Wow! I guess I must be one of those in the mass market you speak of. After 8 cruises we are now addicted and like to cruise 2-3 times a year. Yes we love balconies. I would rather be cruising than stay home. I am prepared to don the long gown and hubby the tux , for only one night in seven.
Everyone watch out ()we are looking at booking our first Celebrity cruise in 2004(Summit) and may even do Hawaii on the Infinity.! Don't be so sure that financial ability has anything to do with how much we are willing to pay. (According to Stats Canada at our house we are in the top 10% of the country for household income - and no quips about the fact we only have a little better than 30 million here) We could afford Seabourn or Crystal, but do not care for so much formality on vacation. A vacation is time to relax and be carefree. I enjoy the service and cruise experience to the point that we will never take a land vacation again.
I do admit that there are some incredibly rude and uncouth individuals on cruise ships, but fom what I have observed, I am not altogether sure that they are from the lower economic strata.
This is a thread about Celebrity's standards, and whether or not they classify as premium or upscale. You express something common and I think fallacious about the notion of the cruise vacation. The whole appeak of the Harry Potter series of books is to escape into a world of fantasy and magic. Some books are to educate, some books are to escape, some books are adventures, etc. The cruise is a specific type of vacation, and, within this specific type of vacation are different types. Some cruises are "country club casual", some are "adventure", some are quasi-traditional, etc. Celebrity, is a line that was designed for the quasi-traditional type of cruiser, one that goes along with dressing a certain way half of the nights of the cruise and not just one, one that goes along with a certain onboard ambiance, not one that wishes to be totally carefree. There is relaxation, there is pampering, spa life, etc., but there was supposed to be an element of mid-century elegance to the cruise experience and the formality and attire that goes along with this. This isn't only about money and who can afford what, it is about the attitude one brings onto the cruise and whether one brings a "mass market" attitude aboard on one that is more premium and something that those used to certain environments reflect and how much the line has gone "too far" to the mass market attitude and product delivery to accept a wider clientele on an expanded fleet.
I'm amazed! Are there really people out there that don't enjoy their meal if the person at the next table is lacking a tux or formal dress? Is that person at the next table that valuable to your experience on the cruise? Did they come for a "vacation" or a showing of their "style"???? Be comfortable, you're on vacation! Those who want to be formal, enjoy it! Those who are "uncomfortable" in extreme formality, allow them to "enjoy their vacation without the constrains of formality". I think the cruiselines are coming to the realization that not everyone who cruises is into the formality need. And people who can afford the more expensive cruises don't necessarily need to show their goods. Therefore the freestyle cruising is becoming more popular.
I have cruised with Celebrity twice, and Carnival about 6-7 times. I found the food to be the same quality on both, with Carnival's quality increasing. I think the service and room accomodations is a bit higher with Celebrity.
You know, your point would be really well taken if all the cruise lines adhered to a formal dress code.
But they don't.
There are plenty of cruising opportunities where you don't need a tie or a fancy dress from one end of the cruise to the other.
With all those options available, why begrudge those who prefer something a little more formal just one single cruise line. . .Celebrity?
And yes, if people show up on formal nights without dressing, it does detract from the evening for those who enjoy it. And no, most of us don't let it ruin our meals, because we're intelligent grownups. But that doesn't mean we like it or think it's appropriate.
Are there really people out there that don't enjoy their meal if the person at the next table is lacking a tux or formal dress?
No, I'm not going to let it spoil my meal at all -- but don't be surprised if I don't engage in conversation with such individuals. Of course, you can be sure that I will register complaints through appropriate channels about the staff not doing their jobs in allowing people with inappropriate attire into the dining room, the theater, or wherever else they happen to go -- and you also can be sure that I won't be the only passenger making such complaints.
I think the cruiselines are coming to the realization that not everyone who cruises is into the formality need.
