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  1. Smaller cruise lines motivate excessive entitlement in their own way, but as you said, you're subjected to less of it just because there are fewer people around you.
  2. Entitlement doesn't work that way: Those who get so ridiculously upset about other passengers wearing a bathrobe as coverup at the pool instead of some purpose-crafted pool coverup will invariably also expect that other people should quit sailing on "their" ships, rather than those complainers acknowledging that they should do so. [For those who didn't follow the link back to the April 2018 post that Responder responded to... It was an interchange between mek and I, both of us amazed that some people get upset at other passengers wearing a bathrobe as coverup at the pool instead of some purpose-crafted pool coverup.]
  3. That is the problem. If you have 2,650 passenger, all behaving as if entitled to whatever they personally feel they purchased with their cruise fare, rather than just what the explicit, written promises say they are entitled to, then it is not surprising to have conflicts such as this between passengers. The reality is that the industry has been the hospitality (from the Latin hospes, which literally means hosting of guests) industry since the 14th Century, and that has shaped the expected behaviors of both sides of the transaction over and above the Uniform Commercial Code since that time. As guests become less respectful of the guest obligation, don't be surprised when hosts do so as well. Just don't complain about being treated as if you're staying in a storage locker and eating at McDonald's, given your preference to eschew the host/guest relationship.
  4. AirBnB is only problematic when something goes wrong. 😉
  5. Clearly the cost is going to reflect what a typical user will do with the service, rather than what an outlier will do with the service. We kept in touch with our cat sitter, checked in on our pets via security cameras in between cat sitter visits, posted selected photos from the past day on social media to share our joyous occasion (anniversary) and wonderful experiences with family and friends in real time, and made some critical changes to arrangements for our trip home.
  6. I think practically everyone in the thread has made their beliefs known rather effectively. I think there are some people who don't like the fact that their beliefs are considered insulting or elitist, etc., but that's not really a failure to communicate. It's the opposite though: akav8er's claims are without merit. As such, Holland America is perhaps not the right line for akav8er; those claims don't say anything about whether it is the right line for you. There is a lot to be sad about with regard to how society has changed. What people wear to the grocery store isn't one of them. As a matter of fact, those things that have "sadly" changed are so severe and cause such harm to those most vulnerable in our society, that it is arguably offensive to even try to put what people wear to the grocery store in the same category. Amen. It is up to Holland America to decide, judge and take action. Our obligation - a guests' obligation that has been inherent in the code of hospitality for as long as any of us have been alive, and unlike dress codes, hasn't changed one bit - is to defer to our host in matters like this, and without a doubt doing nothing to make their other guests feel unwelcome.
  7. Not anymore. It's a mid-grade, mass-market cruise line. That's rather the point. "Traditional" cruising is a niche interest, now, just like expedition cruising, with the difference that expedition cruise is becoming more mainstream while traditional cruising is becoming less mainstream. Regardless, just as those who wanted expedition cruising had to choose boutique cruise lines for that in the past, those who want traditional cruising will now have to do so. No, that's not an opinion. It's a statement of fact for which there is overwhelming evidence here on Cruise Critic alone. Formal attire is increasingly viewed as fussy, not a sign of respect. I'm not talking about how I view formal attire; I'm talking about how it is increasingly viewed by society in general. If you don't see that as a statement of fact that there really isn't much I can do to help you understand the situation within which you find yourself. And that's the crux of the issue, I think: Those with this niche interest in traditional cruising don't want to have to pay the premium necessary to cruise a boutique cruise line that serves their niche interest (and in the process lose the frequent cruise benefits that they relish). They want to go back to a time when most everyone agreed with their personal preferences and they weren't increasingly the odd person out, as is the case today.
  8. I don't think you realize it, but you contradicted yourself within the space of two sentences. And that's really why threads like this get so heated: The people trying to defend their promotion of contexts for formal attire are apparently so desperate to do so that in the process they fail to realize how their advocacy is a baseless, and somewhat petty, insult. You're not "leading by example", blizzardboy. If anything, you're actually trailing by example. And there is nothing wrong with that; just as long as you don't consider it "leading". But the tail end of your contradiction is also worth highlighting: Some folks who are "trailing by example" will refuse to recognize that that is the reality, and will be unable to see their choice as no better than the other choice that other people make.
  9. Very true; there is a rapidly shrinking group of customers like that. The question boils down to when they can expect to have to switch to a non-mass-market (read: more expensive) cruise line that serves their niche interests. It wasn't ten years ago. It may not have even been five years ago. It does seem now, though, that that time has been reached.
  10. Some of us once danced The Hustle; that doesn't mean that that dance is some kind of paragon. People used to do a lot of thing that society now generally realizes were superfluous or otherwise a relic to be left behind.
  11. That would deprive passengers who disagree with you the MDR food and service. Holland America's rules clearly indicate that they recognize that those folks contribute more heavily to their cruise line's success than those who agree with you. This is quite significantly a fight between different perspectives. Understand that for decades your "side" won. Things have finally and thoroughly changed. Holland America understands that.
  12. I don't think there's really been a "loss of effort". If anything, the amount of effort has increased markedly over the last decade or so. However, everyone isn't necessarily directing their efforts in the manner you personally would dictate. That's an outmoded point-of-view. Formal attire is increasingly viewed as fussy, not a sign of respect. Respect, by contrast, is shown by acknowledging each individual's inherent dignity regardless of what they wear. Holland America is not a formal cruise line.
  13. I've found that that generally is due to a presumption that one's own situation is everyone else's situation, a presumption that one's own priorities are everyone else's, or some similar type of inward focus. To truly understand what is being discussed in the thread, it is necessary to take what other say as true for them, even if it doesn't mesh with your own situation. There are likely things that work the other way: Perhaps you're not a techie. If not, and you struggle to do things for which techies have no trouble, they could "never quite understand" what your issue is if they adopted an exclusively inward focus.
  14. Perhaps. "Breaking up the monotony" was clearly the impetus underlying rotating dining room arrangements, and the exponential growth of alternative dining venues aboard ship, within the American cruise market. That really underscores the point, though, doesn't it? The point is to satisfy customer needs - providing variety in the diversion. The question is "Which variety?" and invariably, in the long-run, the answer has to go back to the point of the variety: satisfying customer needs, and that of course means as the customer changes the way diversion will be delivered must change. Formal nights are sometimes touted as harkening back to some bygone era, romanticized by "Titanic", but they really never were. The end of ocean liners as transportation irrevocably changed the industry, and what came later was always a simulation, and to a great extent a fabricated fiction crafted based on an understanding of what customers wanted. You said that formal nights serve the same function as themed dinners. I would go further than that: They were the (only) themed dinners offered on our first cruises. Then other themed dinners were offered, a reflection of new understandings about what fabricated fictions customers wanted at that particular time. And just like other types of themed dinners have fallen out of favor with passengers and are no longer offered, we'll likely see the same thing with formal night, because there's nothing about them that is fundamentally different from other themed dinners. The only thing unique about formal dinners is how vitriolically passionate some squeaky wheels are about their passing, and consequently how disproportionately (more) slowly the cruise lines have to go reducing and/or eliminating them, while still being able to control the message. And of course this isn't unique to cruising or even cruise dining. What can be more traditional than Christmas? Yet, the last week should have reminded any of us with a long memory just how much the way we celebrate Christmas has radically changed decade after decade.
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