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How much to tip Penthouse Butler, 12 day cruise?

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We always leave an after-cruise tip for our room stewards, but not quite sure how much others tip for butlers in a Penthouse Suite?

12-day cruise.

 

 

Edited by WahooNKS

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it is  a personal choice

Depends on  how much  you asked of  him above & beyond

They get part of the auto gratuity  charged to your  onboard account  unless you have them covered

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This is indeed an unanswerable question.  Did you butler go above and beyond?  Provide really spectacular service?  How much did you use him?  Some people hardly use them at all (that was us in the beginning) and on the opposite end are people who use them to host cocktail parties, pack and unpack luggage, and all sorts of things.

 

We used to just let the regular daily fee be what we gave, but since we've had extra OBC to spend (and have been in higher suites since we first sailed) we look more closely about what we want to give above and beyond.  It's really up to YOU.  There aren't any rules.

 

We added on for our butler on a cruise where the ship managed to lose our La Reserve reservation.  He's heard us say we'd be going to La Reserve that night but hadn't seen our names on the list, so he took the initiative to check it out.  He went above and beyond that day.  Fortunatley I had brought a print-out of the email showing that reservation which helped him in sorting out the problem.  We couldn't go to La Reserve that night but since we were on a B2B the ship was able to accommodate us on the second leg.  In fact, we ended up having a more expensive meal than the one we'd paid for.  When something like that happens, you DO want to acknowledge that fact with -- more.

 

 

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I always tip the butler extra (assuming he does a good job!) -- for a 12 day cruise I would probably be in the range of 75 - 100.

If he did little more than the usual I would be at the low end.  If we did a lot of in room dining (particularly if we invited guests)  and he did  other extras for us I would be at the high end.

 

When the butler is proactive rather than reactive (eg anticipates our needs and wants) I tend to be on the high end of tipping.

 

It is very subjective. I am sure many will disagree.  You asked for a guideline so I gave you mine.  It is not a hard and fast rule.

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On our last two cruises on Riviera and Insignia we tipped the butler an extra $100.  They worked so hard to please.  On Riviera our butler managed to get extra specialty restaurant reservations.  On Insignia our butler brought extra canapés and goodies even if we hadn’t ordered them.  And that’s only a few of the extras they provided.

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We've only had a butler once, and it was clear that we are not butler people. 

We asked him to do 2 things: turn in DH's special diet menu (he told us to take it to breakfast) and show us a veranda cabin (he was very reluctant)--so we didn't tip extra.

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I agree that there is no right answer and that it depends on how much you ask him to do above and beyond.  We like the PH because of the larger cabin. We’d be fine without the butler. On our last cruise, we had 2 breakfasts in our cabin and that’s the only thing we had him do.  We didn’t tip extra. 

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Thanks especially to those who gave numbers.  Those of us without experience feel much better knowing some sort of range, from some other travelers, even if what is right for you does vary for level of service and length of cruise.

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On this last cruise we had the worst butler ever.   (15) cruises.  Could not find him half the time.   First time ever we did not leave extra.  The auto tip was more than enough.  Could have reduced that but did not think that was right to do.  Mostly do not need a butler anyway but nice to have when he is doing his job.

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Agree with the $75-100. range.  We have never had a butler that disappointed.  Our butlers have always gone beyond our expectations and our requests. 

We enjoy conversations with them... about their families, their interesting work experiences, even world politics.  It's so interesting to see our country through the eyes of foreigners (guess that's why we hosted a ton of high school exchange students over the years).

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I am in hopes of getting a decent butler this February. The last 2 we had were some of the worst and I have had them on X too. The butler time before last came in to "update" us during the first announcement before we sailed and it went downhill from there. He was rarely seen and we had to look him up the few times we wanted something. Last January we were in one of the PHs on deck 7 with the huge balcony. I get that most of our butler's cabins were not near us, only the one next to us (who had very demanding people) but we do not ask for much. One thing we do like is to occasionally get an appetizer before going to the Terrace for the remainder of our dinner. We asked one morning for something from Jacques that evening and he forgot us. We rarely ask for much so it just set wrong with me. We never remove the auto tips but in both of these cases we did not even consider adding anything. Julia

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I usually have wonderful butlers ( clearly some are better than others) but on 1 cruise it was so bad that I asked for a different butler and the change was made.  I know we all hate to do such things but when I am paying for a suite that comes with butler service I will not tolerate "awful" butler service.  No one should.

