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PrincessPete

Freedom Dining query

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1 minute ago, terrierjohn said:

Fortunately, for those of us who prefer sharing tables, if P&O stay true to form they are unlikely to listen to the demands of those seeking more tables for 2.:classic_rolleyes:

Although we can always hope.:classic_biggrin:

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4 minutes ago, terrierjohn said:

Fortunately, for those of us who prefer sharing tables, if P&O stay true to form they are unlikely to listen to the demands of those seeking more tables for 2.:classic_rolleyes:

A major problem with sharing tables is we usually take less than an hour to eat dinner but when sharing a large table it can take over 2 hours.

Even with a table for 2 you can still talk to people at either side of you if you want.

Edited by grapau27

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7 minutes ago, Harry Peterson said:

That's actually a rather good photo in that it shows clearly the reality of the 'table for two' - they're so close together that in reality it's a table for 4 or 6 with a tiny space between.

 

You'd have to be very rude indeed not to talk to your fellow diners, so I still struggle to see what you're actually gaining?

Thanks.

See my post #27.

 

Edited by grapau27

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I cruised as part of a group of 5 last year with Royal Caribbean and for the first time selected My Time Dining.  I hadn't realised that you should book your dining times before you sail and as a consequence we had to wait most evenings to get a table.

 

I sailed with P&O this year and had Freedom dining.  There was only two of us and we didn't mind sharing a table each evening.  If we'd have wanted a two we would have been sent away with a buzzer.  A couple of evenings were a bit awkward at the table as some diners clearly didn't like two single ladies on their table!

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7 minutes ago, Sarah1974 said:

I cruised as part of a group of 5 last year with Royal Caribbean and for the first time selected My Time Dining.  I hadn't realised that you should book your dining times before you sail and as a consequence we had to wait most evenings to get a table.

 

I sailed with P&O this year and had Freedom dining.  There was only two of us and we didn't mind sharing a table each evening.  If we'd have wanted a two we would have been sent away with a buzzer.  A couple of evenings were a bit awkward at the table as some diners clearly didn't like two single ladies on their table!

We book a nightly time for My Time on RCCL but we're not able to do this on P&O.

You highlight a problem of sharing a larger table and I can't understand why anyone would complain about 2 single ladies sharing their table.

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22 hours ago, PrincessPete said:

Hi, can you request specific times for dinner each day of the cruise on Freedom Dining before sailing, or do you just go to the restaurant and get a table when you turn up. (I appreciate if that is the case it may mean taking a pager and waiting.) I know you can book in advance on some lines, not sure if so on P&O.

The ship is Arcadia if that makes a difference.

Many thanks for your help.

Peter

Never been able to pre-book a Freedom dining time on P&O but I am always able to book a time on RC My Time dining.

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2 hours ago, grapau27 said:

Every night on Ventura the Atrium deck 5 and 6 was full of people carrying buzzers.

When we finally got in to Saffron restaurant after waiting an hour this is what we found, Empty Tables for 2.

This tells me there is a demand.

Several of the larger tables were regularly empty 

IMG_20190823_194623.jpg

What we've found on those long rows of tables for 2 on Ventura is that they seem to wait until just about everyone in the row has finished their dinner and left the table before allocating the empty tables to new diners. You can tell when you're in a bar and multiple pagers go off one after the other. Whilst that may be a more efficient way of taking orders at the same time for multiple tables it's not a good look when you've been waiting with a pager and then walk in to see all the empty seats. Don't get me wrong,  we do not mind waiting for a table for two if we have to as we prefer to have a drink in the bar,  as long as the wait is not too long. 

 

The worst tables for two we've seen are on Arcadia. A number of them are only an inch or two apart and look like a table for four as you approach  them. Ok if the other couple want to talk but if they don't it makes for an awkward experience. On Arcadia they do have a number of set apart tables for two that you can request but in our experience the wait for them is way too long, up to 75 minutes one night.

 

I agree with other comments, other lines like Celebrity are so much better with tables for two.

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2 hours ago, grapau27 said:

We book a nightly time for My Time on RCCL but we're not able to do this on P&O.

You highlight a problem of sharing a larger table and I can't understand why anyone would complain about 2 single ladies sharing their table.

