We took the cruise because P & O is the only line cruising from Brisbane at this time of year. We decided a few years ago not to cruise with P & O again but in desperation decided to give them another try, this was the result.
Food in the Plantation Restaurant was very poor. Food was cold and the choices at breakfast and lunch was very limited and repetitive. The baked beans every day were so sweet that they were inedible and the oatmeal was a thin gruel.
The reason for the cold food was the air-conditioning, every part of the ship was cold and we had to wear sweaters most of the time, by the time you got your lukewarm food on a cold plate and found a table it was cold.
Things that are free on other ships are charged for on P&O ie: Burgers, Pizzas, room service etc. also they don't have a pre-purchase coffee card which reduces the cost for regular coffee drinkers.
The Waterfront restaurant food was not up to the standard expected on such a cruise, the menus were very simple and limited and nowhere near the standard experienced on other ships.
The Wait staff were fantastic amongst the best we have experienced, just a pity about the poor food and freezing temperatures.
The entertainment, if one can call it that, was third rate it looks like they have stoped trying to get good acts. The best show was the kids concert.
What has happened to the Captains party? he used to have a cocktail party for frequent cruisers as a bit of a thank you.
There is no library or reading room, it was claimed that the books were stolen by the passengers which says something about the "Cruislings" and P&O's "Its too hard so lets give up" attitude.
As a frequent cruiser I get free internet on the Princes Line, I refuse to pay on P&O, after all they are owned by the same Company so why not offer the same rewards.
The daily program guide offers the minimum of information on activities and nothing about the destinations.
The TV is abysmal, the is no program guide and no program information. The satellite signal is unreliable at the best. Australian news was very hard to find, even though we were cruising off the Australian coast.
We will not be cruising P&O again, compared to Princess Cruises it is no better than two stars but is charging three star prices.
It seem that the Pacific Dawn is for fist time cruisers and families looking for a cheap cruising experience.
Cabin was good but the balcony door is a nuisance as it swings out and is difficult to get round. Cabin staff were excellent.
Great place to visit, weather is usually good great cafes and Pubs.