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On board credit question/drink question

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We are sailing on the Seaside 5/11.  We have a $400 credit.  I was going to purchase a drink package that is $203.00 each but I wanted to use that money.

If I wait and purchase it once we board, does the price go up?  Should I just purchase it now and use that $400 in the casino?

 

Also, me and hubby are not drinkers at all.  We are buying the non alcoholic package so we can have water, soda, coffee, etc.  Is it even worth it?  If you don't purchase a package are there free drinks around anywhere or you have to purchase everything?

 

Thanks!!

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You can also use the credit for your gratuities 

 

Soda is not free, regular coffee is free, but espresso/cappuccino is not

You can get a glass of water, but a bottle will cost you

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If you buy your drinks package onboard, you will pay an additional 15%, which adds up to over $60 in your case. Gratuities will be $175 for a 7 day cruise. $406 seems like a lot to spend on coffees, soda & water. Maybe worth paying as you go and use any balance in the casino/gratuities.

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It does seem like a lot of money for soda, water and coffee. I don't even drink soda.  So if I don't buy the package, I can use my on board credit every time I buy a drink?  I'm sure I won't spend $400 on drinks!! I think you are right, I should pay as I go.  Not sure why I didn't think of that! 

 

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Your on board credit is just like a bank account with money in it.  For everything you do on board it is charged to the same on board account.  When you purchase something on board (or use a specialty restaurant or shop) they add 15% gratuity to it and charge it to this acccount. The balance is then decreased by the amount of the purchase until there is no credit left.  At the end of the cruise if you have a negative balance (used all your credit and still have charges in your account), you have to pay if you have a positive balance (you still have some of your on board credit left ) we had it go back to the credit card we registered with MSC when on board.  If you don’t have a credit card registered I am not sure what the policy is. I am also not sure if this is the policy all the time as we were also told we would loose any onboard credit if we did not use it. Perhaps it matters the type of onboard credit you have (you put money on the account, or got an onboard credit from MSC, etc.).

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Ok good to know!!  We actually won this trip from Mohegan Sun and had to put $400 down to reserve it and I was told it comes back to us as on on board credit.  I am sure we won't have anything left at the end.  I do have a credit card I will put on file.  So that makes me feel better that I do not need to fork out $406 for a drink package so I can have water and coffee!! 

I already booked and paid for excursions and wifi.  The only thing left was drinks and gratuity.  Oh and money to gamble!

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I would just confirm with them onboard that with a registered credit card that the OBC will be refunded as it seems MSC is not always the best at consistency of answers. 

 

If you check when your get on board then at least you will know what they told you and you can plan accordingly or at least deal with it early in the cruise instead of trying to figure it out close to the end.

 

Have a GREAT time.

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3 hours ago, kevinrobedm said:

Your on board credit is just like a bank account with money in it.  For everything you do on board it is charged to the same on board account.  When you purchase something on board (or use a specialty restaurant or shop) they add 15% gratuity to it and charge it to this account. The balance is then decreased by the amount of the purchase until there is no credit left.  At the end of the cruise if you have a negative balance (used all your credit and still have charges in your account), you have to pay if you have a positive balance (you still have some of your on board credit left ) we had it go back to the credit card we registered with MSC when on board.  If you don’t have a credit card registered I am not sure what the policy is. I am also not sure if this is the policy all the time as we were also told we would loose any onboard credit if we did not use it. Perhaps it matters the type of onboard credit you have (you put money on the account, or got an onboard credit from MSC, etc.).

This is great explanation about how OBCs work on board. We’ve done three cruises with MSC and the only thing I’d change is the last part of your reply. If you don’t have a credit card registered against your account, nor have you deposited cash at guest services (or registered a check card directly from your bank), you will not be able to make any purchases on board the ship at all. All transactions are facilitated through your cruise card (or wristband) and must have one of three payment methods backing it up – even if you’re in the Yacht Club and you try to get a drink at the South Beach Bar on deck 7. The bartender will need to swipe your card, and for yacht club guests you’ll get a receipt back to sign with a balance due of $0.00 (not required inside the yacht club enclave – they just bring you your drink). Everyone needs to link one of those payment methods to their cruise account in order to make any purchasing transactions on board.

Now, let’s say you have purchased $1,000 of OBCs prior to your cruise using your AMEX card, but you only use $750 during your week onboard. The remaining $250 balance will be returned back to that same AMEX card you used to make the purchase 1-3 business days after your cruise ends. This has happened to me each time without a problem. I didn’t use a TA however, so I’m not sure what happens if you made the purchase through an agent. Through MSC these transactions are made from their HQ in Europe and are usually in my account first thing Monday morning following the end of the cruise.

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Thank you so much!!  I decided not to buy a package and just work off the OBC I have.  I will register a credit card when I get on board and if I go above the $400 at least it will get charged to that.

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Congratulations on your win!  

 

When we were on the Seaside last year, I had onboard credit on my account as well and I never ended up registering my credit card and didn’t have any trouble making purchases.  On the last night, I went to guest services and paid the balance in cash.  If I remember correctly, it was only about 50.00 or so - I am not sure how high they would have allowed the balance to go before requiring payment.

 

As far as free drinks go throughout the day, the buffets had self serve dispensers that had juices in the morning and lemonade, iced tea, and a couple of other rotating flavored water options (strawberry kiwi, mango, etc) during the rest of the day ( in addition to coffee and water).  

 

Enjoy your cruise!

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Thank you!!  All I really drink is coffee and water throughout the day so we decided to just wing it and use our credit if we want to buy something.  

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I have OBC from my TA. Does anyone know if there is a way to

use it for gratuity for my butler etc?

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51 minutes ago, Mikalen said:

I have OBC from my TA. Does anyone know if there is a way to

use it for gratuity for my butler etc?

 

You can go to the casino and register your cruisecard in one of the machines to transfer a balance to the machine.  You can then cash that out.

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