Princess' Wine Bottle Package

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#1
3,767 Posts
Joined Dec 2004
Many of you have asked for information about the new Wine Bottle Package that is being test-marketed on select Princess ships. DH and I purchased a 7-Bottle Gold Tier package last week onboard the Crown and also got a copy of the full description of the program from a lovely restaurant hostess. We have additional information based on conversations with waitstaff and Maitre d' and will answer questions as we are able.

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Princess' Wine Bottle Package
Crown Princess, January 28-February 4, 2012


The wine bottle package is a two-tiered wine by the bottle promotion whereby passengers can prepay for bottles of wine of varying quantities at a discounted rate.

Silver Tier Wine Bottle Program (Tier 1): Any bottle of wine up to and including $29 in retail value. Bottle packs of 5/7/10/12 will be available.

Gold Tier Wine Bottle Program (Tier 2): Any bottle of wine up to and including $45 in retail value. Bottle packs of 5/7/10/12 bottles will be available.

In the instance that passengers wish to buy a bottle of wine in excess of either the Silver or Gold Tier, an onboard credit can be made for either $29 or $45 which can be applied to the higher-end bottle of wine.

Passengers choose (in the future, pre-orders via Special Services) the package they prefer and receive the relevant punch card. As passengers order bottles, servers bring the punch card to the bar to have it processed and punched.

Following packages are available:

Silver Tier Bottle Program (Tier 1) - any bottle up to $29
5 Bottle Pack: $120/av$24/bottle
7 Bottle Pack: $161/av$23/bottle
10 Bottle Pack: $210/av$21/bottle
12 Bottle Pack: $240/av$20/bottle

Gold Tier Bottle Program (Tier 2) - any bottle up to $45
5 Bottle Pack: $160/av$32/bottle
7 Bottle Pack: $217/av$31/bottle
10 Bottle Pack: $290/av$29/bottle
12 Bottle Pack: $336/av$28/bottle
#2
Toronto
758 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
I'm glad to hear Princess is doing that. We always but a wine package when we sail on Royal Caribbean. We feel it's a good deal as we get an opportunity to save while drinking the higher end wines.
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#4
Greenville, SC, USA
51,087 Posts
Joined Apr 2000
Thanks for the info.

Two questions: Any idea of the roll out schedule? We are on the Ocean Princess for 30 days in April & May. These packages would be great.

How about a 2b2? can you get one package and use it over the two cruises?

Thanks
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Paul
#5
3,767 Posts
Joined Dec 2004
Originally posted by paul929207
Thanks for the info.

Two questions: Any idea of the roll out schedule? We are on the Ocean Princess for 30 days in April & May. These packages would be great.

How about a 2b2? can you get one package and use it over the two cruises?

Thanks
No idea about when the program will be available fleetwide.

Once you prepay for the wine package, it is yours to use when and how you wish. Since I didn't stay at dinner on Thursday night to finish that bottle, it was saved for Friday night. We brought the last bottle home with us after having it delivered to our stateroom.

Not sure about a B2B, but if you purchase a large package on the first leg of your voyage and don't drink all of it, you can have the remaining bottles delivered to your stateroom to enjoy during the second leg

Cheers!
Chris
#6
San Diego
806 Posts
Joined Apr 2007
Thanks for the information.

Punch Card, smunch card. Why bother? I like this policy better: Buy a wine package at any bar, room service, wine cellar, sommelier or wine steward. Take delivery in your room, MDR, bar etc. Drink it anywhere. Even better, for wines that are your favorites, bring them on board. Corkage fee? of course. And if you love wine, you know which line/s have this policy
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#8
3,767 Posts
Joined Dec 2004
Originally posted by Astro Flyer
Thanks for the info & in another current wine package thread they say these prices do not include the 15% tip which is added to the package's total cost.

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1565332
Correct. The "official" information that I posted does not include any the 15% gratuity that is automatically added to any onboard beverage purchase.

Cheers!
Chris
#9
Southern Cal/Maui No Ka Oi
16,911 Posts
Joined Dec 2009
Originally posted by cruzinchris
Correct. The "official" information that I posted does not include any the 15% gratuity that is automatically added to any onboard beverage purchase.

