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I do think this is where it's going though. There's a parallel thread that mentions HAL's "testing" (as if this notion wouldn't pass a 'test'?) charging for a second entree. The next logical step is to eliminate the MDR or unbundle formal food service from the cruise rate - and as mentioned, turn the aft dinning room into a non-smoking casino.

Personally, I like the MDR. As has been mentioned, I didn't go on cruise to eat pizza.  It does seem, however, that there's a generation of younger cruisers (I'm 62, which is above the average for Carnival and below the average for HAL) that find the MDR experience to be too slow and unnecessarily formal. Perhaps the Virgin model, where there's nothing but specialty restaurants (which is far more challenging from a galley design and service standpoint) is the way ahead - hopefully they're not all additional fee though....

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15 hours ago, fireofficer5 said:

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.

 

I think a lot of folks want to get to an early show, if possible, and sometimes/ofttimes that means getting to the "line-up area" by around 7:15pm.  Most of the time dessert is being served about then, IIRC.  (But I honestly am not checking my watch regularly enough to know for sure.)

 

And some folks just don't like to linger at a dinner table, even if they have nowhere specific to go: they want their meal, and accompanying drinks/desserts, and then be on their way in about an hour - most family dinner at home are done well inside that time frame.

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People love to draw their noble line in the sand for things that won't happen. When did the internet become conspiracy theory central? Testing charging for a second entree = the end of the MDR as we know it. I still don't believe all of those who say they wouldn't cruise again if the MDR was gone.

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We choose not to eat in the MDR for a variety of reasons, so I would definitely be ok with a ship that didn't that didn't have one.

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23 minutes ago, Joebucks said:

Testing charging for a second entree = the end of the MDR as we know it. I still don't believe all of those who say they wouldn't cruise again if the MDR was gone.

HAL's stated reason is to "curtail food waste." As in - I suppose - someone eats their dinner, then says, "You know, I've never had broiled rock fish, let me try that?" They take one bite and it gets throw overboard. That is wasteful, but rather than charge - the theory being that it disincentives wasteful behavior, why wouldn't they simply say, "No sir, you can't have a second entree tonight?" 

I appreciate that cruise lines have to turn a profit, and it is wasteful, but on the other, I get nervous every time they start unbundling or upcharging or whatever. I realize on the super-expensive lines, that's not the case (their cruise fares fully recover all costs by themselves) but ...

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2 hours ago, Joebucks said:

When did the internet become conspiracy theory central? 

 

Um, pretty well since the invention of the Internet.  Seriously.

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22 hours ago, BTHodgeman said:

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.

 

You've described my issue on my last few cruises: dinner was mediocre (food and service) while also taking a long time.  Interestingly enough, Guys and Blue Iguana had some really good food and service (especially BI at breakfast) and was grab and go.

 

16 hours ago, Chrystine5 said:

How about the opposite. I’m all for no buffet!🙋🏻‍♀️

 

I'll take the buffet over the above mentioned mediocre food and slow/mediocre service.  I also don't think it is practical to have enough full service seating unless it is a very small ship.  Perhaps the luxury lines don't have buffets (I think at least some do though), but we aren't at the point of paying that price or taking that long of trips yet 😉 

 

19 hours ago, fireofficer5 said:

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.

 

4 hours ago, ProgRockCruiser said:

 

I think a lot of folks want to get to an early show, if possible, and sometimes/ofttimes that means getting to the "line-up area" by around 7:15pm.  Most of the time dessert is being served about then, IIRC.  (But I honestly am not checking my watch regularly enough to know for sure.)

 

And some folks just don't like to linger at a dinner table, even if they have nowhere specific to go: they want their meal, and accompanying drinks/desserts, and then be on their way in about an hour - most family dinner at home are done well inside that time frame.

 

This is my thought.  On another thread about dining times there is discussion about how we have switched to private tables rather than the shared tables of the past.  If I am having good discussion I can easily sit talking longer than if it is just my husband and I enjoying a meal but not part of a group.

 

We like to return to the cabin so DH can change back into comfier clothes for the evening (that we feel do not respect the suggested MDR dress code) and/or enjoy a stroll on the promenade before a show if there is time and leisurely make our way to evening activities rather than having to "rush off."

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It will cost more than a few nickles today but the concept will be close to this:

Horn_&_Hardart_automat.JPG

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I enjoy the MDR-I love being waited on and served several courses.  I usually travel with a group of friends and we may go our different ways throughout the day, but we always meet up for dinner. 

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3 hours ago, AHS123 said:

It will cost more than a few nickles today but the concept will be close to this:

Horn_&_Hardart_automat.JPG

Loved Horn and Hardart when I was a kid.  

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9 hours ago, h_blond2 said:

We choose not to eat in the MDR for a variety of reasons, so I would definitely be ok with a ship that didn't that didn't have one.

That's sad and a shame that anyone would even say that ...... Telling Carnival that you're ok with taking away a free food venue that serves real food with a waitstaff is a facepalm moment to me.  This is just what they want to hear. SMH .......

Edited by tallnthensome

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9 hours ago, h_blond2 said:

We choose not to eat in the MDR for a variety of reasons, so I would definitely be ok with a ship that didn't have one.

Thanks for sharing your honest opinion. I said earlier in the thread the aft dining room should be converted to a non-smoking only casino with its own buffet so the players can play and dine. Opinions and ideas are what make this site hum. Happy sailing.

Edited by sanmarcosman

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On 3/5/2019 at 4:33 PM, fireofficer5 said:

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.

 

We eat a quick dinner and then go to the earliest evening shows. If we have a bit of time before the first show we might stop by the casino or just walk around and see what’s going on, maybe check out the shops or go out to a deck rail and enjoy the sea breeze.  On Oasis of the Seas we were always happy to visit Central Park, the Solarium, the Promenade, or the Boardwalk. On their first cruise I was so excited for DH and our little girl to have their first dinner in the MDR and I was surprised and disappointed that they disliked it. However I’ve adjusted quickly and I don’t push it anymore.  There’s no joy in dressing up and going to a fancy restaurant with two crabby companions.  We’re just not food people.  It’s not entertainment for us.

Edited by KmomChicago

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On 3/4/2019 at 5:36 PM, jmcathome said:

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.

Every time JH does a poll on eating in the MDR it's a pretty even split between folks wanting fixed dining or at least YTD  in the MDR and and those who don't care.

 

If Carnival gets rid of the MDR they'll be getting rid of us to another cruise line.  We, like many others, see dining in the MDR as an enjoyable part of our evening activities and not as a bother.  We also don't go to the "pay" food venues on board as our regular food is included in the fare.  If I was going to spend $35 each in a steak house it'll be at one of the great steak houses at home :classic_rolleyes:


I know ... there are those who put down the MDR food but frankly I find it more than eat-able and have never had a dinner time I could not find some things in each category that I like or want to try.  At home for each meal I have to shop for the stuff, prepare it, cook it, serve it up, clean it up and do the dishes.  I adore being waited on hand and foot in the MDR :classic_biggrin:

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21 hours ago, AHS123 said:

It will cost more than a few nickles today but the concept will be close to this:

Horn_&_Hardart_automat.JPG

Bills only!

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15 hours ago, sanmarcosman said:

Thanks for sharing your honest opinion. I said earlier in the thread the aft dining room should be converted to a non-smoking only casino with its own buffet so the players can play and dine. Opinions and ideas are what make this site hum. Happy sailing.

 

Obviously we are all entitled to our opinion so I'm not criticizing in any way.  But I promise you that any cruise line that did this would lose my business permanently.  Different strokes for different folks, I suppose.

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15 hours ago, tallnthensome said:

That's sad and a shame that anyone would even say that ...... Telling Carnival that you're ok with taking away a free food venue that serves real food with a waitstaff is a facepalm moment to me.  This is just what they want to hear. SMH .......

 

20 minutes ago, h_blond2 said:

 

It's sad and a shame that I choose not to eat in the MDR on a cruise? Seriously? I have no desire to spend two hours eating food that I don't even like when I can be spending time doing things that I do enjoy. I can go out to dinner on land and eat at restaurant that I do like. You really need to get over yourself. 

 

9 minutes ago, tallnthensome said:

You need to understand what is being said. Nobody cares where you choose to eat and why, that's not the point.  Saying youre ok if Carnival got rid of the MDR is. Don't be an advocate for the removal of something that is included in your fair as these types of comments are what Carnival feeds off of. Perhaps you'd like it if a bunch of cruisers asked Carnival to get rid of the buffet then even if they didn't dine there?  In other words, don't tell Carnival you'd be fine with the removal of something you don't even use. See where others says they would never cruise Carnival again if this were the case? It would be because people like yourself said it was A-OK to them if there was no MDR. 

 

For the record, again, I enjoy the MDR, and would be sad to see it go away.  But I don't believe that will be the case, at least with the current cruising demographics.  To suddenly, or even over the course of the next 5 years, expect to make that change would be a death-knell for their current customer base.  But:

 

If @h_blond2 would never use the MDR, why on earth would they advocate on your behalf to keep it, or stay silent on the topic, just because it is part of the current cruise fare that you enjoy?  This board is full of folks saying "get rid of this, I never use it, why doesn't Carnival do that instead, like xxx brand?".  If all Carnival ever hears is the occasional "yes, I still want that" but never hears "please get rid of that", how is that conducive to change?  Keeping the status quo is anathema in almost any customer-related industry.

