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bobradford

Arcadia - Fuel Saving Gone Mad!

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Arcadia J405

 

Have returned today from a 14 day Baltic cruise on this sleek adult only ship. The weather was fabulous, the ship generally in very good condition.

 

My own feeling is that P+O food has improved over the last two years except their roast potatoes are still appalling. Now you have more options, some on each day, others varying. The meals come plated, so generally you do get a warm meal and don't have to wait while some old dear decides if she wants broccoli! 

 

I prefer a good hot meal to silver service.

 

The cabin was spacious, airy with responsive temperature control; the shower larger than some.

 

Entertainment varied from the superb Killer Queen and the very good Reel to Reel to P+O's tried, tested and boring between the wars music. A guest act was a 1940's tribute, great for centarians! Guest singer Roger Wright was superb, Bobby Crush can still play. Some good quizzes and Christine Noble leads a good entertainment staff but new shows and newer songs are desperately needed.

 

Ports - we chose this because we had not been to Gdansk and Klaipeda in Lithuania. Having done most St Petersburg tours frankly they are hard work. 

 

GRIPES 

 

P+O are hiking their drink prices fast, and wine sales looked notably down. Mt favourite Ice Cuvee was £26 in March, in May it was £32. We gave it a miss and bought only three bottles where normally it would have been ten in fourteen days.

 

Time in ports was too short. We left Tallinn at 2.30 for a day at sea. Then to cap it all we were back on board in Copenhagen at 4.30 some 61.5 hours to get to Southampton, while we were overtaken by almost every other ship in the North Sea. Copenhagen Tivoli is great at night, but we are never there.

 

Saves money paid to the ports, saves fuel and I guess they think we spend more on board. 

 

Late bookers often got better cabins at half the price we paid.

 

POSITIVES

 

I still love Arcadia, the staff in the main are great - but P+O still needs to sort its pricing, booze prices, time in port and pricing structure out while at least bringing its main musical content into the second half of the last century. I am, by the way, 67 and there was a lower than average normal age on this cruise.

 

 

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Guest shilly3191

Its the main thing that is turning me away from P&O after over 20+ cruises with them the increase in number of sea days and the less time spent in ports and with their general timing i.e. early afternoon departure, early morning arrivals and late morning arrivals etc. Tallinn is far too nice a port to be leaving at 2-30 and the same with Copenhagen at 4-30. I am afraid the bean counters at P&O with there thinking of leaving early so we can go slow and save on fuel and spend more time onboard so therefore spend more money but it isnt actually working.

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I have to agree that spending a longer time in port , overnight even better,  would be good as a port is very different by night so even if you have been before you can enjoy a different experience ! People would probably be prepared to pay a little more for this so should cover any extra port charges paid by the operator. A lot of itineraries are very samey I find when I'm sure it wouldn't be so hard to make a few changes ?

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Guest shilly3191

P&O used to stay longer in ports and it was always stated in brochure of arrival and departure times, a thing which Princess still do even though part of Carnival, its only this last 2 or 3 years that they have gone down the vague early afternoon, late afternoon, early evening departures.

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Guest Solent Richard

I often smile when the issue of staying longer in port - even overnight - is discussed on Forums.

 

I recall staying overnight in Rio de Janeiro while on Queen Mary 2.

 

My wife and I headed off to Ipanema  to soak up the atmosphere and had an absolute ball.

 

The vast majority of passengers for some reason (?)stayed onboard. Cunard put on a Folk Loric show and were inundated with complaints that the theatre was full and they couldn't  get seats.

 

Amazing.

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I have just returned from a Med cruise on the Arcadia, which was a first , and will probably be the last.

The good points. Most enjoyable food, restaurant staff excellent. cabin pretty good, balcony also good

Bathroom shocking. Very small shower over the bath. Not good.

We had to have freedom sitting in the dining room. Will never do that again, having to queue for over 30minutes

In an attempt to obtain a table for two was not good especially when dressed for formal nights.

Time in port very poor could not believe the short time we were in Gibralter

I think I will not be going again on the arcadia

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Agree with comments made about Arcadia.  We have done two cruises on Arcadia and on both we sailed at ridiculously slow speeds (9Knots) and missed a destination out. 

