When onboard we all like to browse in the stores available... Not that our money is burning in our pockets, but it is always nice to find something out of the ordinary, things you cannot buy at home...
Now, I notice 2 things: the onboard stores don't have that much out of the ordinary, in other words you can buy those things at home as well - except for the coffee mugs, the t-shirts and caps with the name of the ship or the area where you are cruising.
But secondly, the onboard stores are so much more expensive than stores on land... Okay, they are carrying brands, not the most cheap ones, but why would we buy those expensive things on board when we can buy them at home for less? I don't believe for a minute that those prices are "cheaper" or "without VAT" or anything...! Rather, I checked them back home, and they are far more expensive than at home. Even the (Australian Gold) sunscreen is far more expensive... and I do not live in a very unexpensive country...
Yet I see people carrying bags full of the "goodies" they bought onboard. Me and my loved one bought some stuff too, but more in the t-shirt area (although I bought a white silk bermuda, which strangely enough I haven't worn ever so far...)
Strange... very strange! Is half of the passengers shopaholic or is it just fun to buy something onboard?
I am a rumcakeholic and I noticed that the rum cakes on the ships are cheaper or at least the same price as you pay in port. That's for the Tortuga brand.
Talking about rum cake here's a tip I just read somewhere else. Captain Morgan rum cake is usually around $20 where Tortuga is $16 for a 1 pounder. In Grand Cayman there are a couple of liquor shops in the same plaza as Margaritaville where you will get a coupon for a free captain Morgan rum cake if you buy for $20 of liquor. Now that's a good deal.
You pick up the cake across the street. I'll add some more info and pictures when I have been there next month.
My cruises:Carnival Fantasy 9/7/06 Nassau/Half Moon Cay, Cabin V26, 4 nights Carnival Inspiration 3/17/07 Grand Cayman/Calica, Cabin R132, 5 nights Sovereign of The Seas 12/21/07 Nassau/Cococay, Cabin 8568, 3 nights Carnival Glory 6/14/08 Cozumel/Belize/Roatan/Freeport, Cabin 6481, 7 nights Carnival Liberty 5/30/09 Ocho Rios/Grand Cayman/Roatan, Cabin 8229, 7 nights Monarch of The Seas 09/21/09 Nassau/Cococay, Cabin 5529, 4 nights Majesty of The Seas 06/14/10 Key West/Nassau/Cococay, Cabin 9506, 4 nights Carnival Legend 10/03/10 Grand Cayman/Cozumel/Roatan/Belize, Cabin 5181, 7 nights Freedom of the Seas 11/28/10 Labadee, Haiti, Cabin 9489, 4 nights Carnival Freedom 08/26/2011 Colon/Cozumel/Limon, Cabin 8425, 8 nights Carnival Sensation 01/15/12 Freeport, Nassau, Cabin E37, 4 nights Carnival Imagination 02/13/12 Key West, Cozumel Cabin V32, 4 nights Carnival Sensation 09/09/12 Freeport, Nassau, Cabin U18, 4 nights Caribbean Princess 02/09/13 Princess Cay, Curacoa, Aruba, Cabin C623, 7 nights
One thing I learned quickly after traveling for business quite frequently is look for a Walgreens. Whatever souvenirs the tourist shop was selling, Walgreens had them for a lot less. Took a 50cent trolley ride in Memphis to find one once. Disposable camera at Graceland $15, same camera at Walgreens $1.99
Same on cruiseships and their ports. If prices matter to you and you can find cheap transport, get to where the locals shop. Odds are THEY cannot afford tourist prices, and why should you? Just take care in certain areas.
Great advice on going to the local stores, but when you are at sea, that is not going to be easy, cruznation... LOL
It is just the fact that I think the company sees onboard shopping as a form of entertainment... which it is, probably, since you buy stuff you really do not need, even be it rumcakes, uCruiser!! Why do they have to make it so expensive, up to a small package of band aid, I don't get that. Top stylist's articles, okay, but toothpaste, band aid??? A box of chocolates???
It seems all the cruise ships we've been toward the end of the cruise on a sea day will have the big sales on watches, rings, and sweatshirts, and other stuff. Some have even moved the items out to the pool deck like a sidewalk sell. Most of this junk is from China. There is usually big crowds.
LOL Aldrich, I have a husband who loves to shop!!! And apart from the things you may actually need... (see above) it's all stuff you don't need at all!
My husband bought a very nice and soft windbreaker jacket on our first trip, and guess what? He wears it so often that I am glad he bought it! Me on the other hand still have to give a pair of silk bermudas their 'maiden' trip...
And I totally agree with you on the so-called duty free claim...
KeithnRita, you are right with those sales on deck... I just hope you don't mean with "junk" that the quality is bad, because AND being expensive AND being of bad quality is sort of double jeopardy, isn't it?
Yes cruznation, for those 'normal' things I agree with you that you probably pay for the mere fact they have that shop on board so you can cut yourself whilst shaving... without bleeding the whole morning. Suppose you have to go for a chemist while you're on land, what a waste of time that whould be... !
I have been thinking about my original post on this topic... what I meant to say: cruising doesn't come cheap, the drinks on board aren't cheap, the excursions inland aren't cheap.... that's already a lot of money!! And then paying a lot for a cap of a t-shirt?? Or a pair of trousers or a sunny skirt? Ouch!!
By the way, does any of you know who OWNS the shops? Is that the cruise company or can any merchant rent a location on the ship? Or is it some form of franchising?