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GettotheSun

On a lighter note...why are some so upset with the end of towel animals?

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13 hours ago, Pat.D said:

To me towel animals are a cruise tradition.  I'm a grown adult and love towel animals.  I usually ask the steward to leave behind the animals so I end up with a zoo by the end of the cruise.  They still make animals by default on recent cruises on Carnival, RCCL and Celebrity.

 

I had a chat about animals with my steward on a very recent NCL cruise and he told me the "company line" is to save water but it has a lot more to do with the fact NLC has reduced personnel and each steward has to cover more staterooms so not having to make animals (unless requested) saves them time. 

 

Yes to all that.  If you don't get a big grin on your face and feel much better about life after coming back to your room and finding this...well...you maybe need to get a life. It's part of the joy of cruising for us.  Your mileage may vary.

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I can understand and accept not having a towel animal every night of the cruise, but I would like to be surprised with 1 during my cruise!  BTW, I usually cruise for 10 or more days.

Is that too much to ask? I do agree with others that it is a cruising tradition!

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14 hours ago, Gershep said:

I enjoyed seeing the different towel animal each night. It was like a cruise staple. 

then on your next cruise, just ask for them. 

 

I think the reason they stopped them, without the cabin requesting them, is three fold.  One, it saves the Cabin Stewards time.  Two, it does save water and soap.  Three, not everyone is enthralled with them, so why wasted the Cabin Steward's time and use up soap and water, if someone doesn't care and doesn't request them.

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17 hours ago, GracyandGravy said:

I can't say I'm upset. Disappointed maybe. It's a little something special to look for when you come into your room in the evening that you don't get anywhere but a cruise.

 

You can't deny that almost every group of photos someone takes on a cruise includes at least one towel animal photo. That in itself shows that it's a special memory that people want to remember. I think it's reasonable to be disappointed that that part is no longer a part of your daily experience. 

 

I kind of compare it to "Bags Fly Free" on Southwest Airlines. I can tell you (as part of their employee family) that it is the number one thing someone says when they find out you work for Southwest. "Oh, Bags Fly Free. I love that." If they were ever to change that, there would be an uproar.

 

Doesn’t compare at all!  Not having towel animals doesn’t cost $25 plus as luggage would

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9 minutes ago, NLH Arizona said:

then on your next cruise, just ask for them. 

 

I think the reason they stopped them, without the cabin requesting them, is three fold.  One, it saves the Cabin Stewards time.  Two, it does save water and soap.  Three, not everyone is enthralled with them, so why wasted the Cabin Steward's time and use up soap and water, if someone doesn't care and doesn't request them.

Assuming it takes 2 towels per animal it also reduces the quantity of towels each ship must keep in inventory and the laundry's time in washing them. My guess is that is about 3000 (2 towels x 1500 cabins) towels per day.

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With overworked stewards I'm glad towel animals are going. I can't imagine making up 15-24 staterooms at night and spending that precious time making towel animals for passenger's amusement. Makes me glad room stewards are getting a well deserved tiny break in expected duties.

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2 hours ago, Petoonya said:

Makes me glad room stewards are getting a well deserved tiny break in expected duties.

 

Except that they do not get a tiny break, according to the attendant I chatted with they have to cover more staterooms with the time saved... 😞

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Just now, Pat.D said:

 

Except that they do not get a tiny break, according to the attendant I chatted with they have to cover more staterooms with the time saved... 😞

😞

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16 minutes ago, Pat.D said:

Except that they do not get a tiny break, according to the attendant I chatted with they have to cover more staterooms with the time saved... 😞

Not that you'd have a reason to embellish, but I cruise frequently (at least 4-6) a year and I have never encountered a room steward complaining about their job or workload.  The closest I can relate is that I asked my Haven butler once "how many rooms do you manage" and he answered the question with a smile and didn't elaborate on NCL workload policies, etc.  I'm sorry you had that experience and I'm hoping that steward was just having a bad day and not looking for sympathy.  If the latter, it sadly just perpetuates the (false) perception that NCL employees are indentured servants who are "put upon" by a big, bad greedy corporation.  I've said this before, but NCL employees choose to work at NCL.  They know the salary as well as the workload and the hours.  They are intelligent people and made the decision to take the job because it made sense for them (and their families.)  They are not stupid or ignorant because English is not their first language.  In fact, MANY MANY of them are HIGHLY educated  professionals who can actually make MORE money working as a room steward or bartender on NCL than in their own country in their skilled profession.

 

Sorry for the rant, but anytime it is even slightly insinuated that NCL employees are "taken advantage of" it pushes a button with me (especially in tipping threads.)  Any non-US person working on NCL speaks AT LEAST two languages (their native and English.)  If their English isn't perfect that doesn't mean they are stupid or easily duped by NCL or anyone else for that matter.  If you think that, you seriously need to check yourself for an unconscious bias.

 

I need to stop ranting but you get it.

