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MSC onboard beverages package


Rach Agrawl
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I am cruising on the MSC Grandiosa for 6 days in the Mediterranean in the coming weeks.

 

I was pondering the classic question of whether to get the drinks package or not. I wanted to get a sense of what kind of discounts have you been offered when buying drinks package onboard the ship. Also, would they agree to offer it just for the adults in the cabin?

 

Thanks

 

Edited by Rach Agrawl
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Cheaper to buy it when you book.  There often specials where drink packages and wi fi are included as part of the package at a discount rate ( as compared if purchased separately).  ANd no, everyone in the cabin has to have a beverage package.  All the adults have to have the same level and the kids have to have the kids package if the adults purchase a package.  All this info and what is included in each package is on the MSC website

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  • 1 month later...
  • Does anybody know the cost once on-board to upgrade from an Easy package to an Easy Plus package? This would be Meraviglia NYC to Bermuda 6 day cruise in August. I have some on-board credits to use.
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12 hours ago, floor13 said:
  • Does anybody know the cost once on-board to upgrade from an Easy package to an Easy Plus package? This would be Meraviglia NYC to Bermuda 6 day cruise in August. I have some on-board credits to use.

You would have to upgrade both adult occupants of the cabin since everyone has to have the same package.  The cost beforehand is 20 pp per day to upgrade from easy plus to premium, so I would assume it's less than that.

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6 hours ago, CruizinSusan70 said:

You would have to upgrade both adult occupants of the cabin since everyone has to have the same package.  The cost beforehand is 20 pp per day to upgrade from easy plus to premium, so I would assume it's less than that.

My understanding is the cheapest way is to book pre-cruise, but no personal experience with this. What I do know is that a15% (maybe 18 now) gratuity charge is added on board so, if the 20 pppd is accurate for pre-cruise cost, then onboard will be 23.

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6 hours ago, CruizinSusan70 said:

You would have to upgrade both adult occupants of the cabin since everyone has to have the same package.  The cost beforehand is 20 pp per day to upgrade from easy plus to premium, so I would assume it's less than that.

It's actually MORE than that to upgrade once onboard.  You pay the $20pp/pday plus gratuity.  It is never cheaper to upgrade onboard.

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1 hour ago, hamrag said:

My understanding is the cheapest way is to book pre-cruise, but no personal experience with this. What I do know is that a15% (maybe 18 now) gratuity charge is added on board so, if the 20 pppd is accurate for pre-cruise cost, then onboard will be 23.

The 20 pppd cost is what I am currently offered on my current booking on the Mera going from easy plus to premium.  Don't know what the pre cruise charge is to go from easy to easy plus.  

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1 hour ago, Morgsmom said:

It's actually MORE than that to upgrade once onboard.  You pay the $20pp/pday plus gratuity.  It is never cheaper to upgrade onboard.

That's the way it is on most cruise lines, but some people will still pay the increase on board if they have OBC to burn.  I'll use my 175 in OBC towards gratuities.

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I'm solo so I'll still have $163 OBC to burn after paying daily gratuities with the rest. I already have the "unlimited" dining package, and there really isn't anything else that I spend money for on board. Although I did recently learn that on MSC you can apparently use OBC in the casino so that might change my mind on upgrading the drink package ahead of time. I just don't see any option online to upgrade the package and when I called last week they said they had no idea if or when I could do that. I'm thinking maybe that option will show up closer to the sailing date which is August 21. I booked my drink package before the price increase so it was a good deal. I think I'm ok with the Easy package but the fact that I can't use it in the specialty dining restaurants is one of the reasons I prefer to upgrade.

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18 minutes ago, floor13 said:

I'm solo so I'll still have $163 OBC to burn after paying daily gratuities with the rest. I already have the "unlimited" dining package, and there really isn't anything else that I spend money for on board. Although I did recently learn that on MSC you can apparently use OBC in the casino so that might change my mind on upgrading the drink package ahead of time. I just don't see any option online to upgrade the package and when I called last week they said they had no idea if or when I could do that. I'm thinking maybe that option will show up closer to the sailing date which is August 21. I booked my drink package before the price increase so it was a good deal. I think I'm ok with the Easy package but the fact that I can't use it in the specialty dining restaurants is one of the reasons I prefer to upgrade.

I would upgrade in a heartbeat.  From what I saw online, the drinks all include generic names in their descriptions for what is covered under the Plus package such as vodka, rum, gin, whiskey, etc.  This means you'll get bar rail bottom of the line alcohol that tends to result in quicker hangovers.  At least with the plus package you'll be able to choose your brand of choice up to 10.00 which will include name brand choices instead of generic rot gut 

Edited by CruizinSusan70
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31 minutes ago, CruizinSusan70 said:

I would upgrade in a heartbeat.  From what I saw online, the drinks all include generic names in their descriptions for what is covered under the Plus package such as vodka, rum, gin, whiskey, etc.  This means you'll get bar rail bottom of the line alcohol that tends to result in quicker hangovers.  At least with the plus package you'll be able to choose your brand of choice up to 10.00 which will include name brand choices instead of generic rot gut 

In the US at least, the ‘bar pour’ can be off-branded at most bars and restaurants (Ambassador is one that comes to mind). I have not found that to be the case on any cruise line I have sailed. Yes, there will be a lowest priced selection for each type of liquor, but it will be an internationally recognized brand. I would not expect to call any of the pours on cruise ships to be ‘generic rot gut.’ They all have international contracts with the major liquor companies.

