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4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
I chose this cruise for the beautiful scenery of the Norwegian Fjords. Due to strong winds we were unable to embark straight away as it was dangerous to use the air bridge but we were kept informed and I actually boarded 15 minutes ... Read More
I chose this cruise for the beautiful scenery of the Norwegian Fjords. Due to strong winds we were unable to embark straight away as it was dangerous to use the air bridge but we were kept informed and I actually boarded 15 minutes before my allotted time. First time using a mobility scooter but very helpful staff helped me to board by a conventional gangplank. No trouble disembarking, off within 15 minutes. Luggage found and out of the terminal within 30 minutes. I did not do any organised trips as it was my first cruise on my own, since losing my husband and having to us a mobility scooter. Self serve Horizon restaurant has plenty of staff wearing "Happy to Help aprons" and they were indeed helpful (although wanted to give me more food than I wanted) carried it to the table for me. All areas are accessible to disabled travellers and if you want to eat in the other restaurants they will park and bring it back afterwards. The Eric Lanlard afternoon tea in the Epicurean is to die for. The glad house has amazing wines (Selected by Ollie Smith). Try a wine flight if you want to sample. These is plenty of seating even on a sea day it wasn't hard to find a place. Overall a beautiful ship with absolutely wonderful crew. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Embarkation The car drop off takes 40 mins waiting in the car, this is a poor parking system, we were told it is a holding pattern so not to block gate entrance, but no other dock in Southampton does it this way and the fast drop off at ... Read More
Embarkation The car drop off takes 40 mins waiting in the car, this is a poor parking system, we were told it is a holding pattern so not to block gate entrance, but no other dock in Southampton does it this way and the fast drop off at other terminals works fine. Maybe we arrived at the worst time @14:10, but the tickets told us to arrive for 14:30 and no more than half an hour before. Embarkation was busy but flowing and fast track good for people with limited walking. There were rather a large number of guests waiting in the assistance area and the process seemed slow, so even though my wife and I use sticks and usually use this service we continued through the lounge. As soon as we were on the ship, we were able to go to our cabin and divest ourselves of the hand luggage and suit carrier. This we were not able to do on some other cruise lines and lugging cases etc. around was very difficult. The large cases arrived promptly about two hours after we boarded, which was excellent. Dining The restaurant's have plenty of room between the tables. The initial waiter service was poor for how tables laid out during the first breakfast and dinner. We had to wait for more water/coffee and when asked another waiter he said someone would serve us but only from our team (which he didn't tell us and didn't pass message on), plus waited for menus themselves in some instances. The table layout is bad for both general waiting and wine waiter, as our table for dinner (93) is behind wall/piller for main waiters and at far end of area of wine waiter, so difficult to see or get hold of either of them. We had no wine menu on one night and again difficult to get hold of the waitress, when she finally arrived and we asked about the menu, she stated not enough menus to go round so only given to regular customers, as we ordered wine on two occasions and drank it over two days we were obviously not regular enough. This was outright rudeness! Oriental Restaurant set up not like typical cruise ship and dark decor, seems to try and mimic a restaurant rather than ship. Other restaurant are more open, but food provision in these restaurant is more chaotic, we have been told by others. Food for breakfast can be warm at best, again service depends on visibility. The porridge can be nice and hot, but also luke warm, it does vary a lot and getting there early ironically meant the porridge was colder. Toast is nice and crispy, not damp as with other lines who keep it covered to keep warm, but too soggy. Coffee in the Oriental very nice, also hot, but refills can be slow to come. If you ask for well done bacon for breakfast it comes crispy which is good. The general food quality in the Oriental Restaurant is good. We didn't try the buffet breakfast. It is good that the doors to the restaurant close to late guests in the Oriental Restaurant 15 mins after sitting commences. The separate vegetarian menu is good, however if you have food from this it takes longer to prepare than from standard menu, so you will have to wait, which is not a problem, guests just need to know. The vegetables can be sparse e.g. Quarter of a potato,10 thick cut chips with steak. For the vegetarian meals sometimes it would be good to include separate vegetables. Also need to understand that vegetarians don't want everything to be soft. The sweet corn risotto was not great, the rice was undercooked. Steaks come as asked for and are generally good. The salmon was overdone and dry. The pheasant was dry and the shredded pheasant had a bone in it (about an inch and a half long) that I nearly swallowed. The low sugar desserts seem to lack taste e.g. Coffee and hazelnut cake was just a slab of cake with no coffee taste or hazelnut at all. The thyme and lemon stuffing that came with the roast chicken, wasn't anything like stuffing at all, much closer to thyme and lemon breadcrumbs. The scrambled eggs were excellent, as were the soft boiled eggs. My wife ordered macaroni cheese with focaccia bread, it didn't come with the bread and that was not the first time the accompaniment didn't appear. Drinks on-board were excellent value and greatly appreciated after other cruise lines. Does make daily drinks package seem very expensive at £40 per person per day. The wine packages are a good idea. The buffet restaurant is generally good, with wide walkways and good seating, unlike other cruise lines where they "pack people in". There seems to be enough choice, but very limited fruit available during lunch, which is what we'd like to eat. Having had a good breakfast and dinner. My wife wanted to go to the Good Friday service at 08:30, so we arrived at the Oriental Restaurant before 08:00, as from previous breakfasts it took 20 to 25 minutes to finish. This breakfast room considerably longer with scrambled eggs on toast for my wife arriving after 25 minutes which she had to bolt down to get to the service and didn't get her Danish pastry at all. Yet from where we were seated other guests in a different area, had their main breakfast delivered nearly 10 minutes before we did. Cabin The TV is missing on board spend, which you have to go to reception and ask to be printed out, which is a waste of paper. The tv channels are very limited, however the destination videos are very interesting and worthwhile. The tv lost all channels on at least one occasion that I can confirm (around 17:00 onwards on Sunday the 14th of April) and I think on another occasion earlier in the cruise. Also lost signal temporarily a number of times. The room steward is very friendly and remembers names (Ratheesh), he looks after us very well. Other staff outside generally do not say good morning (some do)? Though restaurant staff are pretty good. This improved the longer the cruise went on and by the end most said good morning, when on my walks around deck. The bed is very comfortable and cabin E520 is quiet and nicely furnished. It does need small lights by each bedside for getting up in night/reading. Guests leave bathroom light on and door ajar with coat hanger so some light available, this wastes electricity. The balcony is small at around 1 metre in depth, this seems smaller than other ships we have been on and with the chairs and tables minimal room to squeeze by, especially if you have limited mobility. The shower is excellent and spacious, the bathroom is well laid out but not large, I can see where some guests would think the layout is not ideal, especially larger people. The non slip floor in the bathroom is excellent. General Ship The decor is a bit tired in places, floor 7 buttons missing in most lifts, some carpets, rails and stairs worn. The ship is generally clean and the staff look like they work hard to keep it clean. The lifts are a nightmare, they are too full for disabled people, miss floors when waiting and take an age, had to take stairs as gave up after 5 mins plus, others waited for over 15 mins. People end up getting in any lift going in the wrong direction. No stairs with middle lifts a massive mistake. When trying to get off for an excursion again had to give up with lifts after waiting 10 minutes for lifts in the middle of the ship and standing there with two sets of people with wheelchairs, as there are no stairs, a glaring mistake when designing this ship. Also as lifts don't go to all floors it gets confusing to go to deck 5 from the rear from deck 6, you have to go up 1 along to mid ships and then down and when it is busy and you are in a wheelchair this takes ages. Lots of complaints about lifts and queues. Plus the rear lifts are the only ones you can use to get to the Oriental Restaurant, you can't walk there from other lifts, so they get ridiculously busy at dining times, especially in the evenings. There are two independent lifts each side in the middle, so people press all three buttons (1 for the main bank of 4, and 1 for each of the side ones) then get in whichever they can, leaving the other two still stopping at that floor. All middle lifts need to be synchronised. As there are middle stairs (behind the doors) which can be used from floor 7 down, but not up, why not? On the lifts in the middle there are notices about letting less mobile people use them, these are totally ignored. As this cruise has a number of sea days, at the beginning and end, a few children have taken to pressing all the lift buttons as they are unsupervised. I understand this is difficult for P&O, but the parents do need to have responsibility. It was nice that bridge crew made an announcement over the tanoy when whales were spotted. On Palm Sunday, an important Christian event, there is nothing mentioned or even a room set aside, as there is for the Jewish community. It is good there are Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services, though 23:30 is a bit late for the washing of the feet on Thursday and the liturgy on Friday (this is due to the crew being able to participate). I suppose this was the earliest P&O had rooms available? The Stations of the Cross on Food Friday was held in The Ivory Suite - a nice room, but only enough chairs for half of the people there, the rest had to stand. The lack of a promenade deck is disappointing as we like to stroll around the outside. There is an area outside to sit in which confused us as we thought it was the promenade. Doors really heavy and difficult to move. The facilities to keep hands clean (dispensers) are largely absent. My wife asked the restaurant manager and was told not necessary after a couple of days and also not that effective, soap and water much better, which is available (in the toilets by Oriental Restaurant so no one used them), in our view dispensers much better and more used, if they were there. The wash basins by buffet restaurant were used but only by a very few people. It is good that there are close buttons on lifts. Ports & Excursions The different ports were excellent, with lots of variety. La Palma was our favourite due to not being too commercialised, but all offered interesting aspects and not what you would expect of these islands. Docking was handled quickly and efficiently, though there were the inevitable queues at peak times. Excursions were good value (compared to other cruise lines) and pretty well run. Though on the one we undertook it was rushed to get the walks in and therefore faster than my wife or I can manage without discomfort (this was the one from the ship we did in La Palma - UNESCO wildlife and Rum). They did say they would take it easy, but certainly didn't for the last half, so we were the last to get to the rum tasting and worn out when we arrived. The tour of the facility was also rushed as we were quickly ushered between a couple of rooms with hasty explanations, to get to the tasting and buying something. At Lisbon, we had to wait nearly 10 minutes to get onto the ship, having gone through security and on the moving gangway, in very cold conditions. This was due to the positioning of the gangway being moved upwards for the tidal flow, which is fair enough. However, over half this time was waiting for someone from the ship (other than the security personnel) to confirm it was safe, despite the Portuguese operator of the gangway confirming to the ships staff that it was. When the P&O officer arrived he tried to blame the delay on the gangway shutting itself down, which the operator refuted and plainly stated it was down to having to wait for him to arrive. We were cold and just wanted to get onto the ship. Whilst we understand the need to be safe, this was clearly "jobsworth!" and nothing to do with safety. The dozen or so passengers were not at all pleased. Theatre & Shows The theatre was over packed for the Strictly interviews, it would have been much better to run 2 events. Also, there is a rush to get into events. Even for the "Astonishing" magic show (which wasn't even mediocre and was certainly not a magic show, just another dance show!) it was a ridiculous rush to get seats and for people who can't walk quickly very frustrating as all the best seats were taken. Theatre layout is curious as not only is it not big enough for the size of the ship (for 2 performances) the staggered seating near the front, means three rows are at the same level therefore if you're shorter, like my wife, and sit on row 2 or 3 of a level you struggle to see. So we had to try to get seats in the first row, which, due to the rush, was not always possible. Much more sensible to properly stagger the seating. If you dine early, like we have to (as I am diabetic), a third show at 19:00 is during dining time, so the show you go for will be 20:30 which is always the full one. The idea of having seats reserved next to aisles for disabled is great, but I recommend that the red signs on the deck 6 ones are made much larger and thus more obvious, as a number of people "didn't see them". It would be good to give out the "No saving of seats message" prior to a few minutes before the performance, as most shows were pretty full long before that and on a number of occasions people had been reserving seats for quite a while. Mind you on the flip side, neither my wife or I are particularly mobile so when doors open we can get caught in the rush to get good seats, so I try and go ahead, leaving my wife to catch up, which usually takes a minute or two. Michael Kushner is an excellent speaker and his talks are really interesting, the shame is due to a number of them being in the Live Lounge (that only seats about 250 people) we were unable to listen to a couple as all the seats were taken well over 10 minutes prior to starting. The Headliners theatre was a much better venue. There are a number of quizzes which are good fun, however the late afternoon one in Brodies bar starts at 17:30 and finished in about 20 minutes. Given that it takes another 10 minutes to get back to our room, we have 30 minutes to get ready for dinner and on formal night that is not long enough. The singer's in lounges are good with a variety of songs and moods. We were told by others the dance floor was much too small and it did seem so for the number of people trying to dance when we went passed, but it was a Strictly cruise and so this might have been an exception. Disembarkation The cases need to be outside at 20:30, which is much earlier than other cruise lines. The worse part of getting off the ship was that there is no place to store your luggage prior to disembarkation and you have to vacate your cabin by 08:00. So with both of us having mobility issues and needing sticks, we then had to contend with hand luggage and a suit carrier to take around with us, which made life very difficult. Some other cruise lines have luggage holding areas. Cabins have to be cleared by 08:00. Not surprisingly the buffet restaurant gets very full. Disembarkation requires you to go to a specific destination, ours was the headliners theatre. So you enter through deck 7 and have to make your way down the front (deck 6) as that is where they will start from. Walking downstairs is bad enough for us, but with 2 sets of carry on luggage and a suit carrier, plus 2 sticks it is almost impossible and leaves my wife and I knackered and very unhappy and hurt my wife’s shoulder quite badly. As we have some paperwork to hand, I left the theatre and met a P&O rep outside. I tell her about the difficulties of the process and how tired we both are and she says there is a disabled departure point (limelight club) that we should have gone to, or asked a rep before getting to the theatre. I said we weren't aware of the disabled departure (as it is not stated anywhere we found) and that by the time we knew how much hassle this would be we were already in the theatre. Also, there was a rep on deck 7 that saw us struggling down the stairs to get to the theatre (as APU the lifts were so jammed full of was impossible to get in the first 5 going down and people had been waiting over 10 minutes) who said nothing to us. So we were now stuck in the theatre waiting. My wife and I registered as requiring assistance, so P&O knew we'd need help for both on and off the ship. So instead of the rep saying we should have asked, P&O knew and exactly which cabin we were in therefore the should have told us what to do as disabled passengers (especially as we had not done this before on P&O). Also, there is an opportunity to self depart, which is a good idea, but we certainly couldn't cope with our main luggage. We asked reception about self departure and were told we would have to get all of our luggage off, and we stated there was no way we could do this having limited mobility, at no time did the receptionist mention assisted departure. An announcement was made about leaving the lifts for wheelchairs or others of limited ability which was more of less ignored. We understand that there is a process needed for so many people but some people ignored it and stood by the doors to get off first. There is realistically very little the crew can do to stop this. Our disembarkation time was scheduled for 08:45 to 09:15. The staff handling the process were OK, but made a number of completely inaccurate statements: 1. Once the process started it would go quickly: This started off in promising manner with the first 4 rows leaving at 08:40, then the next 2 at 08:45. We then had over a 20 minute wait for the next 3 rows (which we were in) and when finally called forward, more than the 3 rows requested tried to leave. We were in the 7th row and finally got out of the theatre around 09:15. One of your reps tried to stop us going out saying the queue was too big (which was ignored by the fed up guests), which it wasn't when we got there. 