7 Ways to Get Free Drinks on a Cruise

November 7, 2011 | By | 194 Comments

Booze Week 2011 lives on with one of our favorite subjects: free drinks. At-sea alcohol prices are anything but cheap, but savvy cruisers know how to keep from drowning in their bar bill.
Here are seven tips for scoring free cocktails on a cruise (and here are 9 more):
Loyalty pays … in booze. When it comes to gratis pours, cruise lines can be generous with their past passengers. Sail just once with Holland America and you can attend the complimentary Mariner Champagne Brunch. Amass 200 days at sea, and you’ll get the Champagne brunch, a complimentary wine tasting, plus half off wine packages. Royal Caribbean ups the ante by hosting open-bar nightly cocktail events for its hardcore repeaters. Read more about cruise line past passenger programs.
Attend a party. Disney Cruise Line‘s captain’s cocktail party, which is open to all passengers on formal night, provides complimentary drinks. In fact, for most lines, the master’s formal introduction is made as servers dart about with booze-topped trays. Sometimes it’s the goodbyes that are worth celebrating. Carnival Cruise Lines tries to make a strong impression with its Farewell Fun Party, a free-flowing event that’s often poorly attended (readers say it’s not well advertised). Princess Cruises holds a similar farewell soiree on cruises of 14 nights or longer.
Check out an art auction. At-sea art auctions and free cheap sparkling wine go together like surrealists and curly moustaches. Whether you bid, buy or pass, the drinks are free. (Should you bid, buy or pass? Learn more about cruise ship art auctions.)
Look for 2-for-1’s. On a recent sailing aboard Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas, a number of bars advertised hour-long BOGO specials. We stumbled onto such a happy hour at the crystal-and-drape-covered Champagne & Martini bar, and stumbled out after doubling up on the normally $8 to $10 concoctions. Peruse the daily newsletter for time and place.
Upgrade to luxury. On upscale lines like Seabourn, all alcoholic beverages — including French Champagne — are included in the fare, plus there’s a stocked bar in every suite. (Note: Ultra-premium wines typically cost extra.) Naturally, you’ll be paying substantially more up front to sail on a luxury ship.
Sit down at the tables. As long as you’re splashing chips (or inserting pennies) in Vegas or Atlantic City establishments, the beer tap remains open. Not so at sea. Comped beverages generally aren’t part of the action — unless you’re a player. Sign up for Norwegian Cruise Line‘s Casinos at Sea Players Club, make sure have the pit boss swipe your card each time you play, and you could be on your way to getting free drinks. A representative for Norwegian’s casino reservation center said players need to accrue 1,500 seabucks to get the coveted “drink card.” Without going into too much details, that requires a bit of dedication (time and dollars). But there’s an easier way: Harrah’s Total Rewards card holders (membership is free) who book a cruise through Norwegian’s Casinos at Sea can get the drink card. Just be sure to mention your TR status when booking.
Suite guests stay lubricated. Book a Grand Suite or up on a Royal Caribbean ship, and you’ll have access to the Concierge Club Lounge, found on Enchantment of the Seas and all Radiance-, Voyager-, Freedom- and Oasis-class ships. There are nightly happy hours — actually happy 3.5 hours — during which servers dole out equal parts conversation and Chardonnay.
Have your own secrets to getting free drinks at sea — like over-tipping a favorite bar tender? Share them in the comments section.
Learn everything about cruise booze in our Ultimate Guide to Drinking at Sea.
Are all-you-can-drink packages worth it? Find out..
Discover 5 lines that let you BYOB.
Get the low-down on cruise line alcohol policies
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    194 Responses to “7 Ways to Get Free Drinks on a Cruise”

    1. Scott
      November 7th, 2011 @ 1:40 pm

      On some cruise lines, there is another way we have saved money on cocktails a few times. Some of the lines offer bottles of liquor via room service. So we often will order a bottle of vodka, and a six pack of seven up or sprite, and mix our own vodka seven cocktails. It actually can save a lot of money, and you can have a cocktail in your room instead of having to go find a bar and wait in line.

    2. Linda Carl
      November 7th, 2011 @ 1:41 pm

      my husband have alway found that if we frequent the same bar staff during the majority of the cruise and be sure to tip generously, we get excellent service. May not always be free, but the bar staff tend to be more generous also We also make sure to ask our favorite bar staff in what locations they will be during the day!

    3. Sonya Sherow
      November 7th, 2011 @ 7:26 pm

      Carnival Cruise Lines has the welcome back party where they give away prizes and the free drinks are all around. My sister loves this night!

    4. Cruisin paige
      November 9th, 2011 @ 9:20 am

      Two words: rum runners. And I’m not talking about the cocktail by that name;-)

    5. Sara mc
      November 9th, 2011 @ 9:54 am

      Oceania has liberal policies on bringing your own booze and wine on board. Also very good pricing on special drinks and 2 for 1 at happy hour daily. Free booze at welcome on party.

      Also they don’t charge for sodas, or special coffe like cappuccinos. So you can get free mixer for that booze in your room

    6. Leigh-Ann
      November 9th, 2011 @ 9:55 am

      Carnival also had a goodbye party. Free drinks and a great band. Wasn’t too busy either. Well worth the stop.

    7. Matty
      November 9th, 2011 @ 10:15 am

      The so called Free with upscale lines or cabins is not free. It is built into the pricing, just like gratuities. Many of the ships facilities and amenities on upscale do not justy the variance in cost.

    8. Harry
      November 9th, 2011 @ 10:38 am

      I just finished a cruise with NCL on their ship named the Star. The ship may have been a star but the entire staff was a ugly asteriod, We were betting anywhere from $25.00 to $100.00 per hand at many blackjack tables and recieved only one drink the entire cruise. That was a first for me and my bride of 26 plus years. We have enjoyed over 35 cruises on many different lines and have always been taken care of in the casino, but not this one!!! The NCL Star truly SUCKS!!!!!

    9. Jerry
      November 9th, 2011 @ 10:58 am

      Just returned from a 14 day Hawaii cruise on Holland. Not only did the casino buy several drinks for us through out the cruise, they also sent a bottle of wine to our dinner tabnle one evening.

    10. Mary Jane
      November 9th, 2011 @ 11:25 am

      We just got off the Carnival Fascination and we only found out about the Farewell Fun Party because we were at the casino and someone told us about it. It was not advertised at all and there were only a few of us in there. The staff did have plenty of free drinks to pass around and we enjoyed it very much.

    11. Tom
      November 9th, 2011 @ 12:00 pm

      Loyalty Club Membership! We’ve sailed almost exclusively on RCI and are Crown and Anchor members. They always have parties on-board for C&A members serving free wine or champagne and hor dourves. The quality of the wine is usually acceptable (as good as we drink at home) and there is typically an event every three or four days.

    12. Selena
      November 9th, 2011 @ 12:50 pm

      On our last Carnival cruise we found the Martini tasting package great. For $12 we received 4 mini martinis that were very stout and delicious. Will definitely be looking for this on our next cruise in December.

    13. gale
      November 9th, 2011 @ 12:52 pm

      Traveled on Holland America Amsterdam, 3 weeks, Panama Canal. Had 2 for 1 drinks every evening at Happy Hour in the Crow’s Nest.

    14. Nancy Tugayli
      November 9th, 2011 @ 2:54 pm

      As a repeat cruiser on carnival we always go to
      the repeaters party Plenty of free drinks for an hour or so.

    15. Mike
      November 9th, 2011 @ 2:57 pm

      Second that to Selena’s reply on the Martini package. It was very cheap, very strong, and enough for two of us to drink and be “good” for most of the night. Check it out.

    16. Jenny
      November 9th, 2011 @ 3:20 pm

      As Elite loyalty members with Princess, we receive a free mini-bar selection on embarkation day. Too bad we don’t drink alcohol at all, but we can usually find someone who does!!

    17. Kim
      November 9th, 2011 @ 3:23 pm

      On Princess, we always buy ourselves a “Bon Voyage gift” or two. Liquor is a particularly good deal, comparable to our prices in Ohio (and includes gratuity!). Extra bonus — when the gift is set up in your room, it includes a nice set of glasses to use during the cruise. You are not supposed to take these drinks out of the cabin, but we have never been questioned when doing so.

    18. Anne
      November 9th, 2011 @ 3:32 pm

      We are on the Celebrity ‘Select’ tier, one of the perks is a free wine tasting seminar. It was interesting and there were 6 wine ‘tasters’ – great if you enjoy wine!

    19. Jill Pace
      November 9th, 2011 @ 3:46 pm

      Check out the “drink of the day” usually listed on the daily program.

    20. Alan Nichols
      November 9th, 2011 @ 4:19 pm

      Sailed Azamara Quest from Israel to Greece. Great cruise – all inclusive including free gratuity and wine/beer with meals. Meals could last from 6 – 10 PM. Wine selection changed daily with 2 selections in Red and White. But the trick is that any wine selected for serving was available on any day so we chose two or three favorites and had a blast every meal. Love my ZA or AUS Shiraz and NZ Sauv Blanc. Don’ think I will travel any other line in the future.

    21. Tom
      November 9th, 2011 @ 4:43 pm

      I don’t drink except for a beer every once & awhile; same for my wife with a wine. So, we usually don’t drink anything if we have to pay for it. lol cheapo’s.

      But, a couple of cruises ago, a tablemate said that what he does is tape a couple of bottles of booze (the flat bottles) to his legs when he boards. That way he can have a couple drinks a day & not get ripped off.

      Now that’s cheap, but I don’t begrudge him that since I feel that the lines are really ripping us off in these constant charges, even for soda’s.

    22. Stan
      November 9th, 2011 @ 4:58 pm

      As RCCL Diamond Plus members, we get free drinks in the Concierge Lounge, plus several bottles of wine during the cruise in the dining room and cabin.

      We’re also Elite on Princess, and as Jenny stated above, get a free initial setup in our cabin’s mini-bar.

