394 Southampton Entertainment Cruise Reviews

My experience on P and O cruises was a first however it sure will be my last. The buffet food is the same each night and is of a low standard. The entertainment onboard was next to none and they had an awful comedian who was on twice a ... Read More
My experience on P and O cruises was a first however it sure will be my last. The buffet food is the same each night and is of a low standard. The entertainment onboard was next to none and they had an awful comedian who was on twice a night and on, on more than one night. The drinks package is completely pointless unless you become friendly with the bar staff or walk from bar to bar as theres a 15 minute wait time on the drink and they serve the drinks in the smallest glasses possible it may as well be served neat. The customer service is appalling there is no Ps or Qs upon that ship and all the staff look unhappy except clifford in the Havana bar and he was the only one with any manor or able to crack a joke with you. Security dont know what day of the week it is let alone helping you out. Someone also made a noise complaint about me and my mate next thing there was two guys at 4am in the morning outside our cabin who came in arguing with us in relations to this and was very unprofessional. To top the entire experience of i was charged over £1300 when i got of the ship and had to get the bank to cancel payments as I was charged twice as well as that I was considerably over charged for the mini bar in the room. The toliet blocked over four times on the cruise and the last night we was informed it would be sorted but it never was.Overall would recommed celebrity, NCL or royal Caribbean. You get what you pay for on P&O and no more, if not less. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
The ship is beautiful. The decor is really done well. The food is awesome. The layout of the ship is fine. However on some levels you have use the stairs move around to different parts of the ship. You can use the elevators but its a ... Read More
The ship is beautiful. The decor is really done well. The food is awesome. The layout of the ship is fine. However on some levels you have use the stairs move around to different parts of the ship. You can use the elevators but its a little confusing. I enjoyed the ice shop and the comedy club, The bars are similar to most ships. There is not enough real security to take care of real problems on the ship. I wish there was someone really monitoring people taking advantage of other other passengers. Some people like to enjoy a cigar on the ship but there is no protection for people who follow the rules for smoking. If you smoke cigars. You can forget it. The cigar lounge is taken over by cigarette smokers. Even though there are signs posted in the “The Humidor Cigar Lounge”, "No cigarettes allowed". There is no enforcement. It’s a joke. Every time I would goto to the cigar lounge I was accosted by cigarette smokers. The servers would ask them to leave but the would not. Not interested in going on this ship again. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We last sailed on Oceana back in 2015 and felt the ship was really beginning to show it’s age. Some spectacular ports of call including Venice, Kotor, Florence, Rome and Capri together with beautiful long warm, sunny days more than made ... Read More
We last sailed on Oceana back in 2015 and felt the ship was really beginning to show it’s age. Some spectacular ports of call including Venice, Kotor, Florence, Rome and Capri together with beautiful long warm, sunny days more than made up for it. Due to recent events in the Gulf, Oceana was repositioned from it’s planned itinerary and this meant there were some really good bargains to be had. We decided to book a 7 night cruise in the English Channel and the North Sea in November. Despite the great value we felt it was a bit of a risk as we knew we would have to spend plenty of time inside the ship. As the Captain joked such an itinerary allows you to see all “50 shades of Grey”. Since last sailing on Oceana we have always preferred other ships in the P&O fleet and have sailed many times on Cunard and Princess (our most recent cruise being 2 weeks in August on Queen Victoria, which we always find to be absolutely immaculate in terms of decor). I have to say that Oceana really delivered, firstly the ship is looking far better than it was in 2015. All of the pool areas have had brand new tiling, new AstroTurf and loungers. The Yacht and Compass bar and Winners have been transformed with brand new furnishings and carpets. The Yacht and Compass is in my view the best looking pub at sea, far better than the Golden Lion on Cunard ships and Brodie’s bars on Britannia and Azura. It just seems a shame that the Hand pulled Real Ales have been added to the Winners bar. Despite this there is a brilliant selection of Real Ales and the Beer flights on offer in the Yacht and Compass (at good value). The Atrium has seen the dated Palm trees disappear and brand new carpeting throughout. It is without doubt the most impressive and most functional atrium in the fleet. It is the absolute hub of activity on the ship, in a way that even a refitted Britannia atrium can’t achieve. To put it into context the 4 level atrium can simultaneously host, professionally organised dancing on the lowest level, shopping on the level above, a musical act (whether it be a pianist, band or guitarist on the deck above) and the fantastic Cafe Jardin on the top tier overlooking all the action. Even by the end of the week you couldn’t help be wowed by the beautiful views, the Glass lifts, Grand staircases, Water features and Tiffany glass ceilings. Cafe Jardin is a real stand out! Serving complimentary breakfast and lunch, freshly cooked to order. Breakfast runs from 8am-10:30am and Lunch from 11am until 5pm. The food is delicious and it’s an offering incomparable to that found on other P&O and Cunard ships. You also have a buffet station with fresh salads and desserts should you wish to add further to your ordered dish. It’s especially brilliant when you return at 4pm from a trip to be able to sit down, order from a menu and have water, tea and coffee served to your table. We paid the additional £8.50 cost for the evening meal and had a really tasty meal. I wouldn’t describe the food as gourmet, it certainly isn’t as good as Epicurean or the Verandah on Cunard before they turned it into a steakhouse. However it’s well worth the cost and is a really refreshing alternative to the Main Dining Room. We didn’t try the Beach House on this cruise. We did back in 2015 and it was one of our stand out nights on the ship as we dined al fresco on the terrace. I think we may no longer be here if we had attempted to relive the experience on the North Sea. Despite the plaza buffet being more attractive in design than most ship buffets I felt the inside Beach House area was a little close to the buffet stations to convey the ambience you would expect of a select dining venue. The main dining room was good, dishes ranged from outstanding to generally good to occasionally poor. The Plaza buffet doesn’t have as wider choice as that on Cunard or the larger P&O ships but we found breakfast to be every bit as good on Cunard or the bigger ships. Lunch however was more average. The Plaza however has a great location at the front of the ship with great views and it’s all been completely refreshed since 2015. It has a really lovely ambience especially of am evening. Where Oceana really excelled was in terms of the entertainment. The theatre isn’t huge so the brilliant bonus of this is that each night the ship has two simultaneous shows. On our cruise that would be the Headliners (who seriously were far and away the best cast we have seen in dozens of cruises on P&O, Cunard, Princess, Thomson and RCI) in one venue a comedian/guest singer/group in the other. There would also be at least two other acts on from the resident entertainers, which included a fantastic singer and guitarist, vocal duo, pianist, party band and big band. We were often really disappointed on P&O Britannia (sailed on it 3 times) that despite the vastness of the ships there were often times from 6pm until 8pm when there was very little good live music (The same can often be said for Cunard). In terms of improvements we would love a Glass House, we are still surprised they didn’t convert Winners bar. However the bar has been really improved after the refit. The plumbing system is still a little ropey and we had one toilet failure that lasted a few hours and the occasional odour in places on the ship (it didn’t last for more than a couple of hours and was due to emptying or venting of tanks). The theatre lacks the brilliant LCD screens found on Britannia and the Cunard ships, which slightly compromised certain scenes in “Astonishing”, which required a wait for the old fashioned projector screen to move down and awkwardly projected unwanted images onto the cast. The TV system in the rooms is very dated and my iPad has a bigger display. The bedrooms are equivalent to those on Azura, not as nice as those on Britannia and the Cunard ships but storage space is the best I’ve seen. The bathroom however was probably superior to those on the Cunard ships in terms of layout and space. I really like the Sindhu Indian restaurant as well, so I’d love to see that onboard but not at the cost of Cafe Jardin which offers far more to the ship, as it was a venue we used twice every day. I’d only visit Sindhu once per cruise. In terms of drink prices P&O continue to remain very competitive in the cruise industry. The prices on Cunard, RCI and Princess have become ridiculous in our view and on Cunard in the summer meant many bars were empty and lacked any atmosphere. You are talking £9 for 250ml of wine (third of a bottle) on Cunard and £6 on P&O (£27 bottle Cunard compared with £18 P&O) and £5.50 for pint of Beer on Cunard compared with £4 on P&O) RCI are even more expensive than Cunard. In summary we fell in love with Oceana once again. It proved to us that small ships have a real charm and character that perhaps the really big ships (that we also love) lack. The atrium is spectacular and has a superb atmosphere and other public rooms such as the Yacht and Compass are absolutely top draw. The Headliners theatre cast were utterly outstanding (definitely the best we’ve seen) and the ship was always buzzing with music and life. Having two proper shows running simultaneously every night offers brilliant choice and sets he ship aside. Cafe Jardin is the best daytime complimentary venue on any P&O or Cunard ship. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Chose cruise to visit cities not yet visited in Spain. Because three destinations were cancelled we still have not seen some of them. We were told of bad weather but did not experience much. Seemed premature to cancel two stops. Otherwise ... Read More
Chose cruise to visit cities not yet visited in Spain. Because three destinations were cancelled we still have not seen some of them. We were told of bad weather but did not experience much. Seemed premature to cancel two stops. Otherwise cruise was just as good as previously especially the food! Entertainment with a singer and comedian very good but ships company only average I would say. The breakfasts were good apart from the very well done streaky bacon which wouldn't stay on your fork. The waiters were very attentive. Lunch on the last day was very special with loads of seafood including lobsters and jumbo prawns.As last two stops were cancelled we had five continuous days at sea which got rather boring as the weather got colder as we got nearer home. I did have a good book thank goodness. Got fed up watching tv in cabin and saw some truly weird films! Only seven out of ten for this one Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Basically used as transport from the UK to the Caribbean, we had time to take this trip as part of our itinerary to reach home. Southampton check in -very quick and efficient the only flaw was NCL’s oversight in prebooking information ... Read More
Basically used as transport from the UK to the Caribbean, we had time to take this trip as part of our itinerary to reach home. Southampton check in -very quick and efficient the only flaw was NCL’s oversight in prebooking information in failing to advise that documentary proof of ESTA is required. Ship-We had anticipated some shortcomings as this voyage was essentially a shake down , however it was interesting to see how the latest cruise ships have evolved with a lightly built, full bowed hull outfitted with low maintenance Internal modular units obviously designed for a refurbishment a few years down the road. Despite its huge size the vessel reacted like a much smaller one encountering some poor but not particularly rough sea states, surprising that it is classed for “winter North Atlantic” service. The internal ambience is very understated and the internal decorators have done an outstanding job in both layout and decor. Cabin-Mini suite on deck thirteen, was a little on the narrow side and the balcony, unused due to the weather, extremely small. A large amount of storage, more electrical points would be useful(US standard only). The king bed was comfortable and located inboard of the seating area, apparently the sofa converts to a double bed, it would be adequate only for small children. Bathroom was large with excellent shower, but poor quality toiletries. Restaurants-complimentary, were somewhat limited as Taste, Savor and the Manhattan Room have exactly the same menu which changes little from day to day. The Garden Cafe cafeteria was generally a better choice, being large, beautifully laid out and with an good selection, the carvery and Indian sections were the high spots. -specialty, Ocean Blue(seafood), very disappointing , Food Republic basically sushi with a rather annoying tablet menu, a little better, Le Bistro, worth a visit for a change, Cagneys, by far the best and really the only one worth paying for unless the very reasonable Free at Sea package had been purchased. Bars, although cumulatively quite large in number only the Observation deck had a lounge quality with adequate seating. Again the Free at Sea package is almost essential even for moderate drinkers as the per drink prices are high, a plus point is that only the excess cost is charged over the base prices for premium drinks. Wi Fi-worked well but the very reasonably priced unlimited use add on is essential as the basic 250minutes was consumed by an apparently arbitrary log in and out algorithm. Service-Generally good(vessel only 50%occupied), but could improve particularly in table clearing and cabin areas. Entertainment-Two free professional level productions but not continuously available meant that tickets were scarce. Smaller general acts very similar to other cruise lines. Excessive emphasis on trivia and TV type game shows indicate a Bingo rather than Bridge orientation. Outside facilities, did not use due to weather-vessel is geared to tropical cruises. Value-exceptional,even including Free at Sea and extra Wi Fi costs Disembarkation -An utter shambles, not the fault of NCL, or indeed the immigration officers who struggled to cope with 2000+ passengers using outdated technology and without the self clearance machines used at US airports. They were fortunate, as were we, that the crew were not permitted to disembark.Customs clearance on the following day was much easier as the officers basically just watched passengers collect luggage and leave. High spot-The sea approach to New York under the Verrazano Bridge , past the Statue of Liberty and up the Hudson to the terminal berth was stunning and could have been more so had the ships entertainers been used to provide NY music during the transit. Fellow passengers-mix of American , British, Canadian and some others. Many hugely overweight and large numbers of mobility scooters, walkers and wheel chairs, generally in 50 to 70 age group and preponderance of return NCL guests. Overview-A relative bargain on a new ship , perhaps a half star lower than Holland America or Celebrity but quite enjoyable. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We chose this cruise because we were excited to be on the first sailing of a brand new ship! The entertainment was great! We especially enjoy music and were not disappointed. We loved WT Greer, the piano player/singer, Rock and more with ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we were excited to be on the first sailing of a brand new ship! The entertainment was great! We especially enjoy music and were not disappointed. We loved WT Greer, the piano player/singer, Rock and more with Guns and Rojas, an Acoustic set with Camille Rae in the Q Texas Smokehouse, Pop and Rock music with the Duo Phil and Keysha, Calypso/R&B with Temperature Band and the Liverpool Beatles. These performers could be seen in several venues instead of just one spot each night, which gives a different feel for each performance. They could be seen in the Observation Lounge, The Atrium, Sugarcane and the Cavern Club. In The District was Music and Humor with Jim Badger(hilarious!). The headline entertainers were impressive as well. We saw Vox Fortura (music), Joseph Reohm (Magic), Kinky Boots (Musical),and our favorite The Choir of Man! I enjoyed the musical numbers of Kinky Boots but otherwise it felt at least as long as it was, at an hour and 45 minutes. The Choir of Man brings you into the story from the get go by inviting the audience on stage for a beer! The musicians and singers were all excellent at making you feel the emotion, exuberance and humor of the story. Go straight to make reservations when you board and board early! Although it's free, they ran out of reservations by early afternoon on embarkation day. One night in the Observation Lounge, WT Greer invited individual singers from both Kinky Boots and The Choir of Man to join him at the piano. He also invited a very talented guest to play his piano! A very memorable night for music! Happy Hour Prohibition the Musical was a cute musical production in The Social Club, but I do not recommend it. We paid nearly $40pp, I guess because of the intimate venue, but it was not worth it. They include 5 drinks(nearly everyone has a drink pkg) that were all awful. From the watery Moscow Mule to the final glass of what tasted like straight Sweet and Sour mix, they were all bad. No bar available to order a drink, so bring one with you as back up if you go! They should come up with a single signature drink for the show and