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960 Norwegian (NCL) Copenhagen Cruise Reviews

It was obvious that NCL management cares only about how much money they can make. For example, the ship stopped in Miami for only a few hours and took on fuel and provisions there. Every passenger had to go through Customs and ... Read More
It was obvious that NCL management cares only about how much money they can make. For example, the ship stopped in Miami for only a few hours and took on fuel and provisions there. Every passenger had to go through Customs and Immigration and the line took a minimum of three hours to get off and back on. Then they blamed Customs for the delay when the stop was obviously only to benefit the ship, not the passengers. The line at the private island in the Bahamas for the tenders was over an hour while we watched two Royal Caribbean ships docked at a pier at their island and passengers walked on and off the ship at will. NCL obviously doesn't want to spend the money to build a pier. The infirmary on the ship charged outrageous prices, in the thousands of dollars for minimal services. The bartenders and waiters worked hard but there just weren't enough of them. The food was cold and second rate. Service in the dining rooms was very slow and the food, especially at the buffet, was always cold. The specialty dining rooms (we ate in five of them) were a disappointment except for Cagney's and The Bistro. Skip the Italian, the seafood, and the Brazilian. That means we paid for three nights for two people (about $180) for food that was no better than the regular dining rooms. There was nowhere to walk around the ship outside except for a small area. The ropes course up top was actually very fun, but the average age of this 19 night cruise was 67, according to the crew, and many, if not most, of the passengers were not physically able to participate. The embarkation would have been fine if they had not lost my suitcase, which i carried to the dock. At the end of the cruise they gave me a claim form with a reminder on it that the terms of the cruise contract say they are only liable in an amount not to exceed $100. Try and buy a suitcase and all of the clothes, etc. in it for a hundred bucks. I'm glad that we had the experience of crossing the Atlantic by sea and I might do it again one day but not with NCL. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
First, read the Danforth family review. No need for me to repeat everything there. It is ALL correct - even a bit mild. Overall, organization was lacking. Processes were disorganized; we heard the word "cluster" quite a ... Read More
First, read the Danforth family review. No need for me to repeat everything there. It is ALL correct - even a bit mild. Overall, organization was lacking. Processes were disorganized; we heard the word "cluster" quite a few times. The biggest surprise (of many) was the churlish attitude of most of the staff. Few smiles, uncaring (even after pouring coffee on my wife's lap!), angry that we asked for a new table when the tablecloth was soaked with said coffee. Excursion staff - not helpful and clueless (multiple different or non-answers to the same questions). Our cabin steward, Arnold, was excellent, though. The rumor mill had it that our crew was stripped in Southampton to staff the new ship being launched the following week. Not sure if it was true, but many of the staff acted like they had no previous experience with what they were supposed to be doing. The tendering at Stirrup Cay was a clown show. Compared to our last visit with another cruise line, when the lines got too long, they launched some lifeboats and got the people moved quickly. Clearly Stirrup Cay can not handle two ships at once, with only two tenders and one small auxiliary (used to move crew and food service). When the tendering fell 90-120 minutes behind schedule, no adjustments to food service were made. Passengers simply got disgusted and skipped that "experience." Excursions. Terrible. London - 2.5 hours by bus, 3 hours in London, 2.5 hours back. Waste of time from Southhampton. Paris - 3 hours by bus, 3 hours in Paris (along with a terrible guide whose English was VERY weak and who knew nothing about Paris, and who got flustered with any question she was asked). The "port briefings" provided no information about the port; they were simply an effort to sell excursions. Questions about non-excursion topics were not answered. (NB, Holland America does a MUCH better job in this arena). Not mentioned was the appalling "out of food" situation when we missed the port stop in the Azores. Ships missing that stop is not uncommon - some lines report as much as 60% of the time they are unable to get in. SO - the ship should be prepared for not being able to re-supply in the Azores. But no - after that, we were out of watermelon, bananas, lettuce, mushrooms, orange juice, iced tea, lemonade (the only FREE drinks available), milk of any sort - for the next 7 days. Even after we landed in Miami (plenty of time to place a grocery order), there was STILL no orange juice available (doesn't orange juice come from Florida?). Some dining staff told us that they "couldn't find it" in the load they took on in Miami. Absolutely ridiculous. In general, the food was mediocre - Buffet food overcooked, over-spiced (and not labelled as such), over-curried, over-salted. Restaurant food cold by the time it got to you. Typically took 75-90 minutes to get breakfast in either the TASTE or SAVOR restaurants, with courses arriving out of order. The first day - lunch - in a sit-down restaurant. Waiter brings the menu, later comes back to take our order. 25 minutes later, no food. The waiter returns and tells us that we had been provided the wrong menu and we'd have to re-order. OK, can we have the correct menu? Sorry sir, we have to wait for them to be printed! We attended a couple of extra charge dinner-shows (Cirque, Dreams, and Steam, and the "Wine school." After both, we were, via the PA system, unceremoniously told to leave immediately, even though we had not had the opportunity to finish our meal, dessert, and drink our wine. Then, the immigration situation in Miami. 4-5 hours to unload and get everybody checked, THEN 4-5 hours to get back on board. Fuss at passengers about being back in plenty of time, THEN make them stand around while the crew flounders. Disorganized, no staff help (there were two security guards from the terminal - nobody else to help). The captain blamed it on the "local authorities" - who did the same thing that they always do. The CBP staff had left for the day, and we were still standing outside. Miami is the USA headquarters for Norwegian, and their offices are right down the street. If you are going to have, or are having, a disaster (which this process was), get your office staff out from behind their desks, go to the terminal, bring (or buy) some coolers, ice, and bottled water, and help the customers. People were sick, exhausted, overheated (the outside sidewalks have no protection from the sun), Really ANGRY, there were no medical staff present, no cold water, etc., etc. On another occasion, myself and one other gent were lifting weights in the fitness center. A female member of the Spa staff entered the room and literally screamed at us that we must stop dropping weights. NOBODY had dropped any weights for the time I was there - about 20 minutes. She ungraciously informed us that her customers downstairs were complaining, and if they complained she was "working for free." Totally inappropriate. I complained to the fitness staff, whose response was, "We all know that she is crazy." The spa, despite paying a lot EXTRA for it, was almost always out of robes. Not a real problem for me, but the ladies were quite unhappy about the situation. My last noteworthy comment involves my wife's effort to get a glass of tomato juice on the last morning (no orange, remember - even though we had just taken on stores in Miami). She went to the bar where the mimosas and bloody Mary are made. Guess what? Can't find tomato juice! Once located, can't find can opener! Once located, didn't know how to operate it (you have to make two holes, one to pour and one for makeup air to enter). 25 minutes to get a glass of tomato juice, at a bar that specializes in Bloody Mary and Mimosa. Unreal! In general, the public facilities (restaurants, entertainment venues, even the buffet dining area) are not big enough for the number of people aboard the ship. Particularly a problem when the weather is cold and the outdoor pool/sunning areas can't be used. We suspect that the overcrowding of entertainment and dining venues, as well as the extensive queuing (passports, embarking, disembarking) contributed to the rampant spread of upper respiratory infections throughout the passengers. Almost everybody was sick! My background is in part in the US Navy. If a Navy ship had so badly failed in its core mission, the boss would have been waiting at the pier, the captain would have been relieved and replaced on the spot, along with the hotel "general manager" (who was so conspicuously absent), the restaurant managers, and the person responsible for purchasing and warehousing food. Nope, blame it on the local authorities, ruin another whole day for the passengers, and move on. Sincere-sounding apologies don't make it acceptable. It will require a lot of convincing before I will do another cruise on this line. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
The lines, noise and crowds were terrible. For example, the organization of the immigration clearance in Miami was terrible and unforgivable. We shuffled in line for an hour and a half, for no reason, to get to the immigration desk. I ... Read More
The lines, noise and crowds were terrible. For example, the organization of the immigration clearance in Miami was terrible and unforgivable. We shuffled in line for an hour and a half, for no reason, to get to the immigration desk. I calculated about 400 people in the queue in the main bay alone. Why, when they were only processing about five people per minute? Why run a line from the Tropicana aft roomt to the forward lobby, to the outside deck, and aft to the gangway before even getting off the ship? We could have stayed in our cabin or a lounge for an hour and a quarter and then had a leisurely walk to the immigration desk without compromising the process at all. I understand that nothing could be done about getting back aboard before the Coast Guard gave permission, but at least there should have been enough seats in the waiting area. Instead many had to stand or sit on the floor. And food and beverages would have been nice since we were stuck there from mid-morning until mid-afternoon. The noise in the atrium was often so loud that we couldn't enjoy our meal in O'Sheehans. The first show we went to in the theater was so loud that we left after a few minutes. I never went to another, although my wife did another and stuck her fingers in her ears for the duration. At dinner in the Tropicana room, where we had an excellent waitress, the band started and we rushed dessert to get away. From then on we went a half hour earlier. Later a friend gave us earplugs which we kept close at hand for the rest of the cruise and used frequently. And we had to stand in line so frequently that we stopped going to many places on the ship because they weren't worth the aggravation. Tropicana, O'Sheehans and the buffet were our favorite dining places, but we had to arrive early to be assured of getting a seat without standing in line. The best part of the on-board experience were sea days when I could sit in the quiet of our cabin