Is your next vacation a cruise? If you love the water, around-the-clock activity options at your fingertips, and plenty of shore excursion opportunities, you're in for a treat.
But even though cruises can be a great way to see many destinations in one trip, and are often times wallet-friendly, things like alcohol, wifi, and on-board entertainment can really add up. Well, here's a savvy way to save that you may not have considered: Pack a bottle of wine in your carry-on luggage. While policies vary amongst cruise lines, many allow guests to bring one or two unopened bottles of wine when they embark on the ship for the first time (unfortunately, the same rule doesn't apply for beer and hard liquor).
We checked the policies of Norwegian, Carnival, and Royal Caribbean, and here's what we found. Norwegian Cruise Line states that "...guests may bring sealed bottles of wine on board for personal consumption. They will be checked prior to embarkation and a corkage fee applied at that time of $15.00 USD for a 750 ml Bottle or $30.00 USD for a 1,500 ml Magnum bottle."
On Royal Caribbean International, their website explains that "[g]uests may bring personal wine and champagne on-board only in their carry-on luggage on boarding day, limited to two (2) 750 ml bottles per stateroom." There is a $15 corkage fee per bottle.
Carnival Cruise Line has a similar policy, stating "At the beginning of the cruise during embarkation day only, guests (21 years of age and older) may bring one 750 ml bottle of sealed/unopened wine or champagne per person in their carry-on luggage." A $15 corkage fee per bottle applies. Of course, check the policy of your cruise line before throwing in your favorite bottle of sparkling wine or merlot in your bag.
Since buying wine aboard cruise ships can be pricey, packing your own can be a great way to cut back on all those miscellaneous fees that can add up during your trip. Don't forget to pack a bottle opener!