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Cruise ship room service: A line-by-line guide to in-cabin dining

Oct. 27, 2022
20 min read
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There’s no better place in the world to be when the pang of hunger strikes than on a cruise ship. Whether the buffet is packed with people or packed away, 24/7 room service is always available to fill your belly. It’s one of the greatest amenities of cruising, and it is uniformly offered on all major cruise lines. No need to dress up for dinner – just call in your food order, flip on the in-cabin TV and wait for your meal to come to you.

Wondering what your cruise ship will deliver to your door and how much it will cost you? Here’s a line-by-line overview of room service options and pricing across the major cruise lines, along with in-cabin dining menus.

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How do I order room service on a cruise ship?

You can always pick up your in-cabin phone and dial the room service number to order food. Some cruise lines offer the option to order your food and drinks through your in-cabin TV or smartphone, which populates photos of the menu items. Some cruise line apps even have location-specific features that allow you to order food and drinks to be delivered almost anywhere on the ship.

Breakfast is often ordered by filling out a pre-printed menu card left in your cabin and hanging it outside your door before you go to bed. Crew members collect the orders during the night and deliver your food the next morning at the time you specified.

Related: The ultimate guide to cruise ship food and dining

What types of food can I order to my cabin?

Most cruise lines offer a complimentary continental breakfast delivery from which you can select items that typically include pastries, bread, fruit, yogurt, and coffee and tea. Hot breakfast items like eggs, pancakes, bacon, etc. are available as well, but may incur an additional fee on select lines or in specific cabin categories.

After breakfast service ends in the late morning, all major cruise lines offer an all-day room service menu of salads, sandwiches, snacks and desserts. Most cruise lines have special in-room dining menus, separate from what you’d find that day on the buffet or in the main dining room.

However, some of the more upscale lines and some select concierge cabin classes offer comprehensive in-suite dining menus, often with the convenience of ordering off the menu from the main dining room or specialty restaurants onboard. This elevated in-room dining experience often includes a white tablecloth setup and your meal delivered course by course to your cabin or suite.

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There are also specialty food experiences that can be accessed from room service operations, including fresh pizza delivery as seen on Carnival Cruise Line and MSC Cruises, a cutting-edge app feature for Champagne delivery on Virgin Voyages, and luxury cruise lines that will bring you lobster and caviar, as seen on Silversea.

Is room service free on a cruise ship?

MARINA113/GETTY IMAGES

Whereas land-based hotels charge a premium for any food delivered to your room (as well as astronomically high minibar prices), cruise ships have a long legacy of including room service in its fares. Many cruisers’ favorite amenity is the 24/7 complimentary access to generic yet classic menu items such as fresh fruit, a cheese plate or a club sandwich, not to mention continental breakfast.

Recent changes in the economics of cruising have sunset the glory days of unlimited, complimentary room service on several of the most popular cruise lines. Service fees and menus dominated by a la carte options are now the new norms across the industry. Still, the fees are often considerably less than at comparable land-based resorts, and continental breakfast items are most commonly free of charge (with the exception of MSC’s lowest cabin class, which charges a per-item and service fee for breakfast service).

Related: Extra charges on cruise ships that will drive you nuts — and what you can do about them

How much does room service cost?

Depending on the cruise line and your cabin class, room service is either a complimentary all-inclusive service, billed per item or carries a flat delivery fee. Most lines will offer complimentary continental breakfast options through room service with no service fee, even if other options cost extra. Luxury lines including Seabourn, Silversea and Regent Seven Seas Cruises always include 24/7 room service as a standard amenity.

Delivery service fees per order can reach up to $9.95, the per-order rate currently on Norwegian Cruise Line’s non-suite class staterooms. A la carte prices average around $5 per item, whether that’s hot breakfast or a midday sandwich. For example, on Carnival’s new a la carte room service menu, salads now cost $4 to $5 (with additional fees for adding proteins), sandwiches $5 to $7, snacks like pizza and chicken tenders $6 to $8, and dessert $3 to $5.

Do you have to tip for room service on a cruise? 

On no-tipping lines, such as Seabourn and Silversea, crew members are compensated appropriately and you do not need to tip for room service. On lines where guests are expected to tip crew members, determine first if a gratuity is automatically included in your room service order or delivery fee. If it’s not, a small tip is always appreciated.

Depending on what you order and the line, you might not have the chance to sign a bill for your room service order, which could be a missed opportunity to add a tip. Come prepared with small bills to offer as an appreciation of the service, as you’ll find the room service deliverers work hard to expedite many meals around the ship.

