7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
We chose this cruise with Fred primarily because it sailed from Liverpool and Fred was recommended by trusted friends with good taste and judgement. Also because it is a smaller traditional ship. We have had several cruises on oceans and ... Read More
We chose this cruise with Fred primarily because it sailed from Liverpool and Fred was recommended by trusted friends with good taste and judgement. Also because it is a smaller traditional ship. We have had several cruises on oceans and rivers but this was 10 out of 10 for all aspects; excellent well trained staff, crew and passengers. No lager louts or badly behaved families. Took us back to more genteel and well mannered times. Food was incredibly good, cabin very comfortable and restful, tastefully designed public rooms, no minimal sterile decor, a discreet casino area instead of it dominating the ship. Boarding and disembarking very efficient but with adequate security. Port lectures were professional with no pushy sales talk with regard to the excursions. Wonderful entertainers and a great cruise director. Just could not find fault with any aspect of cruising with Fred Booked for next year out of Liverpool again, which is so convenient for us in the North West. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
This was our 5th cruise on Boudicca. She is our favourite ship of the 4 we have sailed with over 8 cruises, 6 with Fred Olsen. After a disappointing experience 2 months previously on Columbus (Cruise and Maritime), we were excited to be ... Read More
This was our 5th cruise on Boudicca. She is our favourite ship of the 4 we have sailed with over 8 cruises, 6 with Fred Olsen. After a disappointing experience 2 months previously on Columbus (Cruise and Maritime), we were excited to be back on the 'fabulous Boudicca' as the Captain likes to call her i his daily briefing from the bridge, We were not disappointed - in fact, this cruise exceeded our expectations. There are very few cruises to Greenland at all, due the their very short summer. Fred did 2 this year, and we felt very privileged to be able to spend a day cruising through Prins Christainsund in lovely weather, whereas apparently the Black Watch had been unable to do so 3 weeks earlier due to the amount of ice still breaking away and clogging it up. The views of glaciers, mountains and icebergs were jaw-dropping, especially the icebergs! We did a complete circumnavigation of one estimated by the experts from the Bridge to be around 180m long and 70m high. A few days later we did an Ice Fjord tour organised by Fred, using small motor cruisers operated by locals, who took us up very close to some enormous and spectacular bergs. We were even able to reach out and touch one! The small towns of Qaqatoq and Tasilaq were both extremely interesting with small but very informative museums and attractive churches and brightly coloured houses. This is a fragile, sparsely ihabited country due to the Arctic climate. Two lecturers on board gave very interesting lectures on the ports and shore tours, and on the history and culture of the Inuit people. As has always been our experience, the food and service on Fred's ships is superb, and our fellow passengers friendly and interesting. We noticed a larger number of 'younger' passengers (in their 40s and 50s) and 3 children - it was a delight and a refreshing change to engage with them. I was also more impressed than on previous trips with the quality of the Boudicca Show Company, whose singing, arrangements and dance routines were impressive. Many thanks in particular to all the incredibly hardworking waiting staff in the dining rooms, for whom nothing is too much trouble, especially our waiter Jaydeep, also Vincent, Jeronimo, Alihandro and Roshan, the assistant maitre d'. IN fact, all the staff deserve far more than they get. Despite the long hours of often probably repetitive work, they always have a smile. We can't wait to go back on this lovely ship. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
This cruise was for Bermuda and the Azores. We've both always wanted to see the Azores and my wife wanted to go to Bermuda. As this was her 50th birthday and the year of our 25th anniversary, as well as leaving Liverpool less than an hour ... Read More
This cruise was for Bermuda and the Azores. We've both always wanted to see the Azores and my wife wanted to go to Bermuda. As this was her 50th birthday and the year of our 25th anniversary, as well as leaving Liverpool less than an hour away from our house, it was the perfect fit. I thought 26 days was too long for a first cruise but I now know that it's not enough. The staff couldn't possibly do more to ensure our trip was first class, there was a very wide variety of excellent food and the drinks were good; we went all-inclusive. This doesn't cover everything by the way so beware. Every aspect of the ship's hygiene is spot on, it is cleaner than any hospital I've visited... NHS could learn from it. Although she isn't any spring chicken any more, Boudicca is very well maintained and we found her to be a beautiful ship. We found that there was so much to do, shows, meals, concerts, gym with good equipment, deck walks, dolphin and whale spotting, shopping, swimming, hot tub, reading and sunbathing were a few things on the menu. The bars are great with their own character and the staff so very friendly: thanks to Allen and his team, Caterina and her team to mention but a few. Restaurant staff also excelled and again there would be so many names I can't mention them all but people like Tom and Wetter became friends. We could honestly say that it's the best holiday we've