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Buying Beverage packages.....


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... is there any advantage or disadvantage to purchasing

before sailing (online)

or waiting till on board?

Does anyone have the menus for the current Signature and Elite packages?

 

Looking at elite package.

 

Koningsdam OCT 2017

 

 

Thanks

L

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If you purchase the Signature Beverage Package in advance of boarding, there is a price discount as compared to waiting to buy it on board. The difference is about $5/day.

 

Then again, you have 48 hours into your cruise to buy it. The first day you probably won't break even without the morning specialty coffees etc. Also, after finding that real nice bartender, he or she will like you a lot after buying the package via them.

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Thank you!! I was hoping to get a side by side comparison between Elite and Signature. We are a group and it makes a difference since everyone in the stateroom needs to have the same package. At least I have a start.

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The Signature Beverage Package (SBP) used to be $44.95 per day (+ 15% service charge) purchased online or onboard as late as December 2016. HAL decided they didn't want guests purchasing the SBP with free HAL OBC, so they increased the price by $5 per day is you wait to purchase it onboard. So, there's no "discount" by purchasing it online, ahead of your cruise, that $44.95 price was the standard price for a long time. That $5 increase is a penalty to discourage people from using OBC to purchase the package onboard. Funny.... they don't have the same "penalty" for the Elite Beverage Package (EBP) at $54.95 per day, same price, purchased online or onboard. Of course we all know there is a markup on drink prices, cruise lines have to be competitive with land based bars and other lines, but no where near the markups on Spa treatments or shore excursions. So, HAL would rather you use your OBC to do a day in the SPA or purchase shore excursions. They want you to purchase the SBP with hard cash ahead of the cruise due to the relatively lower markup on drink prices.

Edited by TAD2005
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  • 8 months later...

If you are already booked: Using the "Already Booked" option, log in and look under Cruise Activities, then Beverages. There are packages for all beverages. soda/soft drinks, non-alcoholic beverages and water. Also the soda and beverages cards are there.

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  • 3 weeks later...

If we wait to book onboard, and wait until the 3rd day (day at sea) to purchase, is the package prorated?

 

As someone above mentioned, the first day onboard is a low drinking day. We will probably have one drink before dinner, and maybe 2 glasses of wine pp during dinner. Then the 2nd day of our cruise is at Half Moon Cay. I understand that drink packages are not honored on the island. However, there is an offer of a lower priced drink package for just that day on HMC. I assume that "special package" does not extend to onboard purchases that day. So we would have to buy our drinks individually on the first and 3rd evening of our cruise. And then we would purchase the drink package the following morning for the remainder of the cruise (5 more days.) Does that sound reasonable?

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Oh, wow... that's surprising! It is on Celebrity. Why pay for something that you did not use for those 2-3 days?

 

Also, I read either on this thread, or someplace else, that you have 48 hours to decide if you want to buy the package. Anyway, DH and I talked and decided to stick with the Beverage card. That seems to be the best for us. And we will be on Celebrity the next week and will have the included drink package. So we can make up for any missed drinks while on the 2nd cruise. :D

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we had the package on our Feb cruise. Recently sailed on Oceania and I had the package and my partner just was changed drink by drink as it didn't pay for her as she had only 1 or 2 drinks a day. Wish HAL was able to do that. That is being considerate and not money grubbing.

Our HAL cruise was only 7 days but the next one is over 2 weeks.

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Oh, wow... that's surprising! It is on Celebrity. Why pay for something that you did not use for those 2-3 days?

 

Also, I read either on this thread, or someplace else, that you have 48 hours to decide if you want to buy the package. Anyway, DH and I talked and decided to stick with the Beverage card. That seems to be the best for us. And we will be on Celebrity the next week and will have the included drink package. So we can make up for any missed drinks while on the 2nd cruise. :D

Celebrity also doesn't impose a daily drink limit. I'm not sure that I'd ever reach the limit, but for the amount HAL charges, it should be unlimited IMHO.

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we had the package on our Feb cruise. Recently sailed on Oceania and I had the package and my partner just was changed drink by drink as it didn't pay for her as she had only 1 or 2 drinks a day. Wish HAL was able to do that. That is being considerate and not money grubbing.

Our HAL cruise was only 7 days but the next one is over 2 weeks.

It would probably be cheaper for you to avoid the packages and simply pay as you go if your partner is a light drinker.

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Oceana cruises are considerably more expensive than the same cruise and cabin type on HAL. Also Oceana's beverage packages are more than $44.95 a day, so they can afford to look the other way when one passenger in a cabin has the package, and occasionally shares a drink with the non-package passenger. It's because of drink sharing that the major cruise lines require both in a cabin to buy the package. If people wouldn't try to scam the system and share drinks with friends and cabin mates who don't purchase the package, we wouldn't be having this discussion, There's always a few who won't play by the rules and make it more expensive for those that do.

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Celebrity also doesn't impose a daily drink limit. I'm not sure that I'd ever reach the limit, but for the amount HAL charges, it should be unlimited IMHO.

