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How to get a get a discount on a Royal Caribbean drink package

17 Jan 2017

Did you know Royal Caribbean offers discounts on its very popular unlimited alcohol drink package?

Too many people buy a drink package on their ship and pay full price having missed out on the chance to save a lot of money.

In order to get a discount, you just need to do a little bit of work before your cruise to snag a lower price. The good news is anyone can get a lower price for a drink package with very little effort!

Many folks want to know how to get a drink package discount, so here's how to pay less.


Generally speaking, Royal Caribbean offers discounts on its drink packages that are pre-purchased via the Cruise Planner site before the cruise begins. 

The exact discount will vary, although it is common to see a 20% discount off the daily rate. No matter what discount you see online, it will be cheaper if you buy it before your cruise compared to waiting to book it onboard.

Royal Caribbean has been known to run even more lucrative discounts from time to time. The intriguing aspect to that discount is the daily price for a drink package seems to vary from ship to ship, and sailing to sailing.  If you have more than one cruise booked on different ships, you may find different sale prices.


To find the discounted rates, log into the My Cruises section of the Royal Caribbean web site, and navigate to the Cruise Planner section for the sailing you are interested in.

Once logged in, navigate to the Beverage section and look for advertised rates. You will likely see something similar to this: 

Drink package listed in Cruise Planner

If you are comfortable with the price, you can purchase it for as many (or as few) guests as you like.  Keep in mind that you will be charged in full for the drink package at the time of purchase.

It is also worth noting beverage package purchases made online can be canceled and full refunded at any time, up until about 3 days before your sail date.

You can buy a drink package up until 48 hours before your sailing.

Ignore the percentage off

Here's a secret about the pre-cruise sale you see for your drink package: the percentage off is meaningless.

Instead of comparing how much off the drink package is today versus another day, look for the bottom line price.

Essentially, you'll want to do a mock booking in the Cruise Planner to get the total price to determine if the actual price.  Royal Caribbean advertises percentage off the onboard price, but we will never know the onboard price until you're actually onboard.

Book now to protect yourself

A common mistake is for someone to wait to book their drink package to see if the price will go lower.

The reason waiting to book a drink package until closer to your sail date is a mistake is because the price could go up, and then you would end you paying more than you originally saw it listed for online.

Instead, you should book the drink package at whatever price you see it for online before your cruise.  Remember, you can always cancel it if you change your mind later, up to 48 hours before your cruise begins.

If later the price goes down, you can cancel and rebook the drink package and take advantage of the lower price.

By booking the drink package now, you lock in the price and protect yourself against a price increase while still being able to take advantage of a price drop.

What is the cheapest price for a Royal Caribbean drink package?

If you're new to cruising, how do you know if you're getting a good deal or not?

Before we get into pricing, it's important to note that what someone else paid for their drink package has no bearing on how much you should expect to pay. Drink package prices vary from ship to ship, and sailing to sailing.

Unlike a retail store where you could price match what someone else paid, there is no such mechanism on cruises.

Drink package prices

Remember, no matter what the price you see online, it will be cheaper than onboard the ship if you were to wait!

These days, a per-day drink package cost of below $65 is about as cheap as it gets for the deluxe beverage package.

Rarely do we see prices go below that threshold, and it is extremely rare to see the deluxe beverage package priced below $60 per person, per day.

Realistically, you can expect to pay between $65 - $90 per person, per day for the unlimited alcohol package.

The Royal Refreshment package will cost between $22.99 - $29.99 per person, per day.

The soda package should range between $8.99 - $10.99 per person, per day.

If you aren't seeing prices as low as what's listed here, there really isn't anything you can do to change that.  Keep checking back for price drops, as there's usually a sale every 4-6 weeks.


Getting a drink package onboard is only an option if you are higher up in Royal Caribbean's customer loyalty program.

