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43 Transatlantic Luxury Cruise Reviews

Last year I sailed 22 days on The Queen to UK, Hamburg, and Norway. I was excellent. Last week I was only able to take a short cruise and I found it to be lacking in it's treatment of the guests. Saki the head waiter in the Britannia ... Read More
Last year I sailed 22 days on The Queen to UK, Hamburg, and Norway. I was excellent. Last week I was only able to take a short cruise and I found it to be lacking in it's treatment of the guests. Saki the head waiter in the Britannia room should not be working for Cunard. I had the second seating at 830 pm ordered a simple steak and plain baked potato and got it after 10pm. 3 nights we ate after 10pm because of Safik. When I told the maitre d' I had the food by 9pm. Some staff was disgruntled that because the were from certain countries on their first contract they would not be allowed of the ship in NYC. So when I got off the ship in Brooklyn ( it is too big to dock in NYC) the ship was going to head east to the UK and then back to NY. Some staff did not get off the boat for ages and they took out their frustration on guests. The food is not as good on a 5 day cruise. When you do a "crossing" they treat you much better with food and entertainment. Embarkation was a nightmare compared to a crossing.The Captain (Osprey ) is much more pleasanter and easy going than Christopher Wells. He never shuts up and is always giving coordinates on where the Titanic went down Osprey doesn't do that . I had a handicap cabin which you could have parked a Buick in the bathroom that was good but my Steward Gabriel cut corners wherever he could. The Pursers office /desk is always 100 percent professional. We had a smooth ride but a lot of fog so the fog horn blew every 5 minutes in the night. I carried my on bags off the ship so you can disembark when you want. You must leave the ship by 830am Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
First my positive comments: The ship itself is great; spacious and comfortable. The ship's stabilisers were only used once during the 8 days and this was in Force 9 winds. The impact of the high seas was barely noticeable on ... Read More
First my positive comments: The ship itself is great; spacious and comfortable. The ship's stabilisers were only used once during the 8 days and this was in Force 9 winds. The impact of the high seas was barely noticeable on board. Our cabin was good, the bed was comfortable, we had sufficient space and it was quiet, despite the large numbers of people on board. The spa was excellent (though expensive), the gym was fairly well equipped with sufficient equipment that it was never fully occupied. The staff were generally welcoming and helpful. There is a very well stocked library, so if you want to spend your time reading, there is a wide range of choice. It is possible to eat for 22 out of 24 hours a day should you wish. Some of the food on board was great, but in our experience this tended to be the special restaurants which required an additional payment. There are a variety of places to sit on deck plus several small swimming pools, deck games and even a couple of tennis courts. However, transatlantic weather is not guaranteed to be good and most days during our trip it was windy, a bit too cold to sit outside or raining. This was a shame as I would happily have sat on deck with a book and an ocean view. Our main disappointments were these: The entertainment programme is frankly dreadful. Considering the facilities on board, a theatre, cinema, dance floor, planetarium, lots of social areas, etc the programme is boring, inflexible and massively old fashioned. I had expected (incorrectly as it turned out) to be able to do a variety of exercise classes, learn to ballroom dance, attend some interesting lectures and watch movies. There are very few exercise classes, they tend to only occur once a day so if the time doesn't suit you then you can't participate, and for things like Pilates, the classes cost an extra $12. Ballroom dancing classes only occurred for 1 hour at lunchtime and were very busy. In my opinion these should have run 2 or 3 times a day. There was 1 film a day in the cinema, shown 3 times. We only saw one movie each as the films shown were not exactly recent or blockbusters. The talks were mainly dry, of no interest or were really just sales pitches for the shops, businesses on board, .e.g. a talk about diamonds by the on-board jeweller followed by a view of their collection. A particular favourite of ours was the talk entitled "Can Chiropractic help my lower back pain? Is my Sciatica treatable?" Most people we spoke to were similarly unimpressed by the so called entertainment. The second disappointment was the access to technology/ wi fi. Our flight from Newark to Manchester offered free wi-fi but Cunard charge a considerable amount of money for a truly dreadful internet service. Not only is the service expensive, but it is charged by time. It could take minutes to get from connecting to the wifi to being able to actually read my email. However the lack of modern technology was not limited to the internet service. There are televisions in the cabins and we were given a list of movies we could watch, in addition to a smallish range of TV channels. There is a choice of 3 moves a day shown every few hours. Why is there not a digital library of hundreds of movies available to watch on demand? Communication of events and activities is via a printed, paper programme left at your cabin each evening for the following day. Why not a QM2 App that could be downloaded for those on board who like to use such things? The ship offers ( as part of the Entertainment programme) a range of istudy / ipad workshops. These were basic so I guess intended for people who have Apple products but don't really know how to use them. This is ironic as Apple products are known not to work well on the ship! We were even given an A5 sheet with a list of possible fixes to known iphone/ipad connectivity problems. I gave up on my iphone and used the non Apple PC's. Perhaps the most surprising aspect of our Cunard crossing was the similarity with a cheap flight. If I buy a plane ticket from a cheap airline I expect to be charged for everything and to be constantly offered more opportunities to spend money to "enhance" my travel experience. As Cunard's branding is not about cheap travel, I did not expect to encounter a similar experience. Even our welcome invitation to join fellow guests on deck for the "sail away" with a glass of champagne failed to mention that we'd have to buy the champagne!! Quite often the sales tactics were pressurised e.g. book now to get extra massage minutes; buy a photo today to get a free extra print, etc. I am left with the impression that many of the staff who work in the "outsourced" service providers are only paid tips and gratuities so need to sell in order to earn. My husband overheard a Spa therapist "high fiving" a colleague because she had got a customer to buy products. It leaves a feeling that the staff are selling for their own sake and not in response to genuine customer needs. My goals were to sail across the Atlantic and into New York. It was fabulous to be on deck, before sunrise watching the Manhattan skyline edge closer. This transatlantic crossing is not a cruise so if that is what you want, look at different ships/ itineraries. Other reasons to do this trip would be: if you don't or can't fly (for whatever reasons) and want to get between North America and Europe; if you want to take your dog with you (the kennels are being expanded later this year); or if you are elderly and you like the idea of assisted living combined with travel. In my opinion Cunard have lost the plot when it comes to customer service, I could not even find a means of providing customer feedback directly to them on their own website. If Cunard does not modernise its offering I rather think its days are limited, or it should be re branded as a glorified ferry!! 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Sail Date July 2015
I found the atmosphere on the Serenity to be intolerable by the end of the first few days. I will not go into much detail here but suffice it to say I was ignored by others when I as a solo traveler sat down and waited to play. As soon as ... Read More
