Royal Caribbean is going to be increasing gratuity rates starting from January 2, 2018 for all guests.

The cruise line has updated its site which mentions that gratuity rates will increase starting from January 2, 2018. The rate will increase by $1.00 which means $14.50 for all staterooms and $17.50 for suites. Guests who have already pre-paid their gratuities before the change date will stay at the previous rate but anyone planning to pay onboard the ship will have to pay the new rate.

Royal Caribbean states:

As of January 2, 2018, our daily gratuity amounts will increase by $1.00 per guest, per day. Guests who book before January 2, 2018 can pre-pay gratuities before their sailing at the current rate. Guests who choose to pay gratuities onboard, regardless of when they book, will be subject to the new rates for sailings departing on or after January 2, 2018.

The current Royal Caribbean gratuity amount per guest is $13.50 for staterooms and $16.50 for suites. The rate last changed on May 1, 2016 and before that, the price of gratuities was a lot lower at $12.95 for staterooms and $15.95 for suites.

The cruise gratuity rates are for each passenger per day during the cruise and it doesn’t matter on the age. The amount is automatically charged to the onboard SeaPass account but if guests want they can change the amount at the onboard service desk.

When guests are not happy with the service during the cruise the gratuities can be altered at the end of the voyage. The gratuities are shared among the hard-working crew members including housekeeping stewards, dining staff, and bar staff. The money does help the crew members a lot while they are working long days month after month away from family and friends.