299 New Orleans Senior Cruise Reviews

This cruise was a whim of a moment, for myself and my friend, no kids. I had called Vacations To Go, and got a very nice price for a balcony cabin, on the 4 night cruise out of New Orleans to Cozumel and back. I was also familiar with ... Read More
This cruise was a whim of a moment, for myself and my friend, no kids. I had called Vacations To Go, and got a very nice price for a balcony cabin, on the 4 night cruise out of New Orleans to Cozumel and back. I was also familiar with Carnival and their port there, since my only other cruise was based there. My friend had not been on any cruise; it was my 2nd one. We both enjoyed it ~overall. She had a bit of a time first sea day, with sea sickness, but recovered soon. We had spent the night in Biloxi, then drove 1.5 hrs to the port the next morning, not taking any time to explore New Orleans, not really wanting to. Embarkation was quite a chore. We parked at the Fulton Place Garage, a few blocks and a shuttle ride away from the port. We arrived a bit after our set time, due to a large load of other people getting on the shuttle. Our checked luggage was taken by porters, and we went to join the Masses ~ However, we were processed, walking back and back and forth through the queue with the rest of the large crowd, we NOT being the most OverPacked ! It was rather tedious, and very hot, with the weather out being very warm. I determined that on next crusie I MIGHT buy the "Faster to the Fun" perk, and get through swifter. Security was not awful, pleasant personnel, and we were quickly processed, carry on items scanned, bottles shaken for alcohol content, etc. We did carry a small cooler with canned drinks and 2 bottles of wine. On board, we were quickly verified, and wandered on the 3rd deck into the assembled masses. Soon, Finding way to our room, we were pleased to find our Sail & Sign passes in our mailbox, and entered the room. Great sigh of Relief !! The cabin on deck 8, somewhat amidships, was just as seen online. The beds were properly set up, with a luggage pad on one of them. Plenty of linens & supplies were in the bath area. The temperature in our cabin was good the whole trip. Everything was good - EXCEPT the Refrigerator - it was about dead. I mentioned it to our steward, and he just shrugged, said -Sorry, most of them are no good. That was a large disappointment ! The balcony was perfect with two chairs and a table. The view was wonderful ~except for the stormy day. Our steward Suphol was unobtrusive, reliable, throrough, and very willing to get ice for us every day, replacing the "Dead Fridge". I have zero complaints for him. My friend tried the Comedy club. She said it was very entertaining and fun. I did not go, preferring to rest up in the cabin. She also tried a few drinks, finding them well made. We had late dining every night, and had very good meals. Our waiters were great, friendly, informative, and *could dance* !! LOL ! Of course I had Melting cake every night! Cruise Calories do NOT COUNT! MY Only disappointment was an extra charge for ordering a Filet Migon; Santika, our waiter let me know that if I liked Filet - to go to Seaday Brunch and they were Included ! YEA ! I did! Twice ! We LOVED the Guys Burgers restaurant ! Oh those were GREAT ! I was craving one when I got HOME ! We really kept things simple, not dining in any specialty restaurants nor going to any big shows. I was tired a lot, (Old person!) and my friend was a bit awed by all the things available. LOL We took a privately booked excursion on Cozumel to Nachi Cocum beach club. It was very nice, and easily accessed via taxi. All Inclusive meant lots of food and Drinks, and beach, which was Perfect! Be warned, though - Do your Cozumel Market Shopping BEFORE you head to whatever excursion ! The Crowds AFTER are Insane ! I cut my buying short to be sure I got BACK to the Ship before it left! There were some people that were videoed being amusing "dock runners" before we left port - but they MADE it ! The Valor was quite clean in all areas, with the floors shining brightly everywhere. It was a good size ship, not too long from bow to stern. We made the trip several times, going from one venue to another (maybe one reason I was Tired ??). We shopped the Fun Shop sales, and had fun with the sales persons. We collected a few nice FREE items too! Most of my "fun activity" was in the casino. Of course I didn't WIN a lot, but I had a pretty good time. One of our fellow cruisers organized a "group slot pull" where we pooled our money and shared win/loss proceeds. All participants enjoyed it a lot. Debarkation was a rather non-event. We had our to-be-checked luggage outside by 10 PM, the previous night, and it was swiftly collected Getting out of our room by 8:30 AM was more of an EVENT ! We then had a liesurely breakfast in the Buffet, and roamed around a bit until our lot was called. We had the usual long walk, with our carry-on items, then found our baggage easily. No back & forth maze nor scanning, as we had "nothing to declare". Non-Event, as mentioned. Our parking shuttle arrived in good time, luggage loaded by the driver and a helper. When we got to Fulton Place Parking, we were requested to take our bags across the street to load our car, since there were so many people going OUT, as well as a whole new crew of passengers coming IN. That worked out fine, when my friend brought the car around. We were swiftly OUT of New Orleans, again not dipping into the city at all. We had both been there many times. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Carnival is always a winner when picking a cruise. Our steward Timur on the 8th floor middle seem to know what we needed each day and was always pleasant as was his helper Maricel. They were always smiling and willing to do whatever we ... Read More
Carnival is always a winner when picking a cruise. Our steward Timur on the 8th floor middle seem to know what we needed each day and was always pleasant as was his helper Maricel. They were always smiling and willing to do whatever we needed without any question. Probably the best ones we have had. The ship decor is my least favorite of the ships we have been on, it seemed dark, with all the dark wood and the hangings on the walls above the main bar. This is the first time we did not eat in the MDR but seems like they served the same thing on the Lido deck and there you do not have to dress. After all the trips we have been on I finally got my husband to go to Love and Marriage and he loved it. We did not go on any excurisions as we have been to the ports many times before. Great Trip as always. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
