You don’t have to tip your hat on a cruise but it sometimes seems you need to tip almost everything else – and a major cruise line has just reinforced that feeling.
From 15 December 2016, Princess Cruises will raise the suggested level of tips to USD 13.50 a day for passengers with interior, ocean view and balcony cabins. That’s a 4.2% increase, USA Today reports. It’s less than a year since the last increase. In January, the level rose 13% to its current level of USD 12.95 per day.
Australians dislike the idea of having to tip cruise staff for doing the job they are paid to do. Tips are entrenched in the cruise industry and also throughout America, which is why Americans don’t mind paying them.
Princess urges passengers in its mini-suites to pay USD 14.50 per day, and those in full suites a dollar extra.
Norwegian Cruise Line has also hiked its gratuity rates twice this year – once in February and again just five months later.
Tipping is getting a bit like a compulsory service charge, with some lines adding tips automatically to passengers’ shipboard accounts. The amount is sometimes adjustable at passengers’ request.
Travellers have seen gratuity increases this year from Carnival Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruises and Royal Caribbean International.
P&O Cruises in Australia does not add gratuities automatically. It leaves it to passengers’ discretion.
Written by Peter Needham