Related: Everything you need to know about tipping on a cruise ship

Line-by-line guide to cruise ship room service

Azamara

Azamara offers room service 24/7 at no additional charge for all cabins and suites. A full breakfast menu is available from 6:30 a.m. until 10:00 a.m., while lunch, dinner and late-night snacks include fresh salads, soups, pizzas, burgers and desserts.

Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival’s 24/7 room service is now an à la carte menu, with free continental breakfast service. Access the room service menu through the Carnival HUB app on your smart device or by scanning the QR code in your stateroom.

Complimentary continental breakfast can be arranged the night prior by calling the room service line from your cabin, and delivered to your room in the window of time you designate (6 a.m. to 10 a.m). The breakfast options include a selection of fruit, cereal, baked goods and yogurt, along with coffee, tea, milk and select juices. Four breakfast sandwiches are available for an additional fee, including a biscuit, egg, sausage and hash-brown sandwich ($5), and a bagel with smoked salmon and cream cheese ($6).

Daytime dining runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and the salads, sandwiches, snacks and desserts are now priced entirely à la carte as of October 1, 2022. The menu includes a greek salad ($5) to which you can add grilled chicken ($3), a roasted turkey wrap ($6), a Philly cheesesteak ($7) and firecracker shrimp ($8).

Some of the late-night favorites include the wings ($7), a pan pizza ($6) and the devil's food chocolate cake ($5). Soft drinks as well as beer, liquor and wine by the bottle are available 24/7 with pricing based on the ship’s bar rates and free delivery.

The Carnival HUB app features a bit more flexibility when ordering, allowing you to customize items like a free pizza, delivered to any place you pinpoint on the ship for a $5 service charge.

Celebrity Cruises

Room service on Celebrity Cruises is complimentary from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. for non-suite level and AquaClass passengers, and available to suite passengers 24 hours a day at no charge. Outside of the daily complimentary hours for non-suite passengers, room service orders incur a $5 service fee.

The standard non-suite room service menu includes the soup of the day, chicken skewers, seared salmon and warm cookies with milk. Breakfast room service for non-suite staterooms is complimentary and can be ordered ahead nightly with a breakfast order card. The menu includes scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage and hash browns, along with coffee, tea and select juices.

AquaClass passengers have more expansive options on their breakfast menu, including custom omelets, French toast and pancakes. AquaClass also has a few more options on its room service menu including a chicken caesar salad, a Niçoise salad with grilled tuna and a Beyond Burger.

Top suites onboard offer an enhanced room service breakfast menu (New York strip steak and eggs, a black truffle omelet), along with a robust menu that includes shrimp cocktail, crab cakes, filet mignon and sea bass, along with canapes delivered each day.

Cunard

Cunard’s room service is a complimentary amenity, included in your fare. The 24-hour service includes a robust breakfast menu that must be ordered the night prior via an order card in your stateroom. The daytime room service menu is globally inspired with items such as chicken fajitas, a Mediterranean quesadilla, and chicken or shrimp Thai green curry; dessert items include comfort-food favorites, such as warm apple pie a la mode and vanilla cheesecake.

Passengers sailing in one of the Grill Suites can order from the full Princess Grill or Queens Grill menus, as well as request ensuite dining setups. A few traditional luxuries of cruising are available for an extra fee including caviar service ($60) or caviar service with a half bottle of Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin Yellow Label Champagne ($100) and a gourmet canapes tray ($34.50).

Disney Cruise Line

DISNEY CRUISE LINE

Complimentary 24/7 room service is included with all fares on Disney Cruise Line, ending at 1 a.m. on the day of your departure. The extensive menu can be found on the Disney Cruise Line Navigator App with plenty of food options for all ages, from mac and cheese, chicken tenders and burgers to more sophisticated items like a Greek salad, grilled salmon and New York steak panini.

Snack items like salted peanuts, M&M’s and popcorn are available for an additional fee. Specialty coffee, sodas, bottled waters and all specialty juices and spirits are also available at an additional cost.

For in-room breakfast, complete the request card in your cabin the night prior and leave it outside your cabin for a complimentary continental breakfast with options that include bread, pastries and cereal, along with coffee and tea.

Concierge-class passengers have a special complimentary menu, with service from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. that includes a seared ahi tuna Niçoise salad, potato gnocchi and Mickey-shaped sandwich cookies.

Holland America Line

Holland America Line offers complimentary 24-hour room service for all staterooms and suites. The room service breakfast menu includes bagels and lox, a vegetable frittata, and an American breakfast that includes eggs, hash browns, bacon and sausage. Premium a la carte options include lobster benedict ($12.50) and steak & eggs ($15), both subject to an automatic 18% gratuity. Fill out the breakfast menu in your stateroom the night before, specifying what you want and when you want it delivered, and then hang it on your stateroom door for collection.

