12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
On the 28th December 2018 we embarked on a New Years cruise with P&O (the prices for this particular cruise were double if not triple normal prices due to the time of year). The dramas started when we paid for priority checkin however ... Read More
On the 28th December 2018 we embarked on a New Years cruise with P&O (the prices for this particular cruise were double if not triple normal prices due to the time of year). The dramas started when we paid for priority checkin however our tickets did not list this, it wasnt such a big issue, however at the time we didnt know this was just the start of the many issues we would experience. First day on the cruise one of our suitcases never arrived to our room, after calling reception we were told to wait and they will contact us back once they have tracked it down. 1.5 hours later sitting in our room waiting for a call back we called receiption to find our bag was there and we could come down and collect it. CABINS The first 3 days at sea were rough (with approx 6 foot waves) which is not uncommon however the front of the boat was particulary bad and majority of the time we could not be in our rooms due to the severity of the movement. Now to give you some background prior to this cruise we were on another cruise with RC which was in the middle of a cyclone with 8 foot waves and had little to no issues with our room which was also located at the front of the boat so it seems this particular boat with P&O may of not be of the same standard mechanically. Our room was on level 11 (pool 12 and pantry 14) which was a great location however levels 5,6,7 are also great as they are close to bars , reception and shops. Cabins were clean and liveable however they do not reflect the standard you would expect when paying a minimum $6k a couple (interior room) on new years. They are the original cabins and corner rooms are particulary smaller. If you are particular with pillows make sure you take your own as they are not the best. The rooms do have a safe and fridge and a great little sensor light for night time toilet trips. They also only have 1 australia power point , 1 european power point and 1 US power point. The rooms do have a hair dryer however they are very basic. Overall we were fine with our rooms however during our trip the toilet blocked up , lost all power and lights in our room at 12am in the morning and also had issues with the door locks not recognising our cards. A special mentionto the room attendents who do an amazing job , are very fast and are friendly. FOOD Not to bad, same as most cruise boats. We liked lukes , dragon lady and the cafe for cakes and tea. We love how P&O have set up the pantry as it stops alot of food being touched by other guests and limits food waste. Special mention to 400 grandi , great food , amazing staff and a nice quiet place on the ship. STAFF We were extremly lucky to experience great staff at the ocean bar , the cafe and 400 grandi. They are extremly helpful and accomodation. ENTERTAINMENT For a New Years cruise entertainment was limited however for a standard cruise it was not bad. Love riot was a great show (approx $15 per person) it was well worth it. Please note P&O seem to limit any adult only shows for 9pm and 10pm at night which wasnt always the best if you have a port day the next day. Please note lawn bowls and slides are not open permently only certain hours. PORT DAYS / TENDERS For locations with a port it was very simple and quick to get off and well organised. For ports which required tenders it became a bit of a mess and for one of our ports we waited 1.5 hours and then gave up getting off. Some people waited over 2 hours to get off and no explanation was given. After speaking to people who were lucky to get off we found guests on the beach kept snorkeling in the tender lanes which would then hold up the boats. P&O didnt seem to get these people out of the water or issues warnings to causing delays for other guests and some guests didnt even get off. SHORE TOURS We were lucky enough to do a great snorkelling tour in Santo which was well worth the money. However the couple we were travelling with did a village tour on another island and it was nothing like the tour summary and they did not learn anything from it. GUESTS Possibly some of the worst behaviour I have seen. Many of the guest were extremly rude , self centred , would push past or push in lines and we even experienced guests permently calling our room at 1am even though they were told they were calling the wrong room. Kids where still running around after 9pm and would often fill up the lifts or press all buttons inthe lifts. Our last morning there were kids outside our cabin door screaming at 5am with parents who did not care (our room was out of the way). The experience which really sent us over the edge was this one lady which we had to ask 4 times to move so we could sit down on the first day and book restaurants. We then had to ask her another 6 times to move so we could get up from our seat. I also experienced a lady at the gym who proceeded to push pass me and tell me she was waiting for a tredmill and she was next in line..... mind you i had been on the equipment for a good 5 mins before she appeared from somewhere having a cry. Please note the gym gets packed out and runs out of room and equipment duringthe mornings. Overall terrible behaviour and this doesnt even go into the fights , yelling and crappy comments we heard being shouted between guests and at the poor staff. LEAVING THE BOAT You are told to put your bags outside your room between 4pm and 8pm the night prior. Please note no where do they say you can self assist and take your own bags off but you can do this and it will get you off the boat faster. We got off the boat at 740am (we were told 720am for group 1 and 2). When we finally got off to collect our bags, our bags where not out yet and we had to wait atleast 30-40mins for our bags to come through. If you are being picked up or have a flight please keep this in mind. LIFOU If you are travelling to Lifou please note you need a ticket for jinek bay. If you do not get a ticket you will not be able to snorkel. Even though this is plastered everywhere we watched many people ignore this and walk in 30 degrees heat to the bay to then be disappointed. Quick tip, everyday you get a newsletter , make sure to read the back page for sales and spa deals. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
This was my second of back to back cruises on the Pacific Explorer. I had sailed a few times when this ship sailed as the Dawn Princess. P & O destroyed everything about this ship. The food was horrible. One youth would only eat in ... Read More
