We left New York on 10/21 on the 11-day cruise to New England and Canada. This was our 4th NCL cruise. We anticipated that the weather might not be too good and basically that's how it turned out. Half the trip was very cold and rainy, the last half became much better.
The Jewel is a "Jewel". We sailed on the Dawn 2 years ago and were so impressed by the freestyle program and the ship that we didn't want to go any other way. We weren't disappointed.
The Jewel handled rough seas like a hot knife through butter. Hardly felt a thing. That's important for anyone who has a weak stomach.
We arrived at the ship around 3PM with sailing time at 4PM. We did this because we have learned not to arrive at 1PM when boarding first starts because everyone else is there at the same time. It took us all of 5 minutes to get on the ship.
We had an inside cabin since I believed that we wouldn't spend much time in the cabin anyway, so why spend the extra money. There's plenty to spend on in the casino, the specialty restaurants, the photos, extra tips for excellent service, excursions, etc., etc. Also, no light shines through in the mornings and one could sleep all day! That brings up another point, the ship is incredibly quiet. We never heard a door slam or any noise from a next door cabin. Not even the toilets flushing. Hmmm...maybe everyone waited till we were out of the room later in the morning?
The ship, like the Dawn, is absolutely beautiful. And pretty much laid out the same way. The food was excellent especially in the specialty restaurants. The buffets were different every day and had excellent food. We were stuffed from morning till night.
Service was excellent from the waiters to the room staff. One thing though, if you eat in the big dining rooms, the service can be slow. So be prepared and relax. It's not the end of the world.
Entertainment was once again outstanding. From Dave Naster the comedian to all of the Jean Ryan dancers and singers. Excellent, excellent, excellent. Paul Baya, the cruise director and his staff do an excellent job.
We love the freestyle program because we eat when we want, where we want, what we want. Not everyone likes it this way because they like set times, at a set table, with the same people. Then this is not the cruise line for you.
If you want flexibility, great food and service, a beautiful ship, lots of activities, the Jewel can't be beat.