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76 P&O Cruises Britannia Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

This was our second cruise with P&O and we chose the flagship I will try to give a true and honest opinion. We stayed in cabin A324 on deck 15 which was a superior deluxe balcony cabin. The ship is large and new so decor is very ... Read More
This was our second cruise with P&O and we chose the flagship I will try to give a true and honest opinion. We stayed in cabin A324 on deck 15 which was a superior deluxe balcony cabin. The ship is large and new so decor is very nice, the staff had a very good attitude, the Selection of food and quality was good, cabin smaller than previous ship Azura, balcony was very small and we had no sun because top deck has about 15foot overhang which totally blocks the sun except for about 15 minutes when it sets in the evening, entertainment was ok, Boarding and leaving the ship was as specified and very organised. Bad points: - First week a staff member made sure passengers washed there hands whilst going for food in Horizon Restruant. The second week people were walking through without washing there hands. Balcony was to small and had no sun, we paid the extra money for this type of cabin because we like to chill out and relax on our balcony in the sun. Going on holiday you want to chill out, relax and maybe sleep a little later than normal in the mornings. In cabin A324 on deck 15 you have no chance because at varying times from 3am, 4.30am you have a stampede above on deck 16 where they are laying the deck chairs and moving furniture. I went down to reception and complained but was just the same the next day in fact it happened every day of the cruise. Stairs in midship are closed during cruise. So you either have to wait for lifts or walk to rear or front of ship to use stairs. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
After reading all of the negative reveiws regarding the Britiannia cruise ship we started our holiday slighty apprahensive of what we might find, after a few hours on board (We embarked at our allocated time) all of these feeling ... Read More
After reading all of the negative reveiws regarding the Britiannia cruise ship we started our holiday slighty apprahensive of what we might find, after a few hours on board (We embarked at our allocated time) all of these feeling disappeared as I tried to find these faults. We were greeted on board as we entered and directed to our cabin, the cabin was beautifully presented and our cases were waiting outside of our room. We had lunch from the large buffet and proceeded to the Headliners Theatre for an optional tour of the main areas of the ship (shops, food areas, casino) Wes the gentleman doing the tour gave us his recommendations of what to try whilst on board (Market cafe has lovely cheese and ham board, The Glass house has a lovely selection of wine). Many reviews stated that the ship did not have enough room to accomandate all of the guests for the entertainment. This is the case, however many of the shows are repeated 2-3 times through the evening. We watched a show on the first night that was shown at 8.30pm and 10.30, so if you miss one show it was easy enough to go to the next showing, there was entertainment most night in Headliners Theatre and Live Lounge again with scatered showings. This ship was built to accomandate families, although they do have some Adult only areas on board, I didn't go to these as i have children myself. Serenity on top deck is an adult only area that is quiet (you can't even adult only area but this has to be paid for, this area is great for health conscious due to the offerings up there. Whilst on this cruise we have since tried to book another one but are having difficulty with the dates as the ship is already selling out for next year. I can see why this ship is georgeous and you are treated so well on board. All the staff are impeccaple and look after you marvellously. Don't be detered by some of the reviews and experience this ship for yourself. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Me and my wife have just returned from a two week Mediterranean cruise on Britannia. Embarkation was smooth we arrived at 11.30 and by 14.30 we were on the top deck enjoying a drink at the bar. The ship is amazing from the moment you walk ... Read More
Me and my wife have just returned from a two week Mediterranean cruise on Britannia. Embarkation was smooth we arrived at 11.30 and by 14.30 we were on the top deck enjoying a drink at the bar. The ship is amazing from the moment you walk on and see the atriam. We did not have any issues finding our way around the ship. Don't know what other people are moaning about because the mid ships stairs go from deck 4-17 and we never waited more than 5 mins for a lift. The cabin was spacious and clean with an excellent size shower and queen bed. We were on freedom dining and used the meridan restaurant almost every night. The food was amazing especially the desserts. The staff were very welcoming and friendly. The entertainment was first class we saw the Beatles experience in the the live lounge we also saw ruthie henshall in the headliners ,if you want to see 20.30 show them go at least 30 minutes prior to act as it gets very busy. The ships on board band pulse are very good. We would also recommend the crows nest on deck 17 . Resident pianist was fantastic. We also had Eric landlards afternoon tea at the epicurean which was fantastic. You can also sample his cakes at the market cafe on deck 5. The swimming pools are a good size and are heated and there was always sun loungers available . We used serenity pool more as it was quieter. The grab and go is a very good idea offering burgers, Chips, salads , pizza etc . The bar staff are very good and you are never without a drink. Overall this is an amazing modern ship that offers something for everyone . Our only negative comment is there are far to many people who go on to moan they tend to be the older generation and there are far to many people who go on to compare it with other ships. Don't go on it to moan go on it to enjoy your holiday. We would highly recommend Britannia and would definitely go on it again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
We have just returned from two weeks on Britannia and having read some of the reviews on this page, we were very apprehensive. However although there is some basis for the criticism shown We did not agree with most of it. The main ... Read More
We have just returned from two weeks on Britannia and having read some of the reviews on this page, we were very apprehensive. However although there is some basis for the criticism shown We did not agree with most of it. The main drawbacks are that there is no promenade deck, the interior of the ship is unable to cope with the number of passengers on board on a sea day and that there is quite literally nowhere to sit at all without buying something to drink. One of Carnivals new features perhaps?. Having said that Britannia is a very beautiful ship internally, the cabins are well thought out and all the public rooms are very tastefully designed. ALL the usual P&O expectations were in evidence, excellent food, superb service and good ports of call. We did not once have to wait for a lift, but one day we waited 50 minutes for a coffee at the Costa coffee shop, not acceptable but par for the course on a sea day. P&O may well pay the price for ignoring the wishes of their typical passengers who do NOT want gigantic ships filled to overflowing with FAR too many people. Our cruise was enjoyable( just) but is an experience we will certainly not repeat, give us the small and mid size ships every time, and if Carnival in their American wisdom decide that we can no longer enjoy them it will be time to look at the increasing number of cruise lines that operate smaller ships. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
We had booked a balcony cabin for us and our two children (aged 4 and 20 months). On booking, and pre-embarkation I checked that the cabin would fit the cot and a sofa bed, to which I was assured it would. On embarking and arriving in ... Read More
