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Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

Lauder Scotland
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258 posts
51 reviews
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Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

We have been told that it is $11 per person per day and that we can increase, decrease or remove this once on board. This is our first cruise and we are unsure what to do. We are a family of 4, 2adults 2 teenagers so this is going to be a big extra expense. On prevous holidays we have tipped for good service and this is what we would prefer to do but wonder whether we would not get good service if we were to decrease the amount and what about the staff behind the scenes?

Any advice would be great.

Thank you, Jen

Ontario, Canada
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1. Re: Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

Not sure what to tell you it really is a personal choice

We leave the auto tipping in place & tip extra to those that go above & beyond to make our cruise experience special

When you think about it if you were in a Country where tips are the norm for meals etc... then adding 15% to each meal would probably less than the daily rate on the ship

Many hands are touched by the daily tip rate

Keep in mind also drinks from the bar or shop purchases will incur an automatic 15% tax/gratuity

Having someone served breakfast lunch dinner & other snacks ..plus make your bed clean the cabin/toilets twice a day is well worth the fee in my book LOL

Enjoy your cruise

ON, Canada
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12,617 posts
40 reviews
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2. Re: Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

Since you will need to speak to someone at guest relations regarding changes in the amount of the gratuities, they will explain the rationale for them and who they benefit. I wouldn't try to make the decision now, but wait until you talk to guest relations staff and see what's involved with on-board service.

In the meantime, you might find this article helpful: www.cruisecritic.com/articles.cfm?ID=132

3. Re: Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

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Removed on: 04 November 2013, 05:05
NL
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835 posts
49 reviews
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4. Re: Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

Consider leaving the automatic tips on your account. The amount isnot just for your cabinsteward or waiter, but also for people working in the Lido (selfservice restaurant), kitchenstaff etc. All very hard working people.

Ottawa, Canada
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84 posts
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5. Re: Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

Leave the service charge in place for all passengers. Don't stiff the crew.

You can tip extra of course.

Do you realize how little the tips are per day? Say it is $12 per person.

If you go out for breakfast, at a cheapie flea bag hotel, it will be about $12p - a crap tip would be $1.80

Go out for a lunch at a chain restaurant, get a nothing special lunch served by a rude server, $20pp - tip $3

Have a really splashy dinner out, good service, multiple courses, dinner pp is $60 - give a bottom end tip of $9.

Oh wait, there is twice a day maid service. In a regular hotel, say a Hilton, it doesn't happen, a standard tip for once a day maid service is $5 (per one or two people, more sharing the room, it should be double).

So lemme see. All told for a land based vacation with spotty service, no taking into account extra services, like grazing in the buffet between meals, turn down service and crew who work their fingers to the bone, it would be $16.30 pp per day in low end tips.

For those who have never cruised before, the service is much better than you would get in an average hotel.

Don't stiff the crew, like land based restaurants, they rely on tips for their wages. Leave any UK notions behind, they don't apply at all to North America or cruises based out of North America.

The service charge is part of the cost of the cruise, and if you can't afford to pay it then cruises are not for you.

Lauder Scotland
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258 posts
51 reviews
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6. Re: Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

Thank you for your thoughts.

Actually we can't afford to go on a cruise......this is a very very special holiday made possible by my late parents, we will not ever be able to do this again.

The tips add on a huge amount, we prefer to tip when the service is good, surely that is why you tip. I understand that the staff that work behind the scenes don't get the tips but perhaps the ships should pay their staff better, it is not my fault that the wages are not good. Having worked in the hospitality trade i know how hard these people work and i am certain that we will be well looked after. I do not intend to remove the tips just perhaps reduce them a little.

NL
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835 posts
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7. Re: Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

Since the frontoffice knows if you take the automatic tip off/reduce the staff you tip will be required to put it in the trunc and will have to share. So the end they probably will have less money.

No indeed it isnot your fault re tips, but "when in Rome do as the Romans"

To make your cruise more affordable look to do some excursion yourself (maybe use e.g. a local bus).

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, New South Wales, Cruises
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8. Re: Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

If you can't afford to leave the full amount on per person per day, then I suggest you reduce it by say 50%, at least it will be shared amongst all those crew who have worked long hours behind the scenes to give you a great holiday.

And BTW, if you tip your cabin steward and remove the auto tips, then they may have to hand it ... don't you think it kinda defeats the purpose of tipping only those who have given you good service when they have to hand it in?

Edited: 05 November 2013, 20:29
9. Re: Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

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Removed on: 06 November 2013, 13:58
ON, Canada
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10. Re: Gratutities on board Emerald Princess

The OP has clearly explained their circumstances regarding this cruise, and since it's already booked, it's a bit late to "find another type of holiday." And she only mentions reducing the gratuities a little, so perhaps the amount of chastising that's going on here really isn't necessary. I agree with lht28's comment that "it's a personal choice".

While we leave the auto tip as is, I know that not 100% of the clients on the ship do the same. Hopefully the total amount collected from all passengers provides the employees with sufficient remuneration.