247 Norwegian Bliss Cruise Reviews

The ship is beautiful the rooms are beautiful. Our state room steward took great care of us. Embarkation was ridiculous we were supposed to be there at 9:30 and couldn’t board the ship until 12:30 very antiquated. The three main ... Read More
The ship is beautiful the rooms are beautiful. Our state room steward took great care of us. Embarkation was ridiculous we were supposed to be there at 9:30 and couldn’t board the ship until 12:30 very antiquated. The three main dining room‘s left a lot to be desired. The service was horrible and the food was not so great. One night we waited so long we got up and left before our food was delivered. We found it easier to get up and go to the nearest bar to get our drinks before we were served in the dining rooms. This was not only happening to us but others around us. We observed other people getting angry with the white stuff and getting up and leaving. The buffet has a lot of choices but the quality of food is not very good it just doesn’t taste very good. This is my 25th cruise and I expect more from Norwegian. Especially with this being a new ship my expectations were higher. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
My younger son turns 13 in October 2019 and wanted to go to the Splash Academy one last time before he is "too old" as his birthday gift. So, we booked this cruise when we were on NCL Escape in November 2018. Again, we learned ... Read More
My younger son turns 13 in October 2019 and wanted to go to the Splash Academy one last time before he is "too old" as his birthday gift. So, we booked this cruise when we were on NCL Escape in November 2018. Again, we learned from the same mistake, never booked our cruise too early as NCL will drop their price dramatically as they cannot sell their rooms during the regular periods of the year. However, we still love the NCL shows although there are lesser and lesser available. The crew members are still hardworking and most of them are very good! We still love them! Drinks are still good and NCL is still kids friendly! Overall, as a regular NCL cruiser, I am disappointed with NCL on their arrangments on the food they served. They only serve Lobster at the Ocean Blue and Caney's now, and they are not as good as other ships. The crab cakes at Q were too salty, so did the scallops at the Teppys. The lunch's menu at the two "sit-down" restaurants have not been changed during the entire 7-day-cruise. The only good thing is "The Local" still serves good Burgers, but the chefs could not hold the qualities of the wings that they served. My wife and I are both agreed that it is time for us to start sailing with other cruise lines and stat building our membership-tier.​ Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We recently returned from our Norwegian Bliss cruise to the Mexican Rivera. These are our thoughts: 1. Embarkation was extremely efficient and quick. 2. Be prepared to wait for the elevators, which aren't conveniently located ... Read More
We recently returned from our Norwegian Bliss cruise to the Mexican Rivera. These are our thoughts: 1. Embarkation was extremely efficient and quick. 2. Be prepared to wait for the elevators, which aren't conveniently located if you are mid-ship. 3. By prepared to pay for things like: race car driving, laser tag, bowling, gelato, coco's, cabaret, etc. 4. The food in Savor and Taste were average at best. 5. We dined at: Cagney's, Le Bistro, The Cucina, Teppanyaki, and Ocean Blue. These restaurants were absolutely outstanding and we would HIGHLY recommend them. 6. The Garden Cafe was a go-to for breakfast and lunch. There was a nice variety of selections, and the food quality and taste were great. 7. The shows: Jersey Boys was Excellent. Six was Good. Happy Hour Prohibition was $39 and not worth it. You're served 5 mini-cocktails laced with sugar overload and the entertainment factor is something equivalent to a high school show production. The Cavern Club featuring the Beatles were good. The Comedy Shows were good. 2 of the 3 comedians were funny. The other was boring. 8. The ship is very large so be prepared to wait and wait and wait. 9. Reserve dining and entertainment quickly or it will be sold out. 10. We had the mini-suite with balcony. The bathroom was nicely equipped with a dual vanity and large shower. The room was spacious with very comfortable beds and pillows. We did not like the fact that you can't charge your phones if your not in the room. The electric shuts off if your Key Card is not inserted. 11. Cabin Steward and Cruise Director Team were very nice. Bar and Dining- with the exception of speciality dining and washy washy team- were not very friendly at all. 12. We took three excursions: Luxury Sailing with Snorkeling in Cabo- was awesome. Private Beach Resort in Mazatlan- Outstanding. City Tour of Puerto Vallarta- Avoid. 13. The Norwegian Bliss is the 10 largest ship in the world, so just be prepared for large crowds who are impatient. Norwegian does a great job of trying to make as much seating available and to ensure spots like the Garden Cafe do have plenty of stations. If you meet someone, the chances of running into them again is unlikely. 14. There are plenty of places onboard to get a drink. There are bars nearly everywhere. Don't expect a straw, plastic or paper, which makes drinking a frozen drink difficult. 15. The food in Savor/Taste were just average. We dined once for breakfast and once for dinner. 16. Use the NCL app when you get onboard. It's a great resource. 17. Use your stateroom TV to reserve shows, specialty dining, onboard activities, and shore excursions. It's much more convenient. 18. There was a medical incident onboard and the team reacted quickly and professionally. It was reassuring. 19. The onboard activities were engaging and fun. We really enjoyed them. 20. You get the impression that NCL is always trying to sell you something. 21. I yearn for the days when you can buy a package and EVERYTHING is included. The Deluxe Beverage package did not include water/soda/Starbucks. 22. Norwegian Bliss does have their Disembarking to a science. It was efficient and organized. Overall, we enjoyed the cruise and there is some room for improvement. We wish the staff were more friendly. We sailed on Royal Caribbean in February and that team were so awesome even after a 8 month stint. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
I chose to sail on the NCL Bliss because it is Norwegian's newest, largest ship. Usually, newer means better. But the design of this ship and the crew of the Bliss proved they are truly "not ready for prime time." The NCL ... Read More
I chose to sail on the NCL Bliss because it is Norwegian's newest, largest ship. Usually, newer means better. But the design of this ship and the crew of the Bliss proved they are truly "not ready for prime time." The NCL Bliss is indeed a beautiful ship. MANY facets of the ship were fantastic, from the relaxing observation lounge on deck 15 to the overall ship decor, which is chic and contemporary. The designers did a great job creating a comfortable experience. However, so many other important elements of the ship's design are lacking. The most obvious issue was that this massive ship only has forward and aft elevator banks, with none in the center. How did the architects think over 6.200 passengers and crew were supposed to navigate about such a massive ship with so few elevators? I noticed hundreds of people congregating near the elevators all throughout the days of my 7 day cruise. So many passengers gave way to "crowd-think" mentality, which meant becoming rude and somewhat aggressive in their fight for elevators. Otherwise, they were forced to walk many floors of stairs to reach their desired floors. Couldn't NCL executives anticipate this dynamic might occur on such a large ship? Also, the communications system onboard the NCL Bliss was awkward. Sure, NCL has a telephone APP for passengers to use onboard to help them schedule daily activities, and the same activities are also shown on the in-cabin TV screen and printed in the daily newsletter, but NONE OF THEM ARE IN SYNC! For instance, the NCL phone app is supposed to load activities at least 24 hours ahead of time, but it often didn't display them even a few hours ahead. And the in-cabin TV app was also inaccurate at times. In all, I found the best strategy was to just take along the PRINTED guide provided to my cabin and maintain my actual calendar on my own personal phone calendar. SMH. The in-cabin screen also displayed the Mazatlan port stop as a "sea day" for the entire length of the cruise. I pointed this error out to the Guest Services desk, but they only kicked the can down the road and made it clear they couldn't be bothered. SMH. As for my cabin, it was designed comfortably and with a soothing blue/brown color scheme. Exactly what I anticipated on the NCL Bliss. I was pleased with the individual reading spotlights placed on either side of the bed along with the corresponding USB input jacks for charging electronic devices. Very convenient. My room steward couldn't be worse! I asked for one special item to be placed in my room which, on ALL 40 previous cruises with various cruise lines has never been a problem. But this steward had to be asked numerous times a still failed to provide. So, I escalated the matter. And again...and again...and again...SEVEN times! It took three days until the simple item was delivered -- a small plastic ice bucket. How hard is that?! When I activated the "do not disturb" sign on my door, the room steward constantly ignored it. He was always calling and knocking and bothering me about silly things. I finally had to raise my voice to him and remind him that "do not disturb" means JUST THAT! On many occasions, I was not feeling well and just wanted to relax. Overall, my dining experience on the NCL Bliss was subpar compared to other cruise lines. I ALWAYS dined in the reservations-only Manhattan room and in the same section. But the experience was poorly executed by NCL. As for the service, even though guests are required to reserve their tables in the Manhattan room, NCL subjects them to standing in not one, but two separate hostess lines to be seated. I've never stood in two lines at ANY restaurant in America where I had made previous reservations, just to be seated. What was the sense in that? There were other key issues where the waitstaff messed things up. First, EVERY TIME I had just sat down, the waiter or waitress INSTANTANEOUSLY pounced on me for my order! I had to remind them that I had barely sat down and needed a few moments to receive my water and study the menu. But they never listened. Second, upon being seated at the same time and at almost the same table with the same waitstaff, they NEVER remembered my preferences (e.g.: that I NEVER eat bread during meals or that I ALWAYS prefer lemon slices with my water). I mean, the waiters only served a few tables simultaneously, so how could they not remember certain key details like those? And I found myself always having to BEG for water. Finally, even before I was finished with my plates, the waitstaff constantly attempted to remove the plates! Who does that? In all, I found the NCL Bliss waitstaff to be grossly inexperienced and undertrained. As for the food, it was obviously prepared in a huge galley with little quality control. First, EVERY salad I received was served in a warm bowl or plate, causing the greens to wilt before reaching the table, Any chef worth his salt knows that salads should ALWAYS be served chilled and in chilled bowls/plates. So, I often sent them back in order to have them prepared fresh. Second, most of the entrees were either flavorless or served barely warm, or both. It's clear the NCL Bliss chefs don't taste their food for quality control. Once again, I sent back items until I found a replacement that was appetizing. Third, I addressed my concerns with the Maitre'd and he said he would "deal with" the issues. But nothing happened. Business as usual on the Bliss. They must figure it they ignore problems, they go away. Finally, as for daily activities, I was surprised at how far NCL would go to make money. MANY of the scheduled activities, like craft hour, required passengers to pay fees to partake. The nickel-and-diming on the NCL Bliss was record-breaking, I found. But I attended the "comedy shows" and a stage production called "Six." The comedy shows were a joke, if you'll excuse the pun. During the first show I attended, it was considered a "family-friendly" performance. There were over 10 children in the room under the age of 12. The comedian decided to focus his entire show on those children and reveled the audience with inappropriate "jokes" about a) male penises, b) public urination on others' faces, c) homosexuality/homophobia and d) how much he hates the current president of the United States. How were these topics humorous to 12 year-olds? When I decided to attend the "18+" comedy show on the last evening of the cruise, nearly every sentence was wrapped around the f-bomb or kinky sex topics. SMH. What ever happened to truly funny comedy that doesn't require offensive topics or cursing to be humorous? Clearly, NCL needs to do a better job at screening its "comedians." I also attended a show called "Six." It was a pre-Broadway release show about the six man-hating, feminist former ex-wives of England's King Henry 8th. The show storyline made no sense, in my opinion. The vocals were "pitchy" at best, so it was clear that these performers were not the best NCL could find. But the costumes were flashy. As for port experiences, I only chose to visit Cabo San Lucas and Mazatlan. In Cabo, I took an NCL sponsored "Luxury Day Sail & Snorkel" cruise. The 50-foot vessel motored around the Bay for three hours and stopped for some snorkeling. Only at the very end, for about 15 minutes, did the crew raise the sails. That experience was my best experience during my Mexican Riviera cruise. In Mazatlan, I chose to take a shore excursion provided by a private tour operator. It was comprehensive and included lunch. Very enjoyable, as well. Overall, I found the NCL Bliss to be a beautiful ship, but it has many design, service, management and flow problems. I would recommend it to first-time cruisers, but maybe not experienced cruisers. This was only my second time sailing with NCL, and after this cruise it will be my last. NCL as a company is just too difficult to deal with, from its pre-sailing customer "no-service" to its onboard experience. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
I went on this cruise with my boyfriend and his family. Staff were great, and overall very attentive. The food was generally not good. The best food was at the buffet. While staff at the restaurants were very accommodating, the food did ... Read More
I went on this cruise with my boyfriend and his family. Staff were great, and overall very attentive. The food was generally not good. The best food was at the buffet. While staff at the restaurants were very accommodating, the food did not live up to our expectations for being on a "luxury" cruise. Service at the restaurants that required an upcharge was mediocre at best. Staterooms were modern and very clean. The shows that we went to see (Six and Jersey Boys) were both excellent. The observation lounge and promenade were great places. The shore excursions were well-organized and a lot of fun, although our last excursion to Cabo was time limited because it was turning into an "at sea" day. I would definitely do an NCL cruise again, but with more realistic expectations. Not sure if it was really worth the money that I paid. Overall, it was definitely a positive experience. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
The ship is huge!! With the exception of a few bright spots, it was very impersonal. I might go again, but my expectations will be much lower!! The shows were amazing! Jersey Boys and Six were really great productions and very worthy ... Read More
The ship is huge!! With the exception of a few bright spots, it was very impersonal. I might go again, but my expectations will be much lower!! The shows were amazing! Jersey Boys and Six were really great productions and very worthy of our time. Comedy shows were okay. There were two comedians that were fabulous, unfortunately, one was so poor, the quality of the show suffered. (Felt like this person was simply winging it.) There were few other activities offered onboard. Unless you want to pay extra for laser tag or car racing or participate in pool based contests (best legs??). The one great option was wine tasting. "Free at Sea". Very poor!!! There is no free lunch is the lesson here. We turned down the drink package. Because, we would have needed to drink 4+ drinks per person per day. That is the amount of tips/gratuity we would have paid for taking the free package. We took the free Internet and then upgraded for unlimited which was wise. Occasionally, the service was overtaxed, but in general, it was adequate. Free airfare and transfers. Please don't!! We disembarked by 9:30 AM and had flights scheduled by NCL after 9:30 PM. The transfers were run by some absolute amateurs dressed in NCL garb. After being part of a silly crowd of chaos, we decided to take an uber to the port. We accepted the free service charges (bright spot) and also took the free 3 specialty restaurants. Restaurants. Cagney's Steak House was absolutely wonderful. The food was excellent and so was the service. For the other two specialty restaurants, we chose Italian and the seafood restaurants. The food was just okay in these two. It would have been better to attend Cagney's for three nights. If we had to pay the exorbitant fees for the specialty restaurants, we would have been very upset. It used to be that there was a $20 cover charge, but now these are a la cart, and our bill would have easily been $50 or more per person. The Garden Cafe (buffet) was as expected, just okay food; the Manhattan Room, a "free" restaurant, had decent food--we had excellent service two of our three meals, with the third meal's service being deplorable! Our room steward was adequate. Not one single towel animal :-( No turn down service. Our balcony room was fine and comfortable. Very limited space of course, but as expected. The ship is huge. Elevators were problematic and insufficient when events concluded and during excursion returns. Some people would try to shove in when the elevators were full. It was disturbing. We booked only one excursion (choosing private options at PV and Mazatlan). We had tickets to gather at the Manhattan Room. In the same method as the transfer from the airport, it was chaotic. PLEASE NCL--you don't know how to gather and move large groups of people?? We arrived 5 minutes before the meeting time and people were already lined up and being moved. No one knew where to line up or which groups were being called. We purchased spa passes for the week. We enjoyed what the spa had to offer. However, fellow passengers behaved badly and there was no support from the spa staff. Specifically the heated mosaic chairs, which are very limited, are not to be reserved. Yet, people drop their belongings to save these chairs while they are using other features. I asked staff and they said I could move their stuff, but why isn't it posted? Why doesn't the staff move those items to keep the chairs available? Ports: We used FlavorTeller Food Tours in Mazatlan, which was absolutely wonderful!! This private tour was booked online and the owner/guide was amazing. Maaike took great care of us, shared the culture and flavors of the area and served to translate. In Puerto Vallarta, we books ToursByLocals and chose Cervando--he was polite, kind, and very knowledgeable about PV. We had a great personalized day in an air conditioned van. In Cabo San Lucas, we took the ship's excursion to the Los Arcos. We were supposed to hear a Cousteau recording about the local sea life, however, the speakers were inadequate and when we got to the attraction, there were so many other ships, our views were obstructed. Afterwards, we walked to "The Office" and had a great lunch at a table on the beach. Next time, I'd forego the ship's excursion and just go hang out at the beach as the water was warm and beautiful! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
because of need, requirement!, to reserve show times i never saw a show. both early showings of jersey boys where reserved out by 4.30 on day of sailing and could sign up on line before cruise. boat had not left the dock and i could ... Read More
