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Old 11-10-2009, 11:14 AM
Sandy Sandy is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,879
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It's always a trade-off. It used to be that cruising was "simpler." Everything was taken care of by the time you boarded. You didn't have to worry about where to eat dinner or make reservations for it, you knew pretty much how much extra you'd be paying for drinks, tips and shore excursions, and just needed to decide how much of a donation to make at the casino and onboard shops.

Some people found this too restricting, and open seating was born, along with MyTime/AsYouWish/Freestyle/etc dining. Now you had to decide where to eat and make reservations to avoid a long wait. As she ships got bigger with more flexibility and more choices, a price came along with it, both figuratively and literally.

When we were on the Monarch of the Seas last week, we discovered that the "MyTime Dining" required a reservation each night, at whatever time you *thought* you'd want to eat. Without a reservation, they couldn't guarantee a table would be available when you showed up at the dining room. Not quite as flexible as I thought, in the dining room.