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Does anyone know how long the test is going to last?

 

I am first time HAL cruiser on Zuiderdam in May (and no HAL didn't mention this before final payment).   I rarely order a second entrée but I am usually not impressed with MDR food quality, so I do order another entrée occasionally if I really don't care for the first one.

 

I am not cruising solo this time, but I also am perturbed that I would have to pay 200% of fare and still be charged for additional entrée when I already paid for it.

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13 hours ago, rkacruiser said:

 

The next time that I drive to Florida, this is a cruise experience that I want to try.  What I read on CC on their message board intrigues me.  Particularly with the addition of the former Costa Classica to their fleet, that increases my interest.

I've been on the Grand Classica twice and Grand Celebration once.  The Grand Classica definitely has some appeal!  Classic, in a good way.  Enjoyed the outdoor spaces.  

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9 hours ago, scpirate said:

John Healds of carnival confirmed it was an experiment they were trying on Holland America.the carnival people are scared it is coming their way.they have no shame they will order 2-3 entrees or what have you on a regular basis.the cruise lines are crying about food waste.trying to squeeze out a few more dollars with out increasing prices again so quickly after the recent increases on almost everything.

Why would they feel shame?  

 

Carnival used to offer Lunch in the MDR.  I got a much smaller portion there than I did at the Lido after they cancelled lunch.  Carnival did that to cut back on workers and save money.  

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2 hours ago, LMaxwell said:

Why would they feel shame?  

 

Carnival used to offer Lunch in the MDR.  I got a much smaller portion there than I did at the Lido after they cancelled lunch.  Carnival did that to cut back on workers and save money.  

 

Does management "saving money" also result in lower passenger costs?

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I'm not too happy to hear about this new feature in the MDR. We only order 2nd entrees for things like extra lobster,  when the first dish is inedible or not cooked to order. I think the thing that would piss me off the most would be to have this come as a surprise after I had boarded. HAL is pretty good at sending me notices of changes prior to embarkation. Things like port changes, docking time, etc.. Why didn't they notify the passengers of this beforehand? 

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9 minutes ago, drowelf said:

Why didn't they notify the passengers of this beforehand?

 

HAL rollout of most new/different things is overall, imho, about a D-

To me, the website is a clear demonstration of how poorly HAL plans any kind of rollout of anything.  I often wonder if they bring in random friends of staff, and say "here, do this..." with no guidance, no plan, no communicating about the vision of the end result , no contingency for failure.  Not long ago, there was a post from someone onboard a ship who was denied purchasing a wine package, supposedly because a new one was being intro'd.  (That got sorted, I think, but again -- pretty typical of HAL any time something "new" comes along.)

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I've read about 30 pages of comments, but finally decided to just chime in for whatever it's worth.

 

I don't care if you order one item or 5, I don't care if you count calories or choose not too.   I cruise knowing I will eat too much (and I usually do)....if I cruised more than once or twice a year I would probably be more concerned about my calorie count.   

 

But here is the part that upsets me.    I booked my cruise on NA with the anticipation of ordering more than one entree if I wanted....that's part of cruising for me.   NOT being told in advance this was being done I think is unfair.....Call it discrimination or whatever, but why my cruise and not others?   If this was fleet wide I would still be upset, but more understanding of the trial.    

 

For instance, if HAL made a blanket statement that on Jan 1, 2020 they were going to make this move across all ships, then we could all complain equally.   But to choose only a few ships is very unfair to those that booked without knowing this was going to happen.

 

Stupid move on HAL's part......

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Based on some comments I read elsewhere, I've been further pondering how HAL decided to roll out this supposed "test" of the second entree upcharge on only a few ships, with no announcement in advance and no transparent timeline.

 

One wonders if the ships selected were carefully chosen to be ones where passengers were less likely to complain, thus "reinforcing" HAL's viewpoint that customers don't care about the upcharge?  One also wonders how many cruisers (such as myself, were I on board) may not have even been aware of the surcharge as I normally do not order more than one entree?  Yet I would have definitely NOT been in favor of it if asked my opinion on a mailed survey.

 

Just seems very dodgy how the whole thing is being implemented...

 

 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, cruisemom42 said:

Based on some comments I read elsewhere, I've been further pondering how HAL decided to roll out this supposed "test" of the second entree upcharge on only a few ships, with no announcement in advance and no transparent timeline.

