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Women - formal attire

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So I was informed by a SAGA Chat person that I could wear a dark lounge suit where there are formal nights but I am female.  However no advice when I pointed this out. 

 

How formal do I have to be?  I would wear smart trousers or long skirt and a glittery (appropriately cocktaily) top and flats but damned if I am going to do cocktail dresses.  Would relly appreciate comments from Saga Cruise regulars.

 

Thanks

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JE -   that is exactly what I wear for formal nights (have done some 6 or more  Sagas), and did suggest this on another thread.  Evening tops, smart trousers or long skirt, and flat shoes are perfectly fine.  I  don't wear dresses, and certainly do not have 'cocktail' dresses, but obviously some women do, and they are fine also.

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I took a long black skirt and three different evening tops; certainly didn’t feel out of place and it simplified the packing! There seemed to be a great mixture of things worn by the ladies for the formal evenings. The majority of men did wear dinner jackets.  

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Posted (edited)

I no longer 'do' any sort of glittery/lacy/velvet tops or dresses or trousers, I am more of a White Stuff than a Phase Eight sort of person, so if I can ever persuade my OH that Saga is NOT too old for him (he is 74 by the way!) then I will have to think very hard about what I will wear.  I'm not buying clothes just for holidays.  It's the only thing that puts me off about most cruises from the UK.  We discovered the joy of cruising with Viking three years ago, after about 30 cruises with a variety of other companies, and certainly won't go back to the more mainstream lines, but Saga's new ship looks a possibility.   I guess in time they will drop the formal codes.

Edited by Jammy Bun
typo

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Viking is lovely and hopefully our first Saga cruise on Sept 5th will also be great.

I would also prefer a more 'elegant casual' dress code similar to Viking, although there were certainly quite a few sparkly tops on our Viking cruises too.  

Saga is going to have to fill 2 ships with nearly 2000 clients soon.  They will  have to entice clients away from other cruise lines, and formal nights do put off those who are used to Azamara, Oceania, Viking etc.

 

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55 minutes ago, Mrs Miggins said:

Viking is lovely and hopefully our first Saga cruise on Sept 5th will also be great.

I would also prefer a more 'elegant casual' dress code similar to Viking, although there were certainly quite a few sparkly tops on our Viking cruises too.  

Saga is going to have to fill 2 ships with nearly 2000 clients soon.  They will  have to entice clients away from other cruise lines, and formal nights do put off those who are used to Azamara, Oceania, Viking etc.

 

I agree, we haven’t done Formal nights for many years, it was partly what put us off ever booking P&O or Cunard. Yes, twenty years ago we did, it was a novelty then, but today it seems an old fashioned concept. Many of the main stream US lines have ‘downgraded’ Formal to mean perhaps a sports jacket and tie for men and equivalent for women, although some still really dress up, that is increasingly not the norm. 

 

I suspect some regular ‘Saganauts’ will be horrified at the idea of going less formal but filling two larger ships each week is going to mean some changes I’m sure. 

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I agree with you.  I was not keen on the idea of the formal dressing.  I do wonder whether there is a possibility that when the Spirit of Adventure is also sailing there will be a chance that one of the ships will do fly cruises.  If Saga are hoping to attract a slightly younger age of passenger they may find that there is a limited number of people able to spare more than two weeks at a time for their holidays.  That does severely limit the itineraries that are possible from the UK.  It would be much more of a hassle to take formal clothes by air, particularly for men.  Perhaps in that case, at least there might be the option of not having to wear formal clothes in the buffet.  Just a hope!

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Maybe if comments regarding a slight relaxing of the dress code was made by all of us on our end of cruise comments form, then the powers that be might take notice.

We still cruise with Cunard which has formal nights so OH takes his DJ but he also enjoys the country club casual approach of Oceania.

I think ladies have s lot more lee way on formal nights as to what is deemed suitable.

 

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On 8/23/2019 at 11:32 AM, Mrs Miggins said:

Viking is lovely and hopefully our first Saga cruise on Sept 5th will also be great.

I would also prefer a more 'elegant casual' dress code similar to Viking, although there were certainly quite a few sparkly tops on our Viking cruises too.  

Saga is going to have to fill 2 ships with nearly 2000 clients soon.  They will  have to entice clients away from other cruise lines, and formal nights do put off those who are used to Azamara, Oceania, Viking etc.

 

I shall be stepping out of my usual Cunard comfort zone and have booked Spirit of Discovery for an 18 day cruise this October. I know of several other seasoned Cunarder's who have also booked  various cruises on the new ship.

