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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
Opportunity to transit Panama Canal.Embarkation excellent. Cabin reasonable. Staff very friendly and helpful. Special mention to Sam for port excursion talks- excellent and Albano our cabin steward who was excellent. Misty Blue trio very ... Read More
Opportunity to transit Panama Canal.Embarkation excellent. Cabin reasonable. Staff very friendly and helpful. Special mention to Sam for port excursion talks- excellent and Albano our cabin steward who was excellent. Misty Blue trio very good and sail away parties enjoyable. Downside lack of dress code enforcement- on formal nights people seen in shorts, t shirts which spoils it for those making an effort. Quizzes every night in almost every bar- bad if you don’t like quizzes -crows nest should be a quiz free zone!! Too many smoking areas around the ship spoiling the walk around the promenade deck!!! Smoking rules not enforced especially round the pool in the Aquarius bar. Booked the Ocean Grill and Sindhu on a few occasions as we didn’t like queuing for food -menu limited and fish in Ocean Grill very dry- staff good though. Had to ask for more toiletries when ours ran out which is bad. Ship had so many leaks so buckets wer strewn around the deck -not very nice. Seemed to be too many passengers for the size of the ship- had to wait ages for lifts- ok for us but people with disabilities suffered. Sometimes couldn’t get into the theatre as people had been reserving seats early on.Lack of performances from Headliners. Guest speakers on the whole were very entertaining. Captain’s cocktail party was farcical -too many people in the Neptune bar to be enjoyable. I don’think we will travel with P and O again as we have travelled with Cunard before and although more expensive it is a little less like a holiday camp. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
This was our first "C'mas & New Year" cruise and only our 2nd with P & O. Intriguingly, the first was on Arcadia back in 2006. Subsequent experiences on Cunard and Regent may have tainted our view of this cruise ... Read More
This was our first "C'mas & New Year" cruise and only our 2nd with P & O. Intriguingly, the first was on Arcadia back in 2006. Subsequent experiences on Cunard and Regent may have tainted our view of this cruise tbh. For the most part it was, pretty much, what we expected. We opted for freedom dining and we had an aft suite on the port side. We met some interesting & friendly people and enjoyed the "shared table" experience quite often, particularly at lunch time. P & O do a few things very well - embarkation was surprisingly painless and swift, we had a lovely buffet on arrival. Sadly that was the only "lovely buffet" we had all trip. Entertainment is, generally, first class. The ship entertainers varied from mediocre to outstanding. We particularly liked the lounge pianist Steve Kingsbury who entertained us regally whether it be afternoon or evening. His range & versatility, the ability to switch from classical to musicals and "pop" was terrific. Lovely guy too, enjoyed chatting with him around the ship, he helped to make our cruise special. Equally, Small Talk duo were very good and the Headliners group were excellent, except for a couple of very "shouty" lead female singers whose performances were often marred by them simply screeching instead of singing. Guest entertainers varied too but some, like the Base Tones, Runaround Kids (on C'mas day) and, remarkably, Bernie Flint were fantastic in our view. Elektra and Ida were also very good - it just seems so long since we saw them performing! Others ere ok, sometimes just not our taste The fine dining options were superb, we chose to eat 6 times in Ocean Grill and 5 in Sinhu - they were that good. Food and service in both is excellent. The additional "extra supplement" charges for some items in OG is really irritating though. We ate breakfast in Sindhu too as we were in a suite. This is an example of P & O getting it right. Comfortable surroundings, assigned table, great service and good food options. Nadia and the rest of the team there are all very good. The main dining room was very good for lunch and the food in the evening was usually hot and well presented. Not always the most inspiring menu choices, perhaps, but everything was fine The real disappointment on the food side was the buffet - which was fairly awful for both lunch and dinner. We only bothered occasionally but I have never seen such a poor selection of salad items, desperately sad looking cold meat and fish offerings and the hot food was generally themed but always seemed to lack any imagination. Most of the time the cold selection did not vary from day to day - but it was a miracle if the same dressings appeared. Never been a fan of scampering around to find a table anyway but the lack of seating in the buffet, particularly, at busy lunch times is quite marked on this ship. I enjoyed the spa, used it most days, and had several massages - Sophie and Shanda are excellent therapists. The Spa Manager, from Zimbabwe, was lovely and extremely courteous and professional - not sure how you spell her name, Kundzi or similar, I think - sorry I didn't take note of it because she was great. Unfortunately,the crossing was lively so we didn't get to use the pools much. Which brings us to some of the