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On 8/18/2019 at 9:19 AM, puppycanducruise said:

Thanks for posting your comments.

Sometimes, it's not about "breaking even" but being able to try new drinks without being concerned about the cost.  (as you mentioned)

 

 

I see this comment a lot (trying new drinks), but still have trouble with it.  Why should I pay $800 to try new drinks and not be concerned about cost when I can pay $450 (discounted gift card) and try new drinks while still likely having money left over.

 

19 hours ago, Retired_to_Cruise said:

So, exactly what were your numbers that make you think you didn't get your money's worth. all you need is 5 to 6 drinks a day to break even. But you can use and of the other things that are included to calculate your numbers  

 

Why is it so hard to believe that someone didn't have 5-6 drinks everyday and/or lots of non-alcoholic drinks.  If everyone who purchased Cheers got their money's worth then Carnival would likely raise the price.  Six drinks per day doesn't seem like much until you have a day where you just don't feel like drinking (and weren't drinking 8-10 per day previously to make up for it).  I enjoy several drinks per day, but an average of 6 with an average calorie of 200 per drink doesn't leave much room for food.

 

19 hours ago, lachelli said:

I will be takingy my first carnival cruise on the breeze in a couple of months time. Can someone advise on how else, along with alcholic drinks to best utilise the drinks package

 

Can I get bottles of water / vitamin water to take back to my room and ashore with me and can these be picked up from any bar? 

 

Where can you get shakes on the Breeze? 

 

I enjoy cappuccino and lattes, are these available and What about premium juices? 

 

Hoping someone has a list of how to max out with out going all alcohol 

 

Thanks 

 

If you want to get maximum value for your money without "going all alcohol" then it is difficult for Cheers to be the right method.  There are other ways to save money though and have the prepaid feeling if you purchase discounted gift cards to apply to your account.

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I keep seeing references to buying discounted gift cards but only see references to AARP or some insurance company and I don't belong to either. Are there other avenues I am missing out on that I might qualify for? 

 

As for the Cheers package, I'm still on the fence for our 7-day cruise in February. I'll be going with my two sisters and both seem to think it's a good idea. Part of me thinks 5-6 drinks a day isn't that much over the course of the whole day and the other part wonders if I would spend $429 if I drank how I wanted (alcoholic and non-alcoholic).  

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I don't think you need to be a member for either AARP or Allstate.  Some grocery stores also sell gift cards with a discount on gas or other purchases rather than a discount on the card itself.  Certain credit cards will give cash back on purchases so this is another possible area of discount.

 

If your sisters plan to get and you are on the fence (and can afford it), I would probably get and enjoy - but make note of if it is worth it for you for the future.

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On 8/18/2019 at 2:01 PM, jsglow said:

I actually find that we have a better time on a cruise if we keep our consumption in check somewhat.

I have a better time and keep my consumption completely checked!  LOL😁🙂  

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11 hours ago, RandomUser123 said:

Everyone is different in the classic Cheers debate. Works for some, does not work for others. You just have to evaluate the totality of the group to determine if it is worth it. 

If you can find it on this board,  get the Cheers excel spreadsheet. 

You can also wen search for it.

Best way to evaluate  before hand, including  coffees, shakes, etc, wine and more pricey drinks. 

But a good  rule of thumb is also look back at last cruise s&s account, which will include tips and tax. Add 50-60%. ( last cruise  total x 1.5). If within 90% of Cheers price, go ahead with Cheers. If less than 70% of Cheers, for 7 day cruise, forget Cheers.  

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Posted (edited)
On 8/19/2019 at 1:37 PM, pacruise804 said:

If everyone who purchased Cheers got their money's worth then Carnival would likely raise the price. 

 

 

Absolutely Carnival is in business to make money.  But remember they also make considerable money on the guy who breaks even or goes a little over.  The actual cost of the drinks you buy on board including the labor factor for bartenders is actually less than 1/3 the price you pay, so it is not inconceivable that even the person who hits that 15 drink limit is closer to no worse than a break even proposition for Carnival.  The rest of us probably provided profit margin figures that were never hit when the paradigm was pay as you go only.

Edited by cruisegus

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On 8/19/2019 at 1:50 PM, mommyof3texans said:

I keep seeing references to buying discounted gift cards but only see references to AARP or some insurance company and I don't belong to either. Are there other avenues I am missing out on that I might qualify for? 

