Tipping is part and parcel of any cruise trip. Some do it out of sheer generosity, others give it as a ‘reward’ for a crew member who provided great service, and most especially, for someone who actually went over and beyond expectations. This is also known as cruise ship gratuities. Modern tipping on cruise lines such as Carnival still follow the same ideas, but are given in a slightly different manner. We explain all you need to know about Carnival Cruise Line Gratuities:
First, Why Should You Tip?
Also called as gratuity, a tip serves as an ‘incentive’ for the cruise staff for the good service they provide. Extending gratuity or a tip is widely debated among passengers – others see it as a negative, a ‘forced’ increase or just the ship’s way of adding to the fare, some do see it as a positive too – a means of rewarding the hardworking crew, and passengers in turn, get enthusiastic service. Should you pay it?
Cruise service, especially on distinguished lines like Carnival, are expected to be excellent – gratuities help motivate the crew to continuously serve warmly in the face of long and exhausting work hours onboard – so why not right?
How Should You Pay Carnival Cruise Line Gratuities?
Now this is where a lot of the questions come in – should you pay it the old-school way (hand it directly to the staff), pre-pay it, or have it added to your account?
How it goes on a Carnival Cruise, You have two options:
Pre-paid – This allows you to include the standard gratuity amount to what you pay when you book your cruise, or at any point before the actual boarding time. For Carnival Cruise confirmation messages, this is classified as a ‘miscellaneous charge’, and will be indicated in your cruise documents.
Already booked but forgot to pre-pay your gratuities? That’s okay – you just need to contact your travel agent or get in touch with the cruise line directly.
What if you’re already onboard and you want to give a bigger tip than what you’ve initially pre-paid? Your heart is in the right place, especially if you’re getting amazing service! Just go to the Guest Services desk and let them know how you wish to adjust your gratuities.
Pro: You don’t have to worry about the added cost later on.
Con: The staff won’t directly know you’ve ‘thanked’ them for their good service, and you might find yourself having to spend a bit more in tips.
Added to your Shipboard Account – This option gives you the convenience of assigning gratuities while onboard, and paying them along with other items on your Sail & Sign account at the end of your cruise.
As with pre-paid gratuities, this is indicated as ‘Miscellaneous Charges’ on your account. Children below 2 years old are exempted from paying gratuities. Dine-in gratuities and gratuities for beverage purchases are also automatically added to your Sail & Sign account.
Pro: You can easily adjust amounts, and would not need to dish out the additional cash right away/prior to boarding.
Con: You might be surprised at how charges add up at the end of a cruise trip, and the daily inclusion of the gratuities definitely inflates that cost.
The Carnival Tipping Basics:
When automatically charged to either your Sign and Sail account or to your invoice prior to boarding, the gratuity amount is at a recommended value of $12.95 per day, per person in stateroom accommodations, and at $13.95, per day, per person for those in suite rooms.
You always have the option to give tips directly to the staff if you feel the need to do so, and as previously stated, you can also adjust gratuities based on your ‘experience’ onboard.
Get in touch with guest services right away so they can make adjustments. Do note that if Carnival does not receive a request for modification, the recommended rate is what will be charged to you.
Paying gratuities is already considered an ‘inevitable’ in any modern-day cruise trip, and being aware of how much is expected and how it is charged help you prepare your pockets more efficiently for your trip.
Now that you know how it goes, you can go ahead and make the most of your ocean adventure and be at easy with Carnival Cruise Line Gratuities!