1. Home
  2. Cruise Lines
  3. Cunard Line
  4. Cunard Line Cruise Reviews

657 Cunard Transatlantic Cruise Reviews

This was our second crossing on QM2, having sailed two years ago Westbound in December. The Atlantic in December *is* the destination for us as much as the QM2 herself, and neither disappointed. Perhaps because this was my second trip ... Read More
This was our second crossing on QM2, having sailed two years ago Westbound in December. The Atlantic in December *is* the destination for us as much as the QM2 herself, and neither disappointed. Perhaps because this was my second trip on QM2, I found the ship even more beautiful than I remembered. I noticed more of the details and the design and was constantly amazed and enchanted. So many beautiful "liner-y" public spaces to spend time in, it was a pleasure just moving through the ship. We spent a great deal of time in the Commodore Club for cocktails before and after dinner, and the Chart Room - my personal favorite. And of course the gallery on 3L was especially captivating on the days when we had "lumpy seas" as Captain Wells called them. The service from the Queens Grill through to all the public rooms was very warm and attentive, especially Rakesh who looked after us so good naturedly in the Commodore Club, making us always feel very welcomed. Osman and team in the Queens Grill ran a very tight ship as well, with near flawless service. There were a couple of gala nights were we arrived at the peak time and things were a bit backed up, but the room itself, and the floor show of all the table side preparations kept us more than entertain. We never went to any of the shows, as for us, dinner was the evening's show. I did attend the three lectures by Maureen Ryan the former Cunard social hostess who chronicled her career from the 1950s to the early 2000s and she was excellent. Likewise the jazz combo in the Chart Room each night was wonderful and the perfect accompaniment to the reasonably sized post-dinner martini and the dark Atlantic waters rushing by. The only negatives to the otherwise completely outstanding QM2 crossing were around the food: The menus and food execution were not really up to scratch.  We were in QG and found the food only about 4 out of five.  The service (thank you Osman and team!) and setting was fantastic,  but the variety of the menus and sometimes the execution was not up to par. This was especially true at breakfast, where not only was the menu very very pedestrian, but where they also struggled to poach eggs properly.    The menus were very tame, not even up to par with what I would call today's wonderful "modern British" fare. The food is more than adequate, but I guess especially in QG I would be looking for bit more flare and sophistication. Osman was very aggressive at offering us off menu items, which we took advantage of. Most were good to very good, but overall I would not sail on QM2 for the food. I had to keep reminding myself that I was on "Queen Mary 2" and not "Normandie 2" and that put things in proper perspective. The new menu in the Verandah does not do justice the beauty and sophistication of that space.  It's a gorgeous room, swanky and sophisticated, so it seemed a but incongruous to be eating steakhouse fare. The wine list by contrast was wonderful, and well stocked with a great range of old-world wines at reasonable process. Still, we've been back for almost 3 weeks now, and I have already had half a dozen dreams about the ship.  I am plotting our return at the first opportunity. I am a foodie normally, so despite the "meh" rating of the food, it speaks volumes that I cannot wait to be back aboard. It was absolutely brilliant, and how enormously lucky I felt to have experienced it. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
This is a short review of Queen Mary 2 after having completed four Transatlantic crossings on her, with the most recent one being the December 8 to 15 2019 run from New York to Southampton. First, the ship. Queen Mary 2 is not a cruise ... Read More
This is a short review of Queen Mary 2 after having completed four Transatlantic crossings on her, with the most recent one being the December 8 to 15 2019 run from New York to Southampton. First, the ship. Queen Mary 2 is not a cruise ship. She is an Ocean Liner. What does that mean? It means she is built differently than cruise ships. She is longer for her width, her freeboard (the distance from the waterline to the lowest deck where water can enter the ship) is much higher, her hull thicker and her top speed is considerably higher than a cruise ship. In fact, one thing she is well known for is being able to handle rough seas very well. On the inside, I would describe her as being elegant in her décor and passengers have a lot of elbow room as her square feet per guest is one of the highest out there. Also noteworthy is how the ship’s interior is drenched in history and tradition. In some places it feels a little like a museum with informative wall coverings speaking of the history of Cunard Line, earned trophies and honors and even artwork everywhere telling the story of ships and the sea. Places like the Main Lobby and the Britannia Restaurant are huge and grand but still very tasteful. With that said, sometimes she does feel a bit compartmentalized. This is an after effect of her being built strongly as a seagoing ship, so engineering considerations came first. Second, the service from the staff is uniformly outstanding. They know their jobs, do them very well and their attitude is one of pride in their work and in their ship. They are also extremely approachable and friendly. It is not uncommon for staff to know the passengers and vice versa – this sort of ongoing friendliness is part of Cunard culture. Third, the food. To me it is very well prepared across the board. The selection does not always conform 100% to my tastes but it is very well made with quality ingredients. I especially enjoyed the Steak Diane in the Britannia, the Fish and Chips in the Golden Lion pub and in the Verandah steakhouse the Filet Mignon was excellent. Which brings me to a place named Sir Samuels and the Godiva chocolate everywhere. The hot cocoa there is decadent to say the least. Overall, to me the experience was simply wonderful. I HIGHLY recommend Queen Mary 2 with this qualification – you have to go into it understanding what she is and what Cunard is. Cunard is all about elegance and ambiance, about being steeped in history and tradition and yes, it is the line for ship buffs. It is not the line with on deck rave parties and ziplines in the middle of the ships. So if you are attracted to the aspects I mentioned then Cunard may be the fit for you. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
The transatlantic crossing was part of a two ship round trip to USA, Bermuda and Bahamas. The first part was a faultless sailing on Celebrity Silhouette. All the crew were welcoming and friendly. so good I am going again with ... Read More
The transatlantic crossing was part of a two ship round trip to USA, Bermuda and Bahamas. The first part was a faultless sailing on Celebrity Silhouette. All the crew were welcoming and friendly. so good I am going again with Celebrity next Year. Then what a change. The crew on Queen Mary could barely look at anyone. The captain was most unwelcoming and it filtered down from there. The guest services staff were curt at best. There were exceptions especially the MDR where our waiters were efficient and extremely friendly. The photographers were very helpful. Sir Samuels was extremely slow for service over 35 minutes for a coffee but the waiters were extremely pleasant. The ships layout is challenging we spent over 40 minutes wandering around the ship to find a place to sit for a drink. It is elegant but dark and claustrophobic . You were always aware of the number of people onboard it felt much busier than Ventura earlier this year. There was a literature festival organised by The Times with some great authors for talks and book signings but Cunard managed to make a pigs ear of this. A significant number of guests were unaware of the event which overtook the entire ship severely reducing the available activities especially the planetarium which upset many. Conversely those who had booked through The Times thought the events were purely for them and we should not be taking part in the events. This caused a them and us divide amongst passengers which was entirely down to Cunard’s bad planning. They did send out literature for this event on 28 October by which time a lot of passengers like myself had already left home. Why so very late as there were aware of the event over 12 months ago. I was fortunately advised of the event by my travel agent when I booked. The authors were charming and welcoming such a contrast to the Cunard staff. My inside cabin was comfortable, spacious and well looked after by my cabin steward. I would never sail with Cunard again unless I was unable to fly. It did provide an acceptable passenger ferry service. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Having only traveled in the past by air, automobile, or train, it was high time I tried a cruise, and a transatlantic cruise to me, seemed most adventurous. Seven days alone, afloat on the temperamental Atlantic, inside a large ship ... Read More
