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Norwegian Jewel Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
2,389 Reviews

Ghost Ship for a Night

Norwegian Jewel Cruise Review by juliep2

1 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2016
  • Destination: Pacific Coastal
  • Cabin Type: Mid-Ship Balcony

We've done a one-night itinerary before, on Princess, and as Seattleites, love the fun and flexibility of just one night away. We were sorely disappointed on this itinerary and felt like it was an afterthought, not treated like a real cruise.

Overall, the ship was an odd ghost town. Most bars were closed. When we got to the pool finally (around 7pm) there was just one other family up on deck. We didn't see entertainment people the whole time. The one live music we saw, in the lounge at 10pm, was sparsely attended and odd. The staff said there were two shows in the theatre but there was just one, which we missed due to a slow dinner. Everything seemed picked up and like our time onboard was a hiccup before the real cruise started.

First, due to a six-hour Amtrak delay, we weren't even sure we'd make the boat. More than an hour on hold with NCL and they said 'someone from the port will call you,' though nobody ever did. We weren't sure if we were going to Vancouver just to miss the ship, and nobody could tell us whether the ship could/would hold.

Second, we didn't arrive at the port till 5:45pm. And STILL we waited 45 min for customs. We were told that people who arrived earlier waited hours. (It was a good thing there was a long line, since that's what kept the ship from leaving.) We completely missed our 6:30pm dinner reservations.

Third, we chose this ship because our 5-year-old was psyched about the waterslide and the climbing area in the kids club. When we boarded, our "Freestyle Daily" told us the waterslide was only open till 6pm-- so we missed it entirely. It wasn't open at all the next day. Despite my pleas, and the fact it was still sunny and 70+ degrees, there was no opening the slide.

Fourth, the kids club didn't actually have the play gym as in the photos - the staff said they had taken it out for the night. The kids area had just a bunch of tumbling mats. Another hard loss for our kiddo.

Fifth, despite the empty restaurant, it took more than an hour to get our dinners at the 'Tsar's Palace' free restaurant.

Sixth - and I'd say worst - the next morning was a real 'get off the ship NOW!' experience, despite the 'disembark by 9:30am.' Our room was made up with our luggage in it while we were at breakfast at 7am. Around 8am, a worker came by the outside of the ship and sprayed down our balcony - asking us to step off it and inside - leaving the seating wet and the ceiling dripping. There were no balls for the sports court and the pool was never opened. It was a complete waste.

This is pretty much the opposite of the experience we had on Princess last fall, where the boat was packed, it was fun, it felt like a real getaway.

juliep2's Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Mid-Ship Balcony
Cabin BA 10046

It was fine. The bathroom - with separate sliding doors for toilet and roomy shower stall - was quite nice.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

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