had together. Cabins on decks lower than 7 are a little small but ingeniously set out and soon felt big enough for the short time we spent there each night. There are excellent laundry facilities, if you don't want to do it you can have it done for you! There is a good room service. Beds, rooms and linen are without fault, there is a good shower (you are on a ship and the pressure won't blast you against the wall) and towels are changed when you wish. There are also towels supplied separately for the pool area and gym use. Sea days offer much to do. The excursions are a little expensive and some are frankly not worth the money, a local taxi tour can work out cheaper especially if you share like we did with like-minded people. Only one island required a tender service which is well organised. A but tricky for those with moderate or more mobility issues but staff are very attentive and helpful and a number of cruisers took wheelchairs ashore! Fred Olsen often attracts a more mature clientele and people can be put off a little. We were a decade or two younger than most on board but that didn't detract in any way from the cruise. Most people were really friendly, very active and really knew how to have a good time. We were sometimes surprised. Of course some of the activities are tailored to a mature age group, which is normal since they are the majority and some things didn't suit us. All you need is a little imagination to find other things to do, or, if the worst comes to the worst (I doubt) you could always go through the bar list! We loved it, enjoyed all of the destinations and enjoyed having our hotel right by us when on land. We were treated like kings! Thanks Fred! Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
We chose this cruise to meet up with old friends in Bermuda. Whilst the ship is old and lacking in any glitz (as we commented it was like stepping back 50 years, except the portholes would have opened then) the enthusiasm of the crew in ... Read More
We chose this cruise to meet up with old friends in Bermuda. Whilst the ship is old and lacking in any glitz (as we commented it was like stepping back 50 years, except the portholes would have opened then) the enthusiasm of the crew in all departments was outstanding. The shows were probably the best we have seen in some 40 cruises. Embarkation was very swift, about 5-6 minutes from entering the terminal to getting to our cabin, including a short walk. However this highlighted a lack of security as the scanners for hand baggage 'shoreside' were inoperative and presumably the ships security being unaware did not check our bags on boarding. We were in the lowest class of outside cabin on deck 3 aft and whilst clean and with lots of cupboard space it was quite depressing, with fabrics worn and faded, but we must admit you are shown this in the photographs when booking. OK for a few days but not a month. The biggest problem is that at low engine/prop revolutions the noise is incredible and the deck , deck-head bulkheads et-al shake like an earthquake and things fall about. This is particularly so from the pilot station to the berth, which in the case of Liverpool is over two hours.We feel very sorry for the crew but at least they haven't paid! Air- conditioning was good and we could set it to the minimum of "shops factories and railway premises act". Beds very comfortable. Good shower with plenty of hot water. Room service limited but quick. Dining was very good, not first class, and an absence of steaks or lobster was evident. Variety is always going to be a problem on a longish voyage but the main courses were filling, tasty and reminded us of our youth. Soups were over salted so that they tasted of a higher salinity than the sea. More home cooking than cordon-bleu. Service was attentive and quite swift. Reasonable prices for drinks. The main port of call (four days) was Bermuda, which was buzzing with the "Americas Cup" Many lectures were focussed on sailing and the sea but some presenters had little or no skills. There were no children on board and the average age seemed like 75 but all out to enjoy themselves, some getting particularly good value from their all inclusive packages. Overall fares are expensive, even the 'anchor fares' when compared to(say) Cunard but from what I could gather not many passengers shop around and have little experience of other lines. I can't quite see why they return in such numbers for what is taken overall a middle of the road offering, the prices are of course a function of size Would we go again, possible if the ports of call were what we wanted and the price discounted. Ratings have been given against comparison with many lines, large and small ships, luxury and otherwise. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We chose this cruise because of departure from Greenock. Embarkation went smoothly and our luggage was in our cabin before us! We sailed out on the five night cruise up the Scottish coast our itinery was Fort William, Ullapool and ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of departure from Greenock. Embarkation went smoothly and our luggage was in our cabin before us! We sailed out on the five night cruise up the Scottish coast our itinery was Fort William, Ullapool and Invergorden before sailing back to Greenock. On board the entertainment was excellent with a very talented group of singers and dancers. Food was very good and drinks very reasonably priced. All staff were excellent in restaurants and bars. Our only gripe was lack of information as to where we were when sailing through the Western Isles. It would have been helpful to be kept informed as to where we were. The lack of communication was responsible for most of the passengers not being informed while passing by Fingals Cave this should have been a highlight of the cruise. We missed out on a trip due to not booking early enough I would advise book a trip as soon as possible or risk missing out. This was the first time we have sailed with Fred Olsen and we were impressed with the staff and the various lounges, bars and eating places. We would certainly consider using Fred Olsen for any future cruise. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
