SimonCommunity
Moderator
Contributor Level: Captain

"Free" Drinks coming to Norwegian Sky in 2016

It's true... Norwegian Cruise Lines will offer free alcoholic and soft drinks on Norwegian Sky starting in 2016. Cruise Radio shares the news:  http://cruiseradio.net/free-drinks-on-norwegian-sky-in-2016/

But is "free" really free? Let's compare:

For cruises in May 2015, prices begin at $269 for 3 nights and $219 for 4 nights.  

http://cruiseline.com/cruise/best/month/2015-05-01T00:00:00Z?fq%5Blocation_name%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Bport_departure_name%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Blength%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Bcruiseline_name%5D%5B%5D=Norwegian+Cruise+Line&fq%5Bship_name%5D%5B%5D=Norwegian+Sky

 

For Cruises in May 2016, prices begin at $349 for 3 nights and $389 for 4 nights.

http://cruiseline.com/cruise/best/month/2016-05-01T00:00:00Z?fq%5Blocation_name%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Bport_departure_name%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Blength%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Bcruiseline_name%5D%5B%5D=Norwegian+Cruise+Line&fq%5Bship_name%5D%5B%5D=Norwegian+Sky

 

In December 2015, 3 & 4 night cruises start at $209

http://cruiseline.com/cruise/best/month/2015-12-01T00:00:00Z?fq%5Blocation_name%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Bport_departure_name%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Blength%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Bcruiseline_name%5D%5B%5D=Norwegian+Cruise+Line&fq%5Bship_name%5D%5B%5D=Norwegian+Sky

 

In January 2016, 3 night cruises start at $289 and 4 night cruises at $339

http://cruiseline.com/cruise/best/month/2016-01-01T00:00:00Z?fq%5Blocation_name%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Bport_departure_name%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Blength%5D%5B%5D=all&fq%5Bcruiseline_name%5D%5B%5D=Norwegian+Cruise+Line&fq%5Bship_name%5D%5B%5D=Norwegian+Sky

 

That's a per person per night increase ranging from $20 to $42, depending on the cruise length and sail date.

 

Not quite free, but a trip to the bar can easily come with a $6-$12 charge per drink, so if you're planning on consuming 2-3 drinks per day, chances are you'll at least break even.

 

The weekend sailings from Miami are considered by many to be "party cruises," so if you're coming aboard to let loose, you'll likely come out ahead.

But if you don't drink, you'll be paying for alcohol you won't be drinking and with an open bar, the party may be a bit more raucous than it would be otherwise.

 

What do you think? Will this make you more or less likely to sail on Norwegian Sky for a short cruise out of Miami? Do you think this will expand to other cruise lines or other ships?

 

Tags: Norwegian Cruise Line Drinks Norwegian Sky Inclusive

19 Answers

glomarrone
Contributor Level: Admiral

I usually just drink wine with dinner but if the alcohol was free, of course, I would drink more especially soft drinks if I was paying more for the cruise.  No, I would not specifically take this cruise because of the new policy.  I wonder if you might see more poor behavior on this ship? I think it would be nice to include complimentary soft drinks on cruise ships, though.  Hopeful the free drinks may spread to other ships and cruise lines but not the higher prices.

texassea
Contributor Level: Cruise Director

I hope not because I don't drink. I'm sipping sparkling cucumber beverage right now. LOL Not a benefit for those who don't or can't drink.

Bubba54
Contributor Level: Captain

I would not book the Sky just for the free drinks. The prices rises to give you the alcohol then it's not really free. 

JusMe
Moderator
Contributor Level: Captain

I do enjoy a drink or two,  maybe three,  but I would not want to be on a ship with free unlimited drinks for everyone on board.   I bet the 3 night cruises will be party central with young drinkers getting plastered and then getting sick.  The free soda would be nice,  but I'm good with drinking water or ice tea (less sugar). 

CruiselineQ
Contributor Level: Cruise Director

Have to give Norwegian credit for trying something new.

I'm sure the bartenders will 'cut off' people who are over indulging. Won't they?? NervousSurprised

Johngold
Moderator
Contributor Level: Captain

What about the per drink gratuity? Does the package include the drinks at the pay restaurants? How about room service? Mini Bars.

On the surface if I'm booking a 10 + day cruise, this may be an option over the booze package. But more research is needed. At least as far as I'm concerned. I will be watching this one.

MrChocoholic
Contributor Level: Captain

I absolutely positively can not WAIT to take my next trip on the "Sky." Because buying the unlimited drink package isn't practical for everyone in a cabin, this is a great way for NCL to stuff drinks down people's gullets while reaching in their wallets for everything else. The more drinks you get into someone, the more they spend in the onboard shops, the casino, and if you get them at the right moment--even to spend more at Le Bistro than in the MDR. 

For me personally I know I'll be saving money on drinks which I am going to turn around and spend in the spa. 

 

garsny
Contributor Level: Cruise Director

I like a nice red wine with dinner. Maybe an after dinner cordial sometimes.I just hope one won't have to wait forever to get served.Wonder if the service charge is included.

askeegan
Contributor Level: Cruise Director

We booked with the Sky for October but dropped them as they dropped one port of call.  This ship will likely be well know for the Party Boat.  Free drinks but Gravol in the shops will increase in price!  Can you say Spring Break forever??

 

Personally I would consume more if they were free but not to the point of making myself stupid.  According to my wife, I do not need booze for that!  LOL

meghad23
Contributor Level: Captain

I know for my BF, he always has to get a soda package and for me, I do a drink package. I think if the price of flight and ground transportation gives me a SIGNIFICANT dip (like a grand or more) I would consider going on a NCL cruise... Anything is possible. 

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