Jump to content

Trying Cunard


wesport
 Share

Recommended Posts

I cant think of two wildly different experiences than Hal and Cunard.

 

HAL is value priced, reasonable product but searching for its future growth.  

 

Cunard is class regimented with portions of the ship cut off for higher fare pax

 

Its a big jump

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 12/9/2020 at 6:35 PM, Woofbite said:

They may pretend to be formal but nobody wearing anything from a clean t-shirt and shoes to white tie tux and ladies in floor-length gowns was thrown overboard or even looked at askance on our cruise.  Many men were in sports jackets and quite a few without ties.  Ladies were equally dressed.

The world is becoming a lot more casual despite the wishes and best efforts of those who prefer otherwise.  Go as fancy as you like and enjoy a great cruise.  Cunard ships are spectacular, even if they are understaffed and in my opinion don't live up to the hype.

 

Unfortunately, I rarely see people following the dress-codes on those events. Its sad to admit but we have became very lazy to follow any certain rules. All we want is to consume, and to consume as much as we possible can. This is one of the reasons why we differ from the Europeans 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, mcrcruiser said:

Yes very formal indeed . Great for some but not us either

We took the QM2 four years ago in a Princess Suite.  I did not find them "very formal".  There were man in suits or tux, but the women were not particularly formal.  I was rather surprised by this, in fact.  Other than Cunard has many more formal nights, and their Kings Court was abysmal, I found Cunard to be very similar to HAL.  It was a lovely experience.  The ship is beautiful, but the quality of the food would turn us off from sailing the QM2 again.  I understand, however, that the QE and QM have better culinary offerings.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, tfred said:

I cant think of two wildly different experiences than Hal and Cunard.

 

HAL is value priced, reasonable product but searching for its future growth.  

 

Cunard is class regimented with portions of the ship cut off for higher fare pax

 

Its a big jump

I agree tfred.  Tried it once but wasn't impressed.  Some very snooty people onboard, too.  Incidentally, notice you're in Delray.  We used to have a condo there but unfortunately had to sell.  Absolutely love it there.  My favourite place in FL.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

21 hours ago, tfred said:

I cant think of two wildly different experiences than Hal and Cunard.

 

HAL is value priced, reasonable product but searching for its future growth.  

 

Cunard is class regimented with portions of the ship cut off for higher fare pax

 

Its a big jump

As a non “Grills” passenger (Britannia class) I’ve never noticed the portions “cut off for higher fare pax”

So far as I know the list of Grills exclusive spaces are:

  • The assigned restaurant 
  • One lounge
  • A concierge desk
  • A terrace deck, with one hot tub

The rest of the vessel is open to all passengers. This may be contrasted to other lines (MSC Yacht Club ; NCL Haven) efforts to recreate an isolated First Class.

 

On HAL, what are the included perks for Suite passengers?  Different grades of suites?

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 minutes ago, TheOldBear said:

The rest of the vessel is open to all passengers. This may be contrasted to other lines (MSC Yacht Club ; NCL Haven) efforts to recreate an isolated First Class.

 

 

 


Add Celebrity to that, which has even “revolutionized” existing ships to deny access to non-suite guests to previously all-access spaces for which there are no equivalents (like the only forward-facing exterior deck).  NCL has not done that to their older, non-mega ships. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 minutes ago, TheOldBear said:

Different grades of suites?

 

It's how the company defines "suites" that makes the difference as well as the specific stateroom categories.  Neptune and Penthouse suites are at the top of the ladder and the guests in those categories have different amenities than those in the Signature and Vista Suite categories.  If my memory is correct, there is a difference in a few minor amenities (in my opinion)  between Signature and Vista suites.  

 

If one is considering booking a "suite" of whatever category on HAL, one needs to study the differences among those categories called "suites".  Plus, study the ship's deck plan as well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Never been asked onboard Cunard if I was in the Grill class.   I was asked prior to boarding so I would be seated in the correct area.   I thought laundry was included on World Voyages but I understand wanting to launder ones clothes to avoid mishaps.   In the early days, did laundry with Dr.Ruth!   She was shorter than I imagined.   The Britannia Restaurant is magnificent as is the Library and Theater.  On the QM2, the Grill Restaurants are not as impressive in decor but have good food.   I always order off the menu and they have yet to disappoint finding an item in their stores.   If you are looking for a classsystem you won’t find it on Cunard.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 12/12/2020 at 7:58 AM, Doubt It said:

Given the debt levels of the cruise lines, once cruising starts, we do not intend upon cruising until we are certain there is a consistency in the product that we can measure and determine is there value in cruising versus other vacation options. I and my friends did not take FCC's, only cash. We are highly suspicious there will be serious downgrading provided to all the captive customers using their FCC's.

Very sensible.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

17 hours ago, whogo said:

Very sensible.

Thank you whogo.