2. Adam knew exactly how we felt (and told us so repeatedly): No, he didn’t as he’d never struggled with his luggage (the way we had to) and then sat and waited patiently for nearly an hour, listening to statements that were clearly inaccurate. 3. This was the fastest way off and no one else would be getting off before us: When we finally got out of the theatre and headed for the gangway, lots of people (about half) in the queue for the gangway, had not come from the theatre at all. So, the best way to disembark was just to walk off! (especially as you didn’t need your departure sheet!) 4. You need your disembarkation sheet to get off at your allowed time: No, you didn't, just your cruise card as we never had to show the sheet to anyone. 5. This has never happened before: Well given the ridiculous nature of the debacle, if this was the best method P&O had of getting people off, then yes it would. Quite a few guests were vocal about the whole process and the fact queue jumping was going on. As there was still over 50% of the theatre to go after us and it was now well past 09:15, I believe this was going to get even more heated. Other cruise lines with similar size do not seem to have the same system and disembarkation is considerably easier. It would have been much quicker for use to just walk to the gangway on deck 5 and join the queue. Actually, getting off the ship was pretty straightforward, however finding your luggage was another matter. We had been told the luggage was sorted in deck order, in clearly demarked zones. We were on deck E and eventually found our luggage among suitcases from deck F. In fact, there seemed to be no demarcation between E & F at all, so wasted a lot of time searching what was supposed to be the E piles! At least getting the car from CPS was easy, so we drove off! The whole process was a farce and needs serious overhauling to stop it being so painful and exhausting. Overall Having been on multiple other ships and itineraries overall my wife and would mark this as 7.5 out of 10, as there were some very good points, and some very bad ones. On a scale against the other companies we would rate P&O above MSC and Royal Caribbean, on a par with Marella and below, Celebrity, Cunard and Oceania. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
A number of poor things in relation to the Britannia, some easy to change, others just poor initial design: 1. A real faux pas to not have stairs up the centre of the ship, makes orientation around the ship problematic, means people ... Read More
A number of poor things in relation to the Britannia, some easy to change, others just poor initial design: 1. A real faux pas to not have stairs up the centre of the ship, makes orientation around the ship problematic, means people gravitate to the lifts unnecessarily, really poor design flaw. 2. Incredible that hand hygiene was not a significant issue, no staff on entrance to any of the dining areas and buffets ensuring hand hygiene from passengers. 3. Very lacklustre staff attitudes, told that automatic tipping on P&O is disappearing, wonder if it is affecting how staff work. 4. Size of the gym to the size of the ship is laughable, one shower and one toilet in the changing area - 4,000+ passengers! 2 sit up bikes too. Very poor considering that we should be pushing a healthier lifestyle. Think they are too busy promoting the pay for spa instead. 5. Steam room in the gym was scolding hot, came out burnt after 10 minutes. 6. Complaints pretty much ignored, fits with lacklustre staff, number of occasions I received half service. 7. Cabins are small, trying to get too many on board I had a good break as a holiday, but will avoid Britannia in future. Think this ship is really poorly managed at present. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this cruise as the Brittania is at present the flagship of P&O. We booked a balcony, again a first for us. We have to say we were delighted with the cabin and I spent as much time as possible sitting on the balcony. There was ... Read More
We chose this cruise as the Brittania is at present the flagship of P&O. We booked a balcony, again a first for us. We have to say we were delighted with the cabin and I spent as much time as possible sitting on the balcony. There was everything we would need in the cabin so no complaints there. The food was excellent in all the restaurants, however, the menus are very similar to the Ventura and Azura. The Sindhu......... brilliant. The food and the experience are superb and we would highly recommend a visit. The crew were helpful but we found the crew on the Ventura seemed more cheerful, saying that we do not have any complaints which we are pleased with as we wanted this cruise on the Brittania to be a pleasant experience. A bit disappointed that we didn't get to call in to Guernsey but fully understandable given the conditions, the other ports were pleasant although we would have preferred longer on our trip to Ypres. The only complaint about the tours are the expectations of a gratuity. They are expensive enough without the tour guide and driver waiting with their hands out......as pleasant people as they were. We would definitely go on Brittania again, but to different ports. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Wanted to see the Bulb Fields and Keukenhof, which we did under our own steam. Pity P&O did not put on their own excursions to Keukenhof, a world class venue. Embarkation was excellent, seems to get slicker each time. Some new ... Read More
Wanted to see the Bulb Fields and Keukenhof, which we did under our own steam. Pity P&O did not put on their own excursions to Keukenhof, a world class venue. Embarkation was excellent, seems to get slicker each time. Some new dishes on MDR menus but basically still the same over last few years, still lots of choice but some more new dishes needed on the menu cycles. Contrary to all the negative reviews on stairs/lifts we have never had a problem (other than people who will not step out the lift to let people out). Britannia buffet works well with the serving stations placed between the two sides of the restaurant, much better than the single file lines of other earlier P&O ships. But why oh why do people get a table first and then go off singly to get their food while one "guards the table? New shows like Gravity are not our cup of tea, much prefer "song and dance" A lovely cruise, Rotterdam a very good maiden port call. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
I chose this cruise to get a little bit of sun, rather than sit at home watching the rain. This being my third time on Azura, I thought I knew what to expect. Embarkation went smoothly, and I was in my cabin swiftly. I noticed that the ... Read More
I chose this cruise to get a little bit of sun, rather than sit at home watching the rain. This being my third time on Azura, I thought I knew what to expect. Embarkation went smoothly, and I was in my cabin swiftly. I noticed that the plug in the basin was closed,and I wondered why. It didn't take me long to find the answer. I was on deck fourteen, but when I went to decks six and seven, THE SMELL OF RAW SEWAGE WAS OVERPOWERING !!!. Lots of people were complaining throughout the whole cruise. I spoke to reception desk about this,only to be told that they were aware of this problem, and they were working on it. Previous reviews that I have read have indicated that the problem has been on board the ship for some time. The Captain was never to be seen around the ship,except for photo shoots, nor was the chief Engineer,as I would have approached one of them to ask about the problem, which continued for the entire duration of the cruise.( I later found that the basin was kept plugged to prevent the smell entering my cabin). I dined in the restaurant on only three occasions,as the food was only lukewarm, and on one dinner the ribeye steak was so tough that three members at my table had to send it back. After that I dined at the buffet,where the food was Lukewarm too. The entertainment was mediocre,same old gags from old comedians. On one occasion the show was cancelled because of rough seas. To conclude, six sea days are too much,when the entertainment is poor. However if you like dancing,or quizzes,or overpriced bingo,or old movies then this ones for you. I won't be back on Azura! I have a Cruise booked on Brittania for next year,but I won't be going,unless P&o redress me for the disappointment that I endured on this cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
For a Flag Ship & so new, certain areas looking tired already. Our mistake was not appreciating a "weekend" cruise would be full of badly behaved stag/hen parties! Also, Freedom Dining, as included was very average & the ... Read More
For a Flag Ship & so new, certain areas looking tired already. Our mistake was not appreciating a "weekend" cruise would be full of badly behaved stag/hen parties! Also, Freedom Dining, as included was very average & the buffet very underwhelming. The specialised restaurants were much better but of course at a price - not only a supplement but food supplements too. As a small group who wanted to sit together for dinner - not unreasonable - the only option to be able to book a table at a sensible time, was to dine at one of the specialised restaurants! Catch 22 situation. The "Formal" dining night requested was rather extreme for the ship/the clientele. Having been on a couple of other cruise ships, nothing about this experience will get us rushing back to this ship or PO I'm afraid. Recommend you read the reviews very carefully before committing. Overpriced for what it is, sadly. Lesson learnt. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
Living just 40 minutes from Southampton docks means we can take advantage of short two and three night cruises regularly, in fact this cruise was booked much further in advance as we were going as a group of six taking two passengers on ... Read More
Living just 40 minutes from Southampton docks means we can take advantage of short two and three night cruises regularly, in fact this cruise was booked much further in advance as we were going as a group of six taking two passengers on their very first cruise ship, we booked the cabins on a select fare meaning we could choose our cabin, dining preference and also receive an on board spend of £25 per person. We travelled to Bruges which we have been lucky enough to go to a couple of times and on this occasion we stayed on board and enjoyed the sunshine from the adult only pool on the top deck but if you have never been it is well worth a trip into, it’s very picturesque and also has some of the finest chocolate shops of anywhere in the world and they almost always give free samples. Boarding Britannia was docked at the Ocean Terminal, we turned up at the allotted time of 1300 on our ticket and were straight into the check in system without a wait, we queued for less than 3 minutes before we were seen, it was quick and efficient and after a short check in we were heading to security, we were on board within 30 minutes of arrival at the terminal, boarding into the stunning atrium and after a quick picture it was up to the buffet. Cabin GE Grade clear view balcony with sofa, G deck forward. First impressions were that the cabin was clean, light and airy. As you walk through the door you see the usual cabin layout, I was particularly impressed with the doing away off closed wardrobes with it instead being open and walk in rather than the standard closing door wardrobes. Moving into the bathroom we had a larger bathroom than the other members of the fleet, excellent bath products from the white company, moving through to a comfy queen size bed and two seater sofa which in our cabin could also be made into a sofa bed. The balcony as other passengers have said is a little on the small side and when opening the gate to the next door cabin it was hard to get in and out of our door. Restaurant We were seated both evenings on a set dining at 2045 in the Oriental restaurant, first impressions of the restaurant was it was smart, spacious and clean. On previous experiences with P&O I have found the food offering to be very middle of the road, nothing to write home about. Britannia has done some great work in restoring my faith in P&O’s food offering. I won’t bore you with the details of menus but the highlights for me were the Hampshire smoked trout starter, the beef wellington and as always they still offer a really great cheese board at the end of every meal. A quick note on the service, which was excellent, the waiter, his assistant and the wine waiter were all very happy, smiley and knowledgeable, making the service look effortless. A quick note on the buffet which also had an excellent range of food and was a much more pleasant space than many ship buffets, it was more spacious than some of the slightly older ships. Bars We particularly enjoyed the crystal room, it was a beautiful room with a large dance floor and offered a slightly more adult disco, the live lounge had a fantastic band playing although it was completely packed. We also visited the crow’s nest which was considerably larger than many ships it was also very beautiful with wonderful views, all bars we went into seemed to to have comfortable chairs with clean menus and an efficient staff. Spa Like most things on board the spa is large in expanse, however I was slightly disappointed as the thermal suite which we added was on the smaller side and neither steam room worked, the thermal pool however was very nice although the noise of the shower and bubbles being produced somewhat made the relaxation beds a little pointless and I found the general appearance lacked compared to other areas with pool towels and glasses everywhere which was a little bit of a shame. Those travelling with us took massages and were incredibly happy with both the deep tissue and the hot stone massage. Entertainment Aside from the excellent music playing in the bars during the evening, there was the theatre which hosts two shows each evening, the theatre itself is not huge for the number of passengers on board so if you don’t want to stand at the back it is worth to get there a little in advance, the show we caught was a Four seasons tribute which I think they do often have on these shorter cruises, they were a professional act and the show came across this way with excellent lighting and acoustics to match. During the day if the weather permits as mentioned above you can take advantage of the pools on the top deck, the adults only area towards to front end with pool and ample seating and bar was far more relaxing than the family area in the mid section where they had loud music playing throughout the day, it was a real positive that they had these two very different areas catering for almost everyone, there is also a small pool at the aft of the ship with a further bar this again was slightly quieter. We were not travelling with children so cannot comment on their facilities. Disembarkation Much like all disembarkation's it was very smooth, we disembarked at our allotted time after breakfast and picked our luggage up from the terminal and we were on our way home. General ship view The one thing that will hit you when you just arrive at the port is that the ship is huge, this view won’t change on boarding, a wonderful atrium with bars, shops and winding stair cases, be sure to get some pictures here on formal night. The one downside to Britannia’s size is that everywhere is a long distance walk but always worth it as the product on board is stylish and offers a five star style environment that I think P&O have lacked slightly on their other ships. Everybody also seemed to dress to the occasion and there were very few passengers who didn’t dress for the formal evening with black tie in abundance. An extra note was that as this was a two night cruise we didn’t have a full chance to experience everything and it would almost certainly have more to offer on a longer cruise. I have to praise P&O as the staff on board we all excellent, and they have certainly upped their game in terms of ship appearance. Overall this was an enjoyable two night break on board their flagship and I would not hesitate to return. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
First went on P&O canberra in the 80s' but this new one is not as good as the top class ones we have been on. RCI, Princess, and Holland America are the premier league ones.This new ship is very drab.The passengers who all deserve ... Read More
First went on P&O canberra in the 80s' but this new one is not as good as the top class ones we have been on. RCI, Princess, and Holland America are the premier league ones.This new ship is very drab.The passengers who all deserve a holiday age in 80+ if you do not have a wheelchair,scooter,walking wheel frame or walking stick you are in the minority.This is meant to be a family friendly ship? No so the children like us like ice cream, £1.95 a scoop or £2.15 for a Magnum on a stick.All other good cruise lines have these free.The shuttle bus in ports are £4.00 each way other cruise lines are free.Gratuities are £7.00 a day pp.14 night cruise is £98 With 3500 passengers = £343.000,and tips not going to the crew who have told us they get paid in US dollars.The cabin and bar staff and restaurant crew are excellent..The Headline theatre holds 930 seats for 2 shows a night.= 1860, then with 3500 passengers this leaves 1640 people who cannot see the main show.Dining is moderate to poor..Health & Safety, washing hands with anti bacterial is most important, the Horizion buffet has sinks to wash on entry,but the main dining rooms dis not have until we reported it,the the sprays were put in place at the entry to the dining areas..If you go ashore you have the sprays on you return to the ship,but if have all aboard by 4-30pm the sprays are taken away at 4-15pm so the last people on board cannot clean their hands. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