I found the atmosphere on the Serenity to be intolerable by the end of the first few days. I will not go into much detail here but suffice it to say I was ignored by others when I as a solo traveler sat down and waited to play. As soon as a couple came along, the couple who had been playing addressed them and aid they would take them on. I was never acknowledged, greeted , etc nor did they consider rotating so we could all at least hit balls until someone from the fitness center came to run the morning session. Most of the time there was no one running the paddle tennis program, and that permitted more assertive guests to play as long as they wanted to and in at least one instance kept me from playing when I wanted to as there was no one for solo players to play with at times. I was harassed by someone at the Magic show, a mother in a wheelchair and her daughter, who took it upon themselves to be the seating police and said "She should move" not addressing me directly, when a couple entered the room and were making their way around the stool type seats in the second ro. The couple did not ask me to move and the women in question were not sailing with them. I would have gladly moved had the couple asked me to but this woman was way out of line to tell me to move. I was there first. Ultimately I left the show before it started. The Avenue Saloon piano player did not interact with guests and that surprised me-negatively as I am used to Mark Farris and the fun people have when he is on board. My room stewardess brought me mushy brown spotted bananas even after I told her what I wanted and had told her those were too ripe. It took a message to the home office to get the bananas to magically appear. (I had been told they were usually like that (?) and she didn't think there were any more since they had gotten them in Miami) One of the Ambassador hosts (his first time on Crystal) constantly held hands with an older guest and spent an inordinate amount of time outside the dance floor with her inappropriate behavior according to my gf on my trivia team. That wasn't so much of an issue to me personally, but his demeanor was not professional. he was so phony that it was laughable. The shore excursions were okay but we did have an incident in Lisbon which resulted in the 5 members of our Jeep receiving a full refund of the cost of the Jeep Safari. I did not like having to go through the Casino to get to the Bistro, shops or to head downstairs to the Crystal Cove. Many guests dressed like they were off to a State dinner on Crystal casual nights (what was left to wear on the formal nights, I wondered?) and more than occasionally people looked at me (and I am sure others) up and down like they were the dress code police,giving disapproving looks as if I was wearing rags! I have made my grievances known to the head office but there is nothing they can do about fellow passengers for the most part. Some of you will say I am making this up but believe me I compared notes to others on board and they experienced similar issues. I have nothing to gain by posting this and frankly am likely to be setting myself up for ridicule but I experienced all that I have written here and it was enough, frequently enough, such that you could not pay me to step foot on the Serenity again!!! Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
It was nice to be a part of history, and the food was quite better. The grandness one sees is fake, however. For example, the handrails in the too-long passenger corridors are plastic-laminate covered plastic poles that are peeling. There ... Read More
It was nice to be a part of history, and the food was quite better. The grandness one sees is fake, however. For example, the handrails in the too-long passenger corridors are plastic-laminate covered plastic poles that are peeling. There is black mold in the tile grout of the bathrooms. Attendants do a poor job of cleaning beyond cursory wipes. To be truly grand, it needs to be real and pristine, or at least real and real clean. It was disappointing enough to ensure never being selected again for even basic transportation. Cunard makes RC look better. Got quickly tired of the baking-soda carpet vacuum sprinkle smell, and made me ashamed I used to use that 20 years ago. Lavender Surprise smells like 'Surprised to Be Alive' after the first 817 applications and vacuum-ups. It would be a fun time, they said. It would be, IF I HAD ONE. Cunard had one job to do, one. Ok, well they did do that one. Just poorly. The dining room head manager was a snob that refused to help us with the muster drill because neither of us got all of the information that blared out on the speakers, even when it was pointed out to him that I am hearing-impaired. He said "just copy what everybody else does". Well maybe he's right, I should copy him and be an arrogant snob that doesn't give a toss, but he was supposed to be working for Cunard, I was supposed to be the snobby passenger with my nose up in the air but I could not get over the Lavender Surprise yet. It would be grand, they said. Grand! Well it was a grand pile of ______. Other than that, it was a pleasant time partaking in oxygen consumption. Very nice oxygen it was. IF I HAD GOTTEN ENOUGH. The embarkation and disembarkation was the first time experiencing what it must be like to wait 980 years in the lobby of the spirit realm as portrayed in the movie Beetlejuice. It made me wanted to say his name three times, just to make any progress, even if only one inch. Went to the bathroom three times as exercise just to keep the blood under my fingernails circulating. Mind you, however, the boat did stay on top of the water, despite the sinking feeling. Rose, promise me you will have thousands of babies and when they grow up promise me they will never sail Cunard as I want you to be happy, I want them to be happy, I want everyone to live on, and on - and not go on and on about it like I do. We did see a whale towards the end of the journey as we approached the coast of America. It was the second time experiencing such a sight on the same cruise. Unfortunately the first time was just the stateroom mirror. The day before the last day, there was an injury in the laundry room, an employee got hurt. He got hurt bad enough that the US Coast Guard sent a helicopter and a plane to do a medical evacuation. They would not let us out onto Deck 6 outside to see what was going on. Do suspect they knew we would try to catch a ride with them, just to get off the boat one day sooner. Hope he is OK, though. I will have to stop here, before you feel like getting onto one of the Cunard Queens just to get away from this review. My wife and I met on the internet in 2001, got engaged in 2002, and married in 2003, and we now enjoy cruising together. Travel To Port of Embarkation We cruised to Barcelona, flew to Bristol, rode to Southampton, and embarked QM2 there. Hotel Info (if any) None - stayed with relatives in Tiverton for two days. Embarkation As stated previously, it was a long drawn-out unorganized process. A glance at other reviews show this to be correct. Stateroom 6295 on Deck 6 - the last cabin to the rear. Dining We did eat in the main dining room Brittania a couple of times, but enjoyed the King's Court Buffet more. Activities Watching the helicopter was fun, and the Planetarium was unique. Children's Clubs N/A - Do no have any children, despite being petulant at times. Staff & Service Food Staff and Service excellent for the most part, Dining and Stateroom Staff and Service not so much. Entertainment The Planetarium was good entertainment. The museum-like halls with pictures entertained as well. Shore Excursions There were no excursions, as it went from Southampton to New York with no stops. Disembarkation Almost as bad as Embarkation. Summary In all, we ain't gonna do this again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
We booked this trip as the 'holiday of a lifetime', it certainly was not. The cabin we were allocated 1041 had plumbing that did not always work, apparently because of the rough weather - this seemed to be a known problem, I ... Read More
