New Beverage Packages

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Windstar Cruises
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#1
641 Posts
Joined May 2013
Hi, I just wanted to share the new Windstar beverage packages which I received today via email. I've attached the link (hopefully it will work). There are 3 different levels of packages, 2 with wine only ($32 to $42pp) or wine plus spirits package for $52. Plus gratuities. The good news is that the new packages are per individual and it is not mandatory for both guests in the same suite to take the package. Not sure how they will administer that...hopefully wristbands are not an option!

https://d2xks5907lvzsh.cloudfront.ne..._v11083117.pdf


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#2
Clearwater, FL
649 Posts
Joined Dec 2013
Nice. I still can't drink that much but for those that do, looks good to have choices.

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#3
15 Posts
Joined Dec 2016
Do you have to buy the package ahead of sailing or can you buy it when you check in on the day you sail?
Thanks in advance !
#4
641 Posts
Joined May 2013
Originally posted by pauon
Do you have to buy the package ahead of sailing or can you buy it when you check in on the day you sail?

Thanks in advance !


Here is what the website says:
Beverage Packages must be purchased within the first two days and will be charged from the day of purchase onwards. Prices do not include the standard 15% beverage service charge. Bottles of wine and champagne are excluded from the package. Please note the minimum drinking age aboard Windstar Cruises is 21 years old.

There is no advantage of booking this in advance. In fact, I believe you need to pay with a credit card. If you have an OBC you can't use it. When signing up on board, the beverage package is applied to your on board account and any OBC will reduce the cost.


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#7
Seattle, WA
47 Posts
Joined May 2009
We're on the October 7th sailing from Athens to Rome and we were just discussing the beverage packages today. Although neither my husband or I drink much, when we're on vacation it would be very reasonable to drink a glass of wine at lunch, a cocktail in the afternoon, maybe a couple of glasses of wine at dinner...at that point does it make sense to get a beverage package or just pay a la carte? What is the break-even point or are there any hidden charges? We might purchase a bottle of wine at dinner once or twice but probably not every evening.

I would hate to just decide to pay as we go only to discover at the end of the trip that we overspent compared to the cost of a package. What do most guests do?
#8
Clearwater, FL
649 Posts
Joined Dec 2013
Sounds like you drink about the same way we do. We've come out much better not buying beverage package. Also assume most days you will be off ship at lunchtime. Have a great trip!

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#9
Seattle, WA
47 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by sb44
Sounds like you drink about the same way we do. We've come out much better not buying beverage package. Also assume most days you will be off ship at lunchtime. Have a great trip!

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That is really helpful information! My husband was just saying that if we were to do the package that includes cocktails we would end up spending close to $700 just on drinks! This is our first Windstar cruise and we can't wait!
#10
Sacramento, California
788 Posts
Joined Jun 2003
Originally posted by sandydlc
We're on the October 7th sailing from Athens to Rome and we were just discussing the beverage packages today. Although neither my husband or I drink much, when we're on vacation it would be very reasonable to drink a glass of wine at lunch, a cocktail in the afternoon, maybe a couple of glasses of wine at dinner...at that point does it make sense to get a beverage package or just pay a la carte? What is the break-even point or are there any hidden charges? We might purchase a bottle of wine at dinner once or twice but probably not every evening.

I would hate to just decide to pay as we go only to discover at the end of the trip that we overspent compared to the cost of a package. What do most guests do?
The package that includes cocktails is 52 dollars per person per day and both in the stateroom have to take it. Break even is therefore around 5 drinks a day. That assumes cost of a drink averages $10.80 per day. The two wine packages cover wines up to $8.50 or $11.50 per glass so depending which wines one chose, break even might be higher. Also, if you purchase a bottle of wine, one pays 70% of the price (the package gives a 30% discount) so that could push break even farther out.

Break even for the wine only packages is 4 glasses per day if the wines are always at or close to the maximum per glass price allowed by the package.

I'd like to take a package to have the luxury of not signing for drinks, but being a light drinker they are priced too high to be worth it.
#11
Seattle, WA
47 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by new_cruiser
The package that includes cocktails is 52 dollars per person per day and both in the stateroom have to take it. Break even is therefore around 5 drinks a day. That assumes cost of a drink averages $10.80 per day. The two wine packages cover wines up to $8.50 or $11.50 per glass so depending which wines one chose, break even might be higher. Also, if you purchase a bottle of wine, one pays 70% of the price (the package gives a 30% discount) so that could push break even farther out.

Break even for the wine only packages is 4 glasses per day if the wines are always at or close to the maximum per glass price allowed by the package.

