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Old 02-08-2009, 08:06 PM
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Ok...I'm the new guy here and can you tell I am a little excited about leaving next week! Anyways here is my next rookie cruiser question....Next Sunday when we set sail what do we do about dinner. What I mean is the ship is set for departure at 6:00pm..our dining time is 6:00pm. Is there no formal dinner the first night? I really want to stand at the rail with my wife and kids and take in the sights as we leave Miami. Thoughts? Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-08-2009, 08:06 PM
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Ok...I'm the new guy here and can you tell I am a little excited about leaving next week! Anyways here is my next rookie cruiser question....Next Sunday when we set sail what do we do about dinner. What I mean is the ship is set for departure at 6:00pm..our dining time is 6:00pm. Is there no formal dinner the first night? I really want to stand at the rail with my wife and kids and take in the sights as we leave Miami. Thoughts? Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:15 AM
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The main dining room is open every night. The first night will be casual dress. I've seen them alter the dining times for the first night, and move the start times back a half hour (6:30 for you) but I'll have to look around at my Freedom info to see.

Otherwise the expectation is for you to be in the dining room at the appointed time. Of course you could go to the buffet dinner in the Windjammer but I wouldn't do that on the first night. You'll want to find your table, meet your wait staff, and see who is sitting with you.
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:25 AM
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Hi 417rogers, congratulations on your upcoming cruise, sure won't be long now. I do love sailaway, so I understand what you mean. As Dave said, they may move the start time up to 6:30. If not, there will be other ports you can catch a sailaway from. Hope you have a fantastic cruise. Bon Voyage
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:34 AM
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I was just looking around at some information for the Liberty Of The Seas, which was doing the western run in 2007. They left Miami at 6pm, had open seating dinner in the main dining room the first night (in the Windjammer too), and didn't do the muster drill until 10am on the first at-sea day.

So there are two scenarios - either they'll delay the assigned seating dining or they'll do open seating. That last one surprised me. I've not heard of doing open seating dinner on embarkation day. Learn something new every day.

I am reasonably certain the ship will want to make sure all guests get to do the sailaway. Bar sales, pushing the drink of the day, etc.
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:38 AM
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On my recent Grandeur of the Seas cruise I noted they had a table chart outside the dining rooms on the first day only. I had never seen that on other cruises. I thought it may have helped in that first night congestion where no one knows if there table is on the port or starboard. I had scoped my table out ahead of time and knew to go to the port side set of doors.
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Old 02-09-2009, 07:00 AM
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On our first cruise I was also very excited to watch the ship leave Miami. Sail away was set for 5 and dinner at 6. Our departure was delayed because we were waiting for some passengers whose flights had been delayed so instead of being on deck we were in the dining room. As great as the meal was it is one of the few regrets I have from previous cruises. If I were to do it again I would have had dinner in the Windjammer. It's true that there are plenty of ports but I really wanted to see Miami. It really comes down to which one you want more.
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:41 AM
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Now I learnt something new. I always thought they had to do the mustar drill befor they even left dock. Wouldn't it be safer especially for new cruisers?
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Old 02-09-2009, 09:03 AM
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Frankly, given the panic factor it probably doesn't matter when they have the drill.

However, the Coast Guard rule is the drill has to be conducted within 24 hours of leaving a U.S. port. For instance, cruises embarking in San Juan usually leave around 10pm. With passengers embarking all afternoon and evening it just isn't practical to have a drill until the next day.
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Old 02-10-2009, 10:06 AM
 
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I agree with Wilson, being on deck or on our balcony is always a treat for us when we sail out of our port; especially to watch the people on the beaches, etc waving and all to the ship as it sails away.

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