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Old April 23rd, 2009, 10:49 PM
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Default Your Time Dining

Hey there,
My wife and I are taking our first cruise at the end of May, a 4 night one, on the Elation. I have been reading as much as I can and getting great advice from these boards. We are so excited!!

One question I have is we are signed up for the Your Time Dining so we can have some flexibility on when we eat and what we are doing. How exactly does this work? Do you show up and wait for a table? Can you make a reservation for a certain time that day?

Thanks!!
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Old April 24th, 2009, 04:03 AM
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As I understand it this is the way it works. One of the dining rooms is designated for Your Time Dining. You just show up between the designated dining hours which are aprox 5:30-9:30 and are seated. You are not required to share a table with others unless you choose to. If there is a waiting line you are issued a call beeper. There are no reservations.
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Old April 24th, 2009, 09:55 AM
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Old April 24th, 2009, 07:44 PM
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Thanks for the info. Has anyone else tried the Your Time? Did you like it? Were you usually able to get right in?
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Old April 25th, 2009, 02:16 PM
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Our last cruise on the Legend had traditional and Your Time in separate parts of the same dining room. We stuck with traditional because there was always a long line for those who wanted flexible dining times. They may not have been set up right yet, but that was our experience last November.
Marty
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Old April 26th, 2009, 04:53 PM
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Your time dining is no different from dining out on land. You show up and wait for a table or you make a reservation. We dine out a lot at home so we will stick with traditional on cruises. THAT makes it different, not more of the same.
Some say they don't like the rush back from port to get ready for early dining. I find that imaginary. 98% of the time you MUST be back aboard for sail away 1 to 2 hours before early dining. i.e. 5PM sail, must be on board by 4:30. Which means more like 4PM. Early dining 6PM, where's the rush? Plus, "We like to eat around 7PM at home." Well 7 at home might be 2 hours different from where the ship is, AND the activities on board are scheduled to accommodate traditional dining times. Early shows and late shows are not timed with "your time dining"

We will stay with traditional on ships. Can't get that at home.
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Old April 29th, 2009, 05:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan40
Your time dining is no different from dining out on land. You show up and wait for a table or you make a reservation. We dine out a lot at home so we will stick with traditional on cruises. THAT makes it different, not more of the same.
Some say they don't like the rush back from port to get ready for early dining. I find that imaginary. 98% of the time you MUST be back aboard for sail away 1 to 2 hours before early dining. i.e. 5PM sail, must be on board by 4:30. Which means more like 4PM. Early dining 6PM, where's the rush? Plus, "We like to eat around 7PM at home." Well 7 at home might be 2 hours different from where the ship is, AND the activities on board are scheduled to accommodate traditional dining times. Early shows and late shows are not timed with "your time dining"

We will stay with traditional on ships. Can't get that at home.
I whole heartedly agree with you on this. We do enjoy having the same wait staff and dinner partners each night (most of the time anyway). We might give this a try next time just to see if we like it. We do prefer the early dining over the late dining though. We have never missed early dinner because we were too rushed on a port day. There is ample time to get ready and most of the time the port day dining is smart casual anyway, so no big deal. We took the late dining on our 12 day Grand-med cruise because it was so port intensive and there were really late sail time in some ports. Had we known up front that the ship moves the dining times back 45 minutes on those days, we would have stayed with our usual early dining time. The night of the Grand Gala midnight buffet we literally were so late getting done with dinner that we walked straight from our dinner table to the buffet (just to take pictures of course).
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Old April 30th, 2009, 05:23 AM
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Is this offered on the Glory ship? Can you do anytime one day but traditional the others? Or do you have to choose one or the other for the entire cruise?
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Old April 30th, 2009, 07:32 AM
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The actual time for the Your Time Dining on the ships it is on so far starts at 5:45pm(ship time) according to Carnival's site.
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Old April 30th, 2009, 01:57 PM
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Showcat,
You can go from traditional to Your Time, but you can't go back to traditional if you do that.
Marty
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Old April 30th, 2009, 07:53 PM
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It sounds like most like the scheduled seating. I agree it probably would be fine, I like the thought of having the flexibility though. Has anyone done the Your Time dining? Did you like it? How long was your average wait time?
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Old May 3rd, 2009, 04:09 AM
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Prefer the set dining times !!!!!!!!!
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Old May 3rd, 2009, 06:39 PM
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I'm new to cruising, and so I'm not sure what seating time I want, early or late.

It all depends on how late the pools stay open, and what time the entertainment starts.

Am I to understand there are early show times and late show tmes as well as two different seating times?
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Old May 3rd, 2009, 06:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ginger1111
I'm new to cruising, and so I'm not sure what seating time I want, early or late.

It all depends on how late the pools stay open, and what time the entertainment starts.

Am I to understand there are early show times and late show tmes as well as two different seating times?
Yes, Ginger, usually there are two production shows, one for each dining time.