Decided to try a cruise from southampton. Embarkation very good disembarkation exceptionally good. This ship does not have any wow factor and appeared to be a little bit on the dull side with decor and is quite bland. The cabins are ... Read More
Decided to try a cruise from southampton. Embarkation very good disembarkation exceptionally good. This ship does not have any wow factor and appeared to be a little bit on the dull side with decor and is quite bland. The cabins are functional but the bathroom area is the smallest we have ever used on any ship as when you step out of the shower to dry yourself it is a tight space and on this particular cruise there were a vast number of disabled and elderly people who would have found this space very tight and I cannot believe there were sufficient disabled cabins on the ship to cater for them. There were an abundance of very large people also on the cruise and they could not fit in the bathroom space and went to the Spa to have a shower. The food in the Horizon Buffet was exceptionally good with a vast choice, there were also 4 speciality dining options on board with a cover charge of £25 per person this was also the charge for the Limelight Club which is a type of supper club where special guests performed. The entertainment in the theatre was very good but always full resulting in standing at the back, this spoiled any show as there were alot of people who had no idea what the show was but were there as it was a free show and promptly fell asleep and remained asleep even through the amazing voice of Sam Bailey. Apart from Bingo every lounge you visited seemed to be holding a quiz of some sort. Not an uplifting cruise by any means. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
Had a great holiday on the lovely BrittaniaI! This was my first cruise – France and Spain 7days from Southampton. The ship was impressed, large and magnificent with lots of activities to do, such as dance classes, gym, sauna, swimming ... Read More
Had a great holiday on the lovely BrittaniaI! This was my first cruise – France and Spain 7days from Southampton. The ship was impressed, large and magnificent with lots of activities to do, such as dance classes, gym, sauna, swimming pools, bars, etc. Food was good and plenty with lots of places to eat and drink - buffet, grill bar and black tie restaurants. There were also plenty of places to sit quiet and relax if you wanted to. Service was brilliant and staff were friendly and helpful. Our cabin was comfortable and the cabin steward hard working and efficient. In part entertainment was ok, but could be better. We met many nice people and had a great time chatting and having fun. P&O had computer problems on the last day of our cruise, so we weren’t able to get our final bill, this was posted to us a week after returning home. Overall, my first cruise was amazing, with really good food and excellent service from staff, but on the not so good side, I didn’t enjoy most entertainments and the P&O computer problem was a big let-down. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
Great Ship, very good staff and service. Entertainment was not as good as other cruise lines we have used.... The Pulse were brilliant the Crystal room dance band were dire and the general shows were middle of the road. (More Hi DE Hi than ... Read More
Great Ship, very good staff and service. Entertainment was not as good as other cruise lines we have used.... The Pulse were brilliant the Crystal room dance band were dire and the general shows were middle of the road. (More Hi DE Hi than London Paladium) The quality of food was average unless you paid extra for the alternative restaurants ( The Indian restaurant 'Sindhu' was excellent) Had issue with soot from the funnels landing on pool loungers and marking clothes (as did others) but no warning signs were put up. Also was very disappointed with passport control for some passengers with no obvious or given reasons. ( I don't like getting up at 0630 when I am at home never mind during my holiday) We gave the bar staff tips in cash as apparently they did not share in the daily service charge on the cabin bill - only cabin staff and waiters in the restaurant get that) Not a problem but it wasn't made clear and I would guess that most passengers didn't know. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
Lovely cruise, did our own tours with the locals, P&O tours far too expensive in my opinion. Lovely food, good entertainment in headliners. Couple of acts not so good, but we all like different things. Piped music far to loud on deck ... Read More
Lovely cruise, did our own tours with the locals, P&O tours far too expensive in my opinion. Lovely food, good entertainment in headliners. Couple of acts not so good, but we all like different things. Piped music far to loud on deck and in live lounge, no chance of having a conversation with fellow guests. I think a charge of £25 to watch Gareth Gates and Madeliene Bell in the Limelight Club ridiculous, when they could have had them in the Headliners theatre for all to see. I don't think you should have to pay to go to a venue onboard when you have payed a lot of money for your cruise. Lovely cabin and cabin boy so kind and helpful.all the ships staff were polite kind and go out of there way to help you. It was first time on Britannia but would do it again. First class service. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We chose this cruise as a first time taster.Just 6 nights.Firstly the food was excellent we had an amazing choice either buffet or served in main dining room.Anything we had was fresh and well cooked could not fault at all.Room service ... Read More
We chose this cruise as a first time taster.Just 6 nights.Firstly the food was excellent we had an amazing choice either buffet or served in main dining room.Anything we had was fresh and well cooked could not fault at all.Room service again was 5 star our cabin steward kept our room in a clean fresh environment.The cabin itself was of good size and nice decor.We had a leaflet placed in our cabin every day to let us know what was happening on board.The entertainment in the evening was of an amazing standard and kept us well entertained every evening.The staff were always helpful and pleasant.The ship had lots of places to have a quiet and peaceful time if you wanted.The only downside on Britannia were the lifts and stairs.Depending on where you were the stairs were at one end of the ship which meant you had to wait sometimes for a lift to arrive.Also another tip is to take any unused hangers of the clothes rail as they rattle about when the ship moves about.Would we cruise again on Britannia yes most definitely really enjoyed our short cruise.Also If it is rough at all you do not get into Guernsey.We talked to a lot of other people who had cruised before and had not got into Guernsey on other occasions either so I would avoid Guernsey on your itinerary. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
P&O Britannia Norwegian Fjords cruise June 2017 - distinctly average. It was our first time on Brittania, having previously been with on Ocean Village (twice) and Island Escape and Crown Princess. We travelled as a couple with no ... Read More
P&O Britannia Norwegian Fjords cruise June 2017 - distinctly average. It was our first time on Brittania, having previously been with on Ocean Village (twice) and Island Escape and Crown Princess. We travelled as a couple with no kids. The general cruise was nice, but we left feeling a little deflated, all in all the overall experience was distinctly average. The ship itself is large and I think its a newish ship (couple of years old?) The ships decor was ok, possibly a bit ostentatious, but it was nice and clean. It did look a bit tired already though, which due to its age I found surprising, but I suppose its a tough life at sea, even for new ships. There was some minor peeling paint, minor rusty metalwork, etc. .The cabin (outside with balcony) was large enough and in good condition and very clean. The bathroom had a shower (nice and powerful) but the bathroom on the whole was a tad on the small side, the shower area itself was quite large, but the space next to the basin and wc was a bit tight. There was a reasonable storage area next to the bathroom, with plenty of hangers (about 20) and room to store suitcases, etc. There was a large queen size bed, two bedside cabinets, a dressing table with a chair and small table (as well as the two seater sofa), so overall space was ok. There was a large flat screen tv, a safe, fridge, mini bar, tea and coffer facilities and a hair dryer. For some reason