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134 Canary Islands First-Time Cruisers Cruise Reviews

This was our first cruise and we really couldn't fault anything. From booking in the Louth branch of Thomson with the wonderful help of Sophie, to arriving back home it all went like clockwork. We had chosen an outside cabin and I ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we really couldn't fault anything. From booking in the Louth branch of Thomson with the wonderful help of Sophie, to arriving back home it all went like clockwork. We had chosen an outside cabin and I have to say I'm very thankful we did. If you can afford it I highly recommend a cabin with a window, or even with a balcony. We did find the air conditioning very drying and my husband felt like he had a cold, whereas if we had a balcony we could have opened the door for fresh air. ALL the staff on the ship were so amazingly friendly and happy, and as the cruise was 'tips included' it wasn't as it they were being falsely friendly for a tip. The wonderful couple who cleaned our cabin were so kind and helpful (so they did get an extra tip!) and nothing was too much bother. The bed was very comfortable which was a bonus as so often you stay somewhere with an uncomfortable bed compared to yours at home. The food was amazing and plentiful. We chose not to eat in the waiter service restaurants as we prefer a more relaxed atmosphere and we aren't into 'dressing up'. Someone said to us the choice of food in the self-service was probably better than waiter service and I can only say it was amazingly good and varied. The entertainment was far better than we'd expected. We hadn't planned to watch anything, but decided to give it a go and I have to say it was high class entertainment. The singers and dancers were very good indeed and the comedian, Buster, was fantastic. If he's on your cruise then you are in for a treat and do go and watch him, I defy anyone to say he wasn't funny! We went on two excursions and both were very good indeed with good tour guides on both. One was in Madeira, which is a pretty island, the other Lanzarote, it was a trip to the north of the island which was so much nicer than the port. I would recommend going on as many as you can afford as you see so much more than shops and cafes. Everything went like clockwork. The ship sailed when it was due to, and any transport was right on time, either excursions or transfers to and from the airport. Although we had a smashing time and we have booked to go to the Fjords in June, I'm not sure we are 'cruising people'. Absolutely nothing Thomson did was wrong, it was us finding the time as sea a little limiting and finding we spent far too much time eating and drinking! We are used to doing a little more on our holidays, but we did manage to adapt and relaxed nicely. Our next cruise we have a cabin, so will avoid the drying air con, and we drive to the port rather than fly, which will be far easier. If you've never cruised but feel you'd like to try it I would highly recommend Thomson as they are laid back on board and there is a very relaxed atmosphere. Go on, give it a go!!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
1st cruise and I was not disappointed! Arrived at the port at around 10am and got parked up and checked in immediately. We only had a 30 minute wait in the terminal before we were called to embark. We were on the ship within an hour of ... Read More
1st cruise and I was not disappointed! Arrived at the port at around 10am and got parked up and checked in immediately. We only had a 30 minute wait in the terminal before we were called to embark. We were on the ship within an hour of parking! The ship is huge! I was so glad we got on early so we had a few hours to explore before the staterooms are available at 1pm. We had a Promenade Stateroom. As you enter, the bathroom was on the left and the wardrobe on the right. In the bathroom there was the toilet, shower and sink. There was a huge mirror with lights either side which was great for doing make up. There was a corner cabinet with 3 shelves. There was also ample room around the sink area for toiletries and a shelf under the sink. In the wardrobe was one high rail and 2 lower rails for hanging clothes and there was 5 shelves, one of which had the safe on. The safe was very easy to use. Outside the wardrobe was 4 drawers and 3 more shelves. The bed was huge, the size of 2 singles together and it had a foam topper which was so comfy! Between the bed and the window was a small sitting area with 2 sofas and a dressing table/desk and chair. There was another huge mirror with lights and 2 small shelving areas either side of the mirror. The window looked out onto the Royal Promenade. We were on deck 8 so the window was at an angle looking down. We had chosen 'My Time Dining' which meant we could have dinner in the Romeo & Juliet dining room on deck 3 whenever we liked between 6pm and 9.30pm. You didn't have to reserve a table but we did on the 3 occasions we ate in there, twice reserving a table at the dining room earlier in the day and once by calling the reservations line. We had a table for 2 each time, but the tables are very close together so it was more like a table for 6! The menus are displayed on interactive monitors around the ship so each morning we took photos of the menus to take away and decide if we wanted to eat in the dining room. The food in the dining room was very nice. I had Beef Tenderloin one night and it just melted in my mouth! The service was good with just one little blip that wasn't worth complaining about. There isn't much of a view in the Romeo & Juliet dining room, there are no large windows like in the Macbeth & King Lear dining rooms on decks 4 & 5. The other nights we ate in the Windjammer Cafe, as we did breakfast and lunch. Buffet style food but very tasty and plenty of variety. The entertainment was excellent. We went to several shows both in the Alhambra Theatre and Studio B Ice Rink. I would particularly recommend Grease and the Ice shows. I would also recommend you go to the game show Quest, that was hilarious! Our cruise direct Jamie was great fun and made the cruise very entertaining. The service we received everywhere on the ship was great, most of the crew were exceptionally friendly and in particular, our stateroom attendant Joseph Anthony. He was such a blessing throughout the cruise. I would absolutely go again and am already planning the next one! Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
First time cruisers and it won't be the last. From the moment we stepped on the ship we were not disappointed. The staff were exceptional. They couldn't do enough for us. Cabin stewardess was great. Food was out of this world. ... Read More
First time cruisers and it won't be the last. From the moment we stepped on the ship we were not disappointed. The staff were exceptional. They couldn't do enough for us. Cabin stewardess was great. Food was out of this world. Didn't do the buffet as was a bit of a cattle market. The main restaurants where you were very well looked after and the food was first class were excellent. The speciality restaurants were out of this world. Plenty of entertainment and plenty of seated areas to relax. Didn't do any excursions. We chose do do our own thing. All in all it was a fantastic holiday. Don't be put off by the size of the ship you wouldn't know there was that many people on it. O and if you get the chance have a pamper session at the spa. The girls are so nice and they made us feel really welcome and relaxed. I'm so glad I have finally gone on a cruise and chosen p&o we will definitely do it again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
