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540 Cunard Queen Elizabeth Cruise Reviews

We chose Cunard because we wanted a classic cruise experience, a formal atmosphere, and an excellent itinerary. Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth took us above the Arctic Circle in absolute style. Embarkation was easy and we were on the ship ... Read More
We chose Cunard because we wanted a classic cruise experience, a formal atmosphere, and an excellent itinerary. Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth took us above the Arctic Circle in absolute style. Embarkation was easy and we were on the ship in a timely manner. We loved our forward balcony cabin (but we choose forward because we love ship movement when we sleep). The stateroom was beautiful and our steward was excellent. I cannot say enough about how much we liked our forward balcony. We participated in fencing classes, which we loved. We also thought the history lectures were outstanding. They enhanced our experience so much. The ship is gorgeous and serene, just what we wanted. It was peaceful and lovely. The Britannia main dining room was very delicious at dinner. We had a wonderful sommelier and good wait staff. Only one time did we receive an item of food that was not to our taste, but it was quickly replaced with a delicious option. Most of the drinks options were outstanding, in our opinion. Some people complain about the cost of drinks on here... but we found them well crafted and interesting. The MARY ROSE in the Midships Lounge is a truly lovely drink. We also loved the atmosphere and view in the Commodore Club. The aft deck drinks menu is fun for sailaways. The only drinks we were disappointed in was the regular complimentary coffee. For such a beautiful cruise, the complimentary coffee is not great. (It should be better, honestly) We ended up buying some specialty coffees at Cafe Carinthia, which were lovely- but for those is us who like coffee (coffee snobs) the regular coffee should be improved. We were also not overly impressed with the Lido buffet. The food was fast and convenient, especially for breakfast... but we have experienced better buffets on other lines in design and in taste. It is another area that could be improved in our opinion. The only other gripe we had with Cunard is internet. The internet needs to be brought to modern cruise standards. If the other lines can do so well with unlimited plans, so can Cunard. Many cruise passengers must use internet to keep in touch with family and with their business dealings. Back to wonderful comments... Our itinerary with Cunard to Norway was amazing, the nature was breathtaking, and our experience above the Arctic Circle was magical. Most of the ports we chose to independently rent cars, use public transportation, or hike. We did take two Cunard sponsored excursions, though... and both tours were well worth it. (It must be noted that this is our second trip to Norway- with the first being a land trip... we were prepared to drive in Norway since we did it before- which can be challenging.) We enjoyed the special guest entertainment brought into the theatre and the live musicians around the ship very much. Overall, Cunard was fantastic. I would absolutely take another cruise with them. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We are regular Cunard cruisers and found our Baltic cruise over the last couple of weeks disappointing. Cabin standards and food up to scratch but the entertainment programme left something to be desired. No sign of a Cunard singers ... Read More
We are regular Cunard cruisers and found our Baltic cruise over the last couple of weeks disappointing. Cabin standards and food up to scratch but the entertainment programme left something to be desired. No sign of a Cunard singers & dancers show in the first week and only two shows in the second. We were told the company only boarded with us at Southampton and had to rehearse in the theatre. Sadly their first show looked like they were still rehearsing and some of they costumes looked cheap. Second show was much improved. We didn't appreciate the use of individual artists twice. If you didn't like them the first time you missed another night when they were put on a second time! The speakers programme was also thin, we'd seen a couple of them last year on previous cruises, one speaker had 5 slots in two weeks and on a couple of sea day there wasn't much to choose from. We found ourselves wandering around looking for things to do, which we've never had before. We were also disappointed in the change of the Verandah restaurant to a steakhouse. Although the steaks were fabulous, the sense of a special occasion was lacking without all the additional touches such as 'amuse bouche' between courses and dramatic serving glasses. It also felt that several of the waiting staff were also finding their feet. Hopefully just a blip but can't help feeling costs and corners are being cut. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
My husband and I have completed several cruises over the past ten years. To celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary we decided to visit the Baltics. This was actually a 14 night cruise and we enjoyed every minute. The cruise ship is ... Read More
My husband and I have completed several cruises over the past ten years. To celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary we decided to visit the Baltics. This was actually a 14 night cruise and we enjoyed every minute. The cruise ship is spotlessly clean and very comfortable. The service is exceptional. The very vast majority of staff go out of their way to make you feel welcome. Food in the Brittania restaurant was delicious. We did eat in the Lido some evenings and that was good, although not quite as good! We were incredibly lucky with the weather on this voyage which certainly helps. That said, the ports of call in Denmark, Russia, Finland, Sweden and Germany were all wonderful. Our cabin was on Deck 8 Aft. We like the location near to the Aft stairwell and we would choose this location and deck again. Our cabin was comfortable and our steward was always happy to help us. Entertainment on this cruise wasn't quite as good as we have known it to be before but that might be down to personal taste. We enjoyed the shows and musicians.Guest speakers were interesting and the Celebrity Speaker, John Peters, was completely inspiring. There is so much to love about cruising with Cunard. We'll be back! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Embarkation - went quickly and smoothly, we had no problem with the alcohol we were brining on board at all - a box of wine, several bottles of wine and many mall bottles of gin, rum and port. At ports we had no problem bringing tonics ... Read More
Embarkation - went quickly and smoothly, we had no problem with the alcohol we were brining on board at all - a box of wine, several bottles of wine and many mall bottles of gin, rum and port. At ports we had no problem bringing tonics and coke on board as our mixers. We have never sailed Cunard before, previously only sailing on more casual cruise ships, so were somewhat apprehensive about the dress code. Dress Code - The apprehension was missplaced completely. In the two week cruise there were 3 ball nights, and we knew the ladies and gents dress codes for them. Apart from that, if you were going to eat in the main Brittania restaurant men had to wear trousers, jacket and shirt (no tie necessary) and ladies normal smart going out clothes. If you wanted to wear jeans and t-shirt and stay completely casual, you could eat in the Lido buffet and drink in the Golden Lion pub, but could not go to the ball room, other bars, the main Brittania restaurant or the theatre. Some nights we stayed completely casual. Staff customer service - staff always had a smile and a 'good morning/afternoon/evening' whenever they walked past you or dealt with you. We had an enquiry at embarkation when a case was missing. The customer service team where friendly and helpful, finding the case within 10 minutes. Our cabin steward was friendly and welcoming, keeping our cabin immaculate and was always able to bring additional towels or other items we wanted without delay. Other facilities - there was access to several lauderies on the ship, and these were free!! This included the washing powder as well. The laundry included washers, dryers, washing sink, iron and ironing board. An invaluable resource on a cruise of 14 nights. State of the ship - the ship was kept spotless and any faults seemed to be sorted quickly - there was some water ingress in the ceiling of the central buffet area in the Lido. When in port the ship looked stunning and traditional in comparison to other cruise ships. The decor of the ship is art deco, with lovely wood panelled interiors and themed art work for each stair well. Food - there was excellent choice in the Lido buffet most of the time, ranging from early breakfast, main breakfast, snacks, lunch, afternoon tea, early main tea, later main tea, to later evening snacks (till 1.30am). There was shortages of some items, such as the clotted cream for the afternoon tea, hot chocolate drinks, earl grey teabags etc during the last few days - The main Brittania restaurant, we were on early sitting at 6.00pm, also had at least 4 - 6 choices for starter, main and dessert. On one occasion my daughter and I could not decide which dessert we wanted, and then asked if we could order two each - no problem at all. You left the restaurant feeling pleasently full but not stuffed. - There were snack options during the day available in the Cafe Carinthia. Lunch and dinner were also available in the Golden Lion Pub, we enjoyed Friday fish and chips at lunch time here. Waiter served afternoon tea was available on sea days in the Queends Room, this is not to be missed as the sandwich and cake selection is extremely appetising. We also use the Lido grill, deck 9 stern, at lunch time for fish, burgers and chips etc. - We did not try any of the paid restaurants and were not grills passengers. Room Service - On some mornings, and one evening, we chose to have breakfast and dinner in our cabin. It was such a treat being able to be served just what you wanted for breakfast rather than get up and queue up. The evening menu was not as varied, burgers and pizzas mainly. The room service menu was included in the cruise and not an additional extra, which was very good. Drinks - the bars and deck bars were all welcoming and very good, and we did treat ourselves to an occasional glass of wine with dinner, cocktail at sail away, or cider/beer in the evening or day time. The only issue, is that with the value of the pound to the dollar the cost of drinks is very expensive, especially if you are from the north east of England! If we had not brought our own wine, gins, rums and ports on board, plus mixers, it would have been a somewhat dry cruise! Entertainment - the theatre was exceptional, with proper theatre tiered seating, boxes and an exceptional theatre orchestra!! The ships crew were good (but not exceptional) in the two shows we saw them do. We also saw The Opera Boys both times they performed, they were brilliant. We say a violinist once, she was excellent. There was also a pianist/commedian, Jon Courtenay for the last nights of the cruise who was extremely good. The ball room/Queens Room was a bit of a let down as it was almost like a corridor between the front and back of the ship to one side