I'd like to take a package to have the luxury of not signing for drinks, but being a light drinker they are priced too high to be worth it.
Yeah, we just don't drink that much and also don't want to feel obligated to "get our money's worth" by getting a beverage package. We do have to consider meals that we will have away from the ship and if it's really hot, we're even less likely to want to drink much at all (I tend to get headaches in really hot weather). I think we'll just purchase drinks as we go along. I really appreciate the advice!
#12
559 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Originally posted by sandydlc
We're on the October 7th sailing from Athens to Rome and we were just discussing the beverage packages today. Although neither my husband or I drink much, when we're on vacation it would be very reasonable to drink a glass of wine at lunch, a cocktail in the afternoon, maybe a couple of glasses of wine at dinner...at that point does it make sense to get a beverage package or just pay a la carte? What is the break-even point or are there any hidden charges? We might purchase a bottle of wine at dinner once or twice but probably not every evening.

I would hate to just decide to pay as we go only to discover at the end of the trip that we overspent compared to the cost of a package. What do most guests do?
If you go with nice round numbers, that's more or less $12 per beverage, and I'm counting 4 - 1 glass at lunch, a drink in the afternoon, and 2 glasses with dinner. That's $48. I must admit that when cruising we often add a nightcap, so now we're at $60.

The other reality is that they really don't count glasses, once you order a glass with a meal on the package they just keep topping it up until you say to stop.

I think we had a variation of this new plan in Iceland this summer, and one guy who had the wine only package was surprised to find out that he'd be charged for a beer, which in theory costs less than wine.

In terms of how they keep track, there are different colored dots on your room key, and in our experience once they find out the first time you're good to go.


I have no clue how they're planning to track the pp and not per cabin bit, since you could easily order two drinks as a single person, or clean out the minibar - how will they know who's drinking it?

I must say that is WS goes to wrist bands that will be my last trip with them, but I do think they know better.
#13
559 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
I also wonder how this will affect previously booked beverage package incentives.

I just checked our invoice for Japan in April and our credit is for "Guests 1,2 Beverage package $54."

It isn't specific as to which package, and $54 is neither the per person price of the new top package ($52pp) or twice the bottom since if our total is $54 per cabin and not per guest that would be $27 per person, also not a new package price.

In the past, but current online invoice would probably say, but that seems to no longer be available on My Windstar, another downgrade with the new interface.
#15
559 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Originally posted by 6rugrats
$54 per person daily is the price of the "old" beverage package.
Which seems to be more or less the content of the new top level package, although the 30% discount on bottles is either new or was previously unknown to me.


Actually, that's not 100% true. For example, there are three new Scotches listed on the new list and the old one was just Dewars. Funny, now that I see this I think I was handed the new list by accident on a cruise last spring as the offerings look the same as what I saw. I don't have a copy since when I showed it when I was denied Dalmore the list was taken away and not returned with some story about how it was "incorrect."


In any case, our TA is firing off a message to the WS rep to confirm what we're getting as our incentive, and I'll report back.
#16
559 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Originally posted by milepig
Which seems to be more or less the content of the new top level package, although the 30% discount on bottles is either new or was previously unknown to me.


Actually, that's not 100% true. For example, there are three new Scotches listed on the new list and the old one was just Dewars. Funny, now that I see this I think I was handed the new list by accident on a cruise last spring as the offerings look the same as what I saw. I don't have a copy since when I showed it when I was denied Dalmore the list was taken away and not returned with some story about how it was "incorrect."


In any case, our TA is firing off a message to the WS rep to confirm what we're getting as our incentive, and I'll report back.
WS is responding quickly today, the TA already got back to me with the news that we have the new $52 package. (Why the invoice says $54)
#17
germantown, tn. USA
53 Posts
Joined Mar 2001
When we booked our Windstar cruise, they were offering the bev package for free. Now that they are offering three different packages for purchase, does anyone know which one we will get?
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MemphisBunch
#19
Seattle, WA
47 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by 6rugrats
The beverage package. The other two are wine packages.
To add to the confusion, Winsdstar is calling the wine packages "beverage packages". All non-alcoholic beverages are free. If you want to order a wine package, there are 3 to choose from. They are offered per person (no longer per cabin) and range from $32 per person per day to $52 per person per day. We've decided to just purchase wine/cocktails as we go instead of doing a package since we do t drink that much.
#20
14,619 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
There is the "Voyager Wine Package," and the "Topmast Discovery Wine Package" that just include wine. The other beverage package is the "Captains Exclusive Beverage Package" which includes wine, cocktails, beer, minibar selections, etc. All packages offer a 30% savings on bottles of wine up to $100.
I think they are labeled pretty clearly. If one just wanted to drink wine, you may find the Voyager Wine Package worth the money if you liked the available selection.