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679 Southampton P&O Cruises Britannia Cruise Reviews

First time for me on P & O. Arrived Southampton midday despite advertised motorway issues and car quickly disposed of. Checkin quick and security tight. Wife Barbara had put an oversized pair of scissors in case and it was spotted in x ... Read More
First time for me on P & O. Arrived Southampton midday despite advertised motorway issues and car quickly disposed of. Checkin quick and security tight. Wife Barbara had put an oversized pair of scissors in case and it was spotted in x ray as it went through. So we were called to examine the case. Well done security, we hadn’t realised and they were on the ball. Once on the ship straight to buffet. Very good buffet and better than Royal Caribbean in our view. This carried on throughout the week. Always good choices. Only negatives no American style crispy bacon. Good coffee though. Staff throughout the cruise awesome. P & O should be proud of this crew. Always a smile, a chat, a laugh, a story. Special mention of the top man I call Captain Speaking Coz that’s what he says lol. Jokes, informative, style, professional. When delays occurred you knew why. He had the full info and told you. Real name Wesley Dunlop. His crew learnt from the top man and it shows. Cabin was G445 midships balcony cabin. Nice size, partial obstructed but only a lifeboat one deck down. No real issue. Top tip when on last night and no clothes on hangers take hangers down. They rattle and clunk together otherwise due to no weight of clothes. Put back on last day. Being midships brings me to my two moans. One is huge and has been commented on before. Who was the numpty who signed off a ship with no stairs mid ships?? Definitely never travelled on one as a passenger. Caused so many issues with huge queues for lifts or a long walk for stairs. On last morning mobility issue passengers were stuck on decks unable to get in lifts due to packed out. Safety issue there. It was appalling. Poor poor design. Second moan lack of public toilets in bar areas. Toilets tiny and few of them. So when theatre empties massive queues for toilets Restaurants....... excellent food in all. Best is Epicurean. By far the best on any cruise line we have been in. Staff are top, food is awesome and great atmosphere. Sindhu another top location. We had the full Marco Pierre White experience with a hosted dinner. He is a cooking god. Well worth the money. Just to be able to chat with him over wine was an experience do it! All in all a great cruise and will go P & O again. BRITANNIA would choose a different cabin away from midships. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Recommended. Sunbeds were reserved round all pools. Three small smoking areas with no sunbeds only chairs one under cover cold windy & dark with sunny tables that were no smoking? Hidden extras. Different prices in bars. ... Read More
Recommended. Sunbeds were reserved round all pools. Three small smoking areas with no sunbeds only chairs one under cover cold windy & dark with sunny tables that were no smoking? Hidden extras. Different prices in bars. Norovirus on ship advised use own toilets meaning having to wait for overcrowded lifts as no stairs run through middle of ship?? Penisular breakfast cold toast brought out 35min wait for breakfast hard poached eggs & cold coffee. Horizon buffet good breakfast but like a cafe tables not cleared and floor not hovered between sittings 1st & last cruise not relaxing ship too big too much walking. Butlins at sea but nor butlins prices. Wouldn't recommend to my friends. Drab tired decor. Different prices at bars for same drinks. Internet £7.75 a day free in all hotels we've stayed in. Complaint just done taking in to travel agent tomorrow. Costa/Java staff rude & deck 7 outside terrace dirty ashtrays full Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Having read reviews, we were a little apprehensive about this cruise (2 weeks around the Med) however it was without any major issues. Most of the comments I found to be untrue on this cruise....there was a great deal of food choice, ... Read More
Having read reviews, we were a little apprehensive about this cruise (2 weeks around the Med) however it was without any major issues. Most of the comments I found to be untrue on this cruise....there was a great deal of food choice, there was plenty of it, the tables were cleared quickly and the food areas were all kept clean. We had upgraded to a superior deluxe balcony cabin and this was great, the balcony was not huge but enough for 2 people in relaxer chairs. There was a bath with an over head shower and plenty of storage throughout the cabin. It was well kept by the attendant. The lifts did get busy but with 2 sets of stairs, it was never an issue for us (but understand frustrations of those with buggies/wheel chairs or limited mobility). I think the design of the ship was poor however this isn’t an easy fix now We upgraded to ‘The Retreat’ which had large padded sun-loungers, padded settees, food options, unlimited towels and waiter service for drinks. This was a quiet area, offered lots of space and guaranteed a bed so was worth the money. The pool was still only a 30 second walk away so no disadvantage there. Didn’t eat in the specialty restaurants as enjoyed the food in the allocated restaurant. Breakfast choices and quality was good, lunchtime was fine. Tried to use room service for breakfast on a morning going on an excursion but despite a request for as early as possible within the 30 minute window, it arrived 15 minutes late and we had to leave it. Purchased the internet package but it was really poor and kept failing...Receptions advise was just to get a partial refund. This needs addressing, either make it free and advise that it’s poor, or have a better service. Theatre performances were mixed but this is very much personal choice, on board theatre group were good. Without fail, staff would say hello to you. Drinks package was very expensive so we just paid per drink and these were uk prices. Definitely an opportunity here for a price reduction. Overall a very good cruise and we would use P&O again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We where a little apprehensive regarding the cruise due to some of the reviews posted previously,but we all really enjoyed the cruise from getting on to getting off. We arrived at check in at 2:00 pm expecting to wait till our 3:30 slot ... Read More
We where a little apprehensive regarding the cruise due to some of the reviews posted previously,but we all really enjoyed the cruise from getting on to getting off. We arrived at check in at 2:00 pm expecting to wait till our 3:30 slot but we where able to walk straight to desk credit card given straight through security took about ten minutes when we got to cabin suitcases waiting. Impressions of ship very good only been on Thompson's before. Very large found signage very good took a few days to work stairs out due to being deck 15 . Food found evening meals very good only waited once for fifteen minutes for four of us and sat with some really pleasent fellow passengers. As said earlier good variety of selection. Always went into meridian on a evening around 7:30. Breakfast can not really go wrong with the buffet pick your own always got seat and table even sea days. Lunch selection fine for me only had salads but would off like s little more fruit Cabin was deck 15 A219 very nice plenty of room for clothes and liked the shower more room them previous cruises and enjoyed balcony opened door outside so could talk and drink with our friends. Really enjoyed entertainment saw a few shows in headliners theatre enjoyed all of them never had a problem getting seat. Live lounge good shows but too small . This was my only moan on ship people are sitting in seats on side and other people stand in the gaps by stairs no one can get past or see the stage.They have two Tele screens either side of stage should film the act and show on screens people could watch them .Pulse the band where good they enjoyed themselves whilst singing.One other moan still see people wearing football tops if they are banned tell them. Fyords where fantastic had really good weather apart from Bergen really loved the views. In the end decided not to have drinks package good decision but it was s close call. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We chose this cruise as it was visiting Guernsey which we had never visited before, We also wanted to experience one of P&O best suites on their flag ship. Gurensey was wonderful and I highly recommended for a visit. ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it was visiting Guernsey which we had never visited before, We also wanted to experience one of P&O best suites on their flag ship. Gurensey was wonderful and I highly recommended for a visit. Unfortunately the standard of the suite was extremely disappointing, The inside of the shower cabinet was disgusting with mold and discolored yellow grout between the tiles, the sun loungers were also filthy and could not be used. along with stains on the furniture. This was not the standard we would have expected from a top class suite? Further more, on the second formal evening we decided not to get dressed in black tie as we personally feel one formal night per week is enough but we understand other passengers are happy to dress formally twice. However after dinner there was football being shown in three separate venues throughout the ship limiting our choice of venues as we are not football fans. We decided as the glass house was full we would go to the Crows Nest for a post dinner drink. We were asked to leave the crows nest as I was not wearing a Jacket and Tie ( I was wearing shirt & trousers ) . I have never been so insulted on board any cruise ship. As a suite passenger there is very limited perks on board a P&O vessel compared to other cruise lines but to be asked to leave a venue due to our attire especially when venues were extremely limited due to three venues showing football is disgusting and insulting. If P&O want to dedicate so many venues to football then they should relax the dress code in the other venues. Overall the public areas were clean but there was a lack of service throughout the ship and often you waited far to long to be served due to the lack of attentive staff. We will not be back on board the Britannia. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Travel outside school holidays on a family ship so expected to see some young children but the ship was packed with children of all ages. It only cost £50 to keep them off school. Screaming and running around for the most part ... Read More