separating the seating, and there was not enough seating for the passengers who wanted to enjoy the dancing most evenings. There was a ball room orchestra as well, who were also excellent. We did attend some dancing classes during the day and put our steps into practice in the evening when we could. There are some very serious dancers on board, so it did make it a bit awkward for novice dancers if they felt they were getting in the way. Other entertainment we enjoyed was the band Next Steps, both on sailaway celebrations and at the Yacht Club. Also, most evenings, we attended, and enjoyed, quizes in the Garden Lounge and later in the Golden Lion pub - we even won the Husband and Wife quiz in the Golden Lion. As you wandered around the ship in the evening there were other muscians and ensembles to enjoy listening to, such as pianist Andy Law in the Golden Lion, who could play/sing anything. Sea days - My daughter and husband thoroughly enjoyed the talks by Robin Scagett, about astronomy, space and time - my daughter, as a primary teacher she took a lot away from those talks. My daughter and I both enjoyed the inspiring John Peters talk and question/answer session. There was another speaker throughout the cruise, but we did not attend his talks. I went to the beginners bridge classes with Chris Jarosz, which was pitched at the right level. I attended on my own and that was a slight problem as many others attended as a couple, but Chris found solutions to this. I certainly hope to continue to learn bridge. Otherwise, I loved the afternoon social craft group in the Garden Lounge. I did also treat myself to an afternoon in the spa pool, warm loungers and steam rooms but I did not have any spa treatments. My husband attended the ships choir, who gave a wonderful performance on the last sea day. He made many friends through this group. I would say that all but one of the passengers we encountered, or met through groups, were lovely, engaging and warm people and came from all over the world. Aside from what we did, there was a wealth of activities to enjoy on sea days, outside there was a full bowling green and other outdoor sports, plus two swimming pools and 4 bubble pools. Indoors, there were card tables, board games, puzzles and puzzle tables, and a two story library that gave out daily quizes, cross words and sudoko. If you just wanted to relax, there were lots of indoor and outdoor quite areas to relax, read and sleep. Disembarkation - we were going to take our own luggage off, but a very experienced cruiser said to put it out, and explained that at the port luggage was arranged by deck number. She said that you could take yourself off at your own convenience rather than follow the instructions if you wanted to make an early get away - we had a long drive back up north, so got off at 9.00am, and collected our luggage very easily ready for the pre booked taxi back to collect our car from the hotel. Overall, we would definately cruise with Cunard again. A thoroughly enjoyable cruise with excellent choice of activities, ports that we wanted to visit and the chance to meet some fantastic people. Our party only did one shore excursion, my daughter and our friend did the segway in Copenhagen and thoroughly enjoyed it. It was $99, which I could have booked on my own for about $79, but not for the times that were best for our days plans. As my daughter and our friend were novice cruisers we felt better leaving them in the care of the excursion team. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Having cruised with Princess previously due to work commitments and a desire to cruise the Baltic we chose Cunard. Booked through Igloo cruises and will do so again, very helpful and good deal. Paid over 6 months with all trips included. ... Read More
Having cruised with Princess previously due to work commitments and a desire to cruise the Baltic we chose Cunard. Booked through Igloo cruises and will do so again, very helpful and good deal. Paid over 6 months with all trips included. Booked a balcony room and table for two in the main restaurant. So far so good. Embarkation was smooth and swift, staff helpful and friendly - We scored big time with the cabin. Due to the lines of the ship we had a balcony on the curve of the ships side giving us an extra third floor space of both the room and the balcony !! result. We didn't get our choice of dining table, but were aware that it was subject to availability so no big deal. We ate in the buffet at sea, and the dining room alongside. Best of both worlds.. Grub was of the standard expected. As i'm sure most passengers do, we smuggled a tot or 7 on board ! Just as well the bar prices were eye watering !! I'm used to cruise ship prices and the 15% but Cunard you are taking the micky................... Entertainment was brilliant, sorry cant remember their names but both piano playing comedians................Brilliantly funny. Also speakers on military music and astronomy equally as enthralling. The critic who mentioned the zimmer frame is an idiot. Haven't mentioned the ship itself - Dated, Rusty and in places dirty. Bit like the passengers. Would I sail again with Cunard ? Only if Princess weren't going were I wanted to go. Both my wife and I agreed the staff were a bit aloof - Just Saying !! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Into each life some rain must fall and in my case it came in the form of a bucketful delivered on Day 12 of the cruise. But before sharing the details, let me say that cruises don’t get much better than this: the best European itinerary ... Read More
Into each life some rain must fall and in my case it came in the form of a bucketful delivered on Day 12 of the cruise. But before sharing the details, let me say that cruises don’t get much better than this: the best European itinerary enjoyed from the luxury and comfort of Cunard Queen Elizabeth. My first sea cruise was to the Baltic and it remains a favourite. Every port offers such tantalising glimpses into the history of northern Europe and however many times you return, there is always something new to discover. If you’ve yet to do a Baltic cruise, I urge you to book one. In Stockholm the beauty of Gamla Stan (the old town) contrasts with the grandness of Royal palaces, in Copenhagen Christiansborg Palace offers rich history whilst the Abba museum offers history of a different sort – not just the chance to thank Abba for the music but also to join in with their songs. St Petersburg, rightly known as the Venice of the North with its network of canals and bridges, provides access to the largest art collections in the world – it would take a lifetime to view every exhibit in the Hermitage – whilst the views from a river cruise bring to life the chronology of the 1917 Russian revolution and the fall of the Tsarist monarchy. Then there is Helsinki, its stern beauty underlining for me by grey skies and early morning rain. Very different is sunny Warnemünde, a pretty seaside town of tree-lined streets and colourful window boxes. Expressionist painter Edvard Munch lived here but for most visitors the main attraction is the friendly cafés and bars along the Alter Strom canal, a five-minute walk from the berth. After days ashore there is much to do on board Queen Elizabeth. On sea days guest speakers cover a range of topics. Lt Colonel Graham Jones, music director for different regimental bands including the Coldstream Guards, attracted good audiences. He was a natural speaker and his stories about rehearsing for great state occasions such as the Trooping of the Colour were witty and laced with stirring musical pieces. The Clarendon Fine Art gallery on Deck 3 was a popular destination, with a varied range of original art work exhibited. Consultants David and Rachel shared their enthusiasm and made sure there was always something new to see. Towards the end of the cruise contemporary wildlife artist Colin Banks came on board to give a painting demonstration; his creation of a lion’s face was awesome and we peppered him with questions as he worked. Elsewhere on other decks there were ice carving displays, wine tastings, quizzes, bridge classes, croquet, the lot – and because the weather was so warm and sunny, plenty of time to relax on the sun decks as well. With my interest in painting I found the art classes led by Penny Wilton good fun. During the cruise she taught us different techniques and we completed pictures inspired by the ports we visited, like the Little Mermaid of Copenhagen and the lighthouse at Warnemünde. Each evening the Royal Court theatre was packed. John Martin, a Liverpudlian comic delivered two shows of non-stop jokes and anecdotes. His style reminded me of Ken Dodd in his heyday and so it came as no surprise to learn that John not only sold jokes to the King of Knotty Ash but was also a pallbearer at his funeral. On three evenings the Royal Court Theatre Company presented shows of music and dance with great energy. This was their first contract and they performed brilliantly together, ably supported by the ship’s orchestra. Less impressive for me was the Royal Arcade of shops. Yes, the range of goods is now more extensive and includes top-end brands such as Dunhill, Rolex and Montblanc, but I expect a sales team to have some knowledge about their products. With a generous amount of onboard credit to spend I found myself looking at a Montblanc pencil with a price tag high enough to make my eyes water. How disappointing to find that the sales assistant was unable to explain its features! Better by far was the team who came on board to share their knowledge and enthusiasm for Russian lacquered boxes. Service across the ship was memorable for all the right reasons . . . Ranji in Security for his cheerful welcome whenever returning after a day ashore, Ash in Mareel Spa for a great haircut mixed with good conversation (prices can sometimes be discounted on port days) and Gilda, my cabin steward, for ensuring my home on Deck 2 was maintained perfectly. In the Britannia restaurant, waiters Cleford and Angelo made every dinner special with their friendly manner and insights into the different menu choices. The quality of the food was first class and hot courses arrived at the table piping hot. The beef Wellington was moist and tender and a grilled turbot fillet I had on another evening was packed with flavour. A highlight every day was afternoon tea at 3.30. In the elegant Queens Room, white-gloved waiters serve finger sandwiches, cakes and scones and it is best to arrive early to avoid queuing. I loved the atmosphere but just as good, if not better, was the self-service tea in the Lido on Deck 9. Trays of warm scones are temptation enough but piled high next to them are tubs of clotted cream. Yes, an entire tub to yourself! What a good job I managed to visit the gym most days! But what happened on Day 12? Well, those gorgeous teatime tubs vanished to be replaced with whipped cream! Cunard’s commitment to reducing the use of plastics means that tubs are no longer acceptable. However, all is not lost. I was assured that clotted cream will continue to be served – not in tubs but as individual servings. What a relief - the world is saved, and so is my favourite Cornish cream. 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Sail Date August 2019
This was our first Cunard cruise, having been on more than 10 cruises with Celebrity and Princess. The Cunard cache lured us into trying them. We were impressed by the Princes grill, we liked the restaurant and private decks available to ... Read More