 

Would have loved to have stayed over night in Kirkwall on Orkney.  Instead it took two days to get back to Southampton and we were over taken by other cruise ships from the Carnival group.

 

All saying this we will not be cruising with Princess after viewing 'The Cruise Ship' on TV!!!!!!!

 

 

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Guest shilly3191

Agree with comments made about Arcadia.  We have done two cruises on Arcadia and on both we sailed at ridiculously slow speeds (9Knots) and missed a destination out. 

 

Would have loved to have stayed over night in Kirkwall on Orkney.  Instead it took two days to get back to Southampton and we were over taken by other cruise ships from the Carnival group.

 

All saying this we will not be cruising with Princess after viewing 'The Cruise Ship' on TV!!!!!!!

certainly wouldnt let watching tv programme put you off cruising with Princess we have cruised a few times with them and think they are much better than P&O and nothing like the tv programme.

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I think 'The Cruise Ship' is not a good potrayal of what cruising is really like, they could have made that program so much better because the ship is lovely, what they are showing is nothing like what cruising is really about

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Shaweast, don't let the tv programme put you off.

I have travelled with Princess a few times as well as other cruise companies, and enjoyed every second. I found having a mixture of nationalities onboard worked to our advantage, no queuing, no hogging sunbeds for hours on sea days.  I am disappointed with the programme as i was hoping to see more of their new ship. Instead it seems to be a very poor sitcom.

I feel a great chance to show off the Royal Princess has been missed.

I can assure you it doesn't show a typical cruise ship holiday with Princess.

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We had a similar problem last year on Aurora, when all the ports of call were shortened.  I wrote a letter of complaint addressed to "The Captain", within an hour I had a phone call to my cabin from the Passenger Services Manager asking could I go to his office for a chat.

 

He was very nice but, like all management, he had to tow the line and had all sorts of excuses for the reasons of running slow, his final comment was that they run slower between ports to save on fuel so that they can pass on the savings to us the customer.  My reply to him was "B*LLSH*T" to which he was a little taken aback.

 

I asked him to forward my letter to Head Office, which he did, about a month later I had a call saying how sorry they were that I felt the way I did and would I accept a quite substantial amount of my next cruise.  Of course I said yes as I had not once mentioned Compensation.

 

Here is just one of the reasons I was annoyed at leaving ports early - we set sail from Dubrovnik at 14.15 sailing up to Venice, Seven Seas Mariner left Dubrovnik at 18.00, Mariner arrived in Venice only an hour behind us.  It was this that prompted me to write my letter of complaint.

 

Regards

Bryn.

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Good for you DBH maybe more of us should do the same. The same thing happened to us on Ventura earlier this year, it would have been quicker to walk from Dubrovnik to Venice. ;)

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Guest Solent Richard

We had a similar problem last year on Aurora, when all the ports of call were shortened.  I wrote a letter of complaint addressed to "The Captain", within an hour I had a phone call to my cabin from the Passenger Services Manager asking could I go to his office for a chat.

 

He was very nice but, like all management, he had to tow the line and had all sorts of excuses for the reasons of running slow, his final comment was that they run slower between ports to save on fuel so that they can pass on the savings to us the customer.  My reply to him was "B*LLSH*T" to which he was a little taken aback.

 

I asked him to forward my letter to Head Office, which he did, about a month later I had a call saying how sorry they were that I felt the way I did and would I accept a quite substantial amount of my next cruise.  Of course I said yes as I had not once mentioned Compensation.

 

Here is just one of the reasons I was annoyed at leaving ports early - we set sail from Dubrovnik at 14.15 sailing up to Venice, Seven Seas Mariner left Dubrovnik at 18.00, Mariner arrived in Venice only an hour behind us.  It was this that prompted me to write my letter of complaint.

 

Regards

Bryn.

Nice one DBH.

 

I do suspect though that those passengers on Regent Seven Seas Mariner paid a slightly higher 'premium' for their express transfer. ;)  ;)  

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Guest shilly3191

Nice one DBH.

