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gmbhardy

Not Happy with Liquor Up Charges

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1 hour ago, erdoran said:

There are too many assumptions.  Everyone is different.  Everyone has their priorities and what is, and isn't, OK for them.  The same sailing on different dates costs different!

 

To  make the best decision for YOU, price YOUR desired itinerary on whatever cruise lines suit your fancy.  In my case my DH will be so miserable if we aren't in Haven (or perhaps YC or equivalent on other cruise line) that we couldn't do a guarantee unless it was at that level (YC/Haven).  No point sailing if we roll the dice for cabin.

 

Booze - again for US, DH loved the UBP.  I will drink if it's included but I'm too cheap to spend more than $10-$15/day on booze otherwise - but with him, UBP or equivalent make sense.  I also require unlimited wifi to keep in touch with  my work.

 

So given those constraints, we can comparison shop different cruise lines for the same week/itinerary.

 

For those folks who are saying NCL is (or isn't) the right financial decision for them, I strongly recommend you do the same analysis:

1.  Do you HAVE to avoid a certain type cabin?  What's worst case if you can't choose your cabin (in your fare class)?  Annoyed?  husband/wife meltdown or crankiness?  No, of course there is no guarantee you will get a terrible cabin, but the possibility exists.  Would that ruin your trip?

2.  What perks are essential?  If you had to pay for them, what would it add to your fare? (consider "all-in", ignore what the cruise line calls a cost, just add up all the mandatory costs, and that is really the price to compare.  Irrelevant whether one cruiseline says "gratuity" and another says something else, it's the number on your bill that matters, nothing else does.

3.  How many people travelling?

4.  What's the total cost of everything - fare, perks ("free" or what you would spend without them), extra pax, mandatory gratuities, etc?  Compare dollar for dollar.  And don't forget plane fare if you are looking at the "free" airfare; don't forget transfers if you would be buying from cruiseline.

 

THAT is a valid comparison!

Some of just want to pick our cabin as we have always done.  We almost always travel with others and want cabins together.  Whether or not the end fare is competitive with other cruise lines,  i am not compelled to want to purchase something i dont want so i can pick a room.  I will always sail away and be annoyed.  Not a good business plan.  Why cant i just pay for what i want.   I do believe ncl is a great value but forcing people to buy extra stuff so they can pick a room will always piss those folks off.

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1 hour ago, resetjet said:

Some of just want to pick our cabin as we have always done.  We almost always travel with others and want cabins together.  Whether or not the end fare is competitive with other cruise lines,  i am not compelled to want to purchase something i dont want so i can pick a room.  I will always sail away and be annoyed.  Not a good business plan.  Why cant i just pay for what i want.   I do believe ncl is a great value but forcing people to buy extra stuff so they can pick a room will always piss those folks off.

IMHO , it's not a bad idea . You get premium pricing for those that need/want to pick their cabin and fill up the ship at lower prices for those that don't care . If the ship is getting full you shrink the difference between the two, if there is lots of unsold inventory, you widen the difference . It's not pretty but it works for them so they can sell to bargain hunters without having to lower their 3,4 or whatever for free package prices . 

Edited by richstowe
Difficult for me to defend a cruise line but ...

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7 hours ago, richstowe said:

 

Perhaps you should write them a thank you note . :classic_ohmy: 

Nah, was trying to find the positive and unexpected.  NCL has reversed a few stupid polices but don't remember them being fee based.  This may be a first about face by NCL realizing how petty the nickel and diming has become.

NCL - still the most expensive and worst beverage package at sea

But hey.  It just got better!

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NCL seems high to me. I just priced out a 5 day Virgin Voyages cruise to Costa Maya sailing from Miami and a cruise on NCL for 5 days in the same month (Aug, 2020). VV includes wifi, soda / coffee, all specialty dining and daily gratuities for less than NCL's base price for the cruise (not counting gratuities) for a mid-ship balcony.

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8 hours ago, RedwingHockeyFan said:

 

One thing I forgot to mention is that I am pricing for 3 people and not two, we bring our 10 yr old son.  I cannot make the Celebrity Cruise work right now.  It wants to charge $2400 for the third passenger, it is bringing the total to $5300 for a Veranda room.  February 2021 sailing.

 

That's because you priced out the Edge...their most expensive ship. If you look at the Summit for example you can get a Veranda for about $3,500 with perks including a 3rd person (1/2 off) and don't forget that on NCL you're required to purchase a soda package for your kid which isn't included in the cruise fare.

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8 hours ago, DaCruiseBug said:

 

That's because you priced out the Edge...their most expensive ship. If you look at the Summit for example you can get a Veranda for about $3,500 with perks including a 3rd person (1/2 off) and don't forget that on NCL you're required to purchase a soda package for your kid which isn't included in the cruise fare.

They are  only "required" to purchase the soda pkg if they are also both buying some sort of drink pkg.

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8 hours ago, DaCruiseBug said:

 

don't forget that on NCL you're required to purchase a soda package for your kid which isn't included in the cruise fare.

No you aren't.

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4 hours ago, erdoran said:

They are  only "required" to purchase the soda pkg if they are also both buying some sort of drink pkg.

Well he said he likes to drink so I’m assuming he chooses the UBP as one of the perks.

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21 minutes ago, DaCruiseBug said:

Well he said he likes to drink so I’m assuming he chooses the UBP as one of the perks.

In which case there is no requirement to get the soda package as nobody is buying the UBP.

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2 hours ago, DaCruiseBug said:

Well he said he likes to drink so I’m assuming he chooses the UBP as one of the perks.

you only "have to" pay for a beverage package over and above UBP if someone is buying it "retail" (not getting it "free" as a perk) in which case everyone else in the cabin has to also buy it "retail".  Assuming OP is getting it as a perk, there is no requirement to pay for a soda package for the third passenger.  What makes you think he has to buy the soda pkg?  Did I miss something?

