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Traditional Vs Anytime


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We are cruising on the Golden in July. This is our first cruise with Princess and we are a party of 2. Which would you recommend, Traditional or Anytime? Thank You


If you plan to dine at the same time each and every night of the cruise in the diningroom, then traditional would be your choice, IMHO. Plus, you will be seated with the same passengers each and every night in traditional.


But if you think you might arrive back to ship late for your dining time, or perfer to dine earlier or later in the diningroom on some nights then at your scheduled time, then anytime dining would be your best choice.


Traditional has a certain time you go to the diningroom (not flexible), anytime means you can arrive at anytime and have the same menu on the Golden as if you went to traditional.


It all depends on what you are most comforable with.

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If you are booking a July cruise this late, I would be immensely surprised if traditional dining is even available. My experience has been that in order to get confirmed traditional dining, one must book at least a year out.

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I would prefer anytime dining as you are not in the same mood everyday as to when you want to eat and may be tired from sun and tours.On vacation i am not liking to be regimented as to when i feel like my meals.

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Mkolbicka - We have been on 16 cruises and we prefer traditional (late seating) - this way you do not have to rush if you get back to the ship late. Also, the waiter and their ass't know your likes and dislikes. We also make sure we take care of the Waiter and Ass't over and above recommended tipping if it is warranted. We are not big fans of automatic tipping either; certainly no incentive to do better if everyone receives the same amount.

We have been on two cruises with anytime seating and IOHO we were not impressed by the service or the process itself. My question is - why does traditional dining fill up first (early or late)? Some of the reasons are noted above..


Good luck and have a great cruise.


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Our recent cruise on the Coral was the first in which my wife and I travelled without other family members or friends. We ate in the "Anytime" Dining room often and always agreed to sit at a large table with other people.

It was a great success. We met new people almost every evening and this contributed in no small measure to the success of the cruise.

I would highly recommend the Anytime Dining option.

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We usually do early traditional to be free in the evening for shows. The nights we can't make it by 6:15 we go to the buffet for a bite. I liked Crown Grill a lot too.

We booked a November cruise last March and were waitlisted (approx #150 on the list--4 of us) but cleared and got early traditional a few weeks before the cruise.


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We tired anytime dining for the first time and overall loved it. As with most things there were drawbacks. For the first time I enjoyed eating on a cruise. I know that sounds odd:p We have always had early traditional so so i would save my appetite for that meal. With anytime dining I could enjoy afternoon tea between 3:30-4:30 without giving dinner a second thought. We had problems sharing a table, because we were ALWAYS offered table for 2. I love DH but eyeballing him every night got old. I like sharing a meal with others since I eyeball DH every evening for dinner. I know the table for two is a dream for some. We were still able to share great conversations with other sitting close to us. For the joy of eating when I want and enjoying afternoon tea, I will try anytime again. I am not sure how this will work when traveling with kids.

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We just went on the Coral Princess and did anytime dining. We really like the NCL dining program where there are several dining rooms open with no reservations and found on the Coral there really was only one dining room scheduled for traditional and one for anytime. We ate there the first nite and the first formal nite. The next time we tried there was a 45-60 min wait so we went to the buffet. It's nice to sit and be waited on but when we want to eat, we really don't want to wait an hour. On NCL there are enough options you can just go to another dining room, not on Princess. All in all we would do anytime again if we sail Princess. :)

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I would rather have traditional. I like the fact that the waitstaff gets to know me (sometimes I ask just once for lemon slices for my salad as I don't like salad dressing...and then every night, the waiter brings me a bowl of slices without my asking). I like the fact that I don't have to worry about planning my dinner, when and where. I can do that at home. Traditional dining is what makes cruising special, imo. And if somehow we miss our seating (which hasn't happened yet on port days), we gladly would go to the buffet. And if we think we can't wait to eat at 8:15, we have a mid-afternoon nosh and that holds us over.

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