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Iwantacruisenow

Wheeled cooler for carry on drinks?

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We have six of us traveling in three cabins in December.   Want to bring our own water, soda and wine which by the rules we have to carry on-board.   I'm thinking between the 6 of us I can see at lease a case of water, 30 pack of soda and six bottles of wine.   Logistically, that is a lot to carry on board.  Even divided by 6 that is a lot to carry around.   I thought about a large wheeled cooler.  Then again, how exactly does that go through security? Pretty heavy when put through the scanner.  Anyone have any experience doing this, taking large quantity on board?  Some in our party think it would be odd wheeling a cooler around on board.  But, some of us are on a budget.  Advice Please:)

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The cooler needs to fit in the scanner (most only handle a carry on size luggage) and you are the one who has to lift it.

 

Why so much soda and water?  You can bring it on in any port so why not just bring on what you need for your first sea day or two and then pick some up in the port you are visiting?  

 

Soda and water are not limited to embarkation day.

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"Coolers, only coolers approximately 12 x 12 x 12 inches in size (holds 6-12 cans of non-alcoholic beverages) are allowed. Guests carrying larger sizes will be directed to return them to their vehicle. If the guest is without a vehicle, the cooler will be destroyed in the same manner as other prohibited items.
Exception: if the cooler is larger and contains baby food/formula, kosher food/special diet food or medication — these must be hand-carried. Coolers cannot be accepted as checked baggage. Whenever there is doubt an embarkation supervisor or shipboard personnel can be contacted to make the decision." https://www.hollandamerica.com/en_US/faq.safety-and-security.prohibited-items.html

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You could get a collapsable inexpensive luggage 2 wheel cart or trolley. You can stack your water, soda and wine on and bungee so it doesn’t fall off. As mentioned you can also purchase water / soda at ports and carryon. JMHO, the tap water available in your cabin or the Lido is excellent.

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1 minute ago, whogo said:

"Coolers, only coolers approximately 12 x 12 x 12 inches in size (holds 6-12 cans of non-alcoholic beverages) are allowed. 

 

 

Well that answers that question.   Sounds like splitting up in several backpacks might be the best bet.   Don't really have 6 mobile Coolers. 

 

 

10 minutes ago, kazu said:

Why so much soda and water?  

 

Doing the math, 6 guests x 2 each day x 6 days = 72.   So each get one water and one soda each day.   Not really much when you come down to it.   I see your point on bringing it into port.   Going to Nassau, Turks, Half Moon and Dominican.  Don't remember grocery nearby on most of these places.   Have to do some research.  Thanks.

 

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If on a weight and dollar budget, don't bring on more that one or two refillable bottles of water per person. The water on board is just as pure, tastes great, is FREE, doesn't cause a plastic waste problem, and doesn't cause a weight issue.

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16 minutes ago, freestyling said:

You could get a collapsable inexpensive luggage 2 wheel cart or trolley. You can stack your water, soda and wine on and bungee so it doesn’t fall off. 

 

So stack the case of water, soda and wine and secure to a luggage 2 wheel cart.   When you go through security, take the items off individually.   Re-stack and move on.  Interesting, anyone have any experience doing this?

 

*******  Skip the water per below, bring more soda.  ************

Edited by Iwantacruisenow

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9 minutes ago, CruiserBruce said:

don't bring on more that one or two refillable bottles of water per person. The water on board is just as pure, tastes great, is FREE, doesn't cause a plastic waste problem, and doesn't cause a weight issue.

 

Good Point! I'll suggest that to the group.  

13 minutes ago, freestyling said:

 the tap water available in your cabin or the Lido is excellent.

Agree, the Lido water is excellent but cabin tap water, not so good in my opinion.  But perhaps because it is not cold.  Having the right refillable bottle may do the trick.

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2 minutes ago, Iwantacruisenow said:

Agree, the Lido water is excellent but cabin tap water, not so good in my opinion.  But perhaps because it is not cold. 

It's the same water! The cabin steward supplies ice. 

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2 hours ago, RuthC said:

It's the same water! The cabin steward supplies ice. 

Agree...the exact same water!! And the ice is made from the exact same water. And the food is prepared with the exact same water!

