Norwegian Getaway Cruise Review by centannialcruiser: I really want to like this cruise but.....
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I really want to like this cruise but.....
We were on the Getaway on the March 29th 2014 sailing. Brand new big beautiful ship. I think this was it's 7th sailing (not counting promotional cruises and Bud Light Hotel thing).
First a little background. This is my 9th cruise. All have been 7 days long and 8 of them have been Caribbean. The last 6 were on Disney so that is mostly what I have to compare to. This cruise is not a replacement for a Disney Cruise.
They have a ropes course where you put on a harness and walk around up above on beams, ropes, etc. One part has a plank where you "walk the plank" over the edge of the ship. When you are done you do a short zipline across. This was probably our favorite part of the cruise. Super fun.
Legally Blonde was a good show. It is great that you can see a Broadway style show for free.
The dueling pianos bar, How at The Moon, was fun.
The Nickelodeon Family Party was really fun. My kids had a blast.
The buffet was More good though not much change from day to day.
Illusionarium was a good magic show. I thought the ending would have more of a grand finale but the magic was really good and the food was the best we had on the ship. They charge for it. I think it was $35 each. Get the better seats and get there early so you can get front row (unless Haven guests want them).
The Nickelodeon Breakfast thing with the characters was ok for little kids but I wouldn't pay $20 a piece for it.
The not so good
SMOKE. Wow people smoke a lot. It seemed like everywhere you go on the ship there was smoking. If you smoke or maybe if you are from the East Coast where lots of people smoke you might not notice. If you are from a more non smoking area it is downright offensive. One of the main problems was that there is an open atrium in the middle of the ship, like most ships have these days. The casino is right in the middle and they allow smoking in there. It permeates through the entire middle of the ship where most of the indoor activities are. So if you want to go to many of the restaurants, Howl at the Moon, Comedy Show, etc you had to go into the smoke chamber. Out on the decks and on our balcony we were exposed to smoke as well. It was just everywhere. I can't believe that they build a ship that cost close to a Billion dollars and then ruin it with smoke.
The comedy show was just ok. Not for kids and not bust your gut funny.
Speaking of kids. The kids club situation needs some work. The people are really nice but the hours are weird. Not very freestyle. They are open from 10-12, then 2-5, then 7-10. Not very convenient for parents. You have to plan everything around that if you want to actually use it. We wound up only going a couple of times. I was pretty disappointed because I wanted a little vacation time as well. Disney is much better about this, though they are getting really proud of their cruises and pricing them accordingly.
The service at the restaurants was NOT GOOD. I think this is a downside of the "Freestyle" cruising. You get charged $12 per person per day for gratuities. The wait staff are going to get their money either way so they don't seem to be too interested in working very hard. We were hardly ever asked if we wanted drinks or refills other than water. They seemed almost annoyed when you asked for a soft drink. We paid for a "Premium" restaurant one night and it was just as bad if not worse (the italian place).
That is the other thing. You have to figure out what is included and what is not on the ship. The restaurants that are included all have the same menu. Many restaurants are an up charge. Some of the shows have an up charge. It is not very inclusive like other cruises. It seems like almost everything is extra.
Another weird thing is that there was an annoying sound coming from the smokestack most of the week. Then there was a bunch of ash from the ship where it was so bad that they had to shut down the water slides. They had to clean the chairs and the deck along with the slides. The deck hand said that it happens every week and this wasn't even that bad. The officers in the white uniforms wouldn't give us any information. IS ANYONE CONCERNED ABOUT OUR LUNGS OR THE WORKERS? Amazing!
If you do not have kids, and can deal with smokers, and don't mind slow service then you would probably like this cruise. The ship is great and there are some fun things to do. I really really wanted to like Norwegian too. If I was with some friends we would have a blast. Not great for people with kids though.
Final tip. Don't book early. We booked during one of the busiest spring break weeks on a new ship and they could have fit another 1000 passengers. They kept lowering the price over and over. With so much capacity they are not filling these ships.
Good luck and I hope this helps. Less
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Cabin review: Norwegian Getaway 12296
If you are a non smoker don't waste your money on a balcony.