My wife sometimes watches and reads the monitor as I write up these articles. When she saw Darrell write this in the comments section, she had a good laugh…

Spill the beans RG…. Everyone wants to know how you snuck your belvedere vodka in your luggage…. Please do tell…

While smuggling alcohol onboard isn’t illegal, some people consider smuggling alcohol unethical. The cruise lines rely on alcohol sales for a big chunk of their income. At the end of the day, if everyone smuggled alcohol onboard, the cruise ships would have to make up the lost revenue somewhere else or cease operating (unlikely).

FYI, I don’t smuggle alcohol on cruise ships anymore. I just buy the alcohol package. I’m a reformed alcohol smuggler for the reason I mentioned above.

But in the interest of informing my readers, I’ll leave this right here and let you decide for yourself what you want to do.

The easiest way to get alcohol onboard is to use rum runners. They have a 100% success rate…

Rum Runners: The easiest way to get your alcohol onboard.

Another example of rum runners.

What you do is fill each bladder up with your favorite spirit or alcoholic beverage and then put them in your luggage. Do not fill it with a carbonated beverage, like beer. It’s best to put them in your check-in luggage.

In the off-chance that the rum runners in one suit case is discovered, split the packages up. I’ve never known anyone who had their rum runners discovered. The only time they will be discovered is when security opens your bag for something else, and they coincidentally discover the rum runners.

Some people say that they don’t want to risk the embarrassment. I’ll tell you that there is no potential of embarrassment involved, as long as you put them in your check-in luggage. If the rum runners are discovered, you’ll receive a note in your luggage saying that your package has been confiscated and that the package will be held until the end of the cruise. At the end, you can then pick it up. It’s quite anonymous, and it happens to more people than you think.

I know because I’ve had friends try to put entire bottles in their check-in. Those bottles were discovered.

How To Get Entire Bottles Onboard

I can’t help but write this because as a former advantage player, I’m always looking for weaknesses in a system.

When you first check-in and start the boarding process, you will undergo security that is somewhat similar to the TSA process when entering a flight terminal. The difference is that the ship security is mainly to discover alcohol. I don’t care what the cruise lines say, as someone who was a former cop and has knowledge of security penetration procedures, I see way too many security gaps in the boarding procedure.

I’ll give you one very specific example of how security is very lax.

On Carnival Cruises, the check in procedure has a large series of lines that are very crowded. These lines snake around and move relatively fast. Eventually, a passenger will approach a station that has both a metal detector and a baggage scanner. If the security employee, charged with scanning bags, discovers a prohibited item and they think it is a bottle (based on the outline in the security scanner), that security employee will tell you to take your bag ‘to that line over there’.

‘That line over there’ leads to the station where other security employees will open your scanned bag and take out the prohibited item. The problem with this line is that there are quite a few other people also in line, and it’s somewhat conflated with the group of other people who have been cleared and are heading up to the ship.

At that point, you pick up your bag and take a few steps ‘to that line over there’. The employee will then turn their back on on the passenger. If the person so wishes, they can then just veer off and join the crowd.

Voila, you now have brought your own bottles of Jack onboard.


This weekend, I was in Shreveport with my buddy Brad. We played a little bit of craps, but it was mostly carnival games and slots.

Sometimes, I find out things about my friends that I didn’t know. Brad was playing slots without his player’s card. I asked him why, and his comments was that he wins more when he doesn’t use his player’s card.

With most people, I don’t correct them, beyond a single comment. Remember my buddy who played on the dark side and didn’t let his 6 and 8 travel? That’s the extent of how I correct people. Video starts that that point where I advise him…

Brad doesn’t use a player’s card because someone in a FaceBook gambling group said this, paraphrase Brad, ‘if you use your card, the casino knows who you are and they won’t let you win. If they don’t know who you are, they think you’re a new customer and will let you win to get you to play more.’

This is the point where I roll my eyes and take a sip of my Pina Colada. I’ve already offered my generic advice.