charge half as much! Comedy club onboard was good, but we went less than we expected because the musicians onboard were Great! Food onboard was all very good to great. We ate in complimentary dining -Taste/Savor/The Manhattan- favorites: Italian Wedding Soup, Pasta Carbonara and the Yogurt parfait. The Local Bar & Grill, favorites: Pasta Bolognese and Chicken Salad Sandwich. Garden Café(Buffet) favorites: Snow Crab legs, Shrimp Tikka and Savory Chicken and Waffles. We also ate in Specialty Restaurants- Onda, favorite Short Rib Ravioli. Cagney's favorite: all the sides and the Salmon. I am not a steak eater, but the other guests seemed to be evenly split between loving the steak at Cagney's and Onda's. Ocean Blue favorites the Gumbo and the Fresh Fish Branzino w/White Wine Lemon Butter. Q Texas Smokehouse favorites: Loaded Fries w/Pulled Pork, Grilled Salmon and the Smoked Peach Margarita! Lots of great items to order a la carte in Q and make a lighter meal of it! The bartenders all over the ship were amazing and during the not so crazy busy times, could really put on a show and make great drinks! Our cabin, a midship mini suite was very comfortable and the shower was amazing with a rainhead shower and SIX directional massaging sprayer heads! Plenty of storage in the bathroom drawers and good space in the room. No drawers but shelves,hanging space and vanity space. Room attendant was great! The ship has lots of places to sit, hang out and make new friends. Take some time just to see the artwork around the ship. My favorite art area to walk was deck 8 near Sugarcane Mojito Bar. This was our first Transatlantic cruise and the weather was not ideal. Rough seas and rain resulted in outside areas being closed most of the cruise. We felt like the ship handled the rough seas well. Thank goodness for all that amazing indoor entertainment! When weather cleared up for a couple of days were able to experience The Speedway racecars. We had a blast! Be sure to make reservations and allow plenty of time, an hour and a half at least. They move guests through in an orderly fashion, but it takes time to go through the line with security/safety videos, getting your gear, futher instructions and then your on your way! Please let another driver pass! My husband got stuck behind a slower driver who wouldn't let him pass. He still had a great time though! If you enjoy trivia, strike up a group for the Progressive Trivia. They meet once each morning and it was Very popular! Great prize baskets for the winning team members(not us!) Another activity I enjoyed was the Wine and Chocolate Seminar. I would definitely try another of the seminars they offered in the Wine Bar! They do sell out! Lots of other activities: a variety of language classes, lectures, trivia, movies, crafts, games and more! We purchased Spa Passes for the Mandara Spa. Some guest complained because the Thalassotherapy Pool has to be closed several times because the rough seas made it unsafe. However we still enjoyed the heated beds, the Sauna, the Snow Room and the Salt Room. They also have a Hot Tub but guests turned that into very loud social hours. We did suggest they make it a No Talking Zone. The voices echo across the spa making for a less than tranquil atmosphere and it causes guests to stay in too long. The spa staff will ask them to quiet down if you ask but we hate to have to do that. I do think the Spa staff should routinely move towels off the Heated Loungers to prevent guests saving them for friends or themselves. There are plenty of cushioned loungers they can allow for saving if they must. The Observation Lounge is an amazing view and a great place to hang before dinner, but speaking of saving loungers... the Observation Lounge is like the new pool deck with the lounge chair hogs. The staff should remove items from these lounges as they go through cleaning. If you've been there long enough to have to go to the bathroom, it's time to give someone else a chance! I found the chairs with ottomans to be more comfortable than the loungers, but people save those as well. We did move some items once after confirming with other guests those items had been there an hour. Those guests showed up another half hour later but didn't say anything to us. The one negative area for us was Guest/Financial Services. We had a ridiculous time applying a $100 gift card to our account. We set up a credit card for our onboard account but they couldn't seem to get things straight and kept sending a letter saying we needed to put more cash on our account. After four visits, over three days, working with five different staff, the problem was corrected. The attitude was it must be your fault. After repeating myself to the last staff member 2X and my husband repeating it again, he finally looked and saw that it had been their error and corrected it. Ugh! Time for a drink and some good music! We ended our cruise with the Views of the Big Apple ending at the Airport tour and both our driver and guide were excellent. Although it's a bus tour, we also got out at the World Trade Center, saw the memorials and had a walking tour there. It was quite a bit of walking for some elderly guests. We also had a quick stop at Battery Park with the Statue of Liberty in the distance. It was a perfect ending for an almost perfect cruise! Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Last minute decision as it was so cheap and I have not visited these places. Have not been on Oceana since she had her refit and it looks good. My (adult) daughter and I shared an inside cabin at the back on A Deck –very spacious, ... Read More
Last minute decision as it was so cheap and I have not visited these places. Have not been on Oceana since she had her refit and it looks good. My (adult) daughter and I shared an inside cabin at the back on A Deck –very spacious, plenty of storage space and well appointed – we could walk a few metres onto a small open deck at the back and steps leading up to the Spa and Gym right overhead. We attended two Pilates Starter Classes and used the Gym which is well equipped. The Instructors were nice people, professional, and did not make you feel like an idiot (as so often happens to me when I am unable to follow the routine). My daughter had a massage which she enjoyed, but not so much the sales pitch afterwards trying to sell her the products used. No Tipping required anymore. The staff were wonderful. They were polite, friendly, and smiled all the time. We used the Restaurant most nights to eat and the Buffet for supper twice. We had the most marvellous dinner companions, some of the nicest people we had ever met. Three of the four were vegan and sometimes found it difficult to know what to eat – it seemed their choices were limited. By the end chefs prepared meals specially and waiters checked regularly to make sure their food was acceptable. Our food was absolutely fine as well. We liked the new lunch format as well – more of a Deli/Café menu but you could also have the full 3 courses if wanted. The Buffet had problems. Not large enough for the numbers wanting to use, long queues regularly, and the late night snacks were much worse than they used to be – very limited choice, cheese in particular was gone within minutes and no more was brought out. Near the end of the week the selection improved, not sure if the result of complaints made or extra food found. The Indian night seemed the most popular and was repeated at the end but re-labelled Tandoori night. There were also Chinese and English food nights. The drinks selection was extensive and at London pub prices. I was disappointed at the number of ladies who did not wash their hands in the toilets and the number of people who declined to use the anti-bac gel in the Buffet. Thank goodness there was no Norovirus. Instead of Cruise Directors there are now Entertainment Managers. I never used to rate Headliners but this time they were excellent with good shows. Two shows had a starter video with a TV celebrity introducing the act (sorry, can’t remember names as never heard of either) and explaining they had helped arrange the show. Visiting acts included Fogwell Flax – we’ve seen him before and he really needs more up to date material, an Annie Lennox Tribute singer who was excellent the first night, but rubbish on the second as she just did cover songs then, and the Runaround Kids who we’ve also seen before. They are very good and sing 1950’s hits, we just didn’t get around to them this time. There were various other groups/singers/pianists around the ship who we listened to as we came across them. Did not use shops, casino or swimming pools – the pools are outdoors and it was cold, but saw a few hardy souls in them. We did not book any tours. Overnighter in Amsterdam: free coaches ran between the ship and the centre all day and night. We spent most of our time in the Museums, of which there are plenty. Hamburg had free shuttles as well. Zeebrugge – the shuttle coaches run to Blankenburg which is a seaside town a few minutes away from the Port. Those in the know then caught the train into Bruges which takes 15 minutes for €6 each way – the ship’s coach cost £35 return. We stayed in the town which is very nice and even though winter, all the shops were open. Leaving Zeebrugge, we had been tied alongside the Ventura, which was leaving after us. For the sail away party as we passed them the two captains used their horns trying to outdo each other and it became a bit like the scene in Close Encounters where a person using a keyboard communicates with the UFO; great fun. One of the best cruises we have been on in a long time. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We booked this cruise 18 months ago as it was an excellent price and it was booked as our first ever cruise (we actually managed to fit in two before we went in the end) The ship was beautiful. Lots of wood and Art Deco style, very ... Read More