Royal Caribbean includes drink package discounts onboard the ship to its Crown and Anchor Society members who are Diamond, Diamond Plus or Pinnacle level.

We have seen discounts offered at 20% off for Diamond, 30% off for Diamond Plus, and 40% off for Pinnacle.  As with all onboard discounts available to Crown and Anchor Society members, it is up to you to ask the crew member for the discount to be applied at the time of purchase.

If you are not a Diamond or above member in Crown and Anchor Society, there are no discounts available for drink packages.  

Unfortunately, you cannot combine your Crown and Anchor discount with the price you see online.  You have to choose between one or the other.

If you are brand new to Royal Caribbean, there is no discount onboard and the price will be sold to you at the prevailing rates. In this scenario, you want to pre-purchase it online before your cruise.

Regardless of which method you use to take money off the cost of your drink package, one of these strategies will save you a good amount of money on your next Royal Caribbean vacation. Enjoy!

Spotted: Royal Caribbean raising prices of certain drinks above what the drink package includes

07 Jan 2017

Many Royal Caribbean Blog readers have reported recently prices of certain alcoholic beverages have increased to the point they are no longer included with the unlimited alcohol package.

This first reports occurred on Royal Caribbean cruises that sailed around Christmas and New Years, and it was thought the price increase was a result of holiday demand.  Yet, the drink price changes remain in effect on cruises beginning after the holidays.

Royal Caribbean's deluxe drink package only covers beverages that are $12 or less ($13 on Oasis class ships).  Drinks priced higher than the included threshold are charged the difference to the guest.

Pub drink menu on Allure of the Seas. Photo taken January 4, 2017

Pub drink menu on Independence of the Seas. Photo taken January 5, 2017

Olive or Twist bar menu on Independence of the Seas. Photo taken January 6, 2017

Pub drink menu on Adventure of the Seas. Photo taken January 7, 2017

The drink package policy may change in the days or weeks to come to match these drink price increases. However, this is the first time since Royal Caribbean introduced its drink packages that we are seeing a notable amount of drinks priced outside the drink package allowances.

5 things you need to know before buying a Royal Caribbean drink package

21 Dec 2016

Royal Caribbean's drink packages are quite popular with guests, and we get lots of questions from our readers if a drink package purchase is worth it.  The unlimited drink packages offer a lot of convenience, flexibility, and a wide variety of drinks to enjoy.  

Before you purchase a Royal Caribbean drink package, you will want to consider these five important factors to ensure a drink package purchase makes sense for you.

1. Package prices

Royal Caribbean's drink packages are priced on a per-day and per guest basis, which means once you purchase a drink package, you will be charged for every day of the cruise going forward. The exact price of the drink package can actually vary from ship to ship.  Over the last year or so, Royal Caribbean has been offering its drink packages at various prices depending on the ship, itinerary and time of year.

There is one universal truth about the drink packages, and that is they are often discounted if purchased prior to cruise, but will come with a full price onboard.  These pre-cruise discounts are available from Royal Caribbean's Cruise Planner site, and discounts are regularly offered on the Deluxe unlimited alcohol drink package.  Other non-alcoholic drink packages have had discounts offered in the past, but the availability of discounts seems to vary.

Anyone interested in a drink package should check what discount is available for a drink package prior to the cruise, and understand what the costs will be.  While drink packages will be sold onboard your Royal Caribbean ship, they are rarely discounted.  Moreover, purchasing the drink package online will ensure less time spent waiting to purchase it onboard.

2. Drink prices onboard

It greatly helps if you have a good idea of how much drinks will cost onboard the ship if you were to purchase them a la carte, instead of using a drink package. After all, one of the key benefits of a drink package is to pay a fixed cost and be able to enjoy as many drinks as you like, often saving money versus buying those same drinks individually.

You can refer to this list of Royal Caribbean drink prices for a good idea of how much the popular drinks cost.  Drink prices may vary from ship to ship, but it will provide a good ballpark of estimating how much your indulgences onboard may cost you. It is entirely possible that you may find your drinking habits may not make a drink package purchase a financially suitable arrangement.

