How much are drink packages? Are they worth it?
The most important detail to know about drink packages is that cruise lines require ALL folks in your party or who you’re cross-referenced to dine with to have the same package.
So if just one person in your party is a drinker, you have to pay for EVERYONE to be a drinker.
There are kiddy drink packages which include water and soft drinks, and kids too have to get the equivalent kid version of the drink package that the adults are getting.
The thing about most European cruises is that you will be in a port most days, and won’t return to the ship until late afternoon. So, you may not have a lot of time every day to drink enough to get the maximum value from your drink package.
Then again, prepaying for unlimited beverages does give you the peace of mind not to have a bill that catches you by surprise at the end of the cruise, when you have sobered up and reality sets in!
Meanwhile, if you’re on a Caribbean cruise taking a relaxing, party vacation and you have three sea days, an investment in a drink package is easier to recoup.
We’ve found that drinks on cruise ships are not overly expensive. Most drinks average between $4 to $6 for beer, $6 to $8 for glasses of wine, and $6 to 9 for mixed drinks.
If you live in a big expensive city, you’ll find these prices to be relatively inexpensive. If you live in rural Oklahoma, this may be double what you pay at the local tavern.
We’ve gotten the most expensive premium drink package on cruises ourselves. At first it was fun trying a bunch of different mixed drinks and getting tipsy.
But after day four, we were kinda sick of drinking that much, and couldn’t put away the seven drinks necessary to make up for the $57 per person per day we were paying.
The other way we did extract full value from our expensive drink package is we drank bottled water like fishes. Fishes! Large 2-litre bottles of water are $5 to $6 each on most cruise lines.
You can’t get this wrong. Enjoy your cruise!
Great drink package advice from a military spouse
Military spouse, Raquel Thiebes, is a cruise enthusiast. She just wrote a great review of the MSC cruise she took recently. Here’s an tiny excerpt:
We just got back from our last MSC cruise in the Western Mediterranean a few weeks ago, and I thought I would share some tips! One of my moderators also returned from her trip on Costa and has some helpful hints below as well. Some of our advice you can apply to the other cruise lines as well. Knowledge is power, right? I’ve taken a few notes and thought these could help the next person:
Drink packages. Do the math, period. They will try to cajole you and convince you to go with the most expensive package. Do keep in mind that water, tea and coffee will ALWAYS be available 24 hours up in the buffet restaurant on MSC.
If you’re considering cruising Europe on MSC or Costa, you’ll get a lot out of her articles and suggestions.
CARNIVAL Beverage Packages
Guests are prohibited from bringing water, sodas and other non-alcoholic beverages onboard that are packaged in bottles.
A small quantity of non-alcoholic beverages (i.e., sparkling water, sodas, juice, and milk) packaged in cans or cartons may be brought onboard on embarkation day and must be in the guest’s carry-on luggage. A small quantity is considered a maximum of 12 sealed, unopened cans/cartons of 12 ounces each or less per person.
Guests are prohibited from bringing alcoholic beverages on board with the following exception:
At the beginning of the cruise during embarkation day only, guests (21 years of age and older) may bring one 750 ml bottle of sealed/unopened wine or champagne per person in their carry-on luggage.
A $15 USD corkage fee (a charge exacted at a restaurant for every bottle of wine served that was not bought on the premises), per 750 ml bottle, will be charged should guests wish to consume their wine or champagne in the main dining room, steakhouse or bar.
All liquor, beer, other forms of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages outside of the exceptions referenced above are strictly prohibited in both carry-on and checked luggage and such items will be confiscated and discarded and no compensation will be provided.
Carnival offers two drink packages to choose from – one alcoholic and one non-alcoholic.
The Bottomless Bubbles package is an unlimited soda program lets you indulge in all-you-can-drink soda and juice for the full length of your cruise. This package does not include bottled water.The total price for this package is $4.95 per person per day for kids 17 and younger and $7.50 per person per day for adults. (plus a 15% gratuity)
The Cheers! Package* is an unlimited drink program with a 15 drink per day maximum that encompasses all spirits including cocktails, frozen drinks, non-alcoholic cocktails, sodas, wine, and beer valued at $50 or less. This package also gets customers 25% off of bottled water, champagne, and drinks valued over $50. Guests must purchase the program for the entire cruise as no per day purchase is available.
