How Do I Adjust The Amount Of Gratuities
For most people, the service they receive on a cruise is outstanding. They recognize that the staff goes above and beyond to make their vacation enjoyable. But thats not always the case. With millions of passengers sailing every year, theres inevitably going to be some who receive poor service.
If thats the case and you decide you want to change the amount you are charged for tips then you can do that. Gratuity charges are not mandatory and can be adjusted. To do so, simply head down to Guest Services on the ship to tell them that you want to change your tip amounts.
That said, its unusual to adjust the gratuity amount, and the staff works extremely hard to make your trip enjoyable. If you have a major issue, however, you can change your gratuity amount accordingly.
How To Bring Your Own Drinks On A Cruise
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Can you bring your own drinks on a cruise? To save money or to ensure access to your favorite drinks at sea, carrying on beverages can be a great idea. Many cruise lines allow guests to carry on some non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages, but the rules vary by company.
Before you drag that case of water or bottle of Hendricks to the port, only to have it confiscated by security, you need to read up on the beverage rules for your cruise line.
Here are the carry-on drinks rules for all the major cruise lines, from mainstream lines like Carnival and Royal Caribbean to high end ultra-luxury cruise companies.
In this article
Can I Bring Cbd Or Marijuana In My Luggage
CBD is now seemingly everywhere, and rules around marijuana have relaxed .
That said, these items are not allowed on cruise ships. Cruise lines follow federal law instead of state laws. As well, the items are prohibited in a number of countries, so the cruise line restricts you from bringing CBD or marijuana to comply with rules in any port you might visit.
Its not a good idea to try and sneak them on either as weve seen stories of local law enforcement in some countries detaining passengers for these items.
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Pack A Private Mini Bar
The great thing about those little bottles of booze, once reserved for planes and hotel minibars, is that theyre less than 3 ounces and can fit in a quart-size bag, which means you can stash them in your carry-on bag. Those who bring this contraband onto the ship have been known to squeeze as many as five bottles into one bag.
Even More Ways To Save Before You Cruise
Bon voyage! We sure hope this post has giving you lots of ways to save money on drinks during your next cruise. But before you go, here are a few more links to our other money-saving cruise articles and to our travel affiliate partners that you may find helpful:
Be sure to check out our huge list of cruise tips here:
If you need a hotel before or after your cruise, be sure to book early. All the best hotels in port cities tend to get reserved by cruise passengers in advance. We like using hotelscombined.com to compare all the top hotel sites and score the best deal before its too late.
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Lastly, to receive our latest travel tips and inspiration, as we continue this journey around the world, join us and the thousands of other drink-loving travelers over on our . Every #ThirstyThursday, we post about what were drinking from wherever in the world we currently are. So check out where in the world we are this week and whats on the drink menu!
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Holland America Alcohol Policy
Holland America allows you to bring on larger bottles than other cruise lines, but there is some fine print you should know.
First, beer and liquor are not allowed to be brought aboard when you embark to drink on the ship.
That said, you can bring on wine or champagne. Holland America allows all guests 21 and older to bring on one bottle to drink on the ship. If it is consumed in a public place, then it is subject to an $18 corkage fee. Its free to drink in your stateroom.
In addition, you can bring additional bottles of up to 750 ml, but they will see an $18 corkage fee, no matter where you drink them.
Alcohol Allowed: One bottle of wine or champagne per adult . Additional bottles allowed for $18 corkage fee.
Captains Toast = Free Drinks
If you notice any event in the daily itinerary titled something like Captains Toast or Captains Reception, this always means there will be servers running around with trays full of complimentary cocktails, wine, and/or champagne. Dont miss it!
For longer soirées you may even be able to snag several gratis beverages. So hang out, find a nice cozy spot where the drink servers are coming out of, and then cheers to the captain with that Greek name you cant pronounce.
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Glasses Of Wine : 138
Includes: The widest selection of beverages by the glass, such as Veuve Clicquot, Patrón Añejo, The Macallan Quest and more. Also includes unlimited soft drinks, beers, spirits, cocktails, wines by the glass and select bottles of wine with dinner, plus, still and sparkling water, energy drinks, and specialty coffee. See the full list of beverages here.
Excludes: Room service, mini bar purchases, vending machines, or pre-cruise wine bottle purchases.
Other T& Cs: Same as Corks and Caps Package
Extra perks: For non-select bottles of wine , Wine and Spirit Experiences, tastings, and flights, guest will receive a 40% discount when purchased on board.