They came to that realization several years ago. That's why some cruise lines have maintained traditional formal attire for those who prefer a traditional cruise experience, while other cruise lines have shifted to a more casual product. Is it unreasonable to ask those who don't want to dress up for formal evenings to book on a cruise line that offers the casual experience that they seek, and to respect the fact that other people do enjoy formal evenings?
If you don't want to don fancy clothes for dinner most nights, here are some other options.
>> Princess Cruises (Premium) -- two formal nights on cruises of seven days; the rest of the nights are casual; choice of "traditional dining" (with assigned seating and table) or "anytime dining" (open seating) on most ships
>> Oceana Cruises (Premium) -- all evenings casual; open seating in all dining rooms
>> Norwegian Cruise Line (Mainstream) -- now advertises "formal optional" as part of the "freestyle cruising" program; all dining rooms open seating
>> Radisson Seven Seas Cruises (Luxury) -- all evenings casual
I'm not sure where Royal Caribbean International (Mainsream) falls on this spectrum, but I suspect that Royal Caribbean has about two formal evenings on seven-night cruises and that the rest of the evenings are causal.
The bottom line is that you need to do your homework and make appropriate choices. If you don't want to dress up for dinner, but Celebrity Cruises clearly is NOT an appropriate choice of cruise line.
Holland America Lines
Norwegian Cruise Line
Royal Caribbean International
[b] Economy Lines [/i]
The lines listed in the "premium" segment of the market traditionally were noticeably more "upscale" than the lines listed in the "mainstream" segment of the market, though the differentiation does seem to have diminished in recent years.
I was not referring to "myself" when mentioning that I did not see the need to dress formally. We just returned from a celebrity cruise, in which we were dressed formally on designated nights. My point was..............I really had a hard time believing that there were actually people out there, that would allow THEIR experience to be dampened or disturbed because the person at the NEXT table was not dressed formally enough for their ambiance enjoyment. You, Norm, just confirmed the fact, that YES, there are actually people out there, who are disturbed by this. I am in a position where I can afford to dress my children and myself appropriately for such an occasion. However, my thought was to be INCLUSIVE of more people, who MAY be able to afford to take their family on a wonderful cruise vacation, but can not afford to purchase formal clothing for all of their family members for only 2 nights. But, just to encourage those people who may be intimidated by attitudes such as yours, DO NOT let your family be denied the experience because you can not afford to purchase all new formal wear for your family.
I will tell you upfront, just having returned, that there were MANY people who were dressed in what I would call their Sunday best on both the formal and the informal nights, and NO ONE looked out of place. I think that NO ONE should be scared off by the dress code. Celebrity makes it very clear that you should enjoy your vacation, and yes they do have dress codes and guidelines, but those guidelines CAN NOT and should not be strictly enforced. Be inclusive, you'll end up alot happier. The world is a big place, there is room for all!
Did you REALLY give your maitre 'D a lesser tip because they didn't throw out the inappropriately dressed people???????????? Oh My! Now I see why they deserve those tips! Because of people like YOU!!!!!! Maybe those people that I saw in jeans and tshirts were trying to give some people a show!!!
Celebrity represents what you may not want in a cruise. That's why there's a Celebrity and lines, more upscale or more downscale, with a different attitude about dress. Attitudes about adherence to the spirit of the occasion, in any form, dress or comportment, may be more rigid on Celebrity. And that's how some of us want it and want to share it with likeminded people. We don't appreciate people "crashing" the party with their own ideas about what's comfortable for them. What goes for line A or B doesn't have to be across the board to include line C and D. The cruiselines, for variety's sake, need not be monolithic across the board.
Why is that you are so concerned with making Celebrity an ELITE line of cruising? Why would I want to cross Celebrity off my list of options because it's filled with stuffy people? I like to have a variety of options, that is why I believe in making an atmosphere of inclusion. If Celebrity REALLY held to the standard that you and Norm are suggesting, it would eliminate ALOT of interested people, only for the reason that many would not want to be around this type of cruiser, it would lend to a very boring atmosphere.
