How To Sneak Alcohol On A Cruise Ship (11 Ways) – 2024

Are you planning to save some money by avoiding expensive cruise drink packages and sneaking alcohol on a cruise ship?

Alcohol and drink packages on a cruise ship can be expensive for many budget travelers out there. But worry not, as you will find cunning methods to sneak alcohol on a cruise ship and save some serious money.

All major cruise lines have restrictions on the amount of alcohol that you can bring on board. The allowed quantity of alcohol is definitely not going to be enough for you to meet your needs for the entire duration of the trip.

Even if wine and champagne are allowed on a cruise ship, most of them do not allow you to carry liquors.

Note: It is not recommended to sneak or smuggle alcohol onto a cruise ship. Always read the prohibited items list and terms and conditions of your cruise line before you embark. The below-listed methods to sneak alcohol on a cruise is for entertainment and educational purpose only. Do it at your own risk!

How To Sneak Alcohol On A Cruise Ship?

In the past, people have managed to sneak alcohol on cruise ships in a variety of ways. I’ve done extensive research on the same and found many cunning ideas that worked for many people.

Go through all the different ideas to smuggle alcohol on a cruise ship and find the one that works for you.

Do note that I have never tried to smuggle alcohol on a cruise ship, nor will I ever promote the same. All the ideas below are gathered from the internet and forums. Whatever you do, do it at your risk.

Before going, you may also want to know if vape is allowed on a cruise and if you can take snacks on Carnival cruise.

1. Shampoo Bottles

fake shampoo bottle

Everyday toiletries like shampoo bottles, shower gel bottles, etc., are allowed on every cruise ship.

Did you know you can easily sneak alcohol onto a cruise ship by filling a fake shampoo bottle with your favorite brand of liquor?

Specialized fake shampoo bottles are available, which are specifically designed to hide booze.

These are leakproof shampoo bottles that you can trust. Using a fake shampoo bottle is better than using an original one.

If you do not want to buy a fake shampoo bottle, you may properly wash and use an original shampoo bottle. But properly cleaning a shampoo bottle and removing 100% of shampoo content can be very tiring and often unsuccessful.

Furthermore, original shampoo bottles may end up leaking alcohol and soak your whole bag. So better buy a leakproof fake shampoo bottle specifically for sneaking alcohol onboard.

2. Fake Sunscreen

Similar to fake shampoo and shower gel bottles, you may use a fake sunscreen container to sneak alcohol as well.

These realistic-looking sunscreen bottles have safety seals to ensure the alcohol is not leaked or spilled while in transit.

It also comes with a funnel included so that you can quickly pour alcohol without spilling.

It comes as a set of two, each holding up to 9.7 oz of alcohol. So about 20 oz of alcohol in both.

Sunscreen bottles are less likely to be found than other ideas because they are less noticeable and not that popular.

3. Rum Runner

rum runner

A rum runner is a plastic bag where you can fill alcohol and pack it in your luggage.

Many people have successfully managed to take rumrunners filled with alcohol on board without being caught.

The X-ray machine represents liquid as a dark hue. These machines are only capable of showing the outline of the item.

So it will be better if you wrap the ram runner around a container containing liquid like shampoo or shower gel.

If you get a little creative, you may even pack the Rumrunner in your bag in such a way that the funnel cap is hidden near other toiletries.

Rumrunners come in different sizes and form factors. You can find rum runners that can hold as much as 32 oz or 945 ML of alcohol.

Rum runners, also known as booze bags, are common and widely used. So if your baggage is opened for manual verification, the security will likely find it and confiscate it right away.

4. Umbrella Flask

umbrella flask

Using an umbrella flask is a pretty cunning way to sneak alcohol onto any cruise ship.

An umbrella flask helps you avoid any slightest chance of suspiciousness if you take it somewhere it rains frequently.

The product looks like an actual umbrella, but it is a bottle. The handle of the umbrella is the bottle cap.

The umbrella flask can easily hold up to 12 oz or 355 ML of liquor of choice.

Some umbrella flasks also come with a funnel so that you can easily fill the flask without spilling.

5. Tampon Flask

tampon flask

If you are looking for a foolproof method to sneak alcohol on a cruise ship but only in a limited quantity, tampon flasks may be the way to go.

A tampon flask set comes with 5 individual tampon wrappers that can hold up to 1 oz or 30ml of alcohol. So in total, a set can carry up to 150ml of alcohol easily.