 

We definitely will not reach the 15 drink limit! :eek:

 

Oceana cruises are considerably more expensive than the same cruise and cabin type on HAL. Also Oceana's beverage packages are more than $44.95 a day, so they can afford to look the other way when one passenger in a cabin has the package, and occasionally shares a drink with the non-package passenger. It's because of drink sharing that the major cruise lines require both in a cabin to buy the package. If people wouldn't try to scam the system and share drinks with friends and cabin mates who don't purchase the package, we wouldn't be having this discussion, There's always a few who won't play by the rules and make it more expensive for those that do.

 

On our Oceania cruises, the rate has been comparable for the Caribbean cruises. We started out buying the Beer and Wine package and quickly learned that it was limited. Purchased the full package and clearly wasted our money. However, DH does not want to have to sign for every drink and therefore prefers the packages on our cruises. When you buys the prepaid drink cards, does one have to sign for every drink ticket? And do the drink cards include the 15% gratuity?

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We definitely will not reach the 15 drink limit! :eek:

 

 

 

On our Oceania cruises, the rate has been comparable for the Caribbean cruises. We started out buying the Beer and Wine package and quickly learned that it was limited. Purchased the full package and clearly wasted our money. However, DH does not want to have to sign for every drink and therefore prefers the packages on our cruises. When you buys the prepaid drink cards, does one have to sign for every drink ticket? And do the drink cards include the 15% gratuity?

 

We had purchased drink cards on a HAL cruise years ago. And we did have to sign each drink receipt. And yes, using the drink cards still requires you to pay the 15% SC. For example, a menu price drink of $7.95 will cost $9.14 including the 15% SC. If you have a $100 drink card, you will be able to buy just under 11 drinks at the $9.14 price.

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So can someone clarify, if you wait until the 2nd day to purchase the drink package you will only be paying for the remainder of the cruise? Reading the comments about 1st day being lower in terms of drinks. This would save around $100 (minus drinks on the first day) Is this correct? The beverage package states "per day" so it would seem to me the clock starts the day you purchase?

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I am not familiar with the drink card on Holland. What is the advantage. Is it that it costs something like 90$ for a 100$ card?

We are planning a transatlantic with Holland. Do they have sales on the drink package for TA sometimes. On Celebrity, we were purchasing the drink package with a 50% discount. I do not think it is advertised. I would just check regularly and people on the roll call would also informed us.

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My husband, adult son and I all shared a cabin. They got the elite package (I don’t drink alcohol due to medical reasons and had to submit a doctors note in order to get the quench package.).

 

One nice perk was that the Alaskan beer tasting, whiskey tasting and mixology class were included in their drink package whereas for those not on the elite plan had to pay $15-20.

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My husband, adult son and I all shared a cabin. They got the elite package (I don’t drink alcohol due to medical reasons and had to submit a doctors note in order to get the quench package.).

 

One nice perk was that the Alaskan beer tasting, whiskey tasting and mixology class were included in their drink package whereas for those not on the elite plan had to pay $15-20.

 

Excellent to know. Which ship were you on if you don't mind me asking? We did a couple of the Mixology Classes a few years ago and it was a blast, well worth the $. The bartenders were so much fun.

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Last I checked, just like the unlimited laundry package, the signature beverage package (and the elite) are priced on the full cruise. If you wait until the 2nd or later day to purchase it onboard, you will be cautioned that the price is still for the full cruise, no prorating. The reasoning there is that some people will try to purchase the package for the last days of the cruise when there may be a lot of sea days. HAL doesn't permit that. For example, a 7 day cruise where the last two days are sea days. With prorating you would buy the package for only $103.40 for the 2 days, and could feasibly drink $274 in liquor, even with the 15 drink per day limit. Remember, the break-even point with the SBP is 5 drinks priced at $7.95 plus 15%. That is the reason for no prorating, same for the unlimited laundry. It's $7 (or $9 in Europe) a day for the entire cruise. People would only buy it for the last few days of the cruise and get 2 or 3 bags of laundry (a $40 or $60 cost, by the bag) for only $14 or $21. Some people will always try to scam the system, and that's why there is no prorating.

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Last I checked, just like the unlimited laundry package, the signature beverage package (and the elite) are priced on the full cruise. If you wait until the 2nd or later day to purchase it onboard, you will be cautioned that the price is still for the full cruise, no prorating. The reasoning there is that some people will try to purchase the package for the last days of the cruise when there may be a lot of sea days. HAL doesn't permit that. For example, a 7 day cruise where the last two days are sea days. With prorating you would buy the package for only $103.40 for the 2 days, and drink $300 in liquor. That is the reason for no prorating, same for the unlimited laundry. It's $7 (or $9) a day for the entire cruise. People would only buy it for the last few days of the cruise and get 2 or 3 bags of laundry (a $40 or $60 cost, by the bag) for only $14 or $21. Some people will always try to scam the system, and that's why there is no prorating.
Ok, that makes sense. Thanks for the feedback!

 

Sent from my Moto G (5) Plus using Forums mobile app

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Excellent to know. Which ship were you on if you don't mind me asking? We did a couple of the Mixology Classes a few years ago and it was a blast, well worth the $. The bartenders were so much fun.

 

Eurodam. My husband and son really enjoyed the bartenders as well.

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