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7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Just completed the Melb-NZ cruise 18-30 March 19. Seemed like a good way to see a little of NZ in comfort. Massive delays and chaos at boarding in Melbourne. Burst water main leaving cabins without water until 9:30 AM one day. Casino ... Read More
Just completed the Melb-NZ cruise 18-30 March 19. Seemed like a good way to see a little of NZ in comfort. Massive delays and chaos at boarding in Melbourne. Burst water main leaving cabins without water until 9:30 AM one day. Casino flooded and smelling. Long queues for shuttle bus into Dunedin with USD 8 charge each way. Long queue for tender from ship to Akaroa even at 11:00AM. Stale cheese board crackers in upgrade Verandah restaurant; reported to maître d' who took no action and continued serving from the same supply on the cheese cart. Drinks overpriced in US dollars and even more expensive when converted to AUS and 15% service charge then added. No ushers in cinema with very elderly people entering in the dark after the film started with one gentleman falling badly on the stairs near my seat. No assistance/supervision in the gym in the early mornings with elderly people on machines. Cabin clean and comfy. Staff very polite and efficient. Food plentiful and good but silly corner cutting like complimentary food from room service but charging for tea/coffee delivered with food. Evening shows too much of the same "song and dance" type routines. Good classical music program and ballroom dancing lessons. Overall the company are milking the Queen Elizabeth name. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
After a great cruise on the Queen Mary in 2017 we had great Expectations of First Class service on Queen Elizabeth in March 2019. Our cruise from Melbourne started poorly with a Cunard Computer glitch at the Port check in causing long ... Read More
After a great cruise on the Queen Mary in 2017 we had great Expectations of First Class service on Queen Elizabeth in March 2019. Our cruise from Melbourne started poorly with a Cunard Computer glitch at the Port check in causing long delays. In fact as we boarded the crew were in their life jackets directing all passengers to their muster stations for our safety drill. Obviously they were leaving on time no matter what. Anyway these computer problems do occur but we missed that welcome aboard photo, the officer’s greeting and the champagne. Not to worry we were on the Queen Elizabeth heading out of Port Phillip Bay heading for New Zealand on a 12 day cruise with one of the best ships on water. Generally the waiters in the Lido Dining Room were just not interested in providing service to their guests with avoidance of eye contact and little interest in meeting our needs. At Britannia Dining Room the service was improved but still it was no better than that of a café . Drinks service was appalling. On day six they ran out of scotch in the dining room so served Jack Daniels without asking if OK. Bourbon is not Scotch. Despite all bars on the ship having plenty of scotch (one had 31 bottles) the waiter said he could not borrow or restock and we would need to ask head office why not? Really? Our table of ten ordered 4 bottles wine throughout the cruise with 3 of them out of stock. These were all listed on their wine menu. Food was Ok with rather small portions and limited selection and variety compared to previous cruises. Drinks service at the Golden Lion Pub was very slow whether they were busy or not. Staff seemed disinterested in good service. Plumbing issues began on morning one when our toilet would not flush. Maintenance responded after my 2nd call adjusted something and it worked. Great til morning three when same problem same result after my 2nd call again. Morning four Toilet won’t flush. By now we are “Not Happy Jan “so again after my second call maintenance arrives and I indicated you can’t just keep adjusting this thing every day or we will have to move. He pulled the whole thing apart found the component that was faulty and surprise surprise it was fixed for good. Happy with the outcome but we did not need three goes to get that result. I am sure this is a regular problem so they will be aware of what needs to be done. On morning eleven toilet would not work but neither did the water supply. Seems they had a main water pipe burst and the entire ship was without running water. To be fair these things happen I guess but I got the impression this was not the first time. Anyway the Casino, Shops and many Staterooms were flooded as this occurred during the night. We were without running water until 9.30am just as Captain Simon Love had announced at about 8am. The flooded areas had poker machines and tables in pieces trying to dry them out before the next cruise that started the next day. We did speak to some guests whose rooms were flooded and the crew were helping dry out their clothes and belongings. Our Stateroom Staff were very efficient and friendly. Our room was in good condition but the balcony was in need of rust treatment and painting roof and rails. It doesn’t make it appealing when it looks grubby. We found the entertainment nightly was very good with entertainers of high quality well presented. Well Done! The Thermal Spa and the Gym were very well equipped with helpful enthusiastic staff. Well done! Ports of call were good with even a tendering port Akaroa being not problem at all. Cruising through Milford Sound was a highlight with an onboard commentator who gave great descriptions of the entire area with the Captain and crew placing the ship perfectly for viewing throughout the ship. Well Done! In summary we found the ship was as expected with good facilities and décor but the service and staff are letting the Cunard Experience down badly. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