This was our second river cruise - the first was a few years ago down the Danube in August. The American Queen is a very special ship,not only because of the beautiful furnishings, collectibles and artwork which is abundant, but because ... Read More
This was our second river cruise - the first was a few years ago down the Danube in August. The American Queen is a very special ship,not only because of the beautiful furnishings, collectibles and artwork which is abundant, but because of the paddlewheel. Its power is ever present, and is mesmerizing. Visits to the engine room are encouraged. We cruised from New Orleans to Memphis. The printed material they distributed were clear and well-presented, from the daily newsletters to the material you receive pre-cruise. There were some discouraging reviews that I read prior to departing, so was ready for anything, but I found most everything about this cruise to be very satisfying and agreeable. Our room was excellent - well located, comfortable and beautifully decorated. The shower had good water pressure and plenty of hot water. The steward made up the room twice daily and left Godiva chocolate on the pillows nightly. The beds were very comfortable. The food - the menus were varied and changed daily - everything labeled with information for cruisers with allergies or other special diets. The food came out hot, if a bit too quickly. I often ate fish, and my husband beef, and no complaints about either. The staff looks a bit disheveled, but everyone was friendly and aimed to please. We sat at a table for 2 (this was not requested) so were a bit disappointed about that. When we asked to change, we were led to a table on the opposite side of the room which was above the engine room. DO NOT sit here (left side rear when walking in). We had one meal here and returned to our original table - it was so noisy that you had to strain to hear anyone speaking. We took breakfast and lunch on the Front Porch, which had excellent food even though it was a buffet. There were not an endless amount of choices, but enough and of good quality. The staff assigned to work there were helpful and kept everything very clean. I found the coffee to be just OK, including the self-serve cappuccino. The soft-serve ice cream deserves special mention - I am not a fan usually, but this was really good, available 24/7, toppings with it, and choice of cone or cup. Daily excursions - The hop on - hop off bus was an excellent way to get around and all pre-paid tours were indicated on the map of the town. There was more to do than we were able, even though we got off the boat early (it was also hovering at 100 degrees every day, so we could not move very fast!). Natchez was my favorite port while cruising. There were 8 hours of port time at each stop, except for St. Francisville. We couldn't stop at Greenville due to heavy traffic coming down river because of dredging. My husband did the optional excursion to Vicksburg battlefield, which he said was excellent. I was happy with the ones included. Entertainment - Without question, the best on any cruise. The shows each night were not to be missed. There were 4 performers which included the Cruise Director and Asst. Cruise Director (Ryan and Ashley), and all were very good to excellent. The back up band was excellent. There was nightly music in the Engine Room bar (rock and roll) and in the lounge pre-dinner for each seating. He had sing-a-longs booklets for all, played with a flourish, as well as being an engaging storyteller. All music on the ship was live. On-board activities - We spent 2 full days cruising instead of one because of the river traffic traveling south. The options are limited, but the staff does have some organized activities that were enjoyable. I like to read and there was a larger pool than anticipated, so was pleasantly surprised and kept cool in there. There was a small gym with 4 pieces of equipment (usually unoccupied) and mats for stretching. I do yoga, so found that to be ideal for me. There were many board games, puzzles, daily crosswords and sudoku, and tables for playing. The chart room was always open and you could borrow books about the river and history of the South. Jerry, the Riverlorian, gave daily talks, and was very knowledgeable and engaging. He also gave daily tours of the Control Room. I learned quite a bit about the river, the history of the Civil War, and the many nuances that we did not learn in school. Service - I was happy overall - service was good, not flawless.I am not a fan of mandating gratuities, and thought $18.50/day was high. Overall - This trip was on my bucket list and well worth doing. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and would recommend it for "older" clientele, even those with physical limitations. Also, they have you arrive one day prior to embarkation in New Orleans. I would recommend you spend at least an additional day there, as well as an additional day or 2 in Memphis. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
I chose it because of the decor depicted in the brochure and the itinerary. The decor of the ship was nothing like was depicted in their advertisements. We sailed during an impending tropical storm which they ignored and the cruise up the ... Read More
I chose it because of the decor depicted in the brochure and the itinerary. The decor of the ship was nothing like was depicted in their advertisements. We sailed during an impending tropical storm which they ignored and the cruise up the lower Mississippi river got worse. We repeatedly questioned the cruise direction inquiring about our destination considering the weather. We essentially were ignored. The decor of the rooms is average. The upper floors leaked terribly. two of our three ports were closed. The port at Baton Rouge was at flood stage and the entire city was shut down pending the coming flood. Once again we tried to get answers with no results. When then decided to disembark and catch a flight home. All the crew were first timers and inexperienced. The food was average for a cruise. The entertainment areas were small. There was one ice machine for the 100 or so passengers, The captain was relieved of duty apparently because his lack of communication with the passengers. I contacted the corporate office and their flippant response was we didn't know of any storm or problems with the America. This cruise is falsely advertised and way to expensive for what is offered. The crew is very young and inexperienced. It felt like we were on training vessel. The main office has yet to refund me any money. They offered a 1000 cruise credit which to me was an insult. If you book with this company you will regret it! Never Again! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose this cruise to get a lifetime experience on the Mississippi River. The advertising of the cruise was very effusive about the standard of the service and the experiences that were to be enjoyed. But, let me tell you what really was ... Read More
