Jump to content
Royal Caribbean Blog

WAPO: The Demise of Formal Nights on Cruises: How dress codes are tearing passengers apart


Recommended Posts

  • Replies 77
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

I understand that some people like to dress up.  The question is why does that require everyone to follow their dress standard? Why do some people who choose to dress more formal get offended whe

Furthermore you can never accommodate everyone.   There is no appeasing everyone all the time.   The minority who is isn’t being appeased in the current approach are those that get offended when

Posted Images

Personally we don't get too dressy for formal night anymore (she'll wear a dress, I'll have shirt/tie dress pants - no suit); We also have not been to the main dining room on formal night in years. It's a few reason, one is to respect passengers who dress to the nines, the other is we aren't into the dining room experience. We've booked specialty restaurants or just gone to the windjammer. With two Oasis class sailings in 2020 the odds of seeing the inside of the dining room are very low.

With that, I do notice some people are very vocal (on the internet) about those not following the rules. I get why (kinda) but it's just energy not needing to be spent. Enjoy the company you're around, it's vacation after all.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I skipped both formal nights on Anthem last month. I was cruising solo for the first time and didn’t think it was necessary for me to pack dress clothes given that I was the only one who had to please me. 😂 I did kind of regret not doing one of the formal nights but it didn’t make or break my vacation. And it was definitely nice to not have to fight for a seat in the Windjammer on those nights! Plus people of all ages chose the Windjammer right along with me, so I think people of any demographic might prefer to skip the whole formal charade. 

Honestly I pay little attention to what others are wearing or not wearing unless it is really memorable. When I reviewed my cruise on the Cruise Critic forums, someone asked me if I had seen people wear shorts in the MDR because they wanted to know if shorts were OK. I honestly didn’t even remember or care what people had on. It’s really not my business.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Dramatic headlines sell papers.....or in this case, get clicks.

Other than our middle son's wedding, the only time I've worn a tie in over 25 years is formal nights on our cruises.  It's kinda fun.

That being said, in January I'm doing a b2b with my wife doing just the first one.  We're dressing up for the two formal nights together on the first one, but when I'm solo on the second, I'll just hit the Windjammer.  Most of the fun for me is being dressed up with my wife.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Our first cruise we were concerned about dressing up on formal nights.

By the 4th cruise is was ... whatever ... business casual with a tropical twist usually. I have a few dress "cruise shirts" that are not too loud with an island/tropical print. That and a pair of cargo pant slacks and loafers.

I still see a few people that go all out. They are usually getting their photo taken and are part of some party or family celebrating something.

I occasionally see someone in cutoff jeans come dragging in. Personally, I think that is a bit too casual for the dining room. If you can't dress any better than that, go to the Windjammer or Johnny Rockets.

Have I ever seen seen anyone "torn apart" over their attire? Not once.

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, twangster said:

Click bait title.

Tearing passengers apart?  Please.  

People have opinions and preferences.  That's hardly being torn apart.

This is some really awful click bait. I mean, for a publication with the prestige of the Washington Post, this is extra awful.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, ehw51 said:

Just got off the Anthem a week ago on Sun, we saw people wearing shorts and t shirts and base ball hats in the MDH, They should be a able to tell people like that they need to put pants and a shirt on. I am not saying they need a suit but crappy shorts and a t shirt are a bit much.

People in shorts and t shirts paid just as much for that MDR meal as you did.  Possibly much more if they are staying in a suite and you aren't.  If their attire ruins your dinner, that's your problem.

Link to post
Share on other sites

For formal nights I think what one would wear to a corporate office setting should suffice.  Meaning that shirts are button-down or at least not t-shirts or tank tops. Pants are clean and no holes and affixed to the waist (jeans are fine just not dirty, holey jeans sagging on the floor).  No flip flops.  If someone wants to wear something nicer like a tux or a fine gown that should be fine but not expected.  Economically it doesn't make much sense to many people to spend a bunch of money on things they will typically not wear on a normal basis.  Please note this is only for formal night.  If you wear cutoffs, tank tops, and flip flops in the MDR on NON-formal nights I don't care.  Not my style but you do you.  Moreover, on non-formal nights there is no expectation to be had that people will looked more cleaned up.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have an idea about formal nights.  Let me first preface this by saying that I myself do not dress very formal on formal nights.  But I know people who really like dressing up, especially women.  It's their time to take out that favorite gown, the jewelry, the fancy hairdo.  Some families take it as an opportunity for that family photoshoot in nice attires. For some it is a change of environment from their otherwise "come as you are" events. I think there is still a good percentage of people on the ship who like these formal nights.  Being seated next to someone in a tank top and shorts on formal night somehow takes away from that expected ambiance of a formal event. (Yes, I was seated next to one, but I didn't mind)

Maybe Royal can designate a section of their MDR, especially on bigger ships with multi-level MDRs, to be formal attire only on formal nights.  It will be by reservation only and the dress code will be strictly implemented.  That way, the guests who are wired to enjoy formal events can have their good time and everybody is happy.  I know in the past, when formal nights were still "strictly" observed, formal attire only at the MDR and casual attire at Windjammer.  But I think that is not doable anymore.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I am with @PG Cruiser  I think what the cruise lines should do is have a designated dining room for those that want to have that formal feeling.  IE,  this MDR will have a dress code, of at least a sport coat and tie.  The other MDR will be dress your best.

