This is my 26th review for Cruise Critic. Unlike some reviewers that join this group just to complain about a bad experience, I have, for the past 10+ years felt obliged to write about my cruise experiences. I am a professional writer in another life which tends to make my reviews long and thorough. If you want to know simply if we liked our time on the Gem, just count the stars. If you want to know the how’s and why’s, read and enjoy.
This was our 47th cruise and our 13th with Norwegian. We favor RCCL because of the perks from their loyalty program (we are Diamond with them) but we went on this cruise for the itinerary. We are both in our early-mid 60’s.
NCL has an updated cellphone app and I’m happy to report that it is finally worthwhile. Previously it had been so far behind RCCL’s app that it was abysmal. I started making dinner reservations 5 weeks before boarding. I’m not sure that you can even do that with RCCL’s app. The dinner reservations that I made weeks before boarding began populating a calendar in the app immediately. This is a HUGE improvement and makes the app very useful. The Freestyle Daily is on the app; a huge improvement, but you still can’t add to your calendar the daily activities that you want to partake in. This app is way better than it used to be but if you have sampled Royal Caribbean’s app you can’t help but compare.