Carnival Increasing Drink Prices for 2024

The internet has been busy following along on the exciting inaugural sailing of the new Carnival Jubilee. Pictures and videos of the impressive new ship have been flooding social media. But one overlooked aspect of the sailing is the new bar prices on this ship. Based on the new bar menus, it looks like Carnival will be increasing their drink prices for 2024. 

dr inks bar on carnival jubilee

Carnival Jubilee’s new bars’ drinks cost $14 each

The Jubilee has two brand-new bars. Dr. Inks, Ph.D. replaces The Fortune Teller Bar and Latitudes, found on Jubilee’s sister ships. This bar is in the Currents zone and offers unique and elevated cocktails, including color-changing drinks and one with an aromatic bubble. 

carnival Dr Inks Bar page 1

The Golden Mermaid replaces the sister ships’ Brass Magnolia and Golden Jubilee bars. It features cocktails inspired by precious gemstones and metals. Cocktails here are made with edible glitter, presented in pretty glassware, and adorned with graceful garnishes for an elevated experience.

carnival golden mermaid bar menu

According to the menus, a cocktail at one of these bars costs $14; the highest Carnival has ever charged for a standard menu cocktail. Because Carnival charges an automatic 18% gratuity for every beverage purchased onboard, the actual price is $16.52 per drink.  

8% Increase at Alchemy Bar

The bars above are unique to the Jubilee, making it hard to compare pricing to that of Carnival’s other ships. But one venue that is perfect for this comparison is Carnival’s Alchemy Bar. It’s available on nearly every ship in the fleet and serves favorites like the Cucumber Sunrise (see recipe) and Spicy Pineapple Martini (see recipe). This bar used to have the highest-priced cocktails, making it a good barometer for how prices will change. 

carnival jubilee alchemy bar
Cocktails at the Alchemy Bar on the Jubilee are now $14.

According to the menus seen at the Alchemy Bar on the Jubilee, the cocktails at the Alchemy Bar are also increasing to $14 per cocktail. That’s a $1 increase per drink or 8% higher. Non-alcoholic versions of these cocktails increased by a more modest 5%. 

alchemy bar drink menu page 1
alchemy bar drink menu page 2

Java Blue Cafe has the biggest increase

carnival java blue cafe
Milkshakes at Java Blue Cafe increased by 25%

Oddly, the largest price increases we’ve seen are not for alcohol. The milkshakes available at Java Blue Cafe on the Jubilee now cost $6.75, 25% more expensive than previous pricing. Bottled water has increased to $2.25 per bottle, which may seem reasonable, but it is a 50% increase over previous pricing. 

java blue cafe menu

Other beverages at Java Blue have also gone up. A Cafe Latte increases by 14%, while a spiked coffee increases by 17% to $8.75. 

Other Carnival drinks increase by 3-4%

For most other drinks across the ship, the new pricing is 3-4% higher than before. A domestic beer costs $7.75, while a craft beer costs $8.25. 

red frog tiki bar
Drinks at the RedFrog Tiki Bar mostly increased 2-4%

At the RedFrog Tiki Bar, drinks like the Mango Magic and Rum Jumper increased by 2% and 4%, respectively. The Mai Tai increased the most, by 9% to $12. 

So far, the Cheers package is not going up

At the time of this publication, Carnival has not yet announced an increase in the Cheers Drink Package. The price is $69.95 per day for sailings five days or less and $59.95 for sailings six days or more. Carnival just increased the cost of Cheers for 5-day or shorter sailings this October, so it may be some time before they readjust the pricing. 

With drink prices going up and the Cheers package staying the same, it means the drink package is a better value than it was previously. 

Is the drink package worth it for you? Use our drink package calculator to find out. 

New prices will likely roll out across the Carnival fleet

We can expect these new prices to roll out over the next two months based on previous menu roll-outs. We saw a similar pattern in early 2023 with most ships having the new pricing by March. 

How Carnival’s prices compare to other cruise lines

Carnival’s drink prices are higher, but how does that compare to its competitors? Overall, this increase puts Carnival in line with Royal Caribbean’s pricing for cocktails. The pricing is still higher than Norwegian, but it should be noted a majority of guests on Norwegian choose the “Free Open Bar” package that comes with the booking, meaning the list price is rarely paid. 

CarnivalRoyal CaribbeanNorwegian
Domestic Beer$9.15$8.85$8.40
Bottle Water$2.66$2.66$5.40
Average Price (including gratuity)

The pricing means that two adults having just one cocktail a night at Alchemy Bar would spend an extra $231 over the course of a 7-day cruise. 

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Randy Young

Randy Young is the founder and editor-in-chief at Cruise Spotlight. He has been in marketing for 19 years and has been cruising for just as long. Over the years, he's worked with products like TVs, copiers, light bulbs, and EV chargers, but cruising has always been his passion. There's nothing Randy likes more than the first couple of hours on a ship, exploring every nook and cranny and seeing how it's different from everything else out there. He's known for providing detailed and analytical coverage of cruising to help cruisers get a comprehensive picture of a ship's offerings.