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The Ultimate Cunard 2024 Guide

07 March 2024

Cunard fleet

Welcome back fellow cruisers, today we’re taking you through a 2024 guide to Cunard, looking at the top highlights of the cruise line, its fleet and other useful information to help you book your Cunard getaway.

A luxury cruise line that dates back to 1840, Cunard is based out of Southampton and is renowned for their White Star Service, decadent dining options and opulent accommodation. Cunard travels to a huge variety of international destinations, including Africa, Asia and North America. 

Cunard has also been presented with dozens of awards including the Best Cruise Line for Ultra-Luxurious Holidays at the British Travel Awards in 2023 and in 2024, a mention on Conde Nast Traveler’s 2024 Gold List and Travel & Leisure’s 2024 ‘Where to Go’ List. It also receives exceptional guest reviews, with an average customer experience rating of 4.2 out of 5 on Feefo.

Keep reading to find out more!

Contents:

  1. Cunard's Fleet
  2. Top Highlights Onboard Cunard's Fleet
  3. What’s Included on a Cunard Voyage? 
  4. What’s Extra on a Cunard Voyage?
  5. Dining Onboard Cunard
  6. Upcoming Cunard Getaways
  7. Cunard Guest Reviews
  8. Cunard Packing Tips
  9. Cunard FAQs

Cunard's Fleet

Cunard’s fleet currently comprises four ships, including the iconic Queen Mary 2 which set sail in 2004, Queen Victoria that embarked on her maiden voyage in 2008, Queen Elizabeth that launched in 2010 and Queen Anne - which will be setting sail in 2024. Each with their own unique personality, the fleet has an undeniably elegant flair and panache. 

Queen Mary 2
Queen Mary 2

Top highlights that you can enjoy on all of Cunard’s ships include the Royal Court Theatre that offers different entertainment from West End performances to comedy shows, The Queens Rooms - a social hub throughout the fleet that plays host to ballroom dancing on Gala Evenings and Cunard’s signature afternoon tea each day and The Queens Grill and Princess Grill Restaurants, an exclusive dining area reserved for Grill guests.

Other unique features include the largest library at sea that’s home to over 10,000 volumes and the Illuminations Planetarium aboard Queen Mary 2, the beautiful Garden Lounge on Queen Victoria that takes inspiration from Kew Gardens and Queen Anne’s Bright Lights Society show bar and its picturesque Pavillion Wellness Studio which hosts regular fitness sessions amongst other extraordinary features onboard. 

Top Highlights Onboard Cunard's Fleet

With a long and storied history, Cunard brings a legacy to the waves that differs to others within the industry. But why is Cunard considered to be so unique in the cruising world? 

Cunard's Gala Evening
  1. It’s Steeped in Tradition

Firstly, Cunard’s heritage and the traditional type of cruising it offers guests make it an extraordinary cruise line to sail with. Embracing its history and echoing the traditions that come with ocean travel, Cunard brings its legacy to life through its nostalgic décor, formal nights and the White Star Service that it offers guests throughout their journey. 

Cunard also has a connection with the British royal family, with many of them travelling on or visiting a Cunard liner throughout the years; including Queen Elizabeth I who launched the original RMS Queen Elizabeth in 1938.

  1. Cunard’s Afternoon Tea

Afternoon tea onboard Cunard is also an indulgent experience, which you can enjoy every day between 3:30-4:30pm. Enjoy delicate finger sandwiches, traditional scones and other pastries on fine bone china, accompanied by the sounds of a harpist or pianist. 

  1. Cunard’s Themed Voyages

Not only does Cunard’s voyages feature themed nights, including black-tie Gala Evenings and masquerade balls, but Cunard also runs exciting event voyages. 

Throughout 2024 there will be a series of themed sailings including the Big Band Ball (5th-14th May) voyage, the London Theatre at Sea 2024 (15th-23rd June) sailing, the Literature Festival at Sea (13th-21st November) and more! Find out more information about these itineraries on our blog - Discover Cunard’s Exciting 2024 Event Voyages Programme.

  1. Pet-Friendly Transatlantic Crossings

The only cruise line to offer a frequent transatlantic service, there is often a waiting list to join if you wish to travel on it with your dog or cat. Your beloved pet will travel in style, with a kennel master on hand, an owner’s lounge and 24 spacious kennels. 

For British dogs, there’s the lamppost (taken from Cunard’s building in Liverpool) and for American dogs, there’s a NYC fire hydrant! There’s also the opportunity to have photographs taken and a dog parade!

What’s Included on a Cunard Voyage?

On a Cunard voyage, you can enjoy a wide selection of restaurants, their signature afternoon tea, room service, essential drinks (coffee, water & fruit juice) at selected venues, all entertainment, fitness classes, Cunard Insights (lectures and talks by experts and celebrities), special guest speaker events and kids clubs included in your fare. 

However, if you opt for a Cunard Grill Suite, not only will you benefit from these inclusions, but a wealth of other perks to take advantage of throughout your getaway. 

Guests relaxing on the Queens Grill Terrace
Guests relaxing on the Queens Grill Terrace

Onboard Cunard ships, there are two types of Grill Suites - Princess Grill Suites and Queens Grill Suites.

Princess Grill Suites’ top perks include access to the exclusive Princess Grill Restaurant alongside a reserved table, chocolates and sparkling wine upon arrival, a Grills Concierge on hand throughout your sailing, Grills Afternoon Tea - served in the Grills Lounge, Grills Terrace access (where you can enjoy canapes and afternoon tea) and complimentary 24 hour room service.

