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Sadly this cruise was totally miss-sold as a Big Band Cruise, as the only sign of the theme was on the Saturday Night with a Big Band Ball in the Queens room (The theatre orchestra joined up with the Queens Room orchestra) Most of your longer cruises have this same Big Band Ball on one the evenings, so this was nothing out of the ordinary, we would have expected far more on what was advertised as a themed cruise. On the other two nights there was nothing extra in the way of Big Band music or theme. We feel the cruise was miss-sold to us as a special Big Band themed cruise, and was actually no different to any other Cunard sailing. Boarding the ship in Southampton was a total pleasure, and really fast. This is a massive improvement of previous experiences with Cunard. The ship was well maintained as always, with bar and stateroom staff friendly and pleasant. Sadly the waiters in the Britannia Restaurant were miserable at best, avoiding any kind of interaction with us. We were not even asked if everything was ok with the food. The choice and food quality in the Britannia was the worst I have experienced in 60 cruises. The menu choice was tiny and the quality and presentation of the food you received lower than you would expect from a Weatherspoon’s! We felt this was really poor, to the extent that we did not go back on the second and third nights. We found the room service, casual dining, and Golden Lion Pub food to be of a far higher quality, better presented, with a fantastic choice. This was the first time on any cruise that I have not wanted to dine in the main restaurant because the food was not good enough. Something has really gone wrong with the quality, choice and service in the Britannia Restaurant, as the evening meals are supposed to be a special event, rather than mediocre at best. Sadly our thoughts on the Britannia Restaurant food were echoed by many passengers we talked to on-board. One afternoon we were waiting in the Queens Room for afternoon tea whilst the waiting staff were laying the tables, throwing the saucers down like Frisbees in front of you, ignoring all conversation we tried to make, with no smiles or niceties at all. This really is not what we expect from Cunard. Our stateroom attendant in cabin 1034 was a credit to Cunard. Polite friendly and efficient. If only the Britannia waiting staff could be like this. We did have some rough seas on the cruise, which is to be expected in November. The magnetic wardrobe door catches need to be reinstated in cabin 1034, as the wardrobe doors were banging open and close all night on two occasions. This did not do much for our sleeping. One final issue, we had reason to ask the front desk staff what the weather was like in Zeebrugge before heading ashore. The reply was a shrug of shoulders and “I don’t know” Maybe some training in customer service would be useful in this area? Over all this was not anything like the Cunard cruises I did in 2012 and 2013 and I am unlikely to return.

Queen Elizabeth Big Band Cruise that wasnt

Queen Elizabeth Cruise Review by iandjm

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Trip Details
Sadly this cruise was totally miss-sold as a Big Band Cruise, as the only sign of the theme was on the Saturday Night with a Big Band Ball in the Queens room (The theatre orchestra joined up with the Queens Room orchestra) Most of your longer cruises have this same Big Band Ball on one the evenings, so this was nothing out of the ordinary, we would have expected far more on what was advertised as a themed cruise.

On the other two nights there was nothing extra in the way of Big Band music or theme.

We feel the cruise was miss-sold to us as a special Big Band themed cruise, and was actually no different to any other Cunard sailing.

Boarding the ship in Southampton was a total pleasure, and really fast. This is a massive improvement of previous experiences with Cunard.

The ship was well maintained as always, with bar and stateroom staff friendly and pleasant.

Sadly the waiters in the Britannia Restaurant were miserable at best, avoiding any kind of interaction with us. We were not even asked if everything was ok with the food. The choice and food quality in the Britannia was the worst I have experienced in 60 cruises. The menu choice was tiny and the quality and presentation of the food you received lower than you would expect from a Weatherspoon’s!

We felt this was really poor, to the extent that we did not go back on the second and third nights. We found the room service, casual dining, and Golden Lion Pub food to be of a far higher quality, better presented, with a fantastic choice.

This was the first time on any cruise that I have not wanted to dine in the main restaurant because the food was not good enough. Something has really gone wrong with the quality, choice and service in the Britannia Restaurant, as the evening meals are supposed to be a special event, rather than mediocre at best. Sadly our thoughts on the Britannia Restaurant food were echoed by many passengers we talked to on-board.

One afternoon we were waiting in the Queens Room for afternoon tea whilst the waiting staff were laying the tables, throwing the saucers down like Frisbees in front of you, ignoring all conversation we tried to make, with no smiles or niceties at all. This really is not what we expect from Cunard.

Our stateroom attendant in cabin 1034 was a credit to Cunard. Polite friendly and efficient. If only the Britannia waiting staff could be like this.

We did have some rough seas on the cruise, which is to be expected in November. The magnetic wardrobe door catches need to be reinstated in cabin 1034, as the wardrobe doors were banging open and close all night on two occasions. This did not do much for our sleeping.

One final issue, we had reason to ask the front desk staff what the weather was like in Zeebrugge before heading ashore. The reply was a shrug of shoulders and “I don’t know”

Maybe some training in customer service would be useful in this area?

Over all this was not anything like the Cunard cruises I did in 2012 and 2013 and I am unlikely to return.
iandjm’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Deluxe Inside
Cabin GB 1034
Great location on deck 1. Large square cabin. Wardrobe door fixings broken so doors banged a lot in rough seas. TV quality diabolical.
Deck 1 Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews