Royal Caribbean is testing a new beverage policy onboard Harmony of the Seas that would require guests over the age of 21 to purchase a Deluxe Beverage Package if another guest 21 years of age or older in their stateroom has also purchased that beverage package.
A representative of Royal Caribbean Travel Agent spoke with described the change as a pilot being applied to a small number of sailings. At this time, the line said it does not have plans to roll the policy out to other Royal Caribbean International ships.
Alcohol policy changes have been an ongoing issue for cruise lines. Last summer Norwegian Cruise Line banned bringing most beverages onboard, including liquor, beer and non-alcoholic drinks such as water, soda and juices, but not purified or distilled water in factory-sealed containers for use in conjunction with medical devices or for the reconstitution of infant formula. Guests were also still allowed to bring fully sealed wine bottles for personal consumption, subject to a corkage fee.
The summer before that, Carnival Cruise Line banned bringing bottled water onboard, citing the need to deter guests from using water bottles to smuggle in their own alcohol. The cruise line also lowered the price of its onboard bottled water at the same time, a move that drew praise from travel agents.
Also that summer, Disney Cruise Line updated its own alcohol policy to allow guests a maximum of two bottles of unopened wine or champagne, or six beers, onboard at the beginning of each trip and at each port of call.