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Sail Date: March 2019
I wanted a smaller ship as I was travelling on my own. Having read previous reviews, most of which were positive, I decided to book it. The whole of the holiday was perfect from start to finish. I had a single cabin (1023) which was ... Read More
I wanted a smaller ship as I was travelling on my own. Having read previous reviews, most of which were positive, I decided to book it. The whole of the holiday was perfect from start to finish. I had a single cabin (1023) which was roomy and clean with modern decor. Plenty of drawers and wardrobe space. The entertainment, food, service and cleanliness of the ship was faultless. Comments with regard to ship being old are certainly true but it did not deter from the holiday itself. All the bars, dining rooms and communal areas were modern and tastefully decorated. I have travelled many times on several cruise lines in the past and I can honestly say, that I was not disappointed in any of the experiences on the Marella Dream. I would like to say a special thank you to the member of staff that certainly made my holiday memorable. A young 24 year old - Calum James Smith - with the title of social host. He was wonderful with shall I say the elderly ladies of the ship. Thank you for a lovely, relaxing holiday. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
I chose this cruise to get a little bit of sun, rather than sit at home watching the rain. This being my third time on Azura, I thought I knew what to expect. Embarkation went smoothly, and I was in my cabin swiftly. I noticed that the ... Read More
I chose this cruise to get a little bit of sun, rather than sit at home watching the rain. This being my third time on Azura, I thought I knew what to expect. Embarkation went smoothly, and I was in my cabin swiftly. I noticed that the plug in the basin was closed,and I wondered why. It didn't take me long to find the answer. I was on deck fourteen, but when I went to decks six and seven, THE SMELL OF RAW SEWAGE WAS OVERPOWERING !!!. Lots of people were complaining throughout the whole cruise. I spoke to reception desk about this,only to be told that they were aware of this problem, and they were working on it. Previous reviews that I have read have indicated that the problem has been on board the ship for some time. The Captain was never to be seen around the ship,except for photo shoots, nor was the chief Engineer,as I would have approached one of them to ask about the problem, which continued for the entire duration of the cruise.( I later found that the basin was kept plugged to prevent the smell entering my cabin). I dined in the restaurant on only three occasions,as the food was only lukewarm, and on one dinner the ribeye steak was so tough that three members at my table had to send it back. After that I dined at the buffet,where the food was Lukewarm too. The entertainment was mediocre,same old gags from old comedians. On one occasion the show was cancelled because of rough seas. To conclude, six sea days are too much,when the entertainment is poor. However if you like dancing,or quizzes,or overpriced bingo,or old movies then this ones for you. I won't be back on Azura! I have a Cruise booked on Brittania for next year,but I won't be going,unless P&o redress me for the disappointment that I endured on this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
We are fairly recent cruisers and wanted a winter sun break and booked this cruise in January on line. The weather was superb and we were told by the crew the best they have had for several years. We flew from East Midlands to Tenerife and ... Read More
We are fairly recent cruisers and wanted a winter sun break and booked this cruise in January on line. The weather was superb and we were told by the crew the best they have had for several years. We flew from East Midlands to Tenerife and arrangements at departure, on arrival, coaching to Santa Cruz and boarding Marella Dream went like clockwork. The ship is old but is modern in appearance with good quality furnishings and the staff very friendly and helpful, nothing was too much trouble from our room steward to the bar and restaurant staff. Corridors and lift space are a little narrow and not as spacious as more modern ships. The variety of lounges and drinking and dining options were first class as was the food and drinks. We like to be on our own for dinner and for six nights we were served by Jennifer and April who looked after us very well. The Marella Dream Show team and their shows in the Broadway Show Lounge were excellent. Some very good singers and dancers however the comedian Alan Wilkins material was older than us and we are in our 70's. The resident band were again very good with such a wide range of music on offer. Our only disappointment was the lack of space for sunbathing when we had such good weather. We were birthed in walking distance of six of the places we visited which is brilliant. There were lots of excursions and trips arranged which people we spoke to enjoyed. Leaving the cruise was also faultless, colour coded luggage and well organised. Our only disappointment was East Midlands Border Control on the return. It took about 30 minutes to process us which is not acceptable. A superb restful and enjoyable cruise. Thank you TUI. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
