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  1. #1

    Default Now I'm confused

    Just read this review on TA “It was good...but we were disappointed.”
    I take all reviews with a little pinch of salt - everyone likes different things after all and we are so looking forward to visiting CSA for the first time in October. What has me confused is the comment towards the end of this review about tipping and staff telling you they expect to be tipped. I have no objection to rewarding good service but I don't want to break rules or get anyone in trouble. Can anyone put this to bed once and for all please? Should we tip or not (even if not overtly)? Grateful for advice here :0)

  2. #2


    No tipping except spa ladies and cat crew. I have never been approached about a tip in 4 trips to CSA and one to CSS. NO TIPPING!

  3. #3


    Don't tip unless they are NOT part of the Couples staff (like the spa staff, shuttle drivers, and cat cruise crew are OK to tip)

  4. #4


    Randymon has posted about this many many times. Tips are not allowed for any other than Spa employees, shuttle drivers and baggage handlers at the airport, none of whom are Couples employees. Maybe he needs to make a sticky at the top of the page that addresses this.

  5. #5


    If that was the review then they probably never were at Couples in the first place. It is made very clear when you go that there is no tipping allowed (except Spa and Cat Crew). Probably a bogus review.

  6. #6


    On my way to Couples for the sixth time and I have never even had a hint of anyone looking for a tip. You do tip baggage handlers at the airport ($2 per bag), the drivers who transport you to the resort, and the crew on the catamaran as they are not Couples employees. There is also optional tipping allowed at the salon and spa but that is it. No employee is going to risk being fired, yes...they can get fired, for asking to receive a tip. I have wanted to tip several because of the fantastic service but had to fight the urge. Just remember the names of those who stand out and tell management on the comment slip or here on this message board. That is reward enough.

  7. #7


    We have been to CSA 6 times I believe. I have neve felt like anyone expected a tip or anyway implied they expected a tip. Service was always top notch.

  8. #8


    On our first trip we knew it was supposed to be no tipping but since this MB is monitored maybe its no tipping wink wink. So we went with a wait and see attitude.
    So we get to the resort , check -in and the gentleman carries our bags to what has to be most wonderful room in the world drops our bags show us how to work the a/c and off he goes to help someone else. Even if we wanted to he was didnt wait around for a tip. It was like that everwhere on the resort, no one hinted nor did we have that awkward moment where they wait for you to tip. Couples is really a no tipping resort except for the spa! So unless your leaveing the resort you can put your money away.

  9. #9


    except for the spa staff and the cat cruise folks (who don't work for couples anyways) you shouldn't be tipping. that said, my brother-in-law was asked for a tip by a bell boy at CN and i've seen the bar tender at the couples lounge in the airport take tips. last year at CSS the waiter for our private dinner mentioned receiving tips from other guests and had me thinking he was fishing for a tip from me, but i didn't do it. i don't carry cash around the resort so i couldn't have tipped him even if i had wanted to.

  10. #10


    I agree with everyone else. We've been to CTI once and CSA twice and have never been approached for tips by a member of the Couples staff. The only time I've heard of anyone asking or sometimes demanding tips is the baggage handlers at the airport. We usually tip them a $1 a bag or $5 whichever is handy at the time. I do bring small items like chocolate bars, bags of M&Ms or small bags of salted peanuts and leave them for our maid every morning as a token of our appreciation. They've never asked for anything and on the rare occasion that we've bumped into them they've told us how much they appreciate the gesture. Enjoy your stress free Couples vacation in Paradise!

  11. #11


    Just got home from CSA on Sunday...not one tip, hint for a tip, thought of guilt because I didn't tip (other than they certainly deserve it but I know it's not allowed) for any employee at any time. I felt horrible because I didn't realize we could tip on cat cruise so I didn't take any $$ with me - I will next time though!! I tipped the bus driver to and from the resort, I tipped at the spa, no baggage carriers or I would have tipped them also. Oh and I got married so I tipped the minister. Other than that-NO TIPPING! Gifts? Sure, take a gift for anyone you think might deserve bar filler guy, room cleaning crew etc. Something they can use/something special (make sure you include a note so they can prove it was a gift) but this is a kind gesture, certainly not a requirement. And the staff won't treat you any different than anyone else - we are all treated like royalty!! - pix from CSA 8/18-8/25

  12. #12


    I know the policy/rule is no tipping, but I definitely experienced some employees who expected and accepted a tip. Not anyone out in the public (bars, restaurants, etc.), but every time we asked for something to be sent to the room (room service, luggage delivery), I got the impression they were lingering for a tip. We did tip them because we felt really uncomfortable.

