For my latest cruise passenger Q & A, I spoke with James Allen, 37, a former engineer for P&O Cruises. James started cruising as a child in the late 1980s, before joining P&O Cruises as an engineer in 1998. He now takes his young family on regular cruises. James says:
“Cruising is a superb holiday. It offers great food and entertainment and allows you to visit a different place everyday. It’s also very safe.”
James and his family have cruised on a variety of ships across different cruise lines. They found the following ships particularly family-friendly:
“Harmony of the Seas (Royal Caribbean) has excellent family-friendly facilities. These include a water park and fun slides. There are also DreamWorks characters (such as Shrek), which are great for the kids.
Britannia (P&O Cruises) is very classy and has very good facilities for children. These include a night nursery and club for kids.”
When asked what improvements cruise lines could make to appeal to younger families, James said:
“There aren’t enough four berth cabins, particularly on the Royal Caribbean ships. Some companies also limit the number of children allowed on board during the summer holidays. I couldn’t book a Mediterranean cruise this summer with P&O because my daughter’s age group was full. They wouldn’t accept anymore children her age.”
James told me that he finds an older passenger base a disadvantage for people of his generation. He finds that fellow passengers often complain about the number of children on family-friendly ships. This does not create a positive image for cruise lines.
When asked to recall one of his favourite cruise memories, James said:
“I proposed to my wife on Azura (P&O Cruises), overlooking the bow at sunset. I told her there were dolphins, just so I could get her outside!”
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