Norwegian Jewel Cruise Review by Lscruiser: Disappointing
Member Since 2009
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I have cruised many times and this cruise tied for last place. I traveled with my adult daughter on this 7 night repositioning cruise from Los Angeles to Vancouver with stops in San Francisco, Astoria, Victoria, Nainamo, and Vancouver on the Norwegian Jewel, rated 4.5 stars by my travel agency. We made our own travel arrangements and they were fine.
The ship, in my opinion, was highly overrated. It had few amenities and what amenities it offered were generally an additional fee. The ship had two central, open air pools and hot tubs, all of which were generally filled with families with children. The only option was the spa facilities which cost an additional $30 per day per person and were only available if you booked a spa appointment. Our stateroom (balcony category BD on deck 10) was tiny. It had a refrigerator but was filled with expensive "mini bar" products so it was really of no use. To its credit, it had the best bathroom I have ever seen on a cruise ship More with separate toilet and shower facilities with sliding glass doors.
Activities were generally fee based and expensive. There were a few dance classes and deck games, but everything else was costly. We ended up spending a lot of time in our cabin watching very limited television.
Service was generally poor and we found guest services staff to be particularly rude and dishonest.
The ports and excursions were the highlight of the cruise though not without drawbacks. Tour guides were excellent and we enjoyed a bus tour of Cannon Beach and Seaside in Oregon and a winery excursion on Vancouver Island. Unfortunately, the Oregon tours were on school buses.
Dining was a real problem. The free dining rooms had waits of 40+ minutes (no reservations accepted for parties of 2) and service was very poor. I received my food in a free dining room more than 10 minutes before my daughter's arrived and when we complained the server didn't seem to understand that the dishes should be served at the same time. Service in the fancy dining room was not much better. We avoided the buffet after being greeted by loud music and door guards with hand sanitizor spray chirping "happy happy washy washy."
Entertainment was very mediocre except for one comedian who was excellent. The production cast was set to disembark in Vancouver, so perhaps that explains their performance, but the musicians were not much better.
The embarkation and debarkation process were good and ahead of schedule. No criticism there.
In sum, I will avoid Norwegian in the future and do more research on the ship I am selecting. I ended up with sticker shock and a sense that my week's vacation could have been spent much more happily elsewhere. Less
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Cabin review: Norwegian Jewel Oceanview Stateroom with Balcony Deck Nine 10014
Tiny stateroom. You could not walk around the end of the beds without bumping the walls and feet of anyone sleeping. Balcony door whistled and when we complained we were told "if you closed it properly I would not do that." Finally when we persisted, the maintenance person discovered a bent lock that was preventing the door from closing properly. Only 2 outlets in the entire stateroom. Nice refrigerator but it was filled with "mini-bar" products. No coffee maker. Excellent bathroom - best I've ever seen on a cruise ship.