Having only traveled in the past by air, automobile, or train, it was high time I tried a cruise, and a transatlantic cruise to me, seemed most adventurous. Seven days alone, afloat on the temperamental Atlantic, inside a large ship filled with strangers, filled me with mild anticipation and intrepid fearfulness of what lay ahead on my crossing. Was I to perhaps be cut off from the outside world completely, and at the mercy of mother-nature and her sudden outbursts? Was I to go overboard on some stormy night? Was the ship sturdy enough to endure the perilous high seas, and was the Queen Mary II as majestic and elegant as all the legends had told? I embarked at Southampton on November 3, 2019, and there were no lines or delays. It was a very simple affair and within 10 minutes I found my way to my stateroom which was on deck 4. I had an inside room with no views or balcony. The room was clean, tidy, and smelled good. The bathroom was small but sufficient and again, clean and smelled like it had been just been serviced. I put away my clothes and had a look around the room. The television was already on and tuned to the information channel explaining to me that later that day I would have to attend an emergency drill along with all the passengers and crew. This was a matter of great importance and mandatory. However, that was not until around 5 pm which gave me a couple of hours to explore the ship. I took my Daily Programme with me, which was provided to me every day and left outside my room in a small mail slot. It contained a detailed explanation of each day’s events, details of special events, and the opening closing times of the bars and lounges. I went down to the lobby and was wowed; the lobby was magnificent and elegant. The lighting and colors were well placed and very pleasant and the ambiance was much becoming of such a legendary ship which surpassed her grandeur. There are many places to eat on the QM2. I mainly frequented the buffet which was open most of the time day and evening and also late at night. The food was good for a buffet and if traveling alone it was more than sufficient to meet my basic appetite and dietary needs. Of course if one wished to dress up in a jacket or suite then the stateroom assigned dinning at the Britannia Restaurant was always there if you felt the need to dress formally and take part in the quintessence of fine dining on the QM2. Really though, I never felt like a lower class passenger because I did not like to dress formally. I knew the rules and abided by the ones that suited my whims. I found that attending formal afternoon tea at 3:30 pm everyday satisfied my desire to be a part of the upper crust (or in this case, scones). If you can’t stomach being asked 25 times in 15 minutes by numerous waiters if you wanted more tea or would like more cucumber sandwiches, then this would not be for you. However, each time I went to tea, I met a different solo passenger who I would pressgang and join for afternoon tea. I really enjoyed meeting many unique people with so many stories. I met an established author, a dancer, and an elderly old couple on their 20th cruise to name a few. In the evenings I would frequent the pub and then go to a show or movie. There was so much to do all the time that the days passed too quickly. Next time I go on the QM2 I will spend more time reading or relaxing as I always felt the need to attend the RADA workshop, or a lecture, or the planetarium, or the Royal Court Theatre, or the solo traveler’s coffee meet-up, or go to the internet lounge and connect to the outside world. There was also the night club which was usually quite sparsely packed. It was a fun place to mingle with like minded fellow passengers and it was definitely not a place to hook up. Most solo passengers were attached or married and were just there to let loose a little, have a few drinks and pretend they were 25 once again (without all the drama). The future of the QM2 cruises will more than likely change a little bit with the times, and a new younger crowd will eventually meld into the aging culture of the aristocratic idioms of a traditional crossing. I imagine that with more health conscious activities, a better gym, a faster internet, a more hip and younger crowd will slowly change the old stuffiness that still prevails somewhat. I mean, don’t get me wrong. I thoroughly enjoyed that old stuffiness; and that is why it will not entirely die out! It will change slowly and perhaps morph into something that appeals to the younger generation who don’t necessarily want to go on a Carnival Cruise and who may want something that has some class, allure, elegance and sophistication, not found elsewhere, especially on a cruise ship. To take cruise alone definitely does feel a little daunting at times. The reputation of the Cunard business model can seem a little off-putting and stuck in its ways. But I never really felt alone on the ship. I ended up feeling at one with my entire fellow passengers and crew. After all, we all had a combined experience and had survived the transatlantic crossing, all on board the beautiful Queen Mary 2. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
My wife is mobility impaired and usually uses a wheelchair and so a lot of this report relates to the accessibility aspect of our two way Atlantic crossing on the QM2. We checked in about one hour early and that did not cause a problem. ... Read More
My wife is mobility impaired and usually uses a wheelchair and so a lot of this report relates to the accessibility aspect of our two way Atlantic crossing on the QM2. We checked in about one hour early and that did not cause a problem. Embarkation at Southampton was easy and efficient although the postcode given on our e-tickets seemed to refer to a park in the middle of Southampton rather than the port. We had pre-booked parking and from arrival in our car to getting into our state room took about 40 minutes, the longest queue being security. We were directed to a special check-in area to one side of the terminal with low desks suitable for those in a wheelchair. Getting from quayside into the ship involves a lift and a bridge similar to that in airports with quite a few difficult to negotiate ramps. Staff (at both ends) on the way out seemed to have been instructed not to help those in a wheelchair manage the ramps and it was annoying to have to struggle to get the chair over the ramps with someone in uniform standing watching from a few feet away. Our cabin (6108 – not an accessible cabin) was larger than we had imagined. There were 50 coat hangers in the wardrobe plus a place we could hang those clothes we had brought on our own coat hangers. The shower / bathroom had a reasonably low step into it and the shower stool we had requested was already in the shower. We brought with us a couple of suction cup hand rails to affix to the shower walls (purchased on-line for under £10) and these worked very well. Generally the room was in good order although the carpet needed a steam clean. Our empty suitcases fitted under the bed although very deep suitcases would not and fellow passengers with these reported that storing them in their cabin was a bit annoying. We stored our folding wheelchair (and our walker) out of the way adjacent to the window – it is an “18 inch” wheelchair and thus too wide to go through the cabin door. We did have the opportunity to see an accessible cabin on the same deck and this had a wide door, a wet room and a lot of floor space although a porthole window (we had a sheltered balcony). We will try to get one of these next time because of the extra space. Our cabin steward lent us a very large rubber floor / door wedge to hold the cabin door open whilst we negotiated entering and leaving– we will bring our own on any future voyages. Our cabin was very quiet and we scarcely noticed the pounding of the runners on Deck Seven above. We did note during our 3 am corridor walks that cabins in the 6170 area seemed to have more background engine noise. We also could hear the TV of our neighbours if they had the sound turned up a bit. We used the free launderette on a few occasions, getting there just after 0730 is the key to a straightforward and hassle free wash ! There are numerous lifts throughout the ship (A and D are larger than B and C and there are also quite a number of smaller lifts that you have to use to go from Deck 3 to Deck 3 Lower. Most of the ship is disability accessible although some of the doors need holding open and there is one area on the very top to which a wheelchair cannot get. Food was as described in other reviews. We ate breakfast in our cabin most mornings and it arrived promptly within our chosen time slot - perhaps not always as hot as that at Kings Court but very acceptable. Kings Court food was good in a cafeteria sense (although with a disappointing limited veggie choice, too many dishes being nearly veggie but not totally) and that within the Britannia restaurant was very variable – never good, usually acceptable and occasionally terrible. I (a veggie) left my offering from the main menu one day because it was inedible (over boiled noodles and heat lamp dried vegetables and was then offered the special veggie menu from which one chooses 24 hours in advance. Although restricted in choice (7 offerings for 14 days), its quality was superior to anything else on offer. The crew were always willing to offer help with carrying trays, opening doors or patiently standing to one side as we progressed down corridors (unlike some of our impatient fellow passengers who behaved in an insensitive and / or disability blind manner). We learnt where the best (marked) spots in the presentation venues were for wheelchairs. You should note that these places in Illuminations are very good but some of those in the Royal Court on the upper level can very poor with a restricted line of sight. It was disappointing that some of our able bodied fellow passengers were unable to read the signs indicating certain seats were reserved for those with mobility issues. Generally the lectures and events were very good (we particularly enjoyed the Bridge Classes) and there was far too much on offer for us to be able to go to all we were interested in. We went to one evening show and were impressed with the enthusiasm and energy of the dance group. WIFI was slow and alcohol very expensive (as reported elsewhere - a G&T cost $11). Whilst the tap water was safe to drink, it tasted fairly awful, bottled water was expensive. We disembarked in Brooklyn for a few hours, the ship arrived on time at 0600 and disembarkation started around 0730. It took us 40 minutes to get from our cabin to outside of the terminal (note that there are few facilities within the terminal and no WIFI – it is really a large shed used for arrivals and departures and other things). We travelled in November and the sea was a little bumpy on the way out and smooth as a mill pond on the way back –the QM2 is sufficiently large to be able to ignore anything but the roughest seas. The five-hour time difference was dealt with by putting the clocks back an hour on five nights at 2 am westbound and forward at noon on five days eastbound. Before arrival in Southampton a note appeared in our State Room saying that we had been registered for wheelchair assistance on arrival – I am not sure if we did something to initiate this but it was very welcome and solved my worry about managing the wheelchair and our luggage out to curb side – it took only 15 minutes from being collected in the QM2 to leaving the car park. Overall I would say that staff and most of our fellow passengers did practically everything they could to minimise the challenges of caring for a companion in a wheelchair, often without being asked. In summary, we enjoyed our two way Atlantic crossing and would happily (and intend to) join the QM2 again. One just has to accept the very few negative aspects and enjoy the many positive ones. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We booked two weeks on the Queen Mary transatlantic as a “ get away from it all” luxury holiday. A few months after booking Cunard told us the Cheltenham Literary Festival would be on board on the return transatlantic trip - thought no ... Read More
We booked two weeks on the Queen Mary transatlantic as a “ get away from it all” luxury holiday. A few months after booking Cunard told us the Cheltenham Literary Festival would be on board on the return transatlantic trip - thought no more about it First week out to New York excellent - weather dreadful - but it is November in the Atlantic. However, food and service excellent, a range of interesting speakers that included a former Concorde Pilot, Colin Jackson famous athletic champion and an astronomer. Lots of variety and while the afternoon film selection was hit or miss, the fellow passengers great fun. Lunch in New York then boarded for the return week - what a difference in the passengers. Most were there for the literary festival - and I am sure they had a great time. Wearing their special lanyards, They were loud, rude and borderline openly racist. If you were not part of their festival they did t want to know. All the nice areas the previous week became like Surrey Golf Clubs with loud baying and shouting everywhere - including standing in the corridors late at night continuing their parties. Our table companions had to ring security about the noise late at night I know Cunard can’t do anything about the passengers - but there was nothing for those not involved with the literary festival to do. We went to one talk that sounded interesting to find everyone seated 20 minutes before start so ended up at back unable to see the supporting slides. The film selection was “ classic” - but Annie Hall 3 times in one day - really ???? We went to see The English Patient and almost fell asleep during the 20 minute literary introduction before hand Table companions who did attend some of the talks described them as hours of their life they will never get back The queues for booksigning stretched well into the lift / common areas - and if you dared ask them to move they were really rude - this from people who were carrying 10 to 12 books to get signed - almost felt sorry for the writers ! The lack of alternative entertainment for a full week at sea was not good - the planiterium was used for talks - and the trivia quizzes taken over by arrogant people who took it far too searioysly - first time ever marked wrong for spelling and paper returned with “ could do better” Fortunately Cunard have announced the dates for next years literary festival - if you are a normal cruiser - Do Not Go ! The quality of food remains excellent - along with the alternative dining options. We took the drinks package which was good value as it included coffees and fruit juices along with alcohol- it was the only thing that got us through the second week ! Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We took this trip as part of our anniversary celebrations and it didn’t disappoint. Embarkation at Southampton was extremely smooth with the time taken from train station to cabin just over half an hour. Our first meal in the buffet ... Read More
We took this trip as part of our anniversary celebrations and it didn’t disappoint. Embarkation at Southampton was extremely smooth with the time taken from train station to cabin just over half an hour. Our first meal in the buffet restaurant was OK although getting a table was more difficult than usual as its the only facility open on embarkation day. We had been recommended the Britannia Club level by friends and this proved to be a very wise choice as the dining area was intimate and we could dine whenever we wanted. All the staff were extremely good and the level of service exemplary. We ate in the Britannia Club most of the time although we did try the Pub as well. The food in both was good rather than exceptional and probably not quite up to the anticipated 5 star standard. Speaking to other passengers who were frequent travellers on this ship there has been a slight decline in standard over the years. We thoroughly enjoyed many of the presentations on varied subjects as well. The nature of the trip and the entrance into New York harbour at dawn made up for any slight deficiencies. All in all a great trip on a good ship well worth doing. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Transatlantic in November, from Southampton to NY and back. Return leg coincided with Literature Festival at sea, which made the ship much busier and removed many of the more usual enhancement events including the Planetarium. Mostly a ... Read More
Transatlantic in November, from Southampton to NY and back. Return leg coincided with Literature Festival at sea, which made the ship much busier and removed many of the more usual enhancement events including the Planetarium. Mostly a good experience - food, entertainment, service, ship, stateroom, embarkation, library, bars, afternoon tea etc all of a very high standard. Staff almost always friendly and helpful. Very comfy beds. Some niggles - drinks choice is good but expensive, then add 15% service. Gratuities per person per day added over and above (but you can ask on board to remove them). Spa pleasant but expensive and could do with a refresh decoratively in the main pool area. Queen`s room dancing on some nights marred by a frankly rotten male lead singer in the otherwise good band. Dress code is enforced, so take your jacket/tie/tux. Food and service in main restaurant (Britannia) is excellent - tried upgrading once but did not feel it was necessary. Gale force winds will make the ship rock a bit - but usually copes well with the swell. Had a great trip, and highly recommend the ship if you like sea days, a bit of formality, and don`t mind paying a little extra for drinks. Would definitely sail on QM2 again, in preference to the other 7 mainstream cruise lines that we have tried. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
To sail Cunard was always my dream and after 12 cruises on other lines we decided to book for our 40th Anniversary. There were 6 in our party, ages 63 to 81 years in inside and balcony cabins. The ship was beautiful. The cabins well ... Read More
To sail Cunard was always my dream and after 12 cruises on other lines we decided to book for our 40th Anniversary. There were 6 in our party, ages 63 to 81 years in inside and balcony cabins. The ship was beautiful. The cabins well equipped and our cabin stewards could not have been better. The lecture series was very interesting and informative. But we were very disappointed in the food served in the Britannia Dining room and the Kings Court. In the Dining room the food was frequently over sauced, or dried out! It was poorly prepared and bland. I had a corn chowder where the husk was still attached to the corn kernels. The food of Kings Court was repetitive and uninspired. While there were many service attendants in Kings Court, getting them to pick up dirty dishes was a task! We did expect better from a “premium “ cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We did the crossing from nyc to Southampton on Sept. 15th. The service was outstanding along with the entertainment from the National Symphony Orchestra. I think we were some of the youngest guests at 66,but it was a great ride. The food ... Read More
We did the crossing from nyc to Southampton on Sept. 15th. The service was outstanding along with the entertainment from the National Symphony Orchestra. I think we were some of the youngest guests at 66,but it was a great ride. The food was excellent. We bought the beverage pkg. and think we drank more than normal so we could get our monies worth. The shower was very small in a Britannia balcony room. We loved the club dining room. The Matre Di was wonderful. Flaming desserts were an option every night. I loved the art lesson every day. I met great artists and made good friends. The Chart Room is one of the loveliest rooms I have seen at sea on many cruises-all lines. The English Pub was great for fish n chips lunch or dinner. We used room service a few times and it was elegantly done. We loved having a kettle in the room. Our attendant was very thorough and kind. The place to make friends is in the on board launderette. The lectures and programs were great! The cost is cheaper than a business class plane ticket! Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
This was our 34th cruise and several of them have been crossings on the Queen Mary 2. We chose this crossing to get us to Europe for an extended stay. There were no surprises, pleasant or otherwise. Overall we were pleased. Some ... Read More
This was our 34th cruise and several of them have been crossings on the Queen Mary 2. We chose this crossing to get us to Europe for an extended stay. There were no surprises, pleasant or otherwise. Overall we were pleased. Some positives: Embarkation was smooth and efficient. Maybe Cunard has solved some of the problems that used to plague Brooklyn departures. The ship is in excellent condition and we were thrilled to return to our favorite public rooms, the Chart Room and the Commodore Club. Our Princess Grill stateroom was comfortable and well-designed. We received excellent help from the Concierge on a number of issues. Overall very good service. We continue to be underwhelmed by the food choices and quality on Cunard. It's just the same old quite old fashioned cruise ship cuisine, blah and not very interesting. English and French stye, few true ethnic choices. The exceptions were the alternative dining at night in Kings' Chaos where the menu was adventurous and quality very good. Note that this was a very formal experience with 3 formal nights out of 7, and with the expectation that men would wear jackets on the other evenings. The QM2 crossing is not for those who pack only casual clothes. We have another QM2 crossing scheduled for 2020, and hopefully there will be others. It's a great way to get across the Atlantic without jet lag. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
This was my fourth transatlantic crossing on board Queen Mary 2, but the first during the summer season. This was not the most memorable Overall: The weather was excellent for this transatlantic crossing, very sunny and minimal ... Read More
