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Buffet or MDR


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Just wonder why people prefer the buffet over the MDR .

Which do you use for what meals, does it depend on cruise line?

On P&O and Cunard we use the MDR waiter service for all meals Breakfast/Lunch / Diner.

With Celebrity /RCI who do not always open the MDR for lunch, We eat Breakfast in the Elite members (Tuscan Grill) Coffee shop menu, Lunch MDR or Buffet .and MDR for Diner.

Never on any cruise line found the buffet an attractive place to eat a meal, unless your in a hurry.....Davybe

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I rarely use the buffets except when on HAL cruises. I prefer the MDR service which helps curtail temptation to take just a little piece more of.... On HAL cruises their buffet is much cleaner and safer given that you don`t help yourself to that much but most is kept behind clean class to be requested with some foods finished off to heat / cook as you wait almost fresh. hence no double dipping /trailing sleeves from other  passengers i n your food. The only time I use the buffet is when trips / late returns give me no option.

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sometimes, normally by about day 9, we just cant face another 5 course meal, so a relaxed mixed selection in the buffet is a nice break, thats why we would somtimes chose buffet over mdr. i dont think the buffet is a bad place to eat, better views up there normally than the mdr :) also on queen mary the buffet was the best ive ever experienced so wouldnt hesitate eating in there, mainly for the flexibility too as cunard dont have freedom dining.

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On Celebrity we like the Elite breakfast in the Tuscan Grill - quiet atmosphere and great views.  I don't like a big breakfast, so on other lines we use the buffet to find my favourite smoked salmon on a croissant.  I don't enjoy the MDR for breakfast or lunch because the menu choices are usually too large for me.  Unless we are very late getting back from a tour we choose the MDR for dinner.

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Having seen the habits of some people who use the buffet and how they maul the food I am a strong believer that most onboard illnesses i.e. Noro Virus start in the buffet. On P&O we have been on ships and for afternoon tea where all the sandwiches have a name tab above them telling you what they are I have seen people pick up sandwiches and open them up, pull their face and then put them back. No thanks MDR for me and if I am too late for lunch in MDR on port days we either have a burger/pizza or wait for afternoon tea in MDR.

Edited by sinbad10
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On Fred, which is our current line of choice, I have not seen a lot of the things that are said to be done in the comments.  Fred's buffets are very civilised, and very comprehensive.   We eat in whichever restaurant the fancy takes us - some days we just don't want the formality of the MDR at breakfast and lunch.   We just about always eat in the MDR for second sitting dinner though

.

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On our cruise with Viking Ocean cruises the buffet was absolutely amazing. Also because of the small number of passengers thar were spread throughout the two speciality restaurants and the MDR there was never big queues and hoards all fighting to get the same thing. They pretty much served the same dishes as the MDR plus extras so we found ourselves in there most nights. 

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Just returned from an Azamara Quest, port intensive, cruise in the Adriatic.

To make the most of each day we had Room Service breakfast, ate lunch ashore (we always like to eat local) and had dinner in the MDR.  Never felt the need to try any of the Speciality Restaurants on Azamara as the MDR experience is always so good.

The only time we visited the Buffet was on check in day, shortly after boarding, for a bit of lunch.

At least with all the intensity of sightseeing every day, neither of us gained any weight - unusual, in our cruising experience.  However, we have now returned home for a rest!!

DavidH

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