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Old August 29th, 2006, 03:29 AM
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Default Prepaid Gratuities

Last year on our first cruise we filled in a slip to ask for gratuities to be charged to our seapass account.

Now that we've booked 2 more cruises I see that gratuities are already added to the price of our cruise.

It's too late to do anything about it now but I am now wondering if gratuitues were already added on to the price of our first cruise and we paid twice? The Royal Caribbean brochure (UK version) states gratuities will be added to the price of your cruise unless you state otherwise. Being cruising newbies last year we weren't really aware of this. Don't have the booking details any more to check either.

So, my question is, when I'm onboard will the company be aware that I've already paid the (minimum suggested) gratuities or will I still get a note asking how I want to pay them?
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Old August 29th, 2006, 01:00 PM
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On our last RCI cruise on Radiance, we were given the option of having $10 per person added to our Sign and Sail account for tips, but tips certainly weren't included in the price we paid for the cruise. In the UK, it may be different.
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Old February 26th, 2007, 11:34 AM
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Default Prepaid question

If I prepay and include extra in the prepay process, then when I do not hand out "The Envelopes" does the staff think that I stiffed them?
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Old February 26th, 2007, 04:36 PM
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Default Re: Prepaid question

Quote:
Originally Posted by ctkgak
If I prepay and include extra in the prepay process, then when I do not hand out "The Envelopes" does the staff think that I stiffed them?
I think they get a list of the cabins/names with pre paid tips so they know paid in advance.
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Old April 6th, 2007, 11:15 AM
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okay...so I'm a total newbie.

When and how do you set up the prepay tipping? When you board? Do you set up your account and do it?

I have until July before I'll get all our paperwork and stuff so I have NO idea how any of this all works.
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Old April 6th, 2007, 04:31 PM
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Default Re: Prepaid Gratuities

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrio
It's too late to do anything about it now but I am now wondering if gratuitues were already added on to the price of our first cruise and we paid twice? The Royal Caribbean brochure (UK version) states gratuities will be added to the price of your cruise unless you state otherwise. Being cruising newbies last year we weren't really aware of this. Don't have the booking details any more to check either.

So, my question is, when I'm onboard will the company be aware that I've already paid the (minimum suggested) gratuities or will I still get a note asking how I want to pay them?
I think in UK and Australia passenger have it added to the cruise package check with your TA to be sure.
I seem to recall some rule for the UK that it is included in the pricing.
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Old June 30th, 2008, 02:06 PM
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So is the tip included in the cruise fare price for those who live in the UK?
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Old June 30th, 2008, 02:21 PM
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yes the minimum suggested gratuity is included in the price we pay here in the UK. You can opt out if you want though. Saves a load of hassle in my opinion to pre-pay it.
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Old June 30th, 2008, 02:24 PM
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Thank you for clearing up this question. I have a friend who just returned form Southampton on Independence of the Seas. He told me that the bartenders complained about now receiving tips. he said 80% of passengers were from UK and they weren't drinking. If you don't order a drink from the bar then the bartenders don't get a tip; however, the tips to room steward, dining room waiter, etc, is already paid prior to the cruise. is this correct?
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Old June 30th, 2008, 02:38 PM
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I'm definately not one of the 80% who doesn't drink

It's not just alcoholic drinks where 15% is added to the bill - it's non alcoholic ones too. Were these people just drinking tap water i wonder? I think that in the UK tipping is a pretty alien thing and some people don't really know what to do. We've been to the USA many times so have had some practice.

It's true that the pre-paid gratuities are only for the waiters and stateroom attendents (on Royal Caribbean anyway) but we always give extra when we've had good service.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 03:09 PM
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We opted for the pre-pay gratuities on our last RCI cruise, and we were given envelopes with 'vouchers' printed out already with the tip amount on them for each person. So we still handed the staff an envelope on the last night, but it only had the voucher in it.

I will always do the pre-pay from now on. It was so much easier than trying to figure out how much cash to have on hand to pass out. And you can always include extra cash in the env if you feel the need.
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Old January 14th, 2009, 09:41 AM
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On another cruisesite, there is a big hulaballoo going on about the new tipping charges on Celebrity.

