It is always a shame to see these new rules implemented.
And there is never a really good way to do it.
But there is always a Good Reason do it.
HAL was the only mass market line left that had a liberal policy with passengers bringing wine aboard.
And many passengers took full advantage of it.
When I worked over there, it was not uncommon to see an elderly man or woman, barely able to walk, trying to drag a handtruck with 4 or 5 cases of wine up the gangway on embark day. It was so sad, it was funny.
Or even worse, they handed over a few cases of wine to the union stevedores for delivery to their cabins. The stevedores promptly stole some or all of the wine, and the cruise line then had to replace it.
Then on the first night of the cruise, all the bars on the ship would be empty of wine glasses (and people) by 7pm.
One by one, passengers would visit the bars and ask for a few wine glasses to take back to their cabins.
Then, 2 hours later, those same people went to the dining rooms with wine glasses filled to the brims (sometimes one glass in each hand), claiming that they had just come from cocktail hour in the bars. We always had a great laugh at this, as we never sold a 10 ounce pour glass of wine in the bars.
By the middle of the meal, those same people stood up, took the empty wine glasses back to their cabins, re-filled them to the brims, and returned to the dining rooms, once again claiming that they had just visited the bar for another 10 ounce glass of wine.
Playing games like this just dares the cruise line company to change the rules to protect itself.
All the other lines felt forced to change the rules already.
HAL, in typical fashion, was a bit behind the curve.
Going to another mass market cruise line?
They all have just about the same rules - for the same reasons.
Do the cruise lines realize that making rules like this will discourage a certain demographic from cruising with them?
Absolutely, they do. That's the entire point.
With today's marketing and profit models, we simply cannot afford to have those people sailing with us.