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I must first say that we enjoyed the Cruise. The Queen Victoria is a fine, comfortable ship, and our cabin was excellent. However there were so many irritations, some of them avoidable, that we will think twice before going with Cunard again. The primary complaint was the price of everything on board. The cheapest wine at dinner was $30 + 15% service charge (all drinks attract a service charge of 15%) . Photographs taken by the ever hopeful ship photographers were $24.95 each. A tour of the ship was on offer at $120. To join a wine tasting was about $50. I don't know why Cunard charge these silly prices, it just puts people off, and there were a lot of unclaimed photographs at the end of the cruise. We probably spent less than we would have if the prices had been reasonable. Entertainment was we thought of a high quality, but often spoiled by being over-amplified. The theatre is excellent. However the timing of some of the daily events was strange - there were often 3 talks in the morning and none in the afternoon. Cinema shows started about 1230 when people were having lunch. One of the problems of the ship is that it has only one theatre. Other functions have to take place in the Queen's Room, which is not an enclosed space. It was not therefore a good place for the Piano Recitals given there, as there were stewards and passengers moving along the passageways, and the noise of the air conditioning almost drowned out the performers. Also the seats are badly arranged for that type of event, and for the cinema which was held there. The penny pinching extended even to the Passenger Choir for which no music was provided - even the pianist had to play by ear. The food we found was mostly pretty good, not though as good as we had with Fred Olsen on Braemar a few years ago. Service was sometimes a bit slow. We enjoyed our trips though they are expensive. We were disappointed at the lack of shuttles - particularly in Istanbul where there was quite a walk to the centre. The ambience of the ship is supposed to be traditionally British. If that is so then it seems odd to have everything priced in dollars. Nor were the entertainments staff particularly British in attitude - everything was hyped to the maximum degree, and a bit of British restraint would have been refreshing. Incidentally the Captain (Commodore) was a perfect gentleman! Despite the above we did enjoy the holiday, but much preferred the Aurora on which we travelled round the world a few years ago.

Expensive Queen Victoria

Queen Victoria Cruise Review by DesmondQ

Trip Details
I must first say that we enjoyed the Cruise. The Queen Victoria is a fine, comfortable ship, and our cabin was excellent. However there were so many irritations, some of them avoidable, that we will think twice before going with Cunard again.
The primary complaint was the price of everything on board. The cheapest wine at dinner was $30 + 15% service charge (all drinks attract a service charge of 15%) . Photographs taken by the ever hopeful ship photographers were $24.95 each. A tour of the ship was on offer at $120. To join a wine tasting was about $50. I don't know why Cunard charge these silly prices, it just puts people off, and there were a lot of unclaimed photographs at the end of the cruise. We probably spent less than we would have if the prices had been reasonable.
Entertainment was we thought of a high quality, but often spoiled by being over-amplified. The theatre is excellent. However the timing of some of the daily events was strange - there were often 3 talks in the morning and none in the afternoon. Cinema shows started about 1230 when people were having lunch.
One of the problems of the ship is that it has only one theatre. Other functions have to take place in the Queen's Room, which is not an enclosed space. It was not therefore a good place for the Piano Recitals given there, as there were stewards and passengers moving along the passageways, and the noise of the air conditioning almost drowned out the performers. Also the seats are badly arranged for that type of event, and for the cinema which was held there.
The penny pinching extended even to the Passenger Choir for which no music was provided - even the pianist had to play by ear.
The food we found was mostly pretty good, not though as good as we had with Fred Olsen on Braemar a few years ago. Service was sometimes a bit slow.
We enjoyed our trips though they are expensive. We were disappointed at the lack of shuttles - particularly in Istanbul where there was quite a walk to the centre.
The ambience of the ship is supposed to be traditionally British. If that is so then it seems odd to have everything priced in dollars. Nor were the entertainments staff particularly British in attitude - everything was hyped to the maximum degree, and a bit of British restraint would have been refreshing. Incidentally the Captain (Commodore) was a perfect gentleman!
Despite the above we did enjoy the holiday, but much preferred the Aurora on which we travelled round the world a few years ago.
DesmondQ’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
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Entertainment
Cabin
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Cabin Review

Balcony
Cabin BC
Clean and comfortable with avery comfortable bed, but no tea making facility. The Steward was a star, and we nominated him for Stardom
Deck 8 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins