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gmbhardy

Not Happy with Liquor Up Charges

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5 hours ago, mchelle77 said:

I just gotta say that I think it's wild that they charge $21.95 for a glass of Chateau St Michelle Riesling when I buy that by the bottle for $10 LOL 

 

Well that $10 covers the cost for inventory...now you just need to account for the employees to serve the drink, the glassware, the bar, and the multi-milliondollar ship to make it a fair and even comparison.

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I just saw a new menu for Le Bistro on the Escape. I guess I will no longer continue my tradition of toasting the first night with a glass of Veuve champagne. Not at $34.95 a glass! I usually don't mind an occasional small upcharge for something I enjoy, but this crazy. Disappointing.

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19 minutes ago, SeaShark said:

 

Well that $10 covers the cost for inventory...now you just need to account for the employees to serve the drink, the glassware, the bar, and the multi-milliondollar ship to make it a fair and even comparison.

I'm a bartender so I get mark up, but there's usually a system and that's a lot more than I've ever seen!

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58 minutes ago, SeaShark said:

 

Well that $10 covers the cost for inventory...now you just need to account for the employees to serve the drink, the glassware, the bar, and the multi-milliondollar ship to make it a fair and even comparison.

you can't think that the 20% "tip" that is place on the package or the purchase isn't taking care of all that overhead for the bartenders ,glassware, and bar mix.  They're charging more than some of the most expensive bars anywhere for some of their stuff.  I was a bar manager for 2 years, if I tried to get that kind of mark up, people would walk.  Also, they buy their booze for export.  Meaning they pay duty free.  Not the airport "duty free" but duty free.  Example, when I was in the Canadian Navy, we would take booze out of the country for sale in the messes (the bar, there is 3 per ship).  1.14 litre of vodka, about 6 bucks, 750 ml of Crown Royal, 9, Grand Marnier, 15 ish.  These guys are getting pretty cheeky with their, imaginative pricing.  Does it really cost an extra $125 (5 bucks x 25 shots per bottle) more to buy Grey Goose over....anything.  Nah.  Gotta be a bit envious of making 500 bucks a 750 ml bottle.  That's serious GOUGING!

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On 1/20/2019 at 9:33 PM, gmbhardy said:

I You fully don’t understand the concept of getting “nickeled and dimed” until it punches you in the gut. I’ve posted a number of comments on this topic on two threads that are running concurrently concerning the new liquor pricing and the UBP. To reiterate, I sailed on the Biss January 12 to 19. We chose to be in the Observation Lounge for sail away as the views from that vantage point are stunning. Most of the time my wife and I choose a champagne substitute (prosecco) to toast the start of the cruise but for some reason I decided to order Grand Marnier, my favourite drink, instead. I was shocked when the bartender told me there was now an up charge for Grand Marnier (17.95). I said “since when” (I sailed on the Bliss in November) he said “starting today there is a new liquor menu in effect” and handed me one. Before even looking at it i saked him “what about Grey Goose” and he said “yes also an up charge” (19.95). I was stunned to say the least but collected myself and ordered two proseccos instead. They didn’t have any as their stock for the week had not been replenished yet. This cruise was not getting off to a very good start. Later in the week I attended the Latitudes reception so I could vent my dissatisfaction with the food and beverage manager. I asked him if NCL monitors CC discussions and he said of course they did. So then I said you must know then that the number one complaint about NCL is it’s “nickel and dime” approach to gouging customers. He didn’t quite know how to respond to that comment but instead told me about a new premium beverage package that will soon be available for an additional $28.00/day. I then told him I had six future cruises book with NCL with three being in the Haven and given what I’m paying to stay in the Haven, I can’t fathom having to pay extra for semi premium alcohol. I think our conversation ended at that point. I also noticed a few other new bar policies during the week. With virtually nobody ordering Grey Goose with the $6.00 up charge ($5 + $1 service charge) Tito’s appeared to be the vodka of choice. In the evening if a bar ran of Tito’s they made no effort to get another bottle. I’ve seen resorts in Mexico have limited inventory on some of their premium selections so unless you got there early your chance of getting some was limited. I always considered cruising to be a step above all inclusives resorts, but with changes like this it makes you wonder. Could I afford to pay a little extra for Grand Marnier? Sure I could, but I don’t feel I should have to given the price of cruising, especially in the Haven. The other issue that really bothers me is how they are able to change their product after you purchase it. The travel and tourism industry is notorious for bait and switch tactics and they continue to get away with it. Most businesses would grandfather changes like this but not the travel industry. I have been a loyal NCL customer and in all probability will continue to purchase their products, but in my opinion the NCL brand is starting to deteriorate. When you have the highest priced booze package in the industry and exclude semi premium items from it,  a lot of customers are going to be extremely unhappy. FYI I have attached photos of the new menu. Thanks for letting me vent!