or on the balcony and read in peace, but for that I could have stayed home, turned off the phones and saved many thousands of dollars. Our cabin steward, Mohammed, was excellent. Riu Liu at table 117, our waitress in the Tropicana, was outstanding! And the Maitre’d accommodated us by sending us straight there when we arrived at the desk. The captain was also very good, but we were annoyed that when he gave his daily briefings we couldn't hear them in any public spaces because of the noise; even the crew failed to give him the respect he deserved. If the cruise director was running something in the atrium he kept going through the entire briefing. Our shore excursion on Bermuda was a poor experience. Our catamaran snorkel was cancelled at the last minute, supposedly due to engine problems. A friend greased the palm of an excursion director on the pier to get us onto the Rising Sun, which was then overcrowded. And the crew played music so loud that our ears were ringing. Later we heard that the cancellation wasn’t due to an engine problem at all – there was a golf tournament on the island that was more interesting to the crew. We went with a friend who is handicapped – two artificial knees, two artificial hips and two artificial shoulders. When we were stuck in long lines he asked for a wheelchair and was sometimes told there were none available. Then we would see staff pass us pushing someone in a wheelchair. And they were always pushed to the head of the line in comfort while the rest of us had to stand. There should be enough wheelchairs available that they can stay in their place in the queue. Then perhaps there wouldn’t be so many asking for them. On my tour of the Normandy invasion beaches (The best and most worthwhile part of the whole experience) there was a problem; my tour bus left Colleville Sur Mer without me, although I got to the parking lot with six minutes to spare. Fortunately there was another Norwegian tour bus still there on which I hitched a ride to the next stop. There our guide apologized profusely and said that she had counted three times. She should have counted four times. Although good efforts were made to prevent the spread of coughs and colds, they were rampant anyway. Everywhere we went there were people coughing around us. And we often saw crew members enter the buffet area bypassing the hand sanitizers. A niggle - To connect to the internet requires entering "logon.com." To get off requires entering "logout,com." Not logon/logoff or login/logout. The first time I used it I did logon/logoff and turned off my tablet, which used the entire 240 minutes. It was graciously restored but only after standing twenty minutes in line at the Internet Cafe desk. And another annoyance - it seemed like were solicited several times daily to spend additional money - buy a raffle ticket, play bingo, buy a schlocky piece of so-called art. It was unseemly. Overall the experience was not the relaxing vacation I had hoped for. Instead the outstanding memory is of standing in lines and crowds with a constant dim beating my eardrums to a pulp. This was our first cruise, although we’re in our early ‘70s. After this experience it was almost certainly our last. In my weakened state while composing that into the Norwegian cruise survey website I forgot this event, which was one of the highlights of the trip. You can’t make this up: I always carry a knife or two – my little Buck pocket knife and my big Buck lock-back. Not wanting to be without them for an extended time I checked Norwegian’s forbidden items list, where it says that knives with a blade longer than four inches are prohibited. My lock-back has a three and a half inch blade, so they both went into our checked baggage along with my Victorinox McGyver tool. (And I did use all of them several times on the cruise.) All went well for the first few days from Copenhagen to Rotterdam. In Rotterdam the rest of our party took a tour while I went on a quest walking around the port looking for some Limburger cheese. No joy, but I had a swell time wandering around the harbor area, talking to a nice lady walking her dog, studying some old boats tied up along the quay, and watching the re-provisioning of the ship. Getting back aboard is like going through airport security – jackets and metal items into a basket for the x-ray, and a walk through the metal detector. I tossed my knives into the tray and walked through. On the other side a security guy grabbed the lock-back and asked “This yours?” “Yeah” I said, reaching for it. “I’ll have to keep it. It’s prohibited.” he said. I calmly told him that it wasn’t, that it had a three and a half inch blade and knives were prohibited only if the blade was longer than four inches. After running around that fencepost for a while he explained that the ship has its rules, but we were in the Port of Rotterdam, which has its own rules, and the big Buck was prohibited. I asked that, if it was prohibited in the port, why would it be confiscated on leaving the port instead of on entry. And if he’d give it back I’d be out of the port and on the ship in a few seconds. He could even walk to the gangway with me and turn it over there. No good. He said that he’d turn it over to ship security, who would bring it to my cabin in short order. “What’s your cabin number?” I gave it to him, gave up, went on board to our cabin and read a few chapters. No knife, so I went searching for Security. Finding that it’s on Deck Four I got on the elevator and pushed Four. The light went back out. Deck Four is crew only, so I went to Deck Five. At the stairways there are two sets of stairs going down to either side of a landing, and one set between them going from the landing to the next deck. There was a fat blue rope across the right side, but the left side was open, so I went down that way and wandered around a while. A crew member asked what I was doing there and I said “Looking for Security.” He opened a door for me and pointed the way. I knocked on the door several times but got no answer. Then I noticed a sign with a phone number. I found a phone and called, and finally learned that my knife was at the security station on the boarding deck. But then I was locked in the bowels of the ship. Finally a crew member came by and asked what I was doing there. “Trying to get out.” I said, and he unlocked a door for me. At the security station I told the officer that I was there to get my knife. “What cabin number?” He picked up an envelope with my cabin number on it and tore it open. My razor-sharp knife was in the flimsy business envelope with the blade open! I said “That’s no way to handle and store a knife!” He said that they couldn’t get it closed. Rolleyes. I closed it for him. He told me that I couldn’t have it on board, and he had to keep it until the end of the cruise when I would get it back. “Nonsense! It’s allowed by your own rules! Knives with a blade longer than four inches are prohibited, but this has a three and a half inch blade. Should I get my copy of the rules from my cabin? Do you have a measuring instrument? We’ll get this straightened out real quick.” Finally he said that he’d have to get his supervisor, which eventually happened. After running around the same fencepost for a while with him he told me that he had to keep it because it was “scary looking.” “Scary looking” became the catch phrase among us for the rest of the cruise. Finally I gave up and told him that he could keep it but I wanted a receipt. He said that was no problem and told his Minion to write out a receipt. Minion said that he had no receipts, and was sent off to get a book. While waiting I mentioned that I had seen in the Daily Freestyle that very morning that bringing food or dairy products aboard was prohibited, but there were vendors in the terminal selling wheels of Gouda to the passengers. He said that he’d checked that out and decided to allow it because this was Rotterdam and, after all, Gouda is a Dutch institution, so the cheese was more like a souvenir. “So at your discretion you allow a specifically prohibited food dairy product on board, but confiscate a specifically allowed knife because it’s Scary Looking?” “Well, yeah.” So we chatted pleasantly for a while. When Minion returned and started writing a receipt the officer said “Forget it.” and handed my knife back on the promise that I wouldn’t take it ashore any more. And for the rest of the cruise I had fun telling the story. To leave the ship one presents a key card which is scanned, causing a “Beep,” and putting a picture of the face of the passenger on the screen. The security officer looks at the picture, the face, and hands the card back. Getting back on uses the same process. I didn’t notice it, but my wife said that every time I presented my card on boarding, the terminal said “Beep-boop,” but everyone else just got the “Beep.” She claimed that I was a marked man, and Big Brother was watching me. Maybe so. Then, to add very expensive injury to the insult, although it was on the dresser the day before, my McGyver tool was missing from our cabin when my wife was packing to leave. The knives were in my pockets and made it into a suitcase, but they were gone when we got home. That’s over a hundred dollars of hardware I’ll never get back. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We picked this trip for the itinerary. With 25+ cruises under our belt we never cruised a mega ship. Never again. Lines, lines and more lines. Waited one hour for a show at Syd Norman's. Never got in because it was too crowded.Miami ... Read More
We picked this trip for the itinerary. With 25+ cruises under our belt we never cruised a mega ship. Never again. Lines, lines and more lines. Waited one hour for a show at Syd Norman's. Never got in because it was too crowded.Miami port was a disaster. Mob action mentality. Took 2 hours to have lunch. And even in New Orleans, our luggage was piled all together without any rows to access it. Taxi line was over 2 hours long. Ship is illogically laid out...one bar is placed between 2 dining rooms with not enough space for people to pass. Million Dollar Quartet, hypnotist, Cirque show were fantastic. Public bathrooms flushed when I walked in, flushed when I stood up and then flushed when I left. No water saving there. Soap dispensers were also automatic but didn't work half the time which is probably why half the ship was sick! Ship needs new management and a logistic expert to fix. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This was the worst cruise we have been on, will never travel Norwegian again. Up until Cork Ireland it was good from then on it just got worse. Went through hurricane Pablo and subtropical storm Rebeka, missed a port hence instead of two ... Read More
This was the worst cruise we have been on, will never travel Norwegian again. Up until Cork Ireland it was good from then on it just got worse. Went through hurricane Pablo and subtropical storm Rebeka, missed a port hence instead of two days at sea a day in port that we missed then four days at sea it became seven days at sea. They took this large ship and made everything in it smaller from rooms to finding a quiet place to read, library is a joke no space to sit to read. People went to margarita ville the service was so terrible it ended up to be complimentary because orders were all wrong coming from the kitchen. The stop in Miami was a joke spent all our time in immigration, some people sat in terminal for five hours before being allowed to go back on ship. We ran out of some food before and after picking up supplies, some of the waiters etc did not know what they were to do as if they had never done this before. While dining in the main dining room the music for dinner was so loud you couldn’t hear what the person across the table was saying so we don’t call this dinner music. Captain kept apologizing for the cruise all the way up to when we disembarked in New Orleans. On disembarkment people were looking for their suitcases come to find out they were still on board ship and had never been taken off which made for huge delays leaving. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We choose this cruise because of Itinerary and value. The food was very bad and specialty restaurants were no better then main dining room. Tendering from the ship was a nightmare we were bearded like cattle. The timing at port of Miami ... Read More