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I agree they sort of were a cruising tradition.  I remember my first cruise and coming back to the room to see my first towel animal with my sunglasses on it.  It really blew my mind.  They don't make or break my cruise at all.  I think the removal of towel animals is part of a long list of cutbacks over the years under this new regime.  They first started with the fireworks on day one and have went after a long list of cost saving measures that have to do with saving money and definitely not enhancing the customer experience.  IMHO, its just one more thing that went on the chopping block 😟

Edited by david_sobe

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1 hour ago, Pat.D said:

 

Except that they do not get a tiny break, according to the attendant I chatted with they have to cover more staterooms with the time saved... 😞

 

When we first started cruising our cabin steward told us he was responsible for 10 cabins.  Now the cabin stewards are telling us they are responsible for 15 cabins.  The elimination of towel animals and the elimination of delivered and replaced beach towels has reduced the workload and allowed for less cabin stewards.  I suspect the additional fee for full room service has reduced the use of room service and thus the mess in many cabins so more time for more cabins. 

 

Shockingly passengers are receiving less service but there hasn't been a commensurate reduction in the daily service charge.  Weird. 😉   

 

I'm sure corporate is working diligently trying find ways to reduce more of the cabin steward's responsibilities so the stewards can clean even more cabins.  Maybe they'll follow the hotel industry and offer a perk if passengers decline daily cleaning or nightly turn-down service.     

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2 hours ago, pcakes122 said:

Not that you'd have a reason to embellish, but I cruise frequently (at least 4-6) a year and I have never encountered a room steward complaining about their job or workload. 

 

I also cruise 5-6 times a year on all the lines.  The NCL attendant was not complaining, he and I just had a pleasant chat about towel animals and he did not hide the fact that time saving measures were implemented so they could cover more staterooms.   

 

I had a similar conversation with my attendant on a Carnival cruise last February.  You still get animals on Carnival (it's kind of their trademark) but they've reduced room turndown to once daily (you choose morning or afternoon).

 

I always have this kind of chat with my stateroom attendants because I like to find out what I can do to make their job easier... 

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6 minutes ago, Pat.D said:

I always have this kind of chat with my stateroom attendants because I like to find out what I can do to make their job easier... 

Cool - do share!  What have been their suggestions?  I'm very tidy and make my own bed, but what else did they say we can do to help make their jobs easier?

 

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granddaughter really enjoyed them so if you have young kids in the cabin sure, otherwise, well, nice to have a few extra hand towels around i guess.

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I just polled my kids:

 

11 year old: oohhh, I like them.  I can't remember if it was at the resort or a youtube video but I remember two geese (he means swans) kissing!!

 

14 year old:  What?  I don't really care.

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I don’t miss the towel animals so much but I do miss the old cruise experience. I miss the days ( I am talking a few years ago) when on Ncl there was a beach towel waiting for me and replaced by steward, ice bucket that was always filled, coffee maker available in my cabin, room service for free, my steward getting to know us the first day and never having to get up from my deck chair for a drink. My last 4-5 cruises drink service on the pool deck was almost nonexistent. I miss the servers knowing my name and drink preference. Cruising on NCL has lost the way they made their customers feel special while on vacation. I still love NCL but the experience has definitely gone from incredible to okay.

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48 minutes ago, pcakes122 said:

What have been their suggestions?

 

As you may expect, they are usually too polite to just come out and suggest stuff, but those "would it help if I did this?" suggestions got positive responses:  putting all my trash in the bathroom can and recycling in the desk can (they have to separate recyclables), rinsing the shower after use so no soap sticks to walls and glass (huge time saver!), using towels more than once and leaving the ones to change in one neat pile, use the toilet brush when one makes a mess and what helps most is to not have stuff everywhere they have to move and work around when cleaning the room and bathroom.  I know this last one isn't for everyone but I'm a neat-freak lol!  In the evening if the room is ok, I'll often leave a Post-It note to my attendant with something like "Room is fine as is, thanks, good night!" so they can just leave the Daily and move on. 

 

And to keep this "on topic" on NCL I don't ask for towel animals (though I really REALLY like towel animals!) as I know they will make them if you ask and it does take time. :) 

 

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I had this tradition of keeping the towel animals intact and building a zoo by the end of the cruise. 

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They did an analysis at corporate and thought the time allocated to making them could be spent better elsewhere..i..e reduce headcount - time saved on not making a funny rabbitt could be spent cleaning an additional room.

I heard this from an insider- so mock me all you want - I don't care.

 

The elephants took longer too make though at around :45 seconds each  (the trunk takes a long time) * lets say 1500 cabins that comes to 18.75 man hours per cruise, or 975 hours a year. As you can see, there is much cost savings in eliminating these as well as the extra towels/detergent saved as some passengers actually stole these and sold them on ebay or at least took them home.

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Come to think of it they raise the DSC and eliminate the towel animals- typical NCL move

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6 minutes ago, HowardK said:

The elephants took longer too make though at around :45 seconds each  (the trunk takes a long time) 

 

I literally laughed out loud, thank you!  

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1 minute ago, GettotheSun said:

 

I literally laughed out loud, thank you!  

Although I have a cruise booked in 14 weeks I think to get through winter I am going to need to book one between now and then !

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I'm glad the cabin stewards don't have to make them and I'm also glad I don't have to find a place to put them anymore.  I used to line them up on the back of the sofa cause I didn't want the steward to think his cute creations were unappreciated.  But, truthfully I never cared one way or the other about towel animals and I don't think I ever took a picture of one either.  I keep my cabin neat myself so all want is ice in the ice bucket twice a day.

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