Travel outside school holidays on a family ship so expected to see some young children but the ship was packed with children of all ages. It only cost £50 to keep them off school. Screaming and running around for the most part uncontrolled by parents and guardians. Children sitting and running all over the dance floors until midnight. Young children sitting on the bar counters and none of the staff saying a thing. Health and safety risk also not hygenic! No proper lifeboat drill some passengers told not to bother taking their life jackets to the drill! Didn't meet our cabin stewart for 3 days only after we complained to reception. Berth at Rotterdam not where we expected. At the makeshift tent which was cruise terminal there were no facilities apart from a shuttle bus which took at least 20 mins to get to Rotterdam and there was nobody from P&O at the other end to tell us where the main places were. We were given a map but it showed that the ship was docked at a different place so when the shuttle dumped you you did not know were you were!! Getting back to the ship was a nightmare as no one from P&O was around to control the Q's and the shuttles were few and far between. Very dissappointed and were glad to get off. Standards have slipped and no one seemed to be in charge of anything. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We had sailed last year on Britannia as a couple. We loved the ship, service and food so chose this half term cruise to take our granddaughter who is 10 years old with us, so this was her first cruise and she was super excited. For ... Read More
We had sailed last year on Britannia as a couple. We loved the ship, service and food so chose this half term cruise to take our granddaughter who is 10 years old with us, so this was her first cruise and she was super excited. For those of us that were on the cruise I think the start was pretty horrendous for the majority of people. Firstly P&O sent a text message asking for a 5 hour delay to check in as Britannia had experienced problems, not great start but stuff happens. But for us this resulted in a check in time of 8.30pm, 1st disappointment for the three of us. An email followed with £20 compensation per person. We arrived at the port at 7.45pm to complete chaos. Queues and Queues of cars. We sat patiently for an hour before being told to join another queue which led to another queue and another queue. People were becoming very stressed and tempers were fraying. I said to my husband it was pointless all three of us sitting in the car as we were all tired and hungry. So we deserted him at about 9pm. He finally got on the Britannia just gone 10pm. I’m not sure whether the chaos was caused by P&O or CPS parking but it really was awful. Muster was called at 10.30pm. We were exhausted. Babies were crying, people were moaning. Luckily our granddaughter seemed to take it in her stride. Cabin (C733) was good but a bit tight as she had a sofa bed so when this was out there was very little room. Balcony was great size compared to say the Aurora or Ventura. Steward Ritish was always smiley even in the face of a ten year old’s Mess every morning. Cabin was cleaned to a high standard on a daily basis. So we tipped at the end of the week. We purchased the soft drinks package for our granddaughter at £7.99 per day. She loved ordering her own drinks and signing for them. P&O’s alcohol drinks package at £40 per person per day I thought was totally ridiculous unless you were someone who did no trips and sat at the bar all day everyday. We knew we would not consume £80 worth of alcohol each day so didn’t buy this. They really need to review this. We had first sitting in the Oriental Restuarant. On average the food was very good, but a bit hit and miss, tender steak one evening, grisly steak another evening. The Waiters work extremely hard and it is appreciated. Our waiter let his stress show quite a lot which made us feel uncomfortable and rushed. We went to the Beach House one evening and enjoyed watching our granddaughter cook her own steak on the lava rock, she is still talking about it!! An evening meal in the buffet was not that good and disappointing whereas their lunch time food we thought was far superior. Although our granddaughter loved eating chips at 11 at night, real treat! We found the pool food to be really good, especially the pizzas. We were very lucky with the weather so it was a bit of a shame one of the main pools was out of action for two days. On a ship full to capacity with families this did have an impact on the swimming fun. However, we splashed about with our granddaughter and sunbathed. Staff work so hard and we found the ship to be very clean. Bar staff were excellent. Everyone was always so helpful and caring. I think the shops on the ship are okay, nothing great. We found the P&O trips to be good, husband did the 9 hour landing beaches trip and said it was excellent. We did an afternoon trip to three villages and shopping but as it was Sunday most of the shops were closed. Our last trip on Guernsey we thought was brilliant. Vintage coach, little chapel and cream tea, all three of us loved it. P&O’s management of the tender was organised chaos resulting in them giving financial credit towards a future cruise. We just enjoyed the whole experience. We found the entertainment average, have experienced far better on previous cruises although our granddaughter did enjoy the juggler. The Bay Of Biscay was calm, the sun shone, and all in all it was a good cruise experience. Our granddaughter loved everything about it and wanted to stay on board for another week!!! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Embarkation was a disaster. P&O sent an email out the evening before but hardly anyone got it. They should have rang each party leader. The boat didn't arrive until 5pm on the day then there was 2-3 hours of guests getting off ... Read More
Embarkation was a disaster. P&O sent an email out the evening before but hardly anyone got it. They should have rang each party leader. The boat didn't arrive until 5pm on the day then there was 2-3 hours of guests getting off until everyone else could get on. PO staff were telling arrivals one thing, whilst the car parking company told everyone something else. They laid nothing on for anyone. No refreshments - just pandemonium as 100's of cars jammed the roads surrounding the port. After an hour in the embarkation area we eventually we got on at 9pm and went straight into the canteen, i mean buffet for some mediocre food before going to our cabin. For losing an entire day's use of the boat we were given a paltry £20 each "credit" so not even real money. The boat itself was a real disappointment. Very dark and disjointed. All the lift areas had no natural light. It was like the dim entrance to a cinema screen. Queing for a lift for 2-5 minutes every time we used them - and they stop at every single floor they pass. There is a 2-storey section in the middle which doesn't really work and it also makes getting from the back of the boat to the front a chore of going up and down levels to pass it. The restaurants did not have a very grand feeling to them. They rely heavily on indian staff whom dont really have much to say. Usually on say royal caribbean, you'd have everyone from Peru to the Philipines - all smiles and fun. The staff here lacked any sort of personal feelings and none made conversation. "Do you want a bread?" and then you'd pick a bun out of a basket. "Order sir?" then you'd roll the dice on the main course which were edible but nothing special at all. For example on say the Independance of the seas, the soup would be like French Onion soup with melted Gruyere cheese and baked mini loaf. Whereas on Britannia it was powdery tomato cup-a-soup complete with croutons. Served in a little cat bowl ! The only food that we thought "mmm this is nice" was the pizza place near the pool. The rest of the places were similar to what you'd eat on a ferry. The pool area was poor. There was too very small jacuzzi and there was always teens in there splashing each other in the face and squealing. Nobody really policed it. There was two pools and one was shut - so the other was utterly rammed with kids aged 5-12 all bombing and diving. Whereas on other boats there is a big screen playing movies or music videos, the Brittania had nothing. There was a bit of a DJ whom played