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Change in Traditional Dining Times?

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1 hour ago, sailmeaway said:

I do hope the wizards at Princess are monitoring this thread!  I have read through all 14 pages and have not noticed ONE poster happy to have a 5:00 dining time (and 4:45 - seriously?...). We have over 70 cruises on many different cruise lines and have always confirmed traditional early seating. (6 PM for the past 20 years).  We got an email re our 49 night SA cruise in Feb to say our dining time will be 5 PM.  This means as elite passengers we will miss our traditional cocktail in the elite lounge, something that we always enjoy.  Called the TA immediately to get dining time changed to 7:15, only to be put on a waiting list.  Princess, why exactly are you doing this when clearly the majority, if not all, your passengers are against it?  Certainly not for the passengers benefit, most of whom are paying big $$$ for the insult!  Guess our cruising days are coming to an end.

 

We should ALL pretend that we’re not going to use cruise anymore unless they change the times back.

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6 minutes ago, bemis12 said:

 

We should ALL pretend that we’re not going to use cruise anymore unless they change the times back.

 

We had our first cruise on Princess in November.   The dining time changes really caused problems for our group of 10.   First, our 6:00 dining was changed to 5:00 (which was rough because of sailaways on port days), so then we reluctantly changed to 7:15 dining.    THEN the late dining was changed to 7:45.    We so bummed out.     When we boarded and got our seapass cards, all but 3 said 5:30.  The other 3 were at 7:45.    We couldn't eat together!      

 

Now, our cruise experience was nice on the Royal in many ways.  BUT, with the theater so small, it filled up fast.    Minus our 3 friends at dinner, it really was sad.    Obviously, since it was our first cruise with Princess, we were not impressed with these mix ups which couldn't be changed.   I know we could still eat in the buffet, but that's not the same thing as eating in MDR together with it's better food and service,  and talking about our day and just plain being together.

 

I'm not sure we will ever cruise with Princess again.   We would be taking a big chance on the same thing happening.    Without a single email from Princess explaining all this, we felt like children (you will eat when we tell you to eat).   It's sad.....we really wanted to give Princess a good college try.    It looks like Celebrity is still our top pick for cruise lines.    

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1 hour ago, sailmeaway said:

I do hope the wizards at Princess are monitoring this thread!  I have read through all 14 pages and have not noticed ONE poster happy to have a 5:00 dining time (and 4:45 - seriously?...). We have over 70 cruises on many different cruise lines and have always confirmed traditional early seating. (6 PM for the past 20 years).  We got an email re our 49 night SA cruise in Feb to say our dining time will be 5 PM.  This means as elite passengers we will miss our traditional cocktail in the elite lounge, something that we always enjoy.  Called the TA immediately to get dining time changed to 7:15, only to be put on a waiting list.  Princess, why exactly are you doing this when clearly the majority, if not all, your passengers are against it?  Certainly not for the passengers benefit, most of whom are paying big $$$ for the insult!  Guess our cruising days are coming to an end.

Usually people that dislike something are more likely to post.  In all of the streams you have maybe 30-35 individual posters expressing dissatisfaction, more about lack of notification than the actual change. 

 

Far more expressed dislike when Princess changed their process requiring payment of excursions at time of reservation. Yet  Princess did not change back. 

 

Having been on a cruise with the change I am happy with it.  The use of dining facilities seemed more balanced (as many in late traditional as early).  Anytime seemed to work smoother.  Could show up 5 minutes  before the first show and could get a good seat.

 

My only complaint was not about the change, but about the lack of 2 tops in the stern TD dining room (something that is unique to the grand) As such if you want a table for 2 you either had to select early TD in the midship dining room or Anytime.


Did not hear any major complaints from people I talked with on the cruise.  A few were surprised but adjusted by the second night. 

Edited by RDC1

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49 minutes ago, TW6cruiser said:

We just got off of the Crown.  We did Anytime dining as we were traveling with family who like that. However, I wanted to report that early traditional on the Crown was 5:00 pm in one dining room, and 5:15 in another.  Late seating was 7:15 pm.  The odd thing was that the buffet and the speciality restaurants still just opened at 5:30.  Anytime started at 5:15 pm.  The bad thing also in Anytime was that service on multiple nights was actually so fast we were practically pushed through dinner.  I'm not sure what Princess is trying to do. If they think folks want to eat early, then open anytime dining early at 5 pm and the buffet.  Keep traditional at the regular normal times.  I of course put all that in my survey.  We are on the Crown in Europe next summer and I hope that they move the traditional times back. 

On the Grand. The buffett initially opened at 5:30.  By the end of the cruise it was opening at 5:00.

 

Anytime opened at the same time as early traditional in the midship dining room 5:00.

