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Why NCL Premium PLUS Adult Drink Package?


Sthrngary
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1 hour ago, BenDover said:

I will be getting the Plus package on my January cruise. Worth it to me because of the wine. But I read elsewhere that you can NOT get an unopened bottle. Bottles must be opened when served. Can someone verify one way or the other.

I will be primarily drinking by the glass because the selection is better. 

There are selected bottles you can order and yes, the must be opened.  They cork them and you can take them back to your stateroom.  The list is online n NCL under the plan. Hope that helps.

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1 hour ago, Sthrngary said:

There are selected bottles you can order and yes, the must be opened.  They cork them and you can take them back to your stateroom.  The list is online n NCL under the plan. Hope that helps.

Ok - That was my understanding. I have also seen the lists with those available by bottle and those available by the glass. Since I am traveling solo and the by-the-glass selections are better I will probably won’t be getting bottles.

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1 minute ago, BenDover said:

Ok - That was my understanding. I have also seen the lists with those available by bottle and those available by the glass. Since I am traveling solo and the by-the-glass selections are better I will probably won’t be getting bottles.

Makes complete sense to me. You are doing the right thing just knowing the rules to the game. Enjoy your cruise.

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On 8/28/2021 at 12:15 PM, Rmeister23 said:

i know the haven lounge has Louis XIII and this will make or break the upgrade for me. Any idea on this? haha

Not included, but I accidentally got it for free on the Pearl.

 

Fleet Bev Manager was on board, she said I could order a few 'drops' as a taster for free. 

 

Waitress was totally confused by this concept later when I tried and just gave me one for free.

 

Bev manager was ticked when I told her so I fibbed and said I ordered another and paid. (didn't want to get anyone fired)

Edited by Nicky Mouse
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On board Epic now. Third time with Premium plus. And for sure My last. 

 

It is horrible, these days. The yellow label is ONLY available while dining in Le Bistro. 

 

And all other bottles we have ordered we have been fully charged for. Have spent many hours in lines att guest relations. Only to do the same again. And again.

 

And the bottled water and such is very limited to a couple of bars.

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1 hour ago, roxette said:

On board Epic now. Third time with Premium plus. And for sure My last. 

 

It is horrible, these days. The yellow label is ONLY available while dining in Le Bistro. 

 

And all other bottles we have ordered we have been fully charged for. Have spent many hours in lines att guest relations. Only to do the same again. And again.

 

And the bottled water and such is very limited to a couple of bars.

Interesting.  I have the PP package for my December sailing on the Bliss.  Is anyone else having these issues?  I suppose it's not too late to switch back to "basic" premium but want to make sure it's a systemic issue as opposed to one limited to certain staff not working the system correctly, first sail "cobwebs," or the Epic.  

 

One thing I did notice in others' comments is that Veuve wasn't on the included bottle list but Moet was.  That's a minor bummer but still worthwhile.  And I guess I always assumed that all drinks wouldn't be available at all bars because that's usually the case even with non-premium asks:  Maybe they won't have ingredients to make a Mojito for you in the wine bar, for instance.  I'm OK with that as long as I know where to go for whatever strikes my fancy at that moment.  Can you elaborate further on that?  Where can I get my Pellegrino? 🙂

 

Edited by phillygwm
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2 hours ago, roxette said:

On board Epic now. Third time with Premium plus. And for sure My last. 

 

It is horrible, these days. The yellow label is ONLY available while dining in Le Bistro. 

 

And all other bottles we have ordered we have been fully charged for. Have spent many hours in lines att guest relations. Only to do the same again. And again.

 

And the bottled water and such is very limited to a couple of bars.

We just upgraded to Premium Plus for our sailing on Jade this Sunday. I hope it will not be as bad as you describe. However, we have a history with NCL charging us for drinks which were included in our package. One of the bartenders explained to us how this can happen. Each time you order a drink or bottle of wine etc, they have to put it through the register as normal then press one button to cancel the charge due to package included. So it needs to be done manually and swiping your card won't make a difference. If they are in rush and forget to press that one button, your account gets charged. I wonder if that's what happened with the bottles you ordered. 

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33 minutes ago, JoLoca2208 said:

 Each time you order a drink or bottle of wine etc, they have to put it through the register as normal then press one button to cancel the charge due to package included. So it needs to be done manually and swiping your card won't make a difference. If they are in rush and forget to press that one button, your account gets charged. I wonder if that's what happened with the bottles you ordered. 

