Looking for Casual Alaskan Cruise

May 29th, 2006, 06:53 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 370
Looking for Casual Alaskan Cruise

We are three older women (late 50s)who want to see Alaska by cruise, but don't want all this fancy dress stuff. Does anyone know of any cruises that are totally casual, and perhaps a tad smaller ships? We are aware of Cruise West, whose ships are very small, but they are quite expensive and I'm wondering if I can find a better value with a smaller "big" ship. Thanks for any tips!
Holldoll is offline  
May 29th, 2006, 07:10 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 569
Any cruise can be a "non-fancy dress" cruise. There is no rule that states that you have to dress up and eat in the "formal" dining room on "formal" nights. Most major cruise lines...Princess, Carnival, Holland America...all have the option of eating at the casual buffet/Lido Deck.

BTW, late 50s is NOT old.
luv2fly is offline  
May 29th, 2006, 07:16 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 890
Yes, late 50's is not old!

I'm familiar with the Regent Mariner (formerly the Radisson Mariner).It is a smaller ship holding a maximum of 700 passengers and every cabin has a balcony which is great in Alaska. Each night the dress code is "country club casual" with no formal nights. I know they are having specials during August and September this year (free air or 2 for 1 type things) as we are booked for August 30. You may look into this. I've cruised on the Mariner before and it's a wonderful ship with great food and service. You're going to love Alaska!
petlover is offline  
May 30th, 2006, 04:27 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 234
We also were on Regent's Mariner in Alaska and thought it was great. If you decide you want to follow-up on that cruise line, I know that both Petlover and I use the same TA, who specializes in Regent and several other top cruise lines. This TA usually offers additional discounts also. Feel free to e-mail me at [email protected] for further info.
Dreps is offline  
May 30th, 2006, 05:13 AM
Join Date: Apr 2003
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You can expect to go on any cruiseline and forego the formality. Alt dining options are available. So I would look at itineraries and go from there.
BudgetQueen is offline  
Jun 1st, 2006, 04:32 AM
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We just returned from a Holland America cruise, Vancouver round trip, and loved every minute of it. They have two nights formal dress but you do not have to go. There are other places to eat and to be truthful, a lot of people there were not "formal" I saw many, many business pantsuits.

The itinerary is wonderful and that would be my first priority. The highlight of the trip for me was the helicopter tour to the top of a glacier via Coast Helicopters.

Also a priority for us is a balcony room. We used our balcony every day, many days we had breakfast in bed watching the beautiful scenery float by with a early morning movie on the tv. A very relaxing way to start the day as most of our tours started in the afternoon and you have two full days at sea.
cd is offline  
Jun 1st, 2006, 05:08 AM
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Actually if you look at HAL's web page proper attire on formal nights is requested BUT it clearly states guests will not be refused seating if not dressed formally. I also agree about getting a balcony, esp. for Alaska.
Cheers, Larry
jacketwatch is offline  
Jun 1st, 2006, 01:30 PM
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From these responses I'm now seriously looking into the Regent Mariner. When I say casual, I don't even mean a pants suit. Sweater and slacks is about it. I got dressed up for work for 40 years--I don't want to ever do it again!! Thanks to everyone who responded. Your comments really changed my thinking. I appreciate it very much.
Holldoll is offline  
Jun 1st, 2006, 01:46 PM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 37
I was on the Mariner (then Radisson) last year. It is not really very causal. For dinner, even the alternative restaurant was more formal then we would have liked. My husband went up one night in jeans and he really stuck out and was a tad uncomfortable with some of the looks he got.

The ship, staff and cruise is wonderful but I would not call it casual.

I was on Holland the year before and felt it was more casual then Radisson.
globetrekker is offline  
Jun 2nd, 2006, 06:10 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 228
Interesting, I had the opposite experience and felt Regent was more casual than HAL. I didn't wear jeans to dinner but wore chinos each night and never felt out of place. That Alaska cruise was the best cruise ever.
newyorkgolfer41 is offline  
Jun 3rd, 2006, 04:07 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 370
Well, we won't wear jeans, but hopefully slacks and some sort of decent top will do. As we are three women together, sometimes less formality goes. It will have to!! Thanks for the tips.
Holldoll is offline  
Jun 3rd, 2006, 08:22 AM
Join Date: Jun 2003
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Regent is upscale and elegant and country club casual. This is very different than casual and passengers were very well dressed on my RSSC cruises.

Jeans are most definitely not appropriate for dinner.

I pack dressy slacks to wear with pretty tops and heels, dresses and skirts.

For men, nice slacks and collared shirts and many will wear sport coats.

This is an upscale line and the clothing reflects it.

HAL is dressier in that they have 2 formal nights and there are many tuxes and gowns aboard. Also, I saw men turned away on informal night (2 months ago) for not having a jacket.

I like formal so that is not an issue. But Regent is classy.
kfusto is offline  
Jun 3rd, 2006, 08:33 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I guess HAL ships are different in dress. We just returned from our Alaskan Cruise and were at a table for 8. Not one man wore a jacket except for the formal nights. They all had slacks (Dockers, in my husbands case) and collared shirts or cotton sweaters.
cd is offline  
Jun 3rd, 2006, 09:15 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 228
I can only report that on our Regent Alaska cruise it was smart casual each night(jeans would not have worked). When we cruised the Mediterranean the dress code was definitely stepped up with informal and formal thrown in. For ladies, slacks and a nice top seemed to be the norm at dinner.
newyorkgolfer41 is offline  
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