  •  I realize this would he hard for RCL, since they have MTD and traditional.  On smaller ships, usually MTD and traditional are only separated by the floor you enter.  Larger ships, like Anthem, they actually have designated dining rooms.  Maybe that night they could make the WJ,  like the MDR for lunch on sea days, buffet and menu for those that don't want to dress up, but also don't want a buffet.  

Personally,  we dress up like we are attending a wedding.  Cocktail dress for me and suit for him.  This is fun for us.  We make it a special night....cocktails on our balcony before dinner.  I like seeing people in their finest.  Than again, my hubby served 21 yrs in the military and we would go to military balls @2 times a yr.  I get the I am on vacation, and don't want to wear a suit.  However, I would love to take a poll.  My bet is the majority of women enjoys dressing up, and that feeling, whereas, the men would be more than happy not to!  

I also think the airlines play into the equation.  My hubby and I have no problem paying for checked baggage.  We fly a lot since 1 of our kids and the grandbabies live far away, in the last yr we have flown out to them, 4 times. Than add on flying for business.  In essence, between the 2 of us, someone is flying every 6 weeks for a week+.  Point being, most airline passengers only want to fly with carry ons.  That does not work if you need to pack a suit or dress.  Kind of.  my cruise dresses, are cocktail.  I purposely purchase dresses that travel well (wrinkle resistant...aka Chicos, lace overlay, Ralph Lauren, etc) I literally can roll them up in a ball and they will look perfect as soon as I unpack.  Hence, no excuse about wrinkling!  Hubby only wears Jos. A. Bank,  (probably bc I work there).  Just like Chico's they have a wrinkle resistant line called....wait for it....Travelers.  The fabrication is designed to do exactly like the Chico's woman's line...wrinkle resistant.  

In the end, RCL is following what their marketing dept says is trending.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

Like someone else said, formal night in the mdr is the only time my wife can get a tie on me, and that's a bow tie, for her this night is special and we have cruised many times, we still enjoy the pictures and she enjoys putting that long dress on and some nice jewelry as someone said. One of our favorite parts of,the cruise is the mdr with friends we travel with or new friends we meet at the table. I am a blue jean and ball cap guy and just don't enjoy dressing up, I,always say if I need a tie, I don't need to go. But,one night, maybe two,a year I,can handle, but to each their own,I,really don't notice what,other around me wear and like most said, it don't ruin my dinner. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
20 hours ago, Atlantix2000 said:

People in shorts and t shirts paid just as much for that MDR meal as you did.  Possibly much more if they are staying in a suite and you aren't.  If their attire ruins your dinner, that's your problem.

If they stink and look like slobs I don't care what they paid. If they took a bath and look neet I don't care what they wear.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Wouldn't say it's tearing passengers apart, but there are hardliners on both sides.  We are two who dress for formal night (suit/tux and gown/cocktail dress) and even on the other nights dress smart casual (dress/casual slacks and collared shirt and dress/pants fancy top).  I do it to please my other half and I really like seeing her dressed up, even after dinner you will see us wandering the ship or attending shows or the clubs dressed as we left the dining room, it's a date night for us.  Now I could care a rats behind what anyone else wears, just as you shouldn't care how we are dressed.

Twice we have had tablemates get a little upset with they way we were dressed, the first time we dressed for the Prohibition Party and one of the lady's told my wife "tonight's causal night why are you all dressed up?" (she wore a flapper dress and I had a white shirt and bow tie on) and on another cruise a guy got upset because I wore a suit and another wore a tie on formal night because he thought we were embarrassing him as he thought we agreed to not dress for formal night.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

The trend on land has been towards more casual dress in all aspects of life.  Even in the business world, more and more companies are going business casual vs suits.  Younger people are redefining what "dressed up" means for a date or night out.  RC is a business and wants (needs) to attract young people.

I have mixed feelings as I like the "dress up" part of cruise dining, at least on some nights.  I don't really feel that what anyone else wears affects me, although I think a minimum standard should apply to avoid "people of Walmart" on RC.

I'd like to see them eliminate formal night and go to a dressy night and set a minimum standard for the main dining room - no shorts, collared shirt etc.  If people want to dress up more, that's OK too.  I'd also like to see them have some casual nights where shorts are OK.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...