An appreciation more than a rant!
Barry West | June 29, 2016 | P&O Cruises | Arcadia
We have just returned from a cruise on Arcadia, our second voyage on her, to the Black Sea, Istanbul, Athens et al. There is no doubt that the old girl is well overdue for a refit and with the proposed improvements to places like the Crows Nest it will become a superb cruise ship again.
The trips we booked from the ship were all excellent and we were blessed with the best set of guides we have ever had anywhere. There is no doubt in our minds that this really is the only way to do it if you want to learn about the country you are visiting and the sites you are seeing.
Sure, you can get a taxi at the end of the quay that may be cheaper if you can fill it with say four people but we rather doubt we the commentary from a taxi driver will be as good as a university lecturer.
Inevitably there were the perpetual moaners on board, and we have to wonder why they keep cruising. We can only conclude that it’s not so bad after all.
Over the years there has been nibbling away at the edges of all the nice things we used to enjoy, and which at the end of the day didn’t cost P & O very much. In our opinion too much time and money is given over to the lunches and cocktail parties for the higher grade P & O Cruise Club members. These events also caused a degree of disruption to the ships programme of events because the Cruise Director was unaware they were taking place!
The Entertainments Team were a mixed bunch. Apart from the outstanding talent of Suzanne Britten – possibly the ship’s greatest asset – the rest were without much talent. The Cruise Director Benne (shame she hasn’t got another name) lacked the ability to put a
sentence together without saying “Fantastic” and “Excellent” several times, and this seems to be rubbing off on the junior members of her team. A bit of time spent on presentation skills we not go amiss. Finally, on Entertainment, as good as the Headliners are, it was disappointing to see them doing the same shows after twelve months.
The tipping business still seems a bit of a mystery to us, as we are the sort of people who like to reward our steward and waiters personally, but still feel uncomfortable about stopping the daily gratuity added to our bill. We wonder what others think and do. There are still those that get up from dinner on the last night and seemingly suffer no embarrassment about not giving something extra.
Does anyone know anything about the ‘on board’ fear that everything will be in US$ on P & O before long?
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