Barton - Answered a Question by Howard (05 Dec 08 20:45)

I wonder why you have this attitude that makes you call it a "Monkey Suit". If you can't enjoy dressing up smart on a formal cruise evening when CAN you ? - You'd be surprised just how scruffy and chavvy men look at the formal evening, when they dress inappropriately when everyone else does the proper thing. There's nothing clever or "Cool" or "Rebellious" in not taking part in the plan. It just looks churlish and juvenile. Personally, I never dress like that at any other time. I did this though without any cribbing and a couple of friends joked that I looked like a hard Mafia "Godfather", which I quite appreciated and enjoyed the experience even more !

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Richard Okill - Answered a Question by Howard (02 Dec 08 11:22)

Have not heard the expression 'monkey suit' since my Royal Navy days, when it referred to an Officer's Mess Undress. Dinner Suits are now the appropriate order for cruisers on formal nights. Non formal nights have dress codes appropriate to the cruise line you choose. Surf this site for further tips, there are plenty of opposing views.Regards. Richard.

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Wilba - Answered a Question by Howard (02 Dec 08 11:48)

There are no lines where we dress up in monkey suits everyday to get fed. The most formal of cruise lines only have a couple of formal evenings where DJ's & Tuxedo's are on display . NCL, Carnival, Island are Non Formal or Optional Formal. These are the lower priced lines. Ocean Village are a favourite informal line but they finish cruising in this part of the world in December 2009. Some of the higher end price bracket cruise lines are also moving towards Smart Casual only. I would talk to a Cruise Specialist like the number top right of this page & get professional advice to suit your requirements.....Wilba.

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Neil & Ida Down - Answered a Question by Howard (02 Dec 08 12:01)

You have had two favourable replies and I think you have been lucky. If you had couched your question in nicer terms you may well have got a lot more. I find the terminology you use objectionable and will not give you any advice on that basis other than to write more in keeping with this site. ..... Neil.

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Wilba - replied to Neil & Ida Down (02 Dec 08 13:32)

Yes, I had to rewrite my answer & temper it down before I hit the submit button!!!

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o'neil - Answered a Question by Howard (02 Dec 08 19:48)

You should thank your lucky stars that Neil, Ida & Wilba have been so lenient. Does dressing for dinner in something as abhorent as a dark suit & tie offend you?You don't need a "monkey suit". If it does, stick to Benidorm or whatever and stop moaning. If one thing is "offputting" on the three nights that are formal dining in a normal two week cruise, it is people who can't be bothered to "make an effort" and turn up in clothes that they have had on all day. Alternatively just pop into the self service restaurants and help yourself, if you look closely, you may even be able to go in your wet shorts and flip-flops and then you will really feel at home!!! This is a light-hearted comment and no offence intended, but cruising is a tradition and certain levels have to be mantained or else!!!! Dave. Happy cruising.

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Rum Runner - Answered a Question by Howard (02 Dec 08 20:05)

Whilst casual dress codes are always the norm on Ocean Village, NCL, and Island Cruises, I think you may be surprised in how much better a cruising experience is when there are a few formal dining occasions. The ladies certainly appreciate the sense of occasion and I believe the gentlemen, once used to the slightly more genteel ambiance, settle to enjoy the experience also. I believe the cocktail parties prior to formal dining nights to be an excellent avenue for socialising and for broadening the mind. A good balance of formal and smart casual dining can be had on Thomson, P&O, Royal Caribbean, and Princess Cruises. Cunard may be a bit too formal for a first timer but once you sample cruising you will know where you would feel most comfortable. Hope you try it.

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Howard - Answered a Question by Howard (03 Dec 08 07:47)

Thanks for all comments. It appears that there are some possibilities which we can explore. When I get the coal out of the bath I scrub up really well and I've mastered using a fork instead of fingers so I should be OK.

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Harman - replied to Howard (03 Dec 08 09:29)

That's progress then. We should ask cruise companies to make sure the knives are not too sharp and safe for you to use.

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Wilba - replied to Howard (03 Dec 08 11:34)

I think you should now be commended for taking the flack handed out to you. However you did leave yourself vulnerable to a bit of stick & we applaude you for the humorous manner of your response....Regards Wilba .

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