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Drinal01

Early vs Late Dining times vs. Show Times

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Hi All:

 

If I am reading things right if I get the late dinning time then that will interfere with my ability to go to shows?  Late is 8:15.   

 

After they told me early was full and they could wait list me I got FTTF.   Can I call back and get priority for early dining?  

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They usually have two show per night. An earlier show for passengers with late dining and a later show for passengers with early dining. FTTF gives you priority for a requested dining time, but not a guarantee. 

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The production showtimes are set so that you can make your dinner & show.  We usually get your time dining so we can go whenever we want.  Most nights we eat early with plenty of time to get to the first show.  Other nights we may not want to go to the dining room, so no one is waiting for us to show up.  Be sure to let your waiter know if you are trying to make it to a show.   

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42 minutes ago, Drinal01 said:

Hi All:

 

If I am reading things right if I get the late dinning time then that will interfere with my ability to go to shows?  Late is 8:15.   

 

After they told me early was full and they could wait list me I got FTTF.   Can I call back and get priority for early dining?  

Get my time dining (Anytime dining) Never a problem.

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For the most part, you won't miss any of the BIG things with either. However, I can definitely say I've missed more activities overall with the late dining. From about 6-7, there isn't a ton going on, so I like to eat then.

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I was going to go for the anytime dinning but was warned against it by the travel agent.  He said you normally get much better service with same staff night after night...

 

So reading through this ... Earlier is slightly better for not missing things but I will be fine either way?  Anyone have good/bad experience with Any time dinning?

 

Any bad points to early dinning?  Read that later is "more relaxed".

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3 minutes ago, Drinal01 said:

I was going to go for the anytime dinning but was warned against it by the travel agent.  He said you normally get much better service with same staff night after night...

 

So reading through this ... Earlier is slightly better for not missing things but I will be fine either way?  Anyone have good/bad experience with Any time dinning?

 

Any bad points to early dinning?  Read that later is "more relaxed".

 

We've done both and much prefer Any Time.  If you find a waitstaff you like you can request them each night. We can also plan out evening around whatever activities we want to do and get maximum out of our port and pool time.  

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We always do late, and it definitely causes us to miss at least one show/activity that we want to do (of course you can always skip dinner service). Early dining is the much safer route, but we are never hungry that early (rarely am I even hungry for late dining). I hated anytime dining the one night we had it for (we had been waitlisted for Late and didn't get it despite FTTF, but they were able to switch us to late dining for the rest of the cruise after we voiced our displeasure).  I may try anytime again using @ozzie0075 recommendation of requesting same waitstaff. Only downside would be the waiting for a table, which I didn't enjoy, but I wasn't really prepared for it either having never waited before.

1 hour ago, Drinal01 said:

I was going to go for the anytime dinning but was warned against it by the travel agent.  He said you normally get much better service with same staff night after night...

 

So reading through this ... Earlier is slightly better for not missing things but I will be fine either way?  Anyone have good/bad experience with Any time dinning?

 

Any bad points to early dinning?  Read that later is "more relaxed".

 

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1 hour ago, Drinal01 said:

I was going to go for the anytime dinning but was warned against it by the travel agent.  He said you normally get much better service with same staff night after night...

 

So reading through this ... Earlier is slightly better for not missing things but I will be fine either way?  Anyone have good/bad experience with Any time dinning?

 

Any bad points to early dinning?  Read that later is "more relaxed".


I don’t think there is one answer that fits  everyone. Simply choose what works best for you.  My wife and I have done all three times. By far we prefer early dining, which is the only time we have eaten in the last several years.
 

We like having the same wait staff every night and sitting with the same people every night, whether we are cruising with friends or family,  or sitting with people we met at the table. We have made a lot of friends in the MDR who we still stay in contact with and have cruised with again. 

 

Another benefit of having a fixed dining time, early of late, is after the first night they will usually have whatever you are drinking (wine, soda, water, etc.) on the table when you first sit down. For example, we always drink Pellagrino at dinner and my wife usually drinks some kind of red wine. From the second night on, there is always a couple of bottles of Pellegrino and a glass of wine on the table when we are seated. 

Edited by PhillyFan33579

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I did read if you miss your scheduled MDR time you can go to Any Time and they will always let you do that.  True?

 

Any experience?

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2 hours ago, Drinal01 said:

I was going to go for the anytime dinning but was warned against it by the travel agent.  He said you normally get much better service with same staff night after night...

 

Anyone have good/bad experience with Any time dinning?

 

As was already said, with YTD, if you find a wait team you like, just request to have them again. And it doesn't have to be the one you have the first night, you can wait and experience others if you want. Just keep in mind that requesting the same one each night might cause a bit of a wait if their section is full when you get there. On our 5-day aboard the Valor a couple months ago, we went to the MDR three nights and happened to get the same waiter every time without requesting him. Actually, he was pretty bad. Instead of requesting the same waiter, we probably should've requested a different one. LOL

 

We always do Your Time Dining because we never know when we'll be hungry for dinner. Sometimes we might have a late lunch or maybe we had an afternoon snack. We're always hungry at different times. We also like the ability to go eat whenever we want to be able to do different activities we like that happen at different times.

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If you want early, call top make sure you are on the priority wait list with you're FTTF.

 

We always do early.  We find we are always hungry for dinner at 6, so we might as well have our own table and servers with no wait. 

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2 hours ago, Drinal01 said:

I did read if you miss your scheduled MDR time you can go to Any Time and they will always let you do that.  True?

 

Any experience?

 

Absolutely false.  You can’t just show up where you are not assigned.

