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Gifts for hotel staff

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I agree with Armarillis, Cuba is a bit different. While we were there a waiter was given two party dresses for his daughters and we saw him cry while showing them to another waiter. Pantyhose, dispoable razors...things they need to have to work but are very expensive. Shoes are another expensive item. Cash can be good but Canadian $ is too hard for them to exchange, they don't want American and the system down there has tourists using one type of money and locals using another. They can exchange CCP but it is harder for them. We tipped our hotel staff by finding out if they had kids and gave them things (toys, jewlery, school supplies, clothes) for them. All seem to love this.

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hi i bought a pair of shoes from the on site shop,a waiter commented on them and asked where i got them when i told him he asked if i would get a pair for his wife and he would give me the money(they only cost a couple of pounds)i went and bought some and when i came back with them he came over straight away with the money, i told him i didn,t want it and they were a present he was absolutely overjoyed and so thankful,as i said they didn,t cost much but obviously the wages they get it would have been,x

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Lorraine,

That is such a nice gesture.

 

We have Cuban friends that we bring many gifts to as well, peanut butter, reading glasses, baby items, etc....

 

I am worried about our Cuban friends right now....

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amarillis View Post
Lorraine,
That is such a nice gesture.

We have Cuban friends that we bring many gifts to as well, peanut butter, reading glasses, baby items, etc....

I am worried about our Cuban friends right now....
Amarillis,
Have you got any news about your friends in Cuba, or your resort for that matter?

I was watching the news this morning and they were talking about things getting even worse girl_werewolf.gif

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I have heard nothing at all... I am anxiously awaiting a couple of emails from our resort, as well as an email from our friends.

 

Luckily, according to the BBC (CNN's coverage of Ike was terrible as usual, when Ike hit Cuba) although Varadero was evacuated, Ike avoided the peninsula, and the main problems for the area was a lot of rain and high winds.

 

I am hopeful that everything is well....

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Lots of these have already been covered, but in the past, I've brought pencils, colouring pencils, stickers (very popular), Canadian souvenir-type things (hats, etc...), hair accessories, gardening gloves for the gardeners (who work long hours and don't get tips like the chamber maids and restaurant staff do). Children's/babies' accessories like soothers and children's tylenol are also very much appreciated. Staff also appreciated getting advil/tylenol or toiletries.

A lot of the women like colourful tights/nylons or fishnets - especially if they are patterned.

Anyway, just my two cents. They are always very appreciative of anything you do give them and to me, the service is so outstanding, it's the least I can do to recognize it.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by saraece View Post
Shoes are another expensive item. Cash can be good but Canadian $ is too hard for them to exchange, they don't want American and the system down there has tourists using one type of money and locals using another. They can exchange CCP but it is harder for them. We tipped our hotel staff by finding out if they had kids and gave them things (toys, jewlery, school supplies, clothes) for them. All seem to love this.
All hotels have exchange booths and they can exchange money there. It is not an issue for them.

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Dimitri is absolutely right... but.... they cannot exchange coins... while there for my wedding a waiter sold my dad his toonies - he offered them to my dad 8 toonies for $10CUC... the toonies are worthless to them as they do not deal in canadian coins.

 

Also, my dear friend Maureen in Varadero had a CDN $20 that had marker writing all over it, she couldn't exchange it and was going to toss it, on the advice of her dad she emailed me to see if it was still good.... I told her it definately was and she saved it till we got there and I traded her for a crisp bill.

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We gave out a lot of cash & always left a dollar and a piece chocolate on the bed for whoever cleaned the room.

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When we stayed at Dreams Tulum, we tried to leave cash for housekeeping, but she wouldn't take it. We ended up leaving a note in Spanish (with our limited knowledge of the language) saying "Thank you. This money is for you." I think it was greatly appreciated because we received amazing service (above and beyond the awesomeness we already had) afterwards.

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