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PLB 04-05-2010 10:49 AM

I am booked for my first NCL cruise in August to Alaska. As I've never cruised with NCL I'm not familiar with the "Free Style" dining. Can any of you help with defining this and should I or should I "NOT" bring formal wear as I have on other crusie lines for formal night? Thanks for your help.

susanmaz 04-05-2010 12:30 PM

It's been 6 years since we've sailed NCL - but at that time folks still dressed up for formal night, even with Freestyle dining. Hopefully someone who has sailed on this line more recently will have more information for you. Have a wonderful cruise. An Alaska cruise is a great experience.

Cruise Fanatic 04-05-2010 12:42 PM

Freestyle is exactly that. Free do do as you wish. NCL is very much more resort style dress. However; there are those that still like to dress up on the formal nights. Alaska cruises tend to be more relaxed. Also, more and more you see people not wanting to bring the formal dress with the airlines getting stricter on luggage weights. Basically, wear what makes you feel comfortable.

Kraftsinc 04-05-2010 12:51 PM

You are in for such a treat. I have done an NCL Alaskan cruise twice. We like it specifically because of the "dress up or not" attitude. On each cruise we've been on, we've seen at least one tuxedo, several ball gowns, mostly nice party type attire and some nice pants and tops on those nights.

janfred 04-05-2010 02:30 PM

I did NCL last October and on Formal night you will get a card on your bed the night before saying.."To Dress up or Not" and that is exactly what everyone did. Some gowns some resort casual.......have a blast !!

Berick1234 04-05-2010 04:32 PM

many many cruises on NCL....I always wear a sportcoat and tie for formal it's not so formal...You will see just about any type wear on the ship.....wear what makes you happy.....and you will love Alaska...I've been there 3 times and will go again next year...Happy Sailing...

Bob E

PLB 04-06-2010 09:26 AM

We're very excited!! I've been on 2 Caribbean cruises. First Alaskan cruise for both of us and our first cruise with NCL the other 2 were with Carnival "The Fun Ship" I'm sure Norwegian will be equally as fun!! Thanks for the info!

penny3333 04-06-2010 10:13 AM

Hi PLB, welcome to Cruise-Chat. Congratulations on your up-coming cruise. We've sailed on NCL 4 times and never had a bad cruise. The ships have always been immaculate, the food is very good (especially the sticky buns in the morning), and the staff have always been great. We've always sailed the Caribbean, but don't know if that will make any difference. We'll be on NCL's Epic in October and I can't wait!

Hope you have a marvelous cruise! Please come back and let us know how it went.

Jill SC 04-06-2010 01:15 PM

The main point of freestyle dining is that you don't have any set times for dinner and you don't have to dress up on formal night. My partner still likes to wear his suit on formal night but very few people do. The only drawback to the freestyle dining is that you have to make reservations for the alternative dining and be prepared to wait if you like to eat at the same time as everyone else. And you don't get the same waiters every time. Later is better and more relaxed; they are not trying to rush you out of the dining room so they can serve others.

PLB 04-07-2010 04:57 AM

Jill...thanks this is information I need!! How do we plan for our dinner meal if we want to eat in the main dining we just show up when we are ready for dinner??? I see what you are saying about "if we eat at the same time as everyone else" Like don't go at (say) 6 - 8p.m. because that is when the majority of folks want to have dinner. Now what is the "alternative" dining that we would need to make reservations for? On Carnival they have different areas where you can just show up, such as the buffett or grill areas, you might have to get in line, then hunt for a table, but you can go whenever. Also what hours are the main dining room open? You say eat later, I'm assuming you mean for the dinner meal so how late are they open? Also, I'm guessing if you get different waiters, then you probably get different table mates as you might at breakfast or lunch on the ships where you have assigned dinner times and seating? Thanks so much for the info!!!

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