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9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
This was our first cruise with P&O having cruised previously with Cunard and Royal Caribbean. The coach transfer from Gatwick to Southampton was chaotic, meaning we arrived at the ship at 16.45! Once on board we found our inside ... Read More
This was our first cruise with P&O having cruised previously with Cunard and Royal Caribbean. The coach transfer from Gatwick to Southampton was chaotic, meaning we arrived at the ship at 16.45! Once on board we found our inside cabin to be fine and we had an excellent room steward (Martino). We were given the Freedom Dining option in the Peninsular Restaurant and we found the food and service really good. The entertainment was very good throughout the voyage and the entertainment staff were really good too. The problem with this ship is that it seems to have been designed to cram as many guests on board as possible, over 3600! One guest told us that the Headliners Theatre has a capacity of 1000, so if you want a seat to see a good show you need to be there quite early. If a good act is on in the Live Lounge you have little chance of getting a seat. Similar problems arise when trying to get on equipment in the gym. The walking deck is very small-I went to check it out on the second morning and, in terms of traffic, it reminded me of the M25! Sun loungers were definitely at a premium too! We still enjoyed the cruise overall and would cruise with P&O again, but on another ship. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
Just saying that there was little fun on this ship to be had apart from for the riotous kids who had taken over the swimming pool. A badly designed ship, with sharp elbows from fellow diners in the self service restaurant. Did they think ... Read More
Just saying that there was little fun on this ship to be had apart from for the riotous kids who had taken over the swimming pool. A badly designed ship, with sharp elbows from fellow diners in the self service restaurant. Did they think that there would be nothing left for them? The cabin was good as was the cabin steward. The food was not so good, and the areas cordoned off and charged for separately seemed to be an apt comment on p&o money grabbing. We normally go with Royal Carribean and missed out on the fun, the use of Sauna without having to pay tens of pounds a day, the only thing that we really did not like on our RCI cruise to the Canaries last year was the BIG TELLY which took over the top deck and pumped out football all day and night. No wonder they are throwing cruises away cheap! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
After 15 years of cruising with Royal Caribbean and Celebrity cruises ... the choice came up including Britannia for a transatlantic cruise to celebrate two 70th birthdays......assuming that the reputation of P&O was alive and well .. ... Read More
After 15 years of cruising with Royal Caribbean and Celebrity cruises ... the choice came up including Britannia for a transatlantic cruise to celebrate two 70th birthdays......assuming that the reputation of P&O was alive and well .. we decided to book with them ... even the cruise agent suggested that the standard passenger on P&O was more discerning and service minded... so we booked. From the first night - in freedom dining .. noisy faulty radio speakers (drowned us out)we were by a service station......... noise level was incredible ... we laughed it off as first night hiccups ...... food in main dining was mostly good ..... Grab & Go - terrible sandwiches along with greasy pale burgers from Market Place....... Boring, dull , unimaginative and uninviting décor throughout and many of us newbies found it very hard to find our way around - some stairways difficult to negotiate............ lack of signage and clocks!!! Balcony far too small .. no reading or bedside light (nightmare for those who wake in the night and don't want to disturb their partner) great having a kettle ! Sullen and disinterested crew on the whole like they were working out their notice ... We were not previously aware that 95% are from the Asian continent ... apparently a P&O tradition.... but every night our dining experience was hit and miss ........ mostly miss...... having been used to the rich tapestry of nations on RCI and Celebrity X great fun and above all great service .......it was a stark difference ....... I could go on about so many small issues ... continual drumming up of "extras" on board ... hard to find tap water ....... no interactive TV in the cabin .. therefore hard to keep a check on spending ..... no free ice cream ...... or towel babies ... wet slippery decks in the morning (a few bad falls resulting in ambulance departures) lack lustre in every direction! So - never again !!! Too many negative issues ............. boring, utterly boring ship ... food variable ...service generally poor and indifferent ......... so much for discerning cruisers ??? .. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
Quick and speedy embarkation. We were wondering what the holiday would be like after reading previous reviews but we were impressed with the organisation, food, ship......maybe the service in the restaurants could have been a bit sharper ... Read More
Quick and speedy embarkation. We were wondering what the holiday would be like after reading previous reviews but we were impressed with the organisation, food, ship......maybe the service in the restaurants could have been a bit sharper and the overall cleanliness of the public areas could have had a bit more attention. However, our cabin and cabin housekeeper were first class. The entertainment team worked very hard and we never had a problem finding a seat in the theatre...the shows were very well produced and well presented. The Live Lounge was like a club and had a good atmosphere...the live band 'Pulse' were excellent and their Monsters of Rock set was great. The T/A crossing was like a mill pond the whole way...perfect...the food was first class..the ship was beautiful despite being huge! The return from Barbados on our Thomson flight on board the dreamliner was first class. we would certainly recommend and we will look forward to sailing with P&O again.... Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2017
