Does anyone know how this will work, i hear that one room will be used for personal choice and the other for normal set dinning with the same servers but do you have to choose at time of booking or can you alternate on different nights when on the ship although i can't see how this would work as they cannot predict that 80% of passengers will not all want to do the same on the same night any advise on this as i hear all the ships will have implemented this by the end of the year.
Personal Choice was just instituted on 1/21. If you do a search from 1/29 on The Grand-Personal Choice dining, you should see some of the comments. Most have been very positive. It is right for some people, especially if you are traveling with friends and don't want to have a set schedule. Also, since it is just beginning, normally you would be expected to pre-choose your dining choice but on the first week they were allowing people to switch back and forth. Only one dining room at this time was designated Personal Choice. Most people also thought the pre-paid gratuity of $6.50 pp daily onto the ship board account worked out well and they had the option of changing or adding to the amount. This amount however, does not include your cabin steward or butler.
We returned from the Grand 2/11. We did not use Personal Choice dining but everyone we talked to who did were happy with it.
We felt our dining room waiter was good but not great and when we mentioned this to some of the casino staff we were talking to in the disco after they finished work, they told us the waiters are quite upset about the $6.50 charge being charged and that the waiters are not working to maximum because of losing their direct tip. We ate in the dining room 6 nights and in The Painted Desert the other and the service in there was slow, we were done with our appetizer before our drinks arrived, but friendly. Don't worry too much about dining because whatever you pick you will have good food and a great time.
Debi, I understand the Personal Choice allows you to reserve a table size of your choice. So I would say 100% on the table for 2 with a reservation, which must be made dailey. You could change your times & table size if you decide you want someone to join you, too.
Debbie - As I understand it, if you choose the personal choice dining option, you should be able to get a table for two every evening. However, I would also imagine that there would be occasions where you would have to wait for one of those tables to become available, and depending upon what time you wished to dine, the wait could be long or short. Just like at a land-based restaurant on a busy evening.
If $6.50 per passenger per day for tips does not include the cabin steward (or the butler for suite passengers), it's a significant increase over Princess's previous suggested tips of $3.00 per passenger per day for the waiter and $1.75 per passenger per day for the assistant waiter.