 

Speak to the head butler on the cruise if you have a problem

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1 minute ago, bitob said:

I usually have wonderful butlers ( clearly some are better than others) but on 1 cruise it was so bad that I asked for a different butler and the change was made.  I know we all hate to do such things but when I am paying for a suite that comes with butler service I will not tolerate "awful" butler service.  No one should.

 

Speak to the head butler on the cruise if you have a problem

You are so right..  For us it was not worth the hassle to change butlers.  He did enough to just get passed that problem, but not to qualify for extra tipping.   Hope for better next time since we always had great butlers in the past.  Will not let one bad one spoil the bunch.

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2 hours ago, jwindham said:

I am in hopes of getting a decent butler this February. The last 2 we had were some of the worst and I have had them on X too. The butler time before last came in to "update" us during the first announcement before we sailed and it went downhill from there. He was rarely seen and we had to look him up the few times we wanted something.

I have never had a butler  but do they not have  a pager  or phone to call them  when you want something??

I have seen them rushing through the bar or someplace  with some sort of device they look at when it goes off

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Yes, they have a pager and we have always had a return phone call within seconds. 

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1 hour ago, Sny said:

Yes, they have a pager and we have always had a return phone call within seconds. 

 I know this is the same  when we have called the room attendants  in the lower cabins

Strange  some people would have to hunt for the Butler then 🤔

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Just to explain, the first butler never explained how to get in touch with him which went with the service we got. You have to know about that phone if you need to use it. And since I do not connect in any fashion at sea I did not look past just seeing the phone on the desk.

 

The second butler did check in and we told him what we wanted to be delivered about 6:30 that evening when the specialty restaurants opened. He just plain forgot and by the time we realized it we just went to dinner.

 

Again I am hoping this was just bad karma both times. I hope to have a decent one on my upcoming cruise. Julia

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2 hours ago, Sny said:

Yes, they have a pager and we have always had a return phone call within seconds. 

Not always within seconds, and not always your butler.  Sometimes it was another one who did not know our standing request at 4 pm every day.  Not the end of the world and not worth complaining to the head butler or the GM but also not who you would want to give an extra tip to. 

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We just got off of the Riviera last week. Our butler for the most part was wonderful until the last night when he told us we couldn’t get room service the last morning only coffee or tea. So we asked him to bring us tea at 7am since we had to be out of our room by 8am. He knew from every other day that we always got 4 cups of tea (2 pots) and on the last day he showed up at 6:30, with only one pot. I also read in currents that room service was available for breakfast. I think he purposely took out the breakfast cards out of the rooms, so he didn’t have to serve anybody breakfast. I understand that they have a lot to do before the next guests get on, but that was wrong. We still gave him an extra tip but I was very annoyed! 

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1 hour ago, Misssmb said:

We still gave him an extra tip but I was very annoyed! 

But why? Rewarding bad behavior is rarely a good thing.

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18 minutes ago, clo said:

But why? Rewarding bad behavior is rarely a good thing.

Plus 2

Jancruz1

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11 minutes ago, Jancruz said:

Plus 2

Jancruz1

and we circle back to why this virtually automatic and expected tipping culture where a large proportion of their income is dependent on it, is IMO bad....... 

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1 hour ago, drkitkat123 said:

and we circle back to why this virtually automatic and expected tipping culture where a large proportion of their income is dependent on it, is IMO bad....... 

Oceania is just not the correct Cruise line to fight THAT particular Battle-

Their management already tried bucking the status quo (as Renaissance Cruises) by bypassing Travel Agents.

images?q=tbn:ANd9GcR6Gup5ZkjDjtFL7K9GE_2

That decision didn't end well, but it may have hastened the end of Ren....

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2 hours ago, clo said:

But why? Rewarding bad behavior is rarely a good thing.

I guess because he was great the rest of the cruise and my sensitive heart thinks of people who have less than I do. I think working 11 hour days without a day off in 6 months has to be tough. It’s my nature and I can’t help it. I agree it wasn’t a smart thing to do, but my hubby handed it to him when I was still in the bed since he came early! Ugh 

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16 minutes ago, Misssmb said:

sensitive heart

I know.

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