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Extra tipping guideline?

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My Caribbean Princess cruise ends on Monday, and I would like to give tips to our wonderful steward and waiters, in addition to the automatic gratuities already on our account.

 

i know tipping is a controversial subject and I was reluctant to bring it up, but I wasn’t able to find previous threads to read.  (It’s hard for me to navigate the Cruise Critic site on my iPhone, and my internet connection has been spotty at times.)

 

The last cruise we took was a couple of years ago, but I can’t remember how much extra we gave each person.

 

I know it’s a personal decision, and completely voluntary, but am hoping to get a ballpark idea of what to give our hardworking steward, waiter, and waiter’s assistant.  Also, for those people who choose to tip extra, do you tip the head waiter, if your only contact with him has been him greeting you as you walked into the dining room?

 

We are having the balcony breakfast, and am also wondering about tips for that service.

 

I’m  hoping to prepare envelopes during our at final sea day tomorrow. (I’m also hoping I can get an internet connection tomorrow.)

 

Thank you for any guidance! (If I don’t respond to replies, it will be because I can’t get online!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by ams cruiser

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I tipped our room steward a extra $40 on my 7 day Regal cruise.  I do anytime dining and only 2 nights had the same waiter.  Did have the same assistant waiter multiple times and gave him 20 the last evening.  Never have tipped the head waiter.  I probably would if he provided me with the special service.

There are no guidelines and no right or wrong.  Just a personal choice.

Edited by franktown
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Some of us are not experienced cruisers, and come here to ask for advice, not to start controversy.

 

if if I could have found  links to previous discussions, I would have read them instead of posting.

 

Believe me when I say that I never discuss religion or politics!

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I

4 minutes ago, ams cruiser said:

Some of us are not experienced cruisers, and come here to ask for advice, not to start controversy.

 

if if I could have found  links to previous discussions, I would have read them instead of posting.

 

Believe me when I say that I never discuss religion or politics!

I believed you were sincere when you asked the question and thats why I answered.  It's a topic that has been discussed for years and some people have very strong opinions.  Just do what will make you feel right.

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I usually just make 2 envelopes.  Used to be 4 (waiter & asst waiter before they changed dining times and I went to anytime dining):

□ head waiter $10 per week as he's paid better but I'm on a special diet

□ steward $20 per week

□ room service $5 per delivery

 

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36 minutes ago, ams cruiser said:

My Caribbean Princess cruise ends on Monday, and I would like to give tips to our wonderful steward and waiters, in addition to the automatic gratuities already on our account.

 

i know tipping is a controversial subject and I was reluctant to bring it up, but I wasn’t able to find previous threads to read.  (It’s hard for me to navigate the Cruise Critic site on my iPhone, and my internet connection has been spotty at times.)

 

The last cruise we took was a couple of years ago, but I can’t remember how much extra we gave each person.

 

I know it’s a personal decision, and completely voluntary, but am hoping to get a ballpark idea of what to give our hardworking steward, waiter, and waiter’s assistant.  Also, for those people who choose to tip extra, do you tip the head waiter, if your only contact with him has been him greeting you as you walked into the dining room?

 

We are having the balcony breakfast, and am also wondering about tips for that service.

 

I’m  hoping to prepare envelopes during our at final sea day tomorrow. (I’m also hoping I can get an internet connection tomorrow.)

 

Thank you for any guidance! (If I don’t respond to replies, it will be because I can’t get online!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I would be most happy to greet you (with a smile) and ask how you are doing. I may even inquire about your wife, dog, etc. if you like.

How much will you tip me?

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We tipped our waiter/asst waiter $50 each for 10-day Alaska and the same for our cabin steward. Plus the auto-gratuities. 

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25 minutes ago, franktown said:

I tipped our room steward a extra $40 on my 7 day Regal cruise.  I do anytime dining and only 2 nights had the same waiter.  Did have the same assistant waiter multiple times and gave him 20 the last evening.  Never have tipped the head waiter.  I probably would if he provided me with the special service.

There are no guidelines and no right or wrong.  Just a personal choice.