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1 minute ago, erdoran said:

you only "have to" pay for a beverage package over and above UBP if someone is buying it "retail" (not getting it "free" as a perk) in which case everyone else in the cabin has to also buy it "retail".  Assuming OP is getting it as a perk, there is no requirement to pay for a soda package for the third passenger.  What makes you think he has to buy the soda pkg?  Did I miss something?

 

A couple of years ago on NCL I talked with a couple that got the UBP as a perk and made them purchase a soda package for their daughter. Unless it's changed...or they mistakenly made them do it...

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2 minutes ago, DaCruiseBug said:

 

A couple of years ago on NCL I talked with a couple that got the UBP as a perk and made them purchase a soda package for their daughter. Unless it's changed...or they mistakenly made them do it...

 

 

Seems odd.   That's never been the policy.

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1 minute ago, DaCruiseBug said:

 

A couple of years ago on NCL I talked with a couple that got the UBP as a perk and made them purchase a soda package for their daughter. Unless it's changed...or they mistakenly made them do it...

It hasn’t changed, as there has never been that requirement with the promo package.

 

Either the couple you were talking to were incorrectly told they needed to purchase it, or they misunderstood.

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2 minutes ago, KeithJenner said:

It hasn’t changed, as there has never been that requirement with the promo package.

 

Either the couple you were talking to were incorrectly told they needed to purchase it, or they misunderstood.

Maybe it's a nickel & dime thing - a way to make an extra sale?  Kinda like a car dealership saying "unless you buy our overpriced extended warranty the bank won't give you a loan" (true story, stepson back when he was buying his first new car).  

 

Based on that couple, if there had been a second couple sharing the cabin, then that second couple would have had to pay $240/day extra for UBP for them, because couple 1 had it "free"--I think the outrage here over that nonsense would have lit up the boards 10x the amount this ~20% price increase did!

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5 minutes ago, erdoran said:

Maybe it's a nickel & dime thing - a way to make an extra sale?  Kinda like a car dealership saying "unless you buy our overpriced extended warranty the bank won't give you a loan" (true story, stepson back when he was buying his first new car).  

 

Based on that couple, if there had been a second couple sharing the cabin, then that second couple would have had to pay $240/day extra for UBP for them, because couple 1 had it "free"--I think the outrage here over that nonsense would have lit up the boards 10x the amount this ~20% price increase did!

It’s a question which is often asked on here because of the requirement when the beverage package is purchased. This is the first time (that I recall) if anyone ever having experienced having been told they needed to buy it. As you say, it would have lit up these boards if that was happening.

 

I’d say that it was almost certainly an error, maybe caused by a staff member who had incorrect info (NCL phone staff are notorious for giving bad info), or a misunderstanding by either the staff member or the couple themselves.

Edited by KeithJenner

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21 hours ago, richstowe said:

IMHO , it's not a bad idea . You get premium pricing for those that need/want to pick their cabin and fill up the ship at lower prices for those that don't care . If the ship is getting full you shrink the difference between the two, if there is lots of unsold inventory, you widen the difference . It's not pretty but it works for them so they can sell to bargain hunters without having to lower their 3,4 or whatever for free package prices . 

Here's the cabin-choosing logic.

 

NCL advertises perks as FREE (other than fake gratuities); however, there is a substantial price difference between the same cabin category with and without the "free" perks.  There has to be something else to differentiate the offerings other than "FREE" perks; otherwise, that would be false advertising, right?

 

Cabin with FREE perks, excluding stated requirement to pay gratuities:  $2000

Cabin without FREE perks:  $1400 (for example)

 

"free" perks = $600 = NOT FREE = false advertising

 

Now - add on something unavailable any other way - the ability to choose your cabin within your cabin category.  Airlines let you pay extra to choose your seat in advance.  Once you have done that, you've added something to the cabin plus FREE perks that differentiates it from the sailaway.

 

So, IMHO NCL doesn't have the option to allow the sailaway to pick their own cabin, because if they did then there would be concrete evidence that the two offerings are the same, and the perks aren't really free.  Yes, we all know they aren't, but I'd think that NCL does have a legal defense because of the additional "choose your own cabin" perk.

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On Breakaway for 10 day its day three and here is the new drink menu and they change the drink menu. Now gray goose and patron are included in the UBP package

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18 minutes ago, jordan9900 said:

On Breakaway for 10 day its day three and here is the new drink menu and they change the drink menu. Now gray goose and patron are included in the UBP package

 

How about Grand Marnier.

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42 minutes ago, jordan9900 said:

On Breakaway for 10 day its day three and here is the new drink menu and they change the drink menu. Now gray goose and patron are included in the UBP package

Not seeing a link... is GG martini included in that? Or just a shot of it?

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2 hours ago, Greenpea2 said:

Not seeing a link... is GG martini included in that? Or just a shot of it?

Anything

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16 minutes ago, jordan9900 said:

Have the new menu upload at belize

 

Thanks. That would be great!

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So you’re saying that the cruise started with Grey goose as an up charge and now it’s included as of day 3? Or have the price increases just not hit breakaway yet?

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I spoke to the concierge desk for my 4/1 Jade cruise and she looked up when the new beverage prices will hit our ship and she said it would hit 3/1.    She seemed to announce this as a benefit or improvement.   When I said we were disappointed that the pricing that was in effect when we paid in full wouldn’t be honored she made it pretty clear that it wasn’t really her job to deal with anything other than book dining, excursion or spa appts (and for those she could only book what was available online.). 

 

We we are paid and going but the deposit I have on an H4 in August of next year...maybe not so much.  

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