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About HappyGiraffe

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  1. They'll go up on the cruise personaliser no later than 12 weeks before you sail, but may well appear a few weeks earlier than that, so it's worth occasionally logging in to check! Somewhere on the website there's a page for each port giving a rough idea of the excursions they run but depending on the time of year and length of time in port they may be slightly different to selection offered on your particular cruise.
  2. Strange, I can now not only see examples of excursions but the prices too! If you go to the page for the cruise (the "see cabins and prices" option from the list of search results), click on itinerary, use the arrows on the right hand side to switch between the ports then click "learn more" underneath the paragraph about the port, then it brings up a selection of excursions.
  3. I take this back, just had several new (fjords) excursions added to the cruise personaliser with 6-8 weeks to go! Apologies, not come across that before but maybe it's more common than I thought!
  4. If you like the itinerary but aren't so sold on the formal night dress code, it's worth bearing in mind that on Oceana the evening dress code is only enforced in Magnums, Ligurian and Adriatic restaurants. The dress code for the buffet and the Beach House restaurant is much more relaxed!
  5. They often go on sale early. I'd guess it's unlikely that they'll add completely new extra excursions nearer the time, although they sometimes add extra capacity to popular tours (e.g. if a morning excursion looks like selling out they might repeat it in the afternoon). If in doubt, double check the terms and conditions but you can usually cancel excursions up to a few days before you sail and still get a full refund!
  6. You still can 🙂 It doesn't do it automatically any more like it used to, but when you click in the search box near the top of the forum a list of options appears underneath, including "Everywhere/ Topics/ This forum" etc etc.
  7. For reference, the shuttlebus inc Skylift ticket is now 80euros (£70ish, assuming a good exchange rate), while the P&O excursion to just Kjenndal was £55 (couldn't find a viable option for doing this DIY other than hiring a car?) and the P&O combined excursion to both was £85 ish. We considered doing the P&O Kjenndal excursion and then DIYing the skylift so we could spend more time at each, but overall decided that it was a lot cheaper and less stressful timing-wise to go with the combined excursion and then have half a day free to explore Olden on foot. If you'd prefer not to be rushed and have lots of time at the top of the cable car, then the shuttle bus may suit you better than an organised tour - the tour will definitely make sure you get back to the ship on time but you won't have the freedom to take a later coach if you want to stay longer. Normally we prefer to skip the P&O tours and do our own thing, but we particularly wanted to do both Loen Skylift and Kjenndal and that seems to be an awkward combination to do independently!
  8. Doing Loen Skylift independently will probably let you stay at the top a lot longer, but also check the relative timings/ costs and decide which is worth more to you. We're off to the fjords on Azura in the summer and we found that the P&O Loen Skylift/ Kjenndal excursion only cost a little bit more than the cost of doing just the skylift independently so we've decided to sacrifice a bit of time at Loen to see both, and booked the excursion.
  9. I wouldn't say to avoid the buffet at all costs, but do agree it's best avoided at peak times. Last cruise we had 3 late-ish breakfasts and 4 late-ish evening meals in the buffet with no problems, as well as a few lunches and afternoon teas. Breakfast at 8:15 on the final morning after all cabins had to be vacated by 8am however was a very different story - absolute chaos! When we walked past at other peak meal times it was somewhere in between the two. The buffet is a very different experience from the main dining room, but depending on your plans and preferences it can be very convenient and we found the food to be very good overall. Re: the allergies, there's a little bit of info in the FAQs page here: https://ask.pocruises.com/help/PO/before-you-sail/diets_cater The contact details for P&O customer centre are here: https://ask.pocruises.com/help/PO/before-you-sail/flights_open They'll pass the info on to the restaurant manager in advance of your cruise.
  10. We did a fly cruise from Malta last year. Our flight was earlier than yours but from what I remember, other than everyone having to vacate cabins by 8am you had the run of the ship until your coach departed for the airport. Lots of things to see in Valletta within about 15 minutes walk from the ship if you have time to kill and fancy a bit of sightseeing!
  11. Re: sticking things to the wall with magnets, if you're the kind of person who uses a pinboard or fridge door to organise various bits of paperwork then taking magnets for the magnetic walls is really useful tip as the entire wall is basically a giant fridge door! If, like me, you're more likely to file things neatly in a folder when not in use then it's probably not so relevant. I find a transparent A4 plastic folder for paperwork plus a few post-it notes for reminders suits me much better. Loads of great tips on here but pick and choose the ones that you think will work for you or you'll need a whole extra suitcase just for the extras. Best tip I came across in here was to take one of those cardboard car air freshners for your cabin bathroom, helps to hide any lingering smells!
  12. If the P&O excursions are up on your cruise personaliser, have a nosy at what time they're all due to depart. Even if you don't want to book via the ship, it should give a pretty good idea of when P&O think is a safe bet for arriving in port and getting ashore.
  13. It's meant to be 24 hours after the booking is confirmed. If you have your 6-character booking reference then might be worth a try logging in at cp.pocruises.com even if you haven't had the cruise personaliser email through yet.
  14. We were on Oceana in Malta last June. Muster drill was delayed from 8pm to 8.15 and then 8.30pm so that the coach loads arriving from a delayed flight wouldn't miss it. On your last day, if you don't want to hang around the ship then it's less than 10 minutes walk from the port to the Barakka lift which takes you straight up into the centre of Valletta in a few minutes for 1euro. The gardens by the top of the lift have a beautiful view over the harbour and there are several good museums within walking distance, as well as lots of shops and places to eat. Also, might be worth enquiring about flights again nearer the time, as if they have a lot more bookings wanting to fly from Manchester then other flight options may become available.
  15. We got the equivalent flight last month. We'd checked we had enough space for all the overnight stuff in hand luggage, didn't think to check the weight until the following morning! Needless to say we travelled home with rather full pockets! Our rucksack was slightly over the weight limit but well under the size, our case was the maximum size allowed as hand luggage and may or may not have been bang on the limit depending on the accuracy of our scales; to our relief neither were weighed at the airport. In case it's useful, these were our timings for disembarking Oceana in Malta for the 11.40am flight: hold luggage had to be outside the cabin door by 11pm the night before (so before the later shows and other entertainment finished), vacate the cabin by 8am, meet in a restaurant at 9.15am, and then were straight onto a coach and cleared airport security at around 9.45am. We were herded straight from the coach to security, so not sure what the position would have been with hold luggage.
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