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258 Norwegian (NCL) Gay & Lesbian Cruise Reviews

This was my very first cruise. I can say I went into it feeling very nervous and overwhelmed. I tried to make sure I had done all my research on all the ports prior to sailing to ensure it was a worry free vacation. We arrived to port ... Read More
This was my very first cruise. I can say I went into it feeling very nervous and overwhelmed. I tried to make sure I had done all my research on all the ports prior to sailing to ensure it was a worry free vacation. We arrived to port at 12pm on a rainy day in Miami only to find a massive line up, in which parts of it left you standing in the rain. It took approximately 2.5 hrs to board the Escape. Upon entering I was blown away by its beauty and pure size- I couldn’t wait to explore! I quickly learned that the lineup I dreaded having to deal with to board would follow me wherever I went on the ship- food, drinks, washroom, you name it. Which quickly becomes frustrating when you are trying to have a relaxing vacation. On our first sail day we went to go to the pool, only to find it was a sea of bodies in the pool and no chairs to be found. Sadly the Escape has a pool not much bigger than the average backyard pool that is somehow supposed to fit +4000 people. I was very disappointed to know I wouldn’t be able to get anywhere close to the pool. Our first stop was Roatan and we chose to do the Jolly Roger Catamaran and Snorkelling. Everything was perfect. The staff were friendly, and very helpful when teaching how to snorkel. And the Reef was absolutely stunning! Second stop was Harvest Caye, Belize. I was very interested for this stop as I knew the island was owned by NCL and operated by locals. We chose to not do an excursion that day and just explore and relax on the island. What I was not aware of is that our food and drink package are not included on the island. 2 daiquiri’s were a whopping $25! It was refreshing to have a large pool to sit next to as this was my first day being able to go in a pool on our vacation. After lunch we decided to go back to the ship as it was too expensive to be buying drinks when we already had paid for a very costly drink package. Third stop was supposed to be Costa Maya but unfortunately got cancelled due to a local strike. In turn we had a half day at sea as they continued onward to Cozumel. Having over 24 hrs in Cozumel actually worked quite well as we were able to do extra exploring and not be in a hurry to get back to the ship. We went and swam with the dolphins and stingray. It was a 5 min cab ride to the aquarium. Overall it was an amazing experience! The highlight of the cruise was the food. Le Bistro was hands down my favourite restaurant. Most of the staff throughout the ship were friendly and very attentive. The only staff member I can complain about was a bartender at the Mojito bar. We went there every night before dinner and he was always straight to the point and we witnessed him yell at various customers. If NCL is reading this, I would say their app is very helpful when on-board and we caught ourselves always referring to it. You can message fellow passengers through it for a very expensive price. I would like to see them change that so you can message your family members on the cruise through the app for free. Overall it was a great trip and I was able to bring home lots of amazing memories. I do feel like I could use some time away from people though. Personally I would not recommend Harvest Caye but Roatan and Cozumel were lovely. If I go on another cruise it will have to be with less people and more pool options. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Embark and Disembark were handled smoothly out of Miami. Multiple time cruiser with Norwegian. Very good food dining options on the Upscale Dining Program. Cagney's and Los Lobos continue to be awesome. LeBistro and Ocean Blue ... Read More
Embark and Disembark were handled smoothly out of Miami. Multiple time cruiser with Norwegian. Very good food dining options on the Upscale Dining Program. Cagney's and Los Lobos continue to be awesome. LeBistro and Ocean Blue have modified menus so that was a nice change. Q and Food Republic are definitely worth a whirl. I will say that while food quality was good, the portions in some dining areas has clearly been diminished in size. Great Cabin and I had a balcony. Great room steward which is typical. The entertainment on board is great. Choir of Man and Kinky Boots are both great shows. Very enjoyable and I highly recommend giving both a whirl. The Silent Disco is a MUST DO. Great pool experience and was always able to find a chair with no major wait time or delays. Upper Decks have become pay and that is a bit of a change for me but not a dealbreaker. Escape Room is a must do as is the Galaxy Pavilion and Laser Tag. I recommend the $29 one hour pass to do it all and it's more than enough time. Mandara Spa is always great and I used it daily and had a great massage. Finally, my only complaint, while all in favor of every discernible equal rights offering, I am not sure if it was a particular event or a group but the large LGBT community on board was very cliquish and almost took over the ship at times on programs. As someone who flies the rainbow flag, I support the community but the need to "take over" events and to be so unhospitable to others is just not a good look. All in all, a great ship and one that I would highly recommend for a frequent NCL customer, for a family seeking fun, for a great getaway and for some refreshing new options from cruising. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
A little bit about us, we are 52 years old and have never cruised before. We wanted a vacation that was laid-back, upscale, and hassle free. A friend suggested that we try the Haven on NCL. After doing a bit of research we decided on ... Read More
A little bit about us, we are 52 years old and have never cruised before. We wanted a vacation that was laid-back, upscale, and hassle free. A friend suggested that we try the Haven on NCL. After doing a bit of research we decided on Norwegian Escape. The boarding process was quick and efficient. And the Haven concierge staff was always accommodating and had answers to all of our questions. We were lucky enough to book an owner's suite with la large balcony, it was on the front of the ship with gorgeous views. Some days we didn't want to leave our balcony. We ate breakfast lunch and dinner at the Haven restaurant, along with Cagney's and Le Bistro, all of which were excellent. Because our demanding jobs deal with people 24/7, we were looking for a vacation that was hassle free and quiet. The Haven gave us that. We enjoyed exploring the rest of the ship, but primarily relaxed in the Haven lounge, Haven pool, and Haven sun deck. The Haven restaurant staff was always friendly, tidy, and excellent service. And the food was top notch. We were lucky enough to book an owner suite, room 18700. Our butler Mellany was always courteous and friendly, and quick to respond to our requests. Our cabin attendant Gina, did an excellent job every day, and when the light switch broke, she had maintenance repair it ASAP. Griffith at the Haven restaurant, always made us feel welcome and pampered, and always had a smile on his face. We would highly recommend NCL Haven to anyone looking for a pampered Caribbean cruise. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We sailed on NCL Bliss on 14-day Western Caribbean cruises out of NYC so on Feb 2, 2020s. The ship visited Cape Canaveral. Great Stirrup Bay in Bahamas, Ochorios in Jamaica, George Town in Grand Cayman, Roatan, Belize, Maya coast and ... Read More
We sailed on NCL Bliss on 14-day Western Caribbean cruises out of NYC so on Feb 2, 2020s. The ship visited Cape Canaveral. Great Stirrup Bay in Bahamas, Ochorios in Jamaica, George Town in Grand Cayman, Roatan, Belize, Maya coast and Cozumel Mexico. Great cruise and good staff. We had a standard balcony cabin 12722 on deck 12 with plenty of room for the two of us. Nice ship with lots specialty restaurants good. Buffet was great - better quality food than the general dining (hotter, more variety, very nicely prepared and presented. The only 'complaint' is that there is too much salt added to food throughout. We don't use salt at home, so really notice it We didn't participate in any of the 'activities' like bingo or quiz shows but they had some good entertainment. the 'Beatles' group was standing room only at every show - they needed a bigger venue! They had a rock/pop band who did a good job, and the 'Jersey Boys' was a great performance. Six Boleyn was also good musical described life of King Henry VIII through his 6 wives. There was live music in moist lounges (District Brew House, Mojito bar, atrium and observation lounge). The observation lounge was a great place to get a comfy chair and snack, I spent my days there reading the book, “SEA OF POPPIES” by Amitav Ghosh describing the story of Opium production and trade by the British India company. ON 2nd day Sea day we had cruise critic meet and Greet met the GM of the ship. Sharon complained about lack of body lotion in the bathroom. He took our cabin number and instructed our room attended to supply steady supply of Bulgari body lotion. Afterwards I mentioned him today is Sharon’s birthday. After we came back from lunch our cabin was decorated with Happy birthday sign, Streamers and balloons. He also sent some specialty Chocolate, a bottle of wine. Sharon, her cousin and Aunt enjoyed the wine. I was not happy with luncheon menu at the main dining room. I complained to the Maître Dee. He said I should eat at taste of India. I looked up the Executive Chef Sreekanth Sundram and spoke to him. He informed me Breakfast, lunch and dinner are available for vegetarians at the” Taste of India”. Next morning to my surprise I had an excellent breakfast with Vada, Uthappam, Sambar, Chutney, poori, Potato, with Masala Chai. I also met Rohith Gokulakrishnan Executive Sous Chef from Chennai, Chef Balappan. Everyday I had a feast for breakfast, lunch and dinner We went on Shore excursion on Airboat and crocodile farm in Florida, tour of countryside of Jamaica, Roatan tour to see mangrove reserve, shipwreck and to a beach to watch a local show. Next day we visited the Maya ruins and spice farm in Belize. 9th we visited Mayan coast to see Mayan temple. At Cozumel we visited Mayan Chocolate Farms to learn about history of Chocolates use by Mayans and how Spaniards modified to fit the western taste. Then we visited Mayan Honeybee farm amid the forest. I learned there is no pure Mayan blood descendant, most of them descent of Mayan and Spanish descendants, the last Mayan died in 1850 Overall this cruise is excellent on a new ship with 4,000 capacity. May be less than 10% were people under 40 years old. Most of the guests were seniors, some on walking with Canes, others cruising around on their scooters which took most of the space on the elevators. We were on Deck 12. Most of the entertainments and dining rooms are on Deck 6-8. The Garden Café is deck 16 and lounge is on Deck 15. It is really a struggle to get into the elevators during breakfast, lunch and dinner time. There are 16 elevators for 4,000 peoples which is a handicap. Sometimes I used stairs with huffing and puffing. WE returned on Sunday the 16th after dropping Sharon’s aunt and cousin at the airport for their onward journey to the frozen tundra of Saskatchewan Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Shout out to Terri (DT) and Julian who did an amazing job. NCL arranged transportation. You meet them in the baggage claim area and wait for bus that takes you to port. Check in was (despite reviews I had read) was very organized ... Read More
