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Mariner Luncheon Guests


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We are  veteran HAL cruisers w/ 15 cruises.  We have a suite cruise coming up,  we are treating 2 family members to a first time cruise.  My Question:  on Mariner Luncheon day may we bring our 2 guests to the luncheon?

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Personally we never did bring family members in the same circumstance and would never do. In my opinion you could do 3 things: 1) ask guest service what to do 2) donot ask and bring them (risk small but existing that their is a shortage of chairs if every Mariner shows up (and HAL has many).  3) do not go yourself and ask the ships tiles at guest service afterwards.   Wish you a happy cruise.

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5 minutes ago, Djptcp said:

The Mariner Luncheon is for Mariners. 

Generally I agree with this approach, but in reality being a Mariner involves just having cruise on one cruise on ANY of the CCL lines, so not a big deal to earn IMO.  Therefore I would just bring them along - no one will care or check (too many people coming in at once).

 

 

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My opinion; the luncheon really this isn't a big deal, BUT it is a Mariner Perk. There usually is a greeter at the dining room entrance, and I have seen times where they check the invitation. I always bring mine with me. So, letting your guests know about the perk for Mariners shows them HAL does value it's Mariners. It just might encourage them to return for another HAL cruise. 

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Several years ago my neighbor in the next door cabin, sailing for the first time, told me she went to the dining room for lunch and found it closed for Mariners lunch.

The DRM saw her, told her it was a special luncheon and invited her in. When I talked with her later she was beyond thrilled. I think the DRM made a customer for life.

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1 hour ago, DaveOKC said:

Therefore I would just bring them along - no one will care or check (too many people coming in at once).

I've never seen anyone checked or refused, but they do ask us to RSVP so that they will have an approximate head count. If too many extra people are brought along there could be a problem of not enough places set up.  

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1 hour ago, MAVIP said:

do not go yourself and ask the ships tiles at guest service afterwards.   

We haven't been to the last three lunches... we just request the tiles and receive them... we prefer the Dive in for lunch (except for embarkation!)

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4 minutes ago, catl331 said:

I've never seen anyone checked or refused, but they do ask us to RSVP so that they will have an approximate head count. If too many extra people are brought along there could be a problem of not enough places set up.  

 

On our cruises over the past two years, we have not even been asked to RSVP.  That surprised me.

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2 hours ago, TonyC1952 said:

First time Mariners can also attend the luncheon. Just bring your friends with you. We've never been asked our cabin number, and we've never had to show an invitation on 11 different cruises.

 

Not necessarily true. If a passenger has sailed on a sister line, like Princess or Cunard, they board as a one-star Mariner, and should receive an invitation to the luncheon. If they're on their first cruise on HAL with no cruises on a sister line, then they have no stars and are not supposed to receive an invitation. Whether one can get in without an invitation varies depending on how closely someone is checking.

 

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18 minutes ago, Betty in Cozumel said:

We will be sailing HAL in Feb/March for the 2nd time so I guess we are 1* Mariners and one of the perks was the Mariners Lunch.  When is this usually held?

 

On a sea day - depends on your itinerary and how many sea days there are.  I’ve never seen it on the last sea day if that helps.

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3 minutes ago, kazu said:

 

On a sea day - depends on your itinerary and how many sea days there are.  I’ve never seen it on the last sea day if that helps.

 

Thanks kazu.  We always eat in the MDR on sea days so what makes this Mariners Lunch so special?

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1 hour ago, Betty in Cozumel said:

 

Thanks kazu.  We always eat in the MDR on sea days so what makes this Mariners Lunch so special?

 

Some free sparkling wine and your tile (which you can get anyways). Usually greetings by the Captain and a few words.  Menu is set with limited choices.  Some people love it and some that have done it enough,  skip it.  

 



 

 

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If you sit at a table with strangers, you can compare your HAL experiences.  It makes for interesting conversation, as some people have traveled extensively with HAL for decades.  Of course, you can also talk to these passengers at other meals, particularly if you select the open dining.

