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570 Cunard Queen Elizabeth Cruise Reviews

We chose this cruise as have never been on Cunard before. As it tied in with our time frame, was a good deal and no Princess cruises available, we wanted to experience it. We are Elite Princess travellers with 23 cruises already taken, ... Read More
We chose this cruise as have never been on Cunard before. As it tied in with our time frame, was a good deal and no Princess cruises available, we wanted to experience it. We are Elite Princess travellers with 23 cruises already taken, so had a lot to compare. Embarkation without priority was very quick and smooth.. surprising with virus scares.(filled in form, had temperature taken, sanitised and off we went to check-in. Our cabin was ready and bags came quickly. The ship smelt nice most of the time and the buffet was generally good ( we don't eat alacarte). We were surprised that Crew didn't offer water or tea) coffee. They were polite but Princess crew more helpful. Last night was disappointing as after coming out of a show after 2100pm, found no buffet open. As we hadn't had dinner, I was not too happy as starving. We had to wait until 2130 for them to open another section. But now we know, won't do that again. The performance entertainment, both cruise team and visitors, have been brilliant. We didn't get to see the comedian but others enjoyed it. Musician's around the ship were wonderful (harpist, violinists and strings, pianists and others). The decor is plush with elegant staircases and once we got used to the layout, could navigate our way around better. Beware that all prices are in USA dollars and there's automatic gratuities which is not standard for Aussie waters. Gratuities can be cancelled at pursers office and you make your own donation. Like many ships, there was an occasional waft of sewerage and too many smoking areas. Docking of ship was super smooth. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Booked this on board QM2 when the QE's Asian itineraries were all scrapped. Crazy cheap price made this unmissable. Compared to the QM2 this is the inferior ship in almost every single area. The vaunted decoration of the ship ... Read More
Booked this on board QM2 when the QE's Asian itineraries were all scrapped. Crazy cheap price made this unmissable. Compared to the QM2 this is the inferior ship in almost every single area. The vaunted decoration of the ship looked a bit tacky, a bit Vegas casino, the public rooms felt cramped and crowded. You can't walk to the front of the ship, the gym seems tired. What most surprised me was the surly attitude of many of the staff; some of those in the Lido buffet were downright rude. The Lido never seemed to have any spare tables for either breakfast or lunch. The food was a smidgen better than the QM2 but again the serving staff were brusque. The theatre is outstandingly good, and the performances (particularly from the inhouse entertainment) were MUCH better than the QM2. Shout out to Ronel, Head of Customer Services, for helping me with my cabin issues. However, it is highly unlikely I will ever choose to sail on this ship again as the price premium Cunard imposes for the supposedly White Star service is simply not worth it. I'd rather save my money and go on Holland America. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
I had never been on a curnard cruise before and have been put off by rumours that they are quite formal cruises. However I booked the cruise just a couple of days out before embarktation at a ridiculous price. So let's on the cruise ... Read More
I had never been on a curnard cruise before and have been put off by rumours that they are quite formal cruises. However I booked the cruise just a couple of days out before embarktation at a ridiculous price. So let's on the cruise Overall I can discount a.lot of the critiscim i read on the formality of curnard although on gala nights there is a need to dress up. From boarding the ship and throughout the cruise I loved the white glove service The service level by all staff is very high. There was a bit of administration issues around dining appointments and table allocation and it did fustrate passengers because there were no dinning room.managers available until the first sitting at 5.30pm Quite a few people including myself had dining room arrangements cancelled by their computer system. To their credit the managers worked very hard and got it sorted out quickly. Dining room experience with waiters was excellent. Range of food and quality was high. If a dish wasnt to your tasting it was quickly replaced by the waiter. The size of the meals were and dishes were served hot. They did a very good job My cabin was well appointed and maintained. The service from my cabin stewardess was excellent my room and bathroom were always spotless. What I noticed was the high number of cleaning rags used by the staff. They were using a separate group of rags per cabin. The shower was a little bit smaller than what I expected, water pressure and temperature were excellent. The buffet was very good for breakfast and lunch. I particularly like sushi and there dishes available both for lunch and dinner. Sometimes I would call in early for a small plate of sushi before my main meal. On the subject of allegey food, the selection of gluten free food was better at dinner time, they had an entire bay of gluten free meals at nights. Also in the afternoon tea time, there was also a very good range of gluten free sandwiches and cakes. Overall, the staff were very helpful and service was excellent. If you like reading and need a quite place, this ship offers a number of venues and places just to let you get away from the crowds and just enjoy and occasionally falling off for 10 minutes. The old cigar room which has been relocated to level 3 is now the admiralites room, lovely quite place to read. The promenade deck on level 3 is totally under cover. Whether you relax on a deck chair with a blanket or walk around the ship, you can relax or excerise or watch the clouds go by. It is one those classical decks from a bygone era which seems to be lost in some of the modern ships. The pool.deck gave me mostly joy but a little of disappointment. Pools are fine and unlike the more ships don t have 50 children jumping in and around. It is more refined because of t h e clientele. There are lots of places to sit including a reasonable amount of shaded seating. However the spas are incredibly small and can either fit 2 to 3 people. They are in the sun. If the ship needed a refit, this is one thing that needs to be replaced. They are ridiculous small and ineffective. For non smokers,the amount of space offered to people who consume tobacco is the highest I have ever seen on a ship. Most companies are reducing these areas. On a bad day you can only go down one side of the ship to avoid these passengers. Entertainment was not to my tastes. Except for the trivia and kareoka at the pub, i found the entertainment was 1930s era. I didn't go to one show at the threatre and the number of sessions allocated to ballroom dancers and the number of participants at the queens room couldn't justify the event. There was a reasonable population on the ship to justify a dj and some more modern dance music. Embarktation and Disbarktation service was well coordinated. The tender service at port Arthur was well managed. The nunever of tenders operating and their frequency just made the whole process flow so smoothly. I did two short excursions and found that well organised from the purchase, meet and greet and the service provided by the operators. However when it came to cost, we didn't realise that the price offered was in American dollars. A lot of ships that operate in Australian waters during their stay offer australian prices. I found curnard did not clearly disclose this fact. As a result not only did we have to the equivalent in American dollars but the currency conversion rate was very high.disappointed with this lack of disclosure. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