because of need, requirement!, to reserve show times i never saw a show. both early showings of jersey boys where reserved out by 4.30 on day of sailing and could sign up on line before cruise. boat had not left the dock and i could not reserve a seat. many of the other shows had same requirement -- did not see a show!! spa was a complete rip off -- they wanted more for 7 day cruise then i paid on longer cruise, 12-21 days. after heavy handed spa tour where u are solicited for all their service u are provided card for free drawing BUT u most be present to win. if i had been told that i had to come back at 5.30 to win i would never have submitted myself to 20 minutes of time share type sales pitch as i had bought package before and new all about the spa benefits. oh and no steam or sauna room access after work out, some ships allow, not the bliss did love the many food locations -- it made for short lines in buffet and main dinning rooms. BUT did wait for more than 20 minutes for service in craft beer venue, left w/o buying a beer. EMBARKATION - NCL still has not got this figured out, some people had waits of over an hour. ADVICE either show up WAY early or WAY late if u don't want to stand in a VERY LONG LINE. NCL seems to be the only cruise that has a serious problem getting people on and off their ships Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
I joined this cruise because a friend from my past cruise told me about it. My brother joined me on this cruise. It was his first cruise, my third. We both had transfers from and to the airport thru Norwegian. My brother got in 2 hours ... Read More
I joined this cruise because a friend from my past cruise told me about it. My brother joined me on this cruise. It was his first cruise, my third. We both had transfers from and to the airport thru Norwegian. My brother got in 2 hours before me and it took 30 minutes to find the transfer person that would eventually get him to ship 2 hours later. I never found the transfer person at my baggage claim terminal. I wasted an hour and a half asking the info desk where they were, being sent to 2 other terminals, calling and being disconnected from 3 NCL customer services reps, and finally having to take a 50.00 lift ride to the ship. Once we got to the port gate, the port authority guard said they closed the gate at 2:45pm, It was 2:50pm. There were 7 others in front of me and 4 others came after me with the same issue.We all tried to call NCL customer reps, to let them know we weren't being let thru the gate, and all of us got hung up on or disconnected in the process. I ended up calling my brother, who was already onboard, to let the customer service desk on board, that 12 people had been left at the airport by the transfer company. After talking to 4 people, one of the reps got a hold of the port authority guard and they finally cleared us to go thru the gate. No one ever apologized as we went through the check in process. we got on board around 4pm after going through all that mess. Once on board, the cruise went fairly smoothly. The ship, overall, was a beautiful ship. I thought the pool area was poorly designed compared to my 2 other cruises on the Getaway and Breakaway. But I also realize this ship was designed to go to Alaska most of the time, and not to the Mexican Riviera. The dining was great for the most part. A couple people, in our group of 10 to 15 people, had some bad experiences a couple of the nights. The entertainment was pretty good. Jersey Boys and the Beatles put on great shows and the comedians were really good. The ports of call were beautiful, but the excursion variety was lacking for my taste. We did our own thing on 2 of the ports and did one boat sight seeing excursion on Cabo. Not quite as advertised. The service on the ship was excellent, as always. As opposed to the issues getting on the ship, Getting off was the quickest I've seen in my 3 cruises. LAX is possibly the worst airport I have ever flown in or out of. It is a train wreck. The best thing to come from this cruise was all the new friends we made. We met a couple people from my last cruise on day one. within the next 2 days we had a fun group of 10 to 15 people hanging together at different times and places. We always met up in the Solo Lounge at 5pm to get the nights started. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We arrived at 1pm and embarkation was smooth. However there were undisclosed problems getting some passengers from LAX to the ship, which delayed the sailaway for hours (until after dark).Disembarkation in NYC did not go well. Huge lines ... Read More
We arrived at 1pm and embarkation was smooth. However there were undisclosed problems getting some passengers from LAX to the ship, which delayed the sailaway for hours (until after dark).Disembarkation in NYC did not go well. Huge lines snaking around. I stood in line for an hour (was on a NCL bus tour/ transfer to JFK) with people coughing all around me. There was time for only one stop on the $99 tour due to the delay in us gettiing off. We were assembled at 8am in the theater and our bus didn't leave the port until 10am. Glad that our guide chose Ground Zero for the stop, though. This is another NCL ship subject to itinerary changes after final payment. It is too big to dock in Costa Rica. We were told that it had to do with silting in the harbor after a flood earlier in the year. After final payment, they dropped Costa Rica and added Acapulco. Also, they had to wait until extreme low tide to be able to pass under the Pacific side bridg of the Panama Canal. Hence the "daylight transit" started at 2am. Hygiene and illness were a problem on the ship. Early in the cruise no one was enforcing good sanitation in the buffet lines. After Guatemala (Day 11) they started with 'extra cleaning' which continued and ramped up throughout the cruise, to the point where for several days at the end they were at full-Noro levels of cleaning. They were attempting to keep the statistics below the threshold for special reporting. (We heard the intestinal illness was above 1% but less than 2%). There was also a nasty respiratory virus spreading. At nearly every port (and a few unscheduled, such as Huatulco and in the PC itself) there were medical evacuations and ambulances waiting. We usually arrived early enough in port that disembarkation wasn't delayed, but at one port we were late getting off. The Main Dining Room was mediocre with only a few menus that rotated through 20 days. Sometimes service was awful and sometimes it was okay. After we complained, we were "flagged" and then got put in the MDR sections with better servers. We also got comped a meal . The specialty restaurants were better for service and food, most of the time (we went 8 times). Cagneys was hit and miss. On the first night, the truffle fries were cold.Toward the end of the cruise during the Noro outbreak, they were full and service suffered. We were ticketed to see Jersey Boys, but our waiter didn't ask if we had a show, We sat for 15 minutes without seeing a waiter at all, and then it was another 30 minutes without even seeing the first starter. After calling over the maitre d' and explaining that we were going to miss the show if this continued, the service was rushed and we managed to gobble down 4 courses in an hour with 10 minutes to spare (we had allowed a total of two hours before show time). We found the best service (and food) at Le Bistro. We liked Los Lobos okay. Ocean Blue was good, but hard to get a seating. We didn't hear good things about Q so didn't go there. We went to Food Republic once (comp'd due to my complaining about the MDR). We noticed a lot of crew dining there (probably the only place to get sushi). Some of the plates were better than others. The scallop one was just plain strange. It isn't in the dining package. Most people don't eat at Los Lobos, but we thought the food was pretty good. Ocean Blue was good but difficult to get into, especially after the "extra cleaning" started and more people avoided the buffet. Thank goodness for the wonderful Indian food (BLD) in the buffet, at least I didn't starve. In the beginning they had pickled herring available but toward the end a lot of items went missing from the buffet. The only place you could get smoked salmon at breakfast was in the MDR. The Observation Lounge has limited hours for food service. The only 24/7 is Local, the buffet has limited late night food. Room service now has the upcharge except for limited continental breakfast. They were good about coming during the requested window (I must have been near the beginning of the rotation since the knock came a few minutes into the window). I had a midship balcony and it was fine, no problems at all. I would have liked a few drawers rather than all shelving. The cabin steward was great. Liked the single cup coffee maker. Requested my minifrig to be cleared on Day1. I kept skim milk, yogurt cups and snacks in there which came in handy during the Noro outbreak.You can find some smaller plates around the buffet and Observation Lounge (full sized plates are too big for the frig). The Observation Lounge is a nice space. Unfortunately the sheltered outdoor walking/viewing spaces are limited especially in the front of the ship which are blocked by private spaces. We also miss the public decks in the aft that you can find on other ships and cruise lines. Jersey Boys was excellent. It's easier to get into the later show. The Beatles were good. Six was okay. We only took one shore excursion (Acapulco) which went to Tres Palos and the Botanic Garden. It was advertised as "unguided" and an "Aviary visit" which was misleading. We did not visit an aviary by any English definition and there was a guide who kept tight rein on the group at the Botanic Garden. We complained and they gave us a minimal discount. I booked the NYC tour/transfer and as discussed above we only had one stop due to slow disembarkation. I would not travel on NCL Bliss again for 21 days. Maybe for 7 or 10, but 21 is too many even with 8 specialty dinners. It isn't worth putting up with the terrible dining room service. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
ship was new and beautiful. Staff seemed poorly trained, especially restaurants. 3 Main dinning rooms had very mediocre food and poor and slow service. Specialty restaurants were wonderful, great food and staff. Bars and bar staff (very ... Read More