It appears some people on CC are raring to go to get on a cruise ship.

The basic reality is that people are purchasing a totally unknown product - separate from the virus consequences a key question is - What will the onboard product be?

 

Like what will the onboard experience be - given the debt levels of the cruise lines.  Logic says it will be less than prior to the virus. So logic says as a consumer, why would one pay more for less.

 

In the end, to each their own, but really, I have 0 confidence in the cruise lines to provide a semblance of the experience before the virus. So not purchasing until stability returns and I can judge the value of a cruise versus all other vacation options.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, Doubt It said:

n the end, to each their own, but really, I have 0 confidence in the cruise lines to provide a semblance of the experience before the virus. So not purchasing until stability returns and I can judge the value of a cruise versus all other vacation options.

 

Fully understand your point of view and I do share it to some degree.  But, who/when/how are those of us who share your thoughts are going to be re-assured sufficiently that the "Signature of Excellence" for HAL remains intact for us to book another cruise?  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

17 hours ago, rkacruiser said:

 

Fully understand your point of view and I do share it to some degree.  But, who/when/how are those of us who share your thoughts are going to be re-assured sufficiently that the "Signature of Excellence" for HAL remains intact for us to book another cruise?  

 

rkacruiser, your question is germane to every cruiser on the CC boards. The response will be different.

I am not booking until I know precisely what HAL, or any other cruise line is offering, on a consistent basis, so a potential booking is years away.

Basic questions for any consumer of any product... what is the product, will the product likely be delivered to me when I am ready to receive it, what are the risks to the supplier?

 

It does not matter if is a cruise or a vehicle or a new house - the consumer should put themselves first. I really see less of this important principle on these boards - many say, I will or have booked - and it is an unknown product they are booking some have said I am booking to subsidize a multi national corporation.

 

I am not interested if the cruise lines remain intact as that is not in my control, I am only interested in getting what I paid for. If the cruise lines are  there fine, they will be analyzed as just another travel option.

 

I took my cancellations as cash, so that cash is now in my accounts making me money. I have no skin in the game regarding cruise lines - but I sure have numerous travel options lined up for North America and elsewhere and none of them are cruises.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 12/15/2020 at 1:00 PM, Doubt It said:

Thank you whogo.

It appears some people on CC are raring to go to get on a cruise ship.

The basic reality is that people are purchasing a totally unknown product - separate from the virus consequences a key question is - What will the onboard product be?

 

Like what will the onboard experience be - given the debt levels of the cruise lines.  Logic says it will be less than prior to the virus. So logic says as a consumer, why would one pay more for less.

 

In the end, to each their own, but really, I have 0 confidence in the cruise lines to provide a semblance of the experience before the virus. So not purchasing until stability returns and I can judge the value of a cruise versus all other vacation options.

I find some wisdom in your post.  As a long time (over 40 years) frequent cruiser I have posted a similar thought in that I wonder if we should rush in to go on cruises with many onboard restrictions and mandatory excursions (to get off the ship at ports).  I have questioned whether that is a product that this cruise (and his DW) would even enjoy.   But lets be blunt that many of those rushing in to book cruises are looking at short 7 day cruises to the usual Caribbean places (where we could care less about getting off the ship).  My own interest is in longer cruises (we prefer longer then 3 weeks and preferably at least a month) to interesting and exotic ports.  Most folks who take those kind of cruises are sitting back and hoping we can get back to that type of normalcy.   In some of my recent posts I have mentioned that I have no interest in being on cruises with mandatory excursions (we are independent and somewhat adventurous travelers who dislike most tours).   I also cannot buy in to this idea that we can social distance on a mass market cruise ship!  

 

My personal opinion is that the cruise lines need to quickly move to a mandatory vaccination policy (100% must be vaccinated) which should enable them to move back towards something close to the old normal.  They also will need to go to mandatory vaccinations in order to convince many countries that it is safe to allow the return of cruise ships.  Otherwise, DW and I will continue to do our extensive travel but will avoid cruises in favor of independent land trips.  Once Europe reopens to tourism we will be heading back across the pond...but it may well be on a plane to an extensive driving trip.  I look forward to returning to places like Paris (where we would rent an apartment).

 

Hank

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The choice of line is a matter of personal taste. We have cruised 5 times with each line and the more formal approach of Cunard suits us better as we coast into the evening of our lives. Food also is very subjective - I was not overjoyed to see Meatloaf and Jerk Chicken in the HAL dining room. Although nominally a British line , Cunard tends to bridge the gap between US and UK tastes better than modern day HAL does.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 12/12/2020 at 9:13 PM, tfred said:

I cant think of two wildly different experiences than Hal and Cunard.

 

HAL is value priced, reasonable product but searching for its future growth.  