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Cruise Drink Packages Can Be Worth It
Most cruise lines now offer all-you-can-drink beverages packages. These unlimited drink packages can seem expensive on the surface, but all-you-care-to-drink alcohol packages can actually be fantastic value for those who tend to tip back a few while cruising. Cruise drink packages are a trend in the cruising industry that began a bit more than five years ago. Now Celebrity, Princess, Royal Caribbean, Holland America, most Norwegian ships, and many Carnival ships offer some sort of alcohol drink package.
Each cruise drink package varies on exactly what alcohol included. But most of these cruise drink packages tend to be generous in their offerings, even including top shelf liquors. Some of the cruise drink packages further include specialty coffees, soft drinks, and other non-alcoholic drinks to help you recover the next day.
Cruise beverage packages range in price from about $50-$100, per day, depending on the cruise line and the specific package. For example, Carnival currently promotes its CHEERS drink package for $51.95 per day + 15% gratuities. So for a 7-day Carnival cruise, such a package would add up to a total of $418.20. Again, this seems very pricey, but well further show you how it might be worth it.
|Premium Beverage Package|
Is a cruise drink package worth it?
That depends on a variety of factors, such as
- how much you drink on vacation
- what you drink,
- how much time youll be on the ship , and
- the price of the beverage package on the cruise youre taking.
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Tipping Starts Before You Board The Ship
Seasoned cruisers know one of the most nervous times is waiting for your luggage to appear in your stateroom. The worst thing that can happen is that just your luggage tags turn up!
So when you are pierside consider giving your luggage handler a $2- $5 tip per item, depending upon the size, weight and amount of your luggage. If youre travelling alone and with only one large piece of luggage, a $5 tip is appropriate. Consider the gratuity as a kind of insurance that your bags will make it safely onto the ship.
Some of the Luxury and Ultra Luxury All-Inclusive cruise lines will often have baggage handlers of their own from the ship, and they do not expect tips as these are all included in the cruise fare.
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Beer Drinkers Should Buy Buckets Of Beer To Save
Are you heading to the pool and want to kick back a few beers? Buy a bucket of five beers, which most cruises usually offer for the cost of four. Its a win-win by saving the server a few trips to deliver your beer while saving you a few bucks.
Beer buckets may not be the best drink deal out on the high seas, but it still saves the $6-$7 cost of a bottle of beer. Even if youre not planning to drink all of those beers in one sitting, it can be worth buying the bucket and bring whatever is left back to your cabin to put on ice or in the mini fridge.
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What Happens If I Bring Something That Im Not Supposed To
Accidentally pack something thats against the rules? Expect it to be removed from your bag when found that includes alcohol, weapons, or other items.
Depending on the cruise line policy and what you item is, it may be held and returned to you at the end of the cruise or it may just be confiscated. For that reason, we suggest being very careful about what you pack to avoid running afoul of the luggage rules.
If its an illegal substance thats found, you may be getting a visit from law enforcement.
How Can I Save Money On Cruise Ship Drink Prices
Mainstream cruise lines usually offer soda packages, some with souvenir cups. Prices run from $8.50 to $15 per person, per day, and certain lines will have separate prices for adults and kids. Some lines might also offer bottled water packages or broader nonalcoholic drink packages that include specialty coffees and smoothies. You can learn more about them in our story on
Some cruise lines also offer a nonalcoholic drink special of the day. Look for information on discounted drink prices in your ships daily newsletter.
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Can I Bring Alcohol In My Bags When Boarding
If you want to bring beer or liquor, then the bad news is that these arent allowed to be brought on cruise ships. If they are found, they will be removed and discarded.
The good news? Most cruise lines do allow you to bring a bottle or two of wine or champagne.
The amount varies among cruise lines, but its usually one bottle per adult in a cabin. When you bring this on, just keep it in your carry-on luggage. You dont want to put it in checked luggage where it can possibly be broken.
What About Rules For Carry
When you arrive at the port, you will check your large luggage . This luggage will be carted off, X-rayed, put aboard the ship, and then delivered to your room later that day. But that entire process will take several hours.
For that reason, passengers are encouraged to bring some sort of carry-on that has anything you might need for the first few hours on the cruise ship travel documents, passports, medications, allowed alcohol, toothbrush, your swimsuit, and maybe even a change of clothes for dinner.
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On Some Ships Many Gratuities Are Automatically Included
Most major cruise lines automatically add gratuities to your onboard account. The fee is usually between $12 and $15 per passenger, per day, and the cruise line then divvies up that money between all service-oriented crew. Worth noting: Almost every cruise line includes an automatic 15 to 20 percent gratuity on all bar bills , and 18 to 20 percent on spa services, so there is no need to tip extra unless you want to.
