Since starting this thread I have done most of my pre-cruise attire shopping. So far I have acquired four Tommy Bahama shirts (three 100% silk and one 100% linen) for about $500, plus a pair of white linen pants and shorts and two pair of swim trunks for about $100. I got a discounted Panama Hat (also Tommy Bahama $100), and I plan to by a pair of deck shoes for $100. I also have purchased eight new "artistic" T-Shirts for about $150. That's almost $1,000 so far on clothes alone and I would consider them "Festive Casual". They are all colorful, cool, and comfortable and should be fine for all but the dreaded formal dinner.
I still have not got that figured out yet. I have a jacket and slacks (which don't quite fit yet, but I am loosing a little weight) and dress shoes which I could bring along, but everything else will fit nicely in one large duffel bag I normally travel with. I plan to bring a small back pack for water/towel/souvenirs for my day in Cozumel. I have a suit/shirt bag for travel, but that third carry on now makes my load unwieldy.
I could rent a tux but I am sure Carnival will rape me for that and I would only wear it for the few hours at dinner. All this for some prime rib?!?
I think they should have a "formal" seating time or a special dinning room for those who enjoy this kind of thing and not make the rest of us have to deal with it by looking bad, skipping it, or suffering through it somehow.