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4 Cunard Queen Elizabeth Singles Cruise Reviews

It was when Queen Elizabeth was leaving her berth in Liverpool to sail across the Irish Sea to Dublin that I began to see that a cruise around the British Isles had not been such a bad idea after all. Until now I had steered clear. After ... Read More
It was when Queen Elizabeth was leaving her berth in Liverpool to sail across the Irish Sea to Dublin that I began to see that a cruise around the British Isles had not been such a bad idea after all. Until now I had steered clear. After all, why tour Britain when you live here? The send-off we received was hugely emotional. Scousers lined the streets to watch and cheer as the ship let go her lines and on the quayside a ukulele band belted out Lennon & McCartney and other hits from the Sixties. It was fantastic and just one of my memories of this special cruise. In Scotland, we were sent on our way from Greenock to the stirring sounds of a bagpipe band and for our maiden call at Killybegs in Donegal the locals treated us like royalty. But the biggest bonus was to see my own region from the sea, to sail up the Mersey and gaze at towns I had only explored on foot; the sandy beach at Wallasey, with the dome of the handsome town hall towering above, presented an image totally at odds with the reality of previous visits. But the greatest pleasure was to experience such sights from the comfort of Queen Elizabeth. Standards of service across the ship were excellent, inspired by the leadership of Captain Aseem Hashmi. He could be seen around the ship every day and his announcements at midday were always worth hearing. Apart from navigational updates, he added seafaring anecdotes spiced with humour, and at every port he kept us informed about his plans for leaving the berth and for the course to be taken. No wonder the theatre was packed for his talk about life on the Bridge. Captain Hashmi can certainly look forward to a lucrative career on stage if ever he tires of the sea. On sea days I found the displays of memorabilia from Queen Elizabeth’s maiden voyage fascinating and would make time to look at them as I walked from one venue to another. It was a surprise to see that a bottle of wine cost less than ten dollars eight years ago; today you’re looking at around 30, although you could spend a lot more. Across the ship, original oil paintings of the fleet’s ships and black-and-white poster photographs of Hollywood movie stars taken when on board emphasized Cunard’s place in maritime history. The daily programme of activities requires careful study because there is so much to do. I found the art classes fun, especially when our efforts went on display at the end of the cruise. The Clarendon Art Gallery was a useful destination to appreciate the real thing - here you can buy works of art ranging in price from the low hundreds to $10,000+. The speakers and port presentations were popular with guests, as was the handsome library, the best I have seen on any ship. Dance classes, some of them privately arranged, continued throughout the day and up in the gym there were alternative forms of exercise for those determined to remain at peak fitness. Add daily quizzes to the mix and you can see that there is never any need to feel bored. This year’s sizzling British summer meant that reading by the pools was also essential as was the occasional swim with the aft pool being reserved for adults only. I used Club dining, eating at 6 o’clock in the Britannia restaurant. Both food quality and service were excellent. Geronimo and his assistant, Jericho, were perfect waiters, soon becoming used to my nightly requests for ice cream with caramel sauce for dessert. The steaks were juicy and tender and the fish was also of good quality but portions of vegetables were small. My lemon sole was delicious but an accompaniment of two halves of a potato seemed mean, although of course there were other vegetables on the plate – and yes, that included the usual broccoli. Geronimo responded immediately when he heard me mention the lonely potato and brought extra from then on. Another plus point about eating in Britannia is that after leaving the table you are tempted at the restaurant doors with a table piled high with crystal ginger and chocolate mints. Upstairs in the Lido self-service restaurant, the range of choices was generous and platters were constantly being refreshed. At breakfast I could not fault the omelettes, prepared by a chef who chatted cheerfully as she prepared my choice of fillings. And at teatime, I defy anyone to resist the warm scones accompanied by a pot of Cornish clotted cream! Downstairs on Deck 2, the Queen’s Room offers a more formal afternoon tea. As the clock strikes 3.30 white-gloved waiters march to the middle of the dance floor, the harpist or pianist begins playing and sandwiches and cakes start to be served. It is a classically English occasion. But more often than not I still opted for the clotted cream in the Lido. After dinner the theatre soon fills up. Dance and music shows are presented by the ship’s own theatre company and there are also guest artists, including magicians, comedians and solo instrumentalists. I enjoyed them but my prize for the best show goes to The Barricade Boys, four young men who have performed in the West End and who brilliantly delivered show songs that had us on our feet, cheering for more. So would I do another cruise around the British Isles? Yes, definitely. And would I be happy to return on board Queen Elizabeth? Of course I would. To sit in Café Carinthia enjoying an Americano for $4 whilst drinking in coastal views of great contrast is a privilege that deserves to be repeated more than once. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Queen elizabeth no 801 23rd dec 2017 - 7th jan 2018. I am a regular passenger with cunard but i had a real problem with my cabin on this cruise. I was in cabin 6182, an inside cabin. I was traveling as a single person so had to pay ... Read More