Holland America’s all-day 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. room service menu includes a cheese and fruit plate, three-bean chili, roasted chicken, a barbecue pulled-pork sub sandwich and freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies. A late-night food menu from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. has select items such as a chicken quesadilla, a caprese panini and chocolate layer cake.

The room service menus also highlight a few dishes created by the line’s Culinary Council, a group of six celebrity chefs. Items like a 10 oz. filet mignon ($15), a 12 oz. Maine lobster tail ($20) or a Japanese sushi bento box ($4.95 per item) can be ordered to your room from 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. nightly.

MSC Cruises

MSC CRUISES

MSC Cruises offers four tiered pricing packages, referred to as “experiences,” which delineate service levels and additional fees for its Caribbean cruises. The base package, referred to as MSC’s Bella Experience includes room service but at a charge of $3.50 per order and a tier system that charges $3 for one item or $5 for two items. The menu items include a grilled chicken sandwich, tuna sandwich, minestrone soup and chocolate chip cookies.

The room service menu is the same for all four sailing experiences, though MSC Yacht Club suites incur no fee for all room service items and room service delivery. The Fantastica and Aurea Experiences include complimentary delivery, with the same per-item pricing structure as the Bella Experience, $3 for one item or $5 for two items.

MSC Cruises is known for its Neapolitan pizza delivery service, with custom pizzas made to order and delivered to your stateroom. The Margherita pizza is $6 with a $3.50 delivery fee for Bella passengers, no delivery fee for Fantastica and Aurea Experience guests, and free for guests sailing in the Yacht Club.

Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line starts each day (except for the morning of your departure) with complimentary continental breakfast room service (fruit, pastries, bread, cereal, coffee and tea) from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Hot breakfast items, as well as room service ordered outside of those morning hours, incur a per-order $9.95 fee for guests not staying in suites. All items on the room service menu are available for no additional fee after the per-order service fee and include breakfast options like a spinach and tomato omelet and steak and eggs, along with all-day menu items with highlights that include chili con carne, a veggie burger and shrimp creole.

Guests staying in suites and The Haven do not have to pay the room service delivery fee. All non-complimentary beverages ordered through room service (alcohol, specialty juices, bottles of water) incur a 20% gratuity, as well as an additional service charge.

Oceania Cruises

Room service throughout the entire Oceania Cruises fleet is included in all fares and available 24/7. Concierge-level suites have the option of ordering room service off The Grand Dining Room menu for lunch and dinner, so favorite items like the line’s signature rack of lamb and a molten chocolate lava cake can be enjoyed in the privacy and comfort of your own suite.

Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises offers 24-hour free room service delivery for a wide variety of food, drinks and stateroom amenities with the line’s OceanNow feature on the MedallionClass app. When it comes to dining, the OceanNow feature lets you order food to your location anywhere on the ship, whether it’s your stateroom or poolside.

Princess offers a mix of complimentary and à la carte menu items on its room service menu. The long list of no-fee items includes staples like burgers, hot dogs, chicken fingers, fries and a fruit cup; upcharges kick in for items like shrimp cocktail ($8), pizza ($3) and an 8 oz. steak filet ($19). The complimentary room service menu also includes a continental breakfast (fruits, breads and pastries, yogurt, coffee, tea and select juices). Order the service ahead nightly by filling out the breakfast card in your stateroom portfolio and leaving it hanging on the outside of your stateroom door.

You can also use the app to order extra towels, ice bucket refills or even aloe to soothe sunburns.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Regent Seven Seas’ cruise ship room service is complimentary and offered 24/7 to guests in all suites. Highlights from the extensive room service menu include a charcuterie and cheese platter, beef medallions, grilled tiger shrimp and creme brulee. If you’re dining during the operational hours of the Compass Rose, the line’s main restaurant, you can order from that rotating menu as well, with dinners served course by course in your suite.

Royal Caribbean

ROYAL CARIBBEAN

Royal Caribbean offers room service 24/7 with complimentary continental breakfast (pastries, bread, cereals, fruit, yogurt, along with coffee and tea) service from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. If you’re looking to add a heartier entree to the order, the American breakfast option (an assortment of eggs, buttermilk pancakes, sausage, etc.) on the menu is available for a $7.95 per-order charge plus an 18% gratuity, which brings the total service fee to around $9.40.