 

Personally, it depends on what we're doing that day.  We've probably been to half the luncheons in the 11 years we've been sailing with HAL.  Since I'm allergic to mushrooms and MSG, I base my decision on how much of each is on the menu.  I normally have to check with the maître d' several days before to determine if the chef can accommodate me.  Then, too, the waiter has to be on his toes to find "my special order."  Most of the time, I simply don't risk it. 

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I've been on 10 HAL cruises, have received a 3 star Mariner pin but I've never received an invitation to a Mariner Lunch or received a tile (what is a "tile" anyway?).  I haven't received any of the other 3 star perks either, as far as I know.

 

Is this because all of those HAL cruises have been full charter cruises, and those don't "count"?   The Mariner Lunch sounds enjoyable, worth checking out at least once - a few words from the captain and meeting others who have cruised extensively.

 

I have another HAL cruise coming up in March, so I am wondering if I need to investigate how to receive the lunch invite, the magazine, the discounts, etc.  Since I haven't seen any advantage to being a 3 or 4 star Mariner, I've been booking (non-theme, non-charter) cruises on other lines

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If you would like to bring family members to the Mariners Lunch, please check first so the dining room staff know how many guests to cater for. We had a bad experience on the Zuiderdam last year on our Baltic cruise. We turned up, clutching our invitation, and there was a mad rush as soon as the dining room opened. We could not find a seat and were then ushered upstairs along with another couple. They found a table set for lunch, we were at a table that was not set. A lady officer then arrived and pointedly told us to go away and come back for the second sitting! We pointed out that we actually had an invitation to the first lunch and expected to be accommodated, but we left anyway. On the way out we met the Captain and Hotel Manager who apologised and said everyone had brought their friends and relatives with them! How they knew this I’m not sure, as no one checked invitations on arrival. It was chaos. We were very miffed by the whole thing, and did not return for the second sitting. The Hotel Manager said he would send our tiles to our room. We only ever received one tile. When we asked for the second tile at Guest Services they promised to send it to our room but never did. What was also upsetting was that we had four family members travelling with us on their first Holland America cruise, and we had been telling them how nice the Mariners Lunch was, and that they could experience this if they took another Holland America cruise in the future. I know a lot of people don’t enjoy the lunch, but we do, but were used to the Mariners Lunch on the Maasdam, which has always been a very well run, gracious occasion. The cruise was otherwise very enjoyable.

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28 minutes ago, doctork said:

I've been on 10 HAL cruises, have received a 3 star Mariner pin but I've never received an invitation to a Mariner Lunch or received a tile (what is a "tile" anyway?).  I haven't received any of the other 3 star perks either, as far as I know.

 

Is this because all of those HAL cruises have been full charter cruises, and those don't "count"?   The Mariner Lunch sounds enjoyable, worth checking out at least once - a few words from the captain and meeting others who have cruised extensively.

 

I have another HAL cruise coming up in March, so I am wondering if I need to investigate how to receive the lunch invite, the magazine, the discounts, etc.  Since I haven't seen any advantage to being a 3 or 4 star Mariner, I've been booking (non-theme, non-charter) cruises on other lines

 

If you have a 3-star pin, your cruises "counted" toward your Mariner level.  But perhaps HAL doesn't do a Mariner luncheon on a charter. And it's possible that the 3-star perks (25% off wine packages, for example) aren't available on charters. 

 

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Thanks!  I wondered if this had to do with different offerings on a full charter.  On Disney, we do get the perks of being repeat cruisers even though the cruises are full charters, but the offerings are different from HAL.

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15 hours ago, doctork said:

(what is a "tile" anyway?)

3.75" Delft-style ceramic tiles in many designs.  Examples can be seen on ebay:

https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_trksid=p2334524.m570.l1313.TR1.TRC0.A0.H1.Xholland+america+tiles.TRS1&_nkw=holland+america+tiles&_sacat=0&LH_TitleDesc=0&_odkw=holland+america+tiles&_osacat=0

Edited by catl331
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3 minutes ago, catl331 said:

Are people really BUYING tiles? OMG pt barnium was right....

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9 minutes ago, rucrazy said:

Are people really BUYING tiles? OMG pt barnium was right....

Not from ebay, but we've picked up a couple at flea markets because at one point we were trying to get one for each ship in the fleet.  

Edited by catl331
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