If you’re considering booking a Carnival cruise, you’re probably wondering if the drinks package is right for you.
In this ultimate guide to Carnival cruise drink packages, we’ll break down everything you need to know before making your decision. From the different package options to the drinks included in each, we have all the info you need to make the best choice for your vacation.
We’ll break down all the options so you can make the best decision for your vacation. Cheers!
Carnival Drink Prices
Before discussing the price and features of Carnival’s drink packages, it’s essential to understand the cost of drinks onboard the ship.
When deciding whether or not to purchase the drink package, it is a good idea to calculate how much you would be spending if you bought the individual drinks rather than the package. Knowing the prices before you cruise can help you decide if purchasing a drink package makes financial sense. Sometimes, you’ll spend less money when buying drinks individually.
Here are the average prices for drinks on a Carnival cruise:
|Beer||$6.00 – $8.00|
|Wine||$8.00 to $14.00|
|Mixed Drinks||$7.00 to $20.00|
|Specialty Coffee||$2.00 – $5.00|
|Bottled Water||$1.25 – $5.00|
Carnival Drink Packages
Carnival Cruise Line offers a simple choice between two drink packages.
Carnival’s straightforward approach to their beverage packages makes it easy to choose the best package for your needs. It comes down to whether or not you drink alcohol.
The CHEERS! package is known as the “all-inclusive drink package” because it includes virtually every drink onboard the ship, up to a $20 value. In contrast, Bottomless Bubbles is Carnival’s non-alcoholic beverage package.
|Cruise Length||Bought Ahead||Bought Ahead with Gratuity||Bought on Ship||Bought on Ship With Gratuity|
|3-4 Day Cruise||$54.95/day||$64.84/day||$59.95/day||$70.74/day|
|5+ Day Cruise||$51.95/day||$61.30/day||$56.95/day||$67.20/day|
CHEERS! Beverage Package
CHEERS! starts at $51.95 per person per day of the cruise, plus an 18% gratuity at the time of purchase. If you pre-purchase the Cheers package, you’ll save 10% compared to buying it online. The package can be pre-purchased until 10:00 pm the night before you embark on the cruise ship.
Carnival’s CHEERS! beverage package is perhaps the most inclusive drink package offered among mainstream cruise lines.
Not only are there minimal drink restrictions, but the maximum drink price is $20 (much higher than the maximum purchase price most drink packages cover.)
Carnival is one of the few cruise lines to enforce a drink limit on alcoholic beverages.
Passengers can purchase a maximum of 15 alcoholic beverages in a 24-hour period, from 6 am to 6 am.
The drink purchase limit is a common complaint among Carnival passengers. But in our experience, most people won’t ever reach the 15-drink limit.
What’s Included in the CHEERS! Drink Package
But, the wide range of beverages covered in the package is usually not mentioned in online message boards.
According to Carnival’s website, the following drinks are included in Carnival’s CHEERS! beverage package:
- All spirits, cocktails, beer, and wine by the glass with a $20.00 or lower menu price
- Sodas, specialty coffee, Zero-Proof frozen cocktails, hot tea, energy drinks, 500ml bottled water, and other non-alcoholic bottled beverages
- Bottled water in the Dining Room and Specialty Restaurants
- Milkshakes (where available)
- 25% discount off the menu price for any spirit or wine by the glass above $20.00
- 25% discount off the menu price for wine and champagne by the bottle
- 25% discount off beverage seminars and classes
What is Excluded from the CHEERS! Beverage Package?
Although the Carnival CHEERS! drink package is very inclusive, but there are some restrictions. For example, the drink package doesn’t include mini bar or room service purchases.
Interestingly, Carnival’s website lists “food items” as an exclusion. Something that should seem evident from the term “beverage package.”
The CHEERS! package doesn’t include the following:
- Beverages promoted and sold in souvenir glasses
- Bottles of liquor
- Drinks offered on the gangway
- Beverages purchased through room service, minibars, or in-stateroom beverage programs
- Sharing cocktails, pitchers, buckets, floaters, and tubes
- Self-serve wine from the Enomatic wine machines
- All other beverage-related programs, including merchandise, cigars, and cigarettes
- Drinks purchased at port or private islands, including Princess Cays and Half Moon Cay
- Food items
Bottomless Bubbles Unlimited Soda Program
Bottomless Bubbles is Carnival Cruise Line’s unlimited soda and refreshment beverage package.
Passengers who purchase the package get all-you-can-drink soda and juice for the entire length of your cruise.
The Bottomless Bubbles package starts at $5.95 per child per day or $8.50 per adult per person per day, plus an 18% gratuity at purchase. With the soda package, you get unlimited fountain soda by the glass (16 oz) and juice by the glass (10 oz).
This drink package does not include bottled water, hot drinks, room service, mini bar, drinks offered at the gangway, or alcoholic drinks.
To purchase the drink package for your next Carnival cruise, visit: https://www.carnival.com/drink-packages/bottomless-bubbles-package/
How to Get a Discount on the Drink Package
Carnival’s drink packages rarely, if ever, go on sale. Not to say that they will never go on sale in the future, but we’ve never seen them sell at a discount.
If you know you will purchase the package, we recommend purchasing the package before your cruise begins.