Shout out to Terri (DT) and Julian who did an amazing job. NCL arranged transportation. You meet them in the baggage claim area and wait for bus that takes you to port. Check in was (despite reviews I had read) was very organized and quick. From drop off to on the ship was 30 minutes. Cruise staff, entertainment, and food were all great. Ship is large and easy to find your way. Good cruise for solo travelers as there are plenty of outgoing people. Observation Deck on 15 was a great place to unwind at the end of the day, have a cup of tea, and meet people or read a book. Sign up for meals and entertainment prior to boarding the ship. Free style was great if you had those reservations. Staff in The Local were always organized, friendly and helpful. The TASTE was much more organized that The Savor. Manhattan was good too. Helpful hint--don't wait for your tag color to be called at the end of the cruise or you will, as did many people, miss you flight. Clearance was given about an hour behind schedule and If I had waited I would not have made a 2pm flight. Also, it is worth getting your bag and asking for the porter to take you in a separate line and you clear re-entry very quickly. Overall, the ship staff was amazing, friendly, interactive. The ship was clean and they made efforts to maintain hygiene. I would take the cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
I decided to surprise my adult son with a cruise and spent months planning the trip. We were very excited about the trip and had excursions booked but couldn't decide about a specialty dining package so we chose to wait until onboard. ... Read More
I decided to surprise my adult son with a cruise and spent months planning the trip. We were very excited about the trip and had excursions booked but couldn't decide about a specialty dining package so we chose to wait until onboard. I've cruised before so knew what to expect but it was my son's first so it was important to leave a good impression. Embarking was quick and easy, despite waiting for over two hours at Enterprise for a shuttle. Our cabin was inside no window and incredibly small. We made it work but only had one electric port and our steward would not allow anything to remain plugged in while we were out of the cabin which was most of the time. (Make sure you have good batteries for whatever you are using for pictures!) We had the free drink package and headed to a smoking area H20 to grab our first drink. We ordered and were told no I'm not making that I will make you this, and were handed drinks! Not the best way to start off but we blew it off as a communication barrier or maybe he misheard us, and our second drinks were what we requested. Btw, they use some pretty awful drink mixes and a pina colada tastes horrid. There are only two smoking areas on the entire ship besides a small area within the casino, and they fill up fast. Standing room only if you don't get a seat. One is half of a side of a back deck called H20 and then a box of sorts on the 15th deck by the pool. We vape and felt like second class people stuffed into a noisy chatbot as if we were in time out. H20 played football on a large screen alot so if your not into the sports bar scene...good luck. No drink runners to be found any of the times I was in the casino and extremely tight slots. Bartenders so rude at poolside we ended up getting managers involved. Waited about 10 mins to be served and even though the bartenders were making eye contact, they kept helping others. It got so obvious we were being ignored that a group of other people were literally yelling at the staff to assist us!! Bartenders just looked at us and walked away!! We just stood there a bit dumbfounded but got taken care of by the supervisors after we said something. I hate to make complaints..I'm on vacation and nobody has time for that!! Cleaning staff was friendly and the staff at the buffet entrance were awesome. Room steward was punctual..cleaned twice a day and knew our schedule right off as well as our names. No cute towel animals the entire trip though. Missed two ports for weather-so they said. All inclusive days at the private island appear to be hard to come by if you read other reviews. Missed Costa Maya. We were refunded 12 dollars and change for those port misses. Lots of hidden charges on this ship. Drinks are taxed while in US port....and we had some random charge for seeing a comedy show in the theater but by the time this cruise was done and we reviewed our bill, we decided not to bother because the lines to everything were long and staff just wasn't all that friendly. The food was fair...some days really good, other days not so much. Big on handwashing but food was cooler than should be allowed and the seafood was usually undercooked with a strong fishy taste. I'm a huge seafood lover so that was also disappointing. Met a few people that got food poisoning right at the start of the cruise. We were only able to get one reservation for specialty dining so I'm glad we didn't buy the package. We went to LeBistro which was amazing!! Top notch food and service, a highlight for our trip really. Book things as early as you can, shows, tenders, etc or you won't get in or will have to wait in large crowds. Very disorganized. Elevators constantly full and hard to come by. Pool area incredibly small and chair savers made sure no room to lounge. Ship pretty much shuts down at 10pm unless you like nightclubs with the you get crowd. Pot smokers in the smokers box with staff right there. No one did a thing about it. Pot smokers in H20...no one batted an eye. The end of our trip was the straw that broke the camel's back. Our last night we pulled put everything to pack and decided to head to dinner before the packing began. We put on the do not disturb light so our steward wouldn't stroke out on the mess we made and headed out. We had been very diligent utilizing our safe for valuables up to this point but felt safe with our light on knowing we wouldn't be too long. WRONG!!! We came back to find that someone had placed our shore bought liquor in the room and we were missing a kindle tablet and sunglasses that were on our desk before we left!! My son went to guest services about the sunglasses but we knew for a fact the kindle was there because I was going to plug it in and decided against it last minute. I was pretty much in shock knowing that someone breached our security despite the do not disturb light on and failed to make a claim until we got home the day after disembarking. After making a claim I emailed the VP of guest services Paula and was told an investigation would be done. Was later told it was our steward who brought the liquor, and that the security cameras showed him opening our door and placing things inside but that he didn't go in. HA!! Our bottles were in next to our desk...where the missing kindle was placed ....and unless his arms are 8 feet long, he DID absolutely go inside!! After a back and forth with her I realized nothing would come of it (obviously lied to me about not entering the room) and even though things were taken, the biggest issue as far as I'm concerned was that someone came in with a do not disturb light on!! What if I had been in the shower, or worse???? Worst guest service ever!! Will never, ever book again with this cruise line. Save your money!! The service is barely rateable and it appears to be a crooked company with the crap I encountered. Despite it all...our vacation was fun but NCL won't be getting another red cent from our family!! Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
The good: -Boarding process: Left out of Port Canaveral and from the time we arrived via hotel shuttle to the port (around 11, boarding started at 12 on paper but they started early) to the time we set foot on the ship was around 25 ... Read More
The good: -Boarding process: Left out of Port Canaveral and from the time we arrived via hotel shuttle to the port (around 11, boarding started at 12 on paper but they started early) to the time we set foot on the ship was around 25 minutes. We waited maybe 5 mins at most outside to be let into the terminal and once we started moving, we never stopped other than the check in desk until we set foot on the ship. Was really impressed with how quick boarding process was. -Food: Did not have one bad meal on the whole cruise. We ate at taste, sushi bar, la cucina, moderno, buffet, le bistro, and ocean blue and did not have one bad meal. Food was amazing. Buffet food was a bit bland IMHO but it's buffet food. Can't really speak about the breakfast because I didn't eat breakfast once on the whole trip but my boyfriend said it was good. -Drinks: didn't drink too many frozen drinks or premixed drinks but liquor selection was good for the free at sea beverage package and had not problem getting my buzz on, this is coming from a heavy drinker. Martinis at shaker's were great, as were the bartenders there, same goes sid norman's pour house and spice h20 staff. Take care of them, don't be rude and they will take care of you. Ship could have a bit better beer selection but not bad. -Service: We were on a completely full ship during once of the busiest vacation weeks of the year and my BF and I both think the staff did an amazing job with service. From servers, bartenders, guest services, to our room attendant, no complaints at all. Ship was kept very clean as well. -Entertainment: We saw burn the floor and the band at sid norman's pour hour house. They were both great. DJ at 80s night could've been better. DJ for NYE party at spice h20 was good. -Ship: This being my first cruise, did not have much to compare this to as far as the actual ship but I thought the decor was nice, layout was a bit confusing at times at first but I picked it up over the next few days. Cannot really comment on pool since we didn't spend much time there, opting instead for spice h20, which we both loved and spent a ton of time at. I would say, if pool space is important to you, might want to consider a larger ship (symphony of the seas, etc) as I though pool space seemed limited on breakaway. The not-so-good: Wifi: Paid for unlimited premium wifi package for both BF and I so we didn't have to worry about sharing 1 internet package. With the amount of money NCL is charging for internet packages, the speed should really be a lot faster. Yes, yes I know, you're on vacation, you're supposed to disconnect but us both being self-respecting millennial internet junkies, we have to have it. Did several speed tests throughout the cruise and I think fastest I got was 3 megs, at around 3am when nobody else is online. At most other times, if you get the internet package, you are going to be waiting for stuff to load. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
I have read several reviews that have incorrect prices listed, or what seems to just be a rant and less of a helpful review. As some background info, I booked this vacation with my girlfriend (were 28 years old) and spent a grand total of ... Read More