Not a boring atmosphere at all. More of a "refined" atmosphere, whatever that means. I choose not to vacation with slobs. I am looking at a possible cruise on the Summitt to Alaska. I am waiting until the results of the rebranding are apparent on whether Celebrity is returning to its roots as a premium cruise line. I don't care what the rules are (actually I do care), just don't want to cruise with others who do not believe in adhering to the rules.
If "as advertised" Celebrity is trying to offer a more "traditional" "upscale" cruise experience, I'm not quite certain why someone who is disinterested in that experience would want to book it. Just to buck the trend?
I don't believe it has anything to do with elitism, because Celebrity is not offering their cruises at "elite prices".
They are simply attempting to market to a segment of the cruise population who the more traditional experience appeals to.
I'm kind of with Benjamin. Difficult to understand why someone would book a Celebrity (or any other cruise line) expecting the cruise line, and other passengers, to adapt to what they are looking for, as opposed to finding a cruise line which offers what they want to begin with.
We'd likely be better off if all the cruise lines did more to distinquish their identities and what they offer that is different from the others more clearly.
Enforcing their own individual "rules of behavior"(not just dress codes), whatever they may be, would be a step in the right direction. Make it simple.... this is what we are, this is what we offer. If it sounds appealing and is what you're looking for, book with us!
Trying to be everything to everybody hasn't ever worked as a business model.
Who said anything about wanting to dress like slobs, and purposely trying to go outside the dress code? I am not talking about supporting outright rebellion, and I just saying lighten up. Don't throw out the baby with the bath water!
Oh, come on momof4, you're completely missing the point, and I think you're doing it intentionally.
If you were invited to a black tie wedding, dinner, or other event, would you think it fine if some people didn't dress? Or would you expect people to honor the request?
Where I live, when I go to such events everyone dresses as requested. The only place it doesn't happen is on ships.
I've never understood why people assume that you can't "relax and have fun" in a tuxedo or nice dress, but that's not really the point.
The point is -- again -- that there are plenty of cruising opportunities for those who wish to stay casual, and -- again -- many of them are quite "upscale" (God, I hate that word). Celebrity doesn't make any secret about it's dress code, and I'm another who wonders why people are so anxious to swim upstream.
I like having options too, but when I go to a baseball game I don't expect to see a football game. They're both games, but they're different. Cruising's like that. No one line can be, or should be, all things to all people. The point is, I make these kinds of fundamental choices before I go, not after I get there.
Dressing well does not have to be expensive. Last year on a cruise on Celebrity I wore my very expensive mother of the bride dress that was only a few months old. This year I will wear a beautiful dress I just picked up from TJ Max for $29.99. I know a lot of people with jeans that cost more than that. If one has enough money to buy a cruise ticket, one can affort a jacket and tie.
TJ Maxx has wonderful values, sometimes designer merchandise. I usually buy clothes from outlets or off price stores.
AR, Kuki, and Marc did a wonderful job of expressing how I feel about having a line such as what Celebrity is theoretically, and hopefully in the future, in practice.
Elitism (in the class segment sense of the word)? Not hardly. Low keyed, genteel, vibrant but respectful and festive but not brash, stylish and at times dressy in the evening as part of the mileau--yes. For Celebrity.
And when I want toga parties, parades on the promenade, and to cheer on singing waiters with ships that have ice skating rinks--it's on to an RCI Voyager ship. And it's fun.
Re: Re: Re: Re: Is Celebrity REALLY an upscale line?
It's true - dressing well does not have to be expensive. One can even buy designer gowns on ebay for unbelievably low prices.
The bottom line is that it's about respect. When you follow the suggested dress guidelines, you are showing respect for your fellow cruisers who also chose to dress appropriately.