ship was new and beautiful. Staff seemed poorly trained, especially restaurants. 3 Main dinning rooms had very mediocre food and poor and slow service. Specialty restaurants were wonderful, great food and staff. Bars and bar staff (very well trained) were wonderful. Buffet was disappointing compared to a dozen other cruises I have been on. Rooms (mini-suite) was very nice and bathroom was the best I have ever had on a cruise. Two production shows ( SIX and JERSEY BOYS) were terrific but other theatre shows were just average and the theatre was too small for the crowd (passengers were turned away at each performance). Went on 8 shore excursions and was happy with all of them. The Casino was excellent and very large with a great variety of games. I would NOT RECCOMEND this ship if you are primarily interested in food or entertainment or good service, but since the ship itself was beautiful maybe NCL will get their act together in the future. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
This was my first time sailing with NCL. Good: The ship/Bliss was amazing. Loved the pool, hot-tubs, variety of places. Observation deck, mini-suite. The staff was always kind and willing to help. I felt the staff tried to go ... Read More
This was my first time sailing with NCL. Good: The ship/Bliss was amazing. Loved the pool, hot-tubs, variety of places. Observation deck, mini-suite. The staff was always kind and willing to help. I felt the staff tried to go above and beyond when needed. Enjoyed the proposed itinerary. Liked the 2-beverages on premium package. (nice my husband or I could order for each other, although we both had the package). Garden Café was awesome (props to Indian station) loved the waterslides Areas for opportunities (and why I may not return to NCL): The food was sub-par, often the food was over cooked (example steak ordered med/well and served well. Kids club/Seals; activities seemed geared to younger kids. My kids were 8 and 9. They hated it and refused to go. Other cruise lines they loved the activities. Kids had to keep wrist band on entire trip. If band was damaged then replaced fror free. Otherwise $5 charge. I was no sure I could convince them to return so they kept band on for trip. Last night I tried to enroll them in club, but club was closed 6-7 (prime dinner time) and there was line of 40 families waiting to sign-up. Reservations would be nice. Like the concept of freestyle. Reality is I spent hours prior to boarding and within first 24 hours of ship trying to get restaurants, laser, go-carts and entertainment reservations. I spent about 4 hours in line to coordinate. Would be helpful to have opportunity to make online in advance The app, TV did not sync reservations. Difficult knowing what was accurate. I resorted to old school pen/paper. The tender service to private island was horrific. Delayed several hours. By time our tender number was called it was mid-afternoon. This was a disappointment. Onboard entertainment- SIX was awesome. JB was too old school. Need entertainment for younger crowd. At restaurants staff asked for food order before the drink order. The variety and quality of the drink menu was lacking. Staff asked for food order before drink order. The room we book had 4 pp on reservation. The first night, the room was not set-up for 4 to sleep. We got back to room with tired kids. Called desk to request beds be set-up. Waited 45 minutes. Called back and was disconnected. Called back no answer. I left rook to visit guest services. By the time I returned someone was helping back 2 beds. internet package - often did not work- too slow. pool desk entertainment, opportunity for more kid activities. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
As a latitude reward member of NCL i chose this cruise because other experiences with NCL was good. I have also resolved to cruise during the Thanksgiving period (been doing so for the past 3 years). Thus, I decided to experience this ... Read More
As a latitude reward member of NCL i chose this cruise because other experiences with NCL was good. I have also resolved to cruise during the Thanksgiving period (been doing so for the past 3 years). Thus, I decided to experience this ship because I heard it is beautiful. I also planned on taking the Alaska cruise on this ship next year (not sure now with the experience). I wanted to plan my next cruise and approached the Cruise Next Desk. One young lady from Croatia was around the desk. I approached and she ignored my presence for 3-5 minutes. I am a person of color! Finally, a caucasian male came and stood behind me, she immediately stopped what she was doing and asked "can I help you?' She may have legitimately been doing something, but the fact that she ignored my presence was concerning. Totally spoiled my vacation from that. Prejudice is a fact in the free world,but no one should spend large sums of money to experience it. Therefore, I feel compelled to address this issue on different forums. The staff in the dining rooms make it a point of their duty to say 'no' to most of your request? When you cruise a much as I do, you know what to ask for. If you get it on one ship you are more than likely to ask for it on another. I will not take another Thanksgiving cruise, based on this ship's experience. Night club- The after 11pm DJ ignores your requests and plays the music he likes. I would recommend playing at least a few songs from different genre. The cruising population consists of many people over 50y/o. Therefore, consistently playing music that satisfy the 18-21 y/o is not wise. The cruise director and assistant director was very entertaining, polite and professional. They did everything they can to entertain you. My stewardess was very helpful, made my stay comfortable. The solo cruise coordinator Queena was an absolute jewel - LOVE HER!!! The ship has an observation deck to die for. VERY BEAUTIFUL. The gym was adequately stocked. Overall, my experience on 'the Escape' (another NCL ship) was better. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
So I was told after the fact that this was the first re positioning cruise for this ship. I think the ship is to big for me. There was not enough seats in the atrium. Guests were pushing people to get to seats. Elevators were always ... Read More
So I was told after the fact that this was the first re positioning cruise for this ship. I think the ship is to big for me. There was not enough seats in the atrium. Guests were pushing people to get to seats. Elevators were always crowded. Someone made a suggestion to put escalators in to relieve the overcrowded elevators. Our last day on board was very cold so everyone was inside. This made for the inside of the ship to be very crowded. We had many issues but some positive reviews also. I also don't think that the ship is staffed correctly. Not enough staff to handle 4000+ guests. Main dinning room- My mother asked for a piece of apple pie and was told it is not on the menu so she could not have it. The waiter would have to go to a different restaurant to get the pie and speak to his supervisor about leaving his station. Oh well that is your job and we as customers are paying to have apple pie if we want it. On that note the waitress (Kim) at The Local bar was amazing. She went out of her way to achieve cake for three family members celebrating their birthdays. She and other wait staff sang Happy Birthday. The bartenders worked very hard on this cruise. Even though the ship was full, I never really waited long for a drink. Around the pool and in the theater, there should be more wait staff. They should have more then one waiter in the atrium and the pool. In my package I had 3 specialty restaurants for my husband and I. The three specialty restaurants I attended were very tasty. I attended La Cucina, The Q, and Teppanyaki. The Q was just ok. I have had better barbecue food, however the staff was friendly and the restaurant itself was clean. We also relaxed in the District Brew House. Ryan was AWESOME! He started to get to know our family. He started to joke around with us and was very attentive. They have different beers on tap. It does remind me of a brewery here in NJ. You can relax, talk and drink beers with friends and family. Tendering on the island- Tendering was chaotic. The cruise line has been tendering at this island for years. They should not bring a West Coast ship to the East coast if they can not handle the ports. We had to get a tender ticket group which I only found out about after I read the daily news letter. No announcements were made. By the time we got to the island we had 45 mins to eat. Beach was so crowded and we did not get a chair and had to sit at a picnic table. I should have never gotten off the ship. Staff had no clue on how to tender every guest. They were unable to answer questions about what the hold up was. We were at this private island an hour early. My tentative time to get off was 1200. I did not end up getting to the tender boat until 130pm. So unorganized. Excursions- Waste of money. The excursion I took in Nassau, was not worth the money I paid for it. I did enjoy sitting and relaxing on the beach. The lunch that was offered was very good. The beach was not crowded. I paid $160 for my daughter and I to sit on a beach and eat lunch. Not worth the price. We went to Pearl Island. The island was clean and staff on the island very friendly and attentive. Entertainment- The Cruise Director Jake and his staff made the cruise fun. There were different theme parties every night. The games we played were funny. Alex and Tiago were very fun to be around and interacted with every guest. Now onto the shows. You had to get a ticket for each show. Instead of just showing up to the theater and being let in for the show, you had to stand in a standby lane if you did not reserve a ticket. All complimentary entertainment should be first come first serve. I pay all this money to be put in a standby lane, yeah that is not good customer service. That theater holds 900 guests. The two shows that were complimentary were Jersey Boys and a show called Six. Six is about Henry VIII's six wives. I only saw Six. The actresses were very good and talented. I saw Jersey Boys when it was on tour in New Jersey. I did not get to see any of the comedians on the ship. Disembarkation- Unorganized and staff did not know how to handle 4000 guests. We docked at approximately 2am. I understand customs do not arrive until 6am, however it should not take 3 hours to clear the ship. This clearing put us back an hour. We had a light blue luggage tag which is anytime. We were told to meet at the internet cafe because my father is handicapped and needs assistance with his wheelchair. Our light blue tag was to disembark at 815am. We put our name on the list for assistance and that we just needed a "pusher" because my father had his own wheelchair. I asked if we were able to push my father and get off by ourselves without a "pusher". We were told no. I asked this at 915 an hour after we were supposed to disembark. I finally asked again at 945 and was told to follow a crew member pushing another guest. Once we were cleared I was in my car at 1020, 2 hours after we were originally supposed to disembark. If you are able too, take your luggage with you on disembarkation. Do not wait until a certain time. If you do it on your own, you do not have to put your luggage out in the hallway the night before. You will be one of the first off the ship. I will travel NCL again however not out of NYC and definitely not on the first re positioning cruise. This is our second cruise out of NYC that we have had problems with. I like traveling NCL. I hope this review does not persuade you from traveling on NCL. They offer very good on board deals like the adult beverage package and sometimes free 3rd and 4th guest. This is our 5th NCL cruise. We have taken 2 Royal Caribbean cruises too. Not a big fan of them and they are more expensive. We traveled with 8 people in our group. We had a great time despite all of the issues above. Love being with family. Hope this review has helped you. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We tried this cruise because we liked the idea of the things it had to offer (go karts, mini golf, laser tag & the waterslide). We also picked it for the convenience of leaving out of New York. The embarkation process was frustrating ... Read More
We tried this cruise because we liked the idea of the things it had to offer (go karts, mini golf, laser tag & the waterslide). We also picked it for the convenience of leaving out of New York. The embarkation process was frustrating because everyone acted like we were just supposed to know where to go. We were told to wait in an area for a given group to board. There was no organization to this method. It was basically a free for all for boarding. The staff while being friendly did not seem to go out of there way for anyone. I had to ask my room attendant 3x in 4 days before he remembered to leave me an extra towel each day. We "bid on the room upgrade" and were told we would know up to 48 hours before our cruise if our bid was accepted. We received an email rejecting our bid in less than 48 hours before our cruise. We had bid on a spa balcony upgrade. If our bid had been accepted the thermal spa would have been included so we did not purchase the thermal pass online prior to the cruise. Once we received our rejection email we tried to purchase the spa thermal pass online (it was $20 a person cheaper online). We were not able to purchase it online any longer because it was less than 48 hours before departure. Once on the ship we did purchase the thermal pass. We asked guests services and the spa manager and no one was willing to credit us the $20 each price difference. All things aside the thermal spa was probably one of the best parts of our cruise. We made sure to visit every night. However it does close at 10pm. I wish it stayed open later. Our room attendant was not very attentive. We did not receive one days flyer about the next day events nor did we receive our disembarkation instructions in our room. If we hadn't heard someone else talk about it we wouldn't have known. We skipped a port due to the weather and were given a $16 refund on our account. That was it. No explanation of the credit or anything. Again another guest overheard me questioning the credit and told me. Bring a reusable bottle, bottled water is not included. If you want a soda you have to fight all the people getting drinks at a bar to get a soda. This is includes children ordering sodas at a bar. There is no public soda station. Laser tag was a lot of fun but make sure you book your session early. The go karts was fun until a kid kept swerving and I tried to pass him. He clipped the rear of my car and I was told to watch my driving. We were overcharged on my credit card after leaving the ship. The amount on my app and my final bill left at my room the morning we disembarked were one amount and yet my credit card was another. I was told it was a mini bar charge after the fact. There was no mini bar in our room. Our fridge had a Red Bull, a couple of canned sodas and a bottle of water all of which we never touched. We saw our room attendant the night before we left (after he "inspected" the mini bar) and he said we were all set. There was no charges. I tried to talk to customer service and NO ONE will talk to you after the cruise. You have to file a claim by email and wait for a response. (I filed a dispute with my credit card company also.) I filed a claim on 12/17/19 and have to receive even so much as an email. While we enjoyed our cruise I am disappointed with Norwegian's customer service and lack of caring. I had heard better things about them. We will be returning to Royal after this cruise. The food on the 13 day cruise started to get repetitive by day 9 or 10 and the ship started running out of wines and other items. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Embarkation in Manhattan: Got on the ship in Manhattan. Went ok... but my dad needs a wheelchair. He can’t stand in the lines. They only had one wheelchair person for 4000 passengers. Took hours. More help would be better. They ... Read More
Embarkation in Manhattan: Got on the ship in Manhattan. Went ok... but my dad needs a wheelchair. He can’t stand in the lines. They only had one wheelchair person for 4000 passengers. Took hours. More help would be better. They told us getting on that they no longer punch a hole in your card and that you have to buy a $20 pouch lanyard. They say this is because there is a chip in the card. Not so true. I bring small scissors and bore a hole at the top of our cards for our lanyards. They worked just fine. Ship: The Bliss is magnificent. The decor is sophisticated and urban. It was nicely decorated for the holidays. It is huge, so bring comfy walking shoes. Observation lounge. They have this new room on deck 15 that is half of the ship long with floor to ceiling windows. It was designed for Alaska sailings. It is sophisticated and has comfy loungers and sofas and intimate seating areas and was designed for relaxation. It has light food and a bar and was quite comfortable. Unfortunately, children are allowed to run rampant and sing at the top of their lungs in droves. It really dampened my relaxation experience. With all the kid stuff on board that should be frowned upon in that area. One thing I found bizarre was the ships sanitation protocol. Apparently, there was some flu on board so they were at "level 2"... ok. This meant that when they had those sales of all the coverups and hats for $10... they had a roped barrier around them. You could not touch anything. The sales people had to show you things from a distance. Yet you could walk into the gift shop and touch everything in sight. Same with getting your disembarkation luggage tags. Can’t touch. Girl with gloves on is handing them out. Yet.... 200 people are playing trivia 20 feet away in the atrium using the same pencils over and over out of a box. They removed all the salts, peppers and butter dishes and condiments from all the dining rooms yet nothing about the self-serving spoons in the garden cafe! Made no sense to me.... Activities: Normal for NCL. Only one thing at a time once per hour all over a mega ship. More things to do would be better, particularity for seniors. Things like meet and greet board or card games, etc., even if self-led. The sad thing was that when they offered things like coloring, the markers were too few and all mostly dried out. Same with the dry erase pens for Pictionary. Only one pen worked. For the cost of one steak in Cagney's they could get a fresh batch of these things per sailing. The activities crew were very good and entertaining and did the best they could with the poor supplies. The shows were better than average for NCL and the theater is very comfortable. I was disappointed there was no white party. Another NCL thing gone from this new ship. Pay to play is up on this ship. There are more things to do but at a price... and it’s not nominal fee. Over $6 to bowl a string. $40 to play deal or no deal. Balcony state room: It was new to me on NCL that we had no bathrobes or pool towels in the room. And not a single towel animal all 8 days! I look forward to those little critters every night. I can understand dropping down to say every other night but none?!? Noooo. The room was adequate. No drawers in the room at all so thank goodness I pack collapsible cubes for socks and undies. I will say the sofa is a bit longer on the bliss and will fit an adult as a second or third bed. Yes, same crappy mattresses. I wish NCL could do better than a mere cot to sleep on across the fleet. The screen on the phone in the room was burned out and blank so it made calling for wakeup calls or guest services a bit challenging. No light on the balcony. My dad likes to go to bed early and needs complete quiet and dark. I used to sit on the balcony in peace but could not this time. Too dark. Hmm. If you plan to make coffee in your room in the morning bring your own. The pod bags they offer are undrinkable. Thank goodness I brought a baggie of coffee and filters to make my own pouches for the one cup at a time coffee maker. If you decorate your door bring strong magnets. No tape will stick to the veneer they have on the doors. I put up a lobster flag (we are from Boston) to help dad find the room. One upgrade is 3 American plugs on the dressing counter. That was helpful for