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SarahHben

Iona cutting down on formal nights

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I've been looking at the P&O FAQ page and have just seen this...

Iona

For Iona the 7 night cruises will feature 1 Black Tie night, whilst the 14 night cruises will feature 2 Black Tie nights.

 I'm so disappointed! The formal nights are quite a big part of what attracted me to P&O and now I have way too many long frocks to wear for just one evening.

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Just now, SarahHben said:

I've been looking at the P&O FAQ page and have just seen this...

Iona

For Iona the 7 night cruises will feature 1 Black Tie night, whilst the 14 night cruises will feature 2 Black Tie nights.

 I'm so disappointed! The formal nights are quite a big part of what attracted me to P&O and now I have way too many long frocks to wear for just one evening.

 

It's only Iona (so far) so plenty of other ships to choose from 

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13 minutes ago, tartanexile81 said:

 

It's only Iona (so far) so plenty of other ships to choose from 

Yes I know, but next June, 7 nights on Iona will be our first ever cruise and when we book another one we wont be going until 2021/2022.

 

 

Edited by SarahHben

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Good news from our viewpoint, and long, long overdue. The beginning of the end at last and simply a reflection of changing times and a changing customer base.

 

Maybe they’ll keep the smaller ships as they are, but the larger ships which replace them will inevitably go this way.

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That's a shame, but lots of passengers have been calling for a reduction in formal nights, so P&O can say they listen to feedback. 

We think 2 per 7 nights is about right, but understand on longer cruises this could be too much. 

Lots of things on Iona will be different, so hopefully this is not the start of things to come. 

Andy 

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1 minute ago, AndyMichelle said:

That's a shame, but lots of passengers have been calling for a reduction in formal nights, so P&O can say they listen to feedback. 

We think 2 per 7 nights is about right, but understand on longer cruises this could be too much. 

Lots of things on Iona will be different, so hopefully this is not the start of things to come. 

Andy 

I agree Andy, of course I have no experience of it whatsoever yet, but I would have liked 2. Will just have to find a way to make husband think a cruise in 2021 is his idea 😂 and then try to a)save up and b) stay the same dress size until then! 

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Just now, Harry Peterson said:

Good news from our viewpoint, and long, long overdue. The beginning of the end at last and simply a reflection of changing times and a changing customer base.

 

Maybe they’ll keep the smaller ships as they are, but the larger ships which replace them will inevitably go this way.

You really do contradict yourself Harry. 

You complain about the class of clientele dropping and passengers eating burgers, but then encourage another thing that would make cruising more like a budget holiday?? 

But, like the rest of us, you are entitled to your opinions, all 700 of them😊

Andy 

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I think 1 formal night a week is a waste of time not worth packing extra clothes. 

 

Either drop them completely or have at least 2 per week.

 

One person week shows they are trying to please everyone and will please no-one. 

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I don’t mind formal nights, at least it is by choice but the one thing for me is the restriction on using various bars and dining options  if you choose for some reason not to dress up on that occasion i.e you cannot use Sindu or Anderson’s or Crows nest for example. I think this is what needs to be looked at I fully understand no jeans etc but smart casual as on other nights would seem acceptable.

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Can I ask how many ports you have on your 7 night cruise, because formal nights are never on port days and never on the first and last nights.  So if you have 4 ports, that would only leave one night for a formal?

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5 minutes ago, jeanlyon said:

Can I ask how many ports you have on your 7 night cruise, because formal nights are never on port days and never on the first and last nights.  So if you have 4 ports, that would only leave one night for a formal?

We have 4 port days, but our daughter went to the same place, Norway, last year on Britannia and had 2 formal nights, the first on the first sea day and the second on the last port day.

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8 minutes ago, jeanlyon said:

Can I ask how many ports you have on your 7 night cruise, because formal nights are never on port days and never on the first and last nights.  So if you have 4 ports, that would only leave one night for a formal?

We are booked on our first cruise on Iona next July. There are 4 port days, and if formal night is not any of those, and not the first night the only opportunity would be the second night en route to Stavanger. 

Although as mentioned above, a second possibility would be the evening of the last port day, leaving Bergen mid afternoon with a full sea day the next day

Edited by newbie cruissy
Adding info

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4 minutes ago, jeanlyon said:

Can I ask how many ports you have on your 7 night cruise, because formal nights are never on port days and never on the first and last nights.  So if you have 4 ports, that would only leave one night for a formal?

It doesn't read as if it is just for one cruise Jean, stating that 7 night cruises will have one and 14 night cruises will have 2.

Seems to be for every cruise on Iona. 

Iona will be a very different cruising experience. 

Andy 

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Do you know, although I quite like wearing a nice dress, I don't think it would bother me if there were no formal nights any more.  Feel ambivalent about them these days. But then I often wear a dress or evening trousers on a casual night, so not sure really.

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17 minutes ago, awmartin said:

I don’t mind formal nights, at least it is by choice but the one thing for me is the restriction on using various bars and dining options  if you choose for some reason not to dress up on that occasion i.e you cannot use Sindu or Anderson’s or Crows nest for example. I think this is what needs to be looked at I fully understand no jeans etc but smart casual as on other nights would seem acceptable.

