We had previously sailed on the Spirit the year before and wasn't sure if cruising was for us so decided to give it another go by booking a cruise on the Jade for my daughters birthday.
Why NCL? because the freestyle dining suits the needs of our disabled daughter.
So, as we wanted to see Venice, this was the chosen cruise all independently booked by myself.
Flights from the UK to Venice with BA - no problem.
Taxi from Marco Polo to Piazza Roma - no problem
Overnight hotel on the Grand Canal - no problem
Getting on the ship - no problem. We were given priority due to my daughters disabilities and the shared balcony room was as we expected and had enough room for 3 adults.
So far so good until we got to Corfu - we had already decided that we would do our own thing and not take any excursions so off we went for a look around Corfu. However, when coming back to the boat security is within the port and not on the ship and it was at this point my husband had his wallet stolen at the security scanner.- this could only have been an act by Corfu security or someone on the ship. This is where the Jade and NCL really let us down with their lack of help, compassion and knowledge.
Left with no cards and no money.
Corfu security reported the incident to ship security who merely said 'you need to pray that the person will be honest and hand it in but go to Guest services'
Off to guest services we go - no wallet, no interest when the situation was explained other than you need to cancel your bank cards - which we did.
Then Guest services ring the cabin demanding how they were going to be paid if the cards were cancelled regardless of the fact the card registered to them was not affected - lack of communication/understanding or downright stupidity who knows but the situation was explained all over again.
Next day still no wallet and no money and a request made to advance some cash on the card held - this was accepted, then refused, the accepted with a message to collect the money from the bursar - off we go to collect this - she refuses to hand it over saying she knows nothing of this. Eventually this was allsorted out late on the 3rd night of the cruise.
Day 4 results in Guest services wanting to know if we have another card we can use - insensitive or what.
No other help or advice was given as long as they were being paid NCL do not care.
So on to the rest of the cruise - ports were great and a good way to see the Greek isles.
On board ship - entrainment was seriously lacking if it happened at all. Food was the same nearly every night in the Garden Cafe, often cold and unappetising - couldn't use the restaurants as it did not meet the needs of my daughter and could not use the speciality restaurants as we needed to keep a tight reign on the finances due to the above incident.
The Beatles quiz was the most popular and when asked by another passenger if we could have a Beatles night the answer was a resounding NO - so much for listening to the paying guests.
Last day at sea - unfortunately the weather was not too good so the pool was out of the question - entrainment around the ship, not on your life - no music until night-time, first quiz in the afternoon but plenty of sales pitches to squeeze your last pennies from you or Bingo if wished to throw your money in that direction. Might as well have been on a ferry going back to Venice.
So with bad customer service, rubbish food and lack of entertainment cruising may not be for us or maybe it's NCL who are the problem.