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How The Whiners Ruined Dynamic Dining

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I had to cancel my Quantum cruise and the chance to try out DD. Am considering Anthem for next year and was very much looking forward to trying it out and the different menu each night. Drats :(

 

Feel very fortunate. You didn't miss anything but confusion, a foray of errors, and FAILURE of a dining program that didn't work out.

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Well, I guess I'll never get to try it. The reading I have been doing showed a lot of conflict with scheduling shows, but I've had the same issue with some shows and traditional dining. I've read so many times people schedule shows then they get email, or in my case don't get an email and the time has changed.

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We are sailing on the Anthem in October. So glad we are getting the opportunity to try DD. We have all of our meal times/locations booked and are anxious to sample all the different options.

 

You'll just make the cut. It ends fleet wide in November, hope you enjoy it. Some do, some don't. I respect either opinions. We hated it.

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I, too, was looking forward to trying it one day. Oh well. :( I always found it funny that people would say they don't want to have to plan where they would eat in advance but then would look over the MDR menus in advance and pick something months before their cruise or would decide to skip the MDR on those nights that nothing on the MDR menu appealed to them. I agree with the others who said that some people just don't like change.

 

6. Many people like the spontaneity of cruising and do not want to plan everything in advance.

 

What's spontaneous about eating in the same restaurant at the same time every night? :confused: LOL!!!

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This seems to be a very polarizing topic - kind of like tips and the dress code ;)

 

I for one am glad we get to try DD - I don't understand all the naysayers because it's a combo of traditional, with the DD classic sitting times and MTD with the DD choice where you pick your restaurant and time.

 

We've done DCL which does rotational dining so you eat in their 3 different dining rooms on certain days. To me this is basically what RCL was offering with DD. It was also a nod to freestyle with the choice and different dining rooms. So I personally thought this is a great combination.

 

As I have said before the Quantum class ships were supposed to be so cool and different and now they are becoming sanitized to match the rest of the fleet. Yes they still have North Star, Ripcord and the Sea Plex but gone are both WOW bands and Dynamic Dining due to most likely poor design and implementation.

 

We're on Anthem in Oct and see how it goes. I'll be interested to see if there is any impact on our dining due to the impending changes. Depending on how this trip goes will determine who we sail in April. I have both Anthem and Breakaway booked and we'll see what happens.

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Well let me be quite clear:

5. If I wanted "freestyle NCL", I would book NCL!!!!!

 

Loved it!! Another reason why I now look first at NCL!!

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I've spent over 70 nights on Quantum and Anthem. Loved DD, I made my reservations before I boarded, some were changed onboard, and I never had a problem with lines or the food. If I didn't like something I was always able to get something else. As you can see from my signature, I was looking forward to many more meals with DD. Sorry to see it end.
Have sailed Anthem and Quantum and the reason I am happy about going back to traditional dining is that the crew was very stressed out IMHO. I never had a change nor did the waiters, asst. waiters, and head waiter ever really have the time for even a few minutes to interact with us. They always seem to be rushed and stressed.....K.O.

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Why doesn't Royal do what DCL does, or a completely DD classic? They can just rotate through the dining rooms with their respective different menus and themes.

 

For example these could be the rotations for a hypothetical 4 night cruise:

Traditional Group A:

Silk

Grande

Chic

AI

 

Traditional Group B:

AI

Silk

Grande

Chic

 

MTD Group A:

Chic

AI

Silk

Grande

 

MTD Group B:

Grande

Chic

AI

Silk

 

This way, you don't have to eat in the same atmosphere with the enhanced menu. And half of the restaurants are still available for MTD like the new system will be.

 

Sorry if I'm confusing, but y'all know what I mean?

 

I used my phone to type this, excuse any typos please!

Edited by kwazi07
typo

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Have sailed Anthem and Quantum and the reason I am happy about going back to traditional dining is that the crew was very stressed out IMHO. I never had a change nor did the waiters, asst. waiters, and head waiter ever really have the time for even a few minutes to interact with us. They always seem to be rushed and stressed.....K.O.

 

I share your observation that the servers were harried. But I don't believe this is a function of the concept of DD, it's the result of not having a sufficient number of staff.

