What Do I Have to Wear For a Captain Dinner on Cruise?

Preparing for a cruise trip has a very unique thrill attached to it; you sail off into the blue yonder, relax, swim, jog, play games and so many unimaginable things while surrounded by the turquoise blue waters of whatever ocean you are sailing in. Thoughts of all the places you will visit, the friends you will make and the excellent food you are going to be stuffing yourself silly with, crowd your mind. There is one aspect of the cruise that has you just a wee bit concerned and if you are someone like me with only one all purpose dress to my name, very much concerned! The question, what do I have to wear for Captains Dinner on cruise intrudes upon those lovely daydreams.

The Captains Dinner is one of the formal nights on board the cruise ship and men usually pull their tux out of storage in honor of the occasion. Women wear a formal gown or even a very smart trouser suit should fit the bill. There is a cocktail party followed by dinner and guests get to shake hands with the captain and have their picture taken with him. You are usually assigned a table when you board the ship and that will be your table for the duration of the trip. Some lucky people will be invited to sit at the Captains table for the dinner and it is considered a great honor to be invited to do so.

If you don’t have a tuxedo odds are you can rent one on the ship but you will have to do so at the very first given opportunity. Otherwise wearing a smart suit is becoming quite the fashion these days so it is not such a big deal. It may be a good idea to check with the cruise line as to what they consider acceptable dress code for the Captains Dinner; it usually is a black tie night so for the guys a black dinner jacket or tux, formal trousers and bow tie with vest over a white dress shirt and as I mentioned earlier the ladies can turn themselves out in a gown or smart outfit depending on your wardrobe.

What you need to understand is that it is not mandatory to dress up and parade around or attend the Captains Dinner though it is known to be one of the highlights of the trip. It is understood that some people are not comfortable in formal dress and anyway you are on a cruise to enjoy yourself. Have dinner in one of the restaurants, you’ll probably be the only one but so what!

Formal dress codes have changed drastically over the years and as offices began allowing the business casual dress code to take over; cruise ships have been adapting themselves to the same change in dress styles. Gone are the days when you had to dress up for dinner on board a cruise ship. Now even dressing for the Captains Dinner is less formal and restrictive. Men don’t have to wear tuxedoes, a business suit or smart casual jacket and tie will suffice. Women of course have the greater flexibility and can put on a cocktail dress of short, medium of floor length and still steal the show.

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