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Steve Douglas

Tipping is in the culture

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I'm keeping this alive in 2012.

 

I believe that sometimes the 10 to 15% suggested tip for liveaboards is too much. For example the Philippine Siren costs about 3450 for 10 days. That would amout to tips for all of the crew of $322 to $483 each a week. The boat takes 16 divers and has a crew of 12. I assume that they get paid something from their employer. Considering the pay scale in the Philippines, with degreed accountants and teachers earning $400 to $500 a month and Registered nurses earning $300 a month, I don't get tipping 4 to 6 times average professional salaries. Somehow I don't think that all of those tips are actually making it to the crew. I bet they could hire an 18 year old gal to clean for 250p a day plus food and lodging and that would be enough. Please explain the economics of this to me. Maybe the crew has to pay for their room and board and work for free?

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I understand. I'm just a little surprised Luigi would put that in writing.

 

I have been on many trips on quite a few liveaboards in Indo and only ones I've heard of having a "recommended" gratuity percentage were the Peter Hughes ones. Then again I think it's who you book through as well. I tend to book direct so I don't get these packets from US agents which do all these sort of things.

 

This amount did not come from my travel agent but in fact is from Luigi (or his FAQ writers :) ) and can be view on the Arenui FAQ page here:

http://www.thearenui.com/faq.html

 

I have been on many cruises of the traditional sort and the standard to tip is usually around $10-$15 per day per person that is divided among the crew. I have really been pondering that we are spending $11,000 for my wife and I to go on this trip and then looking at $1100-$!600 in tipping for 12 days on top of that. I guess my feelings are with the cost of the cruise being on the high end I would rather they charge even a little more up front and say that gratuities are included.

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Wow, still the longest running active thread in Wetpixel history! Unfortunately, there is the assumption that all divers who go on these trips are so wealthy that they can afford the 15% of a trips total cost not including the outrageous cost of airline fees and extra baggage tallies. It reminds me of the time I was in S. Africa many years ago and someone there asked me whether it was true that New York streets were paved with gold. While the crews on these live aboards do work hard and receive salaries that pale in comparison to most American and European incomes, their salaries are higher in ratio to their own countries normal salaries and thus, they earn a good living for the country they are living in. Then add the tips and they do ok. What they don't understand is that, for many, divers might save up for years to go on these vacation trips and that 15% of a $4500. trip is beyond their own income and savings. Sure, if you earn big money maybe you can afford to tip that big but that is not the case for probably the majority. Do most crews deserve a good tip, absolutely, but one has to be pragmatic about what they can afford and not stretch their own boundaries out of guilt. Tip what you can afford to tip and don't worry about it.

Steve

Edited by Steve Douglas

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I'm keeping this alive in 2012.

 

I believe that sometimes the 10 to 15% suggested tip for liveaboards is too much. For example the Philippine Siren costs about 3450 for 10 days. That would amout to tips for all of the crew of $322 to $483 each a week. The boat takes 16 divers and has a crew of 12. I assume that they get paid something from their employer. Considering the pay scale in the Philippines, with degreed accountants and teachers earning $400 to $500 a month and Registered nurses earning $300 a month, I don't get tipping 4 to 6 times average professional salaries. Somehow I don't think that all of those tips are actually making it to the crew. I bet they could hire an 18 year old gal to clean for 250p a day plus food and lodging and that would be enough. Please explain the economics of this to me. Maybe the crew has to pay for their room and board and work for free?

I'm not sure we can judge it that way. In a world where athletes are paid MILLIONS to kick/throw/hit a ball around, who's to say DM/boat crew aren't supposedly to earn more than accountants/teachers? Is it any less professional to make sure the guests don't drown, get lost at sea or eat properly?

 

This amount did not come from my travel agent but in fact is from Luigi (or his FAQ writers :) ) and can be view on the Arenui FAQ page here:

http://www.thearenui.com/faq.html

 

I have been on many cruises of the traditional sort and the standard to tip is usually around $10-$15 per day per person that is divided among the crew. I have really been pondering that we are spending $11,000 for my wife and I to go on this trip and then looking at $1100-$!600 in tipping for 12 days on top of that. I guess my feelings are with the cost of the cruise being on the high end I would rather they charge even a little more up front and say that gratuities are included.

