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Old August 13th, 2011, 08:26 PM
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Default Early dining "pace"

There was a letter on John Heald's blog from a person who claimed their waiter cut their steak to hurry them along. They had early dining and thought they were being rushed along to get ready for second service.

For those you who prefer early dining, do you feel you have enough time for dinner and conversation or do you feel the clock ticking as you eat?
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Old August 13th, 2011, 08:32 PM
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If anything, the dining takes too long due to the # of tables the waiters are trying to serve.
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Old August 13th, 2011, 08:50 PM
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We have never felt rushed and have enough time for a nice conversation.
On our last cruise on the Celebrity Equinox we had a great time every evening with wonderful table mates and excellent food, plus time to enjoy both.

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Old August 13th, 2011, 08:50 PM
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I saw that on the blog, and it's really preposterous to me....to think that a waiter would put his job in jeaopardy,and, cut the diner's meat.Nope!

I have dined early,and I do notice as tables leave, they are johnny on the spot, to turn them over, but, I have never felt rushed.
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Old August 13th, 2011, 09:00 PM
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There's been several times at early seating (not just Carnival), where we're just having or just getting our coffee and dessert, and all the tables around us are being stripped and prepared for second seating.

Cutting someone's steak, I doubt. But, yes there's been quite a number of times we've fealt like we're being told to "hurry, finish, and get out".

I can especially see this being the case at tables where some the folks doddle in later for dinner each evening.
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Old August 13th, 2011, 09:09 PM
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I agree with Kuki, sometimes you do feel like you're being rushed if you have early seating, but I've never had a waiter cut my meat for me !

Even if we're eating later (on a ship or in a restaurant on land) I'm not happy about the server's closing things up. The hour's that the restaurant are open (including ship's restaurant's) are the hours that should be observed.

JMHO,
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Old August 13th, 2011, 09:20 PM
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Since we are not really desert people, we tend to leave the table at that point, or shortly thereafter, that must be why I never feel rushed.

But,realistically I think people have to be cognisant of the fact that, there is another seating,and I wouldn't want to doddle too much at the early seating...that's just me....

On the Magic,having late seating,and chatting up a storm we did linger.
Years back dining with the Captain at late seating, our group had such a good time, the waiters, sat down, and, started eating their dinner, at 11 or after, I would say!
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Old August 14th, 2011, 11:41 AM
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We've only had early seating once and never felt rushed .
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Old August 14th, 2011, 12:02 PM
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Like Kuki said, if you dawdle and wander in 20 minutes late, the waiters may be in a bind to get you thru all the courses and turn the table over for 2nd seating. Never felt rushed if I got there at the proper 'dinner hour'. I always try to get there promptly when the DR opens, but on occasion a slightly later entry is just unavoidable due to the activities of the day... If I feel a bit rushed on those days I know its my fault.
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Old August 14th, 2011, 01:45 PM
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There have been a few times on different lines that I have felt rushed at early seating. Especially when they have taken a long time to serve the coffee and dessert. When you are having tables turned around you the "leisurely dining experience" goes out the window.

If the courses are served without delays then I haven't felt rushed.

The regimentation is why I love open seating.

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Old August 14th, 2011, 02:32 PM
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Question Rushed?

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Originally Posted by Mike M View Post
There have been a few times on different lines that I have felt rushed at early seating. Especially when they have taken a long time to serve the coffee and dessert. When you are having tables turned around you the "leisurely dining experience" goes out the window.
Probably the principal reason to have early seating is to be able to enjoy the shows and the rest of the evening. I have never felt rushed at early seating, but usually I did want to get on out and go on with the program.

As far as having tables set around us ... that happens in any good restaurant as diners move in and out. I don't really see why it is a problem on board ship. I figure they can't set all the tables at once anyhow, so I am in no way delaying them if they have other tables to set!

Certainly arriving late at early seating and then dawdling would be very rude. But arriving on time has always allowed us plenty of time to enjoy our coffee and dessert without feeling rushed. It is usually at least 2 hours between dinner seatings.
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Old August 14th, 2011, 03:00 PM
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Years ago, my old boss, used to saunter into their dinner whenever they felt like it. I used to look at him, and, shake my head. Back then there was only traditional dining, and, they could have cared less how it effected their tablemates, or the staff

I really dislike that sense of entitlement...and she wondered why her ice tea was never at the plate like other people got...I told her
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Old August 14th, 2011, 04:59 PM
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We always have early seating and I have NEVER felt rushed. On the contrary, we're usually the first ones ready to leave the dining room. Neither one of us care to sit around a table for over 2 hours no matter how nice our table mates are. That is the one thing we don't like about alternative dining-it just goes on and on and....
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Old August 14th, 2011, 06:28 PM
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We enjoy our dinner, highlight of the day usually, a leisurely meal in hopefully good company, we are often there for over two hours, never done early sitting for this reason, we know that at 8-30 someone wants our table. Even if we were not rushed we would feel we were knowing this.
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Old October 3rd, 2011, 12:32 PM
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What determines early or late dining? Can you change it?? If you have late dining, can you still see shows? Sorry but I am confused.
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Old October 3rd, 2011, 01:16 PM
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Kerr- our travel agent always books our dining preference when she books our cruise, but if thats not the case for you, once you have your booking number you can choose your dining preference and lots of other things on line.
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Old October 3rd, 2011, 01:31 PM
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Most ships have early dining around 5:30 or 6 and a late seating around 8 or 8:30. The shows usually repeat sometimes on different nights so everybody can have a chance to see them. "Any Time" dining is also an option on most ships. That is more like a restaurant where you walk up whenever you want and they seat you first-come-first-served.
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