We had booked a balcony cabin for us and our two children (aged 4 and 20 months). On booking, and pre-embarkation I checked that the cabin would fit the cot and a sofa bed, to which I was assured it would. On embarking and arriving in our cabin, it became immediately apparent that this wasn't going to be the case. After much debate with reception (who really weren't helpful) and housekeeping our bed was pushed up against the wall of the cabin, to make space for the cot inbetween the bed and the sofa bed (to say that we couldn't swing a cat would be an understatement!). Anyway, it was only like this for bedtime, so not the end of the world! But if you are looking at booking for a family, please be aware that you won't have much space. The ship is extremely spacious as you would expect, however, the lifts are a nightmare!!! We had a pushchair with us, and at times we were waiting for over 10 minutes to get into a lift. When it was like this, we opted to carry our son and the pushchair, but unfortunately for those in wheelchairs, this isn't an option. The back and front of the ship have stairs to all floors, but even those that are able to use the stairs would rather not, and are quite happy to queue jump in front of those that actually need the lifts. Even worse are those that get in the lift in the opposite direction of the direction they wish to travel, just so that they have a lift. Aside from these two negative points, the ship has an awful lot to offer to people of all ages. The children's clubs are amazing. Our daughter absolutely loved the clubs and the various activities. The staff on the ship were fantastic with children, and constantly spoke to them and made them feel very welcome. They even offer a children's tea at 17:00 each evening, which has a variety of food for the fussiest of eaters (I should know my daughter is one of them!). The restaurants are gorgeous, and the food equally so. The Epicurean and the Indian restaurant are amazing and well worth the supplement. The pool parties were brilliant fun - particularly the last port we visited, where even the captain came and danced on the stage! Unfortunately we didn't see any other entertainment, as we had our children with us, but we did hear very good reviews of it. The gym is very well equipped, and the promenade deck is pleasant to walk around. There is a separate lift to get to the Promenade deck. The only gripe I would have regarding the Promenade deck is the basketball court. I'm sure that during the summer holidays it will be well utilized, but it seems a huge waste of space the rest of the time? Overall a fantastic holiday, and we've already started saving for our next one! Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
We did have a delay in checking in with the new system they were trying but it was not a problem for us and we were still on board in plenty of time to have some lunch and look around to get some bearings. This was only our 3rd cruise and ... Read More
We did have a delay in checking in with the new system they were trying but it was not a problem for us and we were still on board in plenty of time to have some lunch and look around to get some bearings. This was only our 3rd cruise and we absolutely loved it. As others have said there were a few teething problems, e.g. technical issues ensuring everyone was on board before departure but that is only to be expected with someone new. We thought our cabin was great with plenty of storage and hanging space. The shower was great and our cabin was kept spotlessly clean by our steward. All the staff made you feel at ease wherever you went. We always found somewhere to sit in the Merdian and loved the way the seating was laid out in comparison to the other two cruises we have been on, We always found somewhere to sit no matter where we went and agree that it never felt overcrowded bearing in mind the amount of people on the ship. Our only negative was the quality of the photos taken by the photographers and only found 1 female photgrapher that really took great care in the detail and we even managed to get one photo without people in the background which was the last formal night. The evening entertainment in the theatre was very impressive and loved Steve Hewlett, the Ventriloquist, the Patriot Girls and the Fly Rights who got a standing ovation. Daniel who was the Slot Machine Manager was a sheer delight and had chats with him every night and really made our stay special. We had a wonderful meal in the Sindu restaurant for my birthday and was a wonderful experience and the food and service was devine. We would not hesitate in going on the Britannia again and we had a wonderful Captain Brown, the weather was faultless and for me the highlight was seeing so many dolphins and 4 whales on the Thursday coming home after we left Gibralter. It was like a party on the side of our ship with so many people getting excited (especially me) at the wonderful spectacle which we were privileged to witness and I have the photos and cam corder film to prove it. Enjoy the Britannia she is great. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
We have just returned a week ago from cruising the Mediterranean on Britannia and we have to say we had a wonderful relaxing time. Unfortunately things didn't go too well to start with. Our embarkation was not good due to P&O ... Read More
We have just returned a week ago from cruising the Mediterranean on Britannia and we have to say we had a wonderful relaxing time. Unfortunately things didn't go too well to start with. Our embarkation was not good due to P&O using Britannia for a trial on that particular day. This trial was to allow P&O to ensure that all cabins would be immediately available for passengers once they boarded. (We were advised about this a few days before we travelled). We gather the passengers arriving earlier had managed to get through very quickly, however the time designated to ourselves found us in the embarkation lounge with hundreds of others and the whole process took us two hours to embark and we did not get to our cabin until well after 4 pm. Allowing for unpacking, and the emergency drill, we just made the first sitting for dinner that night. However from there on everything improved rapidly. Our waiters greeted us warmly and we began to feel ourselves relaxing as the evening wore on. The staff and crew were excellent. Our table waiters, wine waiter and our cabin steward could not be faulted. They were friendly, helpful and very considerate. One evening my husband had an upset stomach and decided to give dinner a miss. As I was leaving the dining room after eating, our head waiter appeared with a selection of fresh fruit for me to take to the cabin for my husband. Such a kind gesture. The next night he was greeted like a long lost friend by our waiters, shaking hands with him and enquiring after his health. Our cabin steward kept our cabin spotless and looked after both of us in a very quiet and courteous way. We enjoyed the entertainment in the theatre, the acts and shows were very good. Overall the ship was a beauty, we were very lucky with the weather, and combined with good ports of call, it made for a great cruise. Sail away party from Gibraltar was great. The library was small, but we didn't have any problem finding books to suit our holiday needs. The only evening that did upset us was a few days into the cruise where the entertainments team were having a live music night on the Lido Deck. Unfortunately our cabin was on Deck A and was right underneath. When the music started it was terrible. Apart from the loud beat the noise was reverberating down into our room. Everything was vibrating and the noise was unacceptable. According to the ship's daily newspaper this musical night was due to end at 11.30 pm so we stuck it out. However the powers to be up on Lido Deck ended the evening at midnight. How families with little children managed heaven only knows. Many nights later we read that there was to be a further live music light show above us and we were dreading it. However to our surprise we hardly heard a thing, just a distant beat which was fine. Maybe someone had complained that noisy night. Well done P&O for addressing the problem. Given a choice we would probably choose a smaller ship for our next cruise as that suits our needs better, however if we had no other choice but Britannia then we would gladly sail her again. Thank you P&O for a great holiday. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
This was our first cruise. I have to say, the food on board was second to none. The restaurant service was brilliant. What I will say about the ship, even though I have nothing to compare it to is that there are not enough lifts. It seems ... Read More
This was our first cruise. I have to say, the food on board was second to none. The restaurant service was brilliant. What I will say about the ship, even though I have nothing to compare it to is that there are not enough lifts. It seems the whole ship has been designed not to attract new customers but to increase the amount able to go on the cruise. The cabins seemed smaller than we expected and this was confirmed with other more experienced holiday makers. To finish the review off I will tell you that, although our bank cards never left the cabin safe, both mine and my wife's bank cards were skimmed, my wife's to the tune of £350 and mine to £1100. This was on the Thursday as my cruise was due to end on the Saturday. P&O said that it had never happened before and that it couldn't happen as my code was in the safe lock. As this was the only time the cards have been together since receiving them, I know that the cruise was when it happened. I am still waiting for P&O to apologise. I Will just say when I asked for a review form I never received. I can't think why. Judge for yourselves. Finally it took us 3 hrs to get off the ship. I Will say that my next cruise would still be with P&O but definitely on another ship. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
Just returned from a 14 day cruise on this beautiful ship. Superb entertainment, excellent food and service, fantastic facilities and great ports of call. In particular the special effects and talent of the resident entertainment troupe ... Read More
