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afcandrew

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Everything posted by afcandrew

  1. afcandrew

    Arvia

    Aurora became my favourite when they sold Oriana. I haven't sailed on Arcadia for years but only because Aurora's itineraries have held more appeal for me. Tried Azura twice and hated her on both occasions, so won't sail her again or try Ventura. Would like to see Britannia on a short cruise but not remotely interested in the two new ones.
  2. afcandrew

    Arvia

    Hopefully your luck will change now! As I am only interested in P&O's two smallest ships and not interested in the Caribbean, I knew there would not be much that would appeal to me in the winter release. I was interested in the World Cruise itinerary as I had a 39 night sector of this year's Worldie cancelled. Sadly, the nearest sector to that in 2023 is, at 71 nights, too long for me.
  3. Agree with you OWT. On another board I am on there is currently much discussion about Travel Insurance - particularly as Carnival UK brands are specifying a high level of Medical Cover. It seems that Insurance policies normally only cover a lower level of cover when travelling within the UK. A further issue is around prices for drinks and in the on-board shops, which may be subject to VAT when not leaving the UK?
  4. Yes, that's who I meant really sinbad. Can't be doing with these daft titles. A President runs a country in my book not heads up a division of a company...
  5. Having released a series of three and four night UK cruises aboard Britannia on Monday of this week, they today cancelled six of them and replaced them with three seven night cruises. The reason given is that demand for 7 nights is much higher than demand for 3 or 4! To be fair, they have offered to upgrade booked pax from the short breaks to the 7 night cruise instead but there must be a number of people who cannot do a week or don't want a week at sea with one port of call and cruiseline excursions only. I somehow suspect that once the pandemic has, by and large, passed that we may see
  6. Interesting to see that different lines are doing things in different ways. Disney cruises are the latest to throw their hats in the ring (or should that be English Channel?). It appears that they have not decided whether pax need to be vaccinated and children will be allowed on the cruises.
  7. Good to see that despite Covid, some things never change. The P&O booking system crashed when they opened booking for these cruises this morning...🙄😂
  8. I suppose it is early days still in respect of Vaccination Passports. The problems with the Track &Trace App don't exactly instill confidence. P&O have said that pax will need proof of both vaccination jabs before boarding but at this stage haven't confirmed what type of proof. The system varies a lot. I was given a card with a space for the batch number of the vaccine and there is a second space for the second jab. I am aware however that a lot of folks haven't been given any proof at all. As usual, P&O got in a right pickle with their communication over this. The details on
  9. Further to my post back on 23rd Feb, I do find P&O's current marketing strategy for their two new ships somewhat bizarre. As I said above, despite Iona having been handed over some months ago now, they have not released any photos of her interiors. The only widely-seen renderings have been of the Atrium, Skydome and cabins. A few days ago they released renderings of Arvia's Atrium, Skydome and some restaurants. So now they have published almost as many renderings of a ship that is nearly two years off service as they have for a ship that is ready to sail. All seems very strange to me...
  10. I believe they will be 2, 3 and 7 night cruises. No 'back-to-backs' allowed.
  11. I see that P&O has cancelled all international cruises until September/October (depending on ship) and will be replacing these with UK Coastal Cruising. Full details yet to be released but initial publicity suggests that there will not be any ports of call. Princess has announced similar intentions and it is likely that Cunard will too. Anyone interested these? I might consider one depending on price but only because I have recently priced solo breaks with Warner Hotels and they seem to have gone sky-high. If I do, I will probably look to try a new ship - even a larger one that I woul
  12. So sorry to hear this Jenjen. There is nothing anyone can say to make things any easier or better but please know you have my deepest condolences. We had been cruising on & off for 17 years when my partner died in 2012. Strangely enough, it would have been his 66th birthday today. Tony died in early June that year and I actually went on a cruise in October that year. It felt quite soon but was also partly driven by wanting to get his ashes scattered at sea. Various other options to do it hadn't worked out and I knew it was possible to do it from a cruise ship. P&O were fabulous in
