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This is our 1st cruise and when looking at our boarding documents, it seems that they have us down for 5:15 dinner.  How flexible is this, seems rather early.   Does this only apply at the MDR?   Are there options for taking dinner later at another place?  Alternately could this time be changed once on board?   I thought that they had switched to something called my time dining where you could just walk in at anytime as if you were walking into a Golden Corral buffet.   Is this how it is for breakfast and lunch?   Having some free restaurants and some that are extra is very confusing for newbie like me.  Hate to end up at the wrong one and have a large bill at the end of the cruise lol

We also supposedly got a promotion when we booked for 2 days specialty dining.  I only see one voucher in the boarding document print out.  Is this tracked electronically an maybe on the account already?  Or should I ask my TA about it. 

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The two set time for MDR are Main seating (typically 5:15 pm) and late seating (typically 8pm).  You should be able to contact your travel agent and change your dining time before your cruise (as long as it's not within the next couple weeks).  The travel agent should also be able to change it to My Time Dining, which allows any time and different times from day to day. Once you get on the ship, you would go to main dining room to speak with staff at front desk.  They can help set times for your dining as well.  I believe it's best to have a reservation for My time dining, but I think you can walk up and wait, but I have never done that.  Breakfast and lunch in MDR is walk up and get seated system.

I would also contact your TA for the specialty dining question, although it might be already on your account when you get on ship.  It's better to double check before you go.

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15 hours ago, Ken Edgar said:

This is our 1st cruise and when looking at our boarding documents, it seems that they have us down for 5:15 dinner.  How flexible is this, seems rather early.   Does this only apply at the MDR?   Are there options for taking dinner later at another place?  Alternately could this time be changed once on board?   I thought that they had switched to something called my time dining where you could just walk in at anytime as if you were walking into a Golden Corral buffet.   Is this how it is for breakfast and lunch?   Having some free restaurants and some that are extra is very confusing for newbie like me.  Hate to end up at the wrong one and have a large bill at the end of the cruise lol

We also supposedly got a promotion when we booked for 2 days specialty dining.  I only see one voucher in the boarding document print out.  Is this tracked electronically an maybe on the account already?  Or should I ask my TA about it. 

For what it's worth, we've always enjoyed the early seating in MDR as it ties in nicely with evening activities, and if you are inclined to have a drink before dinner, it fits happy hour!  Also, when you eat dinner later, you'll be tempted to snack in the late afternoon, which leads to tight pants later in the cruise.   Whatever you choose, have a great cruise.

We have used specialty dining vouchers from our TA on occasion, and there is some fine print about when you can use them.  Please look for that. 

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2 hours ago, ChessE4 said:

For what it's worth, we've always enjoyed the early seating in MDR as it ties in nicely with evening activities, and if you are inclined to have a drink before dinner, it fits happy hour!  Also, when you eat dinner later, you'll be tempted to snack in the late afternoon, which leads to tight pants later in the cruise.   Whatever you choosee, have a great cruise.

We have used specialty dining vouchers from our TA on occasion, and there is some fine print about when you can use them.  Please look for that. 

We have cruised a lot, but I have not set seating since my late husband and I sailed on Premier (the Disney cruise before they ate their own - We were in our 30s, I was in graduate school, and we were seated with 4 honeymooning couples. I honestly thought that I not live through it 🙀😹 Since then I have chosen private tables (and once possible, on our own time).  But, when we are on a cruise without a CK we are seated so close to others anyway and we do enjoy meeting people on cruises. Plus, we noticed the lines for the MDR on Symphony last week and thought those would not be much fun!  So, we decided that on our B2B Explorer this summer we would venture into the early dining slot (since we normally would choose 5:30 or 6 for most evenings). But having chosen that, I am not sure how they make decisions on tables - will they give us a 2 person table or set us up with other families or what?  It will collide with the SL happy hour I know, but we thought it was worth a try!

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4 hours ago, AlohaLivin said:

We have cruised a lot, but I have not set seating since my late husband and I sailed on Premier (the Disney cruise before they ate their own - We were in our 30s, I was in graduate school, and we were seated with 4 honeymooning couples. I honestly thought that I not live through it 🙀😹 Since then I have chosen private tables (and once possible, on our own time).  But, when we are on a cruise without a CK we are seated so close to others anyway and we do enjoy meeting people on cruises. Plus, we noticed the lines for the MDR on Symphony last week and thought those would not be much fun!  So, we decided that on our B2B Explorer this summer we would venture into the early dining slot (since we normally would choose 5:30 or 6 for most evenings). But having chosen that, I am not sure how they make decisions on tables - will they give us a 2 person table or set us up with other families or what?  It will collide with the SL happy hour I know, but we thought it was worth a try!

When we book with our agent, we indicate whether we want a group table or private table.  The travel agent makes arrangements with Royal.  Due to COVID, I've read that the default was to keep different families separate, but I don't know the latest practice on that.  Perhaps a recent traveler can comment.  We don't sail until June.

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1 hour ago, ChessE4 said:

When we book with our agent, we indicate whether we want a group table or private table.  The travel agent makes arrangements with Royal.  Due to COVID, I've read that the default was to keep different families separate, but I don't know the latest practice on that.  Perhaps a recent traveler can comment.  We don't sail until June.

Yep, no idea what they they are doing now. We just sailed last week, but we were in the CK and didn’t eat in the MDR. I presume with the mask removal people still aren’t segregated (but honestly when we sailed in Nov we were so close to others at “different” tables to 2 times we are in the MDR as to have been nearly in their laps 😄 

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6 hours ago, ChessE4 said:

Due to COVID, I've read that the default was to keep different families separate, but I don't know the latest practice on that.  Perhaps a recent traveler can comment.  We don't sail until June.

The MDR on Oasis was seating parties with strangers on the last sailing, at least in the fixed dining time. They had lots of smaller tables available as well, but I was a solo sat at a table of 6.

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45 minutes ago, AshleyDillo said:

The MDR on Oasis was seating parties with strangers on the last sailing, at least in the fixed dining time. They had lots of smaller tables available as well, but I was a solo sat at a table of 6.

Do you enjoy the group tables? My long ago experience  with the honeymooners made me gun shy, but thinking it could be interesting. When I cruise with my parents in the 1960s and 70s, that was the way it was always done, and it usually was very positive.

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1 hour ago, AlohaLivin said:

Do you enjoy the group tables? My long ago experience  with the honeymooners made me gun shy, but thinking it could be interesting. When I cruise with my parents in the 1960s and 70s, that was the way it was always done, and it usually was very positive.

It doesn't bother me. I only had people show up on 1 night out of 4. If I didn't enjoy my table mates I would just go eat elsewhere. The MDR food isn't worth then awkwardness for me 😂

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6 hours ago, Jayhoaps said:

Hello all,

Just to clarify, how do we book our time for the main dining room? Is it through the app? Or do we go to the main dining room to book the time or other?

Thanks all,

 

This would have been done when you booked. Your invoice will have your currently assigned time. If you want to change it call RC/your TA

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15 hours ago, smokeybandit said:

This would have been done when you booked. Your invoice will have your currently assigned time. If you want to change it call RC/your TA

Can we also change the booking times when on our ship?

Just to clarify to change it just call Royal Caribbean or my travel agent? Thanks again

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8 hours ago, Jayhoaps said:

Can we also change the booking times when on our ship?

Just to clarify to change it just call Royal Caribbean or my travel agent? Thanks again

Yes, give a call before the cruise, or you can (typically) change it if you go to the MDR as soon as you board.

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Our early cruising days we usually got put at large tables with other families.  A few times we got seated at some tables with people we didn't see eye to eye with which did't make for a pleasant eating experience.  After that we would go to the dining room,  with the maitre d that could change times or tables, and request a table for two.   You will want to do this as soon as you get on the ship.  This usually didn't change that day but the next day we would get a note in our room what our new table would be.  The MDR is on 2 or 3 decks  so they only have one deck where they do this the first day.  Also when you get on the ship go to the dining room your assigned and walk in a find your table  Yes you can do this.  You might already be assigned a table for two.

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