Cruising for a Boozing: The “Wrong” Sort of Cruisers?

March 6, 2015

After the announcement of further ‘all you can drink’ offers being launched on a number of popular cruise ships, it has left some of us wondering; do all inclusive packages attract the ‘wrong sort’ to cruising?

Chris Sorek, chief executive of website expressed concerns about the reasonably cheap all inclusive drink packages. He said:  “Drinkaware recommends that people stay within 3-4 units a day (equivalent to a pint and a half of lager) and women within 2-3 units a day (equivalent to a 175ml glass of wine).”

“Some offers can make it difficult to keep track of what you’re drinking which may have some serious long and short term effects. Customers who sign up to these drink offers would need to consume around five or six beers – the equivalent of 10-12 units a day to make the offer worthwhile.”

“Regularly drinking to excess can increase the chances of health conditions like liver damage, infertility, some cancers and depression.”

With the result of Cruise holiday prices becoming ever more competitive, cruise ships increased their drink prices considerably in order to make more money. After hearing the news that cruise lines have now introduced cheaper package deals, it left alcohol awareness campaigners questioning whether cruise lines have got their guests best interest at heart.

Some beverage packages may encouraging guests to drink as much as they want throughout the duration of their cruise, with prices starting from as little as $11.95 a day!

Here are some of the most popular cruise lines offers;

Azamara Club cruises have a variety of different packages for guests to choose from. In 2013, the line introduced an offer that meant they would get their first 5 drinks for free when they purchased a beverage package option. The packages included Beer, Liquor and a total saving of 25% on premium wines!

Costa cruises have announced that all adults 18+ are allegeable to all inclusive Wines and Beers from €19.50 per person.

MSC cruises have started promoting multiple packages including unlimited wines, cocktails and beers for $22.50 a day.

Celebrity cruises have announced their package as ‘the ultimate in value and convenience’, as drink deals start at £20.75 and rise all the way up to an £89 per night Captain’s Package.

Despite alcohol campaigners concerns that guests will consume more than what’s weekly recommended, there are no complaints or reports of drunken and disorderly behaviour, which begs the question, do alcohol awareness campaigners have the right to be worried?

Scott Steenrod, a spokesman for the food and beverages operation from Celebrity defended the packages when he announced:

“We knew that number one customers were interested in drinks packages.”

“Customers who opt for the beer package are able to enjoy a cold beer throughout the duration of their cruise by simply showing a marked pass card to the barman.”

“We know people like the opportunity to bundle things together and also like the added convenience of getting on-board with one less thing to worry about.”


Could you argue that the drinks packages are open to those who are aware of what the consequences may be? Or do you think that the cost makes the packages too easily accessible and might potentially create danger to guests on-board? Let us know in the comments below!