P and o standards slipping?

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#61
Batehaven, Australia
10,117 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Originally posted by Cruise Puss
On our cruise on Arcadia in July we didn't have one. On our cruise on Adonia in August we had one. They do seem to be becoming less and less. Shame.

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Creation of towel animals is dependent on your stewards's expertise. Some are brilliant.
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Cheers..(Uncle) LES - Princess Captains Circle Elite. - 460 days.

Cruised with Princess, Celebrity, Cunard, P&O Australia, P&O UK, Carnival, Sitmar, Sydney Harbour Ferries. World Cruise, plus British Isles, Europe, Med, Greek Isles, Transatlantic, Asia, USA, Panama Canal, South America, Central America, Caribbean, Alaska, Canada, Japan, South Pacific, Australia, New Zealand.!

**Last cruise: Queen Mary 2 - Sydney - HK, 16 nights, 2 - 18 March 2017.

**Next: (We were booked on Adonia x 2, but they sold the ship on us.)
Sapphire Princess - 26 May 2018, Scandinavia, ex Southampton - 7 nights B2B with..
Sapphire Princess - 2 June 2018, Baltic Heritage, ex Southampton - 14 nights.
Royal Princess - 18 June 2018 - British Isles, ex Southampton - 12 nights.

'Adventure before Dementia - Live for Today !!'
#62
essex uk and calabria italy
851 Posts
Joined Sep 2012
Originally posted by Britboys
Certainly can be Brian. I like some Champagnes but I am not a champagne snob. Whilst I enjoy a glass of Lanson or Taittinger, I equally enjoy a nice glass of Prosecco.
Especially around here where it averages 4 euro a bottle,lol.
#63
Staffordshire
1,047 Posts
Joined May 2011
Originally posted by P-L-B
Yes that’s what we thought.
It may be worth me having a friendly chat with our Cabin Stewart and mention that our daughter is on her first cruise and in the next cabin.

Probably worth a try.
When we took our 4 year old niece on Azura 2 years ago she had a towel animal every evening without us asking. We had not seen any for a few years so we assumed that they now only did them if there were children in the cabin. I would definitely have a word with the steward to be sure if you would like one.
#64
718 Posts
Joined Jan 2004
Over twenty cruises (P and O, Cunard, Fred, Thomson, CMV, Star Clippers, Voyages of Discovery, Pullmantour and Croisieres de France) and only one towel animal. One night on Queen Victoria. Perhaps it is just me.


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#65
Swansea
94 Posts
Joined Mar 2011
From my limited time cruising with P&O compared to some, I've never had a really cheap deal bar inside on a TA and even then peeps booking last minute paid the same for balconies so i'm told... tended to pay 76 to 115pp per night (2 people) depending on grade of cabin and I've definitely noticed cuts in the food, less cheese ( port soaked Stilton very rarely available on formal nights) compared to every formal night first cruise. Change from silver service to plated food - so you end up with barely warm food sometimes. less wine waiters so serving far more tables, several nights of wine arriving after food on last cruise. I still had chocolates on pillow last cruise... On fixed dining they seem to put the new waiters or i have just been unlucky last 2 cruises to have new waiters so service not as good as previously. The buffet not quite as good or variation as much as first 2 cruises.
Day activities seem to have been cut down a lot at sea - no staff at whist drive at sea anymore - lack of cards available ....
However I find the staff ( barring my evening meal service as mentioned ) to be friendly, try their best as always, the nursery staff to be brilliant (last cruise we had our 9 m old son with us - he never made it to evening meal table ) , the entertainment generally good or excellent, facilities on the ships generally in good order and clean. So overall it doesn't seem to have got any cheaper for me but standards not quite as good... Finding the pricing for a cabin capable of taking 3 people very variable over £6k fr 3 people in one cabin seems to be offered on occasions when Advertised price is supposed to be £1500pp sharing or £4800 another time??? The price's of the drinks is reasonable and remained so, although i wish the soft drinks were a bit cheaper for the "pump" soda, costs them pennies... The gym facilities can be variable with worn out or broken machines - less prizes available for the free spa draw...same amount of health talks trying to flog you stuff, treatments or paid classes.
Overall I've enjoyed every cruise so not felt ripped off at the price
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Grey Funnel Line - 1989 - 1997
HMS Beaver, HMS London, HMS Battleaxe

Oceana West Med Sept 2010,Ventura TA barbados Oct 2011,Orianna - North cape Aug 2013
Ventura Iberia Oct 2015- family trip 9m son to 72 yr old dad....3 generations
Ventura Canaries Apr 2018
#66
lancs
393 Posts
Joined Feb 2012
Pleased to report that the bed is being changed every 3 days. Love clean sheets. Not liking the crunchy coconut French biscuits. Have seen a deterioration in the food in the buffet. Never known so many people using the buffet in the morning and difficult to find a seat. Have started going into the Mdr and it's lovely . As good as the epicurean breakfast. The film crew are onboard and areas of the ship are restricted.
#67
Hertfordshire, United Kingdom
604 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Over twenty cruises (P and O, Cunard, Fred, Thomson, CMV, Star Clippers, Voyages of Discovery, Pullmantour and Croisieres de France) and only one towel animal. One night on Queen Victoria. Perhaps it is just me.


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Same here Stephen. I have notched up 15 cruises with P&O and never seen a towel animal I am pleased to say. I just don't get it. Yes they are clever but I still don't get it. I just feel the cabin attendants have more than enough to do without an extra task that to a number of pax is pretty pointless.
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Andrew

Past: Cunard QE2 & Queen Elizabeth; P&O Victoria, Oriana, Arcadia, Aurora, Oceana, Azura; Sea Princess; Celebrity Summit; Fred Olsen Black Watch, Saga Ruby, Portuscale MV Funchal, MS Mayfair (Nile River Cruise).

Future: CMV Marco Polo to Iceland.
#68
718 Posts
Joined Jan 2004
Originally posted by Britboys
Same here Stephen. I have notched up 15 cruises with P&O and never seen a towel animal I am pleased to say. I just don't get it. Yes they are clever but I still don't get it. I just feel the cabin attendants have more than enough to do without an extra task that to a number of pax is pretty pointless.


I agree. They are pointless and the steward are busy enough.


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#69
Staffordshire
1,983 Posts
Joined Sep 2010
Originally posted by lebreos
From my limited time cruising with P&O compared to some, I've never had a really cheap deal bar inside on a TA and even then peeps booking last minute paid the same for balconies so i'm told... tended to pay 76 to 115pp per night (2 people) depending on grade of cabin and I've definitely noticed cuts in the food, less cheese ( port soaked Stilton very rarely available on formal nights) compared to every formal night first cruise. Change from silver service to plated food - so you end up with barely warm food sometimes. less wine waiters so serving far more tables, several nights of wine arriving after food on last cruise. I still had chocolates on pillow last cruise... On fixed dining they seem to put the new waiters or i have just been unlucky last 2 cruises to have new waiters so service not as good as previously. The buffet not quite as good or variation as much as first 2 cruises.
Day activities seem to have been cut down a lot at sea - no staff at whist drive at sea anymore - lack of cards available ....
However I find the staff ( barring my evening meal service as mentioned ) to be friendly, try their best as always, the nursery staff to be brilliant (last cruise we had our 9 m old son with us - he never made it to evening meal table ) , the entertainment generally good or excellent, facilities on the ships generally in good order and clean. So overall it doesn't seem to have got any cheaper for me but standards not quite as good... Finding the pricing for a cabin capable of taking 3 people very variable over £6k fr 3 people in one cabin seems to be offered on occasions when Advertised price is supposed to be £1500pp sharing or £4800 another time??? The price's of the drinks is reasonable and remained so, although i wish the soft drinks were a bit cheaper for the "pump" soda, costs them pennies... The gym facilities can be variable with worn out or broken machines - less prizes available for the free spa draw...same amount of health talks trying to flog you stuff, treatments or paid classes.
Overall I've enjoyed every cruise so not felt ripped off at the price
P&O have not served "real" silver service in the true manner for over 20yrs what they served was meat/fish on a plate and then served vegetables seperately which is not silver servcie. If you are on a table for 8 by the time the waiters had served everybodies meat/fish and then waited to start when everyone has served their vegetables food was often only warm and like most cruise lines moving to plated meals meant food was served quicker and hotter.
#70
Swansea
94 Posts
Joined Mar 2011
quicker and hotter??? first 3 nights on our last cruise all plates to our table were barely warm - had to speak to restaurant manager then they were obviously microwaved before they got to us....we had asked each time for the waiters to provide "hot" food for the main dish... They had to put backup wine waiter into our area as 2 tables were ordering bar drinks all the time so the waiter was delayed getting them served so other tables suffered - not just us.. lets just say it didn't impress my MIL who had done 30 odd cruises or my parents on their first... Needless to say when we went to the payed dining venues a couple of times I'm sure we and the waiters were both happy...
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Grey Funnel Line - 1989 - 1997
HMS Beaver, HMS London, HMS Battleaxe

Oceana West Med Sept 2010,Ventura TA barbados Oct 2011,Orianna - North cape Aug 2013
Ventura Iberia Oct 2015- family trip 9m son to 72 yr old dad....3 generations
Ventura Canaries Apr 2018
#71
UK
276 Posts
Joined Jun 2006
Originally posted by sapphire4
Pleased to report that the bed is being changed every 3 days. Love clean sheets.
You mean the allegation about sheets made on another thread, without any evidence whatsoever, but which nevertheless got people so excited seems totally unfounded? What a surprise!
#72
Batehaven, Australia
10,117 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
I agree. They are pointless and the steward are busy enough.


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Another good reason to keep tea/coffee making facilities in cabin. Stewards have better things to do than knock on peoples cabin doors at 0700 with a cuppa tea. They should make their own.
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Cheers..(Uncle) LES - Princess Captains Circle Elite. - 460 days.

Cruised with Princess, Celebrity, Cunard, P&O Australia, P&O UK, Carnival, Sitmar, Sydney Harbour Ferries. World Cruise, plus British Isles, Europe, Med, Greek Isles, Transatlantic, Asia, USA, Panama Canal, South America, Central America, Caribbean, Alaska, Canada, Japan, South Pacific, Australia, New Zealand.!

**Last cruise: Queen Mary 2 - Sydney - HK, 16 nights, 2 - 18 March 2017.

**Next: (We were booked on Adonia x 2, but they sold the ship on us.)
Sapphire Princess - 26 May 2018, Scandinavia, ex Southampton - 7 nights B2B with..
Sapphire Princess - 2 June 2018, Baltic Heritage, ex Southampton - 14 nights.
Royal Princess - 18 June 2018 - British Isles, ex Southampton - 12 nights.

'Adventure before Dementia - Live for Today !!'
#73
92 Posts
Joined Aug 2014
Originally posted by NSWP
Another good reason to keep tea/coffee making facilities in cabin. Stewards have better things to do than knock on peoples cabin doors at 0700 with a cuppa tea. They should make their own.
We have breakfast (but sometimes just tea) in our cabin on most days and it has never been delivered by our steward. I think it's a different department.

But never before 8am

ETA: Oh and they do appreciate the tip.
#74
England
2,089 Posts
Joined Feb 2004
Originally posted by Britboys
Same here Stephen. I have notched up 15 cruises with P&O and never seen a towel animal I am pleased to say. I just don't get it. Yes they are clever but I still don't get it. I just feel the cabin attendants have more than enough to do without an extra task that to a number of pax is pretty pointless.
Try Princess...........
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Colin
#75
lancs
393 Posts
Joined Feb 2012
Having returned from our cruise I do think that there have been some cost cutting/changes on the Britannia. Its not merely a matter of moaning as its not a "cheap" holiday and after several cruises on her I feel that I am able to make comparisons. We spend a reasonable amount of money on a mid range balcony cabin, pay our gratuities, tip when staff go the extra mile and have come to expect certain standards.
Firstly the tea and biscuits in the cabin were not as expected and in my opinion a less expensive alternative, the price of the room service wines had increased and our "usual" only available in the restaurant. The tea pigs menu was available but at an extra £1.95. Its a nice little extra to have your champagne card waiting in your cabin as a tiny perk for choosing P and O and mildly irritating to have to ring the reception, the loyalty area and trail down to the loyalty desk to actually. Yes people will see that as a moan and there are more important things happening in the world but quite its the start of my holiday and for a couple of weeks I want to recharge and get spoilt.
I did find the food in the freedom MDR was not of the same standard or presentation as we have previously experienced. Some of them were reminiscent of school dinners. Fish with lurid saffron squiggles on top, awful tinned potatoes, profiteroles presented as miniscule blobs on top of a mouse, deconstructed deserts such as sticky toffee pudding and lemon meringue in a sundae type arrangement. Some meals , however, were really delicious, the prawn and chorizo skewers, the soups and the lobster.The prices of the speciality restaurants had increased to £20 a head for Sindhu, £7.50 for the Beach House and an extra 5.95 for a seafood hanging kebab. The food was amazing in these restaurants but nevertheless increased.
Having commented on the comparisons of previous cruises we had probably our nicest cruise. We had seen most of the shows/entertainment before and decided to have a leisurely dinner without the usual rush to try and get a seat. We ate in the MDR for breakfast for a change and met some lovely interesting people. We managed most of the crosswords which if I wanted to be picky could be changed. We loved the grab and go to eat on the balcony surprisingly without too much soot this trip. The weather was very hot. We did have other gripes such as the gym bikes were often broken and out of use but on the whole there seemed to be some extra entertainments on board such as an iPad class, Spanish class etc...The cabin TV had been altered and the documentaries were no longer available but there was a good selection of films. I did find sadly that quite a lot of passengers did not adhere to the dress code with lots of shorts worn in public areas on black tie nights, the buffet breakfasts seemed to be anything goes clothes wise and yes lots of jeans and not the smart tailored variety. For us though, I think it was the hard working, pleasant staff that helped make our holiday. Service delivered with a smile. Indeed I am looking through the P and O brochures for our next jaunt.
#76
Sunderland England
5,218 Posts
Joined Dec 2016
Originally posted by NSWP
Another good reason to keep tea/coffee making facilities in cabin. Stewards have better things to do than knock on peoples cabin doors at 0700 with a cuppa tea. They should make their own.
Any food or drink brought to your cabin is delivered by room service.
I always top my tea bags up from the buffet.

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#77
Manchester, England
288 Posts
Joined Jan 2004
Hi all, I keep reading about this champagne card for a sailaway drink, is this a new thing as we have had 3 cruises with P&O and not come across this?


Rick
#78
Staffordshire
1,983 Posts
Joined Sep 2010
Originally posted by rickpo
Hi all, I keep reading about this champagne card for a sailaway drink, is this a new thing as we have had 3 cruises with P&O and not come across this?


Rick
It is a Peninsular Club benefit and depends what level you are if you get it and if you do its not an actual card but a paper voucher usually left with other documents in your cabin on your desk and can be used at any sailaway from any port during your cruise not just Southampton and can be use din any bar on the ship.
#79
uk
130 Posts
Joined May 2004
We have just returned from The Canaries (on Britannia for the first time ) and thoroughly enjoyed it. I do not like the new biscuits either and found £28 per head for the Epicurian a little excessive but it was a good experience. We found the entertainment to be excellent but could have done with a bit more choice on sea days - there are only so many times you can do a quiz!
We were lucky with our table for 8 at first sitting and overall found the food ok. If my husband needed a bit extra, he finished up with the Stilton. We always found a table in Horizon, which,
in our opinion, is a great improvement on other ships' buffets.
Falling standards? Maybe in small ways but I think cruising is still good value for money We are on Aurora next year but would certainly sail on Britannia again.
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hopeful traveller
#80
Sunderland England
5,218 Posts
Joined Dec 2016
Originally posted by majortom10
It is a Peninsular Club benefit and depends what level you are if you get it and if you do its not an actual card but a paper voucher usually left with other documents in your cabin on your desk and can be used at any sailaway from any port during your cruise not just Southampton and can be use din any bar on the ship.
Interesting,i thought it was just for the Southampton sail away.

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