We wanted to go on the Britannia as it looked so British and she lived up to all we expected and more, cabin with balcony was great you need this for a 2 week cruise. Stewardess to our cabin was always on hand and such a lovely happy ... Read More
We wanted to go on the Britannia as it looked so British and she lived up to all we expected and more, cabin with balcony was great you need this for a 2 week cruise. Stewardess to our cabin was always on hand and such a lovely happy person lovely to see her every day and looked after our cabin with a great deal of attention. waiting staff in the restaurants were very polite at professional with a great sense of humour the very thing us British like, we used the Peninsula Restaurant most night as we got to know waiters Andrew & Flemis who look after us way beyond the call of duty plus a sign presentation of menus covering all the nights of the cruise, well done to you two you made our cruise and not forgetting our wine waiter true to his profession we had some great wines. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
Just returned back from the colourful coast on the majesty. The whole experience right from the flight to the cruise was out of this world. This was my first cruise, and I was a solo traveller, the flight was smooth and just about on time, ... Read More
Just returned back from the colourful coast on the majesty. The whole experience right from the flight to the cruise was out of this world. This was my first cruise, and I was a solo traveller, the flight was smooth and just about on time, but that was ok. The check in process was very easy, and ran like clock work. My cabin was on deck 6, mid ship located just by the on board casino, which was an ideal location as it was near the main entertainment venue. in terms on cabin size and layout, it was basic but it was well equipped for the cruise, the bathroom/toilet was a bit small, but I managed. The activities ranged from day to day, Christina and chewy was amazing in the entertainment that they supplied. Sail away party was amazing, I didn't do a lot of the shore excursions, but the ones that I did do was amazing, all the guides that Thomson used had a good understanding of English, and was able to answer any questions that was thrown at them, and the level of information and background about the ports that we visited was really in depth. Dining wise food was amazing there was always some think on the menu that someone could enjoy. If you didn't feel like having a 3 course meal in one of the 2 restaurants, then you could always visit deck 10 where there was a buffet service which ran until 1am. In terms of evening entertainment, I have never seen such fantastic shows, that got the whole family clapping singing and dancing along. it ranged from theatre shows in the jubilee lounge, or maybe a quiz/ trivia show is more your style then visit the royal firework lounge. Overall I would recommend cruising with Thomson a must. I am all ready thinking about my next cruise with Thomson, looking into doing a longer cruise and cruising around the Caribbean Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Our first cruise. My wife has always wanted to go on a cruise, I prefer to keep my feet on terra firm's, boots on and walking especially in Madeira. This holiday offered both, a cruise for my wife and a visit to my favourite place. ... Read More
Our first cruise. My wife has always wanted to go on a cruise, I prefer to keep my feet on terra firm's, boots on and walking especially in Madeira. This holiday offered both, a cruise for my wife and a visit to my favourite place. The cruise was also booked as our silver wedding present to ourselves. From the out set the holiday was a dream, seamless transfers, easy embarking, shown to a good sized, clean cabin. A walk around the ship revealed a host of bars and restaurants, we never got bored with the food and ate in a different place every night, sure it was crowded at times but if you adjust your schedule a little you could always find a seat. We enjoyed all of our stops despite the weather, but the stand out feature of this ship is the crew. I can't fault a single one, I'm a miserable old so and so, but you couldn't help smile with them, their work ethic is superb and they truly don't stop until you do. Special shouts to our stewards Nerico and Made and Helen Kurver (a gracious host at the Captains Table). The crew made our anniversary a special event that my wife and I will never forget. I thank you and recommend the ship to all in the highest possible terms. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
As first timers on a cruise after reading some of the reviews on here we were worried about going but I really do not understand why people complain. The ship itself was lovely( but I do appreciate we have nothing to compare it too as ... Read More
As first timers on a cruise after reading some of the reviews on here we were worried about going but I really do not understand why people complain. The ship itself was lovely( but I do appreciate we have nothing to compare it too as this was our first time), we had an outside plus cabin on deck 4 and we were very surprised at the amount of space we did have. The beds are comfortable and there is a lot of storage. We had no issues with the bathroom, everything worked as it should. The food on board was brilliant. We ate in the seven seas restaurant twice but preferred the self service in the piazza San Marco buffet restaurant. The food was always hot and of very good quality. All of the Thompson crew on board are fabulous, the reviews that have said that they are all miserable, well I think must have been on a different ship. Everyone greeted you with a chirpy good morning/afternoon and were always happy to help/ answer questions when required. The bar staff in all areas were brilliant, as soon as you were nearing the bottom of the glass you would be asked if you would like another. The Thomson entertainment team were fabulous putting on excellent shows. The ship was a bit rocky on a couple of occasions causing a few sea sickness issues but you do get used to it. The only thing that would have made our holiday better would have been for the weather to have been better but that's one of those things. It was a bit brisk sat outside some of the time. We visited some lovely ports especially Funchal in Maderia but we did feel that Thomson do overcharge on their excursions, £22 for a transfer to the beach seemed very expensive to us, we made our own way around. Overall we had a lovely time and will definitely cruise with Thomson again, don't be put off by the negative reviews on here. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Read a few bad reviews prior to my first ever experience of cruising.What a load of rubbish,If you are a snob,or pompous like formal nights every night then this is not the ship for you.If you like being looked after by really friendly ... Read More
Read a few bad reviews prior to my first ever experience of cruising.What a load of rubbish,If you are a snob,or pompous like formal nights every night then this is not the ship for you.If you like being looked after by really friendly hard working staff who go that extra mile to ensure you enjoy every minute of your cruise then read on. Let's start with the entertainment team,they put on 1st class shows most nights,also make sure your days on board are fun packed,spend hours rehearsing,and still take the time to mix at the end of a long day. Restaurant staff,if you are eating in the buffet restaurant or either of the fine dining restaurants then nothing is to much trouble and they make make every effort to get to to know everyone by name and ensure you food is served hot. The bar staff,you don't really see much of the people behind the bar,this is because the staff waiting on are super efficient,they get to know your drinks always serve you with a smile,and even though they have to clean and polish everything after you have gone to bed still great you with a lovely smile next morning. Cabin stewards,greet you with a smile every morning,ensure your cabin is spotless every day.Turn you bed down every evening,put a big smile on your face with the animals made with the towels,and I had no issue leaving money lying around and felt I could totally trust them and that is a lovely feeling. In conclusion I am sorry that the majesty is leaving the Thomson fleet but if you get chance to sail on the old girl before she leaves go for it you will love it. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
This cruise was a total let down! thank god most of the staff were great or l would have got off and flown home. The ship needs major works done to it as its so tired and in places is a mess, cabins are compact to say the least and I have ... Read More
This cruise was a total let down! thank god most of the staff were great or l would have got off and flown home. The ship needs major works done to it as its so tired and in places is a mess, cabins are compact to say the least and I have slept on better camp beds than what we had, the toilet three times flooded the bathroom and as for the draws in the units l spent a couple of hours fixing them to be able to open them. Having to pay for water was a joke and drinks charges were different all over the place and we had the drinks package so to be charged for a mixer in one place but not another was mind blowing. Great to be charged before we went to eat in the posh restaurant was funny as we booked it twice and to be fair we sent food back twice. Breakfast was ok but sloppy if you managed to get a seat and talking of seats the ship has the most uncomfortable seats all over the place so sat in the window bay bench seat most of the time. By no means am I stuck up but some of the things people were doing without staff stopping them was a joke so sadly I have to say I will not be booking again as planed to take my family. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
Having read previous reviews, like others I was apprehensive about our holiday, however I worried needlessly. We had a great time. Transfer from the airport was approx 50 mins, embarkation was seamless, took about 20 mins to get to our ... Read More
Having read previous reviews, like others I was apprehensive about our holiday, however I worried needlessly. We had a great time. Transfer from the airport was approx 50 mins, embarkation was seamless, took about 20 mins to get to our cabin and our luggage arrived shortly after, delivered by our very attentive and helpful cabin steward. The cabins are small, but there is adequate storage space and the beds are very comfortable. The cabin stewards to a sterling job, making up your cabin in the morning and turning down your bed at night. We were always keen to see what creation he had made with the towels! The 'Cruise News' is delivered at night and details information about the port and what's on the following day. The food was lovely, we chose to eat mainly in the Seven Seas or Four Seasons restaurants. It is waiter service in these for lunch and dinner. Breakfast was buffet style and there was a good choice and standard of food. We had booked the all inclusive drinks package prior to going and I would recommend doing this as it is much more expensive to buy on the ship. The entertainment was superb and the whole team were so talented. The shows were of a West End standard. We also spent time listening to Ben Moss in the Rendezvous Bar, he has an amazing voice. All the staff are very friendly and are a credit to Thomson. We met loads of lovely people, had a cracking holiday and would definitely cruise with Thomson again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
This was me and my mums first cruise and got to say we wont be doing another one. absolutely disappointed with it. My mum's always wanted to do a cruise and thought, this would be a good first time cruise but even the season ... Read More
This was me and my mums first cruise and got to say we wont be doing another one. absolutely disappointed with it. My mum's always wanted to do a cruise and thought, this would be a good first time cruise but even the season cruisers said it was the worst cruise and far below the standard of a normal cruises. To start with the food was awful, in the buffet area (which we didn't/couldn't use) the food I can best describe as slop, you had no idea what it was, even the salad was awful. The server area in seven and four seasons was better but still had some bad food from them too. Also ordered food that came out as some thing completely different. Like a berry tart that came out in an egg custard like blob on a plate no tart in sight, a strawberry shortbread pudding that was a gateau and no shortbread about it, (that happen to allot with the puddings) wouldn't of minded so much if they tasted good or of anything at all. I orders one meal which had roast potatoes and came out with potato wedges, your ok if you like carrots, served on every meal. Tough and un-edible meat on most meals. soup that tasted the same no matter what flavour you ordered. allot of people around us sent there food back half the time. The lists go on and on.... Are best meal of the holiday was at the airport on the way home having a burger king meal and we don't even like burger king at home! so that is saying something of the quality of the majesty's food! afternoon tea was a joke! it was either side of the pool area outside (so even if you wanted some you could never find somewhere to sit and eat it) and when we did try twice, all of it was dry and stale and not nice. hate to think how long the sandwiches were left out for. half the staff was very friendly and we're good at there job but half the other half was down right rude at times. some of them ignore you while serving you and carry on chatting to there workmates. one person just rudely ask "what do you want" instead of asking if they can help and they just make you feel they hate there job and don't want be there which adds a horrible vibe to the atmosphere of the ship. space on the ship is not enough for the people they cram on it. we never found a space outside to sit, but the outside space is very run down and I would say dirty. like I said we're new to cruising but OMG I never thought there be such queuing for everything! queued for the restaurants, bars, receptionist, getting on and off ship, think we spent half are holiday queuing. I normally stay in small 2*-3* hotels so it could be me not use to so many people in one small space for the queuing and finding space to relax but got to say the service, food and overall holiday of a two star hotel