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Pacific Dawn Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
302 Reviews

No, No, No to P&O, don't risk it!!

Pacific Dawn Cruise Review by Cambo

7 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2019
  • Destination: the South Pacific

This is now our third cruise, our second (and last) with P&O. Our first cruise was with P&O on our own and we weren’t impressed, but it was our first and a few years ago now so we thought we would give them another try. The money grab of the century is probably the easiest way to explain it, no happy hours for drinks, no coffee card and the cocktails were so watered down that having 2 of them back to back had no effect at all, just lolly water.

The ship is tired with outdated decor. The food was just ok, the Pantry (or pigs trough as we called it) was ordinary, little variety and didn’t change. The Waterfront was ok, but always rushed with a small menu which also didn’t change much. The language barrier was an issue at times also and when asking for certain items to be added or subtracted from a meal it was a bit of a lucky dip.

The ship was so crammed with people it was very difficult most times to get a seat to watch any of the entertainment.

We decided to try out the Salt grill, which was about $100 extra per couple, the food was very good, but the service was poor, getting the cooking of our steaks wrong and reaching across us often during service. (The Luke Mangan blurb in the menu also had spelling and grammatical errors, he would not be happy)

We were unable to stop at 2 out of the 5 islands, I know this is out of their control, but at Conflict Islands the ship left immediately once the decision was quickly made at 9am, then sailing back slowly because of the extra time which made for a very bumpy ride. Many seasick for that next day.

I had to go back twice where extra drinks were put against my cruise card, when challenged about it they said they yelled out to me but I walked away, mind you I then sat in the lounge where the bar was for the next hour or so, but nobody came over to me even though the same person was floating around taking drink orders, I had to sort it out, dishonest is a word which comes to mind.

Ok, ok, ok, it can’t be all bad I hear you thinking! Well the production shows were very good, but because the Marquee theatre is so dated, their electronic screen, which is a big part of their show is stepped back behind the curtains and unless you sit in the front area, you can’t see it. This was often an issue because of the amount of people crammed onto this boat.

Overall a terrible experience, my son and daughter in law came with us and have now asked us not to invite them on another cruise because of how bad this one was.

Avoid at all costs, go for another cruise line if you can.

Cambo's Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Cabin OA 5159

Cabin was fine, a bit dated but well serviced by very good attendants.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews


Very dirty and disorganised, the locals haven't grasped the concept of tourism as yet.


Great tour guide with an air conditioned van, very knowledgable, good value.

Conflict Islands

Couldn't stop here, strangely, didn't even try, very keen to get going.

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