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Beth42 December 31st, 2009 06:17 PM

Help! First Time Ever! How much will the drink tab be?
Hi - I'm new.

I'm having major anxiety and stress about what to expect on this 4 day cruise to the Bahamas I am going on with my husband of 20 years. We have never been on a cruise, and I'm worried and wondering about the drink tab and excursions.

So many people are telling me to sneak alcohol onto the ship, but honestly, I enjoy beer. I'd like to have a couple with dinner and one here or there. A friend told me her husband brought 2 cases of beer in their suitcase. My brother said that they scan your luggage for bottles and stuff.

I'm getting almost too much info from friends on what to do and to do this and that and the other thing - it's like I'm pregnant with my first baby. Geez!

We have 5 kids, who are staying home. This is the first time we have been ALONE in 20 years. It's our 20th anniversary tomorrow (cheesy, I know - shotgun wedding). Anyway...I want to be able to relax, have a nice time, and maybe even do an excursion - but they all seem so EXPENSIVE in the bahamas.

Any suggestions would be helpful. I'm lost.



Phil&Liz December 31st, 2009 07:56 PM

First relax! Enjoy the time away.

You do not have to stand for or buy every photo they take!

Set a limit on the casino playing and stick to it.

You don't have to leave the ship. You don't have to buy an excursion.
If you know, after researching the options, of something you would like to do locally, book it ASAP either thru the ship or independently. Keep in mind that stuff happens and you may miss a port or have bad weather. Excursions bought thru the ship are refunded immediately if the port or weather cancels. Independent bookings may or may not refund your $.

They have drink specials and cards to save $ on. DOTD (drink of the day) are fine. The have "bucket of beer" specials that sound like the way for you to go. If you have a preference on a beer, you may want to bring "a reasonable amount". If you are flying to the port, buy the drinks in the port city you sail from. Don't try to pack it on the plane.

Drink prices vary by day and location purchased. They have a party on the last day where the drinks are free for an hour or so. There is a (I think) 15% gratuity on EVERY drink so keep that in mind as well.

If you search for "Capers" or Carnival Capers for your ship either here on Cruisemates or on the net you will be able to see the drink specials and daily events to keep you busy.

Come back here and write a review of your cruise when you get back.

Phil & Liz

airforce95 December 31st, 2009 07:57 PM

The first thing you need to do is to relax. Cruising can be as expensive or as cheap as you want it to be. A couple of beers a day on a 4 day cruise is not that bad at all. If you set a limit of $25 a day for drinks you should have money left over. Excursions can be expensive or not. Since this is your first cruise I would be sure to book your excursion thru the cruise ship. Then just pick one that is a tour with some shopping. That shouldn't cost you that much. After you have cruised for a while you will learn the ins and outs and how to save money. What ever you do just be sure to have fun. That is the most important thing.

Donna December 31st, 2009 08:07 PM

I'll have to agree with the others, just relax and enjoy your time off without kids.

You can go to the Carnival web-site and look through all the excursions and pick wisely, you don't need to spend a fortune, but its always nice to do something different and see some of the island at the same time.

What kinds of activities do you like, snorkeling, etc.?

NOt sure I would go through the hassle of bring beer onboard, you should be OK just purchasing a few a day, with meals, without going over your budget.

Just keep track of all your purchases while on the ship, they do add up quickly and have fun!

ScurvyDog January 1st, 2010 01:45 AM

Many people choose to bring alcohol on board but to me it just does not seem worth the hassle. It's a vacation..why add all that stress to save only a few bucks?? If you are on one of the newer ships you can check your cabin bill on the TV each day to always know exactly what you owe. If your ship does not have that feature you can go to the pursers desk and have the bill printed out anytime you would like. There should be no surprises.
Relax and enjoy. :cool:

Beth42 January 3rd, 2010 04:26 PM

Thanks to everyone for your advice. You're all right. I will just relax and enjoy, once I get there. I'm still getting all kinds of "tips" from everyone and their brother, but I think I won't bother with too much of it.

Wish me luck!!LOL

brina January 3rd, 2010 10:48 PM

I too love beer. I believe last time we paid about $5 per bottle of Sam Adams.I did pack a couple of random ones in our luggage. We sailed on the Victory in April 07 just a couple of weeks after my husband returned from Iraq. Our tab was almost $2000. About $1000 was in booze :rolleyes: Last cruise though we were good and smuggled a lot on board so we would save money. That tab was about $300. It is vacation, so have a good time, but I'm with you. I hate spending so much money on alcohol. We were really celebrating back in April 07, but now we are used to each other again LOL Enjoy your cruise!

Michelle1959 January 4th, 2010 09:49 PM

I don't drink much, usually a glass of wine perhaps once a month when out to dinner. I don't ever keep any type of alcohol at home.

It's also such a rip off unless you buy your own. I think it's ridiculous to bring alcohol or any drinks with you on a vacation, other than necessary formula for babies, etc... As said above what a waste of energy and time - both of which should be used as wisely as possible, especially on a vacation. After all, if you can afford to s[end hundreds or thousands on a cruise, drinks are minimal in comparison.

I didn't drink at all on the 2007 cruise I took with my then 14-year old son. But in 2.5 months I will cruise with my mom, and I will have my1 glass of wine with dinner every night and probably enjoy 1 iced mixed drink like a pina colada or marguarita during the day.

Luanne Russo January 5th, 2010 01:28 PM

If you like beer, then your best bet is to buy it by the bucket. Take it to your room, and your room steward will keep your bucket filled with ice.

If one of you or both drink soda, then purchase a soda card. For a four day cruise it is 24.00. If you only drink one or two a day, then you would be wise to purchase indiviually.

Welcome to Cruisemates and welcome to cruising


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