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Why NCL Premium PLUS Adult Drink Package?


Sthrngary
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On 10/3/2022 at 11:42 AM, Sthrngary said:

This comment might seem funny coming from me.  For those of you that don't know, I am the author of this topic.  We all my topics, my goal is always to allow all of us to have "Realistic Expectations".  This goal was set because on a past cruise, my expectations were, lets say kindly, not realistic.  It was completely my fault because I created a vision in my head that was more of a day dream then reality.  Lesson learned.

 

On to my main point.  If you are choosing the Premium Plus Beverage Package for a specific brand or type of wine or spirits, be careful.  The ship might run out, it might have a supply chain issue.  Then you get onboard, ask for it and it is not on your cruise.  Happens all the time.  

 

On the opposite end of the spectrum, look at the offerings and if you see something you want, ask?  I know this because a couple of years ago, I was at a bar, had the Premium Plus Program and asked for  a great tequila.  The Bartender asked to see my card and then brought out a tall bottle I had never seen before.  It was, Don Julio 1942.  It was not on the list but was no charge with this program. If I never would have asked the question, I would have never had the opportunity.  

 

Four cruises later, I asked a bar tender for the Don Julio 1942 and he told me he did not have any and did not think it was on the ship.  Some would have been disappointed.  I used this as a game.  Fine a bar that had that tequila.  I was on the Joy at the time.  With no luck, I went to Starbucks for a coffee at the observation deck.  Next to Starbucks is a full bar.  In the back row of all the bottles was the distinctive bottle of 1942.  Of all places to find this.  The bartender there said, another full bottle was in the "A" list bar between Cagney's and the French Restaurant. 

 

I would have been fine not having this drink.  But making it a quest for the Grail was fun also.  Cruise are what we make of them.  They never go completely to plan.  We get disappointments and surprises.  Most of this is out of our control.  Go with the flow or in my case shot of Tequila.  

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment. 

So fun—although I like a sweeter extra anejo rather than 1942 (like Dos Artes or Cuervo Reserva de la Familia ), it might be fun to see what else there is. And I can stick with champagne if nothing strikes me. I’m actually getting the package to not have to pay individually for bottled water and sparkling water, and to have a bottle at dinner and not wait for glasses, so if I find a premium tequila or bourbon, that’s just gravy…

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On 10/5/2022 at 2:43 PM, Sthrngary said:

@grobma Now that is an interesting question.  As you know, my answers are never short.  The short answer is most bartenders have no clue.  The ones that do know most of the time, KEY WORDS most of the time is if your ship has a Wine Specific Bar or a Whiskey Specific Bar. 

 

On my last cruise on the Joy as I said, I was not in the Haven.  Yet, on day one, I walked in and said hello to the Haven Concierge.  He welcomed me back.  I told him point blank, I was not in the Haven but I would love to have one drink with a friend who was in the Haven at the Haven Bar.  He said, "Mr. Gary, you can come in anytime you want."  My response was, "I did not pay for it and therefore I do not deserve it.  Just this one drink if it is ok."

 

While at the bar, the bartenders also said hello.  They asked me if I wanted 1942 tequila.  I said yes.  Then I asked them if there was any other bottles and which bars they were at.  He said, "None that he knew of however, there was on bottle in storage."  He offered to have that bottle delivered to the the "A" List Bar that evening.  Sure enough, that night at 5, I went to the bar and said, "Hello, my name is Gary." Before I could finish, the bartender smiled and pulled out an unopened bottle of my favorite tequila.  The next morning I went to the Observation deck for a Starbucks coffee and at the bar was yet another bottle of my tequila which looked lonely.  That was by accident finding it.  

 

The bottle line is rare things are indeed a scavenger hunt.  Remember, many of the things I drink are not even on the approved list for the Premium Plus Package.  Some were a surcharge but that was only once for Louis.  I had to try that.  That was a long way to say, it is an inexact science. Sorry.

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment. 