3. Your itinerary

An often overlooked consideration for purchasing a drink package is your Royal Caribbean cruise itinerary.  The drink package benefits are only useful to you while onboard a Royal Caribbean ship (or private destination), which means if your itinerary is port intensive, you will have far less time to take advantage of the drink packages. Conversely, if you have many sea days, a drink package may make more sense since you will have ample time onboard to take advantage of the package.

As mentioned earlier, beverage packages do work at both CocoCay and Labadee, which are Royal Caribbean's private destinations. If your cruise happens to stop at one of these ports, that is another full day of drink package value to reap.

It is important to weigh how many sea days versus port days you will have, if any of those stops include a private destination, and what your plans are for any ports you visit.  You may find with touring onshore, a drink package purchase will not be so conducive to getting a good return on your package investment.

4. What the drink package does not include

While the drink packages do include quite a lot of beverages, not everything can be had with a package.  Depending on your habits and preferences, this may or may not be a deal breaker.

Royal Caribbean's deluxe drink package allow for guests to enjoy drinks such as Labadoozies, Coco locos, after dinner shots or the drink of the day with the but does not include the souvenir mugs/glasses they are often served in.

Likewise, Starbucks on Oasis-Class ships and those little bottles of alcohol in your minibar are not included either.  

5. You can (usually) cancel the package

If you find yourself with buyer's remorse when it comes to a drink package, there are options available for cancelling and getting your money back.

The simplest means is to cancel the drink package prior to your cruise.  If you followed our advice and booked a drink package but want to cancel it, this can be easily done via the Cruise Planner site. Just follow these steps

  1. Log into your Royal Caribbean account and proceed to the Cruise Planner for the sailing you have in mind.
  2. At the top right corner of the pick, click Order History.  You will want to cancel the item you bought first, and then re-book it later.
  3. Once at the Order History page, you will be able to see everything you have reserved or purchased for your cruise. From here, find the item you want to cancel and click cancel.
  4. Follow the next few steps to confirm the cancellation.  You should find yourself at a screen that displays a confirmation message with the exact refund to the form of payment used.  It may take a few business days for the refund to be made.

If you decide to cancel the drink package onboard the ship, usually Royal Caribbean will allow it, but not always.  You will need to go to Guest Services onboard and ask to cancel and refund the drink package.  Keep in mind that if they do cancel your drink package purchase, any drinks you purchased will be charged to your SeaPass account individually.  We have heard from lots of guests this has worked, but cannot guarantee cancelling a drink package onboard will be available for you.

Your best bet is to consider the drink package prior to your cruise and make any cancellations before you get onboard.

Spotted: Bottled alcohol packages

15 Dec 2016

In addition to Royal Caribbean's unlimited alcohol packages, there are two additional packages available that offer guests convenient drink options in their stateroom.

The Royal Gifts shop has two packages that combine Coca-Cola products with a bottle of liquor.

Bacardi Gold and Coca-Cola Package

Cost: $40

This package includes: (1) 375 ml. bottle of Bacardi Gold and 4 Coca-Cola cans.

This product is not available on the following ships:

  • Explorer Of The Seas
  • Legend Of The Seas
  • Mariner Of The Seas
  • Ovation of the Seas
  • Quantum Of The Seas
  • Radiance Of The Seas
  • Splendour Of The Seas
  • Vision Of The Seas
  • Voyager Of The Seas

Bombay Sapphire and Tonic Package

Cost: $43

This package includes: (1) 375 ml. bottle of Bombay Sapphire and 4 Tonic water cans.

This product is not available on the following ships:

  • Explorer Of The Seas
  • Legend Of The Seas
  • Mariner Of The Seas
  • Ovation of the Seas
  • Quantum Of The Seas
  • Radiance Of The Seas
  • Splendour Of The Seas
  • Vision Of The Seas
  • Voyager Of The Seas

Either of these drink packages can be purchased prior to a cruise, and be delivered to a guest's stateroom.