 

It used to be that people complained that anytime service was too slow, now it is too fast.

Edited by RDC1

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5 hours ago, sailmeaway said:

We got an email re our 49 night SA cruise in Feb to say our dining time will be 5 PM.  This means as elite passengers we will miss our traditional cocktail in the elite lounge, something that we always enjoy.  

On our cruise on Coral Princess this summer, with TD at 5:15 and 7:30, the PES cocktail hours had been moved forward to 4:30 to 6:30. I would not be surprised if they're earlier on your cruise as well.

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We were on the CB for two week cruise last month.  Our late TD was moved to 7:45.  The PES cocktail time was the normal 5:00 to 7:00.  They did have theater shows starting at 6:45 PM for the late TD pax.  I wonder what they are eventually going to settle on for dinner in the MDR.  

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15 hours ago, skoeper said:

 

We had our first cruise on Princess in November.   The dining time changes really caused problems for our group of 10.   First, our 6:00 dining was changed to 5:00 (which was rough because of sailaways on port days), so then we reluctantly changed to 7:15 dining.    THEN the late dining was changed to 7:45.    We so bummed out.     When we boarded and got our seapass cards, all but 3 said 5:30.  The other 3 were at 7:45.    We couldn't eat together!      

 

Now, our cruise experience was nice on the Royal in many ways.  BUT, with the theater so small, it filled up fast.    Minus our 3 friends at dinner, it really was sad.    Obviously, since it was our first cruise with Princess, we were not impressed with these mix ups which couldn't be changed.   I know we could still eat in the buffet, but that's not the same thing as eating in MDR together with it's better food and service,  and talking about our day and just plain being together.

 

I'm not sure we will ever cruise with Princess again.   We would be taking a big chance on the same thing happening.    Without a single email from Princess explaining all this, we felt like children (you will eat when we tell you to eat).   It's sad.....we really wanted to give Princess a good college try.    It looks like Celebrity is still our top pick for cruise lines.    

 

The maitre'd is available on embarkation day to assist people with problems like yours.  If you had gone to see him, he would have found a table for 10 so you could have eaten together.

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2 minutes ago, CruzinNoony said:

 

The maitre'd is available on embarkation day to assist people with problems like yours.  If you had gone to see him, he would have found a table for 10 so you could have eaten together.

 

We were told we'd be put on a waitlist.   And that list was loooooong.   We didn't want to mess it up anymore than it already was.     If we do cruise Princess again, it might just be the two of us and not try it again with a group.

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15 hours ago, skoeper said:

 

We had our first cruise on Princess in November.   The dining time changes really caused problems for our group of 10.   First, our 6:00 dining was changed to 5:00 (which was rough because of sailaways on port days), so then we reluctantly changed to 7:15 dining.    THEN the late dining was changed to 7:45.    We so bummed out.     When we boarded and got our seapass cards, all but 3 said 5:30.  The other 3 were at 7:45.    We couldn't eat together!      

 

Now, our cruise experience was nice on the Royal in many ways.  BUT, with the theater so small, it filled up fast.    Minus our 3 friends at dinner, it really was sad.    Obviously, since it was our first cruise with Princess, we were not impressed with these mix ups which couldn't be changed.   I know we could still eat in the buffet, but that's not the same thing as eating in MDR together with it's better food and service,  and talking about our day and just plain being together.

 

I'm not sure we will ever cruise with Princess again.   We would be taking a big chance on the same thing happening.    Without a single email from Princess explaining all this, we felt like children (you will eat when we tell you to eat).   It's sad.....we really wanted to give Princess a good college try.    It looks like Celebrity is still our top pick for cruise lines.    

We sailed with Princess 7 times this year.  However, the last one to Hawaii sailed two days after the change in dining time. We had no time to change anything, since the personalizer was unavailable so close to sailing.  There was NO communication to us or our TA. THAT's what annoys me. At that point the Platinum/Elite cocktail hour had not changed, so we were unable to use that and the Captain's Cocktail Party still started at 5:00 p.m. I can assume that those issues have been addressed, but not sure.  I have since sent two e-mails to Princess about it and received a voice mail telling me that Customer Service agents were backlogged and someone would get back to me ASAP. I have been home for 6/7 weeks, so far no communication. I did receive a notice from Princess about our upcoming January cruise on the Regal - got that two weeks ago. Most Princess representatives had no answers. We are certainly sailing in January, but if Princess does not respect my request for a phone call, I think our Princess days are in jeopardy. Sad, really, because the onboard staff is usually stellar.  However, I will not continue to add revenue to a company that disrespects its customers. Too many other options are available.

