Experience overall on QM2 was terrific. There were moments when I wondered what moron was running this ship, but that can happen on any cruise ship. (Service staff, not maritime staff).
Service was a bit slow/spotty at times in Brittania, but food was good. We ate in Lotus, the Oriental alternative restaurant, one night. It was outstanding. Didn't bother with Todd English. But wished we had more nights so we could have done The Carvery and the Italian alternative restaurants. But we didn't want to miss out visiting with our dinner companions, so we went to Brittania the other nights. And I know lots of people objected to the Roll Colonel serving one roll to each person at dinner then disappearing -- more British than American, and Americans love their rolls at dinner!
Ship itself is a wonder of beauty and tasteful design, daily diversions very good (lectures, planetarium, shows), library and bookshop not to be missed, Tea every afternoon, formal nights where everything glitters. Ship's size did not put me off, like I was afraid it would. Its quiet dignified atmosphere was what I had hoped it would be.
Some of the staff were standoffish and occasionally rude, but not as a rule. BUT, I have NOT encounted this on other cruises, and I didn't expect it on the QM2. Room service left a lot to be desired by my standard, so after missing breakfast one morning due to Room Service not showing up within 1/2 hour of when we had asked it to be delivered, we left the cabin without it as we had to make our shore excursion tender (they assign you a tender time based on the shore excursion you have booked to make the tendering experience less chaotic, at least that's their plan). So if you order breakfast room service -- be advised. But others had no problem with this. Like I said, some of the service is "spotty". Good some times, not so good at other times.
I thought charging $27.50 for an 8x10 overexposed digital photo print outrageous, so I passed on them. It they had been $10.00 5x7 photos I might have had a couple.
I was afraid I would be put off by the Queens-Princess-Britannia distinction between passengers, but truthfully, other than not being allowed to enter the Queens and Princess Grills, you never sense any "class" distinction at all. I never had any other passenger say, "Me first, I'm Queen's Grill." I was very happy to see this.
Everyone's expectations of the ship and Cunard are very very high. And I think we all go aboard thinking it will be "Granada" or "Nirvana" or something, and the naked truth is -- it's a big brand-new ship run by Carnival with a slightly older, slightly richer, more sophisticated, more discriminating group of passengers. We all wanted No Excuses from anyone, and sometimes the staff proved to be just over-worked under-enthused people.
But yes, it was a great time, I'll go back and do it again in a year or two and see what they managed to improve on. They certainly won't get worse in any areas or they won't keep people paying the premium they pay for the experience.
You will enjoy yourselves immensely. Patience and an open-mind will be helpful. Learn all you can about the ship and where/when things are the first day or two as this will help the following days. It's very easy to get twisted around and walk half the ship before realizing you are headed the wrong direction!
If you want to shop -- shop the first day at sea. By the last day or two the "logo" store was practically stripped clean already. I wish I had bought more on the first day before it was all picked over.