Spotted: Royal Caribbean drink package and internet combo offer

24 Nov 2016

Royal Caribbean has a new option that we have spotted in the Cruise Planner that combines two popular cruise add-ons into one package together.

The Deluxe Package And Voom One Device offers guests the deluxe beverage unlimited alcohol package and a one-device Voom plan in one combo.

The cost of this package was listed at $49 per guest, per day. Compared to buying the two options separately, there are savings to the guest.

Keep in mind that this option may not be available for all guests, and exact pricing may vary depending on your sailing.

Spotted: Coca-Cola souvenir cups designed for Harmony of the Seas

17 Nov 2016

Guests sailing on Harmony of the Seas can expect to find one of two new designs for the souvenir Coca-Cola cups that come with Royal Caribbean's unlimited drink packages.

To celebrate Harmony of the Seas' inaugural year, there are two new cup designs guests can possibly receive while on Harmony of the Seas.

The first design has a Boardwalk motif, with the carousel being the primary aspect of the design.

The other cup design is based around the Ultimate Abyss slide.

Both cups make mention of the 2016 inaugural season for Harmony of the Seas.

These souvenir cups are compatible with the self-serve Coca-Cola Freestyle machines, which are located around the ship. The Coca-Cola souvenir cup has a special chip in it which activates the pour function in the machine.

Do you like the design of these souvenir Coca-Cola cups? Tell us in the comments below!

Royal Caribbean Deluxe Beverage package guide & review

20 Oct 2016

Royal Caribbean's Deluxe Beverage Package is the cruise line's unlimited alcohol offering for guests to enjoy a wide variety of drinks for one fixed price.

Drink package

There is one unlimited alcohol package for guests who wish to "have it all" and lock in their price.  Beer, wine, cocktails, coffee, water and more are all included in this package and purchasing the Deluxe Beverage package means you will know your cost for drinks in advance and be able to lock it in now.

Similar to the Refreshment package, the Deluxe Beverage package includes sodas, water, mocktails, premium coffee and tea, fresh-squeezed juice, as well as cocktails, spirits and liquors, as well as beer by the bottle or can and wine by the glass.

Read moreRoyal Caribbean Drink Package Info & Tips

It promises a flat cost to enjoy as many beverages during a cruise with very few limitations.

What does the deluxe drink package include?

Guests can choose between unlimited cocktails, beer, wine, non-alcoholic beverages, premium coffee, tea, and bottled water. This package includes drinks with a value of up to $14. For guests that would like to enjoy a beverage over that threshold, a $14 credit will be applied towards the beverage of choice and guests will be required to pay the balance.

Guests with Deluxe drink package can also get 40% discount on wines under $100. Wines above $100 will receive a 20% discount.

All Beverage Packages exclude any beverages served inside licensed Starbucks stores.

How much is the deluxe drink package?

Drink package offerings at booking time

Based on observed prices we researched, the base price is between $56 to $105 per person, per night excluding the service charge.

An automatic 18% gratuity will be added to the cost of any drink package at the time of purchase.

This means the daily price you pay covers all the drinks in the package as well as gratuity.

Drink package listed in Cruise Planner

There are pre-cruise discounts available for guests that purchase the drink package online, via Royal Caribbean's Cruise Planner.

Royal Caribbean uses variable pricing for its Deluxe Beverage package, and the price can change a lot depending on the ship, time of year, and itinerary.

When should I buy a Royal Caribbean drink package?

Without a doubt, you're better off buying any drink package before your cruise begins from the Royal Caribbean website.

Prices onboard are always higher than the pre-cruise offering.

