The cruise lines generally expects you to arrive to dinner the first night wearing whatever you wore aboard. Most of the time, it is very casual (and yes the "dreaded" shorts).
No problem. The Maitre D' will generally make an annoucement that while tonight is casual that the rest of the nights do have a dress code.
Just got off the Pride on Sunday. First night is casual. There were people in shorts in d.r. Some didn't get their luggage until 8 p.m. Generally, second night is formal on a 7 day. We had our second formal night on Friday evening. Saturday night is too busy with that whole luggage out in the halls fiasco. BTW... people go all out for formal night on the West Coast. A lot more than they do in the Caribbean. Many tuxedos and glitzy gowns!
We missed P.V. unfortunately because of the propulsion break down. We got to see Mazatlan and Cabo. After much research on the web and library books (Fodors and Frommers), we decided not to snorkel in Mazatlan. Water is not clear past November. We went to the beach instead. Hounded every 30 seconds (not kidding) by vendors walking the beach. Be careful when you take the ship's trolley to their marketplace when you get off of the ship. They are all holding up cards, which, at first glance, seems like a taxi stand. IT'S NOT! They want to sell you timeshares. Many, many people were taken by this scam. They spent the entire time in port listening to timeshare speeches and they weren't happy. Sure, they'll give you plenty of Corona and Tequila if that's how you want to spend your time there. We finally found a policeman and said we just want a taxi to the beach. Nothing else please. We got a little white buggy taxi. They are everywhere. Just request one and they will hail one for you. At first they were going to put us in a regular cab but then we requested the buggy type. If you are traveling with your wife, girlfriend, daughters, the absolute best prices for silver, opals, coral, turquoise, etc., is on the beach. Even though you're going to be bugged to death. Also, in the arts and crafts center before you take your trolley back to the ship. Barter with them. The silver was all stamped either .925 or .950, so I knew it was good quality. A silver bracelet started off at $45 and my husband ended up paying $8 If you're not happy with one vendor's selection, wait 30 seconds and there will be another. Get used to saying "no" a lot in Mazatlan. There was also hammocks, straw baskets (I bought a beautiful one), mexican dresses, toys, henna tatoos, hair braiding, Corona towels, etc. This is a poor country and they need the American dollar. People are parasailing and riding jet skiis everywhere on the beach/water. We don't know if these guys running these businesses are legit and highly doubt they have insurance. Do this at your own risk. I know the cruise ship frowns upon it. We went to the Golden Zone. I wasn't impressed. Buy your tee shirts and hats here if you like. We needed suntan lotion and went into a store and they wanted $13 for a bottle that would have cost me $5 at home. Shop wisely. The water in Mazatlan is beautiful. We swam all day. Water is warm. Approx. 76-78 degrees. Shells are on the beach for collecting. The sun is extremely hot.
Cabo was my favorite. Different story here. It's a wealthy port as you will see. Stars own homes here. The Baja coastline is gorgeous. It's ocean and mountains. Breathtaking! We are used to the Caribbean but I was impressed with Cabo. In Cabo we snorkeled in Chileno Bay. Good, but not as great as Cozumel and Belize for snorkeling. Water is a little cooler here. Probably around 72 degrees. We had a fun time with the guys who ran our excursion. Music, dancing, Tequila, mixed drinks, Dox Esquis and Corona all the way back after we boarded the excursion boat. We heard many people complain about the ATV tour. A lot of $$ ($169 or so PP) and you have to follow the guide on his ATV. Not as described we were told. The water is pristine. Lover's Beach is small and beautiful. You can see it from where the cruise ship docks. The sea lions are also right near there. If there is one important thing to tell you it would be to bring binoculars. If you don't own them, borrow or buy. We had them and we got to see dolphins following the ship, whales (tons of them), and the sea lions in Cabo. You will use the binoculars more than you can imagine. Many people were jealous of us for having them. But, we shared. We brought them up on deck with us and during our first 2 days at sea you won't believe the whales breeching and their blow holes snorting water. We got photos that are amazing. If you're swimmers, snorkelers or diver's bring an underwater camera. They sell disposables at Walmart, Target, K-Mart, for around $8.99. The first 2 days are sea days. It's cold leaving port. You will need a sweatshirt or jacket up on deck. Even if the sun is hot, the air is cool. It's funny to see people bundled up trying to tan.
Do not wait until Cabo to get your souveniors. They will not barter on anything and prices are extremely high. I always buy a Christmas ornament every place we visit. That was all I got in Cabo and he only came down $1.00 on it. There is a big difference between Cabo and Mazatlan. If I knew now, I would have bought more silver in Mazatlan. Oh well... I guess I'll have to go back!
Hope this info helps! Let me know if you want other questions answered.