This was my fourth transatlantic crossing on board Queen Mary 2, but the first during the summer season. This was not the most memorable Overall: The weather was excellent for this transatlantic crossing, very sunny and minimal sea state. The ship was rather quiet during this crossing, during the day and during the evenings. The day time program wasn't particularly exciting or eventful and the passengers didn't seem to want to stay up too late in the evenings, even during formal nights. By midnight, the ship was very quiet and the bars even started to close. This was not a "party" sail like my usual pre-Christmas crossing. Cruise critic organized an informal meet and greet on the second day of the voyage. It was well attended and it let me meet the people in the forums. I enjoy transatlantic crossings a lot and despite some negative comments here, it is almost certain that there will be a fifth transatlantic crossing on board Queen Mary 2 in my future. Ship: The Queen Mary 2 is a special ship and I've always enjoyed her design and layout. While there are some quirks and oddities about her design (i.e. Decks 2/3 between A and B stairwells and getting the Queen's Room and G32), she is beautiful ship in the art deco style. One never feels crowded on board the ship. The Carinthia Lounge remains the area to avoid on the ship (it has a very retirement home feeling). The ship is showing some wear and age, but overall maintenance is still very good. Cabin: I had an obstructed view cabin, but it was a good cabin, possibly the best obstructed view cabin because it was behind a small boat rather than a full sized lifeboat. Dining: Britannia Restaurant. The food in the Britannia Restaurant for this crossing was average, not as great as it had been in the past. It was still very good but didn't feel as special as previous crossings. Presentation remains excellent, but the menu wasn't that exciting. The desserts were also rather plain this crossing. King's Court. Always busy, especially at lunch. Finding a table next to a window is nearly impossible and the food is average, but consistent. Golden Lion Pub. The pub lunch is always a good choice when the menu at the Britannia restaurant doesn't appeal to me. It serves traditional pub classic dishes such as fish and chips, or chicken tikka masala. Room Service. It was decent. I usually get room service breakfast. The food/coffee/tea is never piping hot, but that's expected given that its being delivered and the galley is rather far away. Entertainment: Evening shows: Cunard has never been known for their evening entertainment, so I wasn't expecting anything spectacular. The singing and dancing of the Royal Court Theatre Singers and Dancers was what I expected. Though other passenger's descriptions were harsher ("a high school production"). Lecturers: The selection of lecturers for this crossing was not the greatest. None of the lecturers really interested me and the comments from the other passengers were mostly negative as well. Planetarium: It's always nice to be able to attend the planetarium shows, but the show is always the same "stars above the north Atlantic." Service: The bartending staff remains excellent, my favourite bartender was on board and I have sailed with her for all of my voyages. My steward wasn't the greatest this year, but was still decent. The sommelier assigned to our table wasn't very good, rather than recommending me wines, he would just give me to the wine list and have me select the wine. I noticed there were a lot of trainees on board, so service was a bit slow. Shopping: Souvenirs remain a weakness of Cunard. The souvenirs are either overpriced and tacky or just overpriced. It would be nice if Cunard could get some decent and reasonably priced souvenirs. Their selection has improved over the years, but still has a lot of room for improvement. Embarkation: Very smooth this year, no queues, the fastest embarkation in Southampton I've ever had. But I found out that this was the case because there were a lot of people already on board who did not embark in Southampton. Disembarkation: Disembarking in Brooklyn is always frustrating. There was about an hour's delay from when I was scheduled to disembark to when I actually got off the ship. Then the queues to get through US Customs was a nightmare. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Everything about our cruise was great! We boarded very easily in NYC The ship, though older, is kept clean and well appointed. Restaurants: all were excellent! And I do consider myself a foodie! Have been on NCL, RCL, MSC, and way ... Read More
Everything about our cruise was great! We boarded very easily in NYC The ship, though older, is kept clean and well appointed. Restaurants: all were excellent! And I do consider myself a foodie! Have been on NCL, RCL, MSC, and way back on an Italian Line. Cunard was great in all areas; Buffet, Main Dining Room, and Verandah! Not a single line can cook a steak as well as Verandah! (Ships cannot use open flame so it’s difficult to cook a great steak without a flame!) The other point is cleanliness. Having been on all RCL mega ship crossings and each of their buffet rooms were not kept very clean when dining was going on. Waiters would wipe tables onto floor and often tables were hardly cleaned! So QM2 touché! Shows were ok. Not great but enjoyable. The walk/run deck was great! The Aqua Therapy was phenomenal and well worth the $$! Finally, as we enjoy the elegance of the QM2 the evenings, 3 of them formal, were great. The others require a jacket at dinner. (Tux are available and worth it!) The masquerade and roaring 20’s nights were a lot of fun. If you want casual go on a 7 day island cruise. If you enjoy great conversation, stimulating lectures, time to reflect and read great food, great drinks, formal evenings then go on QM2! And finally they do not beg for good reviews! PS our review for excursions says Excellent. But their weren’t any! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Cunard boasts that the RMS Queen Mary 2 is the only true ‘ocean liner’ afloat in the world today, though I have not yet discovered why it is said to be different from, for example, the Queen Victoria or the Queen Elizabeth, the other ... Read More
Cunard boasts that the RMS Queen Mary 2 is the only true ‘ocean liner’ afloat in the world today, though I have not yet discovered why it is said to be different from, for example, the Queen Victoria or the Queen Elizabeth, the other two Cunard ships currently in service. (A fourth ‘Queen’ is due to be launched in a couple of years’ time). The Queen Mary 2 (QM2) is the largest of the three at present in service with a length of 1132 feet, a crew of 1292 and capable of carrying almost 2700 passengers. It is the flagship of the Cunard fleet and one of only two RMSs (Royal Mail Ships) in the world. Being that size, the corridors are very long and it is extremely easy to get ‘lost’, though there are nearly always helpful crew members on hand to guide passengers who feel disoriented. Everything about this ship is on a grand scale and very spacious. It has a charming, ‘old world’ style to it which distinguishes it from most cruise ships. It is elegant, rather than flashy, and the majority of its passengers tend to be that little bit older, though there are exceptions. In our view, the directional signage around the ship could be improved and we feel that, whilst it is intentionally fairly discreet, it should be re-evaluated to help ‘lost and confused’ passengers. For example, because the Britannia Restaurant is designed to be split level and straddles two decks, it is not possible to walk all the way through to the theatres without first going up in a lift (elevator), walking along a couple of decks higher and then descending again in another lift. This took us (and many others) quite a while to fathom out! We had decided to celebrate our 45th wedding Anniversary in August, 2019, by trying a Cunard ship for the first time. (We had been on numerous cruises in the past with different cruise lines, mostly in the northern hemisphere, but never before with Cunard). Our two-way transatlantic crossings saw us travelling from Southampton to New York and back, with just a day in the ‘Big Apple’. We just love ship life and found it quite relaxing knowing that we hadn’t any shore excursions to think about, except for in New York itself, of course. It was our intention to spend a relaxing two weeks at sea. We knew from past experience that there would be plenty on board to keep us occupied and stop our becoming bored, but we would also have plenty of opportunities to simply take it easy. The extensive library on board the QM2 is excellent and the Planetarium feature is also well worth a visit. We were checked in very efficiently at Southampton. Based on our past experience of being required to wait, on occasions for a couple of hours, in a lounge on board, we enquired if our stateroom was ready for us. We were told that it was, but that there had been a leakage of water so there might be a large fan in the room. That seemed OK to us and we proceeded on board and up in the lift (elevator) to our deck 10. Arriving at our stateroom (10097), we noticed a hive of activity in the vicinity and were quickly advised that our room had been flooded so that we could not enter. In fact, the furniture (including the bed) had been removed and the room was being re-carpeted! We couldn’t even leave our carry-on bags in the room. (We particularly did NOT wish to have a Butler and this affected our choice of stateroom). We were able to enter our stateroom after about 90 minutes and it looked just perfect. No-one would have been aware of the earlier problems, except for an unpleasant smell from the drains under the bathroom which persisted throughout both legs of our voyage. We drew this to the attention of our Cabin Steward, Dave, and were visited soon after by Emerson, our Deck Housekeeper. He acknowledged the problem and offered us a change of stateroom to another farther down the same corridor but we declined politely as we had, by then, unpacked all of our clothes and couldn’t face the disruption that would have been involved in a move. He offered us a concession which we accepted with gratitude and handled the situation extremely well. Dave had left a bowl of fruit in our stateroom which was replenished daily, as was the refreshments tray. Complimentary still and sparkling water was also provided each day. We had hoped for a walk-in shower so were disappointed to see a shower over the bath which my partially disabled wife found particularly difficult to use. (She is not in a wheelchair). We had all of the usual facilities in our room. The bed was very comfortable, as were the pillows, and we slept well every night using the simple temperature controls. There was plenty of drawer space and more than enough hangers to meet our needs. We had an in-room safe too. There were fresh fluffy towels, warm bathrobes, a coffee making machine, plus tea and coffee making facilities. It was great to be able to relax on our balcony (with 2 chairs and a table) on sea days. Our ‘smart’ TV was very good and, in addition to BBC World News, BBC HD, SKY News, CNBC, MSNBC, Fox News, a Cunard lectures channel, and a Cinema Channel, we (sorry, I) was delighted to be able to watch ‘live’ soccer matches from the English Premier League! The Master in command for these two ‘voyages’ (NOT cruises!) was Captain Aseem A Hashmi. What an excellent communicator he is and so personable too. He inspired confidence and proved to be a most entertaining speaker. He was regularly seen around the ship speaking to passengers and answering their questions with the utmost patience and a friendly smile. He was always approachable and a great example to other crew members. We dined in the Princess Grill on table 18, a table for 6, where Carmelia, Vincent, Jayson and Sommelier, Christian, looked after us well. Generally speaking, the food was good, but we all thought it lacked that extra something