Old February 13th, 2017, 07:59 AM
donna75 donna75 is offline
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Default few questions-been six years since last cruise

My husband and I have been on seven Carnival cruises and our last one was six years ago. We took some time off to have four grandchildren! I booked a cruise on the Conquest in April and I am seeing some changes after reading some reviews. 1) if my husband doesn't wear a suit coat and just a nice white shirt with black dress pants on formal nights, will he stand out? It sounds like formal nights have scaled back a bit. 2) Staggered embarkation is new since we cruised. When I checked in, I was able to choose 11:30-12:00 at Port Everglades but on the Carnival sight it says the earliest is 1:30?
3) I chose the "anytime dining" but does that mean it will take longer to be served? Do they wait until a table is full before they start serving? Are they any disadvantages with this dining option?
We are celebrating our 40th anniversary this spring and
have always loved cruising. Thank you..
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Old February 13th, 2017, 11:32 AM
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storybookcruises.com storybookcruises.com is offline
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Location: Cape Coral, FL
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First, Happy Anniversary! 40th is definitely a milestone.

I'm surprised your agent wasn't able to help you with all your questions, but you came to the right place. Lots of great people here to give you information.

Yes, formal night attire has definitely changed over the last many years. On our last Carnival cruise, I watched a guy walk in wearing a t-shirt, shorts, and flip flops. I went over to the matre'd and inquired about the fact that was not acceptable attire at any time in the dining room, but was especially egregious for formal night. She announced they use to say something to the passenger, but now they don't.

So, as for formal attire, your husband will be just fine. You'll see everything from golf shirts to tuxedos. Personally, I wear the same type of Oxford shirt and pants for all dinners and for formal night, I simply put on a tie.

As for checking in at the pier, they normally start boarding around noon (give or take 1/2 an hour). But, keep in mind that normally they don't open up the staterooms until about 1:30. So, if get on the ship before 1:30, you'll be waiting. Unfortunately, everyone else will also be waiting and the main place everybody gathers is in the buffet area. With all the people and their carry-on luggage, it'll be crowded and noisy.

And as for 'anytime' dining, it's definitely one of those things that some people love and others hate. It's basically just like going to a restaurant; you show up when you want and then every night you'll sit at a different table, you'll have different tablemates, and you'll have a different waiter. If you happen to show up when alot of others do, you could end up waiting in line, but usually not too long. When it's your turn, they'll ask you if you want to share a table or not. If you say no, then you may have to wait longer for a table for 2. If you say you'll share a table, then they'll usher you to a table where they're seating other guests. They'll not seat you with people who are already half-way through their meal. We've done 'anytime' dining on several occasions and usually your table will fill up rather quickly, but they will not make you wait if it doesn't and they'll begin serving you immediately. Service and menu will be no different than if you were doing traditional dining.

Hope all this helps, but let us know if you have more questions.

Travel Agent/Cruise Specialist w/16 yrs exp and 51 Cruises on 12 different cruise lines in many parts of the world! VIETNAM VETERAN OWNED & OPERATED. Certified Accessible Travel Advocate. Specializing in unsurpassed personal service to insure you have a hassle-free vacation!
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Old February 13th, 2017, 08:00 PM
donna75 donna75 is offline
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Thank you Pete. This really helps. I did ask my cruise agent about the embarkation and he acted as if that did not happen in Port Everglades but everything I read said otherwise.
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