banging music like Baby D 'Be my fantasy' and Robin S again and again, every day. No classy chill out music - it was more like Butlins. When we visited Guernsey it was a complete farce. We went to the buffet for breakfast and qued like cattle to get a clean table, then we went down to like Deck 5 to get the tender - and we were shuffled into the Theatre and given a raffle ticket. The entire theatre was full to the brim at one point - and they'd call off a couple of dozen people every 15 mins on to the tender. We sat in the theatre at 11.35am and it was bang on 1pm when we landed on land !!! We sat for half an hour on the tender itself for no reason at all. As it happens, my friend and his family were on the Sapphire and they were there at the same time. We text each other. They had 3-4 boats taking them to land it start to finish it took 20 mins. Why did we take 1hr and 25 mins ? The only saving grace was the room was nice and quiet. The bunk bed system worked well. The balcony was really small. On Royal Caribbean you can order food or view your bill via the interactive TV menu - but nothing like that on Brittania. Even room service or breakfast was done via a form that was completed and put outside of the door. Breakfast choice was poor - toast, coffee, croissant or this panini thing with tomato and sausage in. It was damp and soggy. Room attendant was utterly useless. When we got there the first night, for a moment we thought our two kids were sleeping on the tiny single-sized sofa bed. We hadn't noticed the bunk that drops out of the ceiling. I called in the attendant and she shrugged and said yes it must be that they both sleep on the sofa bed ! then later on she was in our room with another woman who magically dropped the sofa out of the ceiling for us. Why didn't she know this when we spoke to her? there was no animals made out of towels on an evening. We just had 2 naff chocs left on bed (there was 4 of us in the room!) I spoke to several other guests and nobody was impressed. Several said the other P&O boats were better - but after experiencing the food etc, it just is nowhere near as good as RC's. Not even close. Finally - kid's club.... the negativity continues. It was terrible design. My son is 11 and on Indy he could sign himself in and out - but not on Brittania. He didn't have much to do except Ping Pong. My youngest would go to club after evening dinner and they sat them all in the corner and put on a film. No fun whatsoever. Meanwhile all the staff stand chatting in the office having their own little social. No painting, no music, no fun whatsoever. They were bloody ignorant as well. The time we'd stand there buzzing the door and they would just ignore and ignore it. A parent in front of me had a little row with the woman in the room with 5-8's in it after she knocked and rang the buzzer for about 5 mins and the staff stood chatting to themselves. We were fuming. In closing , the entire trip was very very very average. I will likely never try P&O again. Certainly not the Brittania. I picked this boat as it's the biggest and newest. Dont make the same mistake as us. It's garbage ! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
This was our first cruise and sadly it didn’t start well with 6 hours delay on Embarking. This was described by P&O as a “slight” delay who offered a £20 onboard credit by way of a very limited compensation. Our room was not ... Read More
This was our first cruise and sadly it didn’t start well with 6 hours delay on Embarking. This was described by P&O as a “slight” delay who offered a £20 onboard credit by way of a very limited compensation. Our room was not entirely clean with items left behind from the previous occupants and dirty marks on the pillowcase. Our steward did swap out the pillowcase when I asked him to do so and advised that he had just come on duty that day. The good points - the balcony was worth the additional cost. The tea and coffee was replaced twice a day so we never ran out. Restaurant staff are polite and work really hard. There is a great shower in the bathroom. La Coruna and Santander were stunning. The library was a good edition and the attendant was really helpful. There was a great view from the crows nest and it was a quiet space in the madness. The food in the table service restaurants was mostly very good. The bed was really comfortable. Drinks prices were reasonable and the Restaurant staff offered good wine recommendations. We had no problems sharing a table at meals and as a result we met some great people. The experienced cruise goers were quick to tell us we had been unlucky on our first cruise and “it’s not normally this bad”. The disembarkation process, for us, was pretty smooth with no real delays (there was that efficient library steward again) so that at least ended the holiday better than it began. The middle ground - The entertainment was of variable quality. Films on show in the cinema were older but good. The ship is basically a massive floating hotel with the majority laid out as hotel rooms and the balance with public space feels a little off. The decor is ok but doesn’t set the world alight. There is reasonable fare available in the shops and prices are reasonable. The dress codes were not strictly enforced which is either good or bad depending upon you opinion. A shorts playsuit over a swimming costume did seem to be pushing it a little as acceptable wear for the evening restaurants though and we saw that a good few times. The gym equipment looked pretty good although it was hot and very busy. The bad - The announcements from the captain were patronising and more akin to a bad holiday camp than a ship - who knew “P&O voice” was a thing! After the really long delays on getting underway we had a muster station drill at 10:30pm, There were exhausted children and parents and the captain droned on and on about the trip and the area not taking the hint that people had really had enough by that point. The cleaning was sketchy our room was seriously dusty by the end of the week and we considered tippexing PLEASE onto the make up our room sign. The room next door had breakfast in their room each day and the tray was often still outside the door at lunchtime and once in the late afternoon after we returned from visiting a port. It was half term which was a rookie error on our part consequently there was no chance of using any of the pools or pool area which were all “reserved” by some pretty territorial families all day. This included the adult pool where adults only was clearly not enforced. The Horizon canteen was an experiment in survival of the fittest with variable quality of food. The staff again worked really hard and in pretty difficult circumstances at times. The tenders to Guernsey were disorganised with delays of up to 3 hours. A staff member with a mic kept telling everyone that they were doing really well and it was the same on every cruise ship. Clearly proven not to be the case by the Princess Cruise ship also in port which was managing their tenders much more efficiently. There were long queues on the way back too and again Princess were handling it much more efficiently. The menus in the main restaurants were a little repetitive so if your cruise is more than a week choice could become limited. There were also some long delays in getting a table at times and the pagers were malfunctioning. The WiFi was another frustration we opted not to use the overpriced ship WiFi and stick with our mobile provider and in-port only. Listening to people who had paid for the service it sounds like this was a good call as they had little good to say about it. As newbies I thought onboard signage and commas were very poor. There are plenty of newsletters which tell you lots about paid for options but offer little useful information on getting around the ship, where and when to eat etc. I genuinely recommend getting an offline App in play to enable people to navigate the ship and it can do so much more to improve people’s experience. The lack of stairs midships was frustrating with 3-4 lifts coming through at peak times before any come in with space which again caused some people aboard to get territorial. I wish I had researched this more thoroughly before boarding. We received a missive in our room on the last day offering a £75 discount on a future cruise (in the next two years) per person because of the issues this time. There is no email or postal address on the letter as I guess they don’t want to encourage the complaints. I can not deny I was very disappointed in this holiday. My parents go on cruise holidays 2-3 times each year, they recommended P&O and said we would love going on cruises. I guess we may try another cruise holiday at a later date with a different provider but based on this experience P&O badly failed to live up to expectations time and time again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
As we are limited to school holidays we reluctantly booked this cruise on Britannia thinking it would be too big and busy for our taste. However, we were pleasantly surprised by how much we enjoyed the ship. Having been on over 20 ... Read More
