Fred Olsens – Small and Cosy like a home from home.

Now if your the kind of person that loves the more traditional things in life and is proud to be british then the Fred Olsen Fleet are the cruise ships for you. I have been lucky enough to go on the Balmoral ship and can honestly say it was a fantastic experience. As the ship is quite small ,( it actually holds just over 1300 passengers) i found myself finding my way round the ship very easily after the first few hours of checking in and it isnt long before you feel right at home.

 There was no dramas of coming out of the lifts and wondering aimlessley down the corridors trying to find your cabin and the restaurant is such a nice size you get a very good atmosphere in there. Are waiter who served us was very friendly and really got to know us all , which again with the smaller ships is easier for them to do as not as many faces to try and remember. You are definately a face rather then a number onboard the freds line.Dont worry if you think small fleet means no facilities as this is not true at all , you still have plenty on offer such as the gym where you can partake in a fitness class , practise your swing on the practise golf nets , indulge in a spa treatment , play a few rounds of bridge , do some duty free shopping , enjoy a cabaret show or stand up comedy the list goes on and on.The practical element of the fred Olsens fleet being on a smaller scale also means that they can take you into some ports where the huge superliners would not , so you get a much more interesting itinerary to tempt you as well.My conclusion of Fred Olsens after I disembarked was that this cruiseline is perfect if you are looking for an experience that is very personal , relaxed and individual to anything else thats out there. Nothing is to much bother for there staff and you do get the sense that you are onboard a ship that is family run and the customer is at the heart of everything. The ease and benefits of cruises from Southampton or Dover just makes it so much less stressful then a flycruise and you get the added bonus of taking as many handbags and shoes as you can cram into your suitcase !!!

Natural Disasters – Are You Covered ??????

In the News lately we have been hearing about rogue waves , Earthquakes and hurricanes so you might be wondering how to protect your crusie holiday from a natural disaster or any other unforeseen events. We always recommend at time of booking to purchase travel insurance , but do you know whats covered and whats not ??

If your flights or cruise holiday are canceled or delayed and you need to make alternate arrangements or are forced to cancel your trip your insurance plan will help you cover costs. Coverage may fall into the following catagories Trip Cancellation , Trip Delay , and Trip interruption. However if your simply nervous about travelling or dont think you should go on holiday in a  county affected by a recent disaster then you will receive no help from the travel insurance company. Here are some examples of what Travel insuarnce can cover:

*Inclement weather causing delay or cancellation of travel.

*The insured’s principal residence or destination being made uninhabitable by fire, flood or similar natural disaster, vandalism or burglary.

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Dreamy Destinations – My Top Five

I think before you book , especially if you have never cruised before you should think long and hard about exactly where you want to go and make sure you get the best ports of call possible.Here are some of the most popular cruise ship destinations :

1.The Caribbean – I think it was peoples love for the caribbean Islands that gave rise to the cruise industry.If there is only one place to go then it has to be the caribbean. Gorgeous Beautiful beaches , tropical climates , clear crystal waters – it has it all. This is for the cruiser who just wants to lay back and chill.It is an ideal place for first time cruisers who dont really want to be off expolring on every shore excursion going but just relaxing into the cruising life , one beautiful beach at a time.

2.The Mexican Riviera – Thousands of miles of beautiful sandy beaches have endeared the riveria to cruisers. If you cant  afford to have a full two week holiday break going around the caribbean then the rivieria is a good alternative as manycruise ships visit this area for a week so make it idela for a shorter cruise destination.
3.Alaska – What is the appeal of Alaska?? Well I think ii is perfect for the cruiser who wants a bit more of a action packed holiday. There are so many different options that can be combined with this area doing land tours round the canadian rockies ,gliding through the inside passage taking in glaciers , fjords and the most breathtaking scenery in the world.
4.European Cruise – This is a fantastic oppourtunity to visit some beautiful cities and see the best attractions of each of them. Venice , The French Riviera , Italy , Spain just to mention a few.You could even cruise on Russian rivers and visit St Petersburg , which is so popular that most cruise ships now do at least 2-3 nts at this port. This is a perfect oppourtunity to take in all the history and beauty of some spectacular cities.
5.World Cruise – If you enjoy cruise holidays and are looking for something special , once in a lifetime special then it has to be a world cruise.You can get to see a host of new places and experience the culture and traditions of many different countries.I think the world is full of mystical places and there is no better way to see them then taking a cruise. If you cant bre to be away from home for the full 100+ days then you can always do sectors and just pick put your most favourite must do places to tick off your list.

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And You Think your husband is a plank ……..

Having a lazy Sunday afternoon and flicking through the latest celeb mags , I came across a story that made me chuckle.An article had been written about a women who had visted the old Queen Mary ship which is now a hotel in California. She had just split up from her partner and soon felt great emotions and love for the ship itself. She was quoted to say  ‘On the ship I started to feel better.It felt as if it was a big stong man wrapping his arm around me’.

On her second visit she realised that she was sexually attracted to it ‘ I wanted to kiss the Brass fittings and wooden rails’. This women became so besotted with the ship that she evem moved to an apartment 15 Mins from the dock and whenever she can she books a £70 a night cabin so she can be intimate with the cruise ship. Finally last month she took the big jump and married the ship in a £2000.00 ceremony. Funnily enough she went on to say that only two of her friends made it to the ceremony and her family have distanced themselves from her.She has promised to love , honour and obey the ship , visit it daily and stay over regularly. Bizarre to say the least , I think eventually she will probaly meet someone and move on from the ship.Wonder if she tells the ship off for leaving up the toilet seats!!!!!!

what a bargain ….

Just booked one of my clients onto a brilliant deal. They were looking to do something special for their mothers birthday treat for a few nights. I had a little search about and managed to find

 them a 2 nt Mini cruise on the Ventura 26.03.10. Couldnt believe it when I priced it up at £249pp for a balcony cabin. The customer was delighted , it would cost them more them that to stay in a hotel for 2 nts , not to mention all the foods included as well.

If you fancy a mini cruise them give me a call , but hurry as they wont be available for much longer at those prices .

Queen Elizabeth Floats out.

Count down is now on for the maiden Voyage of Queen Elizabeth as she goes on her first float out. Please click the link below to watch video footage of this moment.

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What Next ? Any Ideas ????

Well having ships like the Oasis and the Celebrity Eclipse entering the seas with there all singing all Dancing facilities , it leaves me wondering whats next to appear on our cruise ships.

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Boots…….Are you out there?????????

I feel  it my duty to put a serious message on my blog to my fellow lady cruises. Please , please ,  please always check your cabin ten times over when packing up your suitcase to come home. Myself and my colleague Tina are now victims of the missing boot syndrome.

Whilst visiting the Independance I wore my beautiful boots onboard but the following day had to leave the ship and go straight to work. Stupidly I put my Work shoes on , packed up my case and on my way I went. It wasn’t until on the evening when I came to unpack my case , that to my horror i realised my mistake – MY BOOTS WERE STILL ON THE CRUISE. Next day I contacted the Lost property department and explained what had happend , she went off to investigate but a week later I received a letter confirming my pain  – the boots were gone forever. They couldnt find them , my only happiness is to maybe think that my boots are out there cruising the world and one day we may be reunited again. As I said my colleague Tina also feels my loss as on our last Christmas cruise party on the Balmoral ,  she only packed one of her boots and left the other behind. Unfortunately for her she has to look at the lonely boot in her wardrobe , constant reminder of what she has lost . So please learn from my story and always check your cabin for your belongings as being reunited with them seems like a virtual impossibility.

It’s Snow Joke !!!

Right enough is enough now , no more snow I have had enough. I am fed up with beeing very cold and it taking double the time to do anything . The snowmen and sledging was fun for the first few days but I am over it now. I think all this snow is even more of an insentive to get our holidays in the sun booked. Give me a call and we can look at getting you a little bit of sunshine for 2010 .

Formal and Fabulous Darling ……..

When taking a cruise one of the first things to decide is what style of cruise would suit you best. If you are looking for something relaxed , easy going not to much dressing up then you need to go for

 the likes of Island Cruises , Thomson Cruises , Ocean Village and Ncl. Cruises ideal for first time cruisers or those who want to experience all that the ships have to offer but in their own relaxed way. On the other hand if you feel like packing you best frocks and matching handbags and shoes (you to chaps) then go for a Cunard , Celebrity , Princess or even six star luxury like Regent . Having been on The Queen Victoria Cunard ship and experienced a formal evening I have to say  it is very exciting to get all glammed up for dinner and then go down and have a look what everyone else is wearing. You dont really get that much opportunity to do this in everyday life so it was really good fun. Everyone has there own take on Formal but you cant beat the men dressed up in the Dinner Jackets and Ladies in faboulous gowns and cocktail dresses.