It's no exaggeration to say that cruise ship food can be one of the most enjoyable experiences of a sea trip. Exotic, exciting routes and exclusive entertainment — it's all, of course, wonderful. However, on an empty stomach, even the most impressive views of the sea and the luxurious decoration of the cabins can fade. That is why the ships are always plentiful and very tasty food for their guests. Travelers will certainly not have to worry about the lack of cruise food. During a boat trip (especially a long one), you should rather worry about the extra pounds that will inevitably appear if you do not observe the measure.
Especially food on a cruise ship
Modern vessels now provide their guests with a huge selection of restaurants during a sea trip. On small ships, there may be 5 or 6 of them, and on large ships — 2 dozen or even more. Some cruise restaurants on board the ships are included in the total price of the tour, while others are presented as alternative establishments for a fee. To have lunch or dinner in them, vacationers reserve tables in advance. This service (pre-booking) is paid. Not the food itself!
Free restaurants, bars and cafes
All of them are available on any ship, you do not need to pay for a visit, since meals are included in the total cost of the trip. The main (free) restaurant usually occupies 2-3 decks. Its design is not much different in beauty from alternative analogues. Any meal, whether it is Breakfast, lunch or dinner, is served according to the menu. Cruise waiters on the ship serve food, so vacationers just need to make an order and enjoy a pleasant pastime.
Every day during a boat trip, vacationers will find an updated menu of great dishes. The variety is really amazing. Each traveler can choose from several options of hot, appetizers, salads, soups and desserts. Owners of a good appetite should be reminded that it is not necessary to order only one item from all this variety. If you are very hungry, you can take 3 hot dishes and 5 snacks at once (as an option). When going on a cruise by sea, remember that the food in the cruise ship restaurant is always delicious and a lot!
Alternative restaurants on the ship
Most modern vessels have such specialized establishments. They offer the ship's guests a special atmosphere and the best service. The cuisine in these restaurants is usually themed: French, Japanese, Italian, etc. Moreover, the alternative can be not only restaurants, but also bars, mini-bakeries, grill or barbecue bars in the fresh air, stands with hot dogs.
Some companies offer travelers special packages that reduce the cost of food in alternative restaurants. Yes, this is very convenient. However, if you agree to these terms, please read them carefully. You may not be comfortable on a cruise if the list of available establishments or the number of their visits is limited. But it is due to this that the cost is reduced.
In addition, you should pay attention to the discounts on the first visit that some restaurants offer to their guests, as well as discount programs on certain days. All this will help you save some money.
The cost and terms of the visits to specialized restaurants
As we mentioned above, you don't need to pay for food at the cruise restaurant in alternative one in most cases (you only need to pay for a table reservation). Although sometimes there are places where guests are asked to pay directly for meals. The booking rate varies depending on the company's class and other parameters. But most often the price is from 20 to 50 dollars.
Often pay institutions are preparing for the guests and serves dinner only. However, some also offer lunch at a lower price and only on certain days. Breakfast in such places is extremely rare. As a rule, it is available only to passengers of elite cabins.
Booking a table at an alternative restaurant
Each company's booking system is built in its own way. Specialized establishments usually require pre-booking of tables. You can reserve a seat before the ship departs, when you have just purchased a ticket for a cruise ship or for the European cruise deals. If for any reason you have to cancel your reservation, the money will be refunded (partially or completely).
You can book a table in a cozy alternative restaurant in any convenient way. You can contact the institution in person, make a phone call from your own cabin, or use a mobile app (many companies have these).
If there are few specialty restaurants on Board, reservations may be limited. For example, on some ships, guests are asked to reserve a table only 1 or 2 times during the entire trip. However, such a case can be found infrequently. Basically, you can have dinner in such establishments at your discretion, as many times as you want.
You will not have to share a table with other passengers of the ship in such an institution. The exception is specialized themed restaurants, where strangers at the same table is the concept of the institution. The question of forced neighborhood may arise if there are not enough available seats. If you don't want to share a previously booked table with anyone, you can cancel or reschedule dinner.
Children on the ship: is it possible to visit alternative restaurants with them
Taking a child to such an institution will not work only in rare cases. Only a small part of specialized restaurants meet exclusively adults. Some allow children from 12 years old.
In the main (free) and other restaurants for young travelers, there is always a special children's menu. Small tourists are usually served their favorite dishes: pizza, nuggets, pasta, etc. However, it is not a problem to order food for a child from an adult menu. You can just ask to reduce the portion.
Will it be possible to stick to a diet on board the ship
For those who follow a healthy lifestyle or passengers with a special food system, it is possible to adhere to the desired menu. Many ship restaurants serve low-salt, gluten-free, vegetarian, low-carb, and other "special" dishes. It is better for Allergy sufferers to warn the ship's employees about their illness in advance. This way they won't have to worry about having the right hypoallergenic food on Board when you're already sitting at a restaurant table.
Dress code features
The presence of an evening dress code is a distinctive feature of a cruise holiday. In torn jeans and a sports t-shirt, you will not be allowed to go to an alternative restaurant. The higher the class of the ship, the stricter the requirements for clothing.
Companies usually specify a dress code for the evening in cruise programs. Most often, guests should be prepared to dress loosely, semi-formally or formally. With everyday style, everything is simple — it's the usual simple clothes: your favorite trousers, blouse, sundress, etc. The semi-formal style assumes that passengers will wear cocktail dresses, suits (for women) and necessarily a jacket (for men). You don't have to tie a tie if you don't want to. But the evening dress code dictates other orders. The lady will have to show other passengers their evening dresses, her Beau — a suit with a tie or a tuxedo.
We think that now there are no questions about eating on the ship during the cruise. You definitely won't have to worry about being hungry. Enjoy your vacation, try amazing traditional cuisine prepared by masters of their craft, and do not deny yourself anything.