We wanted to see Iceland and we have cruised on Arcadia before. She has always been our favourite ship so this seemed an ideal choice for us. As usual embarkation and disembarkation was easy and well-organised. Food standards have taken an appalling tumble. Very, very disappointing. Can't say I truly enjoyed any meal. Breakfast was OK, although they've stopped doing their lovely bircher muesli. Plenty of alpen and choice of fruit and nuts to add yourself but it's not the same. Lunch in the buffet never looked very appetising to me. Husband complained that food was often cold and it did look sort of congealed. I usually had a salad. Cakes not as good as anything you would make at home. Ate in the buffet a few times in the evenings. Never anything to get excited about. They have a funny habit of providing cold plates for the hot food and warm plates on the salad bar. Also I got into the habit of using my napkin to dry the plates before I put food on them - often still wet from the dishwasher. Horrified to be served oven chips one evening. I use them at home when I'm in a hurry or just can't be bothered. Didn't expect to get them after paying thousands of pounds for the holiday. No longer silver service in the restaurant. Waiters take the order and literally dump the plates in front of you. Menus uninteresting and dull to say the least. Tomato soup, prawn cocktail, steak and bread and butter pudding on the menu every single evening. Raw pastry on the salmon en croute, one evening played hunt the meat as I cut the lamb from the gristle, carve the edge of the roast potatoes to get the edible bit, steamed vegetables undercooked and tasted like a salt pot, I could go on. P & O have really let their standards go. Entertainment pretty good. Some good pianists and vocalists in the bars. I wasn't sure that Roy Walker of Catchphrase fame would be quite my bag, but he was very funny and we saw him twice. Some good films screened. Several times we left bars because the service was so slow that we couldn't get a drink. The stewards were working flat out and were as friendly and anxious to serve as they ever have been. Just not enough of them. More P & O cutbacks. My biggest disappointment was the abolition of evening dress codes. 4 formal nights but what happened to the semi-formal nights? And the smart casual nights are no longer smart. Many people trying to make the effort but spoiled by a significant number of passengers who were allowed into bars looking as if they were about to dig the garden. For your information, P & O, there's no such thing as smart jeans! Ports and excursions were fine. Husband and I always find it a bit of a lottery - should we take an excursion or should we go it alone? Sometimes we get it right, sometimes we don't. We just put it down to experience and we'll know better if we come to this port again. I would say Belfast - use the city hop on, hop off bus. Costs £10 per person - you get a commentary as you go round, and if you see something you like you just get off the bus and when you're ready, get on a later bus to continue the tour. All the other ports - should have used an excursion (Stornaway, Reykjavik, Isafjordur, Akureyri, Shetland and Orkney. All nice places, but small and limited things to do independently.)In some ways I wish we hadn't used Arcadia because the lowered standards have spoiled our feelings for the ship. For me the cruise should be an event. Previously I was made to feel like a somebody for 2 weeks of the year. The shine has gone. As it is, we will probably look for a cruise line that charges more, but gives us our money's worth.

P & O not what it was!

Arcadia Cruise Review by cdcmu@sky.com

19 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: August 2016
  • Destination: Europe
  • Cabin Type: Deluxe Stateroom with Balcony and Bath/Shower
We wanted to see Iceland and we have cruised on Arcadia before. She has always been our favourite ship so this seemed an ideal choice for us. As usual embarkation and disembarkation was easy and well-organised. Food standards have taken an appalling tumble. Very, very disappointing. Can't say I truly enjoyed any meal. Breakfast was OK, although they've stopped doing their lovely bircher muesli. Plenty of alpen and choice of fruit and nuts to add yourself but it's not the same. Lunch in the buffet never looked very appetising to me. Husband complained that food was often cold and it did look sort of congealed. I usually had a salad. Cakes not as good as anything you would make at home. Ate in the buffet a few times in the evenings. Never anything to get excited about. They have a funny habit of providing cold plates for the hot food and warm plates on the salad bar. Also I got into the habit of using my napkin to dry the plates before I put food on them - often still wet from the dishwasher. Horrified to be served oven chips one evening. I use them at home when I'm in a hurry or just can't be bothered. Didn't expect to get them after paying thousands of pounds for the holiday. No longer silver service in the restaurant. Waiters take the order and literally dump the plates in front of you. Menus uninteresting and dull to say the least. Tomato soup, prawn cocktail, steak and bread and butter pudding on the menu every single evening. Raw pastry on the salmon en croute, one evening played hunt the meat as I cut the lamb from the gristle, carve the edge of the roast potatoes to get the edible bit, steamed vegetables undercooked and tasted like a salt pot, I could go on. P & O have really let their standards go. Entertainment pretty good. Some good pianists and vocalists in the bars. I wasn't sure that Roy Walker of Catchphrase fame would be quite my bag, but he was very funny and we saw him twice. Some good films screened. Several times we left bars because the service was so slow that we couldn't get a drink. The stewards were working flat out and were as friendly and anxious to serve as they ever have been. Just not enough of them. More P & O cutbacks. My biggest disappointment was the abolition of evening dress codes. 4 formal nights but what happened to the semi-formal nights? And the smart casual nights are no longer smart. Many people trying to make the effort but spoiled by a significant number of passengers who were allowed into bars looking as if they were about to dig the garden. For your information, P & O, there's no such thing as smart jeans! Ports and excursions were fine. Husband and I always find it a bit of a lottery - should we take an excursion or should we go it alone? Sometimes we get it right, sometimes we don't. We just put it down to experience and we'll know better if we come to this port again. I would say Belfast - use the city hop on, hop off bus. Costs £10 per person - you get a commentary as you go round, and if you see something you like you just get off the bus and when you're ready, get on a later bus to continue the tour. All the other ports - should have used an excursion (Stornaway, Reykjavik, Isafjordur, Akureyri, Shetland and Orkney. All nice places, but small and limited things to do independently.)In some ways I wish we hadn't used Arcadia because the lowered standards have spoiled our feelings for the ship. For me the cruise should be an event. Previously I was made to feel like a somebody for 2 weeks of the year. The shine has gone. As it is, we will probably look for a cruise line that charges more, but gives us our money's worth.
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Cabin Review

Deluxe Stateroom with Balcony and Bath/Shower
Cabin DA A46
The ship has had a refit since we were last on board but the cabin looked a bit tired - chips in the cupboard, a bit of mould in the corner of the shower. Things that wouldn't really bother me too much. But on the last night I dropped my lipstick and had to crawl under the bed to find it. The lipstick went straight in the bin. I nearly puked when to saw the filth that had clung to it. I won't go into the gory details - let's just say that it wasn't the bit of dust you might expect after a two week holiday. Basic layout of the cabin is unchanged - large comfy beds, plenty of cupboard space, good sized balcony and bathroom. We didn't get to use the balcony - wind speeds ranged from 5 to 9 and it was a bit nippy outside. But we did choose a trip that took us over the Arctic Circle so what can you expect?
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