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Has your attitude to P&O changed?

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14 minutes ago, NewWestwardbound said:

Perhaps Celebrity? 

Another vote for Celebrity.  But watch out for the drink prices! Try and get a promotional deal that includes a drinks package, even if you are only a moderate drinker.

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13 hours ago, Selbourne said:

As the discussion has moved to alternative cruise operators, can I ask a question of those who have experience of other cruise lines?

 

We have only ever cruised with P&O, have been on all their ships and although only in our 50’s we see ourselves as ‘traditional’ cruisers who don’t like the direction that P&O is going in, so are open to alternatives, preferably more upmarket and certainly not American ‘resort’ ships full of theme parks and kids. Other than Cunard Grill Class, which ‘premium’ operators offer round trip ex-UK cruises? Flying isn’t an option for us. Good accessible (disabled) cabins and facilities are crucial, as are 100% non-smoking balconies. We are foodies so great restaurants are also a must. I’m hearing good things about Saga’s new ships but my wife has a mind block that we aren't old enough for a Saga holiday yet 😂. So, if we take the plunge and desert P&O, given our likes and dislikes, which operator, offering round trip ex-UK cruises would best fit the bill?

 

18 minutes ago, NewWestwardbound said:

Perhaps Celebrity? 

I would agree that Celebrity would meet your needs Selbourne, but I don't think they do round Britain cruises.  However Princess do offer a number of round Britain cruises and with similar ships to P&O and similar style they would seem an admirable fit. Think P&O but with a much higher customer service standard.

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Hi Selbourne,

                         we are also in our 50's and arrived late to cruising, we have now done 9 with P and O, 1 Viking and 1 Seabourn. 

We enjoy the P and O experience especially the familiar crowd onboard but a couple of special offers drew us away to the other operators which was under £250 per night Viking on Orion and Seabourn Encore. It took a little bit of getting used to once onboard but both exceeded our expectations, it often felt that we were the only ones onboard. The food was fantastic especially of not was the buffet and outside eating area on Viking and the Sushi (I never thought I would eat raw fish) restaurant on Encore. We had 3 booked this year Ventura in March obviously cancelled, Seabourn in June (cancelled) and I found a really good deal on Princess whcih we wanted to try and had been recommended to us in September which is also cancelled.  

If I can get a good deal I would not hesitate to go on Viking or Seabourn the only note is to ensure you have the drinks package on Viking its well worth it.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, NewWestwardbound said:

Perhaps Celebrity? 

Is it very ‘Americanised’ though? For all P&O’s faults, we do like the ‘Britishness’ and wouldn’t like anything too brash. 

Edited by Selbourne

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1 hour ago, terrierjohn said:

 

I would agree that Celebrity would meet your needs Selbourne, but I don't think they do round Britain cruises.  However Princess do offer a number of round Britain cruises and with similar ships to P&O and similar style they would seem an admirable fit. Think P&O but with a much higher customer service standard.


Thanks John. Doesn’t have to be round Britain, was meaning a non-fly cruise (post Coronavirus). Celebrity seems to be getting a few votes though. 

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45 minutes ago, TinyDavid said:

Hi Selbourne,

                         we are also in our 50's and arrived late to cruising, we have now done 9 with P and O, 1 Viking and 1 Seabourn. 

We enjoy the P and O experience especially the familiar crowd onboard but a couple of special offers drew us away to the other operators which was under £250 per night Viking on Orion and Seabourn Encore. It took a little bit of getting used to once onboard but both exceeded our expectations, it often felt that we were the only ones onboard. The food was fantastic especially of not was the buffet and outside eating area on Viking and the Sushi (I never thought I would eat raw fish) restaurant on Encore. We had 3 booked this year Ventura in March obviously cancelled, Seabourn in June (cancelled) and I found a really good deal on Princess whcih we wanted to try and had been recommended to us in September which is also cancelled.  

If I can get a good deal I would not hesitate to go on Viking or Seabourn the only note is to ensure you have the drinks package on Viking its well worth it.


Thanks. That’s all very useful info and food for thought. 

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23 minutes ago, Selbourne said:


Thanks John. Doesn’t have to be round Britain, was meaning a non-fly cruise (post Coronavirus). Celebrity seems to be getting a few votes though. 

Selbourne, both Celebrity and Princess out of the UK have a high percentage of British passengers and the cruise line factors this into their entertainment and on board activities.  They do have US, Canadian and Australian passengers as well. and we have found that this more cosmopolitan mix does make for a much more interesting cruise than P&O's with almost 100% British passengers.

