep the automatic tipping on my credit account do I still have to tip extra? Will my service no be as good because of the guaranteed tipping? This is our first cruise and I have read the articles about the way the staff are paid. I am just confused? And is this per person or per cabin? I don't mean to be sound cheap I just usally like to decide someones tip on the type of service they provide. I am a retired hairdresser and lived off of tips alot so I know the importance. Help me please! We choose personal choice dining on the Golden Princess for the flexibility.Thanks everyones advice has been so helpful so far.
The way I understand it is fairly simple.. $6.50/ day per person are charged daily to your shipboard account. These monies are split between all wait staff, head waiters and maitre ds. Room stewards are tipped individually at the end of the cruise as has been normal in the past.
These tips can be reduced or removed from your account by going to the Purser's desk and requesting it.
With Personal Choice dining this automatic tipping seems to be the best option. You could have many different servers during the cruise of your cruise, and would have to seek them out at weeks end, or tip as you go. Automatic tipping takes that out of your hand, and deals with it. In my opinion.. not a bad system at all to go along with Personal Choice dining.
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From what I understand to be the truth is Princess will charge 6.50 per person per day for your waiter and wait staff, not including the cabin steward. It is automatically billed to your account whether you chose either personal choice or traditional dining.
People have told me that if I went to the pursur's desk, and requested for it to be removed that supposely they will remove the automatic tipping from your account.
Personally, I feel the service won't be as good as it would be when the wait staff must work for their tips. Knowing that one already is tipped from each passenger, gives the wait staff a reason not to give the best service, my opinion of course.
Sometimes things in life are to be worked for and earned, and I say this definately includes tipping ones waiter on a cruise....
Just to add on to the previous Posters comments---
I was on the Grand in Feb.,we used the Personal Choice option.
While we dined and enjoyed a different group of folks each evening, we had the same wonderful waiter and asst. the last 4 nights. You can request the same waitstaff if you wish.
This was our first experience with this type of dining, but it won't be our last. I did NOT feel our service suffered. Overall Personal Choice was a very positive experience. You eat at your leisure, not by appointment. You are not rushed, your waiter can give you his attention, as they seem to stagger the seating in each section, so each wait team is not overworked by everyone appearing at the same time.
On the Grand they used the Michealangleo Dining Room for PC Choice, this DR has it's own kitchen. While the the the DaVinci and Bonacelli Dining Rooms, used for Traditional Dining share one kitchen.
Hope this helps!
Have a great cruise!
Even though I like to have control of how much and to whom I tip, the automatic system for charging your cabin $6.50 per day per person worked out just fine. The waiter we had for our traditional dining choice assured us that they (all of the waitstaff) liked the new system and would work very hard to do their best because this system was fair to everyone. You see, where alternatives exist, people where not tipping their waitstaff accordingly on a daily basis and these dedicated servers were being cheated out of their weekly income. Now if you wish to tip in addition to the automatic charges, you have that option. At our table we each pitched in an additional $5 per person giving him something a little "extra". Now our Asst. waiter (of 2 weeks) who is also the wine/bar server, was very slow and inexperienced causing delays in service of his Busing job ie. no water refills, bread refills, coffee service after desert, etc. Again, he was very inexperienced and we took that into consideration. Many people still feel they prefer to tip at the beginning of a cruise ensuring them good service, as the waitstaff will expect more at the end. Some cruisers swear by that method.
I believe that as of today, the automatic charge was just on the Grand where they are introducing the Personal Choice dining option. Soon, beginning with the brand new Golden and possibly more Princess ships, the new systems will be in place. Exactly what ships, and when has not been announced. The waitstaff likes this new system. Service staff are not cheated out of their hard earned gratuity. You can always change it or tip more.
Yes, the automatic gratuity sytem puts the dining room staff tips directly on your onboard account and ultimately your credit card. If you wish, you can purchase a tip voucher for your room steward at any bar. That will also be charged to your cruise account. They give you a copy of the voucher to give to your steward who in turn can cash it like a money order.
Any other tips, like room service, should be done with cash.
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