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I'm confused about Tips vs Service Charges, HELP


New member
I am traveling on the Escape in January.

Bartenders receive an 18% automatic gratuity from all beverage service charges. Those purchasing beverages packages will be charged the 18% gratuity and service charge when purchasing the package.

I have read different info about this topic. If you get the "
Unlimited open bar (Premium Beverage Package) for two ($138.60 service charge per person not included)" will you be charged gratuity per drink when ordering them or does this Service Charge cover that?

Also, when it states a service charge daily of $15, is that the same as gratuities or will we be charged tips to our on board account once we are on the ship?

Last edited:


Staff member
Norwegian Premium Beverage Package Prepaid is $99.00 USD per person per day x Cruise Days plus 20% gratuity and beverage service charge. You pay the 20% gratuity on the $99, not per drink.

The daily $15 service charge/gratuities are separate that the beverage package. This $15 daily service charge is per person/per day and is basically the tips for the rest of the crew (other than bartenders) that includes restaurant staff, stateroom stewards, concierge and behind-the-scenes support staff.


New member
We will be on the Joy in Oct. 2020. We got our beverage package free, and did pre-pay the drink gratuity when we put down our initial deposit.

So the daily service charge, can that be pre-paid as well? Or as WildGrits suggested, is that only charged to your onboard ship account? I hate hassling with tabs while on vacation, would prefer to get it out of the way prior to departure. Thanks for any help.
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