Tipping servers and room attendant

DisneYE

DIS Veteran
Joined
Oct 7, 2013
On my last TA cruise I saw a lot of people lined up to have tips removed. Some said they “preferred to pay cash only” I think. I spoke with the person at the desk who said many do ask to have them removed and really don’t tip at all after that. She also added that in some cases it is cultural for those who come from countries where tipping is not the norm. The people I saw were definitely from good old North America I think. I wish Disney would just charge the extra up front instead of calling it a tip if this goes to pay a large portion of people’s salaries. Calling them tips leave it open to interpretation.
Yes. totally agree.
One of my biggest pet peeves from fellow cruisers - those who weasel out of paying tips by claiming they want to pay cash.
And they exist as I've heard directly from one room host and one server that they've encountered some people that actually fight to have tips removed from their accounts and end up not paying any at all.

It drives me so mad that people like this exist in the world but then I think that there are worse things to be mad about..

But DCL is partly to blame for this - even more so than the cheapskates.
As you say, just charge more and put the extra $ towards increasing the employees' salary. I'll be more than happy to pay the $300-500 or whatever it is, knowing it'll go to increase their wages. And then if I really like their service I'll add more in cash or thru my account.

I don't know what upsets me more: the cruise-and-dash'ers or DCL itself for not including the tips on the original price of the cruise.
 

TestingH2O

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jun 10, 2014
There is a subset of non-tippers who firmly believe that they are helping by not tipping. I have encountered these people who insist that not tipping will make the cruise lines pay better wages. If a critical mass of travelers take the same action, maybe. However, just one person choosing not to tip isn't going to hurt anyone but the people who took care of you during your stay.

My opinion is that yes, the salary for service should be included in the cruise fare, but until it is, I am choosing to vacation in this way and it is my responsibility to play by the rules that are in place. As for extra, it really varies from cruise to cruise.
 

Disney1fan2002

<font color=red>Like OMG the TF is SOO psyched to
Joined
Jun 21, 2002
I agree that Disney should just increase the price of the cruise by the standard tip amount, a 7 night cruise is $84/pp. Then, hand out the envelopes at the end for optional tips (no guideline). All of the tipped cast members would get their regular tips, and many more people would give them extra, because they would think that the tip was at their discretion.

There has to be a reason why the industry does not do this. The financial aspects of a huge cruise line and how, what and where they put the monies is way above my pay grade.
 
  • lilsonicfan

    <font color=teal>The TF knows Canada VERY well!!<b
    Joined
    Jan 20, 2003
    My opinion is that yes, the salary for service should be included in the cruise fare, but until it is, I am choosing to vacation in this way and it is my responsibility to play by the rules that are in place. As for extra, it really varies from cruise to cruise.
    Same here, though it makes me feel conflicted, because I don't like the practice really, but by choosing to cruise, I'm sort of buying in on this flawed (imo) system.

    There has to be a reason why the industry does not do this. The financial aspects of a huge cruise line and how, what and where they put the monies is way above my pay grade.
    I mean, I wonder whether it's just "this is how it's always been", to some degree, and also probably something involving labour and taxation laws. Foreign-flagged ships might contribute to this too, I don't know. I wish it wasn't the case. Some cruise lines are moving toward not calling it gratuities and calling it just a daily service charge, akin to a hotel 'resort fee', I guess, but I don't know if it's really solved the problem of people wanting to remove these.
     

    PrincessShmoo

    DIS veteran
    Joined
    Feb 12, 2009
    There has to be a reason why the industry does not do this.
    One reason is most crew members onboard cruise ships are not living in the US. And the pay they get (just their salary, not including tips) is often more than they can make "back home". Doing a good enough job so that someone give you additional money (tips/gratuities) is a bonus.

    Some cruise lines are moving toward not calling it gratuities and calling it just a daily service charge, akin to a hotel 'resort fee', I guess, but I don't know if it's really solved the problem of people wanting to remove these.
    No, it hasn't. There are cruise lines that now charge a Hotel Service Charge, and people still try to remove it. Citing "I want to pay cash". Problem with that is most of those cruise lines take that HSC and pool it sharing it with more than just the crew that serves you directly (dining room, room host). It's also shared by the "behind the scenes" crew (laundry services, for example). You can give a cash tip directly to any of those positions, but they have to turn them in. If it's determined that you have removed the HSC, the cash you give them just gets added to the pool, and you, therefore have shorted those who you want to reward. If you haven't removed the HSC, the cash is returned to the person you gave it to.
     

    Dug720

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 16, 2012
    Some cruise lines are moving toward not calling it gratuities and calling it just a daily service charge, akin to a hotel 'resort fee', I guess, but I don't know if it's really solved the problem of people wanting to remove these.
    Not per some boards on cruise critic. Some cheapskates will still fight to remove them.
     

    lilsonicfan

    <font color=teal>The TF knows Canada VERY well!!<b
    Joined
    Jan 20, 2003
    Not per some boards on cruise critic. Some cheapskates will still fight to remove them.
    No doubt. Some years ago, DH's uncle once fought tooth and nail after getting off a cruise because the cruise missed Cozumel (weather, I assume) and he wanted a full refund. (Yes - he's THAT person). Maybe the squeaky wheel really does get the grease, because the cruise line ended up refunding him half his fare. Sigh.
     
  • ninecrayons

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 24, 2009
    I'd actually like to know - is there in fact a preferred way for the CMs to receive tips? I've heard varying reports on if cash if preferred or not. We tip room service in cash, but for other tips we increase the amount at guest services.
     

