Even though our cruise docs indicated that we would dock in Cozumel, we ended up tendering which turned into a nightmare. We waited 2 hours on board for a tender and then wasted another half hour getting ashore. Coming back was much worse as we waited in line over 2 hours for a 45 minute tender back to the Dawn. Those that had morning excursions returned to the ship directly and were told they could not go ashore. The captain apologized and said something about NCL taking turns in port, which I can only assume will mean that they will be tendering every third Friday since they have 3 ships in port on that day and only 2 berths reserved. As Cozumel is most peoples favorite port, everyone wants to maximize their time ashore and many more people do it on their own since it's so easy to shop or take a taxi to the beach. By the way the wait for a taxi is another 30 minutes since there were 2 other ships at the International pier totaling 13,000+ people.
As for the rest of the More
cruise, it was much worse than in the past. NCL is clearly cutting corners to save money in every department. The food was very poor. The main dining rooms and Cagney's were about equal to Applebee's. The Italian restaurant was a little better. Le Bistro was however excellent and well worth the $20 surcharge. Do not waste $25 on Cagney's. Cold food and low quality beef. The buffet was equal to that of a Hometown Buffet. The Asian restaurants were always empty for good reason.
The other big change is that if you have an on board credit, you cannot apply it to your tips, which at $12 a day are too high for the service received. They do not tell you about it until you get your statement on the final morning. The only way to fight it is to adjust your tips accordingly.
Other issues include: Prison quality toilet paper. Kids allowed in all hot tubs. People allowed to reserve chairs by the pool for the entire day.
8023 is a very small room with no room to walk from the right side of the bed to the room. You need to get off the bed from the front.
I expect anyone that tenders into Cozumel will never cruise with NCL again which will put them out of business in 5-7 years. I guess they will be selling off all those large ships they are building to cruise lines that know how to plan logistics. Less
There is a beautiful pool right at the pier, but the restaurants are extremely expensive. The ship does not tell you about the pool since they want you to take their excursions. I did not see too many taxis, but I'm sure you could arrange your own excursion.