We choose this cruise because of Itinerary and value. The food was very bad and specialty restaurants were no better then main dining room. Tendering from the ship was a nightmare we were bearded like cattle. The timing at port of Miami was nothing but a convenience for NCL most passengers had no time to enjoy Miami because of the lack of organization. Disembarking in New Orleans was again poorly handled. No supervision from NCL. Insufficient number of buses taking people to airport passengers disembarking and new passengers embarking were mixed together. The entire cruise was a great disappointment and we are in a customer service nightmare right now with NCL. Our room steward was excellent as were the bartenders. The theater personnel were terrific and the Syd Norman pour house rocked. The 2 main shows were excellent however on an 18 day cruise it just wasn’t enough variety Managers and Maitre D in the speciality restaurants and main dinning room tried to accommodate however the quality of the food was sub par and out of their control Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
First the positives: excellent entertainment- if you can get a seat to participate Great staterooms Our room steward Narendra was fabulous Cirque Dreams and Steam was amazing Burn the floor dancers show was fabulous ... Read More
First the positives: excellent entertainment- if you can get a seat to participate Great staterooms Our room steward Narendra was fabulous Cirque Dreams and Steam was amazing Burn the floor dancers show was fabulous The rope course was great and so were the attendants The water slides were fun The grilled shrimp in the garden cafe was excellent consistently Ports of Rotterdam, Southampton, LeHavre, Portland, Cobh and Bermuda were great. The drawbacks: -Too small Cabin deck - one person would have to get up to allow the other to get into the second chair. A book and one glass could fit on the outside table. -TERRIBLE dining service. Even Cagney’s their very expensive steak house the steaks were inconsistent and the side dish came long after your steak and the wine delivered twice was wrong. Mostly the dining staff were disinterested, the meal timing was bad and more then not there were long waits between courses. -The brand new rock and roll venue Syd Norman’s was probably the most popular and grossly undersized for the interest. This bar very small and was full more then 1-2 hr before the band went on stage holding 1/5 of the persons who attempted to attend. -Popular events were held in the atrium instead of the theater. This area also was very small holding a very limited number of people. -Very disappointing not to be able to dock in Azores but this was a weather issue. -What was inexcusably the worst planned shore event was Great Stirrup Cay - if you didn’t pay for a shore excursion you had to sign up for a tender after those with an excursion we’re given priority. The ships staff appeared to make no attempt to monitor who signed up for which tender. Our tender number 10 left almost two hours late - at almost 2 pm getting us to the island when all the food venues closed at 2 pm. First excuse was “it took a long to get people on and off tenders” the second excuse was “the swells were slowing down the tenders” and the third and finally more honest was “we are sharing the 3 tenders with another ship”. This was exceptionally poorly done and what could have been a 4 hr day on the island was reduced to 2 hungry hours and 1 hour if that in line to get back in a tender. The island does not have the capacity for 2 large ships as we experienced. -excuses aplenty on this ship and they kept morphing. -Miami our first domestic port- everyone had to go thru customs. We disembarked to end our cruise here. We received a typed letter from NCL to congregate in an area at 7-7:15 am to depart FIRST as a group. The night before customer service indicated this would be at 7:30 am and we made travel arrangements accordingly. After what looked to be about 300-500 passengers and their luggage arrived we were told we would be LAST to depart! This was via elevators- for staff - some not working into the port where we stood for an hour in line on a hot stuffy gangway. We finally got to the curb at 10 am long after travel planned. This was our 4th Atlantic crossing. Weather is an expected issue. NCL’s inability to handle a crowd of 3600+ passengers was not expected. Yes this ship can sleep that many but it cannot seat in entertainment venues, feed or disembark in a timely manner this many. Every member of our party contracted a respiratory illness at one time or another and hacking coughing and I’ll appearing persons could be seen and heard throughout the ship. I will not travel a Norwegian ship again. No matter how nice and talented the ships captain is. I recommend Celebrity or Holland or Disney for Atlantic crossings. All were smaller ships with consistently fine service. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
I've cruised on Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and NCL. I've cruised 11 times. This is the most mediocre cruise line I've been on. Let me tell you why... Poor Customer Service at every level - the biggest problem with NCL is ... Read More
I've cruised on Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and NCL. I've cruised 11 times. This is the most mediocre cruise line I've been on. Let me tell you why... Poor Customer Service at every level - the biggest problem with NCL is their lack of interest in their "staff culture". There is no one setting an example for how to treat customers. On most cruises I've been on, I felt special and pampered. Not on NCL. After a 19day cruise, my cabin steward never introduced himself and I never figured out who he was. Once I opened my door at 8:50pm and one of the stewards was with his cart outside my door. I figured this was probably my guy. I asked him for a bucket of ice. I've done this on every cruise I've ever been on. He said he couldn't get it as he was off but I could call room service to bring it. In all restaurants, including the specialty restaurants like Cagney's, service was SLOW. I am unable to say whether it was because they were understaffed or what the problem was. There is an annoying casualness to the wait staff approach, as if I was an afterthought, perhaps even an inconvenience. In the dining room "taste" I asked for a glass of club soda and was told, "I will bring it when I have time." Staff constantly stepped in front of me or cut me off when I was walking places. The Captain of the ship even stated he didn't want to hear complaints about the hotel staff at a Q & A which tells me that this is a systemic problem, a culture of "that's not my job." O'Sheehans was the same with slow service and lack of attention to customers. There were few exceptions to this mediocrity. The staff at the Starbucks store were excellent. I have no idea if they work for Starbucks or for NCL but they were friendly, remembered my orders, and made me feel like their special customer. Food: in the dining rooms (Taste, Savour and Tropicana), the food was average. My husband thought the wine selection was ok. I was disappointed in the food at Cagney's. I remembered that when I was on NCL one other time, Cagney's was consistently excellent and I thought I could just dine there and be happy. Not so this time. My favorite steak, Ribeye, was not tender or flavorful. I did have a good Filet twice. Sides were so so. Food not brought out together...sides much later than steak. Desserts were good. Jimmy Buffet's was a letdown on several occasions. On a good day, food was average. But there were several times when I just gave up. The buffet was as expected. The dinner with the Cirque show was average with overcooked sirloin but the food was served hot. Terrible dessert! Room service charges $7.95 per delivery. I think that's service charge should be eliminated. Entertainment: NCL did better with this. My favorite was the house band at Syd Norman' Pour house. Excellent, engaging, talented. Lots of fun. The venue was too small. The Cirque show was excellent. A steampunk version of a Cirque du Soleil and really fun to watch. So glad we went to this. We also enjoyed the Burn the Floor dance group very much. Good choreography especially given the stage was small. The magician gave me the creeps. Ship condition: very good. It was kept clean and is beautiful. Cabin: my biggest problem was the steward who forgot to bring us beach towels (these were to be provided to all guests), forgot to bring a new version of a bulletin that was delivered to all guests, didn't get around to cleaning our room, had to leave notes for him to remove used glasses/plates. Ports: we never take the cruise line excursions and this cruise was no exception. I enjoyed the ports quite a lot. The exceptions was the Bahamas where we had to tender in to the island. We were asked to sign up for a tender time but they were 2 hours late. I spent much of my day sitting in the theatre waiting for a tender and then when I did get to the island, the lunch stands were closing up!! Lines very long. Shopping was just plain awful. A bunch of junk. A waste of a day. If you like a place to read and be quiet, this is not a good ship. There just aren't enough places to "hang out". Overall, this cruise line blew it. I will never cruise on NCL again. They need a complete revamping of their customer service culture. What a dismal cruise experience. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
I have wanted to do a transatlantic crossing and this itinerary was outstanding. I traveled with two friends. We left home on Wednesday morning and arrived in Copenhagen around noon on Thursday after three flights and a sleepless night. ... Read More