We booked this cruise 18 months ago as it was an excellent price and it was booked as our first ever cruise (we actually managed to fit in two before we went in the end) The ship was beautiful. Lots of wood and Art Deco style, very classic as you would expect. Our stateroom was nice but no nicer than what we had experienced with Princess or P&O earlier this year. The food was nice but I had expected Cunard to be a cut above the rest. It wasn’t any better than P&O. The service wasn’t any better although the food was as nice. The waitress asked if anyone wanted wine with their dinner and if we said no, we weren’t asked if there was anything else we wanted. 10 minutes later I had to ask for a gin and tonic and it seemed like it wasn’t normal to have anything else but wine or water with dinner. Drinks and other items on board are priced in dollars. We were extremely shocked at the price of the drinks on board. A glass of Shiraz at dinner was $17! You have to be very careful when ordering drinks as most of the time you aren’t asked if you want single or double spirits. 4 gin and tonics cost $62! We had to be out of our stateroom by 0800 on disembarkation morning. This isn’t out of the ordinary but the main restaurant closed at 0800. Thinking we would have time to have a nice breakfast before our disembarkation time of 0915, we arrived at the buffet restaurant extremely shocked to see that we couldn’t find anywhere to sit. Upon finding some seats outside by the pool area, we returned to the buffet only to find that the queue was out the door. People walking round the buffet with extremely large suitcases didn’t help either. We ended up leaving the ship and stopping for breakfast on the way back home. This did leave a somewhat sour taste as we had had, a lovely weekend away The evening entertainment in the theatre was excellent. The 4 Tunes on the Friday were exceptional. The Top Hat production on the Saturday wasn’t really my cup of tea, however I understand that it was of excellent quality We went to the golden lion pub for the trivia which we enjoyed but unfortunately there was a large group of people very drunk and about to fight . There seemed to be lots of groups and I’m not sure if you would get this on a standard 7 night Cunard Voyage? I would only go back on a Cunard voyage if it was an excellent deal. The drinks were unbelievably expensive and it would make things very unaffordable. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We embarked at Southampton and this was quite smooth and uneventful but when we were issued our cruise cards we noticed our dining arrangements had been changed to a table of 8 ? I asked and the attendant said you’ll have to modify it on ... Read More
We embarked at Southampton and this was quite smooth and uneventful but when we were issued our cruise cards we noticed our dining arrangements had been changed to a table of 8 ? I asked and the attendant said you’ll have to modify it on the ship, On the ship we made this our first order of business when we went to the restaurant to check our table we were told we cannot adjust this you should have booked this earlier, I replied with I booked 18months ago how much earlier do you want? He managed to swap our table all at once, then the next night we were told your in freedom dining instead again we were tried to be forced onto a table of 8 we again said no and they literally put a table for 2 in the end of a table for 8, I went a bit mad at the manager who promised from now on every night I could have a decent table for 2 at 7pm , but every night this table was double booked so we always ended up waiting up to a hour and a half so very often missed shows and left the whole dining experience very stressful, Our cabin was very nice a balcony, although the actual balcony seemed smaller than other ships we’ve been on, the ship itself seemed very hot as if the air conditioning wasn’t on and quite a odd design is you cannot walk around the deck as a lot of other ships I’ve been on, and a lot of people commented on this so you always had to continually walk through the ship going up and down stairs or constantly waiting for lifts, The lido deck is nice area for families with plenty of sun beds, but only two small hot tubs which was constantly full of children bouncing in and out, the adult only area is quite nice but no hot tubs unless you pay 30 pounds a day to go into the retreat but we couldn’t because it was fully booked before the cruise started, we had the feeling facilities had been scrimped on a bit for a ship of this size two hot tubs for over 3000 passengers?. food in the horizon buffet was ok but the desserts were very poor ok if you like desserts full of gelatine and no flavour, drinks were of a reasonable price but we purchased more than we wanted to because of waiting for our dining table every night, The stops in the Caribbean were very good experience and the trips seemed quite well organised, would I go on this ship again, only if no other ships were doing the stops I wanted to go on or if it was at the right price, so Britannia would be quite low on my choice of ships. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Wont be using RC again or recommending them. Needed something to fit in school holidays. I wanted plenty to occupy child and flexible enough to allow them to eat / play / explore without pressure. So we could all have a break. ... Read More
Wont be using RC again or recommending them. Needed something to fit in school holidays. I wanted plenty to occupy child and flexible enough to allow them to eat / play / explore without pressure. So we could all have a break. Unfortunately it didnt work like that. Boarding was straightforward having cruised before I expected to go straight to my room find cases outside,unpack, go exploring/ have snack etc. No, cant go to room til 1:30. But my access card is in my room not issued on admission to boat? When we did get in cases not there, in corridor about 100m away. Kids club was loved by our lo when it went to plan.It was closed for 2hrs between sessions so say 12-2. Too long for a meal but not long enough to do anything else. The pm session finished at 5pm. She could not eat until 6pm cue one hangry, frustrated disabled child. It closed at 10 so if she watched a late show she couldnt eat afterwards. I am used to being on cruises where you can eat complementary food at almost any time. Granted the selection is limited by time of day but you can get something...couldnt get anything unless prepared to pay. No poolside food or tables. Cant leave child unattended in pool so you have get them out back to room to get changed. Only one buffet on ship for 4000+ people, what are you thinking? They were stopping people going in for breakfast because it was becoming dangerous. Wet floor signage that we watched 3 people fall over in 45mins!! We cannot get breakfast on time so cannot join in morning activities. So much time wasted waiting for lifts a ship this size needs more although I accept you cant retro fit them. So many facilities closed or available to book only. When you book them no-one tells you they are now closed due to weather. So when you take your child there they tell them no. Even though you have booked. Cue upset child because 'I have booked it' to them means a promise its happening. Things advertised we never found like laser tag. Then on last day it was mentioned in on board brochure as a competition. Most of what was 'exciting' for children in clubs never actually happened. Says on todays agenda 'team ball sports' or whatever. Our lo would then get excited, she likes sport. ''No we played with playdough' or a game, she's nearly 11! This added to her anxiety and she wanted to go home after 3 days because of the lack of structure. So no-one enjoyed their holiday The only positives were staff were really kind and helpful right across the ship. The food when we could access it was nice. but we wont be travelling with you again. Cabin had very limited storage and balcony was obscured by the structure of the boat but they arent deal breakers Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We are C&A members, and we've sailed with RC over 10 times. So by no means we are "rookies". Granted this was a charter cruise, but we expected the service to be RC quality. Boy were we wrong. There is an extreme lack ... Read More
