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8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
" Slow boat " to Japan for the Sakura or Cherry Blossom, and a bit of sightseeing, fine dining and some dancing in between, that was the idea and why not, take 19 nights instead of 9 hours fly direct. It is the journey that ... Read More
" Slow boat " to Japan for the Sakura or Cherry Blossom, and a bit of sightseeing, fine dining and some dancing in between, that was the idea and why not, take 19 nights instead of 9 hours fly direct. It is the journey that matters and something to reminisce in future. See photos. In Nov 2017, we travelled the shinkansen or bullet train around Japan for the autumn foliage and kind of felled in love with the beautiful people, place and views. So this time, we wanted to see the sakura. We experienced sakura in Hirosaki Castle Park in North Honshu. Aomori is the closest big town. ( see photos and separate review on the Diamond Princess ) We sailed QE, Melb to Yokohama for the first leg and switched over to the Diamond Princess to sail around Japan for the 2nd leg for another 9 nights. Thanks Cunard staff for the cabin upgrade. Hundreds of us, had to do the switch over and gladly give the Japanese a chance to enjoy what we did in the last 3 weeks on the QE. The rumour was, 1700 Japanese were getting onboard the QE for the Golden Week ( 4-5 public holidays ). In my past reviews on Cunard voyages, I have commented their excellent ambience, decore, service, food, entertainment and varied activities. Breakfast room service and dining service were excellent, everyday. These high standards continued, in my humble view. Thanks Reynaldo and Alvin for your serving of pistachio souffle which I enjoyed watching more than eating ( I am not a dessert person ). Thank you to our Brissie realtors table companions and making everyone laugh, sometimes in tears, each night. And to Ron and Angela for the many many happy times we had while onboard. On sea days and there were many, Zumba exercises at 9am and line dancing at 10am, ballroom dancing at 11am and in the afternoon, different type of dance lessons and from 7.45pm onwards, ballroom and latin dancing in the Queens Room till midnight and in the Yatch Club, with more pop and disco until the wee morning hours. In QE, you can literally DANCE TILL YOU DROP DEAD. As they say, when the going gets tough, the tough gets going. Survive I did with a trick, get some rest and catch a nap. We enjoyed dancing but not as dedicated as some others who wake up at the crack of dawn, to practice in the Queens Room. Thanks to the many people we met while dancing like Des and Pauline, Ron n Barb, Arthur n Betty, and Tim n Tima, Mark n Annie, etc.... Life on board the QE includes the pool activities, mahjong, fencing, table tennis, darts, trivia, interesting talks, shows and of course, drinking and fine dining and late night suppers in the Lido after dancing. Following an interesting presentation on the social culture and food aspects of Japan, there was an interesting ceremony on breaking of the sake or wine barrel. The Japanese vintage sake was free flowing and was limitless. It was not a good idea, on an empty stomache and before lunch but life goes on.... Neil, the entertainment director and zumba instructor, was easy, funny and encouraging to many newcomers to zumba. He got my table companions, Steve and Donna, converted. Lesley, did a great job hosting and was ably assisted by the dance hosts like Brian and Sheila, Richard, etc. Much credit is due to our 4 dance instructors who patiently taught many of us, several useful dance moves and techniques to improve ourselves. Recorded music used for dancing was in manyways better than live music on some occassions ( see review on QE to Tasmania and Port Arthur) As for the ports, we were lucky to get some magical views of sunrise over the Sydney Opera House and the ferries darting in and out of Circular Quay ferry terminal. I have lived and worked in Sydney before and this experience is still a treasure. A tip, get the portside cabin when coming into Sydney. We enjoyed strolling along the Royal Botanical Gardens and the views from Mrs Macquaire Chair of QE, Opera Housre and the Harbour Bridge. This must be one of the most beautiful harbour in the world, in my view. In Brisbane, we enjoyed the free shuttle to town centre, free City Hopper ( red coloured ) ferry ride around Southbank and wandered and shop inthe high street. We dropped in a big Commonwealth Bank to do some banking and got free wi-fi and an excellent coffee, on the house. Thank you customer service. That is why banked with you. We skipped visiting Alotaul in PNG as it was so bloody hot and humid but we did our own shore excursion ( aud 45pp for a 2 hour air cond bus tour ) in Rabaul to the Hotsprings, Mt Tavurvur ( pronounced TaVOORvoor) volcano that last erupted 5 years ago in Sep 2014, the Japanese general Yamamoto bunkers, and the Volcano Observatory station. The scientist staff showed us in and explained all the seismological monitoring. You can get some beautiful views of QE in the harbour below and the volcano, too. In Manila, we got a free shuttle to a big shopping complex. We got some currencies and went shopping. I booked and got a nice hair trim by a gorgeous hairdresser and my wife got a manicure done at the same time. You can walk out of QE or port to see Josef Rizal Memorial and Fort Santiago without having to catch the free shuttle. Do that later. Otherwise, it was a 30 min hike back and it can be very sweaty due to its humidity and the pathways are not always clear and smooth. In Nagasaki, we took a tram ride to the nearest station and walked 5 min to the Peace Park and another 5 min walk to centre of the atomic bomb blast. The English tourist brochure on how to ride and pay the tram fare and the direction to the stations is very simple and clear to understand. Remember to change tram at the main station for the next tram and get a transfer ticket from the tram driver before disembaring. This is used for the 2nd and final tram when you exit. Just follow the cruise crowd as nearly all will head in the same direction. It is 50% cheaper to pay on the tram as you exit instead of buying the day pass. You may not have much time visting other places. We window shopping when we return and walked up to the Church which was first used by Portugese inthe 13th-15th century. BTW, you can see the small mountan scenic top from the QE ship portside andyou can catch your own ropeway or cable car up there for a small fee as compared to shore excursion. Yokohama, has a lot ot offer which we will do the next time. This time, we caught the city free shuttle to Sakuragicho station. We have a Suica card from previous visit and we avoided the very long queue to buy a train ticket to Central Tokyo or Shinjuku or Akihabara in our case. We caught the unreserved seating JR Keihin- Tohuku for Omiya direction express train direct to Akihabara for under 600 yen or usd 6 or aud 9. Incredibly cheap and quite fast if you know how and do your homework. Use hyperdia.com website. Otherwise, Cunard transfer will be aud 100 plus. Hopefully, my table companions took up my suggestion,if not for the money, at least, just for the experience. In conclusion, we were very happy overall with the voyage and the many people we met, dined and danced with and highly recommend this ship and voyage especially for the Pollywogs who have never crossed the Equator. You get a big colorful Cunard map of the world certificate with your name on it for crossing the Equator. Nice surprise. Looking forward to the next Med cruise in Sept. Hopefully, you enjoyed reading the review and got something out of it in some little ways. Well, at least enjoy the photos. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose a 3 night Sydney - Burnie - Melbourne cruise as a sampler and introduction to Cunard cruising. Embarkation was reasonably painless. We arrived a little earlier than the allocated boarding time and was told to board anyway. We ... Read More
