I am always planning for a cruise since I cruise at least once a year. This year's cruise is on the MSC Seaside. I've never cruised with MSC before and I am learning a lot! You can read about my initial post on Planning an MSC Seaside Cruise to get started.
We booked our cruise under the All-In Cruise deal which includes the Drinks on Us package and free wifi. Because we booked the Aurea experience, our drinks package is automatically upgraded to the Easy package (score!). We usually don't go for a drinks package because we're not big drinkers, but since they wanted to include it, why not? Free Wi-fi is a no-brainer, but one question I had was:
What's included in the Easy drink package?
We're used to taking our own wine onboard with us on other lines, but MSC does not allow this. Mom absolutely loves Moscato so the first task I had was to find out if Moscato was offered.
A quick Google search will provide you with MSC's new drink packages. It's a helpful document, but it still did not tell me if Moscato is served. I had to do a little more sleuthing.
Dedicated selection of house wines by the glass
I've gone into numerous Facebook Groups for MSC Fans and Cruise Critic forums but could not find anyone who had the answer to my question. It seemed simple enough:
What are the selection of house wines in the Easy drink package?
Most people were able to tell me it included two reds and two whites. That sounds great, but what was the white wine offered with the package? While nobody seemed to know the answer to the question, even those who had cruised MSC and drank wine and MSC's customer service reps, a simple Google search turned up the answer on MSC's very own site: the All-Inclusive Drink Package Comparison Guide. Yay!
While Moscato is not on the list, Mom was happy with the sweet sparkling wine Asti. ?
Problem solved? Well, not really. While I'm looking, I might as well demystify the entire package, right?
This seems like it would be obvious, but is it? The Easy Package does NOT include frozen alcoholic cocktails, but it DOES include “zero proof” or non-alcoholic cocktails. MSC's Zero Proof Cocktail menu is not readily available on their site and it took quite a bit of digging and searching to find one. I found a photo of a menu here.
Basically, you can get the following :
- Virgin Pina Colada
- Virgin Daiquiris (strawberry, raspberry, mango, peach or passionfruit)
- Virgin Pomegranate Mojito
- Virgin Sea Breeze
- Virgin Mango Sunrise
- Captain Sparrow
- Dirty Banana Shake
- Fruit Smoothie
This looks like a great start. You know why? Because the Easy package also comes with selected spirits. I'm about to become a mixologist!
Selected spirits, cocktails, and aperitifs
That list translates to:
- Dewar's White Label Whiskey
- Seagrams 7 Crown Whiskey
- Jim Bean Black Label Whiskey
- Bacardi Superior White Rum
- Beefeater Gin
- Smirnoff Vodka
Coffee and hot chocolate specialties
I had to call customer service about this one because if it was just plain coffee and hot chocolate, they wouldn't have added the “specialties” on the end. Right?
I spoke to both Eddie and Carl (both nice gentlemen) and asked them about the “specialties” part. Eddie really sold it. Eddie said that they make their chocolate on board every day and use it to make chocolate treats and special drinks. Carl confirmed that these treats and drinks, available from the Venchi Chocolate Bar, are indeed included with the Easy package. No gelato though. ☹
So let's recap. Here's a nice table with everything in one place:
|TYPE||EXAMPLES OF DRINKS AND BRANDS|
|Beer||Draught (Heineken), Miller Lite bottled beer|
|Wines by the glass||Prosecco, sweet sparkling wine Asti, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, White Zinfindel|
|Selected aperitifs||White Vermouth; Red Vermouth|
|Selected spirits||Beefeater Gin; Bacardi Superior White Rum; Seagram's 7 Crown Whiskey; Jim Beam Black Label Whiskey; Smirnoff Vodka; Dewar's White Label Whiskey|
|Selected mixers||Whiskey & 7 Up; Gin & Tonic; Rum & Coke; Whiskey & Coke; Vodka & Lemon|
|Selected cocktails||Moscow Mule, Long Island Iced Tea, Cape Cod, Screwdriver, Greyhound, 7 & 7, Bacardi & Coke, Smirnoff & Lemon, Beefeater & Tonic, Dewar's or Jim Bean & Coke|
|Mocktails (non-alcoholic cocktails)|
Virgin Pina Colada, Virgin Daiquiris (strawberry, raspberry, mango, peach or passionfruit), Virgin Pomegranate Mojito, Virgin Sea Breeze, Virgin Mango Sunrise, Captain Sparrow, Spiderman, Dirty Banana Shake, Fruit Smoothie
|Soft drinks by the glass||Fruit juice; sodas; Energy drinks, vitamin water|
|Water||Bottled mineral water|
|Hot drinks||Espresso, Caffè Latte, Caffè corretto, Cappuccino, Hot Chocolate, Tea (breakfast, fruit, or herbal)|
Check out this post to find out actual experience with the Easy Drink Package!
Do you buy drink packages when you cruise? Tell me your experiences below!