We have only been on three previous cruises, all on small ships with quite personal service so this one at 1,500 passengers was big for us ! Our ports of call in the Canaries and Madeira were all fascinating, we thought that the excursions ... Read More
We have only been on three previous cruises, all on small ships with quite personal service so this one at 1,500 passengers was big for us ! Our ports of call in the Canaries and Madeira were all fascinating, we thought that the excursions were overpriced and after finding that the handouts from the ship were not very helpful or accurate we headed for the tourist information offices at the places we visited. There was good information about the ports on-line but we used on-shore wi-fi and roaming Vodafone after a message that we would be charged £2.88 per minute for all calls, texts, and data on "Vodafone Marine" ! Our cabin, 1004, was quite good with a settee and table as well as TV and tea and coffee facilities and a good size window, a bit obscured by lifeboat access equipment. We had a problem with the safe which two visits from crew could not sort out, Dennis, an officer from reception was the second to try, we were pleased that the safe locked itself and refused to open until he put his override code in twice. He confirmed to us that it was faulty. I made a third visit to reception to complain and they refunded my money but were unable to provide a replacement safe for us or alternative safe storage for our valuables, apparently there is no safe at reception ! Our only option was to find a hiding place in the cabin. Please note there is no forseeable solution to this problem as replacement safes are apparently not available ! On our fifth day I was up early with diarrhoea and vomiting, I called reception as required and was visited by a doctor and nurse. They confirmed from my symptoms that it was not viral and therefore probably something that I had eaten so I could either stay in the cabin on immodium for 24 hours or visit the ships hospital for treatment which would see me well again in a couple of hours, I opted for the latter and had extensive blood tests and intravenous drugs, the treatment worked and I called back in the evening to check that all my obs. were normal. Excellent service but a tad dear at £1,400 plus ! Interesting to note that the previous day had been a "sea day" so it was most probably something that I had eaten on the ship. We unfortunately missed Lanzarote on my sick day. On the positive side, the crew were polite and helpful to a man ( or person I suppose I should say). The highlight of the cruise was the entertainment team, they worked non stop and were really professional and talented. The food was all pretty good ranging from canteen type buffets in various locations, made to order pancakes, omelettes and pizzas, a proper sit down restaurant with good service and "pay extra" speciality restaurants. We were on a full board but not " all inclusive " basis so we paid for the "wine package" which at about £14 per bottle compared to UK restaurant prices. Drinks at the bar were similar to pub prices. We enjoyed a lot of the cruise but there were things that let it down, there was no hot water on one evening and for the hour before the captains reception the whole ship was without any running water, the Captain did apologise and excused the smelly guests ! I registered all my complaints on-board and filled in the questionnaire on our return but there has been no offer of apology or compensation, in fact no response at all ! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
All went to plan. Solo traveller and staff made me very welcome didn't feel excluded.Food in main restaurant was lovely and a change from the norm. The main buffet was good as were choices. Waters were particularly attentive and ... Read More
All went to plan. Solo traveller and staff made me very welcome didn't feel excluded.Food in main restaurant was lovely and a change from the norm. The main buffet was good as were choices. Waters were particularly attentive and couldn't have done more.Drinks were excellent including beer ,gin,and many coctails all included Entertainment was excellent very wacky but professional,as were all the musicians,particularly the latino band and singer. Cabin was fine ,bed lovely. Enjoyed all the different islands and Agadir. Plenty of sun loungers and chairs.Bar staff excellent. Pool and Jacuzzis all spotless Very clean and well run ship if a bit dated,which didn't worry me. Good itinerary ,fab weather Embarkation and disembarkation was so fast.Ipaid to have extended stay till 4pm the last day which was helpful. If you want 5* + not for you,but everyone I spoke to enjoyed it .Spanish were very friendly well done Pullmantur,would definitely go again. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
I'm writing this review as my others in sections. Sailing from Southampton UK. Embarkation/Disembarkation. As with all of my other P&O cruises, P&O have got this to a fine art. I had to be out of my digs at 1200 and I ... Read More
