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Any cruise virgin should be told BEFORE going on a cruise that many cruise lines automatically slap you with gratuity charges.
Different cruise lines have their own "tipping guidelines" that they use to charge you. Most charge on a per person/per day basis. With all of the people that expect to be tipped, this can get really pricey -- especially for large families.
Cruisers should know that a quick trip to the Purser's Desk can have those gratuities removed from your bill, and you'll be free to tip deserving persons accordingly.