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Drink package or no drink package is the question!

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This is my first cruise on the Ruby Princess and i'm trying to figure out if it is worth me getting the premium drink package or not? We are going on the Mexican Rivera trip for 7 days w/3 days on land.

 

I guess the bigger question would be what the drink prices are and how much gratuity costs? Since I heard that if I don't get the drink package that I would have to pay gratuity per drink.

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This is my first cruise on the Ruby Princess and i'm trying to figure out if it is worth me getting the premium drink package or not? We are going on the Mexican Rivera trip for 7 days w/3 days on land.

 

I guess the bigger question would be what the drink prices are and how much gratuity costs? Since I heard that if I don't get the drink package that I would have to pay gratuity per drink.

Really depends on what and how many of them you drink.

 

As a rule of thumb about 6 drinks a day to break even or be in front.

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This is my first cruise and i'm trying to figure out if it is worth me getting the premium drink package or not? We are going on the Mexican Rivera trip for 7 days w/3 days on land.

 

I guess the bigger question would be what the drink prices are and how much gratuity costs? Since I heard that if I don't get the drink package that I would have to pay gratuity per drink.

Gratuity is 15% on purchased drinks.

You can find some sample menus here:

Various drink menus

2018

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Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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This is my first cruise on the Ruby Princess and i'm trying to figure out if it is worth me getting the premium drink package or not? We are going on the Mexican Rivera trip for 7 days w/3 days on land.

 

I guess the bigger question would be what the drink prices are and how much gratuity costs? Since I heard that if I don't get the drink package that I would have to pay gratuity per drink.

The price of the drink package is $59.99/day + 15% gratuity = $68.99/day. No further gratuities per drink. The package must be purchased for all days of the cruise. It can be pre-purchased or purchased on board on boarding day only. A 7 day cruise would be $482.93.

The package is limited to 15 alcoholic drinks per day menu priced $12 and under. This price covers about 95% of all drinks offered on board. There is no limit on the number of non-alcoholic beverages. The break even is around 6 to 7 alcoholic spirit or cocktails a day not counting the non-alcoholic beverages, for example espresso drinks. Full details of the plan can be found here: https://www.princess.com/learn/cruise-gifts-celebrations/gifts-and-services/culinary-delights-wine/

 

A 15% gratuity is added to all on board beverage purchases, alcoholic and non-alcoholic.

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It's never been worth it to me, but we're more wine drinkers than mixed drink ones. Our total bar bill for last month's 15-day trans-Atlantic on the Royal Princess was less than it would cost for one drink package for one person on a 7-day cruise. That included 10 bottles of wine in the dining rooms, evening cocktails two-thirds of the time, and one of the Stammtisch wine tastings for the two of us. DH was still using a leftover coffee card for his cappuccino after dinner each night. We also got the free minibar setup for being Elite.

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Put into perspective, cruise lines offer drink packages to make money, not to save passengers money. You’d have to drink an average of 6-7 alcoholic drinks a day, every day, even port days, to break even. That’s just one person as it’s not shareable.

 

You can buy the “soda & more” package for just over $8/pp/day and that would include unlimited soda, mocktails, etc. and if you drink 2-3 alcoholic beverages a day, you’d be way ahead vs. the alcoholic beverage package.

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I'd never pay for the thing, but I am thrilled to have the PBP for our cruise complimentary under the Sip N Sail promotion.

 

 

I know we wouldn't drink enough to make it "worth it", but not thinking about the cost, even subconsciously, while cruising has some value to us. If we want a drink, we'll darn well grab one.

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Definitely not worth it for me. On my last cruise, my bar bill averaged less than $20 per day. That was almost two years ago and I believe prices have gone up since then... so next cruise - this Dec. - I figure on about $25/day). I don't drink specialty coffees or buy water.

 

I think, in figuring out if the package is 'worth it', a lot of people make the fundamental mistake of asking themselves -

"If I had the package, how much would I drink?

 

They should be asking themselves -

"How much would I drink if I didn't have the package?"

 

How many couples spend $4200 per month on drinks when they're on land?

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We always do it if a cruise is 10 days or less. I like walking off the ship owing no money. We prepay gratuities also. We drink 2-3 specialty coffee/tea per day. Plus bottles of water and maybe a soda or two. Then a before dinner cocktail, a couple glasses of wine at dinner, after dinner coffee drink and then head to crooners or the casino. On sea days, I like a beer or two at the pool. I don't want to think about what I'm spending, I'm on vacation.

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I'd never pay for the thing, but I am thrilled to have the PBP for our cruise complimentary under the Sip N Sail promotion.

 

I know we wouldn't drink enough to make it "worth it", but not thinking about the cost, even subconsciously, while cruising has some value to us. If we want a drink, we'll darn well grab one.

 

I'm with you as far as not being willing to pay for the package. We did have it included for our last two cruises - 28 days and 14 days. The 28 day cruise had 18 sea days so the package was nice for that. One of the things we enjoyed most about the package was our evening stop at Vines. It was relaxing for us to just drop in and have a glass of wine before dinner. It was nice not having to worry about a bar bill. I'm just not willing to pay for the package. I can easily drink less.

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This is my first cruise on the Ruby Princess and i'm trying to figure out if it is worth me getting the premium drink package or not? We are going on the Mexican Rivera trip for 7 days w/3 days on land.

