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Carnival has changed the tradition of cruising


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At the end of the day, the actual cost of the cruise ticket is virtually the same as it was in 1995 however the value proposition is so much greater. Lots of people say that the cruise lines " Nickle and Dime" you. How so? The don't charge for Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner, same as in 1995. Water, Juice, Coffee and Tea are still offered. Sure there are alternative restaurants, such as a Steak House, Italian, Sushi and French. I am super confident that Guy Fieri does not work for free on Carnival, but yet they don't charge for his hamburgers ( in Vegas at Guys Big Bite they do- $22 a piece) If I am wrong or off base please chime in as this is a very good discussion and would love to keep the nice conversation going. 

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To the OP I think cruise on Carnival has changed because that is what the customers of carnival want.  They don't want the "stuffiness" of the way cruising used to be.  Maybe should have used the term formal.  There are other lines for that.

1 hour ago, SwordBlazer Cruising said:

At the end of the day, the actual cost of the cruise ticket is virtually the same as it was in 1995 however the value proposition is so much greater. Lots of people say that the cruise lines " Nickle and Dime" you. How so? The don't charge for Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner, same as in 1995. Water, Juice, Coffee and Tea are still offered. Sure there are alternative restaurants, such as a Steak House, Italian, Sushi and French. I am super confident that Guy Fieri does not work for free on Carnival, but yet they don't charge for his hamburgers ( in Vegas at Guys Big Bite they do- $22 a piece) If I am wrong or off base please chime in as this is a very good discussion and would love to keep the nice conversation going. 

I have never understood the "nickle and Dime" complaint.  Usually I hear it about NCL but I haven't had to pay for anything on NCL that I haven't had to pay for on other lines.    Here is my "but" to that comment.  I don't do the alcohol drinks, I don't go to the pay restaurants.  I also have only ordered from room service on Royal and I believe I had to pay for that at the time.  And I did pay for the Prohibition Party but there was plenty of entertainment and this was just something extra we chose to do.  I appreciate the cruise lines keeping the prices low and maybe having to pay extra for certain things.  Maybe because our family has a business and I know how hard it is to keep it in the black.  

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I love being on the water and so far have only cruised Carnival.  I'm careful of the time of year I cruise because I don't like kids running rampant with no real supervision.  I don't like a large spring-break, partying crowd.  If I plan my time correctly, I don't have to deal with either of these.

 

The rest of it is all ok.  I like to dress nicely for dinner, but it doesn't bother me if no one else does.  I like to read in a somewhat quiet atmosphere...I can look until I find it, either outside or in, sun or shade.  I like the burgers and the burritos and the pizza.  And the MDR.

 

I LOVE being spoiled - not having to cook or clean. Always having a fresh bucket of ice and fresh dry towels.  Not having anywhere to go, unless I want to.

 

And the sea!  And the sky!  And the clouds and sun!   Yes, it has changed over the years, but to me, it's still wonderful.

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On 2/27/2019 at 7:23 AM, asalligo said:

The first two responses to your comment explain all you need to know and is the reason I had to move on from Carnival. The bulk of the clientele who love Carnival either never experienced the old cruising way or love the new changes. I only choose Carnival now when I really want to cruise and no other line fits my needs. 

 

You must have loved Isaac Washington as your bartender

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7 hours ago, SwordBlazer Cruising said:

Lots of people say that the cruise lines " Nickle and Dime" you. How so? The don't charge for Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner, same as in 1995. Water, Juice, Coffee and Tea are still offered. Sure there are alternative restaurants, such as a Steak House, Italian, Sushi and French. I am super confident that Guy Fieri does not work for free on Carnival, but yet they don't charge for his hamburgers ( in Vegas at Guys Big Bite they do- $22 a piece) If I am wrong or off base please chime in as this is a very good discussion and would love to keep the nice conversation going. 