The daily room service menu is offered from 11 a.m. to 6 a.m. with meals for all times of day from grilled cheese and tomato soup for lunch, chicken tenders for an afternoon snack, grilled salmon or rigatoni bolognese for dinner, and fried chicken wings and chocolate cake for a late-night snack. Room service incurs a fee of $7.95 per order with an added 18% gratuity, which brings the total service fee to around $9.40.

Guests sailing in one of Royal Caribbean’s Grand Suites or higher are able to order in-room dining from the main dining room during the hours of operation as well as order room service from the standard room service menu without a service fee.

Seabourn Cruise Line

SEABOURN

Seabourn Cruise Line’s gourmet dining experience extends to its room service with a menu of luxe delicacies available around the clock. Room service on board is always included and complimentary, with the option to order from the ship’s main restaurant. Highlights from the room service menu include a shrimp cocktail, prosciutto and melon, a New York sirloin steak and homemade cookies. While it’s not advertised, guests are also able to order complimentary caviar and Champagne anywhere, anytime on board.

Silversea Cruises

Silversea’s butler service for every guest includes complimentary 24/7 room service. The line’s room service menu is extensive with a wide variety of dishes from shrimp cocktail and spring rolls to New York strip steak, burgers, pizzas and ice cream. If you’re looking for a more complete dining experience in your suite, multicourse meals (highlights include lobster salad, Chilean sea bass and hazelnut chocolate cheesecake) are available to order from Atlantide, the ship’s main restaurant, during regular dining hours. Complimentary caviar and Champagne can be ordered any time by any guest. If you’re looking for an upgrade, specialty-grade caviar tins are available from $40 to $75 for that spur-of-the-moment indulgence.

Viking

Viking provides complimentary 24-hour room service for all cabins on all of its ocean and expedition vessels. The room service menu includes a selection of cheeses, chicken consomme, New York strip steak, poached Norwegian salmon and a bourbon pecan brownie.

An extensive breakfast menu printed on an order card includes fresh breakfast pastries, custom eggs, pancakes, corned beef hash and smoked salmon. Grand suites have the option to order from the main dining room menu for in-suite private dining and dinner parties.

Viking does not offer room service for any stateroom category on its river cruises.

Virgin Voyages

VIRGIN

Virgin’s 24-hour room service is an extension of the ship’s on-trend cuisine with many contemporary food options you’re not likely to find on most other cruise lines. Room service orders can be placed through the Virgin Voyages app or by dialing the room service extension in your stateroom.

Each room service order incurs a $5 delivery fee, though you can order as much food as you like. Certain items (like specialty coffee, alcoholic beverages and fresh orange juice) do carry an additional a la carte fee; if you spend more than $5 on these extra-fee items, your delivery fee is waived. The $5 fee is also waived for all RockStar Quarters suites.

Breakfast delivery starts at 5 a.m. and is available until 11 a.m., featuring a menu of contemporary food items like a Nutella-stuffed French toast, an egg white frittata and a house-made date and almond protein bar. The shipwide room service menu from 11 a.m. to 5 a.m. has lunch, dinner and late-night options, with favorites that include a charcuterie and cheese plate, a New York strip steak, a blueberry-green tea vegan cheesecake and confetti cake pops.

Shaking things up, literally, Virgin’s first-of-its-kind “Shake for Champagne” feature adds the convenience of Champagne delivery no matter where you are on the ship. Simply open the Virgin Voyages app, give your phone a shake, and a button will pop up to order a $95 bottle of Moët Chandon Impérial Champagne, with flutes delivered to you.

Windstar Cruises

Windstar’s 24-hour room service is included with your fare. The line has a room service menu that includes a full breakfast, along with salads, burgers and sandwiches available until 10 p.m. nightly. The line also lets passengers order off the ship’s main dining room’s lunch and dinner menus during dining hours.

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Featured image by MARIDAV/GETTY IMAGES
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,200 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
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TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
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  • Intro Offer
    Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,200 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®

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  • Annual Fee

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  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
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Why We Chose It

If you are looking to take your premium rewards to the highest level, this card is really a no brainer in our eyes. Chase's Ultimate Rewards make points easy to redeem, with a wide range of 10 airline and three hotel transfer partners and a friendly user interface. Despite the high annual fee, Chase is consistently adding new benefits to keep the card competitive in a fierce premium rewards field.

Pros

  • $300 annual travel credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • Access to Chase Ultimate Rewards hotel and airline travel partners
  • Unlimited 3x points on the broad category of travel and dining
  • 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Broad definitions for travel and dining bonus categories

Cons

  • Steep $550 annual fee
  • May not make sense for people that don't travel frequently
  • You must spend the $300 travel credit before earning 3x points for travel and dining
  • No automatic hotel elite status
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,200 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year.
  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,200 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select and up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck®
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more