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No, it isn't weird at all to bring those beverages aboard.  Lots of people do it, including us.  We never gave it a second thought.  When we were hauling soda aboard, we bought two collapsible coolers, each of which carried 48 cans of soda and easily fit through the scanner.  They had collapsible handles similar to rolling luggage.  We bought them online, but I cannot recall the site or brand.  I should mention that the several times we did this, we drove to the port.  We would not have dreamed of trying to fly (not that it would have worked anyway) with those coolers.  We would have had one royal mess, not to mention the expense of extra baggage and maybe being over the weight limit (LOL).

 

As others have mentioned, you can bring a pack or two of soda aboard on embarkation day and buy what you want at a port; however, those sodas never taste the same as the ones we buy at home.  Also, you have to run around trying to find a store and hauling the soda back to the ship, which can be a real hassle.  True, you are on a budget, as were we, but have you investigated soda packages?  With a package, you don't have to worry about bringing any coolers aboard.  Just a thought.

 

Have a wonderful cruise with your friends/family.

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For our 14 day Alaska cruise, we packed a collapsible dolly in one of our bags. Then upon arrival in Seattle, we took an Uber to Total Wine and picked up a couple cases of wine we had pre-ordered online.  We had no issues getting our wine on the boat via the dolly. In fact, everyone was asking us if they'd be invited to the party! 🙂

 

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19 minutes ago, GirlGoneTexan said:

For our 14 day Alaska cruise, we packed a collapsible dolly in one of our bags. Then upon arrival in Seattle, we took an Uber to Total Wine and picked up a couple cases of wine we had pre-ordered online.  We had no issues getting our wine on the boat via the dolly. In fact, everyone was asking us if they'd be invited to the party! 🙂

 

 

In our case, one of our couples is driving and offered to bring whatever we wanted.   It does sound like a luggage dolly would be the best bet.   It appears several folks have had success but curious if anyone has had any trouble and what when wrong.  

 

Thinking something like this:

Folding Hand Truck

Edited by Iwantacruisenow

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We have had success with Princess and X by buying a case of soda (24 packs) , securing them with large quantities of duct tape then adding a normal luggage tag with our cabin number and handing  it to the porter with an extra buck or two tip. On all occasions the sodas arrived at our cabin with the rest of our luggage. All previous occasions were at Port Everglades but differing terminals.

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Looks like each cruise line has their own policies, which isn’t surprising. Unfortunately HAL’s policy states that all liquids must be carried - on ship by passenger and can be found at the Know before you go section within HAL’s website. 

Edited by freestyling

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By the time you buy extra dollies or luggage, you could probably just pay for the drinks on the ship.  Unless you're planning to do this a lot, I don't think it's worth that type of investment.  And I say this as someone who brings a small supply with me.  The advice to get enough to cover the first few days is good, especially if it's easy enough to find some in port to replenish.  You may find that you don't drink it all anyway, since you're on a different routine.

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On 9/20/2019 at 10:08 AM, clianmel said:

We have had success with Princess and X by buying a case of soda (24 packs) , securing them with large quantities of duct tape then adding a normal luggage tag with our cabin number and handing  it to the porter with an extra buck or two tip.

 

The problem with this is that the people doing a lot of the lifting is the crew and your cabin steward.  They receive nothing for their work.

 

Those cases add a lot of work for the crew (not to mention risk to other peoples’ suitcases if they rupture or break) which I believe is a good part of the reason HAL changed their policy to carry on.

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Even if they did allow big coolers, it sounds like a major hassle to haul quantities of heavy stuff like that through security and up to the ship.

 

(The two bottles per cabin of wine permitted are worth it because of the cost to buy on board is triple, so you could easily save $100+ - and wine easily fits into shoe pockets in a small roll-aboard used for jewelry, meds, and other stuff people shouldn’t check.)

 

To watch pennies, wouldn’t it be easier for each person in your group to bring a small amount of preferred soft drinks in his/her hand luggage or, for a short cruise, just tough it out and drink the free iced tea, lemonade, coffee, and very drinkable HAL tap water for refilling a water bottle? (Healthier anyway.) Then, if someone really needs soft drinks, pick up more of what you want in port as Kazu suggested. Any crew member could tell you the nearest likely grocery location.