 

I do suspect though that those passengers on Regent Seven Seas Mariner paid a slightly higher 'premium' for their express transfer. ;)  ;)  

 

You dont pay extra for "express transfers" it is only a recent thing that P&O have cut times in ports with their change of details in the brochures so not giving port times. It is unforgiveable that you book a cruise with Dubrovnik being a highlight and then leave at 14-15 for a crawl to Venice. It is done for differing reasons i.e. less time in port less port fees, slow speed to next port save on fuel and finally more time on ship more money spent these are only done for one reason and that is to boost P&Os profit and they should stop treating their cruisers like idiots giving out this corporate "claptrap" that nobody believes except those that would still think P&O were great if they stopped at ports only for an hour and got fed fish fingers and chips in the restaurant.

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Could not agree more shilly3191.

 

When in the meeting with the PSM I asked did he have the brochure for 2013/14 and also the two previous years, he did.

 

I showed him the 2011/12 brochure and he agreed that Port Timings were well set out, we then looked at the 2012/13 brochure where they were less so and then on to the  2013/14 where they were very vague.

 

I asked him could he understand why I was annoyed (as a loyal P&O passenger).  His reply : I'm sorry I don't have an answer for you.

 

I finished my letter to them by saying if this is the future with P&O, I will gladly sail with other companies, we are actually sailing on Celebrity Eclipse in a couple of weeks and in two of the ports of call we don't leave until midnight, one being Warnemunde (OK I know this is because of the distance to Berlin) but the other is our last port of call which is Copenhagen ,then a leisurely sail back to Southampton.

 

Regards

Bryn.

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My one and only experience  in recent years was on Arcadia world cruise in 2013. Never again! The time in ports was very short in places like Napier in

New Zealand we stayed 4 hours where QE and other ships stayed all day. New Caledonia was the same we arrived at 8-am and left at 12-00 noon. A beautiful island and we had no time to enjoy it. Pitcairn s they advertised as a port of call in their first brochures of sale and also Easter Island was sold as port

call till they then removed the PORT from the wording nearer the time of sailing. Yes neither of these two islands were port calls as originally listed.

Easter Island was a sail past and we sailed so far from the shore we saw nothing!

Acapulco they cancelled along with the whole country of Argentina . These were cancelled at the last minute when all passengers had paid in full and no

option to cancel their cruise of a life time around South America. We sailed a snails pace around the world to save fuel. Oh! and don't get me into the the potato farm they feed you daily.

So no wonder over 400 passenger rioted near the and of the cruise over non refund of port fees and missed ports and short time on ports. Some taking their anger into the law courts once they reached the UK again and good luck to them I say.

No for me I will stick with Cunard when it comes to world cruises in future.

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We first sailed on Arcadia back in 2009,It was as bad if not worse then.The worst being the stop off in Malaga which was reduced to 3 hours, the brochure stating this was for trips to Granada, no-one got their trip to Granada.

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Oh Dear

Just booked a six night cruise on Arcadia in May.

Sailed on Azura last year and there were a few things that I was not keen on. The waiters seemed a little unfriendly in Freedom Dining, first time for Freedom but suited us fine. Food could have been better.

I was hoping that the Arcadia might be better, bit worried that I might have to take pen and paper with me now.

Hoping that the refit last year might have improved it though, we shall see.

 

Usually sail Cunard so not expecting the same level of standard, however, if very much worse out will come the paper and pen.

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Guest Solent Richard

Oh Dear

Just booked a six night cruise on Arcadia in May.

Sailed on Azura last year and there were a few things that I was not keen on. The waiters seemed a little unfriendly in Freedom Dining, first time for Freedom but suited us fine. Food could have been better.

I was hoping that the Arcadia might be better, bit worried that I might have to take pen and paper with me now.

Hoping that the refit last year might have improved it though, we shall see.

 

Usually sail Cunard so not expecting the same level of standard, however, if very much worse out will come the paper and pen.

 

Good morning Mabelone.

 

I've done three cruises on Arcadia and, like you, normally sail with Cunard.

 

I've never had a complaint, you know P&O ain't Cunard but it's still British and the potential is there to have a good time.

 

The rest is down to you...

 

14613729895_9e60348857_z.jpg

 

PS. Pencil & paper is old fashioned, you need a tablet.wink.png wink.png

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