Just returned from a 14 day cruise on this beautiful ship. Superb entertainment, excellent food and service, fantastic facilities and great ports of call. In particular the special effects and talent of the resident entertainment troupe were exceptional, service in all bars and restaurants was immaculate and we particularly enjoyed the Beach House and the Limelight club, both of which were well worth the cover charge. Madeleine Bell was superb as was Jimmy James and several of the other acts. Only problem is the number of hyper critical "cruise experts" who seem to take great delight in nitpicking about minor issues, telling you about all the other cruises and ships they have been on and comparing them to Britannia. We learned quickly to avoid contact with such people and were careful not to prolong dialogue when it became clear we had encountered Mr and Mrs Whinger. Will have no hesitation in booking Britannia again and if you go on a cruise to enjoy yourself Britannia offers everything you could ask for. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
After many cruises we were keen to sample the new ship Britannia. What a disappointment. There was no WOW factor at all about this ship. The colour scheme was muted which did not help. The lifts were pretty horrendous - people got ... Read More
After many cruises we were keen to sample the new ship Britannia. What a disappointment. There was no WOW factor at all about this ship. The colour scheme was muted which did not help. The lifts were pretty horrendous - people got stuck in them and thank God it was not me. The toilets were few and very far between and the food in the Oriental Restaurant was absolutely AWFUL and reminded me of school dinners. The waiting on staff were surly and did not appear to enjoy their jobs. On the plus side - we opted to eat out on several occasions at other restaurants throughout the ship i.e. the Limelight Club, Sindhu, The Beach House and the Glass House (at a surcharge of course!) and the food in these places was really top notch and what we have been used to on other cruises - in the normal restaurants!! Cunard for example!! The entertainment in the theatre was extremely professional and we enjoyed all the shows but on sea days (and there were plenty) - there was not a lot going on to entertain us. Treatments at the Spa were over priced and an indoor pool would have been a bonus as the outside temperatures especially at sea were pretty low. We wont sail again on Britannia. It did not live up to its hype. I doubt whether our Monarch would enjoy a holiday aboard ! Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
So disappointed expeted a really special cruise. First could take in our stride getting on the ship there is always a delay. Once on the ship no real welcome cabin ok but did not blow our mind. So let's get ready for our first night ... Read More
So disappointed expeted a really special cruise. First could take in our stride getting on the ship there is always a delay. Once on the ship no real welcome cabin ok but did not blow our mind. So let's get ready for our first night no real feeling of been on holiday. Expected pre dinner entertainment with choice. nothing special in restaurant menu very plain no excitement food not to bother with again but we had another go for two more nights never got any better. Waiters in all food areas looked fed up and we got the impression they would have enjoyed the cruise if it had not been for the passengers. We did hear waiters been rude to guessed especially elderly guess they seemed to have little patience with them and the guess were very nice not been rude. Entertainment waste of time during day nothing of interest. Unless you paid. Films ok taken over at days at sea by product selling. Theatre everyone has said it all could not get a seat. If this had been our first cruise we would never Go on one again. I am so pleased no one I have ever recommended to go on a cruise went on this one. I cannot put into words how disappointed we were. We have had so many lovely cruises and can not believe how p and o have got it so wrong. It will be a long time before I give cruising another go really put off. Feel we have been taken for a ride not a good after taste. We did meet some lovley people the usual suspects you know who you are You made our holiday. Food not good ship lacked any warmth entertainment third class expected excellent service and a clean environment. Also grill on pool deck always cold food made way to in advanced. So all in all a very disappointing experience Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
Having read all the negative reviews about Britannia I just had to give my opinion on the ship and our cruise. As usual check in at Southampham was excellent.The ship was magnificent modern decor and spacious. Cabins were well laid out ... Read More
Having read all the negative reviews about Britannia I just had to give my opinion on the ship and our cruise. As usual check in at Southampham was excellent.The ship was magnificent modern decor and spacious. Cabins were well laid out with a large wall mounted television.The bathroom had a large glass sided shower which was great.The balcony was a bit smaller than on other P&O ships but was perfectly adequate. The staff without exception were polite and friendly. The food was excellent throughout the whole ship. The absence of midship stairs was a bit strange at first but we soon got used to it,and the lifts were a little bit erratic at times but I am sure that will get sorted in time. We enjoyed our cruise so much that we have booked another cruise on Britannia in September this year. The only negative we found was the constant moaning from other passengers we felt that they were looking for faults rather than enjoying a wonderful new ship. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
I don't normally write reviews but I was so shocked by some of the really negative reviews about this great ship. From the moment we arrived at Southampton and saw Britannia till we stepped off at the end we had a great time. As usual ... Read More
I don't normally write reviews but I was so shocked by some of the really negative reviews about this great ship. From the moment we arrived at Southampton and saw Britannia till we stepped off at the end we had a great time. As usual check in was very efficient, the ship's Deco was amazing light and bright. Our cabin was ready and our luggage arrived very quickly. The cabin was a good size with a wall mounted flat screen TV.The bathroom had a large glass fronted shower which was a great improvement. The balcony was a bit smaller than on other P&O ships but was perfectly adequate. Food was excellent great choices in all the places we tried. All the staff were friendly and efficient especially the waiters in the Meridian restaurant. The lack of midship stairs was a bit odd but we soon got used to that The lifts were a bit erratic at times but I am sure they will get that sorted out.The only thing that spoiled it a bit for us was the constant moaning by some passengers, they seemed intent on finding fault instead of enjoying all this great ship had to offer. We enjoyed ourselves so much that we have just booked another cruise on Britannia this September. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
When people ask me why I enjoy cruising so much, I tell them that I'm made to feel like a queen. This was our first P&O cruise. Britain already has a queen, so I guess there was no reason to make me feel like one. That ... Read More
When people ask me why I enjoy cruising so much, I tell them that I'm made to feel like a queen. This was our first P&O cruise. Britain already has a queen, so I guess there was no reason to make me feel like one. That being said, although my husband and I experienced some culture shock (no streaky bacon or bagels to be found at breakfast), overall, we had a delightful vacation. Oops...I mean holiday. We have cruised on Carnival, RCI, Celebrity, Holland, NCL and Princess in the past. We have travelled out of U.S. Cruise ports in Florida, California and New Orleans. This was our first European vacation. P&O had their act together at the Southampton cruise terminal. Just wish they had been more forthcoming about collecting our passports. We were told they would be returned onboard. That was not the case. We did not get them back until after our final port. However, Johan @ the Reception Desk was kind enough to make us copies to keep on hand. We have never had the excellent quality of Reception Desk service that we had on this ship. Yes the room is small and so is the veranda. But the positives include a nice feather duvet, a firm mattress and feather pillows upon request. Also, fabulous suction vent in the bathroom wall. Although it does create white noise, there was never any odor problem and the mirror did not steam up when showering! I quickly learned I was not the Queen when I requested a bath robe and was rebuffed. Our cabin steward asked his supervisor, but our category was not entitled to a robe. Harrumph. We anticipated being unable to participate in trivia games, due to our lack of U.K. knowledge, unless we glommed onto kind fellow passengers. Kind passengers were in abundance. We made some lovely friends. The only excursions we booked were "on your own" tours to Rome and Florence. Like embarkation, this was well organized and worth the cost. Speaking of cost, the U.S. Dollar and the British Pound Sterling exchange is not favorable. The exchange rate vs. Euro is much more favorable. Spouse bought a handsome leather jacket in Florence at a great price. We did not shop onboard. My spouse called the Casino a Casinette. So much smaller than other ships we have