Royal Caribbean employs a great deal of sales throughout the year, and the price of the Deluxe Beverage package will likely fluctuate. There's no telling when there will be a discount or better price, so our advice is to book the drink package early and then cancel and rebook if there's a lower price later.

By booking now, you lock in the current rate, but if there's a better sale later (like on Black Friday) you cancel and rebook at the lower price with no penalty.

Read moreHow to get a get a discount on a Royal Caribbean drink package

Who is the deluxe drink package best for?


Someone who wants to be able to pick from the widest variety of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks without having to pay for each drink individually will want the deluxe package.

Royal Caribbean advertises the deluxe package as having "virtually unlimited options" and that is pretty close to the truth.  Guests who can consume a lot of cocktails, beers, coffees, juices and more are well-suited for this package.  

A common scenario we hear about is a guest who likes to drink a lot of coffee and/or juice in the morning, and then enjoy alcoholic beverages during the day and evening.

Is the Deluxe Beverage package worth it?

Rum and coke

Does it make sense for you to invest in a drink package now with the large up-front cost?

The Deluxe Beverage package has the highest cost among all the Royal Caribbean drink packages, but your bar bill could stack up quickly without one.

A bottle of beer will cost around $8 or $9, cocktails will cost $12-$14, and wine by the glass can easily get up to $25 each. And that's before the automatic 18% gratuity.

If you're trying to decide if Royal Caribbean's Deluxe Beverage Package is worth it, you should also consider it includes non-alcoholic drinks.  Premium coffees, bottled water, and even sodas are included, and these can make it much easier to get your money's worth from the package.

Your best bet is to buy a drink package before the cruise to get the lowest price, otherwise you'll probably need to drink another drink every day to make up the difference.

If your drink package cost is around $65 per day, then you'll need to order enough drinks every day to make it worthwhile.  If having that much to drink every day sounds impossible, you could just skip a drink package and order drinks a la carte instead.

Man and woman at bar in CocoCay

You should also think about the itinerary you're sailing to make sure a drink package makes sense.  If your cruise goes to Perfect Day at CocoCay or Labadee, your drink package benefits work there too, and that's added value.

But if your sailing is a port intensive Alaska cruise or Mediterranean cruise, you'll have significantly less time on the ship to consume enough drinks.

Can I get souvenir glasses/mugs while using the deluxe drink package?

Pineapple drinks

You can get drinks like Labadoozies, Coco locos, after dinner shots or the drink of the day with the deluxe drink package but does not include the souvenir mugs/glasses they are often served in.

If you were to order a drink in a souvenir cup, you'd be charged the difference for the souvenir cup.

You should tell your waiter or bartender to get the drink without the souvenir cup to avoid being charged extra for the souvenir cup.

Can I purchase the deluxe drink package and share drinks with someone I know onboard?

Roving bartender

No, sharing beverages on any of Royal Caribbean's unlimited drink packages is strictly prohibited.

How to purchase Royal Caribbean's unlimited drink packages

13 Oct 2016

Are you ready to purchase a Royal Caribbean unlimited drink package?

Beverage packages have become incredibly popular with passengers because they like the idea of locking in the price of their drinks onboard by getting an unlimited drink package so they have one less thing to worry about.  

Here is how you can purchase a drink package for your Royal Caribbean cruise.

Online before the cruise

Screenshot of the drink packages for sale

To pre-order any drink package online, go to Royal Caribbean's Cruise Planner and choose which drink packages you want to order.

Drink packages are available for ordering online many months in advance of a cruise sailing date.  In fact, it is one of the first items available for purchase via the Cruise Planner.

Buying a Royal Caribbean drink package before your cruise begins offers two significant advantages: you can split up the total cost of the cruise vacation because the drink package cost will be charged at the time of purchase and it will be ready to be used once you board the ship.

Drink package price

As an example, the price on Icon of the Seas for the Deluxe Beverage package that included unlimited alcohol will cost $643.93 per person (before gratuity) for a 7-night cruise. For two guests with gratuity, that comes out to $1,519.56.

