Numerous dining options are available depending on the time of year that you
choose to take your cruise. Today’s ships are floating resorts that carry so
many passengers, it is necessary for most to have multiple restaurant options.
Cruises feature all-you-can-eat buffets with delicious choices prepared on
board by the ship’s executive chefs and their galley staffs. With the
traditional dining experience, a dark blue or a black suit with a tie or bow
tie is absolutely fine. Cruise fares include all meals.
Everything you’ve heard about ship dining is true. On most seven (7) day
cruises, there will be two (2) formal nights. The main dining rooms are
generally reserved for the traditional cruise guest. If traditional ship
dining is offered on your cruise, then you must select early (6 or 6:30) or
late (8 or 8:30) dining at the time of booking.
“If you are absolutely, fiercely
against dressing up, then most cruise lines have alternative dining areas.
Smoking is not permitted at any time in dining areas. Cruises feature
all-you-can-eat buffets with delicious choices prepared on board by the
ship’s executive chefs and their galley staffs.
The difference lies in whether you prefer the traditional ship dining service
of having the same team serve you for every meal, usually leading to
friendlier, more interactive service as they learn to anticipate your dining
Most cruise ship dining room menus have alternative selections for passengers
requiring heart-healthy, fat-free, vegetarian and other special meals.
Depending on your tastes or mood for the night, you can eat anywhere you want,
including room service, which is available on most cruise lines 24 hours a day.
There are also alternative restaurants available that require an additional
fee but the service and food are generally 4 to 5 stars and worth it if you
want to splurge. Breakfast and lunch are buffets and dinner is served at the
tables. The sooner you book your cruise, the better your chances of getting
your dining preference.
Ships are adding more restaurants, caviar bars, ice-cream shops etc. They
offer open seating for breakfast and lunch and assigned seating for dinner in
the main dining room. By emphasizing healthful choices and decreasing the
number of buffets, cruise lines have slowly redefined on-board cuisine.
More traditional ships have two seatings in their formal restaurants, which
differ only by time: typically 6:00 p. Most lines can accommodate salt-free,
low-carbohydrate, Kosher, or other diet preferences.
Many lines are now offering both alternative dining and choice restaurant
options. And a large number of ships offer romantic in-cabin dinners. Some
newer lines now have alternative restaurant facilities where you can dress
almost any way you want to. Most offer 24-hour complimentary room service so
you can choose to have a relaxing breakfast in your stateroom.
When you book your cruise, you will be given a choice between a small, medium
or large table at dinner. Lifelong friendships have been made between total
strangers who shared a table during their vacation, so the dining experience
is a great way to meet new people from all over the world.
Many ships offer tables for two. Which ever seating you choose, remember
that one of the best ways to make new friends is to ask for a large table.
Dinner is served at the same time at the same table with the same wait staff
and with the same guests each night.
Ships offer cruise dining options for most anyone. Whether you want to work
on your cooking skills, or just have the experts do it for you, ship dining
will be sure to please. Food has always been an integral part of the entire
cruise ship experience; some have even dubbed ships “floating smorgasbords”
because of the sheer amount of food consumed on board.
One of the best things about smaller ships is that the meals do not have to
be “mass produced” for thousands of ship passengers, and the chefs can
exhibit their personalities and their favorite dishes on a small scale.
Cruise lines offer a wide selection of gourmet choices and you will be eating
like royalty for every meal you have during your cruise vacation.