While on our first short cruise to the Norwegian fjords on Fred.Olsen's Balmoral in May 2016 we booked this year's longer cruise to the fjords north of Bergen and Bergen itself. As the cruise started in Belfast this saved connecting ... Read More
While on our first short cruise to the Norwegian fjords on Fred.Olsen's Balmoral in May 2016 we booked this year's longer cruise to the fjords north of Bergen and Bergen itself. As the cruise started in Belfast this saved connecting flights and the itinerary included a short visit to Kirkwall on the Orkney Island. The coach connection provided (at a cost) by a local travel agent and embarkation went to plan but there was then a long wait till departure. The following days were enjoyable, blessed with wonderful weather, good food, excellent entertainment and plenty of companionship among our fellow travellers. We enjoyed the extra perks of a balcony suite, though 8010 on the port side seemed to miss out on a lot of the sunshine! Towards the end of the 8-night cruise we learnt that some of our fellow passengers had been laid low with what may have been an upper respiratory infection and that some of the crew were also unwell, but still working. Unfortunately, soon after our return we both succumbed to a particularly debilitating virus and almost 2 weeks' later we are still "under the weather". This has not just been the usual headcold but a full-on viral infection with fever, coughing and overall malaise. Could it be that we picked up a foreign strain which has knocked us both out and curtailed our normal very active lives? The promised feedback form has not yet been received from Fred.Olsen despite having received emails from them prior to our departure. Our subsequent illness has left a rather negative feeling about cruising overall and perhaps the Fred.Olsen line, with whom I first travelled in 1962! Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
Having sailed with Fred Olsen 5 times previously, we had high expectations of this longed for trip to Italy. However, it was the first time we had sailed on the Boudicca. The first thing that was a shock was the embarkation from Falmouth, ... Read More
Having sailed with Fred Olsen 5 times previously, we had high expectations of this longed for trip to Italy. However, it was the first time we had sailed on the Boudicca. The first thing that was a shock was the embarkation from Falmouth, which was the first time this port has been used. I can only describe it as like going through a cattle market. It was a large storage facility on the dock, with no-where near enough seating for everyone. It was cold, draughty, with no facilities available. The check in process seemed chaotic, the security was a joke, since the customs check did not bother with many of the passengers bags. We were just waved through. Once on board, we were disappointed with the ship, again, it did not seem to have enough space and seemed crowded. We were disappointed with our cabin, which seemed dark and dingy. The boat was very noisy and vibrated the whole time, making sleeping difficult. We could not fault the wonderful staff, or the entertainment, which was spot on, but we did think the food wasn't as good as on their larger boats. We booked the trip specifically to visit Rome and Pompeii. The trip to Rome would have been good, but for the fact that we were visiting the Vatican City, and had to stand in a 2 hour queue before even getting inside. We didn't bother in the end and just did our own thing. The trip to Pompeii was advertised as a 5 hour trip, but we actually got less than 2 hours in Pompeii. The trip to Palmero, Sicily, was awful. Was a horrible place. The whole experience this time around has put us off booking with Fred Olsen again. If we did, we would be sure to book the larger boats. Would never sail on the Boudicca again. It was also beset with illness among the passengers and some crew. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2017
My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed this cruise around the Amalfi coast to places we gad never visited before. We have been on the Boudicca many times and we are pleased to say that the overall standard of service and cleanliness was as ... Read More
My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed this cruise around the Amalfi coast to places we gad never visited before. We have been on the Boudicca many times and we are pleased to say that the overall standard of service and cleanliness was as good as ever. In the bars the service was prompt, in the restaurant the food was a very good standard and our cabin was spotless. The public areas were always clean and tidy and the entertainment was very good. Everyone of the staff seemed to have time to talk to you even though they were very busy. We enjoyed most of the trips out, the main reason for choosing this cruise, the guides were very good and the local transport used was of a high standard. Highlight for me was the isle of Capri, a beautiful place with excellent views from almost everywhere. The only downside is the price of goods in the shops.& Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