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Add me to the list who have experienced DD (twice so far, once more next month) and are very disapointed that the vocal minority won this

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So sad, so disappointed. I was hoping I could get the rest of my family one day to experience DD. We loved DD. We didn't have to make reservations ahead of time when they came up with DD Classic. It was exciting every night knowing we'll be dining at a different venue and if we changed our mind they did accommodate us with no problem and never have to wait for a table. When we felt like getting dressed up we just went to Grande even without reservations with no problem. The only thing we weren't too happy was the Esplanade vs Promenade, other than that the entire ship was an EXPERIENCE! Very different from all the other RC ships, very innovative ship!

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

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Why doesn't Royal do what DCL does, or a completely DD classic? They can just rotate through the dining rooms with their respective different menus and themes.

 

For example these could be the rotations for a hypothetical 4 night cruise:

Traditional Group A:

Silk

Grande

Chic

AM

 

Traditional Group B:

AM

Silk

Grande

Chic

 

MTD Group A:

Chic

AM

Silk

Grande

 

MTD Group B:

Grande

Chic

AM

Silk

 

This way, you don't have to eat in the same atmosphere with the enhanced menu. And half of the restaurants are still available for MTD like the new system will be.

 

Sorry if I'm confusing, but y'all know what I mean?

 

I used my phone to type this, excuse any typos please!

 

Not everyone wants to rotate to all four restaurants. I would skip Silk and go to Grande twice or even try the restaurant in the Solarium that gets forgotten in all this craziness.

 

They tried to make a compromise when they added classic and it made the issues worse. Royal Caribbean has enough trouble dealing with MTD and DD was just too confusing for them. The managers that run the dining rooms are stuck on the thought that there are two seatings no matter what you book and have issues managing the flow of diners who are looking to eat at other times. Many tables sit empty because they are being reserved for a specific time and do not get turned over as frequently as they could.

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They at first offered DD on HOTS and then canceled that before she even sailed...must have been a reason :confused:

 

Wait, I'm confused... I'm booked for a Feb 2017 HOTS cruise, and they say I have dynamic dining. Are you saying that this is not true? I've reserved all my times for each night...:confused:

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I sailed Anthem last year on DD and Navigator this year on MTD. Both 14 nights. No real complaints about either however in balance I think the food quality was better on Anthem. In addition although the menu changes every night on Navigator made it look as though there was more choice than on Anthem a lot of the dishes on Navigator were very similar (but with different names) so with hindsight I think the food was more varied on Anthem.

 

I will also be sorry to see it go and I really don't see how the design of a ship like Anthem will suit classic dining with a fixed table.

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If the whiners all provided negative feedback through the post cruise survey - quick response cards on ship, and through various types of social media; and provided extensive descriptions of what they didn't like.

 

And the positive experience people didn't provide positive feedback in the same quantity.

 

Who do you think will win?

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Wait, I'm confused... I'm booked for a Feb 2017 HOTS cruise, and they say I have dynamic dining. Are you saying that this is not true? I've reserved all my times for each night...:confused:

 

You have MTD, or My Time Dining. They are using the wrong words, but you have good ol' MTD. No worries. :)

 

What is the difference between DD and MTD? DD has different restaurant options; MTD has only different time options.

 

:)

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Not everyone wants to rotate to all four restaurants. I would skip Silk and go to Grande twice or even try the restaurant in the Solarium that gets forgotten in all this craziness.

 

This is true! I was booked onto DCL a two years ago, cancelled to go to Disney World.

 

The general consensus was that one of the dining rooms you rotate too (Parrot Cay on Disney and evidently Silk on RC) is lackluster. However, some people could just not eat there and try a specialty restaurant--or in your case the cafe in the Solarium.

 

But you are right in that if you want to eat twice somewhere it is virtually impossible...

 

I used my phone to type this, excuse any typos please!

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.

 

 

 

What's spontaneous about eating in the same restaurant at the same time every night? :confused: LOL!!!

 

Point well taken when referring to fixed dining. It could apply to MTD though.

 

I was thinking more about the process of reserving all dining and entertainment months in advance.

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We tried DD. It truly sucked. Stuck at a table for two the entire cruise, that we didn't want PERIOD, RUSHED THROUGH our meals each time, noticed the menus were merely rotating, giving people the false impression "look at this, isn't this awesome, we are eating in different restaurants every night" meanwhile watching the hostess and reservation desk try and seat people. It was like watching two monkeys trying to figure out a football. Mass confusion. The entire concept didn't work.

 

Except for the Asian cuisine, Silk, whose entrees were salty. Even Chops was overrated. The food sat on a shelf too long, the steaks were dry and overdone. Just thinking we paid extra cash for that. Never again. I liked Jamie's though. Keep that one at least.

