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I’ve done a number of blog posts about this question in the last couple of months as there were some things about the way the scheme was working in practice that did concern me. However, it looks as if there have been some changes.

I did a post in late February in which I said that at that time P&O were offering Getaway fares on cruises all the way out to late July, five months beyond the then current date. In that post I said that this didn’t seem to match P&O’s original description of Getaway fares, which they said would be ‘last minute offers’. Today I’ve had a look at the current availability of Getaway fares, and the situation seems to have improved quite a bit. They are currently available on all cruises from now up until cruise R313, which sails on 24 August. That’s about three and a half months from today. (There’s also one other cruise, A321N, which sails on 31 August which is offering Getaway fares.)

That seems a lot better than the situation in late February / early March. I always accepted that the offers would start at around the three-month mark because that’s when P&O start finding out which bookings aren’t going to be completed. There will always be some would-be passengers who made a reservation, paid a deposit but who, when the final payment is due, are unable (or unwilling) to complete it. It’s also at the three-month mark that the line starts to have a real feel as to how full the ship will be. So I’m quite bit happier with the situation as it seems to be today. My argument was never with the concept that P&O might offer cheap last-minute fares; they’ve been doing that for decades. No, I was unhappy with their interpretation of ‘last minute’. It isn’t five months.

I’m also pleased to see that P&O are differentiating between what Vantage fares & Getaway fares will get for their respective passengers – I did another post here about that. Indeed, the real change is that for all those cruises between now and mid-August for which Getaway fares are available, the actual cabin types on offer for these fares seems to be restricted. If you want a wider choice then you can still book a Vantage fare, even for cruises in early June, which will give you a choice of any available cabin plus all the other Vantage fare benefits.

One Response to “A bit more on P&O's Vantage and Getaway fares”

  1. Barbara says:

    Tom

    I was very concerned on a recent cruise to hear many Getaway passengers boasting about their brilliant offers on outside cabins and balconies at over half the price I had paid for an early booking Inside cabin.

    What made it worse was that they also spoke of being even further upgraded pre or on check in and managing to get switched onto their preferred dining room sitting and also getting added OBC and added luxuries on top of these prices!

    Although we had registered for an automatic upgrade when we booked over a year before the cruise, we were never offered the chance to upgrade even at a cost and heard of other early bookers who had asked for upgrade and had been refused.

    I am really cheesed off about this unfair treatment. I don’t begrudge the Getaways their bargain, but something is wrong in this policy if Getaways end up getting the advantages of the early bookers as well.

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