Chose this cruise because it sailed from Liverpool. We were asked to arrive at 2pm we were swiftly checked in and were on board by 2.25pm Same can be said for disembarkation which was just as quick and efficient with porters to help ... Read More
Chose this cruise because it sailed from Liverpool. We were asked to arrive at 2pm we were swiftly checked in and were on board by 2.25pm Same can be said for disembarkation which was just as quick and efficient with porters to help getting luggage to taxi. We had a balcony suite which was a good size and kept to a high standard of cleanliness. Tintagel restaurant was chosen because we had that restaurant when we sailed before in 2010 and we had a table for two by the window. The food was excellent with good choice and restaurant staff brilliant. Entertainment staff worked hard and guest speakers were quite good to listen to. Staff from all aspects of the ship were polite and pleasant and nothing was a bother. We didn't use shore excursions as most ports of call were a fifteen minute walk away and we were happy to stroll around. However, we saw lots of passengers taking the tours. The Boudicca is an elderly ship like most of our fellow passengers were. We thoroughly enjoyed Christmas and the happy atmosphere on board. Must give the firework display on New Years eve in Madeira a mention it was amazing..... Will definitely be booking with Fred again. Read Less
23 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
In early October I received an email offer from Fred Olsen for a November 20th sailing on the Boudicca for a 21-day cruise to the Canary Islands and Cape Verde. The price was quite good at less than 100 GBP per day although it was for ... Read More
In early October I received an email offer from Fred Olsen for a November 20th sailing on the Boudicca for a 21-day cruise to the Canary Islands and Cape Verde. The price was quite good at less than 100 GBP per day although it was for what Fred Olsen terms an Anchor Fare (i.e. a guaranteed cabin with no choice in assigned dining time). When I went to book I discovered that Fred Olsen now uses a different American booking agent and the change is not a good one. They used to use Borton Overseas Travel based in Minneapolis which is a very good company, but now they are using something called World View Travel based in New York and they are terrible. They rarely answered emails or the phone and knew almost nothing about the cruise line; my cruise documents barely arrived in time and then only after I left phone messages asking where they were. It’s a pity that Americans cannot book directly with Fred Olsen as it would be so much easier. However, this itinerary was so interesting and the Liverpool departure location meant the opportunity to visit relatives in the area so I could not pass up the chance. And I was fortunate to snag some last minute frequent flyer tickets to the U.K. so I was off! I expected travel to the embarkation port in Liverpool to be a breeze from Altrincham where I was staying, but I did not take into account last minute rail works, which altered my itinerary, nor the surprise that some 30,000 crazed rugby fans would also be making their way to Liverpool that same morning for a world’s final match between Australia and New Zealand! Nothing says “adventure” like fighting your way onto a two-carriage Northern train at Manchester Piccadilly with hundreds of others while carrying two large suitcases and then standing the whole way to Liverpool holding onto your cases one stacked upon the other. Once at Liverpool Lime Street the station taxi cue barely moved as fans ran out to the street and snagged many of the available taxis there. Those of us left in the cue started finding fellow Boudicca passengers and joined up to share whatever taxis we could find. Once at the port, though, things went very smoothly. Luggage disappeared out of the taxi before I even alighted and was already waiting in my cabin when I boarded about an hour later. Check-in was already in progress when I arrived at 1:30 pm and at 2 pm embarkation began by group starting with the upper class cabins and those with elite status. The Liverpool terminal is fairly basic, but had plenty of seating for all of us. Toilets were in a separate trailer-like building just outside. The walk to the ship was a bit long and covered at least most of the way; however, it would not have been a pleasant walk, though, had it been raining. I believe assistance was provided to those passengers who needed help getting to the ship. My second unwelcome surprise that day came when I arrived at my cabin. When sailing on the Black Watch this past summer I had been told by the Future Cruise Consultant that the Boudicca was a sister ship, meaning they had the same layout. Since I booked exactly the same cabin category (category N, inside solo cabin) and even was assigned the same cabin number (4107) on this voyage I expected the same cabin facilities. However, instead of the nice wide bed I had on the Black Watch, I had a bed that was all of 30 inches wide—something I would provide for a child, not a full grown adult. And in place of a desk with drawers, there was a small triangular shelf that held a phone, small lamp and barely room for anything else. Even the closet was smaller with only about 16 inches of hanging space. The Black Watch bathroom had nice counter space and a real medicine cabinet, whereas this Boudicca bathroom had a pedestal sink with just a single shelf along the bottom of the mirror. Even the door hit the toilet which meant you had to sit sideways unless the door was fully closed. I went to the service desk immediately to ask about changing cabins, but was told I would