We chose this cruise to get a lifetime experience on the Mississippi River. The advertising of the cruise was very effusive about the standard of the service and the experiences that were to be enjoyed. But, let me tell you what really was experienced. Meals: The restaurant setting is comfortable but crowded. The furniture needs a good clean. The meals were presented in a haphazard style with little appeal to the presented food, it was just placed on the plate. The menu selection on some of the days was appalling. Rooms: Our room was comfortable but included basic furniture. The bed was too short ( I am 179 cm or 5'11") and my feet hung over the end of the bed. The linen was a good quality. Entertainment: This was the highlight of the cruise. Variety and energy were the keys to keeping us entertained. Very good standard of delivery was held throughout the cruise. Gym: A very basic and barely adequate gym and pool is on board. Service: This was the most disappointing aspect of the cruise. After paying $AUS1,000+ per day for a cabin leading onto the veranda, service delivery was very poor. We had to continually request shampoo, soap and other bathroom amenities be maintained. The service in the dining room was appalling. Food was plonked on the table without any of the normal etiquette processes, wine was sloshed into glasses, orders were forgotten, explanation of selections was very poor and there was no continual supervision of the table. Excursions: The complementary shuttle bus service was very welcome and appreciated. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
I have cruised with Carnival over 100 days. I live close to 2 cruise ports and take advantage of the same day drive to the port. I picked this cruise because it was 8 days and went to Key West. I had not been there in 6 years. This was ... Read More
I have cruised with Carnival over 100 days. I live close to 2 cruise ports and take advantage of the same day drive to the port. I picked this cruise because it was 8 days and went to Key West. I had not been there in 6 years. This was also my first trip to Half Moon Cay. Embarkation was very smooth and we walked on the ship immediately after going through security. We had lunch at the Anchor BBQ and it was very good. Overall we had a good cruise. There were some negatives. Our cabin was on the Riveria Deck in bow. The room was in good shape and the A/C worked very well. We heard some complaints by other passengers that their A/C did not work and rooms were warm. Our room steward did a great job. We had late dining in the aft dining room. Late dining is not my cup tea. Eating at 8:30 to 9:00 is too late. This not the ships fault. We booked late and that is all that was available. The wait staff did a great job. However, the menu is becoming boring. The menu has had very few changes over the years. I do not enjoy the shows in the theater. I did enjoy the family friendly comedy shows. The musicians were a mixed bag. The brass section was good and some of the solo artist were good. Carnival is a lower end cruise experience. Carnival is not a luxury cruise ship and it is not a gourmet food experience. People will over indulge and you will hear more foul language than you may want to hear. We also had someone throw up in the main pool on the last sea day and it had to be drained and refilled. Also the hairy chest contest is not for children. It can be over risque when the participants have over indulged. On debarkation, 5 NO policemen and a police dog escorted someone off the ship in handcuffs. Overall, we enjoyed the cruise and you can find plenty of places on the ship to get away from the crazies. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Cruise began in New Orleans (on my bucket list) and we went on a Wednesday and our cruise didn’t begin until Saturday, so we had time to see NOLA or a couple of days. The French Quarter was having a music festival so it was packed with ... Read More
Cruise began in New Orleans (on my bucket list) and we went on a Wednesday and our cruise didn’t begin until Saturday, so we had time to see NOLA or a couple of days. The French Quarter was having a music festival so it was packed with people, but some of the food vendors had some delicious food. We boarded the ship Saturday AM and got underway at 1:00 PM heading towards Memphis, with various stops in between. We had a riverarian and a historian onboard, who gave very interesting talks about the Civil War and the history of the Mississippi. Very interesting talks. Our stateroom was very nice, clean and included a writing desk, a king size bed, 2 end tables, a small closet and an upholstered chair, enough drawer space for some clothing, but we didn’t have to take a lot because the boat had free laundry facilities for the guests. The bathroom was adequate with only a shower, but not enough towel racks or door hooks for clean clothes. We also had a small balcony, which was nice to sit and have a drink or read a book while the boat was on the move. There were plenty of excursions you could sign up for or if you wanted you could explore on your own. Some were complimentary, but most had a fee if you wanted to sign up. There was entertainment every evening after dinner, usually music or a comedy act. The dining room has open seating, so you have the opportunity to meet many people, and these small cruise ships usually have less than 200 passengers. All the servers and deck hands , kitchen staff and cruise directors, etc., are Americans, the boats/ships are all built in the USA, so there is never a problem with communication. Food is usually pretty good, but for some reason the kitchen seemed to be disorganized, therefore food service was very slow. This was our 4th cruise with ACL, and the most disorganized in general. Public areas on the boat were nice and comfortable, whether in the lounges or out on the decks. Happy hour ( 5:30-6:30). is always nice but a bit crowded, sometimes with a line of people waiting for a drink. There were servers with trays of appetizers being passed out and a table with more food and 2 servers to pass out your food of choice. Be careful or you won’t have room for your dinner ( 6:30-8:00). Overall we’ve been really happy with our cruises with ACL and have signed up for our 5th cruise next year. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
we needed 5 days to become platium and we saw this last minute cruise and jumped on it. 2 great friends went with us and had a great time. we booked a sail-away, witch meant no free items. the cruise was only $248 a piece pluse taxes ... Read More
