Our last cruise was on the Azura last January 2014 going round the Caribbean which defiantly had the Wow Factor which we though ally enjoyed enough to book another cruise with P&O & despite the Ventura being the sister ship to the Azura it lacked any feel good factor.
My wife enjoys sitting on deck during the day reading, whilst I usually go to any lectures, demonstrations & joining in the classes in the Gym.
Considering what you pay for what you receive you used to get a massive amount of value for your money.
But from talking to many other passengers there is better cruise company's out there for similar money, eg Celebrity.
Sadly P&O are cutting back on what used to be all inclusive, now comes at a price attached.
There are a small selection of daytime activities that are available all now with a hook!!
Disguised as eg" Relieve back pain & walk in comfort" which translates to a foot insole at £119.00 a pair.
Or "Back pain solutions" which translates in a Spa employee trying to flog sessions of Acupuncture at £93.00, even a gym class will cost you £5.00.
If you might be interested in the Spa products, my advice is DONT, they are hugely overpriced & questionable weather they actually work or work as well as what they claim?.
The food in the main buffet for breakfast & lunch is the same everyday & although you might not slag it of, you wouldn't write home about either. Passable.
The quality & quantity in the main evening restaurant is ok, no more no less.
We thought the Ventura is kept immaculacy clean all the time & is in reasonably good condition.
Generally we enjoyed it, it was not as good as it was but nothing is, is it?
Lets not forget this is a business like any other & the cost of everything keeps on escalating as it does in your weekly shopping.
USEFUL TIPS & SUGGESTIONS FOR 1ST TIMERS & OTHERS.
As this was our 5th cruise we are always looking at any savings we can make along the way.
Eg. Don't bring your own shampoo & soap, it is supplied to you in your cabin.
Although the tea on board is Twinning's which is ok I prefer my own so I bring Yorkshire tea bags.
The instant coffee is Dow Egbert's which is ok.
Bring 6 x 500lm empty plastic water bottles with you so you can fill them up free on board & take them assure with you.
There is a 1litre electric kettle, 2 mugs & tea spoons in all cabins.
Bring large food bags to make up sandwiches from the breakfast buffet to take assure, saves you buying lunch.
P&O is the only cruise company I know that allows you to bring your own booze on board to drink in your cabin only, we took 6 litres of wine which was enough for a 2 week cruise, saves on the bar bill.
Post cards of the ship are free at reception as many as you wont, postage is massive, take your cards assure & buy postage stamps at penny's not pounds.
Get cash assure at ATM machines, the exchange rate on-board is not as good.
Its a good idea to bring a spare pair of sun glasses in case you loose or break the ones you are using, they charge silly money on-board.
Bring a light weight rain mac in case it rains as it sometimes does.
Bring a beach bag for carrying your book etc from your cabin to the sun deck.
If you have a inside cabin bring a small torch as its pitch black at night for finding your way to the loo.
The photographs are £11.20 each on board, bring your own camera.
Photocopy your passports & keep them with you at all times when assure in the unlikely event of you missing the ship you will have ID especially if the next stop is a different country.
Always get a statement of your account half way though your cruise so you stay on top of what you are spending.
Have a good look at your account & make sure all the items tally with your recites.
Its a long story but they messed up big time with our statement in compensation they gave us a free meal in White Restaurant.
We were satisfied with our inside cabin.Some other passengers we spoke to who chose a balcony said they will choose an inside cabin the next time.