197 Norwegian Jewel Senior Cruise Reviews

Meh
One and done, complied with bucket list and 7k poorer. I upgraded, I thought to a larger cabin facing but it turned out to be a basic hotel room size, bed hard as a rock couch hard as a rock but it was my first time so maybe my ... Read More
One and done, complied with bucket list and 7k poorer. I upgraded, I thought to a larger cabin facing but it turned out to be a basic hotel room size, bed hard as a rock couch hard as a rock but it was my first time so maybe my expectations were too high. And also the Wi-Fi that I paid for sucks so bad that nobody should buy it, just do without. I know it’s a satellite-based Wi-Fi but they shouldn’t try to sell it if it doesn’t work. The room TV was nice except it didn’t work unless you want to watch commercials for people trying to sell you watches, diamonds and artwork, up selling everything on the ship when I see there’s not much to look at when on the high seas. Crew was very friendly and the excursions made the trip. If I had to do it again I’d fly to Ketchikan and use that as my base of operations. The people of Alaska make it a great place to visit. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
I was a bit worried about a "cold weather" cruise because I'd never experienced one. Surprise! The weather did not in any way interfere with our great time and wonderful experiences. We saw the Northern Lights!!! The ... Read More
I was a bit worried about a "cold weather" cruise because I'd never experienced one. Surprise! The weather did not in any way interfere with our great time and wonderful experiences. We saw the Northern Lights!!! The scenery was incredible and so very much to see. We dressed in layers for the weather but other than that, an a tiny bit of rain in Juneau, the weather was never mentioned, discussed or thought about. All port stops were extraordinary. My favorite, of all three which are favorites, was Ketchikan. Ketchikan was the most picturesque village we saw. I very much enjoyed the entertainment on board; especially the Cirque du Bijou (I think that's the correct name). Those folks were simply amazing. Our dining experiences were are pretty okay. I did not care for Chin Chin at all. We waited thirty minutes to be seated and then an additional thirty minutes to order. Our food order was incomplete and very bland. We did not mention the incomplete order because we didn't want to waste any more time. Just not my favorite at all. We were very fond of O'Sheehan's Grill & Pub. There were always friendly staff and guests around to visit with. Service was perfect. Great cruise! Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
I chose this Cruise along with my fellow friends. ( Choir and Ukelele Groups. ) I was able to utilize my Scooter on-board and that allowed myself to enjoy every adventure and opportunity offered. I had a Wheelchair accessible Cabin and ... Read More
I chose this Cruise along with my fellow friends. ( Choir and Ukelele Groups. ) I was able to utilize my Scooter on-board and that allowed myself to enjoy every adventure and opportunity offered. I had a Wheelchair accessible Cabin and it was just perfect. Room for my scooter and plenty of room left for every other need we may have had. The cabin was lovely and the care given every day to keep it clean and lovely was without any doubt, exemplary. The ship was beautiful and at all times well kept and clean and enjoyable to be aboard. The staff were absolutely magnificent.......always pleasant, helpful, thoughtful and very attentive. ( Always a Smile and a Hello. Some made a point of trying to remember your name.) Every need that one could have was met and More. The excursions offered were many and covered so many different interests. There was something for Everyone who may have wanted an adventure in Port. The activities and entertainment onboard were top of the line and very enjoyable. ( The only suggestion that I would like to make is to reduce the cost of the Bingo Games so that more people could participate and perhaps there should be more games than just 3 and larger prizes.) The help getting onto and off of the ship was just great. The staff knew what they were doing and made it very easy for all the passengers to follow the directions and get to the correct place and any help that may have been required was provided. This was my first cruise but it certainly will not be my last.......I am excited and can hardly wait to do it again. Thank you for a wonderful adventure! Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Beautiful ship, well appointed. All bars had awesome staff, especially Magnums and O’Shanahons . Specialty restaurants that we picked had wonderful food. We didn’t buy and shore excursions, (too $$$$) but, did do the port shopping ... Read More
Beautiful ship, well appointed. All bars had awesome staff, especially Magnums and O’Shanahons . Specialty restaurants that we picked had wonderful food. We didn’t buy and shore excursions, (too $$$$) but, did do the port shopping experience. Disappointed in daytime entertainment options when we returned to ship. Appreciated the hand sanitizer stations throughout the ship. Best entertainment by far was Fire and Ice (Michael Jackson/ Tina Turner) done by Rosie. . The entire staff on the Jewel had the best attitudes, always with a smile and asking if we needed help. Dan the Man was fun and helpful with announcements. Loved the drink package and the Specialty Dining. We are already planning on returning soon. Maybe the 16 days thru the Panama Cancel, Florida to LA where we live. We took advantage of the CruiseNow package. I personally have cruised on Cardinal Cruise Line.......I will never go back. I’m in love with NCL! Thank you for a very enjoyable cruise Gail Ropp Traveling with Lance Lomax Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Chose this cruise to celebrate our 35th Anniversary and my wife's retirement. Inside Passage itinerary was on wife's bucket list. I Chose NCL because we had our honeymoon cruise with them in the Caribbean. I chose the mini ... Read More