The good Beautiful ship, lovely decor. Uncrowded, always places to sit. Wonderful library. Spotless cabin, plenty of storage, tea and coffee facilities and wonderful beds/pillows. Food was very good on the main dining room, in the pub, ... Read More
The good Beautiful ship, lovely decor. Uncrowded, always places to sit. Wonderful library. Spotless cabin, plenty of storage, tea and coffee facilities and wonderful beds/pillows. Food was very good on the main dining room, in the pub, and reasonable in the buffet. Shows, OK but not up to standard of other ships. Embarktion and disembarkation quick and organised. Bad Trying to get early dinner sitting although requested when booking 8 months prior. The problem is the age of the guests mostly in 80’s, 90’s of course all want the early sitting, then the early show. You can walk through the ship after 9.00pm and think you are on a ghost ship. The type of entertainment at night, cello, violins, ballroom dancing may be a big factor. Certainly put us to bed. And daytime, whist, darts, canasta, bowls, croquet etc The ship could be classed as a floating retirement village. The high tea a major disappointment, held in the lounge with cold scones and stale sandwiches on offer, no pomp or glory! The shower in the cabin has to be the smallest shower of any of the 27 cruises to date, banged my head daily. This cruise is for the very elderly (I’m in my 70’s) . Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Those paying an ultra-premium price in Queens/Princess Grill will receive high quality dining and service in their private part of the ship. The rest(majority) of us will receive an experience far inferior to lines competing in this price ... Read More
Those paying an ultra-premium price in Queens/Princess Grill will receive high quality dining and service in their private part of the ship. The rest(majority) of us will receive an experience far inferior to lines competing in this price tier(Celebrity,HAL,Princess). This Q. Elizabeth cruise displayed cost-cutting everywhere...even the limited floral displays were tiny! Quality and quantity of MDR food is sub-par at best and served in either an efficient or borderline brusque style by waiters assigned too many tables.A small piece of browned broccoli showed up on my "Gala Dinner" plate. The Lido buffet, laid out in the old-timey "alley" traffic style with decidedly underwhelming selections, is not a pretty sight at lunch, One evening,within a space of 20 minutes, I witnessed 6 guests (me included)trying to listen to a bar harpist "deseated" by the bar waiter as they didn't order a drink or requested ice water('we don't have any"}. Brought this to ship's attention and they said: "yep,it happened. we told waiter not to do it again." Never witnessed this in over 40 years of cruising. There is definitely something "off kilter" re the service culture on this ship. Q Elizabeth sports the tiniest cabin showers and public whirlpools on the seven seas. On a positive note,glassed balconies are spacious and comfortable and cabin attendant service is superb. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
First time cruises we alwways travel independently - but my partner's health made cruising an option to PNG - which is hard to get to otherwise. We are ballroom dancers so we chose Cunard. I was highly intimidated by the dress ... Read More
First time cruises we alwways travel independently - but my partner's health made cruising an option to PNG - which is hard to get to otherwise. We are ballroom dancers so we chose Cunard. I was highly intimidated by the dress code snobs online before we cruised - it appeared you needed a different dress for every night -and that if you didn't pay a lot of money for clothes comments will be made! This wasn't true. There were women in long beautiful gowns on gala nights - but they were the majority. The rest of us wore cocktail length dresses or evening black trousers with a glittery top. I saw someone else wearing a a $20 glittery number which I bought for a gala nigh from Millers (cheap Ozzie chain). Jackets are optional for men on smart attire nights in Australian season - and few wore them except on galas. Most took them off to dance or in Britiannia MDR which was pretty warm at night in the tropics., and we were late sitting. Also on gala nights there were a number of men wearing white dinner jackets and apparently that was fine too - despite what the code says. I did see someone wearing shorts in the Commodore Club after 6 refused service. During the day sandals and shorts were the norm - though in places the ship was cold a extra layer was useful. 4 gala thems were advertised online before hand - but only 2 actually happened - the other galas weren't themed. The food was fantastic - we ate quite a lot in the MDR at night but only once (each) for lunch and breakfast . Although service is efficient its just too much sitting around for us. The service was subtle but not in your face. There was no feeling of hands out for tips. We didn't want to deal with the whole handing over cash at the end so we left the auto-gratuities in place and we didn't feel pressured. The entertainment was a bit hit and miss. One of the guest speakers wasn't good - he had an interest in Conflict Island and seemed totally under-prepared. The astronomer and the pilot were both fantastic. The shows by the ship's company were excellent - as was the NZ tenor. We heard the comedian was racist and sexist but didn't go. The dance professional couple were superb teachers for beginners - very impressed with them. Their demos were good too. The dance hosts were a mixed bag - 3 men one woman - the woman was excellent lead and follow - one of the men was dreadful, one was good and one was an OK social dancer. The music was pretty good. The sequence dancing had quite a bit of Australian New Vogue - which despite the music lady having no idea what it was she found the right music tempi. Now to the bad. The embarkation was a debacle - we waited 2 hours in a line to get on. After comparing notes it appeared that every passenger had been given the same check in time 11pm! We finally got on board about 2:30pm. No water was provided and frankly I'm pretty fit and I was tired of standing by the time we finally got on. The internet appears Victorian - but not in a good way -payign for a minute and requiring a logout is incredibly last century. Its the biggest negative for us as I have to stay in contact. The ports were good - didn't get into Rabaul because of local politics. Alotau we booked a local operator with a new bus. Some of the info given onboard was misleading suggesting Cunard had the best buses - yeah nah - some of theres were no-AC - and it was HOT, Conflict don't bother paying the over- the-top prices -snorkeling of the beach is amazing. Bring your own gear. Cairns timing is unfortunately - all aboard was 3;30pm -which meant if you were doing an excursion - you really need to do a ships tours because you are pushing it to get back on time. The ship was gorgeous and we enjoyed it all - always immaculate - as was our cabin. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Not many people I spoke to could access the web site to do the on line check in,before we sailed. Web site told everyone to arrive at terminal at noon, so we spent more than two hours lined up before we got on board,some of that time it ... Read More