This was our first Cunard cruise, having been on more than 10 cruises with Celebrity and Princess. The Cunard cache lured us into trying them. We were impressed by the Princes grill, we liked the restaurant and private decks available to us.Service in these areas was very good. There was no need to reserve sunbeds which was great. We noticed that the overall condition of the Queen Elizabeth was a little worn, common areas were showing their age. Entertainment was way below our expectations and didn't really compare with the 'Cirque du Soleil" style offerings put on by Celebrity. In fact, this was the first cruise we have been on that actually repeated shows throughout the week. The stops on the cruise were generally good, especially St Petersburgh. There seemed little point in visiting Skagen, (Denmark) yet NOT visiting either Tallinn or Riga. I would suggest a substitution here. We booked private tours of St Petersburg in advance which worked really well ( recommended!) All this said, we were very disappointed by the cleanliness in our stateroom. A more detailed review is under the Cabin section below. It seemed that the workload was just too much for the cabin staff to manage when compared with other cruise lines we've been on. No excuse for Moldy tiles and blood stained towels Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Just wanted to experience a (mini)cruise to see what it would be like and if it would suit us (myself and my wife) for a future trip. We found the Queen Elizabeth a great fun experience! The meals were excellent quality, not oversized, ... Read More
Just wanted to experience a (mini)cruise to see what it would be like and if it would suit us (myself and my wife) for a future trip. We found the Queen Elizabeth a great fun experience! The meals were excellent quality, not oversized, and appeared to be nutritious (ie not rubbish American style food - fruit and veggies were included). We travel (sometimes up to 3 months per year) and eat out a lot and to us the service was excellent. The only other cruise we have done is a Ponant Antarctica cruise with 200 passengers and I found it interesting/amazing that it didn’t appear to be to different (ie. overcrowded) on this ship with 2000 passengers. The entertainment varied from having some excellent musicians (ex Moody Blues, Cliff Richard backing band members, etc ( they were great!) to having terrible dancer/Caberet acts (same as on the Ponant cruise!) but that’s just our preferences. The ship couldn’t stop at Guernsey because it was to rough to disembark passengers (disappointing) but they went to LeHavre instead and we went to HonFleur nearby which was lovely. For us we did conclude that touring by cruise ship was probably not for us as you could not get to really know a place you visited (like we would want to) because of lack of time but as a self contained experience a mini cruise was a fun experience and we would be happy doing a transatlantic crossing on one of these Cunard ships which is what we tried to do in the first place but we couldn’t fit it into our timetable. We would recommend a mini cruise as a fun experience. Whether you would want to tour on cruise ship (ie use a cruise to visit different places) depends on how you want to travel. We had fun on Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth . Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We had not previously been on an ocean cruise, but for our 50th wedding anniversary we wanted to treat ourselves to something special. So we booked a 15-night New York to Southampton cruise with stops in Canada, Iceland, Scotland and ... Read More
We had not previously been on an ocean cruise, but for our 50th wedding anniversary we wanted to treat ourselves to something special. So we booked a 15-night New York to Southampton cruise with stops in Canada, Iceland, Scotland and Ireland. It was a world away from our usual quiet life in rural Tasmania, but we had high hopes that the Queen Elizabeth would give us a truly memorable cruising experience, and we were not disappointed. Check-in: We boarded at the Manhattan cruise terminal which was easily accessible from our central NY hotel. Our cruise was the final leg of a much longer itinerary that had started in Vancouver, so this was not a full change-over day for the ship. Consequently there were only a few other passengers arriving at the same time, and the whole process was quick and easy with no queuing. We had been given a 12.30 check-in time and within 20 minutes we were in our cabin with luggage already delivered. It probably doesn't get any better than that; our holiday was already off to a perfect start. Cabin: We had dug deep for our anniversary treat and booked a Q4 Penthouse midships on deck 7. This was truly wonderful; a large and well appointed room with plenty of space to relax both inside and out on the balcony, a walk-in wardrobe with more than enough hanging space for 15 evenings of dress-up finery, a huge comfortable bed, and a bathroom with shower, deep spa bath and separate toilet. Nothing about the room was a disappointment, and the experience was made extra special by the butler Manny and his team. They were incredibly attentive with the room fully cleaned while we were at breakfast, everything restocked including the complimentary bar, fruit and flowers replaced regularly, canapes delivered each afternoon, and refresh/turn-down every evening while we had dinner. One of the really nice Cunard touches is that the staff know you by name and make a genuine effort to remember and deliver on your personal preferences. Meals: We ate mostly in the Queens Grill restaurant but also tried a couple of pub lunches after days ashore, and had room service occasionally. All were good, but the Queens Grill is exceptional for both the food/drink and for the service. It is a relatively small restaurant, less than 100 guests, and because you can eat at the time that suits you (for example, arrive for dinner anytime between 6.30pm and 9pm) it never seemed overly busy or crowded. There was really nothing that we could say to fault this restaurant; the range and quality of food was outstanding, plus a dedicated chef would try to produce anything off-menu if given a few hours notice and if they had the ingredients onboard. We asked for rabbit pie one evening which really wasn't much of a challenge for the chef but was duly produced and served at our table with theatrical panache. The Queens Grill provides a very sophisticated and indulgent silver-service atmosphere, part of the overall Cunard theme of reprising the 1940s/50s heyday of transatlantic voyages. In keeping with this, most Grills guests dressed “smart casual” for breakfast and lunch, then everyone dressed more formally for the evenings in keeping with the designated dress code of the day. Activities: During sea days there was always plenty to do onboard, both for organised activities or do your own thing. You can be as active or inactive as you like. We really enjoyed the outdoor games areas with quoits, croquet, carpet bowls, shuffleboard and paddle tennis, plus swimming and table tennis. Entertainment: The main entertainments included a classical concert most afternoons and then ballroom dancing and 2 theatre performances each evening. We found the shows to be mostly of an okay standard; enjoyable, glitzy and good enough for free onboard entertainment but not really outstanding. The theatre has a number of private 2-person boxes which can be reserved at an extra cost with champagne and nibbles on some evenings but are otherwise available freely to anyone who arrives early. Stewards are on hand to bring drinks. All passengers are expected to respect the after-6pm dress code in the theatre and ballroom. Final reflections: We researched Cunard here on Cruise Critic and elsewhere before deciding that they were likely met our needs. We were aware that a number of reviewers have not been happy with their Cunard experience but this often seems to be related to differing expectations of the type of cruise that these three “Queens” offer. This is not a party boat, and not primarily targeted to families and other younger cruisers although there are some facilities for children. The target market is very clearly aimed at a generally older group who enjoy a slower and more genteel pace of life. Other frequent criticisms of Cunard seem to focus on the so-called “class” system, the after-6pm dress code, and the price of drinks. In our experience this “class” distinction is really a non-issue; it's no different from most airlines where you can book economy and get a good service or book a more expensive seat that gives you perks like shorter queues at the airport, more personal space on the flight and a larger choice of meals. It's a choice for everyone to make, unlike a real class system in which there is usually no choice. The after-6pm dress code seems to annoy some people but in our view is central to understanding what Cunard is offering its passengers. Things like the flamboyant art-deco style throughout the ship, the white-gloved waiters, the traditional afternoon teas, the ballroom dancing, the silver-service ambience in the main restaurants, are all designed to create an evening atmosphere of old-world elegance, charm and sophistication. The ship and the crew deliver on this, and the passengers are also expected to deliver. The entire Cunard cruise is a piece of theatre in which passengers live the retro experience of an age when good manners and gracious living were valued. Nobody is forced to dress formally – there are areas of the ship that are more relaxed – but clearly for the vast majority of passengers the evening elegance is an important part of what makes the cruise special. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Would we go again on Cunard's Queen Elizabeth ? Absolutely. This was a late July east-bound transatlantic cruise with stops in Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Iceland, Scotland, Dublin and finally Southampton. We were generally blessed ... Read More