we needed 5 days to become platium and we saw this last minute cruise and jumped on it. 2 great friends went with us and had a great time. we booked a sail-away, witch meant no free items. the cruise was only $248 a piece pluse taxes and fees. a good deal. this was the 3rd time on the breakaway in 2 months. love going out of new orleans. the food on the lido deck was some of the worst we have had on all of our cruises.31. some with carnival and some with ncl. the other restrauants had good food. the irsh pub was the best for snacks and also for a few dinners. the crew was friendly overall, but some were not. going to book breakaway for dec. our cabin was an inside. small but not bad. it made you stay out more. had already seen most of the shows, so we did not go. the breakaway is a very nice ship. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Third cruise; first on Carnival. New Orleans, Roatan, Belize City, Cozumel. Embark/disembark very smooth and efficient. Stateroom: Balcony near aft elevators deck 7. Room pleasant, normal, functional. Had two 12-pack cases of ... Read More
Third cruise; first on Carnival. New Orleans, Roatan, Belize City, Cozumel. Embark/disembark very smooth and efficient. Stateroom: Balcony near aft elevators deck 7. Room pleasant, normal, functional. Had two 12-pack cases of water pre-ordered and delivered to room. Good idea. Ship has sub-par water. Small balcony had push open door rather than sliding. Food: Guy Fieri's Hamburger Joint and his themed Pig and Anchor BBQ. If these were in my town I'd be a regular customer. 24 hour pizza: If this was in my town => out of business in a week. Main dining (Anytime): Ok. Good service, mostly good food. Crew gets celebration going regularly during dinner. Ate off the regular menu; good flat iron steak, poor, skimpy shrimp cocktails. creative appetizers, sides of veggies kinda small, deserts ok+. Feast night ordered two lobster tails. Good idea. Breakfast: Main dining room, not crowded. Good. (eggs benedict). Good coffee. Buffet, Pretty good. Deli made good sandwiches. 24 hr soft serve ice cream stations good. Experienced very few and limited lines or much trouble finding a table. Could have been due to 800 passengers for a business conference who mainly were out of site and may have eaten together when not in meetings. We tended to use the stairs a lot; two flights up/down to stuff. Nice, quiet, get away place in Library room. Movies under the stars were ok, but surrounded by several open bars with folks enjoying a good (noisy) time. Catch the comedians at the Punchline club. Shows in main theater were ok+. Cruise director was great. Over all, would cruise again with them (taking note of 800 preoccupied conference people and some other reviewers talking about long lines). Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Entire boat was reserved for Road Scholar members for this cruise. Instead of the standard one day stay in New Orleans with tours, Road Scholar had two before boarding. The food and service was outstanding, either in the Main Dining ... Read More
Entire boat was reserved for Road Scholar members for this cruise. Instead of the standard one day stay in New Orleans with tours, Road Scholar had two before boarding. The food and service was outstanding, either in the Main Dining Room with a very good selections or in the Grill Room/Terrace buffet. Most of us chose the Main Dining Room for dinner, wine and beer is included with dinner. and the Grill Room for breakfast and lunch. Weather was good enough for enjoying the meals on the open terrace. Cabins are very comfortable and there are suites with separate sitting area, even two story suites with seating below and sleeping area up the stairs. Lectures and tours are included, with experienced and enthusiastic guides. Free Hop on/off busses are at every port. There was good entertainment with a four piece band and three singers performing every night. Music in the Lounge during the cocktail hour and after the show. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
What an amazing ship. We went during spring break and the ship was packed, but overall the staff handled it beyond belief. Once we had all dining and show reservations made everything went like clockwork. Highly recommend dinner at six ... Read More
What an amazing ship. We went during spring break and the ship was packed, but overall the staff handled it beyond belief. Once we had all dining and show reservations made everything went like clockwork. Highly recommend dinner at six in the Manhattan Room as they had dancers perform from the show burn the floor. We also bought the thermal spa package as we knew the pool area would be packed. The spa was never crowded and met numerous friends in the steam room and thermal pool. All stops went well though our last stop was Costa Maya. Wish that was in the middle as departing at 1:30 just doesn’t give you enough time at the beach. Boardwalk has greatly improved and it is well worth grabbing a cab and getting away from the cruise port. Thought it is also greatly improved. Best shopping was Belize City, especially the port Pharmacy. Don’t listen to nay sayers who complain about everything Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Just love the norwegian free style. Staff is very friendly, ship is been renovated and everything is kept clean. The different restaurants offer a good variety of food. But as I am vegetarien, I had to ask which plate was meatless. Just ... Read More
Just love the norwegian free style. Staff is very friendly, ship is been renovated and everything is kept clean. The different restaurants offer a good variety of food. But as I am vegetarien, I had to ask which plate was meatless. Just wish they put a pictogram beside the name of the dish to tell us if it has meat in it or not. Good show every night. As we disembark in Boston, that part was not well plan but I am sure that they learn from that expérience. But we had no problem for the embarkment. I recommend that you download theNorwegian apps before going on the ship. Very helpfull. The entertainment team was also very good to keep us busy while àt sea. As we were with a french group, they offer us the daily activity journal in french. With the shore excursions, eveything was perfect, no complaint there. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We chose this cruise for a new itinerary. This is not our first time on the Breakaway. Fewer waiters in bars. Less activities such as expert lectures. Less musical choice, too many DJ sessions. Shambolic disembarkation. The cruise ... Read More