Even if your baggage is opened for manual verification, it is highly unlikely that the security personnel will ever open a tampon container. So it is a perfect option to smuggle alcohol onboard.

The only downside of using a tampon flask is its capacity. Each tampon wrapper can only hold a single shot or 1 oz of alcohol. So you will need many of them for cruise trips spanning multiple days or weeks.

6. Binocular Flask

binocular flask

How about a binocular shaped container to fill alcohol and pack in your cruise luggage?

Many people carry binoculars to get a close-up look at various birds and wildlife animals while on a cruise. So they won’t sound suspicious in any way.

The fake binocular flask can hold up to 8 ounces of liquid on each side.

So, a binocular can help you sneak up to 16 ounces or 460 ml of alcohol. Since these fake binocular flask comes with a funnel, you can easily fill alcohol without spilling.

Another good thing about a binocular flask is that neither side is connected. It means you can fill two entirely different drinks on either side. How smart!

7. Mouthwash Bottles

mouthwash bottles

Mouthwash bottles are another sneaky way to smuggle alcohol on a cruise ship.

Mouthwash bottles are pretty obvious on every luggage, and they won’t raise any signs of suspiciousness while scanning.

Mouthwash bottles are available in all sizes, starting from 50 ml to all the way up to a liter.

I wouldn’t suggest you take alcohol on a 1 L mouthwash bottle as it will raise red flags. The best would be getting a more compact mouthwash container, like 100 or 250 ml max.

Tip: It would be best if you fill a clear spirit such as vodka or white rum, or blue-colored alcohol so that there is not even the slightest chance of getting caught, even if your bags are opened for manual verification.

8. Fake Beer Belly

beer belly

As the name suggests, it is a fake belly that you can attach to your stomach that can hold up to 80 ounces of beer, wine, or liquor.

The secret plastic compartment inside the belly can hold the liquid and dispense it when required.

It goes around your stomach and you should be good to go after you wear the T-shirt or a shirt.

One of the highlighted features of beer belly is that it can hold up to 80 ounces or 2.4 L of alcohol easily.

9. Sneaky Booze Sports Bra

booze bra

A sneaky booze sports bra is a wine rack bra that can hold up to 25 oz of alcohol easily.

All you need to do is fill the booze bra with alcohol and put it on. Both cups can hold approximately 12.5 oz of alcohol.

Since this bra has no metal parts, it won’t be detected on a metal detector.

If you are a woman and want to sneak alcohol on a cruise ship, a booze bra is what you are looking for.

10. Liquor On Wine Bottle

Many leading cruise lines allow guests to bring a limited quantity of wine. Mostly, you are allowed to bring a single wine bottle.

So one thing you can do is to open the wine bottle and fill it with the liquor of your choice. Seal it back again and pack it in your luggage.

The x-ray machine sees both wine and liquor the same. Since the cruise line allows you to bring a single bottle of wine, this shouldn’t raise any suspicions.

Another thing to note is that there is no limit on the number of bags you can take on a cruise ship unless you have to fly to the port.

So you may take a wine bottle in your carry-on bag and another in the checked bag.

You can even carry multiple wine bottles, all in different bags. Since bags are not grouped, the security won’t know even if someone brings more bottles across different bags.

11. Wine Backpack

wine backpack

A wine backpack is a normal bag with a hidden flask compartment and a dispenser that can hold a relatively huge amount of alcohol or wine.

The bag is a normal bag with various compartments to keep all your items. To the bottom comes the hidden flask compartment that can easily accommodate up to two bottles of alcohol (2 liters).

The dedicated dispenser makes it extremely easy to pour alcohol into a glass.

There are different varieties of wine handbags. You may get one for your requirements. You may choose either a regular backpack or a ladies’ wine handbag.

13. Hairbrush Flask

A Hairbrush flask is a unique item that helps you to sneak alcohol onto a cruise ship and, at the same time, can also be used as an actual hairbrush.

It is a flask shaped like a hairbrush.

You need to open the secret compartment and fill the alcohol. Seal the hairbrush flask properly and pack it in your luggage.

As it doubles up as a hairbrush, you may use it to brush your hair.

Can You Take Alcohol On A Cruise?

Most popular cruise lines like Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Disney, NCL etc., allow its guests to bring alcohol onboard. But you cannot take as much as the quantity you like.

Depending on the cruise line, the quantity of alcohol a passenger can carry differs.

Refer to the table below to better understand how much alcohol a person can carry on a cruise ship.