Two weeks on the transatlantic, repositioning, cruise gave us 8 beautifully restful sea days with very calm seas throughout. P&O run an extraordinarily smooth operation in every department whether it is embarkation, entertainment or ... Read More
Two weeks on the transatlantic, repositioning, cruise gave us 8 beautifully restful sea days with very calm seas throughout. P&O run an extraordinarily smooth operation in every department whether it is embarkation, entertainment or restaurants. Without exception, all of the stewards, waiters, reception, croupiers et al were efficient, friendly and often went out of their way to go the extra mile. Food in the Peninsular, apart from one lunch, was very good. The waiters will serve you with almost any desired combination from the menu and their memories as to what to give where and to whom were impressive. The Horizon buffet is superbly organised, the food is varied and generally hot, and there will always be seating to be found especially as the Beach House no longer exists. Afternoon tea, to be had in the Oriental, was a delight with finger sandwiches, toasted tea cakes and crumpets, scones with clotted cream and jam, and then half a dozen cakes to finish you off. Apologies for waxing lyrical, but I did enjoy it. The presentation and quality of the food in the Epicurean was excellent. Sindhu was interesting but, for us, was the least enjoyable of the select restaurants. Food was good in the Limelight and, in order to accommodate the entertainers, the organisation in getting all tables served almost simultaneously was very impressive. The Glass House had run out of a number of wines towards the end of the two weeks and that spoilt many of their flites of three wines. Brodie’s was a busy place and the quizzes were often well presented and enjoyable. The range of beers is excellent and the prices (of all the drinks on board) are reasonable. We used the casino, next to Brodie’s, to play in the organised blackjack tournaments in the afternoon. Good, cheap fun. If you like to hear young people shouting loudly into microphones then the Headliners or the Live Lounge are for you. The staging is very good indeed. The comedians and the ventriloquist were well worth seeing in both venues. Leon (our cuddly Head of Entertainment) always gave excellent value. His two talks on astronomy, using outstanding software, are not to be missed. Don't forget to have your 'free' patisserie with your coffee at Java (deck 7). £2.50. Daily crosswords and the Britannia News (a short Bulletin from Blighty) are available. Expensive ship tours are available but not widely advertised. Pools have a minimum depth of about 5 1/2 ft. Travel POSH transatlantic. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
My main concern was with the number of people on board would there be queues at embarkation, restaurants, disembarking or even getting sun loungers? Well, there was no need for me to worry * Embarkation with luggage deliIt wavered ... Read More
My main concern was with the number of people on board would there be queues at embarkation, restaurants, disembarking or even getting sun loungers? Well, there was no need for me to worry * Embarkation with luggage deliIt wavered to the cabin during lunch was completed within a couple of hours * There was no waiting in line to enter restaurants * Disembarking to go ashore went extremely smoothly * We always found sun loungers Our overall experience was positive. However,...... P&O need to address the service in the main restaurants. Waiters were slow, did not have a proper grasp of English and sometimes were quite rude. It was if they were doing us a favour by serving our meals. It was an effort to get mustard , marmite or honey at breakfast for instance, Also, one could not get a swim unitl 0800. It was only after a little pesuasion that we managed a swim at 0715. Come on P&O , on a Caribbean Cruise get the pool open earlier. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
I have been wanting to see London, and also Norway (The Fiords) for quite awhile. I was going to do a land tour, but since my health is now working against me sometimes, I realize that I need to slow down (74ys), and a widower on top of ... Read More
I have been wanting to see London, and also Norway (The Fiords) for quite awhile. I was going to do a land tour, but since my health is now working against me sometimes, I realize that I need to slow down (74ys), and a widower on top of it. I love the people of Great Britain as they are polite and have a special way to be proud, so I put all of that together and I decided to sail on the newest ship and also visit the Norway coast and Fiords. I arrived early so I could spend 4 days visiting London and having a great time. I had to find a way to get to Southampton, but it is only about 2 to 2 1/2 hours from my hotel near the Victoria Bus Station to the station in Southampton in a comfortable bus. The crew of the ship were polite and efficient and took my luggage and got me on the ship very fast. The ship was beautiful, and my table mates were so nice, as they were from all over England, but did not hesitate to include me in all the festivities. The entertainment was excellent and the music and dancing was just wonderful. The food gave me a chance to sample British style, and I really loved it. We had to cross the North Sea to get to Norway, and the water was calm as a lake and I was glad as it could be rough if there were storms. We stopped at the main locations and had great tours as we headed toward our last stop in Bergen. The country was lovely and the Norwegian people are alos polite and glad to see everyone as we got to explore the views and shops. This was definitely a trip to remember. I was glad I sailed on the P&O line and someday will go back and sample other ships from the line. When we disembarked on the last day, I was amazed how smooth and fast, and how they had people in the large terminal area where you picked up your suitcases who were able to assist you and get you out very fast. I must say Great Ship and Captain and all the crew I met were the best personally and efficiently. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2017
We chose this ship because it was calling at ports that we had not visited before. The ship is tired and is really ready for it's refit at the end of the year. It was cold on board and people complained to reception. In the evening the ... Read More
