Last Updated on January 14, 2021
Don’t want to worry about paying for every drink or want to make your cruise more like an all-inclusive resort? Then Carnival’s Cheers package might be for you. The Cheers package is their “unlimited” drink add-on that you can purchase for your cruise. I use “unlimited” because it is capped at 15 alcoholic drinks per day.
What drinks are included for free on a Carnival Cruise?
As part of your cruise fare, you can get non-bottled water, lemonade, unsweetened ice tea, standard coffee, hot chocolate, and juices (in the morning only usually). You’ll have to pay extra if you want any alcoholic beverages or non-alcoholic beverages like soda, energy drinks, premium coffees, milkshakes, and bottled water.
What drinks are included in the Carnival Cheers Package?
The Cheers package gives you access to all beer, wine by the glass, spirits, and cocktails under $20. A majority of the drinks in their bars are under this $20 limit, including drinks from their very popular Alchemy Bar. You are limited to 15 of these drinks per day though.
On top of that, the package gives you unlimited soda, zero-proof frozen cocktails, energy drinks, specialty coffee, and bottled water.
For any liquor or win over $20, you receive a 25% discount off the menu price. You will also receive a 25% discount off full bottles of wine or champagne.
What is not included in the Cheers Package?
Specialty cocktails in souvenir glasses (like the kind they pass around on the pool deck when you board) are excluded from the Cheers Package. You can still get those drinks, but you have to request them in a regular glass. The plan also excludes full bottles of liquor or sharable drinks/pitchers.
Unlike some other cruise lines, you cannot use your Cheers package on Carnival’s Private Islands (Half Moon Cay and Princess Cay). If you purchase drinks on those islands, you will be paying full price.
How much does the Carnival Cheers Package cost?
The Cheers package is $59.95 a day for 3 – 4 day cruises and $56.95 a day for 5+ day cruises. On top of this, you will have to pay an 18% gratuity. If you think you’re going to get the package, purchase it before your cruise and save an additional 10%. All adults over the age of 21+ must who are in the same cabin must get the drink package.
|Length of Cruise||Pre-Purchase |
Total Daily Cost (including tax)
|Onboard Purchase |
Total Daily Cost (including tax)
|3-4 Day Cruise||$64.84||$70.74|
|5+ Day Cruise||$61.30||$67.20|
What is the fine print?
There are a few fine print details to know about the Cheers program. For cruises leaving from Galveston and New York City, the package doesn’t work on the first day due to local laws about unlimited liquor packages. In that case, you will pay per drink on day 1 and have the drink package for the rest of the cruise. You’ll be charged for one less day as well (so for a 6-day cruise, you’ll be charged for 5 days).
The package caps your alcoholic drink purchases at 15 per day. It’s measured as 6am – 6 am (so don’t hope for a reset at midnight). The sodas, coffees, waters, and juices that are included are unlimited, though. You also have to wait 5 minutes in between ordering drinks, which is meant to stop you from sharing.
What are the normal drink prices on a Carnival Cruise Ship?
Carnival has some of the lowest drink prices in the cruise industry, 30% lower than Royal Caribbean on average, and 15% cheaper than Norwegian. The pricing can vary if Carnival is testing new pricing or menus, but here is an idea of standard drink prices onboard most Carnival ships leaving from the US and Puerto Rico.
Average Prices of Drinks on a Carnival Cruise Ship
- Beer: $6.50 (plus 18% tip)
- Glass of wine: $10.00 (plus 18% tip)
- Frozen drinks: $9.50 (plus 18% tip)
- Cocktails: $10.95 (plus 18% tip)
- Soda: $2.50 (plus 18% tip)
- Gourmet coffees: $4.00 (plus 18% tip)
- Bottled water: $1.50 (plus 18% tip)
You can see some menu prices below
Is the Carnival Cheers package worth it?
There are a few reasons you could want the Cheers package…convivence, peace of mind, cost savings. This decision is totally up to you. Do you like to pay upfront for everything and not worry about any charges onboard? Do you drink a lot of high-end liquor or cocktails? Do you want to have a drink whenever you want without worrying about the cost? Then this package may be right for you.
If you want to save money, it depends on what you drink and how much. You can use our helpful calculator to see how much you’d save by using the drink package.
Personally, I have never purchased the Cheers package. To me, the financial aspect is most important. While I would get a few alcoholic drinks every day, it would never equal the amount the Cheers package would cost. Everyone is different, though, so try out our calculator to see what makes sense for you.
Does the Cheers package ever go on sale?
Carnival rarely offers a sale or promotion on the Cheers package. They will take 10% off the cost if you purchase it before you get on board, but otherwise, the package doesn’t usually see any discounts.
In response to COVID, they have been trying to offer a cruise fare that will include the drink package for 2, but look at the options carefully. To get this offer, you end up paying more for the cruise than you would otherwise. You have to do the math to see if it’s beneficial to you.