The most talked about item on cruise boards is the Dress Code. One of the reasons for this is that the cruise lines dont put the information up front in an easy to fine place in their marketing literature. If you are looking on line, you usually have to search the FAQ section of their webpage to find the information. In cruise brochures, it is usally hidden in the fine print.
Another source of confusion is the inconsistent terms that cruise lines use to describe their dress codes and policies. Policies, at least in writing, differ greatly from one line to another. People are often surprised to learn that what means one thing on one line, means something else on another.
Celebrity, HAL and Crystal have three levels of dress: Formal, Informal, and Casual.
Royal Caribbean has basically the same thing, only they call informal “Smart Casual”.
Princess has Formal and Smart Casual, only their definition of formal includes what the above call either “informal” or “Smart Casual” and their smart casual is what the above call casual.
Costa has Formal nights, but passengers are free to dress more casually if they choose.
NCL has resort casual all the time with optional formal nights.
Oceania is country club casual all the time, with resort casual in the Lido.
MSC is either resort casual, or formal, with their definition of formal including what some lines call informal.
Regent Seven Seass dress codes vary with ship and itinerary, with some sailings all casual and some sailings including a traditional formal night or two.
Still confused? Have no fear!!! I have done all the hard work for you. I have visited the web sites of most of the major cruise lines, found their dress code information, and put it all together on one chart to make it easy for prospective cruises to see all the information at a glance.
I hope this will be a helpful resource to other people who love cruising like me. The Cruise Line Dress Codes policies is always available from the My Pages links in the right most column of the website.