need to speak to someone else who was not readily available. The staff person did, however, get on the phone, and within 20 minutes a crew member turned up with a nice small three-drawer cabinet to add to my cabin which provided me with enough additional storage to unpack. I think that had I booked a Freedom Fare (regular cruise fare) I might have had a chance to change cabins to something larger as the ship was not sailing full. On the plus side I love this location on the ship as it’s very quiet and convenient to both the mid-ship stairs/elevators leading to the dining and public areas as well as the aft stairs/elevator that lead to the pool area and laundry room. Fred Olsen ships are older ships without the glamour of the newer behemoths that many cruise lines have launched, but the ship is very comfortable and just the right size at 800 passengers for me. All the necessities are provided (pools, gym, both formal and informal dining spaces, bars, a library, etc.) as well as lots of places to sit both inside and out, with the exception of the promenade deck which could use a few more chairs. Smoking is contained to two outside aft locations and to private balconies. There is a full wrap-around promenade deck as well as additional walking space on the top deck. Indeed, walking seems to be one of the most popular activities on Fred Olsen ships. One of my favorite locations is the Bookmark Café where you can order up hot drinks as well as select from a variety of chocolates while browsing the library collection of books and then sitting in a comfortable armchair with a nice sea view. Those folks who are sun worshippers could choose from quite a number of lounge chairs on several decks. The major public space on the ship is the Neptune Lounge where lectures, entertainment and some activities such as dance classes were scheduled. The layout here is not ideal as it’s all mostly on one level with just one step up to a second level around the sides and back of the space. They do provide some video monitors on this upper level to assist those in back to see the screen or stage area. Some of us early on figured out the best place to sit and would just arrive extra early to grab our favorite seat for any even we wanted to attend. The dining experience on Fred Olsen is decidedly British with a significant emphasis on seafood and geared towards night folk rather than morning people like myself. Breakfast began at 7:30 or 8:00 am, depending on dining venue, except on some port days when one of the venues would open at 7:00 am. Prior to that, the coffee/tea area would be set up at 6:30 am. This was another change from the Black Watch which had a 24-hour coffee/tea area. Lunch began at noon and tea with snacks was served at 3:45 pm. The dining room had two fixed-seating services, one at 6:15 pm and the other at 8:15 pm. For the main dining room there were some designated formal nights, although I noticed that many passengers dressed up a bit for diner here even on regular nights as well. The informal Secret Garden café provided buffet style dinner at 6:30 pm. At 11:30 pm each evening an additional supper would be served, usually with a theme meal. As a morning person and one, whom for medical reasons cannot eat much of anything after 6 pm, this schedule provided quite a problem. To compensate I would try to find something to eat at tea time or put together a sandwich from items on the breakfast buffet to save for later. The ship does provide room service from 11 am to 10 pm, but it is a very limited menu of soup, a few salads and cold sandwiches only. I called and tried to just get a bowl of ice cream one evening and was told that was not possible. I ended up just ordering a glass of milk each night. Except for that standard breakfast every morning the menus varied daily and did provide some gluten-free and sugar-free options for those that needed them. I found the overall quality of the food on this sailing not quite as good as on the Black Watch this past summer. I’m not sure why this was the case. The activities on board are geared toward the general age group that Fred Olsen attracts which is the over 60s. There was a small gym on the top deck, but I found some of the equipment rather old and was quite turned off by the horrible metallic rock music played by the gym attendant. Why he possible thought our older generation wanted to listen to that music was beyond my understanding. He also offered some deck games during the day on the promenade deck. There were two saltwater pools, an exercise pool, and some hot tubs—all wonderfully heated to just the right temperature. As I mentioned before, though, walking the deck seemed to be the most popular physical activity on this sailing. The ship also offered trivia games, dance lessons, a passenger choral group, and painting and craft classes. My preferred activities were the lectures. We had a port lecturer who was quite good, but they limited him to only 45 minutes per port—not enough time really. We also had three other very good lecturers, but I was surprised on their topic choices (Hollywood stars, 18th Georgian England, and assorted political/historical topics). Aside from a lecture on Columbus none of these lectures had any connection to our itinerary, unlike our summer Arctic cruise where we had nature and maritime history lectures that fit the bill. The entertainment on board such a small ship is limited because of facilities. We had a few musicians who played at tea time and there were two scheduled shows in the evening, none of which I attended as they were so late. The cabins had small televisions with terrible speakers; it was so difficult to hear without turning up the sound but