We booked this trip as the 'holiday of a lifetime', it certainly was not. The cabin we were allocated 1041 had plumbing that did not always work, apparently because of the rough weather - this seemed to be a known problem, I would have paid more money not to have had this cabin had I known! The pursors office on the whole were unsympathetic (we are full so we cannot move you), they suggested writing a letter to the Head of Customer Services we did and received no reply. Eventually the problem seemed to be cleared and we were given a complementary bottle of wine but this was not handled well and left a very bad taste in the mouth.We were never honoured with a meeting with the Head of Customer Services. Some things about the cruise were good, some good speakers and occasionally good entertainment. The cabin steward was very good. The food was mediocre and the waiters uncaring, except to get rid of us so they could lay the table for breakfast as quickly as possible. There were many options that we were never offered, for the first week we were unaware that sweets were available with the coffee. We liked to have a brown roll with our meal, we were asked every night and often they still did not have them. A table for 6 was only a table for 6 on 2 occasions in spite of frequent requests. Small things but they could have made such a difference. Tinned fruit in the caribbean? In common with other reviewers we felt that Cunard were trying to extract every last penny from us, was this because they had to pay out a lot of money to cover late arrivals owing to the bad weather? There were so many small problems, the ship's newspaper was rarely accurate, obviously not read through before printing, once offering a discount on internet time which having tried to use we were told was 'a mistake'. We have cruised 5 times before with P&O or Princess, we believed the advertising and thought Cunard would be better - what a mistake.   Read Less
Sail Date January 2015
Just got back from Transatlantic crossing, had high expectations given what we had heard from others that had cruised with Seadream many times. Food was outstanding, service was great, boat is in dire need of repair - and not just ... Read More
Just got back from Transatlantic crossing, had high expectations given what we had heard from others that had cruised with Seadream many times. Food was outstanding, service was great, boat is in dire need of repair - and not just cosmetic - but real repairs and perhaps better onboard management. For some reason, they decided to make a/c repairs on a crossing (go figure) and couldn't get it fixed for the entire trip. So as it got warmer on the crossing, we got hotter and hotter. Management never said a word or admitted that there was a problem. This is supposed to be a 5 star line, I would give it about 2 stars at the most. When we returned, after several emails, they offered us a 25% reduction off the lowest rate. Although a good deal if you're confident they can fix everything, an expensive cruise of this nature - why would I risk more $$$ to take a cruise and be taken care of this way. Makes no sense. We will not cruise with Seadream again.... Disappointed easy going travelers...... Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
Cunard offers free bus transfers from Victoria Coach, London - skip this third world facility. Traveling in Queens Class - stateroom was spacious and Butler and Houseman were excellent. Seating in the Queens Grill is crowded and service ... Read More
Cunard offers free bus transfers from Victoria Coach, London - skip this third world facility. Traveling in Queens Class - stateroom was spacious and Butler and Houseman were excellent. Seating in the Queens Grill is crowded and service personnel are pressed to give proper attention. Food was mediocre at best - one steak served was so full of gristle it was inedible (no substitute meal was offered). Cream soups tasted as if made from a common roux with small amount of vegetables added. Breakfast was very good. Wines were fairly priced. Public areas were clean and neat. Speakers were hit and miss - one was so poor that people walked out. This ship nickel and dimes the passenger, even in Queens Class, to death. After 10 years in service work needs to be done to refresh the public areas. The bottom line is that there is no or very little value on this ship - it is in essence a Carnival experience with the Cunard name. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
Our flight to Lisbon on TAP from Ft. Lauderdale to Lisbon was good with the exception of arriving about 5:30 a.m. Fortunately we had made our own hotel arrangements and they accomodated us and let us check in at a very early hour. Before I ... Read More
Our flight to Lisbon on TAP from Ft. Lauderdale to Lisbon was good with the exception of arriving about 5:30 a.m. Fortunately we had made our own hotel arrangements and they accomodated us and let us check in at a very early hour. Before I go any further I must say that I have given much thought to writing a negative review about Regent since we are gold members. We have been on many cruises on the Voyager and the Navigator and the Mariner and we loved them all. This time we were looking forward to it because a Larry Cohen bridge program was always outstanding in every respect. Our cabin attendents were the best ever and we really liked the refurbishment of the ship. Sadly, everything else went down from there. We had to miss three ports. The reasons were understandable but the attitude was "take it or leave it". We know the crew was overworked and understaffed when there was no time for a smile and the maitre'd was bussing the tables. The quality of the food and wine had gone way down. The specialty restaurants were no longer special. For entertainment on a missed port day we were given an English country fair. It was fun until we got to the bowling booth. It was tasteless to use frozen chickens for bowling balls. What a waste. We regret to say that the only way Regent is a luxury line now is in the price.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
One of the highlights of travelling transatlantic is arriving into New York's Manhattan Island with the fantastic skyline. Sadly, Cunard decided in order to cut costs they would put in at the very unpicturesque Brooklyn cruise ... Read More
One of the highlights of travelling transatlantic is arriving into New York's Manhattan Island with the fantastic skyline. Sadly, Cunard decided in order to cut costs they would put in at the very unpicturesque Brooklyn cruise terminal instead. This required a half hour taxi ride to Manhattan, where everyone on the ship clearly wanted to be. They kept the fact they would put in at Brooklyn well out of any of the brochures. I had invited my dad and wife to travel with my partner and me but my dad developed a heart problem and was forced to pull out of the trip. We informed Cunard of the situation yet they refused to offer any compensation and we were forced to pay the full fare for both cabins even though we only needed one. One of the cabins had a rumble so when it came time to sleep we slept in the other cabin. My partner's parents had to do without any water for three days in their cabin and when the water did come out of the taps it was full of black soot. The Cunard people said, "we can only apologise". I would say they were probably right since clearly they couldn't fix the pipes. Some of the entertainment was good but much was not. Especially a violinist who played many concerts on route but never played well. The food was quite boring and the vegetables were frozen and over cooked. There is a good restaurant on board but it is not complimentary. The wines were either very expensive or bad. The butlers were very good, but that seems to be the norm on all cruises.   Read Less
Sail Date June 2014
Me and my husband have cruised over 60 times. Long and short cruise with many cruise lines from pulmantur to silver seas. This is the time we have been the most disappointed after pulmantur which was a disaster I have to say that we are ... Read More