 

Carnival very much cares where everyone chooses to eat and why - that's why they send out surveys and have JH ask weird poll questions.  So either Carnival is reading this, and would find such statements useful, or they aren't...

 

If in the hypothetical situation Carnival actually does this and removes the MDR, they may replace that "cost" with something else that would be of value to others.  What in particular?  I don't know, doesn't really matter.  Maybe that smoke-free casino suggested by someone else (though I doubt that even more). 

 

But for example: I don't use the (smoky) casino.  If Carnival found that running the casino was a "cost" to them (not likely!!  But play along...) and did a survey and found that the vast majority of cruisers weren't using it, they might replace it with something I would enjoy.  Too bad for the (apparently few) folks that did want to use the casino (in this very ridiculous hypothetical case), but the rest of the cruise guests would benefit.  Carnival would have to weigh the potential loss of those (few) casino guests that would change brands vs the additional demand (=revenue) from making the change.

 

Or maybe a better example: it appears the use of the Library has been something Carnival is looking at, and as far as I can tell, they have started to shrink them or even remove them after drydock upgrades.  Presumably because the non-revenue-generating space is perceived as a net cost to Carnival with not much use by guests, and they think guests will "enjoy" something else more, which may also have added revenue.  I like the libraries, but I can understand why they might all go away eventually.  I would never admonish anyone who volunteers the info that they never/rarely go to the library.  I'd be sad, and I would voice my opinion back to hopefully keep the library space as-is.

 

I can't imagine Carnival would ever get rid of the MDR.  As it is, there are people waitlisted for early dining, and YTD has wait-times at peak times.  So obviously, even with the few folks that don't want it, the MDR is popular.

 

And keep in mind, if the MDR were to go away, Carnival would then have to increase costs somewhere else to feed all those Diners that now have nowhere to go - the Lido Buffet isn't big enough to accommodate everyone.

 

Until the MDR crowd thins out to no wait lists for any dining time, and less than 75% capacity filled, there is no way Carnival will get rid of it.  Even then, they might just shrink them a bit, to keep them "full" with fewer folks, and add other dining options that would apparently be in demand.

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Another "elder millennial" here. This is an interesting thread. As long as there were options with variety other than the buffet such as Virgin's model, I would be okay and it wouldn't stop me from cruising. Although, I might consider an all-inclusive resort type trip first. I enjoy the MDR experience, with a set dining time; I like having the same table-mates and wait staff each night. I like making those connections and I would definitely miss it if I were on a ship with no MDR.

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1 hour ago, the mistral wind said:

Is there a rumor ?

 

Only this thread.

 

I suspect (?) it was triggered by the recent Virgin cruiseline announcements - I understand there is no MDR, just a bunch of specialty restaurants.

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7 hours ago, jsglow said:

 

Obviously we are all entitled to our opinion so I'm not criticizing in any way.  But I promise you that any cruise line that did this would lose my business permanently.  Different strokes for different folks, I suppose.

You need not worry about it,

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7 hours ago, jsglow said:

 

Obviously we are all entitled to our opinion so I'm not criticizing in any way.  But I promise you that any cruise line that did this would lose my business permanently.  Different strokes for different folks, I suppose.

dup post

Edited by jimbo5544

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7 hours ago, jsglow said:

 

Obviously we are all entitled to our opinion so I'm not criticizing in any way.  But I promise you that any cruise line that did this would lose my business permanently.  Different strokes for different folks, I suppose.

PC hiccup

Edited by jimbo5544

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7 hours ago, jsglow said:

 

Obviously we are all entitled to our opinion so I'm not criticizing in any way.  But I promise you that any cruise line that did this would lose my business permanently.  Different strokes for different folks, I suppose.

PC hiccup triple post, never saw that before...

Edited by jimbo5544

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On 3/5/2019 at 7:03 PM, Aplmac said:

.

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

 

A fellow fan!! 

 

OV was my first cruise ship and I have extremely fond memories of both her and OV2. I particularly enjoyed the excellent tribute acts they got on board, made for some great shows. (I loved that bar that had the big round booths at the back)  

 

I think it was a different pace of life to other cruise ships, had a very relaxed vibe. I know the mainly buffet dining wasn't for everyone though, my Mum was with us on one trip & said it was the only thing she didn't like about the ship, as she was used to set time dining & formality on other lines. If more Cruise lines opted for this way of doing things I think it really would split the crowd. 

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