problems: The Captain decided to re-route to avoid bad weather but his some pretty huge swells and bad weather anyway. The first few nights were atrocious and sleep was almost impossible at the aft of the ship due to the excessive vibration and incredible noises that emanated from the back of the vessel. We also had a few technical issues with the suite, these ranged from a loud banging all day and night - which I discovered was due to a badly fitted dividing panel between us and next door's balcony. We were told the shower would be re-grouted but waited over a week, including days when we were off the ship on trips, for that to happen, when it did it was when we returned to the suite at c 5.00 pm & wanted to prepare for dinner, so the lack of communication was an issue there. A similar issue in respect of a broken lounger chair handle also occurred. The change of route also cost us our first day in port at Bermuda, which was major disappointment for many of us - who chose the trip, in part, due the stop over in Bermuda! When the ship came loose from its moorings and floated around Hamilton harbour at 3.00 am we, seriously, started to question the overall control and management of the vessel. The Captain's attempts at humour and glib comments about the mishaps didn't do much to endear him to us either. I would not wish to be on a ship if he was at the helm again - I've never had to think about that before. Along with several others that I spoke to who shared the same opinion,, we found him to be far too aloof and, basically, cavalier about the whole thing. The good news was that we enjoyed the ports, although Nassau was a bit of disappointment. The "best of " excursion left quite a bit to be desired there. However, Antigua, St Lucia Grand Turk and Barbados more than made up for that, as did a wet nd windy stop in the Azores. Terceira was very interesting and we loved visiting the city of Angra as well as Praia de Vittoria, a quaint and colonial port. We were baffled by the shore excursion process - no staff to control it just a free for all getting of the ship, which was frenetic and caused long queues in several ports. Local guides did all the controlling & shore excursion staff simply pointed people, vaguely, in the right direction to find them. That was just plain weird tbh and could be handled far more efficiently and effectively. Fortunately, in our case, the local guides were first class and managed to rescue the situation well on each occasion. My other gripe is the fact that public lounge areas are not the most practical for a ship this size. The Piano Bar is actually just a corridor with seats in it! Many of which are not suitably positioned to hear/see the entertainment on offer. Likewise, the Crows Nest seating arrangement is awful - half the seats face sideways or directly opposite the stage area. Intermezzo is a strange and not particularly comfortable lounge that rarely gets used and looks a bit of an after thought. Overall, there were some highlights, some disappointments and some serious flaws - it will be some time before we consider cruising with P & O again tbh. I would have to say that we did enjoy spending the festive period on board but wouldn't rush back to repeat it. I think the advantage of not flying was outweighed by the lack of variety of day time entertainment on the ship and, on this trip, the risk of a bad crossing at that time of year but we prefer smaller ships anyway. Bit of a lengthy review but it was an eventful cruise! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
First about me - I've been on many cruises on various lines, including Carnival, RCCL, Celebrity, MSC and Disney. I decided to take this cruise about 5 days before departure, it was a 2 night cruise to Bruges and I decided to take ... Read More
First about me - I've been on many cruises on various lines, including Carnival, RCCL, Celebrity, MSC and Disney. I decided to take this cruise about 5 days before departure, it was a 2 night cruise to Bruges and I decided to take it because it was cheaper than the train tickets from London to Bruges and it would include 'hotel' and food, so it seemed like a good deal. Turns out it wasn't the best idea. Due to high seas and strong winds we could not dock at Zeebruges so it turned into a cruise to nowhere, which would have been fine if the whole point wasn't to see the Bruges Christmas Market. We were also not offered anything in compensation, which I know they don't have to do, you take your chances, however, every other cruise line I've been on has at minimum reimbursed for port charges and most have given passengers a small OBC. While the inability to dock couldn't be helped, the way they handled it could have been much better. I've been on many cruises where we have missed a stop and the entertainment team has always gone out of the way to add items to the itinerary to account for the added number of people that would be on board (since it's assumed most passengers will disembark at the port. This was not the case with the Arcadia. For example their were 2 showings of Mama Mia Here we go Again, in a VERY small venue and it was completely packed. There was nothing else going on this that venue the remaining time, so they could have easily added one or two additional showings. I think the worse part was lunch, they only have one side of the buffet open even though, again everyone was on board. There