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l8cruiser

Anyone regret purchasing the Cheers program

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13 hours ago, OC SeaPA said:

Is the cheers package available throughout the cruise to purchase, or only the first day?  Om some cruise lines you can buy it on day 3 or 4 for a 7 day cruise, and only pay for those days.  I have found that when I had the drink package I really wasn't drinking that heavy by the end of the cruise, especially if the beginning was port intensive and the end had more sea days. 

 

Is this available for Carnival? 

You have to purchase by day 2 ( morning I believe).

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I just got off a 5 day and did not buy Cheers as I was with my 20 yr old daughter and didn't expect to drink that much. With that said, most fruity/frozen drinks were easily around $12 with the gratuity and I was thinking it would have been easy to make Cheers worth it. Luckily I somehow figured out on the last sea day I had the drinks on us at the casino and took advantage of that. I'm going on a 7 day in February with my sister and fully plan to buy Cheers for that cruise. I think it will be well worth it not to worry about every drink I order because it adds up quick! Even wine at dinner was over $11 with gratuity. 

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Unless each of you plan to drink 6 drinks per day every day, then it's not worth the cost. That's pretty much the answer, and it's more of a psychological aspect knowing you're not "paying" for your drinks than anything else (even though you are paying for them).

 

For context, my wife and I are going on an 8 day cruise and neither one of us will average 6 drinks per day because we have four port days. With the sea days, we will probably average 3-5 drinks per day for me and maybe 1-2 for her plus a couple of coffees and maybe a shake or two between the two of us for the entire trip. Doing the calculation, our drink spending will work out to about 41% of buying the drink package. That's a significant savings and we can budget for what we intend to spend.

Edited by Sean_B

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I bought Cheers and don't think I will again unless I'm going on trip with the sole purpose to party. I am very much a social drinker and can easily drink 5 drinks during a night out with friends. I drink the same, if not more when on vacations out of town. A large part of my vacations are spent eating and drinking at local establishments. I recently went on my 1st cruise with a friend and barely drank at all. A big part of that was that I wasn't ordering drinks while eating meals or barhopping. I drank 3 or 4 margaritas while watching the football game on the pool deck thanks to the roaming servers, but I spent little time lounging on the decks other days. Again, while watching Monday night football at the casino bar I had a few drinks there, walked back to Alchemy and had a few, and some later in the nightclub. But I mostly went from activity to activity or chilled on my balcony and wasn't much interested in drinking. I brought 2 bottles of wine and didn't even finish 1.

I have a cruise coming up in a few months on NCL and have the beverage package as a "free" perk, so I'll see if my drinking habits differ. But it seems like I vacation differently at sea than on land.

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Do I regret purchasing cheers?  Yes and No, LOL.  I purchased it on my last cruise which was way back in 2016.  My only regret was that I enjoyed it to the max!  never hit 15 drinks a day, don't even think I could, but certainly hit at least 10 a day, which also included specialty coffees.  My regret was that it resulted in a significant weight gain over that week.  However, the reason I do not regret it was that once back home and on my regular routine, that weight gain was quickly lost, and more since then due to healthy lifestyle.  

 

Also, it was likely my last cruise for quite some time to come (family reasons, cant leave home now), so I am very happy that on that cruise I went for the total enjoyment factor.  Had my wine, my special coffees and a few special mixed drinks. (twilight zone, loved that one). so in that sense I am happy that I got cheers, for probably my only time.

 

In future though whenever I get to cruise again, and I will, then I will likely not purchase it because at this time in my life I drink much less alcohol, and certainly not enough to make it worth while for me.

 

So yes and no!

 

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I think a lot of people look at this as drinking 5/6 drinks per day to break even is the wrong way to look at it, unless it helps you conceptualize it. Think of the total bar bill. Ie- you might have 2 days where you have fun and drink 10 drinks those days, which means you only need 2 the other days to break even. 

 

A lot of people also vocalize the idea of being able to try drinks you wouldn't normally have, or not having to worry about a bill at the end of your cruise. 

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I get what you're saying and agree, however most on CC are very money conscious. Not that there is anything wrong with that. 

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On 3/5/2019 at 9:18 AM, l8cruiser said:

I am curious if anyone thought they made a mistake purchasing the Cheers program. I was thinking on port days , if we would be away too long to get our moneys worth. It would be nice to have mimosas in the morning along with special coffees. I would kick myself though if we didn’t drink enough to make it worthwhile. 

