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-   -   NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off? (http://www.cruisemates.com/forum/tipping/300188-ncl-auto-tipping-no-option-adjust-off.html)

Jane_Marlow August 5th, 2004 07:38 PM

NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
I read on another site that NCL (in 2005) will begin surcharge tipping..NO option to adjust off....I emailed them just now asking if this was true...if so, I will not book with them, ever.

I support tipping, but that is simply ridiculous. So the line guarrantees that passengers must tip? This is wrong, as the line cannot guarrantee that staff will provide superlative service.

sls August 5th, 2004 09:01 PM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
If NCL is paying higher wages they have to cover the cost somehow.

pg. August 5th, 2004 10:11 PM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
THEN DON'T CALL IT A TIP!! It is a service charge, or just stick into the cruise price and call it" a no tipping required cruise". All they are doing is adding a service charge and STILL expecting you to tip on top of that!!

A " tip" is voluntary.

bicker August 6th, 2004 03:51 AM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
Actually, NCL does call it a service charge:
Quote:

Traditionally, gratuities for all the service you experienced aboard an NCL ship were paid at the end of the cruise. This often led to a last-night scramble as guests tried to find the correct amount of cash to place in each tip envelope. For your convenience, NCL now automatically applies a service charge to your shipboard account: $10 per guest per day for guests age 13 and above, $5 per day for children age 3-12 and no charge for children under the age of three. All of the service personnel on board receive gratuities from this service charge, and there is no need for you to think about additional tipping. Separately, a 15% gratuity is added for bar drinks and spa services.
So what NCL charges you is a "service charge." They give gratuities to the staff from the money they raise by charging you the service charge. 100% accurate language.

sls August 6th, 2004 08:06 AM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
Separately, a 15% gratuity is added for bar drinks and spa services.



Wow, don't you usually get to decide how much you want to tip at the spa services?


sls

Em August 6th, 2004 09:37 AM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
jane marlow,

The writing is on the walls already. I have no doubt that this service charge will be standard practice on all major cruise lines. It's only a matter of time. I don't think you want to stop cruising.

When I stay at land based hotels the bottom line on check out day includes many extra charges. Of course these are not the Motel 6's. Want to park your car, extra. Even if you self park, I've paid up to $15 a day. Of course there wasn't any other option of street parking. Local and State bed taxes, no option of not paying those. A service fee has been explained to me as everything from energy rate fees, to it's just a standard practice with hotels in the area, and it's a business expense.
There cost of running a hotel goes up, such as taxes, insurance, and utilties. They don't want their published per night rate to go up, so they tack on a service charge. The same is apparently going to be applied to the cruise lines.

If people would just open up that moth laden wallets voluntarily and show some appreciation to the staff this wouldn't be heading toward a manditory fee.

Love to cruise, and appreicate being treated so special by the hard working staff.
Em

bicker August 6th, 2004 04:22 PM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
The President of Carnival said, in no uncertain terms, that he will not consider such a policy change. He said, flat-out, that service quality can only be assured at the level of current expectation by the current system.

Rather, I think the writing is on the wall for US-flagged ships. I don't think that model is viable, given the expectations for service, the ability of non-US-flagged ships to provide it in spades, with lower cost-of-service, assured by voluntary gratuities.

I think the hotel example won't apply, because hotels in the United States have to be staffed by employees covered by US labor laws. Cruise ships do not.

Jane_Marlow August 9th, 2004 05:13 PM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
Yes, Em, you're right. I notice your posts are usually clever and thoughtful. Thank you.

I don't mind paying a "service charge"...just a bit bent about paying a mandatory "tip" when I would tip that much or more anyway.

Oh, I am over it now. And yes, I agree...I believe all cruise lines will go this way one day.

pg. August 10th, 2004 09:37 AM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
I would never use spa services if a tip was included and manadtory. The spa services vary wildly and some of the "workers " are much better than others.
A tip that is mandatory is not a tip, it is a fee. Period.

John Tee August 19th, 2004 05:13 PM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
The 10% fee that NCL charges is a service charge and not a tip. YOU MUST STILL TIP on top of that. My understanding from multiple sources is that the crew doesn't receive this as a tip and the end of a cruise. They still expect you to tip for good service.