Me and my husband have cruised over 60 times. Long and short cruise with many cruise lines from pulmantur to silver seas. This is the time we have been the most disappointed after pulmantur which was a disaster I have to say that we are usually happy with our cruises otherwise we would niot have cruised so often We were expecting this cruise to have one of the best services and food..... Well that was not the case at all The cafeteria is very ordinary. Uncomfortable chair and some of the meals like school cafeteria almost..the food in the dinning room is not good at least half of the time. Food presentation very poor many plates were returned by customers......one night we had escargots. That did not look like garlic escargots as listed on the menu...no taste at all presented on a kind of bread very dry. Everybody at our table returned it, same night lobster tail over cooked very tough . Also returned at least half of the time I did not eat my main meal.....the soups were good So I ordered 2 soups........... Now about service example. Pool on deck. 12 absolutely no help to take your chair which could be on top of pile. Other passenger helped me.... Balconies on deck 4 and 5 you have to stand up to see out because they are closed for about 3 feet so if you sit down you only see the metal wall.... Also there were pipes along that balcony that were all rusted and there was rust on the wall.....hard to believe but true We met people that had reserved for a world cruise on that ship and they devided to cancel even if though they were losing money We are thinking of going to South America about 40 days. And also the world cruise but it will not be on that vessel Positive points. Dancing music......shows we're good.....queens room very elegant....afternoon tea good   Read Less
Sail Date June 2014
Personal Background Information: We are Senior citizens who love to cruise. This was #21. It was the second time on the QM2. The first time was in 2004 and we had a great time. Unfortunately we can't say that this time. This would be ... Read More
Personal Background Information: We are Senior citizens who love to cruise. This was #21. It was the second time on the QM2. The first time was in 2004 and we had a great time. Unfortunately we can't say that this time. This would be the 3rd Cunard experience after having taken the Queen Victoria on an Adriatic cruise in 2011. That was a great cruise. Travel To Port of Embarkation: We had just taken a 12 day cruise around the British Isles on the Ruby Princess, which was wonderful. The QM2 was sailing back to NY from Southampton the next day so we decided to take advantage of it instead of flying back. Embarkation: It was generally well organized but we were a bit disappointed we had no Priority even with Gold status. No problems, just a longer wait. Stateroom: The ship was still reasonably well kept, but it seemed to be a bit "tired". For example, the carpet in our cabin was a bit stained and there was some rust on our balcony. Our stateroom attendant was excellent. Ship Info: The Daily bulletin covered things pretty well and the Captain did make informative announcements. I wish that Cunard would learn from Celebrity and format their Newsletter so that one could just tear off one page to carry around. Also, even though we enjoy a reasonable measure of formality, four formal nights during our 8 night crossing was overkill. Dining: This is where our cruise went really bad. Our dining service was absolutely horrible. We had a waiter who could barely speak English and had a terrible attitude. It took over an hour just to get our appetizer the first night. We complained and they tried to improve for the second night but it was so bad for the balance of the nights, we went to other dining venues. We learned later that the waiter had been terminated and it was his last week. He, and apparently Cunard, didn’t care. The menu, contrary to other cruise lines, only had the daily specials and did not have a list of "staples" like salmon, or chicken or roast beef along with a shrimp cocktail or Caesar salad. If you didn't like something on the daily specials, you had no alternatives. Even the specialty Fish and Chips in the Pub at lunch was way below standards. Soggy Fish and soggy chips. The Ruby Princess, which we had just taken, had excellent F & C’s. Activities: The lecturers were excellent so that helped balance the bad service and mediocre food. This is where we admittedly give Cunard well deserved credit. Staff and Service: Mostly OK other than in the Dining Room. They were friendly and the main desk people were helpful and courteous the few times we needed assistance on some minor problems. Entertainment: Mixed bag. Some events were OK. On some musical performances, the reverb was turned up so much that you thought you were in an echo chamber. We left. Disembarkation: Disembarkation was the most unorganized we had experienced in 21 cruises. The left hand didn't know what the right hand was doing. We were told to wait in one area and after not getting called at the prescribed time, we asked one of the staff what was happening. After telling him our tag color, he said we were in the wrong place. I pulled out the page that was delivered to our cabin that showed we were in the right place. He had a different lineup on his page and couldn’t understand. When we finally got outside to the baggage staging area, we couldn’t find one of our suitcases. Sure enough, it was in the wrong area even though the colored tag obviously didn’t match the other tags in that area. Very bad. Summary: Cunard didn't care? Why? You won't believe this but I absolutely swear it is true. When we returned, Cunard sent us an email link to a survey. They asked a lot of questions related to why we cruise. About four pages into the survey, they asked a series of questions that started with words like I will definitely cruise again with Cunard all the way to the last statement that says I definitely do not plan on cruising with Cunard. I checked the latter statement and clicked next. The next page appeared with one line. I am quoting exactly as it appeared: "Many thanks for your help, but we have filled this quota". That ended the survey. Can you imagine a Company placing a quota on the number of survey entries that criticized them? I am a Sales/Marketing executive for a medium sized Company and we would go overboard to try to learn why customers would be unhappy with us. Cunard had the perfect opportunity but obviously they don't care. So, my last month’s Amex account showed a nearly $3000 Cunard credit applied. Not because Cunard felt bad about our experience but rather it was a return of deposit on the QM2 cruise from Cape Town to Southampton in April 2015. We were looking forward to going on a Safari and then taking the QM2 back to the UK. We simply called our TA and canceled because of Cunard's non-responsiveness to our bad experience and this absolutely ridiculous response to this survey. As they say, don't get mad...get even. Our TA said that when she canceled, Cunard didn't even ask why. So that ends Cunard as one of our top 3 which includes Celebrity and Princess. And yes, we understand Princess is Cunard but they sure treat their customers better.   Read Less
Sail Date June 2014
My husband and I sailed on the QM2 in June of 2014 after a seven week tour of Italy. My husband no longer flies so we decided to use the QM2 as transport back to North America. Unfortunately, that decision was the biggest mistake of our ... Read More