I'm writing this review as my others in sections. Sailing from Southampton UK. Embarkation/Disembarkation. As with all of my other P&O cruises, P&O have got this to a fine art. I had to be out of my digs at 1200 and I arrived at Southampton Docks around 1300. My car was taken to a long-term car park (provided free by P&O) and I went into the main check-in hall. This hall is huge with literally hundreds of people waiting. There were dozens of P&O check-in people on one side and we all had a coloured card with letter for our times. My check-in time was 1530 so I had a while to wait. I eventually checked in at 1500 and was onboard by 1530. I will say that there wasn't any refreshments available in the hall so if you're a bit hungry/thirsty, you'd have to wait till you're onboard or bring something with you. In a first, when I did get to my cabin, my bags were already there. On my last years cruise (also on Britannia) I had one bag there but the other I didn't get till around 2200-and this was after a "heated" discussion at reception. Disembarkation was very easy. I'm a "walk off". Thats someone who can carry their own bags with them. Walk-offs have to be off the ship between 0700 & 0800 (you have to be out of your cabin by 0800 anyway). I picked up my car and I was on my way home by 0830. Demographics. Exclusively British. I didn't hear any other accents onboard apart from the crew. As we travelled outside of the school holidays, there wasn't many families-and the ones that were had pre-school kids under five years old. The average age of the passengers I estimate to be middle age or a little higher-exactly what I expected. I was on another P&O ship in the Easter holidays in 2017 with around 400 kids. This was a nightmare with screaming kids running amok all over the place-but this time we had peace and quiet. The ship and it's crew. The vast majority of the ships crew are either Fillipino or Indian with the officers either British or European. All of the crew are extremely helpful and nothing is too much trouble. The ship itself is another story. Britannia is now three years old and is beginning to show her age. Carpets are looking worn and there are paint chips all over the place. The outside paintwork is starting to show rust patches and the general feel of the ship says that it's had a hard life. I've been told that Britannia is going for a full refit in October 2019-and I have to say that it's about time. I will add that the crew kept the ship spotless for the entire cruise with all of the public areas and toilets clinically clean. My stewardess-Gladys-kept my cabin perfect all the time (and she got a generous tip from me). Food and drink. I was on select dining (in the Peninsular restaurant) and had my evening meal at 1830. I was on a table of 9-all solo travellers. The food on offer was excellent and I can't fault it at all. Our waiters were very attentive-although I will say that sometimes they wanted to rush things along a bit-but they did have another sitting at 2030. The daily menus were a little underwhelming on occasion with fish and chicken being the dominant ingredient. We did have (Michelin starred chef) Marco Pierre White onboard for this trip and his menu one night was fantastic. Mr. White's Beef Wellington was superb. The Horizon Buffet on Lido deck was also very good. Breakfasts were usually "Full English" but there were other options including cereals, smoked fish, fruit, muffins/Danish (for breakfast?), yogurts...The list is almost endless. Lunch and dinner were equally as good with wide selection each day. There were themed menus too-curry night, British Pub Lunch, Italian. Again, the list is too long. As to alcohol...Thats another story. As with every other P&O review I've written, I still say that P&O are overcharging the passengers for alcohol. P&O claim that they charge pub prices. Not from my point of view they don't. Pints were around £3.95 to £4.50 with premium bottles (330ml) around the same price. In my regular pub, I pay £3.25 or a pint and if I go to my local Wetherspoons (to non-British readers, Wetherspoons is a major UK pub chain) I pay around £2.50 for a pint. So, no P&O are not charging pub prices. It's about time cruise companies lowered their alcohol prices and I'm certain that their passengers would appreciate it. Our route. We visited (in this order) La Coruna (Spain), Madeira, The Canary Islands-Las Palmas/Tenerife/Gran Canaria and Lisbon (Portugal). The weather was quite good all the time with temperatures in the mid-to-high 20'sC-sometimes in the low 30'sC. I did several trips in most of the ports (all official P&O excursions). Sightseeing in La Coruna, Volcanoes in Las Palmas and Tenerife and a coffee plantation on Gran Canaria. In Madeira and Lisbon I did my own thing just having a walk around. NOTE. If you do your own thing in ports of call and you miss the sailaway, the ship will not wait for your return. It will then be your own responsibility to get to the next port at your own expense. If, on the other hand, you take an official P&O excursion and you're delayed, the ship will wait for your return. Entertainment. There was the usual in-house troupe "Headliners" doing shows in the main theatre. There was also several guest singers/tribute acts and in the Limelight Club we had Claire Sweeney (UK actress/singer), Cheryl Baker-formerly of Bucks Fizz and a couple of others. I did hear reports of