What strikes me most about the story is how well you were treated.  When staff are good to you, it changes the whole dynamic of the experience.  I’ve not done NCL but the Celebrity staff could not do enough for us and it elevated the experience. I was worried that NCL would not provide the same warm and generous vibe so it’s nice to hear this story. 

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3 minutes ago, renji said:

What strikes me most about the story is how well you were treated.  When staff are good to you, it changes the whole dynamic of the experience.  I’ve not done NCL but the Celebrity staff could not do enough for us and it elevated the experience. I was worried that NCL would not provide the same warm and generous vibe so it’s nice to hear this story. 

Thank you and yes they did treat me well.  You have to know the whole story.  First, in late November 2021, my family and I sailed on the NCL Joy in one of the two Owners Suites.  As you read this stream which I originally wrote four years ago and updated at the beginning of 2022, people know me and my writings.  They know I do both a Butler Letter and a Haven Desk Letter.  The butler letter has his tip included upfront.  I really don't want to debate this, I am only stating this as a matter of fact.  the Haven Desk Letter is similar and has their full tip included as well.  

 

During the week, I would make a point of smiling and making jokes so folks would laugh.  In a day or so, everyone knew my name and anything we wanted, was there for the asking.  They started to call me Mr. Haven which made my wife very embarrassed.  She had no clue why folks would stop me all the time and ask me questions about the Haven.  My wife hates the way I write, LOL.  

 

When I came back on the Joy, three months later, it was the same staff.  They thought initially I was back in the Haven.  That should put the extra personalized service I got into a different perspective.  They are great all the time but they kind of knew me from the past.  Please take that under consideration. 

 

Just thought it was important to tell the whole story. By the way, after that first drink, I never went in the Haven area again.  As I said in my original post, I did not pay the premium and think those that did need full focus by the staff. 

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment. 

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38 minutes ago, gmbhardy said:

We were on a B2B in a Joy Haven Suite. We pre purchased the first week to see if it was worth it. We liked it so much that we purchased the second week with OBC. The cost is simply added to your onboard account like any other purchase.

Just to make sure we’re talking the same thing. You bought on board the bundled upgrade that provides the p+ and unlimited internet and extra dining and shore credits using your OBC, correct? I was told by a CC on the phone that wouldn’t be a problem and I can just go to the guest services desk to request it added to my account, but it seemed to be a buy before you board kinda offer. Thanks for the clarity 

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43 minutes ago, gmbhardy said:

We were on a B2B in a Joy Haven Suite. We pre purchased the first week to see if it was worth it. We liked it so much that we purchased the second week with OBC. The cost is simply added to your onboard account like any other purchase.

 

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23 minutes ago, renji said:

So fun—although I like a sweeter extra anejo rather than 1942 (like Dos Artes or Cuervo Reserva de la Familia ), it might be fun to see what else there is. And I can stick with champagne if nothing strikes me. I’m actually getting the package to not have to pay individually for bottled water and sparkling water, and to have a bottle at dinner and not wait for glasses, so if I find a premium tequila or bourbon, that’s just gravy…

You got the right attitude.  I just want a portfolio with no extra's at the end of the cruise.  So I pay for everything up front. 

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment. 

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3 minutes ago, Rmeister23 said:

ust to make sure we’re talking the same thing. You bought on board the bundled upgrade that provides the p+ and unlimited internet and extra dining and shore credits using your OBC, correct? I was told by a CC on the phone that wouldn’t be a problem and I can just go to the guest services desk to request it added to my account, but it seemed to be a buy before you board kinda offer. Thanks for the clarity 

If you think you want the package, buy it now.  Why would you wait to buy it on board.  If you don't want the package, just cancel it before you sail.  I give the same advice for the Vibe Beach Club and Excursions.  Why wait when you can always cancel it.  One less thing to think about.

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment. 