My husband and I sailed on the QM2 in June of 2014 after a seven week tour of Italy. My husband no longer flies so we decided to use the QM2 as transport back to North America. Unfortunately, that decision was the biggest mistake of our trip. We had taken another cruise ship from Miami to Europe and expected the QM2 to be far superior as we paid 3 times the price for the QM2. How wrong we were. Transport to Southampton: We were told to meet the Cunard representative at St. Pancras station in London for our trip from London to Southampton. We were told only to look for the Cunard representative and not given a specific location to meet. After wandering around St. Pancras for about half and hour, we met another couple, also wandering around looking for the Cunard rep. A plan was formed for the wives to stay with the luggage and the husbands would attempt to find the rep. One person asked someone at an information desk if they knew where we should be, and of course they did not but they did call Cunard and got the same storey, look for the rep! The rep did finally arrive (he was late) and started to collect the passengers. He took us to another area of St. Pancras where we waited another 2 ½ hours for other passengers to arrive. It became apparent that we should buy some form of lunch at the station as we would not be arriving at the ship until well after lunch. We were finally taken to a bus, loaded our luggage and ourselves and we were off to Southampton. Not an auspicious start to our trip. Embarcation – was relatively fast and easy. We did not appreciate being put through a very slow line to have our pictures taken before we had to pass through the security check. We were tired and had no intentions of purchasing overpriced photos of our drooping selves! After the photo shoot, we went through security where we even had to take our shoes off to get on board while managing all of our luggage. Reception: Shades of things to come! We were herded on board and given no direction of where to go. Very poor organization. In general there was no direction for anything on board this ship. Potholes in floor: We immediately noticed large “soft” spots in the floor. These were very dangerous for the elderly folk traveling on this cruise. We witnessed several missteps and I tripped several times due to the soft spots. I would think that Cunard would be more concerned with the liability aspect of a person falling and hurting themselves due to the condition of the floors. This ship needs some serious risk management! Condition of stateroom: We had been upgraded to a restricted balcony room and while it was nice to see some light….. that was all we could see as the lifeboat hanging outside the balcony blocked all else. The balcony was extremely rusty and needed painting. One morning there were workers outside our balcony on a walkway and they could easily see into our room. Not a very private stateroom! The furniture in the room was to the standard of a 3rd rate hotel with chipped paint and tables not working in room. The bathroom was a nice size and we had no complaints with the water or any smell. Stateroom staff: Our steward was hardworking and conscientious. He seemed unfriendly, but we feel that was due to his lack of English. One major problem we had, which was not his fault, was that the day before we arrived at our destination we were told to have our bags packed as we were going to take advantage of the express debarcation. The steward did not come to our room to make our bed until the afternoon as he was in a training course. We could not pack until the bed was made so this put us behind in having our luggage ready. Again very poor organization and lack of concern for the passengers! Sound: The ship is certainly not soundproof but we did not expect the noise we experienced. We were unfortunately next door to two young men who thought it was great to come into their room late at night and slam doors and laugh loudly and this sounded like it was in our room. These young men woke us up many times during the cruise. We complained and were told basically, as the ship was full, they could do nothing about the problem. Entertainment: The lack of interesting entertainment was a shock. We were expecting something more than reading (which was almost impossible in the library as it was very noisy) or board games (if you could get a table to play). We did go to a very good show in the Planetarium, but that was also spoiled by the fact that the seats were broken and did not recline to a comfortable position for your neck. The trip was very boring. Cunard should know that the North Atlantic is usually iffy for good weather (it rained 4 of the 8 days of the cruise) and have some interesting indoor games and learning experiences for their guests included in the price. Dining staff good: Our waiter and wine steward in the Britannia room were very good. They remembered our names and our wine selections and gave us very good recommendations for our entrees. Formal nights: As we had been in Italy for 7 weeks prior to our sail on the QM2, we did not bring formal attire as we were already at our maximum weight for our luggage. We assumed from what we were told by a Cunard representative on the phone prior to our trip that there would be only a few areas where “formal” dress was required. As it turned out, this was not the case. We were made to feel that if you were not formally dressed, you should stay in your stateroom. On this sailing there were an excessive 4 out of 8 nights designated “formal”. We really feel that there should be areas designated as “relaxed” attire on the formal nights. The passengers who are in formal dress should not need to pass through “relaxed” areas which would provide a better experience for both groups. Possibly one deck designated formal and one deck designated relaxed. With the current luggage weight restrictions by the air lines, we are amazed that the “formal” night designation for the entire ship is still being maintained. As the QM2 is the only regular transatlantic passenger ship that we found, it would be nice if Cunard could understand that not everyone making the crossing is there for the “QM2 experience”. There are many of us with other reasons and we would appreciate a little consideration! We unfortunately, must agree with another reviewer and say that this was the first and definitely the last time we would ever sail on a Cunard ship. It was not worth the money.   Read Less
Sail Date June 2014
My partner and I sailed for the first time (on Cunard) in a Queen's Grill. We cruise only in large suites as we enjoy time away from the masses. Embarkation: As some have mentioned it was a right mess. Not enough staff to take care ... Read More
My partner and I sailed for the first time (on Cunard) in a Queen's Grill. We cruise only in large suites as we enjoy time away from the masses. Embarkation: As some have mentioned it was a right mess. Not enough staff to take care of the Grills Suite passengers If all those reading this sense entitlement - you are correct. We expected service to match the Grill Suite price tag we paid. Not one of you would expect less for a cruise that topped $10,000 USD. The weather and a surprise US cost guard inspection slowed the process, but that offers little solace for passengers paying for a 1st Class ticket...strike 1 Dress Code: If this was applied with the same vigour and zeal they advertise it in their brochure it would have been acceptable. However women dressed in cheap H&M blouses and skirts, evening dresses with flip flops, tarts wearing just enough to cover their bits with matching Payless slippers. Gentlemen: wearing a green kilt with a matching green T-shirt is not formal. The rest of the world does not care if kilts are formal in your country. The dress code states "Tuxedo or Dark Suit" Apparently this has been a thorn in Cunard's side for some time. Neither is having the letters " Q M 2" shaved into the side of your head considered "elegant or classy" Only 10% of the passengers were dressed formal or elegant. Which made the rest look like pigs wearing lipstick - wearing something black while leaving your hair unwashed nor combed doesn't mean you are "Elegant." Cunard's dress code is a sham - they allow non compliance to some - others they ask others to leave the common rooms because they are not dressed in black (wearing $300 of Brooks Brothers apparently gets trumped by a $20 outfit on a slag - just because it was black) Strike 2 Food: Exceptional in both the QG and King's Court - in fact, other mainstream cruise lines could learn a lot from only offering 10-12 hot items (all done very well) instead of 40 items with little to no consistency. Ship: as some have mentioned - some of the toilets around the ship kept having issues and were closed. The smell was quite awful and unfortunately lingered for some time in all directions of these affected WC's. Carpets in some areas were worn, and some furniture legs were damaged in our suite. In a 506 sf' Q5 suite - what is a 26" TV doing there ? It is not a college dorm room - it is a Queen's Grill Suite. Unacceptable. Strike 3 Cunard tries to create an experience based on class. The cost of which and price you want to pay for is up to you. If you chose to pay for a Fist Class Cabin without baulking at the price (because you can) then that is what should be provided. Nothing less. We heard that Cunard had a mass exodus of staff in NYC and there were many more leaving upon arrival in Southampton. Due to un paid wages. This might have explained why there were so many people with name tags on, but without uniform. Perhaps Cunard had to fill positions with staff from their land offices to handle this. Whatever the case, we have always voted with our dollars. Cunard does not execute the experience they advertise, and for that my money is going somewhere else. We have enjoyed service style and class for less money - but then again it isn't about the money, is it ?   Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