phones etc. They now have loud parties on deck that go until after midnight. I like to sleep with the balcony door open to hear the waves. I could not this time as the party was too loud and kept Dad awake. Also, no insulation in walls, if you have noisy neighbors (kids crying, etc.) you will hear them loud and clear. They now lock your refrigerator the last night which was a pain as my dad is elderly and I make coffee in the room. No refrigerator for milk or a snack for him to take medication with. They will leave it open if you request it but need to do so ahead of time. Also, we saved out thanksgiving turkey wish bone to break and make a wish on Christmas eve. It was clean and dry and free of meat or grease. I left it on the upper shelf under the mirror over the dressing counter. Our Stuart threw it away while we were out of the room. He did not ask if this was something we wanted and clearly the dining room was not serving whole turkeys!!! Maybe he didn’t get it, but things left on that skinny counter should be off limits to toss without permission. Service: Worst of all the other 5 NCL ships have been on. It was mostly rushed and impersonal. We were only offered coffee with dessert 2 nights of 8. Most servers just ran over and said "you ready?" It was like eating at a diner counter. I only encountered one friendly and fun bartender. Most looked like they had nails sticking up thru their shoes there was so much pain on their faces. The ONE fun bartender, Michael was from Indonesia, the rest appeared to be annoyed to be behind the bar at all. Even Le Bistro had poor service. Cagney’s wasn’t bad... still rushed but at least our waitress smiled and the food was better than the main dining rooms. We ate at Le Bistro for Christmas dinner. The waiter with his "you ready?" was my last straw. This is my Christmas dinner! I booked this dinner 3 months in advance! I said something and we were more or less waited on by the dining room manager from then on. He was excellent and ensured our evening was nice. Thank you. Food was just ok again. Le bistro on other NCL ships was far better. Room Stuart’s service has fallen off too. I found all kinds of leftover items and paperwork in our room from previous guests. No personal touches anymore. And once again, there are very few smiles or greetings from the crew. I will say our last night we ate at Ocean Blue and our waiter Adhi was outstanding. He saved our last night’s dinner and the food was very good as well. I noticed more officers walking about than any other NCL I have been on. They were everywhere. I am not sure if they are looking to make them more visible? It may be better to a few less officers and more crew. Maybe the crew will look a little happier? Food: Just ok in main dining rooms and Garden Café but way too salty. Desserts were the best food offered on the main dining room. Garden cafe was a disaster. No more washy washy person. They don’t say it anymore as you enter and barely pay any attention at all. As annoying as it was, I missed the washy washy guy. We even had a washy washy band in the garden cafe on a prior cruise... lol. The cafe on the bliss is arranged in squares. Stations are all over and its chaos. Every time I was up there, I had to search for a plate as they were never stocked. One shore day most passengers came back at 3pm hungry and we went to the garden cafe. There was NO food! There was an officer saying they were closing at 3pm and about 400 people should go to the Local (formally O'shahans) or to the observation lounge where they just serve snacks and desserts. The Local seats about 200. Not 400! Very poor. Where to people at the pool get a snack or burger? The food station at the pool has been eliminated too. BUT!!! There is a new fancy self-service wine machine in the Garden café. It is very expensive. About $35 a glass and not on the drink package. You can’t get a plate… but you can serve yourself a very expensive glass of wine to go with your burger or pizza. Casino: Only new slots. No old school 25 cent slots my dad likes. Most say a penny but average 50 cent minimum to play. I was not alone in my conclusion that the slots are tight. We usually go up and down all week and ultimately leave about $100 down. That’s fine, we had fun. This cruise, we just lost and lost, night after night on the slots. Tables are what they are in all casinos Private island: We were scheduled to tender to Stirrup Kay on Christmas. This was to be the highlight of the trip for me. We did not get off in Port Canaveral (who cares?) and other than Sandals, who cares about Nassau too? I get it if it is rough for the tenders. But from what I see on cruise critic they pass it over quite a lot. NCL really needs to consider developing a dock if they are going to keep putting the island on the schedule. For us this was the great 8-day cruise to nowhere. It was disappointing to not toast my Mom in Heaven with a Corona beer in a Santa hat on the Beach on Christmas as planned. Everything that made NCL unique with quirky fun is gone. While there are upgrades in some ways and the ship is beautiful but so many visible corners have been cut. This was the least FUN I have ever had on cruise. Am I crazy to think the pool bars should be fun? They used to be... the bartenders were just miserable looking. Disembarkation in Manhattan: Takes a LONG time. I would say half the ship walked their luggage off. I only saw one gangway, a second would help. And note – you have to drag your luggage a LONG way under pier 88 in NY thru pier operations to get out the street. A far longer way than you had to go when dropping it off. My Dad had to stop often as we did not see any assistance for him and getting our luggage out. Dawn in march: We are sailing again March 29 from Tampa on the Dawn. Back to a smaller older ship. I am hoping to again see the fun and service that has kept us coming back to NCL. We shall see… In conclusion: This was the best-looking ship I have ever sailed on yet my least enjoyable cruise in terms of FUN. Everything was beautiful, updated, and very efficient… but it was more like being at a business conferences I have had to attend. Adequate, comfortable, nice looking and NOT MUCH FUN…. My prior sailings on NCL made a greater effort to make week fun and feel somewhat personalized. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
I chose this cruise because of the ease of sailing out of NYC and not having to fly to get to the cruise, plus the dates worked well. The ship was large enough to house 5,000 people, but beyond that, we were like sardines or ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the ease of sailing out of NYC and not having to fly to get to the cruise, plus the dates worked well. The ship was large enough to house 5,000 people, but beyond that, we were like sardines or cockroaches running around trying to find space to eat, sit and explore the ship. The ship itself was not that big, believe it or not, as the area in which to explore was very limited, limited being the operative word. The majority of the ships space was devoted to the rooms in which to house the patrons. Onto the food.... It was good and tasty but not of the same caliber as Holland America. There was no grilled fish in the Garden Cafe (the all inclusive food area), there was no sautéed shrimp nor any of the more expensive variety of foods. What was very good and tasty was the Indian food and hamburgers. The activities were positively limited. My young boys didn’t even get to do the go carts because they were filled up or closed half the time. That is one of the reasons why I booked this cruise, so disappointed would be an understatement. All activities on board were very expensive and any miscellaneous desires were very costly as well. Plus, they add 15 bucks for each day each passenger sails, so that was just shy of 500 bucks for my family of four. I paid a lot for this cruise, so I didn’t account for this extra charge. I gave tips out to those who accommodated me during sailing. I found the crew as a whole to be kind, warm smiles and overall very helpful. The Jersey Boys was fabulous and so was Six. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Was on the Bliss last year just a few months after her inaugural. I really liked the ship observation lounge and thermal spa so thought I would give it another try. On that first cruise on Bliss I was disappointed by the quality of the ... Read More
Was on the Bliss last year just a few months after her inaugural. I really liked the ship observation lounge and thermal spa so thought I would give it another try. On that first cruise on Bliss I was disappointed by the quality of the food in the garden buffet and the offerings of the lunch menus in Taste, Savor but hoped it was just a matter of giving them time to work thru issues on a new ship. I could not have been more wrong. I found the buffet to be even worse than last year. Also, the only restaurant that could provide a breakfast that was better than room temperature was the Local. Of course I cant speak for the Haven but assume its superior there. The dinner offerings in Manhattan, Taste, and Savor were quite good overall tho I did have to send two items back due to being ridiculously over salted. Overall, I would recommend a new food director and oversight staff since they just are not in my opinion managing obvious issues so responsibility clearly lies with management on board. I still enjoyed the thermal spa area as I normally do but if you're at all shy be warned. They now secure the change room entry doors fully open at all times even if you ask for them to be closed. No idea why. People are walking into the wrong change rooms with frequency. If the thought of a complete stranger of the opposite sex walking in on you while you're fully disrobed bothers you, it might not be the experience you are looking or paying a premium for. Also, because of the placement of the rooms interior mirrors, you should be aware that people can see inside the change rooms now from the hallway door opening due to the reflection of the mirror opposite the lockers and dressing area. Ship cleanliness was still excellent as was the steward service and Vibe Club service. I found the entertainment to be lesser than on other NCL ships I have been on. I would call it average for a one week cruise but anything longer than that Im not sure I could give the same rating Overall I enjoyed myself but wont return to the Bliss without some indication that they have stopped the decline. Sorry Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We choose this cruise due to the port location (no flights for us) and the deal we got at time of booking. Have cruised with NCL many times before but have never dealt with such crowds everywhere on the ship at all times. Bigger is not ... Read More