Read more: Guide to Icon of the Seas

While that is a lot of money up-front, you could pay it off now on a different credit card billing cycle, and not have to pay it on top of other purchases made on your sailing. Guests can pay off the drink packages before the cruise even begins, which means less of a bill that will be incurred following the conclusion of a cruise.


Moreover, most sailings offer some sort of pre-purchase discount on the drink package, which can bring that cost down.  Pre-purchasing a drink package online is the most reliable way of saving money on a drink package purchase (compared to booking it onboard).

Going back to our example, Royal Caribbean advertises the price is 20% off onboard prices.

As an added benefit, buying online means you won't have to waste time waiting to buy a drink package onboard the ship.

In short, your best choice is to pre-purchase a drink package before the cruise to get the lowest price and save time once you get on the ship.


Using a phone

There is one more method of pre-purchasing an unlimited drink package and that is by phone.

Guests may call (800) 398-9819 in the U.S. or Canada to reserve drink packages for their cruise.

If there's ever a choice, it's faster and easier to book a drink package online rather than the phone, however, there is one reason to call in and that's if you want to buy the drink package with alcohol but get someone else in the room a different drink package.

Royal Caribbean's rules stipulate if one adult gets the Deluxe Beverage Package, then all other adults in the cabin have to get one too. This is to prevent sharing of drink package benefits.

If there's an adult booked in the cabin that does not or cannot drink alcohol, you can call Royal Caribbean and ask for that adult to instead get the Refreshment package, which is the non-alcoholic option.

You have to call in to get this workaround, as it cannot be done online.


Drink package table

Another option is to wait and purchase the drink package onboard your Royal Caribbean cruise.

Drink packages can be purchased at various kiosks set up around the ship, as well as any bar or lounge.

There only real advantage of waiting to buy a drink package onboard is if you choose to purchase a drink package on a day other than embarkation day.

In that case, Royal Caribbean will prorate the cost of the package for the remainder of the cruise.

If you know you're going to get the drink package, buy it online pre-cruise to save money and time. The onboard price will absolutely cost more per day than if pre-purchased.

Spotted: Royal Caribbean offering up to 30% off drink packages for this weekend

07 Oct 2016

Many guests with cruises booked are reporting seeing up to 30% off certain unlimited beverage packages for their upcoming Royal Caribbean cruises.

Royal Caribbean has been offering 20% the alcohol packages for a while now, but for the next 60 hours, there are now discounts of up to 30% off certain packages.

The exact discount will vary from sailing to sailing, but the Deluxe unlimited alcohol package has been spotted with 20-25% off deals and the Refreshment package has been seen with a 30% discount.

Based on the countdown clock, it appears this promotion ends at midnight on Sunday night, October 9, 2016. This promotion has been extended through midnight on October 10, 2016.

To check if your sailing has this new offer available, log into the Cruise Planner on Royal Caribbean's web site and navigate to the Dining & Beverage section to see any available offers.

If you have a drink package already prepurchased, you should be able to cancel the purchase and then re-purchase the same drink package under this promtion.

Thanks to Royal Caribbean Blog reader Michael C for assisting with this information!

Do you see a similar discount for your sailing? Share the details in the comments and if you will buy one!

Clarification on Royal Caribbean's drink package premium coffee benefit

28 Sep 2016

Earlier this month, Royal Caribbean changed the drink package rules to exclude Starbucks beverages, but there is now further clarification on what the drink packages do and do not include.

On Royal Caribbean's Facebook page, an update provides information on what the change means across the fleet.

Furthermore, Royal Caribbean amended its drink package document again to be more specific about the use of drink packages with Starbucks beverages.

Essentially, this sounds like the premium coffee rule is similar to how Starbucks beverages were handled with the former drink packages, that have been replaced with the new drink packages.

Thanks to reader Glen R., who shared this update with us!

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