 

As for the Cheers package, I'm still on the fence for our 7-day cruise in February. I'll be going with my two sisters and both seem to think it's a good idea. Part of me thinks 5-6 drinks a day isn't that much over the course of the whole day and the other part wonders if I would spend $429 if I drank how I wanted (alcoholic and non-alcoholic).  

 

I was on the fence, as Wife and I are not big drinkers.  I did some time on the web and found drink menus (I don't remember where). I did some rough calculations and figured out that 5-6 drinks a day would break even or get close for us. We had. 7 day cruise and the total was $860 for Cheers!

 

We thought that we might get close to breaking even, and felt like prepaying would alleviate any worry about a big bill at the end of the cruise. Plus, without work tor responsibilities to keep us busy during the day, we were likely to enjoy a couple more drinks than we would otherwise. We also were concerned about the cost because it was our first cruise and we had no idea what our experience would be.


As I said, we're not big drinkers. Having said that, we discovered that the freedom of a cruise led us to enjoy more than our fair share of drinks, and the package more than paid for itself.  

 

Everyone is likely to have their own experience, but it was worth it for us, and we will definitely be purchasing it when we go on our second cruise next February

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25 minutes ago, joy4ron said:

 

I was on the fence, as Wife and I are not big drinkers.  I did some time on the web and found drink menus (I don't remember where). I did some rough calculations and figured out that 5-6 drinks a day would break even or get close for us. We had. 7 day cruise and the total was $860 for Cheers!

 

We thought that we might get close to breaking even, and felt like prepaying would alleviate any worry about a big bill at the end of the cruise. Plus, without work tor responsibilities to keep us busy during the day, we were likely to enjoy a couple more drinks than we would otherwise. We also were concerned about the cost because it was our first cruise and we had no idea what our experience would be.


As I said, we're not big drinkers. Having said that, we discovered that the freedom of a cruise led us to enjoy more than our fair share of drinks, and the package more than paid for itself.  

 

Everyone is likely to have their own experience, but it was worth it for us, and we will definitely be purchasing it when we go on our second cruise next February

We do Cheers for so many reasons. We can prepay it and not gulp at the end of our cruise on out of pockets. I did that once and the bill was so  high and I thought that it took from the experience as I was worried about it. As the family bill-payer, that is the type of thing I sweat. By prepaying, I don't sweat it and it adds to my vacation as it's all handled and paid in full in advance.

 

Additionally, to be able to get coffees, pelligrino, smoothies, soda if I wanted it. I drink alot of club soda with a splash of cranberry... that would add up as that is not free. It's hydrating and not alcoholic, but would add up by the drink. 

 

Been there and done that. To me, the lack of surprise adds value. To each their own. 

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The wife and I always do well with cheers. We will have a couple drinks with breakfast, then, with the exception of port days, pretty much enjoy ourselves all day. We never really get drunk because the drinks are spaced out and we drink plenty of water and eat all day.

 

We get up and workout at 6am so and it never really affects us. We are bummed that the beverage package on NCL does not include bottled water or coffee drinks.

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We are getting it for our upcoming 4 day cruise- but it's because we are cruising with lots of drinking buddies from our softball league. I can bet most will exceed or meet the 15 drink maximum - I've seen them drink quite a bit at the ballpark on a hot Florida day.  If we were cruising just the two of us, we wouldn't buy it. But I intend to enjoy specialty coffees and other options while I have it!

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1 hour ago, leight said:

We are getting it for our upcoming 4 day cruise- but it's because we are cruising with lots of drinking buddies from our softball league. I can bet most will exceed or meet the 15 drink maximum - I've seen them drink quite a bit at the ballpark on a hot Florida day.  If we were cruising just the two of us, we wouldn't buy it. But I intend to enjoy specialty coffees and other options while I have it!

 

It will be tough to exceed the limit since they cut you off after 15 drinks. The computer system lets the bartenders know when a guest has hit the 15 drink limit and will not let a bartender sell you another drink. 

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1 minute ago, PhillyFan33579 said:

 

It will be tough to exceed the limit since they cut you off after 15 drinks. The computer system lets the bartenders know when a guest has hit the 15 drink limit and will not let a bartender sell you another drink. 

So they can't pay out of pocket for more drinks? I'm sure they will be looking for excursions with rum punch and beer then, lol. This group can really put it away. I bet that's why I was told to still plan to bring my two bottles aboard. 