the "Headliners" not being too good but as I didn't attend any shows, I can't comment. Brodies had the usual pub quizzes, kareoke, live football matches (thats soccer to non-British readers). We also had Professor Peter Roberts-a retired archeologist who gave a series of lectures on volcanoes in The Canary Islands and others. The Professors lectures were very interesting but sadly not well attended. P&O need to get more people like Professor Roberts. Observations. All of the passengers were very friendly but...In the buffet one day (a late breakfast) I bumped into one of my fellow diners-an elderly lady who had a fall the day before. She had a very nasty black eye, stiches in her lip and severe bruising ot her left arm. I was enquiring as to her health when an elderly guy with a tray of food shouted "EXCUSE ME!". Just before this, someone had dropped a tray of food and drink and one of the crew was clearing it up. I couldn't move backwards or sideways to accomodate this bloke and he again shouted "EXCUSE ME!". Then he just barged his way through almost pushing people out of his way. I reacted to this bloke by shouting "YOU DON'T HAVE TO SHOUT!". This he ignored. I again repeated "YOU DON'T HAVE TO SHOUT!" but again this was ignored. By this time I had around 200 to 300 people watching. I will admit to not being a "people person" but this was just plain ignorant. Also on our dinner table there was an elderly lady with a southern (London or south coast) accent. She claimed to be travelling with "a friend" but we never met this friend and the lady said her friend preferred to dine at her own time. Why would two people travelling together not be dining together? Anyway, this lady thought that she was better than the rest of us and talked down to us all the time. She was also quite rude when she did talk to us but I had to bite my lip as I was in polite company. She didn't attend on a couple of nights and we all breathed a sigh of relief. I hope that I don't meet her again as I don't think I could hold back with comments about her atttitude. Overall, this was a good cruise but as I have been to some of the ports we visited on previous cruises, it did get slightly boring. Going on cruises does give you the chance to visit several countries on one holiday and you get to meet new people-but as the ships go to the same places all the time, it's getting difficult to find something new. I'm going to the Caribbean (again) in 2019 but I'l be looking further afield for 2020. I'm already looking at India or the Far East. As a solo traveller, it's not cheap do do cruises. I really want to visit Australia/New Zealand but as I'm a solo traveller, the costs are still far too high for my budget. The daily charge (£7 per person per day over 12 years old) was still in force on this cruise. This could be removed by filling in a form at reception. BUT as of May 2019, P&O are abolishing this charge-and about time too. This daily charge is VERY unpolpular and everyone I spoke to had removed the charge. It's about time all of the cruise companies stopped doing this. These trips are expensive enough without cruise companies taking more money out of your pocket. Conclusions. The ship-a bit tatty and in need of a refit. The crew-excellent. Food & drink-again excellent but I maintain that the beer prices are far too high. Our intinerary-ok but as I wrote above, I've been to some of the countries already. Marks out of 10? I'll give this eight out of ten. I've knocked off a couple of points for too high beer prices and the ship looking a bit tatty. I would recommend Britannia to first-timers and seasoned cruisers-but wait for the refit in October 2019. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We chose it for the destination The food was awful 2* is being generous. The breakfast was the same very day greasy hard bacon cheap nasty sausage never changed . Every day was a stir fry or some obscure meat like beef cheeks nasty cheap ... Read More
We chose it for the destination The food was awful 2* is being generous. The breakfast was the same very day greasy hard bacon cheap nasty sausage never changed . Every day was a stir fry or some obscure meat like beef cheeks nasty cheap food by the end of the cruise so many people were eating from the kids section as the food was slightly better. if you are vegetarian you would really struggle veggie curry and rice or cheese and salad . No late food apart from 11 to 11 30 when plates of Iceland type buffet food was taken Around the bars. You felt like a penguin being given fish . Most staff rude especially reception we went to complain about the lack of sun beds 450 for 1400 passengers.the receptionist rolled her eyes and picked up the phone twice while we were talking . People were taking sun beds when someone went for food and leaving belongings piled on the floor . There were arguments and near fights every day . The Crewe had their own deck with around 30 beds that weren’t being used we got a sun bed twice in 15 days and it was taken when we went for lunch . People were sitting on chairs taken from the buffet as there was nowhere to sit.we ended up going to the speciality restaurants they were a bit better but you shouldn’t have to pay . Entertainment was awful singers screeched out of tune people got up and walked out including us. We went to Tenerife on a Sunday everywhere was shut . Some of the places visited were too short 4 hours not enough time . Kids in pools couldn’t use till day ten when the made one adult only We lost tv signal on 3rd day . Incompetent management it all needs a massive review All in all this was my tenth and by far the worst cruise I would never sail with them again or recommend them to anyone I know . Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
