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Drink Package question

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My husband and I are pondering booking the Hawaii to Vancouver cruise, which comes with the free drink package.
But...what exactly does this entail?  We're not big drinkers, but like to enjoy a bottle of wine with dinner occasionally, or a martini at dinner, or a beer by the pool.
And we like a soda in the afternoon.

It has been about 8 years since I've cruised with NCL, so this is new to me.
Bottles of wine? Wine by the glass? Beer? Soda? anything else?  Is there a limit?

 

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Assuming you have the Premium Beverage Package and not the Premium Plus Beverage Package you have access to:

 

Soft drinks, beers, cocktails and wines by the glass up to €15.

 

The following are not included:

 

Bottled water, premium coffee/tea, fresh fruit drinks, energy drinks.

 

This PDF lists in a little further detail regarding brands available.

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I think the important thing is that the promo beverage package includes glasses of wine (a fairly limited selection) but not bottles.

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2 hours ago, KonkyWonky said:

ft drinks, beers, cocktails and wines by the glass up to €15.

 

Just to clarify it's USD ($) and if you want something that costs more then you get a $15 credit and you're responsible for the difference plus 20% gratuity on the difference

 

$22 drink would be:

22 - 15 = 7

7 * 1.20 = $8.40 cost to you

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Also, I wanted to make sure you were aware that the "free" drink package will come with a 20% gratuity added to your cruise fare when you go to purchase it.  They will calculate 20% of the rate the package would have cost you if you had purchased it instead of getting it free.  So it will add some money to the base fare of your cruise.  This means you are do not worry about tipping when you get a drink, unless you desire to tip more than what has already been added.  It still may be a good deal for you.  All the drinks you mention are covered up to $15 each except the bottle of wine.  Mini-bar drinks from your cabin are not included in the package.

Edited by MeHeartCruising

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A soda is almost $4, a beer will be at least $7, and a martini or glass of wine will be $10+. (And if you're more particular about your vodka or wine you'll be closer top $15 or above.) All prices without the mandatory 20% gratuity.

 

The gratuity on the free package is just under $20 a day per person. A beer, a soda, and a drink at dinner will put you over that making it cheaper to choose the package.  

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7 hours ago, BK512 said:

My husband and I are pondering booking the Hawaii to Vancouver cruise, which comes with the free drink package.
But...what exactly does this entail?  We're not big drinkers, but like to enjoy a bottle of wine with dinner occasionally, or a martini at dinner, or a beer by the pool.
And we like a soda in the afternoon.

It has been about 8 years since I've cruised with NCL, so this is new to me.
Bottles of wine? Wine by the glass? Beer? Soda? anything else?  Is there a limit?

 

 

If only there were an electronic device one could use to find this information...

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51 minutes ago, CILCIANRQTS said:

 

If only there were an electronic device one could use to find this information...

 

And isn't great said electronic device can access Cruise Critic, a source of help, information and personal experiences.  

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1 hour ago, CILCIANRQTS said:

 

If only there were an electronic device one could use to find this information...

Someone got out the wrong side of bed this morning. 

 

By your thinking the forums should just be shut down, last  one out turn off the lights.....

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Well, this of course is just my opinion...just off NCL Joy. When I booked, I was indeed offered the "free" beverage package and needed to pay 20% upfront, about $140. My travel agent then mentioned if I was willing to book a "sailaway" mini-suite (NCL picks the cabin) rather than the one I was booking, I would save $240 per person (2 of us) on the cruise fare but would not get the drink package. So we saved $360 each by booking the sailaway cabin (which was lovely), and spent less than $150 each on drinks during our 7 days. It was a definite win for us!

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Thanks for your answers. You've all been very helpful.  Well, except one person, but that's okay...I'm booking a cruise!  

Woohoo!

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9 hours ago, Podie said:

Well, this of course is just my opinion...just off NCL Joy. When I booked, I was indeed offered the "free" beverage package and needed to pay 20% upfront, about $140. My travel agent then mentioned if I was willing to book a "sailaway" mini-suite (NCL picks the cabin) rather than the one I was booking, I would save $240 per person (2 of us) on the cruise fare but would not get the drink package. So we saved $360 each by booking the sailaway cabin (which was lovely), and spent less than $150 each on drinks during our 7 days. It was a definite win for us!

 

If you rarely drink then sail away rates can be worth considering,.  You also need to take into account that with the sail away rate you don't get to choose your cabin, so there is a reasonable chance you will get a cabin in an undesirable area (above/below public areas where noise can be an issue).

 

You didn't really save $360 per person, you saved $240 per person by booking the sail away rate which then removed your option to take out the drinks package.  You spent almost the exact same amount on alcohol as you would have paid on gratuities had you taken the drinks package, there was no saving there. 

