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Corkage Fees - Are They Charging?


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I know Royal added corkage fees if you bring your own wine ($15/bottle?).  Wondering from recent experience if the servers are actually charging?  And what ship did you bring on wine?  We'll be on Symphony if anyone has recent experience.

PS - On a different note....If we have BOGO, then we are probably best waiting until night 3 to bring the wine to dinner, right?  (We're not the type to finish a bottle in one evening as DH drinks red and I drink white)

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3 minutes ago, WannaCruise said:

I know Royal added corkage fees if you bring your own wine ($15/bottle?).  Wondering from recent experience if the servers are actually charging?  And what ship did you bring on wine?  We'll be on Symphony if anyone has recent experience.

PS - On a different note....If we have BOGO, then we are probably best waiting until night 3 to bring the wine to dinner, right?  (We're not the type to finish a bottle in one evening as DH drinks red and I drink white)

They will move the bottles for you to the next restaurant!  Or you can open the bottle in your room and just take a glass with you.  Jane

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I was on the Allure last month and I asked the room steward to bring me a corkscrew so I could open them myself. I had to force her to take a tip for that...lol.

I had champagne waiting in the room when we boarded, but we stored that in the fridge until formal night and then brought that to the MDR and they popped it there with no charge.  

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23 minutes ago, HtownHolly said:

Man... the very idea of corkage fees is annoying. I don't drink wine, and this is another reason not to, for me. Why are they able to pull this off? It's just pulling a cork out of a bottle, no? Why is that $15??

If you bring and use your own corkscrew, then it's not even a charge for them pulling the cork out.

The correct name of the fee ought to be, "Hey, we're trying to sell wine here, okay? If you insist on bringing your own aboard, okay, we'll let you, but we have to make a little money on it, okay?"

Hmmm... I guess I was a little heavy on the "okay"s. Sue me, okay?  😁

(On the other hand, I have to be honest. When I was on Mariner in July 2018, they opened both bottles (one each on two different nights) and didn't charge me for either one.)

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1 hour ago, HtownHolly said:

Man... the very idea of corkage fees is annoying. I don't drink wine, and this is another reason not to, for me. Why are they able to pull this off? It's just pulling a cork out of a bottle, no? Why is that $15??

Corkage fees are neither unique to Royal Caribbean nor to the cruise industry.

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1 hour ago, Jolly Ogre said:

Good luck getting it past security. All you have to do is ask your room steward and they will being you one.

I keep a travel cork screw in my toiletries bag, probably for the last 7-8 cruises and never had an issue, it looks like a plastic pen if someone were to pull it out.

All the wine my wife drinks has a screw top lid so I've never had to use it.

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Sadly some people take great pride in their misunderstanding of a pretty common term.  It has nothing to do with a cork and was not invented by RCCL.

https://www.royalcaribbean.com/faq/questions/charge-corkage-fee

Quote

Guests who consume their personal wine and champagne in public areas, will incur a $15 corkage fee per bottle.

Whether it is charged is pretty hit and miss, but the fact is that they can charge you if you drink it outside of your stateroom.  Technically if you open it in your stateroom, pour it in your stateroom, and then take the glass in to the hallway you are subject to the corkage fee (though in that particular scenario I give it about 0% chance a crew member will call you on it).  If someone tries telling you that already opened bottles or bottles with a twist-off don't count then they are just making up their own stories in their head and expecting reality to conform to them.

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2 hours ago, HtownHolly said:

Man... the very idea of corkage fees is annoying. I don't drink wine, and this is another reason not to, for me. Why are they able to pull this off? It's just pulling a cork out of a bottle, no? Why is that $15??

Yeah kind of sucks.  On our Allure cruise in 2016 there was no such thing, but they've introduced it since then.

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20 minutes ago, NS8VN said:

Sadly some people take great pride in their misunderstanding of a pretty common term.  It has nothing to do with a cork and was not invented by RCCL.

https://www.royalcaribbean.com/faq/questions/charge-corkage-fee

Whether it is charged is pretty hit and miss, but the fact is that they can charge you if you drink it outside of your stateroom.  Technically if you open it in your stateroom, pour it in your stateroom, and then take the glass in to the hallway you are subject to the corkage fee (though in that particular scenario I give it about 0% chance a crew member will call you on it).  If someone tries telling you that already opened bottles or bottles with a twist-off don't count then they are just making up their own stories in their head and expecting reality to conform to them.