was much better then on this cruise. This was far the worst holiday we've ever had! We were on deck 4, in 4001, it was right at the front of the ship and the movement of the ship was really bad there. someone did say its best to be in the middle of the ship. but the sea was very choppy. On the plus side you didn't have to have a drink to feel drunk! I will end on the good things, one great thing about the holiday was the evening entertainment, The Thomson entertainment crew, Muzzik unlimited and also three of a kind (i think that what they were called) they all where fabulous, you couldn't fault them. they where great at what they do and loved doing it and it showed. All the housekeeping on deck 4 were wonderful people and all said hello with a smile and ready to help. We had an inside room and actually it was bigger than we expected and kept clean by the wonderful housekeeping, we had an animal towel displays and a nice little chocolate every evening. and also a little plus for us as there was a channel that showed the outside of the ship so we could see what the weather was like. Over all a big big disappointment in cruising and we will not be doing another one soon and Defiantly not with Thomson. if your thinking of a first time cruise please don't go with them its a waste of money try another cruise line. Would be my advice. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
Pre curise booking was a nightmare - so many errors - had to go into travel shop three times and was still not sorted by the time we left re flights. Seating on aircraft very compact - upgrade if you can but avoid seats right next to the ... Read More
Pre curise booking was a nightmare - so many errors - had to go into travel shop three times and was still not sorted by the time we left re flights. Seating on aircraft very compact - upgrade if you can but avoid seats right next to the bulkhead in the first row. Staff, service [with a few exceptions] and entertainment in general absolutely first class. Particular credit to our two cabin staff and our waiters . Nice choice of bars, lounges and facilities throughout the ship to suit all ages and tastes from a card room to jubilee lounge. Masses of indoor space even on a full ship [all cabins taken our friends got the last one available]. Very small gym and saunas - didnt use due to risk from virus. Majesty shows her age but is basically comfy if a little worn in places. There are stabilizers - cabins in the middle of the ship move the least!!! Thomsons will only run her until sometime in 2017 so I dont expect a lot of updates to be forthcoming. Pool deck crowded, noisy, facilities withdrawn - days spoilt with no pool or jacuzzis, loungers crammed and hard to find a free one and over crowded, [think seals basking on scrobie sands]. They should never have filled in the extra deck space up there to add the cafe. Top deck food serveries - Cafe Royale closed leading to chaos and jams in the San Marco and long queues to other restaurants. Obviously the ship was in lock down with norovirus - suddenly salt and peppers vanished off tables and all food was handed out only by staff causing chaos. Staff were fervently cleaning absolutely everything - we met various people who had been confined to their cabins by the medical officer. Food - you had plenty of choice and you could find something you liked - but it was obviously done to a very tight budget - so nothing special - ie seafood, steaks etc unless you paid extra. One night we paid £24 for two steaks and they were absolutely fabulous. There was a lot of repetition and on occasion the portions were minuscule, not a lot of green veg.. Puddings were particularly disappointing. As I said I found things I could enjoy but since I did not put on on ounce of weight [a good thing] I wasnt that tempted!!!! I recommend purchasing the drinks package - but the cocktails were very weak! Some odd exclusions - but i was happy with the house wine , cocktails, lemonade and the odd liqueur. Water is not part of the package which as i love fizzy water was a pain. You can purchase on shore leave and bring it back on board! Shore trips rather over priced - in some ports you could easily do your own thing and for a lot less money. Madeira and Grand Canaria particularly interesting and easy to get around. Local buses were very cheap - Grand Canaria Port to old town 1 euro 20 each way!. Trips up Madeira cable car and on land train in La Palma were both worth doing. Organization for embarkation and disembarkation was fantastic [hint take something very colourful to mark your suitcases out when they are lined up with 300 others! Use cable ties to secure.] Suitcases delivered very quickly to cabin. Daily ships news and map of town where docked very informative and helpful. Reception staff charming and helpful. Unfortunately I had paid a LOT of money to upgrade for a quiet cabin with a balcony and what we got was overhead noise from 5am in the morning so loud that it was impossible to sleep through even with ear plugs! This really ruined my week in the same way that people who caught the virus had their week ruined. It turned out to be service trolleys not sun loungers being moved [in the dark?] as suggested by other reviewers. One morning it was 3.50am!!!! Thomsons need to sort this out -! as it effects the most expensive cabins. Hence my marking down value for money and the cabin which is a shame as the cabin was exactly as described in the brochure [so read before you book] and what I was expecting. Check you have no obstructions if you like a clear view from your cabin - some have views that are very obstructed - Thomsons can tell you by what actual percentage!!!!. Overall - the sunshine made up for a lot, we met some lovely people and saw a variety of islands - i am glad there was only one" all day" at sea. The staff are such an asset to the Majesty - they really help to make this a positive experience. Thomsons need to make improvements to their organization and transparency in what they are actually supplying. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
my husband and I took our first ever cruise on board P/O VENTURA on the 2 January 2016. we stayed overnight on the 1 jan at wetherby service hotel, and cruise connect picked us up the following morning at 7.30. we had a good run down to ... Read More
my husband and I took our first ever cruise on board P/O VENTURA on the 2 January 2016. we stayed overnight on the 1 jan at wetherby service hotel, and cruise connect picked us up the following morning at 7.30. we had a good run down to Southampton, arriving about 2pm. we embarked onto the ship. (I WAS IN AWE OF THE SIZE OF THE SHIP) had our pic taken, then onto reception to collect our card etc. we then caught the lift to our cabin. not disappointed, we had a balcony, the room was spotless. our cabin attendant introduced himself. a charming young man, by the name of REVLON. I did some of our unpacking, then proceded to the MUSTER STATION for the drill of safety. I wont go on too long with my review, only to say that we really enjoyed every aspect of the cruise. down to our room, the cleanliness of the ship, we ate in waterside for breakfast and Bay Tree for select dining, and no complaints over the food, everything was good. I know we can not compare with any other ship, but our first experienceon this ship, we ENJOYED it very much, and are looking forward to booking our next one for next year, as it will be our 70th and golden wedding. some people moan over the least little thing, but I would like to say, there is something to do for everyone on this ship. I even got my pic taken with TOM O CONNER!!!!!! we will probably book with P/O for the next one. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