 

5 hours ago, sprint180 said:

I have never understood the "nickle and Dime" complaint.  Usually I hear it about NCL but I haven't had to pay for anything on NCL that I haven't had to pay for on other lines.

 

I think two good examples of recent nickel & diming on Carnival are, 1) no longer offering free room service items after 10pm and 2) recently starting an 18% per item "delivery fee" for everything purchased from the on-board Fun Shops. I do believe there are other legitimate examples of nickel & diming aboard Carnival, but those two are the most recent that come to mind.

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9 hours ago, jimbo5544 said:

New cruisers and old cruisers (maybe experienced is a better word) only need to be concerned with their cabin and their room service.  The rest  is smoke, mirror and what if’s.  One cabin, and the level of service they CHOOSE.  I don’t know where that dead horse is......but i will find him.

Guess this is the 412 item for us to respectfully disagree on🙂

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On 5/25/2019 at 12:20 PM, jimbo5544 said:

I actually gave senior management my 2 cents that they should create a higher level Carnival (on a couple of ships) where cruisers would be willing to pay some more for the “frills” of the old days.   

 

Sounds sensible to me. Not everyone wants to subsidize things that few use.

 

And then again, people would just complain this is more "nickel and diming". These options already exist. People just want to pay a price lower than they did in the past, but not miss a single thing. In the end, the poor stewards get screwed.

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Things change over time.   Get over it or love to a different line or vacation all together.  If you want to cruise lime you did in 1986, then by all means get in your Delorean and go back to 1986.  But then CC won't exist for all the complaining yet.

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2 hours ago, moondog73 said:

Things change over time.   Get over it or love to a different line or vacation all together.  If you want to cruise lime you did in 1986, then by all means get in your Delorean and go back to 1986.  But then CC won't exist for all the complaining yet.

 

At first I thought it was a silly idea to suggest that they should have ships that operate under the "olden days." But then I thought about it a little more. If those folks had a couple ships to sail on in order to relive their cruising past, maybe they'd stop complaining about the current state of Carnival ad nauseam.

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1 hour ago, Organized Chaos said:

 

At first I thought it was a silly idea to suggest that they should have ships that operate under the "olden days." But then I thought about it a little more. If those folks had a couple ships to sail on in order to relive their cruising past, maybe they'd stop complaining about the current state of Carnival ad nauseam.

No they would just find something else to complain about. 

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17 hours ago, Florings said:

I love being on the water and so far have only cruised Carnival.  I'm careful of the time of year I cruise because I don't like kids running rampant with no real supervision.  I don't like a large spring-break, partying crowd.  If I plan my time correctly, I don't have to deal with either of these.

 

The rest of it is all ok.  I like to dress nicely for dinner, but it doesn't bother me if no one else does.  I like to read in a somewhat quiet atmosphere...I can look until I find it, either outside or in, sun or shade.  I like the burgers and the burritos and the pizza.  And the MDR.

 

I LOVE being spoiled - not having to cook or clean. Always having a fresh bucket of ice and fresh dry towels.  Not having anywhere to go, unless I want to.

 

And the sea!  And the sky!  And the clouds and sun!   Yes, it has changed over the years, but to me, it's still wonderful.

I totally agree!

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11 hours ago, Organized Chaos said:

 

At first I thought it was a silly idea to suggest that they should have ships that operate under the "olden days." But then I thought about it a little more. If those folks had a couple ships to sail on in order to relive their cruising past, maybe they'd stop complaining about the current state of Carnival ad nauseam.

