Regal Princess Postcard #1 – Southampton and Embarkation

We awoke to torrential rain this morning but by the time we left home to drive to Southampton most of the storm had passed over. We had a nice drive down electing to go cross country and not risk any holdups on the motorway. We arrived at the port at 12:45 and joined a queue for the Carnival testing center, actually entering just before 1:00,  we then joined a very long queue along with passengers from Iona who were also embarking today. We were never asked to show our embarkation slot group and I very much suspect people ignored the instruction to only turn up for their window. In the end, we queued for about 2½ hours.

After testing, we made our way to the terminal, dropped the car off and continued the check-in process. A slight delay while we waited for the test results to come through and when they did embarkation through the green channel was pretty swift. Instant access to the cabin with cases arriving soon afterwards

Looking out from our balcony, we noticed that the testing center was now completely deserted so I rest my case about everyone turning up at the same time. 

After meeting up with our travel companions, we all struggled to get to grips with the Medallion App because the WiFi was down and so resorted to the old fashioned way to order drinks.

The delay in getting onboard really made an impact on how the afternoon panned out and if I am honest, it’s not been the greatest of starts for us. When so much is geared around the technology which then doesn’t work properly, it is rather disappointing. However, we muddled on but have not done things in a way that we would normally do on our first day. 

After sailaway, the internet and app suddenly started working again and we made the decision to eat in the Horizon Court buffet instead of the MDR for the first night. It just seemed the most simple option given the circumstances plus we were all very hungry. It was here that the Medallion App started to come into its own, drinks ordered arrived within just a few minutes and our disappointment with it was soon forgotten.  We stayed in the buffet all evening just chatting with our group, catching up with their worlds and occasionally grabbing something to have a nibble on while putting the drinks package through its paces. One thing we were all complaining about was having low battery levels on our phones, so we are going to have to monitor our usage, I do have a portable battery charger but it’s another device I could do without having to carry around.  Tomorrow, we will hopefully get a chance to explore the ship which is something that we normally do on the first day. So far we have seen very little and I am keen to see what it is like, however, we also have Rotterdam to deal with too. 

3 thoughts on “Regal Princess Postcard #1 – Southampton and Embarkation”

  1. Had someone with that same experience on a Panama Canal cruise last week. The Medallion app just stopped working. It was out for most of the cruise. Hope yours stays on.

  2. It sounds like MedallionNet doesn’t work very well in port but I’m glad it started working for you after Sailaway. To be honest, we very rarely ordered our drinks through the app in public areas as there was plenty of crew on Sky Princess to order from. Enjoy Rotterdam!

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