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15 minutes ago, kelleherdl said:

In the US at least, the ‘bar pour’ can be off-branded at most bars and restaurants (Ambassador is one that comes to mind). I have not found that to be the case on any cruise line I have sailed. Yes, there will be a lowest priced selection for each type of liquor, but it will be an internationally recognized brand. I would not expect to call any of the pours on cruise ships to be ‘generic rot gut.’ They all have international contracts with the major liquor companies.

Have to disagree with you.  Have recently sailed on the Anthem of the Seas (April) as well as the NCL Prima (Feb) and on both ships I have seen drinks made with rail no name liquor.  This happens when people order a generic drink like Pina colada, they get the cheap stuff blended up.  Been on the majority of the US based lines and this is the case.

I also saw a MSC list of cocktails broken down by easy, easy plus and premium.  All of the easy plus and premium drinks had the specific name of the alcohol mentioned such as Bacardi rum, while all of the easy drinks used generic terms such as gin, vodka, rum, tequila and whiskey.  Further implying that generic bar rail stuff is used.

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2 hours ago, floor13 said:

I'm solo so I'll still have $163 OBC to burn after paying daily gratuities with the rest. I already have the "unlimited" dining package, and there really isn't anything else that I spend money for on board. Although I did recently learn that on MSC you can apparently use OBC in the casino so that might change my mind on upgrading the drink package ahead of time. I just don't see any option online to upgrade the package and when I called last week they said they had no idea if or when I could do that. I'm thinking maybe that option will show up closer to the sailing date which is August 21. I booked my drink package before the price increase so it was a good deal. I think I'm ok with the Easy package but the fact that I can't use it in the specialty dining restaurants is one of the reasons I prefer to upgrade.

Two things:  1) you can cash out your OBC at the Casino if you don't want/need to spend it and 2) you can bring a drink with you INTO the specialty restaurants if you don't want to upgrade.

Oh, I guess there are 3 things... Yes, I agree with @CruizinSusan70 that the well spirits are, indeed, no name rot gut 

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I've heard conflicting reports on whether or not you can bring a drink into a specialty restaurant. Some have been told they cannot. Others have said it was allowed to slide by without comment. I think it is technically prohibited so you CAN be asked not to bring your drink into the restaurant. As with many things I've experienced on various cruises and cruise lines, not everything happens exactly the same way for everyone at every time. I was on MSC Divina in January and they were out of Ketel One vodka at all but 1 bar the entire cruise. I also saw them making drinks at one bar for people with the Easy package using Absolut vodka which is technically a higher category in the Easy Plus package. I did see "no-name" type of liquor at other bars. I upgraded my Easy package on the last MSC cruise and felt like I would have been totally fine with whatever vodka they used since there were times I had to get whatever the particular bar had and was pouring at the time. I definitely know the difference between cheap vodka and name brands, but my brand is Ketel One which is "supposed to be available" but was not available during my cruise. With mixed drinks I can be flexible on vodka choice which is why I got the Easy package. I don't do frozen drinks and really only drink vodka. If I knew for sure that I could get Ketel One I would be much more inclined to upgrade again. My current plan is just to get on board and see what vodkas the bars on board are actually stocking to see if Ketel One is available as it "should be". If so, then I don't mind burning a little more OBC on the upgrade. 

Edited by floor13
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3 hours ago, CruizinSusan70 said:

The 20 pppd cost is what I am currently offered on my current booking on the Mera going from easy plus to premium.  Don't know what the pre cruise charge is to go from easy to easy plus.  

When I pull up my booking it says purchase easy plus package for $427. I already have the easy plus package. It doesnt say how much to upgrade.

 

with MSC now just letting you pay the difference in drink cost if I were to order a premium drink I am not going to worry about it now.

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5 hours ago, Illbcruzn4life said:

When I pull up my booking it says purchase easy plus package for $427. I already have the easy plus package. It doesnt say how much to upgrade.

 

with MSC now just letting you pay the difference in drink cost if I were to order a premium drink I am not going to worry about it now.

We have the easy plus as part of our package.  We have the option to upgrade for 20 pp per day or 140 for the week.  MSC loses out though because my DH would pay it so he could enjoy some higher end drinks, but since I am OK with Tito's or Ketel One we're not going to pay the 280 for the upgrade since MSC requires everyone to have the same package.

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4 hours ago, CruizinSusan70 said:

We have the easy plus as part of our package.  We have the option to upgrade for 20 pp per day or 140 for the week.  MSC loses out though because my DH would pay it so he could enjoy some higher end drinks, but since I am OK with Tito's or Ketel One we're not going to pay the 280 for the upgrade since MSC requires everyone to have the same package.

At least you have the option to upgrade. According to MSC's website I don't even have the package.

 

He can just pay the difference in drinks when you cruise next. He can drink a lot of them and still save money by not upgrading .

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