As we are limited to school holidays we reluctantly booked this cruise on Britannia thinking it would be too big and busy for our taste. However, we were pleasantly surprised by how much we enjoyed the ship. Having been on over 20 cruises previously, we found the food and service in the buffet and main restaurant to be absolutely fine. When people complain about the food on a cruise we can only be envious of how they must be eating at home! We never had any problems getting a table in the buffet at breakfast or lunchtime. There were issues getting a table in the Freedom Dining restaurants in the evening but this is not a problem exclusive to Britannia. We do wonder how with ships getting larger, Freedom Dining can work. We had a very enjoyable evening in Sindhu and thoroughly enjoyed the food. We found the public areas and outside deck space to be perfectly adequate for the number of passengers. However, we missed having the shade of a promenade deck and unless you wanted to pay for the covered area of The Retreat the only option is to remain in full sun. The lack of ship’s staircase midships is a major design flaw; which at least has not been repeated on Iona. We do not bother too much about the entertainment but were disappointed with the limited choice of films in the cinema. The weather was better than expected (we have done a similar itinerary in July and only saw the sun once). The embarkation delay was unfortunate and not a pleasant experience for passengers or staff alike. This was our first experience of such a problem and we commented that it could put you off if you were a first time cruiser. However, once we were in Ocean Terminal the process went smoothly and we were on the ship within an hour. Self-disembarkation was well organised and straightforward. Overall, an enjoyable and relaxing holiday leaving us relaxed and refreshed. We would go on Britannia again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We cruised with P and O for many years up to 2014 when we decided that as their standards had dropped so much we would try other cruise lines. We found these other cruise lines were still up to the standards that P and O had before 2012. ... Read More
We cruised with P and O for many years up to 2014 when we decided that as their standards had dropped so much we would try other cruise lines. We found these other cruise lines were still up to the standards that P and O had before 2012. P and O had been in contact with us over the years trying to convince us to try them again assuring us that the standards were once again on a par with other cruise lines. We decide to use them during the May half term and go on Britannia on the 25th with the Grandchildren. We wish we hadn’t. The ship was late in due to some mechanical problem, (which we now know they had before they left on the previous cruise, so using it with this problem made it worse) and we were delayed many hours, but the worst of it was that having driven over 4 hours down to the port with children in the car we were them held on the port by CPS in a car park for at Mayflower terminal for over 3 hours without any facilities, refreshments or information. People who were not booked with CPS were allowed on the ship but anyone booked with CPS were kept away from the ship until almost 9pm. The organisation was terrible. Having got on the ship it was chaotic and we were unable to get any food until after 10pm, but had to leave it for the muster which was at 10.30. Because of all of the chaos on the ship continuing during the muster our granddaughter was lost in the crowds and no one would take it seriously saying that they would look into it after the muster. We refused to wait and one of us went to the reception to report her as missing, whilst one of us continued to look for her. The Captain went on and on during the muster, far longer than necessary, whilst the reception said they could do nothing. We eventually found her sat outside the room, 30 minutes after the muster, having found it by asking people where the room number on her ships map was. So generally a very poor start to the cruise, still we decided to put this behind us and enjoy the time together. Unfortunately, despite being told that because we had children, we would have a table for 4, but they put us on a table for 7. We tried to change it but were told it was unlikely that we would be able to move. In the end we had to transfer to freedom dining which we don’t like when we have children with us, it is never a problem on other cruise lines they always accommodate us. To turn to the cruise itself, the ship was a bit chaotic throughout the week, culminating in passengers not being able to get off the ship by tender at the last port for over 2 hours. There were several late night or in the middle of the night announcements, none of which made any sense. The Costa café was very poor, the service was virtually non- existence and when you went to the counter to seek a coffee you were treated to insolence. Many people left the café without ordering and we only went twice due to the issues. The food was okay but a bit samey and mediocre at times in the restaurants and the waiters were a bit hit and miss. The buffet was better than the normal with good access to tables. Since the last P and O cruise we were on the singers were better but the Headliners were not as good and the shows were poorer with less sets etc. There was also less shows generally. Daytime activities were also poorer and unlike other cruise lines, there is a lot less to do for older children during the day, although the kids club for 9 years olds was excellent and could not be bettered. We have been on most P and O ships and Britannia is the worst, is far too big to be so disorganised and whilst P and O are still pushing for bigger and bigger ships, they need to get their organisation Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We had never been to Norway or the Fjords so this Britannia cruise was an obvious choice. We hadn't heard too many positive comments about the Britannia on previous cruises so we were a bit apprehensive Despite the ships many ... Read More
We had never been to Norway or the Fjords so this Britannia cruise was an obvious choice. We hadn't heard too many positive comments about the Britannia on previous cruises so we were a bit apprehensive Despite the ships many shortfalls we loved the cruise and would recommend it to everyone especially anyone considering a first cruise.The Britannia is big and spacious and the Norwegian Fjords and scenery are stunning. Well the ship wasn't full of old people as we thought it might be. Most were middle aged. There were families with babies, teenagers, young couples, middle aged couples and the elderly of course. It was very British in the sense that most guests dressed in shorts, t-shirts, lumberjack shirts the occasional set of braces. At the pool area you ha he usual adornment of pot-bellies, tattoos and the largest pod of beached whales south of the arctic circle..... If you haven't been on a cruise and thought the dress code might be a bit formal well take it from me...it isn't. The Britannia is quite a large ship. It may be described as P&O's flagship but sadly it has too many shortcomings to be overawed by it. However its perfectly functional. There are some very pleasant areas to explore.There is no "Wow" factor however. The Atrium is pleasant but not stunning. The Theatres,cinema etc are on the smallish side and quite claustrophobic compared to other ships. The corridors with their grey and brown colour scheme could pass for any corridor in a certain Lodge hotel group I can think of. In fact the colour schemes everywhere on the ship seem to have been deliberately "dulled down". The lifts are dreadful and the waiting times plus stopping at every floor will drive you crazy. Clearly P&O were more concerned about cramming as many guests in as opposed to providing a more spacious guest environment. Despite the above there was plenty to like about the ship. Food wise I loved the meals at fine-dining in the evenings. The food in the buffet was ok but personally I cant stand buffet food. It appealed to many including my Wife but I think all buffet food can best be described as ".... on a plate". There were only 2 formal nights so it was an opportunity for everyone to dress up particularly the Ladies. On informal nights at fine-dining most of the Ladies still dressed up with the odd one turning up in a vest or sloppy sweater .. eewww. Men tended to dress in short sleeved shirts or whatever they were wearing at the pool. It was quite amusing to observe quite elegant ladies in their finery walking with partners in t-shirts and track suit bottoms. Nothing like people watching on a cruise ship. My son and girlfriend had a meal in the Epicurian restaurant. It was very reasonably priced and they highly recommend it. The Sindhu was full most evenings so I am guessing its good too. Our room was a nice size a I had opted for a slightly larger inside cabin. It was really worth the extra few pounds. I would never consider a balcony cabin but for the Fjords ts could be a very good choice with all that stunning scenery. The staff on the whole were polite and hard working and we tipped them as always irrespective of P&O removing their gratuities. Just remember these staff earn peanuts. Entertainment was quite good. I liked most of the evening shows but particularly Lloyd Wade who has a great voice. One of his shows we attended was spoiled by some uncouth and drunken northerners talking throughout his performance. Sadly you get that everywhere. The headliners would not usually be my cup of tea (having grown up in the hippy 60/70s) but you have to admire them. Some great voices and amazing dancers. Dont know where they get all that energy. Kirsty did a great job on her talks on Norway so do go to these lectures if you get a chance as they are very informative. Please make sure you use the crows-nest for those relaxing moments . Its a gem. Norway is absolutely stunning. I much preferred it to our med and canary cruises. Beware however it is mega pricey. 2 x 400ml beers £21 , bar of chocolate £3 and a packet of biscuits £7 (£1 in £ shop in UK). So eat well for breakfast on the ship before you venture out. The local tour buses were £25-£30. Probably there were cheaper alternatives but we just legged it into town for an expensive coffee and cake. So overall we really enjoyed he cruise.We were at a table for 9 in the evenings and all were really nice people. We have already booked our next Fjords cruise on the Iona. We took our son and girlfriend on this cruise (their first) and they loved it and are already planning their next cruise. Despite the shortcomings Britannia is a nice ship and we will be booking her again. Next cruise is in 12 weeks time on the Ventura. Cant wait.. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We chose to go on Britannia as it's the onlt P&O ship we haven't been on. After reading some reviews we were a bit unsure of what to expect, alot of people didn't seem to like Britannia, but we needn't have ... Read More
