For me, the biggest advantage of Ceroc is that it is a social activity. Classes and social dancing occur at the same place on the same night for the same price and everyone is encouraged to dance with strangers. The nearest equivalent is Argentine tango (class with practica). However, the Ceroc people dance with everyone; the tango people only dance with people they regard as worth dancing with. With salsa and swing, you do the class, and then have to go to separate social event, where you may or may not get a dance.
Tango "milongas" are considered by many to be a large part a social event. You aren't expected to "dance very dance". Quality is valued more that quantity.
Still, many milongas and practicas in the US have a beginner lesson before the "dancing" starts. Beginners stay for a while, dancing what little they know, often with helpful more experienced dancers.
The country western "dance hall" scene is similar in that, where there is a regular cilentele, there is a high social content to an evening of "going out dancing".
Sitting and standing around socializing is part of an evening out.
Salsa venues also have lessons before dancing starts.
If you are taking lessons at a studio, you get lessons at a studio.
If you are new to any scene, and don't know the dances, it can be a tough row to hoe. CW bars throw in "rock n roll" type songs for the people that don't take the time to learn anything. Then of course there's the all purpose "slow dance".
Lots of people show up (both CW and AT) and never really learn how the do the dances very well. They "learn on the floor", usually with very mixed results. As someone wrote not too long ago, they find like minded indivduals, and they are happy. Meanwhile, they are probably thinking that the people who HAVE put lots of time, energy, and money into learning how to do the dances well, are "snobs" for not asking them to dance.