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49 minutes ago, fyree39 said:

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.

 

We have done a few in the past couple years....I just get so bored being in one place for a week...

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18 hours ago, Aplmac said:

I hope MDRs continue for the older crowd, over 50-60

who don't like to line up for food!

 

 

 

 

Hitting 80 this year, I'm always mildly amused at the "over 50-60" being defined as "the older crowd". For the first time I bought the insurance on a cruise I'm taking in 2020. Just to be on the safe side. (one never knows) 🙂

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I can't see it happening, however, the last cruise on the Breeze with my ex wife provided horrible dining room service. Sit down drink water for 10 minutes, get menus, sit for 10 minutes, take orders, sit for 10 minutes. My ex and I were the only ones talking to each other. Others acted like they didn't want to be there. Boring boring boring and so ungodly slow. We decided after a couple of nights to just do the Buffet for the rest of the cruise. Can sit outside anywhere on the ship while eating and still have the conversations the two of us just love.

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40 minutes ago, glrounds said:

 

Hitting 80 this year, I'm always mildly amused at the "over 50-60" being defined as "the older crowd". For the first time I bought the insurance on a cruise I'm taking in 2020. Just to be on the safe side. (one never knows) 🙂

I believe the average age of a Carnival cruiser is 54...

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We stopped going to the MDR about 10 cruises ago. It simply takes too long and the food doesn't interest us.  We cruise to relax and in our opinion, there's nothing better than finding a quiet table outside and taking in the scenery while eating. Between the Lido, Guys, room service and the Deli (we're not fans of the pizza Carnival offers either) we've never gone hungry.

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I remember sailing on Ocean Village I & II years ago, they didn't have a MDR and we survived. These days I would probably choose a ship that did have one though, given the choice. I like getting to know the servers. On the Norwegian Gem we ate at the alternative free venues most nights and had a great time, but it didn't feel as personal. 

 

One point we should probably consider though, is that Ocean Village had no MDR and was marketed for those who didn't want the stuffiness of formal dining etc. That brand is no longer sailing, so perhaps not such a popular choice! 

Edited by Amyracecar

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2 hours ago, jimbo5544 said:

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.

I could care less where people eat. What I and others should care about is posting for Carnival to see is that there are people who could care less if the MDR disappeared. Why don’t people just post that they want to pay higher cruise fares for Carnival to see while they’re at it?  Never post that you’re fine with something being taken away or being charged more for ......

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We like the MDR.  A chance to have a nicedinner, with appetizers and a main and dessert if there is room, wine generally served quickly enough (we found it useful to order the next glass when they bring the current one...).  And nice sea-day brunches.  Food was generally quite enjoyable.

 

I would be disappointed if the MDR was eliminated.

 

So...where does this question come from?  Should John Heald expect a flurry of posts on his FB page saying "hundreds of people on Cruise Critic want the MDR to go away, this is outrageous Heald, I am Diamond and demand MDR service stay for us Diamonds, and maybe the Platinums!" ?

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11 minutes ago, ProgRockCruiser said:

 

So...where does this question come from?  Should John Heald expect a flurry of posts on his FB page saying "hundreds of people on Cruise Critic want the MDR to go away, this is outrageous Heald, I am Diamond and demand MDR service stay for us Diamonds, and maybe the Platinums!" ?

I cant speak for all Diamonds for the record.  I do feel most of us lost interest in what Heald thinks a long time ago . And ask very little of him. If anything it would not be D& Ps that will complain to him.

 

Edited by BoDidly

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I would be okay with the Virgin model, as previously mentioned. I enjoy dressing for dinner and having a waitstaff.

 

If my options were either buffet, Guys/Blue or pay for a specialty, I would not cruise on that line. I do not cruise to eat pizza, burgers or tacos for dinner.

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40 minutes ago, JennyB1977 said:

I would be okay with the Virgin model, as previously mentioned. I enjoy dressing for dinner and having a waitstaff.

 

If my options were either buffet, Guys/Blue or pay for a specialty, I would not cruise on that line. I do not cruise to eat pizza, burgers or tacos for dinner.

I agree completely and would never sail on a line like this. 

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I also like the Virgin model of several small restaurants included in the fare.  On Carnival, I'll eat dinner in the MDR 6 nights of a week's cruise, and be in the Steakhouse the other night.  On NCL, Celebrity and RCCL, I'll up the # of specialty restaurants simply because those lines have more variety than Carnival.

 

I've joked on here that Carnival may eventually have a MickeyD's on board instead of an MDR.  If that ever happens, I'd never sail Carnival again.

 

Whether on a cruise or at an AI or other type of resort, I enjoy being served brunch and dinner.  I have never eaten in a buffet for dinner, have had only 2 Guy's burgers and maybe 3 slices of pepperoni pizza and that's in about 40 Carnival cruises.

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2 hours ago, Amyracecar said:

I remember sailing on Ocean Village I & II years ago,

they didn't have a MDR and we survived. ===> So did we!

One point we should probably consider though, is that Ocean Village had no MDR and was marketed for those who didn't want the stuffiness of formal dining etc.

That brand is no longer sailing, so perhaps not such a popular choice! 

.

Carnival Corporation's decision to axe Ocean Village Cruises

came almost immediately after the financial meltdown of September 2008!

Like they were just looking for an excuse to dump it.

 

Thousands of Ocean Village fans were horrified at the very thought

but within the next year or two, both ships changed hands -and livery.

We were not amused. We had sailed twice on OV2.

It was a very popular brand in the UK, make no mistake about it.

.