Queen elizabeth no 801 23rd dec 2017 - 7th jan 2018. I am a regular passenger with cunard but i had a real problem with my cabin on this cruise. I was in cabin 6182, an inside cabin. I was traveling as a single person so had to pay the supplement for that grade. I think this cabin is not even fit for one person, most certainly not two. There is no desk space the way the cabin is configured at present. The tray for tea/coffee making equipment is a nice touch but in this cabin leaves no desk/dressing table space. There is also no causal chair . See attached photographs This meant that the whole time had to be spent on the bed. I complained to the purser (hotel general manager) she responded saying that all desk areas were the same except for queens and princess grills cabins. I have traveled in everything from a q1 downwards. The desk space is not the same in all cabins. In 6182 it was 69 cm. And in the other 84.5 cm. Thus they vary by 15.5 cms and the high space in the 6182 also not available as it is taken up by the tv. The customer service manager offered me cabin 4110 late in the voyage which was perfect. However this not really my point. I tried to load photograph but this proved impossible, however one desk was 69 cm the other 84.5 cm. This being 15.5 cm longer On the last leg of the world cruise, cape town to southampton i traveled in a single cabin on deck 1. This cabin was perfect. This time i was unable to book a deck 1 single through cunards site and had to go to an agent. I notice from the present 2018 site every single cabin for all cruises is marked “sold out” for the whole year. I find this unlikely and this would appear to be a crafty and dubious business practice. When i book a cruise i watch the website frequently and twice a day towards departure and it is obvious when cabins and fares are updated and consolidated. The amount i paid for my 6182 cabin was similar to the fare for a single on deck 1. This single was an oceanview. It therefore had a window, a settee, a usable desk area and plenty of space. Cabin 6182 has no window, no desk and no settee. All for a similar fare. I know very well you get what you pay for, but it is unconscionable to charge the same fare for totally contrasting cabin facilities, what, in one cabin, is provided for a particular fare should in another cabin have similar facilities. Anything else is unacceptable, unethical, sharp business practice and possibly illegal. To further compound this shadiness by “blocking off” all the single cabins on every cruise for the whole year, makes the situation worse. Primary points for attention are: SIMILAR CABIN FARES MUST EQUATE TO SIMILAR CABIN FACILITIES SELECTED CABIN GRADES SHOULD NOT BE DISPLAYED AS “SOLD OUT” WHEN THEY ARE NOT Single travellers are constantly being exploited. Do not let you agent or cunard book you in cabin 6182 on the queen elizabeth. SOLO TRAVELLERS Arising from this problem i have a further concern as to what is provided for “solo travellers”. On this cruise q801 there was very little and what was provided was a shambles. The first “meeting” was situated in an area too small for those wishing to attend. The “bubbly” and coffee had not been arranged and the “host” did not turn up till very late. On the second occasion the “host” did not turn up at all. He was being santa or something. Due to the first meeting not having taken place there was no list of “solos” so it was impossible to arrange invitations for the solo lunch. In port there was no hosting attendance, coffee or other provision other than a notification of the scheduled meeting place. The solo lunch eventually took place on the last day. Solo travellers pay a considerably higher fare than other passengers but receive virtually nothing extra. There was a group arranged in the ballroom on new year’s eve but it was inadequately notified and many people did not realise it had taken place. Many of these ‘solos’ are older and also disabled therefore triply isolated and left on their own. This demographic of cruise passengers is becoming an increasing part of your client base. Cunard need to take better care of them. Also, the years of people with the large pensions are drawing to a close. Where are your passengers going to come from then? Another problem with being sole on this cruise was the lack of the gourmet/wine dinner in the veranda. I like to eat in this venue but on my own it is little difficult. The gourmet/wine dinner gives solos a chance to eat at a made up larger table. This event was dropped from the usual programme, again to the detriment of sole travellers. Each passenger receive an allocated ‘spend on board”. Should a solo traveler not receive 175% of this amount as they pay 175% for their fare? Primary points for attention are: GIVE MORE APPROPRIATE ATTENTION TO PROGRAMMES AND FACILITIES FOR SOLO TRAVELLERS Increase the personal spend for these passengers. ENTERTAINMENT The christmas show was a disaster. I understand it was probably a one off as it was christmas but if the singers had just come on stage and had a ‘sing along’ of christmas carols it would have been preferable. The costumes did not fit the dancers, the