    23. Mke MacLean
      November 9th, 2011 @ 6:13 pm

      Comment number 4 hit it on the head. I have cruised many times and not once had a problem with rum runners being found in the luggage.

    24. Monkey Supervisor
      November 9th, 2011 @ 6:29 pm

      We were actually gifted a bottle of champagne once from the Art Auction staff. We’d purchased several pieces (small ones) over the course of a 10 day cruise and when we went in to finalize our paperwork, the had a bottle sent to us with their complements. It was a really nice surprise and certainly made us smile. We shared the bottle with some friends and it made for a lovely evening!

    25. speedlady
      November 9th, 2011 @ 6:55 pm

      We “worked” very hard to become Elite on Celebrity. Now we have access to the Elite lounge, which includes a lovely breakfast with mimosas or bloody Mary’s, cappucino, etc., plus the BIG bonus, nightly happy hour with hot and cold hors d’oeuvres, all free! No wonder we are dedicated Celebrity cruisers.

    26. Bob
      November 9th, 2011 @ 6:57 pm

      Taping bottles of booze to his legs?
      I must admit I’ve never cruised before, and I’ve heard they don’t want you to bring your own booze with you, but do they actually inspect you luggage? Do they ever do strip searchs?????

    27. Max Entropy
      November 9th, 2011 @ 7:01 pm

      Free drinks tip #8:
      Never underestimate the power of a tube of lipstick and a pushup bra to bend the will of men.

    28. Katria
      November 9th, 2011 @ 8:51 pm

      I have traveled Carnival many times. They do allow you to take a bottle of wine per person on board. They check luggage so don’t hide anything. But, they also allow water and soda in limited quantities, so you can always put alcohol in bottles. But the best way to save is to buy drink coupons ahead of time. It will save a lot in the long run, if you are a drinker. Saved me about $100 on my last cruise.

    29. Richard
      November 9th, 2011 @ 10:02 pm

      I did a transatlantic crossing on the Queen Mary 2 last year. As a repeat customer, I found a full size bottle of champagne in my stateroom upon arrival. I then went to the art auction at sea, was served free champagne, and as the first person to make a purchase at the auction, the auctioneer threw in another bottle of champagne. Lastly, whenever I went to the Commodore Club, I was served by the same server. By the third night of the crossing, she would already have my cocktail waiting for me as soon as she saw me enter the club. In fact, one night, when I was going to be late for dinner, I left the bar without settling up my bill. The next evening I went back to the commodore club and she simply had my previous nights bill waiting for me. Nothing was said other than a good chuckle about it. She took care of me, and I took well care of her as well.

    30. Pam
      November 9th, 2011 @ 10:04 pm

      As for Carnival, make note that they do allow one bottle per person brought on board, but you MUST take it with you in person through the checkin line. DO NOT put it in your checked bag. I did not read that * line close enough & I out mine in my checked bag & when I got to my room, my suitcase had been opened & a note inside that said an item has been taken that is against our policies, you will get it back when you disembark. There is no getting it back until you go to leave. I was also informed that if you do declare it on your way, you can take it, but they charge a “cork” fee to open the bottle, but I have no idea what that fee is. Does anyone know what they actually charge to open it?

    31. Heidi
      November 9th, 2011 @ 10:35 pm

      I just got of a Carnival cruise in MIA. I normally hide my rum in an ice tea bottle but this year I put vodka in my water bottles. The port security got smart and took the bottles out of the plastic wrap from the store and shook each one to check out the bubbles. They snagged the only 4 bottles I put vodka in and let me go with the rest of the water. I waived goodbye to my good vodka and stormed away to buy minis at the first port where I got through security with them (but not too many of them).

    32. lyn mcglade
      November 9th, 2011 @ 11:31 pm

      Princess cruises do allow you to bring a bottle on board per passenger WINE OR SPARKLY. and also have a farewell dinner with free drinks.
      The Auctions are also a way to get free drinks.
      We got caught bringing WINE onboard mid cruise (in big pockets)!! with NCL.
      The scanners pick up everything
      so best just hand it in and they will give it back end of cruise. Its $15.00 corkage otherwise dearer than the wine!! LYN

    33. cj
      November 9th, 2011 @ 11:55 pm

      What is a Rum Runner?

    34. Art
      November 10th, 2011 @ 1:59 am

      Some tips which we use on our cruises:
      1.) On-board wine tasting. The last one we did cost about $5 each and we had what amounted to about 5 full glasses of wine.
      2.) On Princess they serve a “Pina Colada Soup” with some dinners. This “soup” is remarkably cold and full of alcohol. For those who still haven’t caught on, IT’S A FREAKIN’ FREE PINA COLADA!
      3.) I’ve always taken my on bottle of Jack Daniels on board Princess and Carnival. I then buy an unlimited soda card for around $25 and mix my own in my room and then go back on deck. (Note: make sure you put it in a zip lock bag and pad it well so it doesn’t break. My friend says that they now make flat plastic blister bags specially designed for this to pack in your luggage.)

    35. Monique
      November 10th, 2011 @ 2:59 am

      The best is to drink water…..
      CO2 good for you!

    36. Sean
      November 10th, 2011 @ 7:33 am

      @ Harry, it is not just the “STAR” it is NCL, their service is terrible. I believe that the entire line could use a lesson in service. I’m done with that line…unless someone else pays for it.

    37. Brian
      November 10th, 2011 @ 9:02 am

      1. Rum Runners work great. Just went on a Carnival cruise with a bunch of people and everyone else in the group tried the water bottles, but they’ve wised up. I put my sodas and water in my carry-on and security opened it up and inspected the seals on each of the bottles. I put my rum runners in my checked bags and was the only one who didn’t have anything confiscated.

      2. Drink coupons. Carnival has them on the bon voyage website. They include gratuity so you save there. Go to the casino and get a bunch of $1 bills to use as additional gratuity when you use your coupons. Some of the staff stick to the rules and request your card to cover anything above the alotted amount, but you’ll find out who will go above and beyond to make you that kicked-up drink. By the end of the trip, I was getting a full regular glass of whisky and a can of coke.

    38. Brian
      November 10th, 2011 @ 4:23 pm

      Holland America usually has two for one Happy Hours. At the Captains party and repeaters party they usually serve wine, champagne and orange juice. Don’t be afraid to ask for a martini, scotch or a non-alcohol beer. Princess has the in room stocked mini bar for Elite passengers. If you ask, they will stock it with free diet coke or other beverages if you don’t drink.

    39. gary
      November 11th, 2011 @ 12:38 am

      #35 CO2 good for you! ???

      Perhaps H20 good for you?

    40. NANCY
      November 12th, 2011 @ 9:38 pm

      What is a rum runner and where can i buy one???

    41. Mary
      November 14th, 2011 @ 12:32 am
    42. Lory
      November 14th, 2011 @ 4:14 pm

      Oceania Regatta has a BOGO most nights. Great cruise line all around.

    43. Barbara
      November 14th, 2011 @ 11:31 pm

      Join in on one of the hosted singles cruises & they have multiple special evenings with unlimited free cocktails!

    44. Ginny
      November 23rd, 2011 @ 1:27 pm

      We have cruised on Princess many times and learned about five years ago that they allow you to bring wine or beer onboard in every port. Each person is allowed a bottle of wine or a sixpack of beer. When we cruised around New Zealand, we always bought wine in port to try the different wineries and found some lovely, inexpensive wine.

    45. Joe
      November 23rd, 2011 @ 3:54 pm

      If the line say no bringing of booze aboard that why do some of you INSIST on breaking the cruise lines laws???????????????????????

      What do you say to your kid when they ask????

      Do as I say not as I do???????????


    46. Charles
      November 23rd, 2011 @ 5:14 pm

      On a 7 day Fred Olsen cruise this summer, we had 4 cocktail parties? Captain’s cocktail party, Captain’s farewell party, Oceans (loyalty club) cocktail party and Connoisseur (travel agent) cocktail party. All with free drinks and nibbles!

    47. Teresa
      November 30th, 2011 @ 9:47 am

      To my surprise on my August Carnival Dream cruise, they did not offer FREE drinks at the Captain’s party, or the repeat guest party–the drinks are reduced price but the lines were so long for those and free appetizers, who in their right minds would wait for a reduced price martini?

    48. ME
      December 1st, 2011 @ 8:48 am

      @ Joe

      Overreact and self righteous much? Rum Runners for life!

    49. Tim
      December 5th, 2011 @ 2:19 pm

      I agree with Linda on comment #2. Find a good bartender, tip generously and ask them what bars they’ll be working in the coming days. They will treat you right with strong pours and drinks that never find their way to your tab.

    50. Tim
      December 5th, 2011 @ 2:22 pm

      Also, I will put one bottle of vodka in my checked bag and if it makes it great, if it doesn’t, no great loss. Its never been confiscated. Perhaps it helps to book higher end rooms, not sure why the success.

    51. Joanne Hice
      December 5th, 2011 @ 3:37 pm

      I agree with the NCL comments. We went on them for the first time last March. The food and service were horrible!!!
      I also agree with the comments regarding Carnival. We have been totally happy with them. We attend the Welcome Back cocktail party and somehow I end up with over 1,500 points in the Casino so get the free drink card. I’ve heard of the Goodbye party but always forget about it when on the ship so always miss it.

    52. Samantha
      December 5th, 2011 @ 3:59 pm

      You can buy bottles of vodka, rum, wine to be delivered to your room on Carnival for just slightly more than buying a bottle before you go. Saves tons of money rather than buying drinks at the bars.

    53. Cruise Critic
      December 5th, 2011 @ 4:52 pm

      @Samantha, another reader wrote in with this fantastic tip. You do have to pay Carnival’s bon voyage prices, which we’re seeing as $40 for Absolut (for example), but that’s still an outstanding savings over the onboard prices.

