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Bringing Alcohol and Soft Drinks On Board

This guide provides a thorough overview of what alcoholic beverages and soft drinks you can bring aboard, focusing on wine, the only allowed alcohol for carry-on. We’ll delve into specific rules, address common questions, and offer tips to ensure a smooth sailing experience.

bottles of wine in a bucket
Virgin Voyages allow sailors to bring two bottles of wine on board for each cabin © Photo by the blowup

Can I Bring Alcohol on My Cruise?

Virgin Voyages permits two bottles of wine, sparking wine or champagne (up to 750ml / 25.4 oz each) per cabin, exclusively in carry-on luggage. Here are some crucial points:

Insider Tip: Remember, any type of wine is allowed. This is great way to enjoy your favorite premium wines and champagnes on board at grocery store prices!

Glasses of champagne, tea and a tower of food
Get the most out of the two bottle allowance by bringing premium brands on board, bought at on-shore prices.© Photo by VV Insider

Allowance: Per Cabin or Per Sailor?

The wine allowance applies to each cabin, not each sailor. If each sailor a cabin brings wine, security may ask for their cabin number. Security will confiscate and store any excess bottles on the ship.

Bringing Non-Alcoholic Beverages

Water and Soft Drinks
You can carry limited quantities of non-alcoholic beverages like water, protein drinks, energy drinks, non-alcoholic beer, and canned/boxed soft drinks in your carry-on. Unlike the wine allowance this is per person. Restrictions include:

  • Container Type: No glass or plastic bottles.
  • Quantity Limit: Maximum of twelve 12-ounce cans or paper cartons per person.

What About Non-Wine Alcoholic Beverages?

Policy on Other Types of Alcohol
Security will confiscate and keep all alcoholic beverages, except the allowed two bottles of wine, until the final night.

Alcohol and Port Visits: What to Know

Purchasing Alcohol at Ports
You are welcome to buy any type of alcohol at ports, but it will be confiscated by and collected by security upon re-boarding and held until the final night.

Virgin Voyages’ Screening Process

Ensuring Policy Adherence
The ship’s security team uses X-Ray machines for bag scanning. This process helps identify and confiscate items exceeding the two bottle wine limit, alongside other prohibited items.

A stack of luggage on a luggage trolley being labelled by a person wearing a striped t-shirt
Once your luggage is checked in at your origin port it will be screened by x-ray© Photo by VV Insider

What Happens To Confiscated Alcohol?

The onboard security team will securely keep any alcohol they take from you. They will deliver these items to your cabin on the last night of the voyage. If an item is missing, it might have been misplaced. In such cases, you can collect it from the security team stationed near the disembarkation gangway.

Why is There A Restriction on Alcohol?

Like with other cruise brands, Virgin Voyages would prefer you to pay for alcohol on board!

With that being said, the drink prices on board the Virgin Voyages ships are fairly reasonable. Virgin do not offer an all-you-can-drink package but they do offer a way to reduce your beverage spend by way of the Bar Tab.

What is a Bar Tab?

Bar Tab is a way for you to pre-purchase a credit to use for beverages on board the ship. You may even get some free Bar Tab credit when you book your sailing.

If you’re not sure how much Bar Tab you might need, VV Insider have an exclusive ‘Bar Tab Calculator’ where you can estimate how much you will spend on drinks and how much you can save if you pay in advance of your sailing.

Two colourful cocktail drinks against a brightly lit bar background
The Bar Tab Calculator is the easiest way to estimate how much you will spend on drinks during your voyage© Photo by

Dining With Your Own Wine: How To Avoid The Corkage Fee

Corkage Fee

If you bring a bottle of wine to dinner the server will gladly uncork, store and pour your wine as you dine. They will add a $25 corkage fee to your bill for this service. You can use your Bar Tab to cover this fee.

An Alternative To The Corkage Fee

To avoid corkage fees, you can bring a glass of wine to dinner. Request wine glasses from your stateroom host and carry the glass to the restaurant.

Need Special Beverage Arrangements?

Contact Sailor Services
For specific beverage requirements or additional water needs, reach out to Sailor Services for assistance.

Key Takeaways

  • Wine Only: Two 750ml bottles per cabin.
  • Wine Allowance: Per cabin, not per sailor.
  • Soft Drinks:  Twelve12-ounce cans or paper cartons per person.
  • Purchase at Ports: Allowed but collected and stored.
  • Screening Process: Security checks all bags.
  • Corkage Fee: $25 per bottle or avoidable by carrying a glass to dinner.

Source and official guidance: Virgin Voyages Drinks FAQs

About the author

Co-Founder and Director. David has a background in web design and development and writes travel content, vacation guides and tips about Virgin Voyages.

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