We chose to go on Britannia as it's the onlt P&O ship we haven't been on. After reading some reviews we were a bit unsure of what to expect, alot of people didn't seem to like Britannia, but we needn't have worried it was amazing, in fact my wife & i both said it is now our favourite ship. The balcony cabin was excellent loads of room & very modern, getting around the ship was extremely easy also in the reviews quite a few people said navigating the ship was a problem for them but i can't understand why, we found it to be very easy. I thought the sheer size of the ship & the amount of passengers would be a problem, for seating at shows or the Costa places but we never had a bad experience at all seating wise. The food in the restaurant was very good, we went into the Epicurean one night & we weren't very impressed with it, the venue & service was first class but the food was not for us just not our sort of thing, what i can recommend is the Limelight Club, this is a well known artist plus a three course meal & you stay in all night. This was the best night of the cruise & well worth the money, the artist was brilliant & the food was to die for really good. We don't normally use the buffet on ships but tried this one on Britannia & was very impressed. All in all Britannia really was a very good ship & we will certainly use her again Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Norwegian fjords on Britannia in May, great weather overall. Ports and excursions great. Embarkation was smooth although delayed 2 hours. disembarkation was chaotic due to arriving late due to issues with Britannia and then coinciding ... Read More
Norwegian fjords on Britannia in May, great weather overall. Ports and excursions great. Embarkation was smooth although delayed 2 hours. disembarkation was chaotic due to arriving late due to issues with Britannia and then coinciding with a Take That concert in Southampton. The area around the port was absolutely chaotic. We were due originally to be leaving ship at 09:45am and got off eventually at about 6.00pm! Port staff in car park didn't have a clue. We have cruised with other operators and this the first time with P and O, We were really excited to be going on Britannia but have been left a little underwhelmed to be honest. The ship just didn't seem to have the Wow factor for us compared to others, maybe just our taste though. The cabin was great, and our porter was superb, really friendly and helpful. The dining was ok, we did freedom dining, and the available restaurants were ok, but choice of food was to us a little limited and sameish. The Horizon buffet was very canteenish, but the food was plentiful, but the buffet was very very busy most of the time. Restaurant staff very hard working and friendly. Didn't take up the option of paying an extra £35 for a three course meal listening to Gareth Gates sing. Quite good daily information regarding next days entertainment of which there was plenty to do. Although a lot of people onboard there was always somewhere to sit so that was great. Drinks onboard are very reasonable. Nearly purchased the wine deal, glad I didn't. We did see quite a lot of dehumidifiers working on carpets, so must have some plumbing issues? We were woken up two nights, once at about 02.00am with the tannoy calling for emergency crew to attend a suspected fire. Not what you want to hear. We were told about half an hour later by the captain that it wasn't a fire and all was under control. Still left us nervous. The following night the ship lost all power at about 04.00am, woken up by the tannoy going bing bong. No lights in cabin, and engine power lost, captain again apologised later saying all was well. But not for me I'm afraid. One night the toilets wouldn't flush. It was sorted out quite quickly to be honest. Too many things for me though, ship needs a bit of tlc I think. Maybe these things happen?? All that said I still enjoyed the cruise, fjords lovely, crew friendly (apart from some frosty reception staff), just no overall Wow factor. If it's meant to be contemporary, it looks dull to me. Would I go on Britannia again, no. P and O? Not sure. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Positives... arriving at Southampton it was easy to embark as we had already checked in online no waiting straight on board. Our cabin steward introduced herself (Rona) when we were able to get into our cabin, she was excellent very ... Read More
Positives... arriving at Southampton it was easy to embark as we had already checked in online no waiting straight on board. Our cabin steward introduced herself (Rona) when we were able to get into our cabin, she was excellent very friendly & helpful. The cabin was clean and fairly spacious with plenty of room for our clothes. We had booked freedom dining and found it easy to get a table each night, the food was of a reasonable standard the staff were quite efficient and friendly. Negatives.... The cabin needs to have better lighting, individual bedside lights its difficult to read if other person sleeping. The bedding although clean looked as if it needed replacing. The bathroom needs a magnifying mirror suitable for putting on make-up & shaving. There was a lack of amenities in bathroom no cotton wool or cotton buds. No bath robes were provided. The buffet in the Horizon was very hit and miss, lunchtimes food seemed the same every day. We found the entertainment very basic only one or two decent acts we gave up going in the end. However we did enjoy the after dinner speaker ( David Gower) in the limelight club although there was an extra payment of £28 p.p. Service in some bar areas was very slow. Could have done with more interesting daytime activities there only seemed to be bingo or quizzes.We enjoyed the Art talks, Needs more demonstrations and class activities. and interesting speakers. There should not have been charges for wine & gin tasting events . The ports we visited were fine we did not take any organised trips as prefer to explore on our own.We thought an extra events port could have been put into the itinerary maybe on Corsica or Sardinia . There were an awful lot of sea days! The cows nest seemed to be full of older people almost like a rest home! The pool area was always crowded on the hot sunny days again bar service around the pool was quite slow, also charging for ice cream we did not think appropriate. Did not use spa or gym Disembarking at Southampton was a complete mess with long queues and people having to wait until noon before they could leave, we carried our own cases and managed to get off at 9.45. Over all the ship looked tired and in need of refurbishment. We have cruised on other lines but P &O does not come up to expectations Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
This was our second trip aboard the Britannia and chose the ship rather than the destinations because we loved or first cruise on her. She is a fantastic ship with all the modern facilities you would expect from a floating hotel. My ... Read More
This was our second trip aboard the Britannia and chose the ship rather than the destinations because we loved or first cruise on her. She is a fantastic ship with all the modern facilities you would expect from a floating hotel. My wife and I love the entertainment on board and enjoyed some very professional acts that kept us laughing and dancing for most of the trip. We also love good food and were not disappointed by the variety available on board. We had a terrific Indian meal in the Sindu an amazing wine and food experience in the Glass House. Although these restaurants make a cover charge for the meals the cost is minimal and no where near the prices you would pay ashore. We did a couple of excursions but would not recommend them as they are quite expensive and can be done a lot cheaper by local tour operators if you have the confidence. There are always down sides to every holiday in this was no exception. The room we chose was not ideal and I hold my hands up as it was me that chose it. It was on "A" deck and that was a big mistake as it is directly below the Horizon restaurant. Although there was little noise from the restaurant its self, the noise from the kitchens was incredible. It continued on some evenings until well after midnight. Just as well we are night birds. The most unfortunate thing was the fact that the service area access door for the Horizon was opposite our cabin (A612). The floor outside was constantly wet and the smell was sometimes unbearable. On our last morning aboard the area actually flooded and we woke up to wet carpets in our room. Not good P&O - you need to look into that. All in all the trip was enjoyable and we have booked another cruise on Britannia already. Ive chosen "C" deck this time so hopefully less noise. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We wanted to visit Seville (via Cadiz) Barcelona, Pisa & Florence ( via Livorno ) and Rome. This cruise B912 , gave us all those options and we were able to celebrate My Wife’s 70 on board. Priority boarding with check in on ... Read More
