Member review of the week: Transatlantic on the “Celebrity” Quantum

“There is a very large pink bear. Why? Because they can.

There is sky diving. Why? Because they can.

There is a pod that rises 300 ft above the ship and then swings out 90o over the side. Why? Because they can.”

Find out what made little britain “WOW” once they stepped inside Royal Caribbean’s Quantum of the Seas in their review.

Read on to find out more.


Where in the World is Cruise Critic?

Louise sailing on Voyager of the Seas & Chris sailing on the Costa neoRiviera

Cruise Critic staffers set sail every week, travelling the globe to bring you the latest cruise ship trends, port sneak peeks and onboard observations. Here’s where we are this week.

(Got questions about any of the ships we’re boarding or ports we are visiting? Ask us in the comments!)

Read on to find out more.


More terrible towel animals

Seduce you, Yoda will - photo by Casey Hutchins Smith

It takes time to perfect the art of towel animals – and not all cabin stewards are up to the task. As we pointed out a few weeks ago, Cruise Critic readers have encountered more than their share of towel animal fails, finding creations in their cabin that range from goofy to terrifying to downright unrecognisable.

More wacky towel animals


So, how much did you pay for your cruise?

Admit it: you love a bargain – and you love telling people you’ve got a good deal.

Don’t worry, you’re not alone! – We’re guilty of it too (we admit it), and we have no doubt many others are too.

However, it seems that bragging about how little you have paid for a cruise is very high on the list of Most Annoying Conversation Topics Onboard.

On a thread on the P&O Cruises forum bemoaning moaners, a sub-thread has been started by member Tayscot about those people who bang on about, in his words: “how much they and others have paid for their cruise.”

Read on to find out more.


Cruise shows: What’s in-store for 2015?



Visitors can learn about what’s in store for cruisers in 2015

Discover all you need to know about the latest ships, destinations and even the latest cruise styles at 2015’s cruise shows!

The Telegraph Cruise Show takes place in two locations across the UK:

  • London Excel 9 – 11 January 2015
  • Liverpool Exhibition Centre 17 – 18 October 2015

Four other cities across the country will host The Cruise Show, sponsored by the Daily Mail, on the following dates:

  • London Olympia 14 – 15 February 2015
  • Birmingham NEC 12 – 13 September 2015
  • Manchester Central 26 – 27 September 2015
  • Glasgow SECC 10 – 11 October 2015

We’ll have more information regarding the upcoming cruise shows in 2015 on Cruise Critic.

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Member review of the week: Great ports of call

Looking to try holidaying on a larger ship? Read this member’s review to find everything you might need to know.

Our member review this week is by catfm, who sailed on P&O’s Ventura on a Mediterranean cruise with her husband but had not been on a larger ship before. As this was booked for the couple’s 25th Wedding Anniversary and sixth cruise, they were up for celebrating in style.

Read on to find out more.


December 2014 Calendar Desktop Wallpaper: Holiday Markets

German Christmas Market photo courtesy of Boris Stroujko/Shutterstock

Get your December 2014 Desktop Calendar Wallpaper! Throughout Europe, the Christmas Markets are in full swing, with stalls selling crafts, decorations and the ubiquitous gluhwein. We hope this nighttime photo of Heidelberg – a usual stop on a German Rhine River cruise – will help get you in the celebratory spirit.

Here’s how to put this photo on your computer, tablet or mobile:

1. Click on the following links to get the size that you want. Each link will open a new window (or tab) displaying the wallpaper, in the appropriate format for your screen size.

2. For the desktop versions, right-click on the image, and choose the option that says, “Set as Desktop Background”, “Use as Desktop Picture,” or something similar. The wording depends on your browser. Mac users should ctrl-click and save the photo on their computer in the “Pictures” folder.

3. If the image does not fit your desktop background neatly, you may have to go to your preference panel (on a Mac: System Preferences > Desktop & Screen Saver > Desktop; on Windows: Control Panel > Display > Desktop) and choose”Fit to screen” as the display mode of your background image.

4. For phone and tablet, open the link and center the photo on your phone so it fills the screen. Take a photo and save it on your device. Then go to your Settings and find your Wallpaper (on an iPhone, this is under “Wallpapers & Brightness.” Set the saved calendar photo as your wallpaper.

2560 x 1440 | 1920 x 1200 | Tablet | Mobile

Check back on December 31 for the January 2015 calendar.

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Where in the World is Cruise Critic?

Chris sailing on the Costa neoRiviera

Cruise Critic staffers set sail every week, traveling the globe to bring you the latest cruise ship trends, port sneak peeks and onboard observations. Here’s where we are this week.

(Got questions about any of the ships we’re boarding or ports we are visiting? Ask us in the comments!)

Ship: Costa neoRiviera

Where: Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates, including Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Fujairah

Who: Chris Gray Faust, Destinations Editor

Why There? We’ll be experiencing Costa’s “neo” class of ships, which promote slower travel through overnight port stops and more casual onboard ambiance. We’ll also be taking a look at how Dubai — the Las Vegas of the Middle East – has been expanding its water sports and shore excursions for cruise passengers, many of whom fly to the port several days before embarkation.

We Can’t Wait: Razzle me, dazzle me: I’m looking forward to seeing as much of the high-end silliness as I can. Visits to Ski Dubai (a ski slope within a mall), the towering Burj Khalifa and tea at Burj Al Arab are on tap. I’m also looking forward to seeing Dubia’s more authentic side, with a Middle Eastern food tour and a visit to the Sheik Monahmmed bid Rashid Centre for Cultural Understanding.

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Cruise Confession: I Showed up for My Cruise… A Year Early

Too Soon! image courtesy of MRJPEG/Shutterstock

It happens to everyone. You book something when you’re not paying attention and you get the dates wrong.

Normally you catch the mistake in time, but worst-case scenario, you endure some mild embarrassment when you show up on the wrong day/week/month, right?

One of our members took that scenario to the extreme, and has likely set a record for “Earliest Arrivals for a Cruise Disembarkation.”

DavidandPamela, brought his wife (presumably Pamela) and his mother-in-law along for a lovely Mississippi River cruise on American Queen Steamboat Company’s American Queen — only to realize he’d shown up at the dock a FULL YEAR EARLY.

You might be thinking, “His mother-in-law, too?! He’ll never live that one down!” Don’t worry, this story has a happy ending.

Miraculously, David, Pamela and mom managed to get on the cruise they showed up for, with the help of the ship’s First Purser, Dimitri.

“Dimitri was so helpful that he got us on the sail anyways at the last minute,” David wrote. Dmitri even got the group a cheaper rate than they’d paid originally, along with a full refund on their original cruise.

David owned up to his mistake and said he owes a huge debt of gratitude to Dmitri. David said the trip was absolutely ‘grand’ and exceeded his expectations … After service like that, I should think so.

Have you ever made a mistake while booking your cruise? Tell us in the comments below.

-By Jamey Bergman

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Cruise Critic Live! with Paul Ludlow, MD UK & Europe Princess Cruises


Please join us today at 2pm for a live chat with Princess Cruises’ managing director for the UK & Europe, Paul Ludlow.

Paul will be answering all your questions about Princess Cruises, but with a special emphasis on Destinations in 2015 and beyond.

Paul became MD in 2011, taking on responsibility for Europe in January 2014. He leads commercial operations in the UK and across 16 European offices.

So if you’ve got a question about next year’s return of Royal Princess or what the Love Boat means to the line – please ask away!

The live chat begins at 2pm this afternoon GMT, but the forum is open now for you to ask your questions.

We look forward to hearing from you soon!

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