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Old March 21st, 2006, 11:59 AM
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Default Anytime Dining? Feedback?

We are taking our 1st Princess cruise and have opted for Anytime Dining.
If you have experienced this, can you tell us if there is a wait involved with this, as someone I know experienced on another cruise line?
We thought 6pm a bit early, and 8:15 a bit late for set-time dining, so thought we'd try "anytime", but don't want to be left waiting in line forever.

donna
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Old March 21st, 2006, 03:14 PM
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I think it depends on how large your party is, and whether you want to sit at a table by yourselves or at a larger table with other passengers. When we cruised the Dawn a year ago, we had no problems getting in immediately if we were willing to take a table with others (generally me, my wife, and several times my son). We had great table mates and had many an interesting conversation. Had we desired to sit by ourselves, we might have ended up waiting a while...

Dana
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Old March 21st, 2006, 03:23 PM
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Donna, Princess has the Anytime Dining thing figured out pretty well. If you choose to dine at peak dinning times you might have a slight wait. If you and your guys don't mind dining with another family or couple, you might get seated faster. To avoid that you can always make reservations. If you find a wait-team that you really like you can request to be seated in their section
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Old March 21st, 2006, 07:03 PM
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You can call and make reservations after the second day of your cruise for whatever time you would like at whatever resteraunt of your choosing....call in the morning....
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Old March 21st, 2006, 08:12 PM
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We had a standing 7:00 seating everynight on the Caribbean Princess. We never had to wait more then 3 minutes. We had the same waitress everynight and had excellent service. We even had the same couple at the table beside us everynight and hung out together. We loved the anytime dining. Ohio Cruisers
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Old March 21st, 2006, 08:40 PM
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Hi RD,

We loved Anytime Dining! We always asked to be seated with others and never had to wait. We ate between 7:00 and 8:00 every night.

If you and J want to eat alone there may be a wait. DH and I eat together all the time-we liked eating with others.

We never made reservations (kind of defeats the purpose, IMO!) and enjoyed meeting many new people!

I think you'll love Princess!
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Old March 21st, 2006, 10:38 PM
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RollerDonna,

We are taking our 1st Princess cruise and have opted for Anytime Dining.
If you have experienced this, can you tell us if there is a wait involved with this, as someone I know experienced on another cruise line?
We thought 6pm a bit early, and 8:15 a bit late for set-time dining, so thought we'd try "anytime", but don't want to be left waiting in line forever.


Personally, I despise the "anytime dining" arrangement for several reasons.

>> 1. The fixed seatings of traditional dining are timed to mesh with the shows and other evening entertainment, so you will end up either eating close to those times anyway or missing the shows and other entertainment.

>> 2. Service suffers badly when you don't have the same waitstaff every evening. With fixed seating, your waiter and assistant learn your preferences on the first couple evenings of the cruise and thus anticipate your requests thereafter, so your beverage of choice, or whatever, arrives before you have to ask for it. This can't happen if you don't have the same waitsfaff.

>> 3. In most cases, you'll build a lot stronger friendhsip with the same tablemates over the course of a week than you'll build with tablemates that you'll never see again after tonight's dinner.

>> 4. All Princess ships offer plenty of alternatives if you can't make your assigned seating due to, for example, a shore excursion that returns late. In particular, the lido buffet areas (called "Horizon Court" on most ships) become bistros with full table service and a nice dinner menu after 10:00 PM, with no surcharge.

The frustration with "anytime dining" and difficulty in confirming "traditional dining" on several Princess cruises was one of the major frustrations that caused me to move to Celebrity Cruises nearly three years ago.

Norm.
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Old March 21st, 2006, 11:40 PM
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We just cruised on the Sapphire and tried Anytime Dining and it was just okay. We will opt for tradional from now on. We like eating between 6 - 6:30 pm and never had problems getting a table but it was always a table for 2...with your neighbors just 2 feet from you on each side. The last 3 nights we were able to get a sharing table and enjoyed it much better. Only once did we find the service to be slower but otherwise it was great. Also, we like to go to the 1st show so we had to eat by 6pm. Once we ate later and had to wait till the 2nd show, too late for us. Just our experience.
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Old March 22nd, 2006, 09:52 AM
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I agree with Rev22:17.

We have taken over 30 cruises and experienced anytime dining on the Golden. It was my husband, me, my father-in-law, and father-in-laws' companion.

They wanted to eat between 7 - 7:30PM each evening. We needed to make a reservation FIRST THING each morning, then had to wait on the Que line to be seated. I would have loved to share my dining with other folks, but unfortunately, we were always seated at a table for 4.

That was the first and last time we chose anytime dining.

SlotL
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