we had been led to expect from Cunard. I can give three specific examples to illustrate why we were a bit disappointed. First, one of us ordered the Lobster Bisque one evening and it was nothing like any bisque I had ever seen or tasted – more like a consommé! Second, one my wife ordered a cheese soufflé one night but the texture and taste were all very substandard. Third, my wife and I ordered (a day in advance) the duck a l’orange to share one evening. It looked great when it was cooked and served expertly at the table, but was dry and chewy – not at all enjoyable, I’m afraid! (Overall, we all agreed that the Celebrity ships’ Aqua Class food was better, which we found surprising!) Our best meal by far was one night in the Verandah Restaurant, for which there is an additional charge of $40 per person. That was truly excellent with great service! As my wife has a partial disability, we decided to opt for the in-room breakfast because it was easier for her. The efficiency of this food service could not be faulted but, whilst realising that there are logistical problems in offering such a service on board such a large ship, we have to say that the food was only ever lukewarm. We used the efficient on-board laundry service and the self-service laundrette – a most useful facility for 7+ days at sea! The Canyon Ranch Spa Club is extremely expensive and exploits its captive clientele. Moreover, we all felt it is an absolutely appalling disgrace in this day and age for Cunard (and they are not alone) not only to charge for the use of the Wi-Fi facility, which is both slow and variable in quality of signal anyway, but to apply exorbitant charges – 30 minutes for just $15; 120 minutes for $45; and 480 minutes for $135 – when most public spaces in the 21st century, including public transport, provide the facility free! This is tantamount to taking unfair advantage of Cunard guests for what is, in any event, an unreliable service! The entertainment shows in the main Theatre were very good and, as a former competition dancer, I must say how very impressed I was with the dance troupe and the 4 main singers. There were several good guest speakers on board too, including a Canadian astronaut and a costume designer, who were most interesting. We also had the pleasure of watching the English National Ballet workshops and performances. Even though we are not ballet fans, we enjoyed them very much. We were not impressed by the Entertainments Director, Paul O’Loughlin, who seemed to imagine he was a ‘star’ in his own right! Our ‘special places for a coffee or an alcoholic drink were the Chart Room and the Commodore Club. We also greatly enjoyed the Carinthia Lounge at lunchtime for a delicious light snack and a drink. We found that the Golden Lion Pub was also very comfortable, but it can be difficult at certain times to find a table as its popularity, especially with British travellers, means it can be pretty busy. All of these venues had ‘live’ entertainment from time to time, usually in 45 minute slots. We didn’t really use the Queens Lounge (?) except for the Captains Cocktail party but it is a beautiful, large venue. All drinks on board carry an automatic 15% service charge. Before we had set off from home to catch the Queen Mary 2, we had been advised that a film crew would be on board on the return voyage back to Southampton. We were even given the opportunity of applying to be ‘extras’. The advance warning advised that there might be a few restricted areas when filming was taking place but gave an assurance that any disruption would be kept to a minimum so as not to spoil our enjoyment of the voyage. Well, we were never inconvenienced and only saw the filming a couple of times. At no stage was there a problem on such a large ship, and we were pleasantly surprised to see such ‘A listers’ as Meryl Streep, Candice Bergen and Gemma Chan (and others) at work. (We understand the film is to be released in 2020). In summary, the Queen Mary 2 copes well with everything the North Atlantic can throw at it so it was a smooth sail in both directions, in spite of 14 feet waves at one point. We did enjoy our first Cunard voyage, but not quite as much as we had expected. We might sail Cunard again in the future, but it probably would not be our first choice unless the itinerary particularly appealed to us. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This was our third Queen Mary 2 cruise and our 145 total cruise. After our first QM2 crossing my wife and I were determined not to repeat using it. However wanted to go for 6 weeks to Germany and Cnard was th3 only one taken us to Germany ... Read More
This was our third Queen Mary 2 cruise and our 145 total cruise. After our first QM2 crossing my wife and I were determined not to repeat using it. However wanted to go for 6 weeks to Germany and Cnard was th3 only one taken us to Germany and back to New York with 6 weeks in Europe. We took the QM2 to Hamburg in September, again with reservations. Well, what a surprise, the staff, the entertainment, the people, the cruise director, the Captain, the conferences and the luck of having the director and members of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra with us, made it one of our top five cruises. And then we took the QM2 in Hamburg stopping in Southampton, what a difference, a large group seem to be weekenders going for a quick trip to England with that type of attitude, it most have change the atmosphere, the staff was not nice, actually some front desk attendants were rude, totally different from 6 weeks before. The conferences were poorer, although some for the German group would have been interesting if I could understand them. The cruise director was like night and day from the prior one. I wonder how much difference the new Captain made to this poor crossing. Our room attendant was 5he same from our previous crossing and was great, so were the dinner servers. Fortunately we enjoy our dinner partners both crossings. Even the entertainment with the same people was poorer in this crossing. Needless to say, after giving the highest marks to our crossing from NY to Hamburg, we were extremely disappointed in most of the categories on our Hamburg- NY crossing! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We had not previously been on an ocean cruise, but for our 50th wedding anniversary we wanted to treat ourselves to something special. So we booked a 15-night New York to Southampton cruise with stops in Canada, Iceland, Scotland and ... Read More
We had not previously been on an ocean cruise, but for our 50th wedding anniversary we wanted to treat ourselves to something special. So we booked a 15-night New York to Southampton cruise with stops in Canada, Iceland, Scotland and Ireland. It was a world away from our usual quiet life in rural Tasmania, but we had high hopes that the Queen Elizabeth would give us a truly memorable cruising experience, and we were not disappointed. Check-in: We boarded at the Manhattan cruise terminal which was easily accessible from our central NY hotel. Our cruise was the final leg of a much longer itinerary that had started in Vancouver, so this was not a full change-over day for the ship. Consequently there were only a few other passengers arriving at the same time, and the whole process was quick and easy with no queuing. We had been given a 12.30 check-in time and within 20 minutes we were in our cabin with luggage already delivered. It probably doesn't get any better than that; our holiday was already off to a perfect start. Cabin: We had dug deep for our anniversary treat and booked a Q4 Penthouse midships on deck 7. This was truly wonderful; a large and well appointed room with plenty of space to relax both inside and out on the balcony, a walk-in wardrobe with more than enough hanging space for 15 evenings of dress-up finery, a huge comfortable bed, and a bathroom with shower, deep spa bath and separate toilet. Nothing about the room was a disappointment, and the experience was made extra special by the butler Manny and his team. They were incredibly attentive with the room fully cleaned while we were at breakfast, everything restocked including the complimentary bar, fruit and flowers replaced regularly, canapes delivered each afternoon, and refresh/turn-down every evening while we had dinner. One of the really nice Cunard touches is that the staff know you by name and make a genuine effort to remember and deliver on your personal preferences. Meals: We ate mostly in the Queens Grill restaurant but also tried a couple of pub lunches after days ashore, and had room service occasionally. All were good, but the Queens Grill is exceptional for both the food/drink and for the service. It is a relatively small restaurant, less than 100 guests, and because you can eat at the time that suits you (for example, arrive for dinner anytime between 6.30pm and 9pm) it never seemed overly busy or crowded. There was really nothing that we could say to fault this restaurant; the range and quality of food was outstanding, plus a dedicated chef would try to produce anything off-menu if given a few hours notice and if they had the ingredients onboard. We asked for rabbit pie one evening which really wasn't much of a challenge for the chef but was duly produced and served at our table with theatrical panache. The Queens Grill provides a very sophisticated and indulgent silver-service atmosphere, part of the overall Cunard theme of reprising the 1940s/50s heyday of transatlantic voyages. In keeping with this, most Grills guests dressed “smart casual” for breakfast and lunch, then everyone dressed more formally for the evenings in keeping with the designated dress code of the day. Activities: During sea days there was always plenty to do onboard, both for organised activities or do your own thing. You can be as active or inactive as you like. We really enjoyed the outdoor games areas with quoits, croquet, carpet bowls, shuffleboard and paddle tennis, plus swimming and table tennis. Entertainment: The main entertainments included a classical concert most afternoons and then ballroom dancing and 2 theatre performances each evening. We found the shows to be mostly of an okay standard; enjoyable, glitzy and good enough for free onboard entertainment but not really outstanding. The theatre has a number of private 2-person boxes which can be reserved at an extra cost with champagne and nibbles on some evenings but are otherwise available freely to anyone who arrives early. Stewards are on hand to bring drinks. All passengers are expected to respect the after-6pm dress code in the theatre and ballroom. Final reflections: We researched Cunard here on Cruise Critic and elsewhere before deciding that they were likely met our needs. We were aware that a number of reviewers have not been happy with their Cunard experience but this often seems to be related to differing expectations of the type of cruise