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Phone use in dining areas

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One of my pet peeves are people that go to a restaurant and are constantly on their phones, either texting, talking on their phones, shopping online, playing games, etc. while at a sit down restaurant.  With the introduction of Medallion Net, which is great, by the way, is etiquette set aside as to where people actually don't think twice about texting and even talking or surfing the web on the phone via WiFi while a nice restaurant? 

I can see using one's  phone to take photos or even checking on the scheduling for evening events but, to pull out your phone, plunk it on the table and then answer it or text all throughout dinner just irks me.  Maybe I am just  too much judgmental but, I am seeing this happen more and more frequently in upscale restaurants and now on cruiseships, as well.  I can see if you are on a cruise with your kids and the sitter needs to message you about something, medical emergencies of one of your travel mates,  etc ... short of that, I'm seeing a disturbing trend on cruises that didn't exist before such great WiFi capabilities were installed on cruises.

Is it ever appropriate to seated for dinner and be using your phone the whole time, especially when seated with others?  Should people excuse themselves and go conduct such business outside of the restaurant?  Maybe it is ok in the IC or buffet ... but in a sit down restaurant?  

I guess I might officially be an old timer ... or maybe good manners are a thing of the past?  I don't know ... what do you all think??  

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It bothers you, so keep it to yourself.  there is no need for cruiseships to ban phone use in a dining room or anyplace else unless taking pictures invades someone's privacy.  We used to be a civil society where we were able to converse with other people but we also kept our mouths shut about what we didn't like.  Now we are uncivil in just about all aspects of life.

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It is commonplace now and nothing to get upset about. Everyone is on their phones all the time.  Talking on the phone at dinner is rude, I agree with that, and if more than just a few seconds it should be taken outside.  But texting and doing whatever else is just normal.  I sometimes take my phone out while dining to show my partner something or perhaps there is something I want to take a picture of.  The other night we made conversation with a couple seated next to us in a restaurant I took out my phone to make notes of some restaurants they recommended.  It's just part of life nowadays.

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16 minutes ago, Cruise Raider said:

One of my pet peeves are people that go to a restaurant and are constantly on their phones, either texting, talking on their phones, shopping online, playing games, etc. while at a sit down restaurant.  With the introduction of Medallion Net, which is great, by the way, is etiquette set aside as to where people actually don't think twice about texting and even talking or surfing the web on the phone via WiFi while a nice restaurant? 

I can see using one's  phone to take photos or even checking on the scheduling for evening events but, to pull out your phone, plunk it on the table and then answer it or text all throughout dinner just irks me.  Maybe I am just  too much judgmental but, I am seeing this happen more and more frequently in upscale restaurants and now on cruiseships, as well.  I can see if you are on a cruise with your kids and the sitter needs to message you about something, medical emergencies of one of your travel mates,  etc ... short of that, I'm seeing a disturbing trend on cruises that didn't exist before such great WiFi capabilities were installed on cruises.

Is it ever appropriate to seated for dinner and be using your phone the whole time, especially when seated with others?  Should people excuse themselves and go conduct such business outside of the restaurant?  Maybe it is ok in the IC or buffet ... but in a sit down restaurant?  

I guess I might officially be an old timer ... or maybe good manners are a thing of the past?  I don't know ... what do you all think??  

The "I don't like it so ban it culture returns"  Sorry but people do things in different ways. There is an alternative to things happening around you that you do not agree with.

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I have not noticed any excess. Just have fun and ignore the adjacent tables.

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I haven't noticed it on my most recent trips. I have dined alone mostly but I do people watch. If I were at a group table and someone talked on their phone the whole time, I'd simply ask the Maitre D' for a different table the following night. I agree that it has become increasingly common to take calls in public. I have heard some rather "interesting" phone calls standing in a check out line, sitting at a bar, in the waiting area at the doctor's office, etc. 

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it's the new normal ... people at the table are prolly texting the people across from them ...

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Actually making/taking a call in a restaurant (depends on the restaurant though) is bad manners according to most people.  However, looking at the phone or taking pics of food is all too common and not bad manners.  I think it is just a way of life now. 

 

I do see people in restaurants on their phones and while I don't make it a practice, I try not to judge since I have no idea what their purpose is.  I also do it sometimes and wonder if people think my husband and I went out to eat to not talk to eachother.  We are empty nesters and do EVERYTHING together so we talk A LOT most of the time.  Now, when we've gone out to a nicer dinner I definitely give my husband all of my attention since that was really the point in the first place.  Just because I would not do something though, does not mean that other people think or feel the same way about it.  To each their own.

 

I enjoy looking at my phone or tablet and reading, texting, emailing when I have downtime.  It's amazing to be able to do that in my opinion.  I do like to people watch as well and just observe people's quirky ways.  We all have our quirks!

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1 minute ago, voljeep said:

it's the new normal ... people at the table are prolly texting the people across from them ...

Guilty!  Usually when we are people watching and we don't want the "people" to hear us.  😂

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Talking on a phone in a restaurant or bar is about as rude as could be. I do not want to know about your personal life.  I have actually stopped going to restaurants that allow it. 

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As we always secure a table for two, this doesn't really bother us.  We carry on with our own conversation and eating our meal and just ignore what everyone else is doing.  I would not sit at a table with people who did this throughout the meal.  When our kids and grandkids come for dinner they would never dream of bringing their phone to the table.

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If a person speaking on a phone at a dinner table is not using a voice any louder than s/he would be using if talking to the person or people they are dining with, then I don't care one whit.  Why would anyone be bothered by a voice that is the same decibel level as a normal speaking voice?  If I am at a different table, I don't care if you are talking to the person sitting across from you, or to a person sitting across the ocean, as long as the tone is civil and subdued.  Now, if I were seated at the table with a person who couldn't get off the phone, I would care a little bit more.  At a table of 8, it probably wouldn't irk me so much.  If I was seated at a table for four and my tablemate couldn't stop talking on the phone, I would ask to be reseated in hopes that my next dinner companions would be more interactive.  Personally, we have a "no electronics at the dinner table" rule and follow it.  But I can't impose my personal rules on others.