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7 minutes ago, leight said:

So they can't pay out of pocket for more drinks? I'm sure they will be looking for excursions with rum punch and beer then, lol. This group can really put it away. I bet that's why I was told to still plan to bring my two bottles aboard. 

By out of pocket, do you mean cash? Well if so, the answer is no. You can only pay for a drink with a S& S card. And with their computer system, don't you think Carnival can track your daily consumption? I think they can. 

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For the group that feel they might want more than the 15 alcoholic drinks, they need to have their bartender let them know when they get to about #13. Decide how much more drinking they are likely to do, and then pay cash for drinks until they are ready for their nightcap. They WILL let you pay cash for additional drinks if you have NOT reached #15, but will NOT sell you anymore after 15. One of the funky rules. Of course, they have the right to cut you off at less than 15 drinks, if you are are a loud, obnoxious drunk. 

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For DH and I, we go back & forth about it, but usually end up getting it. Our daily routine is a specialty coffee and 1-2 mimosas in the morning. For lunch, we may have a beer or sangria out on Serenity and always have 1-2 Aperol Spritz before dinner. Then 1-2 glasses of wine with dinner, and a specialty coffee for dessert. We drink 1 large sparking water at dinner, and ask for one to go when we leave to take to the cabin. If we go to a show, or the piano bar or Karaoke, we'll probably have maybe 1 more. 

 

The best way to NOT feel so crappy when drinking so much is to not mix too may different types of alcohol. I tend to say with wine & champagne-base drinks, since I'm drinking wine with dinner. I try to avoid a lot of the super-sweet mixers, even though boat drinks are delicious. We're planning to intersperse more bottled water between drinks to stay hydrated. Also, we drink on the ship, instead of in the ports. It's already paid for on the ship, so it doesn't matter how 'cheap' it is in the ports. However, we mainly sail from California, so we've been to the ports many, many times, and usually just do some walking in the area. 

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Posted (edited)
On 8/18/2019 at 1:21 PM, patrice1 said:

 They have a Non-alcoholic package..... I would love to have the same package on CCL next year when they're back in Europe.

Celebrity has a non alcoholic package in both a basic as well as premium format in case you ever decide to cruise on them.

 

 

On 8/18/2019 at 1:57 PM, JohnSpo said:

  Maybe in the future they will let you buy it each morning on the days you will actually use it.  I would get more use of a deal like that.😎

 

The only place they would sell a daily package would be in Fantasyland.

 

 

On 8/18/2019 at 3:53 PM, daisymay1960 said:

Could you tell me if the price shown on the drinks menus is before or after tax

Thank you

Tax is only included on embarkation day while still in US waters as well as while visiting US ports such as Key West, San Juan or Boston.

 

 

On 8/18/2019 at 6:10 PM, Nic6318 said:

 

Alcohol is a poison, the more you drink, the more it hurts the body and yet these cruise lines promote these drink packages because it's makes more money for them. They sell these bundled products to increase their revenue, even when the product they are selling can hurt their customers.   

Alcohol is a poison....just like gluttony, gambling, smoking, cursing and every other vice that the majority of cruisers engage in at least sometime during their lifetime.  Guess where the cruise lines make their most profit?  In the casinos and at the bars.  I assume you really like the casino patrons with their "Drinks On Us Cards", they're poisoning themselves two ways.

 

 

On 8/18/2019 at 6:51 PM, lachelli said:

I will be takingy my first carnival cruise on the breeze in a couple of months time. Can someone advise on how else, along with alcholic drinks to best utilise the drinks package

 

Can I get bottles of water / vitamin water to take back to my room and ashore with me and can these be picked up from any bar? 

 

Where can you get shakes on the Breeze? 

 

I enjoy cappuccino and lattes, are these available and What about premium juices? 

 

Hoping someone has a list of how to max out with out going all alcohol 

 

Thanks 

The Alchemy Bar is your best place for bang for your buck drinks.  You can get bottles of water or vitamin water at any bar to take ashore with you.  Just don't get it at the table as you're exiting the ship to go ashore since those purchases are not part of Cheers.  Just remember to keep yourself hydrated during the course of the day and enjoy a bottle of water or Perrier between each alcoholic drink and it will make the possibility of a hangover less of a possibility if you over indulge.