that these three “Queens” offer. This is not a party boat, and not primarily targeted to families and other younger cruisers although there are some facilities for children. The target market is very clearly aimed at a generally older group who enjoy a slower and more genteel pace of life. Other frequent criticisms of Cunard seem to focus on the so-called “class” system, the after-6pm dress code, and the price of drinks. In our experience this “class” distinction is really a non-issue; it's no different from most airlines where you can book economy and get a good service or book a more expensive seat that gives you perks like shorter queues at the airport, more personal space on the flight and a larger choice of meals. It's a choice for everyone to make, unlike a real class system in which there is usually no choice. The after-6pm dress code seems to annoy some people but in our view is central to understanding what Cunard is offering its passengers. Things like the flamboyant art-deco style throughout the ship, the white-gloved waiters, the traditional afternoon teas, the ballroom dancing, the silver-service ambience in the main restaurants, are all designed to create an evening atmosphere of old-world elegance, charm and sophistication. The ship and the crew deliver on this, and the passengers are also expected to deliver. The entire Cunard cruise is a piece of theatre in which passengers live the retro experience of an age when good manners and gracious living were valued. Nobody is forced to dress formally – there are areas of the ship that are more relaxed – but clearly for the vast majority of passengers the evening elegance is an important part of what makes the cruise special. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Would we go again on Cunard's Queen Elizabeth ? Absolutely. This was a late July east-bound transatlantic cruise with stops in Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Iceland, Scotland, Dublin and finally Southampton. We were generally blessed ... Read More
Would we go again on Cunard's Queen Elizabeth ? Absolutely. This was a late July east-bound transatlantic cruise with stops in Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Iceland, Scotland, Dublin and finally Southampton. We were generally blessed with fine weather and calm seas; there was some movement on the north Atlantic but not enough to bother most people. Try to get your stateroom as close to the middle of the ship and as low as possible; it will minimize the rock-and-roll if there is any. Embarkation from Manhattan Terminal was perfect. From street to stateroom in 30 minutes. The ship is very elegant as others have said. it is sparkling in its art-deco appearance and it is very well-maintained, inside and out. Painting and maintenance are ongoing when we were at port. It is the very model of an elegant luxury cruise ship. We had 4 formal nights on the 15 day cruise; men in dark suits or tuxedos; women in gowns or smart cocktail dresses. Casual during the day but formal at night; it was not mandatory but for those not dressed up they had special dining locations those evenings. After the 3rd night I could get into my tux in 10 minutes, much faster than the first night. It was a chore the first night but it was special to dress up on this elegant ship. It takes a day or two to discover all the places on the ship and I'm sure I missed some. There are many public spaces where you can relax and read; many bars and cafes throughout the ship. Overall you get both a big but also intimate feeling on this ship. The library was very impressive; two stories with dark wood furnishings. My wife and I reserved the Queen's Grill Suite (Q4) Room 7088. On the QE there are 3 passenger classes: Britannia, Princess Grill and Queen's Grill. If it were a plane, Britannia would be economy, PG would be business and QG would be first-class. There is also Britannia Club which is a step above Britannia. The PG and QG restaurants are two, separate but similar restaurants on Deck 11 with similar menus and service. It is hard to tell the difference. They share a common lounge between the restaurants for PG and QG passengers. Apart from that, the rest of the ship is available to everyone. The PG and QG meals are served in their respective restaurants, including afternoon tea. For Britannia class, there is a large impressive restaurant in the aft of the ship; afternoon tea is served in the Queen's Room which is also the dance floor. The staterooms are of course larger for the QG than for the PG than for Britannia. Overall I think the QG is not that much different than PG. Service and attentiveness was very good. The big difference for the Grills is that you can have dinner anytime after 6 pm. For Britannia there is an early and late seating. We found the flexibility of the QG/PG to be very convenient. There are a mix of 2-tables, 4-tables, and 8-table sizes. My wife and I enjoyed our dinner mates very much at the 8-table size and we became friends. Food was very good but not great. The Verandah ($39 supplement) had much better steaks than at the QG; our dinnermates and we decided to go down there one night just to get something different and we all agreed that V was much better. Of course not everyone wants to pay a supplement for dinner when they have already paid for the cruise which could explain why the Verandah was not very busy. But it was worth it for the food. Age group was mainly in the 65+ crowd although there were some people in their 30s and 40s with children (ages 6-10) but this younger group was less than 10% of the passengers. Most were from UK, US, Australia, New Zealand. With QG there is refreshed wine and liquors in your stateroom each night, as well as refilled min-fridge at no charge. An Illy coffeemaker with refreshed tea, creamer, and coffee is provided. As well as evening canapes. This is in QG. Certainly nice touches but I think you could scrape by on PG or Britannia depending on what you are looking for. Activities on the ship were fine with lectures and high production value shows every night at 8:30 and 10:30 each night. Lectures on Broadway, Weather Prediction, Space Exploration, the upcoming ports were very good. The port excursions were generally well-organized and interesting. They are not inexpensive! And you may be able to find better value with some planning. But be sure to return to the ship on time! There are a few washing machines and dryers on each deck but not anywhere enough, so there was jockeying and some harsh words in the competition for them. Better to do your own delicates and send out the rest to the ship laundry which has a charge. I agree with others about the atrocious internet. Slow to connect, slow to use, and slow to disconnect. At $45 for 2 hours, Cunard probably makes as much on the internet as the cruise! You can't just shut off the computer because your account is still open until you sign off which was so slow I didn't know if I signed of at all. I had to call the purser every time to make sure they signed me off. Fortunately the long-suffering IT guy gave me back 45 minutes which was spent trying to get on and off the service. Befoe leaving home,sign on with your local wireless provider to use the port-days with discounted International Roaming. It is much faster and less expensive. Disembarkation was also perfect.Remember to leave some day clothes out before you go to sleep on the last night. Your luggage will be off the ship overnight so make sure you have something to wear on the last morning! We had a great time and we would do it again although we might try PG or Britannia Club for comparable value since 90% of the rest of the ship and activities are open to everyone. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We sailed on the Queen Elizabeth in late July on a 15 night North Atlantic crossing.. The ship was built in 2010 and is the sister ship of the older Queen victoria. Both ships are Vista Class ships. Carnival Corporation, Cunards mother ... Read More
We sailed on the Queen Elizabeth in late July on a 15 night North Atlantic crossing.. The ship was built in 2010 and is the sister ship of the older Queen victoria. Both ships are Vista Class ships. Carnival Corporation, Cunards mother company, built a number of these vista class ships for its various fleets and aside from the two Cunard ships,a good number were built for Holland America, Costa and P&O, Having previously sailed on Holland America's Niew Amsterdam and Eurodam, I felt very much at home with the general layout of the Queen Elizabeth. However, by comparison, I found the Holland America ships to be far superior in many ways to the Queen Elizabeth: 1) Contrary to other Carnival owned cruise lines, Cunard ships have three distinct classes of guest accomodations: the Grill, the Britannia Club and the Britannia. Both the Grill and the Britannia Club passengers enjoy exclusive restaurants with the Grill passengers also enjoying indour and outdour exclusive areas. As a result. there is obviously less additional common areas to be enjoyed by Britannia class passengers. There is only one specialty restaurant available to all passengers ($40 per person). 2) Although the food quality is comparable to that found on Celebrity and Holland America ships, the service, especially in the Lido buffet restaurant leaves much to be desired. For instance, at breakfast, there is no coffee or juice service at the table and the coffee in the large coffee machines is constantly being re-heated leaving a bitter taste. Also, there is not enough personel cleaning and setting tables in the Lido (I presume this would not the case in Grill and Britannia Club restaurants). 3) Although the Queen Elizabeth is the more recent version of Vista Class ships, it lacks certain characteristics of older Vista class sister ships; There is no retractable roof over the pool (a must for transatlantic passages) nor are there automatic sensor doors to the rear and central parts of the ship which I found annoying when attempting to open doors with a drink and plate in hand. 4) The internet is terrible. If you are paying a premium price for an internet package you should not experience sporadic reception and you should not expect to pay for the many minutes it takes to log in and log out. If you are into serious Ball Room dancing you will be vary happy. There were the same few dozen couples who regularly took part in dancing while the rest of us enjoyed their performance. I would estimate that the average age of passengers is around 75. The entertainment is geared to this age group with music of the 50's and 60's together with a dose of Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole era songs. It felt like I was visiting a floating senior citizens residence. Cunard passengers are very loyal but I wonder how it will go about recruiting a younger generation of passengers. Cunard should be commended for the quality of guest speakers and the range of topics is excellent. If I do take another Cunard cruise it would be for the destination and not the ship. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose this cruise to celebrate my partner's birthday with a transatlantic crossing that included many destinations on our bucket list. We have been on other cruises in the Mediterranean and also South America - they were fabulous ... Read More
