If P&O have any sense, & they did have a great reputation, they have time to sort there obvious problems before new year.......Wilba.
P&O don't think they have problems with Ventura - they think they are exploiting a gap in the market. If the concept of Ventura is not what one expects from a cruise then stay away - I know I will. Seeing her in Bergen and the hoards of people including hundreds of kids (and it was June, not school hols) being herded on to excursion buses and queuing to get back on board made me sure she's not for me. Family friends with young children thought they had a wonderful holiday, so perhaps P & O are right.
P&O's problems with all the negative activity & publicity stems from their price cutting activities on the run up to Christmas. It's understandable that they need to try and fill all cabins to make the cruise viable but it will without a doubt backfire on them if they continue to do it at any cost! Like it or not, they need the traditional cruise types who respect conventional cruise etiquette and who come back year on year. I suspect the cruisers who purchased cut price tickets won't be seen again if they can't do the same next time!! P&O - On your head be it!!
Given the article in the Times yesterday 11 January 2009, some may be tempted to wait for a late deal!
My husband booked Ventura as a surprise on Saturday. He also bought me a Sunday Times the next day. It will be great because it's a CRUISE!-written by one who enjoyed a Louis Cruise! I reckon there will be vast changes wrought by both P&O and Carnival even by next week because with the credit crunch they can't afford to be complacent. Enjoy!-Jo.
I have just come off the 2008 christmas and new year cruise and there were 20 of us. We had 6 children in our party who have to be very well behaved. I booked this cruise 18 months ago and paid alot of money for it. Some of my party paid thousands to go in a mini suite. We had a fabulous time as I have done on the 2 previous ones I have done onboard the Oceana. I was a little upset to say the least that some people had paid a lot less than me. This is not the usual expected from P & O as the prices normally increase substantially the nearer the cruise comes. If P & O maintain there usual pricing structures even up until the end despite the credit crunch I am sure you will have a fabulous time. I know many many people who are going back on it this year. Taking children on cruises does not spoil them if they are well mannered. The childrens clubs on the Ventura are fantastic and the youth crew work extremely hard to ensure the children have a fabulous time. They even stick to their own areas. However, I cannot account for every child.
Is there anyone out there who has something good to say about the christmas and new year cruise on ventura 2008/2009. I have just come off it and met some fab people who I first met 4 years ago on my first christmas cruise...It was sad to miss 3 of the best ports due to adverse weather conditions but I still had a great time. We were a mix of 20 including responsible adults and very well behaved young children. It would not put me off going again. The latest article in the Sunday times could be quite frightening reading for some people. Yes there was a fight on New Years Eve but there has been on other ones I have been on. It is always dealt with quickly and efficiently and the culprits are dealt with in the correct manner. They certainly will not be seen on the cruise again for some time!!!! Is this not a problem everywhere on New Years Eve when a lot of people have far too much too drink. It can still happen at sea.
Having been on a few P&O cuises I was disappointed to read of the new years poroblems on the Ventura. My last P&O cruise was on the Artemis which had a tired aura about it. My last cruise was on Independence of The Seas which was out of this world. Security was tight such there was no chav activity and the staff were excellent. If you bring your prices down you will attract unpleasant elements of our society. I shall stay with the Americans who run a tight ship and stand no nonsense.
We were on the Ventura on the cruise before the christmas cruise. We were delayed leaving the ship as one of the pilots fell ill with a tummy bug. The captain was great and held the ship for a couple of hours to save us being abandoned at Barbados airport in the middle of the night. What we did see as a result was all the new passengers coming on and there were hundreds of teenage children (with varying levels of behaviour, some just really good, some where you got that sinking feeling) and some fairly unconventional cruisers. Filling large ships during a credit crunch is inevitably going to attract new customers to cruising. One couple told us that it had cost less for their family of 2+2 to cruise in the caribbean for 2 weeks than go to greece in the height of the summer. They were a lovely family. If you look at the P&O DVD for Ventura and compare it to the DVD they make on board during your cruise, though, they are worlds apart! I have to say that although the ship was lovely, as a child free couple, we wouldn't cruise on Ventura again.