It can already be difficult to know when to tip while traveling, and tipping on a cruise often has its own rules, which can be confusing for first-time cruisers. Here are a few tips for what to expect about tipping on your cruise.
Gratuities are generally automatic on cruises. Each day of your cruise, a gratuity per person will be charged to your stateroom account. (As an example, Royal Caribbean’s daily gratuity per guest is $12.95.) This gratuity will be distributed amongst your servers and stateroom attendants. Different stateroom categories, such as suites, may have different automatic gratuity amounts if additional services are provided for that category.
This article does explain how gratuities works on a cruise ship. I for one find having the gratuities automatically added to my stateroom account to make it much easier. If you know how much is being added and you know the length of your cruise, you know how much to budget.
I felt that there are a few other pointers that can be added.
- it is customary on embarkation and debarkation to tip the baggage handler at the port. Some say a dollar a bag is sufficient but I feel this is low. I feel that 2-3 dollars a bag is more reasonable.
- I usually bring extra money while on a tour at a port of call to tip the tour guide. Recently when on a tour of a local zoo on Aruba, the young man that acted as our tour guide provided such a extraordinary tour, it would have been very hard to leave without showing our gratitude with a tip.
- Although most cruise lines now do automatic gratuities, it does not mean that you cannot give an extra tip. Many a time have we had a server, stateroom attendant or other ship personnel that have over and above and made our cruise that more enjoyable.
What other cases where you would tip over and above the automatic gratuity would you include? The casino? The Spa?