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Formal nights - something to look forward to or a nuisance?

Formal nights - something to look forward to or a nuisance?

Mar 4th, 2014, 11:58 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jan 2003
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Formal nights - something to look forward to or a nuisance?

What do people really think about formal nights? Are they something to look forward to, and take your best outfits to wear? It means carrying extra clothing which may only be worn once or twice. Or are they a nuisance, particularly if you are travelling light and trying to keep your luggage to a minimum.
We've done several cruises, some on the other side of the world from home. We don't want to take formal outfits which could easily fill another suitcase. For women it's a bit easier - a bit of bling here and there, and you can pass your outfit as formal. For men, it means taking shirts and ties and jackets etc. - all extra weight. I know we can eat in the buffet on formal nights but why should we be made to feel second-class passengers when we've paid as much as any one else on the ship.
What do other people think?
marg is offline  
Mar 4th, 2014, 12:12 PM
  #2  
 
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I like the dress-up (although not a frequent cruiser). Don't get out much, so don't get many opportunities otherwise.

When we travel on regular vacations, we don't bring fancy clothes at all, just something a little better to squeak by. So this is a nice change for me. DH may feel differently, as you say..
sludick is offline  
Mar 4th, 2014, 01:33 PM
  #3  
 
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I hate the thought. Have been on a couple north american cruises. Going on vacation and wearing a suit is not my cup of tea.
We are going on a Baltic cruise this summer, and the thought of carrying a suit (tie, shirts) half way around the world is quite distasteful. I am inclined to bring a more versatile sport jacket.
I know people like to dress up but when you have to travel to Europe with a suit it is a bit over the top. Everyone has opinions...that is mine.
giro is offline  
Mar 4th, 2014, 01:37 PM
  #4  
 
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I enjoy it, but I'm a woman. I do carry an evening dress, though.
persimmondeb is offline  
Mar 4th, 2014, 02:48 PM
  #5  
 
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We enjoy the lobster usually served on formal nights, but not dressing up. We never take formal clothes. I take light weight black dress slacks and black dress top that I top off with a pashmina. They weigh almost nothing and take up almost no space. My husbands takes a sport coat which he carries on the plane, a tie, dark slacks,and button down shirt. We haven't checked luggage in 2-3 years. We each take a carry on and a personal item. We find fewer pax dressing to the nines than in years past. Those who do enjoy it look very nice. But it's not for us. We always look just as nice as 3/4 of the other diners.
1965 is offline  
Mar 4th, 2014, 04:08 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: May 2003
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I like getting all dolled up and watching DH get into his tux--so James Bond-like.

It's fun to see the other passengers all dressed up.

That being said, our favorite cruise line is Oceania, which has no formal nights--and that's OK, too.
abram is offline  
Mar 4th, 2014, 04:31 PM
  #7  
 
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1965 - very nice, congratulations!

I will be taking one "formal" outfit to our next cruise - otherwise, I don't have any occasion to wear it. For the other nights, I too have a lightweight pair of black pants and a couple of tops that will rotate among the other 5 nights.

DH is planning on wearing his suit coat (probably more on the casual side) on the flight, with dress slacks to match in his luggage. Maybe a couple dress shirts and a tie, that will do it. No doubt he will be in my orbit..
sludick is offline  
Mar 4th, 2014, 05:34 PM
  #8  
 
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It's fine with us as we seldom dress up so its nice and for me taking a suit or a sports coat and nice dress pants does not cause any baggage issues.

You will find that enforcement of formal dress codes is rather inconsistent to say the least. Some men are allowed in the MDR with no coat or tie sometimes. Maybe one day there will be no more formal nights or at least just one per cruise. Times have changed.
jacketwatch is offline  
Mar 5th, 2014, 02:27 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
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Times have changed & trend seems to towards much less formal.

On our first cruises it was a tux & dress for me. Now it
is a light weight tuxedo suit w/versatile tops for me.
Rhea58 is offline  
Mar 6th, 2014, 12:02 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 159
I dislike formal nights for many of the reasons already stated. It also tempts some men to wear really out dated tuxes that look worse than tee shirts. I'm OK with a navy blazer which I can wear on the plane (don't tell the airline - they want to charge extra for that.) But the whole business is inconvenient, expensive, outdated, and pretentious. Also, as people interpret "formal" differently, the appearance of the dining room is inconsistent at best
Reme is offline  
Mar 8th, 2014, 08:31 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
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It all depends on you, not anyone else around you or on board,

As to us, we usually dressed in business/formal, went for dinner, returned to cabin and changed into smart casual before moving about and enjoy the rest of the evening.

Some people may give us the looks but it is their problem. They can go sit elsewhere and not next to us in shorts or flip flops
Eschew is offline  
Mar 9th, 2014, 06:47 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
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I like formal nights but I wish they would only have them on sea days. When you're rushing to get ready after a long day in a port, it is so much easier to be able to wear nice capris rather than have to get all dressed up.
travelenthusiast is offline  

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