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View Poll Results: When Ocean Village and Island Cruises' ships leave the U.K. market, I will _________
Have to look for new cruise options 25 29.76%
Try the bigger cruise lines 10 11.90%
Follow the ships to the new fleets 7 8.33%
Hope there is a new casual line by then! 42 50.00%
Voters: 84. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old October 30th, 2008, 02:15 PM
kelly@ kelly@ is offline
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Default What will you do when Ocean Village and Island Cruises' ships leave the U.K. market?


In news today that shocked and surprised many, Carnival U.K. has announced that it will cease operating Ocean Village, the two ship cruise line that billed itself as the "cruise for people who don't do cruises".

Its ships -- Ocean Village and Ocean Village Two will be transferred to P&O Australia, a sister company, and will be marketed in that region.

Read the full story here: http://www.cruisecritic.co.uk/news/news.cfm?ID=2914
The eventual loss of Ocean Village is a big blow to travellers who have flocked to the U.K.'s more casual cruise lines; Island Cruises, its two ship competitor, will also cease operating.

With that in mind, what will you do when these ships leave the U.K. market? Vote in our poll.

Last edited by kelly@; October 31st, 2008 at 06:49 AM.
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  #2  
Old October 30th, 2008, 02:54 PM
Goldryder Goldryder is offline
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I don't understand why this has happened. OV were popular, especially with families who wanted a casual cruise line that catered for people who didn't want the traditional style.

CCL also own AIDA and they, along with OV, were modelled off each other...does this mean that AIDA could face the chop too?

If this decision to lose OV is a financial one, I think CCL have made a big mistake....otherwise why transfer AidaBlu to OV if the company was a loss maker?

The loss of Island Cruises and now OV too...the market for casual, family cruises is shrinking and considering families provide the cruisers of tomorrow (ie the children when they grow to adulthood), I really feel OV could be shooting themselves in the foot unless they are prepared to make AIDA bilingual and encourage English speaking guests onto those ships...especially in light of the current newbuild that is almost ready to float-out (AidaLuna) and the next ship (AidaBlu) whose keel was only recently laid down at Meyer Werft.

If CCL are considering opening up AIDA to everyone and not just the German market, then fine...the ships are beautiful and they have some incredible itineraries too...but if CCL are not going to replace OV with something similar, well I think they will live to regret this decision.
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  #3  
Old October 30th, 2008, 07:58 PM
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The difference with Aida is that the ships are aimed soley at the German speaking market! and if you do not speak the language then you will not be able to book a cruise on Aida ships unless of course you are with someone who speaks enough German to understand announcements and can read the menu`s etc.
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  #4  
Old October 30th, 2008, 08:06 PM
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Default Aida

Interesting point about AIDA -- those who aren't familiar, it's a fabulous German line with gorgeous new ships (several, at least three, are on order I believe) and a similar casual style to OV. I do know that AIDA is a big moneymaker for Carnival Corp. so don't think it's going anywhere.

I have to admit I was pretty shocked by the news today and it's disappointing to say the least. I thought OV was really clever and creative in encouraging leery-to-cruise and family travelers. I'm not sure the folks who work there even had much warning; we had a meeting with them about three weeks ago and they were very gung ho about working more closely with Cruisecritic.co.uk. So, sad and strange.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goldryder View Post
I don't understand why this has happened. OV were popular, especially with families who wanted a casual cruise line that catered for people who didn't want the traditional style.

CCL also own AIDA and they, along with OV, were modelled off each other...does this mean that AIDA could face the chop too?

If this decision to lose OV is a financial one, I think CCL have made a big mistake....otherwise why transfer AidaBlu to OV if the company was a loss maker?

The loss of Island Cruises and now OV too...the market for casual, family cruises is shrinking and considering families provide the cruisers of tomorrow (ie the children when they grow to adulthood), I really feel OV could be shooting themselves in the foot unless they are prepared to make AIDA bilingual and encourage English speaking guests onto those ships...especially in light of the current newbuild that is almost ready to float-out (AidaLuna) and the next ship (AidaBlu) whose keel was only recently laid down at Meyer Werft.

If CCL are considering opening up AIDA to everyone and not just the German market, then fine...the ships are beautiful and they have some incredible itineraries too...but if CCL are not going to replace OV with something similar, well I think they will live to regret this decision.
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  #5  
Old October 30th, 2008, 08:50 PM
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Well I've just ordered a RCL brochure for next year. We can protest with our money going outside the Carnival corp!

Perhaps we should all pick a ship and take it over during the med season!
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Old October 31st, 2008, 03:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sidari View Post
The difference with Aida is that the ships are aimed soley at the German speaking market! and if you do not speak the language then you will not be able to book a cruise on Aida ships unless of course you are with someone who speaks enough German to understand announcements and can read the menu`s etc.
German market now, but can be opened up to everyone extremely easily.

