Many travelers enjoy bringing a small gift to give their stateroom attendants or other crew members, such as favorite bartenders, youth counselors, or cruise directors in thanks for their dedicated and often personalized service.
Carnival Cruise Line is now adapting new guidelines that might mean some gifts are unacceptable. What can grateful cruisers to do to offer thanks without violating the guideline?
Not All Gifts Permitted to Crew Members
For many years, cruise travelers have brought small gifts to give to crew members as appreciation for their helpful service in creating amazing vacations. Items have ranged from treats such as cookies, candy, and snacks to more practical items like phone cards, socks, and toiletries.
Carnival Cruise Line is now introducing a policy to prohibit some gift items, however. Brand ambassador John Heald addressed the new policy on his Facebook page, in response to guests’ questions about items to give crew members.
“There is a new guideline for this,” Heald said. “Please only bring something that is factory sealed and still in the packet or box. Individual candy or cookies etc. won’t be able to be taken by the crew I am afraid. This is for their safety.”
This means that any opened or homemade items will not be able to be accepted, or may be immediately discarded regardless of the item or to whom it is given.
No further details about this restriction were made immediately available, but the new guideline is intended for the safety of the crew. There are several ways that even the most well-meaning gift could be unsafe. Homemade goodies, for example, might have unknown allergens in the recipe, such as nuts that could give a crew member a dangerous reaction.
To best safeguard crew members, Carnival Cruise Line is restricting any gift items that are not in the original, factory-sealed packaging. This will ensure that items have not been tampered with and are properly labeled so their safety is confirmed.
The Best Gifts You Can Give
The quickest, easiest gift to give any crew member who goes above-and-beyond with excellent service is an additional gratuity, a bit of extra cash they can spend on whatever they like. While extra gratuities are never expected, they can be greatly appreciated.
Many cruise ship crew members send their paychecks home to their family members, and a bit of extra onboard cash could be spent on their favorite treat in port when they have a break. This will also ensure that even factory-sealed treats aren’t inappropriate due to allergies or personal preferences.
Read Also: How to Help Out Your Stateroom Steward
While crew cabins onboard are small and space is limited, many crew members also enjoy small tokens to remember guests by.
“The crew love to remember you so if you want to bring them something like a baseball cap, a key ring, or something that will remind them of you and the kindness you showed them then that would be marvelous,” explained Heald.
Consider small items from your hometown like local postcards, magnets, or other fun keepsakes. Other great gifts include personalized notes or a sincere, face-to-face thank you acknowledging superior service. These greetings mean a lot to crew members and can brighten anyone’s day.
Taking extra steps to make crew members’ jobs easier is another way to show thanks. This can be as easy as returning empty glasses to the nearest bar so they don’t need to be collected, discarding trash in appropriate trash cans instead of leaving it on deck, or keeping your stateroom a little neater so it can be cleaned up more quickly by the stateroom attendant.
Have you ever brought gifts to give out to crew members? Share your favorite ways to say thanks on the Cruise Hive boards!