    54. Drew Gillespie
      December 7th, 2011 @ 2:14 pm

      Take a river cruise. We are taking a Viking river cruise in Europe and were told we could bring anything we wanted on board. Booze. Beer. Wine. They volunteered the information. Best of all, nor corkage fees. It is common practice to buy booze or wine in each port and bring it on board for dinner. Plus, wine and beer are complimentary at night. Plus staff much better than on a liner.

    55. Janna
      December 7th, 2011 @ 3:47 pm

      NCL has Latitudes parties, and you can also enter to have dinner with a Snr. Officer (they choose who) plenty of free wine and booze there.

      I love NCL, great staff, good food and wonderful atmosphere. I had an all around horrid experience with Carnival, no free booze, no free anything just nickled and dimed to death.

    56. Betty
      December 7th, 2011 @ 4:24 pm

      NCL does not honor the Harrah’s Reward Card for free drinks in the Casino. Mis information

    57. Cruise Critic
      December 7th, 2011 @ 6:02 pm

      Betty, no one is saying that you can use your TR card to get a free drink in an NCL casino. We say … if you book your NCL cruise vis a vis TR, they will supply you with a special drink card that can be used in the casino.

    58. lynn montero
      December 7th, 2011 @ 10:57 pm

      just sailed a 3 night cruise on rcl out of port canaveral, fl. Had 1 bottle of wine in my luggage they must be scanning luggage now-when they didn’t deliver my bag I went down and there it sat with MANY others- they asked me if I had anything I said yes one bottle of wine- I opened the bag they semi searched it and took the wine- labeled it and gave me a ticket to pick up monday morning as I got off the ship – oh well no big deal

    59. Deidra Kennedy
      December 8th, 2011 @ 9:22 am

      On the HAL’s Zaandam, we were delighted to find the ice cream dessert bar at the buffet was doling out (you need to request it) large, overflowing tablespoons of delicious liqueurs on top of the vanilla ice cream–Wowza! They even offered coconut rum as well–Gratis!

    60. cargo pants
      December 9th, 2011 @ 10:35 am

      Wear cargo pants, rum runner flask in each pocket

    61. Didikay
      December 9th, 2011 @ 3:34 pm

      Lynne, I also returned this morning from a RCCL
      4 night cruise and had 2 bottles of liquor confiscated!I put them in my checked baggage. As they were not full,(3/4) they were not returned to me! Right down the drain they said!
      Alcohol abuse! Maybe I will have to check into a rum-runner! LOL…

    62. Missy
      December 10th, 2011 @ 7:31 pm

      I have found the checking to be very haphazard. Got on one ship in the Pacific with a 2 litre huge square bottle of Jim Beam in my backpack after a day out and about. No problems. Maybe because it was so big they thought it was soda/soft drink. Other people were being made to hand in their normal size bottles. On a Caribbean cruise this year on Celebrity got back on in one port with a 1 litre OP rum bottle no questions asked two ports later had a 1 litre coco bacardi bottle taken and returned at the end of the cruise. The craziest thing was that they wouldn’t let my partner back on board in one port with a small bottle of beer. He had to drink it there. We wanted it as a souvenir for my 88 year old dad. Different beers from around the world were about the only thing he enjoyed getting as a gift. Unfortunately he never got to try it and has since died.
      I’m wondering if the new scanning machines they are trialing that will allow you to take liquid on board planes again will be able to detect alcohol in your luggage and carry on or on your person.

    63. Diane
      December 13th, 2011 @ 12:00 pm

      I guess the real question is why this has to be an issue. I feel like a high school student. I am on vacation and I am an adult, why do I have to sneak drinks? Drinks onboard are ridiculously expensive and very dilute. Why go on a cruise if you can go on an all inclusive land vacation and be treated like an adult. Cruise lines need to wise up.

    64. Jim
      December 21st, 2011 @ 6:45 am

      LOL. Most of these are anything BUT free. You pay at the bar or you pay WAY more through bookings, gambling, upgrades, etc.

      Not to say these aren’t legit, but hardly “free” boozing.

    65. Lilyrose123
      December 21st, 2011 @ 8:11 am

      Just came off the Celebrity Solstice in November, and I received a bottle of Champagne (Ships Champagne) for my Birthday, Another Bottle wine at our Dinner table on the last night from the Restaurant manager, because we had to wait so long for our meals each night. And then I had a bottle of champagne waiting for me when I boarded because they made a mistake about my date of birth. Plus there was booze on the Captains Welcome aboard, Senior Officers Party and I was invited to a Wine tasting. So Hail to the Solstice. It was a wonderful Birthday Cruise.

    66. Jack
      December 21st, 2011 @ 9:04 am

      Some liquor stores sell 1 oz. platic packets of different types of booze (rum, whisky, brandy), sort of like a big ketchup packet. They are little pricey $2.00 or so each but they get through airport and all other types of security. But nice if you want to bring an assortment of a half dozen or so on board.

    67. Mark
      December 21st, 2011 @ 9:19 am

      I agree with Diane. Charge a bit more for passage if necessary, but lower (or eliminate) the price for drinks and allow passengers to BYOB.

    68. Joanne Zielke
      December 21st, 2011 @ 9:24 am

      We were on a Carnival Cruise and had a bottle of wine in a carry on bag. At embarkation an enthusiastic crew person took it along with our regular luggage on board. I hadn’t given it a thought until we got the bag with a note saying they took the wine and we could retrieve it at the end of the cruise. Unfortunately 22 hours into the cruise my husband had a small stroke and we had to leave the ship. Our luggage was sent to our home minus the bottle of wine. That was adding insult to injury! Not only did we miss our cruise but they kept a very nice bottle of German wine.

    69. Andrew
      December 21st, 2011 @ 10:08 am

      I’ve packed Rum Runners filled with alcohol in my checked luggage on my last three Royal Caribbean cruises and they have always made it to my room. Glass bottles will show up on the scanners and will be removed from your luggage. This happened to my girlfriend last year and they were NOT returned at the end of the cruise. Since the cruise line no longer allows you to bring even one bottle of wine aboard and the drink prices on the ships are so expensive, we try to save money where we can. Just buy a soda card good for the length of the cruise and use that to get your mixers. We still buy a few glasses of wine and occasional specialty drinks on the ship but we save about $200 – $300 on our bar tab by bringing our own.

    70. Laura Napolitano
      December 21st, 2011 @ 10:11 am

      What do you suppose the cruise lines do with all the liquor/wine left on the ships? Resell it to the next cruise passengers?

    71. Richard Hagen
      December 21st, 2011 @ 10:21 am

      My wife and I have taken wine aboard in almost each of our 7 cruises by concealing it in our checked baggage. Wine boxes seem to work best. However, I noticed that on our recent Carnival Cruise people openly brought bags of booze and soda on board. Carnival seems to have the most realxed policy of all.

    72. Roberta
      December 21st, 2011 @ 10:22 am

      Usually we put at least 8 bottles of wine in our packed luggage. We have been doing this successfully for years on HAL, Celebrity and RCCL. We even bought wine in Venice before our Med cruise and took that aboard. However, last winter we sailed from Bayonne and they caught my travel iron. There were also 2 bottles of wine in that bag. When my husband went down to the “naughty room” to find out why our bag had not come to the room, he was told about their confiscation of the iron (to be returned upon disembarkation). The security guy was nice and told him he would let the wine go through. The wine in our three other checked bags was no problem. This security seems to be quite haphazard. We will try for wine again on our next Caribbean cruise this winter and see what happens.

      I do not understand why the ships charge so much for booze, anyway. They purchase it duty free and wholesale so their costs must be significantly less than in the US. We recently dined in NJ and my friend had a Grey Goose on the rocks. It cost $6 at this very nice restaurant; the same drink would probably be $9 on any ship.

    73. Andrew
      December 21st, 2011 @ 10:34 am

      So many cruise passengers are rude and demanding that your kindness, friendliness, and patience will usually be rewarded. We’ve been able to get free drinks or much stronger drinks by doing what others have mentioned: Visit the same bartenders and be friendly with them. Have fun! Tip well and they will start pouring stronger and may give you an occasional free one. They usually work in a couple of venues around the ship so ask where they will be working that night or the next day, etc.

      Also – another way to save money on drinks is to attend any tastings or classes held in the bars. We’ve paid the $15 fee for wine tastings and had several glasses of amazing wines and plates of excellent appetizers included for the price. We were offered deep discounts on bottles of wine while we were there and it was significantly less than they charged in the restaurant for the same bottle.

      We did a “How to make a Martini” (we already knew how) class for $15 each and not only drank 4(!) martinis that hour, but each got a coupon for a free martini during the week, a souvenir martini glass to take home, and a handout with about 8 or 9 of their fanciest martini recipes. They also fed us appetizers and one of the bartenders made us each another free martini later in the week when we stopped in again.

      Don’t go expecting free drinks because why should they risk their job for you or me, BUT many of them will take care of their best customers.

    74. CruisinLALA
      December 21st, 2011 @ 10:36 am

      I havent made the investment in rum runners but buy little “minibar” size bottles and put them in with my toiletries in ziploc bags. When scanned they are like mini shampoo. Got a soda card and there’s your mixers! I used the soda cup they gave me too!

      Just got back from NCL and PUb CRAWL is worth the $$ $25 for 5-7drinks and they are heavy handed drinks. Latitiudes lunch free champagne, Captains dinner free champagne, art auctions- just keep the champagne coming, hook up with a bachelorette party or wedding group….yeah they wanna keep u happy, they always have drunk specials ofthe day and BoGo martinis and Margaritas!!!

    75. Joe
      December 21st, 2011 @ 10:42 am

      On a recent Celebrity TA, a great many boarding passengers had any wine in excess of 2 bottles per cabin, taken by security(for return he night before debark). It was not an appropriate \welcome aboard\ for any mode of transportation. Celebrity has lost my patronage forever.

