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beagle25

UK cruise ships in carribean

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Does anyone know any UK cruise lines that cruise the Carribean?   We did that many years ago and really enjoyed being on a ship with mostly British passengers and crew.

 

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Depends on the time of year. Check out options from P&O, Fred Olsen & Marella. 

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We have booked Rhythm of the Caribbean for November 2020 on the new Saga ship Spirit of Adventure. The ship is under construction at Meyer Werft.

The only drawback for a North American guest is that it cruises from and to Southampton.

This is the spec for it's older sister, Spirit of Discovery which launches in July this year.

https://brochures.saga.co.uk/seeinsidebrochure/Saga-Holidays_A-guide-to-Spirit-of-Discovery/Front-Cover/A-guide-to-Spirit-of-Discovery/pages_1-1

Minimum age for passengers is 50 but they can be accompanied by someone aged 40 or older.

It will be all balcony, gratuities, wifi, speciality restaurants and drinks included.

If you do decide to fly in Saga will transfer you from the airport to the ship at no extra charge.

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Posted (edited)

P&O and Marella usually have two ships stationed in the Caribbean, but only in the Caribbean season, broadly Oct/Nov to March.

P&O use at least one of their large ships (Azura and Ventura), Marella currently one tolerably modern mid-size and one smaller (the older and smaller ships are being phased-out)

 

I believe Marella offer fly-cruises (chartered aircraft, all passengers are on the cruise) from Canada  (Toronto?)

Otherwise you would need to make your own way to the embarkation port - Barbados and Jamaica, occasionally St Lucia.

But this gives the same advantage as San Juan gives US ships - no sea-days heading to the Caribbean.

 

P&O's ships are modern, many on the same errrrrr "chassis" as many US ships. Decor is perhaps a little more bland, and the atmosphere more sedate.

Marella ships vary from just a little older to quite old, they use second-hand ships. They have a more varied demographic than P&O  - wider age and income ranges, but still overwhelmingly British.

Very few big boys' toys on P&O, and pretty-well absent on Marella. 

 

In the MDR, some dishes are very British but plenty of US & international dishes to choose.

At breakfast you'll just have to get used to properly-cooked back bacon, instead of streaky bacon that's burnt to a frazzle :classic_biggrin:

Both lines are very traditional about formal nights - Marella's dress code not enforced as rigidly as P&O's - but dark suits and a smattering of military uniforms or national dress (think kilts) are very acceptable on both lines. Or dress-down in the buffets on formal nights.

Service is good, but much less "in your face" than on US ships.

 

On-board costs are significantly lower on both.

Pub prices in the bars, no drinks service charge, no daily "gratuities" - tips are included in the ticket price, but most customers bring out their wallets for cabin attendants & perhaps waiting staff at the end of the cruise - not at the level of US  service charges, but averaging I guess £10 to £20 per week in total per cabin.

 

Bear in mind that ship's currency is sterling. Currently that makes it even cheaper for you, but you need to bear in mind the advice that I and others give to Brits sailing non-sterling ships - don't agree to the ship converting your on-board account to your card's currency, keep it in ship's currency  & your card issuer will convert at a much better exchange rate.

 

Most cruises are 14 days and both lines include a full day in the embarkation port - P&O your choice of the first or the last day in Barbados (the changeover is spread over two days), Marella mid-cruise (effectively two b2b cruises from Jamaica).

Marella also offer 7-day cruises and 14-day cruise-and-stay.

 

P&O's itineraries are the well-worn eastern and southern routes. 

Marella's are more inventive and can include Cuba (overnite) and Central American ports. Plus the opportunity for a partial Panama Canal cruise on local boats from its port at Colon - bus to Lake Gatun, boat thro the Cut and locks to Panama City, return by bus.

 

Fred Olsen and Cruise & Maritime also offer Caribbean cruises, but I don't think Saga station a ship in the Caribbean. All have older demograhics, smaller & older ships.

 

Regardless of wanting to sail with Brit fellow-passengers, those ship offer a number of advantages over US ships. And a few disadvantages

 

JB :classic_smile:

 

 

Edited by John Bull

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It seems that with the US banning ships that call into Cuba from then docking in the US, some of these cruise lines will be more popular.

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The other advantage of the UK lines is they start and finish in the Caribbean.The US ships start in Florida mainly, stopping at their bland,artificial cashcow private islands on the way.

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On ‎6‎/‎19‎/‎2019 at 12:47 AM, brian1 said:

The other advantage of the UK lines is they start and finish in the Caribbean.The US ships start in Florida mainly, stopping at their bland,artificial cashcow private islands on the way.

I suppose seeing it once would be okay but they seem to repeat it every cruise and sometimes twice when doing a longer one.

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43 minutes ago, MicCanberra said:

I suppose seeing it once would be okay but they seem to repeat it every cruise and sometimes twice when doing a longer one.

 

 I mu$t confe$$ I don't know the rea$on why they vi$it their own private i$land$

 

JB :classic_smile:

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I think it is to help the islanders who would have no gratuitie$ if tourists didn't visit. Very generous of the cruise lines.

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You're not being cynical are you  guys,lol.Our very first cruise was on the Sea Princess when they also used to start and finish in the Caribbean.2  7day b2b,one starting in Montego Bay,the other Barbados with  a different port more or less every day.The highlight was watching West Ham beat Man U live on MUS,LOL.PS that was 2007 I'm afraid.

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1 hour ago, brian1 said:

You're not being cynical are you  guys,lol.Our very first cruise was on the Sea Princess when they also used to start and finish in the Caribbean.2  7day b2b,one starting in Montego Bay,the other Barbados with  a different port more or less every day.The highlight was watching West Ham beat Man U live on MUS,LOL.PS that was 2007 I'm afraid.

That would be good no matter where or when it happened, but especially cool on a big screen.

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Posted (edited)
54 minutes ago, MicCanberra said:

That would be good no matter where or when it happened, but especially cool on a big screen.

Especially standing in the pool with a pint of lager.A rare moment only because one of the officers was a west ham fan.

Edited by brian1

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1 hour ago, brian1 said:

Especially standing in the pool with a pint of lager.A rare moment only because one of the officers was a west ham fan.

Wouldn't want to be in the pool after the game though.

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P&O offer a number of cruises to the Caribbean, no-fly round trips from Southampton.  

 

 

 

 

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19 minutes ago, cabin4three said:

P&O offer a number of cruises to the Caribbean, no-fly round trips from Southampton.  

Yes, that's how we visit the Caribbean in Jan/Feb... Madeira going, Azores returning, and an island a day in the Carib. 

 

 

 

 

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For something completely different in the Caribbean you could consider the sailing ships of Star Clippers. Their clientelle is international but includes a fair number of we Brits. They usually have two ships there during the winter season sailing out of Barbados or St Maarten.

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On 8/9/2019 at 3:29 PM, Denarius said:

For something completely different in the Caribbean you could consider the sailing ships of Star Clippers. Their clientelle is international but includes a fair number of we Brits. They usually have two ships there during the winter season sailing out of Barbados or St Maarten.

That’s on our bucket list. Watched a tv show last week about Star Clippers and got straight on the internet to check out costs. Pleasantly surprised. I was expecting it to be way more than our usual Celebrity/Royal/NCL cruise and found the fares very comparable. Def giving them a try. 

 

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