We chose a 3 night Sydney - Burnie - Melbourne cruise as a sampler and introduction to Cunard cruising. Embarkation was reasonably painless. We arrived a little earlier than the allocated boarding time and was told to board anyway. We dropped off bags, queued for about 15 minutes and then found ourselves on-board. Finding our cabin was easy as we were escorted by our cabin steward who did a good job of explaining our cabin facilities. The cabin was comfortable and clean, though no larger than what we've previously experienced. Power is via British and American sockets, which is no problem, but there were no USB sockets. The bathroom was small but everything worked as expected. The bed was comfortable, but I found the pillows too soft. A nice touch was a complimentary bottle of sparkling wine on ice in the cabin. As a tip for Cunard though, next time source a wine that is drinkable. Two lunches and breakfasts were in the Lido buffet. As a buffet, the food was reasonable quality with a good variety. Shouldn't have to pay extra for espresso style coffees though. One lunch and dinners were in the Britannia Restaurant. This was disappointing. The food was no better than a reasonable RSL club bistro. The service was reasonably attentive though a little hit and miss. After our first night's dinning I found myself with someone else's keycard. This was quickly fixed up at the purser's office and provided a lesson to check the card after purchases. A highlight of the food experience was the high tea, which we experienced on our second day. Being our only day at sea, it was very popular and the overflow ended up in the Britannia Restaurant. The tea (or coffee) was plentiful and hot, the food, sandwiches, scones and sweets, were spot on and the service was attentive. Drink prices were on the expensive side, especially once you remembered to convert from USD and add the gratuity. Being Australian, gratuities, and tipping in general is a pain. If it is part of the standard or expected cost, just roll it into the overall price and be done with it. Then we can decide to tip if we feel the service deserves it. Overall though, the service was good. We didn't take in a show but did experience some of open the entertainment on other nights. The bands were what you would expect and reasonably entertaining. We took in a talk by a historical expert regarding WWII Japanese hold-outs (refusing to surrender after the war) in the Pacific. I found this interesting as I enjoy the historical aspect, but it wasn't to my wife's taste. My wife though did sample the shopping, fortunately without much success. Our one port day was in Burnie, Tasmania. This a good, honest working town, but not a very inspiring cruise destination, especially as it was a public holiday and would have been completely dead if it weren't for hundreds of cruise passengers wandering around looking for something to do. There were very few cafes and you couldn't even have a beer and lunch in a pub as they were all closed. At least the mayor was there to greet us when we came down the gangway. We didn't do any organised shore excursions, but my sister, who was part of our cruise group, did, and enjoyed the Cradle Mountain excursion. Overall, the ship had a decor in keeping with it's image and wasn't overcrowded. We weren't disappointed, but now feel we've done the Cunard experience and probably won't be sampling it again. We are going on a longer Oceania Mediterranean cruise later this year. It will be interesting to compare that experience. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
I chose this cruise as an opportunity for my partner to experience a cruise steeped in history which he loves and for a little luxury. I have been on other liners and the difference was quite significant. We arrived early and was ... Read More
I chose this cruise as an opportunity for my partner to experience a cruise steeped in history which he loves and for a little luxury. I have been on other liners and the difference was quite significant. We arrived early and was pleasantly surprised to be let on board immediately. Embarkation was a breeze. To keep this review brief I will deal with the disappointments. I expected more of the food. It was very ordinary and at breakfast only one person was doing personalised egg choices. We gave up. Cheapest bottle of wine - $48 USD which equated to almost A$70. Toilettries were never replaced even after asking 3 times. In fact the steward was only seen three times and it was very poor service. Finalising of account queue on the last night. Both my partner and everyone in the queue were furious at the wait time with 2 people serving and another desk free being payment for tours with nobody at it. People eating at 8.30 pm session had to wait till 10.30 to see a show lasting sometimes till 12. My partner would have loved a tour of the ship's history perhaps as a speaking or walking activity. We spoke to others who agreed. It was both my birthday and our anniversary and there was no provision or opportunity/acknowledgement for anything special as with other liners where a sign and balloons are put on your door or they bring out a little cake to your group dinner table (sounds trivial and not that I wanted to be centre of attention but if it's a special occasion, it always goes down well). When I enquired about this they advised I should pay for the specialty restaurant or purchase one of their expensive gift packages. We did not go on a shore excursion with the ship as most were booked out and were quite expensive. We went on a private tour and it was the highlight for us. It was a public holiday in Burnie but as the operators were locals they knew all the places to go. We were stressing before we went as to how formal the gala dinner would be, what to wear and how this would be presented. It was over-rated and nothing special was done. On the positive side - room was comfy, smooth sailing, nice surprise of a bottle of bubbly in the room, entertainment good, good guest speaker talks, impressive fit out of ship and we particularly loved the bar near the theatre (can't think of name) where the meals there were better than most restaurants and were free with such a great atmosphere and we found the staff here to be the most welcoming and engaging of all Happy it was a sampler but wouldn't go again.. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
My wife & I have done many cruises over the last 10 years,And this has to be the the lower end of all we have done,If this had been our 1st it would have been our last,1 With CMV, 1 with Tui/Marella/Thomson,2 with Cunard & about 16 ... Read More
My wife & I have done many cruises over the last 10 years,And this has to be the the lower end of all we have done,If this had been our 1st it would have been our last,1 With CMV, 1 with Tui/Marella/Thomson,2 with Cunard & about 16 with P&O,The check in at Southampton was amazingly quick,15 mins from pulling up to cabin is the fastest we have ever experienced,After that it was nothing special,We were experiencing a banging noise outside our cabin,we did contact the pursers desk,the head deck steward did respond very quick,after 30 minutes or so,The desk phoned and said it was a faulty part on the deck above,deck 9 lido,and was required for operational purposes from 07:00 to 23:00 hrs.,They did give some compensation & ear plugs.We were hoping that the faulty part was going to be repaired or replaced at our 1st. stop,Madeira,but no it wasn't and we had to endure this noise for the whole of the Voyage.The there's the entertainment,Or lack of it,There was an illness with 1 of the theatre group,OK I can understand that the show had to be rearranged,so accepted that,but the rest was poor,Pat Patton the the Golden Lion EVERY night,not that good either,A Juggler on the theatre,Come on,we are not 10 year olds,There was 1 night they had a pianist in 3 different bars/venues at the same time,John Martin "comedian" seriously needs new material,He's been on cruise ships for years & is still using the sames gags,Keeps going on about being from Bootle,I thought Liverpool was full of comedians,John not one of them.Entertainments teams didn't mix with the passengers,Cunard like to call us guests,Equinox were good stuck up in the club,but that was empty,with no atmosphere,They did the Golden Lion one night & the Queens room on the last,both were rocking when they were there,I did tick the poor box on the feed back,And the Entertainment Director phoned my cabin & asked if I/We could have a talk about my poor comment,I felt like a naughty child being summonsed to the head teacher,But he was OK,Don't know the average age,We are both in our late 50s.,were very young compered to others,We mention this to the director that Cunard need to move with the times.and start looking after today's generation of cruisers and not who are in the latter years of life,He did seem a little shocked at that comment,But when he thought about it,knew what we meant,they need to rotate the entertainers,We were asked about a cigarette stump/butt on our balcony & we don't smoke, Everything else was great. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Whilst this was a short cruise to Belgium I do wonder if Cunard are even bothered about missed opportunities with "new to the brand" cruisers. We are 'suite' cruisers 2-3 times a year and in our 40's, surely a ... Read More