I guess I should read the info packs moreover then. :)

Let's be fair to say that higher end establishments tend to have better service, and thus the gratuities are higher. From presentation to which side to serve from etc, luxury is something I'm sure we all can enjoy.

I'd add that salaries aren't all that high and some places, the local crew get less than the foreign crew.

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This got me thinking....is there any way to kill a thread? Maybe say something politically incorrect, but then I'd be blacklisted.

:)

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Loftus,,

You should know that some things, like death, taxes and my wife's constant shopping never end.

Steve

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I'm with Steve on the "tip what you can afford" statement, you shouldn't feel intimidated to payout enormous amounts for tips thats ridiculous ... Most people choose their careers so if you don't like your wages get another, more well paid, job... Simples :)

 

Dean

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How about TRIP WHAT YOU CAN AFFORD ! If you can't afford to tip don't do the trip....why screw the little guy who probably does most of the work?

 

If your career allows you to take trips but not to tip...maybe it's time to switch your career so you can afford the tip? Why or why not, because careers are not always easy to change!

 

Just my thoughts....Peace

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How about TRIP WHAT YOU CAN AFFORD ! If you can't afford to tip don't do the trip....why screw the little guy who probably does most of the work?

 

If your career allows you to take trips but not to tip...maybe it's time to switch your career so you can afford the tip? Why or why not, because careers are not always easy to change!

 

Just my thoughts....Peace

 

WTF! That's the best quote I've heard lol your comment is a type of bullying what gives you the right to tell anyone where they can and cannot go! Tips are tips NOT taxes if people do not want to tip then Tough!!! ... Well I have heard people changing companies because of the 'tip policy' of that particular boat. if i saved up to go on a big trip I wouldn't expect to pay extra thousands in bloody tips to people who 'chose' the job in the first place!? I don't care if the guide 'stroked my balls with a smile' if I don't tip then that's up to me ...

 

Maybe next time I do a shoot for the BBC I should ask for 15% extra for smiling and helping the others with their gear... :)

(just in case any Beeb prods are looking, I was only kidding :) )

 

Dean

Edited by DeanB

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How about TRIP WHAT YOU CAN AFFORD ! If you can't afford to tip don't do the trip....why screw the little guy who probably does most of the work?

 

If your career allows you to take trips but not to tip...maybe it's time to switch your career so you can afford the tip? Why or why not, because careers are not always easy to change!

 

Just my thoughts....Peace

 

Mike I agree that you should only take a vacation you can afford but I do think there is relevant discussion regarding tipping and policies for tipping.

My thoughts on this are more geared towards boat owners setting "policies" (which is discovered after you book a trip) so he can pay lower wages and make more profit by getting us to pay more of his labor cost. From my perspective if the owner of the live aboard charged $300 (or whatever amount) more per person to pay his people better and said the trip was all inclusive including tips I think most would be happier then finding out after booking we are somewhat expected to pony up $500-700 per person for tipping.

I don't think I am a cheapskate, I was a bartender for 10 years and fully understand tipping. I always tip 20% for good service at restaurants and I always tip my divemasters after my dives on a day boat. My thoughts of this is geared to liveaboards and all inclusive resorts.

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WTF! That's the best quote I've heard lol your comment is a type of bullying what gives you the right to tell anyone where they can and cannot go! Tips are tips NOT taxes if people do not want to tip then Tough!!! ... Well I have heard people changing companies because of the 'tip policy' of that particular boat. if i saved up to go on a big trip I wouldn't expect to pay extra thousands in bloody tips to people who 'chose' the job in the first place!? I don't care if the guide 'stroked my balls with a smile' if I don't tip then that's up to me ...

 

Maybe next time I shoot or the BBC I should ask for 15% extra for smiling and helping the others with their gear... ;)

 

Dean

 

Eaaassyy Dean...I mean no disregard & sorry I ruffled your feathers :) I haven't being keeping up with this forum post....In general people should go on trips they can afford, which include modest tips to the dive masters and the little guys that don't get paid shit for all their hard work....Don't go on trips you can barely afford knowing you won't tip...that's just wrong! I stick by the career statement...If anyone could change their career at will we'd all be wealthy, free, and happy....maybe then there would be no need to tip.

