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Old 01-03-2002, 03:47 PM   #1
paradefreak
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Tip for Dining Manager

I have found suggestions for tipping everyone except the "Dining Manager." I am curious what this person does and what an appropriate tip is. Help from any previous Disney Cruisers would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 01-03-2002, 03:53 PM   #2
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This individual is in charge of the other servers (your head server and asst. server) as well as numerous other servers for the other passengers.

He/she should come around to your table every evening and greet you and inquire if everything is to your satisfaction. Ours (Karen) also refilled drinks for us and actually served us on Castaway Cay.

We cruised in 2000 and I can't remember the tips but we tipped the recommended amount that was in our Cruise documents, which you should receive anywhere from 1 month to 2 weeks prior to your trip.

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Old 01-03-2002, 05:01 PM   #3
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I think Pam is describing the Head Server, as opposed to the "Server" and "Assistant Server", who are at your table each night and serve food and drinks, respectively. The Head Servers are in charge of several groups of tables. It seems that they are in charge of the tables of two or three teams of Server/Assistant Server.

My understanding is that the Dining Manager is in charge of all of the dining services. They would be the one to make a seating change, or changing your dining time. I read in a guide book (Frommer's, I think), that most cruise lines leave this up to your discretion, and that you're not really required to tip this person if you never even see them. I'm not sure what to tip them if they do something for you. The Dining Manager is not listed on the tipping form that you fill out if you want to charge your tips to your stateroom account. Nor do they supply you with an envelope in which to put their tip. I've never sought to tip them on either of our cruises. Hopefully, you'll never need their help and it won't be an issue.
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Old 01-03-2002, 05:02 PM   #4
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This is the only person I really resented tipping. He NEVER came to the table the ENTIRE 7 Day Cruise, EXCEPT to pick up his tip envelope. If I had it to do over again (and I will do things differently on our next cruise) I would have given that additional amount to our assistant server, I-Made, who was so sweet. We did tip Made over the "suggested" amount, but I would have given him the Dining Manager's share, also.

Don't get me wrong, if he had introduced himself and came by at least ONCE during the whole week I would not begrudge him the tip - since I do understand most of his work is "behind the scenes" in getting the staff to do their job. But, I found it insulting that the only time he appeared was with his hand out, waiting for his envelope.
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Old 01-03-2002, 05:05 PM   #5
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Maybe I'm getting the "Dining Manager" confused with the "Head Server"?? We had a Server and an Asst. Server at our table every day, but then there was another envelope. Maybe it's the "Head Server" I am thinking of? Even so, the same applies - whatever his title, he never said hello until it was time to collect!
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Old 01-03-2002, 05:25 PM   #6
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SingingMom,

I think you are thinking of the Head Server. We've had the same experience as you. On our first cruise, our head server was named Karoly, and he was there every night, helping the servers out and asking about our day, and just generally making sure things were going well. We gave him more than the suggested amount. On our second cruise (12/1), we never saw this person, so we didn't feel obligated to give him or her a tip. We weren't at dinner on Friday night, but made it a point to go to breakfast on Saturday morning so we could give our server and assistant server their tips.

I noted on my comment card that I'd never seen this person, so I didn't feel obligated to give them a tip. I found it funny that when filling out the tip sheet they give you that you're supposed to fill in the names of your server, assistant server, stateroom host and head server, yet I had to leave the name blank for the head server. I left the amount blank as well.
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Old 01-03-2002, 06:02 PM   #7
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from my experience

I have been on three Carnival cruises. For that line it was customary to tip the maitre d' (not sure if i am spelling this right) He is in charge of the total dining area. The head waiters report to him. I gave five bucks one time and ten the other two times. Then next was the head waiter. The dining rooms were broken down in three sections and all the waiters and assistant waiters worked under one head waiter. I also tipped these guys ten bucks. This is how Carnival is set up. I hope it helps give a little understanding...
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Old 01-03-2002, 06:28 PM   #8
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Cool

