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Everything posted by Balaena

  1. Getting there but they keep cancelling them🤣
  2. First time was on the Balaena, I was 16 at the time and set off for a 6 month expedition to Antarctica. The ship left Southampton on the 8th November 1959 for Curacao, then across to Cape Town before going south to the Antarctic. After 4 months we returned to Cape Town and then disembarked in Liverpool on the 6th May 1960. Having had a taste for cruising the oceans, my wife and I joined the Sea Princess in 1982, latterly the Victoria, on a 3 week roundtrip cruise to the Caribbean and in February of this year we completed our 150th P&O cruise.
  3. Well well, just as well one doesn't have to mix with you lot on a cruise .. unfortunately one does occasionally have to pass some as one walks down the corridor from ones rather special and expensive accommodation but Hey ho times have changed with the type of passenger who cruises these days. Sadly the offer can be so cheap and that it attracts folk who would previously gone to Butlins. Just my observation of course.
  4. Well thank you for being so positive, there is much more chance of getting any bug in your inside cabin. Fortunately a suite provides large outside living where meals can be served, invited guests can enjoy a cocktail socially distanced and the patio doors left open at night and indeed the day for fresh air to enter. As for Butlers etc one trusts that P&O will have thoroughly tested their crew to ensure covid is not on board, it is so in their interest not to have an incident such as the Diamond Princess which could ruin the company. Sadly I've notice that your various comments are of a negative nature so presume this is just part of your personality. Looking forward to the cruise, if it doesn't go ahead then there will be good reasons for that so am comfortable either way Happy Bal
  5. Cheers, do hope so .. got another 9 in the pipeline, will keep you uptodate 👍 Bal
  6. Mine also due on the 8th and will pay. If the cruise doesn't go ahead then it's no problem to wait for a refund as banks are only paying a pittance for saving accounts. Clearly there will be restrictions onboard with any number of changes but as suite passengers we always enjoy the benefits as such and happy to be spoilt there rather than worrying about buffets and all the social distancing that will go with it. After over 150 cruises with P&O we have enjoyed all the shows so they are not a priority. By November things may have changed either way but to escape down to the Med for 19 nights will be terrific after all that we have gone through over the past few months. Fingers crossed Bal
  7. We have the same dilemma as booked on Arcadia November 6th. Unless there is an announcement putting cruises back further we will go ahead and pay. If a little later the cruise is cancelled by P&O then I'll wait for the refund even if it's not until February next year as interest rates are so low, at best 1%. That said this has not been my experience with refunds on earlier cruises cancelled by P&O which have been pretty prompt. I think it all depends on what you are expecting from your cruise which undoubtedly will be different to pre covid. Bal
  8. I’m sure you are trying to be helpful and of course the measures we are experiencing ‘at home’ will continue on the ship. However I am asking P&O to be specific with their plans which they will have to hand. For example, how will the dining arrangements be, do we dine in our cabin as has been suggested and if so will that be from the room service or full menu. Are they splitting the dining into more sittings and how many, all freedom no doubt. Would the same apply to the theatre to seat at a distance. How about the bars which at certain times get rather full, perhaps a lottery draw as to if you are allowed to go or not each evening. Will numbers of guests be reduced and if so by what percentage. Peninsular get togethers, yes or no. Tendering ashore, currently larger ships take quite a while to achieve quota. Are we to expect log queues to reboard at each port. Relaxing on deck arrangements, get a ticket and no reserving. Masks are a definite, will these be supplied and what type, plastic masks which will enable the ladies to wear their makeup or standard NHS type or whatever you fancy. I could go on with this list. The answer to most of these will be as we expect but that is not sufficient to make a judgement. Yes WOWZZ, of course I could cancel my currently scheduled cruises but that is not the answer for P&O or indeed for myself, without having a clear understanding of what is going to be expected of us. Of course, that might be the reason for ‘no comment' from P&O as no information will lead to cancellations and help their cash flow with FCC’s and, reduce the numbers on the early cruises without them having to do a cull. So P&O, share you plans with us, maybe they are just provisional but don’t say that you haven’t prepared these yet.
  9. Like many on this site, as a very regular P&O cruiser with 2 cruises planned for November and December and a long one round Cape Horn Jan/Feb I would be very interested to know from Carnival House what the plans are for social distancing on their ships which are due to commence cruising again from October. We have all read various speculations about how it will be, but nothing from P&O how they plan the entry back into cruising. One might say that it’s still 4 months away before kick off, but like many, I am almost reluctant to pay my cruise balance without knowing and understanding how the on-board offer will effect my wife and myself. If I take the chance and pay without this information, where would I stand if the on-board offer is far far removed from what we have become accustomed. If we are informed of ‘how things will be’ after paying the cruise balance and, the on-board offer is such that I would rather not go, will they say, no problem we will refund you or set the sum you have paid against a future cruise. I somehow doubt it, therefore I ask Carnival House to enlighten us with their plans before balances are paid. Clearly there will be and, I expect substantial changes, so information is the key to securing your enthusiastic guests to go cruising again.
  10. Taking everything into account about social distancing etc I do not think that full capacity will the norm until some time into the future. A 25% reduction in numbers is not at all unreasonable in order to ensure a good cruise experience, so clearly P&O will have to decide who to cull, which in my opinion will be those with cheapest fares, insiders and so on. Understandably they will wish to maximise on revenue and therefore 'the more you pay, the more lightly you are to stay'. Bal
  11. Collecting crew from the Aurora then back to Southampton to sail to India on the 16th
  12. What was that .. ah, maybe from black and white tv days
  13. Oh! you are soooo funny .. ummmm shall we put it to a vote
  14. Fair do's if it was a joke
  15. What a very strange attitude. One of the benefits of cruising is connecting with the very people that run the ship. If this is the way you think why travel on a ship, probably best to go to a hotel somewhere .. Oh! I get it, you think you are in a hotel and like to be treated like a 'nobody'. Me, I enjoy the interaction between ourselves and the officers which enhances the experience considerably and has forged many friendships spanning the years. Bal
  16. Hope this isn't going to be the way forward for the Loyalty Lunch, so enjoy meeting up with the 'Table Host' and the banter which occurs. Problem with cocktail parties of this type is that those officers present get cornered by guests and very little mingling actually takes place.
  17. I see that Arcadia arrived Southampton this morning on schedule and was due to sail at 16.30. However she now has a revised sail time of 04.00 on Monday morning. Wonder why such a late and unusual sailing time.
  18. 55 nights on Aurora is even better .. bring it on
  19. Derek Gray has just got on so could well be there for Christmas .. great Captain but, we all know how quickly they change the rotas so don't bank on it.
  20. Had a place in Barbados for a number of years and October until towards the end of December is rainy .. very heavy .. season. Always wrap your suitcases with polythene as they are lightly to get soaked between aircraft and coach and coach and ship and visa versa. Seen the soaked cases soooo many times Bal
  21. Doing this cruise as well and would be interested visiting the old SS Rotterdam, last time I went on her was September '59 as a walk-on in Southampton during her maiden voyage. Would find it very interesting if anyone has made the visit in recent times. Oh! I was 16 at the time😃
  22. I always take ours on for longer cruises
  23. Interesting, last time weather was lovely and we whizzed though immigration also there for two days. Question is for anyone who might have done the daytime riverboat cruise, is it better to go on an excursion or, under your own steam. Not trying to save money, rather just avoid the long queues. Thanks Bal
  24. Bought mine for £1700 in 2008, with dividends and OBC have scooped a return of approximately £7000. Generally do between 6 to 8 cruises a year. Bal
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