Wilba - Answered a Question by Duncan (09 Apr 08 18:41)

Never Never let RCI or any American cruise line do the conversion, leave it to your credit card company. As for Grats, it's the most emotive subject on any cruise site so do what you feel right for you & don't be led.

- Was this comment useful or 0 of 0 found this useful
Whitehead - replied to Wilba (13 Aug 08 11:38)

All these answers are confusing me, sorry, but I really don't understand this tipping business. I've just booked to go on Ind of the seas in Oct 09. I booked with Thomsons, who advised me to pre pay our gratuities/tips, being the 1st time we're cruising, I took their advice. From reading everyones' answers above, I think I may have made a mistake. Could you please advise, in simple terms! Thank you.

- Was this comment useful or 0 of 0 found this useful
Comment | Report
Wilba - replied to Whitehead (14 Aug 08 07:22)

Here Goes! All cruise lines have differences in the way we tip the staff. The options with RCI are, prepay, agree to them being added to your on board account (i.e. pay at end of cruise on your credit card) or do nothing & pay tips as you feel, in cash ($US) to those you feel most deserve. You have ‘elected’ to pay up front, $10.50 a day per person, which is the same price as agreeing to having them added to your on board account. If your having second thoughts, you could always get your T A to change your ‘booking’ as it’s never too late until final payment. 15% will be added to your drinks bill regardless of how you pay. One final piece of advice, when booking a cruise, go to a Cruise Specialist, like the Freephone number on this site, or any of the many Cruise Agents on the internet, people who know the cruise business. If you’ve any further questions, just click on the comment button & fire away.

- Was this comment useful or 0 of 0 found this useful
Whitehead - replied to Wilba (15 Aug 08 08:58)

Thanks for that Wilba, it's become clearer, sorry to ask again, but.. we've obviously chosen the prepay option (so far) as you say, however, this pre pay option will be paid within the balance of my holiday so how can that be added to my on board account? That would mean I'm paying them twice?

- Was this comment useful or 0 of 0 found this useful
Comment | Report
Wilba - replied to Whitehead (16 Aug 08 07:04)

You have opted to 'prepay', so that will be paid by you in your final balance to Thomsons. Nothing further will be added to your on board account. In other words your fully paid up as far as the gratuities/tips are concerned. When you purchase drinks, 15% will be added to the drink price. So, in a nutshell, your fully paid up. If when on board you purchased no drinks or spent nothing at all, your on board account would be 'zero' at end of cruise.

- Was this comment useful or 0 of 0 found this useful
Comment | Report
Whitehead - replied to Wilba (18 Aug 08 09:20)

Ok you've made it clear now, thanks a lot for that. It's really confusing for 1st timers!!....

- Was this comment useful or 0 of 0 found this useful
Comment | Report
Buckley - Answered a Question by Duncan (10 Apr 08 10:48)

With RCI you need to opt out of paying your tips at the pursers desk early on otherwise they will get added on to your sea pass account then charged to your credit card,we find it easier to use the voucher scheme they give you the vouchers which you pass on to the different staff.The staff do get the full amount and you can add some extra cash if you wish,you could have it paid by on your card in dollars but credit cards charge you any way the exchange rate can alter daily,RCI brochure will tell you roughly what each person should get as a tip.

- Was this comment useful or 0 of 0 found this useful
Comment | Report
Duncan - Answered a Question by Duncan (10 Apr 08 16:09)

Thanks for your answers. Though still not clear about pre-paying tips. If I have the tips added to my travel agent's booking form now, the charge will be £53.91 each for 11 days. So costing me in total £215.64 for 2 adults and 2 teenagers. Is this exactly the same as what RCI would add to my sea pass account or is it cheaper because it is pre-paid. Also, if I settle my bill with dolllars cash, will I still have to register a credit card. Many thanks, this is a first cruise and I am on a tight budget!

- Was this comment useful or 0 of 0 found this useful
Comment | Report
Bradbury - Answered a Question by Duncan (10 Apr 08 16:41)

Does not make any difference whether you prepay or have them added to your on board account - they will charge the same amount. However we never prepay and always ask for them to be removed from the on board account. WE THEN DECIDE WHOM and how much. It really is up to you. I am sorry I know this upsets some people but if your children are sharing your cabin although yes there are four beds to make up - the room doesnt take that much longer to clean & tidy up. Also my children do not always eat with us in the Dinning Room - therefore I do not tip the full amount for my children. Also you will find they automatically add a tip for the Maitre De - fine if he does you a good service, but most of the time you never even see him/her until the last night. Like Wilba said, its an emotive subject. Just do what feels right for you. Even if you dont want to tip them cash in hand you can have the charge to your on board account adjusted according to what you want to tip.

- Was this comment useful or 0 of 0 found this useful
Comment | Report
cope - Answered a Question by Duncan (10 Apr 08 20:40)

We just told our TA we did not want gratuities added to our account and put dollars in the envelopes at the end of the cruise. These are delivered to your room on the last night. That way you can give what you think the individuals deserve. For example we had an envelope for the Head Waiter and we never saw him so if we had pre-paid he would have got a tip for basically doing nothing, i would rather give more to who i think deserves it. We were on Legend of the Seas to the Carribean.

- Was this comment useful or 0 of 0 found this useful
Comment | Report
Peter Wellman's blog

Are drinks packages worth it ?

By Peter Wellman

It’s a question I get asked almost daily, are drinks packages worth it and of course there isn’t an easy answer unless you want to go through your daily intake on holiday with me! Some people literally work out how many drinks they would have to have to get their money’s worth which is fine but there are other things to consider.First of all do you really want to be thinking about it every day ? How many have i had today, am I getting my moneys worth ? In my opinion no, I li...

Read More

Nov 17 2017 10:39:51:000AM


The New Azamara Pursuit

By Robin Clarke

Robin Clarke's blog

So we recently heard the news last month that P & O will selling their ship “Adonia” to Azamara club cruises who currently have 2 ships in their fleet, the Azamara Journey and the Azamara Quest. The new ship joining the fleet will is the Azamara Pursuit and will be Christened in Southampton after UK agents helped double the sales from the UK market.The new Azamara Pursuit is now on sale and its maiden voyage will set sail from Barcelona on the 3rd of August for 10 nights saili...

Read More

Nov 17 2017 12:46:18:000PM

Independance of the Seas mini cruise!

By Jodie Baldwin

Jodie Baldwin's blog

The last time I stepped aboard Independance of the Seas was in 2008 when she was brand new and I was invited to Southampton for a guided tour on board. She was the first cruise ship I’d been on and I remember feeling absolutely blown away at how beautiful she was!So here I am 9 years later and looking forward to a 3 night mini cruise to Bruges and Le Havre on her with my my partner Mike and my 3 children! WE had booked a family ocean view room which we knew was right at the front of the...

Read More

Nov 15 2017 02:51:38:000PM