Whilst this was a short cruise to Belgium I do wonder if Cunard are even bothered about missed opportunities with "new to the brand" cruisers. We are 'suite' cruisers 2-3 times a year and in our 40's, surely a demographic the company might be keen to impress for our future cruise dollars? As Queens Grill guests we were allowed to the front of the line but very little else to impress or separate the significant amount of money the short break cost. The embarkation was easy but again a very lackluster nod of a few heads as we boarded, nobody directing any joiners or nobody/nothing with a genuine welcome. The stateroom was beautifully presented, well equipped and meticulously maintained. The 'butler' team were nearby and thankfully gave us a genuine welcome that we've come to expect. The ship was well presented, immaculate and beautiful to explore. She has just returned from a refresh/refit with new carpets and new fixtures and fittings. The food & service I n the Q Grill was excellent and it was wonderful to see quite how much effort everybody made with their dress in the evenings. The tables for 2 were VERY close together. Thankfully we are a sociable couple happy to chat, but if you wanted private conversation or to be left alone you would have struggled. The Entertainment Director was no where to be seen, nor his/her team. Heard or seen no where. With an opportunity to impress they failed miserably. A lame 60's wedding/tribute band on the main theatre for the 1st night? Awful. Surely this is a great opportunity to really showcase Cunard at its best?! Thankfully the second night the cast were able to impress with a new production show which showcased a beautiful theatre, a pleasant story and a talented young cast working very hard. I can only hope that a longer cruise might trigger a better more comprehensive welcome, entertainment selection and genuine appreciation of our custom? Sadly Cunard won't see us return any time soon. A shame as we wanted to enjoy a lot more. We've been back for 2 days and still no post-cruise survey to complete, do they even care? Clearly not. Shop wisely people! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We have sailed several times on both the Queen Elizabeth and the Queen Victoria. There is very little difference from one to the other and we feel completely at home on each of them. However, if we did not like Cunard's itineraries ... Read More
We have sailed several times on both the Queen Elizabeth and the Queen Victoria. There is very little difference from one to the other and we feel completely at home on each of them. However, if we did not like Cunard's itineraries we would find another line. While we had visited Baltic States before what whet our appetite were stops at three new countries; Riga in Latvia, Klepedia in Lithuania and lastly, Gdynia in Poland. In addition the ship was stopping at a little known Swedish island, Visby. ( This port was perhaps the highlight of the cruise in that it was such a complete surprise; dating from Medieval times it has a tiny walled village which delighted us) Generally the cruise was a pleasure as is every Cunard cruise for us. There are some little things that we would change if we could but, as always, we booked another cruise while on this one and we will look forward to it. One drawback for us was the shore excursions. My husband has limited mobility and there are not enough tours geared toward easy activity. I realize that this could be due to the ports that we visited. There were narrow cobblestone streets in most of them. A plus for me on Cunard is that in the past there has always been someone from the crew backing up the tour guide so that if one has any problems one can fall back on that person. I would have thought that this was especially needed in ports that Cunard had not visited before but, unfortunately, this did not seem to be the case in one of our ports, Gdansk Our tour to Gdansk was a disaster and there was no backup person. We almost got separated from the group. Part of the problem was a very young child who cried continually into the city ( about an hour) so that it was hard to hear the tour guide's instructions for the meet up after doing Gdansk on our own Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
Summary: Beautiful ship. Disappointing experience. Details: Just got back from 22 day cruise on Cunard's Queen Elizabeth from San Francisco to Hawaii, Bora Bora, Tahiti, New Zealand, Sydney, returning home to San ... Read More
Summary: Beautiful ship. Disappointing experience. Details: Just got back from 22 day cruise on Cunard's Queen Elizabeth from San Francisco to Hawaii, Bora Bora, Tahiti, New Zealand, Sydney, returning home to San Francisco via 13 hour Quantas flight. It was our 20th wedding anniversary and I wanted to do something special for my wife. Especially since we had planned a Tahiti cruise on the Paul Gauguin in 1999 but job changes for both of us caused us to cancel. Cunard was running a free balcony upgrade incentive, so I booked this cruise and reserved a table for 2 so we could have some intimacy. We arrived at the Upper Britannia dining room the first night and were shown to a table for 4 people. I went to the maitre d' and asked if we could please have the table for 2 which we requested 3 months earlier. The maitre d' sarcastically quipped "Only three months" and then refused to provide the requested accommodation. The pursers office were extremely annoying. It took them 4 days, requiring us to come to their desk each day, to get our credit card authorized. The coffee was appalling. As an ex-pat, it grieves me to see how badly the Brits make coffee. We've been through this before when we visited the UK. Way too strong. The drink prices were ridiculous, averaging $14 each. We don't drink alcohol but Virgin Mary's and Cokes were still dear at $4.50 and $3.75 respectively. The food was un-imaginative "Carnival Cruise" fare although the fish and chips in the pub was decent as was the afternoon tea, stale sandwiches, scones with no clotted cream (unheard of).. The toilet in our cabin was ridiculously loud. A man came to fix it but we noticed no improvement and he never returned despite our asking. There was a terrible smell of raw sewage outside our cabin one night. They fixed it. But no apology offered. There were so many sick people onboard that the main Theater sounded like a diphtheria ward with so many people hacking away. My wife contracted the same flu-like infection and remains sick even after we returned home and got her an antibiotics prescription. Discussions with other passengers indicated the onboard sickness problem had been occurring since the ship left New York a few weeks earlier. Not sure why I escaped. Perhaps it was because of all the anti-bacterial lotion I applied hourly to my hands, nose and face every day. The weather was rough for at least 10 of the 14 "at sea" days". Not Cunard's fault, but the promenade deck was frequently roped off due to the rough seas so no walking possible. Regrettably, it's unlikely we will be taking any Cunard cruises in the future. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
After travelling on the many cruise lines, celebrity x 13 cruises and P O for 12 cruises......Royal Caribbean x 5, Princess, NCL and MSC.....we now prefer Cunard, excellent around except the price of the drinks.... Really lovely team ... Read More
After travelling on the many cruise lines, celebrity x 13 cruises and P O for 12 cruises......Royal Caribbean x 5, Princess, NCL and MSC.....we now prefer Cunard, excellent around except the price of the drinks.... Really lovely team onboard and lovely passengers made the experience even more charming. The Internal Decor is the style to suite Cunard, and the Brand. The dining experience excellent and the lido had good choices.....they do not push you towards the other dining ( extra cost ) restaurants......P O food in the dining rooms and buffet has dropped in quality and this was mentioned by other passengers when comparing with Cunard. So we have book Queen Victoria for next December 13 ......due to being so delighted with this cruise.......well done to all the staff and the team at Cunard. They are building a new ship and have promised.....not to let their brand slip and keep the the standards.... Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
Life aboard the Queen Elizabeth was a bit like living at Cliveden/the Ritz or in endless episodes of Downton Abbey, or in a novel by P.G Wodehouse or Agatha Christie. We were constantly surrounded by live music of all types, and with one ... Read More
Life aboard the Queen Elizabeth was a bit like living at Cliveden/the Ritz or in endless episodes of Downton Abbey, or in a novel by P.G Wodehouse or Agatha Christie. We were constantly surrounded by live music of all types, and with one crew member for each couple, we were literally waited on hand and foot. The ship is Art Deco style, spotlessly clean and ultra luxurious. The staff were excellent; extremely polite, attentive and friendly without exception on every occasion that we encountered them. The food was abundant and top quality and we had the option of silver service breakfast, lunch and dinner, plus complimentary room service 24 hours a day and a running buffet. That's not to mention the afternoon tea. Every day at 3.30pm, the doors to the ballroom open and 20 waiters emerge wearing white gloves and brass buttons bearing the teapots aloft. After they have taken their bow to light applause, a harpist strikes up, or a pianist or a string trio and they would serve cucumber sandwiches with no crusts, cakes and scones with jam and cream. We also had lectures to attend; the history of navigation, the story of Pinewood studios, an interview with the highly entertaining Captain Aseem Hashmi. And in the evening, there was live music and dancing every night (jazz and swing), plus live acts in the theatre including soloists and groups. The best of these were a male vocal group performing songs from the shows called The Barricade Boys and topping the bill, Will Martin, a Kiwi soloist who performed pop and classical numbers and was an excellent singer and entertainer. He was so good on his evening show, he was brought back by popular demand for a matinee. And that was just at sea; never mind all the exciting ports of call and adventures we had ashore. Stockholm was beautiful and we didn't see half enough of it but had fun in the Abba Museum. And Russia was so romantic and full of history. We had an excellent two-day tour there in a small group delivered by a local guide from Alla Tours that we had booked privately and we saw a great deal of St Petersburg thanks to their efficiency and know-how. We visited the Peter & Paul fortress where the Tsars are buried (including Nicholas II and his family since 1998), the Catherine Palace, the Hermitage, the Peterhof Palace gardens with their fountains overlooking the Gulf of Finland, the Yusupov Palace and the basement where Rasputin was murdered. And there were other highlights; seeing Girl with a Pearl Earring at The Hague, walking the cobbled streets of Tallinn, buying a Skagen watch in Skagen, multiple sailaway parties on Deck 9 accompanied by live bands and much exuberant waving. Loved it and would not hesitate to travel with Cunard again. Read Less