For context, we are Princess people and have also cruised with P and O and NCL. Chose this cruise due to itinerary, date and regional flight. Knew it would not be as special as Princess and so it turned out but was very enjoyable and ... Read More
For context, we are Princess people and have also cruised with P and O and NCL. Chose this cruise due to itinerary, date and regional flight. Knew it would not be as special as Princess and so it turned out but was very enjoyable and decent value for money. The flights, transfers and embarkation/disembarkation arrangements were excellent. Things that were better: size of cabin and bathroom, drinks prices, included tips. Things that were worse: bar service was a bit offhand, slow and they did not know how to serve certain drinks; food in the main restaurant was nothing special (we did try Kora La, the Asian restaurant which was very good); felt crowded on the day at sea. The worst comparison however was the "entertainment" - the theatre shows had excellent dancing but terrible singing and the two bands playing in the lounges were just dire and far far too loud. A grand piano sat untouched in Tides while the pianist was stuck in a closed room and the "party band" could be heard above him! The quizzes were badly presented and indeed all the entertainment staff seemed too young and far from interested. Two really bad things that I will be taking up with the company - I have never been as ripped off as paying £15 for the use of the safe and far more importantly the safety briefing commenced 2 minutes after we boarded while people were still finding their cabins and no effort was made to ensure everyone attended; worth mentioning that the medical questonnaires were dumped in a heap on a table and not counted or presumably checked. We also greatly missed the central atrium as there was literally nowhere quiet to chat in the evenings. In summary, a decent week away but not one I would consider suitable for any kind of "big trip"/special occasion. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
Been cruising with Thomson since 1998 1st ship Thomson Topaz. Been on the Thomson Dream 5 times (Used to be "Costa Europia") Was on it for 2 weeks in October in the Adriatic. Great 2 weeks no problems. was on the liner with my 91 ... Read More
Been cruising with Thomson since 1998 1st ship Thomson Topaz. Been on the Thomson Dream 5 times (Used to be "Costa Europia") Was on it for 2 weeks in October in the Adriatic. Great 2 weeks no problems. was on the liner with my 91 year old sister-in-law 5th January for 2 weeks, in single cabins Deck 5 and deck 9 (Right next to the Gym) We knew there was problems aboard with the Nora virus so we was careful not to frequent crowded areas. After 5 or 6 days my Sister in law became ill and was confined to her cabin. After 8 or 9 days the same thing happened to me. We had been given injections and 1 500 mg paracetamol and let out after 2-3 days with no instructions, no medication and the doctor even asked me to use my own paracetamols. We left the ship to pass the germs on our flight home. He both still have the illness (25.1.18.) and are seeing our doctors 29.1.18. The waiter service at The Orion was excellent, a bit slow at times but that was due to more passengers using, instead of the caferteria. We did not use the activity due to our age, but passengers appeared to be enjoying it. The service all over was ecellent, except Reception with the staff being overwelmed with customers. The cabin staff I would say are the best on the ship as always. When locked away in the cabin, I had no eatable food at all. Entertainment was exactly the same when we were on this same liner in October 2017 Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
This was my first time as a solo passenger so that's why I picked the 5 night and am so glad I did I found the ship to be very tired with not much happening for a solo passenger. I usually cruise with P&O and will definitely go ... Read More
This was my first time as a solo passenger so that's why I picked the 5 night and am so glad I did I found the ship to be very tired with not much happening for a solo passenger. I usually cruise with P&O and will definitely go back to them. I was in cabin 5211and although it was quite spacious it was very noisy, the shower room had an unpleasant odour and only one socket worked so had to boil the kettle and change to charge anything else. The food was ok nothing special the only redeeming thing was the staff were very pleasant, would I go with Marella again that would be a definite no there was no ship map in the cabin which would be very handy as the signs around the ship only told you what was on that deck but not direction you should be heading. Read Less

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