We are sailing HAL soon. We are "moving up" from the three mass market lines to see if they are for us. Our last HAL cruise was during the '80s. It will be significantly different than 1986 and we expect it to be. Truthfully, we would not want the level of formality that cruising was back then. We do expect a higher level of quality and service than the lines who serve different market segments. We will have a good time.
If you go through these boards, you will find similar threads about cutbacks on the larger ship lines. Some are making cuts, or adding fees, that have a much greater impact than eliminating the yum yum man.
Companies have a fiduciary responsibility to the shareholders that own them. Profits and the anticipation of future profits drive stock prices and shareholder value. You can attract more customers, increase prices, or reduce costs. It sounds simple, but it is not rapidly changing political, economic, and market environments. Each has its own risks and potential rewards.
Consumers vote with their purchases. If they are unhappy, they will try something else. It could be a competitor or land based vacation. I'm not being snarky, it is reality and it is why we are trying HAL. The lines we sailed were simultaneously increasing prices, overcrowding ships, and lowering the quality of the product.
I understand how these people feel that their loyalty has been betrayed, but loyalty is a two way street. It's OK with me for people to vent here and hope for change. But the trend will continue until it impacts the bottom line.