Cheers!
Chris
Thanks Chris for confirming the prices are plus 15% tip.
#10
Sechelt, BC & Fort Mohave, AZ
26,679 Posts
Joined Sep 2007
It will be interesting to learn what Princess includes in these packages, on the surface it looks good. We just purchased a couple of packages on Celebrity last month and found the packages rather restrictive, had mainly lower end European wines and frankly of the 10 different wines we tried there was only one that we would likely purchase outside of the package.
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#11
California
398 Posts
Joined May 2005
I am curious to know if you pre-order and pre-pay for a wine package (as if it was a gift) will you still pay the 15% onboard? It seems to me that in the past when we pre-ordered the beer package we did not have to pay the 15%. When we boarded the ship, there was a card in our room informing us to contact room service when we would like the beer to be delivered. Our credit card had already been zapped when we ordered it about 2 weeks before the cruise.

Any thoughts?
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#12
Southern Cal/Maui No Ka Oi
16,911 Posts
Joined Dec 2009
Originally posted by never2late
I am curious to know if you pre-order and pre-pay for a wine package (as if it was a gift) will you still pay the 15% onboard? It seems to me that in the past when we pre-ordered the beer package we did not have to pay the 15%. When we boarded the ship, there was a card in our room informing us to contact room service when we would like the beer to be delivered. Our credit card had already been zapped when we ordered it about 2 weeks before the cruise.

Any thoughts?
My experience has been that when pre-ordering any drinks the tip is included in the price. The price onboard will appear to be less but after adding the 15% tip it's the same as the pre-ordered price.
#13
3,767 Posts
Joined Dec 2004
Originally posted by Putterdude
It will be interesting to learn what Princess includes in these packages, on the surface it looks good. We just purchased a couple of packages on Celebrity last month and found the packages rather restrictive, had mainly lower end European wines and frankly of the 10 different wines we tried there was only one that we would likely purchase outside of the package.
The wine packages are not pre-selected: Passengers choose their wine bottles from the full Princess wine list. If you want a higher-priced wine than those offered in the price range for which you paid, you will be credited that amount and pay the full price for the more expensive bottle of your choice. To the best of my knowledge of the program, no wines are off-limits as long as you want to pay the difference in price.

Cheers!
Chris
#14
minneapolis, mn
2,298 Posts
Joined Jan 2005
Originally posted by cruzinchris
The wine packages are not pre-selected: Passengers choose their wine bottles from the full Princess wine list. If you want a higher-priced wine than those offered in the price range for which you paid, you will be credited that amount and pay the full price for the more expensive bottle of your choice. To the best of my knowledge of the program, no wines are off-limits as long as you want to pay the difference in price.

Cheers!
Chris
I certainly hope this is true. As I recall, a few of the wines I like most are between $45 and $50. I'm much more inclined to get the package if I can still buy those wines--and pay the additional amount. Prior posts on CC have indicated that you can't use the package on wines above the price limit.
#15
3,767 Posts
Joined Dec 2004
Originally posted by jff50
I certainly hope this is true. As I recall, a few of the wines I like most are between $45 and $50. I'm much more inclined to get the package if I can still buy those wines--and pay the additional amount. Prior posts on CC have indicated that you can't use the package on wines above the price limit.
From the document that I posted at the beginning of this thread:

In the instance that passengers wish to buy a bottle of wine in excess of either the Silver or Gold Tier, an onboard credit can be made for either $29 or $45 which can be applied to the higher-end bottle of wine.
#16
Greater Columbus, OH area
141 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Wine is one of our pleasures, and we are fairly pleased with the quality of selections as various price points. I look forward to this developing package.

In the last two years I met the "first" Sommelier in the Princess fleet, or that is how he described himself. He told us the goal as to hire several more for select ships to increase wine knowledge. By making wine less intimidating folks can enjoy the joys of the fruit and increase sales.

