We have definitely book the Coral for a 10 day Panama Canal cruise..booked guarantee cabin in BF category and have been upgraded to BC..thanks to the poster who suggested it!)....now..when asked for traditional or personal choice dining..we decided on traditional.
Last year we were on the Sea Princess and tried personal choice..and I loved (and still love) the fact that you can go when you want to and that you meet alot of really nice people every night..but I really thought that the service at dinner really suffered. It had really deteriorated from the great service we had received on the Star Princess years before. I suppose it's to be expected..the waiter is new every night..he doesn't get to know your tastes..you don't get to establish a rapport with him..as traditional dining allows. That was the only low point of the cruise..of course I knew that I could have reserved the same table every night once I found someone that I liked..sadly that didn't happen and I thought..if I was going to do that..isn't that like traditional dining in a sense..except for the choice of dinner time?
And I have a feeling that the new automatic tipping system might have something to do with the new kind of service as well perhaps...don't know..
Anyway..hope we've made the right choice..but in case we haven't..can you switch from traditional to personal choice once the cruise commences or are you "stuck"??
Yes, you can switch. Just see the maitre d' and he'll make the change for you. We may change the opposite way - from PC to traditional. I really prefer to have a set waiter who knows what we like and what we don't like. I think the service is so much better. It's just a matter of convincing my DH to change!
its much harder to switch from PC dining to traditional dining, traditional books up very fast ( tells you something?) if you want to switch from PC to traditional, have your TA do it for you now, we booked our traditional seating assignment at time of booking to make sure we would get it and not be wait-listed.
The reason Trid books up fast is that there is only one dining room for Trid while there are two for PC. With PC you can request a specific table, have the same waiter and asst. waiter, and time every night. Regardless, each dining is a pleasure. Happy Cruising!!!
We always book traditional. If we ever want to try one of the specialty restaurants. We like to let our waiters know that we won't be at a particular meal so that way they aren't wondering if we are coming or not.