I see the words smart casual all over the place on these cruise boards and have used it myself. I'm ASSUMING that it means what you would wear to church, a day wedding or an upscale restaurant ( not a TGI Friday's).
So tell me why there are so many posters that feel that this type of clothing is inappropriate for formal night? Formal according to the dictionary is what you would wear to a "dinner party", I've attended many dinner parties and never once saw a tux or gown, I must be hanging out with the middle class types. I think that the cruise lines should be more spacific, why not just call it a "Black Tie Event" instead of formal night, I would then ignore the dining room and eat elsewhere, but since I'll be dressed for a dinner party, I will show up in my smart casual clothes on formal night. JMHO
Terminology the cruise lines use is confusing. On some line smart casual refers to casual nights... on others, it's supposed to mean semi formal. I think Country Club casual would better define.. the casual (no jeans, no t shirts) attire they're suggesting for casual nights.
As to your dictionary definition of Formal... we must have different dictionaries<G>.
I've gone to many dinner parties in casual clothing.
Formal doesn't dictate a tux a tux and gown, but certainly does imply a suit and tie for men, and eqiuvalent attire for the ladies.
Kuki, thanks for the reply. I have a standard ourfit that I wear to all so called "formal" activities. Black crepe pants and a black lacy/beaded top. I call this my smart casual clothes, my husband wears gray dress slacks, white shirt, tie and black sports jacket. I've seen our formal clothes as being more typical of the way people dress on the cruises we've been on. The way some people talk about formal on the boards, we would have to be dripping in diamonds, wearing Vera Wang gowns and Tuxes, not my persona. After lurking about on these boards, I'm beginning to think that a land based resort is more my style. I love cruising but it seems to have become an effort to talk to cruisers without being put down. I wonder if there's a web site for ResortMates???
In all the discussions I've EVER seen about dressing on cruises ( and there have been MANY!!!!) I've never seen anyone imply that people should go to the dining room on formal night ONLY if they're wearing Armani, Wang, or similar. That's sort of the standard reverse elitist stereotyping.
Fact of the matter is you don't have to spend big bucks to dress appropriately, and interestingly enough, the outfit you describe sounds just fine.
As I said, I think the confusion comes in the terminology. Maybe the cruise lines should use pictures <G>
There are a number of cruise lines who offer a totally casual atmosphere for those who don't want to "dress up" at all, and not just the luxury lines. If that is what appealed to me in my vacation, I'd be searching them out, and giving them a try.
The confrontational attitude arises when people who enjoy cruises with "traditional dress codes" see people say they've paid their money and they will do as they please. That attitude alone shows disrepect for their fellow cruisers, and means WHATEVER anyone who paid chooses to do is OK.
That's going to get scary when everyone chooses different things in regard to everything they do onboard!
Star, I am with you. On our recent cruise on Radiance, many men wore nice sport shirts and dress slacks on smart casual nights. I think it is too much to carry a suit or tux and also a sports coat or blazer. I think dress should be be either formal (dark suit or tux) or casual (slacks or dockers and a sport shirt) but not T shirts or shorts in the dining room for dinner. I did see men in T shirts and shorts in the dining room on the last evening. I feel that is directly against the cruise lines dress policy.