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My fiancée (well, as of the last night of the cruise) and I were excited to join fifteen (15) friends on this cruise which was arranged primarily for the 40th Bday celebration of one of our friends. The embarkation process seemed smooth, not knowing what to expect as this was my first cruise, but others in our group, previous cruisers, were not as satisfied. The cabin was pretty much what we expected - everything was clean, organized and in proper working order. There were a satisfactory number of outlets, mirrors and storage spaces. My only issue with the room was the sliding door for the bathroom was awkward and loud to maneuver. The ship was clean and very attentive to hand sanitizing, although that did not prevent several members of our group from getting colds, sore throats, etc. The Public Address system on this ship was akin to Charlie Brown's teacher in a Peanuts TV special. The food on the cruise was very good! Unfortunately, the staff serving it was not! Our group often waited for water, to have our order taken, food delivered, drinks re-filled and dessert to be offered/delivered. That was definitely the consensus of our group complaint - waiting for food and drinks. Everyone in our group purchased the Unlimited Drink Package for the cruise, but waiting to have cruise staff take our orders for drinks was SLOW! The ship had too many drinking passengers and not enough bartenders to serve them. They even opened specialty drink kiosks, but lines quickly formed at those as well, making the wait for beverages just as long as at the bars. One bright light on the cruise for beverages though was Jay, the waiter at The Whiskey Bar. He was very personable and attentive! The second big disappointment was the ship's inability to dock at Great Stirrup Cay, Norwegian's private island. While the official announcement was poor water conditions and passenger safety, several members of our group had spoken to different members of the ship's entertainment who indicated that they had only docked at Great Stirrup Cay once in their last seven attempts! So if it really was bad conditions, or perhaps some financial circumstance, the $19.50 refund for port charges was hardly a compensation for missing what was a widely advertised and highly anticipated day at Great Stirrup Cay. The lack of additional activities for that non-port day made all of the other ship's activities crowded, and therefore not worth it. We tried to take solace in the beautiful weather and blue oceans, but again with more than four thousand other passengers deck chairs, hot tub and pool space was scarce. There are few words that strike fear in me, but one was added to the list during this cruise - Disembarkation! The ship was delayed in receiving port clearance for disembarkation - something that I am sure must have occurred previously with this ship, or even the cruise line itself. The process for the delayed disembarkation was complete chaos and nearly a melee! Passengers were being directed in different directions by different staff. While in line there were exit pathways that were blocked with chairs, but without any staff to enforce the non-admittance. Thus, ignorant or arrogant passengers were moving the chairs and bypassing the lengthy line of dutifully exiting passengers. At one point I was directed by ship's staff to turn to enter the next line of passengers while seconds later another staff person directed me in a different direction. As I started to comply with the second directive by ship's staff, the first ship's staff began shouting for me to come the way he had initially directed me. Patience and perseverance were the only things that kept me from being escorted off the ship by security at that point, but it was obviously extremely aggravating and very stressful! When we finally left the ship (Hallelujah) our reserved van transportation driver had already missed a subsequent pick-up as a result of the delay on the ship; we later discovered that four members of our group, who had left us early to begin the disembarkation process, were still on the ship. They were forced to make other travel arrangements to the Orlando airport. The van transport driver asked how our group had enjoyed our cruise; while not wanting to take away from the birthday celebration our responses were less than enthusiastic! The van driver stated that this was the general consensus of Norwegian cruise passengers that he has transported. He also added that the passenger pick-up process is more difficult for him with Norwegian than with Disney or Carnival ships. Having become engaged at dinner on the last night of the cruise is the only really enjoyable memory that I will take from this experience, and as for my first cruise experience, it was a huge disappointment.

Huge Disappointment

Norwegian Epic Cruise Review by Jod12400

1 person found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: March 2019
  • Destination: Bahamas
  • Cabin Type: Inside
My fiancée (well, as of the last night of the cruise) and I were excited to join fifteen (15) friends on this cruise which was arranged primarily for the 40th Bday celebration of one of our friends. The embarkation process seemed smooth, not knowing what to expect as this was my first cruise, but others in our group, previous cruisers, were not as satisfied. The cabin was pretty much what we expected - everything was clean, organized and in proper working order. There were a satisfactory number of outlets, mirrors and storage spaces. My only issue with the room was the sliding door for the bathroom was awkward and loud to maneuver. The ship was clean and very attentive to hand sanitizing, although that did not prevent several members of our group from getting colds, sore throats, etc. The Public Address system on this ship was akin to Charlie Brown's teacher in a Peanuts TV special. The food on the cruise was very good! Unfortunately, the staff serving it was not! Our group often waited for water, to have our order taken, food delivered, drinks re-filled and dessert to be offered/delivered. That was definitely the consensus of our group complaint - waiting for food and drinks. Everyone in our group purchased the Unlimited Drink Package for the cruise, but waiting to have cruise staff take our orders for drinks was SLOW! The ship had too many drinking passengers and not enough bartenders to serve them. They even opened specialty drink kiosks, but lines quickly formed at those as well, making the wait for beverages just as long as at the bars. One bright light on the cruise for beverages though was Jay, the waiter at The Whiskey Bar. He was very personable and attentive! The second big disappointment was the ship's inability to dock at Great Stirrup Cay, Norwegian's private island. While the official announcement was poor water conditions and passenger safety, several members of our group had spoken to different members of the ship's entertainment who indicated that they had only docked at Great Stirrup Cay once in their last seven attempts! So if it really was bad conditions, or perhaps some financial circumstance, the $19.50 refund for port charges was hardly a compensation for missing what was a widely advertised and highly anticipated day at Great Stirrup Cay. The lack of additional activities for that non-port day made all of the other ship's activities crowded, and therefore not worth it. We tried to take solace in the beautiful weather and blue oceans, but again with more than four thousand other passengers deck chairs, hot tub and pool space was scarce. There are few words that strike fear in me, but one was added to the list during this cruise - Disembarkation! The ship was delayed in receiving port clearance for disembarkation - something that I am sure must have occurred previously with this ship, or even the cruise line itself. The process for the delayed disembarkation was complete chaos and nearly a melee! Passengers were being directed in different directions by different staff. While in line there were exit pathways that were blocked with chairs, but without any staff to enforce the non-admittance. Thus, ignorant or arrogant passengers were moving the chairs and bypassing the lengthy line of dutifully exiting passengers. At one point I was directed by ship's staff to turn to enter the next line of passengers while seconds later another staff person directed me in a different direction. As I started to comply with the second directive by ship's staff, the first ship's staff began shouting for me to come the way he had initially directed me. Patience and perseverance were the only things that kept me from being escorted off the ship by security at that point, but it was obviously extremely aggravating and very stressful! When we finally left the ship (Hallelujah) our reserved van transportation driver had already missed a subsequent pick-up as a result of the delay on the ship; we later discovered that four members of our group, who had left us early to begin the disembarkation process, were still on the ship. They were forced to make other travel arrangements to the Orlando airport. The van transport driver asked how our group had enjoyed our cruise; while not wanting to take away from the birthday celebration our responses were less than enthusiastic! The van driver stated that this was the general consensus of Norwegian cruise passengers that he has transported. He also added that the passenger pick-up process is more difficult for him with Norwegian than with Disney or Carnival ships. Having become engaged at dinner on the last night of the cruise is the only really enjoyable memory that I will take from this experience, and as for my first cruise experience, it was a huge disappointment.
Jod12400’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Service
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Cabin Review

Inside
Cabin IE 9135
It was satisfactory, except for the bathroom door.
Deck 10 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews