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3 day dining and availability


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Hi everyone!  I'm waffling between saving a bunch and worrying about getting into restaurants.  We are sailing on Harmony Dec 31- Jan 8.  We very much want to dinner at 150 Central Park, wonderland and izumi hibachi.  I'm not so worried about getting the central Park reservation, but with what will be an insanely full ship, I'm afraid I won't get the other 2.  In addition, I think many people won't pay the extra for specialty on new years Eve (it's like 40 more a person) and that will crowd the other nights).  The difference between booking the pkg vs 3 expensive restaurants is over 40 a person savings.  So, for people who have traveled, if I get an early check in time (and I'm planning on going on at 1200 midnight Eastern Time on day one of check in snail-like), will I be able to get into these restaurants?  And will they be available on not formal nights (we are trying the mdr again and planning on being there for the better menu on formal nights 2 and 6)?   

   I need someone to either talk me off the ledge on availability or tell me to just suck it up and pay the extra.  I've never traveled this time of year, but I've been on busy spring break cruises.  I've just never seen as big of price savings on the 3 day.  Thanks!  Jane

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1 hour ago, mom2mybugs said:

I think many people won't pay the extra for specialty on new years Eve (it's like 40 more a person) and that will crowd the other nights). 

If i remember correctly, only a few of the specialty restaurants, not all of them, have the special additional up-charge Holiday meal. 

Other than that if your getting on early and you are at least somewhat flexible, I don't think you will have a problem fitting in your 3 meals.

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2 hours ago, mom2mybugs said:

Hi everyone!  I'm waffling between saving a bunch and worrying about getting into restaurants.  We are sailing on Harmony Dec 31- Jan 8.  We very much want to dinner at 150 Central Park, wonderland and izumi hibachi.  I'm not so worried about getting the central Park reservation, but with what will be an insanely full ship, I'm afraid I won't get the other 2.  In addition, I think many people won't pay the extra for specialty on new years Eve (it's like 40 more a person) and that will crowd the other nights).  The difference between booking the pkg vs 3 expensive restaurants is over 40 a person savings.  So, for people who have traveled, if I get an early check in time (and I'm planning on going on at 1200 midnight Eastern Time on day one of check in snail-like), will I be able to get into these restaurants?  And will they be available on not formal nights (we are trying the mdr again and planning on being there for the better menu on formal nights 2 and 6)?   

   I need someone to either talk me off the ledge on availability or tell me to just suck it up and pay the extra.  I've never traveled this time of year, but I've been on busy spring break cruises.  I've just never seen as big of price savings on the 3 day.  Thanks!  Jane

Here is a strategy I have read about...but I have never tried this myself, just to be clear.

Go ahead and pre-purchase the full-priced reserved meals for the restaurant, nights and times that you want.  Also purchase the 3 night dining plan.  When you get onboard, have them switch your full-priced reservations for your each of your 3 night reservations.  Then get the full-priced reservations refunded.  I think you will get onboard credit for those.

The only disadvantage will be that you will have to make one of your specialty dining nights be night 1 or 2 since that is a requirement for the 3 night plan.  Also, you would have to lay out the money for the full-priced reservations up front but that money will be refunded to you once you switch them out for the package-plan nights.

As I said, I have never tried this myself but it's kind of a genius plan if it works !

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1 hour ago, WAAAYTOOO said:

Here is a strategy I have read about...but I have never tried this myself, just to be clear.

Go ahead and pre-purchase the full-priced reserved meals for the restaurant, nights and times that you want.  Also purchase the 3 night dining plan.  When you get onboard, have them switch your full-priced reservations for your each of your 3 night reservations.  Then get the full-priced reservations refunded.  I think you will get onboard credit for those.

The only disadvantage will be that you will have to make one of your specialty dining nights be night 1 or 2 since that is a requirement for the 3 night plan.  Also, you would have to lay out the money for the full-priced reservations up front but that money will be refunded to you once you switch them out for the package-plan nights.

As I said, I have never tried this myself but it's kind of a genius plan if it works !

I've heard of this too...especially with the izumi hibachi.   I don't mind the money being locked up...we would just do the onboard credit and use it for gratuities.  If we did this, I would just have to adjust 150 now and put it on day 2 instead of day 3, since we have to do night 1 or 2.  Thanks 🙂Jane

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I’m on the same cruise!! Personally I’m way too OCD with my travel plans to not have everything booked and finalized well before hand. I know it’s the more expensive way to go, but peace of mind that I’ll have the restaurants and times I want is worth something to me. 

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8 hours ago, Ryan79 said:

I’m on the same cruise!! Personally I’m way too OCD with my travel plans to not have everything booked and finalized well before hand. I know it’s the more expensive way to go, but peace of mind that I’ll have the restaurants and times I want is worth something to me. 

Awesome!   I’ve never traveled this time of year and can’t wait!   I’ve decided to do what raye suggested…I have the 3 times booked and the 3 dining pkg as well.  I don’t mind tying up the extra money.  As soon as we are on, I will head to a restaurant.  If they won’t take my times, then I will cancel the pkg.  if they do! I will take the pkg.  I had to do the opposite dining pkg time (9pm) since the planner wouldn’t let me overlap day 2 times.  After I settle that! I will book all the shows…frankly I’m such a planner that I’m a nervous wreck!!  Jane

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