then you worried about disturbing your neighbors. Channels included BBC News, Sky News and an ITV station with an occasional show from some other mystery station. There were also two movie channels but the Daily Times often had errors in the schedule so I often found I missed a movie I wanted to see. And I really question the movie selection on this sailing as there were a large number of very old movies while the newer movies tended to be about aliens and/or Marvel comic heroes—not really of interest to the older passengers. Again this differed from the Black Watch cruise on which we had some really good recent movie selections. Service is one area in which Fred Olsen really stands out from many other cruise lines. The majority of their staff has been with the company for many years and has the most amazing ability to remember passengers’ names and preferences-even passengers who have sailed with them before. My cabin attendant was a very sweet and quiet young woman who kept my cabin spotlessly clean and had no difficulty with my requests upon arrival to remove several items from the cabin to reduce clutter/improve storage space. When I mentioned to one of the ship’s photographers that Cape Verde would be my 100th foreign country visited, he made a special effort to follow me around that day to get pictures of me with the little sign I made for the occasion. And I cannot say enough good things about Hannah in the Shore Tours office. She was just great and the best provider of any information I needed while on board. Fred Olsen offers a good range of shore tours in ports and they are, in general, more reasonably priced compared to many other cruise lines. I booked tours in the all the ports and was only really disappointed in two of them--Mindelo (too many people booked for the accommodations) and Santa Cruz de Tenerife (poorly run tour). The one major negative aspect and one very frustrating for me is Fred Olsen’s refusal to provide specific port times in advance for any of its cruises. They provide only vague information such as “Early AM arrival” which can mean anything from 5 am to 9 am. Even if you ask for port times once on board, they refuse to provide them until they appear in the Daily Times the night before saying “things can change”. What good is that? It’s too late to make any adjustments to shore tour bookings or make any independent arrangements. And in the case of this cruise, twice the “Early AM” information was not correct. Our “Early AM” arrival in Lisbon turned out to be planned for 12 noon. I’ve sailed with nine other cruise lines, both British and American, and they have all provided ports times at the time of booking. Cruise companies have to pre-book specific times with the port authorities and with their on-shore tour companies so they do know the times in advance. And, sure, anyone who has sailed before knows that occasionally sea conditions, port staffing issues, or medical emergencies, etc. can cause a change in port times, but at least you do get to plan your port time in advance. I will say the frustration with this lack of information was the one reason that kept me from booking a future cruise deposit with them while on board. Disembarkation at Liverpool went very quickly and smoothly. Breakfast was served starting at 6:30 am and we were told to be out of our cabins by 8 am. We docked at 7 am and disembarkation began about 7:45 am once luggage had been off-loaded. As usual those guests in the upper deck suites and balcony cabins were called first followed by the other decks downward. This is another advantage of sailing on a smaller ship as the luggage was easy to find in the terminal and the cue for taxis outside was almost non-existent. I was off the ship, in a taxi, and at my hotel by 8:45 am. Although I’ve pointed out a number of negatives on this Canary Island/Cape Verde cruise on the Boudicca, in particular in comparison to the wonderful Arctic cruise on the Black Watch this past summer, I still believe that the Fred Olsen cruise line is a good company to sail with. Their smaller ships and level of personal service really make them stand out from the crowd. And what, to me, is the truly outstanding feature is the people—you really feel you have become a resident in a wonderfully charming English village with all the marvelous characters one might encounter there. Passengers are very friendly and really care for one another. Even though I’m an American, my mother was English so I feel a part of that heritage. I never had a chance to meet my English grandparents but talking to one retired Cumbrian railroader at early morning coffee with his crazy stories made me feel as if I’ve “found” my grandfather, whom I was told was himself a great story teller. Helping my elderly neighbor up a steep ramp or the memory-challenged gentleman across the hall locate his cabin upon occasion or getting an invitation to stay at their home from the charming couple I met at breakfast—these were all wonderful connections, the type of connections I’ve rarely found on any other cruise ship except perhaps on Swan Hellenic, another small ship British company. So, yes, I expect to be back again on Fred Olsen; I just beg their home office to reconsider providing passengers with port times in advance and please let Americans book directly with your office. Read Less
Boudicca Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.8
Dining 4.0 4.2
Entertainment 3.0 3.6
Public Rooms 3.0 3.9
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.6
Family 1.0 3.6
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 3.6
Service 4.0 4.4
Value For Money 5.0 3.8
Rates 5.0 3.8

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