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We chose this cruise because the dates matched spring break-I am a professor and had the opportunity to travel (when we booked- we did not know that COVID-19 was on the horizon). We booked on "Black Monday" and got a really good deal with 3 specialty meals, wifi, a beverage package and 50 dollars off shore excursions. Embarkment was excellent. I wished I has listened to the ship orientation-it took me days to understand processes that I should have learned! Our suite was great on the 9th floor with a balcony. The two of us friends have Celiac disease so were quickly connected to the dietary specialist who took such good care of us. We were not able to eat at the buffet because NCL does not label its food, but we had wonderful meals at the sit down restaurants including three at speciality restaurants. We upgraded to the best beverage package and enjoyed fabulous wine bottles with each meal. Our beds were comfortable. Our room was tended to twice a day. In getting off the boat for island days-we would never know we were on the giant ship! Few if any wait times or lines. Really amazing. We took one NCL shore excursion to the Virgin Gorda that was very very well done! I would say our service was good to excellent. We loved the entertainment especially "Pricilla Queen of the Desert" and the Circ show. We got the Wifi upgrade which may have been worth it for two professionals who needed to stay connected to work. WIfi on cruises is slow and frustrating but we did use it when we could. We left on our cruise just before the serious nature of the COVID-19 pandemic came to light. We were not offered cancellation or rescheduling. Once on the ship the crew did lots to keep us safe. We had no virus on ship with 5000 plus passangers and nearly that many crew. I am grateful to NCL for the care they gave us. We were the last sailing of the ship for months. Now, some criticism, mostly of the ship: *The pools are not satisfactory in terms of space, depth, or temperature. There are really no handicap accommodations for swimming. *Pool bar service was far too slow and difficult *Pool area service staff seemed to be avoiding taking orders rather than trying to serve. Our ship was diverted from Puerto Rico to Cape Canaveral due to the COVID-19. Apparently we needed a 3 day quarantine. The NCL crew and staff handled three more days with poise and grace. They treated us with the same kindness we had during the scheduled days of our cruise. BRAVO NCL! You did an excellent job in a tough situation.

Great cruise, food, service and entertainment-swimming pools not so much

Norwegian Epic Cruise Review by Hansonl

1 person found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: March 2020
  • Destination: Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Mid-Ship Balcony
We chose this cruise because the dates matched spring break-I am a professor and had the opportunity to travel (when we booked- we did not know that COVID-19 was on the horizon). We booked on "Black Monday" and got a really good deal with 3 specialty meals, wifi, a beverage package and 50 dollars off shore excursions.

Embarkment was excellent. I wished I has listened to the ship orientation-it took me days to understand processes that I should have learned! Our suite was great on the 9th floor with a balcony. The two of us friends have Celiac disease so were quickly connected to the dietary specialist who took such good care of us. We were not able to eat at the buffet because NCL does not label its food, but we had wonderful meals at the sit down restaurants including three at speciality restaurants. We upgraded to the best beverage package and enjoyed fabulous wine bottles with each meal. Our beds were comfortable. Our room was tended to twice a day. In getting off the boat for island days-we would never know we were on the giant ship! Few if any wait times or lines. Really amazing. We took one NCL shore excursion to the Virgin Gorda that was very very well done! I would say our service was good to excellent. We loved the entertainment especially "Pricilla Queen of the Desert" and the Circ show. We got the Wifi upgrade which may have been worth it for two professionals who needed to stay connected to work. WIfi on cruises is slow and frustrating but we did use it when we could.

We left on our cruise just before the serious nature of the COVID-19 pandemic came to light. We were not offered cancellation or rescheduling. Once on the ship the crew did lots to keep us safe. We had no virus on ship with 5000 plus passangers and nearly that many crew. I am grateful to NCL for the care they gave us. We were the last sailing of the ship for months.

Now, some criticism, mostly of the ship:

*The pools are not satisfactory in terms of space, depth, or temperature. There are really no handicap accommodations for swimming.

*Pool bar service was far too slow and difficult

*Pool area service staff seemed to be avoiding taking orders rather than trying to serve.

Our ship was diverted from Puerto Rico to Cape Canaveral due to the COVID-19. Apparently we needed a 3 day quarantine. The NCL crew and staff handled three more days with poise and grace. They treated us with the same kindness we had during the scheduled days of our cruise. BRAVO NCL! You did an excellent job in a tough situation.
Hansonl’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Mid-Ship Balcony
Cabin BB
We loved having a balcony. There was plenty of storage. The shower/tub has a giant step in feature that might be difficult for elderly or disabled.
Deck 10 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

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  • Catamaran Tour
    Excellent-Highly recommend! We took the adult version with ETOH and it was great. They even had gluten free food for us! Wonderful service.
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  • Snorkeling
    Excellent-Highly recommend! We took the adult version with alcohol and it was fantastic. They even had gluten free food for us!
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  • Sulphur Springs Mud Bath
    Wonderful tour that was a varied adventure! We had a city tour, a banana plantation tour, a local food brunch, beer and rum punch or soft drinks were plentiful. We had a boat ride to a snorkeling beach that was GREAT. We then went to the rainforest and saw an active volcano, had a mud bath and then showered off in a waterfall! Back to more food and beverages. Our guide "Bumpy" (nick-named after his walk not his driving) was GREAT.
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  • Beach
    We took a taxi to Secret Harbor beach and rented chairs and towels and had a great day of snorkeling and swimming and eating and drinking! What was great is that it was quiet and clean and not overcrowded. A great end to our trip!
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  • Virgin Gorda
    This is one vigorous tour. It was wonderful though I am not sure I would do it again. I am 61 with two total hip replacements and my friend is 65. Don't do this unless you are athletic. Pack light. You will hike to a beautiful beach and swim and then do a very vigorous hike through the pools and then the caves (picture an army boot camp in a cave with a bunch of tourists). Finally we arrived at a nice place to snorkel and refresh. I am glad we took the tour through the cruise ship so that the timings were right. My friend said that if there is more than one cruise ship in port it is too busy to do this.
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