auuto gratuity's ?



Gratuities are added on to your shipboard account at 10. per day per person however you can go to the service counter and have them adjusted. We did. Took the Dream to Alaska on Aug 11th and will never cruise with NCL again NEVER. Had our gradtudities reduced by 150 dollars. Trip was really that bad.
Canceled ports very late leaving Seattle and I coould go on and on. Email me if you need more info.


This whole topic drives me wild!

First, it is important to note that the service providers on all cruise ships are not well paid. This is the cruise lines' fault but cruise lines keep their costs low by not paying their service providers well, but this is true of virtually all industries providing personal service, restaurants, spas, you name it. The corporations rely on the customers to supplement their employees wages with tips.

Second, the $10 a day, per person, on NCL doesn't even begin to cover the number of direct service providers that you encounter each day on a cruise--2-3 cabins stewards, 2-3 waiters per meal, buffet staff, etc. I counted a minimum of 11 people providing direct service each day on my recent cruise to Alaska. That works out to less than $1 per day per server (excluding cocktails and other up-sell items). Then there are the non-direct service providers, dish washers, cooks, laundry people, etc.

On cruise lines that don't have an auto tip policy, traditional tipping is fine (except those non-direct service providers don't get anything), but as noted earlier in this thread, with Free Style you don't have the same servers at each meal.

I view the $10 a day, per person, as tips for the non-direct service providers and tip direct service providers in the traditional amounts, adding more for excellent service. Needless to say, I don't give tips for bad/inadequate service. My feeling is if you receive bad service, complain and don't give additional tips to that server.

Also, reducing the auto tip because of missing ports is just cheap! The crew has no control over canceled ports. If you want reimbursement for missed ports contact the cruise line directly, don't punish the real people who have worked to make your cruise enjoyable by reducing their income.


NOT CHEAP..... I did tip to those as I went and as far as contacting NCL I have tried that as of yet no response and really wonder if they will care enough to ever do so. NCL still SUCKS as far as I am concerned.



You are right, YOU aren't cheap. I'm talking about people who didn't tip and reduced the auto tip because of missed ports. That is CHEAP!

As for NCL's customer relations with regard to missed ports and/or other problems in Alaska this summer, I agree it has been extremely poor. Like anything else, if you have a complaint ,and it goes unresolved, the best way to show your dissatisfaction is to take your business elsewhere. There are many other cruise lines which would love to have your business.


This brings up another issue... Star changed it's itenary 9 days before departure mechanical problems so they say... perhaps the high cost of fuel has us slowed way down and 1400 miles less..
Some of us had wanted to go to Acalpulco and we had friends and realtors planning to meet us in Ixtapa
so deleating auto tip would be an option but that doesn't help the staff who waits on us...


mat62lvt67 Wrote:
> Gratuities are added on to your shipboard account
> at 10. per day per person however you can go to
> the service counter and have them adjusted. We
> did. Took the Dream to Alaska on Aug 11th and will
> never cruise with NCL again NEVER. Had our
> gradtudities reduced by 150 dollars. Trip was
> really that bad.
> Canceled ports very late leaving Seattle and I
> coould go on and on.

Which of the service staff was responsible for the cancelled ports or being late leaving Seattle? You took it out on the wrong people.


Quite the STICKY Subject indeed. =shrug I think we can ALL agree that these folks deserve a good tip if good service is performed and perhaps NOT so GOOD a one if its NOT. The problems I have with the Auto Tipping policy are ONE MAJOR one and that is this!!!! The Cruise Lines are the ones that are scalping the workers in reality and especially with the Auto Tip policy because believe me when I tell U that (Its 1st Hand Info) with Auto Tipping the Cruise Lines take anywhere from 15 - 30% for administering the Auto Tip Policy before those hard working crew members even see it.

So next time U are trying to decide between Auto Tip and Envelope think hard about it. Yeah I know that MOST Lines even with the envelopes pool the tips and take their cut but at least the hard workers have a better chance of getting their fair tip seeing as they know what it REALLY is rather being told what it is via a computer printout. If U think I am wrong with regards to the amounts being scalped by the Cruise Lines then all U have to do is look as some of the worthy donation organizations within our own country and see how much is scalped off the top by the adminstartion. That should be a VERY good indication of the under table shenanigans that go on behind the curtains. That is a TRULY Sad scenario IMO as the Cruise Lines are trying to make US look bad and that is what REALLY makes my blood boil in regards to the current tipping policies. Wonder why we are seeing a dropoff in service ... well I do NOT believe U have to look to far from the Apple tree to find the rotten apple.


Don Clark

If you feel that way aboutr auto service charges, don't take cruises on cruise lines with auto service charges.
Go on th ecruis elines with traditional dining, and tipping via envelopes.

They are still in existance, although their cruises are significantly higher in cost.
It's a Hobson's Choice. Cruise on the more expensive cruise lines with traditional tipping, or cruise on the cheaper ones with auto tipping.