I previously sailed on the Queen Elizabeth two years ago, San Francisco to Auckland and enjoyed every minute apart from one or two minor irritations. So, when the opportunity to cruise Melbourne to Melbourne came up, I jumped at the ... Read More
I previously sailed on the Queen Elizabeth two years ago, San Francisco to Auckland and enjoyed every minute apart from one or two minor irritations. So, when the opportunity to cruise Melbourne to Melbourne came up, I jumped at the opportunity. Cruise 911, Melbourne, Picton, Wellington (overnight), Akaroa, Dunedin (Port Chalmers) and cruising the Fiordland National Park. The itinerary was great, enjoyed all of the ports and cruising Doubtful and Milford Sound was wonderful. Embarkation was a total shambles and if I hadn't been using a walking stick who knows how long it would have taken me to board. My boarding pass/ticket stated embarkation time was 12.30pm. I joined an exceptionally long queue in sweltering heat - no shade - and when I got to the top of the queue was told embarkation time was 1.30pm. A friend who had 1.30pm on her ticket, was told her embarkation time was 3.30pm. Seriously? I understand some people fainted because of the conditions. It seems to me that the Victoria Port Authority need to lift their game if Melbourne wants to attract more cruise ships. While their staff tried hard, it doesn't help that the facilities are hopeless. Thank goodness Cunard's check in staff were fabulous. I received an unexpected upgrade from Britannia to Princess Suite. My cabin steward was fantastic, the room was exceptionally clean and the fruit bowl was replenished on a regular basis. Dining in the Princess Grill was out of this world. But there were aspects of the cruise I found disappointing. No pen in the cabin. Previously there was always a pen. This was the most commonly discussed annoyance among passengers. Why provide a notepad if you're not going to provide a pen? The cost of those pens, as marketing tools, is probably negligible. I know it's not a big deal and I did have my own pen but still, it rankled because if this is how Carnival are going to strip down the Cunard brand it's a pretty stupid thing to do. I ate in the Lido a couple of times for lunch and with a group of non Grills friends at dinner. What can I say? Presentation was dreadful, selection seemed to be limited and I noticed that people were queuing up for whatever was going to be cooked on the spot - there was nobody to cook it! On one occasion one side of the Lido was blocked off because the "chef wasn't ready!" It was 12.20pm for goodness sake. For the first few days I had breakfast in my room. Big disappointment. Again, presentation was zero, portion sizes were so small I began wondering if I ought to order two breakfasts. A piece of bacon that measured less than 13cm in length (5 inches for non metricated folks), scrambled eggs - almost cold, presented in two small rounds. Coffee cold - every single time. Yes, I had a coffee maker and I could have made my own, but I chose not to because previously the coffee was always hot. On three occasions I had no knife on my tray, so not sure how I was expected to eat my breakfast and spread butter on my toast. Lucky I had that fruit bowl because I had a knife I could use. Yes, I could have probably complained to somebody about my breakfast but I also understand the logistics of keeping food warm etc. The lack of cutlery was another problem altogether which I felt reflected the lack of care I sensed in the Lido. Maybe the variety in the Lido was due to the fact we were cruising in the southern hemisphere when many northern hemisphere items (especially fish etc.) are not available. But the overall impression I had regarding the Lido was that the staff didn't care. Food ran out and was not replaced in a timely manner. Despite these issues, I still enjoyed the cruise and have booked another one. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this cruise after enjoying a Queen Mary 2 circumnavigation of New Zealand a few years ago. Our boarding time was 2.30pm and we arrived at Station Pier, Melbourne, 10 minutes before the scheduled time to encounter a long and ... Read More
We chose this cruise after enjoying a Queen Mary 2 circumnavigation of New Zealand a few years ago. Our boarding time was 2.30pm and we arrived at Station Pier, Melbourne, 10 minutes before the scheduled time to encounter a long and mutinous queue stretching along the pier. We had to queue for 40 minutes on Station Pier in 30 degree heat. Several elderly passengers were becoming quite distressed. Passengers were being allowed into the Cruise Terminal in groups of about 20. Here we queued for a further 40 minutes in a hot, stuffy antiquated building - the air conditioning unable to cope with the passenger numbers. I understand the problem was due to multiple computer crashes and a passenger who fainted in the airless terminal having to be medivaced. Cunard could, and should have handled the situation better. They could have sent a ship's officer down onto station pier to explain the situation first hand. They could have set up the cold drink stations and gazebos on the pier as they did at every port stop. They could have provided temporary seating for elderly passengers. An apology would have been nice. Maybe even a voucher for a complimentary drink once on board. This was hardly Cunard's famed White Star service and the problem was exacerbated by Melbourne Port's antiquated facility. Overall the embarkation was a tedious, unpleasant experience. Most reasonable people accept that things can go wrong. Unfortunately, the bad embarkation experience got the cruise off to a bad start with some passengers just looking to find fault wherever they could. Once on board things changed considerably for the better. Our cabin was spotlessly clean and well appointed. Our steward, Alfie, was an absolute treasure. There were a couple of minor issues with our cabin - a blown light bulb and blocked toilet. Both were fixed very promptly following a call to the Pursers office. Like one of the other reviewers, i was slightly irritated that there was no pen provided in the cabin. On our QM2 cruise there was a nice faux "Mont Blanc" style pen. Cost cutting to save a couple of dollars on a cruise costing several thousand dollars just doesn't make sense. The ship itself is fabulous with its art deco interior, artworks and magnificent staircases. It is only spoiled somewhat by the gaudy poker machines that occupy too much premium space. Surely they could have been placed somewhere less conspicuous (preferably down on Deck 1). I find it hard to understand why some reviewers complain about the food. The dining choices are many and varied. We ate most of our meals in the Britannia Restaurant where the meals were excellent, as was the service (and we're fussy). We had a couple of meals in the Lido buffet where there was plenty of variety and we had no problem with service. We loved the Golden Lion pub and the English fare. The Fish 'n Chips were great and I enjoyed one of the best chicken curries I've had in a long time. Our favourite bar was the Commodore Club for pre-dinner drinks. Service was always excellent and the complimentary canapés were a nice touch. Our only problem with service was in the Verandah Bar where we once waited 20 minutes to get any service. The waiter seemed more interested in chatting with the barman than attending to guests. Drink prices were high for guests paying in AU dollars. Beer was best value with prices being about what you would pay in a good quality hotel, even after conversion. Wine was expensive for Australian travellers who love their wine. The wine list provided an excellent selection from around the world and I enjoyed attending the wine tasting and sampling wines that are not easily available in Australia. Our sommelier was very knowledgeable and happy to share his expertise. The enrichment lectures were of a very high standard as were the song and dance routines accompanied by an excellent band. We had no problem with the embarkation and disembarkation by the ship's boats in Akaroa as reported by another reviewer. We also opted for the Train excursion in Dunedin which was well organised and well catered for. The train came right onto the Jetty at Port Chalmers. The highlight of the trip was the navigation of Doubtful Sound and Milford Sound which was accompanied by an excellent commentary form a local expert. Would we book Cunard again? Definitely. We have already booked the QE Christmas and New Year cruise to NZ. I'm pleased to report that the disembarkation ran a lot more smoothly than the embarkation. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Apart from having to queue for 90 minutes to check in due to Cunard computer crashing several times, the cruise was everything we expected and more. There was a bottle of champagne waiting in our cabin, robe and slippers supplied and ... Read More
Apart from having to queue for 90 minutes to check in due to Cunard computer crashing several times, the cruise was everything we expected and more. There was a bottle of champagne waiting in our cabin, robe and slippers supplied and lovely toiletries and the beds were so comfortable. There was plenty of choice in Lido restaurant for breakfast and lunch and dinner in Britannia restaurant was excellent for quality, choice and service. Golden Lion pub served excellent British food for lunch, the Atlantic cod, chips and mushy peas were a favourite. Afternoon tea served in Queens room by waiters wearing white gloves was an experience. There was plenty of activities to take part in if you wanted to and plenty of seating if you just wanted to read. We took up the offer of 'book inside cabin and get free upgrade to balcony'. However it was not used very much as the weather got quite rough crossing the Tasman Sea and travelling down the east coast and round to Fiordland, so unless the same deal offered next time, an ocean view would suffice. Definitely recommend this trip to New Zealand. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose a 3 night Sydney - Burnie - Melbourne cruise as a sampler and introduction to Cunard cruising. Embarkation was reasonably painless. We arrived a little earlier than the allocated boarding time and was told to board anyway. We ... Read More