This package is $49.95 per person per day, plus 15% gratuity, for guests age 21 years or older. If just one person in your cabin wants to purchase it, everyone has to purchase it. This means that if just one person in your party is a drinker, everyone in the cabin must be a drinker.
Bottled water is sold separately. You can purchase a 12-pack of half-liter bottles for $4.50 if they are purchased ahead of the cruise.The price increases to $4.50+15% gratuity for the same 12-pack if purchased aboard the ship.
*Due to state laws, Carnival cannot sell this package until the second day for cruises departing from TX, AL, or NY. The Cheers package price will be for one less day since it will apply for one less day.
Cheers, and the Bottomless Bubbles soda program can be purchased online through Carnival’s funshop once you have booked your cruise.You may also choose to buy individual drinks onboard.
ROYAL CARIBBEAN Beverage Packages
Guests are not allowed to bring beer, hard liquor, fortified wines or non-alcoholic beverages onboard for consumption or any other use on boarding day or while in port. Alcoholic beverages seized on boarding day will not be returned.
Guests wishing to bring personal wine and champagne onboard may do so only on boarding day, limited to two (2) 750 ml bottles per stateroom. Additional bottles of wine beyond two (2) bottles that are brought onboard or any alcoholic beverages purchased in ports of call or from Shops On Board will be stored by the ship and delivered to your stateroom on the last day of the sailing.
On Royal Caribbean, there is a requirement for all eligible guests within the same stateroom to purchase the drink package if one person purchases the drink package! If passenger 2 is pregnant or a non-drinker, the 2nd person will need to buy the ‘refreshment’ beverage package which is $28 pp per day plus 18% gratuity.
All package prices include the 18% gratuity and all packages must be purchased for the duration of the cruise.
Deluxe Beverage Package
This package comes with virtually unlimited options including coffee, tea, bottled water, juice, soda, cocktails, frozen cocktails, beer, wine, and non-alcoholic cocktails up to a value of $12 each.
$55 per person per day + 18% beverage gratuities.
There are also bottled water packages. Evian is sold in 12 packs for $39.00 or 24 packs for $69.00 and can be purchased on the ship or prior to your sailing.
If you are simply interested in a soda package, the price for unlimited fountain soda with CocaCola products and a souvenir cup is $8.50 per person per day.
It should also be noted that while you are in a port that is owned by the cruise line, such as CocoCay, your drinks on the island are free if you have drink package!
You can purchase the packages on Royal’s website, or onboard during the first few days of sailing.
NORWEGIAN Beverage Packages
Guests are not permitted to bring bottled water in its original sealed container or any other sealed beverage like juice or soda.
However, tap water, juice, tea, and coffee will be provided for free.
Guests may bring sealed bottles of wine and champagne on board. They will be checked prior to embarkation and a corkage fee applied at that time of $15.00 USD for a 750 ml Bottle or $30.00 USD for a 1,500 ml Magnum bottle. Box wines are not allowed on board. If guests do not wish to pay the corkage fee, the wine will be held onboard and returned to the guests at the end of the cruise.
1-liter Aquafina water bottle packages are sold for $33.54 for a 12 pack
Norwegian offers the following alcoholic beverage programs:
The Ultimate Beverage Package
Enjoy a wide selection of soft drinks, beers, spirits, cocktails, wines by the glass and bottled or draft beer up to and including $15 USD during your entire cruise.
Prepaid @ $99.00 USD per person per day x Cruise Days plus 20% gratuity and beverage service charge.
Beverage packages must be purchased for all guests staying within the same stateroom, additional stateroom, adjoining stateroom or traveling together.