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It seems to me that this situation is being overcomplicated by treating these beverages as a single entity. It's quite manageable  for an individual couple to bring its two bottles of wine, some water and some soda, and passengers do this all the time without any difficulty. 

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2 hours ago, Caribbean Chris said:

Any crew member could tell you the nearest likely grocery location.

And often there are shops in the port terminals or mini-malls close by.

Edited by catl331

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@Iwantacruisenow

 

1) What someone else suggested to me in a different topic worked great on my recent cruise. 

 

Realize this:    You don't need to carry on board everything all at once.

I did not know this.  I thought embarkation day was like a plane where once you board you have to stay on board.

 

I had a rental car.    Left drinks in the trunk.  

Checked in at 11:30am.  I was able to immediately access my room. (Awesome!) 

Emptied my rollerboard onto the bed.

Left the ship.  Filled rollerboard with drinks in the trunk.  Returned the rental car.  

Hertz shuttle dropped me right in front of the check-in terminal door. 

Very easy.  Took at most 30 - 40 minutes.

 

Before I dropped off my rental car I could have made a second trip to the Safeway if needed.  Trip #1 was several days earlier upon arrival.    It was so warm and dry where I stayed in Alaska that on day 2 I became dehydrated.   I ended out drinking lots more of water than I calculated I'd need pre-cruise.  

 

I thought about one of those dollies, but I didn't want to deal with it before and after the cruise.

 

2) Waiting to buy drinks in port

I am very glad I didn't wait to buy sodas, etc. in port.  I had no spare minutes on port days.  I don't recall seeing any place that sold drinks to bring back on board, though YES I'm sure it was there somewhere.   I just didn't trip over it or I would have probably bought one or cans of something.

 

3) Water on the ship

I thought the water on the ship is fine.  However, I'm still glad I brought on board a bunch of those half-height water bottles because on port days, putting them in my day pack helped me remember to drink.   I would re-use them on board.

 

4) A Yeti type insulated water container

I removed my Yeti that I always bring on work trips to create suitcase room.  Mistake.  I should have pulled out something else.  I would have used it a lot before, during, after the cruise.   It's so much nicer than drinking warm water.

 

5) Ice dead zone

What I experienced was from 2pm - 5pm, I could not get ice. 

ex:  at 3pm on sea day I ordered 2 iced teas + side lemon from room service  (fyi - the Westerdam's room service iced tea was pretty good)   I'd requested for a bucket of ice with the iced tea.

Room service would say, " your room attendant will bring the ice"

But that would not happen since at 2:00pm the room attendant was off duty. 

 

6) Calculating liquids needs

When planning family vacations or work trips, I also use math (a Google Sheet) to calculate water and drinks to buy based on per person per day estimates.  Then, just trust the math.  It makes it simple and prevents emotion errors like, "oh we won't need that much water / soda / fruit juice."  when you see the final number.

 

7) Consider adding variety instead of more of the same thing

ex:  Instead of 12 mini diet cokes, I brought on board 6 + a 6 of lemon-lime sparkling water + cherry juice which was excellent  (I'm trying to drink less Diet Coke, breakfast of champions...)   

 

Look at the non-alcoholic drink menus and see if there's anything you can't get that you're fond of.   I totally enjoyed all the drinks I brought on board except forthe bottle of Chardonnay - I didn't drink it till in Vancouver after the cruise.

 

It's more about convenience and variety than saving $.    You'll have what you want when you want it.   The minutes pass in a flash.

 

 

 

 

Edited by SempreMare

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The last thing I am going to do is drag beverages on board when I am on vacation. The most I will bring is one bottle of wine per person.  That's it. I am on vacation , thank you. 

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For people who bring on loads of beverages, do they also bring their own to hotels or restaurants ? 

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After reading this and another posting about how the costs are going up on cruise ships and people complaining about higher cruise costs, is the desire to take on as much water, soda, and wine just cheating the ship of income.  If the ship can't sell these items, then they will have to increase prices.  What's next, bringing on your own food to eat in the cabin.  

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