Would we go again on Cunard's Queen Elizabeth ? Absolutely. This was a late July east-bound transatlantic cruise with stops in Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Iceland, Scotland, Dublin and finally Southampton. We were generally blessed with fine weather and calm seas; there was some movement on the north Atlantic but not enough to bother most people. Try to get your stateroom as close to the middle of the ship and as low as possible; it will minimize the rock-and-roll if there is any. Embarkation from Manhattan Terminal was perfect. From street to stateroom in 30 minutes. The ship is very elegant as others have said. it is sparkling in its art-deco appearance and it is very well-maintained, inside and out. Painting and maintenance are ongoing when we were at port. It is the very model of an elegant luxury cruise ship. We had 4 formal nights on the 15 day cruise; men in dark suits or tuxedos; women in gowns or smart cocktail dresses. Casual during the day but formal at night; it was not mandatory but for those not dressed up they had special dining locations those evenings. After the 3rd night I could get into my tux in 10 minutes, much faster than the first night. It was a chore the first night but it was special to dress up on this elegant ship. It takes a day or two to discover all the places on the ship and I'm sure I missed some. There are many public spaces where you can relax and read; many bars and cafes throughout the ship. Overall you get both a big but also intimate feeling on this ship. The library was very impressive; two stories with dark wood furnishings. My wife and I reserved the Queen's Grill Suite (Q4) Room 7088. On the QE there are 3 passenger classes: Britannia, Princess Grill and Queen's Grill. If it were a plane, Britannia would be economy, PG would be business and QG would be first-class. There is also Britannia Club which is a step above Britannia. The PG and QG restaurants are two, separate but similar restaurants on Deck 11 with similar menus and service. It is hard to tell the difference. They share a common lounge between the restaurants for PG and QG passengers. Apart from that, the rest of the ship is available to everyone. The PG and QG meals are served in their respective restaurants, including afternoon tea. For Britannia class, there is a large impressive restaurant in the aft of the ship; afternoon tea is served in the Queen's Room which is also the dance floor. The staterooms are of course larger for the QG than for the PG than for Britannia. Overall I think the QG is not that much different than PG. Service and attentiveness was very good. The big difference for the Grills is that you can have dinner anytime after 6 pm. For Britannia there is an early and late seating. We found the flexibility of the QG/PG to be very convenient. There are a mix of 2-tables, 4-tables, and 8-table sizes. My wife and I enjoyed our dinner mates very much at the 8-table size and we became friends. Food was very good but not great. The Verandah ($39 supplement) had much better steaks than at the QG; our dinnermates and we decided to go down there one night just to get something different and we all agreed that V was much better. Of course not everyone wants to pay a supplement for dinner when they have already paid for the cruise which could explain why the Verandah was not very busy. But it was worth it for the food. Age group was mainly in the 65+ crowd although there were some people in their 30s and 40s with children (ages 6-10) but this younger group was less than 10% of the passengers. Most were from UK, US, Australia, New Zealand. With QG there is refreshed wine and liquors in your stateroom each night, as well as refilled min-fridge at no charge. An Illy coffeemaker with refreshed tea, creamer, and coffee is provided. As well as evening canapes. This is in QG. Certainly nice touches but I think you could scrape by on PG or Britannia depending on what you are looking for. Activities on the ship were fine with lectures and high production value shows every night at 8:30 and 10:30 each night. Lectures on Broadway, Weather Prediction, Space Exploration, the upcoming ports were very good. The port excursions were generally well-organized and interesting. They are not inexpensive! And you may be able to find better value with some planning. But be sure to return to the ship on time! There are a few washing machines and dryers on each deck but not anywhere enough, so there was jockeying and some harsh words in the competition for them. Better to do your own delicates and send out the rest to the ship laundry which has a charge. I agree with others about the atrocious internet. Slow to connect, slow to use, and slow to disconnect. At $45 for 2 hours, Cunard probably makes as much on the internet as the cruise! You can't just shut off the computer because your account is still open until you sign off which was so slow I didn't know if I signed of at all. I had to call the purser every time to make sure they signed me off. Fortunately the long-suffering IT guy gave me back 45 minutes which was spent trying to get on and off the service. Befoe leaving home,sign on with your local wireless provider to use the port-days with discounted International Roaming. It is much faster and less expensive. Disembarkation was also perfect.Remember to leave some day clothes out before you go to sleep on the last night. Your luggage will be off the ship overnight so make sure you have something to wear on the last morning! We had a great time and we would do it again although we might try PG or Britannia Club for comparable value since 90% of the rest of the ship and activities are open to everyone. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We sailed on the Queen Elizabeth in late July on a 15 night North Atlantic crossing.. The ship was built in 2010 and is the sister ship of the older Queen victoria. Both ships are Vista Class ships. Carnival Corporation, Cunards mother ... Read More
We sailed on the Queen Elizabeth in late July on a 15 night North Atlantic crossing.. The ship was built in 2010 and is the sister ship of the older Queen victoria. Both ships are Vista Class ships. Carnival Corporation, Cunards mother company, built a number of these vista class ships for its various fleets and aside from the two Cunard ships,a good number were built for Holland America, Costa and P&O, Having previously sailed on Holland America's Niew Amsterdam and Eurodam, I felt very much at home with the general layout of the Queen Elizabeth. However, by comparison, I found the Holland America ships to be far superior in many ways to the Queen Elizabeth: 1) Contrary to other Carnival owned cruise lines, Cunard ships have three distinct classes of guest accomodations: the Grill, the Britannia Club and the Britannia. Both the Grill and the Britannia Club passengers enjoy exclusive restaurants with the Grill passengers also enjoying indour and outdour exclusive areas. As a result. there is obviously less additional common areas to be enjoyed by Britannia class passengers. There is only one specialty restaurant available to all passengers ($40 per person). 2) Although the food quality is comparable to that found on Celebrity and Holland America ships, the service, especially in the Lido buffet restaurant leaves much to be desired. For instance, at breakfast, there is no coffee or juice service at the table and the coffee in the large coffee machines is constantly being re-heated leaving a bitter taste. Also, there is not enough personel cleaning and setting tables in the Lido (I presume this would not the case in Grill and Britannia Club restaurants). 3) Although the Queen Elizabeth is the more recent version of Vista Class ships, it lacks certain characteristics of older Vista class sister ships; There is no retractable roof over the pool (a must for transatlantic passages) nor are there automatic sensor doors to the rear and central parts of the ship which I found annoying when attempting to open doors with a drink and plate in hand. 4) The internet is terrible. If you are paying a premium price for an internet package you should not experience sporadic reception and you should not expect to pay for the many minutes it takes to log in and log out. If you are into serious Ball Room dancing you will be vary happy. There were the same few dozen couples who regularly took part in dancing while the rest of us enjoyed their performance. I would estimate that the average age of passengers is around 75. The entertainment is geared to this age group with music of the 50's and 60's together with a dose of Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole era songs. It felt like I was visiting a floating senior citizens residence. Cunard passengers are very loyal but I wonder how it will go about recruiting a younger generation of passengers. Cunard should be commended for the quality of guest speakers and the range of topics is excellent. If I do take another Cunard cruise it would be for the destination and not the ship. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose this cruise to celebrate my partner's birthday with a transatlantic crossing that included many destinations on our bucket list. We have been on other cruises in the Mediterranean and also South America - they were fabulous ... Read More
We chose this cruise to celebrate my partner's birthday with a transatlantic crossing that included many destinations on our bucket list. We have been on other cruises in the Mediterranean and also South America - they were fabulous experiences that cemented our enjoyment of cruising. What we didn't know was that Cunard really only cater for people over 70. For people in this age category the cruise would have been a wonderful experience. All activities, meals, shows, events, excursions cater for this group. Even the entertainment coordinator was bland. The comedy shows were by people from the 60's and 70's where racist and sexist jokes were the norm. Sadly these acts hadn't changed their material. The only activities appeared to be quizzes or card games or ballroom dancing. There were no live bands playing popular music, sing alongs around the piano bar, live music and comedy shows around the pool. Frankly it was boring. The internet is also the slowest that we have ever experienced on a cruise ship. When on board we also found that for people who booked in Australia the cruise was for 15 days, whereas those from the UK had 18 days which included the Guernsey. Both were the same price! Not sure why Australians were given a different deal. Cunard also doesn't seem to care if people complain as they do not respond promptly if at all. Very disappointed. Perhaps when I am 80 I may consider another cruise with Cunard. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
I was on a Mediterranean cruise in 2015 on the Queen Victoria. That was my first Cunard experience. It has spoiled me forever now. I have been on two other Ocean cruises with Crystal. Nothing to complain about on Crystal however they ... Read More
I was on a Mediterranean cruise in 2015 on the Queen Victoria. That was my first Cunard experience. It has spoiled me forever now. I have been on two other Ocean cruises with Crystal. Nothing to complain about on Crystal however they have changed there format since being purchased by Carnival and now are less formal and the dining was "freestyle". One of the reasons i chose Cunard was because i like the formal nights and the set dining. It is one of the best ways to meet people that may eventually become friends off ship. I departed from my home port which is located 4 blocks from my apartment so super easy. Embarkation was longer than i thought it would be but not irritating. Note to cruisers departing from Vancouver...its a lovely city please add two or three nights pre or post trip. The cabin i had was an inside so not much to say except it was very well appointed and was serviced professionally and serviced twice daily. I like the amenity products. Food was spectacular. Never a bad meal. I started to order in room service for breakfast after going to the Lido the first two mornings. Room service provided fresh and hot food on time as ordered. High tea is not to be missed. As Vancouver has very similar landscape to Alaska i booked this trip to relax on an elegant ship. Cunard delivers. I can literally go 40 minutes from my house in September to see 100+ eagles in a tree and feeding on Salmon so it was quite funny when on the excursion, everyone was ooing and awwing over one lone eagle in a tree almost too far away to make out. Very few children on board which is a plus. I would definately book another Cunard cruise but would not go to Alaska again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We live in Vancouver and one night after too much wine drinking the Cunard Ad for Queen Elizabeth is coming to Vancouver showed up on my Ipad. I remember checking the itinerary and was amazed that when it left Vancouver we could sail all ... Read More