 

Bring back the traditional dining where we're all eating in the MDR again at either EARLY or LATE dining. Yes!!!!

 

I would gently point out a few things in your post.

 

1. Most people would KILL for a table for two and rant and rave when they get "stuck" with strangers.

 

2. If there are four complimentary restaurants and each has three menus, that's 12 different menus. How is this not more than "standard" dining on other RC ships? And are those menus not much more different from each other than "standard" menus are?

 

3. You complain about Chops, which has NOTHING TO DO WITH DYNAMIC DINING.

 

I am sorry that your experience with DD Choice was not good. DD Classic gives passengers the traditional dining experience with fixed times, while still giving the variety of different restaurants with different menus. Of course, I should say "GAVE". :mad:

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I was very happy when RCCL introduced DD Classic, wich gives you the same waiters, while still giving you the oportunity to taste your way trough the different menues in each venue. Now they scrap this, premiering on my sailing (27th of november). Needless to say, i'm not very happy right now :( Cancelling the trip however is not an option, as it is part of a larger vacation (see signature).

 

Oh well, still looking forward to trying out a Quantum-class ship!

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No such thing.

 

1. YOU never tried it, so as far as I am concerned, you have no legitimate input on the subject.

 

2. Not the majority. The LOUDEST complainers.

 

On #1...I have never experience radiation and chemo treatments but I think my opinion that having to go through them sucks is legitimate. My wife and I enjoy sharing a table with strangers (on the first night) and getting to know them during the cruise. It is one of the things very high on the list of things that make a cruise enjoyable to us. That is impossible under DD. When we were looking at possible cruises for next year, we did not even consider a ship that did not offer the traditional MDR...period, end of discussion. Any business that does not offer me something I know I want during my time with them is not a business I will even consider. YMMV.

 

On # 2...the two groups are not mutually exclusive. As much as RCI is shifting their attention away from retaining customers and toward attracting new customers do you honestly believe they would eliminate something that the majority of their customers liked?

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I share your observation that the servers were harried. But I don't believe this is a function of the concept of DD, it's the result of not having a sufficient number of staff.

 

The staffing is fine, but the galley locations made it a nightmare for the crew....K.O.:(

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On #1...I have never experience radiation and chemo treatments but I think my opinion that having to go through them sucks is legitimate. My wife and I enjoy sharing a table with strangers (on the first night) and getting to know them during the cruise. It is one of the things very high on the list of things that make a cruise enjoyable to us. That is impossible under DD. When we were looking at possible cruises for next year, we did not even consider a ship that did not offer the traditional MDR...period, end of discussion. Any business that does not offer me something I know I want during my time with them is not a business I will even consider. YMMV.

 

On # 2...the two groups are not mutually exclusive. As much as RCI is shifting their attention away from retaining customers and toward attracting new customers do you honestly believe they would eliminate something that the majority of their customers liked?

 

There are large tables in DD, we had a table for 4 and there was tables for 10 on either side of us that were for people who wanted to sit with others. There could have been more, I only saw those that were beside us. I would not have liked the way they sat those tables as they sat a couple, who were on their main course when they sat 4 others at the same table. The other table at least had 4 couples sat within a short period of time of each other.

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On #1... My wife and I enjoy sharing a table with strangers (on the first night) and getting to know them during the cruise. It is one of the things very high on the list of things that make a cruise enjoyable to us. That is impossible under DD.

What do you think DD Classic was? You sit at a table with strangers and move with them every night and your waiters.

:rolleyes:

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Andy or anyone, for a person having not cruised with the DD concept, how would one know which place to choose each night. I read you could stick with one place if you wished, is this correct. What type of menu did each offer.

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With some thinking RCI is out to kill them (Feb 6 and Sep 3 sailings) or cancelling because of the ending of DD, or the lowest review ratings of any ship, you'd think Anthem must be terrible and unpopular. All those folks who fill the ship on every sailing (at higher prices than other ships with better reviews) must have missed the memo.

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Andy or anyone, for a person having not cruised with the DD concept, how would one know which place to choose each night. I read you could stick with one place if you wished, is this correct. What type of menu did each offer.

Think of DD as RCI trying to emulate life on land, where you walk to a restaurant see what the menu looks like and walk in or don't. When you have a popular venue you need to make reservations to get in at the time you want. The host of the venue seats you.

