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About tring

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Wirral, England
  • Interests
    Gardening, Travel to unusual places
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Swan Hellenic, Voyages of Discovery, Fred Olsen
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    The Amazon

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  1. tring

    Fred Olson Why So Expensive

    It is the itineraries that we book Fred for, especially when you get overnights or unusual destinations that you can only get on the very high priced lines otherwise. Mind you we also tend to book when there are offers on and are not bothered about needing a balcony cabin. We did have a terrace balcony on the Liverpool to Mauritius route in Oct/Nov 2017 and got that for only about £100 pppn overall, though that did include a good offer to begin with and then we were able to upgrade at a decent price from an outside cabin. We have also coupled fly cruises with land stays and booked our own flights, which can work out very well. Fred does charge silly prices for his flights, especially long haul and no choice of flight times either - not our style we prefer stop overs. For instance we are staying in the airside hotel in Dubai airport both ways in a forthcoming jaunt so we do not fly overnight. Some times it is worth ringing to ask about upgrade possibility nearish to the cruise (usually when any anchor fares are offered). Sometimes nothing is available, but always worth asking. The value is not too bad In an outside or even inside cabin if there is an offer on, but depends what you want. We prefer cheaper quality holidays, but can be away 2 or 3 months a year all told and we never spend long in a cabin when on a cruise anyway. We also do land holidays were appropriate and are off to Myanmar and Thailand soon, staying in 6 different hotels independently booked. That has got a bit complicated, but will hopefully be good when we get there.
  2. Buying single tickets if not unusual - in fact return tickets can be more expensive than two singles. Globaliser - Sorry, yes I read the bit about London city airport - sorry, though sometimes the cheapest flights do not leave from there and it is out in docklands. I have no detailed knowledge about flights to Edinburgh though, so I stand corrected if my info is wrong in that instance.
  3. I was only commenting on your wish to keep your luggage near to you and giving the practicalities of train travel. I have never heard of asking for luggage to be put in the guards van so cannot comment on that. I have also never heard of luggage going missing from the normal luggage racks which are commonly used, but I would not leave any valuables in them. Sunday can be a quieter day on the trains as there is no commuters, though we have travelled out of another big city to London on the 1pm train last summer and shared it with a fair number of people, including a couple of stag party groups (and a large number of cans of beer). Dawned on us that many weekenders will have checked out of their hotels at midday, so it was a popular train. If you go for one of the cheaper trains (ticket prices vary) it is also likely to be one of the less busy trains as the prices go up according to number of bookings. No worry if you are not fed in first class on a Sunday as there will still be a buffet carriage where you can buy food/drinks. Weekend likley to be cheaper for first class. Often the effect of engineering works is that the trains take a lot longer to complete the journey rather than be cancelled and cancellation of part of a journey will probably be replaced by a bus between two stations. Train is quite doable - just that flights take a lot less time, though as you say go out/into the city centres, rather than an out of town airport.
  4. Highly unlikely, as mentioned by someone else you need a seat near to a luggage rack. The seats are tight and the aisle narrow (like on a plane) so unless the train is fairly empty and you could find an empty seat next to the one you sit on for your bag to 'sit' there is no room at all. You do not have to occupy the seat you have booked (which will likely have other nearby seats booked). If you can find a seat that is not labelled as booked for some stage of the journey and you may find an cabin that is more sparsely occupied. That would still be a big gamble though as if the train became busier and you need to take your bag off the seat it is sitting on then there will not be any space left on the luggage racks. At times like that it is normal to see people in the spaces at the end of the carriages sitting on their cases. To ensure space on the luggage racks, (which are not really big enough), you will have to be waiting by the boards in the London station (so you can see as soon as the platform is listed for your train and then make a very speedy walk to the platform, especially if travelling at a busy time of day/season. Long distance trains are rarely not busy, but travelling first class will make the journey a whole lot better regards both luggage and the journey - I would recommend that if the prices are not ridiculously high, as first class carriages are not normally fully occupied if you travel off peak and the seating much better, often with snacks/drinks included and possible use of a first class lounge in London station. Snacks not always included at weekends. Air travel does have it's advantages.
  5. tring

