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11 Southampton to U.S.A. Cruise Reviews

There are not many ships that cross the Atlantic twice. P&O and Cunard are regularly on this trip. Phoenix also offers this route but there you are 44 nigths on the ship. We also had to book with one of these companies. We booked the ... Read More
There are not many ships that cross the Atlantic twice. P&O and Cunard are regularly on this trip. Phoenix also offers this route but there you are 44 nigths on the ship. We also had to book with one of these companies. We booked the trip from England to USA and Canada from 9th of September 2016 to the 5th of October 2016. Arcadia allowes smoking only on the outer deks. If these deks are colsed (as they are when the winds are strong) you cannot smoke anywhere else. P&O do not have indoor smoking lounges! We would also like to warn future passengers, that they have to pay extra (12.95 - 16.00 £ p.p.) if they want to eat good food. The self service restaurant (Belvedere on deck 9) is one of the badest restaurants where we ever have been. The public rooms are not big enough for more than 2000 passengers and therefore often crowded. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
Chose this cruise because we were celebrating both my husband and I 65th birthdays. Wanted something special. This was not what we expected. The weather is obviously nothing that can be controlled but it was bad enough that out of 7 days ... Read More
Chose this cruise because we were celebrating both my husband and I 65th birthdays. Wanted something special. This was not what we expected. The weather is obviously nothing that can be controlled but it was bad enough that out of 7 days we could only use the deck twice. Force 8 gales and it was not pleasant. The average age appeared to be older generation, lots of disabled people, more like a care home, with knitting and sewing circle every day in a beautiful lounge are. Not able to watch football in the pub on board due to having bingo everyday. Also very regimented, don,t even think of this ship, if you don,t like being told what to do and when, we paid for a princess suite, and if we had not dressed how we were told on a particular day then we could not eat dinner in the restaurant that we had paid a lot of money for. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
Just returned from above trip and a few observations on the Entertainment Cunard Insights Programme - thought that Robert Gates and Chase Untermeyer on the outward leg were excellent but unfortunately the other speakers were bland and ... Read More
Just returned from above trip and a few observations on the Entertainment Cunard Insights Programme - thought that Robert Gates and Chase Untermeyer on the outward leg were excellent but unfortunately the other speakers were bland and uninteresting. on the return journey Lord and Lady Howard were both interesting and sincere. however, again the other speakers left something to be desired, I heard someone say ' Made an interesting subject boring' Myself and my husband Ron have been travelling on Cunard for 12 years - I think we have now seen La Passionata 9 times. The timing of event in some cases was dreadful with some clashing or wrongly timed for instance RADA Ghost Story started at 10pm while second diners where still in Brittania. Lady Howard's book corner was in the Winter Garden and was sometimes in audible due to the fact it is used as a thoroughfare and food area. Paul O'Loughlan needs to put some effort in rsther than drifting, new shows, new acts , new insight subjects I know enough about Astronomy etc. Overall we did enjoy the crossing, Brittania was as usual very good and the various drinking areas to a high standard. karaoke in the Golden Lion was entertaining so did enjoy our trip but it could have been improved upon with a little more thought from Cunard Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Just returned from Oriana cruise to New Orleans. This ship has had more than her fair share of bad luck - indifferent weather in the Atlantic, hostile USA immigration at Charleston, engine fire at Miami, lost a port altogether (Key West) ... Read More
Just returned from Oriana cruise to New Orleans. This ship has had more than her fair share of bad luck - indifferent weather in the Atlantic, hostile USA immigration at Charleston, engine fire at Miami, lost a port altogether (Key West) and more indifferent weather on long haul back. However, it is the loss of the old P&O ambiance and quality that is hardest to take. No more silver service, mediocre entertainment, no interaction with ship's officers - all hallmarks of the pre-Carnival regime. Change is inevitable, but some of the changes have resulted in P&O no longer being special. The service from the crew was excellent, and we had a very comfortable cabin. There was plenty of space for sunbathing, a good library, and during the cruise many groups found their niche - bridge players, whist players, etc. The food was mediocre at best - many people expressed dismay at being expected to pay an extra £12,99 per person per night to enjoy food in a celebrity restaurant which was of the standard previously provided by P&O for all passengers. The cruise was good value for money in terms of distance travelled, ports visited, subsistence and accommodation (but steer clear of the Spa which not only charges eye-watering prices but adds a booking fee and gratuity to them!) Will we go again with P&O? - unlikely. We just have to accept that the past is the past. If you want a slightly upmarket Butlins afloat style of holiday, then it is for you, but traditionalists steer clear! Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
