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Is Oceania for Us?


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Hi all,

 

Hubby and I are considering an Oceania cruise around in Japan 2022.  We are in our early 60’s and the cruise lines we have been with to date are Princess and Celebrity.

 

Just wondering if you lovely people can tell me your experiences, good and bad, of Oceania?  Are they ‘miles ahead’ of Princess and Celebrity and are they good value of money?  Not sure how their excursions work, what is OLife? Do you get a good variety of tours if you choose these tours.

 

Lots to look into but was just hoping you can guide me in the right direction.

 

We are also hoping the world will be a lot more settled by 2022 and our cruising experiences back to being some sort of ‘normal’!

 

Thanks for any help you can give me.

 

Vicki. 🙂 

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Oceania may be quieter than your previous lines

 People tend to go for the ports & the food 

entertainment is fairly good  but with the smaller ships they do not have the big productions shows like the main stream lines

I have only done 1 Princess cruise  & in their basic cabin so if you get  the higher end cabins they may be smaller on Oceania in comparison

check the deck plans  for cabin size & compare to what you are used to

 

We do not know what your priorities are  so  I would do more reading on the Oceania website  & see what you may or may not like

The ships are smaller  unless your were on the R ships that Princess  had/have

Try it you may like it 😉

JMO

 

 

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1 hour ago, Busy Mum said:

Hi all,

 

Hubby and I are considering an Oceania cruise around in Japan 2022.  We are in our early 60’s and the cruise lines we have been with to date are Princess and Celebrity.

 

Just wondering if you lovely people can tell me your experiences, good and bad, of Oceania?  Are they ‘miles ahead’ of Princess and Celebrity and are they good value of money?  Not sure how their excursions work, what is OLife? Do you get a good variety of tours if you choose these tours.

 

Lots to look into but was just hoping you can guide me in the right direction.

 

We are also hoping the world will be a lot more settled by 2022 and our cruising experiences back to being some sort of ‘normal’!

 

Thanks for any help you can give me.

 

Vicki. 🙂 

I suggest you talk to a cruise specialist TA who will take the time to go over your travel experiences, preferences, expectations and means. And make it a TA who has membership in Oceania's Connoisseurs Club.

 

You should also use the search feature here on CC to peruse threads of interest in the Oceania forums.

 

Were you ever on the Ocean Princess? I ask because it took a $40 million upgrade to make it meet Oceania's standards (now the Sirena). Also, you'll find that better than 70% of Oceania cruisers are repeat customers many of whom moved up from lines like Princess, Celebrity and HAL (and never looked back). 

 

 

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We are new to Oceania but after our first sailing we have booked two additional cruises. We have sailed Princess - not our best cruise. Our usual cruise line is Celebrity usually in an Aqua cabin so that we can dine in Blu which we much prefer over the MDR.

Oceania's two larger ships carry 1250 passengers. Like Celebrity's fleet they are well laid out with multiple dining options - 4 specialty restaurants with no service charge. You will find enhanced menus and service. Waves poolside grill serves everything from salads to Caribbean sized lobsters every day.

The MDR dining options are varied each evening and special requests are accepted with notice.

We have not yet sailed on one of the smaller ships of Oceania but have sailed on the same sized Azamara ships. They do not have as many specialty restaurants (2 per ship) but all the other restaurants are present.

The cabins on the Riviera  and Marina are comparable to the larger balcony cabins on Celebrity's Millie class ships. The regular balcony cabins on the smaller ships are smaller but the bathrooms are a challenge. There is ample storage in every cabin class. No top storage like on the S class ships.

It looks like we will have to endure cruise line tours in the immediate future. That's where the O Life program comes in. Excursions are an option in that price point. Tours are varied and are on the same pricy side as any other line. The O Life included tours are valued at anything below $199. You can 

purchase additional tours above that price and you can also bundle additional tours for a discount. Your intended itinerary probably offers 6-8 included tours. 

The crew and officers on our Marina cruise in February were not as warm and fuzzy as our normal Celebrity staff but they were professional and efficient. The ship was spotless and the public areas were comfortable.

Like Celebrity the production shows and entertainment were too loud for my tender ears. I stayed often as long as I could tolerate the decibels. 

Alternating from Celebrity to Oceania and vice versa seems like a good option for us. Please give it a little more study but you should fit right in with the friendly passengers and wonderful itinerary.

 

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3 hours ago, alcpa1 said:

We are new to Oceania but after our first sailing we have booked two additional cruises. We have sailed Princess - not our best cruise. Our usual cruise line is Celebrity usually in an Aqua cabin so that we can dine in Blu which we much prefer over the MDR.

