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Sail Date: September 2008
12 night Norwegian Jade - Istanbul to Athens - 19th September 2008

NEVER AGAIN!

We flew out of the new London Heathrow Terminal 5 to Istanbul, so far so good!

Embarked found our small, cramped balcony cabin ... Read More

12 night Norwegian Jade - Istanbul to Athens - 19th September 2008

NEVER AGAIN!

We flew out of the new London Heathrow Terminal 5 to Istanbul, so far so good!

Embarked found our small, cramped balcony cabin on floor 9 (thank god we didn't bring our cat with us) but no baggage until midnight, reception staff are a joke. "Go back to your cabin (again) whilst we look around the ship (again) for your bags", whilst filling out a form, "what's in your bags"? "erm, we're on a 12 night holiday, what do you thinks in our bags!"

Room steward and his female assistant were the epitome of laziness, you get this card to fill in on day 1 to get fruit replenished each day, that didn't happen, you are meant to get a card to hang on your door for room service breakfast, that never happened. I suggested to the steward that by not giving out these 2 forms that it would save him work each morning, I was right. He was meant to put a mint chocolate on the pillow, OK small thing but it didn't happen, apparently either the ship or his section had 'ran out' of mint chocs, Bah Humbug! I reckon he was flogging them to the Camel Trainers in Cairo!

Entertainment was the worst of any cruise line that we've done. The male/female jugglers were laughable (but wasn't meant to be), the bloke kept dropping the battens/balls and trying to laugh it off

On another act, a couple of guys (joke magicians) where 'kind of' Ok, but really lacked any interest from the audience, I did think though the large balloon balls thrown into the audience and a women had to squirmingly reveal the color of her knickers was cool

Another act was a show called 'Joes cafe' , basically a group of black soul singers. The audience laughed pretty much all the way through but I don't think we were meant to laugh

The Spinnakers 'Second City' was cool, well done to them for keeping that impromptu act up for the entire cruise (ps.. this is how Bill Murray (Ghostbusters) started his career)

The Freestyle (version 2) restaurant experience was OK, tip here is to keep an eye on the TV monitors around the ship and watch the busyness of each restaurant. Simply do not just use the freebies restaurants as you will be disappointed for such a long time trip

Bar service overall was OK, just as well when they add 15% tip to your bill, albeit I was sold a glass of flat sparkling wine, when I returned it to the bar I was told it wasn't flat, called for the bar manager who agreed it was to get a free bottle of bubbly, sorted!

At Alexander, we did the cruise organized excursion to Cairo, we did the Pyramids and Tombs. What an experience that was ! and are we glad we didn't do any overnight trips. When the overnighters returned to the ship there was 2 queues to see the doctor and they had to stop passengers touching ANYTHING in the restaurant just in case, thankfully it was only the last couple of days. We are glad we did but glad we didn't stay the night as the ship was EMPTY

2 Swimming pools are small but OK, be warned that on the 2 sea days you will see towels on chairs at the crack of dawn and NO they don't enforce the 'half hour towel on chair rule'

Don't bother with the photographers, their all amateurs with a box brownie, smile .. click and they post the pictures in the gallery most with our eyes closed, or scratching ones nose or something, Doh!

On the last day, and me being Ex-Royal Navy Engineer, I pointed out to an engineering officer on deck that 3 main and obvious light bulbs (lamp stands around railings) where out on the 12th deck for the entire cruise, not very 'ship-shape! aye Captain!

One Staff member, (Bistro Maitre'd) was so unprofessional and in fact childish. Apparently she's had more complaints about her arrogant, loud and rude attitude to passengers than anyone else on board, in fact she has no respect whatsoever for paying NCL passengers or even her staff. They did smile when I said I was reporting her to the Hotel Director, obviously they want her out

In the afternoon/evening of the eve of disembarkation, you will see queues at reception to be excluded from the $10 a day automatic tip. Like us, you simply fill in a form to state your dissatisfaction and the auto tips are removed

Overall very disappointed and wont be using NCL again, in fact back to OCEAN VILLAGE (part of Princess Cruises) with NO 15% bar tipping, NO $10 Auto daily tip, better service and respect from managers and staff, better entertainment, excellent quality buffet and 'eat when and with whom you want' restaurants

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