We choose this cruise due to the port location (no flights for us) and the deal we got at time of booking. Have cruised with NCL many times before but have never dealt with such crowds everywhere on the ship at all times. Bigger is not always better. Ship: The ship itself is a beautiful ship. There are only 2 banks of elevators on this ship located forward and aft-none in the middle of the ship and the wait for an elevator was ridiculous to the point where people became very rude trying to get on the elevator cutting in line, pushing people out of the way, jamming themselves into packed elevators, etc. The Observation Lounge was beautiful, but out of 14 days we were able to get a seat one time our whole cruise. I was never able to get a lounge chair by the pool at all. On deck 8 there were couches and chairs that I was able to get a seat each day. Lots of kids on the cruise which we weren't expecting in January. Cabin: We had a mini suite forward on Deck 11 which was a good location-cabin rooms above and below us and near the elevators. Advice-the mini suite itself was no bigger than a balcony room-the extra room is in the bathroom area, so if the size of the bathroom doesn't matter to you -you might want to pay a lower price for a balcony room. I didn't feel our room had a lot of storage. One closet with 4 shelves, 2 suitcases went under the bed. Room was clean, room steward did a good job, shower didn't drain well, so by the end of the shower you were standing ankle deep in water. Dining: Buffet extremely crowded at all times. Never could get a table inside of the dining area but caught on that the tables outside on the deck near the pool were always available. Mostly had lunch at the buffet and the food was very good. The main dining rooms had very slow service, food was good. Cagney's was very good, Ocean was excellent, Q was very good, Le Bistro ok, La Cucina didn't like at all. I would not pay extra to eat in any of the specialty dining areas, but since we had 7 dinners included we tried them. As long as you keep in mind that dinner in each place is approx. a 2 hour event you will be fine. If you are in a hurry, I suggest you eat at the buffet or at Local. Local is where we ate breakfast most days as the dining rooms were long lines and slow service in the mornings. Entertainment: We enjoyed almost all of the shows. Jersey Boys was great, Six was ok, Beatles were very good. Went to a show every night and enjoyed the variety. What I didn't like was the line to get into a reserved show such a Jersey Boys. People started lining up 1 hour ahead of when the theatre opens and the line ended up blocking off a whole bank of elevators. Then for those of us waiting in the long line, the elevators would open, people would get off and jump in line cutting off those of us who had been waiting. Same for people lining up on the stairs- no effort from ship employees to regulate the lines or restore some kind of order-resulting in passengers yelling at each other about cutting the line-it was ridiculous! Service-we received excellent service from all of the employees on board. All we dealt with were polite, helpful, and very pleasant. Ports and Shore Excursions: We don't normally use the ship shore excursions, but since we received credit to use for booking ones, we tried one in each port and enjoyed each one we took. What I didn't like is they try to get you to book online or using their app to avoid long lines on the ship, so I did, but as a Platinum member I was supposed to get 10% off each tour and the only way to get that is to go the Shore Excursions desk, so even though I booked on the app, I still then had to go stand in line to get my 10% off. Spa: the spa was quite expensive, but the last day of the cruise, they had several specials for $99 so only used the spa on the last day of the cruise and of course had to deal with them trying to sell me a $1,000 worth of products at the end. Overall we enjoyed the cruise, but I for one, will never go on a ship this big again as it did not seem prepared to deal with number of people the ship holds. There was a lot we didn't get to experience due to the long lines of people and then getting cut off because the venue had reached capacity. Embarkation and Debarkation took about an 1 1/2 from start to finish. Would much rather go back on the Escape, Getaway, and Epic. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
I was so looking forward to this 14 day Southern Caribbean cruise out of New York. First the good. The ship is beautiful. Our cabin steward Guilson was amazing. That’s about where it ends. I was one of those fools who bid on and paid for ... Read More
I was so looking forward to this 14 day Southern Caribbean cruise out of New York. First the good. The ship is beautiful. Our cabin steward Guilson was amazing. That’s about where it ends. I was one of those fools who bid on and paid for an upgrade to a spa mini suite. Having experienced the thermal spa before, I knew we would spend time there. So even though my bid was on the higher end, I was still excited when it was accepted. So we were moved from cabin 15760 a mini suite to 15780 a mini spa suite. Don’t get me wrong, I love the shower and access to the thermal spa. What I don’t love is the incessant thumping and pounding from the pool deck above where they seem to have most of their nightly entertainment. When I was on the breakaway last year, the entertainment was held in spice h20, which I believe was above the garden cafe...not staterooms that cost over 3500 per person. Evening entertainment in the atrium is lacking as well with one band playing there most nights. Where are the game shows? The fun audience participation games? We’ve had 2 of those so far and we’re already on day 10. And I’ve spoken with other people on the ship who feel the same way. Thank goodness for the specialty meal package because otherwise the food is repetitive. The staff on the ship is lovely. As I said the ship is beautiful, but this vacation has been less than blissful. Maybe I need to experience another breakaway class or even a jewel class cruise to make me love cruising again. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
I am writing this aboard the Norwegian bliss 14 days out of New York to the Caribbean I had booked this is very last minute the day before Sailing and I booked an inside Guarantee but when I got to the ship terminal Around 12 o’clock ... Read More
I am writing this aboard the Norwegian bliss 14 days out of New York to the Caribbean I had booked this is very last minute the day before Sailing and I booked an inside Guarantee but when I got to the ship terminal Around 12 o’clock they could not find any cabin for me so basically I sat in the terminal until 4 o’clock when they finally found me a cabin. Even though I paid for an inside cabin I accepted a lesser cabin of a studio that came available it’s laid out nicer than the inside cabins but it’s only for one person. I’ve probably been on 50 different cruises and the ship is new and beautiful. It will take me two weeks to see the entire ship. There’s no shortage of things to do or see and they’re certainly ready and able to take your money at every corner and nickel and dime you to death. This time of year it’s mostly older middle-class people from the United States Canada and elsewhere. Not too many kids which is a good thing. As I’m writing this on the evening of day 2, I have numerous complaints some are life-threatening. This morning when I got up I walked down the hall and by the time I got to the end I couldn’t breathe started coughing and my eyes were running in my nose was running so I came back to the cabin and lay down and it took me about two hours before I could breathe again-As it turns out they spray some sort of anti-flu spray disinfectant in the air and I breathed in a good amount of it. I would probably be dead if I had asthma or COPD so be warned this could happen to you. Hopefully they won’t do that again on the floor that I’m staying. Told them if they did I’d be off in the 1st port with my bags. I did not buy the drink package I’m not a big drinker and since I’m by myself I don’t want to eat into any specialty restaurant but they all look really really good I’ve just been eating at the buffet since I’m a vegetarian and there’s something for everyone but the Indian food is excellent. . It’s the evening of day three and I’m very tired of being nickeled and dime to death for every thing. It’s highly recommended to take the packages and drinks Internet and anything else that you can get in advance. Hopefully for free. The person in the cabin next to me has a noro virus -she’s been projectile vomiting and is quarantine to her cabin hopefully I won’t get sick. The casino slot machines don’t pay off very much and there are many bad blackjack players- I am done. Really done. At this point I really wish that I would’ve just gone to Mexico instead. You can’t get into the comedy shows you can’t get in the Beatles shows -The seating venue is too small. . people outside come out early and put a towel in there flip-flops on a chair you cant get near the pool. On a positive note food inside the dining room is excellent the waiters are great and they are very accommodating that much I do have to say. They should have maps of the local islands or places that you visit instead of just trying to sell you expensive excursions if you just want to spend the day at the beach unless you have time to do extensive research in advance you won’t know where to go in the taxi drivers will rip you off. You can get the maps when you get off the ship and go to the information desk at the ports by that time it’s a little late. Some islands I’m familiar with it and I know that they have local bus service but not all of them do. They should also be warnings about some of the islands are dangerous. Exercise common sense and caution when you’re out. Now I don’t smoke but there’s only two areas on the whole ship that you can smoke and that’s on deck 17 at the disco area outside or in the casino in the smoking area which is sick with aggressive cigarette smoke. Be prepared to be woken up at all times of the day and night by selfish passengers slamming their doors drawers and bathroom doors in such close quarters you would think that people would have the common sense and decency to close their doors gently but no. The staff and crew work particularly hard to try to make you happy with whatever they can- They work long hours and try to keep a positive attitude and a smile on their face eight months on two months off year around. So try to be kind to them they’re away from their families for long periods of time and I’m sure that Norwegian doesn’t pay them very much out of the gratuities that they take from us each day so maybe leave them a little extra- All the ports in the Caribbean to the south that we have been to so far are beautiful but quite expensive- Saint Martin on the french side is still disaster area from the hurricane a few years back most of the restaurants and shops are closed. Very sad see see that. Mostly on the French side. Saint Thomas is nice as usual I always go to Sapphire beach it’s gorgeous quiet beach and not a lot of people know about it and you could take the local bus there for two dollars. 