This is a serious post directed at all you "chair hogs" out there. It is not intended to be inciteful, insulting or funny.
We have 23 cruises under our belt and are still trying to understand the mindset of those of you known in cruise lingo as "chair hogs."
You come in two flavors. A very small minority of you set yourselves down in a chaise at 7am and don't appear to move until you leave at 5 - no visits to the dining room or buffet for lunch, no trip to the water fountain for a cold drink, no bathroom breaks. You are just there. Some of you seem not to move a muscle all day for fear you may be aced out of your place.
The vast majority, on the other hand, awake before dawn, run up to the pool deck and throw down an old baseball cap and empty bottle of suntan lotion (torn tee shirt, old sneakers, empty shopping bag and/or various other personal possessions of no value) in order to stake out your claim for the day on your chaise of choice. You may or may not show up to actually occupy the seat any time during the day. If you do show up, it's usually later in the afternoon.
We have been on 50,000 ton ships, 140,000 ton ships and ships of every size in between. We've never been on a ship that didn't have a sufficient number of deck chairs to accommodate all passengers on board, and then some. Granted, not every chaise is dead center, poolside. But there are deck chairs on the pool deck, on the deck above, fore, aft, on the promenade deck and in various other places around the ship. Why the need to be so. . .territorial?
Are you the same folks who get to the theater 30 minutes before showtime in order to save 11 seats in the third row for yourself and the three people you're traveling with?
Is it that you've paid your money and want to get every penny's worth out of your cruise?
Is it an "entitlement" issue?
I ask these questions in all seriousness. I'm hoping the anonimity of this cruise board will result in some honest answers from real "chair hogs."
I myself do not sit by the pool, I find it boreing....so I will tell how I think the problem could be solved.
Have a few pool attendants stantioned around the pool, when people come early in the morning to stake out their charis, have the pool attendant approach them very nicely and ask if they intend to sit down "now" if not, then just tell them that they can not reserve chairs for more then a hour. Its not that hard of a solution to solve..most people would be embarrased being caught saving chairs and take their stuff and move on.
There is enough crew on any ship to have at least 3 crew members to do this.
Thanks for your reply. The intent of my post is not to find out how to solve the problem created by chair hogs. We could discuss that issue ad infinitum - there are countless tactful ways in which the cruiselines could handle this issue.
What I am really interested in understanding is exactly what goes on in the mind of someone who finds the need to "reserve" his/her place around the pool, in perpetuity. There has to be a common denominator, since these people are on every cruiseship - no matter the line, no matter the ship, no matter the itinerary or their choice of accommodation, rich/poor, fat/thin, good looking/ugly!
I'm hoping that some folks who engage in "chair-hogging" will come forward and give some honest answers as to why they do what they do. No judgment made.
TIC!!..electrify the chairs..every 20 mins throw the current..it it detects other than a human in the chair...zap!!! perhaps a pile of nuked radios, books, towels, t-shirts,wraps, sunglasses, etc..etc..will dissuade the "chair hogs"? However, I really don't think there is any remedy for this problem. Untill the cruise lines start enforcing the rules they put out, there is NO way around it. Guess us CMs will just have to keep on being courteous, considerate, and kind to our fellow travelers. Hopefully we can start a movement for Truth. Justice, and the 'Merican way. (Canadian,too) among cruisers? SSaFWs..ED ;-)
In our family we have an expression for certain people. We call them "moneysworth people". Long story not to be repeated here.
Poolside chair savers will be the same folks who save theatre seats, up front tables in the lounge and special slot machines in the casino. They will be the folks who ask for the free room upgrade at the pier, again at the pursers desk. They will be the same people who deduct most if not all of their auto tip from their account. They will be the same people who must have both the filet mignon and the lobster tail . The same people who carry on wine and liquor and the same people who buy one soda card and use it for the whole family. They will show up at the art auction simply for the champagne and free print with no intention of ever spending a nickel. You can be sure that they hit every meal, every show and every buffet. No matter what you did ashore, they did something better and it was cheaper. They will be the first to ask you how much you paid for your cruise as a lead in to tell you about their fabulous deal. The same will go for their airfare , hotel, rental car and parking. No matter what the subject they have an angle on life that is better than yours. They got a better deal on theitr tux than you did. Oh by the way, that's their kid in the hot tub , that's him smoking the big cigar on deck and his other kid just pushed all the buttons on all three elevators.
He will also be bring in the Cuban cigars and has his luggage stuffed with cigarettes and liquor wasy above customs limitations.
.I'm not saying that any or all of the above things are wrong, I make no judgements , just observations , it may be a good way to go through life, just not for me.
Gram and I sit quietly on a side or stern deck , take a dip in the pool when it's hot and go back to our chairs. We pick up our stuff when we head for lunch, there will always be another chair. We gather our friends and enter the theatre together, finding seats as available. Cruising for us is about sun, blue water, a good book, a little pampering,
good food, good service and many new friends.
I'll let Mr. chair saver jump ahead of me to get his moneysworth.
PapaBill, thanks for a thoughtful reply. From one non-chair hog to another, I think you're very observant. Those Moneysworth folks must have nationwide chapters - we run into them all over the place!
Isn't it funny, though, that no chair hogs have as yet replied to my query? Could it be they just don't have the courage of their convictions and are too embarrassed to defend themselves?
Still waiting to hear it straight from the horse's mouth. . .
