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Iona Review

4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating
125 reviews

Disappointing , understaffed and lots of excuses

Review for Iona to Europe
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10+ Cruises • Age 60s

Rating by category

Public Rooms

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Sail Date: Jun 2022

My husband and I have been on in excess of 20 cruises over the years and often used P & O. for various reasons we drifted away from them as we did not like the bigger boats when they were first introduced and we found ourselves becoming big fans of several other cruise lines. Recently a friend asked us to join them on Iona for a Norwegian fjord cruise during which they had 2 special celebrations, we thought about it and decided it was worth a try. We booked a conservatory suite. We read the reviews complaining about lack of privacy on deck 8 and being overlooked on deck 9 but as it was only 7 nights and we were not planning on sunbathing on our balcony we decided to go ahead. Big mistake. the cabin had those issues plus loads of others we had never seen mentioned. Firstly the cabin is very very narrow. there is barely 1 foot of space to pass the end of the bed to get into the rest of the cabin. The space between the same bed and the wardrobes is sufficient to open the doors and then you literally have to stand inside the wardrobe to put anything in or take it out. Considering this is billed a a suite. its not good enough. We got perks such as a bottle of champagne.. It was very cheap and very acidic. We also got chocolates , they were ok, bathrobes, all one size and not very big. 4 Pairs of slippers I have no idea why and some nice smellies, we were also given canapés on 1 night, they were soggy and inedible, on previous cruises in a suite we received canapés every night and they were lovely. I can see some of you saying well stop whining , you were in a suite, but we paid nearly £2000 more than our friends who were in a balcony for basically exactly the same holiday. we would never book one again its got some extra space in the form of the conservatory, but this was not heated and our week in Norway was chilly to say the least so made the area unusable. They have really missed a trick with this type of cabin it could have been lovely.. On to other things. There are not enough staff on the boat and those that are are overworked tired and often a bit angry.. I really felt for them. we only spoke with our cabin steward twice on the whole trip, normally you would expect to form a passing relationship with them. our cabin was quickly cleaned once a day and that was it, no evening turndown, no chocolates on pillows etc. They are really dumbing down the whole experience and putting up the prices as well. Finally whoever decided to send Iona to the Fjords is quite frankly a fool. It is far far too big. We lost 2 ports of call out of 5 because it was too windy and we were unable to manoeuvre in the tiny fjords. we acquired an extra sea day after our first port was cancelled when we left Southampton 8 hours late once again because it was too windy. I am at a loss to know why a cruise company would commission a ship that cannot sail in wind? Anyway aside from all this and the fact that it was freezing cold we had a nice time with our friends . The food was good in the restaurants where you paid a bit extra, Pearl was a lovely space but the food was all a bit overcooked and soggy . So would we go again. Most certainly not on P& O I am afraid , they need to sort out an awful to of things on Iona.

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