    76. Dri
      December 21st, 2011 @ 10:49 am

      Best thing to do on a Carnival Cruise is order your liquor through the Bon Voyage department ahead of time. I don’t find that the drinks onboard are that expensive, but I guess for others it may be pricey. Living in a huge city where drinks at a local bar, lounge, and restaurant run between 8-19 bucks a pop, I think Carnival’s drink prices are reasonable. Another smart idea is to set aside a savings a year in advance for liquor and purchase the Carnival Funship dollars and add that to your booking a month in advance so will have onboard credit for your drinks.

    77. Lonewolf
      December 21st, 2011 @ 10:49 am

      No freebees on Cunard,even if you tip large. They even measure the wine being poured in each glass.They want to make sure you do not get a extra drop.

    78. Mark
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:10 am

      On Carnival we were allowed to bring one bottle of wine per person on board, only at initial boarding. On a RCL Hawaii cruise we had a box wine in our checked luggage that made it to the room and we drank that for 12 days… On a Princess cruise I had 2 EXCELLENT reds confiscated. One night at dinner, a ship’s officer joined us. He and I started talking about wines- I told him about mine and that one was rated a 97! He asked what I had planned to do with it and I said have it with dinner. He called over a waiter, whispered to him and 5 minutes later both bottles were at the table- they openned the 97 rated red with no charge, and I of course shared the wine with him! The other bottle went to our cabin~

    79. Ryan
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:19 am

      Sail on Disney. You can bring whatever you want on board with you as long as you have it in your carry on.

    80. cruizzer
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:22 am

      Just got back from our 1st Disney cruise. They allow unlimited alcohol in CARRY ONs. We took 14 bottles by 4 adults. Wine steward at dinner kept us supplied in fresh glasses. Carried our own drinks everywhere. Delighted! !! Didn’t mind buying the kids Smoothies.

    81. Bruce Goldensohn
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:22 am

      If I remember correctly, if you order a bottle of wine in the main dining room (cheaper than by the glass!), and you don’t finish it – the wine steward will re-cork it, and return it to you at dinner the next night.I think this was aboard a Celebrity ship – but it might be available on other lines.

    82. Nina
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:23 am

      NCL is different then other cruise lines. If you pack wine they charge $15 per bottle corkage fee to get the bottle back. Secondly, you cannot just show your Harrah’s card to get free drinks. You must set it up with Casino at Seas. I believe you need a platinum or higher card. Great ways to drink cheap or free. On the Pearl eat at the Mexican Restaurant. For $10 you get your meal and a mini margarita. Our waiter kept refilling and gave us a glass to go.Martini and wine tasting are also great deals. They also put in the cruise planner where the 2:1 happy hour is located.
      PS if you do bring on wine and they send a note to get your luggage give your cabin steward a tip. He always gets my luggage.
      Remember every cruise line has a policy of what and how much you can bring without charge. Ask your travel agent the cruise line policy. Mine always lets me know.

    83. Franke
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:26 am

      I don’t drink. I have nothing against other people drinking as long as it doesn’t affect me. I do have a tip though. In the Carribean we took shore excursions that visited distilleries. Some of them hand out free drinks at the end of the factory tours. I gave my free drink tickets to other people in our group. So remember when you go on one of these tours make friends with a tea-totaler and you will get extra drinks that are free.

    84. cruizzer
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:27 am

      Oh… and we booked thru AAA. They gaveus a $75 beverage credit per room. :)

    85. Zumbachick
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:31 am

      So is there something magic about the rum rummer material or will any collapseable one work? I have one like that I use for running…

    86. Franke
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:33 am

      Oh, by the way the cruise lines appreciate your comments about filling up water bottles with vodka. They have one more place to look when you go onboard. Also the tips about rum runners may be helpful also. They won’t confiscate all or even many but they may at least get a few of them. That is a helpful tip about wearing cargo pants. It will be an easy place to look! Seriously, good luck to all of you. It sounds like many of you make it a fun game. That is what cruising is about.

    87. Mike B
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:43 am

      Celebrity has sauce packages that are bottomless and worth it. If you drink, get one and save. Added benefit: You know how much you’re going to spend. Also, I’ve found that wait staff prefers cash tips. It’s a pain to carry extra cabbage, but worth it.

    88. BosoxI
      December 21st, 2011 @ 12:06 pm

      Of course, if tipping a bartender generously is a way to get stronger drinks or an occasional free pour, have you not in effect paid for it already? Suffering through an art auction to get a class of terrible sparkling wine also has no appeal, not does sitting through a Captain’s Welcome Party to get a glass of fruit juice (always order wine is the trick). Many people I know say that they overeat at buffets; well, after spending more than $60 a day for Celebrity’s drink package, it strikes me that people will also over drink to get their money’s worth. We rarely finish the Elite bar setups on a Princess cruise, so we bring the unused shots on the next cruise. Princess has never complained, nor has Celebrity, as the number/size is probably inconsequential. I would love to cruise on Crystal or Seabourne and act as if I belonged in the upper stratum of society. Unfortunately, it’s something I aspire to but haven’t attained, financially, at least. (In every other measure of success, I’m a king :)) Sneaking booze on board is demeaning enough; getting caught would be unbelievably embarrassing, though I’m sure I’d get over it quickly.

    89. Matty
      December 21st, 2011 @ 12:10 pm

      Most ships allow you take wine and beer on board for Cabin use Only. However, you can fill your glass and carry it around with you. Only time you may get challenged is going into the Dining Room with a glass of wine but rarely had that happen.

    90. Frugal Wino Willie
      December 21st, 2011 @ 12:15 pm

      This thread has grown quite long but it is interesting to frugal winos like myself and my wife. We appreciate good wines (usually the best bang for the buck quality we can get but can’t really generally tell the difference between a good wine and an expensive one)(I’ve learned from wine tastings all over the world that pricing is most determined by the rarity of a label than the actual taste).

      Anyway have now done our last 3 cruises with Azamara Club Cruises. They refill your wine at lunch and dinner as fast as you can drink them and their pairings are really excellent. They have a different red & white each day.

      Prior to Azamara we cruised extensively with Princess. I have a piece of luggage that easily holds a 5 liter box of wine (I am a fit guy so no problem carrying that bag) and we never had a problem with delivery to our room.
      We would always buy a bottle of wine during dinner about twice during the cruise but take the bottle to our room with glasses.
      We always would return to the next nights dinner with full glasses and our bottle. Because we were often in different dining rooms with different waiters the ‘endless’ bottle never became an issue.

      Good Luck To All! Frugal Wino Willie

    91. Library Girl
      December 21st, 2011 @ 12:30 pm

      Book Azamara cruises with free wine at lunch and dinner.
      We have travelled on Azamara 3 times and Oceania just the once and really enjoy the food on Azamara for LESS money than Oceania (Insignia), where salt is on everything – great for elderly passengers.

    92. Richard H
      December 21st, 2011 @ 12:33 pm

      Maybe ignorance is bliss. I’ve bought alcohol at the duty free shops on my way to every cruise and I’ve never had any issue with boarding on Princess or Viking River.

    93. George F Mohn
      December 21st, 2011 @ 12:41 pm

      Better yet, don’t drink (alcohol)! If you are spending all this time and energy on memorizing cruise line practices, scheming, and border-line criminal practices like smuggling, you are testing the limits of the system (including the limits of your wallet). Just to keep drinking within your budget, you are willing to risk humiliations like having your booze confiscated in front of others. Having to think to yourself, these people must think I’m a lush-this is hard on the old self-esteem. Is it worth it?
      On the positive side, imagine not having to worry about your bar bill (and maybe, what your spouse will say about it). Imagine wanting to go to bed early, so you can get up early for more strenuous excursions. Imagine what happens when you and your partner go to bed early with lots of energy and still smelling good! Need I say more?

    94. Nancy
      December 21st, 2011 @ 1:37 pm

      We just returned from a trip on the Norwegian Star. We have 4 bottles of wine in our carry on and when it went through the scanner, we were stopped. They took the wine and told us that we could pick it up there when we returned. We believed them. We got a sheet of paper and unfortunately I did not read it as it told us that the wine was going aboard the ship and could only be picked up there. It would have been a 3 hour plus wait for us to get the wine back and we just left. This is the first cruise that we have taken that we could not bring wine on board. To add insult to injury, the Star attempted to sell us a package of wine to have on board for much more money than we could either buy it in the restaurants or in the cabin. Not a good line as they were always trying to sell you something. Would not go on the Star again.

    95. Cheryl
      December 21st, 2011 @ 1:41 pm

      We didn’t want to get in trouble and go to the naughty room, so we brought our own wine and champagne and paid the corkage fees for them. I think it was about $12 per bottle, still cheaper than buying it on board. We also bought some at port, and paid again.

    96. Andrew golata
      December 21st, 2011 @ 2:12 pm

      After calling them prior to both our last two cruises with them we found out that Holland America allows you to bring as much wine or champagne as you wish. We brought a case when going on a 30 days cruise of the SouthPacific, and bought local wines at most every stops we made in our Mediterranean cruise two month ago. They do capture hard alcohol when returning to our ship, but never bothered us about the wine bottles. Being concerned about bar tabs on long cruise, what I do is bring a bootle opener with me, and drink a glass of wine before going to diner, and one after. I have gone as far as taken a full glass with me to the dining room, as if I had brought it from one of the ship’s bar, and have also taken wine glasses in e theater to watch the evening entertainment. It is much cheaper and you can pick whatever wine you prefer.

    97. trent
      December 21st, 2011 @ 2:42 pm

      When buying a rum runner make sure it doesn’t have a cheapy plastic liner. I brought a litre of Vodka onboard in a new rum runner pouch and it tasted HORRIBLE. New plastic taste. Gross. I should have bought a quality pouch.