I have read several reviews that have incorrect prices listed, or what seems to just be a rant and less of a helpful review. As some background info, I booked this vacation with my girlfriend (were 28 years old) and spent a grand total of about $1,800 ($900) each. For this value, I left the cruise feeling as I got a great value and overall trip. I plan to break this down further, as this cruise has MANY upcharges depending on what you want to do allowing one to customize their own experience. For other comments of couples who have spent over $4,000, I can certainly understand being upset. In my opinion, much of this is their fault, as these fees (for the most part) are clearly available through the NCL website, and many other sources. EMBARKATION: Quick and easy. Passengers are called up by groups but we just got in line and no one stopped us. When you get on the ship, everyone runs straight to the wall kiosk’s or in long lines at The Social to book entertainment for the week. Some events can be booked online, which I would suggest. Other entertainment options must be booked online. There are available kiosks throughout the ship so don’t waste your time in long lines, ride up a few floors and use an empty kiosk. Specialty dining options and comedy/Broadway shows book fast. Laser tag, escape room, go-karts were mostly available through the week. VIBE CLUB: With some of the ship modifications in comparison to others in the class, free to the public deck spare is very packed and sun spots are few. Many comments state that buying a vibe pass is the only choice, but this depends on your goals. Does a lounge chair, a quieter atmosphere, and a spot in the hot tub matter to you? Vibe may be your option. At $209 per person, these spots are not cheap. Tickets should be more easily available than other Norwegian cruises, as the Vibe has 230 or so seats. We were able to purchase these passes at 1:00pm on embarkation, so get there early but you don’t have to make a mad dash. Is a chair in the shade, close access to waterslides and the pool, a loud atmosphere, your atmosphere? Then do not worry about Vibe. SHIP ATMOSPHERE/STAFF: Although this was my first Norwegian cruise what may have made it most enjoyable was the other passengers. There was always a lively atmosphere with extremely friendly people. Not to say other cruises were not, but normally people seem to keep to themselves. There were also many younger people, and couples on this cruise making it much more lively. Staff, as you will find on any cruise, were extremely hard working, helpful, and enjoyable to speak with. This cruise also had a big LGBTQ following, so anyone part of the community would enjoy many of the activities geared towards this. I also found wheelchair access to be extremely helpful for these individuals. ENTERTAINMENT: Choir of Man was a fantastic show. It runs about 45 minutes and IS free (some reviews say it isn’t). Kinky Boots is one hour and forty-five minutes long and is great as well if you are into Broadway plays. There are two comedians who run 18+ shows, and a regular show. Both of the comedians were pretty good as well. Go-karts run in half hour blocks, cost $15 (or $199 for the week), and are about 20 minutes long. These are pretty fun, and go faster than you would expect. Laster tag runs in half hour blocks, is $10 per person and lasts about 15 minutes. I had originally signed up for this but after hearing many complaints cancelled my reservation. I was surprised at how few people seemed to visit the galaxy pavilion. Each ride in there besides one of the race cars and the escape room are $8 per ride (or you can buy a one hour block for $30). Each ride lasts about 5 minutes. I couldn’t find anyone on the cruise who had tried the escape room, and noticed many open spots were available all week for it. In general, all these activities had availability through the week, so don’t feel pressured to immediately book them. Only one waterslide was functioning during our cruise. The slide that drops passengers was closed due to plastic cutting them. The other slide was fun, a bit more slow paced, and always had about a 15 minute waiting line. The bars on the cruise were a nice stand out. Each bar from the brew house, country bar, Beatles show, Latin show at the mojito bar, the late night club, and the atrium band had a very different feel and were a lot of fun. Each bar has different specialty drinks and I spent a good amount of time at each bar. This was a highlight that really stood out, and I feel Norwegian did a good job here. A final thing to keep in mind is there are many upcharges you may not fully expect. If you want to communicate over the messenger on the Norwegian app it will cost $10/person. If you want to see the Probation stage play it will cost $30/person. If you want to play bingo, deal or no deal, or some other on board games you have to pay. This appears to upset many people which is understandable, but it also allows you to customize your experience while not having to battle large crowds to enjoy it. FOOD: The food on board was great. I only dined at the free to eat places, which were all amazing and had something for everyone. Seating at the main dining area is always available and I never had to wait. Specialty dining is quite popular. Many cruisers I heard from particularly enjoyed Cagney’s steak house, Food republic (sushi), Le Bistro (French), and Los Lobos (Mexican). STATEROOM: I stayed in the cheapest basic stateroom. I found the room to be clean and staff were very helpful. There is a lighting system when you need your room made up or if you do not want to be disturbed. The bathroom felt more spacious than other cruises even with the smallest stateroom. There are also USB ports on the bedside lamps to charge your phone. I spoke with many who had balconies and loved the experience. ISLANDS: San Juan stopped at 5:30PM – 11:59PM. This was a different stop but gave an opportunity to see the night life at San Juan if you like that idea. One thing to keep in mind is that even if you have the alcohol package, you will be charged tax for each drink while in San Juan (12% tax) and in Miami before leaving. St. Thomas: we visited Magen’s Bay as many do. This is a beautiful cove with calm and shallow water that extends out, making it ideal for families with young ones as well. There are excursions with strict time standards that are quite expensive through Norwegian. We found that taking a taxi on land was much cheaper. Round trip for two of up costs $32 ($16 each), and be aware that there is a $5 charge per person to enter the beach. This is to keep the area maintained and beautiful, and to pay for the lifeguards as well. Tortola: Many on board made the water taxi trip to The Baths which everyone raved about. We took a cheap route and visited Cane Garden Bay through a taxi on the island (also $32, but no charge for the beach). This was a nice area with shallow calm waters within a cove like Meghan’s bay, but much smaller and a bit crowded. DISEMBARKATION: Quick and easy process. If you plan on getting breakfast before a travel home, make sure to be up early. The buffet was entirely emptied out by about 8:30, and most everyone was off the ship around 9:00. You can choose to exit yourself, or if you have lots of luggage they will have you put your bags out the night before and dismiss you off the ship by groups as many other cruise lines do. FINAL THOUGHTS: Don’t forget that if you do buy into the alcohol package offer, this does NOT include gratuity, which will be another extra charge for you ($138). Also, 15$ per person is charged per day for inside state rooms totaling $210 for the week. I believe this is a bit higher if you have a larger room. Sometimes these fees can sneak up on you, so it is good to know. I would also strongly suggest looking up gift vouchers through eBay and other related websites. I was able to buy a $500 voucher for $350, which was very exciting to have that instant savings. These vouchers are pretty easy to find. . Personally, for the price I paid I really enjoyed the Norwegian Encore and had a great time. If I were to be looking to spend around that $3,000+ price, I would look at other cruise ship options. In the end, your experience is what you make of it. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Joined about 70 friends from a boating group aboard the brand new Encore out of Miami for a 7 day Caribbean Cruise including Puerto Rico, St Thomas and Tortola - all nice stops though I have been to each in the past. On the positive ... Read More
Joined about 70 friends from a boating group aboard the brand new Encore out of Miami for a 7 day Caribbean Cruise including Puerto Rico, St Thomas and Tortola - all nice stops though I have been to each in the past. On the positive side, the ship is brand spanking new and beautiful with a really nice passenger mix. Check in at the Miami port was the smoothest I have experienced and I have been on more than 15 cruises. From the moment I was dropped off at the curb I was to my room in under 20 minutes. Food on the ship is very good and the mix of entertainment is excellent. Kinky Boots and Choir of Man are top notch productions and should not be missed. In addition, WT Greer is an excellent piano/lounge singer that you will want to see over and over. I spent a lot of time on the 15th floor observation room as well as the spa where I bought the one week pass for an additional $269 giving unlimited access to a private indoor pool, sauna, steam room, ice room and heated lounge tables. This was well worth it as the pool area seems very limited for a 4000+ passenger ship and gets crowded quite quickly. I took advantage of the two water slides and the race track, all lots of fun even for a guy in his mid 50’s. Live your inner child, overcome fears and jump on these rides. Tonight I will do the virtual reality room and play laser tag. Now, on the not so positive side, and these are minor but important being a Royal Caribbean fan - the staff is very rigid with food service. If you are early or late by one minute you are refused service. The staff was not accommodating in that regard and less than friendly at times. Everywhere you go, you have to press buttons to open doors instead of overhead sensors. This does not seems to be ideal in an environment with a propensity to spread viruses. Conversely, other than handicap bathrooms, the doors have no power assist and you have to grab handles. Just odd on a brand new ship. The cabin bathrooms don’t have night lights, so if you have to pee in the middle of the night, you are blasted with bright lights which wakes me right up. Even though you can get the free at sea upgrade for specialty restaurants and the bar, there are still lots of opportunities for up charging. Not to say this does not happen on Royal but it is less prevalent. Lastly, the ship seemed understaffed relative to RCCL. Service at bars and restaurants was very slow. Also, whereas in Royal there are always people cleaning and servicing the common areas, not so much on this ship. So in sum, give the Encore a whirl. Some of what I described may just be inaugural shakedown jitters. And maybe I am biased to Royal but have never had a complaint on that line. I am a pretty easy guy to please but the Royal experience is just more accommodating and low key with many more fun activities. Also, once you have been on an Oasis class ship (Harmony, symphony, allure and oasis of the seas) few other ships can compare of you like the big ships! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
After a heinous embarkation that is still unexplained by NCL or the port of Tampa, it was a great cruise. The outside cabin(8130)was very roomy. A comfortable bed and huge amount of storage. The bathroom had the best shower I’ve ever had ... Read More
