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Posts posted by GOQ

  1. Thanks for posting that link Presto2.


    Looking at the webpage I notice it is an Antiviral, which is just what we need. I believe these alcohol based hand cleaners are  only effective against bacteria.


    Will definitely be buying some of this stuff..



    Found on the internet:


    "Why is Norovirus resistant to alcohol-based hand sanitiser?

    Norovirus is a non-enveloped virus with a protein membrane protecting it, as opposed to the lipid membrane of an enveloped virus. The protein membrane around a norovirus cell is not broken down by hand sanitiser and so it is not effective in protecting against infection. The best way to avoid catching Norovirus is to wash your hands for 20 seconds minimum and scrub underneath your fingernails."


    • Like 2
  2. I have done about 30 cruises and this was the first time I have had any gastrointestinal illness, that is 1 in 30, so I suppose that is not bad odds.


    I frequently come away from a cruise with a few sniffles or a light cold, a few heavy colds and once I needed antibiotics for a chest infection.


    This time I was a bit unlucky, at least 4 times people sat besides or directly behind me continuously coughing. Just bad luck. And luckily I did have a balcony so I could get some fresh air.


    I was doing about 5 cruises a year, I have lost a bit of my confidence now I don’t think I will be booking any new cruses for a while.


    • Like 4
  3. Thanks for your reply

    No it's not my first cruise, more like my 30th and my worst. Perhaps it's just because I am getting older and just can't hack it anymore.

    Oh, and in addition to the illness I was stopped and questioned by the police in Valencia and my homeward flight was delayed by 45mins causing me to miss my bus at Gatwick. Sort of just adds up.   

    • Like 1
  4. Before embarking on my recent Azura cruise I received an email from P&O informing me there was Norovirus onboard. And there were precautions being taken in the form of the buffet waiters serving food and drinks.


    Then about two thirds of the way through the cruise they reverted to self service, then I got ill with diarrhea and vomiting.

    I rang 999 and reported it and was promptly told to self isolate in my cabin, they asked me about my symptoms, phoned me up a few times to check my symptoms and that was it, on my own for 2 days. The only visit I had was from a nurse? Not to ask how I was or if I needed anything, only to deliver a questionnaire and a sample bottle and quickly disappear. I am in my seventies and a solo cruiser, sick and alone in my cabin for 2 days.


    Throughout the cruise there were many passenger coughing and sneezing, mainly over me I seems. After I started to get through the Norovirus symptoms got these as well, a cough, sore throat and runny nose.


    I don’t know if I had Norovirus and a heavy cold at the same time, but it’s certainly putting me off cruising.

    • Like 1
  5. Thank you all for your advise:


    @kevcharben for your experience with Emirates.


    @elmsliebev I will ask a travel agent how and if they can modify any flights P&O might offer.


    @julymorning for your experience on layover time, transferring between connections is something I had not considered.


    @terrierjohn and @thejugger booking my own flights would not seem to be an option. Trying to do a dummy booking, when I get to flight options and select opt-out option the response is:


    “Please note, there will be no change to your holiday price”, so it would seem quite an expensive option to book my own flights.

  6. How did you find Emirates, and was your stopover in Dubai?


    Yes 23hrs is maybe optimistic, but I am thinking the duration of the stopover will have some impact, a longer journey but more time for a break between flights.

  7. P&O Flights to Australia.


    I am considering taking a segment of a P&O world cruise from ether Sydney to Hong Kong or from Singapore to Sydney. Only the thought of a 23 hour flight from London to Sydney is a bit scary.


    I made inquires from my local TA asking for details of the flights for these cruises and all she could tell me was that P&O only release flight details 6 months before the cruise.


    I then went to the future cruise lady on an Aurora cruise and asked the same question. She told me the same but implied there might be a choice of flights/airlines within a set price range and outside this range there might be a choice for a supplement.


    How might this work? Would P&O assign me a flight e.g.