 

Quite agree.  We have shared tables with single ladies and a single man.  What's the problem?  Nothing.

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My wife and I have a strong preference for sharing a table but personally I am not fussed about tables for 8 because it effectively becomes two adjoining tables of four which is fine but we usually end up not conversing with the people furthest away from us. Six seems to me to be the ideal number on the basis we can all hear the conversation without straining. As long as ones hearing aids are working!!😀 

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We have always had a table for 8 in Club over 12 cruises, and have met lovely people,  but last time our table for 8 was 7, 4 of them knew each other and accused the three of us of being standoffish.  It was so bad, we decided to give Freedom a try.

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27 minutes ago, jeanlyon said:

We have always had a table for 8 in Club over 12 cruises, and have met lovely people,  but last time our table for 8 was 7, 4 of them knew each other and accused the three of us of being standoffish.  It was so bad, we decided to give Freedom a try.

When we have been on large tables we have encountered 

Snobs.

People constantly bragging.

People talking politics.

1 or 2 people doing all the talking.

Poor table manners.

Rude people.

Some really nice people.

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I share a table for two every night for 48 weeks of the year. My wife can't wait to share a table with as many other people as possible! 

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7 hours ago, grapau27 said:

When we have been on large tables we have encountered 

Snobs.

People constantly bragging.

People talking politics.

1 or 2 people doing all the talking.

Poor table manners.

Rude people.

Some really nice people.

That's a pretty damning condemnation of P&O customers, isn't it?  😉

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For us on a table for 2 we eat at our own speed. Towards the end of the cruise i may be down to 1 or possible 2 courses (sometimes) I don't wish to sit there while someone munches their way through 4 or 5 courses. Never have coffee or cheese and biscuits. We like to eat and be gone.

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I suppose the bean counters have looked at it but, in our case, dining more quickly, a deux, leaves more of the evening for *spending opportunities* .  More tables for 2 might just mean more income from the rest of the ship?  ‘Clubbable’ tables still available of course - perhaps they bring in more income from alcohol?

 

I agree about dwindling appetite towards the end of the cruise

 

 

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Now Iona is going to be all freedom dining. 4MDR's . I guess they will have an electronic system in place on it so you know which one to head for if you want a table for 2..well you would would think there would be some thing like that in place anyway.

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2 hours ago, Harry Peterson said:

That's a pretty damning condemnation of P&O customers, isn't it?  😉

This is over 51 cruises on RCCL,Princess,P&O,NCL and Sun cruises and why we decided to always get a table for 2.

I'm sure as at least 2 people on this thread have already said most of these occurrences do happen regularly.

For years we have got a table for 2 and get room service breakfast to eat on our balcony.

On a table for 2 it is still easy to chat if you want but you don't have to if you don't want to plus you can control how long your dinner takes to eat.

Edited by grapau27

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10 hours ago, grapau27 said:

When we have been on large tables we have encountered 

Snobs.

People constantly bragging.

People talking politics.

1 or 2 people doing all the talking.

Poor table manners.

Rude people.

Some really nice people.

You must have been really unfortunate in that case as with very few exceptions we have had enjoyable conversations with interesting and pleasant people.

 

Interesting that you also think that politics is off the conversation list. I know the old adage is that you should avoid politics and religion. Personally I find it interesting to hear other perspectives on politics as we all live in echo chambers so hearing real views (rather than filtered via the news and social media) from people who have a different point of view is educational. A polite conversation on any subject can work.

 

 

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12 minutes ago, Eglesbrech said:

You must have been really unfortunate in that case as with very few exceptions we have had enjoyable conversations with interesting and pleasant people.

 

Interesting that you also think that politics is off the conversation list. I know the old adage is that you should avoid politics and religion. Personally I find it interesting to hear other perspectives on politics as we all live in echo chambers so hearing real views (rather than filtered via the news and social media) from people who have a different point of view is educational. A polite conversation on any subject can work.

 

 

I think most people will have experienced 1 of these incidents when sharing a 6+ table.

Of course it won't happen every time and only 1 incident from my list might happen but I quoted my observations over numerous cruises over 16 years cruising.

RCCL are more flexible with deals on their speciality restaurants and for the last few years we spend more time in them than MDR.

