Hot on the Forums: Should You Befriend Cruise Crew on Facebook?

March 19, 2014 | By | 5 Comments

An officer, waitress, hotel manager, cabin attendant and several bar staff (oh dear, there might be a bit of a common theme developing with that one) are among my cruise crew buddies on Facebook.
There’s no doubt the social networking site makes it easy to keep in touch and see what everyone’s been up to on the water or dry land. But social media has also opened up a modern-day social minefield when it comes to etiquette.
I didn’t think twice about adding my newfound floating friends to my page, and I reckon it was about 50:50 on who made the suggestion to link up online in the first place.
But some Cruise Critic members think that asking to befriend your waiter or waitress – or any other crewmember for that matter – on Facebook is variously weird, creepy and a bit stalker-ish – or simply a no go area.
The subject has now cropped up on the forums. You have a great server and get on like a house on fire. Should you make the effort to stay in touch or wave a final farewell at the dockside? Some think there’s no harm in asking – the worst that can happen is they don’t accept your request and leave a minor dent in your pride.
The more cynical say it’s their job to be nice and treat you like a long-lost friend, suggesting they might agree to be your Facebook friend onboard because they don’t want to offend you – or end up with a lower tip.
Golfb4cruzing points out: “Do you friend the waiters at your local restaurant? After an 18 hour day, the last thing I want is to talk with someone I had to wait on.”
But it’s good to see there’s some heart-warming stories too, such as the couple who have cruised for over 30 years and originally kept in touch with crew members as pen pals via snail mail. Now they are up to speed with email and social media, corresponding with stewards, cruise directors, executive chefs, photographers and officers.
Some of us are happy to take it further. I’ve met my cabin stewardess friend in Hungary and Holland and fate brings us together next month – she has been assigned to a new river vessel I’m cruising on. Meanwhile, forum member Melinda and her group of 13 cruisers collectively “fell in love” with their drink server.
“We all friended him on Facebook and visit with him frequently and cruise on his ships when we can. When his little girl is in high school, hopefully she can be an exchange student and spend an academic year with one of us!”
So tell us: Where do you draw the virtual line?

    Comments

    5 Responses to “Hot on the Forums: Should You Befriend Cruise Crew on Facebook?”

    1. EileanT
      March 19th, 2014 @ 2:03 pm

      I have only friended one person that was staff onboard a cruise. Her name is Dragna and she was so sweet to my kids and my mother on our cruise… She even came to find us after the dolphin swim my kids had wanted… This was a big deal because I had suffered a spinal injury and wasn’t sure I could do it. She came to find us when we got back on the ship… And it was her off time. She found us on her own time to see how the kids did and if I had managed ok. I also discovered that she looked in on my mom who didn’t debark at that port… Also on her own time. My daughter (who is 11) talks to “D” all the time on FB. She is amazing… Glad I know her.

    2. Helene Camissar
      March 19th, 2014 @ 4:15 pm

      Yes we have certainly befriended crew members. What on earth could be wrong with that???? They are wonderful people and to be very honest, many of them I prefer to some people that I am forced to associate with. Always look forward to meeting up again with them. Staying in touch is such a treat and so meaningful

    3. neta platt
      March 19th, 2014 @ 4:41 pm

      We befriended our Concierge, nurse and doctor on the Breakaway after my almost fatal cruise. We only stay in contact with our concierge as she had been a friend from a previous cruise and we were so excited to have her again on the Breakaway. I think you just need to know when to draw the line and don’t get to personal.

    4. Brian Foster
      March 19th, 2014 @ 10:11 pm

      I only befriend crew members on FB if they have gone the extra distance to provide some service. Otherwise they’re just being trained to be courteous in their daily work. You know quite a few of the crew members do have businesses back in their own countries so I have a lot of respect for aspiring and goal-oriented people. Those few crew members really work hard in order to save up money to fuel their dreams.

    5. Sara Barron
      March 20th, 2014 @ 6:29 pm

      I was a crew member and I accepted friend request from certain people. Let be honest, why not? Of course you have to be careful who you friend (in general) but you also have to take into consideration the person as an individual.
      I worked as cruise staff, my job was to entertain guest. I ended up making some great friends (crew and pax) from all over the world. I was lucky enough to get to know those passengers a bit more through hostin trivia, dancing the night away and being able to talk to all the guest in the pool deck and shoreside.
      I didn’t respond to a few guest because I felt that we had nothing in common, or that they scared me (being an American female working onboard a cruise ship, I had to have my guard up.)
      I think everyone on social media can choose to accept or deny friend request… I never accepted to get a “good tip at bingo” or to get a “hospitality card”…. I accepted because I had a genuine interest of friending that person.
      Many passengers are also curious of a life of a cruise crew… I always directed them to “Cruise Ship Confidential” a book about a crew members contract. I also had to explain that not every ship or person is as crazy as that author makes it sound like.

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