 

 

On 8/18/2019 at 11:16 PM, RumpunchGirl said:

DH and I have decided to give the Cheers package a try for our next cruise. It's only a 3 day and has only 1 port of call. I also purchased the packages with our 10% discounted AARP Carnival gift cards. It is very expensive but being such a short cruise, I figured it was the best time to try it.  I think we'll probably spent most of the port day on the ship.  I'm looking forward to trying the specialty coffees and milk shakes besides all the fancy drinks.  Time will tell if I like Cheers enough to try it again!

 

Enjoy Cheers and even if you decide to stay ashore during your port day for the entire duration, you'll still be back on board by 400 pm, so even if you had 1 drink every 90 minutes, you would still come out ahead.

 

 

On 8/19/2019 at 11:10 AM, ray98 said:

Everyone is different.  For us Cheers absolutely makes sense.  I never have a day where I don't drink at least 6 drinks.  A couple of beers mid-day by the pool, two with dinner and at least two watching the live bands in the evening.  Then there are the sea days where that total may double.  When we factor in the coffee we start off with daily and the bottles of water we order every few hours it all adds up.

 

.....but I am not one to analyze things down to the penny.  I am willing to pay for the experience I want, that is why we cruise or do all inclusive type vacations.  If squeezing every dime consumed my thoughts I would just do a motel 6 at the beach.

Glad to see that the posts in this thread are starting to tilt slightly towards those that are pro Cheers versus those that are against it as the majority of the initial posts were.

I have had a drink package on 13 straight cruises that were all 6-8 days in length each.  8 were via packages on NCL(4), Celebrity(3) & MSC(1).  The remaining 5 were with Cheers 4 times, including next week on the Horizon and on RCI once.  Some cruisers never go back to an inside cabin once they sailed with a balcony.  I feel the same way about the alcohol packages.   I will never have alligator arms again and think about having to pay close to 30 bucks for two drinks with tip at Alchemy when I know it's covered with Cheers.  2 specialty coffees, 4 Perriers, 3 Coke Zeroes, 3 Alchemy drinks and 1 beer.....breaking even with only 4 alcoholic drinks and this can easily be repeated for an 8 day cruise.

 

 

Edited by SNJCruisers

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7 hours ago, Wanna_Cruize said:

For the group that feel they might want more than the 15 alcoholic drinks, they need to have their bartender let them know when they get to about #13. Decide how much more drinking they are likely to do, and then pay cash for drinks until they are ready for their nightcap. They WILL let you pay cash for additional drinks if you have NOT reached #15, but will NOT sell you anymore after 15. One of the funky rules. Of course, they have the right to cut you off at less than 15 drinks, if you are are a loud, obnoxious drunk. 

 

You can’t do this any more because of software changes they have made to their system. It used to be a loophole or funky rule as you mentioned, but the system no longer allows this. Additionally, you can never pay cash at any bar on a Carnival ship. 

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4 hours ago, SNJCruisers said:

 

Glad to see that the posts in this thread are starting to tilt slightly towards those that are pro Cheers versus those that are against it as the majority of the initial posts were.

 

 

I believe this has never been an anti-Cheers vs pro-Cheers discussion.  It is a discussion on ways to determine when buying Cheers makes sense for different people and different circumstances.

 

The fact it wouldn't make sense for me does not indicate in any way that I am against the Cheers program.  The various posts may help cruisers new to Carnival decide if Cheers fits their needs.

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11 hours ago, leight said:

We are getting it for our upcoming 4 day cruise- but it's because we are cruising with lots of drinking buddies from our softball league. I can bet most will exceed or meet the 15 drink maximum - I've seen them drink quite a bit at the ballpark on a hot Florida day.  If we were cruising just the two of us, we wouldn't buy it. But I intend to enjoy specialty coffees and other options while I have it!

I hit the 15 one day ( yes I challenged myself Lol). We had a great bartender in the Atrium Bar and after my 13th she wiggled 2 fingers at me. After the 14th she held up 1 and laughed.

 

Told her to wait the 5 minutes then drop a shot in my drink. 

 

As mentioned BUY a couple during the day for "friends" and it doesn't count towards the 15.

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1 hour ago, PhillyFan33579 said:

 

You can’t do this any more because of software changes they have made to their system. It used to be a loophole or funky rule as you mentioned, but the system no longer allows this. Additionally, you can never pay cash at any bar on a Carnival ship. 