frequented and disappointing for him. It was fun reading the menus and trying to figure out what some of the foods were. Fellow passengers helped with translation of: Cullen Skink, Bubble and Squeak and Bakewell Tart, to name a few. However, by and large, for this American palate, the food was not seasoned enough. And, I was unable to get a cup of brewed decaf coffee anywhere onboard. Not even the Java Cafe!! Also, what we would consider easy substitutions, such as having chocolate ice cream instead of vanilla in a sundae (in Glass House), required the waiter asking his supervisor if it was OK. Finally found a bagel on the Meridian lunchtime menu one day! It did not come toasted. Requested it be toasted. The waiter came back to tell us the chef agreed to do so. Sigh...so much work. The Queen was not pleased. We had closely reviewed the floor plan before choosing our cabin and chose one close to the aft elevators. We don't have any disabilities, so we often used the stairs. However, you know elevators are an issue when people get on at 8 to secure a spot, ride up to 16 and stay on to get back down to 5. Having never toured Europe, we loved the ports. I had purchased, online, timed tickets in advance for many sights including The Vatican, the Ufizzi and Sagrada Familia. That worked out well. We sampled Gelato and breads everywhere we went. The pleasant surprise was our unplanned stop in Corsica. We shopped in the open air market for ham, nuts and more. Then found a boulangerie for bread. We brought it all back to the ship and had a delightful lunch on the veranda. Hmmm...maybe I was the Queen after all. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
Sailing 11th April 2015 Stateroom D716 I have read a lot of negative reviews of Britannia. And sadly I have to join the masses. I didn't speak to a single person on board who enjoyed this cruise, myself and my husband included. ... Read More
Sailing 11th April 2015 Stateroom D716 I have read a lot of negative reviews of Britannia. And sadly I have to join the masses. I didn't speak to a single person on board who enjoyed this cruise, myself and my husband included. It was our first sailing with P&O and will be our last. We have sailed many times previously with celebrity and with princess and they both have the upper hand in every way. Even Norwegian was better in many ways, which I didn't expect to ever say. It wasn't entirely bad. The ship was gorgeous. Light and spacious, and always felt empty. At time like a ghost ship. We never knew where everyone was. I heard many complaints that it was too dark and this is the only complaint i cannot agree with. I felt quite the opposite. We knew ahead of time, because of the design similarities to Royal Princess, that there was no central stairway. And until we were onboard we didn't think this would be an issue. It WAS. Especially with the small number of elevators always having one or more in each bank out of order all the way through the cruise. The large number of electric scooters and wheelchairs taking up entire lifts and making people have to wait several goes until they could get in a lift (or walk the length of the ship to the forward or aft stairs and lifts). We heard many people say this ship was aimed at the young. We are in our 30s and can say it was not aimed at our age bracket. The cabin was nice, but small. Our steward was amazing and had the place clean and made up in no time. And by the amount of time we ended up spending in there, this wasn't an easy task. Even though our sailing was only the third in, there was always some damage to the ship and our room. Some kind of green paint on the front of a cupboard that was never removed, a big chip in the mirror, broken bulbs that were never replaced and didn't work for the whole cruise. Similar things were showing in public areas. In the glass house lots of the tables were scratched because of the nicely designed but poorly thought out metal menus that damage the surfaces. The food was average. I actually found that from our few trips to the buffet, that the food there was better than in the main dining rooms. We have had better food on many cruises and it was the first time in the main dining room (Meridian for us) that i rarely saw anything i wanted on the menu and had to go for always available. And I am not a fussy eater. I love food of all kinds. The Horizon buffet had a good range and was well laid out, but good was rarely labelled. I guessed what I was picking up, but was sometimes wrong! I hear many complaints about this from other people too. The hygene in the buffet and throughout the ship was appalling. Nobody using the sanitizer machines when going into the different dining rooms and nobody trying to get people to. The same when entering back onto the ship after being in port. Never known such a lack of hygene on any ship. I never saw or heard staff being rude, but many couldn't be bothered. We could wait in the market cafe or atrium bar for 30 minutes or more to even be offered a drink at times. And then at other times hassles 5 times in 5 minutes. No consistency. In the Meridian and Oriental for breakfast we were rarely shown to a table, servers simply wafted a hand in the direction of several tables and told us "there's your table". The biggest complaint was the utter boredom. There was so little to do on the 7 sea days. The odd trivia game, aimed at people who didn't do much trivia as the questions would have been easy for a ten year old. Besides that there was nothing. We spent most of the time bored in the stateroom watching tv and reading. And though it is nice to relax on holiday, this was not how we wanted to spend our time. There were none of the standard things you see on other cruises, folding and carving demos, cake decorating, art classes..any of this would have been a welcome break from the tedium. The only thing they seemed to offer were "how to walk better", "look younger" and other such lectures from the spa in order to sell treatments. Even an activity or two that you had to pay to join would have been welcome. But no. Nothing. This really was a disappointing cruise and that hurts to say because I love cruises, expected a lot and wanted to enjoy it. If you'll pardon the pun, P&O seriously missed the boat on this one. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
Firstly I would like to say that we are very fortunate to be very experienced cruisers, and have tried quite a few cruise lines in the past and have 2 new lines to try later this year. As a line that caters very well, largely for British ... Read More
Firstly I would like to say that we are very fortunate to be very experienced cruisers, and have tried quite a few cruise lines in the past and have 2 new lines to try later this year. As a line that caters very well, largely for British cruisers, P & O have offerings that for the overall experience can be rated as very good and will be a good place for new cruisers to start. We have to be open and say that there are several things which may have caused dissatisfaction with this cruise / ship which could lead to the negative feelings. Among these being:- • The big build up over many months, gave many the expectation that this would be a very ‘Special’ experience. Unfortunately it wasn’t and P & O did little to make it so. The substitution of the normal musicians at send off for the superb Royal Marines, a few fireworks as we left and a commemorative cup and saucer left many wondering when the ‘Magic’ would start. It didn’t, so we ended up largely with a standard P & O offering. Which as stated cannot by any means be regarded as bad, but not what the preconceptions of this maiden cruise would be. • The weather was not good by and large but what could we expect for March in the Med. A little sunshine does a lot to boost the temperament of members of this island race. • This ship was supposed to have been the ultimate in design for British cruisers with their input being very closely considered. I would dispute this. • We have never encountered such a bunch of moaners as on this cruise. Whilst we may have agreed with much that was said, frankly it was a bit disheartening to hear such constant negativity, sometimes even to the point of verbal aggression. • Our cabin E442 (inside family cabin on deck 10) had a very annoying creak in any increased level of sea. We had visits from 4 engineering teams all of whom left and simply left the problem. This left us very tired after disturbed or sleepless nights and at one stage due to not having perfect health, I was absolutely exhausted to the point of feeling ill. Not only did engineering fail us but the reception staff totally failed to take ownership of the issue and see it through to resolution. It seems that once the problem has been passed on they lose all interest in it, instead of seeing things through to resolution. We had to manage the whole situation ourselves and finally on the last night we were move to one of the ‘Vacated’ balcony units. Very shoddy customer service. • To finish on a positive note, the actions of the captain and crew to ensure passenger safety when returning from a delayed tender return in Monaco in difficult conditions, can only be hugely applauded. So to the review: Cabins The initial cabin felt rather small compared to other P & O ships we have been on. The fixtures and fittings were of course all new so no problems there. This cabin had 