Not many people I spoke to could access the web site to do the on line check in,before we sailed. Web site told everyone to arrive at terminal at noon, so we spent more than two hours lined up before we got on board,some of that time it rained,lucky for us only drizzle. Web site definitely needs to fixed. Cabin and food good,Lido service area a bit cramped at times. We had two helicopter evacuations, we were not allowed into Rabual,and mechanical fault in Cairns that delayed our departure from there by three hours. Staff not very friendly but very efficient.Staff in the main restaurants moved very fast and had no time to talk or explain menu items. Very clean,but I think staff should make sure all passengers use the hand cleaner before entering a food area. Good choice of drinks, but there is a service charge on everything. Leaving the ship was very quick. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Overall a great cruise, value for money. Ship looks great. Maintenance seemed up to date and all looked clean and shipshape. Main dining room food was excellent, maybe Lido buffet a bit underwhelming but certainly ok. Tried Veranda ... Read More
Overall a great cruise, value for money. Ship looks great. Maintenance seemed up to date and all looked clean and shipshape. Main dining room food was excellent, maybe Lido buffet a bit underwhelming but certainly ok. Tried Veranda restaurant and was execellent. Had the sole not steak. Not as stuffy as I had expected and surprisingly gala nights made a nice special occasion but I would still prefer not to wear a stupid tie. Not everyone on this Australian cruise dressed up and some without dark jackets were let into dining room but who cares really..Cabinwas well appointed and super clean, maybe bathroom a bit small but a first world problem. Entertainment ok but maybe have late show earlier before dinner a few more nights so do not do not have to watch show at 10 pm after late dinner sitting. Virtually all staff seemed to be happy and interacted well with passengers... Did no ships excursions. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
I wanted to try Cunard for the experience so paid 3.5 times the usual daily rate of other ships. Unfortunately it was the worst dining experience of any ship I have sailed on (10+) and I complained to the Executive Chef in person. Meat and ... Read More
I wanted to try Cunard for the experience so paid 3.5 times the usual daily rate of other ships. Unfortunately it was the worst dining experience of any ship I have sailed on (10+) and I complained to the Executive Chef in person. Meat and Foul were of very poor quality so if you wanted anything not to be tough you had to order rare. I had tough steak and lamb n poor quality shrimp. One lady at my table had duck which was like shoe leather. The same lady complained to the wine waiter about her wine being stale and he just walked away. When challenged the next night by another lady about it he walked away again. One lady ordered lobster maccoroni but could hardly find any lobster. She said they have weird combinations on this ship plus you need a dictionary to read the menu. As an example one night they listed a Phirthier of Cauliflower. At afternoon tea one waiter was rude to me when I asked what fillings were in the sandwiches. He said " I have already told the others" meaning the other 3 at my table. The decor of the ship is simply stunning and it felt spacious and the highlight of the cruise was afternoon tea at 3pm each day. The evening shows were really great and having a private box made it special. The vast majority of the staff are fantastic and can't do enough for you. Unfortunately on the last evening there was a long line up of people wishing to settle their accounts but few staff. Overall I enjoyed the cruise but it's not good value for money and if you are a foodie sail with someone else. I think Cunard is resting on a tradition that is gone since being now owned by Carnival. As an example on the last evening there was a $10 SALE, mainly watches, rings, sunnies and bling. The original British owners must be horrified. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
My cruise was a surprise arranged by my friend. I was amazed. Arriving we were greeted by friendly porters and our suitcases were taken to our booked cabins. We then waited some time in five rows filling out paperwork before being served ... Read More
My cruise was a surprise arranged by my friend. I was amazed. Arriving we were greeted by friendly porters and our suitcases were taken to our booked cabins. We then waited some time in five rows filling out paperwork before being served at a counter, then given further documents for customs. Staff were continually on hand to manage the rows. Once through Customs we walked towards the gangplank stopped to have our photo taken, then into the entrance area. We were greeted by friendly officers and staff and given directions to our cabin. During the seven days the cabin crew were efficient cleaning our cabin daily, replacing linen and tidying the cabin. The phone marking for enquiries was clear. We had a television and during the emergency gatherings we were told channel 41 contained a viewing of the ship. Unfortunately we learnt an inside cabin not having windows or a balcony encouraged us to walk down stairs or arrange a lift downstairs from deck six to deck three to view the marvellous ocean or see any action during sailing towards docks or leaving docks. I watched the ship leaving the dock in Melbourne and it was marvellous watching the men on the dock and the gang blank being lifted into the ship. Activities on board included, shows, staff employed to dance with ladies without partners or husbands, craft, card games, ping pong, massages, swimming, line and modern dancing classes, art training, tour of galleries, virtual bridge tours , gymnasiums, casino, bars, shops, violins, police bands, Irish dancers,international dancers, singers, harps and piano bar with trumpets. There was a black and white and a masked ball and judging. Staff were friendly and continually cleaning. Blankets for cold days on decks supplied. Any emergency was dealt with immediately. Embarking and disembarking off ship was well organised. with sanitizers for hand washing supplied on docks along with face washers with Dettol and cold water during hot days after excursions. Umbrellas were also supplied for the rainy day at Bernie. Days were busy with so many choices to make, walking up and down stairs for activities with crowded lifts at times and wonderful meals at the Britannia Restaurant. The ludo deck supplied snacks twenty four hours a day for staff and guests. The decor was opulent and relaxing. We all enjoyed dressing up for gala and ball nights while the masked ball was fun with people relaxing hiding behind well designed masks. The cruise was fantastic Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