We booked this holiday cruise one year ahead under the impression of a grand and mighty ship and good services as advertised. It only proofed that big expectations, bigger disappointment. The QM2 is a ocean liner as it claims, but it is ... Read More
We booked this holiday cruise one year ahead under the impression of a grand and mighty ship and good services as advertised. It only proofed that big expectations, bigger disappointment. The QM2 is a ocean liner as it claims, but it is not a cruise ship because the service, the rooms and the food are not up to the standard of a decent cruise ship. The inside layout of this huge ship is unexpectily small, once you are in the ship, you feel like you are in the small ship because of the small grand lobby, the narrow corridors and small staterooms. The only rooms that seems big is the ballroom (Queens Room) and the theatre (Illuminations). One can easily get lost because of the weird layout of the ship. We have been cruising with other cruise lines before and weren't impressed by the overall service, entertainment and food of the QM2 as it was quite average comparing with other ships we had been on. Other passengers who cruised with QM2 before told us that the services and entertainments, food were much better before. One told me about the unannounced New Year's eve midnight buffet, it turned out to be the best with a lot of food, ice sculptures... Our stateroom was an inside one on deck 6, it is small, bland, worst of all, it is directly under the kitchen area and next to the laungry room and we could hear noises all night up to 3am in the morning, the noise stopped for two hours, and it started again at 5am. We could hear every activities took place in the kitchen. We complained after the first night and the noise continued on the second night, the front desk staff assured me that they had informed the staff of the kitchen to be "mindful" but no improvement was made. We requested to change room after two sleepless nights but we had to wait because the ship was fully booked and they couldn't do anything until we reached the first port of call. After all the fuss, on the 3rd night, they managed to give us a room for one night and finally moved us on the 4th night. We have not received any apology or compansation from the cruise line for the torture. The stateroom under the kitchen area is uninhabitable and I am sure they knew about it, but yet, it was sold to us and hope for the best. The stateroom is showing its age, the bedding and towels are worn out, we found holes in the pillow cases and in the duvet. We also found blood stain in the duvet and unclean carpet when we boarded the ship. Although,the matter was taken care of immediately, but it shouldn't be there to begin with, it felt like we checked in to a budget hotel. I took some fitness classes on Deck 1, the room was messy with randam equipments, ropes and boxes that didn't belong to a fitness centre, and it was filthy and the carpet was damp, I pointed it out to the instructor and she said the area is also used for embark and disembark purpose. I've never seen activity areas for guesses located at the working deck in any other cruise ships I've been on before. There were some good about QM2, it is a true ocean liner, due to it's size, it sailed smoothly most of the time. It is definitely a good choice for crossing the Atlantic. It stayed in ports for a long time, so we don't need to rush at all. To sum up, I will not cruise with any Cunard ships again unless sagnificant improvement are made.   Read Less
Sail Date December 2013
This ship is too big. I felt like I was on a bus. And the crowds at the Buffet! I started to feel claustrophobic. I caught a terrible cold on there. One cannot shut of the air in the cabins, and even with the balcony door open, the hallway ... Read More
This ship is too big. I felt like I was on a bus. And the crowds at the Buffet! I started to feel claustrophobic. I caught a terrible cold on there. One cannot shut of the air in the cabins, and even with the balcony door open, the hallway air get's sucked into one's cabin under the large gap under the doors. They had CFL bulbs in the lamps, which give off an unnatural and unatractive light, and have also been proven to be bad for humans and the environment. Then fluorescents in the bathrooms and even in the Queen's Room! Like a nursing home! The swimming pools were cold, and closed at 9, so after the children were finished with them, we adults had no chance for a peaceful swim at night, which is also imperative for those of us who are pale, who can't be in the sun. When I went to the Purser to complain, she said: "No one ESLE has complained!" As if I was supposed to go back and tape record and video all the other patrons wailing about how freezing the water was? What happened to White Star Service? At my first table, our waiter was sullen, hostile and rude, also placing his hands and arms in front of the woman across from me's face all the time, not serving from the left and removing from the right etc., then cleared unused wine glasses half way through the meal, then proceeded to clear the table while we were STILL SITTING there!? As if we were gone!? We moved, and got normal, wonderful service. I had a lifeboat outside my balcony, and while relaxing and drinking coffee, looked up to find a worker entering it, and squirreling around for 30 minutes, at one point disappearing down into the hold for another 30 minutes! I called to ask if something was wrong, and got a female purser who said: "What?! A WHAT?!" I said: "LIFEBOAT"! She kept repeating that she didn't understand what I was saying, then finally said: "Oh! Lifeboat!" ?! When one odered breakfast from room service, the man on the other end would sign off saying: "PLEAHHHHH-zahhhhh....", (Pleasure, I assume), sounding sarcastic and bizarre, as if it was definitely NOT a pleasure. Other mornings he changed it to: "Hev eh Nace DAYYYYYE...." - same sarcastic, weird tone. Really strange. Then lifeboat worker came back, or another. No privacy. When I first arrived, I called my Steward as I had no bathrobe, he came right over, (though I didn't need him, they were all being washed), and stared at me like a desperate guy in a bar at 3 AM. Traveling alone, and this being the man who would enter my room twice a day, and have access to all my personal belongings, I found this alarming and extremely disquieting. He wouldn't let me shut my door and end our stupid conversation, when I was jet lagged and tired, and then started accusing me of stealing some envelope supposedly left in the slot of the cabin next to mine?! I kept telling him, over and over, that NO, I had not taken anyone else's envelope, but only taken the one left for ME, in MY slot, which I was expecting, and I had opened it, and YES, it was mine, and addressed to ME! He wouldn't stop. I finally had to say: "OK. I'm closing the door now, and going away.", and basically slammed the door in the peering, face. This colored the rest of my voyage. understandably. Then every time I came out of my cabin, he was there, down the hall, and would exclaim: "Oh! Very pretty!" Or some such, unasked for nonsense. I was afraid to leave, or come back to, my cabin. Then in the 7th floor restaurant, they ran out of macaroons, so I asked a young woman if there were any more, and she just said: "NO". I walked a few feet and found 100 more, which I then brought over to show her, but she was completely uninterested. Just standing around, taking Cunard salary for doing nothing and being unpleasant. When did White Star service mean ogling, harassing, arguing and being a sarcastic, lazy, unhelpful lump? What happened to manners, friendliness, just listening and taking note, and HELPING?! Genuinely? On our last day, up