I started sailing back when Formal nights were truly formal, we had complimentary cocktail parties, and always table cloths on the tables. But you know what? I’m glad that cruise lines are throwing away that formality and adopting the more casual vacation experience. My hubby and I got tired of that awhile back, and moved over to NCL, where it was Freestyle and so much more casual. We loved it, but we missed the fun atmosphere of Carnival. We returned to Carnival this past March, sailing the Breeze, and are thrilled with the change! We absolutely LOVE all the grab and go options of food that were not available before, and the only night my hubby did not wear shorts in the MDR was on “elegant” night, and then he wore a pair of khakis and polo. Perfect! And now we can choose YTD, and not made to adhere to an archaic Cruising model of set dining times. Personally, I wish they’d do away with set dining, and make the whole ship YTD. Then open ALL dining rooms and YOU choose which dining room you want to eat in. Not decided by the cruise line, and you could eat in a different one on different nights. To me, YTD is the best of both worlds. You could eat at the same time every night as you always did, or go whenever you actually feel hungry! We are senior citizens, not some young kids, so not all of us old timers want a return to the stuffy formality of cruising. If people truly want that, there are cruise lines that cater to that demographic. 

Edited by grandmarnnurse
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2 hours ago, ronbe65 said:

 

Hi Grandmarrnnurse,

How fun atmosphere on the Breeze differs from fun atmosphere on NCL Getaway?

Happy cruising!

Well, we sailed the Getaway twice, as we were in love with the Freestyle Cruising concept. Eating wherever and whenever you want. We returned to Carnival because we remembered all the fun we had on their ships, and thought we’d take the chance of it again (after 2 Royal and 2 NCL) because I had quite a few reward points accrued with my Carnival Mastercard. So we booked the Breeze, used $1200 worth reward points towards a statement credit after booking the cruise in its entirety to the card. With using the credits, the cruise actually ended up costing us only $769 (for a 7 day cruise in inside cabin for 2 people with prepaid gratuities and trip insurance). Pretty good, huh? So, we went, keeping an open mind, because our Royal cruises WOWED us with their ships (Independence and Oasis), and the Getaway was beautiful as well with fabulous food, and the Freestyle Cruising concept, all win-wins with us. Boy, were we surprised at Carnival! The Breeze was beautiful, staff was FAR MORE PLEASANT than NCL and DEFINITELY FAR MORE PLEASANT than Royal. The grab and go options for food choices other than their buffet were the best, as there was NOTHING like this on Royal, and at least on NCL, we had O’Sheehans Irish Pub, a 24 hour complimentary sit down food venue. Now for the fun. EVERYWHERE we went on Carnival there was something going on—-deck activities, trivia inside, music everywhere. There was none of that on Royal, and only some (trivia) that I noticed on NCL. Also, on NCL, because they have their Free at Sea offers, nearly everyone had the Ultimate Drink Package, so there were NO ROAMING WAITERS AT ALL, and if you wanted a drink, you had to wait in a roped off que line to get to bar. No fun at all. And no matter what anyone says, there were far more drunks on NCL because of that free drink package. (But if you watch their cruise prices, you will notice how they are sneaking the cost of that package in. Nothing is actually free) We loved relaxing in the Atrium, listening to music, having a cocktail on Carnival, and always something fun going on there. And what about the Dive In Movies on Carnival? We did that nearly every night! And one thing that we loved was being able to watch the comedy shows every single time we wanted to go. On NCL you have to book a reservation at the box office for any comedy show. If you don’t do that at beginning of cruise, you won’t get in. And all shows on NCL and Royal need to be booked online prior to cruise. Yes, their shows were Broadway caliber, but I liked the freedom of Carnival of making my decision for the evening that night, not three months prior! Do I need to go on? I’m sure I could think of more things, but that was it all in a nutshell. I don’t give two hoots that they are now less formal, don’t have table cloths, etc—-all pluses for this old gal that loves cruising! Oh, I just remembered—the Serenity deck! On NCL you have to pay $99 (the Vibe) to get that. They have Spice H2O that is adults only until 6pm, but it is not relaxing. It is loud and party atmosphere (once again, loaded with drunks) 

Edited by grandmarnnurse
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45 minutes ago, ronbe65 said:

Thank you for your detailed answer.

First of all I want to congratulate you on your ships choice.

You've been on the three best "mega mass market" ships available. I've cruised on all those ships too. 

