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Unlimited Specialty Dining use in MDR?


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Hi, I just purchase the unlimited specialty dining package for myself and husband for upcoming cruise in November on Explorer of the Seas, 9nts out of Miami.

 

We are going with a group of friends. If we choose to eat in the MDR on a couple of evenings so that we can visit with our friends, do we have to stick to the MDR menu or can we order "off menu" at all? I guess I am a bit picky, but have not been a big fan of the MDR fare on either Princess or Royal. It seems to me I've seen other posts about possibly ordering some items (not sure exactly what or if it's very limited) off menu and not being charged extra. I know there is a $35 surcharge, and I did confirm with Royal that we would not be charged for this, but just curious if anyone has done this and, if so, were you able to order a variety of things ? 

 

Thanks so much!

Edited by Janie1229
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You can order the normal "off menu" items, such as Indian entrees, baked potato, steamed vegetables, etc.  You cannot order items from specialty restaurants, other than those listed on the MDR menu.

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I've occasionally asked for the children's menu in the main dining room. Good, basic fare available there when the dining room menu is a bit light on attractive items or I'm just tired of the failed attempts at particular dishes. 🙂

 

You can view the dining room menus for your entire sailing in advance; that may help you choose better which meals to join your friends in the MDR. Additionally, with a days notice the main dining room can often be very flexible providing you with something customized for you or with something normally available on other days just not on that day.

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3 hours ago, dswallow said:

I've occasionally asked for the children's menu in the main dining room. Good, basic fare available there when the dining room menu is a bit light on attractive items or I'm just tired of the failed attempts at particular dishes. 🙂

 

You can view the dining room menus for your entire sailing in advance; that may help you choose better which meals to join your friends in the MDR. Additionally, with a days notice the main dining room can often be very flexible providing you with something customized for you or with something normally available on other days just not on that day.

Where and How Early can these MDR menus be found?

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1 hour ago, Magicbar said:

Where and How Early can these MDR menus be found?

 

I believe they're usually available from your TV in the stateroom. And at the entrance to the main dining rooms are generally monitors that you can browse the menus through. All available from when you board. They may also be available at any of the information monitors on newer ships that have them.

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5 hours ago, dswallow said:

 

I believe they're usually available from your TV in the stateroom. And at the entrance to the main dining rooms are generally monitors that you can browse the menus through. All available from when you board. They may also be available at any of the information monitors on newer ships that have them.

 

The App has them as well. Not sure if Grandeur is on the app, though.

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Thanks everyone. Not sure if I will keep the UDP or not. It's not inexpensive, but may be something nice to splurge on for this one cruise. To be honest, I've never eaten at a specialty restaurant on Royal - only on Princess. The main dining room fare was "meh" at best in my opinion, and I felt the same way on Princess. Yes, it was edible, not horrible, but I wasn't overly thrilled. I DO love the Windjammer!! 

 

If this was just my husband and myself, I'd have no reservations about purchasing the UDP but we are traveling with a fairly big group of friends, so we will dine in the main dining room with them on a couple of nights - the rest of the trip, we'll just have to find other times to visit :-) 

 

 

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No comparison between Princess and RCI SRs. RCI wins hands down. We have over 50 cruises on Princess and 40+ on RCI. So we do cruise them both. RCI has more SRs to choose from than Princess.

Keep your UD Pkg and enjoy. Happy Cruising!

 

 

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19 hours ago, dswallow said:

 

I believe they're usually available from your TV in the stateroom. And at the entrance to the main dining rooms are generally monitors that you can browse the menus through. All available from when you board. They may also be available at any of the information monitors on newer ships that have them.

Used to be on the I/A TV, but not anymore on my most recent sails on Anthem and Symphony.  They also used to have the weekly menus in paper form in cabin and also on their website.  The only place one can get this info is by the MDR and the WJ.

 

 

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We were able to see the menu for the full sailing on Anthem on the TV in the cabin for Coastal Kitchen and the Main dining room.   You would just choose day 1, day 3, etc

 

The menu for the specialty restaurants were listed too but they don’t generally change

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16 minutes ago, RFerrington said:

If you’re asking if you can order the upcharge options (like whole Maine lobster and Chops filet) from the MDR menu without being charge I believe the answer is “no”.

 

There's another thread on this where someone just off a few sailings was able to do this with no issue on both.

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Typically you can do a filet or surf and turf for $15-30 in the main dining room.  Steak is often discounted to as low as $7.  

 

Of course if you want to eat in the MDR with your friends you will need the same type of dining as they do - First Seating Fixed, Second Seating Fixed, or Mytime Dining.  For the first two you will always get the same table but when you are eating at a specialty restaurant your fixed seats will be vacant.  With Mytime the friends can sit with other cruisers when you are not there if they want to.

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Not sure about the answer to your question but just thought I'd add my perspective on dining. 

To me, one of the "perks" and enjoyment of traveling with a group of friends or family is the ability to all do your own thing during the day and then everyone coming together at dinnertime. Talk about your day, compare experiences, laugh and enjoy. 

Also, one or two nights in a specialty restaurant would ve fine but if I were part of the group and one couple didn't want to dine with the rest of us on most nights, I might feel a little slighted and feel like they really don't care to be part of the group. 

Just my perspective, others may feel totally different. 

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4 minutes ago, lcantw3658 said:

Not sure about the answer to your question but just thought I'd add my perspective on dining. 

To me, one of the "perks" and enjoyment of traveling with a group of friends or family is the ability to all do your own thing during the day and then everyone coming together at dinnertime. Talk about your day, compare experiences, laugh and enjoy. 

Also, one or two nights in a specialty restaurant would ve fine but if I were part of the group and one couple didn't want to dine with the rest of us on most nights, I might feel a little slighted and feel like they really don't care to be part of the group. 

Just my perspective, others may feel totally different. 

 

I would feel differently from your perspective.  

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18 hours ago, lcantw3658 said:

Not sure about the answer to your question but just thought I'd add my perspective on dining. 

To me, one of the "perks" and enjoyment of traveling with a group of friends or family is the ability to all do your own thing during the day and then everyone coming together at dinnertime. Talk about your day, compare experiences, laugh and enjoy. 

Also, one or two nights in a specialty restaurant would ve fine but if I were part of the group and one couple didn't want to dine with the rest of us on most nights, I might feel a little slighted and feel like they really don't care to be part of the group. 

Just my perspective, others may feel totally different. 

Yes, this is why I'm a little torn on keeping the UDP, b/c the majority of our group is doing the early dining, and then there is another couple who purchased the UDP. I agree with the above post, part of the fun is doing different things during the day then meeting at dinner to talk about what everyone did, etc. And yet...another couple is doing UDP. Ugh! 

 

Our sailing isn't until 11/29, so I have some time to ponder on this. 

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