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9996A736-31B9-44AC-A166-DE23E8B6E6ED.jpeg

Most cruise lines do grandfather changes.  I guess just not ncl.

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6 hours ago, mchelle77 said:

I just gotta say that I think it's wild that they charge $21.95 for a glass of Chateau St Michelle Riesling when I buy that by the bottle for $10 LOL 

Bring some on board, pay the 15 corkage, and you're ahead after the first glass.  

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6 hours ago, xakeridi said:

That does sound drastic but if you only have one drink a day that's still cheaper than the package. You have to consider your usage. 

1 drink...per day.....

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I am happy that NCL now have a real beverage package which doesn't only include alcohol and soda. But also coffee, juice and water. Maybe I'm not that happy with the price tag. But i will think about it for my next cruise. Which unfortunately(?) is 21 nights, so it will be expensive if I choose to have it.

 

I really wonder if how they will do with the wines by the glass with the upgraded package, if all glasses will be covered, real champagne, for example. 

 

Also wonder if it will be possible to upgrade before boarding. 

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5 minutes ago, roxette said:

I am happy that NCL now have a real beverage package which doesn't only include alcohol and soda. But also coffee, juice and water. Maybe I'm not that happy with the price tag. But i will think about it for my next cruise. Which unfortunately(?) is 21 nights, so it will be expensive if I choose to have it.

54.60 per day x 21 days x 2 people comes out to 2293.20. 🤔

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It makes me wonder if we, in Europe will be offered anything different?

 

The thing is, we already pay more for "All inclusive".

The all inclusive already includes water, specialist coffee (with food) and all gratuities - even though "All inclusive" we are also restricted to the $15 limit. It's not free, we pay extra for this in the fare already.

 

All we would gain from this new upgrade would be better drinks, while as things stand they have taken away some drinks we already paid for. It will be even less value to us to upgrade, I certainly won't be paying more for an upgrade JUST to get back the drinks they took away.

 

It's a disgrace, put the drinks up 20% if you have to but do the same with the allowance, increase it by 20% to $18.

Edited by ziggyuk

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For me, what's really burning my butt is that this increase comes on the heels of the price increases in the specialty restaurants so that platinum coupons now won't cover the total cost for most meals. I get that the goal is to get people spending more, but come on. To price items WAY above their value just to take more out of our wallets is crap.

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All the whining in the world will not change a darn thing.

If past experience is any indication, NCL will just stick to their guns.

I suppose the only exception was that "no food to be taken out of the buffet" fiasco.

Other than that, I really do not recall NCL ever backtracking from any decisions they take.

There are a bunch of other cruise lines to consider other than NCL, at least that is what we do.

Whining on Cruise Critic achieves nothing, it certainly is not going to make NCL reconsider. 😞 😞 

 

Thank you

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4 hours ago, Aesop081 said:

Bring some on board, pay the 15 corkage, and you're ahead after the first glass.  

 

No need, I never drink wine outside of my home (BECAUSE of the markup!! 🙂 )

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4 hours ago, roxette said:

I am happy that NCL now have a real beverage package which doesn't only include alcohol and soda. But also coffee, juice and water. Maybe I'm not that happy with the price tag. But i will think about it for my next cruise. Which unfortunately(?) is 21 nights, so it will be expensive if I choose to have it.

 

I really wonder if how they will do with the wines by the glass with the upgraded package, if all glasses will be covered, real champagne, for example. 

 

Also wonder if it will be possible to upgrade before boarding. 

You’re either crazy or a millionaire..... NCL loves people like you .

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4 hours ago, SNJCruisers said:

54.60 per day x 21 days x 2 people comes out to 2293.20. 🤔

 

You could book 2 inside cabin 7 night cruises for that much.  Lets see, shall I take the beverage package or 2 more cruises :classic_ohmy:

 

I would take curtain #3...….2 cruises

Edited by david_sobe

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I was at a M&G once and everyone there kept asking the officers why the "nickle and dime" movement...bottom line was all of the officers said  BOTTOM LINE...this was 18 yrs ago...so I don't think NCL will change.  We book where the ship goes but we no longer book semi suites...and we no longer take an NCL cruise 2 or 3 times a year.  By the way...the pre- paid  gratituties  do not go the the bartenders etc....never have..never will:classic_rolleyes:

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2 hours ago, c r u i s e said:

All the whining in the world will not change a darn thing.

If past experience is any indication, NCL will just stick to their guns.

I suppose the only exception was that "no food to be taken out of the buffet" fiasco.

Other than that, I really do not recall NCL ever backtracking from any decisions they take.

There are a bunch of other cruise lines to consider other than NCL, at least that is what we do.

