1. Home
  2. Cruise Reviews
  3. Norwegian Jewel
Due to my husband’s work schedule we typically book our vacation around February or March, this one fit in with his schedule and we had vouchers from another cruise we were unable to take. I normally book everything myself, so when I contacted Norwegian Cruise Line to book, they were very helpful setting a vacation package for us. Once they have the booking then the money all help is gone. Asked about a pre-cruise hotel they didn’t have one and since they don’t have a hotel, no getting transfers from airport to hotel. We stayed at the Four Seasons Hotel in Circular Quay and within walking distance to the Overseas Passenger Terminal. Maybe 15 minutes with luggage. Left our bags at the bag drop off, headed inside terminal to complete the check in process. Then onto to the ship. The overall appearance of the ship is faded fabrics, clownish carpets, more faded carnival theme, then glamour.We were in cabin #11850, which is consider a mini- suite. For those of you that have been on Holland America, this is the same size as a balcony room. This room in particular, was not very good. While the bathroom looked very clean, it wasn’t until I walked barefoot on the floor after a shower did I notice the sticky floor, not if it’s the cleaner they use. Toilet has a separate closure glass though why have it if you can just see though it. The shower also is in the bathtub, which you have to step into but also have the same distance to drop down to, could be a problem for someone with limited mobility to overcome the large step up. The room in general was shabby, weird colored carpet, dim lighting throughout kept hoping that I wasn’t putting on my make up to rivival a clown’s make up. The mattress was two single beds put together to create one bed, one of the beds had a zip on mattress pad that had a broken zipper. It was uncomfortable at times if it shifted. Laundry service is available on the Jewel, not self serve, but by the piece, they may offer a bulk deal. Our was $19.95 for one bag of laundry. Though they charged $21.95, additional was tax, not stated on promo flyer. Norwegian had promos at the time we booked, the higher category cabins received more promo choices, one was $50 shore excursions credit for each person per cabin per port. We also received 250 minutes of free internet, though we had trouble with connecting. We also chose the Unlimited beverage package although there are limits to the package maximum of 15 drinks per day and they do not include anything in your cabin’s fridge, bottled water in your cabin nor any specialty coffee drinks at the Java Cafe. Norwegian’s Freestyle Dining has it pros and cons, while allowing you to eat at the time you want in theory, you are more likely to wait unless you eat at the buffet dining. We ate nearly all our dinner meals at the specialty dining which cost additional, either flat rate or al la carte. Eating in any of the dining rooms where they serve you you can expect to be there for at least 1 1/2 hours or more, service is slow, not sure if it is serving staff or the kitchen. Even if you booking when they first open, you may not be able to make it to the first show in the Stardust Theatre. The main theater shows are alright though not memorable. Other activities on board are also the usual cruise activities, golf challenges, basketball challenges and trivia challenges. Bingo and the casino was probably the most outrageous, as expected the odds are in favor of the casino, but poker tournaments had high antes, house took a 20%. Bingo started at $39 for a card of 3 per game and each session they played just 3 games not four. Again those who won received about $230. Big rip off. Ports on this itinerary were Melbourne, Adelaide, Kangaroo Island, Hobart, Burnie, and Eden. Most of the excursions followed a theme of wine tastings, wildlife sanctuaries and drive by sightseeing bus tours. Time in port was very limited, you could either go on a shore excursion or explore on your own but typically not both. Even time allotted for shore excursions was short, 4 hour shore excursions were 1 hour drive time to first stop then 45 minutes to do the first stop then 15-30 minute ride to the next stop, 45 minutes at the second stop, followed by 1 hour ride back to the ship. Is this cruise worth going again? Maybe on another cruise line.

Not worth the Money!

Norwegian Jewel Cruise Review by TravelingRoxy

5 people found this helpful
Trip Details
Due to my husband’s work schedule we typically book our vacation around February or March, this one fit in with his schedule and we had vouchers from another cruise we were unable to take. I normally book everything myself, so when I contacted Norwegian Cruise Line to book, they were very helpful setting a vacation package for us. Once they have the booking then the money all help is gone. Asked about a pre-cruise hotel they didn’t have one and since they don’t have a hotel, no getting transfers from airport to hotel. We stayed at the Four Seasons Hotel in Circular Quay and within walking distance to the Overseas Passenger Terminal. Maybe 15 minutes with luggage. Left our bags at the bag drop off, headed inside terminal to complete the check in process. Then onto to the ship. The overall appearance of the ship is faded fabrics, clownish carpets, more faded carnival theme, then glamour.We were in cabin #11850, which is consider a mini- suite. For those of you that have been on Holland America, this is the same size as a balcony room. This room in particular, was not very good. While the bathroom looked very clean, it wasn’t until I walked barefoot on the floor after a shower did I notice the sticky floor, not if it’s the cleaner they use. Toilet has a separate closure glass though why have it if you can just see though it. The shower also is in the bathtub, which you have to step into but also have the same distance to drop down to, could be a problem for someone with limited mobility to overcome the large step up. The room in general was shabby, weird colored carpet, dim lighting throughout kept hoping that I wasn’t putting on my make up to rivival a clown’s make up. The mattress was two single beds put together to create one bed, one of the beds had a zip on mattress pad that had a broken zipper. It was uncomfortable at times if it shifted. Laundry service is available on the Jewel, not self serve, but by the piece, they may offer a bulk deal. Our was $19.95 for one bag of laundry. Though they charged $21.95, additional was tax, not stated on promo flyer. Norwegian had promos at the time we booked, the higher category cabins received more promo choices, one was $50 shore excursions credit for each person per cabin per port. We also received 250 minutes of free internet, though we had trouble with connecting. We also chose the Unlimited beverage package although there are limits to the package maximum of 15 drinks per day and they do not include anything in your cabin’s fridge, bottled water in your cabin nor any specialty coffee drinks at the Java Cafe. Norwegian’s Freestyle Dining has it pros and cons, while allowing you to eat at the time you want in theory, you are more likely to wait unless you eat at the buffet dining. We ate nearly all our dinner meals at the specialty dining which cost additional, either flat rate or al la carte. Eating in any of the dining rooms where they serve you you can expect to be there for at least 1 1/2 hours or more, service is slow, not sure if it is serving staff or the kitchen. Even if you booking when they first open, you may not be able to make it to the first show in the Stardust Theatre. The main theater shows are alright though not memorable. Other activities on board are also the usual cruise activities, golf challenges, basketball challenges and trivia challenges. Bingo and the casino was probably the most outrageous, as expected the odds are in favor of the casino, but poker tournaments had high antes, house took a 20%. Bingo started at $39 for a card of 3 per game and each session they played just 3 games not four. Again those who won received about $230. Big rip off. Ports on this itinerary were Melbourne, Adelaide, Kangaroo Island, Hobart, Burnie, and Eden. Most of the excursions followed a theme of wine tastings, wildlife sanctuaries and drive by sightseeing bus tours. Time in port was very limited, you could either go on a shore excursion or explore on your own but typically not both. Even time allotted for shore excursions was short, 4 hour shore excursions were 1 hour drive time to first stop then 45 minutes to do the first stop then 15-30 minute ride to the next stop, 45 minutes at the second stop, followed by 1 hour ride back to the ship. Is this cruise worth going again? Maybe on another cruise line.
TravelingRoxy’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Service
Onboard Experience
Free Price Drop Alerts
Get Norwegian Jewel price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email