 

One wonders if the ships selected were carefully chosen to be ones where passengers were less likely to complain, thus "reinforcing" HAL's viewpoint that customers don't care about the upcharge?  One also wonders how many cruisers (such as myself, were I on board) may not have even been aware of the surcharge as I normally do not order more than one entree?  Yet I would have definitely NOT been in favor of it if asked my opinion on a mailed survey.

 

Just seems very dodgy how the whole thing is being implemented...

 

 

 

I pondered this, too.  It occurs to me that possibly Carnival chose the path of least resistance on which to implement this across all of their brands.  We all seem to agree that more seniors cruise with HAL than with Princess or certainly Carnival.  Seniors are lighter eaters who probably wouldn't object too much.  After this extra fee is well-established with HAL, it would be easy for other lines to follow suit.  

 

Maybe I'm a conspiracy theorist here, but if it were my company, and I wanted to get this going, I'd start with HAL.  (I'm sure this point is being discussed over on the Princess and Carnival boards.  I don't look at those to know.)

Edited by AncientWanderer

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2 hours ago, AncientWanderer said:

 

I'm sure this point is being discussed over on the Princess and Carnival boards.  I don't look at those to know.

 

I haven't looked myself either, but I've heard that the Carnival boards are buzzing over this... mostly worrying that it will be a slippery slope with the brand, and that it's only a matter of time before it comes their way. And they're not too happy about it..

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4 hours ago, cruisemom42 said:

Based on some comments I read elsewhere, I've been further pondering how HAL decided to roll out this supposed "test" of the second entree upcharge on only a few ships, with no announcement in advance and no transparent timeline.

 

One wonders if the ships selected were carefully chosen to be ones where passengers were less likely to complain, thus "reinforcing" HAL's viewpoint that customers don't care about the upcharge?  One also wonders how many cruisers (such as myself, were I on board) may not have even been aware of the surcharge as I normally do not order more than one entree?  Yet I would have definitely NOT been in favor of it if asked my opinion on a mailed survey.

 

Just seems very dodgy how the whole thing is being implemented...

 

 

It could simply be that these ships already have the technology for tracking and billing in place and readily available to all MDR stewards. 

 

Havent i I read that some of the ships use iPads to send orders to the kitchen, and hasn’t HAL offered upsell special entrees in some of the MDRs?

 

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Just got off NCL's Getaway . It was a good cruise but Norwegian justifiably has a well earned reputation as the nickel and dime cruiseline . And yet the waiter laughed when I made what I though was a joke about charging for extra mains . They , like all cruise lines , have relatively small portions . This is deliberate to reduce wastage and allow passengers to try various options . Ship portions are much smaller then portions on land .

I am shocked that the pointy heads have decided to use HAL to try out this "innovation" . Ridiculous ! I may have to rethink which is the nickel and dime cruiseline .

On 3/12/2019 at 5:33 AM, anniegb said:

I never eat Surf and Turf - I am allergic to shellfish.

 

Maybe I should order double starters and surf and turf and offer my entree to the table to share?

 

Annie

Perhaps you could sell it for $5 . :classic_biggrin:

6 hours ago, AncientWanderer said:

Maybe I'm a conspiracy theorist here, but if it were my company, and I wanted to get this going, I'd start with HAL.  (I'm sure this point is being discussed over on the Princess and Carnival boards.  I don't look at those to know.)

I have never seen anybody order more then 2 mains on Holland . I have seen 3+ ordered on Carnival . Plus at the lower price point and more new cruisers , it would seem to me to be the place to try this idiotic idea . 

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1 hour ago, richstowe said:

Just got off NCL's Getaway . It was a good cruise but Norwegian justifiably has a well earned reputation as the nickel and dime cruiseline . And yet the waiter laughed when I made what I though was a joke about charging for extra mains . They , like all cruise lines , have relatively small portions . This is deliberate to reduce wastage and allow passengers to try various options . Ship portions are much smaller then portions on land .

I am shocked that the pointy heads have decided to use HAL to try out this "innovation" . Ridiculous ! I may have to rethink which is the nickel and dime cruiseline .

Perhaps you could sell it for $5 . :classic_biggrin:

I have never seen anybody order more then 2 mains on Holland . I have seen 3+ ordered on Carnival . Plus at the lower price point and more new cruisers , it would seem to me to be the place to try this idiotic idea . 