    Allocation of OBC

    Agreed. No problem just register one CC and you can still have your own cards to use on board, but they come through as one joint account. Bit like our bank account - DH gets most in comings and I spend as I wish 🙂
  6. tring


    We do not like Black Watch because it has a lot of cabins with fixed beds in L shaped configuration - this means you cannot even have a bedside table. I agree Balmoral has slightly bigger cabins in general. Look at Fred's website and search for cabins in a mock booking and you will see the size/layout of the cabin. By layout, I mean twin or double beds and the ability or not to convert to the other. You can still book via an agent for any extra discount offerred. We would still go with the itineraries we preferred though and the departure location of the cruise.
  7. Thank you for those replies - much appreciated. I have been away from home in the last couple of weeks with no internet access, so sorry my thinks have come late.
  8. Can anyone tell me where Fred docks in Leixoes and Portimao and if a shuttle bus is required? It looks like there are two docks in Lexioes and I have seen a review when someone was able to take a tram to Oporto from outside the port gate. but I do not know which dock that was from. Also, is there anything near the port in Leixoes if we do not go to Oporto?
  9. I have read that it is fairly easy to get into Porto from Leixoes, but we often prefer places that are near to the port rather than head for a large city nearby. Does anyone know what is near the port and if it is possible to walk into Leixoes? I think there are two docking locations. We will be on a small ship (less than 30,000 ton) and there is usually one port which is always used for smaller ships, can anyone help me with that?
  10. We went on the ship visit to Aurora on 14th November, so can now answer my own question for information to to others. The only offer was for a low 5% deposit on cruises up to spring 2020, with only the standard extra onboard credit that is on a current P&O offer available. We wanted a cruise for summer 2020, so would not have gained at all as those cruises currently have a 5% deposit offer on them anyway. Not unhappy though as we realised afterwards that we were not that keen on a cruise for then anyway as we will have been on a lot of cruises in the previous year and will likely be more ready for a land holiday - perhaps to visit relatives in Canada. Must also admit that we were not taken with Aurora. It was a very sunny day and the ship seemed very dark and dingy inside apart from when we had lunch at a table right by a window. We have been used to smaller ships were you are never that far from a window on the public decks, so we reckoned the size of the ship was the issue for us. We will stick with smaller ships most of the time - even Fred's Kn......d old boats have a better feel than we got on Aurora and from recent posts it would seem P&O are not without a share of kn......d old boats anyway 🙂 P&O do have some enticing prices, especially on the higher grade cabin's and the overall deal can be good given no tips etc. so we will not say never to a P&O cruise.
  11. tring

    Cruise Personaliser down?

    The booking system is not working properly at present - or isn't for the cruise I just tried to access. Clicking 'book now' just gives a long wait, then an error message. Let's face it probs with the P&O website are not unusual 🙂
  12. tring

    Grade H cabins on Boudicca

    I can now answer my own question as I rang Fred earlier. There are fixed double beds in some H grade cabins on Boudicca. I was told we could ask our agent if it is possible to request a room with twin beds, but decided to book an outside anyway in case of problems. It was not initially apparent that those cabins have fixed double beds, which I thought was bad given that a lot of people share with friends or relatives that are not spouses. I still do not know what would happen if book an anchor fare and are allocated a cabin with a double bed.
  13. Thinking of booking an anchor fare on a grade H cabin on Boudicca and see that the cabins starting with 40 all seem to say that they have double beds, yet the ones starting with 44 say they can be converted to singles. Does anyone know if this is the case as we prefer single bed configuration on a cruise as it is easy to disturb each other, and are concerned we may not be able to choose bed configuration. The other anchor fare restrictions do not bother us for this cruise, though we do not normally book anchor fares. Can anyone tell me if it is normal to be able to choose bed configuration if you book an anchor fare?
  14. tring

    Glass House and Carmen's on Aurora

    Thanks for the reply dai