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mercedes

Is the era of formal nights on cruise ships over? Another major line is betting on it

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Regent Seven Seas Cruises is joining the list of lines going less formal -- and in a big way.

The luxury cruise operator this week announced it will do away with jacket-required evenings and formal nights on a large percentage of its cruises, effective in January.

The globe-trotting line currently has a three-tiered evening dress code, with dress requirements at night alternating between "country club" casual, (jacket-required) informal and formal. But starting with New Year's week cruises, all voyages of 15 or fewer nights will be "elegant casual" on every night.

The line defines elegant casual dress as a skirt or slacks with a blouse or sweater, pant suit or dress for a woman; slacks and collared shirt for a man. Sport jackets are optional.

The change means men no longer will have to pack a sport coat, let alone a tuxedo, when sailing with the line, and is being made after a review of passenger feedback, the line says.

Regent will continue to have two formal nights on cruises of 16 nights or longer, but even there dressing up will be optional. The line is calling the dress code for the formal nights "formal optional" and says passengers can stick to the elegant casual dress code if they wish.

Still deemed inappropriate in the evenings on Regent ships no matter what the night: Jeans, T-shirts, baseball caps, shorts, sneakers and bathrobes.

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Pat and I think the formal nights are one of the special touches of cruising. We will miss them if they totally disappear. I suppose Cunard will keep up the tradition.

Sam

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Pat and I think the formal nights are one of the special touches of cruising. We will miss them if they totally disappear. I suppose Cunard will keep up the tradition.

Sam

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Hmmm. I wonder what Joan and Joe will have to say about that when they get home.

HI! We had a wonderful time when formal night fell on October 31. The Captain wore his kilt and full formal clan attire, Jay and Carol Peterson came as a muscular Anthony and lovely Cleopatra, and Joe and I wore long, flowing caftan and djabellah with funny matching Turkish hats. I gave out 70+ genuine Turkish bookmarks, and the Social Director took wonderful pictures of us with the Captain. That formal night was one of the high points of the cruise, not merely because we tried to work in a Halloween theme, but because the staff and fellow passengers also joined in the laughs.

Joe does not own a tux. He will buy one for our son's wedding, but our son is 34 and "why buy the cow when the milk is free?" is our son's motto. Formal night is always an extra effort....but some of the couples look so fine in their glad rags, it's often worth the effort.

The real problem is tighter baggage allowances. As long as airlines punish you for checking suitcases, there will be a push by cruise passengers to save weight by eliminating formal nights. I might add that sentiment on the "critical board" for Regent is very mixed on this subject.

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Welcome back to reality, J & J! You are probably correct on the tighter baggage allowances affecting cruise formal nights. We plan on only picking cruises where we can drive to port and we will bring our formal attire, even on Carnival.

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Regent Seven Seas Cruises is a 6-star luxury cruise line. It is among the elite in the premier cruising world. Regent features all-suite, all-balcony ships, Le Cordon Bleu menus and superior space and service ratios.  Regent Cruises also offers imaginative itineraries, unique shore excursions and land tours, and the other innovative services. 

Regent Cruises also offers a Travel Concierge, which features personalized services and programs that enable you to travel at your own pace and explore those things which interest you the most.  You can visit the Taj Mahal by private jet, for example, go on an eco-adventure to the Panatanal in South America or even have us custom-design your own tour.  With Regent Cruises the world is quite literally in the palm of your hand.

________________________________________________________________________

victorian inn bed and breakfast   ~ Travel and change of place impart new vigor to the mind ~

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