Does anyone know which nights are the formal nights on the 10 day Tahitian? Further to that,I have heard that things are a bit more casual on the Tahitian, given the temperatures etc....but I am hoping that tuxes are still common. Any comments would be welcome. We will be on the Dec. 29 cruise which of course will include New Year's..so we hope to have some 'formal' fun.
From my experience on other Princess cruises, they have retained the formal nights, usually two on a 7 day cruise. But they seem to have cut back on the number on longer cruises. For example, on a recent 15 day Panama Canal cruise, we were told there would be 3 formal nights. Once on board, they reduced it to two. After almost a mutiny by the women that packed extra for 3 formal nights, they added it back on. But if they went according to the 2 per week, there would have been 4. Two or 3 is fine for me.
The one thing Princess seems to have done is eliminate the semi-formal nights. I think that was a good idea. I don't mind humoring my wife with a couple of nights to play dress up (I accuse her of never getting over doing that as a child <G>) but having that extra suit or suitcoat and what goes along with it, did take space in the luggage.
We were on the Tahitian Princess in early May. There were two formal nights for the 10 day cruise. More than half the people were dressed formally; the rest were pretty dressy, but not tuxes and evening gowns. More wedding-type dresses.
For other nights, things are a bit more casual, with many women wearing either sun dresses or slacks. We never ate in the dining room other than dinnertime; the Panorama Buffet filled our needs and times better during the day; we loved eating lunch and breakfast on the deck behind the Panorama Buffet, watching the islands go by--or the wake on sea days.
If you have any other questions about the cruise, I'd be happy to reply. There are also many great threads on www.cruisecritic.com about the Tahitian Princess, detailing many great shore excursions that last longer, do more, and cost a whole lot less than the Princess offerings. Great source of info.
We are considering this cruise for May, 04. Would like any information or special tips you could give us. Is May a good time to go? Is it a good idea to fly to LA a day early, I've heard the check in process is a nightmare. Also, did you fly first class and is it worth the extra money? Did you have a balcony room or a suite? Which would you recommend? Which deck would you recommend?
Does anyone know which nights are the formal nights on the 10 day Tahitian?
It probably varies by itinerary, as they prefer to have them on days when the ship is at sea, at least in the afternoon, and always avoid having formal nights on days with late ports of call. IIRC, on my cruise to French Polynesia and Samoa, the formal nights fell on Night #3 and Night #8 due to the itinerary.
You should also be aware that the embarkation, disembarkation, and turnaround arrangements on this ship are unusual. Princess has a contract with Omni Airlines to operate a charter flight (777 IIRC) round trip between Los Angeles and Papeete on turn-around day, which accommodates about half of the passengers. The flight leaves Los Angeles in the early afternoon, permitting connections from anywhere in North America, and arrives in Papeete in the early evening. The return flight leaves Papeete late at night and arrives in Los Angeles early the next morning, again permitting "same day" connections to anywhere in North America. Passengers returning to the United States on the Omni Airlines charter flight must go to the airport to check their luggage in the morning of disembarkation day, then return to the ship until final disembarkation between 8:00 and 9:00 PM or so. The bars, the spa, and other facilities aboard ship are open to disembarking passengers on a cash basis on turnaround day. There's also a baggage check for hand luggage aboard ship on turnaround day, at no charge.
Passengers who are not on the Omni Airlines charter flight and who do not have a "cruise plus" (hotel) package also usually have evening departures because all of the commercial flights between Los Angeles and Papeete seem to operate either on a similar schedule to the Omni Airlines charter flight or, alternatively, depart Los Angeles around midnight to arrive in Papeete early in the morning and depart Papeete midmorning to arrive in Los Angeles early in the evening. Passengers on flights other than the Omni Airlines charter flight do not go to the airport on Saturday morning, but rather remain aboard ship until final disembarkation in the evening, and complete check-in procedures in the normal manner upon arrival at the airport. Passengers with independent arrangements in Papeete are free to disembark at any convenient time.
Because of this arrangement, the main dining room serves dinner on an "open seating" basis between 6:00 and 8:00 PM and between 9:00 and 10:30 PM on turn-around day. Passengers on the Omni Airlines charter flight arrive in time to eat dinner during the second window, while those departing on the Omni Airlines charter flight leave the ship late enough to eat dinner during the first window (though those on the first buses to the airport will need to eat promptly when the dining room opens). Passengers who have independent arrangements or "cruise plus" packages before their cruises embark earlier in the day, and may eat during either seating. The assigned seating arrangements for dinner commence on the second night of the cruise.