22 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
This was the first ever cruise for both me and my partner. Cunard wasn't our first choice. We had planned to go with Celebrity Cruises on recommendation however there were a few snags with the cruise we were considering and we looked ... Read More
This was the first ever cruise for both me and my partner. Cunard wasn't our first choice. We had planned to go with Celebrity Cruises on recommendation however there were a few snags with the cruise we were considering and we looked for an alternative which happened to be this cruise with Cunard. Honestly we weren't aware of the Cunard reputation when we booked and we were a little bit daunted when we read online about the high standards and strict dress-code. We flew down to Southampton and it cost about £20 in a taxi from the airport to the port (which seemed a bit steep really). We were met at the port by friendly staff who took our cases. The embarkation system was very organised. We were a lot earlier than our scheduled time but this wasn't remarked upon. The only issue was a problem with the bridge (which seems to be fairly common with this ship) which meant that everyone present had to wait 30 minutes or so to board. We weren't bothered by this but some other guests seemed really annoyed and impatient! Once we got on board, we found our cabin and the cases were left outside the room soon after. The cabin was an Inside Deluxe on the first deck. Everything was very nice and met expectations. The main cabin was bigger than we expected with lots of storage space. The bathroom was smaller than expected but you do get used to it. The facilities on the ship itself were great. I won't go into detail because this information can easily be found elsewhere. We are both in our 30s so you could say we are well below average age for a Cunard traveller, or indeed any cruise line. We were concerned that we wouldn't fit in but we needn't have worried. Everyone on board from guests to staff were delightful. We shared a table at dinner each night with two retired couples who we got on fabulously with. I should probably mention the infamous dress code! The formal nights are what you would expect. It was the informal nights that are still very smart. Jacket is still required for men but ties are optional. If you don't want to dress up you have to eat in the buffet and aren't meant to go anywhere else on the ship! The restaurant was quite hot on some nights and people did remove their jackets which was fair enough to me but is technically against the rules. Honestly I didn't mind the dress code and it was quite fun to dress up for dinner. Before 6pm you can wear more or less what you want around the ship, within reason. We dined in the Britannia restaurant and found the food quality and menu variety excellent. The table service was generally very good although there were a few slight errors on occasion which is understandable with so many guests. Dining on the ship is like a military operation and I don't know how they do it. Cunard prides itself on the White Star service and they certainly do treat you like royalty. Very impressive. We did eat a handful of times in the Lido restaurant which is seemingly open almost round the clock. As with any buffet, you have to get used to it being crowded and people going the wrong way in the queue etc. It was alright but we far preferred the main restaurant. Our expectations for the entertainment on board were fairly low based on reviews we had read but it was actually of a far higher standard than expected. The shows each night were sufficiently varied and at about 45 minutes, just the right length. The dancers were superb, the singers were pretty good and even the comedian was actually very funny! The programme of activities was very good, especially on the sea days. As you would expect, a lot was geared towards the older market but by no means everything. On the last sea day there were even two or three things I wanted to do that clashed, which illustrates the range of choice. The lectures on board were all interesting and we often watched the movie shown in the theatre each afternoon. These were all fairly recent releases from the past 6 to 12 months. There were a vast range of excursions at each of the 4 ports we visited. We had panicked when we tried to book a trip online a few days before departure and saw everything fully booked! In fact they only seem to advance sell a percentage of tickets and keep plenty back for sale once everyone is on board. The one exception to this was the Flam railway for which tickets were like gold dust. We actually heard people say that it was over-rated so we didn't feel like we missed out too much. The trips do seem very expensive and yes you probably could do most of them yourself for cheaper but you are paying for the peace of mind and to save hassle. There was a handy in-ship TV channel which gave information about the ports and trips available ahead of time and it was actually very useful. We did our own thing at Stavanger and Bergen where there is lots to see close to the port and went on Cunard excursions at Flam and Andalsnes where there isn't much at the port itself. The two excursions we did were very good and although we felt they were pricey, we weren't disappointed overall. Apparently there was a problem with one of the excursions and a lot of people received partial refunds but it sounded like it was something outside of Cunard's control that went wrong. Disembarkation was also fairly smooth. It was a bit of a pain to have to leave your case outside the cabin by midway through the last evening when you are expected to still be dressed up for dinner etc. We had to do some rather creative packing, including suit jackets in our hand luggage which was not ideal. We were also a bit miffed that our steward (otherwise incredibly friendly and helpful) was trying to get us out of the cabin about 30 minutes before we were due to vacate. Overall we had a fantastic cruise and will definitely travel with Cunard again. It wasn't perfect but I think because so much is of a very high standard it tends to magnify the handful of things that could be a bit better. Certainly we had no major issues and would definitely recommend them, but Cunard may not be suitable for everyone. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
From the embarkation to disembarkation the whole experience was wonderful. I have sailed with P&O before which was very nice, but Cunard really was a different class. We had a balcony cabin on the 8th deck. The cabin was spacious, ... Read More
From the embarkation to disembarkation the whole experience was wonderful. I have sailed with P&O before which was very nice, but Cunard really was a different class. We had a balcony cabin on the 8th deck. The cabin was spacious, clean and beautifully decorated. The bed was a good size and the bathroom was also a good size, a little small for my husband, but he is 6'6". There was a great choice of dining and the standard of food was excellent. The entertainment was good, although the dance shows didn't seem to be very polished. Staff were approachable and extremely helpful and friendly. We did not book any Cunard excursions as we did our own thing. Norway itself was absolutely beautiful although very expensive but we will definitely be visiting again. We are already planning our next Cunard cruise which hopefully will be in 2019. We hope to try another ship in the fleet but would definitely cruise on the Queen Elizabeth again. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
To give my wife an experience of a cruise to the Norwegian Fjords was the task to help celebrate our 10th! Frankly the thought of being cooped up with thousands of people did not appeal and we had put off cruising for years. After a lot of ... Read More