  13. #13


    NO TIPPING ..... other than the people that others have already told you about. They may "hint" but that doesn't mean you should because they know the rules ..... The employees can lose their jobs over taking a tip so don't put their jobs in danger. You will get the same great service without a tip & yes, it's hard not to tip those that make your stay special but as Randymon has said so many times that it's also all the people behind the scenes that make our stays special not just the bar/wait/housekeeping/watersports/entertainment staff that are out there in front every day.

  14. #14


    We were at TI last year and never once felt pressure or awkwardness from a Couples employee expecting a tip. Not once. We even had to seek out the spa ladies to tip them.
    It shocks me when I hear that people had an experience with a Couples employee expecting a tip. I've heard of that happening at other resorts, but not Couples.

  15. #15


    NewYorker that is really surprising to us. In three trips, we've had luggage delivered from room to room, had managers & workers fix our in room safes & A/C units and had many deliveries of our early morning room service trays. No one has ever asked or inferred that they needed to be tipped. On occasion a manager would stay in the room after any work had been done to make sure we were totally satisfied or needed anything else. We did not feel that he was implying that we needed to tip him for doing his job. Only on one occasion many years ago while staying at CTI, my wife was asked by one of the guys working in the water sports room if she wanted him to get her some bottles of rum. When she told me that she ordered two bottles from the guy I got mad telling her that it's not his job to sell us rum. She felt guilty that she had already ordered it so we should just get it from him. I agreed not to make a fuss and when we got to the airport on our way home I saw the same bottles of rum cheaper in the duty free store. That was the only time we felt like any employee at Couples tried to take advantage of us. Hopefully no one else has been made to feel imposed upon by any of the current Couples employees.

  16. #16


    Quote Originally Posted by NewYorker View Post
    We did tip them because we felt really uncomfortable.
    How will you feel if they lose their job? Were the rules unclear to you?

  17. #17

    Default Thanks

    Thanks all for the advice ~ will stick to tipping non-employees only but will bring small gifts for other staff. I don't want to appear ungrateful for good service and don't want to make a huge mistake on our first visit to a couples resort.

    Can't wait to get there ~ 196 days to go!

  18. #18


    Quote Originally Posted by KrisJamie View Post
    How will you feel if they lose their job? Were the rules unclear to you?
    Obviously, I would feel terrible if that happened. I don't think my post warranted such a hostile response, I was only trying to let the poster know what my experience was, I certainly wasn't telling anyone that we should tip in violation of the rules.

  19. #19


    Quote Originally Posted by NewYorker View Post
    Obviously, I would feel terrible if that happened. I don't think my post warranted such a hostile response, I was only trying to let the poster know what my experience was, I certainly wasn't telling anyone that we should tip in violation of the rules.

    I see where NY'er is coming from. Last year we had breakfast delivered and the gentleman came in to set the tray on our table.....and stayed, and stayed, and stayed. I was in nothing but a robe, and my husband was under the covers in nothing but a smile....VERY uncomfortable. I posted my review....shocker, the message board did not post it. Will we go back? Yes, we always do, but management needs to really drive this home with their employees.
    Jamie & David
    CN 11/2005 & 10/2008 & 11/2011
    CSS 9/2007, 9/2009, 9/2010, 11/2011, 9/2012, 9/2013
    CTI 9/2013, 11/2015- I think this will be our last couples trip

  20. #20


    What sort of gifts should we bring for the staff? I've heard chocolates mentioned and bath and body products.

  21. #21


    We generally bring a ton of paperbacks to read on the beach, and then as we're done, we leave them (usually) with our housekeeper along with a note. Or if another staffer comments on the book, I'll tell them it's theirs when I'm done. People seem to enjoy getting these, and it certainly lightens the load for the trip back!

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