my UK shaver would not fit the shaver point? Luckily I had charged it and I had also brought a wet razor. The cabin was air conditioned (with variable temperature control in cabin) Cabin TV / Films = poor. There were only about 8 tv channels, of which 2 were news, and 1 was sport and the signal was intermittent, frequently dropping out so there was no signal. There was an option to watch films on the tv but again this was poor, the choice was limited (although a few films did change daily) they were mostly the same old(ish) films and not too many of them (maybe about 100 to choose from)? Is it too much to ask to have a decent selection of tv channels and / or films? (or even a good selection of radio channels). The balcony had a slightly restricted view, being between two lifeboats, but we did have a view. The balcony timber handrail was starting to peel varnish. The balcony was only large enough for two (reclining) chairs and a small table, but although small, it was large enough (just). Our last balcony on Crown Princess had four chairs and a table and was about double the size of the one on Brittania. One negative, the large glass sliding balcony door was very stiff. I am 17 stone of idiot, and I could just about manage to pull it open myself, using some force on my part, but my (smaller) partner could not, it was just too heavy for her to move. Service from the general waiting and bar staff was generally slow, they often seemed to be more interested in talking amongst themselves rather than serving customers. I frequently waited more than five minutes to get someones attention to order a drink, and then often waited a further five minutes for them to actually bring it. On one occasion I finished my meal by the time the drink was brought tom our table! On some occasiuons the service wsa ok and faster, but it was at best variable. The service from our cabin steward was better (Freddie), he was great, very happy always smiling, happy to chat and enthusiastic and helpful, it was a shame the other staff were not as dedicated as him. The staff in the various "premium" restaurants were much more attentive and cheerful than the general waiting and bar staff. so paying the premium improved the service, (but you should not have to pay extra for basic good service). There were NO outbreaks of the Nova Virus on board (or any other virus) to our knowledge and the ship was in my opinion very good at preventing this, with lots of the alcohol hand cleaners, and lots of reminders for passengers to wash hands at every opportunity. Food was ok, but ultimately slightly disappointing. The choice of food was slightly limited, with perhaps only four choices of main course, dessert, etc. There was a different theme every day, but some food was available every day, eg: salads, breads, fruit, etc. In the premium restaurants, the menu's did not change at all for the whole 7 days! On our previous cruises, (7 days duration) the premium restaurants changed their menus every couple of days. I thought the lack of overall variety and the general quality of the food was very average. Certainly not bad food, but also not great. I find that one of the things I look forward to most on a cruise if the food, so lack of choice is dissapointing. There was no real wow factor with the food. Drinks were expensive, premium lagers were well over £4 each, whereas on previous cruises I have found drinks prices to be roughly equivelant to normal bar /pub prices. Although some wine prices were very reasonable, £18 a bottle, etc. On board shops were generally expensive, (do people really spend £4000 on a watch on a cruise?) but to be honest, I don't expect to bag many bargains on a cruise ship (apart from duty free stuff). They had a few "sales", including jewellery, watches, etc, but these were generally tourist type tat or cheap makes I had never heard of. As this cruise was in Norway, its worth pointing out that Norway is also a quite expensive Country, with beers costing £9 per pint! Food wsa quite cheap though (in some cases). Two of our excursions promised Norwegian waffles, (included in the price) but on both occasions we just got "normal" type cakes, so we didn't get to sample the waffles. Entertainment on board was in my opinion also slightly lacking, the theatre style shows looked a bit jaded, (I find most cruise shows to be a bit of a cliche') and they were not very original, just your standard cruise / holiday camp style nightly show. These were often over subscribed, we had to get to most locations at least 15 to 30 minutes before the start date to be sure of a seat. Pub quizzies were good (Brodies Bar). We missed some shows but talking to other passengers the general conscensus was that the on board musicians were good, comedians were good, and there was also a hypnotist who was good. There was an occasional talk (but these invariably ended with the talker trying to sell you something) and there were some films daily (in the ships cinema/theatre). But again, nothing outstanding and no wow factor. The onboard gym was great, with lots of shiny new fitness machines, which were easy to use and the only negative was the opening times, only open up to 10pm, I'm sure some people would like to use them late at night but hey, Gym staff were helpful and friendly. The ports of call were ok, but the cruise excursions were expensive, we had four stops and did an excursion on three of those stops. The first excursion (leisurely Stavanger) was basically a two hour coach drive round the outskirts of the town. The one thing we wanted to see up close, the large viking sword monument, we drove past without stopping, so got no info and no picture opportunity! The second excursion (Olden) was great with a drive to see some Fjords and the glacier (highly recommended). We did the excursion which included the troll cars (as we both have minor walking issues) and we were glad we did, as the walking tour took several hours apparently, (talking to other passengers who did it) and even with the troll cars, there was still a steep 20 minute walk to get to the glacier (and a 20 minute walk back). But the view of the glacier was worth it. The third excursion (Alesund) was also very good, via coach stopping at several islands, passing several lakes / Fjords and traversing several bridges and tunnels and a visit to a lighthouse, with coffee and cake included, with a good guide and lots of interesting info en-route. The last stop was Bergen and it did not stop raining all day, we had not booked an excursion so just did a quick look round the town. However, after doing these excursions, (and others on other cruises) we now know that, with a little research, we could have arranged our own trips at much lower cost and saw the same things (and more), but you live and learn... and sometimes its just more convenient to let someone else do the organising, you pays your money and takes your choice... 8-) We had some poor weather (especially Bergen) and we sailed some notoriously choppy waters (Dover strait, North Sea, etc), but the ship was fine, with very little movement. The ship is very large and staberlised and most of the time you don't realise you are moving. No sick bags were required... Embarkation was easy and fast, we were on board within about 20 minutes of arriving at the cruise terminal (we used a car parking compnay), so we just drove to Southampton, gave our luggae to a porter, left the car across the road, and entered the terminal. Disembarkation was the reverse, we were booked to leave the ship at 10:20am, but they were ahead of schedule and we actually left about 9:30am anad again it was quick and easy, off the ship, into the terminal, find luggage, cross the road and pick up the car, easy peesy, lemon squeezy. We were home by lunchtime. 8-) Things that really annoyed me: Only having whole milk on board? call me a walking cliche, but I'm British and I drink tea, and I loathe whole milk, it must be semi skimmed, but all the milk on board seemed to be whole milk only (in our cabin, in the restuarants, at the tea stations, etc) so for the whole week, my tea tasted fowl! Horrible toast? At every breakfast there were dishes of ready made toast, brown or white, but all vile. I don't know if its the bread they use but it was almost always cold and either under or over done and always very crispy bread. Again, call me a cliche, bit I like my toast hot (so the butter melts) and soft (not hard or crispy). Its a little thing, but it absolutely spoilt every bloody breakfast. Just give us a toaster so we can toast our own bread how we like it, pretty please? The lack of decent tv channels, when I'm in my cabin, generally I have the tv on, is it too much to ask for a couple of decent channels to watch? Half the time there was no bloody signal, so no tv channels anyway. Overall, we were slightly disappointed with this cruise. Don't get me wrong, it was ok and we had a good time. But, service was sometimes poor, on board costs were high, excursions were expensive, on board entettainment was average and the food was not inspired. But the ship was nice, cabin was nice, the stops were nice and how often can you say that you have visited a Glacier? Would I sail with P&O again? yes. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
