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Seating Capacity in Restaurants-Covid19 question


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Settle an argument between me and my boyfriend please!  I love cruising and my boyfriend hates them (though he's never been on one).  He says that it will be impossible to feed everyone in the future on cruises because they have too many people to feed and the capacity in each restaurant would be limited due to new social distancing guidelines. I tried to explain that there are many restaurants on a ship but I can't find the maximum capacity in individual restaurants, just the max capacity of the ship.  I'm sure cruise lines will institute new rules but he is convinced that people will be waiting for hours just trying to get something to eat.  I just don't see that happening!  Thanks!

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45 minutes ago, Solo Cruiser Memphis said:

Settle an argument between me and my boyfriend please!  I love cruising and my boyfriend hates them (though he's never been on one).  He says that it will be impossible to feed everyone in the future on cruises because they have too many people to feed and the capacity in each restaurant would be limited due to new social distancing guidelines. I tried to explain that there are many restaurants on a ship but I can't find the maximum capacity in individual restaurants, just the max capacity of the ship.  I'm sure cruise lines will institute new rules but he is convinced that people will be waiting for hours just trying to get something to eat.  I just don't see that happening!  Thanks!

yes they will feed everyone lol  they may count ppl coming in and out of the buffet (which they do anyway) and hold some from coming in till others leave . 

 

 

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11 minutes ago, PortFees45 said:

Won't be an issue because nobody is sailing on a cruise ship in 2020. I guess some people spend longer in the "denial" stage of the grief process than others. 

Totally agree but I do think this will affect the cruising industry and so many others (Disney, amusement parks, concerts, etc) for a few years.  We'll have to see how this plays out.  Have a great night

 

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Most likely the capacity of cruise ships will be held at about 40  or 50 percent once cruising resumes. They will do this more to manage risk and PR. The main thing the cruise lines want to do is get people on and off without a virus outbreak. Look for things like assigned seating in the MDR and maybe assigned times at the buffet with tables either spaced or closed to spread everyone out.

I expect only 3-4 days cruises to start off with and only passengers from the local regions, Caribbean for North America, Med for Europeans, and West pacific for Asia. After a couple of months open up 5-7 days cruises. Long duration cruises are done until next year. They have the highest risk with a virus outbreak.

We shall see.

So, tell him we will only go on a cruise thats capacity controlled when cruising resumes or wait until a few months have passed and see what is happening with cruising.

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With some states allowing outside dinning at restaurants. the breakaway and breakaway plus class ships should more capacity since you can dine outside on the waterfront

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11 hours ago, Solo Cruiser Memphis said:

Settle an argument between me and my boyfriend please!  I love cruising and my boyfriend hates them (though he's never been on one).  He says that it will be impossible to feed everyone in the future on cruises because they have too many people to feed and the capacity in each restaurant would be limited due to new social distancing guidelines. I tried to explain that there are many restaurants on a ship but I can't find the maximum capacity in individual restaurants, just the max capacity of the ship.  I'm sure cruise lines will institute new rules but he is convinced that people will be waiting for hours just trying to get something to eat.  I just don't see that happening!  Thanks!

 

They will have no problems to feed everybody, cause as long as there will be restrictions(social distancing,etc.) they will not operate the ships with full capacity. It is impossible to follow all rules on a ship with full capacity.

So they will operate the ships with 30-40% of the max. capacity. And then it will work without problems even if the seating capacity is reduced.

 

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25 minutes ago, Iluvmykindle said:

I wonder if NCL will have to implement set dining times for their passengers.

 

That would make things worst. I have cruised on ships with traditional dining. What you have is a crowd of passangers all arriving just before the dining room opens. Lots of folks stacked up next to each other waiting to be seated.

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Not quite sure I understand the question. Cruise lines are excellent at maximizing space so that all guests can be served but without having excess space going unused. If they were to operate with a full ship and wanted to cut seating capacity in half for social distancing; I think your BF is completely correct. It would force people to space out more evenly in the times dining is open, more people would have to eat at buffet, and possibly room service. If they want to try to operate with social distancing practices they will have to operate with much lower capacity than normal.

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So far, NCL at the corporate level and at ship level has not shown they care about social distancing.  If they decide to allow practice social distancing, there are many "creative" things they can do:

1.  All dining venues offer take out, order from your smartphone/tv/stateroom phone, show up, get a to go bag; most will eat in their stateroom, anyone is welcome to eat anywhere

2.  Extend dining hours for all dining venues, open 30-60mins earlier and/or close later

3.  Better buffet, staff served, have a more attractive food selection and more live cooking stations

4.  Buffet has a MDR menu station, mirrors the MDR menu, no MDR-FOMO

5.  Better room service options for all passengers, expand the selection and quality, allow room service in the MDR menu, allow specialty dining delivery with a slight discount

6.  Offer a MDR forfeit discount, for example, a $100 OBC on a 7 day cruse, perhaps allow one or two visits yet all other visits will induce a charge

7.  Casino dining while playing, as an AP, I've been in casinos all over the world; most offer dining while playing, personally not my jam yet many seem to demand it

8.  Have complimentary roaming heated carts that serve pizza by the slice, a typical NCL slice of pizza costs them less than a quarter, fill the passengers up, they won't be as hungry and will order less in the MDR

9.  All MDR desserts are to go, speeds up service

  

On 5/3/2020 at 12:01 PM, Paul Bogle said:

Find a better boyfriend.