We have no intention of lowering our dress standards, we'll be bringing Cunard's 'evening wear standards' along with us too,  so I guess formal evening on Saga will be here to stay for quite some time yet . 😉  

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It will be interesting to read how the different cruisers respond to Discovery - Cunarders, who obviously either enjoy dressing up, or at least don't mind, and the Oceania/Viking aficionados, who definitely prefer the casual approach.  I have a feeling both groups will enjoy her, and be willing to alter their dress standards a bit as necessary! 

 

Nevertheless, I think in time the code will veer more towards that of, say,  Seabourn, where formal optional requires a jacket to be worn by men on those evenings, and though some still appear in their dj or suit, more and more are tending towards a blazer or sports coat, often without a tie.  As Seabourn is a pretty upmarket outfit, most people look fairly well dressed anyway.

 

Your cruise, Bell Boy, is a lovely itinerary.  Do come back here with a report afterwards, please.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Bell Boy said:

I shall be stepping out of my usual Cunard comfort zone and have booked Spirit of Discovery for an 18 day cruise this October. I know of several other seasoned Cunarder's who have also booked  various cruises on the new ship.

We have no intention of lowering our dress standards, we'll be bringing Cunard's 'evening wear standards' along with us too,  so I guess formal evening on Saga will be here to stay for quite some time yet . 😉  

Even on Cunard the standards are slipping to some extent.

In spite of formal dress being required all over the ship there were some in the theatre who were not in formal dress.

Presumably they had dined in the buffet?

Whatever, I feel there should be an option for those who don't want to get 'gussied up' to be able to dine in the Grill.

 

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Wow, a bit of a hornet’s nest stirred here. 

I don’t consider that Azamara (Viking/Oceania) styles of clothing are a lowering of standards. It’s that rather snobby attitude that wearing formal is a superior vibe that has always put me off Cunard. If that atmosphere pervades SoD, it will be our first and last Saga cruise. 

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 I feel sure that existing Saganauts will not be at all 'snobby' about dress on board.  I personally hope that what I have predicted in my second paragraph will happen - those who want to dress formally may do so, but those of us who prefer something a bit more casual - including us - will prevail in the end.  Seabourn a few years ago did require dj or suit for formals, and then changed the wording to formal optional for those evenings, and it has worked well.

 

As someone has already suggested, putting it in writing in your post cruise questionnaire is the best way to persuade Saga to change the rule.  

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Posted (edited)
50 minutes ago, cinnamon said:

Wow, a bit of a hornet’s nest stirred here. 

I don’t consider that Azamara (Viking/Oceania) styles of clothing are a lowering of standards. It’s that rather snobby attitude that wearing formal is a superior vibe that has always put me off Cunard. If that atmosphere pervades SoD, it will be our first and last Saga cruise. 

 I believe you have misunderstood my comments, my comments are not snobby at all, nowhere have I mentioned that wearing a Tux is superior.   After Cunard, Seabourn is one of my preferred cruise lines (where I have enjoyed many platinum  sea days)  I've also sailed Azamara on two occasions and with Oceania once. I'm quite happy with 'Country club casual'  and will go along quite happily with the flow . 

Every cruise line has their own characteristics, their 'dress codes' are often an 'integral part of their brand image'.

 

However, what I don't expect, is for those 'country club casual' cruise lines, to change things for me. What  does get my goat, are those folks who are already quite happy with a less formal cruise experience  and expect other lines ( on which they are not seasoned guests on ) to change dress  codes just to suit them. 

 

I have never sailed Saga before so this will be a completely new experience for me, however , I did noticed in their pre cruise information that their formal evening dress codes will be 'strictly enforced ( their words not mine 😉

 

Your final sentence, to quote , "If that atmosphere pervades it'll be your last Saga cruise". Cinnamon,  why not just go with the flow and enjoy the characteristics of Saga  ( even if that means a formal evening or two)  otherwise keep to what you are more comfortable with.   

 

 

Edited by Bell Boy

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I haven’t said that Saga should change for us. Only that the need to go Formal nearly put us off. What felt ‘snobby’ was the phrase about  ‘lowering standards’. 

 

We will be going with the flow and will stay open minded. Who knows, without the need to handle luggage on flights, taking extra clothes will be easier and we may enjoy getting all togged up again as we used to do 20 years ago.  It really depends on how the atmosphere surrounding all that pans out. 

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What is really surprising me on SOD is the very casual dress by some on the ‘smart casual’ nights. I have observed hoodies, jeans and flip flops.  

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7 minutes ago, sweep said:

What is really surprising me on SOD is the very casual dress by some on the ‘smart casual’ nights. I have observed hoodies, jeans and flip flops.  

