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Free at Sea Beverage Package

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I am completely new to NCL and have a quick question on the free at sea Beverage Package.  A co-worker has told me that while on his cruise he had the beverage package perk and paid the 20% gratuities/service fees when booking the cruise.  And then also paid 20% gratuity on each drink he got onboard.  That makes no sense to me at all and I was wondering if you experienced NCL'ers could clear this up for me on whether it's true or if my co-worker is just mistaken. 

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He was mistaken.  If you have the beverage package, once on board you do not pay anything additional with one exception.  You do not even get a receipt to sign. 

 

The one exception is when you are in a US port.  In Florida and Louisiana you have to pay sales tax on the retail price of the drink.  You will get a receipt to sign and you can add an additional tip if you like.  I do not know what NY law says.  For Texas, beverage packages are not allowed to start on the first day due to the TABC laws.  NCL does not sail out of Texas but that was an FYI if you sail on Carnival, RCL or Disney out of Galveston.  

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It is just the 20% per day which is paid up front. Perhaps he got it mixed up with the sales tax charges when you are in most US ports. We had the Premium Beverage Package on the Breakaway at the beginning of this month and while we were docked in Miami I was charged $1-$2 in taxes for drinks!

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Maybe he was mistaken and forgot that the Daily Service Charge is charged daily and that will show on your account on the ship.  You will pay any difference above the $15 drink limit plus the 20%.  Maybe your co worker was drinking more expensive liquor.

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29 minutes ago, Liljo22 said:

He was mistaken.  If you have the beverage package, once on board you do not pay anything additional with one exception.  You do not even get a receipt to sign. 

 

The one exception is when you are in a US port.  In Florida and Louisiana you have to pay sales tax on the retail price of the drink.  You will get a receipt to sign and you can add an additional tip if you like.  I do not know what NY law says.  For Texas, beverage packages are not allowed to start on the first day due to the TABC laws.  NCL does not sail out of Texas but that was an FYI if you sail on Carnival, RCL or Disney out of Galveston.  

 

They charge in Washington too. Only state I know that doesn't is Alaska.

 

I haven't gotten a reciept to sign when they're charging tax on my last two cruises. There's just a sign up somewhere on the bar that says it. 

 

Also, Royals drink package is good the first day out of Texas. They make sure to buy some product that meets the laws and offer a reduced drink menu until you're out of Texas waters. 

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1 minute ago, smplybcause said:

 

They charge in Washington too. Only state I know that doesn't is Alaska.

 

I haven't gotten a reciept to sign when they're charging tax on my last two cruises. There's just a sign up somewhere on the bar that says it. 

 

Also, Royals drink package is good the first day out of Texas. They make sure to buy some product that meets the laws and offer a reduced drink menu until you're out of Texas waters. 

This is true. We sailed out of Galveston in 2016 and we were able to use our Drink package too!

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6 minutes ago, smplybcause said:

 

They charge in Washington too. Only state I know that doesn't is Alaska.

 

I haven't gotten a reciept to sign when they're charging tax on my last two cruises. There's just a sign up somewhere on the bar that says it. 

 

Also, Royals drink package is good the first day out of Texas. They make sure to buy some product that meets the laws and offer a reduced drink menu until you're out of Texas waters. 

Good to know about RCL.  I have only taken Carnival and Disney out of Galveston.  Carnival does not start until day two and I just assumed RCL did.  Want to sail the Liberty but they only have the trip around Cuba when our kids are out for Spring Break.  Not my favorite route. 

 

 TABC is a big pain with their weird antiquated laws.  You would be surprised by some of them.  

Edited by Liljo22

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the most expensive drink I saw was $22, probably with added tip.  

 

Knob Creek Bourbon.  I had one on Halloween on the back of Lido on the Escape a couple years ago.  ONE. 

 

 

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I sail on the Epic from San Juan leaving at 9 PM.  Does anybody know if the drink package is available on embarkation day and if so is sales tax charged then as it is the US?

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Hmmmmm? Coming up stop in Port Canaveral, not embarkation.  I know I paid sales tax on RCCL for a beer before sailing. Don't remember if I paid it on NCL in PC before sailing though. And it was this Irishmans best holiday too!