Edited by JimmyVWine

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What did thee people do 20 years ago when there were no smart phones?  They carried on conversation with dinner mates and took time to relax on a cruise.  It seems to be the new norm that people are constantly tied to their phone whether on a cruise ship or anywhere else.  Does it make life better - I don't think so.  And the new norm is not necessarily a better thing.  We're all entitled to our opinions and it doesn't mean that one is right and the other is wrong.  Personally I just put my phone in the safe when we get on board and leave it there unless we are actually leaving the ship.

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Before I retired, I carried two cell phones.  I would turn the personal phone off whenever I was in a waiting room, dinner table, meetings etc. but when my work phone rang I needed to answer it immediately.  That said, when that happened, I would excuse myself and take my conversation to a different area.  I do think it is rude for somebody to have a cell phone conversation at my restaurant table.  I also think it is just as rude for somebody to be using profane language in earshot of others.  Sometimes they're doing both at the same time.  I don't believe I have to be subjected to that.  I'd ask to be seated somewhere else or to have the offending person moved to another table.

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1 hour ago, TM said:

What did thee people do 20 years ago when there were no smart phones?  They carried on conversation with dinner mates and took time to relax on a cruise.  It seems to be the new norm that people are constantly tied to their phone whether on a cruise ship or anywhere else.  Does it make life better - I don't think so.  And the new norm is not necessarily a better thing.  We're all entitled to our opinions and it doesn't mean that one is right and the other is wrong.  Personally I just put my phone in the safe when we get on board and leave it there unless we are actually leaving the ship.

I like your style!  I actually mentioned to someone on CC today that I'd do a Trip Report for our 7-14 Dec Sky Princess trip...but it wouldn't be live because I like to disconnect from the world when I'm on vacation.  We never buy the Wi-Fi package because we don't want to be tempting to call back home.  It's all about relaxing and enjoying each other's company (although there are 12 family and friends in the group this time).

 

I do agree that taking pictures of food or checking on a scheduled event are very acceptable.  But, we, as a family, make a concerted effort, even when not cruising or on vacation, to leave the phones down when it's dinner time!  Enjoy each others company instead of doing whatever it is you do on your phone!  LOL.

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3 hours ago, Cruise Raider said:

I guess I might officially be an old timer ... or maybe good manners are a thing of the past?  I don't know ... what do you all think??  

 

Send them a link to this thread?

 

Also, from reading the replies, some things are acceptable -- checking a schedule...

 

If someone across the table from me is using their phone, how do I determine if

what they are doing is an acceptable behavious?

 

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13 minutes ago, Daniel A said:

or to have the offending person moved to another table.

how has that worked out ??

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I would do it but when I bring my flip phone out everybody laughs at me!

 

Kidding aside, I'm with the OP, especially at dinner....I take it as "I'm not interested in you or what you have to say".    

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Some people are still working for a living, own their own business, still have children at home, or parents with health care issues.  Just because we go on vacation doesn't mean we get to turn off our responsibilities to other people.  The cruise lines are aware of this and that is why they improve their services on a regular basis … so they can stay in business themselves by bringing in people who would otherwise pick a different type of vacation to go on.

 

Unless you are in port I doubt you are going to get a "call" but you could need to use skype or WhatsApp or something similar and in that case you get up from the table to have the conversation, especially if it is a private matter.  But checking your phone to make sure someone doesn't need you for an emergency or similar, or answering a text from someone in your life, is just part of the reality of most people these days.  And just because you are "retired" or so wealthy that you can leave all of your responsibilities while on vacay doesn't excuse you from being judgmental or a snob.  That holier than thou is why more and more people ask for tables for two rather than deal with other people's attitudes and assumptions.

 

The cruise lines are not just marketing to the people who have been around on cruises forever.  The only way they are going to survive is if they market to a much broader group of consumers.  Geez this sounds like people who complain about "certain people" being allowed into the MDR.  

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I was speaking particularly when at a shared table ... I just find it odd that someone would say since it bothers me, I should just keep it to myself and keep my mouth shut.  It seems to be a bit of a Non Sequitur.  

But, you all are right ... I should simply asked to be seated at a table for 2.  What is not right in my face or out of ear shot, I can pretty much ignore it.  When seated at a table where my table mates are on the phone throughout the dinner, I guess I could just get up and ask to be reseated elsewhere.   

Wonder what some people would think if someone next to them took off their socks and shoes and started clipping their toenails ... hahaha!!  Now now ... I am just kidding!!  

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36 minutes ago, pablo222 said:

 

Send them a link to this thread?

 

 

 

 

That would be hilarious!!  

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28 minutes ago, voljeep said:

how has that worked out ??

I don't eat in the MDR just for this reason.  I prefer to select my own table in the buffet or have a private table in specialty.  I have asked for a person using loud and profane language to be moved away from my table in a nice restaurant.  The few times I asked, the person was asked to leave the restaurant.  (This isn't going to work at a fast food joint or a dive, but you should expect a different level of manners depending on the type of dining facility.)  As far as a person carrying on a phone conversation at the table, there is nothing wrong with politely asking the caller to take the call somewhere more private.  If they refuse, then I have a decision to make - stay and put up with it or leave the table.

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Me darling wife of forty-six years and I dine at a table for two.  We actually talk with one another.:classic_love:  We observed a couple at another table who were on their separate phones before, during, and after the meal.  I thought that it was quite sad.

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