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Have you ditched the drink pkg?

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I'm going back and forth on whether to get it for our upcoming cruise...

 

We've got the pkg every year since it's been offered.  Typically I find we never drink what it costs.

This year I'm thinking of ditching it.

 

We have a 500 OBC  and the free drinks from diamond lounge.  I'm thinking --- that should be enough to cover our drinking. 

 

Typical drinks

 

Day 1   Welcome aboard Drink or 2 --  something after dinner or 2

 

First Sea Day:   3 by the pool  --- 2-3 more over coarse of the day/night

 

By Day 4 -- I feel my age and say I can't drink this much anymore and cut back dramatically  2 a day at best

 

Port days  even less.

My wife is about the same as me --- she'll hang a little longer.

 

Only reason I would get it ----  Bottled Water &  everyones excuse "Its nice to not have to worry about what you're spending"

 

I don't drink coffee or soda  --- so no advantage there. but we do love to grab the bottles of water everywhere.... especially when heading into port. 

 

It's a tough one ---- has anyone ditched it and relied on your OBC  ---- how did it play out for you?

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If you don't drink that much, why would you want to spend that much?

I've never gotten an alcohol package.  I usually just get the soda package (diet Coke is my "coffee"), but I splurged on Refreshment when it was on sale for $17/day for my next couple cruises.  This way I can have bottles of water in the room fridge and for port days, and the occasional frozen drink treat.  

You may find that the Refreshment package is a nice middle ground for you -- covers your bottled waters and smoothies / shakes / frozen drinks without alcohol, and you can add a shot of something to a mocktail if you want.  

 

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If you are getting the free drinks from Diamond perks and have a $500 OBC, you should be fairly well covered. Maybe just grab a refreshment package if you are worried about the smaller extras. 

 

I drink moderately on vacation, especially with purchasing packages. But I don't think I would do it if I had the drinks offered with Diamond perks and would just drink if I wanted one and end up with a smaller overall drink bill. 

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Yes we passed on our next cruise in March, to many port days. Not enough time to drink to make it work..

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4 hours ago, RCCL Fan said:

 ...

 

It's a tough one ---- has anyone ditched it and relied on your OBC  ---- how did it play out for you?

 

Why not just try it next cruise and see how you come out?

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We never get it.  My husband is not a drinker and while I wish I didn't have to be concerned about my calorie/sugar intake, I just can't go down the rabbit hole with the fruity/frosty drinks of the day.  On most cruises I'm with my kids, so not looking to get hammered.  I'm just a simple girl who likes a couple of cold ultra light beers by the pool and maybe one with dinner.  I don't drink soda or juice and usually bring bottled water onboard (but don't have a problem drinking the ship's water with meals).  There was a Starbucks on our last cruise, so I brought a bunch of gift cards I had collected over the months and used them for coffee.  

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5 hours ago, RCCL Fan said:

I'm going back and forth on whether to get it for our upcoming cruise...

 

We've got the pkg every year since it's been offered.  Typically I find we never drink what it costs.

This year I'm thinking of ditching it.

 

We have a 500 OBC  and the free drinks from diamond lounge.  I'm thinking --- that should be enough to cover our drinking. 

 

Typical drinks

 

Day 1   Welcome aboard Drink or 2 --  something after dinner or 2

 

First Sea Day:   3 by the pool  --- 2-3 more over coarse of the day/night

 

By Day 4 -- I feel my age and say I can't drink this much anymore and cut back dramatically  2 a day at best

 

Port days  even less.

My wife is about the same as me --- she'll hang a little longer.

 

Only reason I would get it ----  Bottled Water &  everyones excuse "Its nice to not have to worry about what you're spending"

 

I don't drink coffee or soda  --- so no advantage there. but we do love to grab the bottles of water everywhere.... especially when heading into port. 

 

It's a tough one ---- has anyone ditched it and relied on your OBC  ---- how did it play out for you?

 

I think you answered your own question.  Probably should have stopped buying the package a few cruises ago.

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Not regular cruisers,so far we have just 3 & a bit under our belts,never bothered with a drinks package before but our forthcoming cruises booked with RCI are likely to change that.

Whereas on our last 2 cruises with P&O which saw bar prices similar to low UK pub prices ( & no service charge added) so there seemed no need,we now have 2 RCI cruises ahead of us (Quantum in October 2019 & Anthem in April 2020) with drink prices on board which make the £30 a day we are being quoted for a drink package a pretty good deal.

What doesn't seem such a good deal was that RCI were offering a 'special deal' when we booked the Anthem cruise which was advertised as meaning that your drinks on board were 'covered',the end result was a price £1000 dearer than without the special offer,realing struggling to find that as much of a bargain on a 12 night cruise!

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36 minutes ago, snaefell said:

 with drink prices on board which make the £30 a day we are being quoted for a drink package a pretty good deal.