We live in Vancouver and one night after too much wine drinking the Cunard Ad for Queen Elizabeth is coming to Vancouver showed up on my Ipad. I remember checking the itinerary and was amazed that when it left Vancouver we could sail all the way to NYC. This seemed like a very rare opportunity to come to New York the old fashioned way aboard a Cunard Liner and sail around the North American continent while doing so. I originally booked an ocean view in Britannia but the next morning when I realized what I had done I was a bit shocked at how much I had bit off. I also read some reviews and had some misgivings that I had booked us on an Old Geezer cruise. My wife and I talked it over and she said it doesnt matter what's going on onboard as we always do our own thing and we will have a great time no matter what. After a couple months went by I realized 24 days is a substantial cruise and with a Panama Canal transit I should have got a balcony. I phoned Cunard and the lady informed me that there was only one balcony cabin left so I grabbed it. It was right at the front with the full metal enclosure below the railing which worked out great as it had a steel reinforcing girt halfway down giving us an extra shelf for our feet and drinks when enjoying the view. Embarkation day came and I drove our luggage to Canada Place early in the am, this went very smoothly as they were surprisingly well organized and I would recommend this for Vancouver locals. We took the bus and Skytrain in the afternoon with just our hand luggage no problem. I followed the 3:00 pm schedule and was a bit dissapointed at how much running around and up and down between US customs and boarding lounge was involved, that could give some frailer passengers a good workout. We checked into our room and the luggage was there, all looked good except the old couch, I've seen better on our sidewalks on large item pickup day. No problem the drawers under the bed held extra Royal Blue throws which dressed that thing up quite nicely. The rest of the room was fine with us and our 2 large KLIM bags fit under the bed no problem, plenty of storage in the closets and drawers. There was a card from our room Steward Mike, we got to know him quite well over the weeks to come and he was awesome, always had a greeting and a smile on his face couldnt do enough for us 5 Stars for him! Time to explore the ship and with blue skys and sunshine it doesnt get any better for a Vancouver departure than than this. I wasnt expecting an awesome Rock Band but they had one playing on the rear pool deck, they also played in the Yacht club, I could tell we were in for a great cruise. This ship is beautiful and it had a very relaxing ambiance throughout, its not a floating amusement park. We had many meals in the Lido and contrary to other reviews found the tables got cleaned off promptly and some sections there do have at table coffee service. You have to pay attention to the meal times which are posted as different areas come available at different times of the day which can lead to a bit of confusion. We had a lot of fun in the Brittania dining room, Oscar and Neil were our waiters and the place would not have been the same without Paco the wine Sommelier, he got a lot of laughs from many tables. I actually got used to dressing up collecting ties and shirts along the way during shore excursions, the Maitre'd lent me one and tied it for me the first time. We got to try some exotic dishes like pigeon, pheasant, wild boar etc all perfectly done, it helped the waistline by eating many meals in here. The food in the Lido was great Frank the French Chef was in charge and he was a lot of fun especially in the Chef's competitions in the Queens room. We liked the variety and the specialty nights, Indian, Asian, German after the Costa Rica stop awesome Pineapple and fresh fruits came aboard. No complaints about the food at all it was excellent at all times! I really thought we would spend more time in the Golden Lion Pub, we mostly enjoyed lunches and beers but found ourselves too busy with other activities. We had a good time at the jewelry auction, its a great way to get all the free champagne you can drink and my wife came away with a lovely modestly priced ring she really loves. There is actually plenty of free liquor to be had if you go to the tastings and special events available, we downed some expensive brands without spending a nickel, check the daily itinerary. We found the drinks onboard to be reasonably priced not more than at a descent hotel and they serve chips and nuts at no charge along with them and the ambiance of the Commodore Club is fabulous. The High tea is quite an event at 3:30 daily, never expected to enjoy it as much as we did and we took part often, it was wonderful! The walk around deck is also very cool we did 5 rounds a day of speed walking which kept us in shape for the shore excurions. This deck also has the old fashioned wooden padded lounge chairs, great for relaxing on with a drink and a book. We got to know some of the onboard entertainment staff as they also helped out with the Tenders and Port excursions. The shows were great and very well done, different entertainers got on and off at different ports and they got a lot of standing ovations they were that good! The laundry was a bonus all free including detergent, I even learned how to iron my fancy shirts from the Australians, that was a hangout for them. I tried to book the shore excursions privately but found the Prices through Cunard were much better especially in Sanfransico, Cabo, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Panama and the Everglades. The highlight was the July 4th fireworks where we were back to back with Cunards old Lead Ship the Queen Mary in Long beach. Our room key gave us free passage and tours of this old ship, the Cunard exhibit onboard the Queen Mary is not to be missed. We enjoyed all of our shore excursions especially the Pamana Jungle river canoe trip to the Embera Indian village, it was awesome! The Panama Canal transit is quite spectacular, the ship is a Panamax size hull which fills the entire lock and we had access to all the foredecks etc. great experience! All the ports were great but you have to watch your boarding time, it was surprisingly difficult to find a Taxi in Ft. Lauderdale to take us back to the ship, get that Uber App! There is nothing like sailing under the Varrazano Bridge and by the Statue of Liberty at the crack of dawn and up the Hudson to dock at ancient pier 90 in Manhattan, it was a spectaular Cunard experience and they have been doing this for over 100 years. We thoroughly enjoyed this voyage, it was not a Geezer Cruise even though there were plenty of them aboard, everyone seemed to be having a great time. There are always a few grumps on a ship like this but that is on them. The staff were most kind and helpful, they seemed funloving and enjoyed the activities as much as we did. The only negative we found was some passengers had a cough or a cold and were coughing into their hands instead of their elbows or holding a napkin to cough into. I expected more from mature adults and even spoke to a lady who just seemed to be coughing into her hands and touching everything like she was deliberately spreading it around, she told me to leave her alone and go away. We were sick for a few days because of people like her, dont buy the meds at the ships store they are expensive. Go down to the medical clinic and ask for some cold meds, they cost us 68 cents per box best deal on the ship! Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We chose this cruise because it was a ten day round trip itinerary that left and returned to Vancouver. It didn't' go to Glacier Bay, but the times in port were good and the ten day itinerary allowed us to visit extra ports. We ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was a ten day round trip itinerary that left and returned to Vancouver. It didn't' go to Glacier Bay, but the times in port were good and the ten day itinerary allowed us to visit extra ports. We were also hoping to get some dancing in because we'd found the dance floor on our previous cruise was far too small. The cruise more than met our expectations. We had some lovely table mates in the main dining room and the food was excellent. We usually ate in the Lido for lunch and tea and very much enjoyed the food there as well. It had some great views . The tea in the Queen's Ballroom was also fantastic. The ports were great. We did a private tour with Wild Wolf Tours in Ketchikan and very much enjoyed it. In Juno, we took the shuttle to the Mendenhall Glacier and were glad we'd chosen the tour that gave us the most time there. In Skagway, we took the train to Bennett Lake and the bus back. It was a great experience, but next time I might go for a smaller tour so that we'd have more flexibility. In Icy Strait, I went whale watching while my husband stayed on shore and watched the whales breaching behind our boat. Luckily we some some on the boat as well as eagles, sea otters, and sea lions. Our Captain and crew showed their true colours at the Hubbard Glacier because they were able to manouver us very close to the glacier. We had a great view of the glacier calving and the small boat tour didn't get that much closer to the glacier (maybe 200 metres) than we did. The naturalist on board was very impressed with how close we got. In Sitka, we walked around the port by ourselves and found it very easy to do and I particularly enjoyed the walk in the Natural Park with the huge trees. In Vancouver, we took the ships tour to Butchart Gardens, but I found it very rushed and would have preferred longer in the gardens. A private excursion that would let you take as long as you want would have been nicer. There were a few dance groups on this cruise, so there were some high level dancers. This lead to a packed and intimidating dance floor in the Queen's Ballroom, so we often went up to the yacht club and danced there because it was less intimidating. However, I was able to hold my own during the line dance lessons and we eventually got up the nerve to dance on the floor in the Queen's Ball room and we did fine. We also enjoyed the shows in the theatre. They had a new one every night and we always managed to find a seat if we left our cabin about 15 minutes before the show started. My biggest disappointment with the cruise was the fact that they cancelled the line dance and ball room lessons on the last sea day because the dance classes are the favourite part of my sea days. But all in all, it was an excellent cruise. They staff seemed happy and pleasant and we really enjoyed our waiters in the Britannia and the dance couple that taught the lessons. We plan to go on another Cunard cruse again because it seems to do the three things we like to do on a cruise very well (dance, read a book (their library was fantastic), and promenade around the deck). We were the only ship disembarking in Vancouver and I found the process fairly well organized. We waited in the theatre until they called our deck and then proceeded to the gangway where I picked up the ulu knife that had been confiscated after I went shopping in Ketchikan. They showed us to the deck five luggage area and we picked up our bags and got into the taxi lineup. It took us about an hour to get through that lineup, but it was an organized process where we snaked through the lineup corral until we were given a taxi stand to stand at. Anyone needing a handicapped vehicle was sent through a different lineup and I noticed that they did allow someone who I suspect had issues standing jump the taxi lineup corral and go straight to the assigned taxi station just before ours. Our disembark time was 9:10 and I think we got off the ship at 9:25 and we made it to the airport by 11. If a lot of ships were disembarking at once, I would probably consider the ships shuttle instead of the taxi even though it was more expensive. I our case, I knew we'd have time to do the taxi lineup because our flight wasn't due to leave until 1pm. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