When you pre-purchase the package, you save 10%, which can add up to more than $50 over a week-long cruise.
You can pre-purchase the beverage package up to 10:00 pm the night before your cruise begins and take advantage of the savings.
Are Carnival’s Drinks Packages Worth It?
Generally speaking, the CHEERS! drink package is worth the price if you drink six or more alcoholic beverages, juices, or soft drinks per day.
However, the exact number depends on the cost of the drinks you order.
If you’re considering purchasing a drink package, it’s best to do the math to make sure it makes financial sense. For most passengers, we think you’ll actually spend less money when you purchase individual drinks.
One often forgotten consideration is whether you will be getting off the ship at ports of call. While exploring the port, you won’t be visiting the poolside bar to purchase drinks throughout the day, but you will still be paying for the drink package.
There are many factors to consider when purchasing a drinks package. You must consider your drinking preferences, how much time you will spend on the ship, and the drinking habits of your travel companions.
If you’re on the fence and aren’t sure whether the drink package is right for you, check out our full article: Is the drink package worth it on a cruise ship?
Carnival Drink Package FAQs
Is There A Daily Limit Of How Many Drinks You Can Order?
Yes. Carnival allows passengers to purchase up to 15 alcoholic drinks in a 24-hour period (from 6:00 am to 6:00 am).
There is no limit to the number of non-alcoholic drinks you can order, so drink all the soft drinks and juice you want!
How Many Drinks Can You Buy at One Time?
You can order only one drink at a time when using your beverage package.
Can the Drink Packages be Used at Carnival's Private Islands?
No, passengers cannot use Carnival’s drink packages at either of their private islands; Princess Cays and Half Moon Cay.
Any drinks purchased at the private islands are charged back to your Sail & Sign card.
Does Carnival Have a Specialty Coffee Package?
Unlike some cruise lines, Carnival does not offer a Specialty Coffee Package.
The CHEERS! drink package includes specialty coffees. Or they can be purchased separately, priced between $1.95 to $4.50.
Regular coffee and hot tea are free and can be found in the main dining room, buffet, or room service.
Does Bottomless Bubbles Include Coffee?
Carnival’s Bottomless Bubbles drink package only includes sodas and juices. You won’t be able to use your Bottomless Bubbles package for specialty coffee.
But, if you upgrade to the CHEERS! package, you will be able to use it for specialty coffee and alcohol, along with sodas and juices.
Can I Use The Dinks Package In The Restaurants?
Yes. You can use your drinks package in complimentary dining venues and specialty restaurants on the ship.
Do I Have to Buy the Drink Package for the Entire Cruise?
You must purchase the drinks package for the entire cruise. You cannot buy the package for individual days.
The only exemption to this policy is for Carnival cruises that depart from New York or Texas when you aren’t allowed to use the drink package on the first day of the cruise.
Can Just One Person Buy the Drink Package?
Carnival’s policy mandates that if one adult purchases the drinks package, all adults sharing the stateroom must purchase the same package.
If one adult in the stateroom cannot drink for medical or religious reasons, you can call Carnival and ask for an exemption. Exemptions aren’t guaranteed, but we have met passengers who didn’t have to purchase the drink package for their travel companion.
Can I Share the Drink Package?
You cannot share either Carnival drink package. Carnival mandates that every adult sharing a cabin must purchase the same drink package to prevent sharing.
If a cruise ship employee catches you sharing the drink package with other passengers, the cruise line will cancel your package without a refund.
Are Wine And Champagne By The Bottle Included In The Drinks Package?
No. Wine and champagne by the bottle are not included in the drink package.
But, guests can purchase bottles of wine or champagne at a 25% discount as part of the package.
Can I Bring Drinks on a Carnival Cruise?
Each adult can bring one 750ml bottle of wine or champagne in their carry-on luggage on embarkation day.
Further, guests can bring 12 sealed, unopened cans or cartons of non-alcoholic beverages.
You can consume the wine or champagne in your stateroom. But, if you want to drink it at a bar or restaurant, you will be charged a corkage fee of $15 per bottle.
Can You Get Free Drinks in the Casino?
When you play in the casino, you earn casino points. After collecting the required points, you’ll receive a “Drink On Us” card, which allows you to get free drinks while playing.
You’ll earn one casino point for every $2.50 you play on the slot machine.
Once you accumulate 1500 points, you’ll receive the “Drink On Us” card. So, you’ll need to spend $3750 at the Carnival casino to get free drinks. And once you accumulate 5000 points, you’ll also receive a Drink On Us card for your next Carnival cruise vacation.
It’s important to note that the Drink On Us card only grants you free drinks while you are actively gambling. And, considering the time spent preparing, serving, and drinking your beverage, you’ll likely spend far more gambling than the cost of the drink.
Do Carnival cruise ships serve Coke or Pepsi?
Carnival cruise ships serve Pepsi and other PepsiCo sodas such as Mountain Dew and Bubly.
You won’t find Coke or Coca-cola beverages on a Carnival cruise. Since January 2020, only Pepsi and PepsiCo drinks are available on Carnival.
Is the Carnival CHEERS Package Refundable?
If you purchase the Cheers package before your cruise but decide you no longer need it, you can get a refund up to 9:00 pm the night before your cruise vacation begins.
After that time, the drink package is no longer refundable.