Pools are usually open as late as you'd like to swim.
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Old May 3rd, 2009, 06:50 PM
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There is a show for the early and late seatings. It basically comes down to whether you have children with you and if you want to be in a hurry to get ready for dinner. Families and seniors tend to choose the earlier seatings, while those who do not have children tend to choose the later. It also depends on what time you are used to eating, and if you end up with late dining you can always get a snack to hold you over. I would suggest you simply choose by your own preference, though those with late dining get to linger longer than those with early dining. Carnival has also introduced Your Time dining on select ships, which allows you to eat anytime between 5:30pm and 9:30pm. Fleet wide implementation will be by Summer 2010.
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Old May 3rd, 2009, 07:03 PM
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We are booked on the Dream in December. I asked my PVP at Carnival about the anytime dining. I was told you can make a reservation for the next day if you already know what time you will be wanting to dine. I choose the anytime seating mostly due to the fact some of the activities (such as dance classes) were always held during times that we would be in the dining room or getting ready to go. This way we can be more flexible with activities. Hope I was properly informed.
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Old May 3rd, 2009, 07:10 PM
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I prefer late dining since it does, for the most part, allow most of the activities to be winding down for the day, at least until the night time activities start up.
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Old May 3rd, 2009, 07:10 PM
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I like the traditional dining because you get to know the others at your table, and the wait staff get to know you. I always have had nice people at my table and have enjoyed the conversations.

I did try the "anytime" or free-style dining - just didnt care for it.
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Old May 5th, 2009, 08:24 PM
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As I've in a couple of posts, I just got back from the Holiday. The pool staff started closing the pool around 530 or 6 ship time every night. They told us its because they don't have the staff to man it....very disappointing, among other things...
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Old May 31st, 2009, 04:50 PM
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We had the anytime dining and loved it. We would be sitting in a lounge listening to music and all of the early dining people had to get up and go. We would stay for the rest, then go change and eat. We only had to wait for a table once, and that was 10min. and we still got the table type we wanted. When we had to wait they gave us a pager and we just went and sat at one of the bars and had a drink. As for the main shows in the evening, we never had an issue making one of the two shows. Overall, when we cruise again we would do the anytime dining.
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Old May 31st, 2009, 05:07 PM
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Brad: you said "Families and seniors tend to choose the earlier seatings, while those who do not have children tend to choose the later" and you also said you prefer late dining. I was led to believe you have never cruised So how can you make statements like this? I am a senior and I like the late seating mainly because it isn't quite as rushed and there are usually no small ones running about. However, since the shows are set up for both dining times it really doesn't bother me. By the way this upcoming cruise will be our 9th.
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Old May 31st, 2009, 05:56 PM
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These are general statements not going specifically to an individual but the group as a whole, made based on what I have read online at other cruise websites. Common sense would inform someone that there are always exceptions. As far as my personal preference, it is primarily due to being allowed more time to get ready after a day on shore, especially on formal night. I have a tendency to get in a fight with bow ties and them winning.
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Old May 31st, 2009, 08:45 PM
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Default dinning times

When I went on my first cruise I had requested the late seating, I got the early seating. At first I was disappointed but as the cruise went on I really liked it. It is especially great if you like the show of that night. For the last show of the cruise I really like it and I was able to see it a second time.
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Old May 31st, 2009, 08:55 PM
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Late dining - always

If hungry in afternoon, snacks abound. Once in a while we got bumped to early and was always able to change to late once on board.
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Old June 1st, 2009, 08:00 AM
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I am set for early dining again - I don't stay up past midnight so I want to have my dinner early so I can enjoy a few activities before bedtime.

What works for me, since I will want to sample a little of everything, is to look at the Capers, and igure I'll spend between 15-30 minutes doing different things. The last thing will be 30 minutes in the disco before heading back to the cabin for the night. If the activity doesn't hold my interest for 15 minutes, I'll be outta there in 5.

For example, 15-30 minutes in the piano bar sing along, 15 minutes watching karoke (no, I don't sing in public), 15-30 minutes checking out the big stage show, etc. The trick is to sit in the back so I can slip out without offending those performing, if I'm not enjoying it.
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Old June 1st, 2009, 12:05 PM
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My vote is for the later dining (don't have kids and I'm not a senior) so I'm proving your theory Brad

Anyway, though you have to be on the ship by 5 or what have you on port days, I much prefer to get back on board, and take my time after a busy day. I've done both and found I was cutting it too close to rush back to the ship, shower, and get dressed for dinner by 615pm. Maybe I take too long to "primp" but that's just my opinion.
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Old June 1st, 2009, 02:09 PM
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I would suggest that people who might want early dining check their itinerary to see what time the port day ends. Allow 1/2 - 1 hour before that as the time you have to be back on the ship. That will help you determine if early seating gives you enough time or not.
We prefer early seating and we are not seniors nor do we have kids. General statements like that are annoying, especially when based on other people's comments, rather than any personal experience.
Also, any time dining is not like a restaraunt on land simply because of the number of diners. There can be a huge rush around certain times on ships. The only time I see that on land is on holidays.
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Old June 1st, 2009, 02:16 PM
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Marty,

A great Amen to that
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Old June 1st, 2009, 05:23 PM
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Geesh, I guess humor is not welcomed here...
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Old June 1st, 2009, 06:10 PM
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Our Group consists of ages from 30yrs to 71yrs. We have all cruised together many years now. So I guess it all depends what anyone prefers. We have tried late dinning and early. we enjoy the early so we can jsut have the rest of the evening in the shows and casino. Then back to our balcony's for champagne and quiet time listening to the waves. Mind u that is way later. like 1 or 2 am. So age has nothing to do with it. just personal preference. Wait to really decide Brad untill you have tried them both. I thought we would want the late always. But found out differently. Cruising is all try it and see........ happy cruising!
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