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42 minutes ago, Fortressgirl said:

We sailed with Princess 7 times this year.  However, the last one to Hawaii sailed two days after the change in dining time. We had no time to change anything, since the personalizer was unavailable so close to sailing.  There was NO communication to us or our TA. THAT's what annoys me. At that point the Platinum/Elite cocktail hour had not changed, so we were unable to use that and the Captain's Cocktail Party still started at 5:00 p.m. I can assume that those issues have been addressed, but not sure.  I have since sent two e-mails to Princess about it and received a voice mail telling me that Customer Service agents were backlogged and someone would get back to me ASAP. I have been home for 6/7 weeks, so far no communication. I did receive a notice from Princess about our upcoming January cruise on the Regal - got that two weeks ago. Most Princess representatives had no answers. We are certainly sailing in January, but if Princess does not respect my request for a phone call, I think our Princess days are in jeopardy. Sad, really, because the onboard staff is usually stellar.  However, I will not continue to add revenue to a company that disrespects its customers. Too many other options are available.

That's actually how we felt.   Disrespected.    Since they would not be in business without passengers, it seems like they should be informing people about these changes at the very least.    And don't have a group of 10 people have surprise time changes on their seacards.   

 

If we had sailed Princess before and loved them, we might be more lenient.     But being our inaugural cruise with them, it makes us uneasy to try again.   ESPECIALLY if we are sailing with a group.  

 

Hope they give you the courtesy of returning your call. 

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Just back from the Crown Princess.  Our early seating time was changed from 6:00 to 5:00 about a week out from the cruise.

 

Unlike, in the past, if a ship was in port late (well, later than dinner seating times) and they would just open all the dining rooms for Anytime dining, on this cruise, those ports we were there later than the start time for early seating (5:00) the dining times remained the same.  If you were too late back to the ship to meet your assigned dining time, you're on you own to find dining otherwise.

 

 

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20 hours ago, sailmeaway said:

I do hope the wizards at Princess are monitoring this thread!  I have read through all 14 pages and have not noticed ONE poster happy to have a 5:00 dining time (and 4:45 - seriously?...). We have over 70 cruises on many different cruise lines and have always confirmed traditional early seating. (6 PM for the past 20 years).  We got an email re our 49 night SA cruise in Feb to say our dining time will be 5 PM.  This means as elite passengers we will miss our traditional cocktail in the elite lounge, something that we always enjoy.  Called the TA immediately to get dining time changed to 7:15, only to be put on a waiting list.  Princess, why exactly are you doing this when clearly the majority, if not all, your passengers are against it?  Certainly not for the passengers benefit, most of whom are paying big $$$ for the insult!  Guess our cruising days are coming to an end.

 

I would copy & paste your thread on the Princess Facebook page. 

 

I’m aware that I’m in the minority but here’s what the earlier dinning time does for me. Before with the 6 pm dinning time I usually had to RUSH through my dinner sometimes skipping dessert because of the 1st show where if you got there late their could be no more seats. I prefer to sit in the front so that nobody blocks my view. 

 

I agree that Princess should be more aware of passengers concerns/issues. 

 

Tom😎

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3 hours ago, Fortressgirl said:

We sailed with Princess 7 times this year.  However, the last one to Hawaii sailed two days after the change in dining time. We had no time to change anything, since the personalizer was unavailable so close to sailing.  There was NO communication to us or our TA. THAT's what annoys me. At that point the Platinum/Elite cocktail hour had not changed, so we were unable to use that and the Captain's Cocktail Party still started at 5:00 p.m. I can assume that those issues have been addressed, but not sure.  I have since sent two e-mails to Princess about it and received a voice mail telling me that Customer Service agents were backlogged and someone would get back to me ASAP. I have been home for 6/7 weeks, so far no communication. I did receive a notice from Princess about our upcoming January cruise on the Regal - got that two weeks ago. Most Princess representatives had no answers. We are certainly sailing in January, but if Princess does not respect my request for a phone call, I think our Princess days are in jeopardy. Sad, really, because the onboard staff is usually stellar.  However, I will not continue to add revenue to a company that disrespects its customers. Too many other options are available.

On the grand the Platinimu/Elite Cocktail hour moved up to 4:30 to 7:00

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I recently did a cruise on the Crown Princess. Originally our dining time was 6pm, which was too early for me to eat. I requested to be changed to 2nd seating and was accommodated. This presented a problem with the late show time. Dinner was never finished  before 9 pm. Not 1 person at our table for 10 people was able to make any of the Princess Theatre show for 9.15. Our dining room was at the back of the ship and the theatre is at the front of ship. Very disappointed.

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I believe the general idea is that early diners go to the late show and

Late diners go to the early show. 

The shows and the dining times generally allow for that.