Basicly on NCL the only person you see everyday or performs a service everyday is the room stewart. Perhaps also a butler if you have a suite. If you think your room stewart did an outstanding job and you want to reward them with an extra tip, then hand it to them at the end of the cruise or in advance if you want something out of the ordinary done daily. If you add it onto the ships automatic tips then they will only see a portion of it. If you want to lower the amount because you want to give them a larger amount of cash, that will hurt the others who share in tips. If you get overall lousy service then I would adjust the total at the end of the cruise, and note it on the comment card as to why, and name names.
We are going on our first NCL cruise with freestyle dining. I will make my judgement at the end of the cruise if the over all sevice level has fallen.

Steve & Donalee
Sun 12/29


Auto gratuities are fine as long as you have the ability to change them according to the service you received. We have cruised many times and there was only one time that we completely took all auto gratuities off our account and handed out cash to those people that deserved it. It is also why we decided to try another cruise line. Currently I am not very happy with NCL and we haven't even gone on our cruise yet. I hope that the ships attendants are better than the customer service reps that you conduct business with on land because if we get the same type of service we have had on land then their will be no tips for anyone.

Don Clark

Yes, you can have the auto "service charge "reduced only if you give NCL the time and opportunity to correct the problem first. If you wait to complain about services on day six or seven for services performed on day one, you probably will not be able to change it.
It's not even called an "auto gratuity" anymore. It's a service charge. From

What about Tipping?

A fixed service charge of $10 per person, per day will be added to your onboard account. For children ages 3-12, a $5 per person per day charge will be added to your onboard account; there is no charge for children under the age of three. Our crew is encouraged to work together as a service team and is compensated by a combination of salary and incentive programs that the service charge supports. It is our earnest wish that you enjoy your Freestyle Cruise experience and that our entire crew in all areas of the ship will provide you with the standard of service for which NCL is known. Therefore, if you have any concerns about the service you receive during your cruise, please bring them to the immediate attention of our reception desk staff on board so that we can address any issues in a timely manner before the cruise is over.

Both NCL and NCL America have a structured guest satisfaction program on board designed to handle any concerns raised by our guests relating to the service or on board product quickly and efficiently. In almost all cases we are able to come up with a satisfactory solution to any issues which are raised and make sure our guests can focus on enjoying their cruise vacation. In the unlikely event we cannot satisfactorily resolve the issue through our guest satisfaction program, guests will be able to adjust the service charge according to the level of inconvenience they feel they have experienced. Our clear priority is to have the opportunity of resolving the issue, when it happens, to everyone’s complete satisfaction.

Unlike most other ships in the cruise industry, there is no required or recommended tipping on NCL America or Norwegian Cruise Line ships. Guests should not feel obliged to offer a gratuity for service that is generally rendered to all guests.

However, all of our staff are encouraged to "go the extra mile", and so they are permitted to accept cash gratuities entirely at the discretion of our guests who wish to acknowledge particular staff members for exceptional or outstanding service. In other words, there is genuinely no need to tip but you should feel free to do so if you have a desire to acknowledge particular individuals.

Also, certain staff positions provide service on an individual basis to only some guests. We encourage those guests to acknowledge good service from these staff members with appropriate gratuities. For example, for guests purchasing bar drinks the recommended gratuity is 15 percent. Similarly, for guests using concierge and butler services, we recommend they consider offering a gratuity commensurate with services rendered.


I have just come back from the Southern Caribbean cruise sailing on the Norwegian Spirit. First of all I would like to say a big thank you to all the staff on the ship. They did make my cruise worth while.

Now onto the tipping. I dont begrudge the $10 per person auto gratuity that was all well and good for the service we received. When we had room service we gave extra. I did begrudge was the extra 15% on the bar bill and 15% on a bottle of wine the cheapest bottle being $29.00 when if effect the actual bottle to buy was $8.00 and the $4.50 for a bottle pf evian water now that was a rip off.

I do agree that tipping for a good service is a must. I did ask staff if they actually got anything for the auto gratuity and did did say that they did (How much I dont know). My room maid made out that they never saw any of it but I am not sure.


Very interesting. I wonder how much the percentage that the cruise line takes is? I have heard anywhere between 15 and 50% for administrative fee's! Viet


Thanks to everyone posting here for all the input and opinions. I have just made reservations for our first cruise this October on the NCL Star to celebrate anniversary. We are really looking forward to experiencing a new way of travel.

I know that I will have many questions in the upcoming months, but on this subject of tipping. Do you tip for room service? Also, any extra tips for the room sewards that you will most likely see each and every day of your trip?

(Rookie at 53)

Don Clark

Room service isn't included in the $10 per person per day service charge.
So, yes you should tip for room service.

And yes, you can tip anyone extra if you feel they provided better than normal service.


We returned from NCL Majesty Dec 27 - Jan 7 and had a great time. The staff was amazing !!!
We gladly paid the auto gratuity ( 2 people, 11 nights, ) These guys and gals work very hard 7 days a week. We also tipped a tad extra mid week to our steward and then on the last day gave them both an extra $ 20.00 each (cash) they seemed quite happy, heck they deserved it ( we are kinda messy people, lol)
We also spent a lot of time in the casino so last day I went and gave a "little extra" to our favorite cocktail/beverage servers. We ALWAYS tipped our slot attendants when getting a hand pay. I didn't notice many people doing this at all though.
I personally loved the auto tip policy and was glad that I could give a little extra too in cash directly to the person I wanted to receive it.