I am not a heavy drinker and my wife is an occasional drinker but we thought that shakes, coffee, and drinks would help us save.  It was our first cruise so we went crazy on the shore excursions so being away from the boat for 5 hours a days takes away from your drink package.  We ended up losing a little of $300 when it was all said and done.

We did a review if you would like to take a gander.


 

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I'm just wondering if anyone has hit the 15 drink limit?

On sea day if you start with a bloody Mary and end your night with a cocktail I wonder how many drink I could put back just relaxing around the pool and singing at the piano bar after dinner. 

 

Our next cruise I was thinking of just putting money on our account each month leading up to our vacation. 

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6 minutes ago, Waglitt said:

I'm just wondering if anyone has hit the 15 drink limit?

On sea day if you start with a bloody Mary and end your night with a cocktail I wonder how many drink I could put back just relaxing around the pool and singing at the piano bar after dinner. 

 

Our next cruise I was thinking of just putting money on our account each month leading up to our vacation. 

On an 8 day Southern I hit 15 once and 10-12 twice. Never less than 7 any day. Vacation drinking habits are way different than normal life.

We aren't excursion people so only spend 3-4 hours off ship in ports.

 

I do start everyday with Bailey's and Coffee (2) on 🚢. So that puts me 1/3 of the way to getting my value of Cheers each day.

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On 3/5/2019 at 10:18 AM, l8cruiser said:

I am curious if anyone thought they made a mistake purchasing the Cheers program. I was thinking on port days , if we would be away too long to get our moneys worth. It would be nice to have mimosas in the morning along with special coffees. I would kick myself though if we didn’t drink enough to make it worthwhile. 

Nope! We don't drink much at all (like 2 drinks a year at home) but we like to drink cocktails on vacation. You break even at 5 cocktails (plus all the other drinks - especially bottles water). So a mimosa for breakfast, 2 throughout the day, and 2 at dinner and you are even. We bought it again for our trip next year.

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We have.   Both times we've purchased we calculated that we would have spent approximately 50% less had we just purchased drinks as we went along.  For us, it  would be great if you were able to purchase just for one.  But unfortunately since both adults in the cabin are required to purchase and one of us does not drink very much, it's not a good deal for us. 

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3 hours ago, Waglitt said:

I'm just wondering if anyone has hit the 15 drink limit?

On sea day if you start with a bloody Mary and end your night with a cocktail I wonder how many drink I could put back just relaxing around the pool and singing at the piano bar after dinner. 

 

Our next cruise I was thinking of just putting money on our account each month leading up to our vacation. 

 

I hit 15 one day on two different cruises.  My normal is around 10 I would guess.

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We always get it and sometimes I break even, sometimes save a lot with it and sometimes dont break even.  I just pay for it up front and then I dont worry about it.  To me, it's a cost of cruising.

 

Couple of reasons- At home- We drink socially, and usually if we are out at dinner will have a drink.  Many times I would have two but my cheapness takes over and I just have one.  I know if we didn't have cheers that on vacation, I would be thinking about the bill at the end and not ordering what I want.  It's just my personality.  Once money is spent, I dont care, I just let my frugal nature take over otherwise.

 

When we cruise without our kids, no doubt we break even or come out ahead with cheers.  We also arent big on excursions without our kids.  Most things, I think, I'd rather just eat and drink for free on the boat.  When we take our kids, that's probably when we dont always come out ahead.  We take them on excursions, so we are off longer on port days.  But we still start every day with specialty coffee and enjoy drinks throughout the trip, so if we dont break even, it's not off by much, so I still dont regret it.  Every cruise is so different for us, depending on friends we make on board, the staff, etc so sometimes we end up drinking more than others, sometimes we gamble more, sometimes we watch more shows, etc.  So it's hard to guess upfront.

 

Now, the biggest question always seems to be- do you drink more just to get your monies worth from cheers.  Yes and No for me.  I get specialty coffee because I paid for it.  Regular coffee is honestly just fine for me.  I drink a lot more bottled water where tap is fine for me.  I order a mimosa or Patron XO in my coffee at breakfast where if I didn't have cheers, no I probably wouldn't.  I'd only have one drink at dinner vs two, etc. I do try things that I am not sure I like, because no harm if I dont.  We have only hit 15 drinks like two nights out of all of our cruises so a drink going to waste is not a big deal to me.

 

All of that long winded message said- we always tip extra on every drink, soda, or specialty coffee with cheers since the gratuities that are added are so small per order.  So, this is an extra cost to consider.  I'm definitely ordering more than I would if I didn't have cheers since I would just drink regular coffee and wouldn't order so freely if I were paying per drink.