Aida can go multi-lingual, they can take the place of OV easily on CCS booking mainframe GDS etc.

There is absolutely nothing to stop AIDA being a full part of the CCL portfolio that is open to everyone, regardless of nationality. Signage etc can be changed in a matter of hours, the crew do speak English (legal requirement)...AIDA could simply and effortlessly slip into OV's place and they have far superior ships & itineraries that OV....transition from German line to multinational would not be hard or expensive to manage successfully.
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  #7  
Old October 31st, 2008, 03:28 AM
Goldryder Goldryder is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by editor@cruisecritic View Post
Interesting point about AIDA -- those who aren't familiar, it's a fabulous German line with gorgeous new ships (several, at least three, are on order I believe) and a similar casual style to OV. I do know that AIDA is a big moneymaker for Carnival Corp. so don't think it's going anywhere.

I have to admit I was pretty shocked by the news today and it's disappointing to say the least. I thought OV was really clever and creative in encouraging leery-to-cruise and family travelers. I'm not sure the folks who work there even had much warning; we had a meeting with them about three weeks ago and they were very gung ho about working more closely with Cruisecritic.co.uk. So, sad and strange.

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AIDA ships are purpose built casual ships, the company has an excellent reputation and the fleet is extremely impressive, especially the newbuilds. None of the ships are gigantic either, so they suit the role of slipping into OV's wake very nicely. Language hurdles would be very easy to overcome...new signage etc, the crew are already multilingual and officers speak English as , like in the airline world, it is a legal requirement to speak fluent English anyway.

AidaAura, AidaVita, AidaCara are the 'older' ships but even those are beautifully turned out. AidaDiva, AidaBella (newbuilds in service) and AidaLuna (about to be floated out) and AidaBlu (keel just laid) will have at least 2 new sisters by 2012. All the fleet is under 70,000 tonnes, so absolutely perfect size to get just about anywhere.

If CCL do give the go-ahead for AIDA to go multinationality, it would be superb. I know the OV fans are shocked and angry now, but if AIDA are to take over the OV mantle, well, tbh you couldn't ask for a better replacement for OV.

After shutting the door in OV's face, bringing AIDA into the full portfolio would be an excellent move on CCL's part.

Lets not forget, AIDA are Costa's sister company...Costa went multinational after years as an Italian line, so AIDA can do the same.

Last edited by Goldryder; October 31st, 2008 at 03:34 AM.
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  #8  
Old October 31st, 2008, 04:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Single Cruiser View Post
We can protest with our money, going outside the Carnival Corp!
Good Luck with that,Craig.

There is some choice there, but not a whole lot.
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  #9  
Old October 31st, 2008, 06:35 AM
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Kelly,

What would be useful is if Cruise Critic could do a feature on what alternatives for ex-OV passengers on other lines.

I.e. Ones that offer:

Freestyle dining,
No dress code,
Onboard account in £ sterling?
Any that dont add 10-20% in compulsary tips!
Those that offer inclusive fly-cruise and transfers from the UK
Any that have UK style plug sockets ( I think Sea Princess is one of the few! else you have to take loads of travel adaptors and switch between phone/camera/ipod charging!)

I think someone mentioned NCL was the nearest?
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  #10  
Old October 31st, 2008, 06:55 AM
kelly@ kelly@ is offline
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Default Cruise Critic Feature

Quote:
Originally Posted by Single Cruiser View Post
Kelly,

What would be useful is if Cruise Critic could do a feature on what alternatives for ex-OV passengers on other lines.

I.e. Ones that offer:

Freestyle dining,
No dress code,
Onboard account in £ sterling?
Any that dont add 10-20% in compulsary tips!
Those that offer inclusive fly-cruise and transfers from the UK
Any that have UK style plug sockets ( I think Sea Princess is one of the few! else you have to take loads of travel adaptors and switch between phone/camera/ipod charging!)

I think someone mentioned NCL was the nearest?
I think you make a good point -- and as we have said, with the two U.K. lines (OV and Island) departing, there will be fewer options.

NCL would offer the more "relaxed" option, but if people are looking for a British line, this may not suit them. Another option could be Thomson Cruises -- although the line offers a more formal approach right now, perhaps it will see a gap in the market to cater for passengers that are going to be looking elsewhere. It is going to be interesting.

Kelly
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  #11  
Old October 31st, 2008, 10:02 AM
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We dd our first cruise on OV2 and had afantastic two weeks We were hoping to go with them again It does not look like we will have the chance we even had post from them this morning for there Caribbean hoildays.
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  #12  
Old October 31st, 2008, 12:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kelly@cruisecriticUK View Post
I
NCL would offer the more "relaxed" option, but if people are looking for a British line, this may not suit them.

