Seven Seas Mariner

(5:38 p.m. EST) -- Want to use your onboard credit to book shore excursions and other add-ons ahead of your Regent Seven Seas Cruises sailing? You soon will be able to, with the luxury line's upgraded onboard credit policy -- one of two recently revealed features that also include a new casual dinner experience on the pool deck.

Booked cruisers now have early access to use new or existing onboard credit to pay for certain premium activities, beginning with voyages departing on or after May 1, 2019. Among the activities and services onboard credit can be applied to are Regent Choice Shore Excursions, Executive Collection Private Car Tours and, on Seven Seas Splendor and Seven Seas Explorer, Culinary Arts Kitchen Classes. (Regent Seven Seas Cruises includes standard shore excursions in its fares -- along with other extras such as airfare, alcoholic beverages and gratuities -- but passengers have the option to pay up for premium tours.)

Regent Seven Seas Cruises said the changes are based on passenger recommendations.

In addition to receiving early onboard credit access, passengers can look forward to a new, casual outdoor dinner experience across the fleet. Sunset Dinner at the Pool Grill is now is now available on all four of the line's ships -- serving grilled-to-order steaks, chops and burgers, fresh seafood, sandwiches and salads in a relaxed setting, where passengers won't feel pressured to dress up.

"Every guest has a slightly different definition of luxury," said Regent Seven Seas Cruises President and CEO Jason Montague in a statement. "For some, the ability to relax and enjoy the finest cuisine in a casual setting, while watching the sunset from the pool deck of our ships and seeing the ocean waves go by, is luxurious. Our goal is to deliver a personalized experience to all our guests and serving dinner at the pool grill is one more step in delivering this customized guest experience."

Sunset Dinner at the Pool Grill follows a trend of luxury cruise lines adding casual dinner options. Seabourn recently revealed a similar experience at its outdoor poolside grill: Earth & Ocean at The Patio, while Silversea's Silver Muse debuted in 2017 with a casual, alfresco pizza eatery called Spaccanapoli.

--By Gina Kramer, Editor