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!