Main Entry: graÃ‚Â·tuÃ‚Â·ity
Pronunciation: gr&-'tÃƒÂ¼-&-tE, -'tyÃƒÂ¼-
Inflected Form(s): plural -ities
: something given voluntarily or beyond obligation usually for some service; especially : TIP
If it was just to bar bills, I think I would not have much of a problem. I think too often those guys do get skipped. What about wine? I certainly tip the wine steward separately...he was the best service person on our last cruise (on the Zuiderdam 10/18-10/25!!!).
But, what about the Bloody Mary or Sail Away specials on board. They prepare hundreds of these in advance, annouce a special is available between certain times and hand you a drink as you pass by and pay...not really personal service. Did you tip those guys? Frankly, I did not. Do they deserve a tip for that? Am I a scofflaw??? Oh dear...
yeah, I thought my idea was good...but how does that service person know you are going to do that unless you tell every staffer on day 1, "hey, I will tip you great at the end if you treat me right." How elegant and gracious is that? Ugh. So the service people have no way to know who will do it the "right" way...IMO. So the result is still an unfortunate general decline in sincere service....I hope not.
I did read one avid cruiser once say they tip modestly at the BEGINNING of the cruise to everyone they felt would be their service folks...and tipped again more if deserved. They felt tipping at the beginning "bought" (insured) excellent service. Still not too sincere....
My partner and I have chosen HAL as our favorite among many reasons, is the "no tipping required", I feel that the speech that they have been giving in the recent years at the debarkation speech, has been, in a way, (and have been thinking this for a while) tuning US up for this change. Think about it. How many people that cruise on HAL do not know how to tip, or how much? One here one there. It is A Corporate thing...."carnival" acchhoo. They make the (cruise staff) give this crazy speech for a year or five for folks that are used to HAL to think "oh, that is a problem". I really do not think so. We all know that we have met people that are on either their first cruise, or first cruise with HAL, and I KNOW that we have told them many ideas or ways of showing our appreiciation for a wonderful trip, be it on daily, per service, or end of cruise.
If they feel that they want to "UPGRADE" this policy, I THINK, they should have tipping guide available (available at pursers) at a rate that other cruise lines give, per cabin, if they so wish to understand the "confusing" no tipping required policy. In addition, they should have an option for folks to add it to thier "FOLIO" if they wish to, either, visit the desk, use the phone, or even do what a friend of mine said they have done on the new "Carnival" ships (so sad that HAL gets a rip of "Carnival") where it is like a hotel room where you can "interactively, play with your folio", Hal would be wise if they could to be able to name the people to which these tips go to. I am SOOOO against pooling, I feel it is a way for these corporations to skimm thier payroll.
As far as bar tips "service charge", I have no problem with this, as long as they go to exactally the server named on the bill. I doubt it, but if so no prob. I would just adjust my cash tip to equal out $1 per drink (those bar tenders in the crows make hundreds off us per cruise HEHEHEHE).
I think that Carnival will see that the HAL following will not except this way of cruising. I am interested to hear from the first people of ships with this new policy. I really do not think that the folks that work on the ships now, and know "US" will give us less than great service. It does worry me for the new comers.
PS---If it goes bad, we are moving up to Raddison, dont want to, but........................
FYI to everyone...
I emailed HAL MAriner Society yesterday and got the standard auto response in moments, but actually did receive a personal response within a couple of hours...
The response time was impressive...the answer was not... Here is what I sent and received.
"I am sure you are already getting (and have anticipated the emails)
regarding the new tipping policy...which again is unclear.
I am a little saddened and confused. Whatever happened to the no tipping required as a means to insure gracious, professional and SINCERE service as opposed to service just for tips?
Maybe coming emails will clarify and somehow explain how service personnel
who do give excellent service will continue to do so while the new policy
might breed a goodly amount of mediocrity."
Received response from HAL:
"Thank you for your email regarding the "Signature of Excellence". We appreciate receiving all comments from the Mariner members regarding the new changes, and I am sorry that the new policy is confusing. As stated in the email regarding the Signature of Excellence, additional information will be forthcoming.
We look forward to welcoming you on board again in the near future. Please be sure to check out our website, www.hollandamerica.com, for the most up to date information about itineraries and rates."
Still confused...maybe they are waiting to see the fallout of responses before they clarify.
I agree with many of the posts...bar bill addition seems acceptable, and if the rest is simply allowing us to add SPECIFIC tips for SPECIFIC people to the folio, that would be a definite improvement and convenience.