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Cruise Reviews

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines

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General Information
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines
Anette S. Olsen
Ships in Fleet: 4
Year Established: 1848
Corporate Location: Ipswich, UK
The Fred. Olsen Fleet
Destinations & Itineraries
Onboard Experience
Past Passenger Program
Links to Fred. Olsen Cruise Ships:

Fred. Olsen Overview
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines originated in 1848, when three Olsen brothers (Fredrik Christian, Petter and Andreas) bought their first ships in Norway to start an international shipping company. In today's world of huge corporations, Fred. Olsen offers the rare characteristic of being a family owned and operated company. Today, the fifth generation of their family operates this company.

This cruise line is known for their traditional cruising format, with a definite British influence. The onboard atmosphere typically experienced on Fred. Olsen's ships is relaxed and quiet. Shows are not quite as elaborate as those found on other cruise lines, and although the ships are tastefully decorated they certainly do not feature all of the "bells and whistles" found onboard other vessels. The majority of the passengers that cruise with Fred. Olsen are British, many of which are senior citizens. Only recently has this cruise line started to really market itself to the US market.

In the pricing of their cruises, Fred. Olsen includes on board accommodations, all meals and snacks throughout the cruise, complimentary tea and coffee during the day and early evening (at selected venues), tea and coffee making facilities available in all cabins, as well as entertainment, sports and leisure facilities.

Fred. Olsen offers a nice amount of single occupancy staterooms onboard their ships, which is quite rare in today's cruising world. They also offer a special program where they match single passengers (of the same sex) up to share a stateroom.

Fred. Olsen Destinations
A wide range of itineraries are offered by Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, from 2- to 5-night "Mini Cruises" all the way up to 100+ night "World Voyages." Fred. Olsen's ships travel all along the world. Destinations of this cruise line include the Amazon, Canary Islands & West Africa, Caribbean, Iberia, Iceland, Mediterranean, Northern Europe, UK & Ireland and USA & Canada.

Onboard Fred. Olsen
During each cruise, all passengers are invited to a Welcome Cocktail Party hosted by the Captain. There is also a Farewell Party held on the next to last night of each cruise.

Daytime wear is generally casual onboard all of the Fred. Oslen ships, just don't try to wear any type of swimwear in the restaurants. During dinner onboard these ships, the dress code is traditional. This means that on the informal evenings you may see dinner jackets (for men) and semi-formal wear; however, on more formal evenings men will be seen wearing a "black tie" and women will be wearing attire such as cocktail dresses. During a Fred. Olsen cruise, there will be various themed dinners, such as "Tropical Evening."

As far as meals go, the main restaurants typically serve breakfast between 7:15 am and 10:00 am, and lunch between 12:00 pm and 2:00 pm. A buffet breakfast is also typically available elsewhere on each ship. As far as dinner goes, there's an assigned dining setup in the main restaurants (first sitting is at 6:30 pm, while second sitting is at 8:30 pm), as well as an open sitting setup available elsewhere on the ship. The dinner served in the main dining rooms is a five-course meal.

Since Fred. Olsen does a nice job of marketing to single cruisers, there are Gentlemen Dance Hosts to entertain single ladies on board the Fred. Olsen ships.

A credit system is established for all guests' onboard purchases. Guests are given a swipe card to make any purchases while onboard. The currency used onboard their ships is Sterling, which is what you must use if you want to pay your account off in cash.

All of the staterooms onboard the Fred. Olsen ships are air conditioned, as are all of the public areas. There's a temperature gauge in each stateroom, to control the temperature of each stateroom.

There is a beauty salon onboard each of these ships. Services at these venues include hairdressing, manicures and various spa treatments (such as massages). Also onboard each of the Fred. Olsen ships is a small casino, featuring games such as Blackjack and Roulette.

Unfortunately there are no babysitting services available onboard any of the Fred. Olsen ships. However, there are children's facilities onboard each of the ships.

Fred. Olsen Past Passenger Program
The Oceans Club is the past passenger program of Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines. Membership benefits include (depending on membership level) special discounts, priority embarkation, advanced notices, cocktail parties, welcome aboard gifts, a newsletter and much more. View our Oceans Club page for more details.

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines Fleet
There are currently 4 cruise ships in the Fred. Olsen fleet. Among them are the recently refurbished Braemar and Balmoral (formerly sailed as Norwegian Crown, with NCL's fleet), both which received updates in 2008.


Inaugural Year: 1988
Most Recent Refurbished Year: 2008
Black Watch

Black Watch
Inaugural Year: 1972
Most Recent Refurbished Year: 2007

Inaugural Year: 2006
Braemar Braemar
Inaugural Year: 1993
Most Recent Refurbished Year: 2008


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