4 Norwegian Jewel Cruise Reviews for Repositioning Cruises to Hawaii

We had just completed a cruise on Celebrity from Hawaii to Sydney and loved it so when we saw this itinerary (much better) for a great price we decided to fly back to Hawaii and do it all again. Again embarkation in Honolulu was a ... Read More
We had just completed a cruise on Celebrity from Hawaii to Sydney and loved it so when we saw this itinerary (much better) for a great price we decided to fly back to Hawaii and do it all again. Again embarkation in Honolulu was a breeze. Sadly our upgrade bids failed and so did our attempts onboard, was surprising to find out the cruise was sold out as it had not been selling well when we booked last minute. It is our first time on Jewel but she is a carbon copy of the Jade so no issues with orientation. She is a little dated but is maintained well and was generally clean. As with other NCL ships in these classes the public area configuration means sometimes changing levels and there is a lack of public walkway space so on these longer cruises with an older clientele it can be slo moving at times. The positives of these ships are not too many passengers, the full promenade deck, the terrific views from Spinnaker lounge and the aft facing bar outside the buffet. The pool deck is a reasonable size for the number of passengers compared to their larger ships. There is a great variety of dining options. On this cruise smoking had been banned on the promenade deck which is fantastic but was a shame that they did not advertise it correctly so past passengers continually smoked out there despite there being no ashtrays and put everyone at risk by either throwing their butts overboard or extinguishing them on everything from paper packets to the ships dining ware (disgusting) and caused a lot of consternation between passengers and the smokers and the crew. I have no idea why the officers refused to put signs up rather than employ security staff who were regularly ignored. Again we were annoyed by the drinks tax issue NCL claims in USA ports, no other line charges these on drinks ordered under a pre paid drinks package - how can there be tax when there has been no transaction, NCL may as well charge you tax on your meals and accomodation under this logic, the hotel director could not explain this and the chief financial officer simply refused to meet us, we were told “it’s only $15” which is true but if you consider a small sum then you pay it! We had cabin 10,145 an inside which had an interesting configuration being parallel to the hallway but we enjoyed this as it seemed to utilise the space better, the cabin also felt modern. Unfortunately we had a junior steward who regularly forgot to deliver mail and laundry and often didn’t clear out dirty glasses and plates. Dining - was generally good. We find NCL is always behind other main lines like X and HAL but for the price paid was good quality with plenty of options. We tended to have breakfast in the buffet on the outside deck on port days or Osheehans for a change. Lunch on sea days we always dined in the mdr as we enjoy the views over the wake and the attentive service. Dinner in the Tsars palace was very good and the venue felt more spacious than on other ships, service was always top notch. When we felt like a change we alternated between Chin Chin and Osheehans which do tasty quick meals. The Chinese needs more vegetarian and seafood options. We don’t like the Azura mdr compared to Tsars as it feels dark and claustrophobic and the staff seem more rushed. As platinum members we get 2 specialty restaurants and we tried the French and the Italian- as on other ships we were treated like 2nd class citizens for dining under this program which is very strange and it certainly doesn’t incentivise us to pay for additional dining in these venues. Food and service in the French was good but only marginally better than the mdr so could not justify paying. The Italian is a nice space but the pizza is the same as in the buffet (slightly better toppings) and the rest of the food was decent without being outstanding. This cruise changed CDs on day 4 which I have never seen before and in our view it seemed to disrupt the flow the ship had attained. Dave the new CD seemed to moan about being back at work constantly and was constantly talking about cruising around Australia and NZ (this cruise didn’t go to those places - nor did the following one except for its final destination). Also, the activities seemed to be lessened on the changeover and considering we had 5 sea days in a row there was a complete lack of variety in activities (NCL seems to have gotten mundane in this area compared to Celebrity). Strangely they had a lot more activities on port days? On the plus side there was a couple of great matinee shows in particular by Igor the band leader and saxophonist. The production shows were well performed and the cast seemed very talented, I do feel like some semblance of a story line would be good but this is just nit picking. Guest entertainment was generally good, personally I don’t like ABBA so the 2 nights of identical show were a bit much, I also don’t go to hypnotist shows anymore (reports were that someone didn’t come out of it Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
I choose this cruise because I wanted to visit all of the islands that make up Hawaii without having to travel there numerous times due to the expense. By cruising I was able see each island as well as not having to worry about the cost of ... Read More
I choose this cruise because I wanted to visit all of the islands that make up Hawaii without having to travel there numerous times due to the expense. By cruising I was able see each island as well as not having to worry about the cost of hotel, transportation, food and entertainment. When participating on shore excursions there were numerous activities scheduled each day on board to keep one entertained for the individual as well as group activities if one wish to be involved a group function. As for myself the food provided was a large variety to satisfy the palette of the most selected person. i have only traveled on Norwegian since I started cruise after taking my first cruise of three days several years ago. Is the line perfect nope, but which one is! For me it's what I have been looking for and will continue to use the line to meet my goals of seeing the world one port at a time. My motto is from a shirt that I found on the Jewel earlier this year, "Cruising Is My Happy Place". Happy cruising...... Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Chose this cruise as it left from Vancouver (my home port) and I wanted to see more of Hawaii. Travelled with my cousin & our aunt in an inside room. While snug, we managed to all have enough space for our belongings in the ... Read More
Chose this cruise as it left from Vancouver (my home port) and I wanted to see more of Hawaii. Travelled with my cousin & our aunt in an inside room. While snug, we managed to all have enough space for our belongings in the drawers, closet, & washroom. Our room steward was great, the crew was smiling & happy everywhere we went. Waiters in Tsar’s Palace were awesome! My aunt has a food allergy & the food allergy guy, Alex, took such good care of her. We had 2 specialty dinners and enjoyed both. Found lots of space at the pool & in the outdoor cafe. Enjoyed the renovated areas on the pool deck where they’ve removed lounge seating type couches & replaced with tables as it seems to allow for more people to enjoy the space. I was super impressed with the Hawaiian show that came on-board one afternoon. The performers were great and it turned out that the show they did was very similar to the luau show that we went to after the cruise. Overall I continue to be very happy with NCL & the Jewel class ships. First time on NCL for my relatives and I think they are both on board for doing another cruise! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary.We wanted to visit all of the Hawaiian Islands and this did the trick. An added benefit turned out to be the 5 days at sea! We never realized how relaxing, yet interesting the ship would be. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary.We wanted to visit all of the Hawaiian Islands and this did the trick. An added benefit turned out to be the 5 days at sea! We never realized how relaxing, yet interesting the ship would be. We loved the on board lectures, the activities, and just the opportunity to take naps or find a place to read. The restaurants and the food were terrific---never disappointed. Loved all the shore excursions---got a chance to see the calmer side of the islands, not just the shopping and hustle side. The entertainment was very good with quite a variety. We also enjoyed listening to the different musicians and groups on board. The cruise staff also recognized Veterans on board---several get-togethers were organized and the final party included 53 Veterans from the US and Canada. It was a great cruise---we are counting it as one of the best cruises since we have retired!! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Norwegian Jewel Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 4.1
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 1.0 3.4
Service 3.0 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 3.0 4.1

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