After a heinous embarkation that is still unexplained by NCL or the port of Tampa, it was a great cruise. The outside cabin(8130)was very roomy. A comfortable bed and huge amount of storage. The bathroom had the best shower I’ve ever had and the worst toilet! The shower was amazing. A large rectangular space. The toilet felt smaller than standard and you’re forced into this walled cubbyhole that anyone of a larger size is going to be very unhappy with. Friends traveling with us had an inside room that lacked the walled in toilet but still had the nice shower. The AC worked well. We’re usually too hot in most ship cabins. Not on Dawn. The bars were varied with lots of interesting cocktails to sample. You could also order two drinks per cabin which was so convenient. NCL doesn’t hand you a receipt with every order either. Take note other cruise lines! Food was very good. Not as good as HAL but better than RCCL. I really enjoyed the buffet. Tasty and never crowded. I easily found a table every time. O’Sheehans food was really good but needs to improve their service. Every order was usually missing something and getting refills on beverages seemed to be a big problem for the staff. The specialty restaurants were good but not elevated enough to justify the cost. Some of the food came right from the buffet. The included coffee wasn’t too bad. We saw it was ground coffee and not those atrocious bags of liquid swill. We never ate in the main dining rooms but friends did and they said it was very good as well. Not all that impressed with the entertainment but the band Sonata was fun. We booked the thermal suite and it was worth every penny. Wish these were on every cruise ship. Dawn only has one main pool and it was very crowded and noisy. Not a fan of that. Anywhere near the casino or the cigar lounge reeked of cigarettes. Nonsmokers beware! We really like these older midsized ships. I wouldn’t hesitate to sail on Dawn again. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
I wasn’t sure what to expect from this ship after reading so many reviews, but during my time onboard I fell in love with this ship and wouldn’t hesitate to go on the Epic again. We boarded in Barcelona, and were met with long ... Read More
I wasn’t sure what to expect from this ship after reading so many reviews, but during my time onboard I fell in love with this ship and wouldn’t hesitate to go on the Epic again. We boarded in Barcelona, and were met with long lines checking in at the terminal. While I found this a bit of a speed bump to the start of our cruise I didn’t let it bother me. Everyone was doing their best to get us onboard as quickly as possible, and let’s face it sometimes that takes time. The layout of the ship didn’t bother me too much. Every ship has its own quirks. I did miss the lack of windows and quiet spaces to sit during the day, but they do make the specialty restaurants available to use when they are closed so there are still plenty of quiet places to go. I also missed the running track, but this ship has the biggest and best set up gym I’ve seen on any ship. I found it easy to find my way around the ship. I agree they are missing a bank of elevators, but I have no problem taking stairs. Also if you don’t mind walking a little you can usually find elevators that aren’t busy. The food was fantastic, and the service was amazing in the restaurants. I didn’t eat at the buffet because I just am not a buffet person. My only time up there was to get ice cream and I have no complaints there. Disembarking was a bit of a process. Not sure what happened but they halted disembarking for at least an hour just as we were going to get our stuff out of our cabin. Our cabin steward told us to just stay there and relax until they started to allow people off the ship again. Which was sweet that he offered this to us. We left our luggage in our cabin and walked around the ship a little so they could still get in and do as much as they could to get the cabin ready. When it was time to get off the ship we were off in 15 minutes. I think the crew got handed some tough situations on this cruise with the embarkation and disembarkation, but I feel that they handled everything as best as they could and very professionally. I was very impressed. I would also like to add that I haven’t see a crew work together so well and genuinely like each other. You could tell these guys are all family. Like I said earlier I wouldn’t hesitate to book a cruise on the Epic again. I loved my time with her and the crew. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We joined this cruise with friends that had already booked. A surprising 1st time adventure in a cruise ship. We were concerned about sea-sickness, turned out to be not an issue at all. The cruise was 11 days and it was hardly enough ... Read More
We joined this cruise with friends that had already booked. A surprising 1st time adventure in a cruise ship. We were concerned about sea-sickness, turned out to be not an issue at all. The cruise was 11 days and it was hardly enough time to experience all that the ship has to offer. Getting on and off the ship was sometimes a challenging experience, I think there must be something they could do to expedite the process. The food was excellent. We ate in ALL the restaurants. I would recommend the inclusive drink package - makes things so much easier. The NCL casual dress policy is a real incentive for us, who wants to put a jacket and tie on vacation every day? I would recommend NCL to everyone. We found the initial booking a negative experience, rushed by the NCL agent, felt pressured to complete "Right now", without clear details. Followup calls to the agent had to be placed multiple times and had no additional info. Their goal is clear: " Make The Sale! " I would not book directly with NCL again. Rather use a travel agent I think. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Basically used as transport from the UK to the Caribbean, we had time to take this trip as part of our itinerary to reach home. Southampton check in -very quick and efficient the only flaw was NCL’s oversight in prebooking information ... Read More
Basically used as transport from the UK to the Caribbean, we had time to take this trip as part of our itinerary to reach home. Southampton check in -very quick and efficient the only flaw was NCL’s oversight in prebooking information in failing to advise that documentary proof of ESTA is required. Ship-We had anticipated some shortcomings as this voyage was essentially a shake down , however it was interesting to see how the latest cruise ships have evolved with a lightly built, full bowed hull outfitted with low maintenance Internal modular units obviously designed for a refurbishment a few years down the road. Despite its huge size the vessel reacted like a much smaller one encountering some poor but not particularly rough sea states, surprising that it is classed for “winter North Atlantic” service. The internal ambience is very understated and the internal decorators have done an outstanding job in both layout and decor. Cabin-Mini suite on deck thirteen, was a little on the narrow side and the balcony, unused due to the weather, extremely small. A large amount of storage, more electrical points would be useful(US standard only). The king bed was comfortable and located inboard of the seating area, apparently the sofa converts to a double bed, it would be adequate only for small children. Bathroom was large with excellent shower, but poor quality toiletries. Restaurants-complimentary, were somewhat limited as Taste, Savor and the Manhattan Room have exactly the same menu which changes little from day to day. The Garden Cafe cafeteria was generally a better choice, being large, beautifully laid out and with an good selection, the carvery and Indian sections were the high spots. -specialty, Ocean Blue(seafood), very disappointing , Food Republic basically sushi with a rather annoying tablet menu, a little better, Le Bistro, worth a visit for a change, Cagneys, by far the best and really the only one worth paying for unless the very reasonable Free at Sea package had been purchased. Bars, although cumulatively quite large in number only the Observation deck had a lounge quality with adequate seating. Again the Free at Sea package is almost essential even for moderate drinkers as the per drink prices are high, a plus point is that only the excess cost is charged over the base prices for premium drinks. Wi Fi-worked well but the very reasonably priced unlimited use add on is essential as the basic 250minutes was consumed by an apparently arbitrary log in and out algorithm. Service-Generally good(vessel only 50%occupied), but could improve particularly in table clearing and cabin areas. Entertainment-Two free professional level productions but not continuously available meant that tickets were scarce. Smaller general acts very similar to other cruise lines. Excessive emphasis on trivia and TV type game shows indicate a Bingo rather than Bridge orientation. Outside facilities, did not use due to weather-vessel is geared to tropical cruises. Value-exceptional,even including Free at Sea and extra Wi Fi costs Disembarkation -An utter shambles, not the fault of NCL, or indeed the immigration officers who struggled to cope with 2000+ passengers using outdated technology and without the self clearance machines used at US airports. They were fortunate, as were we, that the crew were not permitted to disembark.Customs clearance on the following day was much easier as the officers basically just watched passengers collect luggage and leave. High spot-The sea approach to New York under the Verrazano Bridge , past the Statue of Liberty and up the Hudson to the terminal berth was stunning and could have been more so had the ships entertainers been used to provide NY music during the transit. Fellow passengers-mix of American , British, Canadian and some others. Many hugely overweight and large numbers of mobility scooters, walkers and wheel chairs, generally in 50 to 70 age group and preponderance of return NCL guests. Overview-A relative bargain on a new ship , perhaps a half star lower than Holland America or Celebrity but quite enjoyable. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We have cruised with this cruise line several times. We had always had a good experience but since our last cruise I am a vegetarian and can only comment on the lack of vegetarian options are atrocious Lack lustre curry stir fried ... Read More
We have cruised with this cruise line several times. We had always had a good experience but since our last cruise I am a vegetarian and can only comment on the lack of vegetarian options are atrocious Lack lustre curry stir fried vegetables fried rice , or salad were the only option for meals and so the only meal worth looking forward to was breakfast There are no vegan options either. We met really lovely people, entertained by the Acoustic Soul brothers excellent!! And the piano virtuoso Ian West who tinkled the ivories like a legend. Some of the stops were by tender and can be slightly precarious for older persons however the staff were always helpful, some of the stops had very steep slopes so looking at the shore excursions need to be considered before booking The ship itself had a good variety of entertainment great swimming pool and cheerful staff. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Ship was great but It’s been really frustrating. Couldn’t book dinner and activities prior to cruise. Can’t get reservations onboard. Go karts completely booked the entire cruise, my kids can’t go. Only able to have dinner in main ... Read More
Ship was great but It’s been really frustrating. Couldn’t book dinner and activities prior to cruise. Can’t get reservations onboard. Go karts completely booked the entire cruise, my kids can’t go. Only able to have dinner in main dining room twice on 5 night cruise. Missed port in Vancouver. Currently been in line for 1 hour 20 minutes to get off boat in San Francisco. Every time we call concierge, it goes to front desk. Room is great, concierge service is non existent and total waste of money. Credit card went missing from our account, couldn’t play in casino last night. Onboard credits were t correct on our account. I can’t tell you how much time was wasted calling about reservations, accounts, credits etc. not relaxing! Inside family cabin was awesome! Lots of space and storage. Loved having two bathrooms. Best cabin we’ve stayed in! Never again. We’ll stick with land vacations or RCI. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We have been looking for a long time and we thought we got a great value for our money ! It took a long time before I felt comfortable enough to be on a big ship for a long time. All of that worry went out the window when we first boarded ... Read More
