If I am going to the trouble of getting dressed up then I think everyone else should!
To be perfectly honest, the way I truly feel is that if a person paid for a cruise then they should be able to wear their underwear on their head if they want to. They should also be aware that I might stare at them like they just broke wind in church - at least for a second. But it's their money and reputation, so they can do as they please. I am not going to say "if you can't dress right then don't cruise."
I was once on a cruise where a tablemate said "I only book this line because I know everyone on here is up to my standards. I don't want to associate with unrefined people." I have to say I felt really sorry for the guy when I realized he didn't have anyone close enough to him to care about him personally so he had to care more about what the strangers around him were like.
The statement just sounded somewhat insecure and judgemental.
Remember, there was once a tme when boys with long hair were not allowed in Disneyland. Maybe you remember slicking your long hair back so you could get in? Maybe you remember when schools had dress codes and how much you hated being told how you should look?
Do we really need to be that way on cruise ships? They are suggested dress codes, and I am glad they are not mandatory anymore. Yes, I still say "if I have to do it then I wish everyone would," but in reality deep down I can't say I don't understand the people who don't want to do it, I do understand it.
Its kind of like this; if you have the money and time to go out and buy nice clothes, and you never gain weight so they always fit, and you have a body that looks good in any kind of clothing - then good for you.
But some people don't have all that much money, they don't have the time or money to buy fancy clothes they may never wear again, they hate the way they look in a suit because they have a long waist and short arms & legs (that's me) and their weight fluctuates so the nice clothes they planned to bring didn't fit.
I am just saying it doesn't pay to be judgemental if you don't know the whole story about someone.
I think it would be cool of the cruise lines worked something out where they could pre-arrange special formal cruises on certain ships in a fleet or something like that. But we have seen that concept doesn't seem to work. They couldn't even make a non-smoking ship they could sell out.
What if it was the other way - where ships used to be very informal and suddenly they started having mandatory dress codes. I think a lot of people might be upset about suddenly having to get dressed up.