My question is: Is it somehow advantageous to the cruiseship company to handle the tipping? I wonder if they keep a percentage. I also wonder how quickly the crew gets their money. Somehow, I think it is better for the staff if they get cash.

Any opinions?
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Old July 22nd, 2010, 05:55 PM
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When I booked on Carnival I was able to pay for the pre-paid gratuities online with my fare. I just had to check off a box.
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Old July 22nd, 2010, 06:42 PM
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It depends on the cruise line here. P&O for instance do not include tips & unless you opt for anytime/mytime/freedom dining do not pre-charge. You pay in cash in envelopes at the end, there is a "recommended'' amount/guideline. U.S. cruise lines do as they do as home, pre-pay or charge your account. Some TA's may include basic tips as part of a deal.
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Old July 25th, 2010, 02:14 PM
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Its similiar to restaurants adding an 18% gratuity to the check .
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Old July 25th, 2010, 04:10 PM
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I always try to prepay or add OBC to the amount at I'm planning to spend.
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Old August 4th, 2010, 09:25 PM
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Default Gratuities and tips

Are gratuities and/or tips mandatory?

If you do not want to pay them, can the lines force you to do it?
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Old August 4th, 2010, 10:37 PM
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Nothing is Mandatory or compulsory. It is recommended.
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Old August 9th, 2010, 10:42 PM
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We did the Pre Paid gratuities... but I plan on tipping for any job well done for the our Cabin Steward anyway...:-)
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Old October 19th, 2010, 11:38 PM
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My thoughts are that you need to check with your travel agent, the cruise line vacation planner or whom ever is making your travel arrangements prior to your cruise, then you'll know in advance what to expect concerning tipping policies with any cruise line.
Whenever I cruise, I usually tip my cabin steward, a little extra cash, because I don't believe that most of what might be charged on my bill/folio, will not make it into the hands of these extremely hard working people...they work like 7 days a week for 6 months, I believe, before they might get 2 months off.
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Old November 8th, 2010, 01:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swallow View Post
Are gratuities and/or tips mandatory?

If you do not want to pay them, can the lines force you to do it?
when i booked allure of the seas, if you chose the fixed time ( like first or second dining), you don't have to pay the tips inadvance, but i chose the free time one, so they charged me inadvance.
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Old November 27th, 2010, 12:40 AM
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Apparently it's the same case here in NZ.

