A family holiday is a wonderful experience. As a watch lover I want to be able to have a squiz at something new on my holiday when I actually have a chance to browse and discover. Shopping for a watch can take time and in our everyday lives sometimes it's a precious commodity that we often don’t have. When we are on holidays, our kids all tucked away in kids club having a blast with no guilt factor, a Pina Colada in hand and no dinner preparation (I can hear you sigh) the shopping experience can be there for the taking if someone can provide it.
I decided to put this to the test on a recent family expedition on board the wonderful P&O Pacific Dawn. On my departure day I had a bit of a squiz to see what was for the taking and the crew did a great job of getting people in the mix offering a very generous raffle. But what is up for the offering if this is indeed your chance to shop? The stock standards are there like Michael Kors, DKNY, Guess, GShock, Fossil and Citizen with Tissot thrown in for good measure. Lesser known brands like Invicta, Anne Klein and Bella & Rose are the sale brand appetisers with offers like 70% off or two for $45 bargains. They also carried Superdry in the surf shop. Most of the brands offer discounts of between 10-20% off regular retail with different specials throughout the cruise. The stock is rotated through regularly but from my eye I would say they are still sitting on FW15/SS16 and yet to receive FW16 styles but I am assured they are not far away.
If you are looking for higher end or different brands then when you are in port some of the duty free shops are the way to go. The one I would recommend the most on my cruise would be PROUDS Duty Free. PROUDS are very dominant across all the Pacific Islands and you can be guaranteed you are buying a genuine piece. Some of the other Duty Free stores I am not sure and if you are purchasing a ROLEX for $100 from the markets well........... What P&O do offer is a genuine price match, if you do find the one you want in port, take a happy snap and if it's on board it's yours for the same price with an authentic guarantee.
What stands out about the shopping experience on P&O is the service. The staff are just exceptional in both product knowledge and service standards. It’s actually a pleasure to be treated with such outstanding attention when shopping. I attended a presentation about time given by the ships watch expert especially for watch enthusiasts. Free flowing champagne, a genuine passion for service and knowledge, a special raffle and a big smile was all on hand, I was blown away. The staff do a great job with what they have but they could shake up the brand mix a little and add some really on trend and different options for customers.
As I sail back into Brisbane the memories I return with are those of the people I met, the service I received and the precious commodity of time that I got to spend with my family. Time is precious, spend it wisely (preferably with cocktail in hand!).
*I was not financially compensated for this post. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.*