    98. Peter Hamling
      December 21st, 2011 @ 2:46 pm

      For the record, Cunard provides a half bottle of champagne gratis in your stateroom – it’s there when you board.
      As for the rest I just couldn’t be bothered with all the subterfuges that people are promoting – for goodness sake you are on a cruise to enjoy yourself (aren’t you??)not to be foreever scheming on how to beat the system.

    99. Mark K
      December 21st, 2011 @ 2:48 pm

      One of the smartest things I have seen – Costa Cruise Lines has 2-for-1 drinks from 11-12 and 5-6pm at all their bars, and various 2-for-1 at other bars during the night at various hours. It makes a lot of sense, because 11-12 they aren’t selling a lot normally but it really gets things going! Having a margarita 2-for-$7 is definitely a good deal!
      The other bars have different 2-for-1, whether it is one of the live music areas that may be some kind of wine, or one of the sports-oriented places that does it with drafts. Very smart, and allows you to visit a lot of different places.
      Thanks Costa!

    100. Eric McBride
      December 21st, 2011 @ 3:12 pm

      A recent 12 day adventure on the Azamara Quest was quite revealing about the up-scale cruise lines. While not encouraged to bring your own booze it was not outlawed—we purchased 2 Liters of Grey Goose at the duty free shop in NY – and when we boarded The Quest in Nice France we told out cabin attendant that we would appreciate her making sure the in-room refrigerator had 4 cans of tonic everytime she made up the room as well as several lime wedges. Daily we were able to enjoy drinks on our deck PLUS 8 of the nights on board we had room service for Dinner – first they bring a dinner menue from the main dining room – then when you place an order they ask which of the wines you would like – each night we also ordered a back-up wine that was served in a caraf and brought with the dinner. No tipping so no added cost for the room service – and sodas were free so that included the tonic. the 2 liters of Gray Goose cost $46 at the Kennedy Duty Free shop and we brought 1 home. Our total on ship charges were limited to a tube of toothpaste and a rather expensive ring I purchased my wife for our 50th Anniversary.

    101. chestnutt
      December 21st, 2011 @ 3:15 pm

      Folks, do the words “ALL INCLUSIVE” mean anything to you???

      Silversea and now Crystal are and so is Seabourn (terrible wines, though).

      Azamara’s easy and fun. Previous comments about them, I second.

    102. Travel.AAAAmerican.Com
      December 21st, 2011 @ 3:26 pm

      Stay OFF and/or FAR Far Away from NCL.

      That’s the Nickel and Dime Line!
      Holland America and other Sub=Carnival Lines CCL/CUK :NYSE are a THOUSAND Percent Better.

      Look what RCL : NYSE did to the best one Celebrity! That used to be way above par now it is a very paltry one. Anyone want to pay for a Choice Grade Steak called Mignon?

    103. Anna Sargent
      December 21st, 2011 @ 3:37 pm

      We have gone on lots of cruises and have tried putting scotch in an empty mouth wash bottles and vodka in empty water bottles. When you Scotch tastes like Listerine you quit doing that!! We then went to those little mini bottles and we do about 10 each vodka and scotch. Just read about the Rum Runners and thought that was a great idea. Went to Ebay and found a knock off brand much cheaper than Rum Runner. It would be good to check it out if you are thinking along those lines. We have never gotten caught with any of the things we fill and bring on board but those little bottles or a Rum Runner sound great. We have attended those parties where they give you drinks and it’s like drinking punch. I agree those Martini Classes are great. Did one of those on the Queen Mary and fell in love with “Ginger Martini’s”. Of course you can’t get a good one in just any bar and most bars have never heard of them. But Yum, Yum…

    104. Carol
      December 21st, 2011 @ 5:05 pm

      Jenny, are you sailing to Alaska on the June 2nd Princess cruise? We would love to share your coupons! :-)

    105. mary wilson
      December 21st, 2011 @ 5:22 pm

      Reading all this gave me a giggle! When we cruise with friends, mega bar bill, when we cruise together, big bar bill, just took my grand-daughter on Rhapsody of the Seas, and bar bill of just $30!!!!!! Had two free ‘champagnes’ at Captains Cocktail Party, two more at ‘Crown and Anchor’ party and a few yummy alcohol-free lounge drinks. Lots of free lemonades at meals. Has my husband of fifty-three years been LEADING ME ASTRAY?????
      Happy Christmas everyone!

    106. Jamester
      December 21st, 2011 @ 5:50 pm

      HAL lets you bring as much wine and soda on board as you want to. Plus, if you’re sailing out of Ft. Lauderdale, there’s a wine supermarket that will take pre-orders, package them up, and have them ready for you to pick up on the way to the pier. We just carried it on and enjoyed dinners on our verandah…not to be anti-social, but it was our first vacation without kids in a decade. :)

    107. realgearhead
      December 21st, 2011 @ 7:22 pm

      We’ve been on about 26 cruises ,my worst experiance was with NCL ,we had bought an upgrade to a owners suite ,[expensive] Upon boarding they discover a pint ,not a fifth or a litre ,but a pint ,I explained to them that we were booked into an owners suite ,they didn’t care. my 7.00 pint of vodka was confiscated and I was treated like a criminal , All this did was really piss me off ,It’s not like I was staying in some 399.00 inside cabin in the bottom of the ship.
      They may have made a few more dollars off me on that cruise,because I’m still going to hit the bars onboard .But they stand to loss future 1000.00s because I won’t be cruising on NCL anytime in the near future .
      NCL seems to be the most stingy cruise line ,they always seem to try and nickel and dime you with fees

    108. Ruthie
      December 21st, 2011 @ 7:28 pm

      Wow! Everyone has their own choice of cruiseline. We are Elite with Celebrity and
      drinks are not an issue. Elites have a Cocktail party every night, with free drinks.
      Add that to all of the other free gatherings
      plus, through Captains club, Really! how much can you drink.

      If you want drinks in unlimited venues, upgrade to Azamara, Crystal, Regents or Seabourn. All will allow you to bring what ever
      you want onboard. You get what you pay for….

    109. bobby
      December 21st, 2011 @ 8:20 pm

      Never had a problem bringing a bottle of champagne each on both X and HAL, boarded RCL last month and my bag was held with all the others x-rayed on the dock, Had to claim the bag at the ship sheriffs office, and the wine as we disembarked. 1st and last trip on RCL.

    110. Judee
      December 21st, 2011 @ 8:50 pm

      This matter of getting alcoholic drinks seems to be terribly important to a great many people. Just saying!

    111. Rita
      December 21st, 2011 @ 9:47 pm

      I’ve cruised alot with RCCL. Being a Crown and Anchor members allows me to attend at least 3 functions where the drinks are free. I don’t drink so I enjoy the free horsy dervies and Coke. You aren’t allowed to bring liquor onboard to consume. If you read your pre-cruise info, you learn what to do as well as what not to do. I laugh when I hear adults complains about breaking rules. It is what it is.

    112. Mary Jo
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:05 pm

      Judee is right on… alcohol consumption SHOULDN’T be the focus of anyone’s cruise. If it is, and you can’t afford it, then you might look into an all inclusive resort!

      Cruiselines barely charge enough to cover expenses. Once they have you on board, they can increase their margin. They recognize the needs of so many and adjust the price based on demand. If none of you drank, the price would go down!

      I indulge with plastic jogging bottles- they come with a nylon shoulder strap. My vodka and clear peach snappes don’t look any different than water. Try dark rum in a plastic Coke bottle. No one is the wiser at the check in gate.

    113. Mary Jo
      December 21st, 2011 @ 11:09 pm

      And while I’m thinking of it… take advantage of hosted parties on board. The Captain’s Gala will get you a champagne or wine. The Cruise Critic Cocktail Party on board the Celebrity Millennium offered mixed drinks and wonderful canapes… and the CAPTAIN even attended. When we went to a “Honeymoon” party on an RCL ship, we were treated to drinks AND a bottle of champagne.

    114. Bathf1
      December 22nd, 2011 @ 8:00 am

      Great fun reading this thread. I think we have been in every situation described in the letters. We have smuggled aboard successfully, we have been nabbed for a half of champagne, we have purchased liquor packages, tried the big tip adventure and we have paid full freight. The one thing we notice is that every ship is different because the personnel is different. A rude bartender on RCCL may ruin an otherwise great trip just as an exuberant waiter on NCL will enhance your experience. Every cruise is a crap shoot. Some will turn a blind eye, some want to earn your admiration but some tow the company line because that is their job. I notice that the higher ranks are more agreeable to individual circumstances and a word in the right ear will get you your bottle back. No need to be demanding or indignant. Over the years we have left the smuggling behind but it was kinda fun doing the frat house thing. Still brings a smile when we watch others’ bags opened, so what we’ll never see them again.

    115. Rick
      December 22nd, 2011 @ 9:00 am

      Some desserts contain liqueurs, e.g. Tiramisu w/rum, truffles w/Grand Marnier, Champagne sorbet, etc. Princess had a Vet’s luncheon w/drinks. Do not hesitate to lodge a complaint about quality or service issues. We received a specialty dinner with a bottle wine over a hot tub issue on Princess. Just last week, on a Celebrity cruise, our whole table shared 2 bottles of Champagne because one of the diners sat with someone who had a service issue the night before, at a different table, with different diners. I’m sure several other tables got bottles too.
      We choose “Select,” “Anytime,” or “Freestyle” dining to meet interesting and “strange” new people every night, from all over the world. Also, carry a thermal mug for you “tea.” SoCo mouthwash anyone?

    116. Scott
      December 22nd, 2011 @ 1:57 pm

      When I go ashore I pick up a micky of rum and just stick it in my back pocket with my shirt over it. Never a problem, sometimes I have even stuck a bottle of wine there, I just keep my back to the staff

    117. Bill & Deborah
      December 22nd, 2011 @ 5:46 pm

      We have cruised many times (platinum) and not once had a problem with rum or any other liquor being found in the luggage. We don’t go overboard but a few bottles never a problem. Make sure they are raped in bubble rap or if they break while in there care you are on your own. They still win on the mix as all charge for cola. It’s a game but they want you to be happy.