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13 minutes ago, Rmeister23 said:

Just to make sure we’re talking the same thing. You bought on board the bundled upgrade that provides the p+ and unlimited internet and extra dining and shore credits using your OBC, correct? I was told by a CC on the phone that wouldn’t be a problem and I can just go to the guest services desk to request it added to my account, but it seemed to be a buy before you board kinda offer. Thanks for the clarity 

I believe I misunderstood the question. I was referring to specifically upgrading the beverage package from premium to premium plus  (not the bundle) with OBC on the ship. 

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13 minutes ago, Sthrngary said:

If you think you want the package, buy it now.  Why would you wait to buy it on board.  If you don't want the package, just cancel it before you sail.  I give the same advice for the Vibe Beach Club and Excursions.  Why wait when you can always cancel it.  One less thing to think about.

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment. 

I definitely want the package, but only

if I can use the OBC I have from my TA. I don’t want to put it on my credit card… I can’t charge to room in advance so hoping I can do so once onboard

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1 hour ago, Rmeister23 said:

I definitely want the package, but only

if I can use the OBC I have from my TA. I don’t want to put it on my credit card… I can’t charge to room in advance so hoping I can do so once onboard

You can absolutely upgrade once on board and use your OBC. This is how I did it the first time when I had a lot of OBC I had to use. It is very easy to do. In my case there was a table set up in the atrium offering the upgrade and it was charged to my room account and the OBC was used. I am sure there are other ways to do it, concierge, guest services etc.

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  • 2 weeks later...
6 hours ago, kdawg954 said:

Getting sad that I am not seeing Patron Anejo on the list no more.  My go to on Norwegian with this package.  But having the Macallan Enigma and Terra as options make up for it . . . it was always just Quest.

Don't lose hope the list is not accurate. 

 

Cruise well and drink responsively. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

There was one mention of it in this thread back in February but because a) things change, b) I want to make sure, and c) I just love this thread so appreciate the chance to bump it, I wanted to ask again:

 

Is the Biosteel sport drink shown on bar menus included in the Premium Plus plan? The plan literature says "energy drink" are included, but that usually refers to Red Bull. Thanks!

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16 hours ago, grobma said:

There was one mention of it in this thread back in February but because a) things change, b) I want to make sure, and c) I just love this thread so appreciate the chance to bump it, I wanted to ask again:

 

Is the Biosteel sport drink shown on bar menus included in the Premium Plus plan? The plan literature says "energy drink" are included, but that usually refers to Red Bull. Thanks!

The Biosteel was included for us on the Prima two weeks ago.  👍

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17 hours ago, grobma said:

There was one mention of it in this thread back in February but because a) things change, b) I want to make sure, and c) I just love this thread so appreciate the chance to bump it, I wanted to ask again:

 

Is the Biosteel sport drink shown on bar menus included in the Premium Plus plan? The plan literature says "energy drink" are included, but that usually refers to Red Bull. Thanks!

Yes.

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment.

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On 10/3/2022 at 3:09 PM, Sthrngary said:

I came back from my last cruise and bought a large bottle.  I live in Alabama and it was no where to be found.  So I ordered it from a online store.  I shopped and finally got it.  $350.00 for this bottle.  I have had it for 5 months and it is 3/4 filled.  It is for special occasions and no one touches it but me in my family.  Really smooth stuff. BTW, it was $45.00 a shot on the cruise.  LOL.

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment. 

I am in southern Alabama and ABC stores now carry 1942 ($199).  Check out the phone app "AL BOSS" by ABC and you can search for nearest store that carries it

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10 hours ago, notbroken said:

I am in southern Alabama and ABC stores now carry 1942 ($199).  Check out the phone app "AL BOSS" by ABC and you can search for nearest store that carries it

Wow, I had no idea.  Thank you for letting me know.  I was only drinking my bottle on special occasions like, I don't know, Thanksgiving, LOL.  It is nice to know it might be available near me.  I live in Birmingham however, the ABC stores usually have the same inventory statewide.  Thank you again.

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment.