We chose this cruise to celebrate my partner's birthday with a transatlantic crossing that included many destinations on our bucket list. We have been on other cruises in the Mediterranean and also South America - they were fabulous experiences that cemented our enjoyment of cruising. What we didn't know was that Cunard really only cater for people over 70. For people in this age category the cruise would have been a wonderful experience. All activities, meals, shows, events, excursions cater for this group. Even the entertainment coordinator was bland. The comedy shows were by people from the 60's and 70's where racist and sexist jokes were the norm. Sadly these acts hadn't changed their material. The only activities appeared to be quizzes or card games or ballroom dancing. There were no live bands playing popular music, sing alongs around the piano bar, live music and comedy shows around the pool. Frankly it was boring. The internet is also the slowest that we have ever experienced on a cruise ship. When on board we also found that for people who booked in Australia the cruise was for 15 days, whereas those from the UK had 18 days which included the Guernsey. Both were the same price! Not sure why Australians were given a different deal. Cunard also doesn't seem to care if people complain as they do not respond promptly if at all. Very disappointed. Perhaps when I am 80 I may consider another cruise with Cunard. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Personally I have never been interested in going on a cruise but it was the choice of in laws and I ended up being dragged along. After initially booking Britannia we ended up taking advantage of a cheap upgrade offer to Queens Grill. ... Read More
Personally I have never been interested in going on a cruise but it was the choice of in laws and I ended up being dragged along. After initially booking Britannia we ended up taking advantage of a cheap upgrade offer to Queens Grill. It didn't start well at Embarkation when there was a scrum of people surrounding the doors into the hall in Southampton and no indication of where the priority booking queue was. Asking people working their didn't get us anywhere until one guy told us to go straight into the hall which meant forcing our way past the people in the main queue who were rightfully unhappy with us pushing past them where at last we saw the signs for priority booking. Given there are multiple doors into the hall surely it can't be that hard to put signs up outside as well. Though not as bad the disembarkation was also chaotic with little in the way of clear directions. First impressions of the ship were ok, some of it looked a bit tired but much of it very nice. The cabin was nice and spacious and we were glad to have upgraded. Food wise the Queens Grill was ok more of a decent chain restaurant than anything else though. Some really nice food, the beef wellington for example, alongside some pretty run of the mill stuff. The formality of the place and the dressing up got a bit wearying after a while particularly as you weren't usually eating food that lived up to it. It also led to some oddities like if you ordered a pie they brought out the pie dish and then spooned the entire contents onto your plate which took ages. Just serve it in a pie dish guys, my poor husbands cottage pie just looked a mess. Apart from that the staff were almost uniformly excellent and they were fine with us not all turning up and ordering at the same time. Went to Kings Court occasionally but it was nothing special. Entertainment wise some of the lectures were interesting but the entertainment was mostly end of a pier stuff, the planetarium pretty dull and the pub ok but quite small so you had to get to things like trivia early to get a seat. On that note the entertainment team in the pub were generally very good though the lady who liked to make the 'twist' question in the evening trivia easy really needs to learn the point of quizzes. Their didn't feel like there was much on though in general, certainly not much of any interest. I suppose mostly aimed at the elderly regulars. The gym was good though having no sauna or steam room other than having to pay in the spa is a mistake. Outside areas also ok though not that well used given the pretty average weather on most sea days. We spent a lot of time in the smoking area and got chatting to some very nice, fun people there, other than that there was little interaction on board. The casino was quite fun and they made it easy to play if you didn't have much experience, only issue was the crumbling floor so you had to watch your step the whole time. The floor is also starting to give way in the main lobby which was somewhat alarming. Stops wise Liverpool (helped by the weather) and Reykjavik were both very nice, with lots to see. We didn't go on any excursions as you can book the same trips yourself for half the price. Had a fantastic lunch at Islenski Barinn in Reykjavik. Halifax was ok but it's essentially a mid sized city with not much in the way of history to see. Corner Brook however may be the dullest place on Earth and I have no idea what they were thinking in stopping there. Overall a real disappointment, for all their talk about the glamour of the transatlantic crossing there was painfully little of that in evidence. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Was on the Iceland Canada crossing. Very smooth but there lacked things to do for anyone under 50. Also had a worrying fire on board one evening over the tannoy telling us it had broken out in the incinerator room. Could smell smoke. ... Read More
Was on the Iceland Canada crossing. Very smooth but there lacked things to do for anyone under 50. Also had a worrying fire on board one evening over the tannoy telling us it had broken out in the incinerator room. Could smell smoke. Also had a person helicopter lifted off. All quite eventful! Boat was clean and tidy and staff very nice plus the food was great. The buffet was very good especially the sushi etc. Did get a bit of a dodgy stomach from the mussels which upset my stomach for 24 hours but it soon passed. The entertainment in the theatre was very poor however. Some of the acts were dreadful including the resident singers. A very good guest French pianist though. Overall worth the money but be prepared to occupy yourself as there is very little to do on those long sea days if you don't do ballroom dancing or enjoy bingo etc ! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We (2 couples) chose this cruise to return from a European vacation rather than fly back to the US. We knew the cruise would be very formal but as one English passenger said when I queried him about his experience on the 2nd day of the ... Read More
We (2 couples) chose this cruise to return from a European vacation rather than fly back to the US. We knew the cruise would be very formal but as one English passenger said when I queried him about his experience on the 2nd day of the cruise, "They are quite serious". LIkes: We booked the Brittania Club, therefore we had our own private dining table for four each night with the same servers. The food was truly excellent, on par with Oceania Cruise line, which is noted for it's food. (Kudos to our servers, Brendo and Orsulah). We ended up eating breakfast, lunch and dinner in the restaurant. We only gained an average of 2 pounds per person for a 7 day cruise and we believe that is because we mostly avoided the Kings Grill, which is very chopped up, located in several separated rooms with a limited selection of food. We understand it had been upgraded in 2016 from the original design. I cant see how it could have been much worse then. Also, the brewed coffee in the restaurant is very good, unlike the machine coffee in the Kings Grill. We had dinner one night in the Verandah steakhouse restaurant for a small upcharge of $39 per person and it was the best steak we have ever had. 35 day aged beef. The Enrichment and Art seminars, Tea Time and Gala Evenings were spot on great! We didn't mind the tuxedo and formal dress evenings and enjoyed the Masquerade Ball. The planetarium and Queen's Theatre were great venues also. Dislikes: Probably because we have been spoiled by cruises on Oceania Marina, Rivera, & Insignia and Holland Statendam and Koningsdam, we didn't appreciate the QM2 as much as we should. Even with the retrofit in 2016, she looks a bit tired. Very chopped up, no flow to the design. What's with the Churchill and Chart room locations? You have to go through the Brittania Dining room to access the Queens Ball room or go through the Art Gallery up and down stairs to access. Also, the aforementioned non functional Queen's Grill area. The Library boasts 8 thousand books and a room the size of an average family dining room and each passenger is restricted to 2 books at a time with the shelves locked during night hours? That's when most insomniacs need to find a book. We found this very unusual as Oceania ships boast great libraries with a barrista next door. Their libraries are unlocked and open to all cruise passengers 24/7. Finally, what ever you do don't buy the liquor package!!! Very limited pours (50 ml) which makes no sense, as it requires the staff to service you more often. (However, once they see you have a drink sticker on your card, they avoid you like the plague, and you practically have to tackle them to get service). This occurred in every lounge but was particularly acute in the Golden Lion Pub! The wine steward in the Brittania Club restaurant also was put off by our asking for wine refills at dinner, until 3 days before the cruise ended, when he finally increased the pours, which saved him extra trips. (We were not heavy drinkers, drinking no more than 2-3 50 ml pours at dinner) or any other sitting. The package was very restrictive, nothing over $11. If you want to purchase a $20 cocktail, you have to pay $16 (purchase price less 20%), which begs the ? why purchase the liquor package? Also, our traveling companions, (one who drinks and one who cannot drink because of medical reasons), cleared with Cunard corporate that if she brought a Doctor's excuse that he could by the package but she wouldn't have to. We spent the better part of the first afternoon being shuffled between the Purser's office, the G. L Pub and were even sent to the spa, because no one could or would make a decision on allowing our friend to purchase the liquor package alone. Finally, a bartender in the G.L. Pub told us in great whisper (I am not exaggerating) that he would allow it if our non drinking friend would purchase the $30 per day beverage package (water, soft drinks and coffee). You could not purchase wine by the bottle at dinner like on Oceania or HAL only by the 50 ml glass because of the liquor package restriction. The ship was good in the water, you never really felt any motion. However, it felt as if It was designed more for sailors than passengers and the staff was not there to serve you as much as ensure that all rules and regulations would be followed and not be infringed on! Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Our trip started in Hamburg, Germany on June 21, 2019, stopped in Southampton for the day on June 24 and onwards to New York arriving June 30. The trip had 2 very different vibes: The Hamburg to Southampton segment had many more ... Read More