I have wanted to do a transatlantic crossing and this itinerary was outstanding. I traveled with two friends. We left home on Wednesday morning and arrived in Copenhagen around noon on Thursday after three flights and a sleepless night. Copenhagen is a great city to explore and I definitely recommend at least a couple of days to explore. We opted for the Hop on Hop Off bus which made it easy to get to the major attractions. This also included a harbor tour which was a different but equally enjoyable way to view the city. We took a taxi to the port. The embarkation area was already busy with a long line of eager passengers but the line continued to move. Luggage was loaded for delivery to the room and we were on the ship within 30 minutes. For the number of passengers we thought embarkation went well. The ship is huge. It looks like a building when you first encounter all 16 stories. Exploration of the public spaces quickly made me realize that there wasn't a lot of room for the 3700 people who boarded with me. My overall impression was that the space is cramped and closed in. There are very few locations to see outside when you are inside. There were no quiet spots when everybody was out and about. Remember that the only public space is located on decks 6,7,8,15 and 16. This includes all dining options, shops, a huge casino, bars, clubs, spa, gym, thermal spa, outdoor activity areas like ropes course and mini golf, and you soon begin to understand why space is so limited. It was the public space of a smaller ship with the rooms and passengers of a big ship. Many of the activities were held in the atrium which was not large enough or have adequate sound to overcome the noise from the atrium bar on the lower level or O'Sheehan's on the upper level. The clubs and lounges which had performers would fill early which resulted in people standing in line up to hour to secure a seat. Many people were turned away. After a while you stop trying unless you get there really early. The outdoor public spaces were very nice with the waterfront but for the majority of this cruise they were blocked off due to weather conditions. This ship does not have a promenade that circles the entire and I realized how much I missed this. The quality of the headliner Entertainment was outstanding with The Million Dollar Quartet and Burn the Floor. Unfortunately I heard people complain about not getting to see these because they had not made reservations beforehand. The theater is small for the number of passengers and the show was only offered a few times. If you are willing to pay extra then the Cirque Dreams show and the Wine Lovers musical were also excellent. We thought the meal at the Wine Lovers Musical was better than the meal for the Cirque show. Both are set menus so I would not recommend for picky eaters. The Staff and Crew were all very pleasant but seemed to be overworked. They never complained and were constantly on the move but meal services were extremely slow. Failure to allow 2 hours for a meal would result in missing entertainment or the desert course. Personalized service was not an option because they were so busy trying to keep up. I hated to even ask for a drink refill (which was not offered). Complimentary dining options included main dining in one of three restaurants (Tropicana is the largest with Taste and Savor being smaller), the buffet, or O'Sheehans. The noodle bar was always booked so I cannot comment on it although I would like to have tried it. Tropicana, Taste and Savor all serve the same menu. We learned to check if one seemed extremely busy because we could often get into another sooner. Since I have been cruising with NCL they had made and seem to be continuing to make cutbacks on the quality and variety of items offered on their menu. Breakfast is pretty much the same thing everyday with a few daily selections swapped out about every third day. While on an extended cruise I expected to see repeat menus but I did not expect to see the same one on back to back days or so often. The food was average-nothing really special. We prefer the more relaxed sit down instead of the hustle and bustle of the buffet but the menu did get old being so limited. The garden buffet seemed to have more variety if you didn't mind scavenging from station to station in search of what you wanted. The seating area also had the most glass windows for actually seeing outside. The view directly out of the rear dining area is beautiful and slightly less hectic. O'Sheehan's is good for a quicker meal or if you need a fast food fix. The spinach and artichoke dip is additive. NCL advertises open 24/7 so I was surprised to go down for breakfast at 5 only to find a plate of stall sandwiches and self serve coffee/hot water for tea. They did open for breakfast at 5:30. The fitness and spa area is very generous in size. Services are pricey, even with specials but everyone is very professional and do an excellent job. My overall memories from this trip are mixed with both positive and negative. It was a great itinerary. The length in port was often too short. We ran into some glitches that were out of anyone's control like two hurricanes which rocked the boat and cancelled a port. We also had some glitches which seemed to be created by NCL: long lines, extended waiting, being herded around like cattle, a lack of activities, inadequate public spaces, poor planning, and a relentless and constant up-sale mentality that was tiresome. I have dubbed this a trip of Endurance because we endured a whole lot. We met some wonderful people who share our love of travel, chose to make the best of the situation and still managed to have an enjoyable time. There also seemed to be a large contingency of loud, obnoxious, complainers who were quick to find fault and managed to make everyone around them miserable. I did not lodge complaints on the ship but I will allow my travel dollars to speak for themselves. If this is the direction that NCL is going then I will be exploring other options. Some overall comments about the ports. While we arrived at the stated time, we were never close to being cleared so it seemed our days started late. It often felt like a hurry up and wait. There were times when NCL seemed to manage the large crowd efficiently but more often I saw a lot of people with limited mobility forced to cue up in long lines, stand on feet and ankles that looked swollen and painful, hurry to try and keep up with a group. I saw a woman almost knock down an older person so she could get the set at the front of the bus. There was also a lot of grumbling about passengers on NCL excursions being given priority. I know those excursions are more expensive but this is one of the reasons we chose to book mostly NCL tours. I consider the door to door service as part of the tour. If we chose to go independently we knew we would be exiting later and planned accordingly. Rotterdam-NCL Clogs, Windmills and Amsterdam The living museum is a controlled environment to see what life used to be like, its a beautiful area and we had a quick tour of Amsterdam and enough time to grab a quick lunch. South Hampton-NCL Panoramic London, it was a long day but we managed to hit many of the sites. We had a 1 hour stop with enough time to get lunch in a pub. La Harve-Paris, another long day but again we covered a lot of territory. We had 2 hours to explore a little on our own which also allowed time for lunch. Portland-Stonehenge-a beautiful drive through the country. The area was drizzly with rain and the wind is biting but definitely one to see. Cobh- Jamison Experience and City Tour of Cork, an interesting tour of how Whiskey is made, cork is not easy to see through bus windows, everything is very close to the street Azores- cancelled due to wind Bermuda- independent taxi tour, it is a beautiful island Great Stirrup Cay-explored on my own, if you are able to walk a little, you can find plenty of loungers away from the crowds Miami- city and harbor tour The tours were interesting especially if you like celebrity talk. This was certainly better than staying in the terminal while the ship was cleared Would I go again? Yes, I would take a Transatlantic Cruise. I do not have a desire to go on NCL's large ships if this is the format and if NCL continues to cutback more and charge extra for less then cruising with them will not be my first choice. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We selected this cruise because I was attending a watercolor workshop. I enjoyed the course thoroughly. However, the location the ship provided was in a dark club painted black with limited lighting, their staff assisted us to have tables ... Read More
We selected this cruise because I was attending a watercolor workshop. I enjoyed the course thoroughly. However, the location the ship provided was in a dark club painted black with limited lighting, their staff assisted us to have tables under the best lighting fixtures. The ship is very large and lacks good and quiet areas around the ship to just read and relax. In fact, at the last refit a large area of open upper decks were eliminated to build more cabins. All possible public areas were monetized to increase income rather than provide relaxing areas. The ship bulletin mentioned certain areas, later in the day used as bars or restaurants, as being quiet areas from 0800 to 1000 hrs. Pretty pathetic to say the least. There were about 4000 pax plus crew. Embarkation was very crowded but it went fine. The entrance to the ship itself was extremely long full of inclines that were very difficult for many passengers with canes, walkers and wheelchairs. Staff was not available to ensure that flow was steady. Our cabin was small with plenty of storage. Our cabin steward, Omar, was excellent. He was professional and kind. We felt very comfortable in his care. Buffet was very crowded with tables very close to each other and long lines at each station. We finally opted for breakfast and dinner at the dining rooms Savor, Taste, and Tropicana. We were totally unwilling to pay for room service at 7.95 each time. Entertainment options were basic, if any one wished to attend more elaborate shows, those required reservations and extra fees for tickets. The theatre had one level removed so that more cabins could be added. We enjoyed the food options at all the dining rooms and the specialty restaurants. Of those, we liked Cagney's and Le Bistro the most. La Cucina lacked ambience since it was open to bars across the entrance where lots of pax were drinking to excess. There was one server, Ms Anyway from Zimbabwe, who was always professional and helpful. She was so kind and cheerful, it was so nice whenever we met her. This is a ship where pax are ensuring that they are drinking every cent they paid in their Drinks Package from early in the morning to late evening. Enrichment activities consisted of a few half hour talks about locations where the ship landed. Every other activity in the ship bulletin related to attending product demonstrations with options to buy products. Or basic games and activities that didn't interest us. Spa was limited to use with expensive day passes, or included with spa services. The walk/run deck was closed off at forward end to provide seclusion and priviledged space to elite levels cabins. The library is just two locked shelves of books totally unrelated to the areas the ship visits. These shelves space is in the card room, with six small card tables. The shelves can be unlocked only during two hours daily. The casino on deck 7 is extensive, smoking is allowed, there is always a musty smell of smoke and other things. There was very limited signage to direct pax to the gangway to disembark at each port. Also, the cruise director failed to clarify any changes to that location. Ports re embarkation.: Portland Island UK A complete shambles where the ship and port authority were unable to organize a smooth return of 4000 pax with only 2 officers and 1 security machine. It took us over 1 hr to stand in line in a open area in a windy and rainy day to re board the ship. Meanwhile those who took tours were taken by their buses directly ship side to reboard. Grand Stirrup Cay Great delays to disembark from our ship, they were using only tenders from port to ferry pax to shore. Those few tenders were shared Norwegian sun. They did not use the boats on board our ship. This was done in other cruise lines, and it would avoid delays to get to shore. We finally gave up waiting in the theatre and spent the day onboard. Miami Shambolic disembarkation complicated by excessive delays on clearance from US CBP authorities. There were only 5 CBP officers clearing 4000 pax! Further, the departure time was 2pm, so we spent 1 whole hour on land! Of course, any pax who signed up for tours were cleared first. It was unreasonable to have such a short stop at a large city such as Miami. It seemed that the company didn't want to pay port fees at this location. Equally chaotic was the re embarkation process, many older disabled pax were suffering waiting standing without any ship or port staff to direct pax smoothly. Police were called to handle pax incidents, including a pax who hit a port staff person. The shore excursions desk didn't provide any information on port stops unless the pax were part of a tour. It provided a Bermuda shopping handout issued by the Bermuda merchants association. That is it. Many cruise lines provide interesting port talks before arrival, Norwegian provided marginal talks. Other cruise lines provide basic port maps to anyone who wants one. Not Norwegian. Tours We prefer to arrange Independent visits and tours. It seemed to us that the company's management of the ship is focused on income generation. Ensuring that the pax were relaxed and enjoying the trip was a secondary goal. It was obvious to us that the staff seemed generally stretched thin and very tired at most times. They seemed rushed in trying to serve such a large pax complement. New Orleans disembarkation slow and crowded. Test port lacks good signs to baggage and the to taxis and other transportation modes and for airport connections. We would not take another cruise with Norwegian. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Stayed at the Marriott Copenhagen for 5 nights. 5-10 min walk to Tivoli Not close to any restaurants so we ate breakfast at the Marriott. No decaf coffee found in Copenhagen. Due to dietary restrictions, I cannot have caffeine. ... Read More