 

Back when we first started cruising our waiters would be disappointed if we only ordered only one entree.  They would often bring us extras and encouraged everyone at the table to order lots of food so we could try as much as possible.  We were told if we see something we like, we should order it because it wouldn't be on the menu again for the rest of the cruise.  20 something cruises later I guess I still have the same philosophy.  We just got off of the Koningsdam last week and over the 10 day cruise I ordered 3 entrees several times and 4 entrees once.  Sometimes they were all delicious and other times I was glad that I had others to choose from.

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I got to thinking about this thread today and kept wondering why people as so upset with those of us who order more than one entree.   Do I get upset because some of those passengers are in a Neptune Suites?   They could just as easily stay in a regular room as to not "waste" so much space on a cruise ship.   Bottom line is, I don't judge them, why judge me?.....Just food for thought without an extra charge :classic_tongue:

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8 minutes ago, cruzin4us said:

I got to thinking about this thread today and kept wondering why people as so upset with those of us who order more than one entree.   Do I get upset because some of those passengers are in a Neptune Suites?   They could just as easily stay in a regular room as to not "waste" so much space on a cruise ship.   Bottom line is, I don't judge them, why judge me?.....Just food for thought without an extra charge :classic_tongue:

 

Don''t assume this is only coming from other passengers. Cruise industry has to answer to outside environmental forces too:

 

  • Nutrient pollution derived from continued disposal of food wastes in restricted areas.

The cruise industry manages this problem by a variable combination of waste minimization, recycling and incineration. Thus, an amount of garbage is retained onboard and landed onshore for recycling in processing plants, a certain percentage is incinerated onboard and the ash discharged at sea, and some solid waste (food and other organic waste) is also disposed of into the ocean.

 

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Posted (edited)

Environmentalists target the "all you can eat" cruise passenger mentality:

 

It’s tougher nowadays for cruise ships to bypass law,” said Raymond Scattone, an environmental studies professor at Florida International University. “Say a cruise ship spills waste in the ocean. There are now GPS systems on them, so the government can keep track.”

 

“So more cruise ships are more protective of what they do. Cruise ships store the waste and take it to disposal facilities on shore,” Scattone said. “It’s a lot better than it used to be and most cruise ships are following law and regulations.

 

“However, food waste is a big issue that still needs to be under control in cruise ships,” he said. “Most cruise ships have all-you-can-eat buffets.”

Edited by OlsSalt

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2 hours ago, OlsSalt said:

Environmentalists target the "all you can eat" cruise passenger mentality:

 

It’s tougher nowadays for cruise ships to bypass law,” said Raymond Scattone, an environmental studies professor at Florida International University. “Say a cruise ship spills waste in the ocean. There are now GPS systems on them, so the government can keep track.”

 

“So more cruise ships are more protective of what they do. Cruise ships store the waste and take it to disposal facilities on shore,” Scattone said. “It’s a lot better than it used to be and most cruise ships are following law and regulations.

 

“However, food waste is a big issue that still needs to be under control in cruise ships,” he said. “Most cruise ships have all-you-can-eat buffets.”

 

 

I get that but why don't they compost it?   I don't throw any food away at home except the bones....and I only do that because the coyotes get into my compost pile.   I know this probably sounds like a stupid post, but I'm serious.

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Posted (edited)
On 3/13/2019 at 8:15 AM, OlsSalt said:

 

Does management "saving money" also result in lower passenger costs?

If you consider that being able to reduce the rate of fare increase is a form of lower passenger costs, then yes.

 

I would suspect that the change is as much if not more related to the impact of the additional entrees on staff workload and dining room/kitchen flow as much as it has to do with food waste. That is why they are targeting the MDR and not the buffet.

 

Every additional entree has to be plated, transferred, served, cleared, etc. All of that impacts the serving staff and the kitchen, especially if they are served one after another.  

Edited by RDC1

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16 minutes ago, cruzin4us said:

 

 

I get that but why don't they compost it?   I don't throw any food away at home except the bones....and I only do that because the coyotes get into my compost pile.   I know this probably sounds like a stupid post, but I'm serious.

 

Things you cannot compost - which sounds a lot like most uneaten dinner entrees and buffet items: 

Meat, fat, grease, oils, bones
n/a
Do not break down, can coat materials and “preserve” them, can attract pests.

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In another thread this week it was announced that HAL has started building its next Pinnacle-class ship. There was discussion (and lamentation) about what this means for the smaller ships still left in HAL's fleet. 