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On 11/11/2022 at 2:15 AM, kdawg954 said:

Getting sad that I am not seeing Patron Anejo on the list no more.  My go to on Norwegian with this package.  But having the Macallan Enigma and Terra as options make up for it . . . it was always just Quest.

Were the enigma and terra part of tasting or available with the plus package ? because those are some very expensive scotch 🙂 

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26 minutes ago, akny said:

Were the enigma and terra part of tasting or available with the plus package ? because those are some very expensive scotch 🙂 

The list given and published is not a complete or accurate list.  It never has been.  This package is one that my wife and I always get.  Sometimes, our favorite's brands are no in inventory and we try new things we never thought of trying.  

 

I always love to push the envelope a bit.  This is how I found Tequila 1942.  I asked for a really good tequila and the bar tender checked my card, saw the program I was on and out came the good stuff with a smile. 

 

All I am saying is, ask and you shall receive.  

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment. 

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4 minutes ago, Sthrngary said:

All I am saying is, ask and you shall receive.  

 

As far as I'm concerned this is the best advice of all time. Years ago, we booked on the Norwegian Sea. I booked a room as close to the sun deck as possible. It had a porthole that was partially obstructed by a lifeboat. What I didn't realize is because the ship only had one suite, the room we booked was also served by the concierge. She was fantastic! The best concierge we have ever had, not to say some haven't come awfully close. During her introduction she made a point to emphasize she can't do something we want unless we ask! So we did ask, and she made our trip one I'll never forget and always appreciate.
As SthrnGary has written several times, ask for what you want. If the crew can't do or find exactly what you want trust that they will work to find a comparable solution or as in many cases a solution you actually prefer but didn't know existed. Exploring new things, making new friends and expanding your circle of experiences; sounds like a good time to me!

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3 hours ago, akny said:

Were the enigma and terra part of tasting or available with the plus package ? because those are some very expensive scotch 🙂 

Just got off of Escape.  Enigma and Terra were part of the Macallan tasting “experience” but were not available at any of the bars.  Quest was available.  

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4 hours ago, Sthrngary said:

The list given and published is not a complete or accurate list.  It never has been.  This package is one that my wife and I always get.  Sometimes, our favorite's brands are no in inventory and we try new things we never thought of trying.  

 

I always love to push the envelope a bit.  This is how I found Tequila 1942.  I asked for a really good tequila and the bar tender checked my card, saw the program I was on and out came the good stuff with a smile. 

 

All I am saying is, ask and you shall receive.  

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment. 

Please report back on the availability of premium booze on the Breakaway. My son is on the ship right now and tells me that getting some of the inclusions is like pulling teeth. He says that some of the bartenders have told him that there’s a daily quota for some of the stuff and when it’s gone, it’s gone. I hope you have a better experience, but please let us know. Thanks.

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1 hour ago, gmbhardy said:

Please report back on the availability of premium booze on the Breakaway. My son is on the ship right now and tells me that getting some of the inclusions is like pulling teeth. He says that some of the bartenders have told him that there’s a daily quota for some of the stuff and when it’s gone, it’s gone. I hope you have a better experience, but please let us know. Thanks.

I will do my best.  That does not seems like the rules I have experience in the past.  I truly hope that is not the case or my next OP-ED on the Premium Plus Drink Package will not be as kind.

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment.

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4 hours ago, Sthrngary said:

I will do my best.  That does not seems like the rules I have experience in the past.  I truly hope that is not the case or my next OP-ED on the Premium Plus Drink Package will not be as kind.

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment.

You're not kidding. I feel like it's disingenuous of NCL to sell this plus package, but then not stock the plus items in a reasonable quantity. I get having a few things run out due to supply chain, but to have no other options available like some people have said makes it feel more like theft. We'll sell you a package you have no way of making use of kind of deal. 

 

You shouldn't have to spend  your entire trip on a scavenger hunt looking for the items included with the package. If they can't stock things reasonably they should discontinue the package until such time as they can. 

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