Posted November 28th, 2012, 10:39 AM
I think a lot of the problem this morning was that people were ignoring the colour coded disembarkation numbers and simply joining the queue when they wanted - if this had been better policed and queue jumpers turned away it might have been easier - as it was, when they called my "priority" number the queue stretched from the Queen's Room, through the Lobby and back past the theatre- so we went back to Todd English - where they chucked us out at 10 - by which time the queue was ~ 20 minutes and only reached the Chart Room. Immigration itself went smoothly and quickly - then there was a 40 minute wait for a taxi.....
As they always do.
Yes, too true. Sadly, the crew made no attempt at any method of control. A few people tried to jump the queue by pretending they didn't know where the end was. People politely, but firmly, told them where the end was. Two men jumped the queue right at the door of the Britannia restaurant and would not go. Several people told them where the end of the queue was and how unfair it was on the people who had been waiting for more than an hour, but they wouldn't listen. Several of us simply refused to let them wriggle in ahead of us, but they soon found someone who gave in. At least a fight didn't break out, which is a testimony to the good behavior of those of us who had been queueing for so long.
What I find intersting is that the crew were SURPRISED that this happened! Had they never seen the queues for tenders????? As we were leaving the ship, I heard the snippy little girl with the walkie-talkie trying to explain the situation to the person on the other end. She said "We're surprised that so many people got in the queue early, so it isn't working quite according to plan." That's a heck of a euphemism for "our plans were poor and it's a shrieking mess."
Perhaps if they had given everyone the full list, people might have understood. We got the list for independent travelers. Looking at that list, it appeared that Immigration officers were on board at 6:45 with nothing to do until the first group would be called at 9:00. So why not scoot in right away before other arrive? Based on previous experience, I think the 6:45-9:00 interval was probably for tours and intransit passengers. And if the independents had known that, some might have been more understanding of the time frames.
Our reward for standing in the queue instead of waiting in TE was that it was easy to get a porter and there were few people waiting for cars. AND we got out early enough to avoid waiting charges from the car service. If we hadn't arranged the car service, we would have lounged around TE all morning.
The THIRD generation in my family to sail on a Cunarder
28 QE2 - including 2 Midnight Sun, 2 Panama Canal, 6 TAs, 4 Canada/New England, and various Caribbean, Bermuda, Europe itineraries
9 QM2 - 5TAs, Caribbean, Royal Circumnavigation of Australia, Canada
1 Caronia - Baltic
5 NCL - including 2 on SS Norway (RIP)
1 Uniworld River Cruise (Tulips and Windmills)
1 American Cruise Line - Queen of the West, Columbia & Snake Rivers