Ten hour delay from Avonmouth due to bad weather so two excursions cancelled at La Corunna and Gibraltar. Four days at sea in Gale force 4 - 7 winds and then very short trips to Lisbon, Gran Canaria, Tenerife and Lanzarote. Appalled at ... Read More
Ten hour delay from Avonmouth due to bad weather so two excursions cancelled at La Corunna and Gibraltar. Four days at sea in Gale force 4 - 7 winds and then very short trips to Lisbon, Gran Canaria, Tenerife and Lanzarote. Appalled at injuries sustained by many passengers due to broken glass and furniture flying around. Madeira trip on New Years eve was a fiasco. Unable to dock so tenders ferried passengers the half hour trip to port. Tenders unsuitable for the journey due to choppy seas, lack of crew training and dangerous practice. Many passengers unable to make the trip as only able-bodied people allowed. Many of the passengers were elderly so unable to leave the ship. Frequent accidents on board consisted of broken limbs, broken ribs, head injuries, lacerations caused by flying glass and objects. Tables made of glass and marble and not secured so causing many of the injuries. Return journey not to Avonmouth but Southampton so had to be bussed back causing all later plans to be disrupted. Offer of the year. If we would like to book another cruise on this boat in 2016 we can have 15% off if we book by 31st March. .....A small 50 yr old boat not fit for purpose in winter weather. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
This was my first ever cruise and will be my last cruise! The late departure was because of their poor embarkation procedures. We were due to board at 14:30 and didn't board until 15:45 even though we were there in plenty of time! ... Read More
This was my first ever cruise and will be my last cruise! The late departure was because of their poor embarkation procedures. We were due to board at 14:30 and didn't board until 15:45 even though we were there in plenty of time! I do not think that the stabilisers were extended on our southern journey thus making things even more uncomfortable for the passengers. There was no form of compensation offered for the loss of 2 ports and the huge delays getting us into Funchal. When it came to Madeira we had to use the tenders to land. I had no problem with this except for their sheer incompetence at lowering the boats. the first tender banged into the ship and broke two of its windows and damaged its rubbing strip. The second tender also hit the boat as it was being lowered which created a hole in the hull. We watched them repairing this with fibre glass! This left the lifeboats available for use which were slow and inappropriate. One wonders what would have happened if we had needed those tenders in an emergency - would they have been able to lower them without damage! The rough seas caused many injuries but many more injuries were caused by the unsuitability of the furniture for cruising. Chairs that tipped over when you were sat on them (Scotts Bar and Marco Polo Lounge); tables not bolted down to the floor; handrails not available as you approached the top of stairs etc. The food in the Waldorf was excellent but never hot - always tepid and in the rough weather we had to demand tumblers instead of the wine glasses that were top heavy and crashing to the ground! One afternoon in the Marco Polo Lounge, because it was so rough, they turned all the tub chairs onto their sides so that they couldn't be used. This left their sharp metal bases pointing skywards ready to do huge damage should someone be unfortunate enough to fall onto them - no common sense and another fine example of inappropriate furniture! The return disembarkation at Southampton and the subsequent coaches were well organised. The staff we came across were excellent. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
Where do I begin? This experience was one absolutely, without question, straight from hell. We waited for almost twenty years for our Marco Polo experience, and we cannot believe how truly horrible it really was. When they originally ... Read More
Where do I begin? This experience was one absolutely, without question, straight from hell. We waited for almost twenty years for our Marco Polo experience, and we cannot believe how truly horrible it really was. When they originally sent us the brochure for the wrong ship, after we booked a year in advance, we thought it was just an oversight. Then when our travel agent later sought to reconfirm that the cabin we had booked was a twin that could convert to a double (it was a wedding anniversary, after all!), they told us it couldn't! So we then had to fight to get the confirmation that the cabin we had booked WAS in fact a convertible one. Silly us, we chose to ignore those examples of initial company incompetence. Boy, have we lived to regret that! A month on from returning and we are still struggling to come to terms with not only a terrible experience, but a terrible attitude on the part of the company, Crusie and Maritime Voyages, who simply rejected our claim for compensation and who have tried to shut us down from social media so we cannot complain about them publicly. Their treatment of us is unbelievable! We fully intend to pursure the matter as far as arbitration, if we have to. The weather was so rough they should never have sailed. Cruse and Maritime Voyages' Captain made the decision to sail, without giving people adequate notice of EXTREMELY rough seas, or offering them the opportunity to cancel or reschedule (which would have been the decent thing to do). We left Avonmouth port twelve hours late, and we lost BOTH of our two pre-Christmas port stops! So we were at sea for three days until Christmas, in seriously rough weather - to the point where my husband, who has been a yacht racer since he was a child, and who definitely has his "sea legs" was throwing up for three days, because it was so bad. I could hardly get out of bed myself for all of that time. The weather was so bad that we could hardly stand up safely for MOST of the trip, and as mature sailers who have lived on our own yacht in the past, we undestand bad weather and when you should or not subject people to conditions that render them injured, sick, and at risk. We were more or less confined to cabin for at least seven of the fourteen days we were away, because it was simply too dangerous to move about the ship safely. All we heard for a full fortnight was the endless sound of smashing glass, bottles and crockery, and the Captain telling us "I regret to advise...". People went flying through the air and some needed medical treatment, at least one to the tune of £1000 for two infusions to stop her from feeling so sick, and there were several "code Alpha" (mayday) calls to staff regarding on-board crises, and they were running all over the ship picking people up off the floor., along with smashed plates etc. One woman fell off her chair, landed on the floor and gashed her legs open on broken glass, another, fell and knocked herself unconscious and that was FAR from all. My husband and I both helped several elderly people to move about the ship on several occasions, and when the staff