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Tipping - Pooling? - Oosterdam

Discussion in 'Holland America Line' started by lovelle, Apr 26, 2004.

  1. lovelle

    lovelle Guest

    I read on one message board that either HAL or just the Oosterdam, that all cash tips given to individuals must be turned in to a general tipping pool for all staff - or maybe just that particular type of staff, like all waiters, or all cabin attendants.

    Someone suggested that in lieu of cash, phone cards be given.

    Don't know if this person really knew for sure that these cards were not required to be put into a general tipping pool. And, as is so often true, don't know where anyone posting to that thread got *their* information! (Also, rules are made to be changed.)

    Does anyone know about the tips being pooled? Either HAL in general or Vista ships in particular?

  2. Frank Black

    Frank Black Guest

    It will not matter soon. HAL will soon start charging $10 a day for tips.
  3. lovelle

    lovelle Guest

    They started the $10/day on May 1, 2004. I know that some people prefer that, but I don't like it.

    I'm a good tipper - and want to do my own. It's not "tipping" in my mind when the ship adds it on. So I'll be telling them asap when I board to take it off my account, so I can do my own. I know that some use that as a way not to tip at all, but that's *not* me.

    Anyone else know about the "pooling" of tips?

  4. sail7seas

    sail7seas Guest

    It is my understanding that IF a pax removes the automatically billed $10 per day pp from their shipboard account, then anything that you may tip to dining/cabin stewards will have to be put into a pool which is shared by all of them.

    HOWEVER, if you leave the automatic tips on your account and then choose to tip an additional sum privately, by envelope, the way we do now to anyone.....that person is then free to keep it all for him/herself.

    I also believe the stewards will know early on if a pax removed the tips....this, presumably in an attempt to ascertain if the service was substandard and give the steward the opportunity to do a better job with that passenger (all passengers ).
  5. BelleV

    BelleV Guest

    The *story* as I heard it was that if you left the $10 per day on your shipboard account and then personally (cash) tipped anyone, such cash would not be pooled.

    Personally we've always tipped (on the 2nd last night) our cabin steward, our dining room steward and his helper and Lounge waiters when we used the same table regularly - for casual lounge visits we carried small bills and tipped as we went. The Lido fellows whom we saw regularly were also tippedÉÉand donÕt forget the Yum Yum man!

    The Wine Waiter and Maitre 'd were tipped infrequently, (because we rarely use those services).

    If you really think about it, a $10 per day assessment is 'peanuts' when it's split between, let's say 3 people. Remember 15% is now being added to all drinks.

    I can't for a moment believe that crew/waitstaff are paid only a pittance and have to rely on tips. If they are, IÕd like someone to explain the expensive cameras, watches radios etc. you see being brought back on board after a few hours ashoreÉÉÉÉ.and also the number of stewards/waitstaff who have been on board for years and years.

    Phone cards, from what I've heard are not always the best idea because they can't all be used at all ports.

    I believe it's time for all Cruise Lines 'to come clean' and explain just how this matter is handled.
  6. lovelle

    lovelle Guest

    BelleV and sail7seas - Thank you for your input.

    BelleV - I'm sure some of the staff are single and can afford a few "expensive" items. For that matter, even if they're married or supporting family members, do we worry if people we tip at home are buying "expensive" things with their salary and tips? Sorry if that sounds argumentative - guess it does now that I re-read it - but it just seemed like an odd remark.

    sail7seas - I'm not meaning my removal of the ship's auto $10 surcharge to alert any staff, but on the other hand, if there's someone who's service is less-than-okay, maybe that's not such a bad thing. I mostly want to make sure that the people who do more-than-okay get much more than an average tip. And the "pooling" bit does away with that!

    I know some people like the "surcharge" but to me, that's exactly what I think it is.

    I'll definitely figure this out promptly when I get on board.

  7. sail7seas

    sail7seas Guest

    lovelle.....I was not suggesting you had any "motive" in removing the charge from your account. I was only stating the information that had been shared with me.

    I am " on the fence" as to what I think about this new system. I think we shall have to wait and see how service/ friendliness are effected.
  8. mlk

    mlk Guest

    I would much prefer they roll the tips into the cruise price and then really go with the no tipping required thing.

    I have never liked automatic tipping as I usually want to tip more. I end up not doing it because it is too much of a hassle.
  9. rocks

    rocks Guest

    Well this is the BEST thing for the Crew and that is the most important thing of all. They work so hard & this will do away with so many people stiffing them. Especially for the Bar Staff. I doubt that you will be able to take off their 15% from the bar bill. And, like everyone has been saying, you can still hand out extra at the end if you want to.
    I'm sure that the service we receive won't change. Just treat everyone as you would like to be treated. The Crew has constant job performance reviews & if pax complain about the service, they will not be offered another contract to come back to work. MHO is that their smiles & friendliness isn't ONLY about money. In fact, I know its not!
    As far as the phone cards go, there are venders that sell the cards right at the ports. They are much cheaper then what we can buy them for.
    I am SO happy that they are finally fixing their "no tipping required" policy". I have seen too many times other pax cheating the Crew because of their confusing policy. ..rocks mlk wrote:
  10. sail7seas

    sail7seas Guest

    There has been alot of conversation as to whether the crew actually will make out better.