We have been looking for a long time and we thought we got a great value for our money ! It took a long time before I felt comfortable enough to be on a big ship for a long time. All of that worry went out the window when we first boarded the ship...If all the cruises on Norwegian are like this you might just have a customer for life...The entertainment was wonderful and balanced with something for everybody... It would be prudent in this day and age to make certain sexual and gender innuendos that might insult some of your passengers.... not being preachy just a word of caution...Otherwise I will look forward to returning again! The food choices were more than adequate and the service staff was excellent..We only wish that on some of the ports there was more time to to be able and enjoy the surroundings more like an overnight stay__say like a day and a half rather than just a few hours...But the experience was not diminished....WELL DONE! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This cruise was like Spring break gone bad. Multiple people who are 1st timers and 20 plus cruises under their belts agreed that this was just an awful awful trip. 2 ports missed. Stinky smokey ship Horrible customer service horrible food ... Read More
This cruise was like Spring break gone bad. Multiple people who are 1st timers and 20 plus cruises under their belts agreed that this was just an awful awful trip. 2 ports missed. Stinky smokey ship Horrible customer service horrible food unless you did specialty dinings which obviously costs more. Hidden costs every time you turn around. Terrible communication on board, and can't hear the captain when you are in your room. Slides were closed. Pool WAY too small. Several people fell in walkways away from the pool as they were wet. I consistent soap in restrooms as well as sanitizer stations, although they are constantly preaching to washy washy, yeah okay, y'all don't practice what you preach. Staff members seemed miserable and expressed that they have a disdain for the other staff members on the ship. We will NEVER recommend this cruise line. We will ALWAYS tell everyone how low budget and basic this experience was. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
This cruise was gifted to me, as I enjoy the casino in an ample way. So the cruise was offered for myself and a guest to enjoy an interior room for said time and ship. We had no choice in the date or location, or which ship took us. ... Read More
This cruise was gifted to me, as I enjoy the casino in an ample way. So the cruise was offered for myself and a guest to enjoy an interior room for said time and ship. We had no choice in the date or location, or which ship took us. Even so, that was obviously exciting and fun. To go on an unexpected cruise , and to get such a huge discount. ( we opted to pay for an upgrade, and you still need to pay for your own excursions and such. Not to mention the regular taxes, etc...) My wife and I reserved a cabin on the phone so as to insure that we got a decent one, which did not work. It's WAS interesting though. I will say that. We got cabin 11100. It's directly underneath the captain as he controls the ship. This meant that we were not allowed to open our drapes at night because it caused glare so he could not see properly. And that we could not open them during the day, with our only window at the nose of the ship because it would make our cabin blazing hot. As such, we had upgraded for no reason. A sizable charge for each person from an inner cabin to an ocean view. (We usually get balcony cabins but the WHOLE point was enjoying a cheap trip because it was something we had not planned) It also turned out that being in the front under the captain, at least on the Breakaway, was a nightmare for my wife. As she has MS and uses a cane half the time. We had never been on on other Norwegian ship that had only 2 banks of elevators? So we had to walk 2 blocks one way to reach them. I asked immediately if jt was possible to change location, and explained why but was told there were no empty cabins on the ship. Then... by the end of night 1 we had a strange mildew smell in our doorway to the hall. We were unsure. But opted to ignore until it worsened through the next day and finally said something the night of day 2. Then they made our room steward shampoo the carpet or something, and kept wanting to air ate? ( unsure of wording) even though we explained that this seemed to be either inside the wall or perhaps in the hallway carpet. And the poor girl had done all she could. Making us come back to check again and again. It was only in the actual doorway, but never went away, and smelled like basement? We don't know- To top the cake, the show were lack lustre because they have no decent stage, and the buffet was the worst of any of their ships we have been on, and they have the least friendly bartenders I have ever found on their ships. AND I TIP, IN CASH! The only reason I rated 3 out of 5 is because, as always it's clean, most are very professional, and the staff in generally incredible. I also happen to know that this crew was supposed to have a week off the week before they got us, and instead had to go help with a hurricane. We are all only human. And we have gone on 3 other Norwegian cruises we adored. They are our favorite company- Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Fall in New England by cruise was a bucket list item. Really enjoyed spending time in Quebec City before the trip started. Processing for boarding was going well until we all got stuck in a line outside as small groups were allowed to ... Read More
Fall in New England by cruise was a bucket list item. Really enjoyed spending time in Quebec City before the trip started. Processing for boarding was going well until we all got stuck in a line outside as small groups were allowed to enter the ship, waiting in line for 40 mins. The rooms were all available by 1pm which was better than previous ships. Our cabin steward was the best. The buffet was the lowest quality we encountered, always the same and sometimes lacking of food. The entertainment was below par. We had a feeling that the majority of the staff was tired and in a bad mood. But some were very nice and helpful. Our first formal dinner in the back of the ship was really bad, worthy of complaining. Bad slow service and marginal food. The Magenta and the steak house were much better. The best shore excursion was Bar Harbor with lobster and sunshine. The ship is getting old and needs updating and paint. Getting off the ship in Boston was good and unhurried. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Friends told us a Baltic cruise would be good for us. It was. We really enjoyed this cruise. We were told that our cabin was ocean view or better. We were told that meant if there were better cabins available we would be upgraded. There ... Read More
Friends told us a Baltic cruise would be good for us. It was. We really enjoyed this cruise. We were told that our cabin was ocean view or better. We were told that meant if there were better cabins available we would be upgraded. There was better available, but no upgrade. We were on a low deck that was extremely noisy. Not a very romantic send off for our first ever cruise and our honeymoon. The service in many areas left a lot to be desired, however we encountered some staff that was over and above any expectations and really blew us away. Food in main dining areas was bland and very small portions. We had the drink package and the fine dining package. The restaurants in the fine dining were simply amazing. We loved NCL’s freestyle cruising and would love to cruise NCL again but to know that balcony cabins went unused and activities staff seemed unprepared or even uninterested in some of the games and such makes you wonder if NCL even cares that you are there. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
My family and I wanted to take a end of the summer vacation together. We cruised August 16-19th. We honestly decided to cruise Norwegian because of the open bar, because we normally cruise Royal Caribbean but drink packages for 20 is a tad ... Read More
My family and I wanted to take a end of the summer vacation together. We cruised August 16-19th. We honestly decided to cruise Norwegian because of the open bar, because we normally cruise Royal Caribbean but drink packages for 20 is a tad expensive. Norwegian open bar was really not worth it the staff was so rude and made the guest feel unwelcome like we were annoying them. The food on the ship was disappointing. A lot of the food was like hospital food with little flavor. The service from the staff was horrible. The majority of the staff including the bartenders and waiters was that they appeared to be annoyed by the guests and seem to have a careless attitude about providing good service. I have travelled on other cruise lines so I understand what quality customer service is and it was not there on this trip. When I would approach a staff member with a simple question no one ever seem to have an answer and the majority of the staff was not able to communicate basic english to answer questions like “where is the bathroom”? Or “what time are we scheduled to be at our next destination?” We upgraded one of our rooms to a balcony and it wasn’t worth it. The room was so tight that you literally had to jump over one bed to get in the room. I really wish I had a picture of that mess. Also, before cruising I was told I had to put a $300 hold per room. I did not have to do that my room key was disabled from making purchases which was fine I did not want to make any purchases. So if your wondering I set my payment to cash on checkin and never went to the service desk to change it. No $300 hold and cards disabled. For smokers they don’t sell Newport’s so don’t run out. Based on this experience this will most likely be our last cruise with Norwegian. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
My husband and I have taken several cruises over the past few years. This was the first time with Norwegian. We were absolutely blow away with the top notch service we received. It began with embarkation, easy, quick and with a warm ... Read More
My husband and I have taken several cruises over the past few years. This was the first time with Norwegian. We were absolutely blow away with the top notch service we received. It began with embarkation, easy, quick and with a warm smile. This set the tone for our week. The food was absolutely delicious. We tried everything on the menu throughout our trip and we were never disappointed. Our room steward Emanuel went overboard (no pun) to be sure our room was always stocked neat and clean. Alexandrea our restaurant hostess was so pleasant. She was very Intune to all the details. We needed to ask for nothing because the crew was always a step ahead and somehow predicted our needs. How they do I we will never know but they made this the MOST relaxing and truly enjoyable trip we have ever taken. As soon as we got home we made a few phone calls to family and friends to plan a 2020 trip. We will never take another cruise with any other line going forward. BEST VACATION EVER!!!! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
I got off the Norwegian Sun today after a 4 day cruise to the Bahamas with my mom. Are you ready for this tale? After boarding on the first day, nothing was open and the rooms weren't ready. When we went to the room, we were given ... Read More