 

Edited by grapau27

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7 minutes ago, grapau27 said:

I think most people will have experienced 1 of these incidents when sharing a 6+ table.

Of course it won't happen every time and only 1 incident from my list might happen but I quoted my observations over numerous cruises over 16 years cruising.

RCCL are more flexible with deals on their speciality restaurants and for the last few years we spend more time in them than MDR.

 

I’m not disputing that there will be the odd occasions when what you describe happens. For me personally it is not so frequent an issue that I would need to always have a table for 2.

 

It is however entirely a personal choice.

 

We also spend much of our cruises on a table for 2 in the speciality restaurants on P&O but that is more to do with food and service quality in the MDR than fellow passengers. When we do go to the MDR we enjoy meeting new people and being sociable.

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53 minutes ago, Eglesbrech said:

You must have been really unfortunate in that case as with very few exceptions we have had enjoyable conversations with interesting and pleasant people.

 

Interesting that you also think that politics is off the conversation list. I know the old adage is that you should avoid politics and religion. Personally I find it interesting to hear other perspectives on politics as we all live in echo chambers so hearing real views (rather than filtered via the news and social media) from people who have a different point of view is educational. A polite conversation on any subject can work.

 

 

With you entirely on that one - with the right people (admittedly a matter of luck - though there are ways of improving the odds!) a conversation on topical political issues can be fascinating and illuminating.

 

Like you, we sometimes eat in one of the 'speciality' restaurants, usually the Epicurean, and of course on a table for two.  The tables for two there are spaced widely apart, though, unlike those in the MDR which are tables for two in name only - just an illusion.

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20 hours ago, grapau27 said:

We book a nightly time for My Time on RCCL but we're not able to do this on P&O.

You highlight a problem of sharing a larger table and I can't understand why anyone would complain about 2 single ladies sharing their table.

Try being one solo lady! Most couples on tables I've shared have been pleasant, friendly, and made dinner very enjoyable. However, you do get the odd couple where the lady especially makes her displeasure clear and won't talk to you. Perhaps she thinks I'm after her husband? I've got one at home who doesn't like cruising, and he's enough trouble thank you! Perhaps if i were a little old lady with white hair I'd fare better.

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1 hour ago, Eglesbrech said:

I’m not disputing that there will be the odd occasions when what you describe happens. For me personally it is not so frequent an issue that I would need to always have a table for 2.

 

It is however entirely a personal choice.

 

We also spend much of our cruises on a table for 2 in the speciality restaurants on P&O but that is more to do with food and service quality in the MDR than fellow passengers. When we do go to the MDR we enjoy meeting new people and being sociable.

Epicurean here on Ventura was excellent as are Giovanni's and Chops Grill on RC where the ambiance,food and service is on another level

and this is our reason for going there.

A couple of unsavoury moments at a large table a few years ago made our  mind up to always get a table for 2.

In my original post I also said there were nice people too at the large tables.

We deal with a wide range of people in our jobs on a daily basis and will happily make friends on a cruise but not being tied to a large table when we take less than an hour to eat dinner suits us.

 

IMG_20190829_185420.jpg

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11 minutes ago, Clodia said:

Try being one solo lady! Most couples on tables I've shared have been pleasant, friendly, and made dinner very enjoyable. However, you do get the odd couple where the lady especially makes her displeasure clear and won't talk to you. Perhaps she thinks I'm after her husband? I've got one at home who doesn't like cruising, and he's enough trouble thank you! Perhaps if i were a little old lady with white hair I'd fare better.

Friends of my wife unfortunately when their husbands have died experience what you describe and usually with couples they used to socialise with.

Pauline instantly makes friends and would happily chat with you.

 

Edited by grapau27

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Well being of an age that when we started cruising there was only club dining as they now call it, we have got used to the pleasure of having set meal times. We are approaching our 50th cruise and have ever had a bad table. We have had some better than others and a good number which have been great. We have made many friends on these tables and communicate with them and have had meet ups.

 

We have tried freedom and we were not that enamoured. Too much movement ‘churn’ , turbulence. People constantly on the move. However it does allow us to try out the other restaurants without disturbing our table companions.

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