What doesn't seem such a good deal was that RCI were offering a 'special deal' when we booked the Anthem cruise which was advertised as meaning that your drinks on board were 'covered',the end result was a price £1000 dearer than without the special offer,realing struggling to find that as much of a bargain on a 12 night cruise!

You are probably comparing very good planner sale prices (£30 would be very rare) without the 18% grats to "normal" prices (drink grats included) when lumped in with the cabin price (£1000 for a 12 day sailing is about £41 pppd with grats)

Edited by Biker19

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We drink about the same as you and also have access to the diamond lounge.  We don't get the drink package normally but a few cruises ago we went with a couple of our friends (no kids).  I did think about it in advance thinking we might drink more than our average (which we did) and we were still ahead cost wise, over the drink package.  We just don't drink enough to cover the costs and with shore excursions you are gone of a good part of the day.  Just not worth it for us and it sound like you are similar in your habits.  

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I always get it now. But if you don’t get your moneys worth why do it. 

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This coming March will be our first cruise that I have bought it. Being a shorter (4-night) cruise and my wife being pregnant gives me a cheaper opportunity to see how it would work out financially. 

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Depends on price of package I have seen it at 41 and high 50’s . And ship since we do suites and also diamond we can get lots of drinks free.

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On my next cruise I will be Diamond. I went back and forth with getting a drink package or not. I enjoy trying different drinks and not having to worry about the cost. The time for the free drink on diamond are limiting to me. It doesn't include drinks at the pool or in the evening at events. I decided to purchase it this time and track when and what I drink and will decide for future cruises if I continue to get it. 

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If you have no other plans for your OBC and diamond drinks it sounds like you don't need the package.

 

For me it varies by cruise if I order it depending on who I'm traveling with, how much time in port and what kind of sale price I can get.  Hubby gets his money's worth every time so it's a no brainer for him.  We aren't always in the same cabin because of kids so aren't always obligated to buy for both.  I'm planning a mommy and me cruise with my two youngest and there is no way I need a drink package.  I don't like Coke products so I don't get the soda benefit from it.  Bottled water and specialty coffee are two big benefits for me but on the Navigator in December it was a really long line for specialty coffee and I feel I missed that benefit.

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We use to have the drinks package. But once we turned Diamond we downgraded to the refreshment package, mainly for the bottled water and coffee. If we want more than the 3 alcoholic drinks, that are on the Sea pass every night, we have 1 or 2 in the diamond lounge then use the 3 on the card. 

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We drink very little so drinks available from Diamond Club are more than adequate.   I have on occasion asked for an unopened  beer to stick in my room refridge to have outside of happy hour.

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Everyone is different....you do what's right for you.  I drink a bottle of wine with dinner at least 4-5 times over the course of a 7-9 night cruise.  With the discount per bottle combined with other daily drinks...beers/mixed drinks in the afternoon, beers/mixed drinks at the shows, Starbucks coffee, and the kids who have a beverage package wanting me to get them a smoothie which I have to get with my package....I always come out ahead by buying the packages 😉

Edited by dodgestang

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Can't ditch it when you've never done it.  😉 

 

I understand why people like it, not having to worry about cost once they are on the ship, and the convenience.  For some, it might even be lower cost than paying out of pocket.

 

However, for us, the numbers don't come close to working out.  We drink every night on a cruise but not nearly enough to cover the cost of the package.


Dan

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We're in the opposite boat, trying it out for the first time. I'm sure we'll drink enough to make it worthwhile but we could also not have it and still spend less (with the package we're likely to have specialty coffee every day plus bottled water and we're likely to try drinks we've never had before). It did help that we're paying less for the package than what we'd pay on CCL.

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11 minutes ago, sparks1093 said:

We're in the opposite boat, trying it out for the first time. I'm sure we'll drink enough to make it worthwhile but we could also not have it and still spend less (with the package we're likely to have specialty coffee every day plus bottled water and we're likely to try drinks we've never had before). It did help that we're paying less for the package than what we'd pay on CCL.

Just as an FYI, at each bar they will often give you 2 bottles of water, per card, even if you don’t ask for 2 🙂. You can also get water at the cafe promenade 🙂

Edited by vacationlover_mn

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Fun fact I learned on the LAST day of our last cruise.  At least on Symphony, you can get yummy boozy coffee!  So sad it took me this long to learn about the boozy coffee!  Normally, I don’t mix coffee and booze, but these were so yummy!

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39 minutes ago, vacationlover_mn said:

Just as an FYI, at each bar they will often give you 2 bottles of water, per card, even if you don’t ask for 2 🙂. You can also get water at the cafe promenade 🙂

Good to know, I was planning on grabbing bottles to stock up to take ashore with us and this will definitely help.

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