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  #1 (permalink)  
Old March 1st, 2011, 02:09 PM
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Default Table Mates: Is it me?

We have been on five cruises, and have not had much success in the table mate arena.

Cruise 1: Sailed with our kids - had a great time
Cruise 2: Table mates were hetero and from the Midwest, the commonalities ended there. In fact, he kept looking over the balcony at there "new friends". In retrospect we should have traded with the new friends.
Cruise 3: Table for eight, two Hispanic couples two Anglo. The Latinas did not have real good English and would speak in Spanish - then joined by their husbands. Conversations were tough.
Cruise 4: Table for four. Table mates never showed up. I think our servers were expecting more company.
Cruise 5: Table for four (had asked for a larger table.) Our table mates appeared the second night and disappeared the rest of the cruise.

Don't know what it is. I shower and everything!
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Old March 1st, 2011, 03:30 PM
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Try anytime dining? That is what I do and suits me.

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Old March 1st, 2011, 04:03 PM
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Talking Table mates

Out of our forty cruises over the years, we have had some delightful table mates, and some not so delightful. By and large we made the best of it and enjoyed them all.

In these days of anytime dining, we also meet some interesting people but the conversation never seems to get past, "Is this your first cruise?" and "What do you plan to do in the port tomorrow." By the time we have covered that, the waiter is serving dessert.

Of course, in "civilized" times, the ability to make light polite chit chat during a long formal dinner was a highly prized skill. These days ... well ...
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Old March 1st, 2011, 04:18 PM
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We've been very lucky as far as table mates go-after 13 cruises, we asked to be moved once. We still keep in touch with many of the people we were seated with and one couple are now great friends who we've cruised with 3 times.
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Old March 1st, 2011, 05:47 PM
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I love a good dinner conversation.

Not easy to find.
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Old March 1st, 2011, 09:03 PM
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Cruise # 1 -we were at a table of 4 ,not by choice .We were with a wonderful couple from Texas .

Cruise #2 -again at a table for 4 ,not by choice .We met 2 wonderful people from Branson,MO and kept in touch for many years.

Cruise #3-we seemed to be the wrong religion and from the wrong geographical area with many of the people we sat with.

Cruise#4-table for 6-all friends
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Old March 2nd, 2011, 03:00 AM
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Cruise 1 - I was single at a table of eight singles (all canucks)...fantastic

Cruise 2 - We were at a table for eight; two of other three couples pleasant.

Cruise 3 - We were at a table of six with my folks and one other couple; very pleasant

Cruises 4 - 18 - Open seating every night; we have chosen restaurant, time, and dinner companions every night....FANTASTIC

We will never return to any ship where we can't choose our dinner companions.
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Old March 2nd, 2011, 09:45 AM
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Going on our first cruise in May of next year. Part of me wants to have the experience of sitting with strangers, just to meet people and make conversation. ON the other hand, I know my kids. (18, 18, and 11 at sailing) They are likely to be all, "What is this? This food is weird, can't we just go get pizza? Stop looking at me! You stop! Why did we have to dress up for this?.... ad nauseum." You get the idea. I think overall I'd rather just sit by ourselves and not have to worry about our uncouthness ruining somebody else's dinner!

But we'll see. Maybe they'll be on their best behavior, and maybe we'll get lucky and end up at a table with other kids for them to talk to, etc. Or maybe I'll just ditch them at the pool cafe every night and go to MDR by myself. Nah, that's not what this trip is supposed to be about.
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Old March 2nd, 2011, 10:34 AM
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OklaCruiserMom, you need to have your travel agent put in a request for you. If you want to just sit with your kids that fine, or you can request to be seated with another family with kids near to yours in age
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Old March 2nd, 2011, 11:15 AM
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We've had mixed experiences.

On our first cruise, we were at a table of 6, but we never met the third couple. We formed a 10 year+ friendship with the second couple. And that was just a weekend cruise on Sovereign.

VOTS - was our honeymoon. You think, they would have sat is with other honeymooners, but no. We had a table of 10 ~ mixed bag. People were nice, but we didn't click with anyone in particular.

Grand Princess ~ we did MTD. We hated it. We always ended up at a table for 2 (which was fine, except that we wanted to meet other couples).

Dream - we had a small table for our family, and will do the same on Eurodam.

When we did GOTS in the fall, we had a table for 6. We had nothing in common with one couple; although they were nice, and conversation was limitted but pleasant. The third couple was great, and we got along fabulously.


I read somewhere here, where a cruising veteran had done a detailed analysis of seating dynamics, and came to the conclusion that a table of 6 was the ideal. I can't remember their logic exactly, but it was something to the effect of 8 &10 was too large for meaningful conversation, and 4 was too risky if you didn't like the other couple.