    Dug720

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 16, 2012
    No doubt. Some years ago, DH's uncle once fought tooth and nail after getting off a cruise because the cruise missed Cozumel (weather, I assume) and he wanted a full refund. (Yes - he's THAT person). Maybe the squeaky wheel really does get the grease, because the cruise line ended up refunding him half his fare. Sigh.
    Ugh. So annoying. The office admin assistant at the site of my school I have worked at the past 10 years cruises on another line (not going to say which as I will be accused of “slamming” it) and brags about removing her tips and not tipping. I had to walk out of the office any time cruising came up so I didn’t get myself in trouble saying something.
     

    KashasMom

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 28, 2012
    Only when all guests stop paying standard and additional tips, the industry will have to change.
    Probably now the servers are at the break-even point or make a little bit of money.
    Curious what break even or make a little bit of money means. As compared to what? How many passengers does a server or asst server have? Do they each get the entire amount charged passengers or do they share with kitchen staff?
     

    PrincessShmoo

    DIS veteran
    Joined
    Feb 12, 2009
    I'd actually like to know - is there in fact a preferred way for the CMs to receive tips? I've heard varying reports on if cash if preferred or not. We tip room service in cash, but for other tips we increase the amount at guest services.
    Typically, if you just leave the auto gratuities on your onboard account, all gratuities for that CM are just credited to their onboard account, from what I understand. They could also elect to have a check cut with the full total on it. Makes it easier to send back home that way.
     
  • ninecrayons

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 24, 2009
    Typically, if you just leave the auto gratuities on your onboard account, all gratuities for that CM are just credited to their onboard account, from what I understand. They could also elect to have a check cut with the full total on it. Makes it easier to send back home that way.
    That's what I've also heard. But have also heard cash can be helpful if someone is doing a store run while they're in Port. I don't think there's a perfect answer but last cruise someone at our table thought we were crazy for increasing at guest services and not giving cash. Said person also said they'll sometimes tip in bottles of wine, which I didn't know was a thing people did.
     

    KashasMom

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 28, 2012
    One reason is most crew members onboard cruise ships are not living in the US. And the pay they get (just their salary, not including tips) is often more than they can make "back home". Doing a good enough job so that someone give you additional money (tips/gratuities) is a bonus.
    And Disney cruisers tend to give a lot more on top of the gratuities added by DCL.
     

    PrincessShmoo

    DIS veteran
    Joined
    Feb 12, 2009
    Curious what break even or make a little bit of money means. As compared to what? How many passengers does a server or asst server have? Do they each get the entire amount charged passengers or do they share with kitchen staff?
    On DCL, the amount designated to your servers goes directly, and only, to each individual. That's $4.50 per guest per night to your dining room server, $3.50 to your assistant server, and $1.00 to your head server. They do not share with the kitchen staff.

    Each service team (server/assistant server) typically handles a 4 top, a 6 top, and an 8 top at each dinner seating. This can vary a little, depending on whether larger groups want table together.

    A head server is in charge of 1/3 of the dining room. I don't know the specific number of guests that will be under that umbrella.
     

    Disney1fan2002

    <font color=red>Like OMG the TF is SOO psyched to
    Joined
    Jun 21, 2002
    What if Disney didn't allow for the automatic tip charge to be removed? Would they get in trouble somehow?
     

    PrincessShmoo

    DIS veteran
    Joined
    Feb 12, 2009
    What if Disney didn't allow for the automatic tip charge to be removed? Would they get in trouble somehow?
    I'm not sure I understand the question. In trouble with who?

    Unlike other cruise lines, DCL gratuities are still optional. You can remove them or not as you wish.

    Other cruise lines have made it a standard Hotel Service Charge and, while there are a few that will allow you to remove them, you have to give a good reason, and those people who you interact with (servers, room steward) are called in to give an accounting of why you want to remove the charge.

    And, at least one cruise line, you can't remove the charge until you've returned home and write to them to remove with with the reasons.
     

    Disney1fan2002

    <font color=red>Like OMG the TF is SOO psyched to
    Joined
    Jun 21, 2002
    I'm not sure I understand the question. In trouble with who?
    I guess I'm thinking that a company as large as DCL needs to watch what monies come in and where it goes for tax purposes. Gratuities are not monies that Disney would profit on, thus they would not have to pay tax money on it.

    I would hope that if enough people were "stiffing" the cast members, DCL would put an end to it and start requiring tips to be automatically charged, without the option of removing it.
     

    TinkerDust10

    Making Magic
    Joined
    May 17, 2013
    We paid default tip by credit card and added more tip by cash. I made sure to hand it to our room attendant on our last day as he was extremely helpful and went above and beyond for my family.
     

    PrincessShmoo

    DIS veteran
    Joined
    Feb 12, 2009
    I would hope that if enough people were "stiffing" the cast members, DCL would put an end to it and start requiring tips to be automatically charged, without the option of removing it.
    I hope not. I prefer to give the tips as I see fit.

    Please don't read that to say that I remove the auto grats, as I certainly do not. In fact, we typically tip additionally to the auto grats.
     

    Connect

    Disney News and Updates

    Daily Updates and News


    Book your Disney Cruise through Dreams Unlimited Travel and receive a Shipboard Credit and an Exclusive Gift Basket!



    CASTAWAY CAY PHOTOS

    DECK PLANS


    STATEROOMS


    ITINERARIES




    Top