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cmm999

sneaking alcohol on board, soda card & bar drinks

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We cruised last month. Upon embarkation there was a duty free liquor shop. We inquired with the employees and were told officially we were not supposed to take it on board but if we put the bottles in our carry on bags that it would go through. I could see the people buying it and going right through the xray machines just fine. I couldn't deal with thinking about how to mix drinks and what I'd mix them with, so I didn't do this.

 

While on board we met some people at the pool who said that a Princess staffer who was off the ship while at port told them that any liquor purchased at port could be stowed in the carry on bags and no one would bother them. The official policy is that no liquor can be brought on board. They did this several times (buying at port and sneaking it on), and it went right through the xray machine and no one stopped them.

 

The people we met explained that they bought a soda card for $25 which came with a free Coca-Cola logo metal cup (similar to travel coffee mugs). They had this filled with rum and carried it around with them. They would get sodas and spike the coke's with rum. They said they did this at poolside, at the buffet meals and even in the dining room for dinner.

 

I was very disappointed with the frozen drinks. I saw they were from a syrup in a carton-premixed base formula. I thought the pina colada was awful and the margarita was also terrible tasting. A friend we were traveling with said the strawberry daquiri tasted water-y. What a disappointment. I bought a bucket of Dos-X beer, 5 for $14 (on sale) however it needed a bottle opener and I didn't have one so this made consumption in the cabin difficult. I asked the steward and he let me borrow his so I was rescued.

 

One day I asked the waiter for 2 frozen banana drinks without alcohol for my son and my nephew. He asked if a banana colada was OK and I said yes, but it had to have no alcohol and again indicated it was for my children. He didn't come back for over 15 minutes and there were about 5 waiters walking around with nothing to do (it was a quiet time). I went to the bar and inquired as to where the drinks were, and the bartender nodded to the drinks which were sitting there melting. (The waiter was no where to be found.) I asked if those were the no-alcohol banana drinks and he confirmed they *were* alcoholic banana coladas. I explained they were for small children and told what I ordered--no alcohol. He made new drinks but insisted on charging my card for the no-alcohol drinks. He wanted me to take the alcoholic banana coladas and I said I didn't want them and asked if I'd be charged and he said no, I'd get credited. Five minutes later the waiter appeared and began screaming at me that I did order banana coladas. He was speaking broken English and must have not understood what "no alcohol" meant. This was the worst customer service ever, to be shouted at about his mistake! In the end we were indeed charged for all 4 drinks despite not getting or drinking the alcoholic drinks. This warranted a trip to the pursor's desk to have the overcharge removed. I was also annoyed at the error because if the waiter had delivered them in a timely manner it would have meant two 7 year old children would have drank a 16 oz. alcoholic drink. There was no remorse at all on the part of the bartender or the waiter about the idea that the mistake almost meant young children drinking alcohol!!

 

I think they must be very hard on the waiters for mistakes. One day when I visited the bar the bartender was screaming at a waiter about 2 frozen mudslides that were made in error and he was saying to walk around the pool area and push the sale of the drinks. We decided to buy them as we felt bad for the waiter and they did look good (they were good albeit loaded with calories).

 

You can bring your own wine to dinner but the corking fee is $10.

 

We were buying wine at dinner by the bottle and one night we had finished one bottle and started a second. We had just one glass out of the new bottle and asked them to save it for us. The next night we were told it was lost and we had a run-in with the maitre'd about it. He said the waiter and the helper both said we finished the bottle. Yes, we finished one bottle but we were talking about the second bottle. The serving staff seemed to not remember we had a second bottle as they did not reference a second bottle. It was our word against the servers and the maitre'd said in that case he goes with what the servers say. I guess "the customer is always right" is not a motto for Princess. After much complaining to the maitre'd they finally gave us a partially used bottle of a different wine to drink. It ruined the dinner to have this problem right as the meal started.

 

On a previous night we asked if we could use the free bottle of wine credit from our travel agent as a credit against buying a more expensive wine. $41 was charged to our account but the credit for $15 was never applied. We didn't find this out until the last day of the cruise. The pursor's desk staff said to speak to the maitre'd about it but when we did, this was met with an argument as well and it seemed he didn't remember the transaction (there was no paper trail on our end as we had turned over the coupon to him as requied) and we had no proof to show we turned in that coupon and that a credit was coming, to show the pursor staff so we lost that $15.

 

Near the end of the cruise we found out that with the soda card you have the option of asking for a large soda to get a much larger sized drink.

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Sorry to hear about your troubles. On our last cruise our waitstaff always had our wine bottles from the night before ready for us. Service was the best.

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The official policy is that no liquor can be brought on board. They did this several times (buying at port and sneaking it on), and it went right through the xray machine and no one stopped them.

 

When you go through the XRay machines at port that is the ships customs. They are only looking for weapons or drugs. Alcohol is a seperate issue. Thats what we were told anyway.

 

Im really sorry you had bad service on your cruise

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The official policy is no hard liquor brought onboard. I see NO reason whatsoever to do this. You can buy alcohol from room service or some of the bars onboard at excellent prices - to have in your room - and no cheating. Think of all the trouble it saves dragging all that extra stuff!

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So glad we are not sailing on Princess. The crew sounds dreadful and disrespectful at best.........Guess why we are going on our 20+ cruise on RCCL this Friday...Happy sailing to all

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The official policy is no hard liquor brought onboard. I see NO reason whatsoever to do this. You can buy alcohol from room service or some of the bars onboard at excellent prices - to have in your room - and no cheating. Think of all the trouble it saves dragging all that extra stuff!

 

We didnt do it ourselves as I am not a drinker, however, at the dinner table some guests were telling us that they bought a litre bottle of barcadi for $3 - doubt they could have got one drink for that on the ship

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