To give my wife an experience of a cruise to the Norwegian Fjords was the task to help celebrate our 10th! Frankly the thought of being cooped up with thousands of people did not appeal and we had put off cruising for years. After a lot of research we went for an 'Early Bird' on the QE, choosing an outside cabin, midships on deck 1 to minimise any 'rocking and rolling' as my wife was concerned about the ship's movement. Booking direct with Cunard was easy and my naive questions were fully answered without condescension. We arrived early for embarkation, as our taxi pulled up a very polite porter took our bags and directed us to check in. 'Check In' was fast, efficient and as soon as we were on board, as our cabin wasn't ready we were directed to a lounge to sip tea and take in the view. Our cabin was surprisingly (to us) spacious and very clean, the bed was so comfortable and the window at ideal height to sit by. Lots of room for clothes, cases etc etc. The shower area was compact but had enough space and there were lots of lovely fluffy towels and a robe & slippers for each of us. We have stayed in some of the best hotels in the world and the cabin was on a par with some of those. Our Steward Gio was very helpful & friendly even apologising when he missed a call as he was off duty!! The restaurant for dinner and breakfast was excellent, the staff; are so well trained and professional putting many so called 'top restaurants', we have dined in to shame. The menu selection was so wide there was always something to tickle the palate - as usual the only thing that was below par was the attempt at Chinese food but we are used to that....being from HK. The buffet meals were all fresh and top class and the layout such that it was very easy to meet other passengers. So the BIGGEST surprise was that rather than being, 'cooped up' there was plenty of space and we met some delightful people. There is so much room on-board you can always find a quiet spot. Being newbies we booked excursions at every stop - yes we could have done our own thing but it was so nice to sit back and let someone else take the strain. Most of the guides were excellent and the one tour that was below par we got a partial refund for - the next day. The only real downside was the $49.99 minimum charge for access to the ship's internet that we passed on; so our roaming charges were high. The entertainment wasn't really our kind of thing but our fellow diners went every night and enjoyed it. The outdoor swimming pools were crowded at peak times so I did my swimming exercises outside of these hours or when it was raining! All in all it was a great experience! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We chose this cruise as a thirtieth anniversary celebration, we love ballroom dancing and managed to have some lessons with world champion dancers....excellent. Our cabin was spacious and well laid out with a complimentary bottle of wine ... Read More
We chose this cruise as a thirtieth anniversary celebration, we love ballroom dancing and managed to have some lessons with world champion dancers....excellent. Our cabin was spacious and well laid out with a complimentary bottle of wine upon arrival. A nice touch. We spent our days, at the lectures, reading, walking, dancing and quizzing, which we enjoy. We found the food to be varied, with a good selection of items to suit everyone. The Lido restaurant was OK but we felt the layout didn't always suit us as we had to go hunting for things that had been moved. Otherwise it was fine. Our destination was Hamburg, very nice but cold. The entertainment on board was first rate Bernie Flint and the Bluejays, everyone really seemed to enjoy the party night...we did. Overall, a lovely brake for our Thirtieth wedding anniversary.We will be back...for the dancing as it was excellent. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
To put this review in perspective, here is some background. We cruise this segment almost every year at the same time for our wedding anniversary, using Royal Caribbean, Crystal and Cunard from Hong Kong back to Singapore. We also love ... Read More
To put this review in perspective, here is some background. We cruise this segment almost every year at the same time for our wedding anniversary, using Royal Caribbean, Crystal and Cunard from Hong Kong back to Singapore. We also love dancing and spend most of each evening on the dance floor. So the starting and ending ports are all that matter and the ports in between, we have been to more times than we care too. We went with pretty high expectations after wonderful experiences on the Queen Victoria and the Queen Mary, we were quite disappointed with the Queen Elizabeth. Embarkation in Hong Kong was a breeze, we arrived a few hours before the sated embarkation time ( at 1pm instead of 3:30pm) and encountered no queues anywhere. Our complaint was that the staff posted around the terminal building to direct people were not very proactive and maybe a bit racist. A couple dragging a carryon bag with Cunard tags and a sheaf of documents would obviously be looking for the Cunard check-in desk, no? They did not smile or point the way out to us but were quick to greet and direct any Caucasian walking past, even if they did not have a suitcase! We were able to go straight to our cabin which was ready, with a bottle of champagne chilling on the table. Our cabin was quite large(see cabin review) and close to all the things we wanted to get to however, very noisy on the last night as it was next to all the crew working areas. We booked early and so had early seating with a quiet table for 2, much in demand I heard, which was set well away from other tables- unlike another cruise where it was separated from the next table by 10cm. Our waiter was the 2nd worst we have had on any cruise. He was unsmiling, distracted and constantly facing away from his tables, fiddling with the silverware over and over instead of looking at his tables to see if we needed anything. He did not try to make any conversation not even to greet us on arrival! He never tried to make any food recommendations, never asked the standard " how is everything?", did not remember simple requests from the previous night (I asked for a slice of lemon in my water, the next night there was a small plate of sliced lemons on his service table but he never brought it to us). We had excellent service from other wait staff at lunch and breakfast so perhaps it was just the one person. Unfortunately the MDR waiter is the person we interact with the most on a cruise and so this gave a poor impression of the service levels. We had informed Cunard that we were celebrating our anniversary. We got a card in the room but not a whisper in the dining room. Food was disappointing but beautifully plated. All the fish was dry and over cooked. The only edible poultry was the duck and even that was just passable. Only the red meats were good. The side dishes did not complement the mains well. We went for the afternoon tea on the first day, white gloved service wasn't too happy we asked for Earl Grey instead of the generic tea they were serving. Sandwiches were dry and fillings were miserly. They only had dry raisin scones that were COLD! Cakes were poor quality ( we later found that they use Cadbury's cooking chocolate now - so brownies and chocolate cake did not taste of chocolate!).We did not bother to make it for subsequent teas. In previous cruises, this was one of the highlights of the afternoons. The best part of the cruise was the dance lessons - Sergey and Olga were amazing. They were able to teach more than 60 people, mostly beginners, in 45 minutes to dance quite complicated steps with good technique. Although we already dance well, we were still able to learn a thing or two from them. We spent most evenings on the dance floor in the Queens Room. It was large and a beautiful space to dance in when there was recorded music. The band spoilt it a little as they were not open to requests and there was a lot of down time between songs. They said they had a set of songs to play ( hence not keen to allow requests and yet did not seem to know which song it was they were going to play next and there was a lot of discussion between members before playing each song). The vocalist really ruined it. Everytime he appeared, you could almost hear the groans from the serious dancers. He was full of himself and used the same lame jokes every night that were very insulting and disrescpectful of his several ex-wives. Lots of talk before each song, called out the wrong dance ( could not tell the difference between a Viennese waltz and a Slow waltz) and switched tempos ( a big no-no in dance music) midway and always ended with a sudden stop which gave no time for any nice end to our dancing. The dance hosts on this cruise were all good dancers and all the single ladies seemed well catered to. We enjoyed having a matinee show in the Royal Theatre called La Danza - put up by the ships singers and dancers. They were not very good but certainly helped pass the time nicely. The magician/comedian on one of the nights was very entertaining. The rest of the programming was quite boring with hardly anything of interest to do in the afternoons. We did not join in the ship excursions as we had already visited both ports ( Nha Trang and Phu My) several times. Instead we took the free shuttle to Cho Dam ( market and bought lots of fish sauce - a specialty of Nha Trang and vietnamese coffee, followed by a very cheap and excellent massage at Sen Spa. We took a small group tour ( just 4 of us) with " Best Tours in Vung Tau" to visit the Long Phouc tunnels, local market and a fruit farm with an excellent home cooked lunch and accompanied by a very hospitable guide-owner. Both activities are highly recommended for people who have already done the usual tours in the 2 ports. Nha Trang was a tender port and it was a nightmare. While I totally