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P & O Cruise

Melbourne, Australia
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P & O Cruise

Hi,

My husband is very nervous about going on a cruise, so thought I might book from Brisbane to Port Vila, Noumea etc for 7 nights on the Dawn Princess in August just to see how he likes it. Is there anybody out there that has done this cruise and is this the best time of the year to go.

Would be grateful for any comments

JenKaye

Sydney, Australia
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for Sydney, New South Wales, Cruises
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1. Re: P & O Cruise

Hi Jen

I've done Sydney to Noumea and several islands / ports including Port Vila but on the Pacific Pearl and the Pacific Sun. I'm going on the Dawn at the end of the year.

I think a 7 day cruise is good for the first one to see what ship board life is like and if it is something you like.

I'm not a fan of Noumea, but unfortunately it is a constant stop on the itinerary. You can generally pick up cheap tours of Noumea at the dock ... just inside the building and pay in AUD - around $25 each for a 11/2 -2 hour sightseeing tour. Noumea has some nice beaches but it would be best taking a taxi there. The town itself has quite a few shops, some offering "duty free" prices but given the amount of tax they pay, it's no surprise to see high prices here.

Port Vila is a nice place to grab a taxi from the port - $10 for 2 of you - get dropped off at the opposite end of town at the Chinese Emporium to buy your alcohol (mch cheaper than the ship) and then wander back through the town and grab a taxi back to port.

You can also do a variety of shore excursions here or DYI shore excursions but as you are newbies to cruising, I'd suggest you go with the ship's shore excursions until you know the ropes so to speak.

Life on board a ship can be as busy as you want it to be. You'll pay for bootledsd water, sofy drinks, alcohol and specialty teas and coffees (eg Cappacino etc). You can get free tea and coffee from the buffet area as well as ice and water from the machine there.

Food in the buffet is made in the same kitchen as the dining room which is open for breakfast , lunch and dinner. If you want to sit at the same table in the dining room, you will need to "book" it.

Gratuities are no longer automatically added to your stateroom account however all tips to cabin stewards, dining staff etc are happily received.

As to the best time of the year to go ? Well I have cruised those waters in February, April to May, June and November and have had similar weather during most of those months apart from May when we seemed to experience strong winds etc.

Is there anything else you'd like to know about?

Melbourne, Australia
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6 posts
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2. Re: P & O Cruise

Hi Dougo,

Thank you so much for this insight, you have been very helpful. I have been advised to get a cabin with a balcony, does it matter which part of the ship or are they all the same?

Regards

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, New South Wales, Cruises
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3. Re: P & O Cruise

Hi Jen

If you are the kind of person who feels claustrophobic or likes to have fresh air, then go for a balcony.

If I was choosing a balcony cabin on the Pacific Dawn, I'd be going for one mid-ships on Deck 10. The reason being mid-ships doesn't rock so much as it does in the front (bow) or the back (aft) of the ship. Also, there are balcony and suites on Deck 11, but you have Lido deck above which may be noisy at night or during the day.

Otherwise, if it was me I would get an outside mid-ships cabin on Deck 9. If you got a cabin on Deck 8, there is the potential for noise from below on Deck 7 with the dining room and bars etc.

Wigan, United...
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4. Re: P & O Cruise

I would get an inside and then spend the difference on another inside a few months later

;)

Sydney, Australia
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for Sydney, New South Wales, Cruises
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11,467 posts
148 reviews
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5. Re: P & O Cruise

I agree Steve, you can save money on an inside cabin.

Let's face it ... most people are out of their cabins for much of the day in any case. There's usually a lot of different activities on board a ship particularly on sea days ... it's up to you if you want to sit quietly with a drink or a book or chat with "new friends" or get involved with everything possible.

I've had a balcony cabin about 3 or 4 times and only used it a few times during our cruises...but that's all. I have read on CC forums where people love to eat breakfast on their balconies or read a book too ... horses for courses !!

Australia
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6. Re: P & O Cruise

we are going on the Pacific Sun where on that ship is the best place to get a cabin where the noise is minimal and the movement minimal please? This is a first time cruise for us

Wigan, United...
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7. Re: P & O Cruise

Get the deck plans and find a cabin that has cabins above and below as well as side to side.

Dont get one next to a ' void ' - they tend to be crew areas and may be noisy.

Also, dont get a cabin over or under dining areas, clubs, etc

With regards movement, midships. Not too high.

Edited: 31 March 2012, 11:52
Australia
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61 posts
97 reviews
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8. Re: P & O Cruise

thanks Destination Expert that is awesome for your valuable response if you have any other ideas for me for being a first time cruiser would appreciate it. I am going with my husband and two sons aged 16 and 12 and taking my parents who are both in their 70's . We are taking my parents thinking it will be a good relaxing time for them and my mum can have a real holiday and not have to cook. Is there things on board that older people will enjoy as well? They were a little concerned that there was only going to be young people on board

Sydney, Australia
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for Sydney, New South Wales, Cruises
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11,467 posts
148 reviews
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9. Re: P & O Cruise

Hi Glenyss

ships cater for all ages and on P&O ships there is a cross section of ages ... particularly during school holiday times.

Many people like to sit and read a book on a cruise and that's fine by me - it's their holiday ! Some like Bingo, the Pokies, playing Bridge etc ... just depends what's on offer that day and what your parents are interested in doing.

Melbourne, Australia
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10. Re: P & O Cruise

Thankyou everybody for your helpful comments. I feel very confident to go ahead and book now.