      And now you know why they now charge for soft drinks.

    118. Susan
      December 22nd, 2011 @ 5:51 pm

      Going to experience our very first cruise on NCL Epic – any words of wisdom/advise regarding “beverages”. Want to be prepared :)

    119. JR
      December 22nd, 2011 @ 6:02 pm

      Love your bartender. Find out his/her schedule, make friends, stick to 1 or 2 favourite bartenders … AND THEN … TIP extra and TIP generously and TIP in cash before you order your drinks. Bartenders seem to have A LOT of discretion as to how they pour a drink or what they charge on the register. a 10$ tip can win you 2-3 drinks at half-price … No one is marking bottles or checking if the white tequila is down an extra 2 or 3 shots. Is the register up? Bar seeing customers and profitable? That’s all the bean counters are really capable of seeing from the corporate offices… Remember, what happens on a cruise ship stays on a cruise ship ! Be discrete :)

    120. Marilyn
      December 23rd, 2011 @ 10:02 am

      Can’t say have not tried all of the above..mostly with success, but the best is to order your bottles from \gifts\ prior to boarding. Reasonable prices on MOST lines..can drink in room or carry out (note: glasses in room are usually different than the bar..so go to bar first day and \buy the kind of glass you will be using\..then covet it so room attendant does not confiscate:)
      And HAL’s policy of carry all the wine free on board that you can..is why we keep going there.

    121. Gloria Marrone
      December 23rd, 2011 @ 10:38 am

      I always enjoy the Farewell Party at Carnival. I attended one recently on the Ecstasy. The location & music were great. Although the drinks flowed generously, there was absolutely no food offered. This is a big mistake. Carnival needs to offer food on the Ecstasy during the Farewell Party. Carnival must have a reason for not promoting this event. It is listed under daily events but doesn’t say that drinks are free.

    122. Gloria Marrone
      December 23rd, 2011 @ 10:41 am

      Carnival allows one bottle of wine to be brought on board. We always take advantage of this offer. Our travel agent buys us a bottle of wine for every cruise we book through her. If it is sent to the diningroom there is no corkage fee.

    123. Marian
      December 23rd, 2011 @ 3:59 pm

      Betty, I sailed NCL Sun out of Port Canaveral in October and the casino did honor my Harrads Reward card for free drinks.

    124. Barbara
      December 27th, 2011 @ 6:45 pm

      We just completed our 9th cruise on CArnival (6 of them with Rum Runners) and have never had a problem. I wash out the new flask with very hot water, fill as usual and then put in a ziploc bag. I wrap the ziploc bag in my nightgown, pajamas, etc. and pack it in the middle of my regular clothes – never been confiscated.

      A second trick is to carry empty Carnival water bottles onto the islands, buy a one liter bottle in the duty free shop and transfer it to your water bottle in the ladies room. You can simply re-board with the re-filled bottle in your hand.

    125. Mary
      December 27th, 2011 @ 11:24 pm

      I have wine that I am planning on taking the next cruise but my bottle is a twist off type will they still try to charge me for the cork fee which is 15.00 surely not? Just wondering

    126. darlene
      December 29th, 2011 @ 5:18 pm

      Since the cruise lines love cruise critic as much as we do, I would never post my little secrets here, after all, every time one gets posted enough time, they start looking for that item

    127. justin
      January 1st, 2012 @ 10:26 am

      everything in moderation,
      I buy coffee and pop cards for 50% discount, this makes it cheap enough not to bother bringing pop on board.

      Also HAL will allow wine, (in moderation) to be brought on the ship, plus we typically have bought a wine package on the ship.

      as for searching lugguge, it seems that ports with duty-free stores at cruise terminal, searchs are more common. cruises at Spring break, or with a lot under 25’s, those under 25’s are searched more often.

      using Rum runners, to save $20 seems to defeat the reality of spending $3,000 on a cruise

    128. Perry
      January 2nd, 2012 @ 11:36 am

      Perhaps I missed it in the article, and if I have, plese forgive my indulgence; but for RCI Crown and Anchor members who have reached Diamond or higher status, there is a nightly open-tap in a dedicated lounge which serves wine by-the-glass to anyone (of legal drinking age) in your group. We have enjoyed this freebie in both the VCL of the Radiance of the Seas last year, and last month in the “Dungeon” of the Navigator of the Seas.

    129. Tommy
      January 6th, 2012 @ 11:06 pm

      My question is that I have been on many cruises and am at Diamond status on RCCL.I am taking another couple in a few weeks and he told me that he had read on their website that they do not allow even non alcohol on board, like coke and water. I have always taken 2 12 packs of coke and a 24 pack of water without any trouble. I just did this back in May on an Alaska cruise. Is this a new police or one that has never been enforced.

    130. Elisabeth
      January 17th, 2012 @ 9:42 pm

      The corkage question – they will not charge corkage unless you ask for it to be opened to drink with dinner. I always just bring a corkscrew and carry a glass of wine with me to dinner. Problem solved.

    131. Amy
      January 26th, 2012 @ 7:00 pm

      We just finished our 5th Princess Cruise in December and found out on day 3 that every day they have Happy Hour from 8pm to midnight. Half price drinks(not Signature or Specialties). My new best friend was a Long Island Tea for 3.50.

    132. Glassespro
      February 1st, 2012 @ 11:51 am

      Thank you for changing the para regarding NCL’s program with Total Rewards. Last time it didn’t mention that you had to book through them with their inflated pricing policy, and I went through a really awful time over it. NCL staff were beyond rude!

    133. Kathy
      February 1st, 2012 @ 2:01 pm

      We just did the Christmas to new years cruise on the carnival pride and upon leaving Baltimore we were treated to unlimited free bubbly and again on new years ever the bubbles were shall we say over flowing! Hope we are treated as well on Norwegians gem this coming holiday week!

    134. Liz
      February 1st, 2012 @ 3:45 pm

      @ George….now we all know why your wife drinks…to tune you out. I just popped the cork on a bottle of wine to help drown out your whine.

    135. lijen
      February 1st, 2012 @ 3:46 pm

      Our Celebrity cruise was a disaster as far as wine was concerned. They tried to charge us for the wine our travel agent had in our cabin and then we were “gifted” a bottle of wine from the housekeeping director and they added that to our bill too!! Took 3 days to get the charges off our bill.
      On HAL, the captain`s party is the place to be as you do not have to have the wine or champagne that is offered. On our last cruise, I had 3 mojito`s & my hubby had 3 martini`s. We had a great time!

    136. Roberta
      February 1st, 2012 @ 4:02 pm

      We always bring wine in our checked luggage aboard Royal Caribbean and Celebrity, but this time they flagged our luggage. We had to go through everything in front of the security people and when neither they nor I could find the last of the six bottles, I was so frustrated that I dumped out all of my clothes to find that one last bottle! What a waste of time and money to search everyone’s luggage just for wine. We happened to have one more bottle in our csrry-on and they didn’t bother with that at the port security checkpoint.
      The reason we bring (or I should say brought) our own was becasue of the exhorbitant prices for liquor and wine. They charge as much for booze they buy wholesale and duty-free as we do for drinks in NYC! One of the bottles of red wine at the chamapagne bar goes for $18/glass of $69.50 a bottle. We pay $6 a bottle (with an additional 15% discount if we buy a case) for that exact same Spanish wine in a NJ liquor store. That is robbery on the high seas!!
      We are finally Diamond on Royal for our next cruise, but with our luck, they will cut out the nightly free wine and beer. It used to be an hour of free booze, but now it’s just wine and beer.

    137. bob
      February 1st, 2012 @ 9:54 pm

      dont sneak alcohol on royal carribean or you will be thrown off the boat and have to fend for yourself in a strange port. they will search your room at the first dinner and go through every bottle. then they will lock you in your room until the next port. after all that they take $600 because they say there is a law that requires them to. fuck you royal carribean!!!!!!!!!!!

    138. Gary
      February 2nd, 2012 @ 12:44 pm

      Just returned from my 24th RCI cruise.. love the Roayl treatment! But over the last 10-15 years, I’ve tried many of the creative ways to save some big bucks on liquor.

      For this cruise, I used Rumrunners – 8 in total, varying sizes from 8-32 oz. Also had two water bottles (with special caps that make them look unopened) containing Vodka. The water bottles were in a carry-on cooler along with other water & about 12 cans of sodas & 6 bottles of real water. All the rumrunners were packed in checked luggage.

      The results: the carryon sodas were fine, but the water bottles were shaken for bubbles.. and the two containing Vodka were confiscated. ALL the rumrunner containers arrived in in stateroom untouched!

      The only problem was that so much booze made it thru, we drank about 10X more than we normally do!! We we’re never sure if the ship was rockin’ from high seas… or high weeees!

    139. samsmama
      February 4th, 2012 @ 9:58 pm

      justin, #127 how do you get your drink cards for 50% off?

    140. Christine
      February 4th, 2012 @ 10:46 pm

      On Disney, you can take alcohol/beer/water/wine on board … as much as you can get in your carry-on luggage. They only ask that you drink the alcohol in your staterooms. However, we use the colorful refillable mugs/containers and mix drinks in the staterooms and then go to the public areas with them all the time.

    141. Jim
      February 6th, 2012 @ 9:09 pm

      HAL has a policy that liquor purchased in their duty free shop will be picked up on debarkation which was reiterated to me in the duty free shop…BUT when I bought a bottle of Johnny Walker Green Label I was told I could take it tomy room along with the cheap bottle of vodka I had also purchased! Maybe the trick is to buy expensive booze!

    142. Emylee
      March 6th, 2012 @ 6:35 pm

      Carnival allows you to bring one 750ml bottle of alcohol ON the ship in your luggage PER PERSON over 21 years of age. Usually we just bring a bottle each adult. They also allow one 6 pack of non-alcoholic beverages per passenger under 21…. :) Happy saving!