 

Cunard is class regimented with portions of the ship cut off for higher fare pax

 

Its a big jump

Have you ever heard of the Neptune Lounge?  Or how about breakfast in a special place for those in the higher suites?  And I have never seen a separate check-in line for HAL suites?  

 

When you talk about sections being reserved for higher paying passengers you are talking about most of the cruise lines these days.  NCL has their Haven Suite area, MSC has a large section of the ship for the Yacht Club and reserves a few prime rows for Yacht Club folks who go to the shows, Celebrity has Michaels and some other areas (depending on the vessel) for the higher paying suites.  Cunard actually has less then many of the other lines.  They do have the "grills" but that is simply giving folks who pay more a better dining experience.  On HAL there are folks who eat nearly all their dinners in the Pinnacle Grill..

 

I have cruised on a few HAL ships (we are 5 Star Mariners) and also been on the QM2.  There were plenty of snobs to go around on all those ships although it is only on HAL where we see folks wearing "Medallions,"  making a big deal out of Medallion ceremonies,  boasting about their status, etc.  I still recall sitting with some folks at the HAL Mariners lunch where they made a point of letting us know they were 4 Star Mariners..like this is something special.  Never heard that on Cunard....in fact I have no idea how their frequent cruiser program works or its levels.

 

Hank

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 12/8/2020 at 5:03 AM, wesport said:

Being a five star mariner on HAL, I have decided to try Cunard next August.  Hope there will be some normalcy by then. Who knows.  Being that this was my first cruise on Cunard, my TA informed me she used our Princess platinum member numbers for our cunard booking. This give us priority embarkation, 2hours of free internet, wine tasting etc.  This was a nice surprise. Especially the priority embarkation. Just thought I would share. Don't know of other Carnival brands that do this. 


To address your original post, give it a go and enjoy. And yes, all Carnival brands have similar marketing “goodies” .

 

Please let us know how it works for you.

 

Be well & happy holidays!

Bob

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 12/16/2020 at 7:39 PM, Hlitner said:

I find some wisdom in your post.  As a long time (over 40 years) frequent cruiser I have posted a similar thought in that I wonder if we should rush in to go on cruises with many onboard restrictions and mandatory excursions (to get off the ship at ports).  I have questioned whether that is a product that this cruise (and his DW) would even enjoy.   But lets be blunt that many of those rushing in to book cruises are looking at short 7 day cruises to the usual Caribbean places (where we could care less about getting off the ship).  My own interest is in longer cruises (we prefer longer then 3 weeks and preferably at least a month) to interesting and exotic ports.  Most folks who take those kind of cruises are sitting back and hoping we can get back to that type of normalcy.   In some of my recent posts I have mentioned that I have no interest in being on cruises with mandatory excursions (we are independent and somewhat adventurous travelers who dislike most tours).   I also cannot buy in to this idea that we can social distance on a mass market cruise ship!  

 

My personal opinion is that the cruise lines need to quickly move to a mandatory vaccination policy (100% must be vaccinated) which should enable them to move back towards something close to the old normal.  They also will need to go to mandatory vaccinations in order to convince many countries that it is safe to allow the return of cruise ships.  Otherwise, DW and I will continue to do our extensive travel but will avoid cruises in favor of independent land trips.  Once Europe reopens to tourism we will be heading back across the pond...but it may well be on a plane to an extensive driving trip.  I look forward to returning to places like Paris (where we would rent an apartment).

 

Hank

 

Greetings Hank, your posts are always filled with wisdom and realism.

 

To each their own, but given the anti consumer tactics of the cruise lines the past months, I am not interested in booking cruises where the basics of the cruise are not solidified and, and, have been delivered for many months so a consumer can determine what is the product and the probability this product will be received.

 

As you pointed out, there are many hurdles for the cruise industry. I too only book long cruises, so the cruise product will have to be as good (food, service, entertainment) and easy and flexible as it was before the virus, for me to ever again consider cruising an option. Not interested in face masks, social distancing, cruise line only shore tours etc. 

 

I do however, have land tour options being devised and they will sit on the shelf until ready to implement.  

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 minutes ago, Doubt It said:

 

Greetings Hank, your posts are always filled with wisdom and realism.

 

To each their own, but given the anti consumer tactics of the cruise lines the past months, I am not interested in booking cruises where the basics of the cruise are not solidified and, and, have been delivered for many months so a consumer can determine what is the product and the probability this product will be received.

 

As you pointed out, there are many hurdles for the cruise industry. I too only book long cruises, so the cruise product will have to be as good (food, service, entertainment) and easy and flexible as it was before the virus, for me to ever again consider cruising an option. Not interested in face masks, social distancing, cruise line only shore tours etc. 

 

I do however, have land tour options being devised and they will sit on the shelf until ready to implement.  

