Automatic Gratuity Fees On Cruise Ships


Many cruise lines charge automatic gratuity fees.

Royal Caribbean adds $14 – $20 per day to your bill.

These charges are not included in the price quoted.

This is a rip off…

If cruise companies want customers to help subsidize their labor costs, these costs should be included in the price quoted, not automatically added to the final bill of the cruise customer.

I fully support tipping for good service.  I don’t support forced tipping.

I hope all inclusive resorts never adopt this policy.

There are services at all inclusive resorts (such as spa treatments and scuba certification) that are sometimes added to your bill, but adding a line item for gratuity (without adding it to the quoted price) would make many of us very mad.

If all inclusive resorts ever do this, don’t just accept it.  Tell the manager you don’t like charges added to your bill.  Tell the manager you will make sure everyone who asks about your vacation will hear about your opposition to forced charges you didn’t authorize or know about.

Another question to ask all resorts and cruise ships is if they charge for internet service.  Most of us have come to expect free internet service from businesses.  Most all inclusive resorts include internet service, but some cruise ships charge a daily fee.  This is another way cruise ships nickel and dime their customers after offering a lower rate in their advertisements.  Cruise ships know people want internet service on their vacation.  Not including it in the price of the cruise is a scam.

The basic message here is to know what is included in your vacation as you compare vacation options.  Many cruise companies have taken the strategy of offering a lower up front price then forcing you to buy basic services once you are trying to enjoy your vacation.