Queen Victoria Cruise Review by Ian5509
- Sail Date: June 2017
- Destination: Western Mediterranean
- Cabin Type: Balcony
Chose this cruise to travel with some friends, some issues were our fault as we did not give it as much research time as we would normally such as the ridiculous price of wine which we would not boost Cunard profits by paying for it,
5 formal nights on a 16 night cruise was too much, we did all formal nights and enjoyed them but cruise was 3 cruises really so this was why so many, however main issue with dress code was ALL other nights required jacket for dinner which made it impossible on some port days so maybe this could it'd be relaxed to smart casual - even if that meant long sleeved shirt etc, and dress codes were not enforced outside restaurant, seeing nearly everyone in formal dress in theatre after dinner and some in t shirt, shorts and sandals was a bit galling especially as air conditioning was not really effective.
Another thing we didn't realise when we booked it was the price of drinks, especially wine - with all drinks having 15% service charge (what service) made drinks so expensive,
A British Style cruise on a British ship...... not really, it was all so American, but let's look at it in a bit more detail.
The ship, nice on the whole, rear deck huge since refit but shade areas not adequate, even some of the crew questioned why this was not done better,
The pool was in parts out of action first 2 days with steps and woodwork around pool being sanded and oiled..... it's just come out of a refit ! and last 3 days pool was roped off half at a time to have woodwork oiled again.... and the smell of teak oil in the heat especially with people having breakfast and dinner on deck was terrible.
Food... pretty abysmal really, often bland and poorly presented on the plate - if several people had same dish every one was presented differently sort of taking the edge off a restaurant dinner visually, it made it somewhat easier to accept that after arriving back from an excursion or port day and not eating in the Britannia restaurant as we didn't have time to dress up,in fact once we discovered on the whole food in Lido was better we chose to eat there some days.
Lido food was ok, it was pretty obvious in all restaurants food was on the whole frozen and stored from start, bread was often cold in middle and soggy on surface, pastry was often like tasteless cardboard - maybe bread rolls were fresh ? But croissants came out frozen in a huge plastic bag.
Breakfast was best meal of the day, and evening supper in Lido was not fresh like so many other ships I have been on, it was dinner left overs on the hot plate. On the whole cold food was slightly warm and hot food was......warm
Good curries in the Lido though
Stateroom 7035 was generous size being on the corner, room and balcony were bigger than normal. Air conditioning above bed was at times to strong in its direct delivery but not so efficient at the ambient feel, and too noisy directly above the bed.
Stateroom steward was nice and fairly efficient, seemed a general thing on board that bedding was not changed often, maybe once during the 16 nights..... that is only a maybe !
Service, even though 15% added to all drinks orders the service was terrible.... now let me clarify that, the waiters were good, some were really friendly and a pleasure to get to know BUT there were not enough of them, most of the time on the new bigger rear deck that was always busy there was often only 2 waiters, at a sail away there was a few more but so many people having to go to bar to get drinks or at least to get a waiter.
Entertainment in theatre was generally not good, clashing vocals not in harmony, the orchestra were great and did some excellent music nights in the pub... they were terrific, as was the pianist/singer in the pub.
Visiting acts were on the whole excellent.
The team on the whole were good whether it was a quiz or introducing the acts but music on deck did seem like a private crew party, yes they need to encourage others to dance but they did take over at times,
Corridors nearly always had cabin staff trolleys and trolleys with old room service trays on, previously on other cruises we have been amazed how invisible this appears, and cleaning stairs during the day making hand rails soaking wet..... surely this is normally done during the night ?
Ports of call were generally good but not often though out, too short a time in port at times, for example most people thought an overnight in Kotor was preferred to visiting Zadar the next day.
So many queues for bus transfers, in direct sun without shade whichever must have been awful for some of the elderly passengers, queue was so bad with no buses apparent in Barcelona we decided to walk and got back on ship before our friends who were at the half way point in the queue !
It became a joke that they should be renamed "Queuenard"
Officers and managers didn't seem to do their job of ensuring things went smoothly, more uniformed officers needed to take control and maybe even speak to passengers.
A lot of staff, especially Lido waiters and Lido Managers just walk in front of passengers at times blocking their route, I saw several times crew walking through doors and not only not holding the door for a passenger but just letting it go without a glance - some (especially Lido manager) needs to have some training in in basic manners. Several times especially when disembarking at ports of call uniformed officers tellingly crew to "wait!,"
Cunard need to try harder, maybe it's because Carnival now own so many cruise lines they are all blending into each other, but we were looking forward to our first cruise on "A Queen" and we felt so let down by Cunard, it could have been fantastic and yet turned out to be the worst of our 5 cruises to date even though it was the most expensive,
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Shower was small but apparently this is typical for Cunard.
Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
Florence (Livorno)Great to explore Florence for the first timeView All 1,114 Florence (Livorno) Cruise Port Reviews
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KotorWished we had stayed overnightView All 736 Kotor Cruise Port Reviews
We did a tour with a local guy we met off the ship, this was well worth it and cost 60 Euro for 4 of us as opposed to something like 65 each for Cunard version, and we chose how long we spent where and at end he took us on a brief guided walk of the old town,
View Cruise Critic's Kotor Cruise Port Review
VeniceHad a great day in Venice, restaurants seemed better value than they did years ago so we had dinner by the Grand Canal instead of heading back to the shipView All 1,472 Venice Cruise Port Reviews
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