Funny thing is that my TA didn't mention that the tips were in the price until I asked her later!
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 04:59 PM
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We went on the Solstice in Dec, we took the flexible dining option and we had to prepay gratuities, the last three nights of the cruise we never made it to the dining room, once we ordered room service and we were discussing how much we should tip, then we came to the conclusion that we were not going to tip anymore because we already prepaid 12 bucks a day per person (and did not even have dining room service), at that point it is really the cruiselines resposibility.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 06:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by commission1 View Post
We went on the Solstice in Dec, we took the flexible dining option and we had to prepay gratuities, the last three nights of the cruise we never made it to the dining room, once we ordered room service and we were discussing how much we should tip, then we came to the conclusion that we were not going to tip anymore because we already prepaid 12 bucks a day per person (and did not even have dining room service), at that point it is really the cruiselines resposibility.
I assume you ate breakfast or lunch onboard, so you did receive service. The tip for dining covers the service you receive the entire day, not just dinner. Plus the $12 per day includes the tip for your room steward.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 07:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wando View Post
I assume you ate breakfast or lunch onboard, so you did receive service. The tip for dining covers the service you receive the entire day, not just dinner. Plus the $12 per day includes the tip for your room steward.
Exactly my point 2 bucks for breakfast buffet busboys per person, 2 bucks for lunch buffet busboys per person, 3 bucks for room steward per day per person, out of the 12 bucks prepaid per day that leaves 5 bucks left over for dinner which I did not go to for the last three nights, multiply times two people and that means the cruiseline should have gave the room service guy 30 bucks to deliver our meal. Cruiseline issue not mine, cruisline made me prepay and I did pay for the service I wll not pay twice.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 08:07 PM
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I really don't have a problem with pre-paid gratuities-we've never had to adjust them for poor service. On the contrary,we always give the waiter,assistant waiter and stateroom attendant an additional tip. And sometimes we include the maitre'd . But I'm wondering about Celebritys guidelines in their brochure. It says $11.50 per day per person will be added to your SeaPass account, then tells you how much and who for: waiter 3.65, assistant waiter 2.10, stateroom service 3.50. Then there's 1.50 for "other service personnel". You don't need a calculator to know this adds up to 10.75. Mmmm...Who gets the remaining .75? And exactly who are "other service personnel"? Don't get me wrong-I'm not nitpicking over 1.50 a day but I do think Celebrity could makes things clearer. I'm thinking of having my auto tips adjusted to 9.25 per day p.p. then additionally tipping those who deserve it at the end of the cruise. And I've NEVER considered adjusting tips because I missed some meals in the MDR!
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Last edited by jacdenv24; January 3rd, 2011 at 08:10 PM. Reason: added something
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Old January 4th, 2011, 08:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jacdenv24 View Post
I really don't have a problem with pre-paid gratuities-we've never had to adjust them for poor service. On the contrary,we always give the waiter,assistant waiter and stateroom attendant an additional tip. And sometimes we include the maitre'd . But I'm wondering about Celebritys guidelines in their brochure. It says $11.50 per day per person will be added to your SeaPass account, then tells you how much and who for: waiter 3.65, assistant waiter 2.10, stateroom service 3.50. Then there's 1.50 for "other service personnel". You don't need a calculator to know this adds up to 10.75. Mmmm...Who gets the remaining .75? And exactly who are "other service personnel"? Don't get me wrong-I'm not nitpicking over 1.50 a day but I do think Celebrity could makes things clearer. I'm thinking of having my auto tips adjusted to 9.25 per day p.p. then additionally tipping those who deserve it at the end of the cruise. And I've NEVER considered adjusting tips because I missed some meals in the MDR!
According to Celebrity's website, the breakdown for a non-suite is:

Waiter: $3.65
Asst Waiter: $2.10
Dining Room Mgmt (I assume that is the Assistant Maitre'd): $1.00
Room Steward: $3.50
Other Service Personnel: $1.25

Total: $11.50

Payment and Gratuities
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Old January 4th, 2011, 12:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wando View Post
According to Celebrity's website, the breakdown for a non-suite is:

Waiter: $3.65
Asst Waiter: $2.10
Dining Room Mgmt (I assume that is the Assistant Maitre'd): $1.00
Room Steward: $3.50
Other Service Personnel: $1.25

Total: $11.50

Payment and Gratuities

Interesting. I haven't checked the website yet but the brochure doesn't mention "dining room mgmt. And I'd still like to know who "other service personnel"is (are)? Not a big deal-I'm just curious. Thanks Wando.
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Old January 4th, 2011, 01:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jacdenv24 View Post
Interesting. I haven't checked the website yet but the brochure doesn't mention "dining room mgmt. And I'd still like to know who "other service personnel"is (are)? Not a big deal-I'm just curious. Thanks Wando.
The "other service personnel" are the behind the scenes staff such as dishwashers, cooks, laundry workers, etc.. There is a pool that this money goes into and these people receive a little extra at the end of the month.

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Mike
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Old January 23rd, 2011, 09:12 AM
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Quote:
It's too late to do anything about it now but I am now wondering if gratuities were already added on to the price of our first cruise and we paid twice?
I seriously doubt you paid twice. Did you take the time to review your final bill...? Always important to do so. We have found charges that weren't even ours on past bills that we had to request removal of, and also duplicate charges of items purchased at times. If this happens to you, take your bill to the purser's office for adjustments.

It is possible they did charge you twice, however, if they misunderstood and thought you wanted to double your tips. Probably too late but I'd ask for a copy of your final bill from that cruise anyway.

That'd be an additional 70 x 4 ($280) on my usual length of a 7-day cruise. No way would I overlook that kind of a mistake.

Quote:
So, my question is, when I'm onboard will the company be aware that I've already paid the (minimum suggested) gratuities or will I still get a note asking how I want to pay them?
Have yet to sail RCL so I can't answer that, but I would think most lines are now including gratuities. Once one line starts, they all tend to follow suit.

Happy sailing!

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