We chose this cruise for a new itinerary. This is not our first time on the Breakaway. Fewer waiters in bars. Less activities such as expert lectures. Less musical choice, too many DJ sessions. Shambolic disembarkation. The cruise ship had a lot of facilities closed until 4 or 5pm each day giving little choice when wandering around ship. The entertainment was only 50% ok. The "rock of Ages" show is not the kind of thing that is needed on a cruise ship with lots of teenagers and younger on board, I wouldn't go to a show at home that was over 100 minutes long without an interval. The content was unacceptable as it meant that a large number of passengers had no show for two evenings. The waiters in the resturaunts had poor grasp of English and we ended getting our full meal delivered at the one time and when asked for them to be delivered as 3 courses all they did was leave the plates at the serving hatch to get cold. I had asked for no main courses and have my starter along with my wives main course. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Took this cruise with a group of girlfriends that have been close since High School (6 of us). We arrived in New Orleans a day and a half earlier to walk the streets so we could learn the history, view the beautiful old buildings and ... Read More
Took this cruise with a group of girlfriends that have been close since High School (6 of us). We arrived in New Orleans a day and a half earlier to walk the streets so we could learn the history, view the beautiful old buildings and enjoy the wonderful Cajun and Creole food. We were so excited to get to the port to board the NCL Breakaway but were very joyfully surprised with the way the staff took care of us. Our embarkation and disembarkation were painless and because our 2-bedroom suite was in the Haven we got priority over everyone. We were greeted with cold beverages, fruit and pastries before the photographer immortalized our embarkation. We were taken to our deck and issued our room cards (which we added to our own home crafted bracelets after the staff punched a hole in the card for us). The staff showed us to our room and introduced us to our butler and housekeeper who accommodated us with anything and everything we could want or need the entire trip. That night we eat in the restaurant open only to those staying in Haven. They offer breakfast, lunch and dinner and each menu was over the top. The food was gourmet and better than any restaurant anywhere in the world. Wine selection was top on the line, no use to bring your own. First day at sea we enjoyed the Haven pool and spa specific to only to Haven cruisers. The deck lounge chairs are equip with clean white towels (changed at least daily) that do not need towel clips and they are fitted to the chair. We ate in the patio area and again had over the top sandwiches, salads and desserts. Coffee, juice and fruit infused water was always keep out on the patio to use as we pleased. Later in the day we choose to try a massage in the spa, it was better than any home town experiences we had ever had. Very professional and well schooled in all types. We were explained each procedure as it was performed and instructed on the importance use of each. The ports and excursions were very well managed. Getting off and on the ship to our destination was made easy as the staff took us from the ship and back to the ship painlessly. We were always greeted by the staff positioned up and down the pier dressed with costumes of the port we were visiting. They offer water and cool washcloths all the while music played in the background to keep the feel. When we got back to our room the butler always had sandwiches, snacks and fruit waiting for us. We decided to see the show "Rock of Ages" and were pleasantly surprised with priority seating for Haven. The show was excellent with very talented performers. We also had previously purchased tickets to the "Cirque Dreams" show. We were served our dinner and entertained before and during our meal. Then the show began with world-class acrobats, aerialists, musicians, along with a touch of whimsy. We chose to disembark early and walk off with our luggage (that way we didn't have to go overnight without). We were escorted to the port level with the staff who had given us a meeting the day before to inform us of the procedures. We have been spoiled (like Queens) to ever go back to just taking a cruise. The Haven is the only way to cruise! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
First, the cruises offered by ACL are geared towards mature audiences - 60's and up, although there very people much younger on this cruise. Actually who's on the cruise really doesn't matter to me, as long as people are ... Read More
First, the cruises offered by ACL are geared towards mature audiences - 60's and up, although there very people much younger on this cruise. Actually who's on the cruise really doesn't matter to me, as long as people are enjoying their experience. I have taken 7 ocean cruises and on rivercruise (20 years ago). If you are expecting in your face activities and craziness, pick something other than a river cruise. This was a celebration cruise for my husband and I, and when greeted when boarding the boat, we were congratulated and on the second day, after returning from a shore excursion, we found champagne and strawberries in our cabin! Every crew member is there to serve you and extend extraordinary customer service, which was evident every minute of the day (we had to ask someone to thread a needle, and they did so with a smile!). When crew members say they love their jobs, that says something about a company! Because the river was running high, a last minute change of itinerary was made and I thought it gave us an even better experience; also, Because we were in the height of Mardi Gras season, instead of staying in a hotel pre-cruise (part of your fare), we stayed on the boat - we were greeted by a lovely buffet and drinks. We were not able to dock at Houmas House or Oak Alley, but those excursions were changed to days when we were in Baton Rouge and New Orleans. We cruised up to St. Francisville instead on the first day, and had the choice of three additional excursions (only 2 of the many offered were premium at an extra charge, by the way...). Also in Baton Rouge, which is not the most exciting stop, they added a walking tour by their river guide, which made is all worth while. And because we returned to New Orleans a half day early, excursions to the WW2 museum and a French Quarter walking tour were added! I think this was all handle exceptionally well!!! On the ACL cruises, beer and wine are included at Lunch, cocktail hour, dinner and during the evening entertainment, so you are not running up a tab. The food was excellent and you could request half portions. There were also snacks, coffee, tea, fruit, juice and soda always available in two of the lounges. My husband had never cruised before and I knew that an ocean cruise was out of the question - he thoroughly enjoyed this and we are considering other itineraries in the future. The cost seems high at first, but when I compared it to an ocean cruise with similar accommodations (balcony), and considering that there is no charge for adult beverages, no tipping, free excursions, free WIFI, the cost is comparable. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We were in cabin 9920 which was great, our cabin steward was the most attentive and meticulous we have had in 24 cruises. But the whole experience lacked class, when the beverage package did not even include water. Harvest Caye is a rip ... Read More