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5 hours ago, anaslile said:

I sail on the Epic from San Juan leaving at 9 PM.  Does anybody know if the drink package is available on embarkation day and if so is sales tax charged then as it is the US?

The drink package will be available as soon as you board. Puerto Rico has a sales tax (and is a US Territory) so it is likely that there will be sales tax on the drinks while in port. I will find out for for next month. 😉

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Wow!  This is way too confusing for a "Free Drink Package"  loopholes everywhere!

Why not sail on Crystal or Silversea.....free  means FREE.  No surcharges, fees, taxes or other  hidden charges.

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1 hour ago, Crusue said:

Wow!  This is way too confusing for a "Free Drink Package"  loopholes everywhere!

Why not sail on Crystal or Silversea.....free  means FREE.  No surcharges, fees, taxes or other  hidden charges.

 

LOL

 

Considering the price of a Crystal or Silversea cruise, you are paying through the nose for their "free" drink package.

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Of course I expected a reaction such as this, but having just returned from a 7 day  European Crystal, trip I can

assure you, I paid less than what I paid for a 7 day NCL  Hawaiian cruise last year.

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On 11/20/2019 at 2:07 PM, Liljo22 said:

He was mistaken.  If you have the beverage package, once on board you do not pay anything additional with one exception.  You do not even get a receipt to sign. 

 

The one exception is when you are in a US port.  In Florida and Louisiana you have to pay sales tax on the retail price of the drink.  You will get a receipt to sign and you can add an additional tip if you like.  I do not know what NY law says.  For Texas, beverage packages are not allowed to start on the first day due to the TABC laws.  NCL does not sail out of Texas but that was an FYI if you sail on Carnival, RCL or Disney out of Galveston.  

You pay the tax while in port in NY, too!  As a matter of fact, that was the first time we saw that with the drink package!

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On 11/21/2019 at 1:23 PM, Crusue said:

Of course I expected a reaction such as this, but having just returned from a 7 day  European Crystal, trip I can

assure you, I paid less than what I paid for a 7 day NCL  Hawaiian cruise last year.

Not Apples to Apples. The 7 Day Hawaii voyages are completed on a US Flagged ship which must adhere to US Labor laws. 

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On 11/21/2019 at 4:23 PM, Crusue said:

Of course I expected a reaction such as this, but having just returned from a 7 day  European Crystal, trip I can

assure you, I paid less than what I paid for a 7 day NCL  Hawaiian cruise last year.

How is that any valid support for your claim?  

 

   Why not post what you paid and the itinerary???     Then see how you compare?    

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3 hours ago, Robinsoncruiseso said:

Not Apples to Apples. The 7 Day Hawaii voyages are completed on a US Flagged ship which must adhere to US Labor laws. 

Absolutely.  There is NO comparison with these 2 random- no detail claims this person is posting       And certainly means nothing.    

 

Why isn’t this poster disclosing the itinerary and WHAT they paid????

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On 11/21/2019 at 4:23 PM, Crusue said:

Of course I expected a reaction such as this, but having just returned from a 7 day  European Crystal, trip I can

assure you, I paid less than what I paid for a 7 day NCL  Hawaiian cruise last year.

 

Ha! Not to derail the thread, but NCL has a US flagged ship sailing in Hawaii. They have to pay US minimum wage and adhere to all US labor laws and pay US taxes. Of course it is expensive! Compare an NCL European itinerary to a Crystal itinerary and get back to us.

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On 11/20/2019 at 11:34 PM, mnventure said:

The drink package will be available as soon as you board. Puerto Rico has a sales tax (and is a US Territory) so it is likely that there will be sales tax on the drinks while in port. I will find out for for next month. 😉

We also are sailing out of San Juan on Epic  in March .Last year on Celebrity Summit sailing out of San Juan are drink packages were not taxed extra while in port so very interested to see about Epic.

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I understand  the Pride of America is a US registered ship, and yes, they must adhere to US  regulations.

All I am saying ,in my opinion, is why go through all the nickel and dimeing when you can board a ship and not worry about a thing!

We did a Crystal Serenity Rome-Venice 7 day in September of this year and our fare was $2950,00/each.

This included all drinks, taxes, port charges and tips, plus we each had an onboard credit.

Just sayin'🚢  and YES I have a great Travel Agent

Edited by Crusue
addition

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