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towny44 last won the day on March 18

towny44 had the most liked content!

About towny44

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    W Yorkshire
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    Cruising, reading, armchair sports fan.

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  1. towny44

    P&O prices on the Rise??

    I have just compared Bolsover's P&O winter launch brochures for 2020/1 with the same brochure for last years 2019/20 cruises, and despite this year's having an extra 5% discount, no gratuities and only a 5% deposit the base prices have, on average not increased by very much, and with the extra discounts this year, prices are in fact lower than last year. So despite the concerns that dropping the gratuity charge might lead P&O to recover this cost in higher prices, that does nor seem to have happened. The biggest increase is for Ventura's 35 night Caribbean cruise where inside cabins have increased by 8% and balconies by 7%, but for a 2 nt Zeebrugge cruise in mid November, an 11 or 12 night mid March Spain and Portugal cruise, the prices are unchanged and a balcony for a 12 nt end Nov/early Dec Canaries cruise is 5% less. Arcadia's world cruise is unchanged for a balcony and only 3% higher for an inside, Norway/North Cape 12nt end Nov cruises show 5% increases and a 10 nt Xmas Baltic cruise has unchanged inside cabins and 5% increases for Balcony cabins. Aurora's 12 nt Northern Lights cruises in November have unchanged inside cabins and 6% increases on Balconies, whilst her mid March Northern lights 12 nighters show 5% increases for both.
  2. towny44

    Chocoholics buffet

    I admit we tried and enjoyed the Chocaholics, Midnight , or Celebrity's Brunch buffet, but don't really miss them now they are gone, and if by concentrating on their routine dining options helps cruise lines to maintain good standards, then that's fine by me.
  3. towny44


    We have only once had club dining on P&O, that was on Arcadia during its inaugural Caribbean season when it only had club dining. We booked fairly early to get a very good deal and chose and were allocated a table for two. So maybe booking early is the way to secure a table for two.
  4. towny44

    Speciality Restaurants

    That is also possibly true but unfortunately these prices have been squeezed because of the lower prices from the bigger ships, and the knock on effect is to spotlight the smaller ships as being less profitable, and probably to hasten their sale. However having said that P&O do seem to successfully market Aurora and Arcadia as premium price ships, so maybe that will help to keep them going for a few more years.
  5. towny44

    Speciality Restaurants

    You are possibly correct, however the main reason for the apparent reduction in cruise fares is due largely to the economies of scales, or good old fashioned mass production if you prefer. The new high volume passenger cruise ships have a far lower passenger cost ratio than the ships did in the "good old days", and of course the more passengers they can persuade to use the added value restaurants, drink packages, shore excursions etc, then the lower the unit cost and the higher the profit margin for the cruise line. Don't get me wrong I will still have the occasional meal in a Speciality restaurant, but certainly not on a regular basis. Since for me the MDR food quality and choice is more than adequate, and on P&O I have even frequented the Buffet on Indian themed nights and enjoyed a very good curry.
  6. towny44

    Speciality Restaurants

    I think if they did credit you with the actual cost of your MDR meal, you would be staggered at how little it costs, and be even more sceptical of paying the speciality charge.
  7. towny44

    Speciality Restaurants

    I think I prefer to pay £35 for a bottle of wine and dinner in the MDR rather than £105 for the same bottle and dinner in Epicurean, although in our case we are quite happy with the wine at £17 - £20 per bottle.
  8. towny44

    Drinks Package

    I think that's the view of the majority on the forums Annie, but I imagine there will be quite a few who think it will be cost effective for them, I just hope P&O drink prices don't escalate like Celebrity's did after they introduced drink packages.
  9. towny44

    Speciality Restaurants

    We have tried a number of speciality restaurants over the years, but generally agree that the MDR food is more than adequate for our needs and we don't really need to pay any extra. However for us the best has to be Celebrity's Tuscan Grill on the Solstice ships, with those wrap round windows and great views over the wake it would be tops even without the special service and some great food.
  10. towny44

    Are the Critics Right??

    Apart from the news and sport we record or download all the the programmes we want to view, and then watch them in the order we prefer, and of course wizz though the adverts. But we never ever ever record any of the puerile so called variety shows or, "the best song and dance performer ever", type shows which are screened on a Saturday night.
  11. I was just reading a thread on CC about RCI placing an order for it's 6th Oasis class ship, and how there were similar posts when it launched the first with posters suggesting that it would lead to RCI going bankrupt and Carnival being able to snap it up cheaply because they were being sensible in not building such monsters. Funny that because 2 of the current 5200 passenger Iona style new ship orders will be joining Carnival's own line, as well as all the others going to Aida, Princess and P&O, all owned by the Carnival group, clearly so far the cruise lines have proved all the doubters wrong, and I suspect they will continue to do so.
  12. towny44

    Are the Critics Right??

    I think like a lot of reports in the media they only reflect the views of the writer, which is why you can get totally opposite reviews about the same programme. However I do sometimes feel as though there is a capital culture slant on quite a few shows, especially new wave comedy which I generally think is rubbish, and yet the London luvvies suggest it is deep and meaningful!!!!
  13. That's quite possibly because it's what the passengers want. Economies of scale have determined that bigger ships are needed to enable cruise lines to keep the fares down, and the way RCI have been able to fill all their ships because of these features, is why we are seeing most other main stream cruise lines follow suit. If you want individuality, smaller ships and superior cabin design and luxury interiors, then you are going to need to focus on the premium cruise lines, but these come at a significant price premium.
  14. They are too arrogant I think, or maybe just too stupid.
  15. towny44

    What's with the silly pop up???

    After following your suggestion unfortunately I am still seeing the pop up, any further advice?