Dryish cruising

Water water everywhere…

In late March, early April, we sailed on the Legend of the Seas from Shanghai to the Japanese ports of Miyazaki, Kobe and Fukuoka and to the South Korean port of Busan, before returning to Shanghai.

The Legend’s restaurant wine list was typical of cruise lines – a fair range of wines with over the top prices. To give but one example, a bottle of Wolf Blass Yellow Label Merlot cost a whacking $46.50 (Australian dollars, including an obligatory 15% gratuity, at the then current ship exchange rate). This wine is easy to find in Australia for less than $10.00.

Bring Your Own? Nope, passengers are warned in the small print that liquor brought on board will be confiscated. Cynics would see it as a way to increase positive cash flow. What’s the point though, I asked myself, of trying to gouge large profits if hardly anyone is buying?

Strangely, travel writers in Australia’s mainstream press never mention this downside of cruising. Could it be because they’re usually non-paying guests of cruise lines?

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