So, basically, a training issue.  I suppose that's understandable for the first cruises with new staff (or at least staff which haven't worked a cruise in ~18 months) but it still sucks if you're spending time at Guest Services straightening it out.  

Edited by phillygwm
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4 hours ago, roxette said:

On board Epic now. Third time with Premium plus. And for sure My last. 

 

It is horrible, these days. The yellow label is ONLY available while dining in Le Bistro. 

 

And all other bottles we have ordered we have been fully charged for. Have spent many hours in lines att guest relations. Only to do the same again. And again.

 

And the bottled water and such is very limited to a couple of bars.

Isn't that the first cruise after relaunch? Might be that they still haven't had time to stock everything. Hopefully it will improve.

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6 hours ago, roxette said:

On board Epic now. Third time with Premium plus. And for sure My last. 

 

It is horrible, these days. The yellow label is ONLY available while dining in Le Bistro. 

 

And all other bottles we have ordered we have been fully charged for. Have spent many hours in lines att guest relations. Only to do the same again. And again.

 

And the bottled water and such is very limited to a couple of bars.

That's troubling to hear. I'm used to not every bar having bottled water, but the full charge for bottles is messed up.

 

Is it an issue with the crew being all newbies?

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I hate to say this but some of the above post reminded me of our last situation.  Please take my comments as my own opinion of the service I received.  We always use the Premium Plus Beverage package.  We print the document on the NCL website pre-cruise to make sure we know the "Selected Bottles" of wine we can have at meals.  We are also always staying in the Haven on larger ships with the Haven Bar and Restaurant. 

 

In the Haven, we never had an issue.  The bar was extremely well stocked on wine by the glass.  We knew the deal on the selected wines.  However, anytime we would outside the Haven, it seemed the crew was completely confused at the benefits of the "Plus" program.  This includes bars and specialty restaurants.  It always took me to explain how the program worked. Not the way it should have been but I got really good at explaining. 

 

The Premium Plus Program is not for everyone.  It is a upsell from NCL and not worth the money.  I admit to all that.  We still do it just because of the bottled water, specialty coffee's and selected bottles of wine.  I also like messing around on premium spirit brands during the cruise.  Remember, not a bargain or super value.  Just what we do.

 

Cruise well everyone. 

 

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15 minutes ago, Sthrngary said:

However, anytime we would outside the Haven, it seemed the crew was completely confused at the benefits of the "Plus" program.  This includes bars and specialty restaurants.

On the 8/21 sailing of the Encore this was the complete opposite. Once they saw I had the P+ (I wear my card on a lanyard around my neck) they made sure to let me know what was included. They were very proactive

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12 minutes ago, zerooveride said:

On the 8/21 sailing of the Encore this was the complete opposite. Once they saw I had the P+ (I wear my card on a lanyard around my neck) they made sure to let me know what was included. They were very proactive

This was my experience also the last two cruises on the Pearl.

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36 minutes ago, Sthrngary said:

We print the document on the NCL website pre-cruise to make sure we know the "Selected Bottles" of wine we can have at meals. 

I like this suggestion, just in case there are document changes, you have what it was when you signed up.

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3 minutes ago, Nicky Mouse said:

I like this suggestion, just in case there are document changes, you have what it was when you signed up.

ALWAYS print your pre-booked items and Amenities Confirmation (can have NCL chat e-mail it to you).

 

I had an issue with a credit I was supposed to get and if I didn't have this paperwork, I would have been out $150. Luckily I printed it and brought it with me.

 

Remember, technology is great, but sometimes things don't work and you may not be able to pull something up that you may need. 

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1 hour ago, Sthrngary said:

I hate to say this but some of the above post reminded me of our last situation.  Please take my comments as my own opinion of the service I received.  We always use the Premium Plus Beverage package.  We print the document on the NCL website pre-cruise to make sure we know the "Selected Bottles" of wine we can have at meals.  We are also always staying in the Haven on larger ships with the Haven Bar and Restaurant. 

...

 

The Premium Plus Program is not for everyone.  It is a upsell from NCL and not worth the money.  I admit to all that.  We still do it just because of the bottled water, specialty coffee's and selected bottles of wine.  I also like messing around on premium spirit brands during the cruise.  Remember, not a bargain or super value.  Just what we do.