    143. Tim
      June 8th, 2012 @ 11:37 am

      Taking a class [wine tasting, martini making, cocktail making] can lead to free alcohol. Yes, there is a charge for the class, but ask questions, suggest alternative liquors and you can turn the 4 drink samples into 6 or 7.

    144. Stacy Vanderbloom
      June 12th, 2012 @ 1:35 am

      To everyone looking for the ACTUALLY answer to the question, RUM RUNNERS! For the RIDICOUS scaredy cats here’s food for thought….. You are 1 of 2,500 cruisers they only skim X-rays to get things moving, hid it well and you’ll never have a problem! Plus man up if u some odd reason n ur the mere 2% who get caught that day SOO WHAT….ALRAMS DON’T GO OFF THEY DON’T YELL HEY EVERYONE LOOK AT THESE PPL….no they just bring ur alcohol to a room with ur name n room # on it n have it sent to u with ur baggage the last day of the cruise. although be weary rum runners usually don’t get returned to u cuz they have no real way of knowing what’s in the bag, labeled bottles are more specific. To the assholes who are commenting well I’m above smuggling alcohol Okay gooooood for u A.) if u were that damn above us than wtf brought u to the website …. b.) get a life…u must have noooo life if u spend all day researching sites for subjects that u obviously have no interest in and feel so insecure about ur finances u mussstt give ur unwanted comments to prove what? C.) IF UR THAT RICH TELL ME NEXT TIME UR CRUISING N PICK UP MY TAB NEXT TIME. Same goes for on drinkers commenting…..really? Kill urself! We don’t show up at ur AA meetings pounding patron shots….n again….what led u here huhhh mmmmmm hm. also to the pricks again wtf r u on this site bunch stating how Cruise lines read these comments n up the anty… A.) cruises happen 24.7 one million ppl travel one line per 5months their concern is getting ppl on the damn ship ASAP so they could start spending money n ESP. To make sure they embark on time 2,500 bags are skimmed n never thoroughly checked as said b4 random checks usually happen round spring break time n if u have obvious bottles of alc. showin up in ur bag. I TAKE (AND MY FRIENDS…FAMILY) 2 large rum runners each time been on 10 cruises so far myself I’m 25years old….also the girl who’s rum runner tasted weird….it’s called following directions….ur supposed to fill them with burning hot water days b4 n massage them correctly empty. N air dry. .

    145. Bev
      June 27th, 2012 @ 10:18 am

      I highly recommend Rum Runners. We cruised Carnival and by ordering the Rum Runner Cruise Kit online prior to cruise, I was able to bring 2 half gallon bottles of Captain to mix with my 12 pack of soda. We still bought some drinks on deck because we had room credit but due to the Rum Runners, our group of 4 had free drinks all week and still had liquor left the day we got back to port.

    146. leonard shaffer
      June 27th, 2012 @ 10:32 am

      Elite status on Celebrity gives you a cocktail party on most days Have to have 10 cruises to qualify

    147. Larry
      June 27th, 2012 @ 1:39 pm

      After cruising twice on Azamara, I would definitely state that booze flows very feeely on board. Free wine with lunch and dinner. Cocktails parties every night where you can order practically any drink.
      Can’t wait for November.

    148. Dennis Robbins
      June 28th, 2012 @ 10:40 am

      Our Cruise line of choice is Celebrity, but we cruised on Royals Enchampment of the sea in May 2012, what a disappointment with thier Booze, no liquer only champaine and wine at all thier events. Going to thier diamond events no liquer only the above. I am curiuos what gives.

    149. Dennis Robbins
      June 28th, 2012 @ 10:52 am

      We were on Enchantment of the Sea May 2012 no liquer at any of thier events only wine and champaign. Thier Diamond events same thing. Has thier policy changed.

    150. Girish Patil
      June 30th, 2012 @ 9:25 pm

      First thing everyone should realize that its business. You are not invited as a free guest.
      Only way you can save money is to buy booze from duty free shops and you can drink either in your cabin or on deck.
      Girish Patil

    151. john s
      July 4th, 2012 @ 2:40 pm

      all these people complaining about NCL? HUH? WHA WHA WHAT?!?! its called freestyle…you must be expecting people to wait on you hand and foot 24/7 regardless of how you treat them/talk to them…as for food? IT WAS AMAZING on the Star, service? THE SAME! we had a better MORE RELAXED ENJOYABLE time on the Star than we did with princess, carnival, X or RCCL (food quality included)…if you want 5* high end cruising, go to Cunard or something where an inside room for a 7 day costs more than $800…for the price…NCL IS THE BEST! for what youre expecting at that price? quit your complaining and go elsewhere so i can enjoy my vacation without hearing people b***h…as for drinks, yeah, theres no real way to get around that unless youre a player in the casino and get the 1500 points

    152. Glitter
      September 13th, 2012 @ 4:52 pm

      Sorry if this sounds like a stupid question, but we don’t really go out much to drink. I know normal rule of thumb is to tip a buck or two per drink, but for all the suggestions of “taking care of the bartender”, how much would you suggest? Like $3-4 a drink? Or a $10 (like one poster had mentioned) up front for a few drinks that night? I just want to get an idea of what would make the bartender remember us in a good way :)

    153. denise
      September 24th, 2012 @ 9:44 pm

      the best way to hide your alcohol is to buy mini bottles. The lids and the bottles must be plastic. wrap them very very well in a plastic ziploc bag in case they open and then two heavy duty brown paper bags. Wrap them in jeans and put them in the middle of your suit case.

    154. Rick
      October 11th, 2012 @ 1:01 pm

      15 Cruises and never caught. It is so tempting to give away all my sure fire methods of smuggeling booze on and not paying a corking fee for every bottle of wine I bring on. But… they are reading…..

    155. Sally
      October 11th, 2012 @ 2:20 pm

      Carnival has a list of alcohol you can purchase (you’ll have to call and ask for it). We purchased Absolute Citron, Malibu Rum, and Bailey’s Irish Cream. They deliver it to your room upon boarding (you may have to call to remind them). Then at the entrance to the large self-serve dining areas they have free lemonade and iced tea, so we would just go to the room, fill our cups with ice and alcohol and get the free lemonade or iced tea to mix with it. The Bailey’s we just served over ice. The bottles ranged from $50-$80, so we spent about $200 for the 3 of us to drink all week. Considering each time I ordered anything from the bar it came to about $8 with the tip. Multiply that times the amount of drinks in a day and then there were 3 of us, so we did save quite a bit of money.

    156. Roka
      October 11th, 2012 @ 2:42 pm

      Really don’t understand how cheap are most of the people when sailing. If you have the money to pay your cruise I guess you can have some for your drinks…this should be a part of your vacation’s budget. Cause of you security will be enforced in the future and you will pay for your cheap way of cruising.

    157. Lou
      October 11th, 2012 @ 6:00 pm

      Rita, the actual way to pronounce hors d’oeuvres is Horse Ovaries. Thank you for the alternative.

    158. keith
      October 11th, 2012 @ 11:48 pm

      Take a Bottle of Blue Listerine and empty it out. Replace it with Vodka and a few drops of blue food coloring. Take it on board and enjoy!

    159. Jerry and Shelly
      October 22nd, 2012 @ 6:15 pm

      Last cruise we went on was Celebrity. This was our first Celebrity cruise, and we had free drinks 6 times: welcome aboard, ship tour, galley tour, mixology seminar, anniversary party, and one of the parties center ship. Also, my wife and I attended the tequila seminar. There was only 1 other person who attended. For $15 a person, the bartender first poured us 4 shots of different premium tequilas and told us about the characteristics of each. The other person with us then asked if we could taste a tequila that came in a crystal decanter in a velvet box (forgot the name.) The bartender included the shot, and then left all of the bottles and told us to help ourselves to whatever we wanted. Again, all for just $15 per person! Also, the martini flight was a great deal.

    160. qquester
      October 31st, 2012 @ 1:33 pm

      Pay extra for concierge class, get disgraceful service, a cigarette smoke filled room, (thanks to the nearby Bridge,) and Celebrity Century will send you lots of champagne in an effort to make you forget that you paid a lot for a very second class vacation.

    161. William Ford
      November 6th, 2012 @ 1:29 am

      On my last cruise I went to a bar at about 10:30pm and the bartender looked tiered. I ordered a drink and after making the drink he couldnt be bothered to scan my cruise card and gave it to me on the house.

    162. ARW
      January 6th, 2013 @ 3:13 pm

      We use a Royal Caribbean credit card and use our credits for buying drinks onboard, as well as shore excursions. RCI doesn’t charge any more for a drink than a nice restaurant does, so we don’t find it to be a problem.

    163. Vicki Savage
      January 19th, 2013 @ 5:08 pm

      Get to know your bartender. On our last RC cruise we spent plenty of time in one bar and was generous and had great conversations with our bartender. Lots of freebies..((::

    164. cruisincat
      March 23rd, 2013 @ 9:48 am

      On my last cruise on Norwegian, my friend and I always took care of our beverage server with extra tips since he took good care of us. In response, he gave me a couple of free drinks

    165. JMc
      April 10th, 2013 @ 5:40 pm

      I must admit a lot of you are very creative. However I can suggest a way that does not require all the subversive tactics. If you own stock in the cruise line you may get onboard credit that you can use to buy your booze. For example I bought a block (100 shares) of RCL which is the parent company of Celebrity. I book my cruise on Celebrity and informed them of the stock ownership. There was a $200 credit on my account when I arrived. I would suggest you take a copy of your statement just in case you did not get the credit. You can purchase items or drink it away. Afterwards you can sell the stock or keep it till the next vacation for the same credit next time. Before you ask, a joint account does not get each of you $200 each and there is only one credit per room.