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4 hours ago, Drinal01 said:

I was going to go for the anytime dinning but was warned against it by the travel agent.  He said you normally get much better service with same staff night after night..

 

 

Your travel is wrong and generalizing. We had the same staff with YTD for 2 weeks. Even the hostess, by the third day said the same server, yep. YTD is fantastic, want to see a late show eat early, get back from an excursion late and possibly ate lunch ashore late, eat dinner late. It's so flexible and you can always get the same server. On on trip the first night, we did not care for our server, sat in another station the next night and loved the staff.

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4 hours ago, Drinal01 said:

I did read if you miss your scheduled MDR time you can go to Any Time and they will always let you do that.  True?

 

Any experience?


Not true, but you can go to the Lido buffet if you miss your dining time. I would not suggest doing this, but I have seen people show up as late as 7 PM to the MDR for early dining and still be seated/served. 

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I personally much prefer anytime dining. I’ve done late once, but that’s not for me. I’m not very good at watching time and I don’t care for the buffet, so I like to go whenever I’m hungry. I haven’t had to wait more than 10 mins for a table before. I much prefer a table for two, which I can request whenever I show up. Even when I don’t request it, it’s usually what we get. 

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If you have kids late dining does not work as the kid/teen club activities start during late dinner. Because of that we usually chose early(don’t care for YYD).  However on our most recent Journey Cruise on the Miracle they moved all of the dining times up from what they were when we made our selections. We found out after boarding that our assigned time was 5:30. We did not try to request a change but it was definitely too early for us. I believe late was at 7:45. 

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16 hours ago, PhillyFan33579 said:

They usually have two show per night. An earlier show for passengers with late dining and a later show for passengers with early dining. FTTF gives you priority for a requested dining time, but not a guarantee. 

 

Unless I'm remembering this from a different cruise line, didn't they used to have the show for people eating late after late dinner? Some years ago they started having the show for late diners before dinner.

 

I don't know why they changed this. I liked the show after dinner much better.

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18 hours ago, Drinal01 said:

Any bad points to early dinning?  Read that later is "more relaxed".

 

When I did late dining, I would definitely agree it is more relaxed. There is a lot less people at that time. That is just too late for me.

 

The only bad points I can think of early dining is not wanting to be on a schedule, not hungry, or feeling rushed. Not that I've really ever felt any of those things. That is what you hear from many of the proponents of YTD. I eat lunch around noon, so I'm usually hungry. There is nothing else I need to be doing from 5-6 anyways. I love knowing my table is always ready and the rest of the night is mine

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2 hours ago, Earthworm Jim said:

Unless I'm remembering this from a different cruise line, didn't they used to have the show for people eating late after late dinner? Some years ago they started having the show for late diners before dinner.

 

I don't know why they changed this. I liked the show after dinner much better.

 

On our last two, the Playlist shows were held at 8:15 and 10:15, with their respective pre-shows starting at the top of the hour.

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We prefer YTD.  I like being able to go eat when I am hungry.  If I don't care for my waitstaff, I simply request a different one the next time I go to the dining room.  If I do like them, I request to be seated in their section on subsequent nights.  The longest wait for a table we ever had was on elegant night with a party of 6.  I don't remember exactly, but seems it was 20-30 minutes.  We grabbed a drink at the Lobby bar, sat on the nearby sofas & chairs & chatted.  Even this past cruise with 9 people, we never had to wait more than 15 minutes & that was on elegant night.  

 

And, to echo what others have said, if you have early or late dining (set time) and miss your time, you can not just do YTD.  I think there are some lines that do that, but Carnival is not one of them.

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I think it depends on the ship.  If the show times are 7:30/9:30, then late dining gets the early show.  If the show times are 8:15/10:15 then late dining gets the late show.  

 

We really enjoy late dining.  It doesn't take us that long to get ready, so we could enjoy the fairly empty ship for awhile, go get ready, go to a show, and then dinner.  And on port days, we had enough time to stay in port until mid afternoon, reboard and eat, and have some time to chill by the pool before getting ready for dinner. 

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Showtimes totally depend on the Ship.  We just got off the Conquest and shows were about 15-30 minutes later than other ships we have been on the past few years.  

 

We always do YourTimeDining...  we eat as soon as they open, and we can get done around 7-7:15pm and hit first show that way.  Going to dining room that early we stand in line for 5-10 minutes then get a table as soon as doors open (Conquest does not have the HUB app table request option yet like the Vista).  

 

And regarding the other dining room, set EArly or Late dining... if you show up late for your appointed time, they send you up to Lido buffet, not to YTD.  We saw this happen last week to a couple on 2nd Elegant night..they were not happy and very rude to Lido staff.  (we always skip the 2nd elegant night and just do Lido buffet for dinner, or something else, just can't dress up 2 nights on vacation, yuck).  

 

 

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So i usually chose late dining but after the last cruise i think I am switching to anytime or early for our cruise in September. 

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20 hours ago, Drinal01 said:

I was going to go for the anytime dinning but was warned against it by the travel agent.  He said you normally get much better service with same staff night after night...

 

So reading through this ... Earlier is slightly better for not missing things but I will be fine either way?  Anyone have good/bad experience with Any time dinning?

 

Any bad points to early dinning?  Read that later is "more relaxed".

We always do YTD. It allows us to eat whenever we want and it's a guarantee that we'll see the early shows. We've never had a bad experience with YTD and I highly recommend it. You can always request the same team if you really enjoy them, but we always get a great waitstaff without requesting a specific team. 

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