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Purchasing dining package


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Hi...

We are booked on a Caribbean cruise for next Jan.

I was looking at the dining package (a four night one). I'm a bit hesitant to pay over more money at the moment but the planner says that there are only 6, 6.30 or 8pm sittings available.

Do these packages sell out for certain times. If I book an 8pm one, how do they know what restaurant I want etc

Usually just book on board as we've usually only been in Aqua and never really felt the need.

TIA

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If you are buying a multi night package you can't make reservations until you are on the ship.   The choice of the time, and in the past a day 1 or 2, was just  a work around to the computer system that required a day & time for a dinner reservation.

 

With the package you need to book your restaurant  choices and times as soon as you can after boarding and be flexible with your plans as not all restaurants and times  will be available.

We tend to eat late so we can usually get a 8 or 8:30 time but 7  & 7:30 can be difficult.

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In the past, we would arrive at the port early and board with the Concierge class group.  If we boarded before the 11:30 Concierge luncheon, we would head up to one of the specialty restaurants to book our reservations for the number of nights of the package we purchased.  Then, we headed down to the MDR for the Concierge embarkation luncheon knowing we had all of our specialty dining nights planned!  

 

How this will work in the future with proposed enforced boarding times...we will wait and see....

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I find the general rule to be the shorter the cruise, the more difficult it is to make reservations. The specialties might fill very quickly on a 4 day cruise. On cruises more than 10 days I would not pay extra for a package since in most cases Celebrity offers up to 50% off to encourage reservations. I would pre purchase a dinning package if I would be on a 4 day cruise if I really wanted to sample the specialty venues.

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Thank you. 
We are on a 12 night cruise. I may just book the first night then and then leave the package in case they do any offers on board?

Thanks for the advice. 

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4 minutes ago, rachiem said:

Thank you. 
We are on a 12 night cruise. I may just book the first night then and then leave the package in case they do any offers on board?

Thanks for the advice. 

Do not book ahead.  The first night they are almost 100% to offer a discount as people are not ready to specialty dine on a longer cruise on night #1.  Just see the restaurant people as you are boarding and be sure to ask for a deal.

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2 minutes ago, Arizona Wildcat said:

Do not book ahead.  The first night they are almost 100% to offer a discount as people are not ready to specialty dine on a longer cruise on night #1.  Just see the restaurant people as you are boarding and be sure to ask for a deal.

Thank you. It is offering 30% off for the first night on the planner but with the rubbish exchange rate, it might be worth waiting anyway. 

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22 minutes ago, rachiem said:

Thank you. It is offering 30% off for the first night on the planner but with the rubbish exchange rate, it might be worth waiting anyway. 

I always book ahead, depending on the cabin category I am in.  Running around, standing on line etc not my idea of the way to start my vacation.  I like having most sorted prior to being on board so I can EXHALE!

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Posted (edited)

Once they started offering the 1st night at 30% off in the Cruise Planner they frequently fill the restaurants.   The plus is that you can book your time when you purchase. Rather than waiting until you board.   If they have a few spots open we have not seen them budge off of the 30% and the times available were 9:30.  
 

 

Edited by jelayne
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On our last cruise, there was a change to the "nicer steak" on the first night.  The nicer steaks were on the second night.  I believe it was filet mignon in Blu and prime rib in the MDR.  Those have been usually served  on the first night.  

 

We usually go to Murano on the first night for the chateaubriand for 2.  We take advantage of the first night discount and also to avoid the first night chaos in the dining venues.

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