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Old School vs New School Cruising


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Hi all,


I'm just happily anticipating (read: obsessing about) our next cruise on the NCL Bliss in the Haven (1st time in the full Haven with restaurant). I've often felt like there are some things I miss about the old school cruising (since 1997) and some things I like about the new way of cruising.  I've been on 34 cruises, but only on the mainstream lines: Royal Caribbean, Princess, NCL, Carnival, Celebrity.  My pros/cons are:


Pros for the new school:

Gratuities are precalculated and easily paid - I used to hate spending time on my cruise getting cash, making decisions, putting $ in envelopes, etc.

Beverage packages abound - I'm not much of a drinker until I get on a cruise ship but I love the feeling of an all you want, inclusive experience.  Even sodas were not usually part of a package.

Food options: though they cost extra sometimes, it is nice to have a huge variety to choose from (yes, I'm a pig, but I enjoy sampling lots of bites, not necessarily eating a "Henry VIII" type cut of steak).

Alternative dining for dinner used to be pretty barren. Now they approximate the main dining room meals, which was good for those who simply didn't want to spend 2 hours eating in the MDR.



Cons for the new school:

The ladies used to wear much more sequined outfits and the gentlemen wore tuxes - now, not so much.

There were few specialty dining options, and now there are plenty but, the MDR meals used to be very special - Now it seems cruiselines just use the MDR meals as a reason to go to the specialty restaurants.

Though today, most of us wouldn't necessarily dine with 6 strangers, I kind of miss discussing the shows (there was usually only 1 main show back then) with people at the dinner table.


What things do you like about the new school vs old school cruising, or vice-versa?


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