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P&O cruise ship tips please

posted 8-12-2009 @ 09:42 PM www
P&O cruise ship tips please

Just wondering, we have booked our cruise for next year - Pacific Dawn.

Just wondering a few things, we're not really into dressing over the top, do you have to wander around the ship dressed really well? or can you cruise around in boardies? I was hoping to wear a casual (not too sloppy) top and some cotton shorts, - do you have to get dressed up for dinner and the shows?

Son wants to know - tv in the rooms, are they australian channels and do they have foxtel?

I've told him that I believe that they would be the usual australian channels (i.e 7, 9 , 10, or gwn and win) and I didn't think they had foxtel/digital tv - but can't see it on their website.

and lastly (for moment) - I remember before that they used to have a pre loaded credit card that you put your own money on it and you use that on board, or for the external trips. But I can't see anything about that credit card thing any more - so I'm wondering, do you take cash - australian dollars (the islands we are visiting are the South Pacific), or do we have to arrange travellers cheques in Fijian dollars and whatever currency those other islands have?

oh and one more thing, as a person hugely frightened of the ocean... when you get to transfer to land on these islands, does the cruiseship go to the port or do you have to go on those little tiny boats which drive you to the islands? if so, how do you get on those little tiny boats? I'm having very silly visions of going down those rope ladders and dangling over the water which I know is absolutely silly, but they don't show you those things on the dvd or in the books or on their website!

So excited about this trip. (a little bit daunted about 7 nights out at sea.. but can't wait - we tried to get on it last year but couldn't get our son onboard - they had run out of space for children, albeit a 16 year old child!)

Prize total for 2011: 1 win (dvd) total $16
Prize total for 2010: 3 wins Total $260 - Chque $50, Dvd $20, 10kgs Chocci $190
Prize total for 2009: 0 wins Total $0
Prize total for 2008: 4 wins Total $400
Prize total for 2007: 8 wins Total $965
Prize total for 2006: 8 wins Total $2,230
Prize total for 2005: 3 wins Total $260
posted 9-12-2009 @ 05:21 AM www

We went on the dawn last year, i will see what i can remember:P:P:P

I found that people dressed in all sorts, if you wanted to go to the dining room then you dressed up. For the shows then it was smart clothes, not shorts or thongs, mind you i didn't watch everyone and didn't go to many shows.

As for the tv, they have their own channels with movies, news and their own information sessions.

Re the money, we just used our credit card and they used that or some people did take cash and put that on the front desk and checked their statements to see how much money they had left. At a couple of ports they had currency exchange on the ship or we just used the currency exchange on the island if they had one.

I can't remember how many ports we actually called into but we did use those little boats (tenders). Its very safe as they have people helping you across and you use a gangway(plank with rails) sorry can't give you exact terminology.

You will be fine and your son will be having so much fun you will be lucky to see him and i doubt he will be worried about what is on tv.

We are booked on the Pacific Jewel for next year and the kids are counting down.:):):)
posted 9-12-2009 @ 06:34 AM www

The P&O site has a 'handbook, with valuable info:

You can wander around the ship, in what you like to wear. For dining rooms, you have to dressed for dinner, in dining room or restaurants, but lunch/breakfast is more casual.

They still had the cards you could load with cash, when I went last year, but I just used my credit card, which was charged on a day to day basis. Make sure you advise you credit card company, if you do this option, so they know you are in different countries!

You can exchanged currency on board the ship. Don't overdo it, because they won't change it back!

Depending on ports, some dock (like Noumea, Port Vila) or covered 'tenders' to places like Lifou. No rope ladders dangling overboard!

You'll be fine, have fun!
posted 9-12-2009 @ 06:53 AM www

I joined this forum before I went on my cruise recently.I found it fantastic for all sorts of information.
posted 9-12-2009 @ 05:43 PM www

I went on the dawn in September this year. Never been on a cruise before and so i didn't know what to expect.

We pretty much wandered around the ship in shorts and T-Shirts the whole time. There are 2 dining areas. One is like a sit down a-la-carte restaurant and so to go in there you need to be in (at least) smart casual. The other is like a buffet and you can go in there in shorts and T-Shirts. If you go to a show or something you just need to be in smart casual. Jeans etc are OK. Not thongs though.

On our cruise there were 2 formal nights and 2 dress up nights (a country and western and a hawaiian night). You don't have to participate in these if you don't want though.

The TV was their own TV. There is a channel which is the cruise channel this is really good because they tell you on there what is happening on the ship that day. You also get the daily newspaper which tells you the events of the day. The rest of the channels are like foxtel, but it's not actually foxtel. So there are movie channels etc etc. Not that you would want to be in your cabin with all the things that go on!!!

The money. Every person on the ship gets a thing called a cruise card. This is like your id and also how you pay for things. You can either use cash to top the balance up or link it to your credit card. Either way you can get a statement of your account at any time from the purser's desk. If you need cash to top up your card there are 2 atms on board but they are not guaranteed to be working (one broke when we were on board). If you need cash for your day trips you can exchange aussie dollars to the Pacific money at the cashier's desk too!

If you are planning a day trip on one of your stops I would suggest booking it as soon as you can at the shore tour desk on ship as they fill up really fast. You can pay for these with your cruise card.

It depends where you go as to how you get off the ship. Ours went to New Caledonia. One of the stops Noumea, was just walk down the gangway. The other 2 were getting on boats called tenders. The tenders are not small boats. They fit about 50 people on there. And you just walk down some stairs and across a gangway and you are on them. Quite easy really.

If your son is a teenager then he can hang out in the teenage lounge. They have playstations and pizza nights etc. We met a couple on board who had their 2 kids 14 and 12 with them and they said they hardly saw them the whole cruise because they were always hanging out with the other kids. Sometimes they even got back to the cabin later than their parents!

You will have the best time. I can guarantee it. The staff are all so helpful and every person that we were with (all 11 of us who had never cruised before) was ready to book our next cruise the day we walked off the ship.

One of the best holidays I have ever had.

posted 9-12-2009 @ 09:02 PM www

Thank you all so much, it is good to hear from others who have been in the same situation.

My travel agent sent me the 'handbook' link this morning also so I have been reading all the things.

I will have a look at that cruise forum mentioned above also - thank you for that.

I now have to get on that treadmill and the wii fitness - I've slacked off a lot of late, so now I have some real incentive.

I'll remember to pack a couple of 'dressy' type things and some proper shoes - so glad that most of the trip I can be in my normal attire.

Can't wait - now I'm off to find my countdown bar to put in my signature to remind me of how many days to go!

Prize total for 2011: 1 win (dvd) total $16
Prize total for 2010: 3 wins Total $260 - Chque $50, Dvd $20, 10kgs Chocci $190
Prize total for 2009: 0 wins Total $0
Prize total for 2008: 4 wins Total $400
Prize total for 2007: 8 wins Total $965
Prize total for 2006: 8 wins Total $2,230
Prize total for 2005: 3 wins Total $260
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