 

 

 

I guess the bigger question would be what the drink prices are and how much gratuity costs? Since I heard that if I don't get the drink package that I would have to pay gratuity per drink.

 

 

 

If you want to nickel and dime yourselves on a cruise then we recommend you pay for each individual drink.

 

If you can afford it and don’t give a crap, then pay for the unlimited beverage package (UBP). You can drink your brains out, get unlimited bottled water, tons of specialty coffees and it’s all good.

It’s a cruise. Go for it.

 

I’m sure I’ll get slammed for this.

 

Bon Voyage.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

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If you want to nickel and dime yourselves on a cruise then we recommend you pay for each individual drink.

 

If you can afford it and don’t give a crap, then pay for the unlimited beverage package (UBP). You can drink your brains out, get unlimited bottled water, tons of specialty coffees and it’s all good.

It’s a cruise. Go for it.

 

I’m sure I’ll get slammed for this.

 

Bon Voyage.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

Nice idea, but the Unlimited Beverage Package was discontinued some time ago. It is now the PBP (Premier Beverage Package) and the included items are different from what they were on the unlimited. As others have noted, the break even level is about 5-6 alcoholic beverages per day in addition to the other drinks.

 

Why would you expect to be slammed? Some cruisers hit their 15 drink limit every day and others don't drink 15 alcoholic beverages over a 7 night cruise. It's just a matter of what works for each individual.

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Princess cruises from Australia the alcohol package is $87 per day. It includes drinks up to the value of $16 ea, specialty coffees, 500ml bottled water, soda from the gun (not cans) juice bar if available. I always get it. Max 15 alcoholic drinks per day

 

 

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Perhaps it should not be labeled the UBP (Unlimited Beverage Package) but the CBP (Cirrhosis Beverage Package):eek:

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If you want to nickel and dime yourselves on a cruise then we recommend you pay for each individual drink.

 

If you can afford it and don’t give a crap, then pay for the unlimited beverage package (UBP). You can drink your brains out, get unlimited bottled water, tons of specialty coffees and it’s all good.

It’s a cruise. Go for it.

 

I’m sure I’ll get slammed for this.

 

Bon Voyage.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

the only reason you might get slammed is that you only describe two scenarios with no middle ground. Many have posted the options that work for them and almost none match the two you describe.

 

We value the PBP at $40 per day per person. So if it is included at that value based on cabin price and all percs, we book it. Else we normally carry on bottles of wine and pay corkage. Everyone has their own way that works for them.

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I tend to always get it just because it removes the need to micro-manage what goes on my account. I'm not a fan of how weak/watered down the drinks are so stick to things like vodka/tonic/club soda in rocks glasses otherwise you get 12 ounces of sugar filled mixes and 1.5 ounces of liquor. There is no such thing as a double and nobody I know (including me) does shots anymore...

The coffee drinks and the water are awesome deals though and do make it worthwhile. I like being able to get water to take back to the cabin at night.

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I always get it when I do the Caribbean, as the ship is the destination for me. I easily break even and probably end up a little bit ahead. I like not having to worry about a bar bill at the end. Everyone enjoys their vacation differently. This is how I enjoy mine.

 

Last year I tried every margarita at Outriggers. That's my plan for January too ;) Speciality Tea, good wine at vines and at dinner, drinks and a show, the occasional shot of good tequila...

 

To each their own. It's worth it for me.

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if I'm not mistaken, this package also includes specialty coffees and tea's

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We always get the package either through a sip and sail promo or pay for it (usually on short cruises). We easily come out ahead with maybe 7-9 cocktails or glasses of wind a day plus many bottles of water for the gym, port calls etc.

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For us, buying the package never makes sense. We just don't consume enough alcohol, although we love our espresso based beverages. But, if it is offered as an included part of our booking that is just fine. I will still keep looking at refaring, factoring in a "bar bill" of about $24 per person per sea day max in determining overall value of the reprice. But for others, especially on a cruise that has a lot of sea days, it might be worthwhile. I think it is a very individual determination.

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Always worth it for us! We both get the package and have calculated it! Hubby & I are sparkling water drinkers and also coffee people, so it all adds up, not just alcoholic drinks (we like Bloody Marys in the am and wine in the evening, as well as trying fun mixed drinks!). It also includes sodas, and fresh squeezed juices too!

Why not spoil yourself on a cruise!!!

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Just a little food for thought: 1) look at the times you are in port for those 3 days...the later we are off the ship, the less likely we consume very many drinks on the ship; 2) what is your alcoholic preference? Some guys I know mostly drink beer...you'd have to consume a 12 pack to break even each day; 3) Do you bring wine on board yourself? We always bring 1 bottle for every night (as does each of the couples we normally travel with), so pay the $15 corkage fee for the additional bottles (first 2 are free)...once we consider the wine being consumed, the number of other beverages decreases; 4) many people I know buy the package and it seems they feel obligated to over-indulge in order to "get their monies worth"...not sure I'd want to feel coerced to drink that much every day.

 

Bottom Line for us...we never purchase it. Port days it's never worth the cost (especially with the wine we bring on). On sea days, we may drink 6 - 7 drinks some days or 6 - 7 beers on others...so breaking even at best.

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