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-   -   Balloons in Dining Restaurant (http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2512192)

KaraokeK June 19th, 2017 03:25 AM

Balloons in Dining Restaurant
 
Hoping for some help.
My wife has a severe phobia regarding percussive noises - this includes a fear of balloons and the fear of them popping.
(I have had a previous thread in 2010 but would like to get more up to date opinions)

In 2010 we made our first, and last, cruise with P&O aboard Ventura. Imagine her horror when on our first evening meal there were six or seven tables celebrating birthdays etc with 4 or 5 balloons, supplied by P&O, floating above the table.
We spoke to the Head Waiter to ascertain if this was a regular occurrence. He assured us it was not and that he did not understand why it had been done. We never saw another balloon in the dining room after the first night.

The reason that it was also our last cruise with P&O is because, although the problem went away on the Ventura cruise, we are unable to find a definitive answer to this balloon situation.

We would really like to cruise again with P&O as they have some great itineraries.
So, do you still get a “bouquet” of balloons, supplied by P&O, at your table when you have a celebration?
(we realise that they maybe the odd occasion when people bring their own balloons.)
If the answer is yes, then is it across the fleet or just some ships.

Thanks in advance

terrierjohn June 19th, 2017 03:40 AM

There were balloons in the MDR on a number of nights on our recent Azura cruise as passengers were celebrating birthdays, fortunately none of them burst.

groovechick June 19th, 2017 04:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by KaraokeK (Post 53338073)
Hoping for some help.
My wife has a severe phobia regarding percussive noises - this includes a fear of balloons and the fear of them popping.
(I have had a previous thread in 2010 but would like to get more up to date opinions)

In 2010 we made our first, and last, cruise with P&O aboard Ventura. Imagine her horror when on our first evening meal there were six or seven tables celebrating birthdays etc with 4 or 5 balloons, supplied by P&O, floating above the table.
We spoke to the Head Waiter to ascertain if this was a regular occurrence. He assured us it was not and that he did not understand why it had been done. We never saw another balloon in the dining room after the first night.

The reason that it was also our last cruise with P&O is because, although the problem went away on the Ventura cruise, we are unable to find a definitive answer to this balloon situation.

We would really like to cruise again with P&O as they have some great itineraries.
So, do you still get a “bouquet” of balloons, supplied by P&O, at your table when you have a celebration?
(we realise that they maybe the odd occasion when people bring their own balloons.)
If the answer is yes, then is it across the fleet or just some ships.

Thanks in advance

During our 2015 Christmas/New Year cruise on Britannia, not only were there balloons on individual tables for birthday/anniversary celebrations, they had an archway of balloons at the entrance to the MDR for Christmas Day/New Year's Eve. Plus they issued tables with party poppers and hooters.

daiB June 19th, 2017 05:03 AM

I can confirm that if people are having a birthday or anniversary there will be balloons above the tables.

Of course someone in your party has to organise it.

They have stopped the bursting of the balloons which used to happen some years ago.

It can happen every night of the cruise.


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KaraokeK June 19th, 2017 05:14 AM

Thanks for those replies.
So seems that P&O may not be an option for us.
Just another thought, wonder if we could just eat in "speciality" restaurants. Do they have balloons?
I kindly thank you for info re Christmas/Gala nights - we keep away from holidays anywhere over the Christmas period for the reason you mention. We find that with gala nights etc the balloons are generally in one area, which we can avoid.
For the last 30 years we have been far away for November 5th, the worst time of the year for my wife. Our first longhaul Nov 5th holiday was to Kenya - walking up the beach on day 2 we came across a large placard saying "November 5th - Big Bonfire and Firework Party. Bring your own fireworks". Fortunatelty Kenyans have better things to spend thier money on and we never heard a thing.

HikingPete June 19th, 2017 06:05 AM

I think its difficult to avoid, and I'd be surprised if you could guarantee you wouldn't run into anything similar on any other line. They may well have stopped intentionally bursting balloons, but having balloons (and even popping them) would be fun to most people. I doubt many places would outright ban them (except possibly on formal nights). Cruising for a lot of people is done for an occasion - often a large or important birthday which they want to celebrate, and people mark the occasions in different ways.

I think all you can do is move to one of the other dining options if you see any balloons, or find a cruise line which is less likely to cater to such events.

Josy1953 June 19th, 2017 06:14 AM

We have cruised with Princess, Cunard, Celebrity and P&O and I can say that on ALL of these lines there have been balloons in the MDR for people celebrating birthdays, anniversaries and weddings on board. I have tried to think back and I think that on every cruise that we have been on there has been at least one celebration.

On P&O they also allow balloons in the select dining areas, we were seated next to a family celebrating 2 birthdays one night in Sindhu on Azura.

groovechick June 19th, 2017 06:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by KaraokeK (Post 53338202)
Thanks for those replies.
So seems that P&O may not be an option for us.
Just another thought, wonder if we could just eat in "speciality" restaurants. Do they have balloons?
I kindly thank you for info re Christmas/Gala nights - we keep away from holidays anywhere over the Christmas period for the reason you mention. We find that with gala nights etc the balloons are generally in one area, which we can avoid.
For the last 30 years we have been far away for November 5th, the worst time of the year for my wife. Our first longhaul Nov 5th holiday was to Kenya - walking up the beach on day 2 we came across a large placard saying "November 5th - Big Bonfire and Firework Party. Bring your own fireworks". Fortunatelty Kenyans have better things to spend thier money on and we never heard a thing.

The only dining venue I can think of where there would not be balloons would be the buffet, that is assuming that passengers do not bring them themselves to celebrate an occasion. I have also seen them attached to cabin doors in corridors.

Purdey16 June 19th, 2017 08:17 AM

On Arcadia yesterday on a day visit we were greeted with a archway of balloons and single displays which I think would cause a problem for your wife to walk under to board the ship ,I'm not sure if this is normal or it was a special treat for passengers, also Fred Olsen as balloons on their ships

Deep-Blue-Iris June 20th, 2017 03:16 AM

I have no advice as I'm doing my first ever cruise in September but just wanted to say I have a similar issue to your wife. I have gotten better over the years and now really only struggle with pyrotechnics - November is not a fun month for me. If I'm going to be in a situation where I know I'll face this, I have some discreet earplugs that I wear, where I can still hear conversations but sudden, loud noises are dulled enough that I can cope. Is this an option your wife would consider?

It's no fun, and I love the archways of balloons because I think they look pretty - I'm just glancing at them suspiciously all night for fear of them bursting!

Cruise Puss June 20th, 2017 04:17 AM

In answer to the question posed by two posters above, no, they do not, generally, have balloons in the Select Dining Restaurants. We've never seen them in 16 years of cruising.

Josy1953 June 20th, 2017 05:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cruise Puss (Post 53346387)
In answer to the question posed by two posters above, no, they do not, generally, have balloons in the Select Dining Restaurants. We've never seen them in 16 years of cruising.

Balloons were definitely in evidence in Sindhu on Azura last July. I think that P&O will put balloons above any table where they are requested by passengers having a celebration.

Another thing that the OP needs to be aware of is that sometimes balloons are used to decorate some of the lounges on "themed" evenings.

KaraokeK June 22nd, 2017 06:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Deep-Blue-Iris (Post 53346301)
I have no advice as I'm doing my first ever cruise in September but just wanted to say I have a similar issue to your wife. I have gotten better over the years and now really only struggle with pyrotechnics - November is not a fun month for me.


Couple of things I could contribute re our experiences taken over 30+ cruises. As mentioned we did a cruise on Ventura where we did experience the MDR balloon problem.
Excluding Gala nights, specific events and the odd personal celebration where there maybe balloons we have not experienced the MDR experience with: -
Cunard
Celebrity
Royal Caribbean
NCL

With regard to the November issue, which we 100% understand – we have done a number of transatlantic/repositioning cruises to get away from November 5th. The fact that these cruises are normally very competitively priced is an added bonus.

My wife does wear earplugs but unfortunately does not help with her anticipation that something might happen. She does, sometimes, wear them in the theatre at show times but this is more to the fact that she finds some of the shows acoustically loud – that really is subjective. We do check with the activies staff if we feel that the show may have some explosive/noisy sections – magicians for instance. They are always very helpful. Should say it’s been very rare for us to miss a show for this reason.

We have never come across pyrotechnics.

I’m sure that you will have a wonderful cruise.

ann141 June 25th, 2017 04:30 PM

We have just returned from a cruise on Britannia and remarked how few balloons there were in the main dining room-probably only on 2 nights of a 7 night cruise.I wonder if this is due to the fact that Britannia has more select Dining venues than other P and O ships and that it is more popular to celebrate a special occasion by paying to for example spend an evening in the Limelight Club or Sindu etc.

tokyo June 26th, 2017 09:38 AM

We have done over 20 cruises and have always seen balloons in the MDR at sometime during the cruise. In fact some of the times it was our table that had the balloons as it was my wife's birthday.


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