choreography was very poor and dated. I have seldom seen so much fear and embarrassment on a stage. The dancers did not know the routines, could not commit to the choreography and were embarrassed by their ill fitting costumes. Happily they did prove their worth in the other shows later in the cruise. How cunard have the audacity to bill the shows as “new” is beyond belief. I have seen most of these numbers on other cruises and ships in the past. The other entertainers were of a reasonable standard, however the speakers/lectures were not particularly good. The lecture on bletchley park being the least well received. The yacht club dj was very poor. He appeared to be unable to work out the type of music the passengers liked. The band would leave after their set with the dance floor full. The venue would empty in seconds once the stared to dj. The bar service is also poor. Only one waiter had the right idea how to work a club/disco type of venue. He would welcome the passengers at the door, help find them a seat, and ask what they would like to drink. The two staff behind the bar were very slow considering the number of drinks they were serving and the other room waiter was slow to get to passengers and ascertain their requirements. This bar must run at a loss Primary points for attention are: ONLY PUT ON PROPERLY REHEARSED DRESSED AND CHOREOGRAPHED SHOWS Do not bill as “new’ shows that have been staged before. FIND A NEW COMPETENT DJ TRAIN THE STAFF HOW TO WORK A BAR SUCH AS THIS ALTERNATIVE DINING OPTIONS The food in general was very good. Good produce, well cooked, and pleasantly presented. The waiting and sommelier staff were excellent, as usual. However, there was on major issue. I visited the “alternative” dining venue one evening. It was the one billed as “coriander”. The starter was ok, well presented although additional chutneys would have been acceptable, also a dedicated rice dish is required. The main course i ordered was lamb pasanda. I was very very over salted and the lamb meat was extremely tough. I am certain it had only been “lamb” many years before it reached the ship. There was good lamb on board as i had a rack during the following days which cut like butter. To charge a supplement for what was provided is a ripoff. Primary points for attention are: Improve the standard of food in this venue if you are going to charge a considerable supplement. THE PURSER’S DESK On several occasions i was given incorrect information by the recaption desk staff and also by the hotel general manager (purser). The desk staff probably were new and inexperienced and not fully trained. I did not receive my customer questionnaire. I asked a number of times. I was assured it would be resent my cabin. It did not appear. I also asked for the assisted disembarkation information on a number of occasions. Again, this did not arrive until the very last minute. I did suggest it may have been because of my cabin transfer but was assured this was not the reason. The customer services manager was very helpful and understanding and did what she could to address my situation. Primary points for attention are: THE PURSER’S DESK STAFF REQUIRE MORE TRAINING AND BETTER COMMUNICATION The purser (hgm) neads to check the accuracy of information sent out in a letter before it is sent. THE RELIGIOUS SERVICE The service on christmas eve was advertised as an “anglican” service. Before the service started, while we were waiting for the pianist, the “reverend” addressed those attending. I may have misunderstood what he was saying but: he announced that he and his wife had set up a “mission” to minister to passengers at sea. I found this a little disconcerting. The prospect that an ordained priest should go around personally benefitting from providing the holy sacrament to passengers on cruise ships i found rather repugnant. Which church did he belong to? does he have a bishop who has sanctioned this activity? Where i come from, northern ireland, in the past we have had too many people set themselves up as “men of god’ in their own church. I did not take the sacrament in the end although i did attend the service. Primary points for attention are: Provide more information on who and what the priest providing communion is. THE PROVISION OF INTERNET SERVICES When i wanted to write my letter of complaint on the ship i enquired if there were computers on which i could write a letter and print it. I eventually discovered i could write an email and send it to the bureau. However, to do this i would have to be “logged on” for the time it took to compose it. This would have been wasting my very expensive internet minutes. I am partially dyslexic and have problems with handwriting. The hand written letter i did eventually did compose took me some considerable time and was very rough and probably difficult to read. I found this whole situation quite embarrassing and frustrating. Primary points for attention are: Make word processing facilities available to passenger without having to “log on” to the internet. I have always enjoyed my cunard cruises. I think the waiters, room stewards and public room waiters all work incredibly hard. I even, as a regular traveler, consider some of them as friends. I look forward to seeing them each cruise. However, most of my issues were rooted in the management and policies in force on the ship. Most are the responsibility of “head office” management. I put all the above issues in a letter to cunard. After some considerable time i received a response. Many of the issues were totally ignored and the one over the unsuitability and pricing of my cabin was hardly addressed at all. Hence i am writing this review as others deserve to know cunard's contempt for passengers genuine problems. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