were very few places to sit and people were waiting a long time for items to be replenished. Outside of the issue with missing the port, the food (which is very subjective) was very British, full english available both mornings, although the scrambled eggs were not cooked well, they were very runny with a sign above them stating you shouldn't eat egg products that were not fully cooked. The first day lunch buffet featured prime rib but all of it was completely well done, which is a total waste of good food. I found most items on the buffet to be cold, the way the buffet is set up it does not keep the items warm at all. I was assigned late dining in the main dining room and had dinner there the first night, not a lot on the menu that appealed, the shrimp cocktail was a bed of lettuce with what we call in the states salad shrimp (or bait LOL). They were very tiny and smothered in sauce. The main was a steak and chips, I ordered it rare and it was medium which apparently is the best they could do. The chips were great, but could have used some ketchup. Dessert (pudding) was advertised as a triple chocolate molten cake, which was not a cake. It was more of a dense gelatinous mousse, inedible, the accompanying ice cream was good. I decided the next night that nothing on the menu in the main dining room interested me, a lot of fish and liver. So, I went to the Asian themed buffet. Again the food could have been much better if it wasn't cold. The sweet and sour chicken used the same chicken goujons from the Neptune grill but overcooked (very stringy). The little egg rolls were the best thing on the buffet, I must have caught them at the right time because they were actually hot. Entertainment - I felt like this ship is stuck in the late 90s, it reminded me very much of the first cruise I went on where the entertainment was only 'live music' in the different bars. I believe there was one 80s music trivia. While it's an older ship and there aren't all the bells and whistles you'll find on a newer ship (zip line, water slides, rock walls, ice skating etc), I would expect something more. They could have done the comedy game shows like the quest or match your mate. They have one very small theater for movies, seats about 30 but the movies they showed were old ones already out on DVD. There was also NOTHING to do during the early diner seating, other than hang out in a bar. I even tried the casino but while it was open they had no dealers for any of the games and just some VERY OLD slot machines. Cabin - as I booked so late I had a gty inside which I did not find out which cabin until I got to the port. I was in E165 which is aft. The cabin was fine, it was my first inside cabin and I did miss the window especially since I spent a lot of time there due to the lack of entertainment I spent a good deal of time reading and napping LOL. I did sit by the pool on afternoon to be able to see the ocean but it was a bit chilly. The cabin steward was fine, he brought ice every evening as requested. Specialty / Room Service Dining - I was originally going to Ocean View which has a cover charge of 22.95, which I was fine with paying until I looked at the menu and saw that 99.9% of the items had a surcharge, I believe the only item you could get w/o a surcharge was the salmon or chopped steak, since that annoyed me I didn't go, just up the charge and include everything. I also did not order room service, first because I couldn't find the room service menu and then second because there was a charge. I think the ships that are going to charging for room service are ridiculous and I'm boycotting. Breakfast room service is included. Overall service was fine, I did have a hard time getting the bar servers in the dining room to take my order and they were very slow returning your key. I also found it ridiculous that the bars didn't have ice. I know they don't like ice in Europe but usually cocktails are the exception. Overall, I was disappointed in missing our port and the entertainment on the ship was not to my liking, however, if you are with a group and can make your own fun, I think this could be a good ship to take. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
My wife and l wished to go back to Praidi Vitoria in the Azores as the last time we visited the lsland it was raining so hard we did not get the chance to appreciate it. We booked on Arcadia as she was visiting Prai di Vitoria and Ponta ... Read More
My wife and l wished to go back to Praidi Vitoria in the Azores as the last time we visited the lsland it was raining so hard we did not get the chance to appreciate it. We booked on Arcadia as she was visiting Prai di Vitoria and Ponta Delgada,sailing on 21st November 2018 which we realised was a slight gamble with the weather at that time of year. The boarding of the ship went very smoothly and it was from the City terminal,Southampton which we had never sailed from before. Our cabin was a P B grade inside and we have used this type of cabin before so no great surprises as it works for us . The one surprise we did have was that in the midships section on B deck it was the only inside cabin and opposite us was the top of the range suites. The position of the cabin meant easy walking distance to both the Crows Nest and the Belvedere buffet restaurant. As it turned out it was not a good choice as the cabin was really noisy not just motion of the ship which