I got off the Norwegian Sun today after a 4 day cruise to the Bahamas with my mom. Are you ready for this tale? After boarding on the first day, nothing was open and the rooms weren't ready. When we went to the room, we were given a single bed even though we booked a double beds. We feared my mother's luggage was lost, since it was several hours without it at the room. I spoke with another guest who said that his luggage was put on the wrong ship. We tried to call our room attendant "Brianna", but the number was a busy signal. We called Guest Services, but the number was also busy. The luggage finally arrived around 9 PM while we were eating what tasted like frozen food or bad airplane food in the main dining hall. We then met our real room attendant who explained that the number didn't work because "she went home today on vacation." Not sure why they couldn't replace the card with the correct attendant's name and number? Shortly after eating/drinking on the ship, we would get horrible cramps. We did not know the cause until after looking up the symptoms on the internet today (the cruise charged $35 per device each day for WiFi) that we had contracted THE NOROVIRUS! Why did we contract the Norovirus? "Washy Washy" was not everywhere on the ship and we watched the workers clean the tables without gloves and without disinfectant. The ship was dirty and we saw crumbs on the floor and on the tables everywhere. The tables were cleaned with wet rags and food everywhere was not bussed. So much so, that seagulls would have feasts on the deck outside on the questionable food no one seemed to enjoy. Comfortable sleep did not happen because we didn't have working AC the entire trip. We called maintenance the first night to fix the AC, but there still was no cold air circulating in our room. We would feel cold air while passing other guests' rooms and in other parts of the ship. The repair man explained that the coldest our room was allowed to get is 73 degrees and the ship utilizes "chilled recycled ocean water." However, 73 degrees would have been tolerable unlike the 80 degree room that we had. We were sweating laying on top of the covers every night tossing and turning. Everytime we reached out to Guest Services, a person who could not understand English very well would get confused and tell us everything was fine. To make matters worse, our toliet would not flush and the sink constantly made a loud gurgling sound. The toliet was fixed a total of 4 times and the AC was "fixed" about the same amount if not more. The bathroom smelled of rank sewage, so we had to constantly spray hair spray in there to not gag every time we had to enter. The shower was also repaired twice, since only scalding hot water came out. We spoke with 4 other guests that claimed their room FLOODED! The toliet and shower eventually worked on the last day of the trip, but the AC never worked. We are leaving the trip completely exausted (and sick). The entertainment on the ship was beyond cheesy and usually involved the ship begging for more money. The ship's shops were desperate money grabs, much like the $5.50 bottle of Aquafina placed in our room to "tempt" us. The food was subpar and every meal oredered was taking a chance. During one dinner, I ordered French Onion soup because I thought how can you mess that up? Much to my suprise, that was bad too. The soup tasted like only beef stock and had no flavors of onion, salt, or bouillon. The ship also kept trying to pass off certain foods as gourmet. For example, one appetizer on the menu was "cream cheese and crab stuffed wonton with a sweet chilli sauce". Isn't that called, "crab rangoon"? We noticed a lot of interesting menu items that we believed to be recycled leftovers from other meals like adding bacon to sauerkraut. We picked snorkeling/beach day for our excursion in Freeport, Bahamas which came be to around $150. When we arrived to get on the bus for the excursion, we were informed that the snorkeling was canceled due to weather. The ship did not inform us earlier of this and instead loaded up a tour bus full of guests whom we suspect were charged the full amount for a 15 minute shuttle to the beach. Instead, we went back to the ship and asked for a refund. We then caught a taxi which only came to $14 for both of us. The White Party/Glow Party was held from 10:30 PM-12:00 AM the night before a port of call was 7 AM. The party took place by the pool deck and it was raining. The workers were squeegeeing the deck and the DJ was trying to get the crowd to come out from hiding from the rain. After the rain stopped, the crowd came out to dance and consisted mainly of small children. The DJ played EDM music for a bit, then switched to explicit rap much to the horror of the parents in attendance. They had a twerk contest on the stage and parents were taking their children to leave. A woman with a see through dress and a thong on got in the splits and began dancing like a stripper on the stage for everyone to see, kids and adults alike. There were other people on stage dancing that kept it clean, but she had to be pulled off stage because she was showing her buttcrack/vagina. There looked to be children watching as young as 5-12 years old. The DJ was blasting Cardi B songs and asked the crowd of kids to sing along to the explicitly laced lyrics. I left after that, since I had no interest in twerking around little kids. Small things such as crew members not knowing guests' names, no towel animals, and no drinks being served by the beach chairs were also a disappointment. We cruised with NCL in 2015 and had a fantastic time, so we suspect there must have been a restructuring within management. The cruise reaked of budget cuts and corporate greed. We suspect that the workers were paid very little and we were told that they rarely get to go home to their families in their home countries. Sorry if this was too much to read, but I did not want to spare any of the details. I posted this on NCL's Facebook page, but it was taken down by the moderators (suprise). Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
About the Reviewer: I’m a mid-30s male who sailed in a balcony stateroom on the NCL Epic from Rome on 6/12 to 6/19/2019. This was my 26th NCL cruise (including charters) and my 46th cruise overall. My prior cruise history includes ... Read More
About the Reviewer: I’m a mid-30s male who sailed in a balcony stateroom on the NCL Epic from Rome on 6/12 to 6/19/2019. This was my 26th NCL cruise (including charters) and my 46th cruise overall. My prior cruise history includes sailing on Princess, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Carnival and MSC. In 2018, I took a break from NCL and sailed with Royal Caribbean and MSC with MSC Seaside being my last cruise. Pre-Cruise I met up with friends in Rome, Italy for a few days prior to the cruise. It was nice to explore the sights at a more leisurely pace than what you can do with it being a ship’s port of call. I flew into FCO (Rome airport) and transferred with a private company versus taking the train to Termini Station. I stayed at a hotel close to Termini Station in Rome and Termini is a great focal point for which to travel regionally as well as within Rome on the public transit system. I purchased the Roma Pass and with the ability to get into attractions cheaply and the use of the public transit system for 48 hours, it was a very wise investment. NCL EPIC CRUISE – Roundtrip Rome DAY 1 – ROME, ITALY Embarkation: The most cost-efficient way to get to the cruise port from Rome city is by train. I booked the Intercity 510 on TrenItalia arriving at the Civitavecchia port just before 11AM on 6/12. Unfortunately, the elevators on the platform at the train station were not working and you had to take the luggage up and down two flights of stairs to get to the outside. Minor inconvenience. Once outside, you need to purchase a ticket for 2 EU for the red bus to take you to the port entrance. Fair enough, but the line for the bus was disorganized and not all cultures understood the need for a proper queue when the bus arrived. It was rather chaotic. I would’ve just walked it and if you’re able-bodied to do so, you might as well as it’s not too far to the port entrance and with city traffic on port days, it would be easier to do so. At the port entrance, since there were 6 ships at least doing embarkations during this date, you had to get into a queue for a bus to take you to the designated terminal. How kind of the bus driver to allow us to load our own luggage under the bus and then tell us the bus for the NCL Epic only had one working compartment versus the other side for Holland America which had two. We were going to the same terminal so it didn’t matter what compartment it went into. How silly and disorganized. Upon arrival to the terminal, the bus unloaded for both ships and we were split up once inside the terminal. Luggage was taken finally and check in was upstairs further over. Latitudes members didn’t have a separate check-in line, however, the main check in line was moving swiftly so it didn’t matter too much. Once checked in, we were told to proceed to the gangway which was down the escalators. When we got to the bottom, there was another bus waiting to take us to the ship! Good grief already. The ship was a short walk down the pier from where the terminal was. Holland America had the gangways in use for their embark that was in the terminal. The bus was hot and stuffy and by this point, I just wanted to walk to the ship to get it over with. Crew were walking to the terminal so it wasn’t unsafe for passengers to do so as well. We had to wait for the bus to fill before we were driven an absurdly short distance to board the ship. All told from arrival at the train station to when we got on the ship and had drinks at Spice H2O, it was two hours. NEVER AGAIN!! A complete and utter mess with 2 transfers within the cruise port to get on the ship. Stateroom Balcony GTY: Room 13039 I’ve sailed on the Epic three times and all the other times were in a studio room. This was the first time I sailed in a balcony. I booked a guarantee and was put into this family room at the ships first bump out. The room had a very large angled balcony which I loved. I could see why this stateroom configuration wouldn’t work unless sailing with a spouse. The layout is funky and while it mirrors the studios design, storage was in the most random of places – including within the sofa! The electrical outlets are hidden under the counter by the coffee maker. The phone in the room also didn’t have a working voicemail button, it would take you to the voicemail and delete it instantly. I learned a trick to bypass it by mid-cruise. Charlton was my incredible stateroom steward. He did a wonderful job looking after any small request the entire cruise and for making sure everything was perfect. He even provided me with towel animals daily without request despite NCLs announcement they were getting rid of them on future sailings a couple months back. After unpacking rather quickly, it was time to head off to the theater for a joint muster drill for all stations embarking in Rome. It was mandatory for all guests who embarked and some didn’t like it that they were shut off from their alcohol until they attended. Rome embarking guests had purple cards so that’s how ship’s crew knew to stop serving you for the mandatory drill. After that, I went to the solos gathering with Julianna hosting for this portion of the cruise and then the LGBT meet up. A group of solos went to dinner at 7PM and we joined them in Manhattan Room. It was a leisurely dinner service since we were a big table and it took over 2 hours to dine but the company made up for the gaps between courses. The ship was supposed to sail