My husband and I recently sailed back to back cruises P313 & P314, we are past passengers with 3 previous cruises on Pacific Sun, 1 on Sun Princess and 1 on NCL Pride Of Hawaii, we have now done 7 cruises 5 of these with P&O.
We noticed some differences from our past cruises with disappointing results, to the degree that my husband and myself will no longer cruise with P&O. I HOPE MY COMMENTS WILL BE TAKEN CONSTRUCTIVELY & NOT AS JUST ANOTHER WHINGER.
TRANSPORT TO WHITE BAY – after being notified of the changes, booked the shuttle and had to cancel our hotel booking at The Rocks and change our flights. My granddaughter wanted to see us off but could’nt due to lack of transport.
CHECK IN AT WHITE BAY – very impressive, fast and organized.
SAIL AWAY – no atmosphere, no band until the harbour bridge no games….. just nothing. When the band/entertainment did start it was short lived.
POWER POINT - with today’s technology you would think there would be more than 1 power point in a cabin.
NO CLOCK - we used to be able to get the time from the web cam channel on the TV but that does not happen now. You have no idea of the time especially (for the 1st time) being in an inside cabin, ALONG WITH REGULARLY CROSSING DIFFERENT TIME ZONES. No we don't wear watches.
TRANSIT IN AUCKLAND – NOT IMPRESSED with any of this, as we had done back to back cruises to Auckland before we were surprised when we received a letter with disembarkation information along with bag tags, things do change so we went to reception to let them know we were in Transit, we told them the procedure we did before, including the fact that we were in TRANSIT and not entering NZ…..we were VERY ABRUPTLY TOLD….JUST DO IT….so we line up spending the best part of 2hrs filled out the forms, went through the MAF then when we get to immigration we asked what we needed to do, go through customs or what when we go ashore..he looked at his list and said ‘you are the CRANES…YOU DID’NT HAVE TO DO THIS YOUR ONLY IN TRANSIT’….we were so very annoyed
P314 (on this leg we have another 14 Australians joining us that have flown from Australia)
GETTING BACK ON BOARD IN AUCKLAND – We were told to wait until 12:30, our letter stated 11:30, showed security the letter, were told to ‘JUST SIT THERE AND WAIT, YOU’LL GET ONBOARD AS SOON AS EVERYONE ELSE DOES’ , cut a VERY long story short, a lady (in a uniform) came over probably seeing our frustration looked at the letter and said no just go on board….she had a heated discussion with security then we were told we could go on……ok go through Xray security etc…just about to go on the ship when we are told we need to go back down to get our new cruise card, but not to go downstairs just to the check in counter…bit like snakes ‘n’ ladders by this time…..we get to the top ask where the check in counter is…we are told (quite rudely)we have to go downstairs and wait with everyone else…..as if by magic the lady that helped us through before appears ….she goes inside brings out a gentleman who takes us in we check in all is good we FINALLY get onboard…..by this time we are very, very upset with the lack of both organization and communication.
SAIL AWAY - ok it poured down so will accept still no sail away, but saying that there was not even a band playing on deck as we left ANY port.
DECK IS SLIPPERY- my husband slipped on the deck like many others including an elderly lady and children, I told my husband to report it to reception, he was asked did he want medical attention at the nominal fee(not very financial) he declined…as this was P&O at fault for having a slippery deck this medical attention should have been at P&O expense
DINING – there does’nt seem to be the ‘FINE DINING’ experience we had on Pacific Sun, it’s very much the same standard as the buffet, the waiters (not all but some) don’t smile and try to take your plate before you are finished your meal, a man sitting with us was eating off his plate & the waiter was taking the plate away, they don’t spend time with the passengers and do little tricks like they used to,they get you in and get you out asap not very personal like our past cruises, you don’t form a sort of relationship the way we did on other cruises. Anytime dining is not a great experience for us. Choice was limited and seemed to be repetitive over the cruise, quite boring. I also noticed there were no fruit and vegie carvings.
RSA – is beyond responsible it’s like having your mother hanging over your shoulder you can’t relax and have a good time at all, RSA taken to the extreme and the price of drinks well that is just ridiculous, you can’t afford to be anything but responsible.
SICK CREW MEMBER – a crew member I believe named Nancy, was behind the Splash Bar, she was coughing, sneezing, sniffling….then to my amazement with bare hands picked up what looked to be mint rubbed it together in her hands and made a passenger a drink. I pointed this out to a supervisor who promptly removed her I was impressed with his swift action….only to then find her working in the Café……reported this to Reception to then find her in the Adults only section…..
CABIN –Shower in 11126 is burning hot when you add cold water you have no pressure or very little water mentioned this several times with no positive results, inside cabin lighting is very dim, found it difficult to read. Also the a/c is very cold even after adjusting.
NOISE – Deck 11, is where your balcony as well as inside cabins are, they are more expensive and to be honest the noisiest …you have all the chairs from the deck above being dragged across the floor, people running, jumping etc the noise at times is ridiculous.
VILA – How disgusting, Vila was never like this on previous visits, when you disembark…the taxi drivers climbing up the wire fence like trying to escape from prison, elderly ladies, young girls, children being grabbed it was horrific. A lot of passengers ended up getting back on the ship and not going into Vila they were literally scared, a 13yr old in our group had to be walked back to the ship by my husband she was so scared she was crying. I used to like Vila, not now.
ON DECK CIRCUS – This seemed to be for practice only…was only used once for a performance,in the 14 nights onboard, which I must say was excellent. One performer while practicing had a bad fall, the next day when we asked how she was she stared with no response at all. Wished her well…still nothing at all, if she could'nt speak English she could have indicated this.
They did however have a couple of performances in the Atrium.
I could go on and on, on P313, I witnessed a crew member that actually swore at a passenger, because he simply asked her to smile.
Female Reception staff are rude and condescending, witnessed this over and over with several passengers.
I was soooooo looking forward to my cruse as all my past cruise experiences have been amazing, I used to say I am addicted to cruising…NOT ANY MORE
We were planning on booking on Pacific Dawn October 31 to PNG we have now decided not to waste our money and look for another alternative.
All in all the good time we did have was the result of our group of friends we traveled with, some past passengers they too were disappointed, along with other past passengers we had spoken to. It is not as if we were expecting people to hold our had, we included ourselves in all we could, we bought 2 horses (1 of which came 1st) we were on stage for the Marriage Game, we went to the shows, Bingo, Casino etc
One question is it just Pearl or have all P&O ships moved in the same direction???????
P&O we were totally disappointed.
I have sent all of this to P&O, I sat on hold on my mobile for nearly 1 hour luckily I am on a plan as the cost of the call was double figures.
P&O have left messages for me twice but I am unable to answer my phone at work, I emailed Mark to maybe find a suitable time to discuss this but I have not heard anything since.