Lorraine is referring here to the cruise lines’ bean counters!” Seems as if they’re “at it” 24/7 figuring out ways to nickel, dime, and dollar us to death!
First it was messing with what had always been complimentary room service (gratuity optional) – then the beverage package fees – now RCL and Celebrity have increased daily “automatic gratuities” from $12.00 to $12.95. Okay – it’s not the pithily 95 cents, it’s the PRINCIPLE!
Lorraine has never balked at “gratuities” – in fact she more than willingly rewards those hard-working individuals who strive to make the cruise experience more enjoyable – but let’s face it – “automatic gratuity” is an oxymoron – why the lines don’t just include such in the cruise fare remains a mystery!
They’re tinkering with the specialty dining venues as well...now in addition to the $35 per person “cover charge” at one line’s Steakhouse – surcharges are applied to certain items (i.e. lobster is a PLUS $21.50) and before you fork it over -think: When was the last time you saw a live lobster tank on a cruise ship?
Okay – so the fact remains you do not have to indulge in costly “extras” if you choose not to – BUT – it seems as if “tier pricing” (read: “class system”) is creeping its way into cruising. How long will it be before “steerage” passengers are barred from certain venues?
Oops – think it’s already happened – some lines reserve dining areas for suite guests only.....and of course – there are those “loyalty clubs” – don’t even think about getting in without the proper credentials – LOL!