 

Peace!! :)

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Eaaassyy Dean...I mean no disregard & sorry I ruffled your feathers :) I haven't being keeping up with this forum post....In general people should go on trips they can afford, which include modest tips to the dive masters and the little guys that don't get paid shit for all their hard work....Don't go on trips you can barely afford knowing you won't tip...that's just wrong! I stick by the career statement...If anyone could change their career at will we'd all be wealthy, free, and happy....maybe then there would be no need to tip.

 

Peace!! :)

 

:) sorry I obviously didn't put enough 'Lol' in I was a little shocked with the comment but not offended, hence the lack of angry expletives ;) ... Obviously people should only go on trips they can afford! Although that would pee off some credit card companies :) however i will stick by my comment and say 'tips' should be thankfully accepted but never expected, especially 'big buggers' I agree that career changed can be difficult however you have to choose the job and it's pay deals in the first place! Tips are great I have had a few in my 23yrs however I always give my best and if tipped that's a bonus! I never expect one

 

Dean

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Some of us might be missing the point here. There are those who can not afford to go on regular dive trips period. They just can't quit their jobs and get a higher paying job. That is not practical or realistic. So now they save, and save, and save, to finally be able to go on their 'trip of a lifetime'. They worked hard for this vacation and deserve to go. Now they go, get good service and have a fine time. They worked hard and deserved the trip. However, for a couple, paying another grand in a tip may well be beyond their capabilities. They should tip what they can afford, period. For some that tip will be large and for the others it might be smaller but large to them on their limited income. Remember that this thread was started by my conversation with several crew people from different boats around the world who made the observation that only Americans really tip anyway. Now that is a blanket statement and we all know that is not true of every Asian or European but are Americans supposed to pay and make up for the lack of European and Asian tips?

Steve

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are Americans supposed to pay and make up for the lack of European and Asian tips?

 

That would be great! ... Cheers Steve

 

Seriously all your statement I agree with :) people shouldn't be bullied into giving huge tips ... I can see why 'crew' posters on here want big tips :) lol ...

 

Dean

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I have started feeling extremely strongly about tipping lately and I am really sick of it - without getting into an American bashing session - I have to blame it on you.

I could have killed these two young girls we were talking with (21 and 24 years old) and they were asking us what New Zealand is like. Tipping has become a bit of a point of annoyance for us travelling through Central America, where it seems that the constant flow of tips has created the normalcy of tipping and it being automatically added. We said to these girls, "Please, don't tip in NZ." and we explained why, it's never been a part of what we do until lately but barely so, etc. They looked shocked and then said, "Oh, well - don't worry, we'll still tip."

WILL you, huh?

 

We also meet a variety of North Americans, some English too that feel the need to tip 15 to 20% for any old meal or service anywhere in NZ. C'mon guys.

 

Can you plead with the rest of your countrymen (Also Canadians, anyone who thinks it's correct to tip as par for course.) to just NOT do it in places where it isn't the culture? We come to your country, swallow it and tip despite the fact we think it's stupid so can you respect us and not just do it, especially in places like Aussie, NZ, the Pacific islands.

 

It just makes me see red and Jesus, those two girls... :|

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"It just makes me see red and Jesus, those two girls... :|"

 

Thanks MITHERE, you just made my day....I'm done f^&*#NG tipping!

 

Give my best to red, Jesus, and the two girls when you see them......... :D

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"It just makes me see red and Jesus, those two girls... :|"

 

Thanks MITHERE, you just made my day....I'm done f^&*#NG tipping!

 

Give my best to red, Jesus, and the two girls when you see them......... :D

 

Jesus said "Stop tipping."

There you go, it came right from the top.

:D

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Hey Mithere,

But what did Moses, Mohammed and Buddah say about tipping?

How are people supposed to know if tipping is ok or not? Now I at least know that if I ever get to NZ, I will know not to tip but what of other countries. Do we ask the waiter in France if I should tip or not. He'd probably be reluctant to say no and leave his pocket just a bit barer. I always tip but I tip what I can afford.....except for my future trip to NZ

Steve

Edited by Steve Douglas

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A tip the way some people use it, is like a bribe or as compensation for wanting more then what was purchased, it can make workers stray from giving everyone who paid a fair deal- it can undermine the MO of that business.