We are C&A members, and we've sailed with RC over 10 times. So by no means we are "rookies". Granted this was a charter cruise, but we expected the service to be RC quality. Boy were we wrong. There is an extreme lack of personnel in the general public area. Starting with the Windjammer, the food was mediocre at its best. There were no personnel going around tables to offer drinks from the bar. With the drinking package, one is given a refillable cup, which RC expects one to carry it at all times. That cup has a chip on the bottom, and it allows the person (in theory) to get their drinks from a Coca Cola machine. Well, the problem is that none of the machines were working properly. If one was lucky enough to find a machine that actually dispensed the drinks, it usually was out of most of the drinks, or didn't have ice, or in the middle of the refill would just show a message on the screen saying the machine was out of whatever drink you were serving yourself. As for the midnight snack at the Windjammer, they only serve cold hot dogs and greasy hamburgers that looked like they had been made 3 days ago. Only a small section of the Windjammer would be open at a time, so the lines were absurd. As for the main dining hall, I was not allowed to enter because I had arrived 30 minutes after the dinning time had begun. I had no idea the dinning hall was totally strict with the hours. When we did make it on time, the food was mediocre. How can you mess up a T-bone? It even tasted weird! The cabin was ok, it was an inside cabin with a huge screen that showed the outside of the ship like if we had a balcony. What a waste of resources! The darn thing didn't always work, and honestly, I could have done without the screen. As for the itinerary, I understand it was a charter cruise. But we were in port less than 5 hours. That meant that most of the shore excursions were cancelled without giving alternatives. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We have cruised with this cruise line several times. We had always had a good experience but since our last cruise I am a vegetarian and can only comment on the lack of vegetarian options are atrocious Lack lustre curry stir fried ... Read More
We have cruised with this cruise line several times. We had always had a good experience but since our last cruise I am a vegetarian and can only comment on the lack of vegetarian options are atrocious Lack lustre curry stir fried vegetables fried rice , or salad were the only option for meals and so the only meal worth looking forward to was breakfast There are no vegan options either. We met really lovely people, entertained by the Acoustic Soul brothers excellent!! And the piano virtuoso Ian West who tinkled the ivories like a legend. Some of the stops were by tender and can be slightly precarious for older persons however the staff were always helpful, some of the stops had very steep slopes so looking at the shore excursions need to be considered before booking The ship itself had a good variety of entertainment great swimming pool and cheerful staff. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Looking forward to Amsterdam and Iceland. Booked >400 days before the sail date. We had 4 fabulous days in London before sailing. We planned private excursions at every port at great expense. Embarkation went smoothly since I'm a ... Read More
Looking forward to Amsterdam and Iceland. Booked >400 days before the sail date. We had 4 fabulous days in London before sailing. We planned private excursions at every port at great expense. Embarkation went smoothly since I'm a gold latitudes member. The ship had only 2018 passengers and was in need of upgrading. The cabin was small. Meals at the paid restaurants were excellent. Other than breakfasts, other meals we're not so good, except at the blue lagoon. The meat was consistently tough. Entertainment was great, especially acoustic soul brothers. Cabin service was excellent and room service was on time and hot. The servers were attentive and pleasant. The original itinerary already had 3 stops in Norway which would have been plenty. When 2 more stops in Norway were added, it got quite redundant. Missing Amsterdam, then Le Havre, then the two stops in Iceland, then Scotland before finally docking g at Belfast was extremely disappointing. It was also very costly since we had prepaid for private excursions at each of these stops. As changes were being made to our itinerary, we managed to book excursions at the new ports only to have them also canceled. There was a very disruptive group of unhappy passengers that intimidated the rest of the passengers and crew. My travel companions and I avoided the atrium, the gathering place for the protesters, as much as possible. Overall, my friends and I made the most of a troubling situation but are not satisfied with the offer of 25% toward a future cruise. We've had financial losses that we can't recover and a cruise that didn't even remotely resemble the planned trip. Although I appreciate the captain’s efforts to keep the passengers and crew safe, I feel that more should be done to make up for the extreme changes to the long-awaited cruise. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
I have travelled Celebrity many times but never have I experienced so much noise. the cabin we were allocated was concierge class cabin 2145 it has a restricted view although a premium price is being charged. the noise from the above ... Read More
I have travelled Celebrity many times but never have I experienced so much noise. the cabin we were allocated was concierge class cabin 2145 it has a restricted view although a premium price is being charged. the noise from the above main café is unbearable day and night 24hours a day, when complaining to the front desk manager a derisory offer of compensation for a completely ruined holiday. all of the ships crew were aware that the noise in the surrounding cabins was a problem. The crew were good with their service, the entertainment cruise director was poor and no where near as good as the previous cruise directors we have seen and met on Celebrity. The ship is due a refit and it needs it as all areas are tired. some of the entertainment was good but I believe one comedian was did four shows in two days. OVER ALL A POOR HOLIDAY CRUISE. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
This was the infamous cruise which left 1200 passengers (including me and my wife) stranded in Monte Carlo. We even made the papers. Don't believe the stories about the weather getting worse and the passenger couldn't be ... Read More
This was the infamous cruise which left 1200 passengers (including me and my wife) stranded in Monte Carlo. We even made the papers. Don't believe the stories about the weather getting worse and the passenger couldn't be tendered back to the ship. The weather was just a light breeze and the transfer of passengers should have been perfectly OK. The problem was that their was an excess of large boats in the area due to the annual boat show. They caused the wake which made conditions in return back to the ship difficult for the able bodied and impossible for most of the elderly passengers. Communications were poor. After up to a 7 hour wait, the local police and on shore crew members guided us all to spend the night in Monte Carlo's basketball stadium. Sleeping on top of a cardboard box (after evicting the dead cockroaches) on the floor of the stadium was memorable. We were eventually tendered back to the ship the following day. A special mention must be made about the work done by the ships crew. Some worked all day and then all night and then the following morning again. Provisions and medicines had been transferred from the ship in dangerous conditions. One crew member feel overboard and that to luck and some quick thinking but the tender operator managed to survive with just bruising. P and O must really think hard if they plan to visit Monaco when the boat shows on. Regarding the ship. It was my 4th cruise and this ship was my favourite. It's due a refit next year which should bring it back to being one of the fleets top ships. The food on board was incredible. Breakfast was top quality both in the buffet and the restaurants. We had the odd light buffet lunch, where there was a large choice, from soups to snacks to full meals. And the evening meals were just as good. We went to the Sindhu restaurant and had fabulous signature meal. Unmissable. The on board entertainment was good. But after the problems at Monaco extra activities and entertainment were added to the schedule. There was even a show in the afternoon. We are independent travellers when we arrive at ports. However we decided to take the excursion to Seville. The guides knew their facts and managed to bypass the large queue when entering the cathedral. Well worth the cost. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
First off, we were told we had a free upgrade. I tried to contact the travel agent to no avail. When we got onto the ship, I asked about the upgrade and had a sign literally pushed into my face which said there are no free cabins. We ... Read More
First off, we were told we had a free upgrade. I tried to contact the travel agent to no avail. When we got onto the ship, I asked about the upgrade and had a sign literally pushed into my face which said there are no free cabins. We were told to board the ship at 5.15 pm. We discovered that the ship had been parked at Southampton all day and most people just got on when they felt like it. Like wise disembarkation, we were told 10.15 am. We left at about 10am and discovered that most people had already left. Dining:- The quality of the food was poor, lukewarm at best and it was impossible to get a hot drink. The buffet area was horrendous, doesn't do to be a shy retiring Brit. Survival of the fittest (loud Europeans). Excursions:- Extortionate. Bruges transfer approx. 55 Euros. Lovely lady gave us information (including safety) on the coach into Bruges. Very pretty town. Rotterdam:- Transfer to Amsterdam about 55 Euros. Horrendous. The ship was parked up all night (until 6am next day) and yet we had to be back on the ship by about 4pm. It took 1.5hours to get into Amsterdam and nearly 2 coming back, and so we had about 2.5 hours in Amsterdam, time to do next to nothing. There was a commentary going on all the way to Amsterdam, in German. We asked the German guide where we were when we arrived, he drew a circle on our map, we asked him which direction we should go in and he pointed to a street, which was a very seedy back street selling undesirable items in the shops. Best value was taking a trip round Amsterdam on one of those bikes that holds two passengers. People who had been to Amsterdam before said Rotterdam is much nicer. We complained at Excursion reception and we were told by a very rude lady that there was no guide on the bus. True but there was no safety instructions either on or off the bus. Don't bother complaining about anything, you are wasting your time. Hamburg:- We took the shuttle which was about 15 Euros. Unfortunately it was Sunday so all shops closed. We took a HOHO bus which was good value. Once again we had to be back on the ship way before it left. Le Havre: we just stayed in Le Havre because most of the trips were expensive. E.g. Paris 119.99 Euros. 11 hours but takes a good few hours to get there. Le Havre is a dump. Entertainment:- Most shows were very samey and only lasted for about 30 minutes. Cabin: We had an indoor cabin which we will never do again. Cabin staff were very good though. The ship itself was fantastic, but trying to partake in any activities was difficult due to overcrowding. We will not travel with MSC again and cannot recommend it. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Cruise WVDV6X. ARCADIA 16 September – 10 October 2019. Canada Sorry for the delay with this review. Family issues have taken up my time since we have returned Our 6th P and O cruise so far. To my mind in many ways the best cruise ... Read More
Cruise WVDV6X. ARCADIA 16 September – 10 October 2019. Canada Sorry for the delay with this review. Family issues have taken up my time since we have returned Our 6th P and O cruise so far. To my mind in many ways the best cruise we have been on, (ish) Embarkation was very fast and efficient. The same with disembarkation, we left ahead of schedule Our cabin was B17, an inside and at the front. Front and high up!! But to be honest it was a great position, very very quiet. Great cabin. We had a little swell on the return across the Atlantic, but you would never know it. Ok a few annoying squeaks and rattles from the ship, but I bet even the posh suites have them. Arcadia handles very well A great ship, we loved Arcadia. Spent a lot of time in the viewing room, and the Palladium Theatre The headliners group was the best we have ever seen, and I would have been happy to have paid to see them perform, (I don’t want to give P & O any ideas though!). We had seen many of the productions before on previous cruises. But without exception this group blew the previous productions right out of the water. Loved the new show, Astonishing. Also the Palladium has a fabulous stage; it allows the production to completely step up another level. We’ve been on some of the American lines, and it’s good to see the Brits can go for it, and rival them! The seating is comfortable and varied, just don’t get stuck behind a pillar! Or sit in either of the “goldfish bowls”, the view is generally obstructed to a degree Other entertainers. We had seen Phil Hitchcock on Princess and it was the same act that we saw several years ago. We had seen Elektra before, but Im thinking one of the girls has been replaced. Roy Walker of course, he never offends, great guy and as always a show worth seeing. Stephanie Webber was good (couldn’t get my partner to attend a second concert). Jon Courtenay, a good show to be fair ( I liked him anyway) We found the crew happy and friendly without exception. The service has not suffered one bit because of the daily gratuities being dropped. Although we still tipped out room steward Linda as we always do. We found Linda approachable and always fun, even when she was clearly knackered and on her knees!! They are worked so hard The port presentations were fantastic. A very personable guy with lots of flair, (John, I think?). He loves lobster and a glass of vino ( a lot). A Brit that now lives in Aus. The presenter makes it worth going to each and every presentation regardless if you intend to book a shore excursion or not We came across Terry Brown again. He is the murder mystery guy. We had him onboard on Aurora a couple of years ago and attended his talks. But didn’t take it any further, (that cruise was a hot one to the Middle East and the sun/pool was more of a draw! Sorry Terry). This time I applied to be a murder suspect and was lucky enough to be chosen. It’s all great fun and Terry is the hilarious glue that holds it all together. I wouldn’t miss it for the world. P & O you need to follow this up and have more murder mystery guest’s speakers Food. We ate mostly in the Belvedere restaurant. Open from 6.30 am – 1.30am. Mostly because we like to be flexible with times and our menu. It was fine and served a purpose. I did find Belvedere a little ridged and the menu a little restricted at times. The food and service however was first class. A little gripe is, why have specially cooking areas in the middle of the “buffet line”, it makes no sense to me. It just holds everyone up. You can’t get to the dishes you want when there is a “mosh pit” of people waiting for let’s say an omelette right in the middle of the line. I also agree with some other comments. The food being bland and tasteless at times. Garlic bread –no garlic!! Lemon tart/sponge no hint of lemon!! We did not take a drinks package as P & Os options just don’t appeal The Lido enclosed deck was just too cold to enjoy at times. Not P & O fault. But they still held a couple of events their when it was simply too cold to enjoy. I kind of think, work around it maybe The viewing room. I loved it. It’s a boutique cinema that holds 30 people only. Tickets are to be pre booked. We used it a lot and so enjoyed it. The seating is so comfortable, and we enjoyed most of the films Especially enjoyed the poolside food stations. It saves going into the Belvedere for lunch/snacks if you’re enjoying the undercover pool. Everything is cooked prepared to order. However a note.... I do think a tea/coffee station needs to available here (Oceana style) as you still have to go into the Belvedere for these. There is plenty of room to install!! The cruise destinations I found to be a little underwhelming in general. Quebec was fab, although we ended up having three days and not two (it rained heavily for two of the days!). Other ports of call were fairly small and didn’t have a lot to offer. P and O tours were mostly sold out, so we set sail with no further capacity to be available We did the hop on/off bus in Quebec and Halifax. Both were ok with a couple of nice stops on each tour, and as always a good way to travel. The Blue Bus in Charlotteown, and even though we visited on a different day to our ticket (due to the cruise being altered) they honoured the ticket. Sydney, no tours available and it rained heavily. Thankfully a good cruise terminal and a market. Sept-lies a good day but just nothing to do except walk along the seafront, and that was fine. Gaspe, a walk around the bay to a museum that we felt was too expensive to enter. We then walked through the town, visited the wooden church. What saved the day here was on the quayside the local pub had some entertainment, with dancing and live music Not P & Os fault, but I did find the destinations a bit disappointing in general. Would I go again....sorry no! However I cant wait to cruise again on Arcadia, loved her. I thought we had great value for money overall Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We are elite class passengers on Princess, we have favoured Princess for the last few years even though we used to be regular RCCL and P&O clients. On our last Princess Cruise in March we thought the food on offer had deteriorated in ... Read More
