Giving tips on cruises

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We haven’t talked much about cruises lately, so let’s talk about how you should tips on cruises today.

When you go to a sit down restaurant, you are expected to tip if the person does even a halfway decent job. It is similarly expected when you go to a nicer hotel, tip the bellboy when he helps carry your bags. On cruises, it used to be that you would put money in envelopes for the people who cleaned your rooms or waited on you for your meals. Now it is pretty common for cruiselines to go on and give you an upcharge each day for your tips. We are going to talk more about the “forced tip charge” a little later. Luxury lines are actually adding the gratuities into your actual fare. If you are displeased with the service, you are going to be able to get your gratuity money back, but the article I’m reading says that that rarely happens. They say that the more common thing is that you want to pay your servers even more because they do so well.

Okay, let’s face it, it is rather nice to have everything paid for by the time you step on the ship. That is why a lot of people are going for the more all inclusive cruises. People don’t like to be nickeled and dimed every time they turn around. At the same time, should tips be mandatory? Shouldn’t you reward only the most exceptional service?

This is a debate that is going around in the travel industry. I would love to know your thoughts on this topic.

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