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40 minutes ago, Aulanis said:

I believe the general idea is that early diners go to the late show and

Late diners go to the early show. 

The shows and the dining times generally allow for that.

Um.....no.  On our recent Crown cruise:

Dining times 5:00 & 7:15

Show times 7:15 & 9:15

 

Early seating could go to either show

Late seating could go to the early show, and, maybe, get a seat at the late show (if you didn't dawdle much over dinner).

 

Only on Disney have I run into the show times being actually during the dinner seatings (meaning early diners go to late show, and late diners go to early show).

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This is going to be my 40th cruise, 29th with Princess. Early and late traditional diners have always had a show to attend after their evening meal...  Hence the expression, 'dinner and a show'... I was just in communications with someone on the ship I'll be on next week, the Grand  - S.F. to Mexico... The Elite/Platinum cocktail party, with those delicious appetizers, has been moved up to 4:30PM... I am not looking forward to grabbing a quick drink and nosh and rushing to be on time for dinner OR inconveniencing my fellow diners by being late and throwing off the rhythm of the wait staff. I have always booked early to get Early Dining... If you waited, in the past, you were on the "Wait List"... Waiting is something I don't want to do on cruise... Now, there is a "Wait List" to switch to Late, 7:15PM, dining. It's too late for my cruise, but if enough passengers voice their feelings on the Online Survey, today's equivalent of the Comment Card, perhaps we can make a difference. Or, perhaps, Traditional Cruise Dining is on its' deathbed.

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As misguided as Princess is on this matter not sure why people believe it is some sort of plot to eliminate or destroy fixed dining?

Fixed seatings are far easier for cruise lines to administer and galley and servers to operate with. There is no gain for the cruise line to kill it off.

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16 minutes ago, foodsvcmgr said:

As misguided as Princess is on this matter not sure why people believe it is some sort of plot to eliminate or destroy fixed dining?

Fixed seatings are far easier for cruise lines to administer and galley and servers to operate with. There is no gain for the cruise line to kill it off.

I can't speak for Late T/D, but at Early T/D on my last 4-5 cruises I've notice an increasing number of empty seats... Especially later in the cruise... Empty seats means wasted labor... You can't "guess" who's going to show and who isn't so your staffing has to remain the same while the number of meals served declines... Anytime dining is more like a restaurant... Get em' in, get en' fed and get en' OUT! "Turn the table" as quickly as possible. When I started cruising ALL the dining rooms were T/D with two sittings... If you didn't make it to your scheduled time they would try to accomodate you or you'd have to hit the buffet... That's why I believe T/D will become an option, an option - like the specialty restaurants - for which you pay extra... That IMHO is the future... Wow... I speak "Tech"!!!

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Sorry to defend Princess on this issue but as confirmed late traditional diners it is really obvious to us that Princess was attempting to even out the demand for dining times.

Late traditional dining used to be at 8:30 and also used to be the preferred time. We had to reserve many months ahead of time to get it. 

Over the years it got emptier and emptier and earlier and earlier in an attempt to fill it up as the early dining time became more and more in demand.

(We've actually loved the relaxed dinner with the extra attention the wait staff was able to give us in the half empty dining room for late dinner - but that is not a good business model)

So when I read that all of the dining times were moved up I was not surprised. Princess is trying to even out the demand for times.  For us 7:15 is early so I can't even imagine 5:00 and I do understand why some people are upset.

But this is not a plot to upset people and it's not a plot to end traditional dining,  it's just a (misguided) attempt to fill up both dining times.

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Agree with chamima .... more and more folks seem to want to eat early leaving the late TD half filled many nights and go to Anytime whenever they wish. 

Do think Princess is making an effort for more people to have the early timing they seem to want in TD.   

 

 

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1 minute ago, Seadog & Sea Hag said:

Being an early traditional diner, if it doesn’t suit we just go to anytime dining. You just need to be flexible 

Outstanding ! 👍

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2 minutes ago, Seadog & Sea Hag said:

Being an early traditional diner, if it doesn’t suit we just go to anytime dining. You just need to be flexible 

 

That's the problem:  Folks in TD are allowed to go to AT whenever they wish. Not fair to thoses who book AT.  :classic_sad:

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4 minutes ago, OCruisers said:

Agree with chamima .... more and more folks seem to want to eat early leaving the late TD half filled many nights and go to Anytime whenever they wish. 

Do think Princess is making an effort for more people to have the early timing they seem to want in TD.   

 

 

three major topics of complaint here on the princess boards for quite a while has been 1. Anytime dining performance 2. lack of early td capacity (people getting wait listed and forced into Anytime) 3. having to go to the early show 30 minutes early to get a seat.

 

from what I saw on the Grand last week these changes have the potential  to improve all 3.

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