AR said it perfectly. When one is invited to a formal wedding, one dresses appropriately. If one is not dressed appropriately, one is exhibiting a lack of respect for one's hosts and fellow guests, and, if one has manners, feels uncomfortable and out-of-place. It should be the same on a cruise ship.
Land Cruise, Britain and Belgium
Now posting as MichelleP.
If you are dressed in a suit, and you go to a baseball game or a football game, the referee or the usher doesn't come up to you and say that you are inproperly dressed and thus unwelcome. Not at all, you may feel a little out of place, but you are welcome still the same. You came to the game, you paid for your ticket, and you came to enjoy the game. Nobody really cares about what you are wearing. Casual tennis shoes and jeans are the appropriate wear, and most will be wearing them. I understand that cruiselines have dress codes, and most people abide by them, and uphold them, including myself. Anything I have to say will not change your mind on this issue, and you have said nothing that changes mine.
I have only cruised Royal Caribbean and Celebrity and my feeling is when I'm in the mood for a little more glitz then I book a RCCL mega ship.
When I'm in the mood to relax and just want to chill with good food and drink, I choose Celebrity. As a matter of fact I just booked a 10-night Summit So. Caribbean cruise for $85 a day. I think I got a very good deal on this cruise. I feel their food is step above RCCL.
I'm glad Celebrity and RCCL are a bit different in their class of service, because I can afford these lines comfortably and I have a choice.
It's all a matter of taste and where you feel most comfortable being. I know I'm not Crystal material, so I wouldn't book a cruise on a line like that because I just wouldn't fit in.
All I can say is I'm glad we live in a country where we have so many choices and we can enjoy cruising to our heart's content.
Attire sets the ambiance... just like a lace table cloth versus paper place mats sets the ambiance in your dining room.
Ambiance is part of the traditional cruise style.. and that is the product Celebrity offers.
I still think it is amusing that when prices were much higher in the "old days"....there was no "guff" about dress codes... and passengers complied willingly with the delineated dress codes..... and enjoyed doing so.
Might aswell put my twopenny's worth in!!!.In 2001 as a non-cruiser- and after days of arguing with my significant other,me threatening that if I didn't go somewhere on an airplane soon he would never see me again for dust!!we both sat down with little cards which we divided into 3 columns-sad or what?.Column 1.Places we would not be seen dead in.
Column 2.Places we might consider going to and the reasons why.Column 3.Places we definately wanted to go.
Cards were dutifully exchanged and what was the result,the only place we agreed on was Tuscany,cruising wasn't even mentioned!!.
Off we went to the T.A a supermarket type of place,I looked around for brochures on Italy,S.O turned up with a
Managers Special card in his hot sweaty little mitt which read.........Cruise.Dubai to Singapore Nov.2001,both places I desperately wanted to visit-within 30 mins the cruise was booked and as it was Saturday we couldn't get flights confirmed,that wasn't a problem 'cos by lunchtime Monday I had tripled the price of the cruise by booking us on Emirates!.'Legend of the Seas'-we knew the ship inside out by weekend,the hunt was on for cruise clothes,afternoon tea at 'Raffles'hat and matching French designer outfit,courtesy of local thrift store $35,Blazer and pants for the journey,designer again-courtesy of same thrift store ,etc, etc.Paul already had a Tux. because of his work.The cruise was cancelled October 2001,heartbroken for obvious reasons but determined by now to cruise we booked last minute on Celebrity 'Mercury' for the day after our original saildate.
Fellow cruisers we got talking with at the airport said we had made a big mistake by travelling on 'Mercury' for our first cruise,how right they were!!.
From the moment I set foot on this wonderful ship I knew what they had meant,I left a part of myself on that ship, dressing formally was any womans dream-coming down the staircase to dinner was like being at Tara(Gone with the Wind)!!