This was our first experience on Cunard and we stayed in the top level Queen’s Grill accommodations. We previously have done a number of cruises with Princess. The trip did not start well when we could not find the Cunard ... Read More
This was our first experience on Cunard and we stayed in the top level Queen’s Grill accommodations. We previously have done a number of cruises with Princess. The trip did not start well when we could not find the Cunard representative at the airport to get our airport to pier transfer at the start of the trip. We were at Melbourne airport, but the number to call in our Cunard documentation was a South African number. We ended up catching a taxi to the pier and to their credit Cunard re-embursed the cost as on board credit. We had a large suite at the back of the ship on deck 5. It was well laid out; however, there was a lot of engine noise and vibration when the ship was operating at full speed. Our cruise was to New Zealand, a trip we have done several times, so our aim this time was to enjoy the ship more so than the ports. To that extent the ship delivered. The staff were very friendly and eager to please. The dining in the exclusive Queen’s Grill restaurant was the best we have ever experienced at sea. In addition to an extensive a la carte menu you could request special meals (eg a good Indian curry). The wine list was extensive, but expensive. As a Queen’s Grill guest we had a butler service. We were not sure what to expect but his service was great. Little things like the organisation of lemon wedges for our afternoon gin and tonic in the room and the setting up of our in room breakfast when ordered were all done seamlessly. The ship seemed less crowded in the public places than some of the Princess ships we have been on. Also there did not seem to be as much hard sell as we have experienced on Princess. The differences were subtle, but you could see the difference between the more reserved British heritage of Cunard versus the more brash American heritage of Princess. The entertainment program was also very similar to Princess, a combination of in house stage shows and guest entertainers. The usual trivia and game shows were also a staple. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Although we have cruised before, this was our first cruise with Cunard. The Queen Elizabeth is a very comfortable ship. There are plenty of seats around the ship, and it is never hard to find a comfortable spot to relax, read a book, ... Read More
Although we have cruised before, this was our first cruise with Cunard. The Queen Elizabeth is a very comfortable ship. There are plenty of seats around the ship, and it is never hard to find a comfortable spot to relax, read a book, watch the scenery, play a card or board game or just chat to new friends. There are lots of activities on board, shops to visit, a very busy British pub, an excellent library, lectures, daily movies, and the standard of acts in the theatre was very good. The food was delicious. Serves in the dining room are small, which is very good since eating at the self-serve Lido inevitably leads to over-indulgence. It was very upsetting to hear a perfectly fit passenger rudely complain to staff that he had waited in vain for 15 minutes for a staff member to offer him a cup of tea - in a self-service restaurant! Currency on board is $US which can make on-board shopping, specialty dining, drinks and shore excursions expensive for some. The staff are hard working, helpful, friendly and polite and a credit to Cunard. At every port on this trip from Melbourne around New Zealand, we were transported to the city by bus and/or tender. Although information on shore excursions was provided, and photographers were about the ship, there was no hard sell, which was impressive and most welcome. Whilst there was a few minor disappointments - the absence of a few favourite food items, for example, and the lengthy queues for tickets for tender transfers, they were entirely offset by the many pleasures to be enjoyed on this ship. This is not a ship for children or teenagers who might find it boring. There are other cruise lines for them. Read the literature and reviews before you go and there will be no need to be upset that your drinks are costly, or your shore excursions too. Be prepared and you won’t feel the need to complain later. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Husbands special birthday and cunard was always on his bucket list. First 5 days food was rubbish, dry and not as described on menu. The Lido was no better Bar prices out of this world. Buy a drinks package, coffees, soft drinks or ... Read More
Husbands special birthday and cunard was always on his bucket list. First 5 days food was rubbish, dry and not as described on menu. The Lido was no better Bar prices out of this world. Buy a drinks package, coffees, soft drinks or alcohol, they don't tell you in the book that you have to buy one for every one in your cabin ! What to wear in dining room, non gala evenings. Book says collared shirt, long trousers. My husband was Refused Entry, in front of other passengers ! Lucky I was already at the table...as he was wearing a polo 3 button shirt a very expensive one at that. Why couldn't they just explain themselves, so that next time he would understand what they mean. There were other men at the tables in similar and 2 nights later we witnessed the same thing on another passenger. Well trained staff, I don't think. Very very embarrassing Free sauna and gym, according to a lot of the stafr, it is not free. But it is, depends who you talk to. The last four days the food improved, but too late. Staff seem to be on board under sufferance. Top Mark's to cabin steward. Top Mark's to shows and nightly dancing by passengers. Beautiful ship, shame about the captain - the buck stops here. Where were you and your highly trained senior staff. The passengers - your customers - older generation, paid a lot of money to sail with you, you do realize that the majority would have held very senior positions in their lifetime and know the meaning value for money and how to treat customers. Some were incredulous. A bit of a rip off. Never again cunard. Back to Holland America, value for money, friendly staff and make it clear what you are up for before you go . Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
This is the second cruise our family of 4 have taken. The first being a 10 day cruise with the Carnival Spirit in July 2017. We thought our Carnival cruise was great, fantastic staff, good food and lovely atmosphere. So when booking ... Read More