understand the extra caution that QE was taking ( after the tragic incident they had on the same sector 2 years ago). Only 3 tenders were running and the waiting time to board one was almost 2 hours. We witnessed a poor family of 8 given tickets for tender number 22 who were told to go away for a coffee and come back in 45 minutes as the Queens Room was too full ( we were told the same thing as we were behind them and given the a number for 2 boats later). We remained in the Queens Room. No annoucements were made in the ship when the tender numbers were called, only in the Queens Room. When that family came back 35 minutes later, they were told they had missed their boat and given new tickets for 32! which meant another 1 and a half hour wait. Amazingly they remained cool! Perhaps there were safety constraints that prevented putting on more tenders so the wait may have been unavoidable BUT there were many ways they could have improved the experience like providing pastries and coffee while people waited, making ship wide annoucements if tender numbers came up before the expected time etc which they did not do. I was not impressed. As Gold members we had 2 hours of free internet each which was a nice perk. The connection was slow but good enough for confirming tours and quick checkins home. Part of the thing about cruising is getting away from computers anyway. It was the shortest cruise we had on Cunard ( previous ones were 8 and 9 days) but we were actually quite glad to get home in Singapore as the overall experience was not great. We did self help disembarkation in Singapore at 7am and it was quick and efficient as usual. There was a little glitch at immigration as they had not put up the guide ropes to allow Singaporean passengers to use the automated passports gates, soon rectified. Lots of taxis were waiting so we did not have to use Uber. We will probably cruise Cunard again but we will take the Queen Mary and never Queen Elizabeth. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
I chose QE because l had heard that Cunard was 'upscale". After cruising a couple of other lines l thought l'd give them a try. l was disappointed about the following aspects of the cruise: - Hot tub was seldom HOT ... Read More
I chose QE because l had heard that Cunard was 'upscale". After cruising a couple of other lines l thought l'd give them a try. l was disappointed about the following aspects of the cruise: - Hot tub was seldom HOT - Food was too British - No gala performance as on other cruises - only a single act each night: like it or leave - not much group activity - the men's restroom near the dinning room was out of order for 3 days The staff was very polite and helpful - except the head of the dinning area spoke very derogatorily about passengers. Overall, the ship was lovely, more conservative than RCL. Meals were beautifully presented, but lacked variety and great flavor. My fiance was disappointed in the entree selections. lt is unlikely that we would cruise Cunard again. Thanks to the great company, we still had a memorable time. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
We thoroughly enjoyed our time on Queen Elizabeth, she is a beautiful ship. Our cabin was bigger than we expected and perfect for us. The bed was so comfortable, the best ever. There were good quality toiletries provided in the bathroom. ... Read More
We thoroughly enjoyed our time on Queen Elizabeth, she is a beautiful ship. Our cabin was bigger than we expected and perfect for us. The bed was so comfortable, the best ever. There were good quality toiletries provided in the bathroom. The only downside was the shower curtain and the rather small shower cubicle. We were impresses with the entertainment, we saw one production show and enjoyed it plus ther was a rick band on board who did two shows one in the ending and one In The afternoon, they were amazing. We requested a table for 6 near a window for last di ing and that is exactly what we got. The food was generally very good in both the MDR and the buffet. The drinks were on t expensive side but as the measures are larger than normal it wa to be expected. We have wine with dinner, I did find the wine on the expensive side but he. Purple of bottles we had were very enjoyable. Embararkationand disempbarkatiom we're both trouble free and well organised. We were on th ship within half an hour of us arriving at check in. Our cabin wa ready so we were able to leave our hand luggage there. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2016
This was a new years eve cruise. We enjoyed ourselves so much the first time we booked again this year 2015. We arrived at Southampton dropped off our car withe the parking attendant. Our cases were taken by the porter. As we entered ... Read More
This was a new years eve cruise. We enjoyed ourselves so much the first time we booked again this year 2015. We arrived at Southampton dropped off our car withe the parking attendant. Our cases were taken by the porter. As we entered the terminal we were greeted by a member of staff. The terminal was clean with seating area's, not like some of the terminals used by some other cruise lines. We were quickly checked in. We were greeted by a line of staff, very smart in there uniforms. Then Offered a glass of champagne when we boarded the ship. The ship and all the staff were fantastic. A really first class 5 star service. The entertainment was also first class. Went spent the night docked in Amsterdam. The fireworks display was also impressive from the top of the ship. And as we stayed on UK time new year was at 11pm ( 12pm Amsterdam time). Then at 12pm we had the UK celebrations into the early hour's of the morning. The service and ship decor is very impressive compared to constellation or Equinox we have been on. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
I have read a couple of reviews from people who went on this trip and I cant believe we were on the same ship......the embarkation was smooth and easy...the ship was absolutely fantastic in every way including service, food quality and ... Read More
I have read a couple of reviews from people who went on this trip and I cant believe we were on the same ship......the embarkation was smooth and easy...the ship was absolutely fantastic in every way including service, food quality and staff attitude. Overall a much better experience than the Queen Mary 2 the last time we were on there. If other people found the crew / staff "Miserable at best" it was because they spoke to them like dirt in the first place, and we did see some of that. The Big Band theme was excellent with dance and swing music on all 3 nights with the biggest on the middle night. The Glenn Miller numbers made my hair stand on end....Everyone dressed up and made an effort which was lovely to see compared to the abject failure in adhering to the dress code on QM2 last year. It seemed like everyone on board (apart from myself) could dance well and has encouraged me to learn for the next one when I can take my wife round the dance floor. It was a shame Storm Angus was at night, we would have liked to have seen more of it. Must have been quite spectacular. We didn't go ashore but preferred to stay on board and take advantage of the quieter atmosphere and use all the facilities - pool - tennis - games etc and had a great day. Fed up with people using Trip adviser to try and get recompense for being miserable themselves on holiday. Bravo Cunard and thank you Queen Lizzy. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
This was our first cruise and we were not dissapointed. We didn't know anyone who had sailed with Cunard and did not think their description of cruises they had been on were for us (not into water slides rock climbing or hundreds of ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we were not dissapointed. We didn't know anyone who had sailed with Cunard and did not think their description of cruises they had been on were for us (not into water slides rock climbing or hundreds of screaming kids nor does a river cruise sound appealing....... ) so we did lots and lots of research on line. Mostly coming back to Cruise Critic and YouTube!!! So, we sort of knew what to expect, we are by no means old (mid 50's) and knew by now there'd be lots of folk much much older than us but this was our choice anyway. All these reviewers who appeared to have been shocked and horrified to discover this once on board have only themselves to blame. Research people, research. We had a balcony room mid ships on deck 5 which was good for crossing bay of Biscay. ........ Not noisy, not too hot, we weren't kept awake by anything or anyone. There was a low hum which only served to rock you to sleep but guess what? It's a ship. It has an engine. It's the thing that is taking us to our ports of call. Please don't tell me there isn't noise in a hotel (kitchens, lifts, doors banging, stilettos on marble floors you get the picture.) The food choice was excellent but we only went to the buffet for a snack or ice cream as we wanted to take advantage of the fine and efficient service on offer in the restaurants. So those who moaned about the busy Lido, you had a choice! Evenings were great I personally loved dressing up cos I don't get the chance at home but again you had a choice and there are plenty of places to go if you didn't want to. Of course there were times when a table had to be shared with fellow passengers the alternative was to stand up all night. You can always ignore them. The wine was pricey and I agree Cunard should really not be charging nearly 40 dollars for what is their house wine. our sommelier Markos was amazing and he made our night with his witty banter (all appropriate of course) and whether we had drinks or not engaged with us anyway. The waitering staff were quick efficient and had memories like you wouldn't believe. There was just the right balance of friendliness with professionalism. Wrapping up now before you fall asleep, decor, wonderful, classy ambience, great entertainment worthy of the West End, loads of bar areas to hide away if you want, plenty of room on deck to do likewise. Cleanliness standards one of the best I've seen. Are the soft furnishings getting a bit frayed..... Yes but the QE is due a re fit in 2018. All staff were smart friendly and couldn't do enough no matter how much some passengers whinged or complained Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