at 7PM but some “scheduled maintenance” wasn’t completed in time and the ship would be delayed sailing until 10PM. After dinner was done, I headed back to the room to relax and it was getting close to 10PM. The ship didn’t sail at 10PM. I fell asleep on the balcony waiting for it to sail and when I awoke after midnight we were finally moving. DAY 2 – FLORENCE, ITALY The previous day’s delayed departure caused the Epic to arrive two hours late to Florence, Italy. The tour provider stated they would work with delayed arrivals so I wasn’t worried but there was a mass upheaval in the atrium where guests demanded to use the phone to contact their individual tour companies. The Epic staff caved in and did allow for usage of the phone for people to contact tour companies about the delayed arrival. We arrived in Florence at 9AM instead of 7AM. PRIVATE TOUR: Best of Florence and Pisa by ItalyTours.EU As was mentioned in the confirmation for the tour booking, ItalyTours waited for the arrival of our ship and when I disembarked, I found my name being held by the driver almost immediately. When he rounded up the rest of the guests, we left the port and headed for Florence. Once in Florence we met up with the tour guide from Vox who walked us around the city and took us inside the museum to see the Michelangelo statue. The tour guide provided us with insights about what we were seeing and the history as we walked around. The driver recommended a lunch pizzeria and took some of us there. After gathering the rest of the guests, we went to a scenic overlook of Florence before heading for Pisa. Upon arrival in Pisa, we had a small amount of time which was actually fine to see the sights before heading back to the ship. The tour accomplished everything it stated it would do, even with the time delay. I would highly recommend this tour provider for tours in Italy (they also have tours for Naples and Rome). The tour size is much smaller than what NCL offers (van with Italy Tours versus bus with NCL) and the cost is cheaper than what NCL charges. NCL’s shore excursion prices have skyrocketed since the introduction of the Free at Sea promo. If you take the shore excursion discount, you’re still paying what you’d be paying if you didn’t even bother booking with NCL. ItalyTours guarantees your arrival back to the ship prior to sailing or will get to you the next port for the ship at their own expense. You don’t see any private tour companies really offering such a guarantee! Back on the ship it was a quick change to get to the solo’s gathering in the studio lounge and then off to the LGBT gathering before a Platinum Plus Latitudes perk – Dinner with an Officer. Either there weren’t a lot of Platinum plus cruisers on this sailing or they weren’t interested in dining with an officer. I was the only person to sign up and had dinner with Brett, the Ship’s Training Specialist. It was a nice dinner and we talked about cruising past and present while enjoying dinner in Taste Restaurant. Grace, the Hotel Director’s assistant, arranged the dinner for us. It was a nice time and very well done! It was one of the highlights of the cruise. FEATURED ENTERTAINMENT: Priscilla, Queen of the Desert The major production show on the NCL Epic is Priscilla, QOTD. I had seen the show just after it was loaded on the Epic back in 2015 so it was nice to see it again. It is definitely a PG-16 or higher rated show. Leave the kids in Splash Academy! It’s a good time to follow the gang to the Australian outback for their show. Lots of good dance numbers and a good storyline. The show has evolved a bit since it was first brought to the Epic but the overall production was enjoyable. I was surprised to see some of the original cast from the first loaded show still doing it nearly four years on! After the show completed, it was time to give Bliss Lounge a try. When we arrived, it was already busy and it wasn’t possible to get into the bar to order so the supervisor sent a bar waitress over to take our order. The service was incredibly slow in there but we did notice one bartender going faster than the others and that’s why people were queueing for him. It took forever for our first round to arrive. It wasn’t until the next day that I discovered I was charged for the round of drinks. I did NOT have the beverage package and was shocked when I got the check for $20 for one drink. The last time I sailed on NCL in 2017, the cost was just shy of $12 having gone up from $10 for a Grey Goose and soda. A nearly 100% increase in drink cost? NCL you’ve gone mad. I don’t drink much and with the ridiculously measured pour you did for this $20 drink; you should be ashamed of yourself. You’re not Vegas and with all the nickel and diming lately to justify the CEO’s salary, you should be doing much better instead of getting worse. The drink included an increased gratuity I’m sure the bartenders weren’t getting and an additional $1.50 for a port tax. Trying to fix this error at guest services later would result in the transfer of the $1.50 to the other person’s account. When that person complained about the $1.50 charge, it was reversed back to me with the full charge of the drink I didn’t have. Lesson learned… the waitstaff in Bliss were incompetent. Order directly from the bar staff to avoid this screw up, especially if you don’t have the package and are ordering with people who do. DAY 3 – CANNES, FRANCE I went to a highly-rated beach club from TripAdvisor on the Cannes beachfront. Riviera Beach Club was not far from the ship and for a small fee, you could have a lounger in front and have bar service. It was sunny when we arrived but became more overcast as the day wore on. The wind was kicked up so the sand from the beach was blowing on us. We had a few drinks and then returned to the ship. We did so just in time as the wind had kicked up quite a bit slowing tender service down. When we got in queue, it was just at the guard shack and after that, it was all the way up to the street. It was reported by some guests that it took two hours to get back onboard. Naturally, we sailed late again from Cannes towards Mallorca. Tonight, we had the solos gathering where we met Michael, the Filipino bartender who was dancing in Bliss the prior night and constantly had a line for service. He was very fast, efficient and remembered what you were drinking for all my friends and water for me as I wasn’t drinking. If he saw an empty glass he would ask if the person wanted another one. His energy was amazing and we became fans of his for the rest of the cruise in Bliss or finding him at Howl at the Moon. It was sometimes much faster to go to Howl at the Moon to get a drink than it was to get one from the rest of the bartenders in Bliss. The other bartenders in Bliss just didn’t seem to have the same energy or motivation Michael had. SPECIALTY DINNER: Le Bistro Tonight, we had the first of two specialty dinners given to Latitudes members Platinum or higher. We had a 9PM seating meaning most of the restaurant was just about finished their dinner when we came in. I had the duck which was nice along with escargot and crème brulee. The service was nice and our waitress had to leave after the main course to work in another restaurant. We finished up eating shortly before 11PM. It was a good dinner. You had to chose a main course less than $20 which meant four main courses to choose from – duck, chicken and two fish dishes. FEATURED ENTERTAINMENT: Glow Party This was originally supposed to be up at Spice H2O but when we went up there after dinner, it wasn’t up there. It was down in Bliss Lounge. This is always the featured nightclub night of the voyage. Since Mallorca is a late arrival, the ship put the party on this night. This was the ONLY night of the voyage where the party was scheduled for Spice H2O. When the ship is in the Caribbean or Canary Islands as it had been in the past, Spice H2O was used more frequently. I didn’t feel compelled to go on the dance floor as the music just didn’t move me. It was hard to move anyone since the DJ was mixing in and out of songs so fast you couldn’t dance to one. While it shows a good DJ to mix smoothly, let a song play a bit more. I actually ordered two drinks tonight and it was accurately billed since I ordered it directly at the bar. It was an ok night but definitely not the greatest Glow (formerly White) Party I’ve attended on NCL. DAY 4 – PALMA DE MALLORCA, SPAIN Our delayed departure from Cannes caused a delayed arrival into Mallorca. We arrived just before 3PM when we were supposed to be in by 1PM. This caused a mad rush when the ship arrived for people to get off. I went for an independent Hop On, Hop Off excursion. I walked one bus stop up as the line at the port was a bit crazy so I could get a spot on the bus. It worked as the next stop down was the port and the bus filled without clearing the queue. I took the whole circuit which didn’t take too long and then got off in town by the church to see the cathedral closer up. On Saturdays, the cathedral might not be available for viewing as it can be used for weddings. It was closed this day to the public because of a wedding. It was reported by people who had a shore excursion they received a credit for it. The artisan markets strewn about the area had all sorts of interesting wares for sale, from food to crafts. Save yourself the hassle and see Mallorca for 18 EU on the Hop On, Hop Off bus. Back on the ship we dined with the solos we had made friends with during the voyage so far but were disembarking in Barcelona the next day. Tonight, we dined in the Manhattan dining room and I had the Prime Rib which was amazing. Dinner was leisurely as we had a big group and we watched the ship sail from there. I had a 9:30PM reservation for Burn the Floor but because dinner went longer, I missed it. DAY 5 – BARCELONA, SPAIN This is the main turn around day for the ship so guests were being told to disembark the ship. Surprisingly, I expected the ship to have more announcements than it did in the early morning hours. My friends and I headed off the ship to find some churros around 9AM to avoid any more announcements and to get off the ship before the new folks showed up to embark. We ventured up to the churros place, took the transit up to Parc Guell and discovered you now needed a ticket to enter it. The last time I was there in 2003, you didn’t need to have a ticket to enter. They were sold out for the day already so I headed for Palau Guell and my friend headed back to the ship. Along the way, I headed to Starbucks for a caffeine fix the ship doesn’t offer. Back on the ship, it was interesting to come on the ship as an in-transit guest. When I arrived to the terminal, I had to go through security in the terminal but then just bypassed everything else and went up the escalator back onto the ship. Very easy to do! Embarkation was well underway at that point for the new cruisers. During the ship’s lifeboat drill, I enjoyed working out in the quiet gym. Since I had done the drill on embark day in Rome, I didn’t have to do this one. It was a great time to use the ship’s services in peace and quiet. I met up with the solos and went to the LGBT meet up to meet the new cruisers. SPECIALTY DINNER: Moderno Churriscaria We had a dinner reservation for 7:15PM in Moderno. We figured it would be easier to dine specialty the first night where everyone was so new and getting their bearings. It was a nice dinner where the passador were fast and efficient at bringing all the meats. We were asked for what else we wanted. The waiter was attentive to my friend’s alcohol requests throughout the dinner service as well. FEATURED ENTERTAINMENT: Beattlemania Show The band who usually is setup in the Cavern Club was in the theater. I do know Beattles hits despite my age and decided to take in a bit