in the 7th floor restaurant, where there are so many useless employees lingering and shuffling about without doing anything, that one can hardly walk, I heard a young, male Cunard worker, watching the disorganization (no Nescafe, no hot chocolate, out of hot milk, and too many people: "White Star Service!" as he laughed disbelievingly to himself. I can't blame him, it was a joke. I don't understand any of this. What happened to Cunard? The lawn furniture on my balcony too, was old, chipped and rusty. My carpet was tattered and torn all along the edge, by the balcony, with a huge gap, showing the bare floor underneath. And there were a lot of decorating choices that were mystifying as well, cheap looking, flashy, Las Vegasy leopard print carpet and other things (paintings, the pattern in my cabin), that looked so completely out of place on an "elegant", classic, British Cunard ship! The shower curtain in my shower was too short and too narrow, so that overtime you showered, the floor and bathmat got wet, making a mess, more time and work for the steward, and more money and energy lost on washing and drying perfectly good bathmats. The hallway on Deck 8, Stairway C constantly reeked of cigarette smoke. The hallway on Deck 8, odd number cabins, between Stairway C and B smelled like a toilet. Don't go. Or if you do, bring plenty of cold and flu medicine for what you catch onboard. I think the air filtration systems need work. On my my first night, I saw a cabin a few doors down from me with it's door open, and two workers wearing surgical masks looking dismayed and disgusted. The hallway smelled like a toilet for the whole voyage, and I hate to think what was wrong in that cabin, being that we all share air vents which we can't turn off, and this cabin was so close to mine. What has happened? I am at a loss. Having been on the Victoria and the beautiful Elizabeth, which I adored being on so much, I didn't want to leave, I now doubt I will ever board another Cunard vessel. I am at a loss to explain what is happening, has happened to this line. Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
This 21-day New York  Norway  New York voyage was my fifth on the Queen Mary 2. The elegant ocean liner experience is a high priority for me and I had voluminously posted my opinions regarding the new ''loosened up'' ... Read More
This 21-day New York  Norway  New York voyage was my fifth on the Queen Mary 2. The elegant ocean liner experience is a high priority for me and I had voluminously posted my opinions regarding the new ''loosened up'' dress code in the Cunard forum. My previous reviews had gushed so many superlatives that CC members there regarded me as a ''Cunard Cheerleader''. Well, there was good and bad with the bad being a huge disappointment that kept me from booking another voyage on board. (This review will also explain why my ratings for this voyage are so skewed.) First the good. We had a special sail away that took us up and close to the Statue of Liberty as it was the liner's 200th Atlantic Crossing. The Catholic Chaplaincy has also been restored on QM2. (Chaplains also serve the crew who can be away from home up to nine months at a time.) My Princess Grill stateroom was mid ship, very comfortable and had plenty of storage space. Insights Speakers, except for one shameless and boring self-promoter, were good to excellent. I dined in the PG where the service was excellent especially when our table was served by Andrea. I had requested a table for six and was seated with one other solo and two couples. Stanley Williams is a very attentive Ma'tre D'who spends a lot of time supervising his restaurant. (I've seen other Ma'tre D's just sit at their kiosk.) Food was also excellent and going off menu was no problem provided the request was made by lunch time. A table mate requested an American breakfast regional specialty and the staff found an online recipe and prepared it. There were only two so-so meals where the meat was dry or tough. Upon arrival there was a note in my stateroom that the call at Geiranger, Norway had been replaced with lesund. Not having been to Norway previously and having no ''must see'' list it was OK by me but several passengers were disappointed to have missed Geirangerfjord. The reason given was concern with obtaining a safe anchoring position at Geiranger. I can only speculate that perhaps the ship could have drifted and partially run aground. She had to navigate into some pretty narrow spaces. Docking at Stavanger I had heard some high RPMs and vibrations coming from her aft propulsion pods  as if the bridge crew was coaxing her to quickly ''move her ass'' out of harm's way. To make up for the missed Geiranger call however we made a special tour up the Hj'rundfjord after leaving Bergen. It was a spectacular sight not just for us but also for the locals who must have wondered, ''what is THIS doing here?'' In all I was on four ship sponsored excursions in Norway and felt that they fulfilled their advertised expectations. The ship had two embarkation calls in Southampton and Cunard offered tours for in-transit passengers. I would recommend taking a tour because there is really not much to do in Southampton other than riding a free shuttle to a second tier shopping mall. Walking about on ones own can be a long hike if the ship docks at the QEII or Ocean Terminals. Queen Mary 2 of course is a ship beyond comparison as there is no other ocean liner in service. On the eastbound Atlantic crossing we encountered the calmest seas the ship had ever seen. Two table mates, who had been on literally dozens of cruises but never on QM2, gushed over how remarkably smooth she was. We really could not feel the ship move  there was only the smooth throb of her engines beneath us. Now the bad. The first was a minor annoyance. Cunards new wine list has dropped de-alcoholized wines. There had been only one white and one red but it allowed me to enjoy dinner without calling attention to the fact that I cannot drink alcohol. I brought some bottles on board and the sommelier provided excellent service by keeping them for me so I didnt have to lug them from my stateroom each evening. Now the big, big disappointment. Cunard is not enforcing formal dress on formal nights. When Peter Shanks announced a ''loosening up'' on non-formal nights it was pledged that formal nights were part of ''Cunard DNA''. Those who wanted to go casual on formal nights would be welcome in the Kings Court and the Winter Garden but formality would be required in the main and specialty restaurants as well as the theatre. What has instead happened is a de facto ''formal wear optional'' standard. While most passengers did dress nicely for the evening I saw sweaters and daytime tops in the restaurant with women by far being the worst offenders. The slack to non-existent formal enforcement trickled down to complete loss of daytime decorum: as in two men in the Kings Court whose attire consisted of swim trunks and pool towels wrapped around their torsos. Ive ranted on this in detail in the Cunard forum where some have said its my problem to ''worry about and judge people over how they dress''. Thats too bad because it is impossible to maintain an elegant evening atmosphere if a substantial number of people go casual. I see that many passengers are now waiting for ''deals'' before booking so perhaps Cunard has found that satisfying this casual ''getaway fare'' demographic is more profitable than pleasing their traditional customer base. The traditional customer base being those who book in advance because they anticipate  and expect - and elegant and luxurious experience and were willing to pay for it. Cunard tossed away something special. The Cunard dress code acted as a filter on guest behavior  compliance to the expected standard of dress enforced courtesy and consideration to fellow guests. All in all I had a good voyage but not a great one because I saw Cunards own self-destruction of the elegant Queen Mary 2 transatlantic experience. Since this was an important consideration for me I will take a wait and see approach going forward before booking in the future.   Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
We travelled on QM2 from Southampton to New York, Halifax, Boston, New York, Southampton - 19 nights from late June to mid July 2013, covering the 4 Jul in the USA. The ship is large, relatively modern, and moves sweetly throught the ... Read More