A lot of tippers are queue jumpers who pay their way out of their unfair behaviors- with more dollars then sense!

If I ever tip, it's after the service is rendered and it's because- A) I like the person B) I got more then I expected for the price. It would take both those factors to make me even think about tipping.

 

I like companies which pool the tips and share them equally, as it creates a team attitude and creates limits to disproportionate service(tipped 10% but got 30% more then someone who paid the same base rate, but couldn't afford to do a tip).

I like companies that are small enough so it's hard for staff to get away with giving poor service and you get more personality/character with it- it's not just a business transaction.

 

These days I am too busy seeing if I am getting short changed, which is probably due to people expecting a tip without having to work for it.........Like a doctor that over charges, just to get the latest E-class.

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Mithere, I've spent some time traveling, working in Aus. The culture doesn't seem to support tipping and guess what? Service sucks! The service providers all have an attitude that service is beneath them! Having worked in the service industry for many years (put myself through uni delivering pizzas) I never expect a tip but I am sure going to tip when I want.

 

I well remember the great feeling I got being appreciated for my labour. Yea, the employer should be paying the staff a fair wage but often the little guy at the bottom is not paid. I hate the idea of sharing tips. I want the individual who gave me the good service to get the money. These days I am grateful that I am able to help the little guy at the bottom of the pay scale. I don't tip the captain or officers but the guy who sees to my equipment every day, who humps my tanks in and out of the boat. The underappreciated local guy (or woman) who makes my life a little better. These people need every penny they can get and I am pleased that I am in a position to give a little.

 

I also don't try and get the cheapest service or goods I can. I'd much rather know that I'm helping the local economy rather than saving a million idr What goes around comes around. I am shocked at the attitude many westerners have towards tipping when traveling. I hear from dive guides/service providers of certain people from ( insert country here ) who are the most demanding yet never tip. Cheap priicks who should stay at home and abuse their own countrymen.

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I tip reasonably well after the last dive of the trip. I like all the boatmen and DM's to expect that as I leave they will get a nice bonus. This gives them a added incentive to be sure I am on the boat before they go home.

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Hi:

For 1 day diving from the shore or small boats, let's say 2 tanks for 60 to 80 usd I think that tipping around 10% is all right.

But what about when liveaboard companies suggest an "expected tip" around 10% of the cost of the trip?

I just don't see how items as fuel, boat and others equipments depreciation should be tipped for.

For me, if an expected tip is suggested in advance I'm kind of obligated to tip suggested amount and I consider it as part of the price before taking a decision about the trip.

 

About people tipping in advance, it looks to me like they would be trying to get something extra from the crew.

 

Regards!

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Hi:

For 1 day diving from the shore or small boats, let's say 2 tanks for 60 to 80 usd I think that tipping around 10% is all right.

But what about when liveaboard companies suggest an "expected tip" around 10% of the cost of the trip?

I just don't see how items as fuel, boat and others equipments depreciation should be tipped for.

For me, if an expected tip is suggested in advance I'm kind of obligated to tip suggested amount and I consider it as part of the price before taking a decision about the trip.

 

About people tipping in advance, it looks to me like they would be trying to get something extra from the crew.

 

Regards!

 

Why would you assume the tip goes to covering consumables like fuel and wear-and-tear on equipment? Sorry, but that just doesn't make sense. Gratuity is gratuity. The company suggests that if you like the service, a 10% tip is recommended. There is A LOT more to a liveaboard dive trip than fuel, boats, and equipment. You know, the people that cook your food on the boat, drive the boat, prep your gear, make sure your room is clean. That's what you're tipping for. Frankly, I'm a bit miffed how anyone would think a tip would go anywhere but to staff... I think you've just completely misunderstood what an "expected tip" is.

 

Someone getting something extra from the crew by tipping in advance is their choice and shouldn't concern you. Maybe they want a night dive, or an extra excursion something. I don't see any problem with that, and personally wouldn't pass judgment on someone that had the means to pay extra for something added.

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