Still, if youd like to contribute more or less toward the daily gratuity charge, just head to the onboard customer service desk. Note, also, that there are some additional times when a little cash on hand could come in handy: for porters at the terminal, for instance, or shore excursion guides, and kids club counselors. In those cases, do some research on your cruise lines policies in advance, and set aside some cash for those situations if needed.
Cruise Line Drink Package Guide: Is It Worth It
On Oceania Cruises, any passenger over the age of 18 may order and consume drinks, and on Seabourn Cruises the drinking age is 18 except while in port, when local laws and drinking ages apply. Different Confiscation Levels. Most lines confiscate alcohol being brought on board at embarkation and it may be discarded or held until the end of the. Its about the overall experience, you know, as I said earlier, how they deliver. Um but with that said, we know that certainly price is a big obstacle to overcome when presenting the upper premium to clients for the first time. So, Oceanias value proposition, I think is exceptional and very well thought out Most of Rosarito is a party beach, a place to have fun, drink, listen to music, have a bon fire, and set some fireworks. A lot of vendors trying to sell you from peanuts to massages. Condominium was a 2 story 4 bedroom, 3 baths This is a list of national liquors.A national liquor is a distilled alcoholic beverage considered standard and respected in a given country. While the status of many such drinks may be informal, there is usually a consensus in a given country that a specific drink has national status or is the most popular liquor in a given nation Book Ikos Oceania, Greece on Tripadvisor: See 4,407 traveler reviews, 5,152 candid photos, and great deals for Ikos Oceania, ranked #1 of 4 hotels in Greece and rated 5 of 5 at Tripadvisor
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Are There Baggage Fees On Cruises
Unlike airlines, there are no baggage fees for the luggage you bring on a cruise. Bring what you want, as there is no extra charge.
Thats good news, but if you are flying to the port, remember that you could be charged by the airline for bags you bring on the plane. Thats another reason its smart to pack light if you can.
What Does The Silver Spirits Package Cover
Any drinks up to $15.00, including premium wines by the glass, cocktails and aperitifs
The Chefs Table premium wine pairing
A selection of wines, which change twice per cruise
15% discount on premium beverages above $50
Soft drinks and juices
Note: For premium wines, only those wines that are available by the glass are included in the package . Wines that are only available by the bottle are not included in the package.
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What To Expect On Board
Several top cruise-industry chefs were lured away from other cruise lines to ensure that the artistry of world-renowned master chef Jacques Pépin, who crafted five-star menus for Oceania, is properly carried out. The results are sure to please the most discriminating palate.
Oceania simply serves some of the best food at sea, particularly impressive for a cruise line that charges far less than luxury rates. The main restaurant offers trendy, French-Continental cuisine with an always-on-the-menu steak, seafood, or poultry choice and a vegetarian option.
Intimate specialty restaurants require reservations, but theres no additional charge for Toscana, the Italian restaurant, or Polo Grill, the steak house. On and Riviera, passengers have those and more restaurants from which to chooseJacques, the first restaurant to bear Jacques Pépins name, serves French cuisine Red Ginger features contemporary interpretations of Asian classics Privée hosts private, seven-course menu degustation dinners for a single party of up to 10 and La Reserve serves exclusive wine and food pairings.
A casual dinner option is alfresco dining at the Terrace Café . Although service is from the buffet, outdoor seating on the aft deck is transformed into a charming Mediterranean courtyard with candleholders and starched linens.
Oceania was the first cruise line to upgrade their bedding to the highest standard, so you can count on a good nights sleep on these ships.
Can I Opt Out Of Paying Gratuities Or Have Them Adjusted
Most cruise lines allow guests to remove automatic gratuities. You can do so by going to guest services and making the request. You can also adjust your gratuities up or down. If you choose to pay tips in cash, there are usually some envelopes available at the guest service desk.
There are some exceptions. Norwegian Cruise Line has onboard service charge will is charged automatically for guests 3 and up, and distributed among staff that serve you in various ways. Rather than reducing the amount payed, they point out on their website that they will work to resolve any service issues experienced.
The fact is, the tips that crew get from passengers make up a good part of their wage. Crew members work really hard and make the difference between an ok and a memorable cruise vacation. Since this is the current pay structure for most major cruise lines, removing tips really affects the cruise line workers.
I go into more detail about this topic in this post: Can You Refuse to Pay Gratuities on a Cruise?
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