Our cruise on the Jade was awesome. The food was delicious, top quality & available 24hrs. The ship facilities are wonderful; there is something for every taste in terms of decor,live music,activities, age.
Here are some gripes I read pre-cruise and my opinion of them now I've been aboard:-
The first-day emergency drill is torture in 6 languages.
Yes, it is. Absolutely dreadful. Piped very loud into every cabin, there is no escape from the lengthy passages of unnecessary talking in one language after another. Not once, but 3 times in half an hour!! I was losing my will to live, never mind stay on the ship. After an hour of this torture, we were herded into the theatre for our instruction. What did it consist of? Crew members standing on stage demonstrating how to put on your life jacket!!! That was it! The cabin steward could do this for you in your room in 2 minutes, job done.
Ridiculous, annoying & a terrible first impression. Thankfully, More
once you've endured this, the rest of your trip is plain sailing.
You need to queue early for tender tickets so you can be on one of the first tenders to ferry passengers to tender ports.
Rubbish. At Santorini, our only tender port, there were several tenders buzzing back & forth all day. You could choose to eat a leisurely breakfast in the outdoor cafe & watch the early tenders fill up & go, then wander down in your own good time to take a later tender when you feel like it. Plenty of time to explore Santorini or wherever & be back on board with hours to spare.
The food is bland and in small portions.
Again, rubbish! The food is first class by anyone's standards, and you could eat till you vomit should you be greedy enough.The 'free' restaurants are of such quality & variety that there is no need to eat anywhere else. We did once, just to see what the Jasmine Asian/sushi place was like. It was delicious & we only paid a $15 cover charge, but I wouldn't go past the 'free' places again as there's no need. If you think the portions are small (they aren't), then order 2 starters or 3 mains or 4 puddings!! It's free!!
The 2 main restaurants, Grand Pacific and Alizar, serve the same food.
Only on the same nights! The menu is identical but changes nightly. You can only dine once per evening, what's the problem?
The crew are always trying to part you from your money.
Well, yes, they ask to take photos everywhere you go so they can later display them in the gallery in the hope you'll see them & buy them at $20 a pop. This is no problem at all. You either say 'no thanks' to the photographer or you happily pose but don't bother buying! We bought one because it was excellent & is a permanent reminder of our best-ever holiday.
There is a automatic gratuity added to bar bills.
Yes there is, but you know about this upfront. Just accept the final sum as the price of drinks. If it's too much, don't buy. Alternatively, look out for deals. In the theatre before shows, it's 2 for the price of 1, so go early & get the best seats. There's a deal where you buy 6 bottles of wine to see you through the cruise & it's at a discounted price. If you don't finish your wine bottle one evening, they will keep it for you & give you a ticket to reclaim it at any restaurant. Wine at the garden cafe is minus 20%. At the pool, the waiters regularly offer 3 beers (eg bottled bud) for the price of 2.
The music at the pool is too loud.
When the live band are playing it's fine. Most of the time the piped music is in the background. But twice during our cruise it was indeed too loud, which was made worse by the fact that it was predominantly (c)rap 'music', which is, of course, vacuous drivel & an insult to most people over the age of 16 with half a brain. NCL take note please! Less
Norwegian Jade Cruises to the Eastern Mediterranean