Cruise guests warned of ‘tacky’ buffet habit that could land them hefty fines

When it comes to cruises there are plenty of unwritten rules from dress codes to drinks package etiquette – and the buffet is no exception as one passenger recently found out.

A cruise holidaymaker has been slammed as 'tacky' by fellow passengers after they revealed their plans to fill up their own plastic containers at the buffet in the morning before disembarking the ship and going exploring. They took to Reddit to question if the move was acceptable – and it didn't go down well.

They wrote: "Are we allowed to fill our personal plastic containers with buffet food? We will be leaving the ship and exploring but want to take food from the ship and pack it for later during the day while we are out exploring."

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While food is included in cruises, unless you've paid for a shore excursion with meals included, when you disembark you usually have to fork out for any food you want. However, taking food from the cruise is a divisive topic.

"Wow. I can't think of anything more tacky, quite honestly," one infuriated cruise fan replied. "Take a box of granola bars on the cruise with you if you must, for when hunger strikes and food is nowhere to be seen, but practices like this are EXACTLY why Venice stopped allowing cruise ships to dock in their ports.

"Passengers would come off the ship, bring a picnic, tour the sights, leave their garbage in the city, spend as little money as they could get away with, and sail off leaving the city more worn than it was before without really doing much to contribute to or take part in the amazingness of the city."

They suggested that others "consider partaking of local food, drink, and delicacies while you are ashore" to help boost the local economies, especially as cruise ships can be a controversial topic because of the crowds they bring in an intense burst.

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Others agreed, with one adding a warning that taking food off a ship can be banned on certain sailings. They wrote: "Typically they don’t say anything if you take buffet food (within reason) BUT many cruise destinations do not allow food from the ship to go to shore – particularly fruit, seeds, nuts etc. So be careful and make sure it is allowed. The shore talks typically address this."

Another person added: "They won't let food off the ship. A lot of ports have laws about what food is allowed to cross their boarders. Also that is super tacky."

It's worth noting that in some destinations, it's against the law to bring fresh fruit and vegetables ashore from cruise ships.

For example a number of Caribbean islands prohibit food being brought by tourists, while in the EU you won't be allowed to bring in the likes of meat, dairy and other animal products. Anyone caught breaking the rules will have their goods confiscated, not to mention that you could land yourself a pretty hefty fine. Your best bet is to check the rules with your cruise line, as well as your destination's own rules.

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