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  #1  
Old May 25th, 2012, 06:54 AM
RainbowChaser RainbowChaser is offline
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Default Too late for....on Symphony June 27?

We are thinking of booking on Regal Empires 27 June. My question is: since we won't find out about availability of dining, shore excursions, etc, until we book (with full payment), will it be too late for us to get specialty dining venues or the better excursions? I don't want to book only to find out everything is unavailable for what we want and we have to settle for what's left...
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  #2  
Old May 25th, 2012, 08:39 AM
digtexas digtexas is offline
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I have a friends who booked that cruise, and last time that we spoke, it appeared that the cruise was undersold, so I don't think that you will have issues with dining and shore excursions, etc. My suggestion is to have your TA check out occupancy with Crystal and take it from there. Odds are that you will be just fine. The specialty restaurant maitre d's can usually accommodate you in any case and in St. Petersberg we used a private guide for the first two days, which was wonderful. It is very easy to get around Helsinki, Stockholm and Copenhagen on your own, using the Crystal free shuttle. However I would bet that shore excursions are not sold out, especially the long ones to Berlin.

Good luck!
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  #3  
Old May 25th, 2012, 09:06 AM
Keith1010 Keith1010 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RainbowChaser View Post
We are thinking of booking on Regal Empires 27 June. My question is: since we won't find out about availability of dining, shore excursions, etc, until we book (with full payment), will it be too late for us to get specialty dining venues or the better excursions? I don't want to book only to find out everything is unavailable for what we want and we have to settle for what's left...
No one can guarantee this but I am sure you'll be able to get the specialty restaurant reservations for the cruise.

I would have your TA do two things though.

If you have a preference for dining (early or late) I would have the TA check with Crystal on that for you.

And if you have any specific excursions in mind the TA could check with the land programs group in Los Angeles who could determine whether or not they are available.

Keith
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Old May 25th, 2012, 10:45 AM
ctjon ctjon is offline
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As has been stated other places getting reservations at specialty restaurants as long as you are somewhat flexible as far as time isn't usually too much of a problem. One of the reasons, I assume, that Crystal limits pre-reservations to 1 each per restaurant is so that there will be plenty of space for people to reserve once on board.
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Old May 25th, 2012, 11:39 AM
Keith1010 Keith1010 is online now
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Originally Posted by ctjon View Post
As has been stated other places getting reservations at specialty restaurants as long as you are somewhat flexible as far as time isn't usually too much of a problem. One of the reasons, I assume, that Crystal limits pre-reservations to 1 each per restaurant is so that there will be plenty of space for people to reserve once on board.
The logic behind one reservation at each restaurant is to ensure that each guest has the opportunity to expreience both restaurants. It does not happen very often but once in awhile if you are on a very full cruise it may actually be a challenge to get a reservation, particularly if you need say a table of four or more. Again it is the exception but it does happen.

Keith
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Old May 25th, 2012, 02:35 PM
RainbowChaser RainbowChaser is offline
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I spoke to Crystal and they only have 1 verandah left and all suites already sold out. Only Main Dining (6:15pm) open for that cruise, no Open or Late. It sounds pretty grim as far as availability. They won't be able to tell me anything about specialty dining as it only shows on pcpc once confirmed.
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  #7  
Old May 25th, 2012, 05:43 PM
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KaraokeQueen KaraokeQueen is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RainbowChaser View Post
I spoke to Crystal and they only have 1 verandah left and all suites already sold out. Only Main Dining (6:15pm) open for that cruise, no Open or Late. It sounds pretty grim as far as availability. They won't be able to tell me anything about specialty dining as it only shows on pcpc once confirmed.
The Maitre'd 's on Crystal are worth their weight in gold. Although everything you want appears to be booked, there are often times availability because people leave their dining room assignments and go to the speciality restaurants. If you can be flexible with not knowing until the day of, you should be able to be accommodated in late seating. Also most formal nights, the speciality restaurants have availability.

As far as shore excursions, the ports you are visiting have many options. I doubt you have to worry about something not being available.
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Old May 25th, 2012, 06:24 PM
Keith1010 Keith1010 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RainbowChaser View Post
I spoke to Crystal and they only have 1 verandah left and all suites already sold out. Only Main Dining (6:15pm) open for that cruise, no Open or Late. It sounds pretty grim as far as availability. They won't be able to tell me anything about specialty dining as it only shows on pcpc once confirmed.
At this point in time you would need to ask for the early seating.

On the first day of embarkation the Maitre d' will have office hours starting at around 1:30 PM. The location and the times will be posted in the daily program called Reflections. I would see the Maitre d' right away.

You just never know. Sometimes, there is flexibility and the Maitre d' can get your your dining preference but sometimes there is not. It just depends what the breakout is between those dining early and those dining late. I have been on some cruises where it was easily accommodated but I have been on a couple of cruises where there was so much demand for a particular seating that not everyone could get their desired preference. The Maitre d' will surely give it his best. I just say all of this in terms of expectations.

As I mentioned earlier if there are some very specific shore excursions you are interested in your TA could check with the land program department on Monday or you could call them if you wish. They could easily let you know if they are open.

If you are flexible in what day and times you would like to dine in the specialty restaurants you should be able to make a reservation in each one after you make your final payment. But none of us can guarantee this.

Good luck with all of this.

I hope it all works out for you.

Keith
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