After spending a couple of weeks in Britain with my family, we ended our travels with a Transatlantic crossing. I had previously been on one of the maiden voyages of the Carnival Magic, which had almost convinced me never to take another ... Read More
After spending a couple of weeks in Britain with my family, we ended our travels with a Transatlantic crossing. I had previously been on one of the maiden voyages of the Carnival Magic, which had almost convinced me never to take another cruise vacation. Fortunately, the Queen Mary 2 could not have been a more different experience. The Queen Mary 2 is a beautiful ship whose engineering more than makes up for the differences that many of the reviews criticize. The ocean was fairly turbulent on the third day of our voyage and it was fairly apparent that the ship handled the waves much better than other vessels. Watching the weather in relative comfort was a highlight of the journey. For its age, the Queen Mary 2 is in excellent condition and remains well maintained. Some minor details needed repair (i.e. a couple of carpets require reattachment on the stairwells), but the crew seemed fairly attentive to on-going maintenance. Apart from a limited group of other passengers, including one moron who thought it appropriate to confront my wife and I about "how does a man your age have the resources to be on a trip like this" and to tell a random set of British retirees that they "had to go to ground zero," our time could not have been more pleasant. The crew was genuinely nice, particularly the Head Chef--Nicholas, the Captain--Christopher Wells, our senior waiter--Roy, our steward--Nick, and the Entertainment Director--Jo Haley. Even at fancier restaurants in the U.S., I have not had better food than I enjoyed on board. The Britannia Restaurant runs very efficiently with a consistently good presentation. The simplicity and British focus of the cooking made each meal excellent, with many approachable options. We did not spend too much time in the Kings Court buffet, though at different times it seemed like the food might be very good. A published menu might improve the buffet experience, but I question why anyone would want to go there with the Britannia Restaurant or the other upper class dining rooms providing a much better experience. In particular, I have to give a lot of credit to the kitchen for accommodating the gluten-free dietary needs of some in our party. Each day, the senior waiter would provide the next day's menu and the kitchen would make each chosen option with substitute ingredients. The best part of our voyage was the opportunity to relax and to get away from our ordinary stressful lives. I hope that Cunard continues doing the things that it does extremely well. Subdued atmospheres in the bars and restaurants themed around the original Queen Mary make the Queen Mary 2 an elegant experience. Likewise, entertainment that focuses on guest lecturers, theater, jazz music, dance music, and the transatlantic crossing distinguish the Queen Mary 2 from other cruise experiences. Formal nights also help underscore how a voyage is an escape from ordinary life. I only hope that more people in our demographic (29-40) will discover how nice it is to travel on the Queen Mary 2. Because of our positive experience, my family will make a point of travelling on the Queen Mary 2 as part of trips to the UK and Europe. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
I wrote a review a while back titled "Declining standards in a single year," complaining that the food in the Britannia was not what it had been. This was our third crossing in 2013, and I'm happy to say that the food is ... Read More
I wrote a review a while back titled "Declining standards in a single year," complaining that the food in the Britannia was not what it had been. This was our third crossing in 2013, and I'm happy to say that the food is back to what we expected -- i.e., very good, indeed remarkable under the circumstances. The service is now, if anything, even better. And my fears about the simplified dress code have not been realized: On the "elegant casual" nights (at least at the late sitting) many men wore ties and many who went tie-less wore suits. Of course the women were for the most part extremely well turned out. And the great majority on "formal" nights were actually in formal dress. My principal complaint now is just that Cunard seems to be constantly trying to sell you stuff. About half of the cable channels are devoted to peddling various products and services, and one is constantly fending off pushy photographers. In my earlier post I said something about the HSN/QVC vibe, but threading the maze of photographers to get to dinner feels more like traversing a souk. Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
We have recently returned from our first crossing on the in August, 2013 from Southampton to New York. What a wonderful experience! We are veteran cruisers and travelers who have been many places on ships from Iceland to Antarctica but had ... Read More