 

 

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When my TA added the drunk package as an amenity, nothing is showing due on my booking.  In my NCL app its showing as Ultimate Beverage Package For Groups. 

Edited by ItsAllAboutTheSass

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14 hours ago, Podie said:

Well, this of course is just my opinion...just off NCL Joy. When I booked, I was indeed offered the "free" beverage package and needed to pay 20% upfront, about $140. My travel agent then mentioned if I was willing to book a "sailaway" mini-suite (NCL picks the cabin) rather than the one I was booking, I would save $240 per person (2 of us) on the cruise fare but would not get the drink package. So we saved $360 each by booking the sailaway cabin (which was lovely), and spent less than $150 each on drinks during our 7 days. It was a definite win for us!

My point exactly about the Free drinks package. It can cost you$$$$. My wife doesn’t drink. Don’t bash me though as I couldn’t resist it for the 14 nights on the Bliss in 2020 coming up soon. My wife solution 1/2 the liquor or virgin drinks for her. But it’s costing probably $999.99 in total room and 20% tip. If a cruise is port heavy I can live with out it. 

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1 hour ago, ItsAllAboutTheSass said:

When my TA added the drunk package as an amenity...

Hmmm... Freudian slip maybe?

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Is there any way to find out the white wine that will be poured on the Breakaway?

 

 

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46 minutes ago, AtMaui said:

Is there any way to find out the white wine that will be poured on the Breakaway?

 

 

 

If you look in any recent reviews to see if they posted the bar menus. Looking at other ships will give you an idea of what will be there but it's not exactly the same each ship. 

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I realize that the basic drinks package includes $15 and under drinks and beer. Does that include all the different beer offerings in the Bliss craft beer lounge.

It would be nice to see what different beers are available.  Any one have a copy of beers available.

Someone said an Alaskan beer but that’s probably during an Alaskan Cruise.

I’d love to get a Banks Beer from Barbados onboard. I’ve enjoyed Red stripe from Jamaica onboard. Just wondering if they will offer any other Caribbean beers. Belize has a great beer.
On return from Bliss in February I’ll try to post it.

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1 hour ago, AtMaui said:

Is there any way to find out the white wine that will be poured on the Breakaway?


The default menus are below served across the ship. Different venues will have additional wines available. (Subject to Change)A9B75510-5D27-4067-8724-56E44CCDE7DD.thumb.jpeg.d05c232184ce6fa8d3d5125c8a3a0493.jpeg

 

 

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8F9AC649-7BE8-48FF-9536-5857EAEA84FB.jpeg

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9 hours ago, KonkyWonky said:

 

You didn't really save $360 per person, you saved $240 per person by booking the sail away rate which then removed your option to take out the drinks package.  You spent almost the exact same amount on alcohol as you would have paid on gratuities had you taken the drinks package, there was no saving there. 

 

 

 

But the $240 savings per person makes selecting the Sailaway rate a good value decision for them.  Many people just take the added beverage package service charge and not the added cost of the cruise into account when calculating cost.  We have twice been able to choose our cabin on the Sailaway rate.  Granted, the selection was very limited.  Surprisingly one of the sailaway rate cabins we chose had a large balcony.  On other times when we couldn't select our cabin we have been happy.  

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I'm very disappointed by the wine list above.  I'm surprised how few wines are available that would be included in the basic drink package, especially compared to other cruise lines like Celebrity.  There are very few, they all fall into the $8-9 range, and they don't look like they are very good.  If you want something a little better then you are forced to move up to the $16-18 range and they are no longer free.  Does anybody else find it "interesting" that there is "absolutely nothing" in the $12-15 range??  What is the point offering free drinks up to $15 if you only sell $9 drinks?

 

We like to have a few drinks and we selected the so called "free" package as a perk.  But we will have a hard time just breaking even since we paid the $20 pp/day 20% gratuity.  And that seems to be the point of Norwegian's marketing strategy.  I was already on the fence about selecting the "free" drink package, and if we had known about the weak selection in the wine list, we may have selected something else as a perk, or booked a sail away rate.

 

To me, this is another example of nickel and diming by Norwegian, and it's something we will consider when we book our next cruise.  Other cruise lines do not charge gratuities for their "free" drink package, and they also have a better wine selection, include bottled water, fresh juice, and specialty coffee.  Celebrity recently tried to add a $14/day surcharge.  That didn't go well and they quickly removed it.  https://www.cruisecritic.com/news/4905/

 

 

Edited by Lou33

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Beer menu for district brew pub from an Alaskan Cruise.

Curious to see beers on Bliss Caribbean cruise.
Alaskan beer is great. Available recently in Phoenix. But not available East of Chicago.  Noticed lone star beer in the Q bbq and Pacifico beer elsewhere. Great selection in addition to Red Stripe.

B55A5312-3684-4676-BEFA-CF8B8860AF16.png

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