Are they still seating only 1 family/party per table?

Rebecca Pocahontas

Mouseketeer
Joined
Sep 5, 2011
Are they still giving every family a private table in the MDR? Before the virus I would always have to request a private table so I am just wondering if on all recent cruises if it is one party per table.

thanks
 

eva

Often uses her unique ability to close threads.
Joined
Aug 20, 1999
I wonder if they will ever go back to having table mates. We really enjoyed meeting new people. I think they should really start asking when you book if you want to join others or not. Then people that are still uncomfortable can be accommodated. And those wishing to meet new people can.
 

MrMarcus

Earning My Ears
Joined
Mar 9, 2022
It is not a comfort level question, but that not everyone has had the same glorious experiences that some have had with the assignments.

Making individual MDR table assignments the default going forward would be a fine improvement.
 

eva

Often uses her unique ability to close threads.
Joined
Aug 20, 1999
It is not a comfort level question, but that not everyone has had the same glorious experiences that some have had with the assignments.

Making individual MDR table assignments the default going forward would be a fine improvement.

We have had our hit and misses over 10 cruises. But we still like having tablemates. Our first experience was a nightmare. It was a grandmother, mother, and three children that pretended they knew no English and would get to the table super early so my husband and I couldn’t sit together. It did what they intended and after three nights our servers asked if we would like our own table. But we preserved and tried again. Ever since we have either had ok or amazing experiences. We are still in contact with a number of them. We have even cruised again with one couple. I hope individual groups at MRD are not the new norm. I think DCL should ask when booking, just like asking which dining time you want.
 

MrMarcus

Earning My Ears
Joined
Mar 9, 2022
On one cruise we were seated with quite a few tables put together for a large group. The first night there was just one couple at the opposite end. The woman screamed (yes really screamed) at the waiter that she had specifically requested that only her family sit together, and how dare Disney set another family with a child (oh my goodness a child on a Disney cruise) at HER table. I was pulled aside to speak to a head waiter who apologized for the situation, and quietly had us moved to a table with a nice window view with a different server and a different family.

At the new table, the family was nice, but the kids were clearly never impressed with anything DCL. They had taken advantage of a cheap GTY for their first cruise and had an inside room on a lower deck, which was not pleasing to the kids. Also, as they lived on a mountain in San Diego, anything that was brought up about port adventures was not good enough for them -- they could go swimming or scuba diving or jet skiing any day they wanted at home so why do it on the cruise -- so that got a bit old. That gave us two strikes for a Disney matchup on the same cruise.

Running into our original waiter at one point, I reminded him that we had originally been at one of his tables but had been moved. He said he certainly remembered us from the first night, and wished that they had actually moved him with us and let someone else have the lady's table. I actually got a chuckle out of that even thought it was not a typical Disney thing to hear.

As an entertaining side note, it turns out that the grumpy woman from the first table was on the same deck as us, fortunately quite a ways down. We started seeing hotel management visiting her room several times a day doing inspections, and we noticed that even though we were not at our stateroom too much. Apparently she was making a big stink about the condition of her room so after being cleaned the hotel management was checking it themselves based on all her complaining about the stateroom, trying to make her happy. Maybe there was a pattern with her. :)

Certainly as the numbers go up DCL will need to adjust -- more combined seating and/or more staggered start times to accommodate. We will likely try to get isolated seating going forward regardless.
 
Last edited:

SweetSpot

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 25, 2002
Not everyone has a great experience with "Disney's table match making". We always cruised with our kids and requested our own table so we could catch up with them and talk about our days. When we finally went as a couple we decided to not make the request and were seated with a younger, childless couple that we had absolutely NOTHING in common with. It lead to extremely awkward dinners that we eventually started skipping. We will never chance it again and always request a table for two.
 

tvguy

Question anything the facts don't support.
Joined
Dec 15, 2003
I wonder if they will ever go back to having table mates. We really enjoyed meeting new people. I think they should really start asking when you book if you want to join others or not. Then people that are still uncomfortable can be accommodated. And those wishing to meet new people can.
We have always been asked if we wanted a table to ourselves or to share (pre-pandemic). Of course, we always use a Travel Agent and it could just be a standard question the Travel Agent asks, and then puts it in special requests when booking the cruise. We had a table to ourselves on Disney, and our kids were kind of disappointed because they really enjoyed table mates on previous cruises.
 

tink1970

DCL Platinum
Joined
Dec 29, 2012
Not everyone has a great experience with "Disney's table match making". We always cruised with our kids and requested our own table so we could catch up with them and talk about our days. When we finally went as a couple we decided to not make the request and were seated with a younger, childless couple that we had absolutely NOTHING in common with. It lead to extremely awkward dinners that we eventually started skipping. We will never chance it again and always request a table for two.

That's one of the reasons my introverted husband and I have gone to almost completely concierge with DCL-it's just not worth the anxiety...dining shouldn't be stressful on a cruise. Fortunately we are only into the Mouse for 2 more cruises and then we'll probably jump ship.
 