This was my second of back to back cruises on the Pacific Explorer. I had sailed a few times when this ship sailed as the Dawn Princess. P & O destroyed everything about this ship. The food was horrible. One youth would only eat in the Dragon Lady and another youngster described the offerings as prison food. Quality is disgusting and variety boringly non existent. The 12 day refurbishment left just about all public areas in a very unkempt condition. The Marquee Theatre should have all the seating replaced. Seats throughout other public areas sadly need refurbishing. The Explorer Hotel has wood border trims near ceiling all scratched up. It needs to be completely sanded down and varnished. Several nautical theme items on the walls have been removed, which is a pity as it used to be a very attractive lounge and dance venue. When the cruise director announced on two occasions that it was the last day of the cruise, it was met with applause on both occasions. That says it all! In my many cruises, this was a first. The 9th deck launderette had 3 machines out of order...washing machine, token dispenser and detergent dispenser. The 10th deck launderette had all 3 washing machines out of order. The target demographic is now young families. It seemed like over 80% of passengers were first time cruisers with over 300 aged 19 and under. So they have nothing to compare with. The mirrors during refurbishment were covered on all lifts (elevators) and replaced with questionable looking wallpaper. There are charges for delivery of tea, toast and all food items to cabins. There are charges for ice-cream and pizza as well. So surf and turf night on this ship. The skimping and cost cutting is blatantly apparent. Seriously, DO AVOID AT ALL COST. OH NO, P & 0. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
a quick 4 night getaway on Pacific Explorer. This is my third time on this ship, and actually like the interior. The cruise was out of White Bay as there was a bigger ship in the OSPT in Circular Quay. Our cabin was a mini suite, and ... Read More
a quick 4 night getaway on Pacific Explorer. This is my third time on this ship, and actually like the interior. The cruise was out of White Bay as there was a bigger ship in the OSPT in Circular Quay. Our cabin was a mini suite, and quite tastefully furnished. The beds were comfy and the pillows are actually fine (previously the pillows had been a contention on other P&O ships). The weird thing about the mini suite is the setup of the bathroom. The shower and bath are in one area, and through the door is the toilet and sink. This means that you can't get out of the bath and brush your teeth without having to go next door to the single sink. Our cabin stewards were friendly and gave us a lot of attention. Although they didn't introduce themselves till the second night. The room was serviced twice per day. The balcony is a bit small for a mini suite, not in length but in depth. Food was actually not bad at all. We went to a taste of salt (excellent and well worth the $99 per person cover charge). We also tried Dragon Lady and Angelo's as well as Shell and Bones. The disappointing thing is that if you actually want a decent meal, you have to pay for it. No drama if it's reasonably priced. Angelo's was the star of the free meal selection. The pasta was warm and tasted excellent. The secret bar is the Bonded Store, and I can highly recommend you find this small out of the way place, it's by the blue room. Blink and you'll miss it, as it's hidden around a corner. The "nightclub" which is situated in the Blue Room after about 11:30pm was always full. I've seen this either empty or over capacity on different cruises. I guess it depends on the itinerary and if the drink packages are in operation. In Moreton Island, we took the Quad bike tour. Enjoyed this very brief excursion, and maybe P&O might consider doing a longer version, as we just drove around in the sand around a made course. Fun to drive, but not really exciting views. Overall not a bad cruise, better than other P&O cruises I've been on before. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
This was my first cruise, and it was fantastic, could not fault anything at all, . the 1st night we dined in the Dragon Lady and it was very nice, next night was at Angelos (Italian ) again very nice, the rest of the cruise we dined in ... Read More
This was my first cruise, and it was fantastic, could not fault anything at all, . the 1st night we dined in the Dragon Lady and it was very nice, next night was at Angelos (Italian ) again very nice, the rest of the cruise we dined in the Water front restaurant , and this was lovely, a 3 course meal every night and food was very well presented, and tasted great, The waiters were very friendly and helpful, most nights we had Franky as our waiter, and he was lovely, we went to Charlies for coffee and sometimes cake, each day and that was a lovely place to sit and relax and enjoy a nice coffee and the cakes were really yummy, the crew there were very friendly and went out of their way to make our time relaxing and enjoyable, The entertainment was fantastic, we went to the show each night and shows were great some night and absolutely spectacular other nights, there were plenty of bars around the ship, I spent a lot of time in the ocean bar on deck 7 at nights listening to piano melodies with Nicholas Gentile, a very talented young man with a beautifull voice, plenty of comfortable seating, or you could sit up or lie down in the window seats, and just relax with the music or with a book, went to several of the trivia events, and played bingo, that was really good, the guys doing the bingo made it so much fun, there was a over 18 section to relax in the pool and hot tubs, we went there most days and it was very relaxing, we had the refreshment drinks package, which we purchased before sailing, this was great, we got all the bottled water we needed, mocktails which were really yummy, and juices, and lots of coffee, had caramel lattee's every day which we could get at any of the resturants or bars, had breakfast at the waterfront some days the rest of the time at the pantry, which had something for everyone . would definatly recommend P&O to anyone Read Less
Pacific Explorer Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.3
Dining 4.0 3.4
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 5.0 3.8
Fitness Recreation 3.5 3.3
Family 4.0 3.3
Shore Excursion 3.5 3.4
Enrichment 3.0 3.1
Service 4.5 3.9
Value For Money 4.0 3.4

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