We have recently returned from our first crossing on the in August, 2013 from Southampton to New York. What a wonderful experience! We are veteran cruisers and travelers who have been many places on ships from Iceland to Antarctica but had never done a crossing before. We chose the Princess Grille category and we very happy with the selection. It was well worth the money. The cabin was spectacular--we even had a walk-in closet plus three more closets in the room and tons of drawers and storage space. We could have moved in for months. The balcony was large with comfortable chaise lounges. However, the really perk was the dining. We had an assigned table for 7--another married couple, two sisters traveling together, and a single young man. However, we could eat any of our meals at any time the dining room was open. Our places were always there for us. We had wonderful wait staff and an excellent wine steward. Everyone was friendly but not pompous. I get bored easily but was never bored on our 7 day crossing. There were a variety of lectures, entertainers, classes, activities for every interest. The planetarium was a real plus. We also enjoyed the performances by the young actors from the Royal Academy of the Dramatic Arts (RADA). The formal nights were wonderful--everyone dressed up and it was like the old days when everyone went across the Atlantic like this. We loved our experience and will definitely choose Cunard again.   Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
My husband and I cruised the transatlantic inaugural cruise and felt the whole experience was average. The ship is beautiful and decorated very well but fell short on the space for many of the activities. We are older and like quiet ... Read More
My husband and I cruised the transatlantic inaugural cruise and felt the whole experience was average. The ship is beautiful and decorated very well but fell short on the space for many of the activities. We are older and like quiet places to read and watch the ocean go by, and this ship lacked those type of places. There is no quiet places on the decks outside to just lay back and relax and read, there was loud music and activities when it was nice enough to be on deck near the pool. The library, card room, fitness center and venues like Fat Cats, Headliners, theater and Atrium were small and crowded and there were only 2800 people on board and not sure what it will be like with 4000. We were unable to use much of the outside areas as the weather on the North Atlantic is pretty cool, which made the inside areas congested. We had an inside cabin for the first time in years and I have to admit it was very adequate. There was good use of space and storage was fine for us, but we do travel light. The bathroom was very nice and spacious for a ship. The interactive TV was very handy and made checking your account, booking shows and dinning very easy. TV to watch was not very good, free movies on a printed schedule would really be nice. The food on the ship was very good and the Garden Buffet was huge. Moderna the Brazillian restaurant was excellent. The 3 main dinning rooms were very nice, but the service was slow at times, and at time difficult to get in at busier times. One problem was there was no place except the Garden area to get coffee, water and ice tea, and if you were on deck 8 you had to go to deck 15 or the Atrium cafe and pay for coffee. The best place to eat at that was free was the PUB on deck 8. Food and service was excellent. The entertainment was good, but not sure I liked having to book ahead to go see the shows that were free, like Rock of Ages and Burn the Floor, and I miss not having a show every evening to go to. The theater was small and like a movie theater instead of a show theater. The waiters have a difficult time getting drinks out as they have to crawl over people at the beginning of the rows. Both Fat Cats and Headliners were way to small and the seating in those 2 places was uncomfortable. Fire and Ice were great, but again the Atrium was too small to just sit and enjoy them as it was hard to find a place to sit. The cruise was fine, but feel the company has some things to fix. The places that are for profit have all the space, shops, casino and the restaurant that have fees, the other public areas are small. We wouldn't take this ship again, but were glad to have the opportunity to go on a first voyage once. Read Less
Sail Date April 2013
Boarded the MSC Poesia at Southhampton for a 14 day cruise to New York. The ship itself I could not fault. For cleanliness and design it would take some beating but this is were it ends. The food was awful, with the same menu's on ... Read More
Boarded the MSC Poesia at Southhampton for a 14 day cruise to New York. The ship itself I could not fault. For cleanliness and design it would take some beating but this is were it ends. The food was awful, with the same menu's on offer day after day. The entertainment on board was abysmal and very weak. On a four day sail from the Azores to Bermuda we were reduced to being entertained during the day by a crew member throwing plastic hoops at wooden pegs with a balloon on his head. I wouldn't even try and entertain toddlers with that. The reception staff seemed to think passengers were subordinate to them. The disembarkation process was complete chaos and two elderly ladies, one in a wheelchair, were flatly refused much needed assistance by the crew and had to be assisted by other passengers. A long hard look at the level of customer service this company offers needs to be urgently reviewed and improved. I'm afraid I wont be cruising with MSC again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
Your day would start with a breakfast filled with frustration and dread! Around came your boy with water for tea, somewhat tepid as he's been up all night doing another shift, so walks slowly. Tea sir, yes please we say, into the ... Read More