  13. And I wouldn't be surprised to see further changes to the P&O product over the next few years David. There will only be Freedom Dining on Iona (and therefore Arvia) and they will only have 1 Formal Night per week, named Gala Night. P&O have so far released very few renderings of Iona's interiors and despite her being handed over some time ago, no photos at all. The few renderings released mostly seem to show thirty-somethings dressed in jeans and t-shirts. My guess is that 6-12 months after Iona starts sailing they do away with Formal Nights altogether due to "customer feedback".
  14. You are not alone. Me too and I have seen the same said by a number of people on other cruise fora. Unfortunately, Carnival Corp has decided to take P&O down the 'pile it high, sell it cheap' path. As I said above, I have a cruise booked on Aurora next year but if they do sell her off before then, I doubt I will cruise with them again. I don't dislike Arcadia but wouldn't have any trust left at all with P&O as a company. It will cost me significantly more but I will move my custom to Fred Olsen who at least (currently) have 4 nice, smaller ships.
  15. I would be very surprised if Aurora is still with P&O at Easter 2023. I have a cruise booked on her for August next year and just hope that she is still in the fleet then. Pre-Covid, I expected Oceana to go when Iona was introduced and Aurora when Gala 2/Arvia came on stream. With the effects of the pandemic crisis likely to last some time, their demise could well come forward sadly.
  16. These things are outside their control in that Carnival Corp have their hands on the rudder. The contract for "Gala 2" as it was previously known was signed a good couple of years ago. She has been slightly delayed as the original plan was for her to be introduced for the Summer 22 season but she has been pushed back to December next year so far.
  17. I agree with you but only when comparing like for like cabin grades. As said above, if you normally sail in an inside cabin, the finances really don't work out. If you normally have a balcony and are not tee-total, then the differential is much smaller. If I had chosen an inside cabin for my 19 night Aurora cruise, it would have only cost £2,200. A two week Saga cruise would be more than double that.
  18. Hi David, Yes, all okay with me thanks. Hopefully, once the effects of Covid are behind us fully, we will see prices for most lines start to reduce a bit. Interestingly, I see that Princess Cruises has just announced the sale of its last remaining 'R Class' ship. They haven't disclosed the buyer yet but I wonder if it could possibly be Sycamore for Azamara...
  19. Yes, the new ships look beautiful and are a lovely size David. Sadly, for me, having been built as all-balcony vessels and all-inclusive, they have priced me out of the market. I have booked an outside cabin for a 19 night cruise on Aurora in 2022 for just over £3000. On Saga, I have seen several 14 night cruises next year advertised at well over £5000 for solo pax. If you normally travel as a twosome and usually book a balcony cabin, they are reasonable value but it doesn't work well for solos or those who often book an inside cabin.
  20. It's an interesting move by them and they are in a fairly unique position in providing travel solely for the over 50's. I suspect that they will however have to delay resumption later than May. I am 60 and will be surprised if I get my second dose of the vaccine before late June. If nothing else however, it has given Saga a lot of free publicity 😀. More generally, I think the govt. will have to bring in some sort of certification. The EU are looking at introducing a "vaccination passport" and I suspect many other countries will end up requiring proof.
  21. Not a huge surprise given that RCI had bought Silversea. Azamara would have a bit of an overlap with both the Celebrity and Silversea brands in terms of passenger demographic. Private equity companies own all sorts of companies and generally leave them to their own devices as long as they are turning a profit. Some of the management team are still in place I understand so hopefully the product won't change too much. It will be interesting to see what happens with their pricing once they no longer have the buying power of RCI behind them but at least they already have contacts in the right plac
  22. I hope you are right but will it depend upon how soon vaccination programmes start in other countries? Someone on another forum has suggested that France will not start a significant roll-out until April...?
  23. Sorry to hear that David, but inevitable really. Is the 2022 itinerary identical?
  24. I would prefer not to cruise whilst restrictions are in place and certainly wouldn't want to do so as a solo traveller. My cruise booked for next June is with a friend and is very port-intensive within Northern Europe. Fortunately, Fred Olsen are being very flexible in the current circumstances. I have pre-registered with P&O (via Bolsover) for a Med cruise on Aurora in 2022. I've decided I have to be positive about 2022 and believe that either Covid will be under control by then or we will have developed reasonable ways to live with it.
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