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The staffing is fine, but the galley locations made it a nightmare for the crew....K.O.:(

 

On my Aug. 25the sail there was no problem whatsoever, that I noticed. My wait staff had the same # of tables as in other RCL ships. A large, a medium and a small. We had table for 2 and on most nights we completed our dinners in less than 1 hour. Therefore, I'm saddened by the elimination, if they follow through. Just wonder if this affects the Quantum and what has been their experience.

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We experienced DD on the Quantum Maiden TA. Our first night we ate at American Icon and we were the first people to eat at AI. It was actually funny how our waiter hovered over us, he was so glad to finally be able to wait on someone, after the weeks of training.

 

 

Making reservations is the part I didn't like, so we actually preferred eating in the Windjammer. Booking show times and meal times is rather cumbersome.

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Add me to those who are sad to see it go. 39 nights on Quantum and enjoyed the DD experience a lot. The vast majority of people I spoke to also liked the concept.

 

We made some bookings prior to our first leg as we had read a few early doom and gloom posts but once on board just cancelled most and did our thing on a daily basis.

 

I predict there will be plenty of complaints once people who expect traditional to be the same as other ships find out there is far less available space for early and late traditional.

 

They will then take up the early or late times in the MTD room and those who expect to be able to just rock up for MTD will miss out all together.

 

Most of the issues with DD were centred around lack pf space in the dinning rooms (far lower seat to pax ratio than all the other ships) and lack of staff to serve them.

 

Unless they turn a few other spaces or fee restaurants into complimentary (not going to happen is it) or find some extra cabins for crew then things may even get worse.

 

Agree 100%. I sailed on Quantum, Anthem and Ovation. And the problem with Dynamic Dining was not the concept but the implementation. I have seen NCLs way of doing it on multiple NCL cruises too, and there it works. With Royal, the implementation suffered numerous problems. It seemed like the IT system couldn't handle the bookings easily so the staff had nightmares with that, as did I when attempting to book at home for our party. For instance, 8 people on Ovation and it took, with the Maitre D onboard, 45 mins to book tables for the first 5 nights. And I had done it onboard only because the online system wouldn't work on any of the preceding weeks.

 

All the 'Dynamic' restaurants missed the one crucial ingredient - an adjacent bar and a pager system so that you can have a drink whilst you wait. And the number of seats to passengers ratio was too low. I struggle to understand how an experienced company like Royal, which gets so many things right and innovates so much, managed to make such a mess of this.

 

The one shame now is that the Quantum class all will have 4 separate dining rooms serving the same food, whereas the rest of the fleet will have a single more spectacular space with a greater seat to pax ratio. I wonder if, with this abandonment, Quantum 4 and 5 will be redesigned to bring back a single, large, spectacular main dining room.

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What do you think DD Classic was? You sit at a table with strangers and move with them every night and your waiters.

:rolleyes:

 

...and there in lies the problem. Too many experts with no expertise.

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In my opinion, the first mistake that was made was to introduce Dynamic Dining Classic. The number of tables in the four free restaurants is less than what would normally be in a traditional MDR. However, it was expected that each table would be turned over for more than two sittings unlike in an MDR and this would result in all those wanting a table to be able to be seated throughout the evening. When they then went to DD Classic they took half those tables and pretty much guaranteed that they would only have two sittings at those tables, thus effectively reducing the available seating significantly. This then led to all the favorable non-classic times to be booked very rapidly and leaving people complaining about having nothing available except 5:30 or 9:00 or being told to eat in the Windjammer. They should have left the four restaurants as reservation only as that is what they were designed for.

 

I've sailed on both Quantum and Anthem and have read numerous revues of both. The biggest complaints that I recall reading were about slow or poor service, food quality, and the "loss" of reservations, especially in the early reviews for each ship. I think the service issues were primarily caused by the line trying to cut staff, especially with the elimination of assistant waiters. As for food quality, that's been a complaint of many people on every ship and one can find as many revues where people have loved the food as those that hate it. In regards to the loss of reservations, I fortunately have never lost a reservation on a Royal Caribbean ship. That is not to say that it never happens and with new systems it could happen more than it should, but this is something that should get less and less assuming any effort is made to debug the system.

 

There is one more thing I must add. I strongly believe that those who have a complaint about something are more likely to make their feeling known that those who do not have a complaint. Satisfaction statistics will always be skewed towards the negative.

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DD ruined our Anthem cruise. Good riddance. Still not coming back to Royal for a good while!

 

Ugh. What a nightmare it was this May. I'm a big fan of how NCL runs dining... Royal failed miserably.