we expect but on one side was a locker where they stored bottles and cans etc and next to it was a door to possibly an air con room? Which rattled all the while and on the other side a stewards pantry which also seemed to have extra noise . l mentioned this to reception and they sent someone up who seemed to think it was just ship motion and of course he came in the day time not the middle of the night. They did offer to move us down to G Deck which is not where we like to be so we declined and spent the cruise with ear plugs in and very little sleep at night. So personally we would not recommend that cabin and thought it was graded too high for its position but it was our choice to stay so we cannot complain. Regarding the cruise it all went well to Lisbon then the Canary Islands but after we had visited Madeira with a welcome overnight we had the news that we would not be visiting the Azores due to really bad weather coming across the Atlantic and would now be going to Cadiz and Vigo in Spain as an alternative. Although very disappointed we think it was a wise decision by the Captain and we did seem to keep ahead of any really rough weather and whenever it was rough at all the Arcadia seemed to handle it very well with the stabilisers out. Our call to Vigo was made that bit more enjoyable as the ship stayed till 10pm so we could go ashore and see the Xmas lights , then as we left we were advised the Bad weather was catching us up so the ship put on extra speed and we arrived in Southampton on Thursday evening instead of Friday morning. We have only given a low rating as it was not quite the cruise we booked for other than the bad choice of cabin everything was more or less good. We did freedom dining and found the food good and the revamped crows nest was nice either in the day or at night. The entertainment was very poor except for the Headliners theatre company who we thought very good considering some of them where on their first tour. The Captain was very informative keeping us up to date on weather and destination and the library was well stocked with books so we could relax and enjoy the cruise Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
We chose this cruise because it was 28 days, to the Caribbean and back from Southampton. It was our first P&O cruise after several Azamara and one Viking Ocean cruises. This was an adults only cruise and the average age was apparently ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was 28 days, to the Caribbean and back from Southampton. It was our first P&O cruise after several Azamara and one Viking Ocean cruises. This was an adults only cruise and the average age was apparently 72, but looked older to me. Most of the passengers were experienced P&O guests, 95% were Brits. Firstly the service was excellent from the mainly Indian crew. Very professional, friendly and efficient. We were fortunate to have a suite and our butler Sam was the best butler we have had. The suite was fine, not particularly large but large enough, and the bed was very comfortable. There was a separate shower with the dreaded shower curtain, not a good touch for a suite. The specialty restaurants, Simbu and Ocean Grill were both excellent, well worth the supplement. The main restaurant was OK but a bit "mass catering". The food was generally acceptable and occasionally good. The service was generally good, but the waiting staff were very busy resulting in the occasional long wait. The Belvedere buffet was very poor, busy and the food was displayed haphazardly. It was served on a tray with plastic glasses, a bit like an old works canteen. Having a suite we could use Sindu for breakfast and did every day. it was one of the highlights of a sea day. We missed the Azores due to high winds and went to La Corola in Galicia which was lovely. The sea days got a bit monotonous but overall we enjoyed ourselves and would go again. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
This was my and my husband’s honeymoon – having never done a cruise before we did not know what to expect and so this is an honest review from first time cruisers ! Embarkation This was swift and well organised. Having arrived ... Read More
This was my and my husband’s honeymoon – having never done a cruise before we did not know what to expect and so this is an honest review from first time cruisers ! Embarkation This was swift and well organised. Having arrived at the Cruise Terminal around midday with an embarkation time of 2.30, we were lucky to be sat in Arcadia’s Belvedere Restaurant at 1.45 having lunch with our room ready soon after. Disembarkation This was dealt with very well. We were at our allocated place at 9.45am and in our car by 10.10am Dining There are two main places to dine – Meridian and Belvedere (the latter being the buffet). We dined at The Meridian on 3 occasions and found the food to be average. We had salmon on two occasions and each time it was severely overcooked (crusty almost). It was also disappointing that some of the specified ingredients were not actually included within the meals – ie crab salad consisted of just carrot and onion (no crab !), and a sponge with a hazelnut crumble and a praline wafer had no wafer and just a whole hazelnut placed on top of the sponge ?? We knew that by choosing Freedom Dining we may well be given a pager if there was no available table so that we could “enjoy a drink in the