My guess you've probably missed something on the Getaway with regard to the "fun".

As to serenity deck, it was there at the time of your cruise (has been ruined just a week ago). The Indy is a different story of course. It's an outstanding classic cruise ship (a serenity deck included) with a lot of fun things added. I do agree however, what it delivers has somewhat different shades of "fun".

It's a pleasure to read about what you really like and enjoy. This is why we cruise.

Your post encourages me to share my pictures from the Breeze that I will do. 🙂

Let your cruise fun go on.

Is Mardi Gras in your plans?

Happy cruising!

 

 

Yes, I would love to cruise the Mardi Gras, and I’d like to try the Sunrise to see the changes from the Triumph, a ship I sailed in 2007. We have the Glory booked for February out of NOLA that we are really looking forward to, as we will fly in 3 days prior. And then we have a B2B booked for April for our 50th Anniversary. After that, we only have 16 sailing days until we make Platinum, so I’d like to look for a long Journey cruise. Happy Sailing! 🛳😎🏖🌴

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7 hours ago, grandmarnnurse said:

I started sailing back when Formal nights were truly formal, we had complimentary cocktail parties, and always table cloths on the tables. But you know what? I’m glad that cruise lines are throwing away that formality and adopting the more casual vacation experience. My hubby and I got tired of that awhile back, and moved over to NCL, where it was Freestyle and so much more casual. We loved it, but we missed the fun atmosphere of Carnival. We returned to Carnival this past March, sailing the Breeze, and are thrilled with the change! We absolutely LOVE all the grab and go options of food that were not available before, and the only night my hubby did not wear shorts in the MDR was on “elegant” night, and then he wore a pair of khakis and polo. Perfect! And now we can choose YTD, and not made to adhere to an archaic Cruising model of set dining times. Personally, I wish they’d do away with set dining, and make the whole ship YTD. Then open ALL dining rooms and YOU choose which dining room you want to eat in. Not decided by the cruise line, and you could eat in a different one on different nights. To me, YTD is the best of both worlds. You could eat at the same time every night as you always did, or go whenever you actually feel hungry! We are senior citizens, not some young kids, so not all of us old timers want a return to the stuffy formality of cruising. If people truly want that, there are cruise lines that cater to that demographic. 

 

We haven’t been cruising long enough to have experienced many of the things that are gone, but I’m confident that, if we had been, we wouldn’t miss some of them. There’s a restaurant not far from us that still uses tablecloths in one section. It’s not a very fancy place, so I don’t know why they do it, but we get seated there now & again. I can honestly say the absence of a tablecloth does not affect my dining experience at all. In fact, when we do get seated in the section with tablecloths, I find them to be more of a nuisance than anything. I don’t care about chocolates on pillows. If I want a chocolate, I’ll bring a pack of bite-sized candy bars. We do like  getting dressed up on occasion, but we’re not tux & evening gown folks, so the current attire of elegant nights suits us just fine. And I agree, we love YTD. We never know when we’ll want supper. Maybe we snacked or had a late lunch and aren’t hungry for an early dinner. We never know what we’ll be doing in the hours leading up to dinner and our evening plans change from day to day, so being able to go when it’s convenient for us is a must.

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I am not a hamburger person and NEVER eat fast food burgers, ever.  But I think Guy's are just delicious and I look forward to having a few on a cruise.  That doesn't mean I don't want great meals in the dining room. 

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We started cruising over 25 years ago and remember the midnight buffets, tablecloths, pillow chocolates, wearing tux and formal gown, past guest cocktail parties, etc.

 

Do we miss all of that? NOPE.

 

We think all of the new things offered on the ships far outweigh anything that has gone the way of the dinosaurs. In the "good old days" of cruising, there was: no specialty restaurants, no quick food options (Guy's, Blue Iguana, Pizza, etc.), no big-screen movies under the stars, no thermal spa suite, no YTD, no balcony cabins (or very few and very expensive), no multiple comedy shows, no almost 24/7 activities...I could go on and on.

