P&O Cruises Australia has this week launched its very first alcoholic drinks package, currently being trialled onboard Pacific Pearl. The package is expected to be available on cruises of seven nights or longer and, if it’s a success, will be rolled out across the full fleet.

Priced at A$69 per adult per day, the package includes wine, beer, spirits and cocktails up to the value of A$12, plus bottles water, soft drinks, coffee and tea. The package is similar to that available on other lines sailing out of Australia and is “in line with the growing quality and sophistication of the cruise product,” according to a P&O spokesperson.

P&O introduced a A$7 per day soft drink package earlier this year.

Fans of Pacific Pearl have told Cruise Passenger that it’s great value for money.

Katie Quinn said, “If you drink 7 cocktails a day then definitely worth it.”

While Gary McPherson said, “Haven’t tried it, but I spend $100 a night on drinks on a cruise, so it would be a saving for me.”

So how does the package compare to those available on other ships in the region?

Royal Caribbean

The Royal Replenish non-alcoholic package is US$20 (A$28.50) per person per day and includes premium tea and coffee, bottled water, fresh squeezed orange juice, non-alcoholic cocktails and soft drink. The Select Package is US$40 (A$57) per person per day and includes beer, wine by the glass up to $9, non-alcoholic cocktails and soft drink. The Premium Package is US$55 (A$78.50) per person per day and includes house spirits, premium and frozen cocktails, beer, wine by the glass up to $14, non-alcoholic cocktails, bottled water and soft drink. If you want to go all out, The Ultimate Package is US$65 (A$92.70) per person per day and includes virtually anything you would like to drink.

Celebrity Cruises

A Classic Non-Alcoholic Package starts from A$25.56 per person per night and includes soft drink, fresh and bottled juices, premium tea and coffee, and bottled water. The next step up is the Premium-Non-Alcoholic Package starting from A$31.24 per person per night, which includes soft drink, premium bottled water, specialty tea and coffee, non-alcoholic frozen drinks and smoothies, Red Bull and Vitamin Water. There are also two alcoholic packages available: Classic and Premium. The Classic Package is priced from A$78.10 per person per night and includes beer up to $6; spirits, cocktails, liqueurs and frozen drinks up to $8 and wine by the glass up to $9. For A$92.30 per person per night the Premium Package gives you beers, top shelf spirits, cocktails and wine by the glass up to $13. Both packages also give a discount of wine by the bottle, including those from the Reserve and Rare lists.

Princess Cruises

Princess has two non-alcoholic packages available: an unlimited soft drink package priced at US$5.18 per person per day and a premium package at US$8.05 per person per day that also includes mocktails, juice and hot chocolate. The All-Inclusive Beverage Package available on Australian cruises is priced at A$59 per person per day and is available on all voyages of eight nights or longer. It includes any cocktail, beer or wine up to A$14, plus bottled water, soft drink and specialty coffees.

Carnival Cruise Line

At this stage, Carnival doesn’t offer any alcoholic beverage packages on its ships out of Australia (though they are available on the international fleet). The Bottomless Bubbles package includes unlimited soft drinks and juice for A$7.25 per day for adults and A$5.50 per day for children.

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