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scarlet ohara

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  1. One thought we’ve had was to drive to Bolton and stay overnight in the Premier inn at the football stadium where the pick up is. The bus left there about 8am which is a much more sensible start. Even stating in Carlisle about 6am would give a better nights sleep.,On the way home, driving from Bolton would avoid a rest stop around Carlisle because of the driver hours which just seems to delay getting home. We can also drive a more direct route home via the motorways, takes about 4hours from Bolton, rather going into the centre of Glasgow. We haven’t done that option yet though. Flying home is definitely the quickest and probably our preference
  2. Hi, we’ve travelled to Southampton several times from Central Scotland by all means. The main drawback of the coach is that it leaves Glasgow (Buchanan Stret) at 3/3.30am. It starts in Edinburgh so even earlier there. There’s not usually many passengers so a choice of good seats. Everyone tends to snooze till the first stop at Carlisle, a couple of hours later. There can be several pickups, Lancaster, Preston and often a lot of passengers in Bolton which is often the last pickup. Although sometimes we’ve had other stops further south. If there have been no hold ups in traffic you can end up with a long stop at a service station about an hour- hour and a half from Southampton to time arrival about 2pm. If there are delays the ship will wait if it’s the official P&O coach. Going home is in reverse but it’s a long long day. We arrived in Glasgow at 8.30pm and still had another hour in the train to get home. We prefer flying- Flybe went from Glasgow and Edinburgh direct to Southampton-much quicker but it had become very expensive. There was usually a flight around noon which was plenty time. I don’t know what the flight schedules are post Covid. I would always fly the day before just bin case of delays- it wasn’t known as flymaybe for nothing! The train has various options- can get a direct train from Newcastle to Southampton with CrossCountry so Glas/Edin to Newcastle then change- usually same platform or adjoining so no need for stairs or bridges to cross the tracks. It’s also a long day but one you are on it’s quite comfortable particularly if you get an advance ticket for first class (with a railcard). Again, I’m not sure what the current timetables are Driving over a couple of days with some sightseeing/visiting relatives on the way is ok too, but again is a drag on the way home. Although it’s much quicker driving home than on the coach. We don’t have any cruises booked at present but will no doubt go back to it. While Covid is around, our preference would be to drive to minimise contact with others and avoid congestion in service stations etc
  3. We’ve had Flex plus for several years, primarily for the annual worldwide travel insurance, although it also gives us breakdown and recovery for our cars, and mobile phone insurance for the £13 per month. I have had to pay extra for medical cover which has gone up over the last few years. I have asthma, (on 2 inhalers) high blood pressure (well controlled on one tablet) and a dodgy heart valve under annual review. Last year the upgrade cost about £250 for both of us. (Hubby has no medical issues, we are both early 60’s) We had 2 x 3week land holidays (Peru and Japan) and had to pay small ( £15) upgrades for the cost when over £5k each. We’ve also had a couple of cruises each year- Med and Caribbean- and European/USA city breaks. It’s been excellent value. Have only had to claim once - last year on a cruise in Jan 2020 I had a mishap and had to go to hospital for a CT scan. The total bill was around £400, including the P&O medical centre costs. It was reimbursed within a week of phoning on our return without even having to send in the receipts - probably because it was a relatively low claim. We returned from holiday in Vietnam on 11March last year, just before lockdown and our renewal was waiting for us. I renewed the next day and soon realised that we wouldn’t be going very far. I think I contacted NW in June/July to ask for a refund of my additional health premium which was promptly processed. I think they no longer cover Covid for new bookings (from approx 18 March) I hope they reinstate cover for Covid and would consider them again so have kept the Flex plus policy meantime. I think the service from NW was excellent when I needed to claim (and also from P&O too)
  4. We also use travel insurance via our FlexPlus current account with a medical upgrade. I’m equally as confused about the new wording, especially as it relates to self isolation. I also think it means we wouldn’t be covered if told to isolate just before a holiday. We don’t have any holidays booked now ( for the first time since the early 80’s!) having got refunds for most of them and one BA voucher so thinking about downgrading our FlexPlus account
  5. I agree that P&O bowed to the bad publicity. But hopefully it might have set a precedent that could help others, who have moved cruises once but have had the second one cancelled.
  6. Don’t know if anyone else saw Rip Off Britain. There was a section on travel this morning which included a lady who had had a med cruise cancelled in the summer. She was offered a move of cruise to next summer which she accepted. It must have been on Oceana as this was cancelled because the ship was sold. She was offered another transfer but she didn’t want to accept it (I think it was going to be much more expensive as she could only travel in school holidays) so asked for a refund of the money paid- a deposit of £1000. P&O refused the refund and only offered a voucher, although they had cancelled the cruise. Simon Calder was on the programme and said that P&O’s stance was acceptable as having accepted the offer to rebook following the first cancellation, she no longer had the right to a cash refund. However the programme had contacted P&O and they had agreed to a cash refund!! It will be interesting to see whether a cash refund becomes a general policy given the number of vouchers and rebooked cruises that must be in existence and at risk of further cancellation.
  7. Really surprised that we had our deposit returned in early August for our Oceana cruise in January. I was expecting to wait months!
  8. Thanks all. Amazingly we got an email from P&O this evening saying that the refund has been processed and is being refunded to the original method of payment. I’ll wait 10 days or so and the contact the CC company.
  9. Thanks SarahHben If we don’t get notified by P&O, I’ll check with the CC after the 60 days we’ve been told it might take. We didn’t get paper statements, only online, so not sure how we would know if it’s been credited. Thanks for your response.
  10. Does anyone know what happens if the credit card that paid the deposit has been cancelled. We have asked for a refund of our deposit for an Oceana cruise. It’s only £100 as we booked on board. We filled in the online form and, as requested, haven’t spoken to anyone. I don’t think P&O will be able to identify that the card has been cancelled. I’m not expecting to hear anything soon based on the comments about delays with refunds. As a matter of principle I don’t want to lose the money though.
  11. Well I’m retired NHS who got the email from my regulator yesterday and am happy to try to help. I’ve no intention of working in the front line and putting myself at risk as I have some health issues which mean I get a flu vaccine. I’m also out of date but am pretty sure I can help remotely by giving phone advice, even if only limited. To be honest, I’ve nothing else to do as no holidays, no coffee shops or restaurants to meet friends in, no grandchildren to look after. I might as well do something!!
  12. Fantastic online checkin and onboard by12.30. We do not have any priority but usually go early prepared to wait, but usually get on fairly quickly. Arrived at 12, We were given a pink G card and my heart sank, but were sent straight to a checkin desk. Only had to show passports, cruise cards were handed over. As we headed for the chairs they announced boarding for Caribbean tiers and above and pink F&G. Longest wait was on the air bridge, otherwise we might have been on by 12.20! I think the pink cards were online checkin as it seemed that most passengers were showing the usual e-ticket. its very quiet, presumably because most of those onboard are at the lunch. One slight niggle. 20% vat is to be added to all purchases as we are cruising entirely in the EU. So those in February and later will be getting an even bigger bargain!
  13. Don’t know about priority, but our boarding time is the same as on our e-ticket. The boarding pass doesn’t give details of the terminal so you still need the e-ticket for that
  14. A word of warning for Hvar. It is a lovely place to wander but we found hardly anywhere took euros last summer. It was our only stop in Croatia so we thought we would manage with euros and plastic rather than getting kuna. We walked up to the castle but couldn’t get in as it was cash - in local currency - only. Their card machine was broken!! So we walked back down again! Lovely views though. There is a lovely boardwalk round the harbour which is flat but otherwise a lot of steps, and rough ground up to the castle so probably not suitable if limited mobility.
  15. We’ve just completed online check in for our cruise next week. No problems at all, as noted above, all the information is already on the system, all we had to do was re-enter the passport numbers as confirmation. Both our passports were renewed early so are valid for over 10 years, but are not due to expire until 2027 and 2028. We also had the option to add card details in advance, which we did. Seems very straightforward. Will be interested to see what photo is used. I would be surprised if it was our passport photos. I wouldn’t have thought P&O would have access to that info, but maybe they are using previous photos as our last cruise was May 2019. Time will tell.
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