This article is Royal Caribbean Raises Gratuity Charges. It is about an increase to the daily gratuity charges on Royal Caribbean Cruise Ships.
Cruise lines charge a daily fee for the gratuities for housekeeping and dining staff.
Guests can either prepay for the gratuities prior to the stay, or the cruise line will post a daily charge to the guests shipboard account.
The gratuities are shared among housekeeping staff and food and beverage as well as other staff onboard the ship. The crew count on these gratuities as part of their compensation for working on the ship.
The daily cost for gratuities ranges between cruise lines but it is generally between $15-$20 per person per-day which can become a significant expense for families traveling on the cruise.
Royal Caribbean Increase
On Halloween, Royal Caribbean announced that the daily charge for gratuities on all cruises beginning on November 11, 2023.
The current daily gratuity charge for guests in non-suites has been $16 per-day per-person. The rate will be increasing $2 per-day to $18 per day for non-suites.
Guests in suites are currently paying $18.50 per-day per-person for gratuities. This is increasing to $20.50 per-day per-person.
The increase is a 10% increase.
Guests can avoid paying for the increase by adding on prepaid gratuities to their cruise reservations prior to November 11.
Interestingly as cruise lines continue to raise the daily gratuity cost, they have been at the same time reducing the services guests receive from housekeeping and main dining.
For example, in the past Royal Caribbean used to charge $12 per-day per person for gratuities and it provided daily housekeeping and daily turndown service in all the cabins. The housekeeping service is now reduced to one time per day and many extras such as chocolates on the bed and in some cases towel animals are no longer being provided.
In addition, guest options in Main Dining have continued to decrease which is getting more guests to go to specialty dining where additional gratuities are added to the dinner bills.
It appears that the reduction of service will continue.
Over the past couple of years the cruise lines have increased the gratuity charges several times while cutting service.
Other Cruise Lines Gratuities
To compare the daily gratuity charges on other cruise lines are as follows:
- Carnival charges $16 per-person per-day in non suites and $18 per-person per-day in suites
- Disney Cruise line charges between $14,50 and $15.50 per-person per-day
- Norwegian Cruise Line charges $16 per-person per-day for non suites and between $18-$20 per-person per-day for suites
When one cruise line increases the charges, the other cruise lines generally follow along so it is likely that we will see further increases.
Are you cruising soon? If you have not already done so, I would recommend prepaying the gratuity to lock in the current price.
Royal Caribbean Raises Gratuity Charges…. What are your thoughts?