Brad asked if he should use his player’s car?

I responded,

Do you have a tax lien filed against you?

Do you have an order of back child support?

Are you divorcing your wife right now?

No, no, and no.

So I told him to use his player’s card and stop being superstitious.

I didn’t think anything of it, but then I get back to my room, and this comment from Lawrence Roth appeared…

You may have touched on this in the past, but with the gambling bender you did here and the 50k buy in from earlier, you don’t seem to use players club cards. Maybe you can do a feature on that pros and cons in the future…

Sometimes, I wonder if everything that happens is really coincidence or we’re living in some sort of computer simulation and someone is directing things.

So after Brad and Lawrence Roth both coincidentally brought up the same topic, I made a note to write such an article, but then I remembered, wait a minute, I already written this article but had forgotten about it due to a flurry of work that popped up around the time I wrote the article.

Thank for reminding me, Brad and Lawrence Roth.

I’ll finish polishing the article and have it up soon.




Posted in: Casino, Gambling, Travel

0 thoughts on “Alcohol on Cruise Ships and Player’s Cards

  • Well that was a heck of a good tease about the players card. I always use one I like getting the offers for free stays. It cuts down on the cost of the trip. But I do have a question about comps and ratings. In my recent observations it appears that the box person watches my first bets and then drifts off into another world. I like to start slow and then increase my bets but I think that it is effecting my rating. On my next trip next month I’m going to buy in for a larger amount and increase my initial bets and see what happens. I know that they are supposed to keep track but unless its an extreme increase I don’t think they pay any attention. Any thoughts on that my gambling friends? RG I don’t know how you do what you do but keep it up (after a 3 night trip I’m exhausted). Looking forward to the next article.

  • M, just got off the same trip Monday. Nassau was spared, Bahia Mar is nice, my first time in the newer resort. Wifey hit 120 on some silly slot for a buy in of 20. Then strolled into Cartier for a loss of xxxx.xx lol. They moved Cartier out of downtown to a boutique in the resort. Weather was not great for the tip but it’s a hit or miss this time of year. The Bahia Mar casino is nice….. I mean in style, In the Bahamas I’m almost convinced only 2 of the dice available on the table will give the player a fighting chance. But you have to get lucky and pick the right 2. In for 500, 45 minutes later battled back to walk with 475 and left 13 for the action.
    To comment on the bottle packing, I used to and never had any issue but when they offered the drink packages it was worth it for me and my group. I don’t drink at all other than on vacations or socially. On a cruise it’s A bucket + of Mich Ultras day time for each person and for me nights averaged 8 to 20 Glenlivet on the rocks….lol. You said it drunk cruisers are just happy cruisers. So the expense for 2 of us was (mostly me) lol, outrageously high. And Royal just raised the drink package prices. Still it’s a good value if your drinking on vacation.
    The casino comped us the last cruise . They gave us a Balcony suite, cost me only the usual taxes and port charges. We enjoyed most of the shows, if you went that guy Kivon is funny. The casino staff was mostly all new from last time. Now to the dice table, ya I walk in and play till we close it down., I watched the boys from Miami standing at the opposite end of the table get smoked every night. 1,2 and sometimes 3 times buying in 1k to 2.5k. Not because they should but because of the captive factor and pressure.
    Occasionally dumb luck would show up and hit 2 points in a row or someone would find the right 2 dice every once in 7-12 shooters but if your not willing to roll with the house when necessary it’s going to make for long and distracting trip. When I was a young man my grandfather told me. Son they didn’t put those 100,000 chandeliers up with their money they put them up with players money.
    I bring 1k for each night. On a cruise the goal is always the same walk off with what you walked on with. 3 nights, 45 minutes at Bahia Mar total loss $325. That’s right I lost, but we got a lot of value and had a great time. Can’t wait till we go again

    • Thanks for the trip report, Eric.

      Very awesome.

      Glad you enjoyed the trip. I love Royal Carribean cruises, too. The overall experience is great.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes:

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>