shut down the elevators because of rough weather, and closed one of the only two restaurants on the ship, people had to make their way down to the lower decks for food or even just a cup of tea. So those in wheelchairs or with other disabilities couldn't get access to food or a hot drink independently. I found a lady sitting on the stairs sobbing her heart out because she wanted a cup of tea, and she just couldn't make it down the several flights of stairs to the one place where she could get one. It was just sickening. On returning to our cabin on one of the worst rough days, after an attempt to get some fresh air, we were very freaked out to find that our cabin steward had taken our life jackets out from where they were stowed in an overhead cupboard, and had left them on the window sill! What kind of reaction is anyone supposed to have, to that? The food on the cruise was extremely low-budget, tasteless mush, and we've had better food in staff canteens. The coffee was of very poor quality, and they were serving us rubbish like cottage pie, soggy pasta with tasteless tomato sauce, lumpy mashed potatoes, plain boiled rice, and beef stew. There were no hot puddings, just miniscule squares of jelly-based deserts that looked and tasted like they had come from a supermarket freezer. There were no lovely salad ingredients, just lettuce, cheap cheese and meat options, and no really nice fruit, nothing that could compare with other cruise lines' fare (and believe me, I have thoroughly checked!) - it was just run-of-the-mill stuff that you'd make at home, and to a better standard. Even the bread rolls were cheap and dry. Its not what you expect in return for more than four thousand pounds!!! The in-cabin entertainment was repetitive (a same one hour program or a movie on a continuous loop for 24 hours on all watchable channels). The on-board entertainment was mediocre, and everything was short. Many of the staff were incompetent. They didn't know who to report faults to, as I found out after reporting something three times in the same day, only to find out that reception had passed on the complaint to the wrong person who apparently just ignored it. I demanded a meeting with the Cruise Director at one point and he thanked me for being one of the few people he'd dealt with who hadn't shouted at him! People WERE shouting, and complaining all throughout, and few seemed to get a satisfactory answer to any of the complaints made. A lot of the people on the cruise paid less than half of what we did. We paid top brochure price, others paid as little as £1600 for two. To top it off, the weather was so bad that the captain made the decision to dock at Southampton at the end of the cruise, instead of going back to Avonmouth. You can imagine the uproar and inconvenience THAT caused! Many other people on our cruise had left at the first port and made their own way back to the UK at their own expense, others did it from subsequent ports. Sadly, we were not in a financial position to do that. We ended up as miserable, sick, sitting ducks. Believe it or not, there was a lot more to complain about than this, but I won't go on. For us, this was the worst experience EVER. We'd looked forward to it for so long, almost two decades. It was meantto be our dream anniversary holiday, but it was a complete and utter disaster,. Cruise and Maritime Voyages have elected to assume absolutely NO responsiblity for ANYTHING that went wrong in the cruise, and are ignoring our complaints in the hope that we will go away. We will not. That I can promise. If we have to go all the way to arbitration, we absolutely will. If anyone wants to see a copy of our complaint to them in its 10-page entirety, I will be happy to provide it, along with a copy of their reply to us. I just don't want anyone else to have the experience we had. Nobody deserves that. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. Cruise and Maritime Voyages tout this ship, on their website, as a "luxury cozy ship" and they say that if customers "have enough British pounds they will be very lucky" to take a cruise on Marco Polo. We felt anything but lucky, and if that was their standard of luxury, I'd hate to see their "average", because this wasn't even that. It was very, very poor. It is interesting to note that in their rejection of our complaint they stated that they DON'T advertise themselves as a luxury experience. So they lied. And they have closed off our ability to comment on their facebook page,a nd have deleted our negative comments. They are unwilling to face any responsibility for the consequences of that horrible experience. I doubt we are the only complainants. And I doubt we will be the only ones fobbed óff. But we're not going away, and neither should anyone else who has borne the brunt of Cruise and Maritime's catastrophic "Christmas Cruise" - or any other, for that matter. I can be contacted via my website MaxineCook.com, there is a report about our experience with Cruise and Maritime Voyages under the Soapbox menu option, and I will respond to emails reagarding this, if doing so will stop anyone else having such a hideous, rip-off experience. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
We found embarkation was very good & well organised. Cabin with balcony was acceptable & very clean. Service was good & staff was friendly. We were kept well informed of all that was happening. Plenty of ... Read More
We found embarkation was very good & well organised. Cabin with balcony was acceptable & very clean. Service was good & staff was friendly. We were kept well informed of all that was happening. Plenty of seminars to interest people & very informative. Food was good & varied. Shows were very good & well performed. We were well looked after in ports of call. The gym was fair & adequate. Disembarkation was excellent & well organised. We will certainly book another cruise Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
This was our first cruise ever and it exceeded our expectations. From the start Staff went out of their way to make us feel welcome and catered to our every need. Personnel could not have been friendlier or more courteous and we ended ... Read More
This was our first cruise ever and it exceeded our expectations. From the start Staff went out of their way to make us feel welcome and catered to our every need. Personnel could not have been friendlier or more courteous and we ended our cruise feeling we were leaving friends. So many things to do both at sea and on the tour excursions. All meals were superlative and the "Behind The Scenes" Tour offered an opportunity to really get to know what goes on in the everyday running of the ship - a real insight. The only quibble was with the White Star Luggage Service where the luggage pick up from home was scheduled for a certain day but DHL did not do the pick up as advised on the document. Apart from this, we would definitely choose Cunard and, particularly, the Queen Victoria again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
We embarked in Southampton, we were booked for 14:30 but arrived at about 13:10. CPS took the car straight off us, and the luggage porter was helpful. There we no queues, and we were on board straight away, very smooth. Oh by the way ... Read More