As long as we cruise with our kids, I'll ask for private tables, but if it's just DH and myself, I'll ask for a table of 6 on our next cruise.
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Old March 13th, 2011, 02:00 PM
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It is a hit and miss thing and never be afraid to ask for a new table!!

Cruise 1 Holiday 1991--excellent tablemates!!! loved everyone!!

Cruise 2 Victory--went with mom and she hated dining room and the other three people who showed up (table of 8) were not the friendliest, thus five night at the buffet (yuck for me, mom loved it)

Cruise 3 Truimph--table of eight and three empty chairs. All Canadian table and we had an amazing time!!!

Cruise 4 Conquest--went with my mom and niece and my mother has a deep hate for dining in the dining room where you are served a fine meal, thus after two nights it was buffet (mom and niece loved it, me not loving it)

Cruise 5 Liberty--table of EIGHT solo cruisers of which two were no shows. Five women and one man. Al didn't speak good English and when we moved from middle to back dining room they moved him to a different table. Sad to leave that dining room cuz the maitre'd was smoking freaking hot (he had me at hello....sadly he died 6-8 weeks before I went on the Liberty again and two weeks before he was due back on the ship).

Cruise 6 Valor--table of eight and two no shows. Three opted to change tables because of neighboring table of five unruly children the parents would NOT control, nor could maitre'd, or waiters control...Three of us stayed and we had a great time!

Cruise 7 Freedom--table of eight and three no shows. One couple engrossed in themsevles, and two really grumpy, and I mean ***** ***** ***** the whole time. I asked for a table change and they couldn't find a table suitable, so I opted for the, YUCK, buffet the next five days. Good thing the Mongolian grill was open two of the nights...

Cruise 8 Splendor--Six out of eight showed up, and the table was all solo travellers and almost excellent...alas, one of the guys wouldn't stop hitting on me and thankfully he had to leave the ship for medical reasons in Mazatlan (the day before my 40th birthday.

Cruise 9 Glory--They gave me and a friend a table for two, uhm, no we are friends not lesbian lovers.....so they moved us to a table for eight with six over 65's and we had sooooo much fun, I tell you, those silver foxes at that table were wild women, too bad their husbands were not as wild as them!!!!

Cruise 10 Liberty--table for 10 with eight showing up. Two people were rather annoying and trying on the wait staff. Two of the ladies (mom and daughter) were great dinner mates and the other two women were really nice too.....

Cruise 11 Glory--five of us travelling together and had a table....excellent, for the most part!!!!
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Old March 13th, 2011, 10:19 PM
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Default How do ships decide?

We, like others have had mixed success and have changed tables only a few times in ~40 cruises.

What I don't understand is how the cruise lines decide the arrangements. They have our ages and marriage status.

We are a married senior couple that requests table of 6 or 8.

It is not unusual to be seated w/honeymooners, all singles or a table of 2.

We now check the table size late afternoon of 1st day to be sure the size is acceptable.
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Old March 14th, 2011, 08:00 AM
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After two bad table mates cruises I look at this a little different from everyone else, I would rather spend my dinner time with just my wife where we can have a nice meal and discuss our day and excitedly plan tomorrow.

And can I get a hip hip hooray for anytime dining:-D
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Old March 14th, 2011, 09:34 AM
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On my recent trip on the Ryndam last week, I opted for a table of 6, since I was travelling with my mother-in-law. This worked out well because it was small enough to enjoy conversation. One couple only showed up 3 nights. One night we dined alone. No problem and the servers were very good. I wouldn't go for anything bigger than a 6-top.
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Old March 14th, 2011, 10:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deadmoney View Post
After two bad table mates cruises I look at this a little different from everyone else, I would rather spend my dinner time with just my wife where we can have a nice meal and discuss our day and excitedly plan tomorrow.

And can I get a hip hip hooray for anytime dining:-D
You get a hip hip hooray from me!

Annie
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Old March 14th, 2011, 12:51 PM
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Our servers on Freedom did a pretty good job - but I know no-shows throw them off because they want to serve the table together.

One of our cruises was during the World Series. One couple consistently arrived late because they were watching the game.
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Old March 14th, 2011, 01:23 PM
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Carnival seems to be the best at matching passengers. Always have done well with Royal Caribbean too.

Princess although one of my favorite lines seems to do the worst job of matching people for dinner. At least for me. I think they put Elites together, but I'm 20 years younger than most Elites.

I agree a six top is best unless it's two couples traveling together and your the odd couple. Best size for conversation. Eight top if round is OK.
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