Formal nights? Or not?

Phonedave

Well-Known Member
Yes, I do know the policy. It is optional.
Just as I said in the paragraph previous to what you quoted

"Now DCL does state that their policy is optional, so people are indeed free to show up as they want. Because that is their policy, I cannot fault the people for doing so. However, it does play into the fact that I don't sail DCL anymore. Of course it is not the only reason, but it is one of them. I much prefer cruise lines where people who show up to formal night wearing a graphic T get politely asked to back to their state room and change. "
 

Phonedave

Well-Known Member
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It never ceases to amaze me how passionate some people get about this topic. We no longer dress up on formal night(s) on the cruises, but I do not begrudge those who do. We do not, however, show up dressed like slobs to the dining rooms. As much as people should not judge us for choosing not to wear a fancy clothes, we should respect them enough to at least put on a nice pair of slacks or skirt, and a nice top. I'm just not going to bring a suit on vacation at this point in my life, but I'm also not going to wear shorts and a t-shirt on formal night. Their are people who look forward to dressing up and I now the shorts and a tee shirt put a damper on their evening. It's not a major inconvenience for me to wear pants.

Thank you for understanding the issue. This is my point exactly.
 

jaklgreen

Well-Known Member
Just as I said in the paragraph previous to what you quoted

"Now DCL does state that their policy is optional, so people are indeed free to show up as they want. Because that is their policy, I cannot fault the people for doing so. However, it does play into the fact that I don't sail DCL anymore. Of course it is not the only reason, but it is one of them. I much prefer cruise lines where people who show up to formal night wearing a graphic T get politely asked to back to their state room and change. "
To be clear, I am talking about not having to wear a ball gown or other fancy dress on formal night. I was thinking more along the lines of slacks/capri pants and a nice top and a polo and khakis for men. I would have no issue with them not allowing graphic T's as you say. But really, the people that tend to stick out and get noticed are the ones that do go all out with the ball gowns and tails. I could not tell you what anyone else is wearing because unless it is to one extreme or the other, it does not stick out. I don't sit at my table and watch everyone as they come in and judge them on their clothes. I am more concerned with how people act. If someone is disruptive, then that affects everyone else, regardless of what they are wearing.
 

Phonedave

Well-Known Member
To be clear, I am talking about not having to wear a ball gown or other fancy dress on formal night. I was thinking more along the lines of slacks/capri pants and a nice top and a polo and khakis for men. I would have no issue with them not allowing graphic T's as you say. But really, the people that tend to stick out and get noticed are the ones that do go all out with the ball gowns and tails. I could not tell you what anyone else is wearing because unless it is to one extreme or the other, it does not stick out. I don't sit at my table and watch everyone as they come in and judge them on their clothes. I am more concerned with how people act. If someone is disruptive, then that affects everyone else, regardless of what they are wearing.
Different people like different things. I actually have no issue with the clothes you described, especially since, as you said, there are no hard and fast rules on a DCL cruise.

I will say, on one of my DCL cruises, during formal night, I was in slacks and a sport coat, my two daughters (at the time maybe 9 and 11) were in sundresses. We had table mates for that cruise, a husband and wife with their kid of about 7 (who did a drive by eating each night, to get back to the kids club - no issues with that). We got there first on formal night and were seated. They came in, the wife had a plain T shirt and shorts on, the husband had on a graphic T and cargo shorts. They looked at us and said "Huh, you people really go all out for this stuff, don't you" That made for an awkward evening (they ate quickly and left before dessert).
 

Simba’s Mom

Active Member
Our son used to work for Princess cruise lines, and he was appalled at what some people wore to "formal night". Like the guy with the shorts and ripped sleeveless t-shirt. Like he said "Come on! At least make an effort!" Unfortunately, at the time, Princess didn't enforce the dress code and it seemed as if some people took advantage of that.
 

ChuckElias

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
They looked at us and said "Huh, you people really go all out for this stuff, don't you" That made for an awkward evening (they ate quickly and left before dessert).
Here's an excerpt from one of my old trip reports from the Fantasy (in 2013):

__________________________________________________________________

It was time to get ready for dinner, which was Formal Night in Animator's Palate for us. Since it's me with two women in our cabin, I got ready first and waited out on the verandah until everyone else was decent. I was wearing my tux for Formal Night (without the jacket, at the time) and our neighbor happened to look around the verandah divider and spotted me.

Him: You going to a wedding or something?
Me: No, it's just Formal Night.
Him: Oh, so you're going up to Remy's?
Me: Nope, it's Formal Night in all the regular restaurants tonight.
Him: Jeez, I didn't even pack slacks.

I don't judge. :) I know Formal Night isn't everyone's thing. I just thought that was a funny exchange.

____________________________________________________________________
 

KCheatle

Well-Known Member
We just got back from Disney Fantasy 7-day Western Caribbean, and it had both a formal and semi-formal night. We traveled with my entire family (parents, brother's fam, sister's fam, and my fam- party of 15). I told the whole group that my immediate family would be dressing for formal and semi-formal night (as well as pirate night) because I love a good theme and I didn't want them to feel left out if they didn't pack something. For formal night, my daughter (13) and I both wore long gowns, my son (9) wore a button up shirt, bow tie, and slacks, and my DH wore a suit. My mom and dad dressed about the same as my husband and I, and my sister's fam stayed more semi-formal. My brother's fam just wore khakis and polos. We all dressed differently based on what we wanted to do. There were others dressed as formally and as informally as those in my group. I didn't care one way or another what other people did. We wanted to partake in the theme for us.

With that being said, I think people should dress to a certain level for every DCL seated dinner. These are all high-caliber restaurants and I think it's disrespectful to the staff and chefs who do all that they do to maintain the upscale environment to show up in too of casual attire. No one is forcing the dinners on you. If you don't want to dress appropriately and want to have a meal in your PJs, sweats, or whatever, you can order room service or go to Cabanas.
 

CJR

Well-Known Member
If you don't want to dress appropriately and want to have a meal in your PJs, sweats, or whatever, you can order room service or go to Cabanas.
It's all subjective, but they've determined that too many people would be at Cabanas or backing up room service. I believe the cruise lines know what they're doing and have ran the numbers enough to figure out that the dining rooms wouldn't pull in enough passengers.

They would have to make the dining rooms much smaller and add in more buffet space, also eliminating many serving positions in lue of more buffet staff. They've figured that the experience is better for everyone, guests and employees, by being more relaxed. There are markup restaurants too, that are perfect for a more formal atmosphere. Cruise lines are giving basic options choice and more specific options come at a cost. Just a guess, but people dressing up in tuxedos and fancy dresses can probably afford the markups easier too. The cruise industry has also figured that out. It's also a way to push those upgrades, for the people who want it.
 
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