Remember the movie "Home Alone?" Remember Uncle Frank? As soon as the champagne was served, he tried to get his wife to put the glass in her purse. I bet Uncle Frank was a chair saver--and he wore jeans to formal night. <>
I was just wondering if anyone has ever seen someone remove things on a chair that has been saved for hours with noone claiming it to have the person come back? How do the people react? I haven't been on my first cruise yet (sigh) but I just can't imagine what the big deal is about having a specific shair or location.
I belive in unicorns, dragons, good men and all mythical creatures.
Michelle's probably right ... nobody will own up to it.
I'm sure we could come up with a dozen ways to keep this awful behavior from going on, but without enforcement, it's useless.
My most evil idea is buying an "AFC" (Away From Chair) tag from the deck attendant for the amount of time one intends to be gone. Max = 1 hour. More than that, stuff is picked up and put to one side. Return in time, and your card is not charged.
Further to Papa Bill's comments. The "What do you do?" people. I always say, "I'm on vacation, I'm not here to talk about work."
"I'm a writer" is a one-way ticket to conversational Hell.
One particularly obnoxious guy just would NOT let it be. I kept deflecting him. Finally, I left the table (it was open seating, first night out) for the ladies' room. The guy bored in on my husband. "Well, what DOES the little lady do that she's so mysterious about it?"
Queeg had HAD IT with the guy talking about the great deal he had, blah, blah, blah.
So, he smiled and said, "She is a proctologist. She has to see a@@holes every day of her life and doesn't like talking to them on vacation."
I just figure that the chair hogs don't read a site that dedicated and mannered cruisers maintain.
I read these message board nearly daily just to get the YOUR points of view on various topics. With our first cruise coming up, believe me, we will pick a lounge chair away from the pool (which is no big deal as far as I'm concerned) and sit in it! We will be properly dressed in the dining room, use our best manners (mine are pretty good, hubby lived alone too long :-), and will sit in available seats for the shows. However, if I were to see a child acting like a holy terror with no parental supervison or reprimands, I'm likely to use my "momma voice" to tell them to straighten up. Chalk that up to over 30 years of being the "momma" and I don't believe that there are vacations from manners for anyone at any age.
A cute way to annoy the chair savers. move the "stuff "on one of their chairs a few seats over. When they finally come up on deck they will have their two chairs, they just won't be together. Who are they going to complain to? They will look back and forth at the folks on the 5 or six chairs in between, try and figure out what happened, then they eventually take all their stuff and move off.
Just be careful you don't do this to Rick, when I posted this suggestion one other time he said if I touched his stuff he'd toss me overboard.
Tasha, we've removed stuff from a chair before when it hadn't moved for more than 2 hours and they didn't say a word to us. They seemed to take a longer look at us, then looked the other way and looked at those people and since they couldn't figure it out, just didn't say anything at all. We ignored them and went about our business of lounging, no problem mon!
I would suppose if the persons stuff was moved and they felt ignorant enough to say something they would, but so far, it hasn't happened to us. Plus, since I don't get out on ANY deck before 10am (unless I'm going on an excursion), I don't run into this problem as much because I've always been able to find a space that hasn't been saved. I'm pretty tolerant and will let some things slide but when its been over an hour, forget it, rules don't apply anymore and the space is mine. If asked, I do say that the spot was vacated before I got there and have no idea what they are talking about. That usually shuts them up and they move on in a huff. Not my problem.
The "real chair-hogs" will not stand up and own up, because those of us on this cruisemates site are decent, well-mannered folks who just enjoy cruising, and just don't fit the "chair-hog" mold. I liked PapaBill's answer too!
Last cruise I was on, I took a photography class. There were a couple of seats spare but I was told "Our friends are sitting there". OK I moved up the back. The people did arrive about 10 minutes before the class was to end. They promptly pulled out their walkie talkies to loudly announce their location to other "friends" on board.
My husband catches his own bait for fishing. He drags stinky dead fish in string bags over the sand to make the worms pop up. He then buries the fish in the sand with a stick marker ready for the next day. I remember he came home one day looking all dejected because a girl was sunbaking topless on top of his stash and he was too embarassed to ask her to move so he could dig it up.
Sometimes I would love one of those fish bags strategically placed under someone's chair. Dale.
Last week on Century, I moved some stuff off two chairs. Found two together and asked a couple sitting next to the chairs if anyone was sitting there. There was a towel on each chair. they told me they had been there for and hour and no one had been in the two chairs, so I put the towels on the deck and sat down. We were there for about two hours when a very irate lady came up and wanted to know what happened to her stuff. I told her the towels were on the deck because no one was sitting there. These two chairs were under the deck above and in the shade. I watched her as she returned to her two chairs in the sun...yes she had staked out two chairs in the sun and two in the shade. That way she could move back and forth. Didn't work though. We all need to move things if the chair hasn't been occupied in over and hour. Usually someone can tell you if the chairs have been empty for an unreasonable time.
I've read many threads about this sort of behavior and it's very interesting. The last time I saved Seats or a place in line was back in Jr. High. I don't go for saving seats unless it's for a spouse or child. I don't mind being confrontational. It irritates me when I 2nd in line and I can't get a front row seat because they are all saved. If the person doesn't like it, what's the worst that can happen. Report me to the Cruiseline police.
As long as those types of people don't "mark " their territory, no saves for me. My dog found a couple ways to mark his favorite seat and I don't go near it.