We chose this ship because it was calling at ports that we had not visited before. The ship is tired and is really ready for it's refit at the end of the year. It was cold on board and people complained to reception. In the evening the selection of food in the Plaza buffet was not very extensive and also lacked variety, however, the staff were excellent, we couldn't fault them. If, like me you are disabled and cannot get up and down stairs then this is not the ship for you because, if any of the ports on your cruise are tendered you will not be able to get to the tender platform. I was told there was not a lift that would take me from deck 4 down to deck 3 to get to the tender, so I was unable to go ashore. This is the only ship that I have encountered this problem . As this was our first cruise on Oceana, we gave them the information needed regarding my disability and needs when we booked but no-one advised me regarding the tendering situation of this ship. We are having to cancel another cruise booked on this ship in August/September because of this problem. Disembarking was excellent and the accessible shuttle buses were brilliant. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2017
We use this cruise to relax and not get jet lag on the way back, just chill on sea days and enjoy the ships entertainment each night, Good bunch of passengers playing deck quoits each day and we was able to play until the day before ... Read More
We use this cruise to relax and not get jet lag on the way back, just chill on sea days and enjoy the ships entertainment each night, Good bunch of passengers playing deck quoits each day and we was able to play until the day before disembarkation. Freedom dining is our preference and this worked really well... Coach service back to Gatwick makes the trip really good value .... Done this trip 5 times and it's best sailing back from Barbados.....not sailing from Southampton. Buffet area does not work as it's a pain to get a table and the restaurant is so much better for all meals and the glass house tiger prawns.....are delicious. Sindu was ok and the Beach house was not bad for value.... Staff onboard varied and some were just not happy to be there, but we found that it's the sea days that make it long days for them and this does have an effect on tiredness, so I make sure that I let them know how much they are appreciated and give extra tips to those who go that extra mile..... Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
We have just returned from the reposition cruise on the Britannia front the Caribbean to Southampton. We few from Manchester on a 15 year old TCX airbus that had great leg room and a great crew. At Bridgetown we left the plane straight ... Read More
We have just returned from the reposition cruise on the Britannia front the Caribbean to Southampton. We few from Manchester on a 15 year old TCX airbus that had great leg room and a great crew. At Bridgetown we left the plane straight onto the usual coaches to the port. I had chosen seats at the rear of the aircraft hoping that there would be front and rear steps to leave the aircraft but there was only front steps which meant quite a long delay leaving the aircraft whist the dodderers and chatterers left huge gaps in the queue to leave. At the ship we had a 10 minute queue before receiving a cabin cards and then proceeding through security onto the Britannia. Our cabin was ready and after about 10 minutes I spotted that my case was outside the staff lifts. One of the crew passed it to me. My wife's case arrived at our cabin about 30 minutes later. I always look by the nearest staff lifts as the poor stewards are so busy it can often be hours before they have time to deliver your case. We were on the starboard side of the ship which is the sunny side on the crossing to Southampton. Sadly we were on A deck which had a large overhang which meant that after about 2 hours from sunrise you are shaded from the sun. Another problem with our cabin was that between 4am and 5am every morning there was a sound like a 747 taking off as the staff in the buffet above moved heavy trolleys around then dropped something heavy on the floor above. I would not recommend A deck for those who want a peaceful night. At Dominique we parked at the berth about a mile from the town. Apparently the week before the ship had berthed at the town. It is pleasant 30 minute walk along the front into town or there is a private shuttle bus for 2$. Our next stop was Tortilla were we had a nice walk along the beach to the small colourful craft village 15 minutes away. Next was St Maarten where, along with the majority of the guests on the other 2 ships in port with us, we took the 7$ day return 5 minute boat across the bay to the beautiful beach. From here and after a few beers we had our Great British Sailaway party as we set off on the 5 day sail to Ponta Delgada. For the first 4 days the temperature slowly dropped from 27° to 22°. There was lots of sun and most people were sunbathing on the top decks. We had there nights were we lost an hour so the when we arrived in the Azores we were 1 hour behind UK time. The day we left the Azores the weather took a turn for the worst. We soon got a heavy gale with wind at 80mph and gusts of over 100mph. Britannia rode the winds and massive waves splendidly, it's huge hulk being steadied by her stabilisers. We then had a final hour removed so that we arrived in Southampton with UK time. We had a free P&O coach to return us from Southampton to Manchester Airport. We assembled in the theatre until our Group were called to go down one flight of stairs and disembark on deck 5. You then go into the large warehouse where the cases are all lined up in deck order. Make sure you grab a free luggage trolley as you enter as it is a bit of a walk to the Manchester coaches. After a bit of a search we found our cases, went through Customs and left the building.. We were directed to the Manchester coaches which were being loaded in arrival at your coaches order. We were lucky went on the coach used as the Southampton FC team coach which left at 8.45am. We arrived at Manchester Airport at 2.30pm, despite a section of the M6 being closed. You get off the coach at a coach dropping off bay next to Terminal 1. Overall it was another great trip on Britannia. The towels have lost a lot of their fluff since our last 2 trips but you expect that after a few years of daily washing. The cabin stewards now have to service 18 cabins. The centre lift stairs only go up to deck 7. Read Less
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