- Below Deck -Season 7 Stew Courtney Explains How Tipping Works On The Show
Below Deck is the top rated show on Bravo, and for good reason. It gives us fresh faces every season (with the exception of two or three OGs), real-life work drama that we can all relate to, and insanely rich guests. Luxury baby! It really transports me back to a time when I worked in a restaurant and had become family with the people I worked with; hustling long hours, living off tips and the occasional toxic romance, it was great. It's nice to see people that you can relate to on a network that is usually full of characters that are so over the top.
So when I got to chat with Below Deck Season 7's Courtney Skippon, I had to pick her brain. Seeing as I was once a waitress, I needed the details on how the tipping works.
On the show, we see the primary charter guest hand over a wad of cash in a white envelope, but what's the real story? And, are the guests really as rich as they seem? Short answer, according to Courtney, is, basically an lol no. Here's what she had to say.
Sam Bush for The Dipp: Now, on the show, is the tip money the charter guests' actual money? It comes from the guest, for real?
Courtney Skippon: Yes. I don't know how it works exactly, they would make it so it looks like just the primary person gives it, but I think all of the guests would pool a tip.
Sam: Are they paying to be on the yacht? Or is it a free ride?
Courtney Skippon: I think it's at a discount. And then the tip is a percentage of the total cost of whatever it would be for three days on the yacht.
And then I think Molly and Justine's group [Ed. note: You remember Season 7's Molly and Justine... Justine was the "Instagram chef" from Charleston who fought with yacht chef Kevin Dobson, and Molly was the woman who flirted with Ashton Pienaar] ... Molly wanted to tip more, but some people didn't want to tip as much. And then it ended up their point person or whatever was the one who was presenting the tip, so it seemed like they weren't tipping at all.
Sam: What was the most toxic thing you witnessed on the show, obviously, besides experiencing Brian de Saint Pern? Did you have a guest that was particularly out of hand?
Courtney Skippon: Oh. Of course. I don't have any core memories, but this one really sticks with me. Kate and I were talking and something came up the other day. Someone reminded us. I think it was Michael. [Ed. note: You also remember Michael. He was the schwasted charter guest who was obsessed with Florida State. He requested a "college-style" party and a pirate-themed party. He was remarkably drunk the whole time, and we saw him inappropriately hit on third stew Simone Mashile.]
Anyways, him. That had the pirate party.
Sam: Ah, yes. The pirate party.
Courtney Skippon: And then he tipped the least out of any charter.
Sam: And sometimes I get secondhand embarrassment from these extremely wealthy people, because I'm just like, "Oh, my God. You guys are so insane."
Courtney Skippon: That's the thing. I think the type of people we get as guests, for the most part, there's obviously exceptions, they want to be on the show. They are thinking like, "Oh, it's fun. Let's just do that. It's a cheap vacay."
You're a specific kind of person that wants to be on TV and have cameras around all the time and have potentially shitty crew. It's someone who definitely wants to be flaunting their wealth on TV, but at the same time, they're someone who is taking a heavily discounted vacation.
If I can afford to go on a yacht, I'm not going to be on TV. I'm going to go on a yacht, and it's going to cost me 50 times the price that they're paying, so... are you that rich?
Sam: No. That makes a lot of sense when you put it like that. It's very much, and I always quote this, is like, "Money talks. Wealth whispers," kind of thing.