Firstly embarkation was a breeze. Turned up early and no hanging about. A porter came over collected our cases and off we went. But if you take a suit bag you have to carry this on yourself. Straight onto the ship, the bars where open the holiday was well under way, and didn't have to wait ages for the cases to arrive at our cabin.
The cabin had plenty of hanging space, coat hangers and comfy a lot of mirrors!
I ordered my wife flowers before we got onto the ship and they where there and they have now come home with us and still perfect.
Our cabin assistant was called Ana and she is amazing, you could ask her anything and she knows. She works really hard So if your cabin assistant is as good give them some extra they deserve it.
We went for freedom dining, which meant we could go to the Saffron any time between 18.30 and 21.30. If you want a table for 2 be prepared to wait. Otherwise you sit with 6 other people and not the same people.If you are a big eater you will lose weight and it takes 2 hours to eat a 3 course meal. You can however have what you like, so if you opt for the pan fried chicken you can add a steak which I found out on the Friday.I found some waiters little snatchey towards the men, and not too intent on watching butter levels, it was like if its gone its gone.
Utter chaos little selection and poorly set out. Breakfast was Luke warm and limp. Pastries dry and hard.
Lunch very similar BUT go to the beach house the buffet there amazing!!!!Still disorganised but worth it.We had lunch in the Saffron one day which took over an hour and if you order a plate from the menu i.e the cold meat plate that is all you get so don't forget to order your sides.
We didn't eat in the specials. when an Indian couple tell you that the Indian restaurant was poor you guess they should know.
Pub prices pints £4,30 wine £5.00 ish Costa coffee £2.60 when you order a drink be prepared to wait it takes a while to get it, usually about 15 minutes although we did wait longer than that when it's busy.
We opted for the soft drink pack and consider we saved but everyone is different.If you go for the soft drinks package and order a alcoholic one be prepared for the comment "this is for soft drinks" and you have to explain you know we have to pay for a alcoholic drink.
Ice cream Ridiculous price £3.45 for 2 golf ball sized scopes.
Burgers and hotdogs from the poolside great Big and juicy cooked fresh and not dripping in grease. condiments though in a large pump vat.
We saw 2 good comedians and the Astonish Show which was good. I am not a lover of cruise ship singers so can't judge as it would be unfair. Didn't have much to do with the day time events either.
We paid for the use of the Retreat. Adults only a waiter lunch bought up to you afternoon tea of sorts. But be careful as the price isn't fixed and a couple the next day paid £75.00 less and got more thrown in.
Overall our expectations of the Ventura was good here are some rough points
We had a photo shoot at the same time as another couple, then a private viewing of our photos If we wanted them the price was £1500.00 I can not make this figure look anymore ridiculous the other couple £450 for the same package! Figure that out?
I am not a snob, How ever I am able to conduct myself in an acceptable manner You will need at times a high tolerance level to endure them from both sides of the coin, and I must point out that the Ventura is a wheelchair friendly ship which although liberating can at times turn into a destruction Darby. Thus paid for the retreat,
The attendant in the downstairs perfumery is possibly the most unhelpful person on the ship.
All the staff apart from the fore mentioned did work hard and long hours, and sometimes you had to double take as they had changed from working pool side to the restaurants.
You could talk to the officers and they interact with ease and it's not a chore, and the Captain is witty.
Excursions!!!!! Our experience and others
We paid for 2 excursions On 1 we had the misfortune of having someone sit behind us who had been before and wasn't interested. I paid to hear the guide. I have come home not knowing anything about what I saw, but know her family intimately and so does the rest of the coach.
Before we set off I noticed that our trip finished at 18.30 but so was the boarding time. I questioned this and was told that there was plenty of time. when we got back to the ship we where thrown on our bags launch onto the X-ray and spoken to like idiots regardless of mobility. If you want to complain the shore excursion desk closes at 18.30!Our second was really nice the coach drivers are highly skilled.
Watch the pricing I know you pay to guarantee getting back on board but to be charged to take a child under 6 on the train in Flaam is a bit rich when children under 6 actually travel for free.
P and O do black tie nights. Get involved and enjoy then spend the evening people watching many giggles were had.If you don't you can only eat in the Waterfront as widely stated, don't bore others the next day moaning that it was your only option. The scenery is stunning get up early though as you sail through around 4am Sunsets are out of this world.
Is it value for money? only you will know. We paid for extras because we wanted to. Their guidelines are their guidelines. the choice stops with you.
Norway is expensive. A coffee and a waffle for 2 £13.00(130.00kr)a bottle of coke from £3.00(30kr)
very comfy cabin, we only have inside cabins because the husband likes it dark to sleep, lots of hanging space lots of shelves, safe in cabin, we had to speak to reception because the safe hadn't been reset we went back to the cabin around 20 mins later and it had been sorted cabins are kept clean and tidy bins emptied every day beds made with clean sheets every day all in all very good
embarkation day quick and pain free
we walked around just taking in the town
tolerance is needed with other uninterested passengers
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