We were in cabin 9920 which was great, our cabin steward was the most attentive and meticulous we have had in 24 cruises. But the whole experience lacked class, when the beverage package did not even include water. Harvest Caye is a rip off. Beverage package did not apply. Food and beverages were extremely over priced on Harvest Caye. Shame on NCL for this cheap tactic. Pick another cruise line if you really want a quality experience. Bar service was terrible, very understaffed; you had to wait 20 or 30 minutes for a dink. O'Shehans service was beyond slow. They do this every week, don't let them tell you crowds are overwhelming, they know how many people the ship accommodates. Best experience was Ocean Vibe, but be willing to pay. If you are looking for a place near the pool, forget it! Aft balcony was great at an added cost. Main dining room was ok. Embarkation and disembarkation were a disaster. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Pretty good cruise. Considering that my wife and I have cruised 7 times in the past 10 years and this is our 5th with NCL, (just Gold Latitude members) this review, like many other folks will be slightly subjective. The pros: Our mini ... Read More
Pretty good cruise. Considering that my wife and I have cruised 7 times in the past 10 years and this is our 5th with NCL, (just Gold Latitude members) this review, like many other folks will be slightly subjective. The pros: Our mini suite cabin was on deck 8=great location if you like the several specialty restaurants on the same level We were able to acquire the Free Drink Pkg & 4 Free Specialty restaurants The food was great in all locales. We ate at the buffet for several breakfasts & all lunches. Our specialty eats were at Teppenyaki, LaCucina, Ocean Blue & Moderno Main dining room visits were Savor, Taste & the Manhattan Room*(my fav because of the live jazz music & dance floor) Our cabin was decent, but offered lass storage space than our previous cruises (The Jewel, Jade & Pearl) and was probably a few sq. feet less...that was made up by a larger balcony, accommodating 2 lounges, a table & 2 chairs. I can not imagine anymore than 2 adults staying in such a space. the shower was the best ever...it had adjustable height handheld feature with 6-8 jets that titillated your entire body. We wish we had one in our home. The staff & onboard crew, as usual were quite friendly & hospitable. The customer service desk was easy to access & the reps were very helpful. All lounges were clean & nicely appointed. All public rest room were cleaned regularly, though you had to be careful on pool deck level...the floors were usually wet. Walk gingerly! Entertainment was so-so. I guess that amounts to individual taste. We did not attend a single theater show because the themes were not appealing, but we did enjoy the bands that played poolside, in the Atrium, and in the other lounges. Our favs were James on piano, the Manhattan band and Numero Uno = The Flavors Band. They seemed to get less time & respect than they deserved. A good example was the 30 min-only tribute to Bob Marley....= too short for his global appeal & voluminous catalog of music. In addition to the island music this band capably handled 50's-thru the contemporary tunes with little drop-off in quality. If I were a manager they would have been signed to a contract on the spot. Norwegian should be proud & lucky to have them. The Cons: Surprisingly, the pool area is too small for such a large ship. I guess more space had to be allotted for the water slides. Free Drink pkg - Is limited in that it only encompasses the cheaper wines & beverages. Once the wine (by the glass) is over $12 you have to pay the difference. The same goes for top shelf liquor. Specialty Dining - For Ocean Blue we had to pay a 1 time $29.95 fee (for both of us when we booked) and the final choice on the menu (Seafarer's - Mariners Feast, I forget the exact name?) was not available as a choice. T-Shirt Sale - Forget about it! On previous ships & sailings there was usually a 2 for $20 t-shirt sale. Not here! I still have my souvenir t-shirts from previous cruise & they were of decent quality. Nickel & Diming - Not too happy to see that an additional charge is required to bowl (on only 2 lanes) play video games, shoot hoops, etc. I guess that's why no one was there when we strolled by. Public announcements: Very inaudible or partially muffled messages in many cases TV: Most days the time has difficult fin & the local weather was incomplete Daily newsletter: There were several changes in venue, schedule &/or entertainment and there was no announcement of change until after we arrived & started scratching our heads looking for the current newsletter. Overall The Breakaway was a huge change from our older & smaller ship experiences. The key was getting to the venues, restaurants, embarkations, disembarkations and service desks early. That was a primary point in New Orleans, because there is a lot construction going on around the cruise terminal & it was a headache getting in. I'm glad we didn't have to drive it, but the cab driver was pretty frustrated. Getting out was more expeditious. Since we had been to all of the ports scheduled except for Ocho Rios and with our limited mobility we stayed onboard during port days. This way we got a chance to enjoy the ship with less crowds. Let's not forget if you're not used to walking you will be sore when the cruise is over, because the ship is humongous. Indeed we would sail The Breakaway again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
I went with a 50+ singles travel group for safety in numbers. Ana was my cabin steward, and she was wonderful. The studio cabin was clean, the bed was comfortable and good for my back, and I loved the towel animals Ana made. I'm ... Read More