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32 minutes ago, cheermomof2girls said:

 

 

All of that long winded message said- we always tip extra on every drink, soda, or specialty coffee with cheers since the gratuities that are added are so small per order.  So, this is an extra cost to consider.  I'm definitely ordering more than I would if I didn't have cheers since I would just drink regular coffee and wouldn't order so freely if I were paying per drink.

18% is small? 

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For me, yes and no. On shorter cruises, 3-4 day, when it is my granddaughter and I cruising, I buy the drink package. We are lucky to hit 6 a day but we also have specialty coffee, bottled water, etc. We like our time on the ship and on those shorter cruises we never do excursions and sometimes don't even leave the ship so we get our money's worth. We also love the alchemy bar and those drinks add up fast. The no is on 7,8 day and longer, we don't buy it as that becomes too expensive and on those longer cruises, we don't consistently drink that much every day. The longer cruises are usually my husband and i and even though we both enjoy our cocktails, we would never have a bar bill that totals what the drink package adds up to.

Pat

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1 hour ago, Roscoe13 said:

18% is small? 

 

Well... let's do the math -- I like doing the math...

CHEERS package is $51.95 + $9.35 (18% TIP - prepaid) for a total of $61.30;

Average priced drink is $9.95, so an 18% TIP would be $1.79, for a total drink price of $11.74;

 

If you drink 5 drinks in a day, then the total TIP is $8.95 -- close to the 18% you pre-paid. 

 

However, if you drink 6 drinks ($9.95 x 6 = $59.70),  you have still only paid $9.35 TIPS pre-paid. Your TIP rate effectively lowered to 15.66%, a $1.40 advantage over the 18% TIP.  8 cocktails reduces the TIP rate to 11.75% -- a $4.98 advantage over the 18% TIP.

10 drinks -- 9.4%, $8.56 advantage;  12 drinks -- 7.83%, $12.14 advantage;  15 drinks -- 6.26%, $17.52 advantage;    

 

So, you can see why folks using CHEERS may decide to TIP additional.  

     

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We did it on a four day and used it up everyday with drinks and specialty coffee.  Stretched drinks out through the day and thought it was worth it.  Would prob do on another 4, possibly 5 but nothing longer than that.  Usually on 7 and longer days we’re over the alcohol by day 6 lol 🤪

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2 hours ago, coevan said:

love the math, but don't think that's what Roscoe meant. 


Perhaps.  I was just trying to point out that paying the 18% TIP on the CHEERS package is likely not 18%.  Good to throw the math up in front of folks every now and again so that they are aware.  

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We purchased on a couple of our 7 & 8 day cruises.  While we didn't regret it, I felt it was a challenge to "break even" especially with a port heavy cruise.

 

Moving forward, we are doing "drink & pay as we go" so we have the flexibility to not drink a day and not feel bad about it.

We budget for expenditures on board in any case and based on past spend for drinks, we will spend less than a drink package (we really do not drink pop or the fancy coffees that often).

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13 hours ago, VentureMan_2000 said:


Perhaps.  I was just trying to point out that paying the 18% TIP on the CHEERS package is likely not 18%.  Good to throw the math up in front of folks every now and again so that they are aware.  

I love math, as it is an exact science with little or no room for argument.  However, when I purchase cheers I often find myself ordering several beers a day to pace myself and also, just because I can!

 

On to the bigger question.  Have never regretted purchasing Cheers but it can alter your perspective.  We are budgeters to begin with, so for us it's not about folio shock at the end of the cruise.  We find it's value in the ancillary perks and in the freedom to hang out in the piano bar and agree that one more won't hurt.

 

Merry Christmas!!

  

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I wouldn't say regret so much as learned it wasn't worth it for us. While it only takes about 5 drinks to break even on port days we found we didn't have time to drink that much. I might drink 5 drinks a day but my husband may only drink one or 2 on port days. Since everyone in the cabin has to get it, it wasn't worth it to us. You have  to evaluate what each person in your cabin over 21 will realistically drink each day to determine if it's worth it to you. 

 

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My husband and I purchased it for one of our cruises, but ended up cancelling it on day 2.  We realized we could never drink enough to make it worth it.  On our last cruise, our total bill was $230, which included drinks for the two of us, T-shirts, and a few items purchased in the stores. I can't imagine drinking 5 alcoholic drinks in one day.  The calories alone would be shocking.  It makes sense for people who like to drink a lot.  It doesn't for people who don't drink much.

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