Individuals under the age of 21 will be required to purchase the Soda Package
$5.95 per child per day for kids ages 3-12
$7.95 per person per day for guests aged 13 and up.
Corks and Caps Package
Including fountain drinks, beer and wine by the glass.
$65 per person per day for adults 21 and over
A 20% gratuity and beverage service charge will be added on all beverage packages. These are NOT the service charges for the cruise. It is JUST for the beverage package.
The Ultimate Beverage Package does not include room service, package sales, ship specific promotions or beer buckets, designated Super Premium brands (subject to change), bottled wine, mini bar purchases, bottled water, fresh squeezed juices, select Lavazza coffee beverages, energy drinks, vending machines, wine stations or spirits, cocktails, draft or bottled beer and glasses of wine over $15. One (1) beverage per person per transaction. The package can be used in all restaurants, lounges, bars and Great Stirrup Cay. Any items over $15 will receive a $15 discount and the guest will be charged the difference to their account.
If just one person in your party wants a package, everyone in the cabin must buy the same package (including a non-alcoholic version of the package for kids.)
You may also choose from the non all-inclusive choices or buy individual drinks on board. You can order the unlimited package as well as packages of just beer coffee, cocktails, soda, water, wine, and more through Norwegian’s site once you have booked.
PRINCESS Beverage Packages
You are not allowed to carry on any alcohol on your Princess cruise except one bottle of wine or champagne per adult of drinking age (no larger than 750 ml) per voyage, which will not be subject to a corkage fee if consumed in the stateroom.
Additional wine or champagne bottles are welcome, but will incur a $15 corkage fee each, irrespective of where they are intended to be consumed. Liquor, spirits or beers are not permitted.
Princess offers the following beverage programs:
This program includes cocktails, wine, beer, sodas, lattes, cappuccinos, and bottled water valued at up to $10. This package does not include room service or mini bar items.
The package is $57.47 per person per day including the gratuity charges.
Unlimited Soda & More
This program includes fountain sodas, Coke, Diet Coke, Sprite, and Barq’s Root Beer, orange soda, soda water, tonic water, ginger ale, refreshing juices, and fruity mocktails.
$8.05 per person per day including the gratuity charges.
Bottled Water Package
$6.90 for 12- 500 ml bottles
The All Inclusive and Unlimited Soda & more packages can only be purchased up to 5 days before sailing through your cruise personalizer once you have booked, or purchased on the cruise ship on the first day of sailing.
It is not mandatory for everyone to purchase a drink package if one person does on Princess.
HOLLAND Beverage Packages
Water, coffee, tea, and some juices will be provided for free. Additionally, each guest 21 years and older may bring one bottle of wine or champagne (no larger than 750ml) onboard in carry-on luggage at the beginning of the voyage. This bottle will not be subject to a corkage fee if consumed in the stateroom.
Additional wine or champagne bottles (no larger than 750ml) in carry-on luggage are welcome, but will incur a US$18.00 (subject to change) corkage fee each, irrespective of where they are intended to be consumed. Guests are not allowed to bring beer, boxed wine, or other liquors and spirits onboard.
Holland’s most comprehensive drink package is as follows:
Signature Beverage Package
Guests 21 years of age and older can enjoy a variety of wines, beers, spirits, and cocktails, (including non-alcoholic) of up to an $8 value, after dinner coffee, and refreshing sodas and beverages poolside and at the lounges, bars and restaurants.
This package is $51.69 per person per day including the gratuity charges.
The Signature Beverage Package can only be purchased up to 5 days before sailing on Holland’s website, or purchased on the cruise ship on the first day of sailing.
It is mandatory for everyone to purchase a drink package if one person does on Holland.
Bottled water is available for purchase on the ship. Pricing ranges from $1.95 for a small bottle to $3.95 for a large bottle.
Quench Beverage Package features unlimited nonalcoholic beverages that include any juices, bottled water, non-alcoholic cocktails, nonalcoholic beers and specialty coffees for a price of $17.95 per person, per day.