I went with a 50+ singles travel group for safety in numbers. Ana was my cabin steward, and she was wonderful. The studio cabin was clean, the bed was comfortable and good for my back, and I loved the towel animals Ana made. I'm with others on here in that the room could be equipped with drawers and a refrigerator. It was really nice to be able to shove my empty luggage under the bed, too; plenty of room there. The reason I'm writing this review is because, before I went on the cruise (Western Caribbean), I had read numerous reviews on Cruise Critic. One in particular makes me laugh now. The reviewer had complained about someone in the next room snoring loudly all day and all night every day of his or her cruise. I'm profoundly hard of hearing and wear a hearing aid, and they had set up my cabin with a deaf alarm that went off for every little noise, even people walking by, or me opening the door or the bathroom door or the closets. It was a constant, LOUD, irritating WAH WAH WAH WAH noise. It took me a day to figure out how to shut off everything but the alarm clock part (which I had to reset every night because all electric shuts off when you pull out the key card and leave your cabin)... and I realized that the reviewer must have had a deaf person in the room next door who couldn't hear the constant alarm at all. The ship was supposed to provide me with a device that alerted me to all announcements (sort of like a TTY), but they didn't. Fortunately, I had 4000+ people I could ask about what was going on. Other people LOVED the cruise, so I suspect much of my dissatisfaction had to do with being unable to hear. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We have done this cruise out of New Orleans on two other smaller NCL ships. I have done 5 other cruises over the years but all were half as many people as the 4000 Breakaway. The embarkation in New Orleans was more difficult than normal ... Read More
We have done this cruise out of New Orleans on two other smaller NCL ships. I have done 5 other cruises over the years but all were half as many people as the 4000 Breakaway. The embarkation in New Orleans was more difficult than normal because all the streets around dock were dug up and disembarkation had the same big problem. Ship The ship was very big to handle the +4000 people but the huge number of people caused problems with long delays getting on and off ship. The previous smaller ships we cruised seem to have more luxury with fewer people. Entertainment You had to make reservations for all the shows because the theater could not hold any where near 4000. In past other ships were first come first seated but this time you had to have reservations and only then if seats were left would others be allowed in. We were lucky to have made reservations but watched others told to get out of line and wait. The quality of shows was ok but a little bit below what we had seen on the smaller ships. Cabin The port hole midship cabin was fine with no problems and the cabin steward did a good job. Dinning The dining was a disappointment, the buffet was ok but seem to be more bland than usual. The more formal dinning rooms were surprising bland compared to past cruises. It appeared they gave up quality for the ability to serve all the extra people. It turned out that all of the best quality meals were only served in the specialty restaurants at which you had to pay extra. I heard people rave about the quality of meals in specialty restaurants but never in the regular restaurants or buffet. Shore Excursions The ship was too big to dock at several ports so we were forced to shuttle back and forth. As you can guess it took a very LONG time for 4000 people. The huge number of people limited the number of good shore excursions available. At several of the ports there were 6 cruise ships anchored at the same time all competing for the same shore excursions. There were long lines in ports and long lines onboard ship. I will stick with smaller ships in the future, no more huge ships. The world appears to be adding a Billion more people every 15 years now and huge ships remind you of that fact during your vacation. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We went on this cruise with a group 10 (9 of us are retired) including 4 brand new retirees. Since we are a group ranging in age from 55 to 80 (most in the 55-65 range) we were looking for an active cruise agenda and some fun ports of ... Read More
We went on this cruise with a group 10 (9 of us are retired) including 4 brand new retirees. Since we are a group ranging in age from 55 to 80 (most in the 55-65 range) we were looking for an active cruise agenda and some fun ports of call. Most of us are fairly novice cruisers (less than 5 cruises) and we wanted to keep to a cruise of less than 7 days. We thoroughly enjoyed the cruise agenda and the staff of the Vision of the Seas was top notch. The ship is a bit on the smaller side and is dated in some areas, but is a beautiful ship inside and out. The food was excellent and the stops at Coco Cay and Key West were fantastic. Our only negative was Nassau. The city has some nice restaurants and attractions, but the locals are very aggressive around the port in hawking debarking passengers for taxi, tours and other offers ... its a but unsettling. Additionally, the city is not all handicapped friendly ... streets and sidewalks are narrow and uneven without many ramps or access points for wheelchairs. We hit some rough seas on the return trip to New Orleans and several of us were a bit queazy over the final day and evening. Overall, a great experience made so by the staff of the Vision. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
I received a casino "deal" from a Caesar's casino in Las Vegas. Through the upgrade process went from a balcony to a H4 Family Suite. At a reasonable price. The cabin was perfect with the exception of a foggy window in ... Read More
I received a casino "deal" from a Caesar's casino in Las Vegas. Through the upgrade process went from a balcony to a H4 Family Suite. At a reasonable price. The cabin was perfect with the exception of a foggy window in the main bathroom. While the balcony is pretty small, holding only 2 chairs and a small table, it suited the needs. Embarkation was a surprise. I'm one of those folks who gets eager and tends to get to the port too early. Arriving at 10:30 ish, I found that Haven and group 1 folks were already boarding. There was a 15 minute glitch when the computers hiccuped but I thought NCL did a great job getting us on board quickly. The Haven dining room turned out to be my favorite venue on the ship...breakfast, lunch and dinner. Cagney's has always been my favorite but we cancelled our Cagney's reservation in preference to the Haven restaurant. Excellent service, much less chaos than the Breakway version of Cagney's. Shows were a bit of disappointment, not because they were bad (Burn the Floor and Rock the House were fine) but rather than I prefer the variety