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Is cruise food all-inclusive?

Want to know whether cruise food is all-inclusive or not? Learn here in this informative article.

By Cruise Booking Team

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Cruising has become one of the most popular ways of travel, and it's easy to see why. A cruise offers the chance to explore multiple destinations, all while enjoying the comfort and luxury of a floating hotel. One of the biggest draws of cruising is the abundance of food options, with many cruise lines touting their all-inclusive dining experiences. However, the reality of cruise food and its inclusivity is a bit more nuanced than it may seem at first glance.

What is all-inclusive cruising?

Before delving into the specifics of cruise food, it's important to understand what is meant by "all-inclusive" cruising. Essentially, all-inclusive cruises are those where the cost of food, drinks, and entertainment are all included in the initial fare. This means that guests can enjoy unlimited meals, snacks, and beverages without having to pay extra fees. All-inclusive cruising can be a great way to budget for a vacation, as guests know exactly what they'll be paying upfront. It also allows for a more carefree vacation, as there's no need to constantly monitor spending or worry about unexpected charges.

What's included in cruise food?

When it comes to food on a cruise, the offerings can vary widely depending on the cruise line and ship. However, some generalizations can be made about what is included in cruise food.

Most cruises offer at least one main dining room, where guests can enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner. These meals are typically included in the initial fare, and guests can order as many courses as they'd like. Some cruise lines offer additional dining options, such as specialty restaurants or buffets, which may or may not be included in the initial fare. In addition to these dining options, most cruises also offer snacks throughout the day. This may include options like pizza, burgers, or hot dogs, as well as dessert items like ice cream or cookies.

Also Read: What drinks are free on cruise ships?

What's not included in cruise food?

While many meals and snacks are included in the initial fare on a cruise, there are still some items that are not included. These can vary widely depending on the cruise line and ship, but some examples include:

  • Specialty restaurants: While some cruise lines offer specialty restaurants as part of their all-inclusive package, others may charge an additional fee to dine at these restaurants.
  • Alcoholic beverages: While some cruises include beer, wine, and certain mixed drinks in their all-inclusive packages, others may charge for all alcoholic beverages.
  • Bottled water and soda: While tap water and some sodas may be included in the initial fare, bottled water and certain types of soda may come with an additional fee.
  • Room service: While some cruises offer complimentary room service, others may charge an additional fee for this service.
  • Gratuities: While not technically part of the cost of food, it's important to note that most cruises add an automatic gratuity charge to guests' bills. This charge typically covers gratuities for dining room staff, cabin stewards, and other service personnel.

How to navigate cruise food inclusivity?

Navigating the nuances of cruise food inclusivity can be a bit overwhelming, but some tips can help make the experience smoother.

  • First, it's important to research the specific cruise line and ship that you'll be sailing on. This can help you get a better understanding of what's included in the initial fare, as well as what items may come with an additional fee.
  • It's also a good idea to budget for additional food expenses, just in case. While many meals and snacks are included in the initial fare, you may want to dine at a specialty restaurant or enjoy an alcoholic beverage that comes with an additional fee.


Whether or not cruise food is all-inclusive depends on the cruise line and the specific package or fare chosen by the passenger. Some cruise lines include all meals and snacks in the price of the ticket, while others may require passengers to pay extra for certain dining options. Additionally, some cruises offer beverage packages that include alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, while others may charge for each drink. Passengers need to research the food and beverage options on their chosen cruise line and understand what is included in their ticket price to avoid unexpected expenses. Overall, with careful planning and consideration, passengers can enjoy a delicious and satisfying dining experience while cruising.

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