Thank you! I appreciate your response!

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7 minutes ago, The Mikado said:

We tipped our waiter/asst waiter $50 each for 10-day Alaska and the same for our cabin steward. Plus the auto-gratuities. 

Thank you.  It helps give me some perspective!

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40 minutes ago, franktown said:

I

I believed you were sincere when you asked the question and thats why I answered.  It's a topic that has been discussed for years and some people have very strong opinions.  Just do what will make you feel right.

Thank you, again!  I appreciate your kindness.

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40 minutes ago, Ombud said:

I usually just make 2 envelopes.  Used to be 4 (waiter & asst waiter before they changed dining times and I went to anytime dining):

□ head waiter $10 per week as he's paid better but I'm on a special diet

□ steward $20 per week

□ room service $5 per delivery

 

Thank you!

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I always tip every crew member with whom I interact a minimum of $1,000 per day. Riiiiiiiiiight. You will receive all kinds of replies here. Don't believe them all. As long as you leave the auto gratuities in place the crew will be satisfied. Tip what you like or don't tip at all. The crew won't beat you up.

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This is something that's just really all over the board.  Some people like to tip (or claim to) a lot extra, some people will tip some extra, and some will be content with just the auto gratuities.  (And then of course you get those that want those removed).

 

Personally, I think it's hard to guide anyone what they should tip.  If you leave the auto gratuities on, you've met any real obligation that you have to the crew.  Beyond that, it's an entirely personal decision.

 

Typically, on a 7 day cruise, *if* I tip extra, I tend to do about $20 for the steward, $20 for our main waiter, and $10 for the junior.  Lately we've tended to tip some to the head waiter too because my wife's had some food allergies and we've had a lot more interaction with them - I wouldn't ever consider tipping the head waiter if it wasn't for this.  I think I've once in 22 cruises or so tipped a bartender extra.  And to be honest, on a 14 day cruise, I don't necessarily double those amounts, although I probably should.  

 

And by all means, I don't always tip extra.  I'd say cabin steward is almost always an extra tip for me.  For all that I've seen people complain about having bad stewards, I honestly don't know that I've ever been dissatisfied with my steward.  (I'll probably regret saying that with my luck 🙂 ).  If I'm in anytime dining and jump around a lot to different waiters, I probably wouldn't tip extra there.  I think had one cruise with traditional dining where I didn't tip the wait staff extra.   That pair was never quite where it was worth asking to be moved, but also always just seemed to be a little off in their service.

 

But ultimately, it's your money, tip what you feel comfortable with.  You're not going to offend the crew because you only tipped a little extra, they're not going to complain with *anything* extra they get.

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4 hours ago, Thrak said:

I always tip every crew member with whom I interact a minimum of $1,000 per day. Riiiiiiiiiight. You will receive all kinds of replies here. Don't believe them all. As long as you leave the auto gratuities in place the crew will be satisfied. Tip what you like or don't tip at all. The crew won't beat you up.

 

I like this advice.  It is all relative, and basically it comes down to what you can afford, this is why it is subtly referred to "a personal thing".  We have been on a few cruises with a very fun lady that, in good humor, said that she was "spending all of her (obviously very successful) ex husbands money".  We could never match her tips.  When we were at the bar when she was, obviously, she was given special attention by the bartenders, while they could very professionally make sure that we were neglected.  When we were at the bar and she wasn't, we felt as special as she was.  They won't beat you up, you, no matter what, you are their favorite customer.  They are very good at what they do!!

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7 hours ago, Thrak said:

Don't believe them all.

But, if I don't believe them all, I can't believe yours.

What to do, what to do...

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9 hours ago, ams cruiser said:

My Caribbean Princess cruise ends on Monday, and I would like to give tips to our wonderful steward and waiters, in addition to the automatic gratuities already on our account.

i know tipping is a controversial subject and I was reluctant to bring it up, but I wasn’t able to find previous threads to read.  (It’s hard for me to navigate the Cruise Critic site on my iPhone, and my internet connection has been spotty at times.)

