Free at Sea...really Free on NCL?

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#21
California
1,545 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
Your choice to either get the package or not.

Seems like Norwegian raises the drink package price every year and with it comes more of service charges.
2016 - $69 to $79 per person per day
2017- $79 to $89 per person per day
2018????? who knows

so get the package now if you intend on getting it before they increase the prices once again(if they do). At least you'll be grandfathered in.
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#22
Kennett Square, PA, USA
2,349 Posts
Joined Dec 2000
Originally posted by Georgie562
Your choice to either get the package or not.

Seems like Norwegian raises the drink package price every year and with it comes more of service charges.
2016 - $69 to $79 per person per day
2017- $79 to $89 per person per day
2018????? who knows

so get the package now if you intend on getting it before they increase the prices once again(if they do). At least you'll be grandfathered in.
Yup and its overpriced so the service charge/gratuitys are higher.... Sort of a sneaky way to advertise freebies. They price their package atleast $30/pp a day higher than other lines.....and I do not want to hear...there is no drink limits or price limits on drinks. For the majority of people its irrelevant. Just more price gouging even when they give you the package for free!!
#23
California
1,545 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
Originally posted by lcpagejr
Yup and its overpriced so the service charge/gratuitys are higher.... Sort of a sneaky way to advertise freebies. They price their package atleast $30/pp a day higher than other lines.....and I do not want to hear...there is no drink limits or price limits on drinks. For the majority of people its irrelevant. Just more price gouging even when they give you the package for free!!
I agree, their drink package SUCKS. No water, no coffees, no powerades,

But it seems that it doesn't stop people myself included from choosing the beverage package as their "freebie" . I rather pay just my service charges for gratuities upfront with this "freebie" than to have a bar bill with service charges at the end of my cruise.
I'm on vacation, ill splurge a little. I don't mind paying the extra $$ service charge for unlimited booze. It is what it is.
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#24
Kennett Square, PA, USA
2,349 Posts
Joined Dec 2000
Originally posted by Georgie562
I agree, their drink package SUCKS. No water, no coffees, no powerades,

But it seems that it doesn't stop people myself included from choosing the beverage package as their "freebie" . I rather pay just my service charges for gratuities upfront with this "freebie" than to have a bar bill with service charges at the end of my cruise.
I'm on vacation, ill splurge a little. I don't mind paying the extra $$ service charge for unlimited booze. It is what it is.
I hear you and would agree.... For that price..the package should be inclusive of all beverages!!! But its so sneaky. Your thinking your getting something for free(as a sales perk) and then you see this $125/pp charge added onto the overall cruise total and I know I was trying to figure it out the 1st time I saw it.... Now I know...but for 1st timers it can be an unpleasent surprise
#25
Parsippany, NJ
471 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
Originally posted by Chris2018
For legal reasons, free should be completely free. If McDonalds offered you free fries with your burger, you get them free, you don't pay taxes or gratuity on them.

Instead of pre-paying gratuity which the NCL waiters NEVER see, just make drink packages completely free with the expectation that you must offer cash tip to the waiters for every single drink. That is more than fair.

NCL is just pocketing the pre-paid gratuity for extra profit like a typical corporation. Your drink package isn't free. It's paying for the Johnny Walker Black Label and coke you ordered.


No, if you win a free car, or a free vacation, or a free million dollar lottery, or a free meal at ato a restaurant with Service, you pay the taxes, you pay the tip.


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#27
Minnesota
54 Posts
Joined Oct 2008
Originally posted by lcpagejr
I hear you and would agree.... For that price..the package should be inclusive of all beverages!!! But its so sneaky. Your thinking your getting something for free(as a sales perk) and then you see this $125/pp charge added onto the overall cruise total and I know I was trying to figure it out the 1st time I saw it.... Now I know...but for 1st timers it can be an unpleasent surprise
It's NOT sneaky when they so clearly disclose it! It's only sneaky for those that don't take the time to read the "terms and conditions!"

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#28
Louisiana
2,127 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
Well it wouldn't be so bad if you just had to pay the $249 gratuities to get the beverage package for the two of you for a week but that is not the total cost of the package.

I just priced the cruise I am going on and I can get a "sail and sign cabin" $600 cheaper than another oceanview cabin. With the "sail and sign" cabin you don't get any "free" perks like the beverage package and you get a guarantee cabin. With the regular cabin you get the beverage package and get to pick your cabin but you have to pay $600 more plus $249 more for gratuities making it $849 for the beverages and getting to pick your cabin out of only 9 cabins that are unsold in that class and are all pretty much the same.