I nothing like that on the Gourmet Spain cruise;  we did have dinner in the main dining room every night, perhaps it was different in the Grill?

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No this is the main dining room.  We haven’t been to the grill in the evening yet. 

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28 minutes ago, sweep said:

What is really surprising me on SOD is the very casual dress by some on the ‘smart casual’ nights. I have observed hoodies, jeans and flip flops.  

Wot ! on 'sixty and seventy year olds' ! .....You are certainly joking. I've not yet had the experience of Saga , but there is one thing I know , Saga guests have a wealth of cruising experience , not to mention a disposable income , they don't pay a premium and then walk around in the evenings like that .   

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I think we have probably had enough discussion about this!  My feeling is that for those who are prepared to go with the flow, they will almost certainly love so much about the ship and their trip that they will be perfectly prepared to go along with whatever regime is  current.  We would prefer not to have to go formal, but are willing to do so  in view of all the other good things - not just the ship and the staff, but not needing to fly, having the fairly unstressed travel to the port, with as much luggage as you like and no need to handle it yourself, and the delightful helpful staff on board with pretty good food and no need to sign and pay for your drinks (shortly on Discovery, current on Sapphire).  Not to mention included insurance and tips,and what looks like a really beautiful, tasteful ship interior, with no 'bling'.  (Did anyone see the programme about Regent Explorer?)

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9 hours ago, Bell Boy said:

I shall be stepping out of my usual Cunard comfort zone and have booked Spirit of Discovery for an 18 day cruise this October. I know of several other seasoned Cunarder's who have also booked  various cruises on the new ship.

We have no intention of lowering our dress standards, we'll be bringing Cunard's 'evening wear standards' along with us too,  so I guess formal evening on Saga will be here to stay for quite some time yet . 😉  

I would not expect you to “lower your standards”.  I am sure you enjoy the formal nights, and you should be able to dress up just as much as you want.

 

We used to do this too.  Now we fly to our embarkation as I am not keen on sea days.  We also have done lots of cruises on a variety of cruise lines, but latterly prefer smaller ships with a refined atmosphere.

our only cruise out of the Uk was enjoyable but only because we were with friends.  I found a large ship full  of mainly UK cruisers not quite to my taste.

 

i must confess that it was the price point that made us book with Saga.  Both Viking and Azamara were extremely expensive on their Norwegian itineraries.  Longer cruises than our 7 day Saga trial but significantly higher per firm costs.

i do get offers fromCunard at much lower prices, but I accept that that would only be Britannia class.  Not too keen on the Class Distinction on Cunard and also now on the mass market lines like Celebrity.

i am looking forward to our Saga cruise and will dress according to the guidelines.

Howevet having just read the Cunard guidelines it would appear that Cunard are more relaxed than Saga.

Perhaps I am wrong but Cunard appear to offer dining options for those who do not wish to  attend formal nights but Saga do not.  

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4 hours ago, lincslady said:

... (Did anyone see the programme about Regent Explorer?)

 

Yes, and we thought it looked absolutely ghastly.  No thanks!

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5 hours ago, Bell Boy said:

Wot ! on 'sixty and seventy year olds' ! .....You are certainly joking. I've not yet had the experience of Saga , but there is one thing I know , Saga guests have a wealth of cruising experience , not to mention a disposable income , they don't pay a premium and then walk around in the evenings like that .   

 

Okay, so you haven't been on Saga yet but you are making assumptions about their guests.  Whereas 'sweep' is reporting what they have actually experienced on board.

Perhaps you should wait until you have experienced Saga before passing judgement.

 

 

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10 minutes ago, Tigrou said:

 

Okay, so you haven't been on Saga yet but you are making assumptions about their guests.  Whereas 'sweep' is reporting what they have actually experienced on board.

Perhaps you should wait until you have experienced Saga before passing judgement.

 

 

It was much better tonight.  Perhaps it was because people had been ashore and just hadn’t bothered to change.  

I commented because I was surprised and it certainly wasn’t the same standard as our usual cruise line which is Oceania.  

I might add that everyone is smartly dressed on formal nights with 90% of the men wearing DJ, the others in suits.  Ladies wear the whole range from long dresses to smart trousers and tops. 

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9 hours ago, cinnamon said:

It’s that rather snobby attitude that wearing formal is a superior vibe that has always put me off Cunard. If that atmosphere pervades SoD, it will be our first and last Saga cruise. 

 

I had fun on QM2 looking at so many people who apparently prided themselves on their 'evening dress standards' but who would not have passed muster for the formal dinners which were part of my working life.  It was similar to when the men in a wedding party wear morning suits when clearly none of them have ever worn one before, somewhat cringe-worthy.

 

  

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