Norwegian Epic Cruise Review by HyperViper: NCL - Below Expectations & below par
Overall Member Rating
NCL - Below Expectations & below par
Destination: Europe - Western Mediterranean
Embarkation: Rome (Civitavecchia)
My wife and I have just returned from our 4th cruise and first and last on NCL. We cruised the Western Med which we were very much looking forward to with great anticipation but sad to say, were under-whelmed by NCL.
Hmmm, where to start? Let's do the cabin first. We always prefer the aft facing cabins with balcony because of the quiet and the great views to both port and starboard. Of the 4 cruises we have been on this was by far the smallest cabin of the 4 cruise lines we have been on and the most expensive. The one positive was our cabin person who tried his best to make us as comfortable as possible. The toilet and shower are split on either side of the doorway with opaque sliding doors which means that if you are in either and someone opens the cabin door, those outside can see you, blurry maybe, but still see you.
Food - I would give a generous 2-3 rating. Lack of variety seems to be an appropriate description. No seafood on any buffet unlike our other cruises. More Portions are small in the two main dining rooms...one evening I ordered "surf 'n turf" and got a small steak maybe a half inch thick and three popcorn shrimp. Specialty restaurants, i.e.; sushi bar and pizza are an extra charge unlike other cruise lines.
Internet access - my advice, wait until you get on shore. Speed is terrible and they charge $.75/min + $3.95 for pay as you go. You can pre-purchase minutes which makes it a bit cheaper, but not much and is still way over priced. It really should be free considering the speed of the connection.
Avoid the NCL excursions if you can. We took two and were amazed with the lack of organization (can you say "cattle call"?) Our other tours (we took tours in every port) were with private companies which were much smaller and by far much more informative and pleasant.
Drinks are way over priced even more than the nicer restaurants on shore. Even the water is more expensive which they offer you when you disembark at every port. I guess I just don't like paying $2 for a small bottle of water when I can step on the dock and get a larger bottle for 1 euro (~ $1.53 I think).
Entertainment - "Blue Man Crew" was okay, "Legends" featured imitators other than what was advertised,
"The Beatles" only had 3 members (I guess one missed the plane from England). The Cruise Director was terrible, at least IMHO.
Final feelings - disappointed, "nickel & dimed", under whelmed, and never again. There are other issues that I could mention but I'm already way to long winded. Less
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