Yes, that would be the correct amount. Once you are onboard, you will see how hard the staff works in order for you and your family to enjoy the cruise, they really do earn their tips, so I would tip accordingly. If you order room service, you'll need to tip that person a few dollars when they deliver your order, that is not part of the $10 per day, per person.
I'm sure the entire family will enjoy this cruise, have fun!
Tipping is not mandatory so it really is up to you how much of the 'recommended' amount you pay... many people don't pay anything at all so don't let others dictate what you should pay. Not saying you shouldn't pay anything (or less than the recommended amount) since the service personnel rely on this money for their wage... but wait til you're on board and decide for yourself.
AND it is not necessary to pay extra for room service, that is also at your discretion.
I just like to figure out what the tips are before we leave and have that cash set aside and not have to worry about finding the correct bills, etc. There is a section in every cruiseline's brochure that explains the tipping guidelines. Yes, they are guidelines and are suggested, but I figure the tips are part of the whole cruise, so I figure them in at the rate of $10 per day, per person and in a lot of cases we adjust them and end up giving a little more depending on the level of service.
I have also cruised with my kids and have always tipped the same for them as for us, the staff goes out of their way to make the vacation special for the kids and they are just as much work, if not more, they deserve the tips as you will find out.
We cruise with our four kids. On the first one before we left we felt the same way. $60 per day for tips! Once we were on board and realized how much the staff did, we actually ended up tipping a little more.
Celebrity Century 1/09
Carnival Destiny 10/07
Carnival Destiny 9/06
Monarch of the Seas 3/06
Carnival Inspiration 8/05
Carnival Miracle 4/05
Carnival Inspiration 4/04
Sovereign of the Seas 4/03
On formal nights on Princess( we have been on the Grand and Golden) everyone( male) we saw had on at least a tie. The proportion of tuxes is not high, may be 15 % , but most men had on suits, and a few had no jackets but wore ties and dress slacks.
Almost every female was dressed up, some in ball gowns and sequins, or at least in a nice dress/ fancy pant suit and heels.
We never saw any " slobs" ( shorts, flip flops etc) , but of course the term " formal wear" is open to interpatation. Dress up like you would for a nice dinner in a fancy restaurant, or a wedding, and you will be fine.
Pack those nice clothes, you will notice just about everyone does dress up on the formal nights. Be sure to get a family photo one of those nights, its not that often you have the whole family together and looking nice. They will also have a champagne waterfall in the atrium thats pretty neat, so catch that and have a glass too :-)
I would think that with the ages of your kids, they will most likely enjoy the kids program and would have no problem staying on the ship while you and your wife do an excursion, although I wouldn't be gone the entire day, but a few hours should be fine, provided that there will be some organized activity that is going at that time while in port. You can check that out once you are onboard, but having not been on an itinary like that, I'm not sure what will be going on, on the ship with a port day like that. May-be someone thats been on a cruise like that can fill you in with more information.
You might want to ask this on the Princess board. As far as the soda cards, they'll probably run about $40 each (again, just a guess based on my experience on Carnival). There are free drinks on board (punch, lemonade, etc). Dress code is the same for children as adults. Boys usually wear dress pants, dress shirt and tie, dress shoes; jacket if they have one. A nice dress for the girls. Hope this gets you started......do ask on the Princess board for more specifics as your question might get buried here on this thread. Have fun planning!
The staff work hard and deserve to be tipped fairly, however with a large family it really can add up fast and I see nothing wrong with trying to save a little while still being fair to the staff.
One thing you might consider is reducing the room stewards tips on the 3rd and 4th person in the cabin (I'm assuming you're have one cabin with 4 and one with 2). Assuming you tidy up after yourself and the kids, the 2 extra people in the cabin really doesn't produce that much extra work for the steward. We always tip 1/2 for the kids and think that's fair.
Another thing you may find is that your kids prefer to skip the formal dining room in favor of one of the more casual alternatives. If that's the case, you may want to adjust their dining tips accordingly. Again, I would suggest 1/2 would be fair if they choose not to use the dining room since they are eating somewhere and using some service but not the full service that would be received in the dining room.
Tipping is really a personal decision and only you can decide what is fair based on the needs of your family. The staff work hard and deserve to be tipped fairly for the work that they do, but don't feel you have to tip the recommended amount if you are not using the services fully. It's a tip for a job well done, not charity.
This is begining to get exciting, 7 weeks to go!!!!
All my kids drink soft drinks to extreme, I have read that you can buy a 'voucher' for the duration of the cruise and they can drink forever!!!!!!
Does anyone know how much these are on the Grand P for a 12 day cruise and are there they worth it? can you bring them into the resturants.
Also, do kids have to get dressed up all fancy for Formal nights?
I just returned from a 10 day on the Dawn Princess. The soda cards were $49.95 for the ten days. That was a big price hike from our previous cruises on the Regal and Sapphire where the cards were only $25 for ten days. However, it may still be worth it if your kids drink alot of soda. They did honor the soda cards in the restaurants.
You will see some children dressed to the nines in fancy dresses and little tuxes, but the majority are usually dressed less formally. On my last cruise, I noticed most little girls wearing pretty (but not formal) dresses and most little boys wearing either dress slacks or dockers with dress shirts. Most did not wear a jacket and only about 50% a tie.