SweetSpot

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 25, 2002
That's one of the reasons my introverted husband and I have gone to almost completely concierge with DCL-it's just not worth the anxiety...dining shouldn't be stressful on a cruise. Fortunately we are only into the Mouse for 2 more cruises and then we'll probably jump ship.

You don't need to be concierge to make the request for your own table. It was important with our family cruises because our oldest is autistic and wouldn't do well with other people at the table. Now we request it for just us. 28 cruise and have never had an issue with the request.
 

tink1970

DCL Platinum
Joined
Dec 29, 2012
You don't need to be concierge to make the request for your own table. It was important with our family cruises because our oldest is autistic and wouldn't do well with other people at the table. Now we request it for just us. 28 cruise and have never had an issue with the request.

Oh I know it can be requested but...I really like knowing it's guaranteed...plus shhhh, don't tell my DH-he thinks it is and it's one way to sell concierge:rotfl:
 

squirk

Saw what you did and knows who you are.
Joined
Apr 9, 2011
I'd say not wanting to be seated with others isn't necessarily just a "comfort level" thing. It's also about what you're looking to get out of a cruise.

For me and my family, a cruise is a time for us to take a break from our busy lives and reconnect with one another. Dinner is one of those times on a cruise where, after a day of everyone doing their own thing, we can all sit down together and bond. I really don't want to spend that quality time making idle chit-chat with strangers at the table.
 

eva

Often uses her unique ability to close threads.
Joined
Aug 20, 1999
I'd say not wanting to be seated with others isn't necessarily just a "comfort level" thing. It's also about what you're looking to get out of a cruise.

For me and my family, a cruise is a time for us to take a break from our busy lives and reconnect with one another. Dinner is one of those times on a cruise where, after a day of everyone doing their own thing, we can all sit down together and bond. I really don't want to spend that quality time making idle chit-chat with strangers at the table.
This is why it should be a choice. Then those who are sharing a table can be somewhat assured that their tablemates are wanting to engage and meet new people.
 

Happy100

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jun 13, 2009
As capacity continues to increase I'm not sure they would have the space to continue with only private tables?

Is it a space issue or castmemeber issue? I would think combining tables allows DCL to have less castmembers for dining then a lot of single family tables.
 

MrMarcus

Earning My Ears
Joined
Mar 9, 2022
Certainly there is a cost -- combining may reduce overall space need and impact the number of cast members. It may be time for cruise lines to account for that in their planning of various resources.

Going forward if we request an individual table and are given a combined table that directly impacts my dining experience and will be reflected on the survey regardless of how much pestering the CMs may do to give them perfect ratings.
 

Dug720

See the line where the sky meets the sea?
Joined
Feb 16, 2012
Is it a space issue or castmemeber issue? I would think combining tables allows DCL to have less castmembers for dining then a lot of single family tables.

Largely space. The dining rooms have a finite amount of space and were designed with mostly shared tables in mind. The more they have to pull apart for private tables, the less space there is for the servers to get through to tables making serving awkward at best, risky for spillage and such at worse. I hope that they have taken into account that most people want their own table when designing the Wish's dining rooms.

And no, big tables are not always easier. I personally witnessed a large table (in this case it appeared to be a multi-family group as even from night 1 they all seemed to know each other well) run my serving team ragged the night our main server was out sick (well before COVID) and he was not there to curb them. The adults all ordered cocktails, and then when someone needed another, the assistant server would look at the other drinks which were low and ask those people if they wanted another. They'd say no...but as soon as he got back with the first one another person or two would need a refill - and repeat ad nauseum. Then the kids...two of the boys would dissolve into demanding near screaming fits as soon as their ketchup no longer looked like a Mickey head - so in other words whenever they dipped a fry into it - and insist that the Mickey head be replaced. Finally the head server figured out what was going on - when he noticed my parents' and my table and the table next to us (the only other two tables in that section) had not gotten any food yet - and took over our tables. This was the final night, and I was positioned to see the full production at the other table.

This is why it should be a choice. Then those who are sharing a table can be somewhat assured that their tablemates are wanting to engage and meet new people.

Based on what I've seen on other lines where there is the Select or My Time option especially, I think you'd find that most people do not want to share. First time I saw one party who wanted to be seated with another (they were checking in before me) who was told that they could wait to see if anyone else wanted to share a table which they agreed to...they were still waiting when I finished.
 

lklgoodman

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 25, 2016
My husband and I did a cruise on the Magic 22 yrs ago for our honeymoon. We were both 30 yrs old and we were put with a 70 year old woman. She was very nice, but it was like being with your grandma...not exactly what you want on your honeymoon. 😆
 

princesscinderella

DIS Veteran
Joined
May 27, 2011
We have a food allergy so I always feel bad when we are seated with other families, just because usually it takes so much longer to get our food, even with ordering ahead.
 



Book your Disney Cruise through Dreams Unlimited Travel and receive a Shipboard Credit and an Exclusive Gift Basket!







Top