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I don't like self serve buffets ever!!!! Don't mind Guys for lunch or the deli or even pizza. We use MDR nearly every night. The only exceptions being Chefs Table and/or Bonsai Sushi one night. We use MDR for breakfast, Usually late,  so don't eat lunch. Eat at earliy seating in MDR.

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I really like what Virgin is doing. No MDR, no buffet, just a bunch of resaurants that are all included. Some are table service and some are counter service. Currently in the planning stages of booking one for next year

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No MDR with at least some fixed seating would be a deal breaker for us.   We have not sailed NCL because they don't have any fixed dining.

Having the same service staff and same table mates are things we really enjoy about MDR with fixed seating

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So many people would not care about no MDR. If Carnival did away with it I believe there would numerous people would not sail agai. Not so much the food but enjoy the experience of being with  their friends and families. Carnival can take a poll and they would know for sure. If they did away with MDR it would mean the poll was to keep it.

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1 hour ago, sanmarcosman said:

You said as much about the Panorama being homeported on the west coast. You can't predict what Carnival may do in the future, no one can.

👍👍👍

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We always eat at least 5 out of 7 nights in the MDR.
The other 2 are usually late port days and we just don't feel like sitting for 1-1/2hrs for a meal.

That being said, I would not sail if MDR became an extra fee.
Absolutely no sense in that.
One of the things I really like about it now, is that it is your vacation and you can do what you want.
Want to run through the buffet like Golden Corral and get your own food?
Go right ahead!
Want to have a nice sit down service like a restaurant?
Go right ahead!
Your vacation, eat how you want to!

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After the first cruise on carnival.my wife disliked the MDR so much we never set foot in another and we have been on other cruise lines too .no MDR.im good with buffet if they are up there with celebrity.carnival makes me sad.

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My first two cruises have been on the MDR. After that, i only go to the MDR if i see something on the menu i really really want. The buffet and other specialty restaurants is better for me

 

I only go the MDR maybe once or twice.

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It depends on the cruise, for us. A short 4 day, we normally eat exclusively at the buffet with a night in the steakhouse. For longer cruises, we'll try the dining room the first or second night (we get ATD) and if the food is good and the service good, we'll eat more in the dining room. On our Paradise cruise in September, we were pleasantly surprised at the quality of the food and service in the dining room and ate there every night, requesting the same team. Over Thanksgiving, we ended up at the dining on the last night and had a blast with the people sitting around us and the serving team. We actually regretted not going earlier in the cruise. If we're traveling with family - kids or extended - we enjoy the dining room and use the time as a way to catch up on everyone's days.

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When the cruise lines eliminate all linkages to the cruise industry, like MDR, well, why bother?

 

It is wonderful to take a land tour; with a concierge and private car and driver and guide - no need for any cruise line.

 

See everything, perfectly organized, neighbourhood restaurants, Oh my,

 

It is not that more expensive than the constantly downsized and degraded cruise experience.

 

Open your view, there are other options than cruising!

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Personally, I enjoy the MDR . Maybe it's  not everyones cup of tea. Sort of like the bars and casinos. Since I loathe buffets, a ship with no MDR would not interest me.

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28 minutes ago, Doubt It said:

When the cruise lines eliminate all linkages to the cruise industry, like MDR, well, why bother?

 

It is wonderful to take a land tour; with a concierge and private car and driver and guide - no need for any cruise line.

 

See everything, perfectly organized, neighbourhood restaurants, Oh my,

 

It is not that more expensive than the constantly downsized and degraded cruise experience.

 

Open your view, there are other options than cruising!

Thank you!!!...... Doubt It takes the swing, its going..going...Gone Home Run!!

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Posted (edited)

I’m in my early 40’s and I love the MDR! I’m not a fan of buffets and I can get pizza and burgers at home. We were on a 13 day Journeys cruise in January and had a table of 5 couples who had never met before. Various  ages 40s-80s, and we all got on so well, no one made/kept  any specialty dining reservations so we could all eat together every night. We also had the most amazing service team! Did we wait long sometimes? Yes, but ya roll with the punches, we’re on vacation!

Edited by Chrystine5

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Posted (edited)

To me, the "Elegant Ambiance" is sadly coming to an end with cruise lines. I'm not saying past passengers  were  trying to pretend to be part of the "upper crust", but,  partaking in proper etiquette, manors, and interaction with fellow passengers and crew, including fine meals in the MDR as part of the cruising appeal.

SAVE THE MDR!

 

 

 

 

Edited by jayscore
content

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I love dinner AND breakfast in the MDR.  Having someone else wait on me, prepare my food, and clean the dishes is part of what I enjoy about eating out.  I hate eating at buffets at home, so I sure don’t want to eat at buffets on vacation.

 

It’s been years, but we have tried NCL once, and we actually enjoyed the flexibility of different sit down venues.  But we still stayed away from buffets as much as possible.

