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Norwegian Joy Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
282 Reviews

Needs Improvement

Norwegian Joy Cruise Review by CrushThatCruise

4 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2019
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Balcony Stateroom

Went on the Alaskan cruise on the newly refurbished Norwegian Joy. The ship has a very modern interior and from the first glance appears to be great. However, their lack of attention started to show quickly after embarkment. The biggest issue I had was the width of the hallways by the staterooms. Some floors, if you had gotten off in the wrong set of elevators, required you to walk through the stateroom hallways. This would be okay if the hallways were large enough to permit a wheelchair or walker, which in the Joy’s case they were not particularly when the housekeeping’s carts were scattered every forty feet. In the main areas the doors opened via a touch panel. I failed to see any consistent placement of these panels even on the double entry doors. There was some cool extras like go karts, mini golf, and laser tag. Unfortunately, there were no elevators to these floors making it difficult to accommodate parties with mobility disabilities. I looked forward to these attractions but refused to use them because of this deficiency.

In addition, the embarkment and disembarkment days were handled poorly. Both boarding and leaving the ship had us joining multiple lines, had us leave the ship and badge back in only to leave the ship a second time, & because of the delays caused in the confusion many people ended up running to catch flights (including myself).

The best thing about the Joy was their show Footloose. This is a great thing too since seeing the show meant we had to miss out on their main dance party. They had some trivia, but the cruise director and team lacked luster and the games fell flat most times. The Starbucks located in the atrium where most activity occurred was nice.

In short, unless Norwegian decides to invest in training, the ship’s ergonomics, and time management; I would not suggest this ship. Alaska’s inside passage cruises are some of the best, but do yourself a favor and pick a better ship!

CrushThatCruise's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Balcony Stateroom

Smaller sized without ability to use walker through threshold. This was not a disabled room, so this may be our fault. The shower worked great and while the closet was trickier to use since it was right next to the bed, the scattered drawers throughout the room made up for it. I would not have more than 3 in a room.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

Whale Watching

Very impressive! Saw many humpbacks and orcas in a heated and covered boat.

View All 906 Whale Watching Reviews
White Pass Scenic Railway

Had a few hiccups with the train motor failing but was provided the opportunity to return at a later time. Glad we did! The scenes were gorgeous and the trees smelled so nice! Don't go on this excursion for animals, you will not see any. Go to enjoy a classic train and see some amazing gorges, runoffs, and ice.

View All 1212 White Pass Scenic Railway Reviews

We all know why they stop here, but it’s worth getting off the ship and exploring their downtown and Chinatown areas.

Glacier Bay

Spent the day on my balcony. Peaceful, beautiful, and the best day on any inner passage Alaskan cruise.


Very easy to walk around and enjoy the kitschy side of Ketchikan.

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