 

Your post frames a lot of my own feelings.  DW and I are having a tough time thinking through our future with cruises.  We only have three outstanding bookings (HAL, Oceania, and MSC) with the first of those next October.  We are hedging our bets on those cruises to minimize any loss if they ultimately get cancelled.  But I am very concerned that the "O" cruise (which involves South and Central America) will not allow us to enjoy the normal cruise experience if they must implement mandatory excursions.  The HAL booking is not until April 2022 so we are more optimistic that things will be back to normal in Japan (that is where we cruise).  For that April 2022 cruise we are planning to spend a few land weeks in Japan (on our own).  Our hope is that vaccines will allow Japan to return to some degree of tourist normalcy....but we still have some concern.  

 

Just yesterday I was looking at some long (over 28 day) cruises in late 2022 but decided that it might be best not to book anymore cruises until we see what kind of cruise experience exists post COVID.  We have also had a lot of fun just flying to various countries and renting apartments for extended stays...and I am starting to wonder if this is the better future option for our trip planning.  I know that many here on CC are desperate to get back on ships but I am now wondering "at what price" in terms of not just dollars but of a quality cruise experience.  The cruise lines send me all kinds of e-mails about the restrictions they are imposing for health/safety...but they are no longer trying to wow me with how wonderful the cruise experience will be on their vessels.  It is almost like they think we will accept any sacrifice of the cruise experience just to get on a ship.   I finally got a nice e-mail from Seabourn which did stress the quality found on their small ships (I can tell you from first hand experience that was true prior to COVID).  But Seabourn is the only line that has started to downplay the COVID issue and move back to their old style of advertising.

 

Hank

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 12/13/2020 at 7:27 PM, TheOldBear said:

As a non “Grills” passenger (Britannia class) I’ve never noticed the portions “cut off for higher fare pax”

So far as I know the list of Grills exclusive spaces are:

  • The assigned restaurant 
  • One lounge
  • A concierge desk
  • A terrace deck, with one hot tub

The rest of the vessel is open to all passengers. This may be contrasted to other lines (MSC Yacht Club ; NCL Haven) efforts to recreate an isolated First Class.

 

On HAL, what are the included perks for Suite passengers?  Different grades of suites?

 

Holland has the Orange Club ..

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, Hlitner said:

Your post frames a lot of my own feelings.  DW and I are having a tough time thinking through our future with cruises.  We only have three outstanding bookings (HAL, Oceania, and MSC) with the first of those next October.  We are hedging our bets on those cruises to minimize any loss if they ultimately get cancelled.  But I am very concerned that the "O" cruise (which involves South and Central America) will not allow us to enjoy the normal cruise experience if they must implement mandatory excursions.  The HAL booking is not until April 2022 so we are more optimistic that things will be back to normal in Japan (that is where we cruise).  For that April 2022 cruise we are planning to spend a few land weeks in Japan (on our own).  Our hope is that vaccines will allow Japan to return to some degree of tourist normalcy....but we still have some concern.  

 

Just yesterday I was looking at some long (over 28 day) cruises in late 2022 but decided that it might be best not to book anymore cruises until we see what kind of cruise experience exists post COVID.  We have also had a lot of fun just flying to various countries and renting apartments for extended stays...and I am starting to wonder if this is the better future option for our trip planning.  I know that many here on CC are desperate to get back on ships but I am now wondering "at what price" in terms of not just dollars but of a quality cruise experience.  The cruise lines send me all kinds of e-mails about the restrictions they are imposing for health/safety...but they are no longer trying to wow me with how wonderful the cruise experience will be on their vessels.  It is almost like they think we will accept any sacrifice of the cruise experience just to get on a ship.   I finally got a nice e-mail from Seabourn which did stress the quality found on their small ships (I can tell you from first hand experience that was true prior to COVID).  But Seabourn is the only line that has started to downplay the COVID issue and move back to their old style of advertising.

 

Hank

 

Hank, thank you. Like you said, I believe we are rather out of step with those desperate to cruise again. And yes, the cruise lines believe the many with the FCC's will do and pay anything. 

 

The "value proposition" will be fundamentally changed post covid, so the concept that cruisers will be able to get the previous product, is I believe, naïve. 

 

What this virus has done to cruising is to essentially break the "habit" of cruising. My habit is totally broken and destroyed. I have moved on to planning land vacations to have a real experience in the location I choose. This includes having customized car, driver and guide who efficiently gets us to where I want to go, bypass lines, confirm our reservations at the local restaurants we want and they wait until we finish eating. In many locations, this is not expensive, but what an amazing way to see the world.

 

It is no longer the ship experience or even looking at the ocean - been there and done that. It is about really experiencing a location. 

 

No one I ever talk to in a store, restaurant etc, will even consider a cruise - so I do not know where all these so called bookings are - other than those with FCC's.

 

In the end, to each their own. But people should really put themselves first and the for profit company second. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Thank You for 25 Years - Click for Fun Stuff!
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • Canadian Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...