The opportunity to change your outfits to match the time of day was a pleasure and I cannot imagine any woman not wanting to do this,yes 'Celebrity'is certainly an upscale line,some of the travellers may be millionaires,some may be hard working everyday folks like us who have found the key to happiness simply by saving hard for our cruises,buying cruise style clothes in T.Maxx and such stores and going with the flow,if we wanted to spend 14 days in shorts and tee's we would go Carnival,Disney,NCL etc.We are know hooked for life so any one on 'Infinity'Jan 2004 you will recognise us by the slightly demented look on our faces of pure happiness.
A good friend just sailed the Radisson Diamond. That end of cruising has suffered as well. He said the ship was in terrible condition, not well maintained at all. He said he wished he could have transported himself to a Celebrity ship since they are clean and well maintained and his opinion (he's a very experienced cruiser - he has a relative in the business), The Diamond looked like a tub, and what a shame. I went to Boston for my vacation this year. Other than going whale watching, I stayed ashore and think I will do so for the foreseable future.
My wife and I have been on at least 20 cruises,since 1979,and just about every line in business and some that are not except Holland America.Celebrity is at the top of our list.Unless you want to go with the mucho expensive lines,you can not do any better than Celibrity and most times not as good.Great food,service,emineties,pools(where else can you get a pool and hot tub for adults only?,they have it)entertainment,and just about every area you need on a ship.We have been on Millinium twice and are booked on the Constellation in Aug.So go Celebrity,TOP DRAWER
Dollar for dollar you get the best food, service, atmosphere, and shows on Celebrity.
You could pay a lot more and get no better food or service on Radisson, Silversea or Crystal. We would rather spend the same amount of money and get two cruises on Celebrity rather than getting just one cruise on the so called "upscale lines". Besides, you have the "carriage trade" on Celebrity and Princess that would rather spend their money on excursions, shopping, gambling, and drinks! It's all a matter of priorities on how you spend you bottom line!
I am in a position where I can afford to dress my children and myself appropriately for such an occasion. However, my thought was to be INCLUSIVE of more people, who MAY be able to afford to take their family on a wonderful cruise vacation, but can not afford to purchase formal clothing for all of their family members for only 2 nights.
First, there's no need to purchase formal clothing since it's available for rental.
>> For gentlemen, many tuxedo shops offer a "cruise package" that provides rental of a tuxedo or dinner jacket, tuxedo pants, dress shoes, two tuxedo shirts, a cummerbund with matching necktie, a vest with matching necktie, cufflinks, and studs for a week for about $85 -- which is a lot less expensive than buying a dark business suit or a tuxedo!
>> For ladies, there are many "consignment shops," etc., that offer "worn once" eveningwear at very economical prices.
Dressing appropriately for two formal nights need not be outrageously expensive!
But that said, I would think that most people who cannot afford proper attire for formal nights would be much more comfortable going on a cruise line that does not expect formal evening attire. Perhaps you are an exception, but many people would feel very self-conscious just knowing that they were not wearing the expected attire -- and disapproving or disbelieving stares of other passengers certainly would only reinforce their discomfort.
I also would think that most people who cannot afford proper evening attire prescribed by a "premium" cruise line like Celebrity also would not be able to afford the higher fares charged by a "premium" cruise line like Celebrity, compared to the lower fares on a "mainstream" cruise line like Royal Caribbean International or Norwegian Cruise Line.
However, my thought was to be INCLUSIVE of more people, who MAY be able to afford to take their family on a wonderful cruise vacation, but can not afford to purchase formal clothing for all of their family members for only 2 nights.
Your efforts at being "inclusive" are seriously misguided. Rather, you are setting people up to be embarrassed because they cannot meet the expectations that go with a cruise on this cruise line.
Note that I have not excluded anybody from cruising. Rather, I have simply suggested that people should book their cruises on lines that matches their preferred styles. For some people, that's Celebrity and dressing up. For other people, that's Norwegian Cruise Line and strictly casual. There are cruise lines for all tastes.