Although you are probably referring to the head server, I have a suggestion for tipping managers or other personnel who are in positions that do not normally receive tips. We bring phone cards with us (we stock up at Costco), as most people on the ship are far from home and keep in touch with loved ones via phone. Make sure to get the international ones!! We also bring along thank-you cards and "What Would Walt Do?" pins as rewards for anyone in any position who spreads a little extra pixie dust.
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Old 01-05-2002, 03:23 PM   #9
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What would Walt Do? Pins

Hi
Anyone have any idea of where these pins can be obtained and how they are used? From what I have been reading you give them to someone who has provided exceptional service, however what do they do with them once they get them?
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Old 01-05-2002, 05:23 PM   #10
inkkognito
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Cool

You can purchase the pins from www.whatwouldwaltdo.com
They recently released new ones for the 100 year celebration. You present the pin to the cast or crew member, and when you return home, you submit a description of their service to the WWWD site. They will post it so that the CM can go there later and read it. In addition to handing out the pins, be sure to include an exceptional crew member's name on your questionnaire so they will get recognition from their supervisor. It really does make a difference!!
Also, there was interest in the WWWD pins from pin traders...I ended up trading two or three! Good thing I bought a big supply, as with 9 cruises in 2002 I know I will be giving them all away. Two are already pegged for crew members on our Jan. 17 cruise.
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Old 01-05-2002, 05:57 PM   #11
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Pins

Hi
Thank you for the explanation! I guess that explains it, yikes 9 cruises for 2002 lucky you!
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May 1977 BlueNose, Nova Scotia
May 1999 Flying Cloud Windjammer, BVI
May 2000 Carnival Destiny, Canada
August 2001 Ocean Princess, Alaska
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Old 01-05-2002, 07:01 PM   #12
Eric, Julie and Hailey

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internet gift cards

I learned during this last trip that many crew members do not communicate with home by phone. Rather, they opt for the internet because of time differences and price. Their place of choice is Soapy's in St. Thomas (Soapy's is also at some Western Caribbean locations too).

For a real special treat, chat with that special CM about how they communicate with home. If they tell you they use the internet-- stop by Soapy's and pick up a card for them.
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Old 01-05-2002, 10:57 PM   #13
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Great idea, Eric, Julie and Hailey! Thanks for the info!
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Old 01-06-2002, 02:37 PM   #14
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What a great head server does

On our recent Magic cruise, our head server was Christophe - and he earned the suggested tip and then some.

The first night he was at our table to introduce himself, meet us, and tell us about the cruise. He explained all the dining options on board, and came around again at the end of the meal to tell us about the next day - dining options, special lunch buffets, etc. During the meal when he came around to see how things were, he noted my mother was not eating her salad. She did not like the dressing. He asked what she liked - she told him a recipe, and he was off to have it made!!

We saw him several times each evening. He always told us the special events for the next day, and asked where we had eaten during the day.

We had three actual birthdays while on board and one pretend birthday that he honored (there were 19 of us). Each time he brought a cake and waiters to sing and presented the birthday person with a special pin. He had a great way of pretending to trip just before arriving with the cake - but it always arrived in one piece. He was always having fun which made it fun for us.

The evening we ordered bananas foster (bananas flambe) he did the special table side preparation, with one person from the group chosen to assist and light the flame.

The last evening I mentioned that we had just rebooked for the next Dec. 14 cruise. The next morning as we left the dining room the last time (for that cruise) he told me he would see us next December 14. What a memory!

I can't imagine a cruise without a head server like Christope. He added so much to our enjoyment.

Suzanne

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Old 01-06-2002, 02:42 PM   #15
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Suzanne,
It sounds like you really had a wonderful head server! I hope we are as lucky next time. It is quite amazing how one person could be so different than another in the same position! We were virtually INVISIBLE to our head server, (or he to us!) Now that I know what "could be", I will be a little more vocal on our next cruise if things aren't up to snuff!
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