 

She'll find one if she goes on a cruise without him!

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Those ships are being supplied according to a maximum possible capacity. It doesnt matter whether there 100 people or 5.000 people on board. Moreover, all this new distance policies are a temporary thing. Limiting the number of passengers on board will mean less turnover.    

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15 minutes ago, Roger88 said:

all this new distance policies are a temporary thing.

 

Many do not think this is the case, even if this current pandemic doesn't mutate and is eradicated, there will be another one.  

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On 5/1/2020 at 9:33 PM, Solo Cruiser Memphis said:

Totally agree but I do think this will affect the cruising industry and so many others (Disney, amusement parks, concerts, etc) for a few years.  We'll have to see how this plays out.  Have a great night

 

I do indeed believe it will affect the cruising industry.  All speculation, but I can see the first cruises coming out of port sailing at 50%-60% capacity.  That means, restaurants will be able to accommodate distancing guidelines (as they're defined today).  

 

Buffets?  Doubt you'll be able to serve yourself.  I'm guessing they'll have crew serve from the choices in the buffet.

 

Expect mandatory hand washing going into, and coming out of any restaurant.

 

 

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Social distancing policies can't be long term.   We'd never have stadiums, Broadway, subways, movie theaters, cubicle work.    Boyfriend's life would look a lot different, never mind cruising if social distancing guidelines were permanent.   

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1 hour ago, Vyhanek said:

Social distancing policies can't be long term.   We'd never have stadiums, Broadway, subways, movie theaters, cubicle work.    Boyfriend's life would look a lot different, never mind cruising if social distancing guidelines were permanent.   

 

I for one hope this isn't permanent as life would change as we know it, yet this is a wake up call.  What is needed is the capability to social distance.  Some cruising vloggers are convinced that future ships won't have inside or oceanview cabins.

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If they are going to have social distancing of at least 6 feet as is suggested, most ships would need to remove 50 to 60+% of the tables in the main dining rooms and buffets. If they sail at 30-50% capacity, that wouldn’t be a huge issue. If they were to try to go to a higher capacity and still maintain social distancing, then they would probably have to go to either 3 seatings for dinner in the main dining room ( 5:00, 7:00 & 9:00 for example) and / or require reservations for Anytime type dining.

 

Another option would be to charge a fee for the main dining rooms, which would reduce the number of passengers using it. That would then cause an issue with overcrowding at the buffet if it was the only free option. At that point they would possibly need to start taking reservations or have set dining times assigned at the buffet.

 

I’m sure all of these options and many more are being discussed by each of the cruise lines and they will figure it out eventually. The main issue is the cruise lines cannot afford to sail at greatly reduced capacities for an extended period and survive.

 

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When cruising returns there will not be any "social distancing" practiced like what is happening in most places now. This is the primary reason why cruising will be one of the last businesses to reopen.

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This is a good question when cruising resumes.  I was on one of the last cruises and the specialty restaurants were sold out with almost everyone having the dining package. At Cagneys they put overflow tables outside the restaurant and even those were sold out.  Now when cruising resumes and social distancing is happening that means that half the people may not get their specialty dining.  There wont be the profit to keep specialty restaurants half full.

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If a ship were at 100% room occupancy, and the dining venues are designed to feed everyone over 2 hours, it stands to reason it would take twice as long to get a meal done if you limited dining occupancy to 50%.

 

We'll have a similar problem with entertainment areas and deck space around the pools.

 

It is possible ships will have to sail at less than 100% room occupancy to handle food service, and also to handle entertainment venues and pool deck space.

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If ships are to sail profitably at significantly less than 100% capacity, fares will need to be significantly higher. 

With fewer people considering cruising, i'm not sure how this circle gets squared.

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If reducing capacity is the goal, you would do so by starting with the cheapest rooms, block all inside cabins from booking.  If you need to further reduce capacity, work on the next cheapest room, OceanViews.  I would imagine on board spending is USUALLY higher for a family of four staying in a two bedroom suite compared to the family of four all sleeping in an inside cabin.

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They could dump all of the up charge dining rooms, and make them all main dining rooms with fixed reservation times. That way there would be room for social distancing. The lines would be lessened since there would not be one or two dining rooms that everyone would be lined up for. They could eliminate some of the congregating by giving everyone buzzers to alert them when their table was ready. 

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