of the show. It was just as you’d expect for the Beattles. The singers were really good in the band. The show was well attended. I went to Bliss Lounge afterward and hung out there for a short bit before strolling the ship. Bliss didn’t get all the kids out of it by 11PM like usual and so there were kids in there trying to get drinks off adults who had the beverage package. The crowd who embarked during Barcelona was decidedly younger than the crowd who was on the first leg of our voyage. Security was slow in removing the minors as well. We ventured to Howl at the Moon and then onto Cavern Club where Fire and Ice were playing. Not finding our groove anywhere, we decided to call it a night. DAY 6 – SEA DAY Finally, a full day at sea! It was nice to head up on deck and go to the quiet zone up front before most of the cruise passengers discovered it was there. I found a lounger immediately and setup shop for hours. It was nice and quiet to read and snooze while the room was being made up. I left for a late lunch at Taste with my friends before returning to my room and sitting on the balcony which was also in the sunlight. We passed through the Strait of Bonifacio around 1PM and had the land masses of Sardinia and Corsica between us. It was nice to be on the balcony for the last part of the transit. Tonight, we dined with some solos from the studio lounge in the Manhattan Dining Room before heading off to the 9:30PM showing of Burn the Floor. FEATURED ENTERTAINMENT: Burn the Floor I couldn’t figure out why I disliked this show so much before. The dancers are so elegant to watch and technically proficient in their movements but the story is lacking. The dances don’t progress from one genre to a more upbeat genre, they hop around with no rhyme or reason. There’s no story that links them and the singers with this cast were horribly bad, especially the male vocalist. I stayed for about 50 minutes before giving up and leaving. I’ve seen Burn the Floor on other ships but this production just doesn’t make sense or have a flow to it. If Priscilla isn’t your cup of tea, this is the only other show on the ship you’ve got. FEATURED ENTERTAINMENT: Norwegian’s Night Out Party This party was well attended and for a change, the DJ let a song play out. I finally got out on the dancefloor for the first time this voyage. The vibe was finally right to do so or at least early on it was. As the night progressed, the music changed again and just made me stay at the bar with my friends more while they drank. Michael, the Filipino bartender, had to come up and help get my friends drinks because the other bar staff couldn’t keep up. He was dancing around while he did so and having a good time on his own while still offering faster service than the rest of the bar staff who were stationed there. DAY 7 – NAPLES, ITALY We made it to the port ON-TIME! Hurray! The only problem was, I didn’t need to get off the ship early so it didn’t matter. However, I felt with the way this cruise had gone so far, a bravo to the Epic for an on-time arrival is warranted. After having a room service breakfast on the balcony, I went ashore and walked around Naples center for a bit. There’s a not-so-helpful tourist desk setup in the cruise terminal. Just walk out of the terminal and you’ll be hit up by taxi drivers offering tours. You’ll also have options from the Hop On, Hop Off Tour provider just at the end of the drive way to the terminal. It was here I discovered my grave mistake of booking a tour through NCL for Herculaneum for $100 USD when it would have cost 28 EU for the trip out there on my own and then admission cost at the site. NCL SHORE EXCURSION: Herculaneum In 2004 when I returned to the Med, I was supposed to visit Herculaneum but skipped the tour and went to Capri with newly made cruise friends instead. This trip allowed me to redeem this and go. Since I didn’t have the logistics worked out before sailing, I booked with NCL. Since I am Platinum Plus, I went to the shore excursion desk to get the discount for booking. You can’t get the discount unless you go there and mention it. The tour started with a bus ride from the terminal at 1PM towards Herculaneum. It was a standard sized tour bus but it wasn’t full of passengers. Upon arrival to the ancient site, we waited while the tour guide purchased the tickets for our entry. She guided us around the site describing things we were seeing using a single earbud setup. The group was too large to fit into some spaces while she was talking so you had to go in afterward or squeeze in together. This is why small group tours were more advantageous. After we completed our summary visit to Herculaneum, we boarded the bus to head to a cameo factory. This is where I really dislike NCL’s tactics. The cameo factory and “teaching you how they do it” is a total joke. They put a video on and have you stare at someone who is sitting at a table near the TV and then take you around back to their showroom where you are expected to buy something from which not only does the vendor make money but NCL gets a kick back from. We could’ve spent more time at Herculaneum and seen more of the sites there versus needing this waste of time. It was when we stopped there that I remembered why I have steered clear of NCL excursions lately. My recommendation is you do the same. You can easily go to Herculaneum on your own for much less than what this tour cost and they have audio guides available at the site. Save your money and do it yourself. Just go earlier to get back and avoid all the port traffic. When we returned to the port, so many tours were returning at the same time that it was chaos for traffic with the containers and trucks coming in and going. It would’ve been faster to walk but we stayed on the bus for over a half hour just to get from the port entrance to the terminal building! Tonight, we dined with a large group of solos, some of whom were with us from Rome, in the Taste Dining Room. It was a fun dinner service after the solos gathering where Michael was bartending at. Service was surprising efficient given our table size. Our dinner moved right along and we were done by 9:30PM. I had time to return to see Priscilla at 10PM for one final time. I loved the production, so I wanted to catch it again on standby. I had no problems grabbing a decent seat. Afterward, it was the 70s dance party in Bliss. I stayed for a bit but was so exhausted from the tour in the hot sun, I called it a night at midnight. DAY 8 – ROME, ITALY Disembarkation was much smoother than embarkation for two reasons. We called the driver who picked us up from the airport to the hotel in Rome to see if he could pick us up at the terminal. He did at 9:30AM. The ship’s transfer option to the airport was to leave at 7AM and cost $60USD. For three of us with a taxi at a more convenient time it was 50EU per person and had door to door service. We disembarked the ship shortly after 8:30AM. You do have to be out of your room by 8AM so people were hanging out in public spaces and not leaving the ship at their assigned times. It caused the lifts to get backed up but we had our trick to get one and got off when we were supposed to. The terminal we were at wasn’t the same one we embarked at and had limited facilities. It was also quite hot outside so we waited in a semi air-conditioned area for the taxi. If you were taking the train, you’d have to go through the bus transfer to the port entrance and then pick up the city bus to head to the train station. I customarily close out my reviews by thanking those on the ship who provided exceptional service. This cruise, only two people stood out for me. The first was my stateroom steward, Charlton from the Philippines. His attentive service and his friendly nature from the first day’s greeting to me and to subsequent chats in the hallway were much appreciated and never forced. The nightly towel animals were a nice touch and the towel body one day was a new one for me after all these sailings! The other person who stood out was Michael Misargano (last name might be misspelled) who was a bartender with salt and pepper hair from the Philippines in the solos lounge, Bliss and Howl at the Moon. This man is to be commended for his energy and quick ability to sling drinks. He was incredibly friendly to those who got to know him and he knew everyone’s drinks without having to ask them for it, only if they wanted a refill. I’m not sure how NCL stole him away from Princess but he could do well training some of his peers to be faster and have more fun while doing so! Special thanks to Brett, Training Officer, for the officer’s dinner and making it interesting. All in all, the Epic isn’t the ship I remembered her to be from previous sailings. The room costs have gone up, the on-ship alcohol prices have gone up, everything has gone up exponentially on NCL. Originally, due to NCLs inflated pricing for their promos, I was booked on the MSC Seaview which sails the same day from Rome, Italy and also embarks there. I switched when after final payment NCL finally came down to be reasonably close (without perks) to what MSC was charging and to be with my friends. MSC is privately owned and while they’re struggling with service issues of their own, the NCL Epic minus the people mentioned above was no different in its service struggles. Cruise lines are expanding too fast and now that NCL is publicly traded, it’s all about squeezing the cruiser to make the investors happy. This cruise couldn’t have been more in your face about it. It’s sad because it’s not the NCL I’ve come to know over the years. While I do have two CruiseNext deposits to return in the future, I won’t be in a rush to use them. I will only sail from the Rome port again with flying in directly and using a NCL transfer directly from airport to cruiseport. It’s sad how every new CEO since Colin Veitch has come to NCL and cheapened the product by so much and yet commanded passengers pay so much more for it. Frank del Rio, CEO of NCLH, should be ashamed of what he’s turned this company into. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
I had a voucher PLUS I like the solo cabin option. However, the solo lounge director staff was unable to get us to know once another.. Still nice to have our own place for coffee, etc. I never had to wait too long at the ... Read More
I had a voucher PLUS I like the solo cabin option. However, the solo lounge director staff was unable to get us to know once another.. Still nice to have our own place for coffee, etc. I never had to wait too long at the complimentary restaurants. However, at Taste and Savour the service was very slow and many of the staff appeared to have a language issue. NCL need to make sure each waitstaff has a good understanding of English. Also, when I asked someone for something and it was NOT in there service area, instead of getting it, they passed the request along to someone else which caused taking additional time. Several time I had to ask the manager to provide menus as no one claimed responsibility as our waitstaff!!!! Speciality restaurant service was excellent. I had three excellent massages. But please cut the hard sell. So off-putting.The LGBT meet and greet in the Sunset Bar was well attended and bar staff friendly. Even the cruise director stopped by to introduce himself. I avoided NCL shore excursions. Very expensive and more intimate to find your own tour guides,especially in St. Petersburg. I only took SPB tour as many of the ports could be seen on your own with a local map. Disembarkation was a disaster. Took much too long. Just get off the ship early and do not wait until you tag color is called. I would book NCL again but only on a smaller ship. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
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