Our trip started in Hamburg, Germany on June 21, 2019, stopped in Southampton for the day on June 24 and onwards to New York arriving June 30. The trip had 2 very different vibes: The Hamburg to Southampton segment had many more families with "free range kids", noise, heavy patronage of the buffet, garbage on the floors, noise at night, kids running and knocking on doors, kids running free during the life safety segment, kids running down the promenade deck careening into guests and people sitting in chairs etc. Adults with loud voices and shouting in the public rooms. The Southampton to New York a quieter more refined experience with the amazing guest speakers and quiet conversations among guests. QM2 is an experience of a life time and each time we take a TA on the QM2 it is excellent, unique and designed to link the guest to the sea. The QM2 is the way a ship should be. QM2 did not disappoint - but we would say the food in the MDR and the Kings Court buffet was a significant step downwards from our last TA 2 years ago. Cunard, improve your general food offerings, make it the same as Celebrity. Your general food offerings should not be less than Carnival. Other than that, the QM2 was excellent. The positives: * QM2 is a ship, not a Vegas hotel. * There is no end of vistas so that a guest can feel and smell the ocean. The open wing deck under the bridge is simply amazing. Modern cruise ships are designed to keep guests looking inward so they can spend $. Well done Cunard. The step down stern open areas are spectacular and well patronized * A real promenade deck, enough said. It was heavily patronized. * Cunard expects guests to be able to entertain themselves during the day * This is a ship for intellectuals - meaning the amazing guest speakers and library enable guests to learn about the world. The guest speaks spoke on - being an envoy in Moscow in the cold war, a London theater actress speaking on the hidden gems of London, WW2 submarine technology and deployment in the war. What a joy versus the nonsense on modern cruise ships. * The historical boards towards the bow area recounting the glory days of the Queens and transatlantic travel * The service was excellent, excellent. The amount of staff, their training, their demeanor etc was top notch - a step well above our last QM2 TA. To be frank, the service in the common areas were as good as our trips on Crystal and Oceania. * The extra charge restaurants were - excellent. The Veranda was the equal of the steakhouse on Oceania. The most amazing food was at the Alternative restaurant located in a part of the Kings Court - Cunard, you have a winner here. There are themed nights - Coriandor, The Smokehouse, Azetec and Bamboo. The food was the very best I ever had on a ship period. Better than Crystal or Oceania. The tastes were sublime, the presentation, the quantity, the service by the hand picked staff was first class. There were Grill level guests there and many said they would abandon the Grills and book a non Grill and simply enjoy the extra charge Veranda and Alternative dining. * The officers - they were visible and pleasant and stopped to answer questions. * The Golden Lion fish and chips and the Indian food put most cruise ship venues to shame * The music on the pa was excellent - just loud enough, classic to modern. Excellent choice. Entertainment was good. * Well - the kennel. Being on the pool decks at the stern and hearing the dear dogs barking from time to time as they were out with their fur parents was to die for. It humanized the ship - it was a great hit with guests. * The sheltered balcony cabin was well maintained and very cozy. * The size of the public areas, the amount of space per passenger is amazing. * QM2 rides like a dream, never felt her move. * The side corridors on deck 3 which have tables for games and chairs for sitting. These areas are the closest to the ocean level and are amazing. * Smoothies and detox beverages in the Kings Court area - excellent * Room service was good. The chopped fruit salad was excellent, as good as the chopped fruit salad on Oceania. The pain au chocolate was not bad. Coffee was excellent overall with real cream Negatives: * Boarding in Hamburg - The Grills class passengers walked right in front of the non Grills class long line up to gain access to the check in staff. Disrespectful. Have a separate check in line for Grills guests. * Food in the Kings Court. Not good. Cheap looking, cheap taste. The hot dishes, breads, cold meats etc were set out - no garnishes around any of the food serving stations - just cold looking plates on a hard surface with no visual appeal. Simply the worst looking and worst tasting buffet I have seen. A steep decline from my last QM2 TA. The breads were the cheapest quality you could imagine. The cold meats were cheap. We had no interest in eating there. The realignment of this area was much better than before, the food was not. * The MDR. Fabulous room, the best on the seas. The staff were excellent. The food was not. The food size, garnishing, taste, quality was average to poor. The onion soup consisted of a dry powder soup base with a few onions. Served after was a small round bread piece with a few cheese shreds. Awful. It was returned. The protein portions were small and dry. Salads were small with minimum garnishes. The food did not live up to the amazing room. * The carpets since the refit are awful. The orange and yellow down the main corridor was glaring and cheap. It was the carpet in the cabin floors (all decks I think), beige on the right side trending towards a pattern and deep blue next the cabin doors. The carpet looked awful and cheap. Who needs beige carpet in a high traffic area? The carpet looked like you would have got it at the Dollar store. * Ah, the infamous post cruise mini bar in the room charge. Got dinged for $18.29 for a mystery charge. Will not be paying it. _______________________________________________________________ Having cruised since 1989, on the mass and luxury lines, we enjoy Cunard for the value it represents and the great itineraries and the real ships they provide guests. All cruise lines are cheapening their products. Cunard is as well. Cunard is best suited to guests who enjoy being on a ship, who wish to behave in a classy way and dress a bit better than the anything goes mass cruise lines. The Cunard guests are well travelled and well informed. If you want Vegas at sea, loud techno music, drunk guests due to the beverage packages etc do not choose Cunard. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We were so excited to be going on the QM2! The ship itself was magnificent. Our cabin was also very nice and we had a balcony. But what a waste of money the top drinks package was! It was almost impossible to get anyone to get you a ... Read More
We were so excited to be going on the QM2! The ship itself was magnificent. Our cabin was also very nice and we had a balcony. But what a waste of money the top drinks package was! It was almost impossible to get anyone to get you a drink in a lot of the bars! At lunchtime I was lucky if I managed to get one glass of wine from a barman! I also had to spend 2 days in our cabin as I picked up a bug on day 5 of our cruise. From the food, drink? Who knows but it ruined my cruise! My husband witnessed one maintenance worker who used the WC in the indoor pool area and walked out without washing his hands!! Really!! In this day and age!! Entertainment on board was okay, but the planetarium gave me a sore head. Best entertainment was the irish comedian Roy Walker. We were given the dining time of 8.30 p.m. and were unable to change it. So this was far too late for us and we had to dine in the buffet every evening. The person allocated to give you hand sanitiser when entering the buffet made no effort, unless you went straight up to them. This should be addressed as clean hands are essential for hygiene reasons. Also, very few staff made you feel really valued/ welcome! Best part of the cruise was sailing into New York! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Booked the Queens Grill = £9.000 so quite expensive. Was expecting a real quality experience but very quickly realised it was not all it was made up to be. So, arrived in Southampton and entered a chaotic cattle shed where I was shunted ... Read More
Booked the Queens Grill = £9.000 so quite expensive. Was expecting a real quality experience but very quickly realised it was not all it was made up to be. So, arrived in Southampton and entered a chaotic cattle shed where I was shunted to the priority line. Walked on the ship to be told “the lift is over their, like “get on with it”. Walked around aimlessly for a bit and really found my cabin (943) by chance. Cabin was clean, bathroom tiles were dirty. A welcome was conspicuous by its absence. Food in the Queens Grill was like clockwork .. boring and on numerous times Luke warm. I never got the Gala Nights. Put on a DJ to eat dinner, nothing else, I expected the captain to sit with us or a gala ball for the Queens Grill ... nothing. What was very surprising is that during the entire trip not once did any management come to us to say “welcome” or “how it the trip” .. there was no discerning quality, they just wanted your money. So where was “packing and unpacking, or a morning pot of tea” .. didn’t exist. The evening canapés delivered to the room were simply low grade pate or other stodge. Cut my leg badly on the edge of a chair on the deck and asked a crew member to get me a plaster, he just walked away. The whole experience felt like a Chanel Ferry crossing .. once you leave the ship in New York you are on your own. There is NO assistance to locate your baggage or assistance with carrying. We are elderly and really struggled through the immigration hall and border controls to the chaotic outside with NO assistance to find a taxi .. total chaos. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Already Booked?

Get to know who you’ll be sailing with

Find a Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click