We wanted to visit Seville (via Cadiz) Barcelona, Pisa & Florence ( via Livorno ) and Rome. This cruise B912 , gave us all those options and we were able to celebrate My Wife’s 70 on board. Priority boarding with check in on line was very smooth in Southampton, on board at a champagne lunch within 20 minutes. In our balcony cabin with suitcases delivered by 14.45pm. We chose Freedom Dining, the food was alright but nothing special so we ate in the Sindhu twice, Glasshouse twice, the Beach House and Epicurean . The food in these venues well worth the surcharges. The entertainment was usual stuff of tribute bands and old ( very ) singers but the star was Gareth Oliver, ventriloquist, he was outstanding. The Headliners shows Gravity and Astonished were excellent. Two generous cocktail parties and a Baltic/Ligurian lunch were splendid affairs. Unfortunately the dress code is becoming more dress down than up and black tie nights seem less popular with some wandering around like they just came from the beach. The crew were very friendly despite this being the first cruise without gratuities added to accounts or expected by stewards and waiters. It’s tricky what to do as some people still tipped fr service and others chose to tip nothing. Bar prices still reasonable ( London pub prices ) to some but some from up North thought they were a bit steep. The excursions were excellent with brilliant guides. The weather was very good until we left Gib for home and we encountered 50 knot winds and 4m swells so a bit lumpy. Finally, Captain Dunlop was very friendly, out and about and very approachable. He was leaving the ship as he is standing by at the construction of the new Iona which he will Master when delivered, good luck to him. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We booked a family cruise, 4 adults and an 18 month old, we had two superior balcony cabins of which we could not fault. Our cabin man Romel was amazing, as was the lady that did my son’s cabin. The car drop off and embarkation was easy ... Read More
We booked a family cruise, 4 adults and an 18 month old, we had two superior balcony cabins of which we could not fault. Our cabin man Romel was amazing, as was the lady that did my son’s cabin. The car drop off and embarkation was easy and very quick, the cases were outside our cabins when we reached them. Sadly getting around the ship was incredibly difficult with a buggy as the lifts were constantly full due to there being no stairs in the middle of the ship, why? How much easier would life on board be for everyone if it had been possible to move easily around it. Lifts would have been freed up by able bodied people walking places. Bad design definitely. The Horizon buffet was hit and miss, not the best food I have encountered on a ship, breakfast was the best, afternoon tea was served from 3 to 5, followed by children’s tea at 5, this caused lots of confusion, surely they could have a section for children at all meals, common sense really. We had freedom dining, avoid the Peninsula restaurant, they do not like people going in there, the staff are rude and very unhelpful. However the Meridian restaurant was lovely, the staff were great, cheerful and very helpful. Avoid the Beach House, set in a corner of Horizon, next to the empty buffet stands, food mediocre, Meridian miles better and no extra charge, service charge, discreetly hidden, 7.50 per person. Staff on the rexception of the ship were equally unhelpful, as was the IT lady, wi if a disaster and very expensive. Choosing not to do excursions we did our own thing, coming back on staff were helpful and attentive, letting parents with babies and small children get priority, I also witnessed them be very kind to the ‘older’ people letting them effectively jump the queue. All in all there were some very good points but also some very poor bits. Bingo and quizzes in a very small bar next to the casino, a big noise issue, the timing of lots of things for 530, not a lot of good to parents with children who were eating tea at 5. Also it meant you had to make a choice of what you missed. Not sure about the Headliners, I am tone deaf, genuinely thought they were too! Gervaise Flynn talk was amazing, loved it. To sum up I would not go on the Brittania again, it lacked atmosphere, interest and at times appeared like an old people’s home, just look in the crows nest on a sea day!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
I chose this cruise for the beautiful scenery of the Norwegian Fjords. Due to strong winds we were unable to embark straight away as it was dangerous to use the air bridge but we were kept informed and I actually boarded 15 minutes ... Read More
I chose this cruise for the beautiful scenery of the Norwegian Fjords. Due to strong winds we were unable to embark straight away as it was dangerous to use the air bridge but we were kept informed and I actually boarded 15 minutes before my allotted time. First time using a mobility scooter but very helpful staff helped me to board by a conventional gangplank. No trouble disembarking, off within 15 minutes. Luggage found and out of the terminal within 30 minutes. I did not do any organised trips as it was my first cruise on my own, since losing my husband and having to us a mobility scooter. Self serve Horizon restaurant has plenty of staff wearing "Happy to Help aprons" and they were indeed helpful (although wanted to give me more food than I wanted) carried it to the table for me. All areas are accessible to disabled travellers and if you want to eat in the other restaurants they will park and bring it back afterwards. The Eric Lanlard afternoon tea in the Epicurean is to die for. The glad house has amazing wines (Selected by Ollie Smith). Try a wine flight if you want to sample. These is plenty of seating even on a sea day it wasn't hard to find a place. Overall a beautiful ship with absolutely wonderful crew. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We chose the Fjords again as we cruised there last year in late July. This time, we wanted to see the snow on the mountains and we were not disappointed. Our check in was very quick due to using the online check in service a few days ... Read More
We chose the Fjords again as we cruised there last year in late July. This time, we wanted to see the snow on the mountains and we were not disappointed. Our check in was very quick due to using the online check in service a few days before we left. Once on board, we located our cabin on deck nine. We opted for an inside cabin this time. It was clean and cozy, the mattress and pillows were very comfortable and we slept really well. The only down side was the air conditioning. Every morning, we both woke up with very dry throats, not down to alcohol I can assure you. Also, my wife's asthma was really bad in the mornings. Our cabin steward was always smiling, very polite and helpful. We opted for freedom dining and ate mostly in the buffet on deck 16. It was good to see the staff were much more proactive in ensuring that passengers made use of the hand sanitising facilities before entering the dining venues. This was sadly lacking last summer and there was an outbreak of norovirus towards the end of the cruise. Overall, the food was good and the menus were varied. We also ate in the peninsular restaurant as well, again, no complaints. We chose this time around to make our own arrangements with excursions as the P and O excursions are ridiculously expensive. The best thing about the ports we visited, you did not have to go far to see stunning scenery or find gift shops though eating or drinking out in Norway is extremely expensive. After last year, we didn't bother with the entertainment as it was not to our taste. I think that the amount of money P and O are pulling in, they could get far better guest acts on board instead of has beens. The service we received on board was very good, I must pay tribute to the bar staff on the sun deck who had to endure very cold conditions whilst wearing nothing else apart from their thin uniforms. They still kept smiling whilst they served us. However, the photography department was like something off Fawlty towers. We ordered some photos from the gala night which they managed to lose twice, this after waiting for an hour in the queue. We did complain to reception and finally got our photos delivered to our cabin. I must add, we did get some four for the price of two as compensation. We discovered that others had encountered problems also. Disembarkation went smoothly, no problems at all. Even our coach got away on time. Would we go with P and O again?. Yes, having cruised a few times with them now, we are getting wise to all these little extras that are supposibly good value, and this includes the on board shops who claim that goods cannot be purchased ashore cheaper, when in reality, they can. But overall, yes, a pleasant relaxing time, very satisfactory Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Myself, partner and parents in law went on this trip as it suited all of us with the timing and leaving the UK. I've cruised a lot almost entirely Cunard with a couple of CMV, this was our first P&O for all of us. We would go ... Read More