Length and time of the year means little or no chance of children on board. Britannia balcony cabin on deck 5 toward the front was ideal for us and as we did not intend going ashore too often we were well placed for the ships facilities ... Read More
Length and time of the year means little or no chance of children on board. Britannia balcony cabin on deck 5 toward the front was ideal for us and as we did not intend going ashore too often we were well placed for the ships facilities and reasonable vantage point to view our entry into and out of ports. We are very regular travellers with Cunard, we are Diamond level, and we are disappointed at the extortionate price of drinks even before the 15% service charge is added and a further 10% when in Spanish waters!! All other activities now mostly carry an additional nominal charge from $150 to €15 The daily programme is mostly filled with tasters for the Spar so they can sell products and treatments at enormously inflated prices! As a result of the pricing policy the Captains, World Club and senior Officers parties have become a mass scramble for a free drink The ship now bears all the indications of grabbing margin at any cost, The White Star service which Cunard believe they are delivering is no longer there Evening entertainment is at best reasonabley good but never top rate or excellent Every seat everywhere on the ship need reupholstering they have all sunk! Harsh words but very very true and echoed by all our fellow passengers, Cunard really need to take notice of the views of Britannia level customers, where the volume and growth potential is and stop pandering to the Grills passengers Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
This was our 9th cruise with Cunard and 6th on the QE. Occasionally Cunard lets us down where elements of Carnivalisation become all too apparent; sometimes the service lacks the finesse I would expect; occasionally a member of staff ... Read More
This was our 9th cruise with Cunard and 6th on the QE. Occasionally Cunard lets us down where elements of Carnivalisation become all too apparent; sometimes the service lacks the finesse I would expect; occasionally a member of staff isn’t quite as well trained as I would hope. However, most of the time Cunard get it right and occasionally perfect. After boarding the ship we quickly felt like Cunard had read our minds and solved many of the little niggles we had had previously. On this short voyage we experienced excellent service, very good food and a chance to relax. From booking through to disembarkation, with only minor exceptions, the service was polite and almost flawless. My prepaid on board credit was on my account straight away; our room steward was faultless and our waiter at dinner in the Britannia Club was exceptional (normally works in the Grills). The purser's desk staff were polite, efficient and helpful. Shortly after boarding (which was immediate and efficient, and before 12pm), we received complimentary champagne, strawberries and gourmet canapés as a gift from Cunard Customer Services; I am still not sure why we got these but I suspect it was as we had just booked our honeymoon on QM2 for 2018. Whatever it was for, it was a very nice touch. We noticed a few changes such as an improved Veuve Cliquot champagne menu in the Midship’s Bar with the addition of a champagne tasting where you can buy 3 small glasses of various champagnes including La Grande Dame for $25 per person, served with strawberries and canapés. Caviar was also available but was not presented as described and I’m convinced there was not 50 grams as there should’ve been. Reasonable value at $60 had it been presented a little better with blinis and garnish; not the melba toast we received. We ate in the Verandah twice and the food was exceptional; during a voyage last year it was not as good as it normally is, but was back on form this time. The service was also spot on and the Maitre'D superb and helpful. We encountered some new standard Britannia menus too but also many that we have seen before; some are getting a little repetitive but are still very good. The Britannia Club a la carte menu is improved from what I remember; it is a little larger with a more interesting variety: a very good compromise between Britannia and the Grills. We also ate in the Lido a couple of times and were quite impressed with the standard and variety, and the addition of plentiful smoked salmon which is always welcome. Service generally was very good; the staff were very polite and helpful and our waiter at dinner had a wonderful sense of humour. An exception is that the service in the Commodore Club continues to be a little slow, however there do appear to be more staff than previous cruises so Cunard may have listened to feedback here. However the selection of canapés, hot and cold, served with drinks are worth waiting for. I also enjoyed trying a variety of new cocktails and softails. The on deck drinks service was a little slow too, ordering a drink from the hot tubs can only be described as painful. The overall ambience of the ship was wonderful as always, with most people adhering to the dress code. The harpist, violinists and pianists were wonderful and elevated the ambience further. The world club party was very good too, an excellent variety of complimentary drinks and canapés and a great Captain with a sense of humour. We made use of the complimentary wine tasting for World Club members. The 4 wines tried were very interesting and it didn’t just feel like they were trying to sell us the wines. The sommeliers hosting the event were for the most part polite and knowledgeable. I shall certainly attend another wine tasting. I didn’t like how we had to wash our glasses in between each wine and couldn’t have a fresh glass; there were only 4 wines after all. The ship is in a very good state of repair and it appears maintenance is taken seriously with a rigorous routine for touching up wear and tear. Finally, the weather deserves a mention. Not within Cunard’s control of course, but the combination of excellent weather, good service, good food and picturesque locations made for a handful of perfect moments (and photographs to remember them by). The Ports of Call: Vigo - A pleasant surprise. We went for a walk to the top of the hill and the castle remains. Some wonderful panaromic views can be enjoyed from here. Lisbon - Keep your hands in your pockets and don't stop moving. We took an excursion here to the lovely walled town of Obidos; this was quite good although the guide on the coach was a little boring. Was very busy initially which wasn't great but it soon quietened down and was a beautiful place. We walked the town walls, again offering great views, and visited an shop selling a large selection of wines and spirits offering free samples (always good). We tried a very interesting local gin. Now for Lisbon itself. In the afternoon we walked down to Black Horse Square. Within the space of 15 minutes walking around the square and up the main road from there we were approached no less than 6 times by arab-looking men trying to sell us drugs; we soon realised this was likely a distraction to pick pocket. Thankfully we had our hands in our pockets. Whenever we stopped we were approached and it became quite scary. We decided to quickly return to the safe haven of the ship. Lisbon itself does look very nice from a distance, maybe an organised tour next time. Porto - A Cultural Gem Much better than Lisbon; again we took an interesting tour here visiting the cathedral, stock exchange palace and a port wine cellar with a port tasting. Very well presented with an excellent tour guide and quite good value. Porto felt much safer than Lisbon. An interesting history and charming place to explore. Cherbourg - It is what it is. A good base to explore northern France. We hired a car and drove to the Normandy beaches and American Cemetery. Easy to do a good round-trip in 4-5 hours without being hurried as you tend to be on ships tours. Overall, I am very happy with this cruise. The whole experience was wonderful and I was sad to disembark. I am very much looking forward to my next Cunard cruise, particularly on Queen Elizabeth. Please read my other reviews from previous cruises for a more comprehensive reviews of the ship; its decor etc. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