The Coca-Cola Package includes unlimited fountain sodas for $8.00 per person, per day. On ms Koningsdam this package also includes the Coca-Cola Freestyle program with more than 100 unique Coca-Cola flavors.
The Water Package offers 12 liter bottles for a price of $32.
DISNEY Beverage Packages
Guests are allowed to bring prepackaged, non-home-made unopened snacks onboard.
Disney Cruise Line Guests 21 years and older may bring a maximum of 2 bottles of unopened wine or champagne (no larger than 750 ml) or 6 beers (no larger than 12 ounces) on board at the beginning of the voyage and at each port of call. These beverages must be packed in carry-on (not checked) bags or luggage.Guests wishing to consume wine or champagne that they have brought on board in one of the dining rooms will be charged a corking fee of $25.00 per bottle.
Soda, tea, coffee, water, and ice cream is available for free at the beverage station on the same deck as the pool and in the dining rooms.
Disney has various wine, beer, and water bottle packages for sale but they do not offer any unlimited mixed drink packages.
For $30 plus tax and gratuity, you can enjoy a 6-pack of Corona, Pub Ale, Guiness, or Heineken.
Additionally, domestic beer costs $30 plus tax and gratuity for a 6 pack of 16 oz aluminum bottles. Brands include Bud Light, Bud Light Lime, Budweiser, Michelob Ultra, Miller Light, and Coors Light.
Disney also offers both classic and premium wine packages. These packages start at $95 for three classic bottles of wine and go up to $309 for seven premium bottles.
Bottled Dasani water can be purchased for $9.00 for a 6-pack or you can purchase the 24 pack for $35 plus tax and gratuity.
To purchase one of Disney’s packages, call Disney at 1 (888) 325- 2600 with your booking number, the item number, and your preferred payment method.
Please note that passengers will be allowed to bring a maximum of two unopened bottles — no larger than 750 milliliters — of wine or champagne. And guests boarding with beer will be able to bring six 12-ounce bottles at most. However, any amount of liquor will be prohibited.
CELEBRITY Beverage Packages
Guests are not allowed to bring any beverages on board. Tap water, milk, hot chocolate, coffee, iced tea and lemonade will be provided for free all day. Apple and orange juice are complimentary at breakfast.
Celebrity offers unlimited premium bottled water packages for $12 per person per day which includes Evian, Perrier, and Pellegrino. You can also purchase them individually for $4 per bottle.
There are many beverage packages offered by Celebrity for the duration of your cruise. Additionally, it is not mandatory that everyone purchase a beverage package on Celebrity.
Here is the most comprehensive package:
With the classic package, you may choose from beers, spirits, cocktails, liqueurs and frozen drinks, and wine-by-the-glass up to $9 per serving.
This package costs $64.90 per person per day with the gratuities included in this price.
Celebrity also offers a premium beverage package which comes with virtually unlimited options including craft beer, top shelf spirits, cocktails, and wine by the glass up to $13 per serving. This package will run you $76.70 per person per day with the beverage gratuities included in this price.
You can purchase the beverage package through Celebrity’s website, or onboard during the first few days of sailing. It is not mandatory that everyone purchase a beverage package on Celebrity.
This way, you can see if you think you’ll be better off to purchase an unlimited beverage package or buy your drinks individually.
COSTA Beverage Packages
Guests are not allowed to bring any beverages on board. Tap water, juice, and coffee will be provided for free at the buffet.
There are three options for Guests to book the Beverage Packages.
1) AFTER you book the cruise, call the Costa drink package customer service line at 800-462-6782 and ask to add it.
2) AFTER you book, when you are doing your online check in on Costa’s website, you can add it there. Pricing MAY be slightly lower than if booked when they arrive at the ship.
3) OR, you can just purchase it once you get onboard. The cost will then simply be added to your onboard account. Pricing MAY be slightly higher than if booked online during the check-in process you do immediately AFTER you book.
NOTE: American Military living in Europe. In order to get the prices in Euros listed below, you will need to book your drink package on the ship. Otherwise we can only get you the drink packages at the higher U.S. rate. To book at the higher U.S. rate you can email us at .