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In my personal view, based on 2 cruises on P&O from Southampton, and 5 cruises on Celebrity also from Southampton in a mixture of cabins, I wouldn't say it is too American nor too brash. The cruisers are more international than P&O but the ship and its staff acknowledge it's home port for the season is the UK, and make subtle changes to accommodate our Britishness - including kettles in cabins, and - the times we have sailed - British Cruise Directors and some entertainment styled to our taste, without losing - for me - Celebrity's benefits over P&O (friendlier crew, more live music, better entertainment in the day and at night, and better quality and more choice of food and where to eat it). The Celebrity S Class ships also for us seem to have more public space (especially the theatres and bars). I am 54 if age matters in opinion terms! 

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8 minutes ago, terrierjohn said:

They do have US, Canadian and Australian passengers as well. and we have found that this more cosmopolitan mix does make for a much more interesting cruise than P&O's with almost 100% British passengers.

For us this cosmopolitan mix of pax is a big advantage.  The dinner table conversations are much more interesting with a mix of nationalities,  whereas on P&O the conversations are totally anglocentric.

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It depends how much more upmarket you want to go Selbourne. Both Crystal and Silversea do very occasional roundtrip cruises ex UK. Crystal also do a very occasional London to Amsterdam cruise, where you could come back to the UK by Eurostar from Amsterdam. Naturally, they are luxury lines with prices to match. I would also say however that perhaps you should keep trying to convince Mrs S to give Saga a go - maybe just for a week. If I could afford their prices, I'd get on one of their new ships like shot!

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There is always a caveat when referring to Celebrity, RCI etc. 

Cost obviously, availabilty from UK, brashness, drinks prices, cosmopolitan, less formal, theme park etc... 

Some will see these as benefits but others won't.. 

Each to their own.. 

Andy 

 

 

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3 hours ago, AndyMichelle said:

The irony is, the ones who were more forceful seemed to get their refunds first... 

I have sort of given up chasing as I won't be rude and am very conscious that the person on the phone is following instructions, but surely, when you are blatantly lied to and fobbed off, we must be allowed to get frustrated... 

 

Despite all this, the reason we travelled with P&O was because of the offering and price. 

Customer service has never been their strong point, so not sure why we are surprised. 

The only thing that may change for us is we might do less cruises at higher prices, so will open our eyes a bit more. 

But, more than likely, see you in the Crows Nest.. 

Andy 

 

You're right, of course, Andy, though rudeness certainly isn't part of the forceful (I'd prefer something like tenacious to that word actually) approach.  Rudeness gets you nowhere and just puts people's back up, quite justifiably, but tenacity, coupled with a clear knowledge of the facts and law, does work, even with P&O.  They do have to see you, though, as serious - and prepared to follow through with whatever action, legal or otherwise, is necessary.  Others here will confirm that this approach works, though often it involves a Non-disclosure Agreement. 

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18 minutes ago, Britboys said:

give Saga a go - maybe just for a week. If I could afford their prices, I'd get on one of their new ships like shot!

Which is what we have done for a week next March (hopefully!). 

Depending on how the week goes, we may then decide to put quality over quantity, and cruise less, but with more style.

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Hi....my vote would go to Celebrity....I like their " can do" approach instead of " do I have to" approach. We can only cruise from the Uk...no more fly cruises for us....and I didn't find them brash in any respect and I also enjoyed the mix of nationalities . Yes drinks can be expensive but if you book carefully with a drinks/tips package included then the price for a superior product   doesn't work out so much more expensive 

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I would also recommend Celebrity.  We find the food a lot better especially in the pay extra for specialty restaurants.  We book aqua class and consequently eat in Blu.  We don't drink much but do like to get the drinks and tips included offer because tips, wine and speciality coffees are expensive.  The crew are much friendlier, the entertainment is far superior.  The only drawback for us is that they only sail from Southampton in the summer and we can't fly.  We have also had deals where booking a package of speciality restaurants was excellent value for money.

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7 minutes ago, wowzz said:

Which is what we have done for a week next March (hopefully!). 

Depending on how the week goes, we may then decide to put quality over quantity, and cruise less, but with more style.

I've sailed once with Saga - about 6 years ago - and had a fabulous cruise. Unfortunately (from my perspective), their new ships are all-balcony, which make them especially expensive when sailing solo. That is even taking into account that they are all-inclusive with tips and travel to/from ship included.

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When it's OK to cruise, ie insurance and Covid, we would stay with P&O purely for price and like their 19 day cruises to the Med.

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21 minutes ago, jeanlyon said:

When it's OK to cruise, ie insurance and Covid, we would stay with P&O purely for price and like their 19 day cruises to the Med.

We have cruised 3 times on Celebrity. They cancelled our June Alaska cruise about 4 weeks ago. I agree that P&O are a bit cheaper, but not a lot. Make sure you get the drinks package included as Celebrity .drinks prices are silly. I think from a quality perspective,Celebrity are a bit better, but not a lot. To us, out of the 2 it's a case of who goes where we want to go at the right time. In short both are in the mix as about equal overall.