Our second trip on QE and Cunard once again delivered a fantastic voyage. Long may Cunard NOT offer an all inclusive drinks package - even though my husband likes to drink but the lack of such an offer does seem to maintain the high ... Read More
Our second trip on QE and Cunard once again delivered a fantastic voyage. Long may Cunard NOT offer an all inclusive drinks package - even though my husband likes to drink but the lack of such an offer does seem to maintain the high standards on board. We had a standard balcony cabin, the same one as before 6211 which was right at the end of the corridor to the back of the ship. Beautifully quiet as no-one passing by and the 2 cabins at the rear of the ship are Queens Grill Suites. Its a bit of a walk from the lifts, but we preferred it. Cabin was lovely, light and bright and modern in decor, lovely linens and spotlessly clean. No bath, just a shower cubicle but very nice shower-room with nice toiletries too. We loved this ship the first time we sailed on her, and were equally impressed on this occasion, so much so we have booked again for 2018. If you cruise only once in your life and enjoy luxury, great live music (big band), ballroom dancing and a generally relaxing atmosphere, then make Cunard your choice. You will not be disappointed. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary and we wanted to experience a cruise based in Britian. We were in cabin 1073. We usually book a balcony but the cruise was almost full. The cabin was a really nice size, and we didn't mind ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary and we wanted to experience a cruise based in Britian. We were in cabin 1073. We usually book a balcony but the cruise was almost full. The cabin was a really nice size, and we didn't mind not having the balcony as much as I thought as the ship had lots of nice places to sit. We loved the entertainment, especially the cellist and the tenor, and the speakers (who were really interesting). We also tried lawn bowling and played some bridge and darts. The food was very good, and desserts were excellent. I would say the food was similar to Celebrity but desserts were better. Drinks were expensive though. We loved the Verandah restaurant. We prefer anytime dining, but that isn't an option with Cunard in the Brittania dining room. Still it was nice to meet people, and we enjoyed the dress code. My husband had a couple of nights where he preferred to not wear a jacket, so we went to the buffet on those nights. Embarkation was excellent; we arrived at 1 as was listed on our documents and walked right up. We hardly saw any children and the average age looked to be 70 plus, about 15 years older than us. So it was quiet, which suited us. The library is good, so no need to pack books. This is a cruise for people who like quiet, enjoy good food, like classical music and enrichment activities. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
We chose this cruise as a special holiday after not having one for a couple of years due to paying for two weddings! (Thanks girls). It was our first cruise with Cunard although we have cruised before with other lines. The itinery included ... Read More
We chose this cruise as a special holiday after not having one for a couple of years due to paying for two weddings! (Thanks girls). It was our first cruise with Cunard although we have cruised before with other lines. The itinery included some ports we had visited before and a couple of new ones (Gibraltar and Korcula) and also Venice which we were keen to do again as it was winter and very cold on our previous visit. Boarding was fast, smooth and trouble free and our luggage was in our stateroom when we arrived. Our room (regular balcony deck 7) was very comfortable with plenty of storage space and lots of room to move around. The balcony was a good size and not overlooked although some of them could be so check the deck plans carefully when booking if this is an issue for you. We had a wonderful cruise and found the ship to be very comfortable and well designed. We dined in the Britannia restaurant and were fortunate to have splendid dining companions - we laughed so much and genuinely looked forward to eating every night. The food was excellent and the service was friendly and efficient. There was plenty to do during the days if you wanted to, or you could just sunbathe or read a book. It is true that on a sunny day there will be a shortage of sunbeds by the pool, but there are plenty of other places to find (or escape) the sun and expecting to have enough space adjacent to the pool to accommodate 2000 passengers is unrealistic in my view. If you want a guaranteed place by the pool then you will need to pay 4 times as much and cruise on Europa or some of the other boutique vessels. For at least half the cruise the balconies will be in the sun on a warm day and that's the majority of the cabins on a Vista class ship such as this. We enjoy the formal aspect of a cruise like this and enjoy the dressing up and the dancing and civilised afternoon teas. A Cunard cruise is a Cunard cruise and you do need to know what your booking. If you want casual dining and more pzazz then there are plenty of options out there. Also, although we are in our 50's we had no problem with the older age profile of the passengers. We met a lot of terrifically fun lively people with wonderful stories to tell and a great zest for life - it was really quite enriching. The evening shows are what they are - slightly cheesy cabaret style shows, but the standard was very high, particularly the dancing, and they are a pleasant enough way to let you dinner settle before going dancing. The guest artists, musicians and comedian etc were actually all very good with well constructed shows. A word about the music on the ship which was of a unifornly high standard. The two show bands were first class and there was also a String Quartet, a Harpist, a cocktail pianist and a jazz singer/pianist - all of a very high standard. Definitely the highest standard of music we have encountered at sea. The crew worked really hard in all the areas we went and the Captain, Aseem Hashmi set a great example, being genuinly interested in the wellbeing and enjoyment of the passengers. He also delivered a couple of great lectures on the ships operations and his own very interesting story. Only negatives - the drinks are very expensive, especially the wine in the Britannia, and the coffee was fairly poor unless you paid extra in the (excellent) Cafe Carinthia. After a wonderful trip the disembarkation was equally smooth and painless and we departed Southampton rather wishing we haden't had to leave the boat. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
I booked this cruise for 4 people after having a taster cruise on the Victoria in 2015 which was beautiful however despite being advised that we would probably have an 'upgrade' we ended up feeling as though we had been down ... Read More
I booked this cruise for 4 people after having a taster cruise on the Victoria in 2015 which was beautiful however despite being advised that we would probably have an 'upgrade' we ended up feeling as though we had been down graded. The balcony was smaller and as we walked into the room past the bed my husband bumped his shoulder on the wall mounted tv due to lack of space. The room looked tired and dated and as we stepped onto the balcony we were faced with a view at our feet of rusting metal. We asked for an unobstructed view but had lifeboats just underneath and a protruding balcony above us. The food in the Britannia restaurant was fine and the service could not be faulted but the food in the lido was always barely lukewarm and the quality left something to be desired. I even asked if it could be heated up but was advised they didn't have the fascillity to do so. We also walked out (as many others did) of the theatre shows as they were either a repeat of previous cruises or just old hat for people who were born in the year 1900. Alright I know this is impossible but it just felt like it. Being over 60 doesn't mean you want to sing "we'll meet again". Venice and Dubrovnik were very interesting but would have liked more free time to explore in fact we had to be back at the jetty for 2.30 when in Venice. Other shore excursions/visits were disappointing also about 9 of the 17 days were spent at sea. (Full itinerary not showing at time of booking) Despite complaining to the persors office and on the customer satisfaction forms nothing was done and no redress or contact regarding our dissatisfaction has ever been made. We have never been able to obtain an email to make our views known. We would have liked to travelled on all three Queen ships but unlikely to now. Disappointing birthday cruise Read Less
Queen Elizabeth Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.4
Public Rooms 5.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.8
Family 3.5 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 5.0 3.6
Service 4.0 4.0
Value For Money 4.0 3.5
Rates 4.0 3.5

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