    166. Sunny
      May 22nd, 2013 @ 2:16 pm

      Use the 5 hour energy or generic for you shots. Last cruise I got on a full (36 count) box that had a variety of “refilled” bottles. The box was gently opened and the reglued..NO PROBLEM. BTW these always work for flying since TSA basic requirement is under 3 ounces. Other than that Rum Runners work everytime!

    167. Marianne O'Neill
      May 22nd, 2013 @ 5:46 pm

      Hubby and I preorder a bottle or two of scotch and vodka. The price from the cruise line is double what you would pay at a liquor store but a lot less than paying per drink. But the cruise line is still making money and we don’t have to be worried about getting caught. We did this on celebrity and carnival and it worked great for us!

    168. Barbara Johnson
      June 19th, 2013 @ 6:23 pm

      I was amazed to hear that some people bring box wine, I usually don’t speak of it, because I don’t want to look like a cheap drunk. But I took a 5 liter box in my suitcase, before they got mean and scan luggage. Got through and to my cabin, but my snobby friends wouldn’t drink it, “I don’t drink box wine”, so I carried it home. Glad to know there’s other out there that do it. Hooray, I don’t feel so cheap or drunk.

    169. Marie
      July 24th, 2013 @ 10:58 pm

      How much is a soft drink band? Going on a 5 day cruise in Nov.2014 on the Royal Car. Enchantement of the Sea with l5 year old granddaughter.

    170. Bear
      August 16th, 2013 @ 1:42 pm

      To everyone commenting on how they sneak booze on, enjoy, but remember they are watching!
      To the jerks who have to tell others what they should, or shouldn’t do, there’s a place where the sun doesn’t shine for you!
      To those who’ve told us about the different lines policies, thanks!

    171. Beverly Weber
      August 21st, 2013 @ 5:35 pm

      Re: NCL. We have been on two NCL cruises, both of which we enjoyed very much. Yes they do nickle and dime you and every time you order a drink you are being reminded of how much it costs and even though their cruise prices are very reasonable when you are reminded whenever you order a drink about the price…well I don’t love that. We would stop at a certain bar on the way to dinner for a couple of drinks. The first night, first drink my hubby declined to add additional tip. I saw the bartender pick up the folder and take a look and then toss the folder down disgustedly. When he ordered the second drink I told him to add an additional dollar which he did, though under protest. After that, it was “Oh Meester Edouward!” Our drinks were in front of us before we got our hineys on the bar stool. The staff on these ships work very hard for long periods of time without seeing their family and by and large are very friendly and helpful trying to make sure you have a great vacation. When you have already spent somwhere between $2000 and $10,000 or more what is another dollar for the bartender. It bought us a heck of a lot of service. That being said, I really do not understand why you can’t sit down at a bar and sign when you are done like in a hotel. Signing every time is annoying and slows down service not to mention the waste of paper. If they did it this way we would probably be tipping a minimum of 20%.

      I totally understand people who don’t drink not wanting to pay an all inclusive pkg. But for them to say it encourages drunkenness is mean spirited and a bunch of bunk. There will always be obnoxious people unfortunately but yes, when I am on vaca I enjoy a rosy glow, and yes, I too have smuggled booze onboard in my suitcase…mea culpa. But my TA told me how she did it!

      I think the drink Package idea is a great idea for everyone and having that option would certainly make me look at a few more cruise lines.

    172. LadyPratt
      August 22nd, 2013 @ 9:04 am

      Will be trying those rum runners on my upcoming cruise. Wish me luck :)

    173. Sparkles87
      September 25th, 2013 @ 5:26 pm

      Try indulging in some shameless flirtation with the bartenders ;) Work a treat

    174. Sandra
      December 5th, 2013 @ 2:19 am

      Monique, don’t you mean H2O?? CO2 is carbon dioxide….the colorless gas we exhale when we breathe out, LMBO!

    175. Doreen
      February 4th, 2014 @ 5:34 pm

      I know Princess allows a bottle of wine each and I observed a couple who brought a case of water and someone else brought a case of soda as a checked package. I am going to try that next time with the soda.

    176. Robert
      March 19th, 2014 @ 9:26 pm

      Glad I am not a very heavy drinker, as some of you seem to be. Only been on one cruise, and I don’t remember my tally being very huge, even though I had at least a glass of wine with dinner, and a couple of drinks each night after that. My spa bill was certainly more. It was about 10 years ago, so that may be a factor. I might do a Bon Voyage package, if I go on another.

    177. series online
      March 29th, 2014 @ 10:40 pm

      As the internet evolves and with it user behaviour, other projects are bound to follow that will continue to change the way viewers
      watch movies online. Now, you might say that it was the
      thing of past when you have to wait in queues for booking tickets, with
      the help of Internet you can book the tickets right from your home too.

      Hence the question, can you invest directly into movies.

    178. Chassity
      May 21st, 2014 @ 11:10 pm

      I have cruised with Carnival a couple times, first off you can take one bottle of wine per adult to drink in your room for free (our steward even put it on ice for us) if you take the bottle to the main dining room, there is a cork charge to open it there.

      Additionally, I have snuck on clear liquor (vodka, tequila) in cleaned out mouthwash bottles. This has worked the two times I tried it with no problems.

    179. Kim
      June 22nd, 2014 @ 9:59 am

      Where is this Bon Voyage website. I don’t see it on Carnival’s page.

    180. Jeff
      July 13th, 2014 @ 11:21 am

      If you’re doing a BTB order duty free on board on first cruise and it can be picked up last night of first cruise to be drunk on second cruise :) Worked for us on RCI and also on a BTBTB with Celebrity last year.

    181. Jeff
      July 13th, 2014 @ 11:27 am
    182. KC
      July 30th, 2014 @ 2:54 pm

      Interesting reading as people have so many opinions about alcohol & cruising and many of these are over a year old. My op, to anyone who says that “alcohol shouldn’t be the focus of their cruise,” I’d dare say what should and shouldn’t be the focus of one’s vacation. I have an upcoming cruise this Sept. 2014, am a Crown & Anchor member of RCL, am glad that we can now bring at least two bottles per cabin, thought about it, however, won’t try to smuggle more on the ship, disagree with those who say that alcohol is part of the price of the cruise which it isn’t, disagree with anyone judging others for their actions and just say worry about your own, for those that want to break the rules, do it at your own risk, at least for Crown & Anchor members there are opportunities for free alcohol, even some for who aren’t C&A members, got a $175 onboard credit between my travel agent and RCL, I paid plenty for this cruise, yes, the alcoholic beverages are over priced, and lastly, to all of those who are about to cruise, bon voyage.

    183. Rede411
      October 17th, 2014 @ 12:21 pm

      Royal Caribbean just did away with their $25 corkage fee so you can now bring 2 bottles of wine aboard and drink it anywhere. 2 bottles maximum per stateroom.

    184. Lynn
      October 23rd, 2014 @ 9:22 pm

      Try Smuggs Jugs! They are the best way to get free drinks on a cruise!

    185. Bernadette
      October 29th, 2014 @ 7:14 pm

      Take it easy We all know how easy it is to become an alcoholic. You can get drunk on shore at home Any more than 4 a day and you will be in trouble especially a world cruise

    186. Bernadette
      October 29th, 2014 @ 7:18 pm

      Can you bring on a bottle of wine at each port or just check in

    187. Ed Collis
      December 24th, 2014 @ 4:01 pm

      We are Elite on Princess, and therefore get a FREE minibar setup that is renewed at the beginning of every leg. For 7 days, we get 8 50ml assorted bottles, 4 beers, 8 soft drinks. We also bring a couple of bottles of wine aboard, which is allowed. Sometimes I cannot drink it all. (The soft drinks, not the liquor) LOL

    188. Al Preston
      December 31st, 2014 @ 6:20 pm

      We discovered one way, that involves some luck, on our first cruise (Holland America). After boarding, we found our dining room table assignment had been changed from a 4-person table to an 8-person table – with two empty seats. On each formal night we were joined by ship’s officers, who picked up the drinks tab for the whole table!

    189. John from Wollongong
      January 1st, 2015 @ 12:59 am

      Going on HAL. Oosterdam early this year. Does this ship have “Happy Hour” everyday and at what times do we know and at what bars? What are beer prices?


    190. Mary Anderson
      January 6th, 2015 @ 2:00 pm

      Tipping for a drink is now included with every purchase. I don’t mind the tip in the bill itself but it would be nice if they could wipe off a table on Legend of the Seas. We just returned and were pretty unimpressed with the service.

    191. Dorn Critchlow
      January 14th, 2015 @ 6:59 pm

      As Elite on Princess and a coffee drinker, I trade the mini bar for a couple of coffee cards as we do drink alcohol but that in the selection is not our choice and the cards are more suitable. Shall try and exchange for a soft drink card next month on 28 day cruise.

    192. Lauren Davis
      January 25th, 2015 @ 3:40 am

      I bring a few small water bottle, wear cargo pants or shorts (very baggy kind) & around 4-6 plastic flasks {found in camping section at Walmart!}. I take a couple water bottles with me to the breakfast buffet, every morning. I fill them up with O.J. Back in the room, I can mix my own drinks in the water bottle & walk around the ship (just don’t bring clear bottles).
      Was on the Navigator of the Seas, for Thanksgiving. My sister & I patroned the same smaller bar every night! The very first night we sat at the bar, told funny stories to the bartender & tipped him very well! No matter what we ordered we paid for 1-2 drinks every other night! It pays to be friendly & nice to those bartenders!

    193. Lauren Davis
      January 25th, 2015 @ 3:46 am

      On Royal Caribbean – the is practically always an art auction! The serve free champagne at these auctions! You do NOT have to bid or register to bid! Show up, check out some art & have champagne!

    194. didi games
      May 7th, 2015 @ 1:32 am

      A lot of thanks for sharing this fine piece. Extremely interesting ideas! (as always, btw)

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