We chose a 3 night Sydney - Burnie - Melbourne cruise as a sampler and introduction to Cunard cruising. Embarkation was reasonably painless. We arrived a little earlier than the allocated boarding time and was told to board anyway. We dropped off bags, queued for about 15 minutes and then found ourselves on-board. Finding our cabin was easy as we were escorted by our cabin steward who did a good job of explaining our cabin facilities. The cabin was comfortable and clean, though no larger than what we've previously experienced. Power is via British and American sockets, which is no problem, but there were no USB sockets. The bathroom was small but everything worked as expected. The bed was comfortable, but I found the pillows too soft. A nice touch was a complimentary bottle of sparkling wine on ice in the cabin. As a tip for Cunard though, next time source a wine that is drinkable. Two lunches and breakfasts were in the Lido buffet. As a buffet, the food was reasonable quality with a good variety. Shouldn't have to pay extra for espresso style coffees though. One lunch and dinners were in the Britannia Restaurant. This was disappointing. The food was no better than a reasonable RSL club bistro. The service was reasonably attentive though a little hit and miss. After our first night's dinning I found myself with someone else's keycard. This was quickly fixed up at the purser's office and provided a lesson to check the card after purchases. A highlight of the food experience was the high tea, which we experienced on our second day. Being our only day at sea, it was very popular and the overflow ended up in the Britannia Restaurant. The tea (or coffee) was plentiful and hot, the food, sandwiches, scones and sweets, were spot on and the service was attentive. Drink prices were on the expensive side, especially once you remembered to convert from USD and add the gratuity. Being Australian, gratuities, and tipping in general is a pain. If it is part of the standard or expected cost, just roll it into the overall price and be done with it. Then we can decide to tip if we feel the service deserves it. Overall though, the service was good. We didn't take in a show but did experience some of open the entertainment on other nights. The bands were what you would expect and reasonably entertaining. We took in a talk by a historical expert regarding WWII Japanese hold-outs (refusing to surrender after the war) in the Pacific. I found this interesting as I enjoy the historical aspect, but it wasn't to my wife's taste. My wife though did sample the shopping, fortunately without much success. Our one port day was in Burnie, Tasmania. This a good, honest working town, but not a very inspiring cruise destination, especially as it was a public holiday and would have been completely dead if it weren't for hundreds of cruise passengers wandering around looking for something to do. There were very few cafes and you couldn't even have a beer and lunch in a pub as they were all closed. At least the mayor was there to greet us when we came down the gangway. We didn't do any organised shore excursions, but my sister, who was part of our cruise group, did, and enjoyed the Cradle Mountain excursion. Overall, the ship had a decor in keeping with it's image and wasn't overcrowded. We weren't disappointed, but now feel we've done the Cunard experience and probably won't be sampling it again. We are going on a longer Oceania Mediterranean cruise later this year. It will be interesting to compare that experience. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We took a cruise from Singapore to Dubai, on part of the QM2 around the world trip. The cabin with sheltered balcony was great and we had an ice bucket with champagne waiting for us when we embarked. The ship is beautiful and the staff ... Read More