This is the second cruise our family of 4 have taken. The first being a 10 day cruise with the Carnival Spirit in July 2017. We thought our Carnival cruise was great, fantastic staff, good food and lovely atmosphere. So when booking this 5-star Cunard cruise, I was assuming it would be of a higher standard that we experienced on the 3-4 star Carnival cruise. Sadly to say, this was only marginally better then Carnival. First the positives when compared to our Carnival cruise: Food was lovely and the little touches like the Godiva chocolates were divine. It was slightly better then Carnival The evening shows were of a very high standard and very professional. Loved listening to the invited speakers on board, we had Dr Richard Harris taking about the Thai cave rescue and also a forensic dentist. The library on board is fantastic. The overall decor is very tasteful. The afternoon tea is lovely and you can get the same afternoon tea items in the buffet restaurant Our room steward was lovely and very helpful. Lovely Penhaligion’s toiletries There are some lovely spaces on board such as the Garden Lounge and the Commodore Club. Now for the negatives: Staff were overworked and looked tired. And because of this, didn’t go out of their way to be friendly. But who can blame them when they are worked so hard. The 15% service charge does not go back to the staff. I asked several different bar tenders if they got the money and they all were very hesitant at answering me. They’ve obviously all been told by management not to answer this question The drinks were of a very measly pour. From a standard bottle of champagne, you can get 6 glasses. Cunard was easily getting 10 glasses. At USD $15 plus 15% tax, I was not impressed. The daily tax per person. For our 5 day cruise, this would have come to $350 AUD , We chose not to pay this but to give our tips directly to the staff. It would be interesting to see if any of that money ever gets back to the staff. All prices in USD, for a company that prides itself on its Englishness and their Whitestar service, I found this odd. The tables often took a while to clear and finding a clean table in the buffet area was often difficult. After chatting to several other Australian guests who are seasoned cruisers, we all had the same opinion. We all thought QE would have been of a higher standard the Carnival or Royal Caribbean. I wouldn’t choose to cruise Cunard again but would happily cruise with Carnival again. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
We chose this cruise in order to experience Christmas,New Years and significant birthday at at sea. There were several highlights on the Queen Elizabeth; the food in the main dining room was excellent, our shoulder cabin and balcony seemed ... Read More
We chose this cruise in order to experience Christmas,New Years and significant birthday at at sea. There were several highlights on the Queen Elizabeth; the food in the main dining room was excellent, our shoulder cabin and balcony seemed vast, and some of the guest speakers were excellent (Dr Richard Harris, Australian of the Year, gave a wonderful presentation about his role in the Thai cave rescues which could be used as an exemplar for all those who aspire to talk about themselves in public forums; he was humble and self deprecating, at times very funny, and his tale was spine tingling). So why won't we be back? In a number of administrative matters Cunard proved to be seriously deficient, and these issues combined to leave a nasty aftertaste to an expensive cruise that could have been so much more. In the weeks prior to departure to join the cruise the online Voyage Personaliser was almost always not working, so it proved nigh on impossible to finalise details of excursions, make bookings for restaurants, and complete embarkation details. The Cunard call centre knew all about the problem with the website, yet it remained non-functioning right up to the point of sailing. I understand that technology can fail, but there is no excusing that the website didn't acknowledge the problem, and give clear instructions as to to how to work around the issue. Our cruise embarkation details were supposed to arrive to us a month before embarkation, including such details as location and time of embarkation, the ship's itinerary, and luggage tags for checked luggage. We disembarked the ship on 12 January, and the smartly printed embarkation details folio arrived by mail on 27 January - it contained lots of details that would have proved helpful 2 months earlier. In crossing the Tasman we passed through two time zones, and Queen Elizabeth elected to make the time changes at 10:00 AM (mid morning). We have crossed many time zones in many ships - we have never experienced time changes during daylight hours before, and the resulting schemozzle was completely predictable. I remain baffled as to why Queen Elizabeth elected to do something quite so unnecessarily bizarre - it certainly confused many passengers. Disembarkation in Melbourne was woefully organised and executed. There were passengers like us disembarking after visiting New Zealand, and therefore needing to clear customs, and a large majority of others leaving after a shorter cruise in Australian waters only. The night before disembarkation there were what seemed to be clear instructions about labeling bag for each group, and we, as part of the group needing to clear customs, were to disembark first, with no other passengers allowed off until the customs group had been processed. This might have worked - if all of the disembarked luggage hadn't ended up in a hopelessly jumbled pile, despite clear labeling. The resulting logjam took over 2 hours to clear, without a single word of advice from ship staff, nor any assistance to the many elderly and confused passengers who were obviously going to miss flights and pickups because of the delay. Some final observations. Cunard does an effective job of selling itself as being something special in the crowded cruising market. Its advertised 'White Star Service' and other overblown snobbery make it seem something unique ... and it clearly works, as we met numerous passengers who proclaimed themselves Cunarders for life. In our experience this is a triumph of marketing over reality. Queen Elizabeth is not our worst cruising experience - that was Queen Mary 2 on an Indian Ocean crossing, but it is far from our best, and dollar for dollar it doesn't stack up against other lines who live up to their promises and deliver a great complete experience. Remember - Cunard became part of Carnival in 2005, and is therefore being driven by the same business model as the rest of the Carnival holdings - something the slick advertising doesn't reveal. The reality is that the standards of service onboard are the same as we've experienced on many other ships - not better, not worse. And ... everything onboard is priced to match the hype; 1 barista coffee $7.83 (Aus), 2 drinks at the Golden Lion Pub $38.61 (Aus), dinner for 2 at the Verandah $118 (Aus) with 2 glasses of wine $52.17 (Aus). Daily automatic gratuity $17.40 (Aus) per person - therefore $765.60 (Aus) for the 22 days were were aboard. So no - we won't be back. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
This was my first cruise with Cunard. I knew ahead of time what I was in for as I had done plenty of research before and after booking. I booked this itinerary because I wanted to spend Christmas Day at sea and dress up for evenings and ... Read More