We embarked in Southampton, we were booked for 14:30 but arrived at about 13:10. CPS took the car straight off us, and the luggage porter was helpful. There we no queues, and we were on board straight away, very smooth. Oh by the way this was our first ever cruise, we were a group of 5, my parents myself, hubby and pre-teen daughter. We really enjoyed the cruise, the food in the Britannia Restaurant was fantastic, we had chateaubriand, lobster, lots of seafood the baked Alaska was divine. Our waiters Romeo & Joy were excellent, actually all of the staff we came into contact were marvellous, and I think this made the cruise for us. The Lido had a good variety of foods, however at times it can be a bit of a scrum to get a table, especially for 5, but we managed this. I think at peek times Cunard could maybe allocate the seating, or come up with a system to help with this. The Lido was always very clean and tidy. It was quite windy at times and we had a day where we were most ill, and taken to our cabins. My husband visited the ships doctor and came back with some marvellous tablets, which meant were could fully enjoy the cruise, ( we did take some other tablets with us , but they were not working at all)!! We very much enjoyed the insight lectures particular Malcom Nelson who was a customs officer, even my daughter was totally enthralled by his presentations. We went to about 4 shows as a family. We enjoyed David Copperfield, although an older guy, we did enjoy that older generation humour ( bearing in mind most of the audience were well into there 60's ++). The dancers were good, but let down a little by the 4 singers, the 2 women need a bit more tone to there voices, and were a bit shrieky at times!! We missed one port of call due to bad weather. I have no qualms with this, and would rather be safe, we sailed straight onto Gran Canaria, the captain kept us up to date at all times. We thought the crew were very professionally, and the Captain safety conscious, they even had an extra crew drill whilst we were in port. We paid for 2 excursions, as we were new to cruising, we were a bit apprehensive about been back on time, but both excursions were well organised, particularly Madeira. Rosa was our guide, and as we were travelling as a party of 3 ensured we got a family basket for our toboggan ride, which I recommend. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
This was our very first cruise and we loved every aspect of it! Saga really look after their passengers. The pick up and journey to Dover was excellent, as was the embarkation organisation and process. Our cabin was lovely, kept ... Read More
This was our very first cruise and we loved every aspect of it! Saga really look after their passengers. The pick up and journey to Dover was excellent, as was the embarkation organisation and process. Our cabin was lovely, kept beautifully clean by Willy, our cabin steward. The food was excellent and so was the service. The All Inclusive package was very very good. I would although have liked fizzy wine included too. The entertainment was really fabulous and actually our favourite part. We would pay to see those shows! They all are extremely talented and give 100% on and off stage. The live band are fantastic too. We particularly enjoyed participating in the passenger choir with the professional vocalists, Hannah, Michelle and Kurt. We loved the atmosphere and friendliness onboard the ship. Disembarkation and our journey home was also very efficient. We would definitely recommend and will be booking again. Happy customers! Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
We did enjoy the cruise but a few parts were disappointing! Are departure was smooth apart from we didn't book parking in advance. We were told just to turn up,it was included in our package and someone would take our car when we ... Read More
We did enjoy the cruise but a few parts were disappointing! Are departure was smooth apart from we didn't book parking in advance. We were told just to turn up,it was included in our package and someone would take our car when we arrived. But apparently we had to book it before, we then saw a very small print at bottom of email,you must book it your self !! So we had to pay £135 to sort this but p&o on board did add this to our on board spend. Our room was great queen size bed and a fold out sofa bed for the teenage boys but was a bit worn and springs made lots of noise when my son moved in the night. balcony was large. Lots of choices of films on TV. The room was cleaned twice a day with tea & coffee refills,chocs and biscuits! Ship is very large,takes awhile to find your way. Pool at back is very nice place to Sit and get some sun ! The staff are all lovely We had freedom dining .... Food was like pub grub nothing special, and uninteresting old school 80s food. we did eat at sindhu twice,well worth the extra money £15ph. Drinks well priced some great wines at good prices,soft drinks can soon add up for the kids over 13 days so be careful. Free cold water and coffee,teas are available at buffet,so make use ! You can bring on your own drinks but must be drunk in you room there doesn't seem the be a limit! But would Carry on in hand luggage to avoid breakages ! The weather was warm in its 60s, we had 3 sunny days the rest was over cast but that's just pot luck ! The boys enjoyed the pools on board & my oldest loved the gym never was busy lots of great machines. The sea days were a bit boring shows ok, if any good they were packed !!! So get there a hour before or you will be standing ... Tom Jones & Phil Collins are great ! And there was a great band which played a lot in the tamarin bar got everybody dancing. Queuing didn't find a problem everybody has to wait. The restaurants give u a pager,if they can't sit you straight away. Buffet seats hard to find but you can always walk in the next loung or eat by pool. Pizzeria is free and are thin and delicious. Food off shore avoid the restaurants near by with laminated picture menus.... walk up side streets,we found great tapas bars in Tenerife and Lisbon and well priced ! Lanzarote was the worst place we visited nothing really to look....I recommend you do a excursion !!!! We Wished did :) High lights Lisbon,grand canaria,Madeira Tenerife. grand canaria we didn't sail until 8pm so when back off shore later, we found a lovely out side bar covered in amazing lighting at bottom of shopping centre just near boat port !! cheap drinks,no wines though, Only Spirits served in big wine glasses lots of ice big measures...drinks 11.50 euros; great night cap ! The travel back was so slow and could have stopped off in brittany. But I suppose p&o make more money if your spending on board. The people on board are mainly older but in school term times sure this changes. My son really liked the kids club staff are great ! We did come out of the tips only because we were charged for the children too £240 a bit expensive we thought. So we tipped our cabin man and some waiting staff. We would have preferred to tip every night after our meals at table. Maybe p&o should pay more wages then we wouldn't be expected to pay in to tip. Would we go again maybe but would try Mediterranean/Caribbean Caribbean cruises liner next time for us looks more fun and modern:) Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
We really didn't know what to expect as this as our first cruise but have no complaints really as we thought it was wonderful and service very good at all times. The decor was fine and we are shocked by some peoples comments about The ... Read More