2 fold down bunk beds, one of which seemed to be giving the afore-mentioned noise problem. I must say that we were not the only ones to experience this problem with the engineering teams always turning up with lists of cabins to visit for the same issues, many of which seemed to be fixed by the liberal application of sticky backed foam strip. It is a new ship after all and if only ribald travel agents have used the cabins before any creaks may have been muted by the ‘arms of morpheus’ (or Johnny Walker to the rest of us). Storage was adequate for the 2 of us but quite how a family of 4 will cope for 2 weeks or more without leaving at least part of their luggage in their cases is a bit of a mystery. For some reason the normal drawer set in the cabin itself have been converted to a cupboard which is much less useful. The bathroom is small by any standards but the inclusion of a fixed shower door instead of a curtain for us is positive. However, you have to squeeze between the toilet and the washbasin to open the door, which is quite narrow. I can foresee that some of the larger guests, of which there were many, would have a problem. The room was supplied with an empty fridge which was very useful, as was the hair drier which can be plugged in in the cabin which was welcome to ‘SHE’. The power outlet for shavers in the bathroom did not fit UK razor plugs and at this time you will need an adaptor for this. Adaptors obviously sold out in the shop in the first few hours, but P & O now know about this anomaly and hopefully will fit the correct socket in the very near future. Rooms come with the standard (for P & O) kettle together with tea, coffee and biscuits. This is not often the case on other lines and if an early morning cuppa is a deal breaker either cruise P & O or use room service, which may not deliver the required brew timeously or hot. The balcony cabin E408 had a little more floor space but otherwise was not really any different to the inside unit. The balconies are very small and in my mind not worth the extra cost. An anomaly in both cabins was the design of the lighting. There are simply no reading lights for the main bed occupants whether in twin or double bed configuration. The only reading lights are two linked spotlights in the ceiling which are intrusive if only one occupant wants to read. When the extra bunks are let down they have a reading light but the shadows on the adult or bottom bunks preclude reading at all as the aforementioned spotlights will almost certainly disturb the upper bunk occupants. In-cabin entertainment included free films but the useful port presentations and account information access have gone Food: Food is available in 3 main dining rooms, a buffet restaurant, a grab and go station, a pizza bar and a hot-dog / burger bar as well as speciality restaurants. The food is generally of good quality and the range of available venues enables you to have a quick snack instead of always feeling obliged to have full service dining, which for most people for two weeks could feel excessive. The design of the buffet Horizon was excellent and we did not experience any queues at all. The extra cost of the speciality restaurants was acceptable to me for the extended range and style of the offerings, although we didn’t eat in the top venue the Epicurean. We did leave the Glass House once though due to being completely ignored by the service staff for 40 minutes, who not only did not clear the table from the previous customers but in fact were not even evident for that time period at all. When we eventually ate there the food and wine selections were good although my personal preference when eating any form of pate is for some type of biscuit you can actually spread it on without said biscuit breaking to many fragments in my lap. I got a bread roll in the end. Nice flavours though. Drink; Alcohol prices for beer were pretty much what you will pay in a City bar at around £3.75 for 500 ml, wine is a about 50% more expensive than most of the restaurants we visit locally. Put in context though on the American based ships the prices are much higher and also subject generally to a 15% service charge not applied to P & O bills. The range of wine and beer (especially in Brodie’s) on board is really good. A reduction in wine prices to high street levels would be nice. Entertainment The entertainment team put together the usual P & O offerings of quizzes, bingo, sailaways and disco’s fairly well. The venues did not have the capacity for all the passengers on board. Queues were often formed for the more popular shows up to an hour before or entry or the seating positon you like was not guaranteed. The headliners unusually seemed to be 4 diva’s trying to out shriek each other, not helped by the appalling quality of either the sound or the mixing. Most disappointing as they are one of the highlights of any P & O cruise. Volumes were always too high and the band or backing tracks seemed to generally be fighting with the artists for volume. Especially the drummer who happened to be the music director. Entertainment out of the main venues was poor with only a brief pianist presence in the atrium and Crow’s nest instead of many and varied entertainers throughout the ship as we are used to. The Crow’s nest has lost its dance floor, the space now being allocated to the library The guest artists were very nice ‘B’ list P & O standards, but the Patriot Girls who got everybody singing 40’s tunes were a definite feel good group. The theatre has lost the typical plush seating and has narrow flat backed seats, probably to cram more people into a smaller space. It is also quite dark and sombre. It simply isn’t big enough as the queues demonstrate. Another design error was the drink stands screwed to the seats. These are completely stupid and obviously designed for ‘form over function’. Perhaps that is why there is no drinks service in the theatre as it is almost certain that anything placed on the will go the same way as my pint. They also hurt when you knock them. Please remove them and ban drinks in the theatre, it makes more sense. The casino always seems to be busy. There is no art gallery and if they really spent £1m on the art displayed they were robbed The separate Crystal Room dance area is very nice and Brodie’s bar is excellent but is also the main venue for quizzes and bingo as well. The i-studio (cinema etc) has a screen down to almost the floor level which together with the poor incline of the seats means that only the front row of the audience see all the screen. They also turned off all the satellite screens during screening of films which would have helped. Getting around The lack of stairs in the central area of the ship is ridiculous. This added to a lift algorithm that totally confounds, means long waiting times and much frustration. Particularly during peak periods it is impossible to move around in this area, even for one floor, without using the lifts. People got frustrated waiting and were getting into any lift that happened to stop regardless of whether the direction was the one they wanted, This meant that very often, when the lifts condescended to stop at your floor, they were full anyway. There are 2 sizes of lifts but both were labelled as being for 18 passengers. Perhaps we are supposed to sit on each other’s shoulders. The capacity and efficiency of these lifts is very poor. Mostly there was always one of them out of order and they often failed safe with people in them causing more than a little fear amongst sensitive passengers. The only alternative, which we often employed was to walk all the way to the extremities of the ship to use the lifts there or the stairs which are then available of course. There is only one stairway between the levels of the main atrium instead of the usual two. This caused some congestion between passengers moving between the main entertainment areas, shops and restaurants. Especially when the photographers helpfully set up encroaching areas which intruded onto the stairs. The atrium is relatively plain Facilities There is no sheltered promenade deck on this ship I didn’t realise before how much I liked this feature for a post dinner or post show stroll.. Instead there is a walk round deck up on 18 which is open to all the weather and winds. There are three pools but no indoor unit or even one with a sliding roof. This means that in inclement weather everybody has to sit inside meaning that bars / café’s and so forth get full of passengers reading, leaving no space for consumers. You can’t blame them though as there is nowhere else. There are also only 2 public Jacuzzi’s which are out on the open deck 17. Getting out of them on a cold and windy day is not pleasant and one was often cold or out of order. You can of course pay extra to enhance your experience by using the Spa facilities, but this is not value at £25p.d for the benefit … There seems to be a shortage of toilets in the main public areas but perhaps this is due to the poor signage. People who cruise tend to be of a certain age where facilities are becoming more important to them, so it is important that if they are present they are obvious. My wife reports that there are often more cubicles in the ladies than normal. The taps and soap dispensers are once again a great idea that simply doesn’t work properly in the current installation. If you can persuade the sensor in the soap dispensers