This was my first cruise with Cunard. I knew ahead of time what I was in for as I had done plenty of research before and after booking. I booked this itinerary because I wanted to spend Christmas Day at sea and dress up for evenings and gala occasions. I chose Cunard because I wanted a different (largely child free) experience as compared to other cruise operators. The embarkation and disembarkation process in Melbourne was smooth and both Cunard and the terminal operator worked well keeping things moving. Queen Elizabeth is a beautifully appointed ship and has more the feel of warm inviting spaces as compared to the Casino-like public areas found on most ships. Everything is sparkling clean and for this cruise the Christmas Decorations were festive but not ridiculous. I was booked in to Britannia Club and was not disappointed by the step up of amenity as compared to a regular balcony stateroom. Dining was and food service was high quality across all venues. Of particular note is the Britannia Club dining room and its amazing staff. Service was efficient and personalised without being overbearing. Requests were met with absolute best efforts. Our waiter for this trip was dedicated and unfailingly professional, giving regular tips of goings on around the ship. The Lido Buffet layout is a bit of a nightmare but once you have managed to get your food its tasty and fresh and the dining areas are kept clean. All cruise ship buffets remind me that 'hell is other people' but Cunard manages this as best they can by providing plenty of tea and cake. I have to admit that afternoon tea in the Queens Room was a daily favourite of mine. tip: get there a few minutes early to score a window seat. Service was consistent across all venues and to my surprise many staff were experts at remembering names and orders, greeting guests personally even at bars and coffee shops. Recognition rates increased for those passengers who were friendly to servers (it never hurts to be nice). Entertainment in the Royal Theatre was lively and fun. We booked into a box for a show, really enjoyable experience so I recommend picking something you are interested in and booking it in. For enrichment we were fortunate to have Judith Fordham lecturing on our trip. She packed the theatre out for her entertaining and insightful talks on criminal laws and evidence. Port visits were well organised and we took a couple of excursions. These were great experiences if maybe on the over priced side. I used the Gym regularly and the facilities are great and at no additional cost. We pre-purchased drink packages and they included everything we wanted/needed. Others on our cruise complained about drink pricing, fair enough I guess, but maybe research better next time. I enjoy the Cunard service model, good processes enforced flexibly. I didn't even mind the up-selling as it was mostly well targeted and certainly a lot less in your face than other cruise operators. I would definitely travel with Cunard again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Pros: * Very organised to come on board the cruise * Cleaners kept the ship super clean, especially the toilets. * Cabin staff are so polite and very hard working at maintaining a high standard of cabins * Dessert buffet for ... Read More
Pros: * Very organised to come on board the cruise * Cleaners kept the ship super clean, especially the toilets. * Cabin staff are so polite and very hard working at maintaining a high standard of cabins * Dessert buffet for New Years Eve was Beyond Amazing with all the ice sculptures. * Santa coming on the cruise ship and every child received a great present which we weren’t expecting. * Beautiful Library * Bathroom amenities in both the cabins and at the wellness centre were fantastic. Shavers, mouth wash, combs ect were provided. * Outdoor Pool and Spa were very clean and water was tested every 4hrs. * Met some really lovely people. * Entertainment was great with the dancers being an absolute standout along with the vocalist and the violinist was beyond outstanding!!! But, you really need to have a variety of young fresh acts Cons: * The people on the cruise are majority over 75 and we had a lot of run-ins with the elderly as they felt entitled to tell my kids whatever they felt like saying. They were told not to eat burgers as it will make them fat (mind you they are very fit kids), telling them to move away from their feet, to be quiet while we were at lunch as a family while they were reading a book, not to lean to a bench, and the list just goes on and on! * If you are not over 75 there really is no activity to do as a young family. The “activities” on board is to attend sampling alcohol at a cost, learn to water paint at a cost, play bridges, attend a choir, play bingo, attend LGBT gathering, build a boat and see who’s can float challenge, all singers/bands and djs only play older songs. * The alcohol is an absolute rip off at $17 a drink US!! Lots of people were bringing alcohol and soft drinks on board and making it themselves. Lucky we are not drinkers! * They have 2 seperate kids clubs so my kids had to be separated as they are different ages. The older room is fantastic but, the other room is set up for a baby not for 6-7 year olds. * Apart from the dancers, vocalist and the Violinist performance who were Outstanding!! The other acts were Average/Boring! All suited for 75+ * Don’t book Excursions through cruise ship as there are many tours on land at a cheaper cost. And they are all available. Great tip from other passengers. * To change Australian money to NZ money on board you have to change it to US first and then to NZ! Wellington take Australian money but, you can also use your card and there are plenty of places to exchange money on land. * We were told by other passengers that we didn’t have to pay the $800 US TIP that they automatically put on our statement. We removed it and paid tips to the staff that worked so hard at the end of our cruise. * To use the “hydro spa and sauna” was extra cost at $35 a day US or $280US for 14 days. Other cruise liners are for free. * We weren’t told that there was 1 free yoga class to attend. * Witnessed so many passengers swear at staff that didn’t need to be spoken to in that manner. Lots of stuck up snobs on this cruise! But, met lovely people too! * Security - My 8 year old child scanned my card to get off ship and they let him through and I asked how did you let him through when it has my picture??? They apologised and re-scanned his card. *NO BIG SCREEN OUTSIDE Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise as wanted to experience a Cunard Christmas and also because as departing from Adelaide and returning to Adelaide, no flights involved. QE didn't let us down- wonderful Christmas trees and decorations ... Read More
We chose this cruise as wanted to experience a Cunard Christmas and also because as departing from Adelaide and returning to Adelaide, no flights involved. QE didn't let us down- wonderful Christmas trees and decorations everywhere- even had "snow": outside the OLD LION. The itinerary was good and the seas even allowed us to spend Christmas Day cruising the three Sounds. We had an aft Grills cabin and it was a sight to behold watching the NEW YEAR fireworks from our balcony. (in dressing gowns!) The service in the QG was wonderful and the food lived up to usual high standard. A little disappointed with our cabin- nice and large but only one basin the bathroom and also no basin on the bar in the cabin, which we always find very handy Going on QV soon -can anyone tell me if the QG Aft cabins have 2 basins in the bathroom and also on the bar area of the cabin. We enjoyed all the guest speakers , films were good, shore activities arranged very well all in all Cunard did well and put the sparkle back into Christmas for us!!! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary in Australia. But one of the excursions was cancelled and a disappointment, and the excursions were only okay. The Queen Elizabeth is absolutely for the older generation (ages 65 and older). ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary in Australia. But one of the excursions was cancelled and a disappointment, and the excursions were only okay. The Queen Elizabeth is absolutely for the older generation (ages 65 and older). I am age 53 and felt so young. There weren't any activities onboard that I was even remotely interested in and spent some time in my cabin sleeping and reading. However, it was a beautiful ship (nicer then any other ship I have been on). And the food was the best food of any other ship I have been on, very 5 Star in my opinion. However, the waiters were very rude in the main dining room, which I had read about in other reviews before I read. Because I was traveling as a single person, that kind of made me feel isolated and sad. Thank goodness I had a 2 week trip on the Norwegian Jewel directly afterwards, that was a Spectacular cruise and the food was surprisingly very good! On the Queen Elizabeth, the entertainment was really not good, with the exception of a 4 man group, "Walk Like A Man", they were not only cute, but WOW, could they sing. The high tea was a disappointment because I live in Palm Beach County Florida and have had very exceptional and elegant high tea which the Queen Elizabeth did not even begin to compare too. I won't ever go on this ship again. Too bad, because the food was Exceptional!!! Congratulations to the cooks! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Why not spent some nights on the Queen Elizabeth as part of Pre Xmas celebrations, I thought. We were on her not so long ago in Feb and then in April on her way to Japan for the Sakura or Cherry Blossom. So this is really, a novel way for ... Read More
Why not spent some nights on the Queen Elizabeth as part of Pre Xmas celebrations, I thought. We were on her not so long ago in Feb and then in April on her way to Japan for the Sakura or Cherry Blossom. So this is really, a novel way for us to past the time away. We were just back from her sister ship in the Med in Sept. Making the best use of her while she is in Australian waters. Otherwise, it will be a long flight to London and coach to Southampton. We note some differences sailing here and in Europe. Some of our Aussies are pretty laid back to the point that some wear, thongs and shorts and T-shirts for the evening performances in the Royal Court Theatre and other places in the evening. It is like a country bush setting for some of them and they might be missing the salient point of cruising on the Cunard. We have heard previous comedians joking about the Aussie dressing standards which you have to laugh when you think about how true it is. Seriously, couldn't some of them put a little bit more effort to dress and look good for one's sake and lend a bit more ambience to the evening for everyone's sake. Britannia served some excellent food and lobsters, my favourite marine crustacean delicacy on the 2 formal nights and on 3 other nights. This totally, repudiated my one gripe about the lack of lobster when we were sailing on the Queen Victoria in Sep/Oct. Either the executive chef must have heard my gripe or sailing in Tasmania, means lots of lovely lobsters for all of us. The selection of dining cuisine was very good and delicious and certainly, much better than our recent experience in her sister ship. Lucky, maybe. Entertainment was excellent and as to be expected. We loved Top Hats show performed by the Royal Court Theatre dancers and singers. Good story and good acting. Horace stole the show, we think but Bettini was funny. And so are the Palladium Nights and Hollywood Nights shows. Lana MacFarlane provided the lovely vocals and Tom Scott the guitarist, and the Queens Room Orchestra, provided some lovely music for dancing which we enjoyed very much. That is how we past our time away. We visited the Emu Valley Rhododendron gardens and the famous Hellyer Whisky distillery. The gardens were pretty and well landscaped and I imagined will be even much more beautiful during spring when the flowers blossom or in autumn, when the foliage turned yellow and red. In Hobart, we walked about Salamanca place and went shopping in Elizabeth street downtown and in Adelaide, the ship generously provided an hour long drive shuttle bus to Rundle Mall shopping centre, and so we did more shopping. The winds exceeded 22 nautical miles per hour and for the passengers safety, we were not allowed to tender to go to Kangaroo island. This must have disappointed many hundreds of passengers especially those with children wanting to see some lively kangaroos and seals. Our monies for the full day excursion monies were automatically refunded very quickly and seaday activities were immediately put on by the ship entertainment team to keep everyone happy and busy. What a great effort by all. Overall, we were very happy with the cruise. We met many interesting and lovely people on board. The service was very good and friendly throughout the ship. Looking forward to the next cruise to NZ next month. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
My husband had never sailed with Cunard and I wanted him to share the experience. Having sailed on QM2 from the UK back in 2010, I was worried it might be a little austere but I could not have been more wrong. We were at least 20 years ... Read More
My husband had never sailed with Cunard and I wanted him to share the experience. Having sailed on QM2 from the UK back in 2010, I was worried it might be a little austere but I could not have been more wrong. We were at least 20 years younger than most passengers and we have never seen so many zimmer frames in one place but it was wonderful from start to finish. It was only a 2 night trip from Adelaide to Melbourne but since coming back we have booked to more trips for 2020 and 2021. Staterooms - beautiful in every way Afternoon Tea - opulent and calorie-laden but you have to have it! Dining room - exquisite furnishings, food and service Old style, traditional cruising but it was a very relaxing experience. I would not recommend for younger couples or children as it definitely more biased to the 50+ market. We enjoyed the entertainment and quizzes that took place and were happy wandering around the ship and losing money in the casino!! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
chose this line to compare to azamara. found the cabin to be bigger and comfortable but no international plugs for our electronics. service and cleanliness at a very high standard. the ship itself was very elegant and graceful. ... Read More
chose this line to compare to azamara. found the cabin to be bigger and comfortable but no international plugs for our electronics. service and cleanliness at a very high standard. the ship itself was very elegant and graceful. only did a couple of shows and they were entertaining. the guest speakers were forgettable. the food. the standard food was very good sometimes too salty for me but fresh and abundant. lots of great salads.. the sit down Britianna was hit and miss. some very good meals but some below par. we paid extra for the italian which was spectacular and had amazing wait service. in comparison paid a huge levy for the steakhouse and was monumentally disappointed. the bisque was great then downhill from there. Much song and dance about the steaks with specially selected steak knives and our appetites wetted for this great experience. the aged beef was a total let down. My steak was not rare as ordered and my partner could not chew his it was so tough. added to that spinach sides that were so salty could not be eaten. I come from a land of great steaks and these were ordinary. all the hype about them amounted to nothing. Interestingly the maitre d did not ask or enquire why my partner left most of his steak untouched. Nobody cared. Add a very expensive bottle of wine convert the us dollars and taxes and we were 200 dollars poorer and underwhelmed. the cocktails were superb but very expensive once converted to aussie. the drink package was very expensive compared to the azamara where we had anything top shelf and wines for 25 us a day each. add the average age of 70. I think there were more walking frames than passengers I am not being agist I am quite old myself but this is not a ship for the young. I am glad a travelled on the elizabeth but I would not do so again. The staff were diligent but aloof at times and there was an entirely different vibe here compared to other vessels. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We went Queens Grill on a short cruise in December 2019. It cost a lot of obey but it was a special occasion so we booked it. It was awful from beginning to end. The butler didn’t even exist. We never saw him once. So although ... Read More