 

OV2-175.jpg

OV1-398.jpg

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4 hours ago, Nerkbuck said:

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

 

It takes longer, but the food is better.

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I could easily cruise without an MDR. We tend not to go to the MDR often for a couple reasons, but primarily because a 2 hour dinner service and mediocre food don't fit our vacation style. It's kind of an "either/or" for us. Totally OK with a 2-hour relaxed dinner if the food and service are good. We are also fine with the occasional "mediocre" food as long as it is more grab-and-go style. We will generally have at least 2-3 specialty dinners on a 7 night sailing, and the other nights may eat a meal in port before boarding the ship, have pizza, have Guy's Burgers, etc.

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Just now, wytygr8 said:

 

You should probably try Princess or Celebrity.

I have, and I prefer them, but they do not sail out of my home port so I am limited to CCL and RCCL unless I extend my vacation days +2.

 

CCL has always been adequate, I don't mind the people that don't dress up or ever go to the MDR (I DO mind the flip-flops in the MDR though), they can enjoy their vacation as they see fit. The problem is that there are so many of them now (most tables around us in the MDR have been empty our past three cruises) that they are dictating the trends of the cruiseline. The worst part is that they don't realize that they aren't going to get any perks in their favor if the MDR is removed, it will just go away with no replacement (and probably lead to longer lines in their beloved buffet to boot!), with CCL pocketing the savings.

 

What vestiges of cruising would even be left at that point? Some half-assed playlist shows and invisible stewards?

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2 hours ago, evandbob said:

I also like the Virgin model of several small restaurants included in the fare.  On Carnival, I'll eat dinner in the MDR 6 nights of a week's cruise, and be in the Steakhouse the other night.  On NCL, Celebrity and RCCL, I'll up the # of specialty restaurants simply because those lines have more variety than Carnival.

 

I've joked on here that Carnival may eventually have a MickeyD's on board instead of an MDR.  If that ever happens, I'd never sail Carnival again.

 

Whether on a cruise or at an AI or other type of resort, I enjoy being served brunch and dinner.  I have never eaten in a buffet for dinner, have had only 2 Guy's burgers and maybe 3 slices of pepperoni pizza and that's in about 40 Carnival cruises.

Fantasies and old unfunny humor aside, what Carnival does currently offer and will continue to offer is options, good food at a value price.  Options in dining, MDR, for pay restaurants, Lido, Guys, pizza, oriental, Chicken (soon) are options.  You can pick what either does or does not fit your desire.  These are enhancements, not detriments.  

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The MDR meals are a great part of any day onboard!  Service, interesting foods to try, opportunities at dinner to catch up on the exciting activities of the day.  Sea day brunch is leisurely and lovely.  Sit-down breakfast with a group of new tablemates is wonderful.

 

When our children were young, it was an opportunity to practice manners in a more grown-up, more-realistic-to-adult-life-while-still-being-fun type of environment.  Dress for dinner, real-world practice in using a knife and fork properly, courtesy, etiquette...all in a forgiving Carnival environment with an occasional strolling magician or dancing waiters.  I realize this is no Michelin-starred restaurant...but it is far better than the noisy world of Chili's!   Not quite the risk of offending as at "the club" or a more expensive place.  Also, the MDR exits and an alternate buffet meal are handy in case the youngest ones just do not cooperate.  We are now far past this stage.

 

All of us would sorely miss the Main Dining Room of today if it were to be replaced with another venue. 

 

Now, if they could just strive to serve the meal and dessert within 60-75 minutes...

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Where are some of you rushing off to because you say the MDR service is too slow?

 

Around dinner time there isn't much going on.

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We eat almost exclusively at the buffet.

It may seem like I wouldn't care if they closed the MDR....but I would.  The buffet would get too crowded.

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35 minutes ago, fyree39 said:

DH and I have talked about visiting America's baseball stadiums, one city at a time, and our Boston idea grew from this. Not sure that Minneapolis could keep us busy for an entire week. 

We wanted to visit all the ballparks too. For Minneapolis you could combine either Detroit to see the Tigers or South Dakota to see Mount Rushmore. Do 3 days in one place and move on for 3 or 4 days at the other. We have friends in MN and MI, so we'd likely extend our trip in those places to hang out with them, but it's an idea to split it up.

 

We enjoy the MDR, even if the food is not outstanding. I like the relaxed pace at dinner, enjoying the time at the table to talk to others about the day, whether it is friends we're cruising with or new people we're meeting for the first time. 

 

I don't cruise to eat dinner at the buffet every night. Or pizza or hamburgers. I like that the cruise price has included meals and options that aren't buffet or counter service. It's just easier.

 

If they ever did take the MDR away, I would expect it to be replaced by something comparable. Or maybe I should say I would want that. HA!

Edited by mikayla73
typo

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On 3/4/2019 at 3:33 PM, Aplmac said:

I hope MDRs continue for the older crowd, over 50-60

who don't like to line up for food!

 

I would want to book cruises

on a ship that has one or even two Main Dining Rooms

- and avoid those without!

 

 

Agreed. I loved fixed dining, too. Just show up and be seated right away; have your order taken from a real menu  and be served. No waiting in line. No juggling plates or going back and forth.

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On 3/4/2019 at 2:10 PM, mntbikejack said:

I like the MDR but have done an entire cruise without using it. So it would not be a show stopper for me without an MDR.

 

 

There have been a few cruises where my wife and I have not gone to the MDR a single night.  I enjoy the food most of the time, but I don't want to spend 14 hours of a seven day cruise sitting in the dining room.  Service takes way too long now!  That is one of the reasons we eat on the lido most nights.

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