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Crusin Karen

New to NCL: few questions and advice

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We have not sailed NCL for almost exactly 15 years.  Now we sail almost exclusively with CCL and are Diamond and VERY SPOILED!  Had an unexpected medical complication right before the holidays and had to cancel our Journeys cruise on CCL Pride for January.  The medical condition is "ongoing."  We decided we really need to get AWAY for a week.  We live 20 minutes from NY/Manhattan port and know that NCL cruises out of there.  Long story short (LOL) best all around scenario at this point is Escape 3/24-3/31. .  Because of the difference in price, we would book a gty-balcony or OV.  So we would not be eligible for drink/specialty dining/excursion perks.  On CCL, you can carry on a bottle of wine/pp and a 12 pack of non alcoholic drinks/pp.  Is that also an option on NCL?  Is there any other advice anyone can give me? Anyone have any opinions of the Escape?   Thanks in advance.  

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You can bring on wine but must pay $15/bottle corkage fee. No other beverages are allowed to be brought on at embarkation.

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Yes no beverages but a bottle of wine. Escape is an amazing ship and a lot of fun.

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Thank you both.  Is there a limit to how many bottles? Size?   Also, I drink "screw top" wine.  So I can just take the bottle to my cabin and not have to pay a corkage fee?  

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6 minutes ago, Crusin Karen said:

Thank you both.  Is there a limit to how many bottles? Size?   Also, I drink "screw top" wine.  So I can just take the bottle to my cabin and not have to pay a corkage fee?  

No to the corkage fee question.

 

Here is the policy from NCL's web site:

 

Wine & Champagne Policy

Guests may bring bottles of wine and champagne on board. When bottles are brought on board and served or consumed in any restaurant, public room area or in their stateroom, a corkage fee will be charged according to bottle sizes noted below.

750 ml Bottle: $15.00 USD
1,500 ml Magnum: $30.00 USD

Wine or champagne sent directly to the ship by travel agents, friends, family, etc. or from another retail source, are subject to the same fees. Box wines are not allowed on board.

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If you book a GTY rate and not a sail away rate, you can still get the perks.  In some cases, there is not that much difference in price.

 

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1 minute ago, misguy said:

If you book a GTY rate and not a sail away rate, you can still get the perks.  In some cases, there is not that much difference in price.

 

Nuts, that is what I meant, that we would book a sailaway rate.  There is a $900 difference!  

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5 minutes ago, herdingdogmom said:

No to the corkage fee question.

 

Here is the policy from NCL's web site:

 

Wine & Champagne Policy

Guests may bring bottles of wine and champagne on board. When bottles are brought on board and served or consumed in any restaurant, public room area or in their stateroom, a corkage fee will be charged according to bottle sizes noted below.

750 ml Bottle: $15.00 USD
1,500 ml Magnum: $30.00 USD

Wine or champagne sent directly to the ship by travel agents, friends, family, etc. or from another retail source, are subject to the same fees. Box wines are not allowed on board.

You mean, if  I have a couple bottles of wine in my carry on  they are going to follow me to the cabin and unscrew it and charge me?  On CCL, I would pour myself a glass of wine in my cabin and take it to the dining room or other venue.  

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No, they are just going to charge you by the bottle you bring on board, it doesn't really have anything to do with corkage, it is just revenue enhancement for NCL.  🙂

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29 minutes ago, Crusin Karen said:

You mean, if  I have a couple bottles of wine in my carry on  they are going to follow me to the cabin and unscrew it and charge me?  On CCL, I would pour myself a glass of wine in my cabin and take it to the dining room or other venue.  

They will see the bottles in the scanner when you board and send you over to the fee table.  You pay the fee before you get to your cabin.  As the other poster said, it has nothing to do with corkage of the wine - just like all of NCL's 20% service fee charges.

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I know there is a big price difference, but if you can swing it, the Escape is probably one of the best ships to have an alcohol package. It has both a wine and a beer bar, along with many others. Sailing from New York, you are going to have a fair amount of sea days to enjoy the package.

 

We love the wine bar on the Escape. The people working their know their stuff and are great about making suggestions.

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39 minutes ago, herdingdogmom said:

They will see the bottles in the scanner when you board and send you over to the fee table.  You pay the fee before you get to your cabin.  As the other poster said, it has nothing to do with corkage of the wine - just like all of NCL's 20% service fee charges.

Okay, thanks! 

 

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$15 corkage fee on each bottle is the cost model for NCL.  If you book the sail away price, you should be still in a very good price model even with a few corkage fees.  Also search Viva Vino for the wine package that starts at 4 bottles.

 

Comparing to CCL which lets you carry one 2 bottles for no corkage the most you are looking at is $30.  Is your cabin not $30 more reasonable?  Just do the math to see.

 

Hope you find a value!

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4 hours ago, happy cruzer said:

$15 corkage fee on each bottle is the cost model for NCL.  If you book the sail away price, you should be still in a very good price model even with a few corkage fees.  Also search Viva Vino for the wine package that starts at 4 bottles.

 

Comparing to CCL which lets you carry one 2 bottles for no corkage the most you are looking at is $30.  Is your cabin not $30 more reasonable?  Just do the math to see.

 

Hope you find a value!

In fairness to NCL, the "free" Carnival wine is supposed to be consumed in your cabin . If you want to drink it in a dining location , you are supposed to be charged the same $15 per bottle . Supposed and supposed because you can pour yourself a big glass in your cabin and take the wine wherever you wish . But still . 

 

I looked for the Viva Vino wine package online and couldn't find it . I think you have to sign up on board for this . 

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Thanks for the carry on wine advice.  Truth be told I am not a wine "conniseur." (sp?)  I drink boxed Chablis mixed with lemon lime soda for a wine spritzer.  I know, HORRORS!  It was perfect on CCL because I could bring my bottles of wine and cans of Sprite and I was all set!  But times change....it is nice to be able to have something in the cabin for sitting on the balcony or getting ready for dinner without going to a bar, so $15 might be worth it!  I did warn you we were VERY SPOILED  being CCL Diamond and knowing all the ropes, but again....times change, so have to go with the flow!!!  Haven't booked the cruise yet, but kind of excited to experience something new!  

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10 hours ago, richstowe said:

In fairness to NCL, the "free" Carnival wine is supposed to be consumed in your cabin . If you want to drink it in a dining location , you are supposed to be charged the same $15 per bottle . Supposed and supposed because you can pour yourself a big glass in your cabin and take the wine wherever you wish . But still . 

 

I looked for the Viva Vino wine package online and couldn't find it . I think you have to sign up on board for this . 

CCL also has Cruising the Vinyards package, I think the choices for Viva Vino look a bit nicer but CCLs worked for us too.

 

I'm a newbie about this but I have seen Viva Vino listed at the bottom of Dailies for the first two days.  So yes buy it on board and buy enough since I think you only get to on the first two days :).  There is thread "Viva Vino" with good info.  Cheers!

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