Edited by RareBird

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We sail on Anthem in March. This will be our second sailing on Anthem, and we also sailed on Quantum. We are disappointed with the decision to do away with DD. We loved it. That being said, I do not want to be put into MTD, and would like to request traditional late seating. Would someone know the email address? I knew at one time..but couldn't find it. TIA

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In my opinion, the first mistake that was made was to introduce Dynamic Dining Classic. The number of tables in the four free restaurants is less than what would normally be in a traditional MDR. However, it was expected that each table would be turned over for more than two sittings unlike in an MDR and this would result in all those wanting a table to be able to be seated throughout the evening. When they then went to DD Classic they took half those tables and pretty much guaranteed that they would only have two sittings at those tables, thus effectively reducing the available seating significantly. This then led to all the favorable non-classic times to be booked very rapidly and leaving people complaining about having nothing available except 5:30 or 9:00 or being told to eat in the Windjammer. They should have left the four restaurants as reservation only as that is what they were designed for.

 

I've sailed on both Quantum and Anthem and have read numerous revues of both. The biggest complaints that I recall reading were about slow or poor service, food quality, and the "loss" of reservations, especially in the early reviews for each ship. I think the service issues were primarily caused by the line trying to cut staff, especially with the elimination of assistant waiters. As for food quality, that's been a complaint of many people on every ship and one can find as many revues where people have loved the food as those that hate it. In regards to the loss of reservations, I fortunately have never lost a reservation on a Royal Caribbean ship. That is not to say that it never happens and with new systems it could happen more than it should, but this is something that should get less and less assuming any effort is made to debug the system.

 

There is one more thing I must add. I strongly believe that those who have a complaint about something are more likely to make their feeling known that those who do not have a complaint. Satisfaction statistics will always be skewed towards the negative.

 

Really?? How do you explain Allure 80%, Oasis 79%, Celebrity Equinox 87%, Celebrity Eclipse 86%, etc. Anthem 49%. It is what it is.

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I would gently point out a few things in your post.

 

1. Most people would KILL for a table for two and rant and rave when they get "stuck" with strangers.

 

Some of us don't like to be seated at a table for two. I like eating with strangers. You get to meet new people.

 

2. If there are four complimentary restaurants and each has three menus, that's 12 different menus. How is this not more than "standard" dining on other RC ships? And are those menus not much more different from each other than "standard" menus are?

I didn't like the idea of moving to different restaurants. I preferred traditional dining.

3. You complain about Chops, which has NOTHING TO DO WITH DYNAMIC DINING.

 

You're right. I hope I didn't confuse you with that addition to topic. I didn't mean to piss you off in the process, specifically, but with your capital letters, you sound angry because my opinion differs from you. Get a bottle of cold, refreshing water.

I am sorry that your experience with DD Choice was not good. DD Classic gives passengers the traditional dining experience with fixed times, while still giving the variety of different restaurants with different menus. Of course, I should say "GAVE". :mad:

 

Still though, it's a very subjective issue - but at least we can still enjoy our cruise without it bothering us enough to ruin a good vacay. Seriously, relax. You own a trend of trying to get into it with other posters; that's not very good.

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What do you think DD Classic was? You sit at a table with strangers and move with them every night and your waiters.

:rolleyes:

 

Could they guarantee, with 100% certainty, that every person on the ship that wanted DD Classic would get DD Classic? Nope...limited number of spaces. We were not willing to gamble our limited vacation time. Roll your eyes all you want.

 

As much as many here hate to admit it...the majority did not want/like DD.

 

Fortunately for those that did, they can follow the advice they often give others...book with a different cruise line.

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This is really disappointing. I was hesitant about DD due to the reviews, and I did have some problems with getting reservations prior to our cruise in April. However, once we got on board, we had very little issue with changing our reservations around. We enjoyed all of the different dining rooms and liked the variety. The service was great in all of them. We did "choice," which is more like MTD, and what we prefer. I've never done an early/late seating because we don't know when we'll actually be hungry! :p

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Wait, I'm confused... I'm booked for a Feb 2017 HOTS cruise, and they say I have dynamic dining. Are you saying that this is not true? I've reserved all my times for each night...:confused:

 

You might have reserved times but not a restaurant - meaning American Icon Grill, Silk or The Grande ;-). So you´re on MyTime Dining. Unfortunately the CruisePlanner is still saying "Dynamic Dining" in the overview page but it says My Time in the booking area.

 

steamboats

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