 

We prefer the casualness and "fun" of cruising these days and wouldn't trade one single new thing for all of the "good old days" things combined. 

 

 

 

 

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37 minutes ago, SRQbeachgirl said:

We started cruising over 25 years ago and remember the midnight buffets, tablecloths, pillow chocolates, wearing tux and formal gown, past guest cocktail parties, etc.

 

Do we miss all of that? NOPE.

 

We think all of the new things offered on the ships far outweigh anything that has gone the way of the dinosaurs. In the "good old days" of cruising, there was: no specialty restaurants, no quick food options (Guy's, Blue Iguana, Pizza, etc.), no big-screen movies under the stars, no thermal spa suite, no YTD, no balcony cabins (or very few and very expensive), no multiple comedy shows, no almost 24/7 activities...I could go on and on.

 

We prefer the casualness and "fun" of cruising these days and wouldn't trade one single new thing for all of the "good old days" things combined. 

 

 

 

 

I couldn’t have said it better. Far more better things offered now. Who cares about less formality? We, too, have been sailing almost 25 years, our first cruise being in 1995 for our 25th Anniversary. As we approach our 50 year milestone, we will celebrate it on a B2B Carnival Cruise! Carnival, keep on doing what you’re doing—giving us a fabulous vacation at a reasonable cost. 

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45 minutes ago, SRQbeachgirl said:

We started cruising over 25 years ago and remember the midnight buffets, tablecloths, pillow chocolates, wearing tux and formal gown, past guest cocktail parties, etc.

 

Do we miss all of that? NOPE.

 

We think all of the new things offered on the ships far outweigh anything that has gone the way of the dinosaurs. In the "good old days" of cruising, there was: no specialty restaurants, no quick food options (Guy's, Blue Iguana, Pizza, etc.), no big-screen movies under the stars, no thermal spa suite, no YTD, no balcony cabins (or very few and very expensive), no multiple comedy shows, no almost 24/7 activities...I could go on and on.

 

We prefer the casualness and "fun" of cruising these days and wouldn't trade one single new thing for all of the "good old days" things combined. 

 

 

 

 

 

I totally agree. We've cruised on Carnival (and other lines) for 20 years.  The only thing I really miss is better food quality.  That is true for all cruise lines.  I wish they could kick things up a notch.  Wouldn't want to go back to the structured, formal days to get it though.   

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I have looked, and can't find the answer to what I need to know.  We have 2 formal nights on our Carnival cruise.  My family has to pack light for our cruise, and I also don't want to go out and buy formal attire that we will not wear again.  I want this cruise to be fun and stressfree.  My question is if my husband and son wear khakis and button down on formal night will we be able to eat in the dining room or will we just need to go to the buffet? 

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7 minutes ago, kimco93 said:

I have looked, and can't find the answer to what I need to know.  We have 2 formal nights on our Carnival cruise.  My family has to pack light for our cruise, and I also don't want to go out and buy formal attire that we will not wear again.  I want this cruise to be fun and stressfree.  My question is if my husband and son wear khakis and button down on formal night will we be able to eat in the dining room or will we just need to go to the buffet? 

Your proposal is just fine with khakis and button down shirts.

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2 hours ago, kimco93 said:

I have looked, and can't find the answer to what I need to know.  We have 2 formal nights on our Carnival cruise.  My family has to pack light for our cruise, and I also don't want to go out and buy formal attire that we will not wear again.  I want this cruise to be fun and stressfree.  My question is if my husband and son wear khakis and button down on formal night will we be able to eat in the dining room or will we just need to go to the buffet? 

 

2 hours ago, CA_Cruzing said:

Your proposal is just fine with khakis and button down shirts.

This is correct. Carnival changed the tradition of cruising and now anything goes in terms of the dress code. What you want to wear is perfectly fine for elegant night when sailing on Carnival.

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