25 minutes away. Hidden behind condos with a small restaurant and bar on the beach. Lots of trees to lay under. clear warm water. Saint Kitts was very enjoyable again just went to the beach on a local bus the people are so nice and kind and there’s hardly any crime there. I’m really surprised that they took us into Puerto Rico with all the earthquakes that of been happening there and again they’re still in recovery mode and also had another earthquake the day after we were there. The cruise ship terminals Have outdoor mall’s before you enter the ships- they are all overpriced shops with junk and jewelry basically overpriced-if they didn’t get you for enough money on the ship itself. These places are set up to look like the towns but that is not them it’s just another way of extorting money from you with overpriced restaurants and junky T-shirt shops. Please buy elsewhere and support the locals on the islands you visit!! Once again I hope you like to get up at 5 o’clock in the morning because that’s the time that people start slamming the doors so make sure you get to bed early. . I went to see the musical “six” so far that’s been the highlight of the entire cruise really fabulous high energy great music I’ll probably go see it again if I could. Does require reservations at the theater was 3/4 empty when I went. Several people on board are under quarantine possibly the flu or worse and now you can’t touch anything they took away everything including the salt and pepper shakers and they had to serve you any food that you wanted in the buffet you could not touch anything even get your own coffee they had to handle everything and is continued throughout the cruise- Today we were in St. Lucia and these cabdrivers are very aggressive trying to get your business to take you on a tour of the island or to the beach but if you want to go to the beach there’s actually one within walking distance it was Viggi beach. No water sports no other passengers-just peace Quiet beautiful water and a great little restaurant and bar. Went to St. Lucia before and it has some gorgeous beaches but they never leave you alone wanna comes to trying to sell you things on the beach and I just want to rest and swim. Its really great choice. Barbados is also gorgeous with beautiful incredible beaches very close to the port. .Barbados was by far the best beach and easiest to get to Carlisle Beach absolutely crystal clear water and beautiful. -If you want to eat food after 9:30 pm the only thing is the local at the 24 hour restaurant but all I wanted was a small piece of carrot cake to go and they refused to allow it what kind of a crazy place is this I don’t know but I will tell you that Ncl will nickel in dime you beyond death. . Will be my last cruise with Norwegian. I’ve experienced problem after problem on board and not one thing was done to make things right. Last day in Port we were in St. John Antigua it’s OK not too bad the sun was shining in the sea was blue although not clear at Jolly Beach it was six dollars each way and that included a chair with an umbrella not a bad deal. On a more serious note the ship left six passengers behind yesterday they were 30 minutes late getting back to the ship and they left without them they had no passports with them I would imagine that they were told to get in touch with the port agent in Barbados and they probably had to fly to the next port on a small seaplane who knows all I know that they’re dead serious leaving on time -do not be late under any circumstances getting back to the ship allow for traffic!. Change your clocks to ships time! Now three full days at sea-This is Terrible for me I should’ve gotten off the ship in Barbados and flown home. The woman in the next cabin is out of her mind slamming the doors slamming the doors all times of the day or night and just keeps getting more and more aggressive I’m not sure what to do except do it back to her and then I would disturb the passengers around me- security already spoken to her and there’s nothing that can be done and they have no cabins available. Also emergency Announcements of all sort come to through to the loudspeaker in your cabin, Some at 1 o’clock in the morning. Well this is the last day of our cruise and third sea day in a row. I guess that emergency announcement at 1 AM was a woman stabbed her husband to death last night. Pretty grim news she’s in the brig and he’s in the morgue. I’m sure the police will be waiting for her as we disembark in New York in the morning. On a lighter note I went to see Jersey boys last night do not miss it it’s one of the best shows you’ll ever see true Broadway production! That’s about it I’ve mostly stayed to myself and enjoyed what little peace and quiet that I could find in a little corner is here in there. It never got overly rough on board the ship has great stabilizers so unless you’re very sensitive you probably won’t get seasick.. On a final note don’t bother buying bottled water on board I think it’s about between three and five dollars and it’s not worth it there’s a desalinization plant on board and all the water comes from the ocean and you could fill up your bottle at any spigot and it’s purified ocean water and it’s perfectly fine if not better than bottled water. Be prepared to be ripped off-everywhere!! Whatever you paid for the cruise you will spend at least that much on board with that you know it or not. Download the app and be mindful of your daily consumption. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Too many people for the number of elevators always a wait, long walk from cabins to elevators. Exits are long walk for elderly cruisers. Add on charges for service costly upcharges for drinks etc, Prices for drinks limits the number of ... Read More
Too many people for the number of elevators always a wait, long walk from cabins to elevators. Exits are long walk for elderly cruisers. Add on charges for service costly upcharges for drinks etc, Prices for drinks limits the number of drinks people order. Drink package options very poor, drinks costly with add on service charges and gradtuity Long walk for elderly On board entertainment limited show times not popular Staff friendly, very hardworking helpful and respectful even under stressful conditions We have been loyal NCL cruisers for over 20 years up untill this cruise we never felt we were being taken advantage of I think the time has come for us to try other cruise lines. The design of the Bliss is not user friendly, We have cruised on the Breakaway several times with less problems getting to a stairway and elevator. We have come to the point that bigger is not always better when it comes to cruise ships. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
I’ve been cruising with ncl for ten years but I have to say some of the island’s we we visited left a lot to be desired Puerto Rico was a mess absolutely nothing to do in it st kitts was filthy with nothing but hundreds of taxi drivers ... Read More
I’ve been cruising with ncl for ten years but I have to say some of the island’s we we visited left a lot to be desired Puerto Rico was a mess absolutely nothing to do in it st kitts was filthy with nothing but hundreds of taxi drivers hassling you everywhere you go Bliss is a beautiful ship with very good headliner acts but the entertainment in the smaller venues was terrible it was very difficult to find anything on after midnight My party ate in Los Lobos which I had been looking forward to for quite a while but it was a total let down the food other than the quesadilla was terrible not one of our party eat their whole meal .my brother had a dining package but was charged for one of his meals and it took three visits to guest services to get it put right Another bug bear of mine is people who think the cruise is for them only and go out first thing in the morning put towels over chairs and then get off the ship guaranteeing a good seat when they get back ncl put notices up but don’t do anything about it We were three days at sea before our first stop and the weather wasn’t great the first couple of days so I expected ncl to put a lot more entertainment on during the day Now for the race track and laser tag they should unbolt it an take them away you can walk faster than the go karts go an I never seen anyone using laser tag I’ve been on quite a few ncl cruises and everyone was memorable I just think that their cutting back on things to keep costs down and that could be the reason I try another cruise line Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Norwegian Bliss Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.5 3.9
Entertainment 4.0 4.0
Public Rooms 4.5 4.1
Fitness Recreation 4.5 3.8
Family 3.5 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.5
Service 4.5 4.0
Value For Money 3.5 3.5

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