Myself, partner and parents in law went on this trip as it suited all of us with the timing and leaving the UK. I've cruised a lot almost entirely Cunard with a couple of CMV, this was our first P&O for all of us. We would go back on P&O if the right deal came up but wouldn't seek it out. Couldn't really work out where it was trying to fit in. Food / Dining We both had inside cabins, had booked on the saver and were allocated late dining although on different tables. The head waiter quickly put us together with no fuss at all. Waiters were very attentive in the dining room and also the lunch dining rooms. Food improved throughout the cruise I would say but we had a couple of disappointing meals. Tough steak (quickly replaced in fairness) and a fish that was very bland. The buffet was nicknamed the canteen by us. Hit and miss, some of the food was lovely, some was fodder. Uninspiring but not likely to starve! For us eating is an important part of a holiday and we like to savour not just eat for the sake of it so that was a little disappointing. We stopped using the canteen and opted for Costa and muffin breakfast and MDR for lunch and dinner. My partner and I went to the Epicurean one night and it was superb, we said if we went again we would budget to spend more nights in there. Cabins Cabins were great, functional, clean and spacious. Better than both Cunard and CMV I'd say. Cabin staff very helpful. Bars / Drinks We all went for the ultimate package. It worked for us and we enjoyed a variety of cocktails, drinks, whiskies etc. We went over 15 drinks and often didn't wait 15 minutes so I don't think they were sticking to that particularly. Service was quick (very quick most of the time) which was impressive. One oddity was that you couldn't have large wines or double spirits so you had to do a dance of ordering a single with mixer and waiting a minute or two then ordering a single on its own. Long winded really seeing as the total was under £7 anyhow. Entertainment All bars were great, the shows were great in the Headliners comedian superb and band etc great in live lounge. Live lounge was very very busy so we didn't go in there much which was a shame as it seemed really good. Public Areas / General A busy / full ship. We always managed to get a seat but it sometimes involved circling until one came free. Some of the people on board were pretty aggressive about the process! Not the ships fault and the staff worked very hard clearing and moving things round to do the best they could and serving drinks in random places to alleviate the main bar areas. Lifts were busy but never a problem for us, something which others had said were poor. Not something we really noticed. Itinerary We enjoyed Cherbourg, La Coruna was a bit disappointing not much to say and Bilbao was great, Guernsey didn't happen. A perfectly nice itinerary but not one I'd do again. When Guernsey was cancelled nothing changed on board so everywhere was really busy but we were happy to relax in a quiet corner. Summary Nice ship, staff tried hard at all times, clean, food mostly good some poor meals but to be fair they do 1600 meals a day apparently so I guess that will happen! Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We really like this vessel - no bling just calming, muted decor throughout. Balcony room D117 forward, clean and in good condition. Love having a proper-sized shower with fantastic water pressure, large TV with tremendous movie ... Read More
We really like this vessel - no bling just calming, muted decor throughout. Balcony room D117 forward, clean and in good condition. Love having a proper-sized shower with fantastic water pressure, large TV with tremendous movie selection, plenty of tea & coffee, fridge if you need it. Superbly comfortable bed. Balcony a little on the small side but fine for 2. All public areas on the ship are spotless and tastefully decorated - if you want glass lifts and chrome fittings this is not the ship for you. Dinner in the main restaurant (freedom dining) was always excellent, other eating experiences as follows: Horizon Buffet: a serious bun fight at times (some punters go at it like they’d never seen food before) but quality good and always plentiful. Poolside: average burger and fries. Sindhu: high quality and a bargain at £20 per head in the evening but, surprisingly, “Tiffin” lunch nothing special. Glass House: great for lunch, can’t beat the small plates for taste and value at £6.95 for 3. Drinks on P&O are very reasonably priced and all the wines we tried were decent - you can get a really good bottle for under 20 quid. Wide choice of beers and gins etc. throughout the ship. We found the service in all areas, at all times, to be very friendly and efficient. The staff work tirelessly and show great patience when occasionally faced with a minority of passengers who appear to have been born without manners. Didn’t get too involved in the entertainment, but what we saw was a good standard in the theatre and Live Lounge. Ports: Cherbourg - nice town, walk in straight from the ship, unfortunately nearly everything closed being Easter Sunday. La Coruna - also a lovely town, again berthed just a short walk away, poured with rain so only a quick scoot ‘round then bank on board. Bilbao - beautiful city, spotlessly clean. Some great shopping and Guggenheim is a stunning building. St Peter Port - wonderfully quaint but I’m saying that from previous visits. Sea conditions made tender unsafe and a storm was on the way, so it was straight back to spend the last night berthed in Southampton! No complaints about this, the captain made absolutely the right call. Overall I would encourage people to give Britannia a try, she’s a great ship with no pretensions and friendly staff. I’ve seen negative reviews about the type of passenger on board and yes, there are some you wouldn’t want to share a small tent with, but I’ve stayed in some very high class hotels around the world and come across plenty of dodgy characters in those places! I think if you just accept that everyone’s different and keep a relaxed attitude, I’m sure you’ll have a great time. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
I boarded Britannia for its France, Spain and Guernsey highlights. Embarkation was smooth for all guests, luggage attendants extremely helpful. And check in staff to security personal where to the highest standards. On boarding ... Read More
I boarded Britannia for its France, Spain and Guernsey highlights. Embarkation was smooth for all guests, luggage attendants extremely helpful. And check in staff to security personal where to the highest standards. On boarding Britannia I was greeted by friendly onboard social hostesses, who dealt with enquires in a very pleasant manner. The overall appearance is a finely and articulate ship with the grandiose it expels. The room steward kiran was trained to be more of a butler than a steward, one in which I would of expected to see on a Cunard liner. Absolutely excellent service from this young man. However it was not long Until you could hear the grumbles of passengers. From freezer packs not being delivered at appropriate times for medicine to be administered for a guest who had informed p and o re medical conditions. I can confirm the ship dealt with this on day of departure. Hopefully to the guest satisfaction. Then there was an issue with the drinks package!! 96 year old female told to pay the fee even though didn’t drink so her son could get his drinks package. I can confirm this was dealt with and he did receive his drinks package and the elderly lady was not charged and training was given. There was another incident on board on the first formal night when the photographer asked two gentleman, as they set to pose for photographs if they were father and son. One of the gentleman replied “no he is my partner” the photographer then replied who is the man and who is the woman” to many passengers in the queues horror and well as the two upset gentlemen. I can confirm there complaint was dealt with. The received compensation of 100 pounds on board credit alongside a meal in one of the fine dining rooms and the photographer was moved to a different area of the ship. However, they are still seeking more than this as they feel money or restaurants don’t compensate it is more to the fact of training and his attitude towards their sexuality. Now to bilboa this was pretty horrific as to disembarkation and boarding for disabled passengers coming off deck 6 rather than deck 5. It was far to long for passengers to try and walk and if a dla assessment officer was watching he/she would have been shocked as people who struggle to walk was actually beyond any Disablement entitlement. If a photographer took a photo. However because of this many were left physically exhausted and one passenger falling, injuring her ankle. Other passengers complained regarding the heating in rooms either being to cold then to hot in the evening. Then came the niggles and the freedom dining. Personally was pretty horrified at the times you had to wait your buzzer not going off, which I did complain about. Then the finest champagne not being open correctly and spilling out over the table. Which was reported. Now to your personal order