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About BanburyBlue

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  1. Hi all, We're looking at a cruise that spends 2 days in Ijmuiden. Looking for some advice on... 1, is there anything in Ijmuiden itself? 2, what sort of shore excursions are available from Ijmuiden. I think I've read elsewhere, that the shuttle bus to Amsterdam has improved? Many thanks
  2. Hi all, We're off on a cruise next week that docks in Lisbon. I'm struggling to find out where the ship will dock, and where this dock is in relation to the city centre. Does anyone know? If it helps we're on the P&O Britannia (cruise B927), arriving in Lisbon on Friday 4th October. Many thanks,
  3. Hi all, Quick question. On Britannia, is the Serenity pool part of the Retreat, or can anyone use it? Thanks.
  4. Interesting that they’re prepared to give people extra OBS for sailing late, but absolutely refuse to give people extra OBS when mechanical failures result in people missing ports, or indeed when they shut all the shops.
  5. Yes I can believe that. Looking at the photo's above tells the story.
  6. Yes agreed. We don't drink that much during the day. Occasional beer by the pool, occasional afternoon cocktail. We quite often hit the mocktails (what's not to love about a Bananaberry crush). And of course with port days you're off the boat for hours at a time. So even with a few heavy nights, it wouldn't cost in for us at that price. For those trying to work out if it's worth it, if you've been cruising before, you must have an idea of how much you normally drink during a cruise - just do the maths!
  7. I've been reading this thread with interest. TBH, I get cross anyway when you look at the website and it gives a list of destinations, that once you have done some research turn out to be miles away. I would be very annoyed if P&O did this to me. I agree with the comments about P&O customer service. We had an issue last year with the closure of the shops for refitting and the change of alcohol policy (both notified after booking, and the shop refit closures 2 weeks before we were due to sail). P&O wouldn't budge on anything - very bullish. We did get a bottle of champagne and flowers in the room in the end, but this was because they failed to respond to emails, not because of their original decision. In terms of customer service, after the above experience, we had a sulk and booked a cruise with RCI (never going with P&O again!!). I personally found their customer service just as bad - emails never answered etc. My cynical view is that they want you to use their premium rate call centre. And on board, we quickly realised that P&O are miles better at customer service generally. So back to P&O. We've had POC cancelled before. On Britannia the call at Monte Carlo was cancelled because of bad weather, but they took us to Ajaccio instead. And on last years cruise there was an engine problem, so they held us a Barcelona to fix it and cancelled Nice. Has anyone ever had any success with ABTA? I thought about complaining over the onboard shop closures, but didn't think they'd be any point.
  8. Personally, I won't be taking up the package as it seems very expensive. £39.95 x 2 people x 14 nights = £1118.60 I haven't the bill to hand, but I fairly sure we would normally spend around £500 (between us) over the course of the cruise. Now that the daily cabin charge has gone, the free On Board Spend (£300) will go a long way towards that. We sailed with P&O a few times now, and bar prices do seem relatively sensible - £4/£5 for a beer? So unless bar prices have gone up drastically, it would mean 8 drinks per night. We did try out RCI last year for a short cruise, and on that one, we did actually buy the package. I think it was less that the £39.95 that P&O charge, and drinks were more expensive. (they also only charge the difference for drinks that are more than the limit). I would estimate that for the RCI cruise it was probably 'even stevens' over the course of the cruise. But it was nice not to have to worry about the end of cruise bar bill.
  9. We did a cruise on the Oriana a couple of years ago and really liked it. One really good thing was that you got to know a lot of the other passengers as you saw them again and again. But I don’t remember it being that much more than the other ships. There was an 18 day Med cruise that would cost upwards of £7k for the both of us, whereas a 15 or 16 day on another P&O ship was something like £4-£5k. from experience on other cruises, Oriana does seem a very popular ship. So perhaps that’s it - people are prepared to pay for one last go.
  10. I’ve just been researching cruises for later this year, and was quite surprised how expensive Oriana compared to other P&O ships? I assume this is down to the size of the ship? But even so, there seems to be a massive difference to the extent that on some ships, even longer cruises are cheaper than Oriana?
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