Your day would start with a breakfast filled with frustration and dread! Around came your boy with water for tea, somewhat tepid as he's been up all night doing another shift, so walks slowly. Tea sir, yes please we say, into the cup goes the tepid water, waiter goes away; 'tea bag' we enquire, yes sir. Five minutes later he retraces his steps with tea bags in hand,' over here' is heard the dry cries; milk my good man, yes sir, five minutes later................ The waiters round the pool were more attentive, but as sales were poor due to the very high cost, one would run for any sale, after all they do need the 15% charged on top for everything you purchase, it's their wages. The shows were good, but when introduced in 4 or 5 languages, they were somewhat tiresome, and the so called entertainment director had a very annoying habit of walking very slowly from the back of the theatre in very high heels (she was very proud of her arse) to let you know what's on tonight, yes in 4 or 5 very poor languages. Asking the staff how they liked the ship, poor pay and long hours, did not help. However, the main problem was they all came from Indonesia; some 300 were all from the same agency, they had to learn very basic English to get the job then learn Italian, French, German and now Russian when on board. No wonder the tea boy looked so knackered. Read Less
Sail Date September 2010
My wife and I took the Cunard Queen Mary 2 World Voyage 2010 - Our trip started in Southampton January 11th and we left the Queen 91 days and 33 ports later in Ft. Lauderdale. The size of the Queen affords the passengers the luxury of ... Read More
My wife and I took the Cunard Queen Mary 2 World Voyage 2010 - Our trip started in Southampton January 11th and we left the Queen 91 days and 33 ports later in Ft. Lauderdale. The size of the Queen affords the passengers the luxury of large public rooms and lots of space to lounge around. The airiness and many large windows gives the light and view a chance to be admired by all passengers from every direction. The down size to this large vessel, is that you see all the major container ports of the world; the ship is so large (155 thousand tons) that it does not accommodate the ports well, and one docks miles from the center of passenger interest. The shuttle service takes anywhere from 45 minutes to one hour to transport the passengers to town and the lines are long; and in some ports, no cover was available to shade the passengers from the heat, and a few passengers fainted while waiting to board the ship..The lack of water at the port stations were very obvious to all. If the ship is your "destination", this ship has what you want. If you are concerned about seeing the ports in detail, and with maximum time, you will need to go on a "cruise" ship, not an ocean liner; the QM2 is a great venue for quiet elegance an the enjoyment of serenity, but you can also be busy all day long if you choose. The food quality ranges from 5 star cafeteria to excellent; the quality was not consistent from day to day. The Kings Court venue with its four no charge alternate dining restaurants are a nice touch from the main dining room. The service in the Kings Court was always above par. The food was excellent; but you were limited to two reservation per cruise segment, and when making the reservations, one had to call many days in advance as the space is extremely limited. The decor is a bit "dowdy" and needs help; the ship, built in 2004, is in desperate need of upgrading; the TV's are the old box type, not the new flat screen; there were no DVD players available; the Internet service was very slow and expensive, and was down many hours during this voyage. We also were told that it is coming back on, but it sometime did not for 24 to 36 hours. The Internet manager was helpful to a point, then he would walk away as he had no authority over the web service. In the meantime, one is paying 75 cents/minute to wait it out. The entertainment was broad in nature; the lectures covered a wide variety of subjects, some very stodgy, some down to earth; the port lectures were low in content and were more travel logs to brag about their own experience in the ports. The computer instructor ( different from the computer manager) was excellent, and was very friendly and helpful. Computer class were given several times a week and were at no charge. The movies in the theater were a mix bag; from gory murders to comedy, not all were current. The Broadway style shows were high school in quality and very repetitive. The headline acts were mostly violinist, piano players, and singers; very few comedy or other lite entertainment. Service was no winner. The dining room waiter had to be asked several times to refill the water, coffee, bread etc. This should have been routine training; we finally got the section head to monitor this function for our table as the waiter could not be bothered. The cabin was inside - 6103 - great location and very quiet. Our cabin steward was okay, not outstanding, but the cabin was always clean, and she did her best. On the subject of service, my main complaint with Cunard is the lack of caring from the management. This ship, and it may have a Cunard label, is very arrogant in the dealings with the passengers, and they act as though they know what is best for you. From the World Cruise concierge, to the social hostess, to pursers office, your needs are not met, phone calls not returned, and general destine is apparent. I could write volumes about the misinformation given at the pursers office, and the double talk from the staff, but you get the drift. So it comes down to this; I can not recommend the QM2 for a long cruise; a better choice would be the New York to Southampton crossing. Would I go again on this ship: NO ! We have taken 169 cruises, on several different branded lines and the QM2 does not hold a candle in quality and service to the other ships - what the Queen does have is a name and past glory. Its reputation is slowly being tarnished by the current management. Read Less
Sail Date January 2010

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