    Yes, I, like you, have seen the outrageous lengths some pax go to in order to avoid tipping...particularly in the dining room. I hope the new policy will be good for the crew.

    But...they now will have to pay for their airfare and their uniforms and there has been rumbling about other expenses. I DO NOT ABSOLUTELY KNOW THIS TO BE TRUE but I think the crew will suddenly have expenses they did not have in the past. I ALSO WONDER if all of the money billed will actually go to the crew or is there a handling/processing fee deducted before the "pool" is divided?

    IF the crew does make out better and the service remains the same; if the smiles remain as wide....then, it will be excellent the policy has been changed. This is why I say I am "on the fence". I am not convinced it will be better for them.

    We shall see.....very soon.
  11. bep_sf

    bep_sf Guest

    Personally, I like the idea of preset tips included in the fare...

    We were on a charter cruise that included the tips in the cost up front and we enjoyed EXCELLENT service the entire time. We were told by the charter staff that the tips were pooled and everyone got their fair share. Also, since we hosted a dinner party on the last night in the grill room we felt comfortable knowing that we weren't "stiffing" the main dining room wait staff by not attending dinner there the last night. Since we also experienced superb service from our cabin steward (poor guy had to keep cleaning up the overflow of bubbles from the jacuzzi tub...) we also chose to tip him extra.

    For cruising "newbies" like us - its nice to know the costs of things up front. It also makes it easier to manage your cash at the end of a vacation - its kinda hard to run to the corner ATM to get a bunch of Ones and Fives to stick in the tip envelopes - especially after you've spent your dinero on souveniers and cocktails while in port.

    One thing that kinda surprised me tho - the tip envelopes supplied for us were plain white. I sorta had the feeling that they would be red & gold like the envelopes that are sold in Chinatown for Chinese money gifts, or at least have a HAL logo on them...

    Just my $1.50/day's worth...

  12. BelleV

    BelleV Guest

    Lovelle, I think you misunderstand me àI do not begrudge staff buying "expensive" items àif they did not have a Ãâ€guaranteed reasonable wageÕ with which to support their families they could not afford such items.

    Most of the Stewards weÕve met on numerous cruises have families back home and their children are being well cared for and educated. We are greeted warmly by these fellows and family pictures are shown proudly. WeÕve chatted with many of the singles, they will tell you that they are saving to start their own businesses and have a definite Ãâ€agendaÕ as to how long they will sail.

    We have always tipped and will continue to do so as and when it is merited. If adding an extra $140.00 per week to our cruise cost is going to break the bank we would not be cruising.
  13. BelleV

    BelleV Guest

    mlk àin effect the Ãâ€tipÕ has been rolled into the cruise price and thereÕs no rule that says you canÕt add to it. Few restaurants add a gratuity àis it also Ãâ€a hassleÕ to tip your waiter in a restaurant after an enjoyable meal?
  14. BelleV

    BelleV Guest

    Why donÕt you buy and take some of those fancy envelopes along with you? :) :)

    - and watch those overflow of bubbles from the jacuzzi tub...glad you tipped your steward!
  15. sail7seas

    sail7seas Guest


    What are the extra "symbols" that appear in all of your posts? I've been trying to figure out what in the world is inserting those strange things.

    Than ks.
  16. BelleV

    BelleV Guest

    S7S - Extra symbols?????? - sorry, I'm not with you..........

    If you mean the :) :) - those are smiles.
  17. lovelle

    lovelle Guest

    BelleV - Below is an example of what 7seas means.

    I've been curious, too - looks like apostrophes, quotes, hyphens on your posts - maybe more - appear on this board as weird symbols.

    From your post of 4/27/04 - 15:11
    mlk àin effect the Ãâ€tipÕ has been rolled into the cruise price and thereÕs no rule that says you canÕt add to it. Few restaurants add a gratuity àis it also Ãâ€a hassleÕ to tip your waiter in a restaurant after an enjoyable meal?

    Thanks everyone for your thoughts on this.

    I'll check with several people (my TA, HAL by phone and on ship, including wait staff and cabin attendants, purser, et al). In my former life, I was a news researcher, so I do look long and deep for answers, and this interests me from the standpoint of wanting to make sure that people who work for me (essentially) while I'm on board, are treated *at least* equally well in return by me.

    Looks like I may decide to just leave the "surcharge" on my account and then figure out a way to add to that directly to individuals.

  18. sail7seas

    sail7seas Guest

    Yes, "Lovelle"...those are the symbols I am referring to. :) I am familiar with smiley faces :)
  19. BelleV

    BelleV Guest

    I'm at a complete loss with this - the example you give Lovelle ( and here I've copied/cut and pasted )

    QUOTEFrom your post of 4/27/04 - 15:11
    mlk àin effect the Ãâ€tipÕ has been rolled into the cruise price and thereÕs no rule that says you canÕt add to it. Few restaurants add a gratuity àis it also Ãâ€a hassleÕ to tip your waiter in a restaurant after an enjoyable meal? END QUOTE

    shows up on my screen exactly as you have typed it which is exactly as I typed it. Never had it mentioned before by other boards or personal correspondents. Very strange, and I'm not by any means new to computers.

    For how long has this been going on? Do we have a Techie person on board?
  20. JOHN(NJ)

    JOHN(NJ) Guest

    Æ- BÃâ€Y !!!!!!!!!!!!!

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