The new ship attracted a range of passengers travelling for business or pleasure and, in the case of the 1962 Australian Cricket Team (pictured here), perhaps a bit of both.
For many sailing on CANBERRA marked the start of a new life down under. The assisted passage scheme, devised by the Australian Government after the war, had given rise to the “10 Pound Pom”. With three quarters of her berths devoted to Tourist Class, CANBERRA was designed to capitalise on this new wave of emigration. However the peaks were not without their troughs – migrant traffic tended to be seasonal and one way only. To compensate P&O extended its passenger services into new territories; New Zealand, Suva, Honolulu, Vancouver and San Francisco, following the model pioneered by Orient Liners of the 1950s.
Whatever the reason for travelling, CANBERRA, with its spacious public rooms designed for every modern comfort and entertainment, proffered:
"more than an experience or even an adventure. She offers a unique way of life, as sumptuous as a first-class hotel, as thrilling as a racing clipper, as soothing as a slow boat to China."