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Old September 13th, 2008, 12:25 AM
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Default Anytime Dining

Has anyone done Carnival Legend's anytime dining? If so, how did you like it. Also did you know if they are going to put it on any more of their ships?

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Old September 14th, 2008, 09:10 PM
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I hope not. They already have anytime dining, its called "room service" or "buffet" or even "24 hr. pizza". I have heard not so nice reports on the concept of anytime dining. ON MY OTHER CRUISES THE DINING ROOM WAS NEARLY ALWAYS FULL, SO IF IT ISN'T BROKEN, DON'T FIX IT
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Old September 14th, 2008, 09:17 PM
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The liberty is going into dry dock in three or four weeks. According to Alex, the dreamy Maitre D, the Golden Dining room is going to be gutted and it is going to be anytime dining by reservation only. Everyone will have to make a reservation for the time they want and will be grouped with total strangers at different tables each and every night...YUCK!

I met four wonderful ladies on the Liberty and we had the best time ever! All of us were solo cruisers and spanned ages from the baby (me at 39) to the eldest at 80 (who could keep up with the 50 year olds!!!)
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Old September 14th, 2008, 09:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by misguidedangel
The liberty is going into dry dock in three or four weeks. According to Alex, the dreamy Maitre D, the Golden Dining room is going to be gutted and it is going to be anytime dining by reservation only. Everyone will have to make a reservation for the time they want and will be grouped with total strangers at different tables each and every night...YUCK!

I met four wonderful ladies on the Liberty and we had the best time ever! All of us were solo cruisers and spanned ages from the baby (me at 39) to the eldest at 80 (who could keep up with the 50 year olds!!!)
Can you explain what they mean by "anytime dining by reservation only"? Seems like kind of a conflicting statement.
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Old September 15th, 2008, 12:24 PM
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Say for example, you prefer to eat early, however, your ship is in port that day and you would rather eat later. You can call and make a reservation for whatever time you'd like; you're not "locked in" to your dining time. Also, if you don't mind waiting, you can also just walk up and wait for a table (it's much nicer to eat in the dining room than at the buffet, there's no comparison!). The only catch is; you have to 'commit' to one or the other, you can't go back and forth. It's either all traditional or all flexible.
Keep in mind, that with the Liberty, they'll have two seperate dining rooms; one for traditional dining and one for flexible.
We're sailing on the Liberty in November and signed up for the flexible option right away! I like having the option of eating in the dining room when WE are ready. Plus, (knowing I'm in the minority) we don't need/want to be buddies with the servers, so a different server each night isn't a big deal for us. Plus, we always request a table for two. I know I sound anti-social, but I'm really not; I just like spending time alone with my Sweetie!
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Old September 15th, 2008, 02:55 PM
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My guess is with time anytime dining will be the rule rather than the exception. I also think that eventually one dining room wont be big enough to handle the "anytime" requests. I hope they roll this out fleetwide soon!
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Old September 15th, 2008, 06:03 PM
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It was my understanding that the flexible schedule was going to start out as the upper area of one of the dinning rooms on each of the ships that get the flexible dining plan. If it catches on, it may grow to be a bigger percentage of the total seating.

I hope they continue to offer a significant portion of the dining rooms as traditional seating. Having the wait staff learn our preferences and cater to us so well makes the whole cruise feel more special.

I’m not against Carnival offering options, I just hope the one I prefer doesn’t go away or get watered down.
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Old September 15th, 2008, 08:40 PM
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mI agree with those who said they like having the same wait saff each night. I thought that the supper clubs and the reservations only dining rooms were there to give people an upscaled choice for their time to dine. I also feel so pampered when the wait staff makes sure my chair without arms is waiting for me. And, that they know I love lemon with my Ice Tea and that I want a shrimp coctail every night. I live alone so it's the only time I get that special treatment.

Have an Awesome day!
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Old September 16th, 2008, 01:47 PM
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We did NCL Star last fall and they use the freestyle dining, you can go eat when you want, as far as the main halls are open. This was in the main dining halls and you went to eat when you wanted. You could set by yourself or with a group of people you do not know. Whichever you choose. You could not come to dinner in cutoffs or such, very nice. Our other cruises have been with assigned times and seating, like both but the freestyle is not all that bad. Have not been on Carnival,
Valor this Sunday though. When we get back will write a review.
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Old September 16th, 2008, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wipala
We did NCL Star last fall and they use the freestyle dining, you can go eat when you want, as far as the main halls are open. This was in the main dining halls and you went to eat when you wanted. You could set by yourself or with a group of people you do not know. Whichever you choose. You could not come to dinner in cutoffs or such, very nice. Our other cruises have been with assigned times and seating, like both but the freestyle is not all that bad. Have not been on Carnival,
Valor this Sunday though. When we get back will write a review.
Wipala
Have a wonderful cruise.
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Old September 17th, 2008, 01:05 AM
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The cruise-lines seem to care less about us single/solo travelers. I LOVE assigned seating with other single/solos. On my last cruise I was seated with 3 single women. poor me !
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Old September 17th, 2008, 08:21 AM
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So far, the reports I've seen on "anytime dining" aboard Carnival say that it's not very popular, and the "assigned seating" dining was totally full, and had a waiting list! Perhaps that'll change, but frankly, I doubt it. Most folks I've talked to seem to prefer traditional dining, and I have a feeling it'll continue to be the most popular. I guess time will tell.

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Old September 21st, 2008, 12:16 AM
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I experienced anytime dining on NCL in 2005. I hated it. This is the one reason why I will not take another NCL cruise. The quality of food suffers as does the service. I found it to be chaotic and rather unorganized.

Dining with the same people and having the same waitstaff is one of the highlights of cruising.

Also, in this day of costcutting, I would imagine that anytime dining is more expensive than traditional dining so I don't see it becoming the normal on Carnival. Having a small portion of one dining room set aside for people that "want to eat when they want to eat" is all well and fine but if being able to eat when you want is a dealbreaker, perhaps cruising is not the best choice for a vacation.

Having to make a reservation ahead of time is not really "anytime" dining. It is simply changing your dinner time day by day. Also, how far in advance do these reservations have to be made? If it is more than a few hours, it is probably more trouble than it is worth. There is always the buffet and room service for anytime freedom.
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Old September 21st, 2008, 02:32 AM
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I agree with you IB. Did the Pride of Hawaii cruise last year and did not like anytime dining. I like seeing my tablemates every night. It is fun to discuss the day and what we did. We always seem to get really nice people at our table also. Bob
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Old September 21st, 2008, 12:30 PM
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Do the cruise lines listen to us? Based on this board there are a number of us who like assigned dining just the way it is. I can get this "anytime dining" rubbish at home .
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Old September 21st, 2008, 01:37 PM
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I should have said "preferred time" instead of reservation only. He said it would be like the the open seating breakfast/lunch. You have a preferred time you want to go and you go, but if you find you want to be with certain people at a certain time (and all agree) they will set you all at a table together at that time......

Personally I like sitting with the same group....
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Old September 21st, 2008, 03:21 PM
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I like the Anytime dining on Princess. You can request the same table for the whole cruise and have the same wait staff. If you get bum service on the first night, just ask for another section.

I usually make a standing reservation at a specific time and let the manager know if we want to change it or not show up the next night.

1800 is too early to eat and 2030 is too late; so we can pick one in the middle. You also have the option to eat with others or dine for two.
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