Oceania's two larger ships carry 1250 passengers. Like Celebrity's fleet they are well laid out with multiple dining options - 4 specialty restaurants with no service charge. You will find enhanced menus and service. Waves poolside grill serves everything from salads to Caribbean sized lobsters every day.

The MDR dining options are varied each evening and special requests are accepted with notice.

We have not yet sailed on one of the smaller ships of Oceania but have sailed on the same sized Azamara ships. They do not have as many specialty restaurants (2 per ship) but all the other restaurants are present.

The cabins on the Riviera  and Marina are comparable to the larger balcony cabins on Celebrity's Millie class ships. The regular balcony cabins on the smaller ships are smaller but the bathrooms are a challenge. There is ample storage in every cabin class. No top storage like on the S class ships.

It looks like we will have to endure cruise line tours in the immediate future. That's where the O Life program comes in. Excursions are an option in that price point. Tours are varied and are on the same pricy side as any other line. The O Life included tours are valued at anything below $199. You can 

purchase additional tours above that price and you can also bundle additional tours for a discount. Your intended itinerary probably offers 6-8 included tours. 

The crew and officers on our Marina cruise in February were not as warm and fuzzy as our normal Celebrity staff but they were professional and efficient. The ship was spotless and the public areas were comfortable.

Like Celebrity the production shows and entertainment were too loud for my tender ears. I stayed often as long as I could tolerate the decibels. 

Alternating from Celebrity to Oceania and vice versa seems like a good option for us. Please give it a little more study but you should fit right in with the friendly passengers and wonderful itinerary.

 

Thank you for your detailed response, it’s very much appreciated. We have cruised on Princess’s Ocean Princess which is now in the Oceania fleet as Sirena, we just loved the Ocean Princess.  I am definitely doing more ‘research and lots of reading’ but I’m sure Oceania would be a great ‘fit’ for us.  I have also this afternoon spoken to a lady at Oceania and she was absolutely fantastic, she was so very helpful. Thank you again. Vicki. 🙂 

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Honestly the way I think of O, or at least what O used to be, was a mid-market (R-class ships) to mid-market-plus (O class ships) experience for people who want to customise their vacation with their own touches.

You can let O do everything for you but that gets expensive quickly.

O is best suited for people who want to plan their own air, plan their own port days, don't mind booking their own Specialty Dining a few weeks out, know whether they want the upgraded drinks package, and so on.

 

OP is an experienced cruiser so if she wants to put in the legwork to customise her own holiday I think O would suit her well. 

 

As mentioned, who knows what post-pandemic cruising will look like, but in the Celebrity family (RCCL), Azamara seems to be a better comp to O than Celebrity itself, at least to O's R-class ships which were of course both Renaissance all those years ago.

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8 hours ago, Busy Mum said:

Thank you for your detailed response, it’s very much appreciated. We have cruised on Princess’s Ocean Princess which is now in the Oceania fleet as Sirena, we just loved the Ocean Princess.  I am definitely doing more ‘research and lots of reading’ but I’m sure Oceania would be a great ‘fit’ for us.  I have also this afternoon spoken to a lady at Oceania and she was absolutely fantastic, she was so very helpful. Thank you again. Vicki. 🙂 

Use a TA who is a member of Oceania's Connoisseurs Club. Many of them will share commissions (as refundable SBC or as a rebate) in addition to all perks that O provides. On a longer cruise, that can mean $thousand(s) to you. And FWIW, the O Club loyalty perks for regulars are substantial (e.g., every 20 cruise credits (as little as 150 nights on O) gets you a complimentary 14 day cruise anywhere O goes. 

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16 minutes ago, Flatbush Flyer said:

Use a TA who is a member of Oceania's Connoisseurs Club. Many of them will share commissions (as refundable SBC or as a rebate) in addition to all perks that O provides. On a longer cruise, that can mean $thousand(s) to you. And FWIW, the O Club loyalty perks for regulars are substantial (e.g., every 20 cruise credits (as little as 150 nights on O) gets you a complimentary 14 day cruise anywhere O goes. 

Three times now I've used an Oceania personal cruise consultant and then transferred to a Connoisseurs Club TA who gave me the gratuities.

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10 minutes ago, clo said:

Three times now I've used an Oceania personal cruise consultant and then transferred to a Connoisseurs Club TA who gave me the gratuities.

You've been on 3 Oceania cruises? Or you've booked 3? 

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50 minutes ago, Flatbush Flyer said:

Use a TA who is a member of Oceania's Connoisseurs Club. Many of them will share commissions (as refundable SBC or as a rebate) in addition to all perks that O provides. On a longer cruise, that can mean $thousand(s) to you. And FWIW, the O Club loyalty perks for regulars are substantial (e.g., every 20 cruise credits (as little as 150 nights on O) gets you a complimentary 14 day cruise anywhere O goes. 

From what I have seen, the O loyalty program is one of the best.

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9 hours ago, clo said:

Been on one, one got canceled and just booked another for 2022. Why does it matter?

Good question.  I think he is attempting to get a debate started.  I watched his comments for many months now and concluded he contributes little.  Hope he is not my next door neighbor here in SW Missouri.  Oh, well!

 

 

Edited by Traveler67
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11 minutes ago, Traveler67 said:

Good question.  I think he is attempting to get a debate started.  I watched his comments for many months now and concluded he contributes little.  Hope he is not my next door neighbor here in SW Missouri.  Oh, well!

 

 

Unless I'm mistaken, "he" is a she (based on pix she has posted). From CC responses, it appears that many O regulars don't particularly care for her "one cruise expertise." But, some other folks may think she's terrific. "To each his/her own."

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16 minutes ago, Flatbush Flyer said:

Unless I'm mistaken, "he" is a she (based on pix she has posted). From CC responses, it appears that many O regulars don't particularly care for her "one cruise expertise." But, some other folks may think she's terrific. "To each his/her own."

When you have someone who handles your cancellation in as friendly and professional a way it speaks volumes to me. BTW I'm a huge fan after only one. 

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I thought you were referring to me with the one Oceania cruise under our life raft!!!!!

But unless we are in Aqua or a suite on Celebrity there is no comparison with Oceania's cuisine. The Celebrity MDR, no matter the ship, is not on par with Oceania. Azamara is close.

 

As far as booking with a TA, there are travel agencies who, while not among the Connoisseur designation, are termed preferred agencies. Our Oceania bookings through our agent are more beneficial to us financially and otherwise. I know many swear by the Connoisseur agents but there are other good agents out there. I wish we could name names/agencies but that's a no no on Cruise Critic.

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13 minutes ago, alcpa1 said:

I thought you were referring to me with the one Oceania cruise under our life raft!!!!!

But unless we are in Aqua or a suite on Celebrity there is no comparison with Oceania's cuisine. The Celebrity MDR, no matter the ship, is not on par with Oceania. Azamara is close.

 

As far as booking with a TA, there are travel agencies who, while not among the Connoisseur designation, are termed preferred agencies. Our Oceania bookings through our agent are more beneficial to us financially and otherwise. I know many swear by the Connoisseur agents but there are other good agents out there. I wish we could name names/agencies but that's a no no on Cruise Critic.

Oceania pays Travel Agency commissions on a sliding scale related to their O sales volume (also the basis for acquiring Connoisseurs Club recognition. While high sales numbers don't guarantee a TA will share the commission, the fact remains that Connoisseurs Club member agencies have more $ with which to work. 

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5 hours ago, Classiccruiser777 said:

Included in the fare are all non-alcoholic beverages and specialty restaurants. There are no “art auctions” or photographers. The food is a large cut above the other lines. The atmosphere is quiet, refined yet relaxed and comfortable. Tea in Horizons is wonderful. 

A174236E-F9E9-49FB-A216-30FDC98B1082.jpeg

99286F01-FE37-40C4-AC35-9DC651BE805F.jpeg

2ACE6272-9A9C-43C3-818A-7FAFF11213F5.jpeg

Wow, they all look amazing! Thank you very much for sharing your pics! 😁

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18 hours ago, Flatbush Flyer said:

Unless I'm mistaken, "he" is a she (based on pix she has posted). From CC responses, it appears that many O regulars don't particularly care for her "one cruise expertise." But, some other folks may think she's terrific. "To each his/her own."

I think the "he" that they're referring to would be me. I'm so hurt that my neighbor thinks I contribute little, but if they're like most in this area(especially in the way they vote) I can understand his point. 

 

I just always call it like it is, and don't really worry so much about what others think. 

 

 

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19 hours ago, Traveler67 said:

Good question.  I think he is attempting to get a debate started.  I watched his comments for many months now and concluded he contributes little.  Hope he is not my next door neighbor here in SW Missouri.  Oh, well!

 

 

You obviously have no idea of what your are saying or implying. I am not sure how well you know this board with only 81 prior posts. I certainly do not recognize you as a long standing contributor to O boards.

Just to be clear - ORV is one of the most respected and knowledgeable members of this board and his contributions are valued by most members.

He is one of the voices of reason.

Edited by Paulchili
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28 minutes ago, ORV said:

I think the "he" that they're referring to would be me. I'm so hurt that my neighbor thinks I contribute little, but if they're like most in this area(especially in the way they vote) I can understand his point. 

 

I just always call it like it is, and don't really worry so much about what others think. 

 

 

It definitely is NOT you (at least it's not you to whom I am referring). Think about it.

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