Stayed at the Marriott Copenhagen for 5 nights. 5-10 min walk to Tivoli Not close to any restaurants so we ate breakfast at the Marriott. No decaf coffee found in Copenhagen. Due to dietary restrictions, I cannot have caffeine. I chose this transatlantic cruise because of the itinerary. Pros: midship balcony room well maintained. Steward was pleasant and efficient. Bartenders were all great, never waited long for a drink Specialty restaurant servers were attentive Filet mignon was excellent Major shows were excellent IF you you get there 45 minutes early If you enjoy standing in lines, this is the ship to be on! Negatives: This ship cannot handle 3800 people Entertainment shows in the the theater were often offered at the same time as game shows in the atrium or other small venues. The theater, atrium, headliners and other areas where entertainment was shown never had enough seating. Comedy shows were a hit or miss. Again, long lines to wait to enter venue. If you don’t get there early, there’s stand up room only. Dining reservations were made for 5:30 seating and we still had to wait in line Some meals were better than others but the selection got repetitive and at one point during the cruise they ran out of the better selections The steamed lobster in the specialty restaurants was awful. Grilled lobster was not any better, it was mealy tasting. Shore excursion lines were often disorganized. Long lines again...One person says to stay in one line for one thing and as we got closer we find out that we were directed in the wrong line. Great Stirrup Cay tender wait was long even if you had a shore excursion. We Swam with the stingrays I would wait to do this in Great Cayman Island if you happen to go there. It was a much better experience there. Line to wait to get back to the ship was awful. Never again will I step foot on their island. Stop in Miami had everyone in the ship get off the ship and go through Immigration. We went on a sightseeing tour and returned 3 1/2 hours to (again) long, long lines. We waited for 2 hours to get back on the ship. No seating, not enough wheelchairs or staff to accommodate people in need. Guess where everyone went at 3-4 pm? Yes, to the buffet BC no one had lunch. Disembarkation was again awful. They call groups with certain colors and even though they’re not off the ship they announce another group of colors. Wheelchair assistance to and from the ship was provided upon booking. Upon arrival to the ship it was apparent that they did not have enough wheelchairs and enough staff to provide people needing help. The wait was a minimum of 1 hour. Getting off the ship people with wheelchair needs had to wait over an hour to get a wheelchair. So disorganized!!! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We went with several couples. This ship is too large to be organized. I sensed some of the crew was not trained in their jobs. Have only been on one other NCL cruise. This cruise was the worst of the 10 cruises we have been on. Would not ... Read More
We went with several couples. This ship is too large to be organized. I sensed some of the crew was not trained in their jobs. Have only been on one other NCL cruise. This cruise was the worst of the 10 cruises we have been on. Would not recommend a large ship. Staff was generally good although the Margaritaville restaurant experience was as bad as any restaurant experience ever. Horrible service, food was served burnt, raw, cold and incredibly slow. Server did not know the menu as well as we did after one viewing. Every table in view had the same problem. All 6 tables left and were comped. They actually charge for this restaurant. Amazing. It apparently opened for the first time in months due to weather on previous cruises. We also had 2 hour lunches two other times in their regular restaurants. All the other specialty restaurants were outstanding on service as well as food quality. We were advised the day before arriving in Miami that we had to leave the ship for an inspection. For some of us that was a 6 hour delay. They were not prepared for all the passengers that decided to wait it out in the cruise terminal. Would have been better to be told ahead and we would have ended the cruise in Miami and headed home form there. We lost a half day. Totally unprepared for people to get back on the ship in some organized fashion. Took two hours from the time we left the ship to get on a bus to the airport. We purchased a bus ticket on the ship thinking that would be the best way. New Orleans cruise is totally disorganized in handling the volume of passengers from the Get A Way. I blame Norwegian for not preparing New Orleans for their arrival. The Internet charges and speed of the Internet on this ship is ridiculous. They charge $6 for bottle of water and it appeared the only place you could get a water bottle filled free was in the buffet on the top deck at the back of the ship. That was discouraged although no one stopped us. I would negotiate free Internet next time or not go on NCL. You get the idea that NCL is always trying to get in your pocket for something on this ship. There were many nice staff personnel as well but when they were bad, it was the worst. We only took one shore excursion through the ship and that was the worst of all the excursions and the worst value for the money. We were with people who take about 3 cruises a year and they are excellent planners. Thank goodness. We had shore excursions planned out a head of time. If you didn't do that and waited to get on the ship, you would have been disappointed Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We were looking for that “once in a lifetime” experience and thought this cruise might be it!! It ended up being an endless experience of trying my patience. As this is a HUGE ship and we were told the passenger list was around 3700, ... Read More
We were looking for that “once in a lifetime” experience and thought this cruise might be it!! It ended up being an endless experience of trying my patience. As this is a HUGE ship and we were told the passenger list was around 3700, the number, length, and time spent waiting in line was ridiculous. We are not seasoned ocean cruisers and this ship seemed like it was full of people who do nothing else but take long cruises - we started to call them a “cruise cult”. So, of course, they knew how to get all the best reservations for the shows, special dinners and just about everything else. If you’re not the type who wants every day planned ahead of time, don’t bother with a cruise like this. We weren’t able to see one of the shows (that we essentially paid for), as they were all booked well in advance. The specialty restaurants were pretty much the same. The steakhouse that we finally did get a reservation for was probably one of the most disappointing things we experienced on the cruise. I’ve been to many top-notch steak houses and this didn’t come close. Both of our steaks were cooked the wrong way (overdone and underdone) and the filet I ordered was about 2 forkfuls. The staff was so busy kissing up to one of other tables that we were pretty much left to fend for ourselves. There are just not enough characters available to tell the whole story of this rather sad “adventure”. Basically, if you like to sit, play bingo and drink, then this is the trip is for you. If you’re a fairly active person, I would suggest a different type of travel experience. P.s. And seemingly everyone on the ship had an upper respiratory infection!!! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
As a recommendation from close friends we were convinced that this would be the prefect way to get "out feet wet" with cruising. Our friends had been on many cruises before this and certainly knew the ropes. What we found was ... Read More
As a recommendation from close friends we were convinced that this would be the prefect way to get "out feet wet" with cruising. Our friends had been on many cruises before this and certainly knew the ropes. What we found was endless lines of people for every event ranging from mandatory passport inspections, to dining (even with reservations), to entertainment, to going to our planned excursions. There was a total lack of organization. There was obvious lack of respect for the captain evidenced by the crew and service people during the captain's morning announcements. Some were extremely important! However, you could certainly hear the announcements from Vincent the cruise director made several times a day. All of the entertainment venues were so loud that they could not be enjoyed without earplugs or one would have to endure ringing in their ears or possible damage to their hearing. There appeared to be little consideration for the average age of the clientele on board when it came to the music that was blasted throughout the ship, while waiting for a performer or on the TV as background for the ships log etc. The first night we dined in the Tropicana at 6:00 the "dinner music" was so loud you could not carry on a conversation much less enjoy your meal. The food at all restaurants was good to excellent and the service people in general were good with the exception of our visit to Margaritaville. There we were among the first to arrive. We waited about 20 minutes for our drink orders only to have half of them delivered. Had to wait longer for the rest. Again a long wait for our food which was delivered piecemeal and cold. During our wait, the wait staff and the chef and his assistant argued loudly. Ease of using the WiFi was poor and frustrating most of the time. The server went down rendering us unable to use for more than 24 hours. Most of the NCL provided excursions that we were able to get were good. However, our snorkel trip in Bermuda was cancelled just an hour before we were scheduled thus leaving it up to us to go to the dock to try to find another. This lead to over crowding (some had to stand or sit in walk ways) and the captain blasted music so loud it made me want to jump overboard. Our captain did a superb job of handling the ship especially when skirting the two hurricanes that we encountered. Even as a newbie I was at ease throughout the entire trip and proud to say I did not get sea sick! In general, the negatives outweigh the positives. Don't think we will cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This was our 12th NCL cruise in the past 17 years and I must say the level of customer service has dropped considerably over those years. Much of the shortfalls on this particular cruise had to do with the weather which, of course, NCL ... Read More