    London Dubai – Dubai Sydney without any choice and that’s final or a list of flight options, maybe some at an additional cost.


    I have done some googling and found out there are at least 6 airlines doing the route London to Sydney at various stopover points and different flight duration e.g.:


    Quantas: London Perth 16hr 35min – Perth Sydney 4hr 10min with 2hr 55 min stopover.

    Emerates: London Dubai 7hrs – Dubai Sydney 13hr 30min with 1hr 20min stopover.




    Can anyone with experience of Australia based cruises offer any advise on the Airlines P&O use and, if there is a choice of flights/airline, which might be the best stopover choice.


    Sorry if I am over-complicating this, but as I wrote 23 hours is a bit scary.

  8. I downloaded the Stockperks App then entered and verified my email address.


    I have a Halifax share dealing account so I just did the same as when I used to apply directly to P&O, I printed out a statement of my shareholding deleting my account information, so just containing my name, number of shares, valuation and valuation date then uploaded it to Stockperks.


    I then received an acknowledgement  of my "Manual Brokerage Statement Submission".

    Then another email to confirm that my ownership had been processed and validated.


    On a Friday I used the App to apply for two cruises I have booked for March and May. On Monday morning I received emails from Stockperks and P&O to inform me that both cruises had the Shareholder obc applied.


  9. I have been on quite a few Thomson/Marella cruises starting with Destiny, and the obvious benefits are:


    Fly from your local airport, all inclusive and up until recently good value, a low number of sea days per cruise and Marella do really have a good selection of cruise itineraries (I hope they bring back the USA cruises).


    However as a Solo cruiser I have a slightly different viewpoint on Marella. The drawbacks for me are:


    I am limited to a choice of 15 inside or 15 outside cabins in fixed blocks on the lower decks, it gets a bit boring after a few cruises, and no option of a balcony.


    Limited ship type, either Discovery “Type” or Explorer “Type”, again it gets a bit boring. If I could change the cabin location it would not seem so bad.


    If I don’t book really early, most of the cruises I would like to book disappear, but they are still there if I put 2 people in the cruise search. It seems once those 15+15 cabins are gone that's it, no Marella cruise for me.


    The Solo cruise experience is very hit or miss, if you get a good Solos organizer it is great, otherwise it can be a poor experience.


    So I tend to do more cruises with P&O these days, I can book any cabin I choose, there are much more Solo passengers on P&O and I don’t have to book a year in advance to get a Solo cabin.


    So my Marella cruises were 3 times a year, then 2, then 1 and now 0. But I am still getting bombarded with mail and emails from Marella trying to sell me a cruise. They can't seem to figure out why I haven't booked any cruise lately.  


  10. 22 hours ago, crompton21 said:

    Is it possible that by using one contact point to process the data there was suddenly a greater visibility on what it was actually costing across all the companies?  Hopefully it's just an oversight that the information is currently missing.

    When you consider in 2018 the per share price was around £40 so a hundred shares would have cost you £4000 but today the cost is about £1100.

    Maybe they are considering raising the minimum number of shares held, to say 400.


  11. On 1/23/2024 at 1:18 PM, dmwnc1959 said:

    Don’t wait until it’s too late - I’ll be 65 years old when it’s my turn to transit the Panama Canal and finally get to cross this off of my Bucket List. Here’s hoping I’m still in good health when that time comes. 😎

     You too, at least you are doing stuff.

    My little brother died aged 55, my wife at 60 and my father aged 69, I am now in my early seventies and my old body now hurts quite a lot, so I had better just get on with doing some  adventure. 😵 


    On my list are:

    Panama Canal.

    Suez Canal (if it's safe).

    And Australia. 


    Good luck




    • Like 4
    • Thanks 1
  12. Again sorry to cause any upset, I really know how difficult it can be.


    Perhaps it would be nice if you could ask your wife to contribute a few sentences to your daily report , so we can all see her point of view. 