We really didn't know what to expect as this as our first cruise but have no complaints really as we thought it was wonderful and service very good at all times. The decor was fine and we are shocked by some peoples comments about The Arcada as it hasn't been our experience at all. The choice of food was excellent wherever on the ship we chose to eat and our cabin was kept beautifully clean. We joined in many activities and found everybody friendly but it has to be said some people are not happy unless they are complaining about something especially their experiences on other ships which made me wonder why they chose to come on this one!!! The evening entertainment was really good most nights especially The Headliners ( Oh Billy you were fantastic) and comedian Mickey zany. Waiters in Meridian were fantastic and service first class and we were treated like royalty in the Meridian by Jessel and Rinson and our wine waiter Veineeth and the waiters all sang to us on our birthdays and anniversary which a lovely touch. The captain had a lovely voice and we looked forward to his announcements each day which were informative and friendly and he sent me a card on my birthday too! Photographers were always about if you wanted your photo taken but we did feel the prices were too expensive and had they been cheaper I'm sure both myself and others would buy more. All in all this was a lovely cruise and we and my brother and sister in law enjoyed it immensely. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
This was my first cruise and after reading the recent reviews I was very concerned that I would not have enjoyed it . There was no need to worry as it was brilliant I could not fault this ship in anyway . The crew and staff were very ... Read More
This was my first cruise and after reading the recent reviews I was very concerned that I would not have enjoyed it . There was no need to worry as it was brilliant I could not fault this ship in anyway . The crew and staff were very helpful . our cabin steward Robert was very helpful and always had a smile . the cabin had plenty of room and the bed was very comfortable. the entertainment was brilliant they work very hard . they always say you either love cruising or hate it I have got the bug now will defentley be booking another one next year . well done p and o lovely ship arcadia. the service we received was excellent could not fault it in anyway. i liked the fact you could join in the activities if you wanted to or just relax which is what we done . we went on first sitting in the dinning room we had lots of choices of food 4 courses every night very filling . well done to all the chiefs it must be a hard job making all those meals . i don't now why people are so negative on here as p and o do there best to make sure you have a good holiday . cant wait till next year when I can go again so I will be busy saving for my next one. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
We didn't know what to expect as this was our first cruise. Southampton: Embarkation was brilliantly organised CPS (Cruise Parking service) Attendants took our cases from the boot, next time we saw them was in our cabin so for ... Read More
We didn't know what to expect as this was our first cruise. Southampton: Embarkation was brilliantly organised CPS (Cruise Parking service) Attendants took our cases from the boot, next time we saw them was in our cabin so for us more relaxing then flying. Disembarking: I was a bit worried but needn't have been, as we got a note in the cabin telling us what to do on the day. We took our own case's off the ship, left at 8:00pm and nothing was to much trouble for anyone. Once down we got a trolley, collected our car keys and we was off home. No Forced Gratuity: Just ask for a form to fill in and some envelopes if you want to give to Steward etc. Reception was very good and not rude, plus there was a long line of people waiting for these forms. Sail away: I didn't enjoy but many did, I went to the last one which was very good so maybe I should have gone to the other's, can only say on the first two I did. Lots of things extra you had to pay for on board, yoga, hydra pool etc. The Chocoholics: For me wasn't worth the money Wine Tasting: For me wasn't worth the money, plus I couldn't understand the lady given the presentation. Photo Package: Which we bought wasn't worth the money But this was our first cruise, and you learn by your mistakes. Cabin: was kept beautifully clean, plenty of coffee, tea, milk biscuits etc. Plus I loved my little chocolate on my pillow. Lovely white fluffy towels, plus blue pool towels Soap, shampoo, bubble bath etc, shower cap. Shower was excellent plus once you was in your cabin, you couldn't here anyone from the next rooms, still I used earplugs. We gave him his tip early, because I felt so guilty he had to come twice to do our cabin, our room as never been so clean on holiday. Food: Was superb and good in all venues, however Gala night we found the choice of meals not very good. If you want hot milk just ask and they will warm it up for you, and at 10pm you can have hot chocolate, ovaltine etc. Shows: Headliners put some good shows on, Killer Queen was excellent, better then We Will Rock You in London when that was on. Mickey Zany Comedian was so funny, and the three girls they had on Jenny was excellent Duty free: Perfume on the day you could buy 2 bottle 1 half price, spirits 2 bottles for £ 20 Shore Excursions: Fire Mountain was Excellent, but the others Lisbon have a good read up and you can do this quite easy yourself, Hop On Hop Of Bus is good and shows you more then the tour. I can't understand some people's comments about the Arcadia or P and O, and it makes me wonder why they come back on the same ship or use the same company for that matter. All in all we had a great experience, and booked again for next November same ship but with a different Itinerary. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
At times service in the main bar was particularly bad, waiting 45 minutes just to get a drink, refusing to let you get one from the bar. Areas of the ship discusting filthy, especially the toilets, very stained toilet seats. Public seating ... Read More
At times service in the main bar was particularly bad, waiting 45 minutes just to get a drink, refusing to let you get one from the bar. Areas of the ship discusting filthy, especially the toilets, very stained toilet seats. Public seating areas, fithy, even in the buffet resturant. Entertainment not brilliant although some was good but very repetitive and catered for the o.a.p's! Not all holiday makers were over the age of 65 and wanting to sit around knitting all day or doing the tango to a 1940's tune! Nor did we want to jive everry evening. Formal evenings were a joke, put on your best gear to have dinner, sit on dirty seats and maybe have a picture taken, costing around £20 to buy it, no special evening event, well i suppose you could do a ballroom dance in the foyer. Drinks at the bars although not too expensive, slightly more than in my local but there again my local pays the english taxes whereas the ship does not. Everything was about making money on the ship, go to an event, expect them to try and get you to pay for expensive treatments! The best thing about the cruise ship was the food, you could not go hungry, plenty of choice and great food. If the weather is not great, expect to be bored as there is little to do! Read Less
Sail Date October 2015

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