We are elite class passengers on Princess, we have favoured Princess for the last few years even though we used to be regular RCCL and P&O clients. On our last Princess Cruise in March we thought the food on offer had deteriorated in standard/choice, but it didn’t prepare us for the food on offer in the main dining room on Sapphire. The food was at best functional, no flair, unimaginative, poorly presented, this is a general day to day comment. There were some bright spot but not enough to make up for repetitive fair on offer. The desserts were literally a repetitive stream all similar in nature. The steaks were either good or tough, nothing in between, lamb chops were small and cremated, disgraceful offerings. I will say that the food in the Horizon was very satisfactory, my criticism is of the dining room food. The Entertainment was very good but you had to be early to get a seat in the theatre, not sure why we struggled it is the first time we have known the theatre to. E packed solid most nights. Shore Excursions, I guess it can happen but the crew seemed to lack initiative when there are problems. The originally installed gangway in Boston had such an incline you could have slid to the dock it was so steep. Someone on the bridge was not on the job, one gangway for 2600 passengers and the age group on board didn’t help. Sorry Princess but you reputation took a terrible hit. I will be fair, first time cruisers thought the food was OK, all the regular long term cruisers were constantly critical about the demise of Princess as a cruise line. I am hoping it is just a blip or its Celebrity in future, their reputation is better!!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We chose this cruise because the ports of call included some places we had not been. WE chose Princess because the value and service are always dependable. Our expectations were met with the exception of food at dinner in the 2 regular ... Read More
We chose this cruise because the ports of call included some places we had not been. WE chose Princess because the value and service are always dependable. Our expectations were met with the exception of food at dinner in the 2 regular dining rooms. It was not very good. WE had Club Dinning Class which helped because we had a dedicated MaitreD for our section who made up for the regular menu... If the food had been better the overall rating would easily have been a 4 - 4 1/2.. I guess it is the luck of the draw... Past Princess cruises have been OK.... That being the case Norweigen has changed their food dramatically and it is Great!! Princess should take a cruise from them. On the other hand, Princess had 3 shows during our 11 nite cruise that were the best cruise shows we have ever seen. They had a soprano singing pop songs choreographed like a Broadway spectacular. Ship showed a little age but not too much to seriously detract. Service was very good and embarkation and debarkation were the best we have seen. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
To spend time with my son and enjoy activities on board and ashore. The quizes were fun but one of the quiz masters made them more about him and entered into the realm of vulgarity on a family ship at 12.30.pm. Not a good idea! ... Read More
To spend time with my son and enjoy activities on board and ashore. The quizes were fun but one of the quiz masters made them more about him and entered into the realm of vulgarity on a family ship at 12.30.pm. Not a good idea! The food was exellent at all times and service was fairly good. I would like to single out Milton for High praise, he was an excellent and couertous waiter and took a real interest in us. The drinks system took a lot of getting used to by us passengers and the staff. I am guessing that the ultimate drinks package is a new venture and staff were very slow at times to return the all important cruise card to us, I am sure these teething problems will be sorted out in time. All in all a very enjoyable experience bit not without glitches and some improvements could be made. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose the Ventura as this was the only cruise that suited our availability - we were not disappointed. We arrived at Southampton after a 6 hour journey to be greeted by the parking service. Speedy and efficient, my car was taken and ... Read More
We chose the Ventura as this was the only cruise that suited our availability - we were not disappointed. We arrived at Southampton after a 6 hour journey to be greeted by the parking service. Speedy and efficient, my car was taken and parked whilst we went into departures. No queueing, went straight into check in and on to the ship. This was my first time on Ventura and I was stunned. Glamorous and opulent, it was a beautiful sight. It was clean, bright and well kept, the decor sumptuous. Straight to our cabin, our cases were already there! I went in and our cabin did not disappoint. We'd selected E deck as my 80 yr old mother required to be near the entertainment decks and I expected a somewhat dreary cabin. I was wrong. It was lovely, the view unobstructed and the cabin spacious. It was bright, with and well maintained, no peeling corners but a spruce and well thought out design. The bathroom was super with a lovely shower. It wasn't big but certainly very useable. The cruise was excellent, there was much to do and the food was excellent. We ate on the Lido and there was so much choice. The waterfront restaurant was designed in a way that food was Centred on islands - you don't queue up like a canteen! The service was super and our cabin steward, Rajesh, could not have been more attentive. So many bars and restaurants, a lovely library, a super Arcade games room (which we enjoyed). Deck 15 pools are well designed, one with a retractable roof and it's not windy up there! All in all, a super cruise - I loved it. One thing, though. There's no cards room for adult games. I missed that. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We traveled on the Crown Princess British Aisles Cruise mainly due to it's itinerary. It was our introduction to the British Aisles and my wife and I traveled with our next door neighbors. Let me preface this review in stating that we ... Read More
We traveled on the Crown Princess British Aisles Cruise mainly due to it's itinerary. It was our introduction to the British Aisles and my wife and I traveled with our next door neighbors. Let me preface this review in stating that we are Royal Caribbean regulars and are making most of our comparisons based on that. We arrived two days earlier at Heathrow and our United flight arrived 1/2 hour early around 9 pm, I was worried that our 'Shared Arrival Transfer London Airport to Hotel' booked via Trip-Advisor wouldn't be there but he was (they keep on-top of arrival info, so make sure your Flight info is updated before you fly). Even though it was a shared transport we were his only fare arriving at 9:30 pm and with little traffic at that time we checked in to the Park Plaza Victoria (which is a great hotel near Buckingham Palace) by 10:30pm. We planned to try to cram in as many highlights of London in one day as we could but realistically settled on doing the Tower of London at 9 am (it took 2-hours minimum), Westminster Abbey at noon and The Staterooms at Buckingham Palace. We purchased a Oyster card for Tube travel and began at 9 am opening at the Tower (by the time we were leaving lines to see the crown Jewels were over a hour wait so make a bee-line there first) make sure you purchase your tickets from: https://www.hrp.org.uk/tower-of-london/#gs.zywwgy before you arrive otherwise the lines for tickets will take some time. Of the three we thought the Abbey was the highlight. We pre-purchased reserved seats (reserved for an extra 3-pounds each) for 10 am on National Express bus from Victoria Coach station (.6 minute walk from the Park Plaza Victoria) to Southampton Coach Station for $13.50 each one way. Note that as we were getting on our bus the Princess Bus Transportation was loading right next to us. When we arrived in Southampton at noon we immediately got a taxi to the cruise ship for 8 pounds. Embarkation using the Medallions was quick and we were on board by 1:30pm. This is a port intensive cruise with only two at sea days so we chose anytime dining because of the late sale-away times. We didn't want to be tied to a set dinner time. With the ship off a refresh dry dock in 2018 I was surprised by the state of disrepair we noticed around the ship. Vinyl applique sheets peeling off elevator surfaces, numerous dents on hallway walls, Tile baseboards held in place by caulk in numerous public bathrooms, two drawer fronts came off when opening in our stateroom. All small items but they all add up to create a sense that quality workmanship & maintenance are not a high priority Didn’t think much of the common areas in the ship, it had a closed in small feel with very few views of the ocean. The main Piazza area was only three stories high and had very little room to watch entertainment. Typical shops jewelry, watches, overpriced souvenirs, lacking any sundries shopping that you might have forgotten to pack. Photo services lacked any creativity, probably due to lack of any open spaces to take them. Entertainment was hit or miss, enjoyed the comedians, magician (card tricks), band that played every night, Thought the stage shows were lacking, they don’t come close to the quality found on Royal Caribbean ships, we watched for the first 10-15 minutes and gave up. Food in the main dining room was good nothing outstanding. Many of the meals were very small portioned, my cocoa pork loin while probably the best tasting dish on the cruise was five bite sized pieces. Shrimp cocktail has the smallest shrimp I’ve ever seen, formal night lobster tails were small and dry. Every night we’d get recommendations of 1-2 dishes to avoid from wait staff , that’s never happened before (clue get rid of dishes that don’t work). Wait staff for the most part were amazing in all venues. The Horizon Court buffet was