Cruise lines are beginning to add more and more fees to things that were normally included in your cruise fare just a few years ago. There are some things on cruises that I do not mind paying extra for and others that I want to be included in my cruise fare.
Here are a few things that should be free on cruises. When I say free, I am talking about being included in my cruise fare without a surcharge.
Food in the main dining rooms should always be included in your fare. While I do not mind paying extra for a specialty dining restaurant, extra charges and fees do not belong in the main dining rooms.
Many mainstream cruise lines have begun offering certain entrees (filet mignon, lobster) in the main dining room that come with a surcharge. Now that they got their foot in the door charging extra for a few entrees, where does it end? Will we soon have one half of the menu included and the other half comes with a fee? Will that eventually lead to a fee for any meal in the main dining room and leave the buffet as the only free choice? Dear Royal Caribbean, Carnival, and every other cruise line, keep extra charges OUT of the main dining rooms. This also includes room service. (Norwegian and Carnival are now charging for select items ordered through room service).
Another thing that should be remain free on cruises is entertainment. This is one area where cruise lines have yet to try extra fees. If cruise lines can currently offer Broadway entertainment without fees, then there is absolutely no reason for any lines to add extra charges for shows.
Soft drinks should also be included in your cruise fare. All cruise lines except for Disney charge extra for soda, usually around $2 a glass or $7 a day for unlimited soft drinks. I don’t see this surcharge going away since cruise lines have a healthy profit margin selling soda on board.
Activities on the Lido and Sports Decks should also come without any charges. Cruise lines offer everything from mini-golf, rock climbing walls, waterparks, Flowrider surf simulators, basketball and volleyball courts, shuffleboard, ping pong, cornhole and other activities. All of these are currently free and I honestly do not see that changing anytime soon.
There are a few things on cruises that I do not mind paying extra for, one being Internet access. I once saw someone saying how Internet should be included, however I don’t mind paying extra for it. After all, you are on vacation. Is checking Facebook & Twitter 24/7 really that important while you are in the middle of the Caribbean or cruising by glaciers in Alaska? Some passengers need to get on for a few minutes because of work back home. If it was free, the network would be even slower than it already is from everyone taking up bandwidth.
Cruise Fever would love to hear what you feel should be included in your cruise fare. What do you mind paying extra for? What don’t you like paying extra for? Leave us a comment below with your opinions.