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3 hours ago, Harry Peterson said:

You're right, of course, Andy, though rudeness certainly isn't part of the forceful (I'd prefer something like tenacious to that word actually) approach.  Rudeness gets you nowhere and just puts people's back up, quite justifiably, but tenacity, coupled with a clear knowledge of the facts and law, does work, even with P&O.  They do have to see you, though, as serious - and prepared to follow through with whatever action, legal or otherwise, is necessary.  Others here will confirm that this approach works, though often it involves a Non-disclosure Agreement. 

Judging by the tone of some of the posts on here Harry, rudeness would definitely have come into it for some, but tenacity is probably a better description. 

I take your point, I am no mug but tend to take people's word as I expect people to take mine. 

Andy 

 

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Posted (edited)
52 minutes ago, AndyMichelle said:

Judging by the tone of some of the posts on here Harry, rudeness would definitely have come into it for some, but tenacity is probably a better description. 

I take your point, I am no mug but tend to take people's word as I expect people to take mine. 

Andy 

 

I am the same in that I tend to take peoples word.

Every person I have spoken to has been pleasant but totally unable to do anything or give consistent information.

The, I will have to email so and so and wait for a reply has been said many times.

When you ask them if there is anything on your file or what's your manager's surname they either don't know or been told to say nothing.

Their friendly can't do anything   is a perfect fob off tactic.

Edited by grapau27

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41 minutes ago, AndyMichelle said:

Judging by the tone of some of the posts on here Harry, rudeness would definitely have come into it for some, but tenacity is probably a better description. 

I take your point, I am no mug but tend to take people's word as I expect people to take mine. 

Andy 

 


I didn’t start to enquire until about day 50 and when I phoned they didn’t take my details so they wouldn’t know I was pushing and yet mine is supposedly in the system.

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To get back on topic I probably will go on P&O again - well I have two more booked! I don’t expect my October one to go ahead but I have also got a 14 night Med one booked for 2021. I might use my FFC for the October cruise deposit to upgrade my cabin in 2021.

For me I don’t like flying so obviously going from Southampton is a big plus. I tried Princess last year and although I’ve heard great things about them I wasn’t overly impressed. I would try them again but they don’t have half the range of itineraries that P&O have. I often thought I’d like to try RCI one time though I’m not sure it’s “us” Unfortunately the last two years they’ve only had one ship in Southampton and for that reason the price is really expensive.

We only started cruising in 2012 and usually only do a week. Largely due to a redundancy payment I’d booked 12 nights this year and 14 nights next year, so unlike some on here, I’m not “cruised out”.

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I will stay with P&O. Last November I sailed on Celebrity Silhouette and Cunard Queen Mary 2. Without upsetting Majortom I personally found the crew less friendly and the dining room experience (both service and food) far far inferior to either P&O or Marella. I walked off both those ships without a backwards glance but left Arcadia on 12 April after 99 nights with a heavy heart. I found the Celebrity ship all style and no substance.

The current situation has only affected me in an amended world cruise itinerary and doubt over next year’s which was booked before all this took off.

P&O have the friendliest crews at sea.


Sent from my iPad using Forums

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53 minutes ago, AndyMichelle said:

Judging by the tone of some of the posts on here Harry, rudeness would definitely have come into it for some, but tenacity is probably a better description. 

I take your point, I am no mug but tend to take people's word as I expect people to take mine. 

Andy 

 

Andy, my e-mail; To Paul Ludlow and to Helen Lambe sent on the 28th April and subsequently resent on 4 occasions

Dear Sir

I was legally entitled to receive a full refund in 14 days, however because of the situation, have allowed you to take 45 days to action this.

Interested to see if you can back up your words.

I will lose 3 cruises booked this year but have 2 more booked for next year

Step up to the mark and do what you say.

Anything else is rubbish

Your response is eagerly awaited.

 

I resent the same e-mail on subsequent days;

The first resend I added on the message line Bump in type size 18 bold

The second resend Bump Bump type size 24 bold

The third resend added 47 Days! type size 28 bold

fourth redend added 48 Days! Still no answer! type size 36 bold

 

This was my only contact with them after cancellation via the on line form.

 

This is when I received the call leading to refund dated the 1st May received the 6th May.

 

I

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We have been cruising with pando since early 2000. We now live opposite the port of Southampton, so for us crusing could not be easier.

Am I put off pando, no, having read other boards, exactly the ame with other cruise lines. They are nearly all making people wait for refunds (I cant actually think of one who isn't)

Ref the timescale. Lets say at the start of the crisis you had 100 staff in the call center in Southampton. Due to the virus itself and self iso;ation you were suddenly down to half that, then you had to arrange home working, then you had an overwhelming number of phone calls/messages/etc for refunds transfers etc. Would any company be able to cope with half the staff off.

Plus I don't think American lines will be back over heart anytime soon. I personally would not feel safe. Have they learnt their lesson with the virus..no, they are hoping to start cruising in August from some ports in America. so not vaccine...so how they are going ensure peoples health I have no idea.

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