to give you anything you then struggle to get any, or only an initial very short spurt of water. There are notices on the external toilet doors (as usual) to open the doors with your paper towel, but then no bins are provided to dispose of said towel. The library is small and is no longer ‘allowed’ to run a book swap for passengers read novels. Staff With the exception of the poolside barmen who could be quite rude, all the staff were helpful, pleasant and professional. The cabin attendant was among the best but has extra cabins to clear on this ship leaving him pressed for time to go the extra mile. Summary We so wanted this to be special but sadly it is our least favourite of all the P & O fleet. It is too flawed especially in cooler climes and the other big cruising nation, the Americans, will have problems with fitting into the restricted spaces. Perhaps it was really designed with accountants in mind rather than the myriad of customers who took the time to give feedback as they state… The entertainment is not as good nor prolific as on previous ships and the main entertainment areas are either too small or also used for other uses such as quizzes If your expectations are not too raised, the weather is nice and you are not too worried about the main shows you will probably enjoy yourself. We will only go on this vessel again if the destination and the deal are really right. Very sad and a missed opportunity for P & O.. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
After waiting a year and looking forward to "Britannia" it just was not what we expected, Our cabin had 2 extra bunks in, thankfully we had no children with us as how they think 4 people could exist in a cabin that size beggars ... Read More
After waiting a year and looking forward to "Britannia" it just was not what we expected, Our cabin had 2 extra bunks in, thankfully we had no children with us as how they think 4 people could exist in a cabin that size beggars belief. There was no promenade deck like on the other ships, you either had to go to the Crows nest up forward, or go to the so called promenade deck on deck 17. The activities were'nt great. Port and shore excursions left a lot to be desired - Cartagena a no walking tour we were told - my friend and I - both disabled had to wait for an hour and a half while our wives did the tour, we did get money back but that is not the point. A sailaway was cancelled, when we enquired why we were told inclement weather there is a bar downstairs - friendly staff leave a lot to be desired. Dining was quire good, but the food was not as good as on other cruises, although the waiting staff were excellent. We went to the "Glass House" for lunch, but walked out after waiting for nearly 2 hours to be served, The Beach House was very good though. The Headliners theatre is not big enough for a ship of that size. Embarkation everywhere was a nightmare, only 1 gangway at a lot of places. Lifts and toilets were out of order. The final straw was disembarkation at Southampton, we were at our designated waiting place an hour before, but there was no information broadcast at all, so we did the same as everyone else,and just went for it- a total shambles. Finally a line from the song "Sloop John B" comes to mind - "This is the worst trip I've ever been on" Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
As a non flyer and regular cruiser I cannot tell you how excited I was about Britannia' maiden voyage. When booking we were given a time to check in, we arrived at that time and fortunately got on board within 40 minutes. I heard ... Read More
As a non flyer and regular cruiser I cannot tell you how excited I was about Britannia' maiden voyage. When booking we were given a time to check in, we arrived at that time and fortunately got on board within 40 minutes. I heard other people had waited a couple of hours, this is not P&O's fault, other passengers paid no attention to their allocated embarkation time which in turn creates a back log and delays. This has happened with nearly all the lines I have travelled with. Once on board we went straight to our cabin and was delighted to see our cases already there. There was a few issues with the lifts at this point I think mainly due to a lack of a mid ship stairway. The ship was beautifully decorated and the atrium was spectacular. Our balcony cabin was a good size. The bathroom was quite small but the shower was a good size and had a lovely glass enclosure instead of those horrible shower curtains. The balcony was on the small side not much space with 2 chairs a foot stool and table but ok. The public areas were lovely including brodies, live lounge, headliners and the crows nest. The theatre headliners was always busy but I never had a problem getting a seat and the shows were amazing, although the seats were a little small if you have a big bottom like me Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
First impression of this ship was the size of the ship as I had never sailed on a ship this size before, the biggest having been the Celebrity Galaxy some years ago and the P&O ship Oceana. The cabin a twin inside on F deck was quite ... Read More
First impression of this ship was the size of the ship as I had never sailed on a ship this size before, the biggest having been the Celebrity Galaxy some years ago and the P&O ship Oceana. The cabin a twin inside on F deck was quite spacious and was impressed the the facilities in the cabin such as the adequate hanging space for clothing and a great shower in the bathroom. Beds were comfortable with a nice thick mattress on each bed. Our cabin stewardess was brilliant with nothing too much trouble for her. The cabin was handy for lifts and stairs as it was situated forward end. It was also quite near to the restaurants/shops etc on deck 7. We had freedom dining which we thought was great as it was more flexible than fixed dining times. Facilities on board were excellent with plenty of places to eat and also the bars. Entertainment throughout the cruise was excellent. All in all the cruise was excellent with plenty of activities. Would definitely recommend this ship and would sail in her again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
OVERVIEW. As a maiden cruise, this was a non-event. Extremely disappointing. Nothing special at any port of call. The ship has a number of basic design flaws such as no staircase midships above deck 7, no boat deck, Live Lounge much ... Read More
OVERVIEW. As a maiden cruise, this was a non-event. Extremely disappointing. Nothing special at any port of call. The ship has a number of basic design flaws such as no staircase midships above deck 7, no boat deck, Live Lounge much too small for size of ship. Crows Nest very nice but not big enough, always over-full. Beautiful theatre but hopeless for wheelchair-bound passengers.Lifts too small, continual congestion. We have a severely disabled, wheelchair-bound son and have taken him on many cruise ships including Ventura and Oceana. We would NOT take him on Britannia. The much vaunted atrium left us cold, no 'WOW' factor, reminded us of the Trafford Centre shopping mall. Much prefer a traditional atrium. At no time did we feel that the ship was on a "Maiden Cruise' or was it??? Our cruise number was B502, B501 ( the first cruise) was a shake down cruise but could be argued as the maiden cruise. There was no 'Maiden Cruise' merchandise or memorabilia for purchase on the ship ( we all got a free tea a cup and saucer marked maiden cruise), the only goods for sale were marked 'Maiden Season', perhaps all the merchandise that might have existed was bought by passengers on B501!! Stability of the ship was excellent, at no stage did we ever feel as though we were on a ship. Weather was very unkind to us, but that's what you get in the Med in March. DINING We were allocated to Club dining in the Oriental Restaurant as was our choice. Unfortunately 2 of the 3 restaurants on the ship were allocated to Freedom Dining. A decision that angered hundreds of passengers who wanted Club Dining and could not get it, poor decision by P&O, should have been 2 Club dining and 1 Freedom Dining .I suspect, however, that within a couple of years P&O will change all restaurants on all ships to Freedom Dining, in spite of passenger preferences.We used to cruise with NCL until they introduced Freestyle Dining, we have not been on any of their ships since, we do not like it. if P&O change to total Freedom Dining, we would not sail with them again. Oriental dining room was excellent, food mostly good, waiters superb. Epicurean Restaurant was OK, but not worth £28 extra per person. Limelight club was great, good meal and good service. Kiki Dee was excellent except for her manic guitar player who often totally overpowered her. Sindhu was good, great service in lovely surroundings.Best place on the ship. Glass House is a particular favourite of ours and we used in on many occasions. Unfortunately its position on Britannia is not good as it is a walkway through the atrium.On our last day at sea we went for lunch in the Glass House at 2pm to be advised that the waiting time for food was approximately and hour and a half!! Totally ridiculous. Unfortunaley we had to go to the Horizon Buffet. The Horizon Buffet is laid out differently to other P&O ships and works well except for wheelchair-bound passengers who have little room to move between tables. For