    I often find myself crying when I think of my late wife and what she had do go through, it would be so nice to think your wife is getting enjoyment from life.


  13. 17 minutes ago, Selbourne said:

    If this continues I shall close this thread. In conclusion I shall say this (not that I should have to justify it). You said that if you couldn’t have got a seat you would have returned to your cabin. Hopefully your condition would still enable you to do this unaided. My wife could not, without my assistance. Her disability is such that she may have a sudden need to use a bathroom and I have to assist her both to get there and whilst there. If I am sat away from her she cannot quietly advise me of this need and you can perhaps imagine the consequences. It is not just a ‘desire’ that some people want to sit adjacent to a full time wheelchair user. Now please let it rest. 


    I certainly would not want you to close this thread because I have a difference of opinion with you on access to disabled seating.


    Many people are getting a great amount of enjoyment from your reports of an exciting 65 night cruise which most of us will never probably never will do. So you know you can't really can't close the thread.


    I am following you adventure and trying to work up the courage to do longer cruises, my longest so far has been 16 nights.


    I do emphasize with you on your need to take care of your wife, and this will override all, been there , done that, and I know how difficult it can be. 


    I promise not to say anymore on any disability issue, I will deal with my own stuff in my own way. I am very sorry if I have offended you. Please continue and I hope you have a wonderful journey.


    I will be very interested in your reports on Bermuda, which is a place I have never visited before, and is on my bucket list.


    • Like 11
  14. 24 minutes ago, Selbourne said:

    I really don’t want to start the usual ‘hidden disabilities’ debate that comes up every single time anyone mentions an issue and, as I said in my post, I’m not criticising the passengers. There are plenty of seats marked for accessible use, but only two in the whole theatre allow a wheelchair user to sit alongside their companion. On the newer ships, these seats are specifically designated as companion seats for wheelchair users and it would be helpful if the same could be done on Aurora. As I say, I am talking about just 2 seats. 

    OK I respect that is your opinion, but when the theatre is full and all the "disability seats" are occupied 

    what you are implying is that your need/desire to be next to your spouse/companion/friend overrides/"is more important than" another persons needs.


    I did say that it was my only option was to use a companion seat or go back to my cabin.


    I also had to push around my late wife in her wheelchair so I know how difficult it can be, but you have each other. Just think of those folks who have to deal with this stuff by themselves.


  15. 1 hour ago, Selbourne said:

    🤣 P&O should really put a sign on the one seat each side where a companion can sit next to their partner in a wheelchair that says “Wheelchair Companion Only”. Unfortunately they just have the standard accessibility symbol on them, like all the other accessible seats, so anyone who uses an accessible seat can sit in them. It’s a particular challenge because of the passenger age profile on Aurora. There are a lot of elderly folk who may have a Blue Badge at home, or use a walking stick, who use these seats. Obviously they are perfectly entitled to do so, but they could easily use the other accessible seats and many would if the 2 seats were clearly marked as for wheelchair companions only. 

    Yes I must admit to being one of those guilty persons who have in the past used the wheelchair companions seat.


    I suffer from Cervical Spondylosis, advanced arthritis of the neck which can be very painful and also disturbs my balance. When in “Pain Mode” in order to be able to sit through the show I have to sit at the very back of the theater and tilt my head forward looking down my nose onto the stage in order to reduce the pain.


    On one occasion the only suitable and free seat available which would allow me to do this was the companion seat at the back of the theater, which I took (otherwise miss the show, go back to room and lay on bed). A lady turned up with her husband in a wheelchair, gave me some very nasty looks but did ask if she could leave her husband besides me, so she had to find a free seat nearby which was really no problem for her.


    Sorry, I am guilty.


    As and addition:


    Last December on the Aurora Canaries cruise I tried a different solution to my little neck pain problem.


    I picked an aisle seat 5 rows back from the stage, poked my feet into the aisle so I could assume a reclining position and thus band my head forward. Unfortunately I also have a problem with double vision so closed my eyes.