piano bar”. Each time we ate in the Meridian we got there as it opened and were immediately given a pager and had to wait nearly an hour each time. On two occasions of waiting such a length for a table for two we were made to sit on a table for four (didn’t mind this but surprised after waiting especially). Also when you are shown to your seat you walk past many empty tables which just makes one wonder whether being given a pager is to make you spend money at the bar ? The food in the Belvedere Restaurant is also only average – again fish being put out for guests to eat already well overcooked (boquerones completely inedible like cardboard and already burnt salmon). Also there are two rows of food shielded by a plastic screen. Whilst it is appreciated that the screen is to ensure germs are kept away from food, it is also impossible to reach the food at the back and the chefs did not attempt to assist ! The carvery consisted of a small joint of meat with re-cooked frozen roast potatoes and cauliflower cheese with bland, watery carrots and swede – no other vegetables apart from brussel sprouts one day. Also the Belvedere, for some of the evening, was half shut off to paying passengers so that the crew could eat. This was ridiculous as passengers were having to chase free tables and some even had to eat by the Neptune Pool when the half of the shut off Belvedere only contained about 6 crew members ??? Also the air con is on full blast in The Belvedere making it freezing to sit and eat Entertainment The theatre has shows at 8.45 and 10.30 and we understand that these are new timings. However we could not see a show until the fourth night as unless you “claimed your seat” at about 7.30 you did not stand a chance of seeing the show at 8.45. We were told by other passengers that the previous timings for shows worked very well for passengers. There is music at other venues – ie Crow’s Nest, the Rising Sun and the Globe – but these are only for about 30 minutes at a go and were usually on all at the same time and so there are times within the evening that there is no music/entertainment at all. As to the Globe, this is way too small and The Retreat is a waste of space according to other passengers being used only by the dance instructors. The casino was never used, on our trip, by passengers and we felt extremely sorry for the numerous members of staff just standing around for hours on end each night. Black Tie Events We enjoy dressing up – who doesn’t – but we were offended one night in the Crow’s Nest. Unlike others going into the Meridian Restaurant we had dressed up. However due to being overwarm and nowhere to place his suit jacket, my husband left it in our cabin after our meal. We went to the Crow’s Nest for a drink only to be asked to leave because of no jacket ! Despite my husband obviously wearing suit trousers and a tie it was still not good enough. We explained that it was too hot for a jacket and were told that as long as he had it by his side it would be acceptable !! Really -what was the difference in having it by the side or not wearing it !!! RIDICULOUS The Black Tie Gala Dance in The Globe was also poor. We attended the second one only to find it was really a night for the dance instructors to tell everyone what dance they could do and not for general enjoyment of those who did not wish to do The Waltz or whatever Accommodation The ship had a major refurb last year. Well our Deluxe Balcony Cabin was ok – nothing special, dated and in need of modernisation. The balcony was rusty and the panels between balconies were extremely noisy – wooden wedges are used to stop the rattling but these don’t last long before falling out ! Our cabin keys did not work on three occasions and we were told not to place them next to our mobile phones – we had not done this ! In fact the last time they did not work we visited Reception who for some reason already had the new ones ready for us – how did they know that our keys were not working ?? Alcohol Since booking our cruise 16 months ago P&O’s alcohol policy has changed in that you can only bring on 1 litre each of spirits each. They claim that this is in line with other cruise lines and also to ensure that no passengers become unruly – however they are more than happy to sell alcohol to you ! As to cocktails – don’t bother buying them. They may seem a reasonable price but they are not as if you watch them being made no actual measures of spirit are put in – just a swig and so you are paying through the nose just for juice. Cruise Loyalty Staff We attended the Cruise Loyalty and Future Cruise office once (the queues were ridiculous) but did not like the attitude of the lady who we spoke to. She could not get rid of us quick enough and there was not even anyone else waiting. We decided to use the Library to look at the cruises we spoke to her about and found them to be cheaper on P&O’s own website ! Staff The Entertainment staff were ok – never pushing you to do anything but there was a severe lack of things to do but maybe that is because of the general age of the Arcadia’s clientele ? Our Cabin Steward worked very hard – very long hours and always a smile. As to the restaurant and waiting staff – they simply are a credit to P&O. They are so polite and friendly and professional and remembered your drink and your name. Ports of Call It was a shame that on some port days most of the shops were shut ! Summary We have used this first cruise as a learning curve and having booked our second for 2020 will ensure we don’t make the same mistakes ! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We chose this cruise because it fitted in with our diary and golden wedding celebration. All previous cruises we have had an outside cabin but this time we decided to try an inside and we were not disappointed. The size is quite ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it fitted in with our diary and golden wedding celebration. All previous cruises we have had an outside cabin but this time we decided to try an inside and we were not disappointed. The size is quite comparable to the ordinary outside staterooms and as we spend very little time in the cabin (awake) we didn't miss the windows/balcony either. The cabin steward, Christian, was very helpful, friendly and super efficient. The food in the main (Meridian) restaurant I regret to say was not up to the standard of previous cruises with P&O and especially Fred Olsen and Cunard. The choice of food on the menu was generally very good but the quality of the food was debatable and was often cold. With the exception of the lamb shank we concluded that it was best to stick to fish oriented food for starters and mains. The waiters were always very helpful and apologetic. We dined for one night in the much trumpeted Marco Pierre White restaurant at £30 extra for two plus an extra £7 for lobster. The starter my wife ordered consisted of some sort of stringy balls in a sauce and was tasteless. It went back but was replaced with a crab salad which she could only describe as 'mushy' also tasteless. It too went back. Mine was o.k. Then came the lobster which because it was so small we doubted it was lobster and was probably crayfish or rock lobster as it is fashionably called but cooked in a cheese sauce.No claws or claw meat were served and we were told they had been removed for something else, (pardon) Some was eaten but the rest went back. The dining experience is of course one of if not the most important features of a cruise but I am afraid this did not live up to expectations. For example one of our fellow table guests when served his steak meal jokingly shouted "this horse is a hundred years old". The bars on board were all well appointed and reasonably priced and perfectly drinkable wines of several choices were available for around £16 to £25 a bottle. We settled mostly on a sauvignon (The Holy Snail) at £17.95 per bottle. The waiters in general were very attentive and helpful although one or two were often too engaged in conversations with the passengers and needed to be reminded why they were there. This was a tiny minority, for the most part the others were exceptional. The off ship experiences were quite interesting New York was crazy and delightful together and Canada and the Canadian people were superb. To gain the greatest experience of many of the places visited it was best to use the facilities of the organised tours but several people declined to go because of the high expense involved. One couldn't help considering a 52 seater bus, full, and a driver and guide for a couple of hours or so pulls in over £4000. One of the most pleasant experiences was in Charlottetown where only two or three hundred metres from the ship in the pretty port we had a lobster lunch each to die for. Now that was a proper lobster with all the claws and tools to deal with it. It took about two hours to complete and was absolutely delicious. I haven't commented on the shows available in the evening because with an 8.30pm dining and a nightcap in the bar afterwards and at the same time a listen to some first-class live music we were ready for what was always a very comfortable nights sleep. We were on deck 10 towards the front of the ship. I did however go to several of the very interesting talks on sail days. So there we are; we did enjoy our trip a lot and we were fortunate to have wonderful dinner guests to end the day with. I would comment that things on board seem to have changed since our last P&O cruise with a definite and obvious orientation around making money. The exorbitant cost of wi-fi, a massive open area put over to fruit machines (damn things), where everyone to access some of the bars and restaurants must pass through, very high costs of sauna, massage, hairdressing etc. With grateful thanks to the Captain and his crew for a safe and gloriously uneventful passage. So would we travel again with P&O to be honest I cannot answer that question at the moment. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We tended to have 2 mini P&O cruises a year, 3-4 day breaks, sometimes to the same location.Over these last few years, these have been on the Arcadia.Whilst we have never had reason to complain about the ship or cabin, there is cause ... Read More