The schedule and scenery was amazing - but our experience of the ship was not good. This was only the third time that Cunard had ventured into these waters. We were interested to go with Cunard as we feel we are culturally more aligned ... Read More
The schedule and scenery was amazing - but our experience of the ship was not good. This was only the third time that Cunard had ventured into these waters. We were interested to go with Cunard as we feel we are culturally more aligned with Britain than the US (being from Australia) and there were some great things such as the high tea at 3 pm on the ship. However, we had some major issues with this ship and some of the staff. Very different to other cruise experiences. Embarkation was dreadful - we had to wait until 3 pm to enter after arriving at 7 am on a 15 hour international flight...had to line up for 1.5 hours to get through US customs....then there was no welcome or help when we eventually boarded - I had to beg a staff person to direct us to our room. We entered the room and it was filthy - had not been cleaned from the previous trip and had medical debris around the room - blood soaked tissues, tablets etc....this was the beginning of our distrust of the ship....although the housekeeper was very remorseful and apologetic which was helpful. After paying substantial more money to enjoy a deck and fresh air....we got a metal balustrading on the deck which meant you could not see out - had to lean on the balustrading and could not look out from the lounges or inside on the bed. The deck was located above the crew smoking area so if we went out on the deck - or opened our door to get fresh air into the room, we were flooded with cigarette smoke and later on ,a strong paint smell.....very upsetting .....however the meals were generally ok and the service in the restaurant was lovely. the best thing was the naturalist , Rachel Cartwright, who narrated a lot of the cruise, provided lectures and provided information to guests if required. Staff were generally unhappy and this was unsettling as a guest - there was no sense of joy and excitement from them....no welcome when you returned to the ship after an excursion. Shore excursions were abysmal - we booked three but cancelled the third one due to disappointment with the first two - booked two external excursions which were amazing due to the local tour operators....Cunard used university students from the southern states who had no connection to the area and were annoyingly facile in their approach. Entertainment was geared to the over 80's and on-board activities were sparse, involved extra cost and were not interesting - also for the over 80's - they sure needed more breadth of genre of music The gym was pretty good thankfully....if you liked ballroom dancing, there was opportunity to dance every night....so loved the visit to the area and the sense of being in such an amazing wilderness area - but we will be avoiding Cunard in the future. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Having read some of the reviews of Queen Elizabeth cruises I was having some concerns about this Alaska cruise. Different people have different experiences, even on the same voyage, and I was pleased we enjoyed our June 10-day cruise very ... Read More
Having read some of the reviews of Queen Elizabeth cruises I was having some concerns about this Alaska cruise. Different people have different experiences, even on the same voyage, and I was pleased we enjoyed our June 10-day cruise very much. We had been on this ship only once before and that was in Princess Grill. This time we were in a Britannia balcony stateroom. Embarkation in Vancouver can be chaotic, but some improvements in the procedure have been made since our last cruise from that port four years ago. Although we are now top-tier members of Cunard’s loyalty programme and entitled to preferred check-in we were given a time of 3:00 p.m. Our travel agent phoned Cunard and was told that we need pay no attention to that and can expect to board at 12:15. I have made comments in the appropriate Cruise Critic forum about the Vancouver embarkation so will not elaborate, other than to say there is still a lot of walking to do and going up to the convention level then back down again, but we did not have to stand for any length of time. We did arrange for a wheelchair for me wife who can’t walk long distances or stand for a long time. Cunard permitted early boarding (about 11:00) with the understanding that staterooms would be available between 12:00 and 12:30. We had arrived at the baggage drop-off area to receive the wheelchair assistance at 10:45 and were sipping tea in the ship’s Lido at 11:15. I am not going to complain about the weather, but anyone unfamiliar with a cruise to Alaska is advised to be prepared for anything, except maybe a summer snow-storm. On our previous Alaska cruise four years ago there was not a drop of rain. This time we had plenty and it was quite cold on deck, but comfortably cool in the ports. I brought a light toque, scarf and gloves for my walks on deck. The décor of the ship appeals to me very much. Some, but not all, of the interior public rooms are, to me, superior to the equivalent on the Queen Mary 2. The Queen Elizabeth’s Royal Court Theatre, the grand lobby and the library are more pleasing to my taste. If a ship could combine the best of the Queen Mary 2 and the Queen Elizabeth it would be a perfect ship. We had been given a slight upgrade to a rather odd-shaped stateroom. One wall was longer than the other, so the balcony door and window were on a sharp angle. This provided a two-sided balcony that was about double the usual size. It was noticeably bigger than the Princess Grill balconies, which are actually quite small. Being on Deck 4, the forward view was mostly blocked by a life-boat, but as we had not paid the higher rate for this accommodation I couldn’t complain. The food and service in the Britannia restaurant was very good indeed. The timings of the two dinner sittings had been changed for these Alaska voyages, with the first being at 5:30 and the second at 7:45. I expect that many on the first sitting would find the earlier time to be inconvenient, but we had chosen the second sitting and the time was perfect. When we travel in the Grills we usually go to dinner at 7:45, so this was convenient for us. Cunard continues to excel at afternoon tea in the Queen’s Room. On all but one day - when there was an orchestra and two singers with loud and rather unpleasant voices - the string orchestra or harpist or pianist provided suitable music to enhance the enjoyment of the tea experience. The tea itself was sometimes a bit weak. We saw one gentleman bring his own loose tea and strainer and made his own brew. I won’t comment on the ports as much has been written about them in other reviews. The entertainment on board, as usual with Cunard, provides for all tastes. There are many interesting talks. I despise the “big shows” in the theatre. To assure myself nothing has changed I poked my head in a few times for 30 seconds. There was an acrobatic duo one night which my wife and I enjoyed. Fortunately there was always something soothing after dinner: the stings, harpist or pianist in the Grand Lobby or the Commodore Club. In respect to those who live close to the ship’s docks, Cunard (and I suppose other cruise lines) do not broadcast any outdoor messages on the tannoy nor do they have the usual loud sail-away music on departure. I appreciated this as I did not have to avoid the rear open decks in order to protect my eardrums. Some people complain about the dress code. I will complain, but for reasons not often seen in a review. Since the retirement of the QE2 in 2008, Cunard has been dumbing down the dress standards. The number of formal nights (now called gala) was a paltry two on this 10-night cruise. I have not seen a ratio like this before on Cunard. The last time we were on this ship was a seven-night cruise to Norway on which there were three formal nights. I have never gone to dinner on a Cunard ship without a jacket and tie and have no intention to start doing so. By no means was I the only one. There were many men who dressed traditionally. On “smart attire” nights, except for the first night, the description was “jacket – tie optional”. I must say the two gala nights were glamorous affairs and I heard no grumbling about this. I suppose those who dislike this tradition ate in the cafeteria. The “senior officers party” for those at the top two levels of the Cunard World Club was held at 11:00 a.m. The dress code was “smart attire – jacket optional.” I was pleasantly surprised that most people dressed well. A few men even wore tuxedos and some women wore evening dress, including one elegant lady in a white ball gown with a fur wrap. Perhaps this was a little over the top at 11:00 a.m. There were no other ships in Vancouver on our day of arrival. Due to our Diamond level status we were called ashore at 8:20, just five minutes after the Grills passengers. Getting a taxi was easy. This voyage deserved four and a half stars, but as that option isn’t available I gave four stars. Five stars may imply perfection. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
I have been on 10+ cruises but this was my first Cunard experience. Embarkation went smoothly in Vancouver, not the fastest but not the worst either. Our room was large (accessibility means lots of space) with a large balcony. ... Read More