The last cruise we took was a couple of years ago, but I can’t remember how much extra we gave each person.

I know it’s a personal decision, and completely voluntary, but am hoping to get a ballpark idea of what to give our hardworking steward, waiter, and waiter’s assistant.  Also, for those people who choose to tip extra, do you tip the head waiter, if your only contact with him has been him greeting you as you walked into the dining room?

We are having the balcony breakfast, and am also wondering about tips for that service.

I’m  hoping to prepare envelopes during our at final sea day tomorrow. (I’m also hoping I can get an internet connection tomorrow.)

Thank you for any guidance! (If I don’t respond to replies, it will be because I can’t get online!)

What we have done.

Cabin Steward - For a 10 night cruise US$50. We just took this Caribbean Princess 10 day Canada cruise in August.

Its been many years since we had traditional dining. When we did we provided our waiter with an amount similar to the cabin steward. The ass't waiter about 60% of that amount. Don't remember ever tipping the head waiter.

Hope this is helpful.

Edited by skynight

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Room stewards and bar staff get to keep all extra tips. Dining room personnel must turn all tips in to the fleet wide pool.

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1 hour ago, skynight said:

What we have done.

Cabin Steward - For a 10 night cruise US$50. We just took this Caribbean Princess 10 day Canada cruise in August.

Its been many years since we had traditional dining. When we did we provided our waiter with an amount similar to the cabin steward. The ass't waiter about 60% of that amount. Don't remember ever tipping the head waiter.

Hope this is helpful.

Yes, it is very helpful.  Thank you!

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11 minutes ago, weedpindle said:

Room stewards and bar staff get to keep all extra tips. Dining room personnel must turn all tips in to the fleet wide pool.

Interesting!  We did traditional dining for the most part, so we got to know our servers.  

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18 minutes ago, weedpindle said:

Room stewards and bar staff get to keep all extra tips. Dining room personnel must turn all tips in to the fleet wide pool.

source ? ... link ? ...

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If we have exceptional Steward or Wait Team in the DR, I always make sure to fill out a comment card from Passenger Services and I also mention them in my cruise review that Princess sends out.  We don't hang out at the bars nor drink a lot - I think the 18% automatic add-on to every beverage purchase is enough.  For Steward and Waiter(s), I often tip some extra at end of trip.

 

Here is something to think about.  We book almost exclusively Inside cabins.  That means the percentages I will mention are much lower for the cost of Balconies and higher (even though the daily gratuity rate increases with the highest categories).  Typically, we are paying >$100 net-net (bottom line after our TA fare discount and OBC's factored in).  Our next cruise is under $100/day/pp (unusual good deal).  One we are looking at is ~$115.  I would say generally, we have been at or under $115 in recent times. 

 

Auto-Gratuities are $14.50/pp/day.  So that works out to 14.5% at $100 and just over 12.5% at $115.  The Gratuities cover mainly room steward and wait/dining staff.  If I was to consider the percentage based on Princess' published fare with no TA discount and no OBC for FCD's, promo's and CCL stock, then the rate could be under 10%.  I realize these are rough numbers, but it gives some perspective I think.

 

So, the stewards and wait staff work hard and I don't mind topping up the auto-gratuity with some extra when it is deserved.

 

 

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I second the suggestion to fill out comment cards and if you can, give specific examples of how they went above and beyond.  I did that for one assistant waiter who, on top of being friendly and helpful, did go above and beyond when another staff member messed something up (not either person's fault)  On my next cruise on the same ship I found out that the assistant waiter had been promoted to full waiter, I'd like to think my comment card (and probably others) helped in that promotion.

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45 minutes ago, voljeep said:

source ? ... link ? ...

Several crew. more than a few  bar staff, 2 room stewards, and others. These people had no reason to tell anything but the truth. We have sailed with many of them more than once and still keep in contact with them. Believe it or don't, I don't care.

Edited by weedpindle

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So*IF*you withheld auto gratuities,does that mean the company make up the difference to those staff? Where does this money come from?

Now don't judge,this is just a question ! 😎

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