I was on Pride of Aloha a few weeks back and we discovered this three days into the cruise.

I think it is criminal for NCL to advertise a price and then to add a 10% service charge on top of that and make it sound like it's a tip pool when it is not.

Don't screw the staff on NCL cruises ... you need to tip.

bicker August 19th, 2004 05:37 PM

Re: Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
I believe the information you're providing is in error.
Quote:

For your convenience, NCL now automatically applies a service charge to your shipboard account: $10 per guest per day for guests age 13 and above, $5 per day for children age 3-12 and no charge for children under the age of three. All of the service personnel on board receive gratuities from this service charge, and there is no need for you to think about additional tipping.
I think it safer to believe an official published policy than to rely on third-hand hearsay from alleged "multiple sources. "

JaneMarlow August 19th, 2004 07:31 PM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
It's supposed to start in 2005. I found it on a TA's website...I will see if I can find anything from the actual company.

bicker August 20th, 2004 04:12 AM

Re: Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
This is NCL's 2005 policy:
Quote:

A service charge of $10 per person, per day will be added to your onboard account. For children ages 3-12, a $5 per person per day charge will be added to your onboard account; there is no charge for children under the age of three. This is a fixed service charge and is not adjustable. Of course, if you have any concerns about the service you receive while on board your cruise then please bring them to the immediate attention of our reception desk staff on board so that we can address any issues in a timely manner before the cruise is over.

Unlike most other ships in the cruise industry, there is no required or recommended tipping on Norwegian Cruise Line and NCL America ships. Our staff is paid salaries. Guests should not feel obliged to offer a gratuity for service that is generally rendered to all guests.
[Emphasis added.]

JaneMarlow August 20th, 2004 03:08 PM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
That is strange verbiage from the cruiseline.

bicker August 20th, 2004 05:48 PM

Re: Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
Very careful verbiage like that often sounds strange. Casual verbiage, by contrast, can often be misinterpreted.

JaneMarlow August 24th, 2004 02:54 PM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
So I looked it up....I am fine with a "service charge" that cannot be adjusted. Just as long as it's not called a "tip". I just hope it's distributed fairly to all the workers.

chep September 21st, 2004 06:43 PM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
just came back from NCL Sea Cruise Wonderfull! Its not a problem at all removing or adjusting de service charge (Gratuities) of US$ p/p/d. They even have a form for that. You just need to go to te reception and tell them that you want to remove or adjust the gratuities. You wil need the fill in hou much money you want to deduct. Example a 7d cruise for 2 days will bay 2x10x7=140, if you dont want give any gratuities just fill in 140, if you want to give US$10 fill in 130 etc. Then you have to sign for it.. and voila .... thats it. Make sure that they process it by verify your end statment.

OLD MAN October 13th, 2004 07:55 PM

Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
Chep , You need to read bickers post carfully.. I know you removed your auto tips.. It's 2005 is when you will not be able to remove them.. Also read bickers NCL words, you will not have to tip extra. Just pay the $10 per person, don't remove it, enjoy your trip and move on. If you receive bad service you can complain, but you will not get your money back.. They want that money.. They need that money.. Also to John Tee: You do not have to tip on top of the $10 service charge.. Don't tell people that, it' not correct.. Pay the $10 with good or bad service, because that's what you will have to do on all of the cruise lines in the next year or so and have a nice trip,, OM

bicker October 14th, 2004 06:09 AM

Re: Re: NCL: auto-tipping with no option to adjust off?
 
Actually, from what I've read it sounds as if NCL has moderated their position to some extent, since their original release. Of course, we won't know how they'll actually enforce it until next year, but it sounds like if you make a specific complaint (emphasis on the word "specific" -- rather than "I just don't think it was good enough") against a specific service-worker, they may refund a portion of the charge.

That sounds like a great compromise to me. It gives passengers a release-valve: They cannot claim that the amount of service charge is out of their control completely. More importantly, it would provide two benefits to the system: (1) a validation step so that people aren't able to remove or reduce the charge out of stinginess; and (2) a rich source of first-hand information about actual service performance of specific service-workers.



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