I have been on 10+ cruises but this was my first Cunard experience. Embarkation went smoothly in Vancouver, not the fastest but not the worst either. Our room was large (accessibility means lots of space) with a large balcony. Enough storage space for all our clothes. The food in the Main dining room was good, a good variety of appetizers and mains and always yummy desserts. The downfall of the main dining room, in my opinion is the stringent dress code. Men are required to wear a sports jacket most nights which may or may not included a tie. If you walk in the dining room sans a tie,, the maitre de will hand you one before you can enter. I know people will say you should have know that ahead of time and yes we did but didnt think theyd be so strict. Therefore we ate in the Lido which had a more relaxed attire. Over all, as most cruises I have been on, the staff go out of their way to make you happy. An example of going above and beyond was our room steward, Alfredo. As a power wheelchair user, I need to charge my chair every couple of days. At the end of one day, I plugged the charger into my chair and nada. I first thought it was a charger issue but it turns out there wasnt enough juice coming thru the rooms electricity.. Alfredo go in contact with guys in the electric depot, who came and got my chair in the evening, charged it fully and brought it back in the am. I cannot emphasis enough how much this saved me. I was on a 10 day cruise and on day 2 my battery was dead. We were wondering what were our options, it was highly doubtful we would find a new one in Alaska. My eternal debt is to Alfredo! So if you are a power chair user, this is your heads up. My only real peeve is, ok I have 2 Firstly, their excursion personnel via email or in person has 0 knowledge of what an accessible excursion is. I explained I need a lift to get on any transportation and they had no clue where to get access info. I would have thought with the average age of their guests which was 65+, theyd have a clue. I gave up on them and booked my excursions straight from the company. My last peeve was disembarkation. They advise if you want to self disembark, we live in Vancouver, go to the Queens lounge by 7:20am with you luggage. We did as such and we waiting for over an hour with no staff around to organize the situation and alot of pissed off passenger. Eventually we gave up waiting, headed to the elevators with a huge crowd following us, to fight for an elevator with the other wrinklys. Good fun. A good trip but Cunard wont see us again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We took a family party of 8, ages 5-73 on this to experience Alaska for the first time. We had 3 balcony cabins near the bow on level 5. The ship, was outstanding, elegant, and British-traditional in an updated version. I would recommend ... Read More
We took a family party of 8, ages 5-73 on this to experience Alaska for the first time. We had 3 balcony cabins near the bow on level 5. The ship, was outstanding, elegant, and British-traditional in an updated version. I would recommend this cruise and ship to anyone wanting to see Alaska. I feel it necessary to contradict some of the negative reviews about the crew made by others. Our cabins were excellent, the stewards were friendly and attentive, responding to our requests, and dining was varied enough to suit the tastes of our 3 generation party. Britannia was excellent, food, service and setting. Not a single time did we feel the staff was inattentive or anything less that friendly and professional. Lido was excellent for buffet breakfast and lunch. Never overcrowded, clean, beautiful views, good food, good variety. Port selection was good, and excursions were generally worthwhile. If you are booking these, I caution you that there will be much less time at the sites you visit, and in Port, than you would think, based on the overall port time and the advertised length of the excursion. Once you deduct the boarding and travel time from the advertised length of the excursion, and build in the desired margin to reboard the ship timely, you generally will feel very rushed, and will find shore time in Port rushed or non-existent. Cunard should provide a realistic estimate of the ACTUAL time you will be at the excursion site for trip planning. Another note: I am no techno-wizard, but the technology of the Voyage Personaliser is pathetic, outmoded and in need of a complete overhaul. The site did not save your login info, or auto fill the necessary basic info, so every time you want to do a search, make a change, anything, it’s necessary to repeat all that key boarding. Since **we were booking excursions for travelers in 3 cabins, who were often NOT taking the same excursions, it was incredible that we could not book individuals in separate cabins on an excursion with a single booking, but had to make 3 separate reservations. We thought we were just too dumb to figure a work around, but several in out group tried, and we contacted Cunard by phone and were told it could not be done! Another suggestion, is that Cunard should make available for purchase a Nautical Chart covering the length of the itinerary. I am a small sail and powerboat enthusiast with over 50 years experience and naturally wanted to plot our course and study the channels and tributaries along the way. I learned ahead of time that there might be nothing on ship to purchase, and was stunned, so I went online and found a poor substitute. When I boarded I asked around and no one I spoke to had any idea what I was talking about. Only after we had gotten over half way along the trip did we see Charts for the area on sale in a small store, but by then it was too late. Back to our party. The Kids Zone was a terrific hit with the younger ones and their parents, the fitness area was well done, entertainment and activities were varied and enjoyable and there was much more to do that we had time for, so there was no issue with boredom on days at sea.. Finally, embarkation in Vancouver was crowded, hot and chaotic. We arrived slightly earlier, as instructed by phone ahead of time, than our assigned time and it took about 2 hours. Whether that is an acceptable time frame I will leave to travelers more experienced that I. In the final analysis we would highly recommend this ship and voyage to anyone wanting to see Alaska. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
I had been on two previous Alaska cruises (Crystal & Princess) and hadn't planned on going back again, but I wanted to cruise on one of the new Cunard Queens and since I live in Oregon.... The ship is beautifully done, the food in ... Read More
I had been on two previous Alaska cruises (Crystal & Princess) and hadn't planned on going back again, but I wanted to cruise on one of the new Cunard Queens and since I live in Oregon.... The ship is beautifully done, the food in the Britannia Dining Room was excellent and so was the entertainment in the Royal Court Theater. But the service throughout the ship was consistently uninspired. Nobody, including the room steward and your waiters, bothers to learn your name. Supplies in the staterooms are stingy. Tables in the Lido remain dirty with used dishes and nobody comes over to ask if you need anything. I wonder if they have cut the crew to save money, something Cunard should never do. I always thought Cunard was a tier above Princess but its service on the QE was one big step below. I'm glad I got to ride on the ship but I wouldn't bother to buy a ticket on any of the new queens again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
" Slow boat " to Japan for the Sakura or Cherry Blossom, and a bit of sightseeing, fine dining and some dancing in between, that was the idea and why not, take 19 nights instead of 9 hours fly direct. It is the journey that ... Read More
" Slow boat " to Japan for the Sakura or Cherry Blossom, and a bit of sightseeing, fine dining and some dancing in between, that was the idea and why not, take 19 nights instead of 9 hours fly direct. It is the journey that matters and something to reminisce in future. See photos. In Nov 2017, we travelled the shinkansen or bullet train around Japan for the autumn foliage and kind of felled in love with the beautiful people, place and views. So this time, we wanted to see the sakura. We experienced sakura in Hirosaki Castle Park in North Honshu. Aomori is the closest big town. ( see photos and separate review on the Diamond Princess ) We sailed QE, Melb to Yokohama for the first leg and switched over to the Diamond Princess to sail around Japan for the 2nd leg for another 9 nights. Thanks Cunard staff for the cabin upgrade. Hundreds of us, had to do the switch over and gladly give the Japanese a chance to enjoy what we did in the last 3 weeks on the QE. The rumour was, 1700 Japanese were getting onboard the QE for the Golden Week ( 4-5 public holidays ). In my past reviews on Cunard voyages, I have commented their excellent ambience, decore, service, food, entertainment and varied activities. Breakfast room service and dining service were excellent, everyday. These high standards continued, in my humble view. Thanks Reynaldo and Alvin for your serving of pistachio souffle which I enjoyed watching more than eating ( I am not a dessert person ). Thank you to our Brissie realtors table companions and making everyone laugh, sometimes in tears, each night. And to Ron and Angela for the many many happy times we had while onboard. On sea days and there were many, Zumba exercises at 9am and line dancing at 10am, ballroom dancing at 11am and in the afternoon, different type of dance lessons and from 7.45pm onwards, ballroom and latin dancing in the Queens Room till midnight and in the Yatch Club, with more pop and disco until the wee morning hours. In QE, you can literally DANCE TILL YOU DROP DEAD. As they say, when the going gets tough, the tough gets going. Survive I did with a trick, get some rest and catch a nap. We enjoyed dancing but not as dedicated as some others who wake up at the crack of dawn, to practice in the Queens Room. Thanks to the many people we met while dancing like Des and Pauline, Ron n Barb, Arthur n Betty, and Tim n Tima, Mark n Annie, etc.... Life on board the QE includes the pool activities, mahjong, fencing, table tennis, darts, trivia, interesting talks, shows and of course, drinking and fine dining and late night suppers in the Lido after dancing. Following an interesting presentation on the social culture and food aspects of Japan, there was an interesting ceremony on breaking of the sake or wine barrel. The Japanese vintage sake was free flowing and was limitless. It was not a good idea, on an empty stomache and before lunch but life goes on.... Neil, the entertainment director and zumba instructor, was easy, funny and encouraging to many newcomers to zumba. He got my table companions, Steve and Donna, converted. Lesley, did a great job hosting and was ably assisted by the dance hosts like Brian and Sheila, Richard, etc. Much credit is due to our 4 dance instructors who patiently taught many of us, several useful dance moves and techniques to improve ourselves. Recorded music used for dancing was in manyways better than live music on some occassions ( see review on QE to Tasmania and Port Arthur) As for the ports, we were lucky to get some magical views of sunrise over the Sydney Opera House and the ferries darting in and out of Circular Quay ferry terminal. I have lived and worked in Sydney before and this experience is still a treasure. A tip, get the portside cabin when coming into Sydney. We enjoyed strolling along the Royal Botanical Gardens and the views from Mrs Macquaire Chair of QE, Opera Housre and the Harbour Bridge. This must be one of the most beautiful harbour in the world, in my view. In Brisbane, we enjoyed the free shuttle to town centre, free City Hopper ( red coloured ) ferry ride around Southbank and wandered and shop inthe high street. We dropped in a big Commonwealth Bank to do some banking and got free wi-fi and an excellent coffee, on the house. Thank you customer service. That is why banked with you. We skipped visiting Alotaul in PNG as it was so bloody hot and humid but we did our own shore excursion ( aud 45pp for a 2 hour air cond bus tour ) in Rabaul to the Hotsprings, Mt Tavurvur ( pronounced TaVOORvoor) volcano that last erupted 5 years ago in Sep 2014, the Japanese general Yamamoto bunkers, and the Volcano Observatory station. The scientist staff showed us in and explained all the seismological monitoring. You can get some beautiful views of QE in the harbour below and the volcano, too. In Manila, we got a free shuttle to a big shopping complex. We got some currencies and went shopping. I booked and got a nice hair trim by a gorgeous hairdresser and my wife got a manicure done at the same time. You can walk out of