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  1. PollyBrolly

    Onboard Photographers - What's Your Opinions?

    I for one would buy them if they weren't so expensive. I've got a couple around the place - special birthdays or anniversary etc but would be happy to buy a few each cruise if they weren't nearly £12 each. Especially ones with new friends - I'd make a little album of each cruise with photo's + cruise log + cruise card (saddo that I am, happy that P&O have let you keep the card again).
  2. PollyBrolly

    Art Auctions At Sea

    I appear to be in the minority then - I love going to the Park West auctions on the American lines on sea days. They've always been very well attended & I personally learned quite a bit about various artists. I discovered an artist I really liked (Anatole Krasnyansky) & bought one of his pieces depicting old Chester which I was able to carry off at the end of the cruise. I also won 3 large prints in the raffles during a cruise which were posted to me free of charge. Park West also give everyone who attends an auction a small print of various artists - yes, they're worthless but generally jolly enough to put in cheap frames to adorn perhaps 'the smallest room' or a guest bedroom. I've never forgone an event/guest talk in preference to the art auction & missing an hour of reading my kindle hasn't affected my overall enjoyment of the cruise experience. Diversity rules - it's true that the world would be a boring place if we all liked the same thing
  3. I've had conversations with fellow travellers (similar to Furby) & been told that they totally ignore their time slot because it's the 1st day of their holiday & they intend to be on board as early as possible to partake in the buffet & to get to know their way around the ship (despite most itineries including at least 1 day at sea after leaving Soton). I would hope that these eager-beavers aren't the ones who are quick to whinge about the general housekeeping going on around them - the ships crew can only do so much after departing passengers before those arriving start getting in their way. I don't have a problem if new passengers are held dockside until their allotted time but all terminals need to have suitable facilities (seats, toilets, drinks etc) - Mayflower certainly doesn't!!
  4. PollyBrolly


    We've also used Parking4Cruises for the last few years - I can't fault them either. Their reps have always been friendly & courteous & this time (can't remember doing it before) they recorded our mileage when we dropped the car off. When we collected the car at Queen Elizabeth Terminal last Friday I found the car wet - not because of rain, but because they'd washed it rather than returning it all dusty :-) On Friday at QE Terminal CPS appear to bring cars virtually into the luggage hall but that's the only terminal that we've had to walk slightly further for the Parking4Cruises reps than for the CPS guys.
  5. I'm nearly with Terminator - enjoyed P&O, RCI, NCL & Celebrity. I couldn't really find anything that much different to separate any of them other than P&O seem to be the only one that still provide a Tea/Coffee tray in cabins & generally cater for the British traveller but otherwise I've only had good experiences with the big American ones. The sales factor for me is itinery - where they want to take me I would definitely steer clear of Costa though - the ship was fine but the Italian crew were neigh on all extremely unpleasant & rude to customers, unless you were Italian or German!
  6. PollyBrolly

    Balcony Or Not To Balcony?

    Only had a balcony once but found we only used it to 'air' trainers after a gym session so a definite waste of money for us. Caribbean is generally a no-brainer for weather - so a balcony isn't required to know what you need to wear & if you're a bit of a 'people watcher' then open decks are brill. It's a very subjective question because you're the only one who can decide the value to you. We've literally just disembarked Oriana & one dinner companion told us that they'd never book a balcony again because they are no longer allowed to smoke out there (obviously a factor for them).
  7. I'm a cruiser & have just finished reading through this thread. Tipping is a very emotive topic - always has been & no doubt always will be. I've read the blurb where it states to help me, an automatic deduction will be added to my account & will be shared between my cabin steward, waiter, head waiter & wine waiter. I personally remove the automatic charge because I don't use the wine waiter & I don't generally see the head waiter until he interrupts my meal on the penultimate day of each cruise. I therefore split the amount of the full recommended tip between my steward & waiter >> so not a skinflint as one of the posters likes to accuse. I don't know the validity of comments in this thread about cash tips having to be pooled - if it's true then I would be extremely disappointed. I'm not happy with the whole tipping thing but 'comply' as I'm sure lots of others do. Tipping anywhere is meant to be for better than expected service. I expect my room to be clean with linen changed (as I would in any hotel) & I expect the meals I've paid for to either be delivered (club / freedom) or made available (buffet). Other than getting a towel animal left on my bed at least once during a cruise I really don't feel that I've had anything more than I've actually paid for but I'm made to feel guilty so I pay up. I really can't understand why this industry is so closed & secretive - it's all "I've heard" or "I was told ***" - the operators or crew should open up & put all this speculation to bed once & for all.