that smaller ships offer. The 800 seat main theater on the ship seems way small given 4,000 passengers. NCL crammed about 800 of us into the theater for the lifeboat drill. Gag me with a spoon. Getting in that place was a nightmare. The Haven was quiet. Very few children on the cruise because of the time and length of cruise, I surmise. The stateroom was equally quiet with only a gurgling noise, rather soothing, present at times. Other than a foggy window and a balky bedroom pocket door, things were fine. NCL couldn't provide us a DVD player (I brought some movies I wanted to watch) but the TV movies were free. TV channels available were pretty abysmal. On board internet was slow. No surprise there. The pool area outside the Haven was always crowded. I'm not a sun bather so no big deal but it certainly got crowded. I missed the promenade that other NCL ships have. Deck 7 doesn't go around the ship and using Deck 8 (the Waterfront) requires going in and out of the ship at the forward end. One can walk around 16 if one is OK with dodging joggers and having a pretty truncated walk. I question that portion of the ship design but, then, no one asked me. Pity! Disembarkation was a bit more problematic with a long line for NCL provided transportation. I believe that is all about 4,000 folks trying to go somewhere. Minor gripe to be sure. The ports Jamaica and Grand Cayman are best skipped in my opinion and I will next time. The plus is that the thermal spa gets nice and quiet when it is a port day. The thermal spa was too hot (not the water, the air) every day except that last two. But I enjoyed it...but would have like it more if it was under 80 degrees F ambient. What were they thinking? Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
NCL is our cruise line of choice and we love the latitudes program. All of our NCL cruises to date have been great until this one. The entertainment was for the most part poor and gross at times. The extra charges were never ending. The ... Read More
NCL is our cruise line of choice and we love the latitudes program. All of our NCL cruises to date have been great until this one. The entertainment was for the most part poor and gross at times. The extra charges were never ending. The casino is midship and the smoke was terrible. The atrium played host to a continuous stream of game shows and "entertainment" all of which were so noisy it was unbearable. The atrium also has the internet café, a loud bar, and all of the onboard services like cruise next desk, reservations etc. This area was so loud we could not work with staff to book another cruise on board as no place is provided to be able to hear or sit down with someone to make an informed decision. There was a lot of good on the ship too but the smoke and extreme noise everywhere, especially the atrium was terrible. We will not cruise another NCL ship of this size and category. Too many people, too many lines. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
Wanted New Orleans cruise . Wanted to try Norwegian and try a larger ship. We were very happy with all of the above. Larger ship delivered great entertainment as well as diversity of entertainment. We really enjoyed the various dining ... Read More
Wanted New Orleans cruise . Wanted to try Norwegian and try a larger ship. We were very happy with all of the above. Larger ship delivered great entertainment as well as diversity of entertainment. We really enjoyed the various dining options and the service was great. Even though the largest ship we ever sailed on , we witnessed very high service level on deck and the movement around the ship was very smooth and relaxing. We really enjoyed the flexible dining times. Temperature control Inthe cabin was excellent. The excursions we took were great and very well organized. It was very nice having access to breakfast on disembarkation. Also first time we self disembarked which was a great choice . Basically walked off the ship with no crowds. Finally casino was nice to have a nonsmoking section. Norwegian won our business. We plan to sail with them this summer to Alaska. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
Chose for price and ports. Had never cruised NCL was unsure of free dinning. We had good food and service, but missed the individual every night special care. The one problem was smell of smoke through decks 6,7&8. The casino was next ... Read More
Chose for price and ports. Had never cruised NCL was unsure of free dinning. We had good food and service, but missed the individual every night special care. The one problem was smell of smoke through decks 6,7&8. The casino was next to atrium so smoke smell drifted between those decks. Love the singing staff. They really brightened the day. Also liked and made me smile "washy, washy, happy, happy. Would not open balcony divider. Special meal chef was wonderful once we figured out how to reach him. Comedians were good and had lots of shows so you didn't have to wait in long lines. Felt the cruise line were quite organized we rarely had to wait to get off at each port. When drinks are a perk you should not have to pay $428 in gratuities, seems unreasonable to us. Overall we enjoyed the trip. We traveled with 4 other people. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We had friends from Wales tell us about this cruise with great perks. Since all of us have cruised at least 15 and none of them on Norwegian we were looking forward to a new experience. The reasons I give The Norwegian Breakaway this ... Read More
We had friends from Wales tell us about this cruise with great perks. Since all of us have cruised at least 15 and none of them on Norwegian we were looking forward to a new experience. The reasons I give The Norwegian Breakaway this rating is as follows. The great: A) Ship is beautiful B) Our room was a fabulous room and bathroom C) The main shows we went to (except the magician) were top notch. D) The staff was mostly great. Especially, Boris the Art Director, and Claudius Cruise Staff. The bad: A) The venues were filled with very large furniture and could not hold the amount of people who wanted to watch the shows. ie: the Atrium & Syd Norman's. With over 3700 passengers, Norwegian should set up the ship to handle more passengers for these shows. B) You gave us such a nice room but filled it with cheap,single ply toilet paper? Same with the cheap, runny lotion? C) The cruise staff overall (except a few) were far below what we have experienced on our other 20 or so cruises. D) The Cruise Director was the WORST we ever had on any cruise. Not just my opinion but overall concensious. with many on the cruise ship. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019

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