QE or port to see Josef Rizal Memorial and Fort Santiago without having to catch the free shuttle. Do that later. Otherwise, it was a 30 min hike back and it can be very sweaty due to its humidity and the pathways are not always clear and smooth. In Nagasaki, we took a tram ride to the nearest station and walked 5 min to the Peace Park and another 5 min walk to centre of the atomic bomb blast. The English tourist brochure on how to ride and pay the tram fare and the direction to the stations is very simple and clear to understand. Remember to change tram at the main station for the next tram and get a transfer ticket from the tram driver before disembaring. This is used for the 2nd and final tram when you exit. Just follow the cruise crowd as nearly all will head in the same direction. It is 50% cheaper to pay on the tram as you exit instead of buying the day pass. You may not have much time visting other places. We window shopping when we return and walked up to the Church which was first used by Portugese inthe 13th-15th century. BTW, you can see the small mountan scenic top from the QE ship portside andyou can catch your own ropeway or cable car up there for a small fee as compared to shore excursion. Yokohama, has a lot ot offer which we will do the next time. This time, we caught the city free shuttle to Sakuragicho station. We have a Suica card from previous visit and we avoided the very long queue to buy a train ticket to Central Tokyo or Shinjuku or Akihabara in our case. We caught the unreserved seating JR Keihin- Tohuku for Omiya direction express train direct to Akihabara for under 600 yen or usd 6 or aud 9. Incredibly cheap and quite fast if you know how and do your homework. Use hyperdia.com website. Otherwise, Cunard transfer will be aud 100 plus. Hopefully, my table companions took up my suggestion,if not for the money, at least, just for the experience. In conclusion, we were very happy overall with the voyage and the many people we met, dined and danced with and highly recommend this ship and voyage especially for the Pollywogs who have never crossed the Equator. You get a big colorful Cunard map of the world certificate with your name on it for crossing the Equator. Nice surprise. Looking forward to the next Med cruise in Sept. Hopefully, you enjoyed reading the review and got something out of it in some little ways. Well, at least enjoy the photos. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
After a great cruise on the Queen Mary in 2017 we had great Expectations of First Class service on Queen Elizabeth in March 2019. Our cruise from Melbourne started poorly with a Cunard Computer glitch at the Port check in causing long ... Read More
After a great cruise on the Queen Mary in 2017 we had great Expectations of First Class service on Queen Elizabeth in March 2019. Our cruise from Melbourne started poorly with a Cunard Computer glitch at the Port check in causing long delays. In fact as we boarded the crew were in their life jackets directing all passengers to their muster stations for our safety drill. Obviously they were leaving on time no matter what. Anyway these computer problems do occur but we missed that welcome aboard photo, the officer’s greeting and the champagne. Not to worry we were on the Queen Elizabeth heading out of Port Phillip Bay heading for New Zealand on a 12 day cruise with one of the best ships on water. Generally the waiters in the Lido Dining Room were just not interested in providing service to their guests with avoidance of eye contact and little interest in meeting our needs. At Britannia Dining Room the service was improved but still it was no better than that of a café . Drinks service was appalling. On day six they ran out of scotch in the dining room so served Jack Daniels without asking if OK. Bourbon is not Scotch. Despite all bars on the ship having plenty of scotch (one had 31 bottles) the waiter said he could not borrow or restock and we would need to ask head office why not? Really? Our table of ten ordered 4 bottles wine throughout the cruise with 3 of them out of stock. These were all listed on their wine menu. Food was Ok with rather small portions and limited selection and variety compared to previous cruises. Drinks service at the Golden Lion Pub was very slow whether they were busy or not. Staff seemed disinterested in good service. Plumbing issues began on morning one when our toilet would not flush. Maintenance responded after my 2nd call adjusted something and it worked. Great til morning three when same problem same result after my 2nd call again. Morning four Toilet won’t flush. By now we are “Not Happy Jan “so again after my second call maintenance arrives and I indicated you can’t just keep adjusting this thing every day or we will have to move. He pulled the whole thing apart found the component that was faulty and surprise surprise it was fixed for good. Happy with the outcome but we did not need three goes to get that result. I am sure this is a regular problem so they will be aware of what needs to be done. On morning eleven toilet would not work but neither did the water supply. Seems they had a main water pipe burst and the entire ship was without running water. To be fair these things happen I guess but I got the impression this was not the first time. Anyway the Casino, Shops and many Staterooms were flooded as this occurred during the night. We were without running water until 9.30am just as Captain Simon Love had announced at about 8am. The flooded areas had poker machines and tables in pieces trying to dry them out before the next cruise that started the next day. We did speak to some guests whose rooms were flooded and the crew were helping dry out their clothes and belongings. Our Stateroom Staff were very efficient and friendly. Our room was in good condition but the balcony was in need of rust treatment and painting roof and rails. It doesn’t make it appealing when it looks grubby. We found the entertainment nightly was very good with entertainers of high quality well presented. Well Done! The Thermal Spa and the Gym were very well equipped with helpful enthusiastic staff. Well done! Ports of call were good with even a tendering port Akaroa being not problem at all. Cruising through Milford Sound was a highlight with an onboard commentator who gave great descriptions of the entire area with the Captain and crew placing the ship perfectly for viewing throughout the ship. Well Done! In summary we found the ship was as expected with good facilities and décor but the service and staff are letting the Cunard Experience down badly. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We have travelled on Queen Elizabeth previously and had a wonderful time. We flew to Melbourne to join the ship at our allotted time of 12.00 only to be told you can’t board until after 2.00 pm come back later. They did take our luggage ... Read More
We have travelled on Queen Elizabeth previously and had a wonderful time. We flew to Melbourne to join the ship at our allotted time of 12.00 only to be told you can’t board until after 2.00 pm come back later. They did take our luggage and manage to lose 1 piece. We eventually got to our cabin at 3.45 pm after much queuing. People were passing out in the heat in the lines. Very poor. The food in the buffet was very ordinary and repetitive. The food in the main restaurant was appealing but lacked taste. We had room service but it was cold and the selection was small. The entertainment had too much Cunard singers and dancers and not enough other entertainment. The guest speakers were poor compared to other cruises we have been on. We were asked to disembark at 7.00am. They put on early breakfast in the Lido but while we were at breakfast our room was stripped even though we still had items in the bathroom and on the bed. We felt given that we had to leave so early the room steward could have waited till we had left. When we arrived home we had been charged for water that was given to us when the cabins had no water due to a burst water pipe. It was refunded after we complained but complimentary usually means free. Queen Elizabeth is a beautiful ship but not the high standard it was. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Just completed the Melb-NZ cruise 18-30 March 19. Seemed like a good way to see a little of NZ in comfort. Massive delays and chaos at boarding in Melbourne. Burst water main leaving cabins without water until 9:30 AM one day. Casino ... Read More
Just completed the Melb-NZ cruise 18-30 March 19. Seemed like a good way to see a little of NZ in comfort. Massive delays and chaos at boarding in Melbourne. Burst water main leaving cabins without water until 9:30 AM one day. Casino flooded and smelling. Long queues for shuttle bus into Dunedin with USD 8 charge each way. Long queue for tender from ship to Akaroa even at 11:00AM. Stale cheese board crackers in upgrade Verandah restaurant; reported to maître d' who took no action and continued serving from the same supply on the cheese cart. Drinks overpriced in US dollars and even more expensive when converted to AUS and 15% service charge then added. No ushers in cinema with very elderly people entering in the dark after the film started with one gentleman falling badly on the stairs near my seat. No assistance/supervision in the gym in the early mornings with elderly people on machines. Cabin clean and comfy. Staff very polite and efficient. Food plentiful and good but silly corner cutting like complimentary food from room service but charging for tea/coffee delivered with food. Evening shows too much of the same "song and dance" type routines. Good classical music program and ballroom dancing lessons. Overall the company are milking the Queen Elizabeth name. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Apart from having to queue for 90 minutes to check in due to Cunard computer crashing several times, the cruise was everything we expected and more. There was a bottle of champagne waiting in our cabin, robe and slippers supplied and ... Read More
Apart from having to queue for 90 minutes to check in due to Cunard computer crashing several times, the cruise was everything we expected and more. There was a bottle of champagne waiting in our cabin, robe and slippers supplied and lovely toiletries and the beds were so comfortable. There was plenty of choice in Lido restaurant for breakfast and lunch and dinner in Britannia restaurant was excellent for quality, choice and service. Golden Lion pub served excellent British food for lunch, the Atlantic cod, chips and mushy peas were a favourite. Afternoon tea served in Queens room by waiters wearing white gloves was an experience. There was plenty of activities to take part in if you wanted to and plenty of seating if you just wanted to read. We took up the offer of 'book inside cabin and get free upgrade to balcony'. However it was not used very much as the weather got quite rough crossing the Tasman Sea and travelling down the east coast and round to Fiordland, so unless the same deal offered next time, an ocean view would suffice. Definitely recommend this trip to New Zealand. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Queen Elizabeth Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.4
Public Rooms 5.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.8
Family 3.5 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 5.0 3.7
Service 4.0 4.0
Value For Money 4.0 3.5
Rates 4.0 3.5

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