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It would be ok if there was some other option added to replace  the MDR.  I hate buffets.  In all of my cruises I have only eaten at the buffet handful of times.  Love the Guys Burgers and usually eat there for lunch or have a late brunch on sea days.  Don't care for pizza at all on land or at sea, so I would hate to lose an eating option.  I wasn't that impressed with the steakhouse either... it was good.. but I'm not sure it was worth the price for our family. 

I would be ok with eating at the buffet if they had people that plated the stuff for you, like at Luby's cafeteria... you point to what you want or tell them and they put it on your plate and pass your plate to the next section and they are using gloved hands.  I hate buffets where people serve themselves.  My stomach turns when I see people licking their fingers, then handling the scoops or scratching their hairy armpit and then handling the food scoop.  Yuck... Also witnessed too many people pluck food off of their plates with their licked fingers and place it back in the food serving bowl.... multiply that kind of behavior going on at every line for all the hours it is open and you can get an idea of the amount of germs.  Double yuck... and I know... there are all the people who say they eat at the buffet all the time and never wash their hands and they have never gotten sick, and that is probably true, but for me it turns my stomach..

 

So yeah, I would miss the MDR. 

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In spite of a lot of us who no longer feel the MDR is a central activity for our cruises, we are nowhere near getting rid of it.  For instance, most Carnival ships have two MDR's, one for set time, one for Your Time.  They could eliminate one and still accommodate those who want full service in the other, perhaps with only YTD available for everyone.  They could do a hybrid scheme with buffets set up inside one of the MDR's as some ships do now for lunch, where you can order from the menu or fix a plate yourself for a slightly more restaurant feel rather than the more cafeteria type setting of the lido. 

 

I can't imagine they will entirely eliminate full service evening dining as long as a certain generation or two of people make up a large cohort of the clientele, i.e. the Baby Boomers and Gen X.  Once we have all stepped back onto terra firma for the final time, the Millennials will decide what they want and the industry will adjust.

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2 hours ago, KmomChicago said:

In spite of a lot of us who no longer feel the MDR is a central activity for our cruises, we are nowhere near getting rid of it.  For instance, most Carnival ships have two MDR's, one for set time, one for Your Time.  They could eliminate one and still accommodate those who want full service in the other, perhaps with only YTD available for everyone.  They could do a hybrid scheme with buffets set up inside one of the MDR's as some ships do now for lunch, where you can order from the menu or fix a plate yourself for a slightly more restaurant feel rather than the more cafeteria type setting of the lido. 

 

I can't imagine they will entirely eliminate full service evening dining as long as a certain generation or two of people make up a large cohort of the clientele, i.e. the Baby Boomers and Gen X.  Once we have all stepped back onto terra firma for the final time, the Millennials will decide what they want and the industry will adjust.

 

Again though, the alternative to an MDR is not just a buffet. As Virgin is doing, they have multiple full-service restaurants and some counter serve. No buffet. So it's already being done, just not in carnival. Also considering millenials are anyone between 22-38 today, they already make up a large chunk of cruisers. 

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Amazing how many people how satisfied with lower quality food. Reading these comments about not caring about the MDR is exactly what the cruise lines want to hear. So foolish to say that you're fine with less. If you'll accept less, they will give you less. People should think more about what they say ....but then again this is Carnival so expectations are low. 

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Posted (edited)

With no MDR a cruise vacation certainly would lose some of its perceived value for me.  We enjoy dining in the MDR most if not every night.

 

If I was comparing 2 lines and all else was equal the MDR would be the deciding factor.

Edited by ray98

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3 hours ago, tallnthensome said:

Amazing how many people how satisfied with lower quality food. Reading these comments about not caring about the MDR is exactly what the cruise lines want to hear. So foolish to say that you're fine with less. If you'll accept less, they will give you less. People should think more about what they say ....but then again this is Carnival so expectations are low. 

SO let’s see, if it not the WAY you like, then people are foolish and then of course the bash on the cruise line and those who sail on it. Maybe, just maybe, people cruise for what THEY want and are fine with it as it is.  Some things never change.

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18 hours ago, asalligo said:

I expect that this is where cruising is headed. The lido buffet, Guys and Blue Iguana being free and everything else being for a fee. This would not stop me from cruising, but I would expect fares to stay low in this model. 

 

That would definitely stop me from cruising on Carnival.

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I’m an elder millennial, and a change like this would probably push my husband and I towards staying at all inclusive resorts. 

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1 minute ago, Ariel1985 said:

I’m an elder millennial, and a change like this would probably push my husband and I towards staying at all inclusive resorts. 

You could also try some more upscale cruise lines. It's what I'm doing. I agree, however, that land vacations are looking real good right now.

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I hate eating at the MDR, takes way too long...but the wife loves it.

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