Yeah...so the debate is...do we take a chance and bring our bottles to the MDR (one for DH, one for me)?  Or do we just pour it and walk with the glass to be certain there is no charge.  I know people will bring a glass of wine from suite or Diamond lounge so it's common to carry a glass...guess just a pain and risk of spilling.

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I look at it this way -- that $15 they potentially charge for the bottle is what I would pay for a single glass, and your average bottle gets you four glasses. Considering that the wine I typically drink with dinner goes for $8 a bottle, and a nicer one will be maybe $15, I'm still coming out ahead over buying a bottle on board. And for that corkage fee, they are doing me the favor of taking the unfinished bottle, sealing it back up, and putting it in their wine storage area with all the other stuff on the ship, nicely isolated away from the sea air and temperature-controlled to boot. And then wherever I have dinner next, I can ask my waiter to fetch the bottle and there it is!

So it's not like the crew is doing absolutely nothing besides opening the bottle for me. And since I'm the only wine drinker in my family, there's no way I'm drinking an entire bottle at dinner unless my table-mates ask for a glass or two. (which I hope they would only do with the intent of letting me have a glass of whatever they brought to the table! 😁🍷) So I'm definitely taking advantage of their storage service for a night or two per bottle.

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21 hours ago, WannaCruise said:

I know Royal added corkage fees if you bring your own wine ($15/bottle?).  Wondering from recent experience if the servers are actually charging?  And what ship did you bring on wine?  We'll be on Symphony if anyone has recent experience.

 

On Oasis in Nov 2018, we brought our bottles of carry on wine for both nights that we dined in 150CP.  Corkage was never mentioned and bottles were opened without questions and served without extra charge.  Charging corkage is inconsistently applied, consistent with the prior replies that you have received.  

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43 minutes ago, DDemuth said:

 

On Oasis in Nov 2018, we brought our bottles of carry on wine for both nights that we dined in 150CP.  Corkage was never mentioned and bottles were opened without questions and served without extra charge.  Charging corkage is inconsistently applied, consistent with the prior replies that you have received.  

Thanks.  Good to hear.  

Did you finish a bottle in one night?  And if not, did you take the bottle back with you?  Or the specialty restaurant stored it for you?

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3 hours ago, JLMoran said:

I look at it this way -- that $15 they potentially charge for the bottle is what I would pay for a single glass, and your average bottle gets you four glasses. Considering that the wine I typically drink with dinner goes for $8 a bottle, and a nicer one will be maybe $15, I'm still coming out ahead over buying a bottle on board. And for that corkage fee, they are doing me the favor of taking the unfinished bottle, sealing it back up, and putting it in their wine storage area with all the other stuff on the ship, nicely isolated away from the sea air and temperature-controlled to boot. And then wherever I have dinner next, I can ask my waiter to fetch the bottle and there it is!

So it's not like the crew is doing absolutely nothing besides opening the bottle for me. And since I'm the only wine drinker in my family, there's no way I'm drinking an entire bottle at dinner unless my table-mates ask for a glass or two. (which I hope they would only do with the intent of letting me have a glass of whatever they brought to the table! 😁🍷) So I'm definitely taking advantage of their storage service for a night or two per bottle.

Thanks.  Cause we wonder if it's worth it to bring our own wine if we have to add another $15, but it seems like it is cost affective ..plus less hassle with them storing the rest for us (vs keeping it in our stateroom)

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I have to concur with @JLMoran  the corkage fee isnt a "removing a cork" fee.  It covers them storing your wine in their wine cellar, serving it to you instead of their wine thus losing their profit on wine service (you cant bring your own alcoholic beverages of any other sort, just wine, so they dont lose profit if you want beer with your meal), it covers them being able to not just serve you wine from the MDR but from a specialty restaurant as well.  

Most restaurants charge a corkage fee if you choose to bring in your own wine

The wine I like to enjoy they dont serve this onboard (I cant expect a cruise line to carry some obscure Napa wine, especially a pricey one).  They serve the same kind of wine, but this one particular one I just like. So for me letting them store the wine and then serve it, its well worth it for me rather than having to buy a bottle of a wine that I dont know I'd even like.... at the cost of about 70-80 dollars for their wine.  Not to mention if something were to happen to the wine (they manage to cork the wine, drop the wine, etc) its on them rather than being in my stateroom, if the seas are rough, and the wine took a tumble.  

 

End of story, expect the corkage fee, be delighted if they dont charge you.  

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