Whining on Cruise Critic achieves nothing, it certainly is not going to make NCL reconsider. 😞 😞 

 

Thank you

Totally agree that the whining does NOTHING.  And the only reason NCL reversed their rule on taking food out of the buffet is simply because they had no way to enforce it.  

 

Platinum plus member and shareholder here (one of how many millions?) with no NCL cruises booked beyond this year.  Really disillusioned with NCL's pricing and their practices.  This year will be it with NCL.  My 100 shares of NCL were well priced.  I will use the proceed from their sale to book something with a different line.

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15 minutes ago, vince_g said:

Totally agree that the whining does NOTHING.  And the only reason NCL reversed their rule on taking food out of the buffet is simply because they had no way to enforce it.  

 

Platinum plus member and shareholder here (one of how many millions?) with no NCL cruises booked beyond this year.  Really disillusioned with NCL's pricing and their practices.  This year will be it with NCL.  My 100 shares of NCL were well priced.  I will use the proceed from their sale to book something with a different line.

 

I hear you, Vince.

We are also shareholders and Platinum Plus with NCL....not that loyalty means anything to them.

Last year we did 7 cruises, only 1 was on NCL. And we only did that because it was a dirt cheap, last-minute deal on a 19-day TransPacific crossing. Other than gratuities/dsc....call it whatever you want, our onboard spending bill at the end of the cruise was a big, fat ZERO. To add insult to injury, we used a CruiseNext certificate when we booked that cruise.

I say balls to NCL ! ! !

Edited by c r u i s e

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2 hours ago, c r u i s e said:

All the whining in the world will not change a darn thing.

If past experience is any indication, NCL will just stick to their guns.

I suppose the only exception was that "no food to be taken out of the buffet" fiasco.

Other than that, I really do not recall NCL ever backtracking from any decisions they take.

There are a bunch of other cruise lines to consider other than NCL, at least that is what we do.

Whining on Cruise Critic achieves nothing, it certainly is not going to make NCL reconsider. 😞 😞 

 

Thank you

You may be right, but Carnival on January 2  announced plans to start charging for room service. Five days later they reversed the decision, because of their customer outrage on CC.

We are talking about two different companies, but don’t understand estimate the power of unhappy consumers.

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3 minutes ago, vicnsue said:

You may be right, but Carnival on January 2  announced plans to start charging for room service. Five days later they reversed the decision, because of their customer outrage on CC.

We are talking about two different companies, but don’t understand estimate the power of unhappy consumers.

 

Like you said, they are 2 DIFFERENT companies and we are talking NCL here, not Carnival. 

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Cruise lines have backtracked from some of their decisions but NONE of them were fee based.  NCL did backtrack about taking food to the cabin.  They also reversed course on the construction cruise through the Panama Canal when lots of the ship was actively under construction.  After much flaming here and other places, NCL did give those passengers a credit towards a new cruise or partial refund (cant remember which).

Every company looks to increase profit. As we all know, NCL has no shame in raising auto gratuities twice in the same year or even implementing service charges on cover charges which I still don't quite understand.  Everything is statistics.  Clearly NCL saw many people upgrading their vodka based drinks maximizing their UBP.  When it was time to reorder Grey Goose sooner than expected, someone had an idea to make even more money off the UBP.   Personally, I don't think its the end of the world but the irony IMHO is NCL already had the worst beverage package in the industry.  They could care less and have no shame making it even worse LOL.

Edited by david_sobe

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4 minutes ago, vicnsue said:

You may be right, but Carnival on January 2  announced plans to start charging for room service. Five days later they reversed the decision, because of their customer outrage on CC.

We are talking about two different companies, but don’t understand estimate the power of unhappy consumers.

Carnival has become a great cruise line under Arnold Donald.  They are not perfect but they have become very responsive to customers.  The NCL ceo has such a negative and condescending attitude.   It is such a turn off.

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10 minutes ago, Cafedumonde said:

Carnival has become a great cruise line under Arnold Donald.  They are not perfect but they have become very responsive to customers.  The NCL ceo has such a negative and condescending attitude.   It is such a turn off.

Hey there Cafedumonde.

We live in Alabama, only three hours away from NOLA. We are taking a TA in April on the Pearl. Looking ahead to 2020 we had our eye on the Getaway in January.

Sorry NCL another repeat customer taking their business elsewhere.

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The thing is, are they going to announce this formally and publicly at some point (or did I miss a memo)?  I mean, we only know because someone was on a cruise and found out, and was gracious enough to let us all know here. If NCL is doing this fleetwide, which they certainly appear to be, they should at least own it.  At this point it looks like they are not only nickel and diming everyone (again) but also trying to be incredibly sneaky and underhanded about it.

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