I have cruised with Cunard and other similar companies before but I choose this specific cruise for its dates, convenience and pricing. The itinerary was not new to me and I embarked with mixed feelings about the voyage. I strongly feel ... Read More
I have cruised with Cunard and other similar companies before but I choose this specific cruise for its dates, convenience and pricing. The itinerary was not new to me and I embarked with mixed feelings about the voyage. I strongly feel Cunard's ships offer very elegant surroundings, ships that feel like ships unadorned with gimmicky features and, of course, excellent service. I like the fact that the dress code is stricter and smart wear is encouraged in the evenings but it is in no way stuffy or superior, everyone is very friendly and relaxed. There are a few areas solely for Queen's Grill passengers but I have never been aware of these or felt excluded as all the main areas and facilities of the ship are open to everyone. I am pleased that fellow passengers respect the standard Cunard offers and behave accordingly so that, for example, sitting in one of the bars sipping a cocktail and chatting or listening to live background music is uninterrupted by noisy behaviour. There is plenty of opportunity for fun and more informal surroundings in the Golden Lion pub and deck parties, etc. I particularly love the Queens Room ballroom as it is spacious with a superb dance floor and a big attraction to anyone interested in ballroom dancing which is held there every evening. There are dance hosts, too, for anyone travelling solo as I do. I found all the evening entertainment in the theatre to be excellent and also enjoyed the lectures on sea days. The itinerary was similar to other ships but mostly enjoyable, especially as we had sunny and warm conditions for most of our ports which felt like a bonus in November! Another bonus was that most of the ports were easy to get around independently, apart from visiting Seville, and it was well worth booking the coach transfer there. The embarkation and disembarkation were extremely efficient and the fastest I have ever experienced. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
First time on Cunard, first cruise was on the Sea Princess some 35 years ago...things haven't changed as far as cruising goes. If not in port there is not a lot to do except bask in the sun by the pool, attend the show after dinner, ... Read More
First time on Cunard, first cruise was on the Sea Princess some 35 years ago...things haven't changed as far as cruising goes. If not in port there is not a lot to do except bask in the sun by the pool, attend the show after dinner, old time dance in the ballroom or kick up your heels in the disco, have a quiet drink listening to the piano in the yacht club or play trivia games and karaoke in the pub.. QE is one very beautiful vessel, the decor is lavish. The evening entertainment in the theatre was outstanding!! Apparently the entertainers were all new. The dancers were fantabulous, their stamina in doing two shows each night is amazing. The costumes were beautiful, colourful and the designs very relevant to the dance being performed. Food in the Britannia was great and serving portions just right for 3 course meals. Vegetarian meals were also on the menu. Even those on a diet were catered for. Steaks as requested were perfectly cooked . Duck and Lobster were delicious, we even had shrimp cocktail, souffles, snails. Watching people eat in the Lido buffet was a sight, plates piled high, anybody would think it was their last meal. I now understand the joke by cruise staff referring to cruises as a food marathon. Food was constantly replenished, you could get pizza and pasta on demand, crepes, eggs and omelets at breakfast. Burgers, sausages,fries and onion rings at the pool. There were Indian,Japanese and other special food days throughout the cruise. Some people really need to look at themselves and their eating habits if they think their was insufficient food on QE. All crew were nice, friendly and smiling and always around to help. Although the dinner waiter was a little too swift in clearing the table each night. My cabin was nice but an interior, so pitch black without the lights on, I was rarely in it. The shower was small but the water pressure and temperature was very good. My only complaint was the hair dryer in the desk drawer, the cord doesn't stretch far enough to get to the other side of my head. having long hair it was a nightmare to get dry and styled. As always hotels and cruise ships just don't cater for women! But at least they supplied hair conditioner, something you don't get in hotels. You do get the feeling of penny pinching when it comes to the add-ons. Gratuities, service charges and tips are added, added and added again. Ridiculous and so "American" Being an aussie we believe in a fair pay for a days work. Just pay your staff properly, price things accordingly and get rid of the add-ons, it so cheapens the experience. Being single traveller the cost was obscene, especially with regional pricing. Having said that I would still definitely sail on the QE again but travel with someone next time. Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
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 3.7
Service 4.0 4.0
Value For Money 4.0 3.5
Rates 4.0 3.5

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