This new policy stinks. You are basically forced into tipping BEFORE the service is provided. Sure you can ask this charge not be added but would you be blacklisted or given inferior service? Maybe, but would it also be a hassle to do this, probably. Who needs the hassles especially with all the tax this, and port charge that. This creates one more piece of a basic money grab that will turn alot of people off especially paying for something that is not a guarantee. I'm sure over time it will start with no tipping employees then that will be optional then pretty much a given and this will become a surcharge etc. Sure it will start with a small $9.75 charge per person, but add it up for a family and dad is reaching into his pocket once again. All this before even setting sail, hopfully the rest of the trip is better than the start you will need it.
Bruce, You put it perfectly! You did forget the ice cream, real coffee, and room service charges but no fear I am sure that the cruiselines will remember to charge them.
Obviously I am 100% against such a policy. Frankly I am a good tipper yet I want to be the one handing it over and I want to be the one deciding how much it is. I know the easiest thing to do would be to immediately have the charge withdrawn from the bill upon onset of the cruise. I am a stubborn guy though and that just doesn't make it for me. Instead I will do what is even easier. I will NOT cruise any line that imposes this charge and in addition I will not sail any line that continues to get crazier and crazier with their on board revenue charges. I originally planned to include only those doing such, however, in my own weak protest I will also include all of Carnivals subsidiary lines.
I stopped sailing NCL after 6 or 7 cruises with them after they imposed that idiot $2 room service fee. NCL went right down the tubes as far as I am concerned after that despite rescinding the fees after two years.
I admit that as a cruiseaholic since 1984 I am very sad to see the current trend in cruising. I am sad because I can see the day approaching when I will no longer feel that cruising is the way I should spend my vacations. It will no longer have the magic of cruising for me since it will just be yet another mass market, time share, over charged, hotel that floats.
Why would any one try to please if tip was automatic? Have been cruising for many years and it's going down hill fast thanks to all the penny pinching bean counters!!! Next cruise is on HAL,I hope they don't start that garbage too!
> If you know so much about cruising... you would know that HAL
> includes tips in the fare... has for years, and is now owned
> by Carnival.
Actually I think HALs policy is quite confusing. Tips are NOT included in the fare. They say no tipping required, but trust me, it is expected.
In HALs case I think the confusion of the policy is a disservice to the staff, because many people do think its included in the fare, and therefore don't tip at all.
Your comments are valid, but your logic is faulty. I agree that service on ships generally has gotten worse over the years.
But please read carefully: I have worked on 18 ships for 11 different cruise liines over the past 27 years. The internal tipping policies have been the same on every ship - ALL TIPS WERE POOLED. Please read that last sentence again. Its important.
When you gave me an envelope of some cash, it didn`t stay in my pocket very long. As soon as the last passengers disembarked the ship, all the service staff met at the Captain`s table in the diningroom. We all put ALL cash tips on the table for counting. Then the Maitre d` split and handed the money out to EVERYONE, based on a complicated point system administered by him. Today with auto-tipping, the smae system is in place. The only difference is that most of the cash comes from the Purser`s office. We still pool ALL the money in EXACTLY THE SAME WAY. NOTHING HAS REALLY CHANGED. Please read those last two sentences again. They are important.
To repeat, we ALWAYS knew we would receive a tip regardless of service levels. We still do know today that we weill receive a tip regardless of service levels.
Now please explain to everyone how auto-tipping has damaged service levels.
Once again, I agree that service levels have generally deteriorated over the years (I also observe that the quality of guests has deteriorated at the same pace), bu tyoumay be blaming the wrong reasons for the problems that exist.