So you are probably a cruiser wanting to use NCL and reading these reviews to base your decision. I did the same thing. I have been on Carnival(terrible) and Royal Caribbean (which now I know was the best cruise) BUT I ignored the bad reviews and went with the good reviews which I now regret! I figured oh just a few ppl had a bad time but this cruise was a nightmare for me.
Now the psycho cab driver from the seattle airport has nothing to do with this cruise but it wasn't a good way to start. She was cursing other cab drivers and had the van up on two wheels turning. The Marriott was an extremely nice hotel and the breakfast was to die for. (I am picky and this was outstanding.)
Not easy to get on the ship having to show passport fifty thousand times. It was not like that on Royal Caribbean. We thought the ship was fancy and looked clean. Then it was quite annoying to have to wait for the room until 2pm. So we went bowling which looked fancy, until you dropped a ball and the floor was so cheap and hollow that it sounded like I was breaking something.
We finally went to our room which was nice but not worth the money we paid at ALL for a balcony suite. I forgot to mention this is my wedding and honeymoon cruise in one. So naturally I wanted everything perfect. Everything that could go wrong..did. The closet in the room was so compact that you had to open one door which wouldn't open all the way, then move inside the closet with your body to open the other door. You would think for 3k you would get a nice king size bed. NOPE, you get two twins pushed together. Which I knew this to begin with but was hoping for a king size bed. The beds on Royal Caribbean were so soft and nice. These on NCL are HARD, I'm warning you, if you have back or neck problems, don't take NCL. I do, and I was in pain every night and couldn't sleep. But if you like hard beds. Go FOR IT.
What is hilarious is that this trip gets worse and creepier. I will stop rambling on and just spit out the truth. The BUFFET is disgusting, COLD, rude staff with no emotion. They all look like they hate their jobs-this applies to all the eating areas. On royal Caribbean, they have actual waitresses at the buffet that refill drinks. ON NCL they just stare at you and try to take your plate away before you are done and they don't refill drinks. The buffet food never changes, its the same everyday. It changed everyday on Royal Caribbean. We could never find a seat to sit in so had to eat in our room half the time. (this is just unacceptable and ridiculous. Then the buffet times are just ridiculous. On Royal Caribbean you could eat at midnight if you wanted to eat at the buffet. Ok so its clear the buffet was terrible. And i chose this cruise because of the good cruise reviews. Obviously the ppl that made the reviews have no food standards LOL!.
The BLue lagoon was a joke, seriously, would this not make you grow devil horns? The waiter came and took our drink order. He brings me my drink and does not bring my husbands drink..ok?? ten minutes goes by, he comes back and takes our food order, i asked him to bring my husband Some water, he said ok. Another ten minutes goes by and I see the same idiot serving other tables with drinks and food. ok your going to love this. He comes back with our salads and still no drink LOL. We ask again. We see him again!!! So my husband is not patient. We just get up and walk out with food sitting there are all lol! this is unacceptable also and RUDE. Everywhere you go on the ship, you have to wait in a line...not like this on royal Caribbean!!!
Next subject, the room staff, was terrible. I put "do not disturb on" and the guy tried to come in the ROOM at 7AM. I was furious. So i had to put a handwritten note on the door saying DO NOT DISTURB and he never tried after that. But on Royal Caribbean the guy cleaning our room knew our names, he greeted us every time we came out and he never tried to bust into our room. We left him a heavy tip. NCL room attendant got NO TIP. We never even saw him or knew his name.
So. Now the food is terrible and the staff is terrible. Not to mention after spending seven days on this ship, we still had no idea where we were going or how to get to stuff, the layout of the ship is awful. We knew royal Caribbean inside and outside in one day. NCL ships are almost overwhelming in the layout. Too much stuff and odd ways to get to things.
So we enjoyed alaska, nothing wrong with alaska or the ports. I booked my excursions six months before the cruise and NCL still changed the times of every single excursion I had picked. Then when we went to the counter to change one cause they had booked two at the same time. Get this. The lady had no idea about anything so she just says "which one do you want to cancel?" I said "uh does this other one not have an earlier time?. She says "oh yes in the morning" and I'm like "OK well change it to that time then> GEEZZzzzzzzzzzzzzz what the crap??? just trying to cancel my excursion instead of offering another time????? no clue what they are doing. Excursions were all wonderful once off the ship.
So I made it three and a half days into the cruise and after my wedding feeling just fine. Then of course my luck I catch Norwalk virus which is spreading all over the ship cause some infected person decides to wonder around the ship touching rails and elevator buttons which I probably also touched. I had no idea it was Norwalk virus cause it was not reported that the spreading was occurring until many cases were reported. The nurse came to see me and she was very nice. But the whole situation got creepier. The receptionist kept calling our quarantined room telling us "ok a food menu is coming to you and complimentary bottled water". DID we ever received this???? NOOOOOOOOOOOO. As far as I am concerned I was not the first to catch this virus per the nurse, and I was infected even though I was squirted with sanitizer everytime i turned around, and NCL did not take proper care of me to insure that I was recovering. False promises. Never delivered.
Room service promised 30 minutes, took an hour. Terrible. Then there was a terrible storm one night and the deck door kept flinging open. My husband closed it five times. All of a sudden at 3am the phone rings and the receptionist says "there is a man outside your door, please let him in". ok CREEPY??? so we open the door and there is a man with a stick and he puts it to keep the door closed. ok how did he know the door wouldn't stay closed???? we didn't report anything?? creepy. So since I got this virus, i missed an excursion and of course was not refunded. I couldn't walk for four days...I barely could walk off the ship on the last day and was still sick. Then my husband caught norwalk from me. He was sick the last day of the cruise and all the way home. Then to top off my trip. I got home and unpacked my suitcase a week later, and I am not sure if this is possible, but I unpacked the clothes I was sick in. The very next day I was sick with the same exact symptoms of Norwalk and it lasted a whole day. Wonderful trip-NOT. The best part was my fabulous OFF SHIP wedding which was wonderful and I am thankful I didn't get sick before the wedding. So overall this was a nightmare. We will never go NCL again. We will use Royal Caribbean again if we ever go on another cruise.