a few days there were teething problems with fruit juice and water dispensers, but it was quickly overcome. Breakfast was OK, the usual mad scramble, but we always found somewhere to sit.One complaint was that there was no low fat milk available at the tea making stations, only a large urn full of whole milk. Despite visits to reception to complain and conversations with Horizon restaurant managers, we never managed to get them to give us an option of low fat milk at the tea making stations. Food at lunch was very poor, cold selection was abysmal, same stuff every day, hot selection was poor and mostly over-cooked.We usually ate at the Glass House despite having to pay extra. On a number of days there were no name tags on the hot food, you had to guess.I had a word with a Head Waiter, she advised me that the machine which produces the labels was broken (for 3 days), when I suggested that as she had a pen and paper, she could write the labels by hand she gave me a look that said i must be insane and just walked away. We did not use Horizon at night or the Beach House so cannot comment. ENTERTAINMENT Apart from 4 full stage shows in the Headliners Theatre, the entertainment for us was dire.The worst we have had in 24 years of cruising. We were told by a member of the entertainment team that, as an experiment, all entertainment on Britannia was outsourced to a separate company and THEY had decided that ,on a 14 night cruise, we would have 4 stage shows and 10 cabaret acts in the Main Theatre. Even the quizzes were supplied by this company. There was no Headliners Company, the performers were titled 'Britannia Show Cast'.They were not introduced by the Entertainment Manager as is usual. The lights went down, the show started, when it ended the lights went up and out we went. The 10 cabaret acts were, in our opinion, 3rd and 4th rate has-beens/never will be's!! It was not what we expected on a P&O ship, much less maiden cruise.NO BIG NAME FOR THE ENTIRE CRUISE.Absolutely dreadful. P&O will probably argue that the theatre was full for these shows. It was, BUT ONLY BECAUSE THERE WAS NOTHING ELSE TO DO, unless you wanted to sit in a bar (and drink) or listen to karaoke (and drink) or go to the pianist in the Crows Nest (and drink) or sit in the atrium (and drink). The Live Lounge is much too small, it gets filled with passengers on early dining who stay there all night leaving no space for passengers on late dining.Most of the time in the Live Lounge there would be a 45 minute set by the resident group supplied by the outsourcing company and then 45 minutes of the ships DJ and so on ad nauseam.On two nights there was a comedian on but, as late diners, we could not get in. On 2 of our 6 sea days there was not even a decent film in the main theatre. For the first time ever on a cruise, we spent an inordinate amount of time in our cabin watching TV. We could have stayed at home and done the same in greater comfort. I suspect (again) that P&O will roll out this type of entertainment package across the entire fleet. It is not what we want and talking to others it was not what they wanted either.But P&O will give us what THEY want and not what we want, to save money. We will not sail on Britannia again, it is not for us, if P&O change the entertainment across the fleet to that offered on Britannia, we will cease cruising with P&O. On Britannia there is not enough place to go for 3600 passengers in the evening. On many occasions, we finished our dinner at about 10.20pm and walked through the ship and wondered where all 3600 passengers were. Probably in their cabins watching films as we often did. Cabin Inside cabin was ideal for our needs, our Steward, Sanjay, was superb. Beds were comfortable, plenty of hanging space (as on Ventura and Azura), cabin layout was very good.Shower room was good, even the shower cubicle with its glass door was no problem for me as a 19 sone man.We were on E deck towards the bow and were never disturbed by any noise ( except on the first night at sea when at 5am a foolish Officer of the Watch put an 'alpha' emergency call through all passenger cabins, thereby giving an early morning alarm call to 3600 passengers. Service Cabin steward was brilliant, waiters and wine waiter in Oriental were superb. Neil Oliver and his team were great as usual, given the new constraints they were under. The Great British Sailaway spoilt by a late sailing due to Cadiz security staff being very slow to get returning passengers cleared. The only letdown was the Horizon buffet, many staff were good, but many of them were sometimes surly and offhand. Conclusion. A poor cruise, did not come up to our expectations. No big name artiste, nothing special at all. We will not sail on Britannia again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
We were on the maiden voyage and what a disappointment. Although the crew were magnificent and the food was great there was just no 'oomph' to this voyage. The entertainment was, on the whole, abysmal. for such a large ship there ... Read More
We were on the maiden voyage and what a disappointment. Although the crew were magnificent and the food was great there was just no 'oomph' to this voyage. The entertainment was, on the whole, abysmal. for such a large ship there were not the facilities to cope with everyone in the theatres. There was an interview with James Martin and the venue was overfull an hour before it started. My partner is wheelchair bound and the help on and off the ship was unequalled. Seeing as it's duty free the prices on drinks etc were very high. Also the cabin doors are self closing which makes it difficult to hold them open for mobility and lets them slam at night waking the whole corridor up. Sorry P&O it's a ' could do better' on this voyage. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
This was the maiden voyage so the ship was full, however, it was not school holidays where you could have had children in the cabins as well, I had heard 500 children were on the next week. Without the 500 children everywhere you went was ... Read More
This was the maiden voyage so the ship was full, however, it was not school holidays where you could have had children in the cabins as well, I had heard 500 children were on the next week. Without the 500 children everywhere you went was full! people were going to the theatre 45 mins early to get a place for what they wanted! Even if that meant they were going in half way through a film! The restaurants were full, mostly of dirty tables! so after an hours wait on freedom dining you are sitting in a sea of dirty tables having school at some times pub dinners! certainly not fine dining! no comparison with the grills on Cunard. They can do it though pay £7.50 for ribeye steak with prawns in the glass house and it is excellent, the food in the beach house was also excellent although once it was known about if you did not go in before 7.15 they were full can not book this one. The night club was great £28 per head! fully booked for the 14 days from day 3! as was the fine dining in Epicurean £28 per head ! fully booked from day 3. The reason all these places are full is because of the poor standard in the main restaurants....This needs sorting. You arrive at the desk, they either give you a pager and you wait up to an hour, or a ticket which someone then takes from you and shows you to the general direction your table!!   Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
Maiden Cruise review on Britannia Overall Ship Experience 8 out of 10 + Modern design + Well laid out + Great choice of dining options and food quality + High tech Headliners shows + Ample seating areas + Amazing Atrium We did hear ... Read More
Maiden Cruise review on Britannia Overall Ship Experience 8 out of 10 + Modern design + Well laid out + Great choice of dining options and food quality + High tech Headliners shows + Ample seating areas + Amazing Atrium We did hear a lot of passengers comparing Britannia to other ships in the fleet, but we feel she’s not been designed to replace them, but to add a different cruise experience to the fleet, offering a modern, fresh and unique feel - Points A few key design features which shave a few points off Britannia which are : 1) Design let down by no central staircase, so moving around decks (even just one deck) requires the lift, which can take be quite a wait and get very busy at disembarkation and in the evening. If you take a long walk to either end of the ship there are staircases located forward and aft, but for some can take some time 2) No promenade deck - so if you like to take an evening stroll around the outside deck, you cannot.  Also you cannot access the bow or stern of Britannia, she only has a small outside areas on deck 7 which are amidships and another small area towards the stern (you cannot walk on the outside between these two areas as the lifeboats take the walkway area up). The Crows nest is the only area you can look out over the bow, the Retreat takes the outside bow area up - this can only accessed by purchasing a pass Check In - As usual with Ocean Cruise Terminal It takes up to 2 hours to embark. You have to take a coloured A-Z card and wait your turn…very,very slow, so arrive early Once checked in and through security everything was smooth Thats all the bad bits over with .... lets get back to Britannia's great cruising experience ..... Cabin - Inside cabins offer enough access to get around the bed, plus large area under the bed for all your luggage, a larger than normal shower with glass screen, cabins are quite spacious offering a lot of hanging / cupboard space.  