I agree, having worn DJ's and suits on many P&O cruises I now think formal dress boring. I do find slightly irritating the restrictions on venues . I can understand the main dining room and classy experience cover charge restaurants but why the Crows Nest etc?

 

I see the web site is still listing the Glass House as a formal venue. when I have cruised on Azura and Ventura they were not and the crew confirmed that, after all how can a relaxed informal casual bar be formal! or for that matter any venue that is access to informal areas of the ship.

 

it is entirely possible to cruise P&O without formal wear, you should of course follow the evening casual code, also, Oceana is the least formal with only the MDR, Café Jardin and the small Magnums bar being formal

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I can understand some of you seasoned cruisers being bored with formal nights after so many, but as a newbie to cruising I'd like the chance to do enough of them to be able to get bored by them. 😀

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6 minutes ago, SarahHben said:

I can understand some of you seasoned cruisers being bored with formal nights after so many, but as a newbie to cruising I'd like the chance to do enough of them to be able to get bored by them. 😀

Same here Sarah. 

We tend to do quite a few 7-14 night cruises and find 2 per week just right. 

I totally get the point that on longer cruises, so many are not needed. 

Andy 

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2 hours ago, SarahHben said:

I've been looking at the P&O FAQ page and have just seen this...

Iona

For Iona the 7 night cruises will feature 1 Black Tie night, whilst the 14 night cruises will feature 2 Black Tie nights.

 I'm so disappointed! The formal nights are quite a big part of what attracted me to P&O and now I have way too many long frocks to wear for just one evening.


Quite a lot of people dress up virtually every night so you could if you want to! Although whether they will on Iona remains to be seen.

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We’ve all got our own views and preferences on this, haven’t we?

Personally I’d go with 2 for 12 night, 3 for 13, 14 or 15 night and after that something like one per week, maximum

You’ll notice I haven’t mentioned 7 night 🙄

One would do me fine but I quite understand people thinking it’s not worth the hassle of packing suit, shirt, shoes for just one wearing ...

Glad it’s not my problem to resolve.

Iona will have a whole variety of restaurants of course.  Maybe the solution for those who want to do the “classic cruise experience” is to enjoy the MDR for the ship-wide formal, then book for either the cabaret evening or the equivalent of Epicurean for another ‘high end’ evening experience, where their best bib and tucker will be fine.
 

Sarah - lots of ladies wear cocktail dresses/bling any and every night.  Go ahead.  Fill your boots (or your strappy silver sandals)

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A reduction in formal nights is a real shame. Combined with the freedom dining only option, I don't think Iona will be my cup of tea.

 

I guess it doesn't matter what I think though. They'll just forge ahead with this new direction they're taking the company. 😞

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Must say we've just done Freedom Dining for the first time and I won't be going back to Club.  It was so much better.  We met some great people, some not so great, but didn't have to eat with them again.  Also, the flexibility of being able to go to the 9.30 show in Carmens (Aurora) was great when we didn't want the theatre.

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In cruising as in life itself, things change. If we had been sailing a century ago and had been fortunate enough to afford first class, white tie and tails would heve been worn at dinner. P&O tend not to be in the vanguard of change and to follow the pack at a safe distance. But change they do, eventually - often by trialling change on one or two ships and rolling it out across the fleet if it is in general well recieved. Most cruise lines which still have formal nights now restrict them to one a week and many - like Regent, Oceania, Azamara, Star Clippers, NCL, Celebrity... - no longer have them, if they ever had. Some of the latter lines are much more expensive than P&O, this is not a "class" thing but more one of lifestyle. I expect that P&O will extend this to the rest of the fleet pretty quickly and may even do so at the same time Iona comes into service.

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Sarah. I agree with Eddie 11. Pack a few posh outfits and then either wear them to MDR or book a select venue for 1 evening and it will be even more enjoyable with you in your finery.  Wear your long dresses and enjoy . My friend  only has long dresses or trousers with glam tops. 

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31 minutes ago, dgs1956 said:

You certainly use up a lot of energy in slagging off P&O and their passengers and its strange that you still choose to cruise with them. 

Not really - just certain aspects.  And I've always stressed the major positives, such as food and staff.  There's also the price thing, and balancing the drawbacks of P&O against the cost of Cunard et al - we all have to make choices, don't we?

 

I'm also a firm believer in not sitting back and letting things just happen, particularly as a Carnival shareholder. Influencing change from within is a lot more effective than trying to do it from without.

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51 minutes ago, Harry Peterson said:

Not at all.  I suppose it depends which part of the 'public' you're talking about, doesn't it?  The 'Mail' and 'Express' part, or the 'Guardian' and 'Times' part? 🤔

Well according to my impressions of the number of newspapers they sold on return to Southampton it is very much Mail and Express with the Telegraph outnumbering the Times, the rest much less so. This could just have been these 2 cruises though!

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