Can I Bring My Own Alcohol On A Cruise?

Can I bring My Own Alcohol On A Carnival Cruise

This is probably one of the most asked questions about cruising. The answer varies by cruise line, and we’ll be talking specifically about Carnival Cruise Line in this article.

What Is The Minimum Drinking Age For Carnival?

The minimum drinking age is 21 years of age on Carnival for all cruises leaving from the United States. If the drinking age at one of the ports is lower, guests can consume alcohol off-ship at that port only, if they are of age. For example, in Mexico the drinking age is 18. My daughter, who is 19, can drink in Mexico while in port, but cannot drink on the ship even while in Mexico. You can see a list of minimum drinking age by country here.

Why Would You Want To Bring Your Own Alcohol?

Most people want to bring their own alcohol for two reasons. First, alcohol is way more expensive on a cruise ship than on land. Second, some people have very specific brands of alcohol they enjoy and they’re not available on the ship.

So, Can I Bring My Own Or Not?

The short answer is no, you cannot bring your own alcohol on board. But, the answer is slightly more complicated than that.

You cannot bring your own hard alcohol on board. You also cannot bring beer on board. You can, however, bring one bottle of wine or champagne per adult in your party. Forget boxed wine or mega jugs, though. You can bring one 750-ml bottle and it must be sealed and carried with you in your carry-on luggage. Make sure it is completely sealed or they won’t let it past security.

Your wine or champagne can be consumed in your cabin or you can walk around with it in an insulated tumbler cup. If you want to take your bottles to a restaurant or bar, you will be charged a $15 corkage fee per bottle. If you’re drinking your bottles in your cabin, don’t forget to bring your own cork screw. Carnival will not provide you one and you’ll end up paying the corkage fee just to get your bottle opened. Or, better yet, bring screw top bottles.

Can I Bring Anything To Drink With Me?

Yes, you can bring a “small quantity” of packaged drinks in cans or cartons on board. A small quantity is defined as a maximum of 12 sealed, unopened cans or cartons or less per person. While you can’t bring water, sodas or anything else in bottles, you can get most items in cans/cartons. So, if you like a particular type of soda, energy drink or juice, you can bring one 12-pack per person on board as long as it’s packaged in cans or cartons.

How Can I Get My Own Bottles Of Hard Alcohol On The Ship?

The ship does have a duty-free liquor shop and the prices are reasonable. You cannot buy these bottles for consumption while on board though. If you buy bottles of alcohol from the duty-free shop during your cruise, they will keep them until the last evening or morning of your cruise. You can then collect any bottles purchased prior to getting off the ship.

You can, however, buy bottles of alcohol through The Fun Shops to be delivered to your cabin. The prices on these bottles are way more than they would be at a regular liquor store. For example, a 750-ml bottle of Tito’s vodka is $85. The same bottle at our local liquor shop is $21.99. Other example prices include: Bacardi for $85, Chambord for $85, Fireball for $90 and a 4-pack of Corona for $21.

But, I Don’t Want To Pay Ridiculous Prices For Drinks…

While the prices on the bottles is inflated, you may be able to save money on cruise drinks by buying a bottle and bringing your own soda mixers. A typical mixed drink on Carnival is between $10-$12. A full 750ml bottle or hard liquor equals 25 one ounce shots. That brings your price to $3.40 per shot on an $85 bottle.

If you pack your own soda and tumbler and mix the drinks in your cabin, you end up paying about 1/3 of the price. I should note, however, that you cannot take these bottles out of your cabin to public areas. You must keep it in your cabin and make drinks there. Your cabin steward will bring you ice if you require it.

Lots of other things aren’t allowed on your cruise. We’ve outlined them in this post.

Carnival’s full Liquor & Beverage Policy is located here.

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