This was our 12th NCL cruise in the past 17 years and I must say the level of customer service has dropped considerably over those years. Much of the shortfalls on this particular cruise had to do with the weather which, of course, NCL could do nothing about, especially our having to be caught in Hurricane Pablo and a Tropical Storm! What I would have expected though is that they have a lot of experience with the repositioning of their ships from Europe to North America and therefore know what the possible weather issues might be. Fully, the first 10 days of this 19 day cruise had us sailing with temperatures in the 50's, cloudy, EXTREMELY high winds, sometimes rainy conditions and a whole lot of SERIOUS ROCKING of this big ship!....not really the type of weather for being out on deck! This forced the 3,700+ passengers to stay inside except for the 5 port calls we made in those first 10 days where you might have been able to take a shore excursion for a few hours. These circumstances promoted the spreading of sickness to many of the passengers since the public areas of the ship really are not designed for 3,700+ passengers to spread out. The main public area of the ship is the Atrium...one of the most poorly thought out areas on any modern cruise ship. While the ship's theater could seat probably 1,500 people at a time, the Atrium can seat about 50. With many of the daily activities conducted in this area....figure it out, how do 3,700+ passengers interact with this small space! I'll tell you....NOT VERY WELL! Now let's add to the way this critical area of the ship is used; ALL SHIP SERVICE DESKS are located in this open air area! Can you just imaging the noise and confusion going on in this space! OH, let me also point out that this is where the biggest bar is located and the Starbucks coffee counter. The more I write about this, the more upset I get about how poorly NCL has evolved in providing a truly satisfying cruise experience! I have seen a reference to the fact that the average age of the 3,700+ passengers was 67. I believe their were a total of 11 children and some of those were very young. So like I said earlier, why wouldn't NCL know about the possible weather issues and the average age of the passengers in advance and ensure that the planned activities would provide maximum customer satisfaction? NCL promotes a theme that states "Freestyle Cruising is about having plenty of choices." If you really breakdown the Freestyle Daily's offerings on most days you would see that for this particular cruise, after you cross out ALL outside activities (because weather prevents you from going on deck), ALL casino (gambling) activities, ALL spa sales activities, ALL gift shop sales activities, ALL art gallery sales activities, ALL family (children) activities and ALL box office sign-up hours THERE IS ALMOST NOTHING TO DO THAT DOESN'T REQUIRE YOU TO BE SUBJECTED TO A SALES PITCH OR TO ACTUALLY SPEND MORE MONEY. So now I have hit upon the key motive of NCL in the way they conduct their business......MAXIMIZE REVENUE at the expense of maximizing true customer service. Another point I have to drive home is the TOTALLY DEPRESSING stop in Miami! Without much prior warning you find out that YOU MUST get off the ship and you will NOT BE ALLOWED TO RE BOARD until the "authorities" allow it. What does this mean in reality??? You get off the ship at say 8:00 am and then have to wait in the terminal until 2:00 pm to get back on the ship! PEOPLE - THAT IS SIX (6) HOURS sitting in a CROWED TERMINAL with no real services or amenities offered! WHO WOULD BELIEVE that such a travesty could occur in AMERICA to AMERICAN CITIZENS! I am going to end this review with this final bit of disappointment...on the last several days of the cruise the dining venues were out of several food and beverage items to include; orange juice, ice tea, milk, half and half, some fruit, yogurt and various other items. ARE YOU KIDDING ME! My advice........if you can avoid sailing on NCL's newer, large ships such as the Getaway and Breakaway - DO IT! I have not been on their newest ships, the Joy, Bliss or Encore but I can't imagine that they have learned from their mistakes so I would not hold out high expectations for them either. Sorry NCL, I am being quite honest in my review of this cruise and I still had more I could criticize but just am too tired. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Although the itinerary was a dream come true for me, the ship itself and its management had a lot to be desired! I know it’s was a repositioning longer cruise than usual, but the staff and management were so unprepared and ... Read More
Although the itinerary was a dream come true for me, the ship itself and its management had a lot to be desired! I know it’s was a repositioning longer cruise than usual, but the staff and management were so unprepared and disorganized constantly that we cannot recommend this ship! First, they ran out of a lot of staple type food items, like Iced Tea, Orange Juice, Lettuce bananas. Second, the venues were too small for the size of the ship. Every show was standing room only and that was only if you got in line AT LEAST one hour in advance of the show! Third: something happened that prevented us from being able to go to Portugal. We looked at it from our balconies but were never allowed to dock!!!! Fourth: They herded is like cattle everywhere!!!!! Line upon line for TWO plus hours each time we had to disembark or Renee the ship!!!! In Miami it was FOUR hours!!! Fifth: Shore excursions: NOT what was described in brochures or on line... drove three hours to spend two hours than given 15 minutes to shop when the brochure said 6 hours in that location! Also several times the excursion said meals included and they were NOT! Seventh: the Bahamas Private Island was a joke! It took FOUR hours to tender everyone off the ship only to have another ship there first and all the beach chairs taken before our ship arrived and again ran out of food and drink. Sixth: Dining room food was cafeteria quality and service was so slow it took three hours to dine. Apparently that was caused because immigration in Denmark did not allow several hundred crew members to renter the ship!!!!! Seventh: tithe rooms were the narrowest I’ve ever had on any cruise line ever! NOW in all fairness, the specialty restaurants were mostly good ( except Cagney served a mushy lobster in shell) Le Bistro is outstanding, Ocean Blue is also! The buffet food was unique and very good with lots of specialty options, Peking Duck, Prime Rib and A Cheese selection that was gourmet! The ship was pristine and immaculately clean in all areas! The stewards and wait staff were very friendly and professional. If I had to do it all over, I would pay the extra for The Haven as their area and service was fantastic. They had use of private pools and spa, concierge service and never had to wait in line for anything! If I had known the difference in the service on that cruise, I would have booked The Haven!!!! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
19 day re-positioning cruise Copenhagen to New Orleans. Staff, cabin stewards, bar staff all excellent and helpful. Management was terrible from top to bottom. Free Style was a joke as there were lines everywhere and you had to make ... Read More
19 day re-positioning cruise Copenhagen to New Orleans. Staff, cabin stewards, bar staff all excellent and helpful. Management was terrible from top to bottom. Free Style was a joke as there were lines everywhere and you had to make reservations. Every docking ended with long lines. Unecessary stop in Miami was short and entailed a 4 hour wait in the terminal. Every question to Guest Services was met with either a negative or a vague unhelpful answer. Entertainment (when you could get in) was mediocre. Food in general at the buffet and complimentary restaurants was fair at best and the specialty restaurants had better food on the only other Norwegian cruise ship we had been on (Jewel).Also suprise billing for "services" on the beverage package of over $300/person Definitely would not recommend.Shore excursions were as advertised though the one I wanted most was cancelled and we had to make several visits to the excursion desk to add a desired excursion . Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
I have gone many transatlantic cruises but this was one is one for the books. They were understaffed. Took forever to get dinner, lunch at the restaurants. The ship was not prepared for this cruise. I will never do ncl on a transatlantic ... Read More
I have gone many transatlantic cruises but this was one is one for the books. They were understaffed. Took forever to get dinner, lunch at the restaurants. The ship was not prepared for this cruise. I will never do ncl on a transatlantic again. Entertaining was good if you were a sardine and squeezeed into small rooms. Everyone was hacking or sneezing. Wasnt for the drink package it would of been a total wipeout. Room was never done on time. Come back at 2:30 in the afternoon and room still not done. Then we went threw customs that I have never experienced. Everyone off the ship and no one allowed back on until the coast guard cleared us. Old people sta ding and sitting for hours and were was ncl with drinks or food. Nothing from them and they said they had no control. This ship is not meant for transatlantics. Keep it in the US. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
I'm not a fan be of "freestyle cruising." The food was just okay. The ship's layout was weird with few lounges to read or socialize. The floor in the Thermal Spa lounge area was dirty. Obviously not swept and ... Read More