    This happened to be during a performance of those two young ladies who play the violin and tend to walk about the audience. One of them spotted me with my eye closed, assumed I was sleeping, crept up on me and played her violin about a foot from my right ear.


    • Like 1
  16. 13 hours ago, carlmm said:

    I am considering a Canary Islands cruise aboard the Azura in March.
    Is this a good idea for a German? I have enjoyed my frequent trips with Cunard, will it be very different with P&O?
    How comfortable is it for solo travellers? Shared tables? Socializing? 
    How long is there live music in the evenings? Well frequented bars?

    My main comment here on your query "How comfortable is it for solo travellers".

    I first started cruising with P&O  as a "Solo Traveller" just after corvid in 2021 and in that time I have done 7 cruises with P&O and I have another 6 cruises booked, so obviously I like P&O as a Solo Traveller. Some points:


    1. The solo traveller cost supplement  is very reasonable compared with other cruise lines.

    2. P&O list a solos meetup in the daily news sheet Horizon every day, usually tea and coffee are provided so you get to meet other solo passengers and make friends.

    3. Apart from dinner, when you visit the dining room for breakfast and lunch you are asked if you would like to share a table, if you say yes you get to meet lots of nice people to socialise with. The restaurants staff are very good and when they realise you are by yourself will place you with other solo cruisers. Also they get to know you and call you by your first name when entering the restaurant, I always get to be called Mr Paul or even Sir Paul.☺️

    4. Dinner might be either Freedom dining, dine when you wish but the approach will be the same as breakfast and lunch do you want to share, or club dining where you are allocated a time and table for each night. P&O tend to group singles on the same table, so again over the cruise you make friends.

    5. Being non British will not be a problem, it might even be an advantage as everyone well in the solos groups anyway, will want to make a fuss of you. You will be welcome.


    I don't know what cruise you are on, but I will be on Azura in March, I am an old unsteady bloke with a beard, on a stick bouncing off walls.



  17. I had a very nice curried fish for lunch in the MDR on Aurora in December, not normally something I eat but I enjoyed it. Which I am about to try and reproduce at home, but I can't remember whether it came with rice, chip, potatoes or something else.


    Generally I don't have any complaints with the food on P&O, and only once have I had a  rubbery steak.

  18. Can I change my Select Fare cruise to another cruise, even if I have paid the balance.


    I have a 13 night Tenerife to Malta repositioning cruise on Azura (A411) booked for this March.


    I paid the balance last month.


    On reflection, for me, this winter has been so horrible so I feel it would have been much better if I had booked the 19 night (A410C) or 20 night (A410A) cruise which includes the week preceding the repositioning part.


    Is it too late, I am thinking I might spend half an hour on the phone to P&O only to be told, No.

  19. My bag did go through X Ray, but I had a big bottle of water in my bag as well. Perhaps X-rays are clever and knew it was water. 😁

    On 1/2/2024 at 12:29 PM, 9265359 said:


    And they will have a staff member sat at a desk just past where you scan you card as you get onboard to declare and hand over any alcohol - but the staff member will be sat there twiddling their thumbs as nobody has handed over anything at all all day.


    Even when they have the security xray conducted on the ship and the crew can see bottles in bags nothing is handed over.

    On initially boarding the cruise either at Southampton or Barbados etc I usually have my 1 litre of whisky in my back pack, nobody has every checked my bag so I could have had 2 litres in it, I suppose.


    On my last cruise in December, Aurora to the Canaries, an announcement was made over the ships PA system that any alcohol brought onboard in the Canaries was to be declared on boarding. 


    However on our last port of call (Lisbon, so not the Canaries) I noticed many people boarding with large bags of bottles which were not being checked. Then I found 1 lire bottles of Bells whisky for 10 Euros a bottle, so of course, I bought 3 bottles. Again nobody attempted to check them.


    But this was the last port of call.

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