We took a cruise from Singapore to Dubai, on part of the QM2 around the world trip. The cabin with sheltered balcony was great and we had an ice bucket with champagne waiting for us when we embarked. The ship is beautiful and the staff were helpful and efficient. The negatives for me were firstly the standard of food in the Britannia Restaurant which we were assigned to. The food was generally not prepared in a manner fitting the ship or the price of the cruise, meat and fish were dry and needed sauces, the vegetables were often hard - beyond al dente and almost uncooked, and the desserts were tasteless and unimaginative. The chefs seemed to focus more on presentation than the taste and texture of the food. We went to the buffet on deck 7 quite often which had a bigger variety of better prepared food and enjoyed it more than the restaurant. The other negative is the fact that there are two very small pools for a large number of people, the limit in each pool is 14 (I think) and there was hardly any room to move around if there was half that number in the water. As the temperatures were around 30 degrees and more, a lot of people were in and out of the pool especially on sea days. I preferred my previous cruises on smaller ships that had better food and bigger pools. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We joined QM2 at Singapore on a section of her world voyage. Embarkcation was reasonable enough and were soon at the Kings Court for a light lunch. Our cabin was an obstructed balcony on deck 7 - a spacious cabin well turned out ... Read More
We joined QM2 at Singapore on a section of her world voyage. Embarkcation was reasonable enough and were soon at the Kings Court for a light lunch. Our cabin was an obstructed balcony on deck 7 - a spacious cabin well turned out although we did have a problem with a leaking toilet for 2 days at the start of the cruise. Our cabin stewardess from South Africa was excellent - nothing was too much trouble. Food in the Britannia Restaurant was very good ( much better than our Celebrity Cruise last year ) the waiters were attentive and catered for our likes. However, the price of drinks/wine on board was eyewateringly expensive so only glasses of wine were sometimes consumed at dinner. The food at the Kings Court self-service restaurant was very good but finding a table was like being in a motorway service café! The entertainment onboard was mixed but special mention of a guest speaker - Malcolm Nelson, a retired Senior Customs Officers at London Heathrow Airport. His seven talks were unmissable and this was evident by the number of people attending in the Royal Court Theatre. We booked five Cunard excursions pre cruise - generally good but some days tiring! Dress code was mostly adhered to but come on Cunard - surely a jacket every evening for dinner is a little outdated! compared to P & O, Princess & Celebrity. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this review to celebrate a milestone birthday with family. Food was very average to say the least. Had better food in on our Royal Caribbean cruises and better service too. Everything seemed to be an extra cost plus 15%. Wine was ... Read More
We chose this review to celebrate a milestone birthday with family. Food was very average to say the least. Had better food in on our Royal Caribbean cruises and better service too. Everything seemed to be an extra cost plus 15%. Wine was very expensive. Got a suprise of $US 34.50 for each person on our bill. $US30 to play bingo? Had 8.30 seating for dinner which meant the plays were at 10.30 what a joke. Perhaps they should do what other cruises do so if you have 6.30 dinner you do 8.30 show and vise versa. First & second night entertainment was dismal. Last nights comediam was excellent. Highlight was Burnie where we organized our own amazing tour. So unbelievably disappointed would never go again! Oh I divot to say that afternoon tea was so packed people started trying to get a seat at 2 for 3.30 afternoon tea! Something is so wrong with the coordination of this cruise. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Queen Elizabeth is beautiful. The ship is incredibly elegant as it's namesake allows it to be. But unfortunately when the surface is scratched there are many imperfections that simply are a bit of a let down. Food... We were not ... Read More
Queen Elizabeth is beautiful. The ship is incredibly elegant as it's namesake allows it to be. But unfortunately when the surface is scratched there are many imperfections that simply are a bit of a let down. Food... We were not impressed by the food in the buffet area, Brittania dining room or specialty dining. It all tasted bland or the same - but it really did look great, so I guess that was the disappointment. Cabin... Our cabin was nice, but the bathroom extremely small, smaller than on other ships we've been on. One thing we noted was our television service was intermittent & the English speaking channels didn't show any of the movies being shown in the foreign languages which was weird. Service... We did not encounter many staff but those we did seemed to have very high expectations of the passengers. Our room attendant made mention that we should put the make my room up sign out because otherwise he didn't know, which is fair enough - but he went in our room anyway so.... We could not get a drink in Lido to save ourselves, it was almost if they avoided eye contact. In the main dining rooms service was far too slow with our drinks arriving at the end of our mains or dessert. Simply by being efficient they could have sold extra beverages so I thought they would be on top of it. Entertainment... There just wasn't enough, but this was only a small voyage. We have sailed Cunard in the past, and I really want to stress that despite my disappoints the ship was beautifully appointed - it really could be something remarkable with a few adjustments. Read Less
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