First the normal positive stuff. Great food, great service, perfect weather, great beach, fabulous room and very few hassles from the condo selling crowd and the beach vendors. The place is new and the doors, patio doors, safe and bathroom were all first class. The bed was huge and comfortable. The room had all the amenities you would expect from a 5 star hotel and the air conditioner was silent as was the ceiling fan. The temperature was between 25c and 30c every day and night. The super air conditioner made sleeping, wonderful. Dinner was very nice in all the restaurants but the portions were a little on the small side. You also get an appetizer and dessert so if they were to provide Canadian portions you might go home 10 lbs heavier. I am not sure if this is a complaint or not but I would add that you won’t go hungry.
Now for the real purpose of this post. I am a Canadian as were about 80% of the guests for the 10 days we stayed there from Nov 25, 2012 – Dec 5, 2012. On the web site for Westjet Vacations, it listed all the things included in the price and it also said “All taxes and gratuities”. I would think that the people at the resort would be very well paid compared to other resorts for tips to be included. They are NOT! I am not about to tell the management of Now Amber how much to pay their staff. The employees definitely weren’t forced to work there, however, tips are definitely not included.
When Canadians go out to a nice restaurant for supper, they normally pay about 15% of the bill to the waitress as a tip. I am not advocating that a tip is required if the service is lousy but you won’t find lousy service at Now Amber. Canadian waitresses also make about $10 per hour in wages while their “just as competent” counterparts at Now Amber make as little at $5-$10 per day. Yes, per day. Even a $1 tip is significant to these wonderful people.
I recommend taking at least $25 American for each day of your stay. A dollar for a drink for you and your partner, $2 for breakfast, $3 for lunch and $5 for your supper. Leave at least $3 per day for the lady who cleans your room. Don’t provide these tips as a way of getting preferred service over other guests. Do it because it is the right thing to do as these people will give you an excellent vacation. It is Canadian and it will make you feel better about yourself AND you won’t have to hide the fact you are a Canadian. If you don’t want to tip, please pretend to be something other than a Canadian. Don’t embarrass the rest of us.
I spoke to one of the head waiters and he said only about 1 in 5 give a tip. If you can’t afford a few hundred extra dollars for a week or more in heaven, then please just stay home. I was appalled when I found out just how cheap all these fellow Canadians actually were. Stop it.
If you visit Now Amber yourself and you agree with me, please include your take on tips in your revue so that all Canadians that visit will read that taking tip money isn’t optional.
PS My wife and I aren’t rich, just very average, like most Canadians. We just believe that the people at this resort deserve our respect and a little financial thank you that won’t hurt us and will definitely help them. To all my new friends at Now Amber, thanks for a great holiday.
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