I'm not a fan be of "freestyle cruising." The food was just okay. The ship's layout was weird with few lounges to read or socialize. The floor in the Thermal Spa lounge area was dirty. Obviously not swept and mopped. It felt like we were nickeled and dined for the smallest things. For example you had to pay extra for premium TV or movie channels in the cabin. Normally, I wouldn't be watching TV, bit I got the terrible respatory cold that went through the ship and was sick in bed for three days. I had a solo cabin so paid 1.5X for my cabin, but did not get the same services. No complemtery laundry, no mini fridge. My cabin Stewart did not speak English. I have never been so sick from a cruise. Had to go to the doctor after getting home for anibiotics. I will never do another NCL cruise! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary and we love sea days. We didn't expect it to be 7 sea days in a row. After reading the other reviews, I totally agree with the comments of the reviewers. NCL really failed on this ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary and we love sea days. We didn't expect it to be 7 sea days in a row. After reading the other reviews, I totally agree with the comments of the reviewers. NCL really failed on this cruise for the things they had control over. The cabin and room steward was excellent. The ship was too big with too many people crowed in a small space like the atrium. Too many people sick with coughing and didn't see NCL try to help. In the buffet, instead of letting people serve themselves with germy hands, have the staff serve. At least it will reduce the chances of germ transmission. The tenders to GSC was a terrible mess. It took way too long to cycle through the loading and unloading process. A lot of people I knew chose not to go because they wouldn't have any relaxing time on the island. I went to GSC and all the amenities were taken by the folks on the NCL Sun since they got there first. Probably one of the worse things is everyone getting off in Miami. I can understand the inspections and necessary stuff but NCL really fell down on taking care of the guest. Since we were on deck 14, we were the first to get off the ship. That also meant that we sat there a very long time in the terminal. By the time all the tours came back, there wasn't room for people to sit. A lot of guests sat on the floor which is ridiculous. Surely this inspection process has happened in the past so NCL should know what to expect. The room was very warm as more people showed up. I saw one person that had passed out. This cruise is an older group and people should not have to sit on the floor. Also the water and juice ran out multiple times. This one action could prevent us from traveling on NCL again. Every time the guy made an announcement, it was met with a loud chorus of BOO'S. Then came time to disembark in New Orleans. This again was really bad. We had early flights, that we bought through NCL and had the Red tags. Because Gold and Red were at the same time, we went to retrieve our bags. The narrow hall had lines of people on both sides and the center area was people and porters bringing there bags out. What a terrible mess of angry people. I thought there was going to be several fights because it was not an organized flow. Even the porters were angry. I have to say of the 30 cruises we had been on, this was the worst debarkation. These actions reflects very poorly on NCL because NCL controlled the situation or could have made the Miami mess much better. This survey should have included many more text boxes to allow comments when an item was poorly rated. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This was out 9th cruise with NCL (40th overall). Other reviews for this cruise were bad and deservedly so. There are some areas where I disagree and I will state them here. DINING: This was a bit hit and miss. We thought the paid ... Read More
This was out 9th cruise with NCL (40th overall). Other reviews for this cruise were bad and deservedly so. There are some areas where I disagree and I will state them here. DINING: This was a bit hit and miss. We thought the paid specialty restaurants were excellent with great food and service (we generally ate around 5-5:30). We went to Cagneys (3), Teppanyaki (3), La Cucina (2) and Moderno (1). The Taste and Savor dining rooms were OK with rather strange menus. Due to that and the lines (despite reservations) we actually used the Buffett more than the dining rooms. O'Sheehans was OK, nothing special. The service in the dining rooms was slow!!! The breakfast buffet was very good with the afternoon/dinner being more typical buffet food. Entertainment: We thought the production show (Burn the Floor) and Million Dollar Quartet were excellent. The headliner (singer and violinist) were also excellent. Ship entertainers were very good! Despite having reservations there were long lines for the shows (early). If you didn't get there at least a half hour before showtime, you may not sit together.We did not attend the paid shows. Shore Excursions: We used NCL in Southampton, Portland and Le Havre. We enjoyed the excursions despite long rides to Bath and Stonehenge. Rouen France was a much shorter ride. Not much NCL can do about getting the ship closer! We knew how long the rides were when we booked the tours. Missed the Azores but there's nothing much one can do. Embarkation/Debarkation: Getting on was easy and quick. Getting off was a mini disaster. Long waits and lines through the ship. Once in the baggage area it was a typical mess and more lines to get out of the building. Long taxi line! Tendering at GSC: Disaster, disaster, disaster!! After 2 hours and still sitting in the Theater, we just gave up and went to the buffet for lunch. People coming back said they were out of food onshore. Very crowded with the NCL Sun in port also. Crew/Service: I found them to be helpful and very pleasant. Our cabin attendant Michael was excellent! Wait staff in speciality restaurants were outstanding! Also enjoyed the Cruise Director's staff. Not sure what they pay Junior but he deserves a raise!! Public spaces: Too many big events in the Atrium! There were 4,000 people on this ship and everyone wants to congregate in the Atrium. There is simply not enough seating! During shows the passengers took chairs from the computer area and Starbucks so that those areas were unusable unless you wanted to stand. The other problem with the Atrium is that it is also the site of the busiest bar on the ship and the location for Guest Services, Shore Excursions and Cruise Next. Alot of noise and crowds. The ship also has alot of small bars that are no good for anything other than drinking and it was hard to hear the entertainers. One other issue is that NCL let card players take over the Starbucks seating area during the day! The overall crowding problem was particularly bad until the ship hit warmer waters. After that, passengers were able to get outside and use the pool deck during the day. Crowding returned in the evening. Overall Cruise: We still had a good time despite the crowds, many lines and missed ports. I seriously doubt that I would sail on the Getaway again and would be hesitant to sail on anything larger than the Jewel Class ships on NCL Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This was a 19-day cruise from Copenhagen to New Orleans, with stops in England, France, Ireland, Azores (cancelled), Bermuda, Great Stirrup Cay and Miami. For the first time, this ship ended the transatlantic cruise in New Orleans. This ... Read More
This was a 19-day cruise from Copenhagen to New Orleans, with stops in England, France, Ireland, Azores (cancelled), Bermuda, Great Stirrup Cay and Miami. For the first time, this ship ended the transatlantic cruise in New Orleans. This was our third cruise on the Getaway, but the first after its spring drydock. It was our first Transatlantic cruise. The trip was quite memorable for many reasons. The ship was nicely spruced up in a number of areas, most noticeably along the Waterfront on deck 8, but nothing really big. The biggest change that we saw from previous cruises was a friendlier staff (maybe just due to the length of this cruise allowing them to get to know us better with 10 days at sea). Another noticeable change was the conversion of a jazz bar to a rock themed bar called Syd Normans with an outstanding band and three very energetic and interactive performers. It was so popular that it was packed every night. We also thought the food was better with more choices than our previous cruises on the Getaway. Although this ship is large, it has small public areas. There were nearly 4000 guests on this sailing so it was REALLY crowded. (Balconies and above were sold out 6 months ago.) Because of the cooler weather during the first two weeks, we were mostly inside. Needless to say, it got crowded and noisy. Long lines were the rule everywhere. Lines for Guest Services and Shore Excursions. Getting on and off the ship was a pain. Tendering to and from their private island took hours. The theater was packed early for most shows with standing room only. There were lines for the earlier dinner times. The buffet was packed in the morning, like most ships. And the WiFi was almost useless due to the high volume of use. Because this was a unique re-positioning cruise, there were a few different port and passport procedures that were not fun at all. On the sea day before we docked in England, everyone had to bring their passport to a room to have a face-to-face meeting with an immigration officer and get their passport stamped. There were long lines that got longer as the day went by and many guests were upset. Then, two days before we got to Ireland, we had to turn in our passports to get them stamped. They were returned 3 days later after we left Ireland. Again, many upset guests. Then, when we arrived in Miami, US immigration required all guests get off the ship to go through US immigration and then, after everyone was checked, we could get back on the ship. We were told this ahead of time so many guests booked sightseeing excursions to pass the time. (We took a taxi downtown to shop and have a beer.) However, many guests apparently did not totally understand that there would be a long delay before they could get back on. For those that stayed, some as long as 5 hours, the small Miami terminal was packed for hours, with not enough seating for seniors, no water, food or communication. A lot of guests just sat on the floor. I think the NCL staff could have helped with better communication about the expected conditions (of course I recognize that the US CBP were running the process but this was not NCL’s first time in Miami) and more signs and staff to direct guests, not to mention providing some vending machines and water. Of course, our sightseeing trips in Copenhagen, England, France (Normandy) and Ireland were quite rewarding and memorable. However, our transit through the North Atlantic to the Azores was quite memorable for a different reason. We had to pass through a low-pressure area that turned into tropical storm Pedro which then quickly turned into a hurricane with up to 115 mph winds. The captain turned the ship into the wind so we were not significantly impacted because the ship is so large. In fact, we were in the theater watching the dancing show Burn the Floor during that period. (The dancers kept their shorter high heels on instead of the high stiletto heels.) We also experienced high winds for the next few days due to a storm named Rebekah and we could not dock in the Azores because the winds were greater than 40 mph. We were really looking forward to seeing that island. We were also supposed to pick up supplies there so there was some shortage of fresh foods, like lettuce, pineapple and wrapped butter pats. So, we ended up with 7 days at sea until we got to Bermuda. A lot of guests were happy to get off the ship. My biggest complaint is about the loud atrium. This atrium has a large screen and seating area where many activities are held. For some reason, the technicians kept the speaker volume up so loud on most events that it made it difficult to talk to the Customer Service, Shore Excursion, Cruise Consultants and Internet Desk staff which share that open space. People with hearing aids found it almost impossible to talk to the staff with all the background noise. NCL can't change the design of the lounge but they can reduce the volume of the speakers so that the other business activities can take place. There is no need to have the volume turned up that high. It seemed like they thought that the higher the volume, the more guests would participate. My second biggest complaint was about the disastrous disembarkation at the New Orleans terminal. We had all gone through immigration two days earlier in Miami so all we had to do is collect our luggage and get through the terminal to our transportation. The terminal and surrounding streets just cannot handle 4000 guests getting off the ship in a timely manner. Construction in the area limited taxi and Uber access. Even buses to the airport were running late due to the congestion. After an hour, we finally