Having been on Norwegian Jade this Summer i would say that NCL is a good alternative. I like the idea of Aida.
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Old October 31st, 2008, 02:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyBarlow View Post
Having been on Norwegian Jade this Summer i would say that NCL is a good alternative. I like the idea of Aida.
Matty,
Does that mean no ties, jackets, fixed meal times/tables, no fixed tips - ie doing what I want to do, when I like, where I like & with whom I like - proper casual?
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  #14  
Old October 31st, 2008, 02:12 PM
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AIDA is fully casual....it is what OV was originally modelled on...if anything they are more casual than OV. Beautifully turned out ships, full facilities casual everything, very very laid back and exceptionally popular.

NCL is casual...average of 12 restaurants per ship, you choose where/when to dine...only stipulation is no jeans/baseball caps/vest tops in the dining rooms at night which is fair enough as there is always the buffet anyway. The Gem & Pearl have 10 pin bowling alleys and rock walls and recently NCL have refined their shorex to include more active pursuits. Nice ships, very jazzy inside and out and growing in popularity for families....and Jade is in Europe all year round and will be joined by Gem & Jewel in 2009/10.
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Old October 31st, 2008, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edwardteach View Post
Matty,
Does that mean no ties, jackets, fixed meal times/tables, no fixed tips - ie doing what I want to do, when I like, where I like & with whom I like - proper casual?

yeah pretty much. They have auto tipping added to your account but you can take this off. The only dress code they had was that you couldnt wear jeans in the Grand Pacific restaurant. I still went in T-Shirt and trainers but got the service and food i would expect in set dining. The ships are fantastic. My personal favourite touch was the bridge viewing room. I spent lots of time there during sea days and it always interested me. They have two AIS/Radar screens just for the pax to look at.
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Old October 31st, 2008, 02:48 PM
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http://cruiseforums.cruisecritic.com...d.php?t=763879

have a look at this review in the Aida forum....sounds better then OV!
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  #17  
Old October 31st, 2008, 02:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyBarlow View Post
http://cruiseforums.cruisecritic.com...d.php?t=763879

have a look at this review in the Aida forum....sounds better then OV!
All the people I have spoken to who have been with AIDA have said that compared to them OV was very stiff upper lip....which sounds crazy when you consider what OV were meant to be.

The ships at AIDA are out of this world, the facilities on board are mindblowing...especially on the newbuilds AidaDiva, AidaBella and the soon to be launched AidaLuna. OV2 was the original AidaBlu for AIDA, and now another newbuild carrying that name has just had her keel laid.

The atrium on the newbuilds is the theater and there are walkways that are like glass tubes that change colour....beautiful...and under 70k tonnes.

This is AidaDiva...
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  #18  
Old October 31st, 2008, 06:15 PM
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We returned from a trip on the OV yesterday (30th Oct) and now we understand why the staff were not even trying - they must have known what was happening. We then got a call today from Carnival cancelling our July 09 trip on the liberty as they've decided to move the ship. So we have been well and truly disappointed by Carnival. I think it's a mistake for Carnival to wipe out the UK market in this way.

If you are looking for freestyle, with uk sockets, casual dress etc - try Thomsons - they were excellent - smaller ship but great entertainment and choice of buffet or 5 course waiter service without any dress code or set times for dining. 1 formal night but only if you choose to take part. We thoroughly enjoyed it last year.

We're now desperately looking for a replacement for next July to the Baltic before all the other disappointed passengers book them all up.

Cheers

Jan and David
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Old October 31st, 2008, 08:36 PM
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I wholeheartedly agree with the 'must haves' already mentioned.
The Fly/Cruise aspect is particularly important now. It seems every route I look at on other Lines are going ex Southampton, with little choice of flying (ex Scotland seems to be totally alien especially). I really don't want to waste 4 -6 days on a ship at sea.

As regards to AIDA, it all sounds marvellous. But, if the shoe was on the other foot and we were suddenly expected to accept another Nationality influx on 'our' OV, how would we feel/react? I doubt the Germans would be too happy, unless they can't fill their ships then they'd have no cause for complaint. (don't mean this racially or anything, it would go for any Nationality that had been used to a ship being 99% their 'own')
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  #20  
Old November 1st, 2008, 10:57 AM
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have a look at this review in the Aida forum....sounds better then OV!

Ich sehe was Sie Mittel Matty. Es darf wert Geben sein, der es ein geht. Ich hoffe nur wir, dass alle stille Aufgaben und Geld nächstes Jahr hat!
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Last edited by edwardteach; November 1st, 2008 at 10:59 AM.
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