We tended to have 2 mini P&O cruises a year, 3-4 day breaks, sometimes to the same location.Over these last few years, these have been on the Arcadia.Whilst we have never had reason to complain about the ship or cabin, there is cause for concern in other areas.The cabin steward is always helpful,and the cabin maintained well. Where I feel the standards have dropped, is with the quality of the food & service. The food at all meal times, appear to be prepared on a tight budget, with a limited amout of choice over the period of cruise.The speciality eating venues, are regularly pushed, at very high premiums.I honestly feel the service was better, when you tipped the waiters at the end of the cruise.There is no insentive for them to provide exceptional service, as tips are already included. The entertainment is average, and passes the time away, drinks & wine prices increase year by year. the excusions barely provide value for money. We have cruised with P&O for over 8 years, we have to change. We had booked a 3 day break for June next year, but are prepared to lose the deposit & cancel. ; In the checkin area's before we boarded, we spoke to several first time cruisers, & we sang the praises of P&O. During the cruise these same people were saying never again, we inclined to agree . Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We have always wanted to sail on Arcadia so for our 35th wedding anniversary that is what we decided to do. We chose this particular cruise because it was a discovery cruise with new destinations we had not visited before and we were not ... Read More
We have always wanted to sail on Arcadia so for our 35th wedding anniversary that is what we decided to do. We chose this particular cruise because it was a discovery cruise with new destinations we had not visited before and we were not disappointed. Embarkation went well, straight through and onboard in under 10 minutes ( probably because we were the last coach to arrive having been held up waiting for 2 passengers). Our aft facing cabin was very comfortable and was kept nice and clean by our cabin steward Ajay. Our only complaint about the cabin was the grubby glass on the balcony, it was in need of a good scrubbing not just a wipe over. We found the service in the MDR to be very slow and miserable, when asked for a table for two on our second visiit (and last) we were taken to a table for four, when this was queried the waiter turned and walked away leaving us standing there like lemons. When he returned he took us to another table for four but said we could have it for two?? Yes we were confused as well! The buffet was not much better. Food was ok depending on what you had but not always hot. Thank goodness for The Ocean Grill! Yes you had to pay a service charge but the food and the service was amazing. The entertainment was good, the Headliners were the best we have seen and the comedian Fogwell Flax was brilliant! Disembarkation is another story, it was an absolute shambles. They crammed too many people into the Meridian dining room, no numbers given out and we were held there for 1 1/2 hours - not good!! Would I sail with P&O again - yes Would I sail on Arcadia again - no, she is not the best ship on the fleet by far Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
Embarkation quick and easy good size cabin and balcony, pretty good service in the bars and restaurants and the food not so bad although its now more like good pub grub rather than fine dining. The main evening entertainment was much ... Read More
Embarkation quick and easy good size cabin and balcony, pretty good service in the bars and restaurants and the food not so bad although its now more like good pub grub rather than fine dining. The main evening entertainment was much better than of late with a couple of new shows by the resident team and some excellent guest entertainers. We arrived everywhere on time, enjoyed excellent weather and had no problems getting on and off the ship except in Oporto where there were long queues to get back on followed by further queues to hand over the booze bought on shore. This was the first stop and it got much better after that. BBQ's & Pancake days served around the main pool were a big hit on sea days. All this was good however why oh why do they keep spending money on carpets and furnishings when the plumbing is so dire. Hit and miss if a toilet will flush when you want it to and on two days we had no hot water. Reporting problems to reception gets the standard response "we will send a plumber" but none ever turns up, these are major problems affecting whole blocks of cabins (as we found out later) and if they were just honest and told us that we would have been less annoyed . Choosing a sea day to refurbish our balcony with half a dozen men traipsing back & forth, rubbing down and painting was not ideal and as this happened the day after the cabin steward had done a thorough clean of the balcony. There were notices threatening to remove belongings from unattended sunbeds but this never happened with many being "reserved" for hours without being used. Not much enforcement of the evening dress code. We have been loyal to P & O for more than 12 years but I think its time to change cruise lines. P&O really are losing the plot, many of the regular cruisers we have spoken to on this cruise agree that standards fall every time you step onboard. They now seem focussed on selling the spa, the specialist restaurants and over priced trips to the bridge or sail sways with officers. If half of that effort went into fixing the leaks and providing basic sanitation it would be a much better cruise experience. Read Less
Arcadia Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 3.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 1.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 3.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 4.0 0.0

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