Cruise LineAlcohol AllowedNon-alcoholic Drinks Allowed
Princess CruisesWine – 1 bottle (free). $15 per additional bottleNo limit
DisneyWine – 1 bottle or Beer – 6No limit
MSC CruisesNot allowedWater (for medical needs)
Royal CaribbeanWine – 1 bottle12 x 500ml container per stateroom
CunardWine – 1 bottleNo limit
P&O CruisesWine – 1L, Champagne, beer or spiritNo limit
CelebrityWine – 1 bottleNo limit
CarnivalWine – 1 bottle12 x 330ml cans
NCLUnlimited wine ($15 fee per bottle)Water (for medical needs)
CostaNot allowedWater (for medical needs)

If you bring alcohol more than the limit, the security will confiscate the same at the time of security scanning.

Can Cruise Ship Scanners Detect Alcohol?

A cruise ship scanner cannot outright detect alcohol, but it can detect liquid of all kinds. On the screen, the liquid is shown as a dark hue.

Since the x-ray machine gives an exact outline of all items inside the bag, security can easily find if there is a liquor bottle.

Even if you try to sneak alcohol in a water bottle, a simple shake test will let security know if the bottle is filled with water or alcohol.

What Happens If You Are Caught Sneaking Alcohol On A Cruise?

Depending on the cruise line, the policy on what they do if you are caught with alcohol differs.

Certain cruise line like the Royal Caribbean imposes strict policies like expelling or not allowing people to onboard if found with alcohol.

Here is an extract from the Royal Caribbean’s Alcohol Policy page:

Guests who violate any alcohol policies (over consume, provide alcohol to people under the legal drinking age, demonstrate irresponsible behavior, or attempt to conceal alcoholic items at security and or luggage check points or any other time), may be disembarked or not allowed to board, at their own expense, in accordance with our Guest Conduct Policy

Certain cruise companies like the Carnival do not allow guests to onboard with alcohol over the limit. If the guests are found carrying more alcohol than the limit, the excessive item will be confiscated and discarded.

Here is an extract from Carinval’s Alcohol Policy page:

Guests are prohibited from bringing alcoholic beverages on board with the following exception – at the beginning of the cruise during embarkation day only, guests (21 years of age and older) may bring one 750-ml bottle of sealed/unopened wine or champagne, per person, in their carry-on luggage. Outside this exception, all liquor, beer, other forms of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are strictly prohibited in both carry-on and checked luggage, and such items will be confiscated and discarded and no compensation will be provided. Guests sailing with us on back-to-back cruises are entitled to bring the same quantity as stated in this policy, per cruise. The additional quantities will be stored for safekeeping at the start of the first cruise and will be given to the guest as each following cruise begins.

If you are too much drunk and disorderly, you may be sent to the cruise ship jail.

Also, see if it is possible to getaway with smoking on a cruise ship.


Can You Sneak Alcohol On Carnival Cruise?

Carnival Cruise only allows the guests to bring one bottle of wine. If you try to bring more than the limit, they will find it in the security scan and confiscate it. If you want to sneak more alcohol than the limit, you must try other methods like using a fake shampoo bottle or rum runners.

Can You Sneak Alcohol On Royal Caribbean Cruise?

Royal Caribbean allows guests to bring one bottle of wine or champagne onboard. If you want to take more wine or alcohol, you may try a fake mouthwash bottle or sunscreen pack.

Does Cruise Security Check For Alcohol?

Yes. The security scans all the baggage through an x-ray machine before letting them inside the cruise. If alcohol or any other liquid is found, it will be shown as a dark hue on the screen. If they proceed with manual checking, they can easily find alcohol.

Can Sniffer Dogs Smell Alcohol on a Cruise?

Sniffer dogs are generally not used to finding alcohol on a cruise. Even though they are not used for this purpose, they may be trained for the same.

What Is A Rum Runner?

A rum runner is a unique product that lets you sneak alcohol without being caught. It is a flat-looking plastic bag that hold up to 8 to 12 oz of alcohol. Since these do not look like traditional liquor bottles, they are hard to spot in an X-ray scan.

Do Cruise Ships Search Luggage?

Yes. All luggage, including carry-on and checked bags, are scanned through the x-ray machine before entering. If the security finds something unusual inside the bag, they will open it for manual verification.

Can Rum Runners Be Detected?

The shape of rum runners is nothing like a normal bottle, so it is hard to spot them on an X-ray scan. But if your bag is opened for a manual search, they can easily find it. So yeah, run runners cannot be directly detected by X-ray scanning machine on a cruise.

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