In 2008 my wife and I were introduced to Don Maxaminio Founder's Reserve, an incredible wine from Chile. Our waiter, Rene, was from Chile and wanted to share this wine with pride. While hard to find in the U.S., it has been available on every Princess cruise we've taken since. We always take home a few extra bottles; the prices are on par with land based purchases, if you can find the wine.

But I digress ... Experiment with wines and I suspect the packages described should do well!
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#17
Sechelt, BC & Fort Mohave, AZ
26,679 Posts
Joined Sep 2007
As people who purchase a bottle of wine each evening with dinner....this is sounding almost too good to be true....gosh, we may have to take a cruise to just try it.

It's not April Fool's day, is it.
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#18
Greater Columbus, OH area
141 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by Putterdude
As people who purchase a bottle of wine each evening with dinner....this is sounding almost too good to be true....gosh, we may have to take a cruise to just try it.

It's not April Fool's day, is it.
LOL. We are similar. We enjoy a bottle with dinner and have found some "'ole friends" on the Princess wine list.

We also take advantage of bringing a few bottles as we embark. Some of our fondest memories include sipping wine on our balcony while playing a spirited game of Yahtzee as the miles float by. To that, I thank Princess for not being as restrictive as other lines with respect to our cabin wine.
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#19
Ontario, Canada
210 Posts
Joined Aug 2011
Hi everyone. I was searching for info on whether the wine package was available on the Crown as we are sailing on this ship next month. Glad to have found this thread on the subject. We sailed on the Coral last Nov and bought the 14 bottle Gold pkg and never regretted doing so. The wine list offered many good selections in the $30 -$45 range, one of the best being a Barolo listed at about $43. One limitation we did hear about is that you can only use the card in a restaurant. That didn't bother us but some on board friends did like to have the occasional bottle of champagne in their cabin. They got around this limitation by getting the bottle at the bar in the buffet restaurant and taking it back to their room. Just thought I would add this tidbit.
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Susan

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1989 - QE2 - Transatlantic; 2008 - Viking Neptune - Danube River; 2010 - RCI Serenade - Caribbean; QV - Eastern Mediterranean; 2011 - Coral Princess - Panama Canal; 2012 - Crown Princess - Caribbean; Grand Princess - Mediterranean; 2013 - Star Princess - Hawaii; 2014 - Emerald Princess - Caribbean, Emerald Princess - Canary Islands/Transatlantic; 2015 - Regal Princess - Caribbean/Transatlantic, Queen Mary 2 - Transatlantic, Caribbean Princess - Canada & New England; 2016 - Star Princess - Buenos Aires to LA, Crown Princess - Hawaii/Tahiti


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#20
3,767 Posts
Joined Dec 2004
Originally posted by Blue Lupin
Hi everyone. I was searching for info on whether the wine package was available on the Crown as we are sailing on this ship next month. Glad to have found this thread on the subject. We sailed on the Coral last Nov and bought the 14 bottle Gold pkg and never regretted doing so. The wine list offered many good selections in the $30 -$45 range, one of the best being a Barolo listed at about $43. One limitation we did hear about is that you can only use the card in a restaurant. That didn't bother us but some on board friends did like to have the occasional bottle of champagne in their cabin. They got around this limitation by getting the bottle at the bar in the buffet restaurant and taking it back to their room. Just thought I would add this tidbit.
DH and I had a brief conversation with Crown Maitre d' Neville Saldanha at which time we told him how glad we were that Princess has instituted the Wine Bottle Package. We asked him about use of the card onboard, and he said that any transaction using the wine bottle card must be initiated in a dining room. Since diners at HC can enjoy beer/wine with their meals, it would seem that this is considered a "dining venue". One cannot use the card at an onboard bar like Crooner's, Explorer's, or even Vines.

Also, once you've purchased the wine bottle card, the wine is yours to use as you wish. If you don't finish a bottle at dinner but want to have it in your stateroom, waitstaff will arrange to have it delivered. Same with an unopened bottle: Just tell your waiter that you'd like to have one of your bottles sent to your stateroom. The Wine Bottle Package is a grand plan that gives Princess passengers the opportunity to savor different wines and save money.

Cheers!