 

I was not aware of the software change, but might not have paid attention.  All all passengers now limited to 15 regardless of package or not?  Also, do receipts show # of drinks consumed for all affected by the 15 rule?

 

While you cannot pay cash for a drink at a bar, servers can receive cash for tips (just in case there was confusion).

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9 hours ago, Wanna_Cruize said:

For the group that feel they might want more than the 15 alcoholic drinks, they need to have their bartender let them know when they get to about #13. Decide how much more drinking they are likely to do, and then pay cash for drinks until they are ready for their nightcap. They WILL let you pay cash for additional drinks if you have NOT reached #15, but will NOT sell you anymore after 15. One of the funky rules. Of course, they have the right to cut you off at less than 15 drinks, if you are are a loud, obnoxious drunk. 

 

1 hour ago, PhillyFan33579 said:

 

You can’t do this any more because of software changes they have made to their system. It used to be a loophole or funky rule as you mentioned, but the system no longer allows this. Additionally, you can never pay cash at any bar on a Carnival ship. 

I seem to remember one poster on here say they saw a bartender get fired on the spot for doing this. Maybe some are still willing to do a wink and a nod if your "friend" buys it.

 

 

We did one cruise without cheers and have done the rest since with it. I haven't found it hard to make it work. Specialty coffee in the morning, sometime with alcohol, champagne at brunch/breakfast, 2 or 3 drinks with lunch when laying out on the deck, a cocktail or glass of wine at dinner, then 2 or 3 drinks at alchemy, or high end scotch at the steakhouse. That makes it worth it and doesn't get me wasted or anything. Of course, that's me, I may have a higher tolerance and/or libertine attitude than others and that's fine. I'm not sure I'd want to be on a cruise were everyone was doing cheers if you know what I mean.

This upcoming cruise I am actually planning on using it on more of the non-alcoholic drinks. I want to try the coconut water, shakes and coffees more.

 

 

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3 minutes ago, pacruise804 said:

 

I was not aware of the software change, but might not have paid attention.  All all passengers now limited to 15 regardless of package or not?  Also, do receipts show # of drinks consumed for all affected by the 15 rule?

 

While you cannot pay cash for a drink at a bar, servers can receive cash for tips (just in case there was confusion).

 

From my understanding there isn’t a limit if you don’t buy Cheers, but posters on this site have stated otherwise. 

 

The receipts show the number of drinks you have once you hit double digits. 

 

Technically there is another work around. You can buy a round of drinks for your friends. The bartender is supposed to verify who the drinks are for...if you are buying for 3 friends they are supposed to be with you at the bar. One of these drinks will always count against your Cheers total, but your friends can always give the other drinks you bought to you.  I just wouldn’t do that right in front of a bartender. 

 

Understand your point about using cash to tip bartenders. 

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We don't purchase Cheers because by the end of the cruise, we wouldn't come close to breaking even.  We'd probably do pretty good the first few days but after that.... not so much.  

 

We'd much prefer Carnival sell a 10 drink prepaid package for $80 or so (plus gratuity of course).  I imagine we'd consume 5-6 of these during the course of a week, and then if there's drinks left over at the end.... we forfeit.  Are you listening Carnival???

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I'm not sure why AARP always comes up as a benefit of Cheers. That discount can be applied to anything.

 

17 minutes ago, Tom.Terrific said:

We don't purchase Cheers because by the end of the cruise, we wouldn't come close to breaking even.  We'd probably do pretty good the first few days but after that.... not so much.  

 

We'd much prefer Carnival sell a 10 drink prepaid package for $80 or so (plus gratuity of course).  I imagine we'd consume 5-6 of these during the course of a week, and then if there's drinks left over at the end.... we forfeit.  Are you listening Carnival???

 

Carnival will never do that. Cheers is not about saving money for people on drinks. It is about making a crap ton of revenue on drinks that people wouldn't have otherwise purchased. The whole "unlimited alcohol" thing gets people to really open their wallets.

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34 minutes ago, Tom.Terrific said:

We'd much prefer Carnival sell a 10 drink prepaid package for $80 or so (plus gratuity of course).  I imagine we'd consume 5-6 of these during the course of a week, and then if there's drinks left over at the end.... we forfeit.  Are you listening Carnival???

 

That will never happen. Cheers is designed to benefit Carnival, not passengers. 

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