I have cruised with several cruise lines in the past 5 years but our cruise in October on the Queen Victoria will be our first with Cunard. A friend who has cruised with Cunard 3 times in the last 18 months says I am strongly advised to wear a DJ for the formal nights and a dark suit for the semi formal. This seems more strict than for example PO cruises, where plenty just wear dark suits on formal nights. Advice would be appreciated.
Click HERE for the dress code link from Cunard's Web site. A dinner jacket isn't necessary. Your dark suit should be fine for the formal nights. Note that many pax who choose Cunard do so for the formal atmosphere, so it's likely that there will be a number of gentlemen in tuxedos on formal nights. But, as Cunard plainly states that a "formal dark suit" is within the code, you won't be alone should you choose to go that route.
I'd love to hear your thoughts on QV when you return!
I sailed the Queen Mary II, and as Lisa stated, on the formal nights a good many men wore a tuxedo. However, the men in suits fit right in as well. On the semi-formal nights, many men were in sports jacket and slacks, with others in suits.
Cunard does tend to be more formal than other lines. If there is a theme for later on a formal evening, such as a Black and White Ball, most passengers dressed in accordance with the theme. On my cruise, there was a Masquerade Ball and many passengers had brought masks from home. I didn't, and they gave out fancy masks to anyone who wanted one.
Welcome, Jim! Glad to have you aboard, and thanks for introducing yourself.
There are many experienced cruisers who regret that the cruise lines have adopted a more casual dress code, and that some passengers ignore the dress code that does still exist. In our society in general, at least on this side of the pond, dress has gotten more casual in almost all situations. Saturday night at a Broadway show in New York City doesn't look anything like it did 20 years ago. I think the cruise lines have gone to a 2-track system on their ships, formal dining and casual dining, as a reflection of what's going on around them. The cruise lines are trying to attract a larger passenger base, especially new passengers, who may be been turned off by the stereotype of the strictly formal dress and set dining times.
There are still many passengers, dining rooms full of them, who prefer the more formal and traditional way of dining on an ocean cruise. These days, the ships are large enough to be able to accommodate passengers in whatever mode of dress they prefer, which has to help their bottom line.
Many thanks to you all. I am relieved that my nice new dark blue suit will pass muster for the formal nights. I take the point about the themed evenings, we would probably dine elsewhere on those nights. Brian