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Old May 26, 11, 2:17 am   #1
 
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Should you buy a drink package on a cruise? Someone did the math.

I haven't put a pencil to drink packages on ships and always wondered their value. Here's an article with a summary of cruiselines' beverage packages.


Guide to help calculate if a drinks package -- or ā la carte pricing for bottled water, sodas, and alcohol -- makes more financial sense for your cruise.
http://www.frommers.com/articles/7316.html
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Old May 26, 11, 8:51 am   #2
 
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thanks linda! that was very helpful. i'm just about to go on a cruise in a few weeks and the coke plan was so expensive!
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Old May 26, 11, 9:18 am   #3
 
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DH drinks diet coke but has found that the dc out of the gun is pretty bad so we don't get the package. We did get it for the kids last cruise. For liquor, it was pointed out to me that the only deal is on the "drink of the day" and my vodka soda or wine would be cheaper without the package.
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Old May 26, 11, 11:31 am   #4
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buying bottled water is stupid.....i have reused a bottle many times when on lower priced lines....never had a problem with the ships water....also don't use bottled water at home....

if you are concerned about the ships water, be sure to avoid iced drinks....

good luck...
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Last edited by clacko; May 26, 11 at 11:52 am.
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Old May 26, 11, 2:38 pm   #5
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clacko View Post
buying bottled water is stupid.....i have reused a bottle many times when on lower priced lines....never had a problem with the ships water....also don't use bottled water at home....

if you are concerned about the ships water, be sure to avoid iced drinks....

good luck...
The ship's water does taste kind of funny though. A slice of lemon makes it taste acceptable.
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Old May 28, 11, 12:38 pm   #6
 
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My husband and I used a drink package on a Celebrity cruise to the Panama Canal. So nice not to have that bill at the end of the cruise. Had all the bottled water I wanted. Also smoothies, special coffee drinks and mocktails. Loved it!
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Old May 28, 11, 4:37 pm   #7
 
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Princess has a drink package that is awesome. They have a īkidīs packageī that is between the soda package and the alcohol package. In the package you can have canned sodas, rather than the guns, AND you can get virgin cocktails, and milkshakes. For those of us who donīt drink alcohol (or just a little bit).......and there seems to be more and more of us all the time, it is an awesome package. I think Pricess has a real competative advantage with this product, and I canīt believe that others have not copied them. If anyone knows of any other mid-range cruise lines that offers a similar package, please post it.
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Old May 29, 11, 5:41 am   #8
 
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You also need to consider if your cruise is port intensive or has many days at sea.

We are taking a 10 day Europe cruise and will be in ports on 8 days. On those days we will only have time for a quick drink before dinner and anything after. Since we will have busy port day the next day we will not stay out late. The package does not make sense for us on this type of cruise.
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Old May 29, 11, 4:41 pm   #9
 
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We're headign out on an 11 day cruise on Equinox next week. I looked at thigns and the drinks packages make sense if:

1) you tend to drink a lot (including specialty coffees, water,s etc, not just alcohol)

2) You are on a less port intensive itinerary (like a TA crossing).

Over on Cruise critic on the Celebrity board, someone put together a spreadsheet to calculate if it makes sense. I liek to drink (beer, wine, martinis) but due to being in port 8 of 11 days it didn't make sense for us for the entire cruise. I may change my mind part way through, but not for the whole cruise.

That being said, we will stop ahead of time on the way to Civitavecchbia and pick up cases of water and hopefully sodas before we board and can bring 2 bottles of wine per cabin on ship, so we should be fairly covered except for the martinis
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Old May 30, 11, 4:38 pm   #10
 
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Originally Posted by mileshound View Post
You also need to consider if your cruise is port intensive or has many days at sea.

We are taking a 10 day Europe cruise and will be in ports on 8 days. On those days we will only have time for a quick drink before dinner and anything after. Since we will have busy port day the next day we will not stay out late. The package does not make sense for us on this type of cruise.
That's a good point and something a cruise novice might not consider.
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Old May 31, 11, 10:21 am   #11
 
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I bought a water package from RC. Sure it was expensive, but it was convenient for my (and my traveling's party of 4) needs. It was sitting there in my stateroom once I got onboard.

We bought the lowest # of water bottles (8 large bottles, or roughly 16 regular sized bottle water, or roughly $2.5/regular sized bottle). You could buy it from the fridge if you need fewer. We finished all of it through our 3-day cruise. I tend to drink a lot of water normally anyway, so that was no problem. We had two port days and we planned to be out and about (booked a few excursions) and it was convenient to carry about smaller water bottles with us (especially on hot days). We also ended up buying another 2 bottles of water(at $1 each) at one of the ports because we finished the ones we carried and it was super hot out.

You could just bring an empty bottle and fill it up on the ship. That's just as easy. But since I'm trying to drink less soda and wanted the convenience, the package makes sense to me. I won't lie, it's definitely a bit on the expensive side (I was on the fence when trying to decide whether to buy it or not), but it was definitely convenient.
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Old Jun 4, 11, 6:00 pm   #12
 
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Has anyone ever snuck liquor onto a cruise?

I've never been on a cruise, but I have thought about putting rum in a saline solution bottle to have a rum & coke in the room (while she takes her sweet time getting ready) if we ever go on one.
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Old Jun 4, 11, 8:47 pm   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BOShappyflyer View Post
I bought a water package from RC. Sure it was expensive, but it was convenient for my (and my traveling's party of 4) needs. It was sitting there in my stateroom once I got onboard.
That's my reasoning for always buying a soda package on board; pure convenience. In the end, I figure that at worst I break even on a port intensive cruise, but a sailing with a bunch of sea days, I definitely come out ahead. I don't drink coffee, so I get my caffeine from Diet Coke, even with breakfast.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul79UF View Post
Has anyone ever snuck liquor onto a cruise?

I've never been on a cruise, but I have thought about putting rum in a saline solution bottle to have a rum & coke in the room (while she takes her sweet time getting ready) if we ever go on one.
There are literally thousands of threads on booze smuggling on Cruise Critic.
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Old Jun 4, 11, 8:51 pm   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul79UF View Post
Has anyone ever snuck liquor onto a cruise?

I've never been on a cruise, but I have thought about putting rum in a saline solution bottle to have a rum & coke in the room (while she takes her sweet time getting ready) if we ever go on one.

See these threads

Bringing alcohol aboard RCCL

Bringing Alcohol Aboard Carnival Cruise


And probably quite a few others for hints and tips.
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Old Jun 7, 11, 5:38 pm   #15
 
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I usually carry on two or four 2-litres or a 24 pack (give the 24 to the porters. They'll get it to your room). I abhor the taste of Diet Coke (I do like Coke, but on a cruise I'd rather use the calories on dinner -- though I probably eat 15 cokes' worth of food), so Diet Pepsi from shore is the only way I'll drink it.

Do any cruise lines use Pepsi products? I've only been on Celebrity, RCCL, and Princess.
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