of drinks bill being given and asked to sign before you had your dessert. I can confirm that this was reported and everything was taken extremely serious and action was taken.many passengers were disappointed not docking in Guernsey. This was down to storm Hannah and I back the decision as passengers and staff safety should always come first and the captain did although to the frustration of some. Disembarkation was delayed due to highs winds in the morning again adding to further frustration. This was out of both P and o Cruises control and ground staff. Unfortunately an act of god is beyond anyone’s control. Safety always has to be paramount. I understand people’s views and expectations are all different whether dining, dressing to entertainment. So yes this cruise didn’t meet a lot of expectations however, look carefully at itinerary of your cruise, and dress codes etc , every ship is different but at the same time it’s like a box of chocolates full of different varieties with a glossy coating. One thing I will say I think I am Amongst the majority that found the captains announcements came across a little condescending “ladies and gentleman boys and girls “ and tatty bye. Not how I expect a captain to address his public. I can confirm that every complaint is taking extremely seriously, and that Britannia staff will do their upmost to sort the situation out. Don’t wait to get home and complain it’s important to address it whilst on board. I would like like to add the bar team in the live lounge were of the highest standard and worked together extremely well. They served immaculately and presented themselves well a proud team supporting Avalon and his Assistant manager, and P and O Cruises. So yes the company needs to keep on top of training to impress the quality of service and fix things as soon as they arise. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We chose this cruise to fit in with our grandchildren’s Easter break. Having returned to P&O after a few years break cruising with other lines we cruised on Aurora for 10 days last December. We really enjoyed that cruise so we were ... Read More
We chose this cruise to fit in with our grandchildren’s Easter break. Having returned to P&O after a few years break cruising with other lines we cruised on Aurora for 10 days last December. We really enjoyed that cruise so we were looking forward to a weeks cruise on Britannia with the family. We checked in on line and boarded with no wait which was excellent, however most people hadn’t used on line check in so there were only a few of us. First impressions of the ship were good, the interior design Is more contemporary than most ships and not so glitzy but it is understated and quite nice. We had a larger balcony cabin mid ship in good condition and at last a shower with a glass door, no a soggy curtain. As usual we had an excellent cabin steward. Being mid ship we found there were no stairs open for passengers to use. The lifts were not adequate they were constantly full and didn’t stop when the button was pressed. Unfortunately the unlimited food on cruise ships seems to be attracting disproportionate numbers of extremely large passengers and lifts designed for 16 people are often full with about six, and less if on scooters or in wheelchairs. This meant walking to the end of a very long ship, up the stairs and back to the middle, no mean feat at my age with a dodgy knee, but often the only way back to our cabin. My husband and I didn’t use the buffet at all as the food looked awful, which my family who did try it confirmed, saying it was the worst cruise ship buffet they had used in many years of cruising. Cheap carb heavy dishes and very poor quality. I noticed P&O had reduced the cruise price to sell off unsold cabins so I suspect they cut back on the food budget to compensate. We chose anytime dining, advertised as eat when you want with whom you want, and this works well for us on Princess ships when we cruise with Family, but unfortunately the Peninsular restaurant was was very badly managed. The first night was my Grandsons birthday and I had ordered a cake to the restaurant. We went down at 7.15 and were given a pager we sat down at nearly 9pm! The second night we tried 7 pm and were told dismissively it would be over an hours wait but could be much longer. After 45 mins I went to see the maitre d and he miraculously found us a table for 6. The food quality and choice was ok but ruined as it was served almost cold. We decided then that we would pay extra to avoid the stress as The Peninsula couldn’t manage freedom dining and the staff were borderline rude, obviously the decision to take off the tips has had a demotivating effect. We ate in Sindu which wasn’t as good as the same ones on Aurora or Azura, and the Beach house which was quite good, the teenage grandchildren particularly liked the fillet steak cooked on lava rock. My daughter and I also tried the limelight club where we paid £28 each for tough steak which we sent back and other tiny portions of poorly cooked food. We did have breakfast most mornings in the Oriental restaurant and the service and food here was excellent it was like being on a different ship. The entertainment we did see was of a generally good standard, but the venues are too small for the numbers on board and you had to get the the theatre at least 45 mins before a performance to guarantee seats together. There were no seats in the live lounge after early evening, and one evening they had an adult comedian on at about 11pm. Despite warnings it was unsuitable for children, several young children were allowed to remain by both parents and staff. The ports we did go to were typical of where you can travel in just a week in France and northern Spain. We had been to them before, but we missed Gurnsey because of a threatened storm which didn't seem to materialise, so the Captain wouldn’t use the tenders. This although disappointing we understood, but we felt as we were only 20 miles from France we could have gone to an alternative port which we have done before on other ships. Instead the captain decided to return to the U.K. on the Friday instead of the Saturday which meant all the shops and casino were shut on Friday evening as we were back in port in the U.K. The final straw was the chaos at disembarkation. The ship had been in port all night and we were due to be off at 8.45 and told to wait in the theatre. We waited and waited, getting hotter and hotter, apparently they only opened one walkway off the ship as it was too windy for the covered walkway. This has happened to us with Princess in Southampton but they opened additional exits to the dock side with no problems. A passenger told us the Captain had already got off as her son had spoken to him and left the ship in complete chaos. My daughter and family who were due off at 10.15 were off before us as they came down in the lift to go to their departure area they were told they could leave the ship, whilst the passengers supposed to be off at 8.45 were still kettled in the theatre. They eventually opened another exit when most passengers were already off. The Ship needs a new captain and new management in the food and beverage teams. We found the Captain very patronising with his boys and girls and beddy bye- byes announcements combined with a laissez faire attitude, which seems to have rubbed off on his staff. A bit more professionalism wouldn’t go amiss. We have another cruise booked on Aurora which we hope will match the December one last year, but we will return to Princess or celebrity where the food quality and service are not much better . I have just read that the Captain on this ship is going to Captain the new Iona. If he can’t manage this size of ship goodness knows how Iona will fare. I for one won’t be going on her. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Short jaunt around the Bay of Biscay. Bipolar weather and last stop aborted so no guernsey sadly. I love Britannia. She’s a big ship and handles the rough and tumble of the Bay no problem. I met some lovely people on board who made ... Read More
Short jaunt around the Bay of Biscay. Bipolar weather and last stop aborted so no guernsey sadly. I love Britannia. She’s a big ship and handles the rough and tumble of the Bay no problem. I met some lovely people on board who made my holiday very special indeed. Grateful to Pete and Clarke for this. I also met some horrors too. If people can be nasty bigots in a public venue, I’m the antidote. These creatures were summarily dealt with and I moved on. P&O should DNA check some of its passengers. Embarkation and disembarkation were a breeze. Very efficient and the staff were amazing. I simply couldn’t fault them. I love P&O for this. The ship is due for a refit this year and, although she’s a lovely vessel, she needs a bit of a makeover as my cabin bathroom stunk of urine! Not good when I’ve complained about the very same thing on Ventura before. I get that a few thousand people all using the bathroom is a monumental thing on a ship, but P&O must sort this out. Soon. In summary, I enjoyed my journey and Britannia is lovely, apart from her toilet habits!! Safe journeys y’all Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Britannia Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 5.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.6
Family 5.0 3.6
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.5
Enrichment 4.0 3.2
Service 5.0 3.9
Value For Money 5.0 3.4
Rates 5.0 N/A

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