Alternatively, if you opt for a Queens Grill Suite, you’ll not only have the above benefits included, but access to the exclusive Queens Grill Restaurant (alongside a reserved table), pre-dinner canapes and a dedicated butler.

What’s Extra on a Cunard Voyage?

When opting for a Cunard getaway, similarly to other cruise lines, spa treatments, onboard retail purchases, casino games and shore excursions are all extra costs to consider. 

Alongside these, gratuities, speciality dining, afternoon tea with champagne ($40 per person), wine experiences and Wi-Fi packages (that vary between $18 to $24) are all also additional costs to factor into your voyage. 

Festive cocktails
Festive cocktails

The majority of drinks are also extra on a Cunard voyage, and you can either opt to pay for these on the go or for one of Cunard’s drinks packages. These range from a soft drinks option starting at $10.80 per person, per day to a beers, wine and spirits option starting at $85.50 per person per day; giving you the flexibility to choose the best drinks package for you. 

You can purchase drinks packages via the My Cunard Cruise Personaliser ahead of time, or at the latest, 2 days into your voyage. Drinks prices are in US dollars. 

Dining Onboard Cunard

On a Cunard voyage, you can choose from a wide variety of international cuisine. Restaurants that are included in your fare include the main buffet restaurants - The Lido (onboard Queen Elizabeth, Queen Victoria and Queen Anne) and The King's Court (aboard Queen Mary 2) offering a range of food throughout the day. 

Cunard dining
Cunard dining

The Britannia Restaurant (which is on all of Cunard’s fleet) is also complimentary for all guests, offering a breakfast menu including pastries, hot dishes and cereals, a four-course lunch with appetisers, salads, pasta classics, curries and more and a five-course dinner with British and regional fare with menus that change daily.

All guests can also head to The Golden Lion (available fleet-wide) to enjoy gastro pub fare. A venue that will make British guests feel right at home, you can tuck into fish and chips, ploughman’s sandwiches and other British classics. 

Queen Mary 2 also boasts the Carinthia Lounge - an elegant space offering complimentary light bites and small plates.

Speciality Dining 

Alternatively, you might be looking for a speciality dining experience throughout your sailing. 

Available at an additional cost, these include the likes of the Steakhouse at the Verandah (fleet-wide) which is an additional cost of $45 per person ($50 per person when booked onboard), elevated dining at the Lido/Kings Court - with wine pairings and meals prepared at the table for an additional cost of $20 per person ($25 per person when booked onboard) and Cafe Carinthia offering speciality coffees starting at $3.50 and lights bites. 

Onboard the new Queen Anne’s you can also ‘push the boat out’ with new speciality dining options including relishing Italian cuisine in Tramonto, Japanese cuisine in Aji Wa, steaks and seafood in Sir Samuels and Indian cuisine in Aranya.

Upcoming Cunard Getaways

Cunard Guest Reviews

Cunard Packing Tips

What to pack on a Cunard voyage

During the day, you are encouraged to wear casual clothes suitable for the weather, including shorts and t-shirts, dresses, trousers, sweaters (whatever is suitable for the weather during the sailing). However, you aren’t permitted to wear swimwear in indoor dining areas.

Guest on Queen Mary 2
Guest on Queen Mary 2

After 6pm, formal attire is required, both on Gala evenings and in most of the bars, restaurants and entertainment venues. On a usual evening, smart attire includes formal trousers, long/short formal shirts and dresses. However, on a Gala evening, there is an elevated dress code, this includes long cocktail dresses or ball gowns, suits/tuxedos, a tie/bowtie and formal shoes. 

In casual dining and entertainment venues including the King's Court, Lido Buffet (al fresco dining), the Casino, Carinthia Lounge, Winter Garden, Yacht Club, G32, Garden Lounge and the Golden Lion, you are allowed to dress more relaxed. However, after 6pm, shorts, sports attire and sleeveless t-shirts are not permitted.

Cunard FAQs

What are the Different Cunard Fares?

There are three types of fares when it comes to Cunard, the Late Saver Fare, the Early Saver Fare and the Cunard Fare

The Late Saver Fare - a great option if you want a more wallet-friendly getaway, this is available when you book your cruise within 90 days of embarkation, but you will have a pre-allocated stateroom and no flexibility in terms of cancellation/amending the booking without being subject to a 100% fee.

The Early Saver Fare - expect great savings and benefits such as a low 15% deposit (with the full payment being taken later) and preferred dining times (for Britannia guests). 

The Cunard Fare - the most flexible option, it comes with more benefits including being able to amend bookings, later payments, stateroom selection and potential upgrades, low deposits, complimentary shuttle buses (between the ship and transport hubs), priority dining (for Britannia guests) and complimentary parking/return coach travel (for 7 night sailings +).

What Currency is Used onboard Cunard?

All transactions will be charged to your account in US dollars. A cash-free cruise line, you’ll need to tap your voyage card.

Can I wear Jeans on Cunard?

During the day, jeans are permitted onboard, whether you’re relaxing on one of the decks, enjoying an activity or enjoying an early dinner in the buffet. 

Which Cunard Ship is the Largest and Which Cunard Ship is the Smallest?

Queen Anne is set to be the largest within the fleet, with Queen Victoria being the smallest. 

Book Your Cunard Getaway with Iglu Cruise Today

So, there you have it! There’s a 2024 guide to Cunard, including the top highlights onboard, the dining, what’s included and more. 

A truly extraordinary cruise line that guarantees a voyage unlike any other, whether you opt for a 3-night getaway or a world cruise, you’ll have a holiday of a lifetime. Book your Cunard sailing with us today and create memories that will last forever. 

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