The Classic categories feature the beverage package “Pranzo e Cena” for each guest staying in the cabin, which includes select wines, beers, soft drinks and water by the glass for lunch and dinner. Guests who are minors can choose from mineral water by the glass and a wide selection of soft drinks.
The Premium categories (including Mini Suites and Samsara cabins) feature the beverage package “Brindiamo” for each guest staying in the cabin and includes wine, beer, coffee, water and a wide selection of cocktails and mixed drinks. Guests who are minors can choose from sodas, smoothies, juices and hot chocolate.
The Intenditore package includes unlimited drinks served by the glass in restaurants, bars, from the minibar and in your cabin. * Premium brands, premium liqueurs and champagne by the glass for real connoisseurs. This package is starts at 46 euros per person, per day and varies based upon the sailing. Guests staying in suites will get this package for free!
The GIovani Kids package must be combined with one of the beverage packages for adults – Brindiamo or Piu’ Gusto. It includes a selection of unlimited soft drinks by the glass, with the exception of minibar drinks. It is only available to children between 4 and 17 years old. This package is 18 euros per person per day.
The most important detail to know about the all-inclusive drink packages is that Costa requires everyone in your cabin and those with whom you are cross-referenced (seated together at dinner) to buy the same package.
If just one person in your party wants a package, everyone in the cabin must buy the same package (including a non-alcoholic version of the package for kids.)
You may also choose from the non all-inclusive choices or buy individual drinks onboard.
Costa has a beverage card that you can purchase for 65 Euros for 20 non-alcoholic drinks, including sodas, virgin cocktails, fresh squeezed citrus fruit juice, and iced tea.
One soda: $2.50
One virgin cocktail: $4.80
One fruit juice: $3.80
One iced tea: $2.50
Keep in mind the prices listed here are subject to fluctuate based on the current currency exchange rate, but this will give you an idea of what you can expect to pay for non-alcoholic beverages.
MSC Beverage Packages
MSC prohibits their guests from bringing bottled water on board. Mineral water is served at the dinner table every evening at no charge.
If you purchase a beverage package, all adults traveling in the same cabin or dining together must purchase the same package.
Kids aged 3-11 in the cabin will get the kids package. Kids aged 12-20 will get the adult non-alcoholic package.
$17 per person per day
Includes alcohol-free cocktails, sodas, energy drinks, bottled mineral water, flavored water, fruit juices, a wide range of premium coffee drinks, hot chocolate delights, organic tea and soft ice cream.
$35 per person per day
This includes a selection of bottled beer, spirits and cocktails, non-alcoholic cocktails, soft drinks and fruit juices by the glass, bottled mineral water, classic hot drink (espresso, cappuccino, cafe latte, hot tea) and coffee and hot chocolate drinks.
$62 per person per day
Includes a wide range of cocktails, spirits, liqueurs, aperitifs, wines by the glass, draught and bottled beers, sodas, fruit juices, bottled mineral water, energy drinks, classic and premium coffee drinks, hot chocolate drinks and organic tea. The offer is valid in all onboard bars, as well as the self-service buffet and restaurants, including Specialty Restaurants.
Premium Plus Package
$79 per person per day
Unlimited consumption of all drinks by the glass!
Take advantage of the most premium spirits available on-board! Drinks and food from the minibar and the room service menu and drinks from theme bar menus are all included as well. This offer also entitles you to a 30% discount on bottles of wine and champagne from MSC’s wine lists. You can order your drinks in all onboard bars, as well as the self-service buffet and restaurants, including the Specialty Restaurants.
Adults Non-Alcoholic Package
$29 per person per day
Includes a choice of alcohol-free cocktails, sodas, energy drinks, bottled mineral water, flavored water, fruit juices, a wide range of premium coffee drinks, hot chocolate delights, organic tea and soft ice cream. The drinks included can be ordered in all onboard bars, as well as the self-service buffet and restaurants, excluding specialty restaurants.