We went Queens Grill on a short cruise in December 2019. It cost a lot of obey but it was a special occasion so we booked it. It was awful from beginning to end. The butler didn’t even exist. We never saw him once. So although Cunard advertise this wonderful person who will pamper you good luck with that you have more chance of meeting Santa. He was meant to great us and show us to our room but we would have waited a long time for that ! He apparently unpacks your cases, books your excursions and things on board, pampers you and no problem is too big !!!!! Really that’s a complete joke. I am sure it’s false advertising just to suck you in. Supposedly you have an extensive pillow menu. But not in our cabin. I asked 3 times for extra pillows and they never arrived. I went to concierge and I called them twice but to no avail. I used the cushions on the sofa instead. Not clean but I couldn’t sleep without them. No one told us you have to ask for food off the a la cart menus for dinner at lunch time. So by the time we found out mid afternoon it was too late to order food we wanted for dinner. If the elusive butler had ever shown his face maybe we would have known this ? On our second day our room wasn’t serviced by lunch time and I had to call to get it done. Just another miserable experience to add to the others. So instead of gong for a lie down we had to go back out so the room could be cleaned. The worst thing was the stewards made up our room and stripped the bed taking our own personal belongings off it and put them on the floor while we were at breakfast and still entitled to be in the room. I had to ask them to leave as they wanted to stay and carry on when we returned. How this is acceptable I’ll never know but Cunard thought it was. Have you ever stayed anywhere where the room gets cleaned for the next guests while your still in it. ? I cried twice on that cruise as it was so awful. No one cared we were even there. So if you want to feel like you’ve wasted a huge amount of money feel undervalued and a nuisance. If you want to feel like no one is listening and that although you pay for a service you don’t get it then go ahead and book yourself on. My experience following the cruise was no better. They are only interested in making money not customer service. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Liked the itinerary and wanted to try Cunard. From the start it was annoying. Could never get on the cruise Personaliser . Kept complaining to our agent and Cunard direct but took weeks before they fixed the problem. By that time it ... Read More
Liked the itinerary and wanted to try Cunard. From the start it was annoying. Could never get on the cruise Personaliser . Kept complaining to our agent and Cunard direct but took weeks before they fixed the problem. By that time it was only a couple of weeks before our cruise. No cabin number was assigned until a week before. They couldn’t send us an itinerary as they said it was less than a month! Did enquire online if there was a shuttle from train station to ship. I got a reply one week AFTER our return from the cruise. Grrrrr. . On arrival on the ship we went to the reception to talk about the daily gratuity. The staff were close to being rude. Disembarkation was a disaster. They were disembarking by decks and not by what time our flight departure times were. Our friends who we were travelling with , were on different decks so had different times, which meant they would have missed our flight. Once again we had to approach reception to ask for different times. Not very helpful as usual!, Sailaway parties were held 2 hours BEFORE departure and entertainment staff were happy to just dance with each other and not interact with passengers. Change of time zones were done at 9am instead of the usual midnight. One morning lots of passengers missed out on bfast as a result. Bfast times changed daily as well??? There seems to be shortage of bar staff. Had to wait ages to get service in the bar outlets. Admin certainly needs looking into as well as their website. In saying all this the ship was lovely. Great decorations for Xmas. However sadly, I will not be choosing Cunard again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise as a relaxing way to get home from South Africa. The ship gave a grand impression with wood paneling a feature. It appeared well maintained. For those who get sea sick, there was quite a bit of movement, even in ... Read More
We chose this cruise as a relaxing way to get home from South Africa. The ship gave a grand impression with wood paneling a feature. It appeared well maintained. For those who get sea sick, there was quite a bit of movement, even in relatively calm seas. We had a balcony cabin, we started in 5137- midship. This cabin had a tender boat directly underneath it , which obstructed our view down to the water. After a few days sailing we were able to move to 5159 , nil obstructions and a bigger balcony. The shower is tiny however hot water plentiful and towels fluffy. The staff were unobtrusive yet attentive. They seemed happy and were all polite. The food was enjoyable. They catered very well for food intolerance. My friend was given the following days menu to choose from and they made were able to adapt most choices to gluten free for her, with notice. The day spa's prices were exorbitant- eyebrow tinting $44 US plus tip , manicure $88 US plus tip etc- staff were stationed at the door trying to entice passengers in- if prices were reasonable people would have been lined up ! The demographic was 80+ with the activities and entertainment to match. The entertainment team lacked presence. There was an annual staff tug of war organised, which surprisingly drew a crowd, otherwise, unless there was a two for one trunk sale on, it was difficult to find other passengers ! I enjoyed the promenade deck, which enabled a full lap of the ship - 3 laps = .9 miles. The only down side was that there is a smoking area on the port side, so coped a lung full of smoke on each lap when exercising. There a two pools, the front one more sheltered, getting a deck lounge was nil issue. We only had 2 ports on the way home. As usual the excursions were pricey. On Re union island I opted for a visit to the turtle sanctuary, which was unguided and information written in French..... Mauritius we did a catamaran trip to snorkel , this was magical. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Queen Elizabeth Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.5
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 3.6
Service 4.0 4.0
Value For Money 4.0 3.5
Rates 4.0 3.5

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