One of the most frequently asked questions on cruises is, “How can I smuggle alcohol on board?” Beers and pina coladas by the pool, wine at dinner, and craft cocktails as a nightcap are typical cruise vacation pastimes, but the prices of drinks on board are high. So budget travelers are forced to look elsewhere. Most cruise lines allow 1-2 bottles of wine on board, but additional beer, liqueurs and other alcoholic beverages are also prohibited on board.

These policies make sense from a business perspective, but they lead to some kind of black market. There, a cruiser buys a gimmick for smuggling alcohol onto a cruise ship. It hides or puts the actual contents in a container. It’s an arms race between creative cruisers looking for illegal ways to smuggle liquor, and on-board and port security teams tasked with finding and destroying the smuggled alcohol.

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If you are tempted to smuggle alcohol on your cruise, TPG strongly recommends that you reconsider your plans and follow the cruise company’s rules. Not only are you frowned upon if you break the rules, but there are consequences if you are caught. Here are five reasons why you should avoid smuggling alcohol on your next cruise.

your alcohol will be confiscated

If alcohol is found smuggled on board, port and cruise security have the right to remove the alcohol and do not have to return it.

“Hard liquor, beer and other forms of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, with the exceptions noted above, are strictly prohibited (in both carry-on and checked baggage) and such items will be confiscated and It will be scrapped. Compensation will be provided.” carnival cruise lineOur Conditions of Carriage are the rules that all passengers agree to follow when booking a cruise.

Related: Can You Bring Alcohol On A Cruise Ship? A Line-by-Line Guide

Royal Caribbean I have a similar policy. “Security guards may inspect containers (water bottles, soda bottles, mouthwash, luggage, etc.) and dispose of containers containing alcohol,” Line’s online FAQ clarifies.

Get caught – yes, guards know where cruisers want to stash their booze – and any attempt to save money could be a waste of money if you never see your alcohol again .

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you are called

Travelers who are brazen enough to disregard the rules may not mind being called out to explain their misdeeds, but they know it happens. In some cases (not port security), you may be called into the crew area to “admit a rule violation and be lectured on the ship’s alcohol policy.”

“If the package is locked, it will be held by security until it is unlocked or witnessed for inspection and the offending item is further identified and/or handed over,” it said. . on Princess Cruises passenger contract.

Don’t want to be embarrassed to be caught? Follow the rules and don’t try to smuggle more beverages on board than you are allowed.

miss the bar scene

Jim Hughes/Norwegian Cruise Line

A fun part of drinking on a cruise ship is checking out all the different bars, sampling classic and craft cocktails, and bantering with the bartenders and other patrons. If you’re going to drink only your own smuggled liquor, you’ll have to toast your companions in your cabin or sneak around the ship’s dark corners with flasks. Don’t miss the best cruise her nightlife just because you don’t want to pay cruise ship fare for drinks.

Related: 15 best cruise ship bars

may be kicked out of the ship

More seriously, smuggling alcohol onto a cruise ship can get you kicked out. This is especially true for minors who smuggle alcoholic beverages to participate in underage drinking, or adults who smuggle alcohol onto cruise ships under the legal drinking age.

“Guests who violate our alcohol policy (overdose, serve alcohol to anyone under the age of 21, act irresponsibly, or attempt to hide alcohol at security or baggage checkpoints) will be disembarked. Or you may not be allowed to board, at your own expense,” read Royal Caribbean’s online FAQ.

I don’t want to risk ruining my long-awaited vacation and losing all the money I invested in the cruise for a few drinks.

Related: 6 cruise mistakes that can ruin your vacation in seconds

Miss Out On The Best Beverage Package Prices

Attempts to smuggle alcohol on a cruise can be unsuccessful. Or maybe he simply can’t carry enough alcohol to last a week. Inevitably, you will be purchasing drinks on board. Perhaps even a drink package. You missed the best time to buy, and the lack of forethought makes it costly. Cruise Line Beverage Package.

Many routes offer discounts on beverage packages purchased online before your cruise ship departs. Once on board, the price goes up. If you plan to drink a lot, rather than smuggling alcohol on board, it’s a good idea to sign up for an all-inclusive beverage package while you can get pre-cruise discounts.


Drinking on a cruise ship is not cheap entertainment. Also, on the cheapest cruises, you might spend as much on alcohol as you do on the cruise fare. However, the risks of smuggling alcohol on a plane outweigh the possible benefits. Especially since they are more likely to get caught and have their contraband confiscated. Playing by the rules can cost you a few dollars more, but it’s worth it to enjoy everything a cruise ship has to offer without worrying about getting caught or disembarking.

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