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We chose this cruise to see the Fall colours in Canada. This was our first cruise with NCL and we had no reason to be biased. We travelled with 3 other couple, one of whom had traveled on a NCL ship before and told us they enjoyed the cruise around the Hawaiian Islands and the food was good. Our experience was just the opposite. It began well but my wife ate some food, probably a salad on the ship, and experienced severe abdominal cramps the whole night. Therefore, she decided to go to see the ship's doctor the very next morning. We met another man who also went to see the doctor for similar symptoms. Her condition was diagnosed as gastroenteritis. She was quarantined in her cabin for 24 hrs. The only food she could order in were 5 items from room service. Because of that she missed a private shore tour that we had arranged. After 24 hrs she was released but we were most unhappy because we did not get the impression that the ship was going to investigate the cause of it. Gastroenteritis, according to the Mayo Clinic website, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/viral-gastroenteritis/symptoms-causes/syc-20378847, is caused either through contact with an infected person or ingesting contaminated food or water. Since she was on the ship, the only source of that was ship food. So I wrote to the General Manager and ask that he looked into the matter and sought redress. We were asked to see an officer who was most unsympathetic. She said words to the effect that there were over 2000 passengers on the ship and they cannot be examining what the cause just because a few of them were sick eating the food!!! She told us that we ought to be very happy that the ship has waived the doctor's charges but we told them that wasn't our concern as well could recover that from our travel insurance. She also said that as far as compensation or redress for the loss for missing the private tour, again, we could claim from our insurance. They were not able to do anything on the ship but that they would refer the case to their headquarters and asked us to write to them. My wife wrote to the captain to see if she could a response sooner and guess what? He never bothered to reply. We were given the case details and told to write after our cruise. We told the officer who met us, given their attitude, that we are not going to write but asked her to tell their head office to write to us if they wish. Not unexpectedly, we have not heard from anyone from NCL. Secondly the food was below par overall. The specialty restaurants were better but even then at best average. The last night of the cruise was billed as Asian night. Being Asians, we looked forward to it. What they billed as "Tom Yum Soup" was nothing like the real version from Thailand. What they billed as "Satay" was a poor version. What was even worse was the sauce, the most important ingredient of satay was not anything like what it should be. If the cooks can't prepare those dishes, that is fine. But why pass those dishes off to other passengers by those names? I cannot understand why they want to do so! Finally, we signed up for the ship's internet service. But no one told us how to log in and even worse how to log out. We were not the only ones who had this problem and during the first day at sea, a whole line of people lined up to see the Internet manager. There was only one person and it took an hour to get to her. On my last night, I tried to log in but could not. Sorry, the Internet manager only worked certain hours and she is no longer available. That is what the reception told me. Is it a wonder that we will never ever travel on NCL again?

Never again will I travel with Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Gem Cruise Review by C P Hia

Trip Details
We chose this cruise to see the Fall colours in Canada. This was our first cruise with NCL and we had no reason to be biased. We travelled with 3 other couple, one of whom had traveled on a NCL ship before and told us they enjoyed the cruise around the Hawaiian Islands and the food was good. Our experience was just the opposite.

It began well but my wife ate some food, probably a salad on the ship, and experienced severe abdominal cramps the whole night. Therefore, she decided to go to see the ship's doctor the very next morning. We met another man who also went to see the doctor for similar symptoms. Her condition was diagnosed as gastroenteritis. She was quarantined in her cabin for 24 hrs. The only food she could order in were 5 items from room service. Because of that she missed a private shore tour that we had arranged. After 24 hrs she was released but we were most unhappy because we did not get the impression that the ship was going to investigate the cause of it. Gastroenteritis, according to the Mayo Clinic website, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/viral-gastroenteritis/symptoms-causes/syc-20378847, is caused either through contact with an infected person or ingesting contaminated food or water. Since she was on the ship, the only source of that was ship food. So I wrote to the General Manager and ask that he looked into the matter and sought redress. We were asked to see an officer who was most unsympathetic. She said words to the effect that there were over 2000 passengers on the ship and they cannot be examining what the cause just because a few of them were sick eating the food!!! She told us that we ought to be very happy that the ship has waived the doctor's charges but we told them that wasn't our concern as well could recover that from our travel insurance. She also said that as far as compensation or redress for the loss for missing the private tour, again, we could claim from our insurance. They were not able to do anything on the ship but that they would refer the case to their headquarters and asked us to write to them. My wife wrote to the captain to see if she could a response sooner and guess what? He never bothered to reply. We were given the case details and told to write after our cruise. We told the officer who met us, given their attitude, that we are not going to write but asked her to tell their head office to write to us if they wish. Not unexpectedly, we have not heard from anyone from NCL.

Secondly the food was below par overall. The specialty restaurants were better but even then at best average. The last night of the cruise was billed as Asian night. Being Asians, we looked forward to it. What they billed as "Tom Yum Soup" was nothing like the real version from Thailand. What they billed as "Satay" was a poor version. What was even worse was the sauce, the most important ingredient of satay was not anything like what it should be. If the cooks can't prepare those dishes, that is fine. But why pass those dishes off to other passengers by those names? I cannot understand why they want to do so!

Finally, we signed up for the ship's internet service. But no one told us how to log in and even worse how to log out. We were not the only ones who had this problem and during the first day at sea, a whole line of people lined up to see the Internet manager. There was only one person and it took an hour to get to her. On my last night, I tried to log in but could not. Sorry, the Internet manager only worked certain hours and she is no longer available. That is what the reception told me.

Is it a wonder that we will never ever travel on NCL again?
C P Hia’s Full Rating Summary
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