First time cruisers. We normally travel then have a week or to chill on a beach, by a pool so this was quite the exception for us. We can’t compare this cruise to any others, just review it on its merits, and the people we met along the ... Read More
First time cruisers. We normally travel then have a week or to chill on a beach, by a pool so this was quite the exception for us. We can’t compare this cruise to any others, just review it on its merits, and the people we met along the way. The Norwegian Fjords were beautiful and this is what lead to booking of this cruise. Last minute decision so we were left with an inside cabin. Spacious, well planned, clean, comfortable. Place to sleep. We are used to high levels of service (stay 4 / 5 *, travel business class etc) and we were very impressed with the variety and choice and availability of food on board. Ship was also kept spotlessy clean, everyone encouraged to wash hands often. We ate at the buffet a couple of time. The rest in the Epicurean, Glasshouse, Beach Club and Sindhu. The Epicurean was good, though one of the menus suited our tastes more than the other. The staff were excellent, explaining the courses well and allowing us to tailor the dishes to our needs. Sindhu was also excellent. Again – 1st class service and food. The Glass House tapas/wine bar and the Beach Club also excellent – we ate here a couple of times. Both offered a good variety of food that came at a small extra cost, but this was well worth a visit. The staff were also extremely pleasant and knowledgeable about wine and also showed an interest in their guests. The benefit of these restaurants is that, as there is a surcharge, they are less busy and more likely to be quiet, refined select places to eat! Crow’s Nest bar was a great place to relax in the evening, watch the waves pass by and wait for the Seagull show to start. The switch them on at 5.00pm each night, for an hour. Ship entertainment was pretty good. Some shows were better than others. Some were excellent. Of particular mention – 3 Motown singers – name escapes me. The dancers were fabulous and their lessons during the day were excellent. Engine room tour and Bridge tour – both fascinating Cookery lessons were excellent. Dancing lessons also. Oh – I bought a watch. Massive saving on UK prices. The cabin steward (Jerry) really went out of his way to make sure things were perfect for us – even down to making sure we had a bucket of ice each evening! P&O is the only the only cruise line we’ve been on but we thoroughly enjoyed it and will be back in January… Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
This was our second ever cruise ( previous Arcadia) but found the Brittania a bit too big and impersonal.We had to wait nearly 2.5 hours to board at Southampton , not a good start . We later found out that a gangway had broken down , but ... Read More
This was our second ever cruise ( previous Arcadia) but found the Brittania a bit too big and impersonal.We had to wait nearly 2.5 hours to board at Southampton , not a good start . We later found out that a gangway had broken down , but why wasn't this mentioned when we were waitng . The large number of passengers caused some queuing problems in St Petersburg with Russian immigration staff not being able to cope. Staff on board were friendly and helpful , our balcony cabin on F deck was clean and comfortable but the toilet / bathroom was very small compared with the same grade cabin on the Arcadia. In fact getting in and out of the shower was a real struggle. Our Steward was great and very helpful. Restaurant food was good except that in the Epicurian which was a poor and costly experience. Entertainment was good as we had the Strictly members on board . Quite surprised that a ship only two years old had two separate generator breakdowns, one when two generators broke down and in Zeebruge the "wrong fuel " was loaded !!!!!! The ship also really needs extra staircases mid ships as the lifts get very busy , which means waiting or finding a staircase elsewhere on the ship. Disembarkation was surprisingly easy despite the number of passengers. Overall not that impressed with large ships. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
I have been wanting to see London, and also Norway (The Fiords) for quite awhile. I was going to do a land tour, but since my health is now working against me sometimes, I realize that I need to slow down (74ys), and a widower on top of ... Read More
I have been wanting to see London, and also Norway (The Fiords) for quite awhile. I was going to do a land tour, but since my health is now working against me sometimes, I realize that I need to slow down (74ys), and a widower on top of it. I love the people of Great Britain as they are polite and have a special way to be proud, so I put all of that together and I decided to sail on the newest ship and also visit the Norway coast and Fiords. I arrived early so I could spend 4 days visiting London and having a great time. I had to find a way to get to Southampton, but it is only about 2 to 2 1/2 hours from my hotel near the Victoria Bus Station to the station in Southampton in a comfortable bus. The crew of the ship were polite and efficient and took my luggage and got me on the ship very fast. The ship was beautiful, and my table mates were so nice, as they were from all over England, but did not hesitate to include me in all the festivities. The entertainment was excellent and the music and dancing was just wonderful. The food gave me a chance to sample British style, and I really loved it. We had to cross the North Sea to get to Norway, and the water was calm as a lake and I was glad as it could be rough if there were storms. We stopped at the main locations and had great tours as we headed toward our last stop in Bergen. The country was lovely and the Norwegian people are alos polite and glad to see everyone as we got to explore the views and shops. This was definitely a trip to remember. I was glad I sailed on the P&O line and someday will go back and sample other ships from the line. When we disembarked on the last day, I was amazed how smooth and fast, and how they had people in the large terminal area where you picked up your suitcases who were able to assist you and get you out very fast. I must say Great Ship and Captain and all the crew I met were the best personally and efficiently. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
cost was decent. destination was itinerary was very good, the ship itself is stunning and very well decorated throughout. The shows in the theatre where superb and the majority of the guest artists where also very good. The entertainment ... Read More
cost was decent. destination was itinerary was very good, the ship itself is stunning and very well decorated throughout. The shows in the theatre where superb and the majority of the guest artists where also very good. The entertainment team didn't do enough to make themselves known to the passengers and having been on the Azura several times I don't think they can hold a candle to them. The staff in the restaurants and bars where exceptional as always as was our cabin lad. Sadly there were a few passengers hell bent on ruining the cruise for others and succeeded. people fighting and I've never known as many arguments between passengers. I had to forcibly stop one man from attacking a lady and remove him from the live lounge on night 2 !!. All in all though this wasn't the fault of P&O just the few idiots who behaved in a rude aggressive manner. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
Norwegian Fjords, wonderful scenery, great for photography, very relaxing cruise, this ship is outstanding it offers something for everyone, we couldn't fault it, the cabin, entertainment and food was excellent and nothing was too ... Read More
Norwegian Fjords, wonderful scenery, great for photography, very relaxing cruise, this ship is outstanding it offers something for everyone, we couldn't fault it, the cabin, entertainment and food was excellent and nothing was too much trouble for the staff. Shore excursions to the Glacier are a must, as was the river cruise, we found it easy to get around Bergen and found the vernacular railway ourself saving several pounds and no queuing. Flam and Olden is also easy to get off the ship and walk around. Embarkation at Southampton was easy, just try and arrive near the time you are given or else you will have to wait on the side, many unhappy people trying to get boarded ahead of the time were asked nicely to wait seated until their allotted time. Disembarkation was simple, pack the night before, leave suit cases outside, keep an overnight bag for the morning, early full breakfast and if you book a time at reception you can leave earlier, they were ahead of time so we were able to leave the ship just after 9am, taxis were waiting so no waiting, home by 10am. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
We cruise often, 30+ with different cruise companies. We find embarkation on PO so slow and drawn out, sitting for hours on end with a letter in your hand waiting to hear yours to be called, or turn up about 2.30pm and you don't ... Read More