also good, nothing outstanding, hard to find seats during breakfast especially on sea days. Over easy eggs on the egg station were either over hard or often cold, scrambled eggs had an odd taste leaving the only way to get a good egg dish was thru the omelet station. Free coffee only available in dining rooms were brewed weak. No free coffee or tea at the International Café (free coffee and always available on Royal Caribbean ships similar venues). International café had a great selection of salads snacks, pressed sandwiches, breakfast sandwiches, pastries, cookies, deserts and a Gelato station charging 3-scoops for $3.50. Best Pizza I’ve had on a cruise, Salta Dog Grille, on Lido Deck poolside, burgers and dogs were good, offered signature Ernesto Burger for $5 or the Ernesto w/Beer for $8 (no brainer since a bottle of beer was $6.75). We booked the Princess transfer to Heathrow which was the lest expensive and most worry free way of departing. We disembarked at 9:15 am buss departed the port at 10:15 and arrived at Heathrow at 11:30am for a 3:30pm flight. Our travel companions had a 1:30pm flight and disembarked the ship at 6:15am. Overall my main reason for booking this cruise was for the ports. While I was hoping for more (we all do), what I received was a decent cruise on a aging ship. Princess needs to pull a page from Royal Caribbean’s playbook and treat every ship like it’s our best ship, staying on top of maintenance, providing the best in entertainment, amaze us with great food venues. If Royal had offered the same itinerary, I would have cruise with them hands down. Again I was hoping for more, I wanted to be wowed, I could have been a convert to Princess. Maybe all princess ships aren’t the same but I don’t want to waste another vacation hoping for more. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We had previously cruised on Oceana and loved it. We chose Britannia as we could only travel in August and we liked the ports of call in the med. We had a balcony cabin on deck 12 midship. The cabin was modern and equipped with all ... Read More
We had previously cruised on Oceana and loved it. We chose Britannia as we could only travel in August and we liked the ports of call in the med. We had a balcony cabin on deck 12 midship. The cabin was modern and equipped with all we needed. Our cabin steward was very polite although he didn’t clean as I thought he should have, eg he never hoovered once in 14 days. Food was excellent in all restaurants. We had a dining experience in the Epicurean which was outstanding. We found all staff polite and welcoming. There was a packed itinerary of activities all day. In my opinion cruising is value for money. The gym wasn’t the best. There was lots of cardio equipment but the free weights area was somewhat lacking. There was one lat machine with only one side working. The main pool on Lido deck was very busy and noisy but the adult on section on the deck above was peaceful. The air conditioning inside the ship was set to quite cold so I’d advise a cardigan or sweater in doors if you are sensitive to the cold. Disembarkation was organised, we were able to find our luggage without any problems Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Our second time on Celebrity and certainly our best cruise so far with the company.. Two weeks of bliss although the weather could have been better - wet Ireland! Choose an Aqua cabin and meals in the Blu Restaurant. The cabin was ... Read More
Our second time on Celebrity and certainly our best cruise so far with the company.. Two weeks of bliss although the weather could have been better - wet Ireland! Choose an Aqua cabin and meals in the Blu Restaurant. The cabin was well equipped and just slightly smaller than what we're used to but the Blu restaurant shone. Delicious meals, both healthy and flavoursome. The service was top notch and the shows amazing.We never met a staff member so wasn't happy or willing to help, when needed. We used the spa and a treat for us too. Went after the excursions and great to relax before dinner. Had a drinks package which meant no working out the bill at the end of the cruise. The ice bar was amazing. All in all a great cruise. If you can afford it, try the Aqua experience for better dining memories and fantastic service. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Booked this cruise to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary. The Baltic was chosen and Royal Caribbean as we were in Tallin on the day, a fab place we have visited before. The cruise to the Baltic was pleasant with reasonable ... Read More
Booked this cruise to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary. The Baltic was chosen and Royal Caribbean as we were in Tallin on the day, a fab place we have visited before. The cruise to the Baltic was pleasant with reasonable weather, no rain!!!. However sun tans would have been missing unless you were an addict who went to the sunbeds when the sun was out. All ports were easy to access with the exception of St Petersburg, where you either had to have a Visa or be on an organised approved trip. We only did did ship trip in St Petersburg as we were able to get ashore with local transport very easily. If you use the ship shuttles they will cost at least double. A mixture of nationalities, British, Canadian Australians and some Europeans and Russian noted. As usual with a cruise during school holidays feral children were around in abundance, I think that some parents thought they could not get into mischief and left them to their own devices!!. Dining, well we had My Time Dining in the Sapphire, tables crammed in, and waiters have to manage more tables. We were very lucky, I had pre booked a time and we ate with the same waiters, location every night so did not have any concerns and did not wait long. Although I know that some other areas did complain etc. Food generally good but lack of niceties, no flowers on the tables, after dinner coffee served in large pot mugs not the thing for a delicate tea. Main bug bare was the lack of enforcement for dress code. On the 3 formal nights noticed many people in shorts and tee shirts allowed in for the evening dining. If they want to dress down then either go to the buffet or order cabin service!!!, the dress code was not enforced at all and as this is the only time that we can dress up and feel even if we are not a 1000 dollars. Entertainment was varied, in the bars very loud and always the same. Shows were lackluster as the group had only recently joined the ship, magician, hypnotist, several solo singers and several comedians. The in house band were always loud and with the solo singers blocked them out. Dizzies bar on the 14th floor very good until the disco arrived at 10pm and forced the over 50's to leave, offered headphones!!.Enjoyed Perry Granr very much but you have ti like his srt of entertainment. We had membership of the Diamond Lounge the savior in our opinion. The only place on sea days to find somewhere quiet to read, staff excellent and views wonderful. This place made the holiday enjoyable. One thing we noted seemed lack of organisation. Went down to see the ice show but had my ship card reviewed at the door to be told I was the next sea day Apparently the shows were viewed by the muster station we we were allotted to. I even know people who went and stood by the muster station expecting to be led in. Once I knew the method I looked at the ship paper each following sea day but our muster station details did not appear. On the last sea day I queried with reception to be told my viewing was the 1st sea day at 3pm. I very politely told them that they had not informed passengers of the method and had missed out and I was not happy. No apologies were forthcoming. at all. Disembarkation was a breeze as Diamond member we were no 3 off the shop at 0620am. Breakfast for us consisted of a cookie that I brought down to the cabin from the afternoon before and a coffee made in the cabin. The restaurant opened at 0530am, however, there was not time to get to breakfast, back to the cabin to pick up carry on and be down in the area for departure which was listed at 0610am for a 0620 departure. I would add that my husband and I only had 2 meals a day, we do not ever go on a cruise with the intention of loading a plate every 2 hours. Sitting with a couple who had a 9 hour journey to Scotland also departing at 0620 they had joined a line of 200 people at 0515 waiting for the restaurant to open. They did not get a proper breakfast at all. All in all we did enjoy the cruise, however we have traveled on a varied selection of cruise lines and prior to this cruise only 1 Royal Caribbean, based on this trip we would not travel with them again. For the evening of our 50th we did get a small cake with a candle to be asked how many years?. On returning home our travel agent asked did we have a good celebration as she had informed them it was our 50th wedding anniversary. As noted before a cheap bottle of wine would have been nice but I fear the accountants have a great say in what happens on board. As comparing with Celebrity, Princess, Holland America, Regent to name a few we have traveled with they are a budget line. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019

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