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VICTOR BRIAN 08-06-2010 01:27 PM

1. If purchasing in advance of boarding are they a better deal than waiting to get on the ship before making an order?
2. Are price comparisons made against individual bottles so you can tell what is the best deal(bottle) to select?
3. What pre purchase information is given on selection? That is do you get advised on country of origin and actual alcohol volume content ineach bottle?

Dave 08-06-2010 01:33 PM

It is not any cheaper to do it on-line than on the ship. They have a pamphlet but it only has the levels of the packages and what wines are available in each tier by name of the wine. I suggest you wait until aboard the ship, where you can get more information and ask questions.

417rogers 08-07-2010 07:15 AM

We have previously purchased the "Gold Package" and have done so again for our upcoming cruise. A seven bottle package for us ran $207.00 (gratuity included). Here is a list of Gold Packages I found on RCI. I'm sure the selections change but this was very simular to our last cruise. Good luck.


Sparkling Wine
Korbel, Brut
White Wines
Pinot Grigio, Danzante
Venezie, Italy
Sauvignon Blanc, Caliterra
Central Valley, Chile
Chardonnay, Aussières Blanc by Barons de Rothschild - Lafite
Languedoc, France
Chardonnay, Castle Rock
Central Coast, California
White Zinfandel, Beringer

Red Wines
Merlot, Caliterra
Rapel, Chile
Malbec, Familia Rutini, “Trumpeter”
Mendoza, Argentina
Cabernet Sauvignon, Castle Rock
Paso Robles, California
Cabernet Sauvignon, Aussières Rouge by
Barons de Rothschild - Lafite
Languedoc, France
Shiraz, Peter Lehmann, “Weighbridge”
South Australia


VICTOR BRIAN 08-07-2010 03:22 PM

I appreciate that feedback. If there is no saving I will definitely wait until I am on board and get them to indicate the alcohol content and other questions.

VICTOR BRIAN 08-07-2010 03:26 PM

Thanks for feedback. I will wait until on board to get more details about the alcohol content etc. and then order as there appears to be no advantage doing it in advance.

Dave 08-07-2010 03:43 PM

Just so you know, Royal Caribbean doesn't have a dedicated wine staff anymore. No sommeliers. They were eliminated to cut costs. Wine service is done by your waiter in the dining room. This duty was dumped on them essentially, although they of course know a little bit about it from experience. Those selling the wine packages (and you'll see them at more than one location on embarkation day) are from the dining room staff. They usually have a table outside the Windjammer buffet restaurant.

VICTOR BRIAN 08-07-2010 04:01 PM

Thanks for further fedback. It is several years since I have used RCL so hard times if they have cut back on this knowledgeable sevice. I guess there will be no wine classes on this 30 day cruise!!

I can see I will have to task the conciege and see what homework s/he can deliver when posed with the questions!

Dave 08-07-2010 04:12 PM

They do have wine tastings, and if the ship has a wine bar you will find the bar staff there helpful. Some are better at it than others. Sadly, many cruise lines have eliminated dining room wine stewards.

It just hit me that I recall something about RCI rethinking the dining room wine service. Maybe it was bar service in general. But there was some discussion within the past year. That is another question for the concierge. I do specifically remember reading about taking the wine service off the waiter's list of duties. I just don't remember who would pick it up.

VICTOR BRIAN 08-07-2010 04:33 PM

This is the Mariner which we have travelled on once before when it was quite new and was very good. What will the Maitre Di be doing? I have found they vary so much on knowledge and helfulness across cruise lines. But surely they should be able to assist the novice as well.

Being a European I have always found that we drink more wine with our meals than the majority of our fellow cruisers from the USA.

Perhaps RCL should introduce competitions or quizzes for their passengers to see who has the best knowledge ... the staff or the passengers!

417rogers 08-07-2010 06:13 PM

Thanks for the info Dave did not know that about the wine service. Victor, we just like paying in advance and getting one more thing out of the way prior leaving. Not to picky with our the good stuff for home. Have fun on your trip...sounds like fun.

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