Outside Cabins are quite narrow with very narrow balcony, both are very well appointed with safe, fridge, hairdryer, tea and coffee facilities and are very quite (well sound insulated), either a 32” or 40” TV offering a great choice or radio, tv or film options ….althought your on a cruise and won’t need it that much! Staff - Very friendly, will accommodate your every need, on our cruise demonstrated their care, and bravery when tendering into Monte Carlo became very difficult due to sea conditions and strong winds - we felt very sorry for the crew members left aboard to recover the tenders onto the ships lifting hooks, as it took them 1 hr each to load the large new tenders back onboard due the conditions, injuring themselves in the process (lucky they made a full quick recovery) Tendering - Very fast, efficient and very well organised (please see comment above as quite a lot of passengers may complained about a long wait, but this was caused by very difficult and dangerous sea conditions. The Captain and the crew were very concerned about passenger safety as the Captain personally overseen the tenders and helped passengers back onboard Disembarkation at port destinations - Can be quite lengthly as only 2 gangways were used (we hope more will be used in the future), as with over 3500 passengers it gets very busy not only on the gangways but with the lifts so you can struggle to get ashore quickly Food and Drink - What can we say…. if you like food and drink Britannia is the place it be !!! lots of great places to dine : Meridian - Freedom Dining Restaurant - Meridian Oriental - Fixed Dining Restaurant - Oriental Horizon - open 20 hours per day (late buffet till 02.00) with self service wine Grab and Go - Ready packaged food sandwiches, fruits, pasta etc Poolside pizzeria - till 18.00 The Glass house - Charges from £3.50 to £7.50 - Open from 11.00 - 23.00 The Epicurean - Cover charge £28 per person - Open from 18.30 - 22.00 The Beach house - Cover charge £5 per person - Open from 18.30 - 21.30 The Sindhu - Cover charge £15 per person The Limelight Club - Cover charge applies The Ocean Grill - Charges apply The White Room - Cover charge applies Entertainment - Excellent entertainment Team, offering the best sail away parties we have seen for some time Headliners Theatre offers the very latest in high tech shows, lighting displays and amazing LED screens (around 14 ft high and the width of the stage) and a great sound system. The performers really take these shows to the next level Plenty of daily activities and evening entertainment for the more senior generation, but if you aged between 20-50 you could find it lacking, as the music, entertainment and general daily programme lends itself to an older age group After 11.30 the late night club doubles up as the disco which is nearly always empty as the sound system is lacking compared to the excellent sound systems around the rest of the ship Dress code - Very smartly dressed, it was great to see nearly everyone onboard adhering to smart dress codes (4 formal nights in 14 days) Retail - Quite a selection of retail options - but be quick …. they only hold very limited stock (in the case of watches and sunglasses etc they only sometimes have the item on display for sale, so if you don’t buy quickly you could be disappointed) Tours - Extremely well organised, great tour guides and run perfectly on time, prices once again are quite high on certain tours we chose a Rome tour which we felt was priced correctly for the amount of information and hours we spent on the tour. Spa - Britannia has an amazing spa with some amazing places to relax and pamper yourself, but prices are on the high side Our opinion of Britannia is a very friendly ship, very modern design features and the Captain, Crew and Entertainments team did extremely well for her maiden voyage. Britannia will also cater for families well, as she has a very large children's area with lots of entertainment and staff to keep them happy. We hope to return onboard in the near future ……   Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
Sailed on the maiden voyage, first impression is "wow" but that soon wears off. At dinner in Penninsular restaurant ordered wine only to be told that it was not available, and this was on the first night of the maiden voyage !!. ... Read More
Sailed on the maiden voyage, first impression is "wow" but that soon wears off. At dinner in Penninsular restaurant ordered wine only to be told that it was not available, and this was on the first night of the maiden voyage !!. Similar in both the Epicurian and Brodies where beers and wine on their lists were again not available. Embarkation from Gibraltar was a joke, in pouring rain customers were left queuing up for the limited access available with no effort made to open extra gangways to speed up boarding in awful weather. The common areas are too small for the number of passengers and you needed to be in the theatre at least 30 mins. early to have any chance of a seat. The much vaunted atrium is little more than a shopping mall, shops, cafes and a bar and could hardly be described as the focus of the ship. The food and service is cruise ship average and the £28 surcharge for Epicurian is certainly not worth it as both food and service do not come up to fine dining standards. Entertainment is cruise ship average, one night they did let a drunk onto the stage which brightened the evening and there was a fight in the live lounge where space is so limited that people end up standing in aisles blocking the view of those in seats. The weather was poor all cruise and as there is no retracting roof over the pools that area becomes unusable. Cabins are smaller than other P&O ships and balconies barely big enough for 2 people. The promenade deck is stuck right at the top of the ship is uncovered and again in poor weather is unusable. We have cruised with P&O before and will do so again but not on Brittania which is all glitz but no substance. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
This is a beautiful ship with all amenities as you would expect from a modern ship. People with disabilities have been catered for, even to a lift to lower them into the pool and a stair lift to enable them to get to higher decks where ... Read More
This is a beautiful ship with all amenities as you would expect from a modern ship. People with disabilities have been catered for, even to a lift to lower them into the pool and a stair lift to enable them to get to higher decks where lifts do not go. A grab and go on the lido deck where cheese, ham etc. rolls are available to help yourself if you want a snack, after 18 cruises I haven’t seen anything quite like this before. It’s quick and easy just take what you want and either take it to your table or back to your cabin. I’ve never known room service to be so quick, 15 minutes from ordering to arrival. This is ideal if you don’t want to go for lunch. I only used it twice but was impressed. Evening entertainment was very good especially the Headliners. Their presentation of Once Upon a Time was spectacular, even in pantomimes when I was much younger I have never seen the likes. They even had a gigantic spider coming out over the audience, brilliant. All the other show rooms, I’m told, were very good, it’s just a pity I never had chance to see them as they were always full. Too many people too few venues. Many people will be impressed with this ship; unfortunately I’m not one of these people. I’ve sailed on nearly all P&O ships so feel qualified to voice my opinion and I’m afraid this ship isn’t for me. I found the cabins too small for the three of us, myself, my wife and my son. My son slept on a bunk which is accessed via a ladder at the foot of the bed, when this ladder is in position it blocks access to the bathroom and it has to be removed, which can be quite noisy at 3am. I dread to think how four people would cope as our cabin was a four birth. The TV is huge which unfortunately doesn’t apply to the balcony which is very small. To use the relaxer you have to turn it sideways, there is no room any other way. The biggest complaint I heard from other passengers was the lack of a promenade deck which is usually on deck seven. If you want to stroll around the ship you have to go to deck seventeen and if it is raining you will get very wet. On a traditional promenade deck this would not happen. Although the weather was poor, got soaked in Gibraltar, the wind wasn’t that strong but the ship still moved more than I’ve experienced on other ships in similar conditions. Even members of the crew said they felt a little queasy on certain days, for a ship this size this is unusual. I’ve booked another cruise next year to the Caribbean but stipulated it must not be on Britannia so I will be sailing on Azura which I have sailed on before.   Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
Britannia Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 5.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.6
Family 5.0 3.6
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.5
Enrichment 4.0 3.2
Service 5.0 3.9
Value For Money 5.0 3.5
Rates 5.0 N/A

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