12 Things You Must Know Before Purchasing a Royal Caribbean Drink Package!

One of the most popular add ons when you book a Royal Caribbean cruise vacation is Royal Caribbean’s Deluxe Beverage Package. The beverage package can be pricey, but could it could also be a fantastic value. One of the the questions that consistently comes up in our Facebook Group, Royal Cruise Group is “Should we buy the drink package?” Well we’ve prepared 12 tips that will help you decide if the package is right for you.


1. Pre-purchase your beverage package online

Pre-purchasing your beverage package online through the Cruise Planner is the best way to get the lowest price on beverage package! Royal will generally offer you 30% off the beverage package and will occasionally go to 40% off on select sailings. You should book the package early and if the price happens to drop you can cancel and re-book at the lower price point. Now it’s important to remember the package is priced per person, per day and they will add an 18% gratuity to the total.


2. All guests in the same stateroom must purchase

Royal Caribbean does require all guests over 21 years of age staying in the same stateroom to purchase the deluxe beverage package, even if only one member of your party desires to purchase the package. Now there are exceptions to this rule where they will allow you to substitute a non-alcoholic beverage package, however you will need to call in and speak with a Royal Caribbean representative to discuss your specific needs and options.


3. Will you drink enough to make it worthwhile?

This boils down to your individual habits while you are on vacation. It’s important to remember that the package not only covers alcoholic beverages up $13, but it also covers non-alcoholic drinks such as bottled water, freshly squeezed orange juice, specialty coffee & teas and one of our favorites… energy drinks. With all this in mind, you could easily consume north of 8 beverages a day with a mix of the above mentioned choices and still get your money’s worth.

In our past sailings we’ve started the day with specialty coffee and fresh squeezed orange juice before heading to the solarium where we would enjoy a combination of beers and premium cocktails throughout the day. Then a lot of bottled waters and finishing the day with a glass or two of wine, a redbull to keep us going and then cocktails in the casino to end the night. This ads up to an average of 10 plus beverages a day and we definitely get our money’s worth. At this rate we never felt like we were over indulging.


4. Call your liquor

Your beverage package includes top shelf premium brands. When ordering, instead of asking for a vodka and cran you should specify your liquor by ordering a Tito’s and cran instead as this would be included in the package. There are many premium brands available and they would be included as the package includes beverages up to $13


5. Try some new drinks

You’re on vacation and this is a great time to try out some new drinks and find your new favorite cocktail. Don’t like the taste of what you ordered? Put it down and order something else. We love experimenting with new beverages almost every time we sail.


6. Use your package at private stops

When deciding on whether to purchase the package, a stop at one of the private islands should be a consideration as it greatly increases the value of the package. When you purchase the beverage package you’re also able to use it at Royal Caribbean’s private destinations, Labadee and Perfect Day at CocoCay.


7. Don’t share

A common misconception of the beverage package is being able to share it with other guests. If you have purchased the package it is for you only and you will only be served 1 drink per SeaPass.


8. Don’t over tip

Be careful about over tipping, when you buy the package you are automatically charged an 18% gratuity on the package and that covers all drinks ordered on your voyage. However if you want to tip extra, just remember gratuity has already been included.


9. Do you have to purchase a package?

No, The beverage package is a nice way to splurge but is not required. The free beverages included are tap water, milk, tea, coffee (regular and decaf), lemonade, iced tea, flavored waters, juices (at breakfast and not fresh squeezed) and hot chocolate. If you’re deciding to purchase the beverage package you’ll need to decide whether you will drink enough each day over the entire duration of your cruise to cover the cost of the package. Take into consideration the number of days of your sailing, how many days you’ll be off the ship (excluding the private destinations) and the number of drinks you think you’ll have on a daily basis. These are all very important factors when making a determination on the beverage package. The bottom line is no it’s not required but definitely nice to have if you enjoy adult beverages, premium teas and coffee, sodas and such.


10. Don’t overlook the non-alcoholic beverages

If you’ve ordered the Deluxe Beverage Package it also includes numerous other non-alcoholic beverages on the ship such as: Bottled water, fresh squeezed orange juice, latte’s, espresso, red bull and more.


11. It works at restaurants.

When you sit down for dinner at a specialty restaurant or the main dining room don’t forget your package works there also. You can order anything from a glass of wine to a hand crafted cocktail, even a cappuccino with your dessert. This is something that is easily overlooked when calculating how many beverages you’ll consume daily.


12. It’s truly unlimited

Unlike other cruise lines, Royal Caribbean’s beverage packages are truly unlimited. The only time you can expect not to be served is if you have had too much to drink and you’re really showing it. Just remember to keep it classy!


Let’s break down the 3  beverage package options Royal Caribbean currently offers for 2020.


Classic Soda Package

Coca-Cola souvenir cup and unlimited soda at any venue onboard or at the private islands as well as Coca-Cola Freestyle Fountain beverage refills.

Onboard pricing is currently $12.99 – $15.00/per day for 2019-2020 sailings.


Refreshment Package

  • A Coca-Cola souvenir cup 
  • Unlimited soda at any venue onboard or at the private islands and Coca-Cola Freestyle beverage refills 
  • Non-alcoholic cocktails (mocktails)
  • Bottled still and sparkling water
  • Premium coffees and teas
  • Fresh-squeezed juices

Onboard pricing is currently $29.00 – $38.00/per day for 2020 sailings


Deluxe Beverage Package

  • A Coca-Cola souvenir cup 
  • Unlimited soda at any venue onboard or at the private islands and Coca-Cola Freestyle beverage refills 
  • Non-alcoholic cocktails (mocktails)
  • Bottled still and sparkling water
  • Premium coffees and teas
  • Fresh-squeezed juices
  • Spirits and Liquor cocktails
  • Beer 
  • Wine by the Glass
  • A 40% discount on bottled wines priced up to $100
  • and 20% discount on wine bottle prices above $100

Onboard pricing is currently  $63.00 – $89.00/per day for 2020 sailings

Average Beverage Costs Without a Beverage Package Before Gratuity

Cappuccino $4.00
Espresso $2.50
Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice $4.95
Red Bull $4.50
Wine White/Red/Sparking $10.00-$16.00
Beer $6.50
Cocktails/Frozen Drinks $11.00
Water Bottle $3.25
Sodas $2.95

Beverage Cost Breakdown

We have created a sample beverage cost breakdown of a typical cruise based on what we consume on a 7 day cruise with 3 stops and one of which is a private island.

Onboard pricing is currently  $63.00 – $89.00/per day for 2020 sailings so let’s find a number right in the middle and say they are $76 per person per day for the purposes of this cost breakdown.

beverage breakdown

We hope this has helped you when deciding whether or not to purchase the beverage package. 

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