 

I suppose HAL is also being "environmentally aware" by carrying more passengers in one, newer (potentially 'cleaner') ship than in, say, two older smaller ones.  Yet I suspect that doesn't meet with the same level of acceptance among some cheerleaders here. :classic_dry:

 

For me, the cruise lines started setting themselves up for these problems when they decided some time ago to increase capacity dramatically and keep basic fares steady. Now it seems to have become a sort of "mantra" among mass-market level companies that they cannot significantly increase base fares, only cut costs and create auxiliary revenue streams....

 

 

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1 hour ago, cruisemom42 said:

In another thread this week it was announced that HAL has started building its next Pinnacle-class ship. There was discussion (and lamentation) about what this means for the smaller ships still left in HAL's fleet. 

 

I suppose HAL is also being "environmentally aware" by carrying more passengers in one, newer (potentially 'cleaner') ship than in, say, two older smaller ones.  Yet I suspect that doesn't meet with the same level of acceptance among some cheerleaders here. :classic_dry:

 

For me, the cruise lines started setting themselves up for these problems when they decided some time ago to increase capacity dramatically and keep basic fares steady. Now it seems to have become a sort of "mantra" among mass-market level companies that they cannot significantly increase base fares, only cut costs and create auxiliary revenue streams....

 

 

the cruise industry has always had very limited pricing power. It is a very capital intensive business that is highly competitive with other travel and vacation options. so it is not a new mantra, more a fact of the industry. Very similar to the airline and hotel industry.

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16 hours ago, richstowe said:

Just got off NCL's Getaway . It was a good cruise but Norwegian justifiably has a well earned reputation as the nickel and dime cruiseline . And yet the waiter laughed when I made what I though was a joke about charging for extra mains . They , like all cruise lines , have relatively small portions . This is deliberate to reduce wastage and allow passengers to try various options . Ship portions are much smaller then portions on land .

I am shocked that the pointy heads have decided to use HAL to try out this "innovation" . Ridiculous ! I may have to rethink which is the nickel and dime cruiseline .

Perhaps you could sell it for $5 . :classic_biggrin:

I have never seen anybody order more then 2 mains on Holland . I have seen 3+ ordered on Carnival . Plus at the lower price point and more new cruisers , it would seem to me to be the place to try this idiotic idea . 

I have seen a couple order 4 to 5 entries between them on multiple night. They would taste them, pick what they liked best and eat those 2 and leave the others.

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36 minutes ago, RDC1 said:

the cruise industry has always had very limited pricing power. It is a very capital intensive business that is highly competitive with other travel and vacation options. so it is not a new mantra, more a fact of the industry. Very similar to the airline and hotel industry.

Correct.

The Airline industry however has reached a tipping point, where some airlines are actually starting to IMPROVE their service, eg. By INCREASING the catering budget in order to make them more competitive and the preferred choice. 

Even Ryanair has over the last 24 months been working on delivering a better inflight product.

The US Legacy’s have significantly improved their long-haul product in Sardine Class the last 24 months

The Airline I mostly work for has also significantly improved catering and service-mindedness recently.

why? Because they all realized that at one point, customers say BASTA. Enough is enough. The beancounters have gone too far and realized that customers have a choice, and that price is not the only focus of  most clients, but the overall price/quality IS. 

Those who purely look at the price are not the ideal customer anyhow as they will not buy additional, and very lucrative, products when onboard .

time for the cruise lines to realize this also, before they lose their customer-base to land-side resorts.

 

 

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2 minutes ago, Despegue said:

Correct.

The Airline industry however has reached a tipping point, where some airlines are actually starting to IMPROVE their service, eg. By INCREASING the catering budget in order to make them more competitive and the preferred choice. 

Even Ryanair has over the last 24 months been working on delivering a better inflight product.

The US Legacy’s have significantly improved their long-haul product in Sardine Class the last 24 months

The Airline I mostly work for has also significantly improved catering and service-mindedness recently.

why? Because they all realized that at one point, customers say BASTA. Enough is enough. The beancounters have gone too far and realized that customers have a choice, and that price is not the only focus of  most clients, but the overall price/quality IS. 

Those who purely look at the price are not the ideal customer anyhow as they will not buy additional, and very lucrative, products when onboard .

time for the cruise lines to realize this also, before they lose their customer-base to land-side resorts.

 

 

I love the new Premium Economy being offered now by most airlines on long haul and International flights, if offers something much better than main cabin, but affordable by the masses.

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