We cruise often, 30+ with different cruise companies. We find embarkation on PO so slow and drawn out, sitting for hours on end with a letter in your hand waiting to hear yours to be called, or turn up about 2.30pm and you don't have to wait so long, but if you are going on a weekend cruise a percentage of your time is waiting to get on. The same with disembarkation, you have to be out of your cabin by 8am, don' t be 5 mins late .We went for breakfast, had to wait for the lift for ages, everyone was using them. We got back at 8.07am we had the cabin steward knocking on the door to tell us to leave, he actually said we where holding him up it was messing his timings up. The dinning room was very disappointing for a new ship, very basic. The presentation of the food was like some inexperienced person had placed it on the plate. Also found that the staff did not make and interaction with us Its a big ship, i'm sure die hard PO cruisers love her , but we didn't find it so good We enjoy cruising and there was nothing major to complain about, but after this experience we are looking forward to our NCL, Cunard RCCL cruises this year to come and have no plans on returning to PO. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
We had cruised on Britannia around Caribbean in January, and had a wonderful time, so were a bit apprehensive of taking a short break just over to Bruges. However, it was my friend's 60th, so the 15 of us joined her. We had a great ... Read More
We had cruised on Britannia around Caribbean in January, and had a wonderful time, so were a bit apprehensive of taking a short break just over to Bruges. However, it was my friend's 60th, so the 15 of us joined her. We had a great time. Yes, it was chilly, and the deck areas were not used much, but there were brave souls in the pool. Yes, there were hen and stag dos, but they were all civilised and quite house trained! Many family groups which was lovely to see. Food excellent, entertainment very good (saw 'Sounds of the Underground ' again, but still enjoyable.) We had a standard balcony cabin this time, as opposed to a superior, but it was fine for a weekend. In fact, I didn't miss a sofa, but my husband did. Bed was super comfy and we slept very well. Mill-pond crossing too. Some people complained about the disco till 5am in the live lounge, so I would advise to book cabin early and look at the ship plan first. We were on D deck midship and it was very quiet. Took free ship shuttle into Blankenberg which is a lovely seaside and shopping area with many friendly cafes. You can catch train to Bruges from here. Loved it all! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
This is our seventh cruise having used thompson, celebrity, Holland America, and princess in the past and the first year we have felt the need to contribute to the reviews on cruise critic. We were booked onto a 12 night cruise on the ... Read More
This is our seventh cruise having used thompson, celebrity, Holland America, and princess in the past and the first year we have felt the need to contribute to the reviews on cruise critic. We were booked onto a 12 night cruise on the Britannia departing from Southampton ocean terminal. The cruise would visit Madeira, La Palma, Tenerife, Gran Canaria, and Lisbon. We were travelling with two adults and a 19 year old. We travelled down to Southampton and parked in a private driveway we have used before and from yourparkingspace website online where we pay for parking a lot cheaper than the cruise parking and then get a lift to the terminal and back. Check in for us was swift, we joined the queue for the check in and were through security quickly this was because we were given a black fast track card for check in at time of arrival (for a reason unknown to us) however the alternative to this was being given coloured numbered cards where each number was slowly called out as passengers waited to check in. We had six sea days altogether in the cruise. We had no concerns about this before the cruise, such a large ship after all and the company's flagship, we have enjoyed a wide variety of activities in the past and kept very busy on sea days. Each evening when we received our newspaper in the cabins we were quite disappointed, the schedule looked rather full- quite encouraging at first sight however the large majority of activities were paid for. eg. spa treatments advertised as an activity, gym activities paid for. It was a real struggle to find things to do. Yes there were a fair few quizzes in a day. There were two guest speakers on the cruise. These talks were not held in the theatre like on other ships. They were held in the live lounge which did not have enough seats for the amount of people that were in attendance. We did not feel that there were enough enrichment activities or classes. The library was well stocked with new books in. The buffet mainly consisted of Asian food. It was quite hard to find a table to sit down and eat our food at times. A lot of the staff seemed miserable in the restaurants. The cabin staff kept the room clean. Basically I feel that the ship has too many people for the space that is available. I have never been on a cruise where some many staff members have tried to sell our family things such as a pair of insoles for over one hundred pounds, restaurants with cover charges, entertainment for twenty two pounds. We went to an event called the food and beverage show case which we thought would be lots of demonstrations but it was basically a big sales pitch for the paid restaurant. In the restaurants the lights need replacing in various areas. The shore excursions were good particularly the gardens of the valley which consisted of three very good gardens and the national park in Tenerife was good. we also visited the silk museum and a hotel in La palma. this was a very good tour and worth the money. My daughter enjoyed the kids and teens tea which was well stocked. Here she could get free ice cream and jelly. Disembarkation was a long process. we had to be out of the cabin at 8a.m but we could not leave the ship until 10.30 a.m. This cruise is not ideal for a nineteen year old. There is very little to do for this age group. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
We chose the mini cruise to Bruge. Embarkation was very quick . We checked in at 12.45 and by 13.20 we were enjoying lunch. We had a cabin with balcony on G deck. Lovely cabin with sofa lovely compact shower and loo room. Balcony with ... Read More
We chose the mini cruise to Bruge. Embarkation was very quick . We checked in at 12.45 and by 13.20 we were enjoying lunch. We had a cabin with balcony on G deck. Lovely cabin with sofa lovely compact shower and loo room. Balcony with chairs and small table. Why people complain about size is beyond me . The same moaning about lifts , how many do you want .? There was never a problem even with so many people on board . did freedom dining The food was excellent . Someone moaning about curry every meal? Think they should get out more. Same with shops . The goods were limited but very good if you want more go to a shopping centre. The atrium area is lovely . Great place to sit relax people watch have to say it wasn't the warmest area as was the crystal room so an extra layer helped. Plenty of entertainment . Have to say the duet in Brodie's were awful . The excursion to Bruges was excellent Roger was brilliant , very knowledgable and very funny . Black tie meal in meridian was excellent . All the staff were lovely polite and helpful. Overall can't wait to go on Britannia again . Some of the negativity is laughable some people need to get a life if all they can moan about is brown doors dull corridors poor shops etc etc . People need to read what there getting for there money instead of moaning after the event . Rule Britannia Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2017
Ship was beautiful but unfortunately the food didnt meet to our expections.First night asian dinner then indian all was cold not that much sort of food so after this i am not sure i would go back to Britannia.You could not find vegetables ... Read More
Ship was beautiful but unfortunately the food didnt meet to our expections.First night asian dinner then indian all was cold not that much sort of food so after this i am not sure i would go back to Britannia.You could not find vegetables or fruits really. We have already booked on Ventura and it is a smaller ship but definitely our favourite on any way.We have cruised on Ventura more times by now and although it is smaller than Britannia we would choose again this.Even you have a short break the food should be the same goos as on longer trip. We wanted pictures of official night but it was too late so you could have a look at the photos 3 hours after they were taken it would have been at 2am so we didnt buy any. i dont think it is a good business when you want to sell something. Read Less
Britannia Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 5.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.6
Family 5.0 3.6
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.5
Enrichment 4.0 3.1
Service 5.0 3.9
Value For Money 5.0 3.4
Rates 5.0 N/A

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