We travelled on QM2 from Southampton to New York, Halifax, Boston, New York, Southampton - 19 nights from late June to mid July 2013, covering the 4 Jul in the USA. The ship is large, relatively modern, and moves sweetly throught the sea. On the plus side, the food in the Britannia Restaurant was excellent, the service very good, and the cabin service also was very good - but the cabin was no different from many other cruise liners. The layout of the ship is not great - it is not easy to get from one venue to another - and the entertainment was poor. In 19 days, we had one dance/singer company show repeated three times - and we also had three "Welcome Aboard" shows. So, of 19 nights onboard, 6 were repeat entertainment - some 30%. There are not enough public toilet facilities. We had about 12 days when the toilets were either not functioning, or were intermittent at best. Which leads me to my main criticism of the ship, the staff, Cunard and its parent company, Carnival. My complaints were received with little interst from the purser's/hotel management staff. The ship's company officers were virtually invisible, and, therefore, unapproachable. My complaint to Cunard after our return was acknowledged - but after two weeks remains unanswered. My request for a clue when I might receive a reply - sent three days ago - is also unanswered. So - Cunard pretends to be a cut above the others, but, in our opinion, fails to achieve its belief in itself. We will not travel again with Cunard, unless they are the only ones going where we wish to go, when we wish to travel. And that is, perhaps, the root of the problem. They are clearly focussing on the German and American market with transatlantic crossings their main area of attention. This was our first experience with Cunard - there are other, better, cruise operators who have customer satisfaction higher on their agendas. A sadly disappointing experience. Read Less
Sail Date June 2013
We had never been on a cruise before our trans-Atlantic crossing on the Queen Mary 2 in August 2011. This ship is marketed as top notch, quality, luxurious... ha! Admittedly we have nothing to compare it to, but if this is supposed to be ... Read More
We had never been on a cruise before our trans-Atlantic crossing on the Queen Mary 2 in August 2011. This ship is marketed as top notch, quality, luxurious... ha! Admittedly we have nothing to compare it to, but if this is supposed to be top of the line then we'll never cruise again! Embarkation at Brooklyn Cruise Terminal in New York went fairly smoothly. The only negative element was the guy who took our bags. We don't mind tipping, however there are large signs posted about that say 'Tipping is not obligatory'. After this guy had taken our cases (putting them onto a trolley with other bags which we could have done ourselves) he stood there saying 'Tipping is not obligatory' repeatedly until we gave him a tip! We felt harrassed about that. Not the fault of QM2, but it was not a great start. It should be noted that the queues to get on board were lengthy and there was nowhere to sit down. To us it looked like the older folk were having trouble with that. Once on board there were more long queues to use the lifts to get to your cabin - which you had to find yourself. Lots of confused passengers wheeling suitcases up and down the (very narrow!) corridors. In the short trip from the dock to our cabin our luggage was damaged. Accommodations: we were on Deck 11, up high, with a glass balcony. The room felt small and we wondered how people of a 'portly' body shape would physically fit in the bathroom. Shower slightly mouldy, and the whole room looked a bit 'used' and like it's due for a refit. We were very disappointed with the bed - a so-called king that was actually two singles pushed together, creating an insurmountable ledge in the middle. We like to cuddle at night but it was impossible in this bed! TV was very small and thus watching it from the bed was almost impossible. The hair-dryer was curiously mounted in a drawer in the corner of the cabin above the fridge and was difficult to use. Some parts of the ship are pretty, if you like that Las Vegas style. Closer inspection, however, reveals that the extensive wood veneer is actually plastic. Horrible patterned airport carpet everywhere, even on the steps - a nightmare if you have any kind of vision disorder! Food: we were booked for the late sitting in the Brittannia Restaurant. We only ate there twice because it was bad both those times. The food was absolutely ordinary - the pasta had a 'Heinz' tang, and a chicken dish was inedible. What made it worse was that the waitstaff were curt, we were rushed through our meal and staff were setting up for breakfast for the following morning around us, even at the vacant places at the table where we were sitting. It felt stupid sitting there in our black tie gear with that kind of service going on. We ate breakfast there only once - again, very ordinary, very rushed. We chose to eat in the King's Court Buffet for almost every other meal - if you can put up with the 'trough' atmosphere and the rudeness of other guests (seriously, the tea and coffee is not going to run out, people!) then at least you have a variety of things to choose from and you can see what you're getting! Contrary to other reviews on here we found the Lotus (Asian) food to be quite palatable. We did try the pub for lunch one day and it was laughable - the fish was over-battered, had a very strong odour and get this, one of the portions had seven chips only - we counted them. Staff: We couldn't believe how badly some of the senior food staff treated others - publicly berating them, loudly. Who wants to see that? Most staff we encountered exuded despondency. The guy who made up our room was efficient but was so efficient that he deliberately took our 'comments' card before we had a chance to write anything on it - the same night we'd been given it! We asked for another one but it wasn't provided. Entertainment: This ship does not have a dedicated cinema. We assumed it would. The theatre shows a film daily ('a' meaning 'one', but we'd seen all the 'latest releases' on the plane on the way over) but alas, 3D Michael Flatley and the opera 'Carmen' didn't tempt us. The alternative is watching movies on the TV in your cabin. For some reason 'Inception' was only available dubbed into Spanish, which by the end of the week was really frustrating as we were getting desperate for entertainment! How hard would be be to install those great 'on demand' systems that are in most long-haul planes these days? We weren't interested in going to the shows/live acts/classes so can't comment on those - we were using the ship as 'transport' rather than 'cruise'. There is a fairly decent library - thank goodness. We found that the most interesting thing to do on this ship was watch the other passengers. After a few days everyone seemed really bored, and you could see people having extended fights and giving each other the silent treatment. It didn't matter what the language was, you could tell she was saying 'Why in hell did you get me this from the buffet? You know I hate this!' The promenade deck was the scene of much thunder-faced stalking about. The general mood only lifted the day before disembarkation in Southampton - presumably because everyone was looking forward to getting off! In retrospect, we should have known better. The fares are cheap for seven nights of 'luxury' - it can't be done! We were so glad we'd paid extra to have that glass balcony - we spent a lot of time looking out at the ocean, which was great - good weather and plenty of dolphins. Judging by what we've read in other reviews here, (how we wish we'd found this site before booking!) it's a real shame that given the long history of Cunard, it no longer delivers a luxury-quality cruising experience. In short - a LOT of passengers, not quite enough staff, however-many-thousands of meals per day - is it any wonder the food was ordinary? Please don't plan for this to be a 'trip of a lifetime' - that would just be very sad. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011

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