 

 

I really appreciate reading your input, especially around Haven accommodations.  Just a couple quick questions/comments:

  • The PP brochure does state that selections are subject to change.  When you go into a restaurant (be it Haven, MDR, or Specialty) do they give you a wine list with the PP selections indicated?  I noticed on the menus someone posted, only Ocean Blue listed that on the menu.
  • Whether PP is worth the money is in the eye of the beholder.  It's $35/day per person.  The bottle of wine alone is probably worth that.  Bottled waters and coffees would put it over the top IF people avail themselves of that.  Some of my friends drink beer and soda.  Obviously, a different calculus for them.

 

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1 hour ago, zerooveride said:

On the 8/21 sailing of the Encore this was the complete opposite. Once they saw I had the P+ (I wear my card on a lanyard around my neck) they made sure to let me know what was included. They were very proactive

That is GREAT information.  Thank you.  Everyone should feel really good to know that. 

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41 minutes ago, phillygwm said:
  • The PP brochure does state that selections are subject to change.  When you go into a restaurant (be it Haven, MDR, or Specialty) do they give you a wine list with the PP selections indicated?  I noticed on the menus someone posted, only Ocean Blue listed that on the menu.
  • Whether PP is worth the money is in the eye of the beholder.  It's $35/day per person.  The bottle of wine alone is probably worth that.  Bottled waters and coffees would put it over the top IF people avail themselves of that.  Some of my friends drink beer and soda.  Obviously, a different calculus for them.

Here is how the "Premium Plus" works.  You are no longer limited to $15.00 per drink.  So when you see a more expensive glass of wine, you are good to a point.  If you want Dom, or 100 year old scotch, there will be a cost even on the "Premium Plus".  In the specialty restaurants they usually have the full wine list as I remember it. Please remember, the full bottles is specific selected bottles. The selection is must less then single glasses. 

 

I say it is worth it for me and my approach.  "In the eye of the beholder" is a great way to say that. Yet the debate continues.  It is kind of the same debates as whether the Haven is worth it or not.  The nice thing about NCL, Royal, Celebrity, MSC and Carnival is we have choices.  

 

Cruise well. 

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1 hour ago, Sthrngary said:

Here is how the "Premium Plus" works.  You are no longer limited to $15.00 per drink.  So when you see a more expensive glass of wine, you are good to a point.  If you want Dom, or 100 year old scotch, there will be a cost even on the "Premium Plus".  In the specialty restaurants they usually have the full wine list as I remember it. Please remember, the full bottles is specific selected bottles. The selection is must less then single glasses. 

 

I say it is worth it for me and my approach.  "In the eye of the beholder" is a great way to say that. Yet the debate continues.  It is kind of the same debates as whether the Haven is worth it or not.  The nice thing about NCL, Royal, Celebrity, MSC and Carnival is we have choices.  

 

Cruise well. 

Agreed.  I wish they had the Veuve at the MDRs but they did have it at Vines too, where we often got glasses to take outside through the doors next to Maltings to watch the whales and eagles.  We did get several bottles of water at all restaurants.  I would get it again without a second thought but they need to make the inclusions more clear on the MDR wine lists for guests and staff.

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1 hour ago, Sthrngary said:

That is GREAT information.  Thank you.  Everyone should feel really good to know that. 

Indeed.  I had two staff members volunteer to explain all that was included in my Plus package so that we didn't miss out on anything.  Funny, while I had more than my package cost in whisky and wine, the fresh squeezed orange juice every morning at the buffet was priceless. 

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19 hours ago, phillygwm said:

So, basically, a training issue.  I suppose that's understandable for the first cruises with new staff (or at least staff which haven't worked a cruise in ~18 months) but it still sucks if you're spending time at Guest Services straightening it out.  

Possibly training and also it's do to with bars being always busy and the process being so manual. We have sailed many times with MSC cruise line, always with drink package included. They are updating your key card with the relevant packages, so when you go to the bar, bartender doesn't need to do anything else except swiping your card. The system cancels all charges automatically. I don't understand why NCL has to have it so manual. I was really hoping they would change that by now. 

 

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18 hours ago, Debbiecruz said:

Thanks for all of the input. I am new to NCL but think the plus is the way to go for me. One doubt I still have, does the upgrade price include 20% tip, or is that added at the end?

I think it depends where you're booking it from.  For 7 night cruises originating in the US it's $243.60, which includes the gratuity, so $29/day + 20%.  If you want the included bottle of wine with dinner, plus a few Starbucks runs, specialty water, etc. it's easily worthwhile even if you don't avail yourself of those Patron shots 🙂

 

Edited by phillygwm
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