We have taken these New Year cruises for the last few years ( Oceana, Ventura, Arcadia) brightens the post Christmas lull. Oceana still looking good after her late 2017 refit, we were on her last New Year as well. Embarkation was good and had a different good lunch experience in the Ligurian, rather than the Buffet or the "suite lunch". Didn't get priority boarding as we had expected (mini suite) but as we were there at 12.30 we didn't wait long. Oceana's Atrium is lovely and all trimmed up, dance floor a touch small but we all coped, even on very rough stormy night. Quite how people complain of limited choice at lunch/dinner is beyond me. I wonder if people visit all the counters in the buffet, there is always lots of additional choices (hot & cold) to the curry (v good) and stir fry, including usually a roast. At dinner I counted eleven main course choices and a similar number of vegetables. MDR waiters were very good and friendly, our Wine Steward was exceptional. Food was fine, and offered more if we wanted without asking, soups are particularly good, we could not mange any more though. Only a short cruise so perhaps entertainment was more limited. Only one visiting speaker (I think) although the dated WW2 talks seem to have gone, which is good really. Queen show in Footlights was good although we have seen before, but hey ho I play the CD again and again. Headliners in Starlights was very good. This lounge and its equivalent on the "older" ships are in my view better than the newer ones, with more theatre style seating than tables and chairs it was not a problem getting a seat. Mama Mia Here We Go Again was showing in the theatre and on cabin TV, good. Nice mix of fellow passengers all well dressed be it formal or smart casual, and if P&O's embargo has resulted in no football shirts hooray, only saw one smart "tucked in" discrete logo football shirt, and there was plenty of footie on the bar TV's. We met some nice friendly people. Our mini suite B573 was excellent, bigger than some suites we have had, and I think allowing for a smaller balcony (but still big) the actual cabin was bigger than the adjacent suite. Some engine noise/vibration when docking/departing but only for 5-10 minutes at most, not a problem. Usual issues of some people steadfastly refusing to use the hand gels, and "table hoggers" at the Buffet claiming seats and then going off individually to get food - why, there are plenty of seats? Wheelchair users were given consideration and also they were considerate to others with the odd exceptions. Why two men expected to be seated in Freedom immediately just because they are in wheelchairs is beyond me, fortunately it was beyond the Maitre D as well and he gave them a pager like everyone else. A good cruise and was not as frenetic on the first night as it can sometimes be, everyone seemed to drop into their own routines very quickly, few queues therefore. Disembarkation was excellent, had breakfast in MDR by which time it was 9am and we joined our scheduled leaving time and we were in the car heading out of Southampton by 9.30am. Well Done P&O

Good as ever

Oceana Cruise Review by Martin A

7 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: December 2018
  • Destination: Europe
  • Cabin Type: Mini Suite with Balcony and Bath/Shower
We have taken these New Year cruises for the last few years ( Oceana, Ventura, Arcadia) brightens the post Christmas lull.

Oceana still looking good after her late 2017 refit, we were on her last New Year as well.

Embarkation was good and had a different good lunch experience in the Ligurian, rather than the Buffet or the "suite lunch". Didn't get priority boarding as we had expected (mini suite) but as we were there at 12.30 we didn't wait long.

Oceana's Atrium is lovely and all trimmed up, dance floor a touch small but we all coped, even on very rough stormy night.

Quite how people complain of limited choice at lunch/dinner is beyond me. I wonder if people visit all the counters in the buffet, there is always lots of additional choices (hot & cold) to the curry (v good) and stir fry, including usually a roast. At dinner I counted eleven main course choices and a similar number of vegetables. MDR waiters were very good and friendly, our Wine Steward was exceptional. Food was fine, and offered more if we wanted without asking, soups are particularly good, we could not mange any more though.

Only a short cruise so perhaps entertainment was more limited. Only one visiting speaker (I think) although the dated WW2 talks seem to have gone, which is good really.

Queen show in Footlights was good although we have seen before, but hey ho I play the CD again and again. Headliners in Starlights was very good. This lounge and its equivalent on the "older" ships are in my view better than the newer ones, with more theatre style seating than tables and chairs it was not a problem getting a seat. Mama Mia Here We Go Again was showing in the theatre and on cabin TV, good.

Nice mix of fellow passengers all well dressed be it formal or smart casual, and if P&O's embargo has resulted in no football shirts hooray, only saw one smart "tucked in" discrete logo football shirt, and there was plenty of footie on the bar TV's. We met some nice friendly people.

Our mini suite B573 was excellent, bigger than some suites we have had, and I think allowing for a smaller balcony (but still big) the actual cabin was bigger than the adjacent suite. Some engine noise/vibration when docking/departing but only for 5-10 minutes at most, not a problem.

Usual issues of some people steadfastly refusing to use the hand gels, and "table hoggers" at the Buffet claiming seats and then going off individually to get food - why, there are plenty of seats?

Wheelchair users were given consideration and also they were considerate to others with the odd exceptions. Why two men expected to be seated in Freedom immediately just because they are in wheelchairs is beyond me, fortunately it was beyond the Maitre D as well and he gave them a pager like everyone else.

A good cruise and was not as frenetic on the first night as it can sometimes be, everyone seemed to drop into their own routines very quickly, few queues therefore.

Disembarkation was excellent, had breakfast in MDR by which time it was 9am and we joined our scheduled leaving time and we were in the car heading out of Southampton by 9.30am.

Well Done P&O
Martin A’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Mini Suite with Balcony and Bath/Shower
Cabin BC B753
Excellent Cabin.

Bigger than some suites we have had, including the next door suite after allowing for the balconies.

Go starboard for best firework displays - Hamburg superb.

We were not sunbathing but when you are there is plenty of shade and full sun space, and not really overlooked.

Do not be put off by comments of noise. Yes, you are at the back (we prefer fore and aft) but stern thrusters only operate for about 5 minutes at most. It's really not a problem. No noise from passing passengers.

So much drawer space.

It's a long walk from back to front though! On the plus side the lifts nearest the cabin are relatively lightly used, and it is an easy climb on the stairs.

Looking forward to being here again for the gulf and India in November
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