broke out of the still longer line ahead of us to go outside. We walked up the street a couple of blocks and met up with an Uber on a side street. Even he was delayed due to the traffic backups in the area. Be prepared and allow extra time. I cannot imagine what it will be like combining immigration along with luggage pickup during future disembarkation in New Orleans. Again, NCL staff should have set up separate lines for buses, taxis and Ubers. On the positive side, the Getaway staff was mostly friendly. The bar service was efficient. There were plenty of waiters on the pool decks when the weather got better. The food in the dining room and in Taste and Savor was very good with lots of choices, even over the long 19-day cruise. The common areas were clean. Our steward was great. There was a very popular Halloween party and costume contest. That contrasts with two poorly organized and poorly attended Spice H2O parties that played tunes that did not appeal to the guests on this cruise. The outside Waterfront areas on deck 8 were great, after the weather improved, allowing us to sit in soft lounge chairs, have a drink at the Sunset bar or walk or jog along the outside in the shade. The pool was heated on a number of days and quite a few guests took advantage of that luxury. Beach balls were quite popular. The Captain was quite talkative and informative in his morning announcements. He also did a good job keeping us informed during the rough sea periods. The shows were very good, especially the Million Dollar Quartet. The Cirque Dreams and Steam show in the Illusionarium was quite unique. We had a good time at the Wine Lovers Musical in there as well. Something new and perhaps unique to a Transatlantic cruise was a professional naturalist who made a number of very informative presentations in the theater about the history, economy, geology and culture about upcoming ports. This was not the usual “port shopping talk”. It was quite popular because the theater was packed for most of his presentations. I hope NCL continues these types of presentations. In conclusion, we will no longer sail on this ship again due to its poor design. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We chose this cruise because we had done an LA to Hawaii 15 day on Princess and wanted to do a transatlantic. The ship is beautiful but it does lack places just to relax. I Think the ship is fine for a Caribbean itinerary but Norwegian ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had done an LA to Hawaii 15 day on Princess and wanted to do a transatlantic. The ship is beautiful but it does lack places just to relax. I Think the ship is fine for a Caribbean itinerary but Norwegian did not understand that a longer cruise in the fall with older clientele is different. Prior to the cruise we spent 4 days in Iceland and 5 days in Copenhagen. Embarkation and disembarkation were smooth. We had balcony cabin 13254 which was very nice, we were provided with a shower chair and a sharps container. Our Steward, Mark Anthony was top notch. We dined at Wasabi, which could use more variety. Cucina was good but not fabulous, staff was surly. Tepanyaki was really good but our preparer was lack luster, part of that experience is the chef putting on a show but our chef was meh! One restaurant we really liked was Shanghai Noodle. We also enjoyed the Tropicana and Savor, we experienced some great and some haphazard service. And then comes the buffet... very disorganized. Plates on both sides of a station so people come from both directions. Items were not placed logically, for example nuts were near the scrambled eggs when they should have been near the oatmeal. It was not clear why certain foods were placed together. Foods were often cold. It was apparent the buffet food was left over from prior restaurant meals. We did enjoy the ice creme. The two main shows, Burn the Floor and Million Dollar Quartet were very nice. Our first shore excursion was in Rotterdam going to the Kinderdyk and that excursion was fine, we enjoyed it greatly. Our second shore excursion was at Portland, UK going to Bath. We were late getting into port so our excursion was greatly abbreviated, 2 hours to Bath, 2 hours back with 40-45 minutes to see a world UNESCO site that normally takes 2-3 hours to tour. We should have been given the option to cancel the tour without penalty. Our last excursion was in Corb, Ireland going to Kinsale, again the tour was cut short so we had to rush to see anything. We unfortunately had to skip the Azores due to weather. Right after Bermuda my husband and I both got sick with upper respiratory illness. The ship sells Tylenol but no cold or cough medication, the medical staff charge a minimum of 150.00 to see a patient plus medication. One woman I met was charged 3,000.00 to be seen for pneumonia. Many people were sick, in addition to hand washing stations masks should have been provided. The illness kept us in our cabin for the most part ordering room service. Room service is really haphazard and you are lucky to get what you ordered, they are very prompt to bill you though and charge for juice and soft drinks even if you have a drinks package. Bahamas, Sharing a tender with the Norwegian Sun made visiting Great Stirrup Cay a nightmare I had about one hour on the island before I had to return to the ship. Our plan for Miami was to stay in our cabin and get well, however everyone had to leave the ship to go through passport check. We were off the ship by 9AM spent 2 minutes chatting about Oregon with customs and then were herded to the left of the xray machines with all of the other people in mobility scooters and wheelchairs. We were told "the elevators are broken" so that why we couldn't move on. We were then told "elevators aren't broken but we couldn't go up until ship was cleared." We saw non handicapped people going through the machines and were told "they can use the escalators". All of this was being spewed by port of Miami personnel acting as agents for Norwegian. After people started getting on the ship we went through xray and were again herded to the left of the room. After everyone else was on the ship a Norwegian supervisor came by and said use the elevators. I pointed out to another employee that people were waiting for wheelchairs and that there had not been any. We knew we had to wait until the ship was cleared but being lied to and given contradictory information really made people angry. Better communication should have happened. In general people were not told that there is nothing to see or do in the Port of Miami, one person paid 75.00 to go to WalMart. Better communication all around should had happened. Norwegian blamed the US Immigration people and took zero responsibility. Norwegian does not seem to understand the value of small perks, providing a bottle of water for excursions instead of offering it "for sale". Things like that go a long way in building customer loyalty. Norwegian is likely going to nickle and dime themselves out of business. Would we sail Norwegian again? We would have to think very hard before sailing Norwegian. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We went on a back to back cruise and this one was going to great places as well as across the Atlantic. Something we were looking forward to doing. Ship too large and it seemed like many of the staff were in training, especially in the ... Read More
We went on a back to back cruise and this one was going to great places as well as across the Atlantic. Something we were looking forward to doing. Ship too large and it seemed like many of the staff were in training, especially in the dining areas. The hours that were scheduled for areas like internet and toys were not only too short and not always convenient. Lines were always long. At times we stood in lineup to 45 minutes. The theatre is wya too small for the size oh the ship. Many times they only had one showing of the entertainment and could not get in even with Sro. Syd norman’s Way too small and the same problem as with the theatre. Not enough areas to play cards etc. especially when going on a cruise with many sea days. And then when using the area on the 15th floor during off hours were told to leave. Officers did not get back to us with issues we had. Problem with moving about due to no center elevators. Miami was a bust. Not being able to stop at the azores was depressing. Something should have been done about this to compensate us. Being a platinum member we did not expect this. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We chose this cruise because we were excited to go to Europe and see London, Paris, Stonehenge, Ireland, etc. Embarkation and Disembarkation were very smooth as had been our previous cruise with Norwegian. We had sailed on the Breakaway ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we were excited to go to Europe and see London, Paris, Stonehenge, Ireland, etc. Embarkation and Disembarkation were very smooth as had been our previous cruise with Norwegian. We had sailed on the Breakaway earlier and chose this ship since it was the sister ship and we knew the layout. We had a family midship oceanview cabin. The room was nice. We always ate at the Garden cafe which was nice, but nothing special. The Breakaway was decorated every night with something special which this cruise was not. We saw several shows on the ship and all were great especially the Cirque Steams. Our room steward was horrible! We could not get Kleenex or bathroom tissue. We called several times and he would laugh and say he forgot. We couldn't get clean towels and our trash wasn't emptied. We went to guest services and I spoke with two officers on the ship. They were supposed to get things taken care of. Didn't happen. We still didn't have our soap replaced in the room, clean towels, etc. I went back to guest services and spoke with a different officer. He came to the room saw what was happening and finally replaced our room steward on day 15 of a 19 day cruise! They gave us a bottle of wine and four chocolates to try to smooth things over. It didn't work. We don't drink wine and I didn't want the candy! We did enjoy the ports, but we were not able to stop at Ponta De Gada Portugal. We arrived and there was a smaller ship having problems so we were stopped from entering port. As we sailed around to wait to enter port the winds picked up and we were told we couldn't dock. When we got to Miami, we had to go through immigration and we couldn't do anything. Once you were called off the ship, you couldn't get back on until the ship was cleared by authorities. Some passengers were called off around 7 a.m. and we didn't get back on until after 3 p.m.! It was a real mess! That shouldn't have been this way. When we had to meet with immigration to go into Ireland, immigration was on the ship and things were smooth! Overall, we enjoyed the ports, but not the service. I am writing a letter to Norwegian Headquarters with everything that happened. I was told by guest services to do this. And we had an unexpected visitor on board....Hurricane Pablo made a visit! The captain said we would have rough weather and I kept watching the TV screen. It would tell the wind speed and what it had to get to to become a hurricane. Then it happened, we went above the wind speed. That screen then disappeared! The captain said when we docked in New Orleans to get off the ship that we are all seasoned sailors. He said we went thru a hurricane and the ship didn't get damaged. I never like to come home from a trip, but I was glad to come home this time! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
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