The results of our PNG cruise survey – feedback from those who were on the cruise – are in. Different people will always have different experiences, but overall the feedback was very positive, especially for the conference aspect of the cruise. Here is a summary.

Rating the cruise-conference

Percentage of positive responses – those rating it excellent, very good or good


  • Unlock the Past cruise web site? – 96%
  • Clean Cruising booking/communication? – 93%


  • overall – 90%
  • staff generally: room and meal service? – 87%
  • activities and entertainment? – 76% (of those who used it)
  • meals – 77%


  • Pacific Aria as a conference venue? – 93%
  • conference organisation overall – 100%
  • speakers and presentations overall – 100%


  • value for money – 97%

Other responses

How was the Research Help Zone (one-on-one with experts)?

  • very useful – 29%
  • moderately useful – 36%
  • not useful – 4%
  • didn’t use it – 32%

Was your research experience and knowledge enhanced by the cruise?

  • considerably – 13%
  • quite bit – 53%
  • moderately – 27%
  • not much – 7%

Did you connect with anyone with common research interests on the cruise?

  • yes — 45%
  • no — 55%

Of the 34 talks – how many did you attend?

  • 6-10 – 3%
  • 11-15 – 3%
  • 16-20 – 23%
  • 21-25 – 17%
  • 26-30 – 23%
  • 31-34 – 30%

A selection of comments
For a more complete list of comments, including some criticisms and suggestions click here.


  • Clean Cruising very helpful. UTP organisation very helpful. Loved the opportunity to share research interests and my father’s war details …
  • Had excellent service from Clean Cruising. Information on the web site was good, especially as the programme developed.


  • I am not a cruise person really but found the genealogy activities while at sea enabled me to enjoy these days …
  • The different restaurant choices were great.
  • Found the meals a bit ordinary … the staff were excellent though, especially the cabin stewards.
  • Was very impressed with the decor around the ship with many comfortable nooks to sit and watch the ocean or read a book.


  • I would attend another genealogy cruise.
  • Can’t fault the program.
  • Great experience.
  • Just having all the lectures in the one room so avoiding having to make a choice worked very smoothly.
  • More research help zones.
  • [More] time spent on how to establish the quality of specific sources, various research skills and processes, the production of family history in various ways (online, audio/visual/print).
  • Dr Tom Lewis made it a real success for me … the networking was of value to me.
  • The bookshop … added interest to the conference.


  • All were interesting and different.
  • Milne Bay battlefields great, Rabaul history and military trip and glass bottom trip on Conflict Island.
  • All were good but Conflict Islands – amazing.
  • The war tours and Conflict Island was very special.
  • [locals] guiding us was very moving and memorable as was their native markets and dancing. Conflict Island was a scenic contrast and again the native guide was exceptionally informative.
  • all of them!
  • Rabaul volcano tour; Alotau war tour; Conflict Is turtle recovery.
  • Rabaul was very interesting to see the volcanos also the war history.
  • Milne Bay war tour and volcanic tour on Rabaul.
  • The Milne Bay local experience visit to village. The driver guide had excellent knowledge of this area. Very friendly and helpful
  • Rabaul visit to cemetery excellent and ceremony very appropriate. Japanese tunnel and local market interesting.
  • I found the historical war sites tour of Rabaul the most interesting and emotional. I was very moved when visiting the War Graves cemetery.
  • We enjoyed all the island visits and activities.
  • All the excursions were great. The areas we visited really made the cruise for us as we would not have experienced them otherwise.
  • Rabaul – the two tours were very good with the culture and history.
  • Visit to war memorial
  • Battle of Milne Bay – Rabaul Volcano – Conflict Island walking tour and also glass-bottom boat tour


  • A great thankyou to all the dedicated organisers.
  • Loved the programme. It is a joy to be with folks who are similarly minded …
  • Hope to join you on another cruise.
  • I thoroughly enjoyed the conference component of the cruise …
  • I congratulate you on the choice of speakers …
  • Thank you for a great experience, I enjoyed my third UTP cruise.
  • I did enjoy the cruise. I felt like I was among friends … I also found other passengers were interested in what we were doing when wearing my UTP cruises T-shirt. I also appreciated that I could … do my own thing when I wanted … wasn’t locked into attending presentations which were of little interest … Finally, I was grateful for the extra … allowance to buy the ebooks.
  • Overall, I was very satisfied with the trip and felt I had a worthwhile experience and made some valuable connections. I would do it again as it is rather special to be cruising with like-minded people … lectures give us a lot to talk about. The cruise itinerary to PNG was a highlight as we got a lot out of the shore excursions and saw a part of the world that is really only accessible by ship …
  • Great experience all up. So much knowledge to take in and beautiful sights to see. Thank you everyone for your time and for sharing with us.
  • The combination of cruise with conference offers a great “2-in-1” experience … was good that no presentations were held during shore excursions. I also appreciated the timing of the evening presentations to permit attendance at the later cruise ship theatre show …