Now we do like to drink and have been on many cruises but there is no way that we are going to drink $849 worth of drinks in a week when we are in port most of the time.

Getting to pick your cabin out of only 9 unsold cabins in that class that are close to each other and identical is of absolutely no value and the guarantee cabin is even more valuable because you may get upgraded to a better cabin.

With the $849 I save by not getting the beverage package we are then able to get specialty coffee, water, ultra premium liquors, items from the minibar, sports drinks, Irish Coffee and many other drinks and still have hundreds left over.
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#29
Dallas, TX
9,629 Posts
Joined May 2008
Originally posted by Weetahbugdotcom
No, if you win a free car, or a free vacation, or a free million dollar lottery, or a free meal at ato a restaurant with Service, you pay the taxes, you pay the tip.


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Yeah. I hear Oprah. You get a car. You get a car. People were shocked to have to pay taxes.

If someone doesn't want to pay a small tax or fee. Opt out.


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#30
12 Posts
Joined Mar 2018
Hi I'm new to NCL just booked a cruise with them. I choose the drink package and internet, and i prepaid my regular gratuities and paid in full for my cruise but the lady i booked with didn't say anything about gratuities for the drink package. do they charge this daily? or is it totaled in when i paid? Thanks
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#31
Arizona
11,945 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
Originally posted by sccruiser26
Hi I'm new to NCL just booked a cruise with them. I choose the drink package and internet, and i prepaid my regular gratuities and paid in full for my cruise but the lady i booked with didn't say anything about gratuities for the drink package. do they charge this daily? or is it totaled in when i paid? Thanks
Look at your cruise confirmation and make sure it is the service charges (DSC) that you paid and not the gratuities/service charge for the drink package. The gratuities/service charge for the drink package is charged upfront and you pay at your final payment, while the Daily Service Charge is charged daily unless you pre-pay.
#32
Scottsdale-Arizona
207 Posts
Joined Aug 2015
Originally posted by sccruiser26
Hi I'm new to NCL just booked a cruise with them. I choose the drink package and internet, and i prepaid my regular gratuities and paid in full for my cruise but the lady i booked with didn't say anything about gratuities for the drink package. do they charge this daily? or is it totaled in when i paid? Thanks
Have you already "Paid" as you stated?

If so, you know what they say bout Snoozin

NCL already billed you for the UBP Grats and you didn't notice.

Well if so why worry about it Now. Your balance is Zero, "Paid In Full".....
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#35
1,042 Posts
Joined Aug 2010
Originally posted by tallnthensome
I swear, if another person complains about the service charge for the UBP ......... Go on Royal or Carnival and pay $1000 for their week long drink package instead of a couple hundred for NCL's ...... Your complaining should subside.
Or Celebrity where it actually is “free” and you aren’t charge additional gratuity/service charges on the perk or pocket change on each drink while in port of Miami.
But, they are a completely different experience and lack any nightlife or real entertainment.
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#36
585 Posts
Joined Sep 2005
Originally posted by lcpagejr
I hear you and would agree.... For that price..the package should be inclusive of all beverages!!! But its so sneaky. Your thinking your getting something for free(as a sales perk) and then you see this $125/pp charge added onto the overall cruise total and I know I was trying to figure it out the 1st time I saw it.... Now I know...but for 1st timers it can be an unpleasent surprise


Would you not tip if a restaurant manager comped a meal? When one redeems a frequent flyer ticket, one still pays the taxes on the value of a free ticket


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#37
1,042 Posts
Joined Aug 2010
There are definite issues with NCL’s “free” UBP from any consumer who overanalyzes things. They charge the most of any mass line, don’t include bottled water, and have CLEARLY run the numbers to figure out the point at which the 20% covers/surpasses what the average drink consumption is per person. In case this is news, while yes, many people will benefit from the package, plenty will not. Much like a casino, or any other business, the house will win.
It is up to us to decide if we want to participate and if the larger product is worth the additional cost.
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#38
1,042 Posts
Joined Aug 2010
Originally posted by Ironworker808
Can you provide a link to proof of this claim?
I could be mistaking it for something else but I think a link was actually posted before that gave the breakdown. Most of the amount was going into things like funds for staff medical care with a much smaller than expected percentage going to “gratuities.” But maybe that was the DSC. I’ll try and find it.
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#39
Daytona Beach, FL
242 Posts
Joined Mar 2009
Originally posted by Chris2018
Instead of pre-paying gratuity which the NCL waiters NEVER see
Got any evidence for this outrageous claim?
#40
Graham, WA
507 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by adjensen
Got any evidence for this outrageous claim?
Of course not. It's just something many of the cheapskates who don't want to tip say to try to justify their cheapness.
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