Removing gratuities

I know this can be done as its not legal to enforce you to pay gratuity. However, has anyone ever done this? I don't like giving money and not knowing where its going. I like to pay my own tips. Anyone else like this?

80 Answers

Thanks so much for everyone's answers.

Its really not that us Europeans are stingy with our money, just that our staff are paid differently. None of our serving staff etc rely on tips (although they are a nice bonus). We tend to only tip those that we come into contact with who give us v.good service. And, we would never tip chambermaids (room stewards) in hotels. This is just very different for us.

Just go to the concierge desk when on board,and,preferably the same day to request that gratuity’s are removed from your account. This should be no problem as we have done it several times. Mind you I believe NCL now call gratuity’s, room service charge so you cannot remove them. Guess you could say you will make your own bed!!!!!!!.



Can I ask what your reason was for removing as I feel like some sort of monster after some of these comments

You are not a monster, it is a cultural thing. In the USA we pay for everything, you want the gas station to put gas in for you, you pay extra, you want health insurance, you pay for it and then you have a co-pay if you dare use it. We even tip the barber after a hair cut here.

Thank you for explaining your views on the gratuities. It makes it much easier to respond in a rational manner.

My Mom and daughter were servers at one point, and I really think my Mom would slap the happy off me if I ever mentioned removing tips from anyone for any reason Big Smile

On a recent cruise, we were chatting with a newbie cruiser and he asked us if we realized we could remove gratuities. There was a small group of cruisers who were advising others that it was a great way to save money. That is not an issue of culture or poor service--that is an issue of CHEAP and borderline dishonesty IMO.

On our first cruise, our room steward scolded our daughter, who was in her mid twenties but looked to be around 14 for something my DH did. It was an inadvertent mistake by newbie cruiser and could have been a safety issue. He was absolutely right for letting us know--our issue was that he wouldn't confront my DH or I--he waited till he saw DD going back to room alone and scolded her. We took it in stride and moved on. We didn't remove his gratuities or report him, but we did take the extra money we had planned to give him and instead gave it to an awesome young server on the Lido :)

On NCL they made a charge about a year ago that removal of the gratuity charges may only be done in writing to the NCL office AFTER the cruise. They can no longer be removed while on the cruise.

I have a co-worker that has cruised several times and would plan to do it as inexpensive as possible. This meant booking an inside cabin for a family of 4 and as soon as they got on ship they would remove the charges for all 4. They did not tip, they did not purchase excursions and they did not purchase anything on the ship. Ok. I get it. They want an inexpensive vacation. But this is not the way it should be done. This is not cricket.

Americans can be a bit rabid over the suggestion of removing tips on a cruise. The staff get paid so little and the price of the cruise reflects that.

I would suggest that if you want to tip individually, have tips removed at guest services but make sure those you plan on tipping know you plan on doing so so they don’t think you’re going to cheat them. And make a list of all the staff who would have been covered by automatic gratuities. There is usually a break down of suggested tips for each position somewhere online. As long as you do tip appropriately I’m sure they won’t care if it’s auto or not.

I tip heavily and sometimes I get a complementary soft drink out of it. But even if I didn't I'd still tip heavily. I don't mind the gratuities charge. I would never go to have them reversed. I do wish they cruise lines would pay a lot of those workers more. They really bust their butts for make the cruise go smoothly.

I should have said in my comments that even though we remove the gratuity’s from our account Upon boarding, we always tip those who service our room, waiters, and etc at the end of a cruise, even if there are gratuity’s included in the fare. We don’t tip drink staff as there is already a 15/20% service charge added.

I agree that tipping is a pain and can cost a fair bit on a longer cruise but if the money that is “PAID” to the staff from gratuity’s collected was included in the fare then no one misses out. One should also be aware that the money staff are paid by the cruise line is,in a lot of cases a great deal more that they would ever get at home, if they could find a job that is.

Everyone needs to remember if you remove the tips at the beginning of the cruise. The crew will find out and point you out and barely serve or pay attention to you....

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