Chose this cruise to celebrate our 35th Anniversary and my wife's retirement. Inside Passage itinerary was on wife's bucket list. I Chose NCL because we had our honeymoon cruise with them in the Caribbean. I chose the mini balcony suite 11094 in the middle of the ship as an upgrade to our usual window room. Boarding was ok, not great. Line moved steadily, but no one was checking appointment times, it was just kind of a free for all. No issues getting on the ship. Our room was ready when we boarded. Cabin Steward was a sweetheart, kept things in great shape. Entertainment around ship was ok, not great. Production Cast in Stardust theater was excellent overall. The lounge acts were so- so. The comedian was hilarious. Casino Staff was totally excellent, I was addressed by name from day one, and they all were very pleasant to be around. Buffet was ok, only ate breakfast and 1 lunch there. Staff was nice, and washee washee crew had a blast Specialty Restaurants: Moderno was good, ate night one, plenty of food to choose from, and staff was friendly Le Bistro night 2, disappointing. Service had no sophistication at all, food was just ok, nothing special about it at all and extremely small portions. no name recognition, no celebration recognition... Teppanyaki- great company at the table, fun time. food had zero flavor, very typical of this type of restaurant. Our Chef was a novice....very friendly, but certainly needed to hone his show skills more before being turned loose. everything was rushed...deserts were terrible Cagneys- saved for last night, arrived half an hour early, got sat 40 minutes later. Waited 10 minutes and finally waitress came over and asked for dinner order before even seeing if we wanted a drink, when I said we wanted to get something to drink, she just left. 5 minutes later guy comes over to take order for decent bottle of wine (100$+) We wait 10 minutes and he comes back with wine....not a great presentation, and then wants to get paid for wine on the spot. Very weird. Waitress comes back and takes order..pretty much all she was was an order taker...never refilled wine glasses, or attempted to engage us in conversation. Ribeye Steak was of very poor quality, Filet was cooked correctly. cheesy grits were excellent. She brought us the wrong desert to start, correct desert was ok, again, not great. Spa- took the tour the first day and the hard sell was almost unbearable...we did get a couple massage the next day which was AWESOME! I did buy thermal spa passes before the cruise...an expensive mistake as we never found the time to use them at all used the fitness center once, it was more than adequate Shore Excursions: Most booked independently : Ketchikan:Misty Fjords Seaplane on Carlin Air thru Viator.com- Excellent! Crabfeast and Lumberjack Show thru AlaskaShoreexcursions.com- Excellent Juneau: Best of Juneau thru shoreexcursionsgroup.com- Excellent ( Whale watching, Mendenhall Glacier, and Salmon Feast) Skagway: Best of Skagway thru NCL ( Bus RIde, Train Ride Down White Pass, another Salmon Bake, Red Onion Tour) Excellent Cruise Director was good...The views were humbling, and with the exception of the specialty restaurants missing the service mark most of the time, and the food being probably no more special than what was served in the main dining rooms, we really enjoyed ourselves. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We chose this cruise because it fit our time line. We were going from Alaska to Oregon. We spent 10 days exploring Alaska before we boarded the ship in Seward. We are in our 70s and felt like we were on a seven day date. We loved the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it fit our time line. We were going from Alaska to Oregon. We spent 10 days exploring Alaska before we boarded the ship in Seward. We are in our 70s and felt like we were on a seven day date. We loved the shows and music. We danced every night. The ports and excursions were amazing. We wish everyone we met on the cruise had spent more time in Seward, the Alaska Sealife Center shouldn't be missed. Our cabin was beautiful and spotless. Everything from arrival to departure went smoothly. We were especially impressed with how smoothly getting on and off the ship in ports went. The ship had something for everyone. We did not participate in any of the daytime activities on the ship. We just explored and watched the beautiful scenery when we were at sea. We just ignored the sales pitches..art, jewelry, etc. We hope to do this again and highly recommend it to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Alaska is always a great destination, even when it was cold and rainy. But my concern is that the food on NCL seems to have gone downhill rapidly since our last cruise on the Jade last September. It was bland. Buffet looked like they ... Read More
Alaska is always a great destination, even when it was cold and rainy. But my concern is that the food on NCL seems to have gone downhill rapidly since our last cruise on the Jade last September. It was bland. Buffet looked like they had thrown together and mashed the food together from the night before on several occasions. Even the meals in the dining room sub par. My daughter had to remind the waiter on 3 occasions about missed things and one night a waiter got the orders wrong 4 different times. He just wasn't listening. Nodding his head and off he went. That happened more often then usual from our past cruises. We were Mid ship 5067 and 5069. Inside. But don't ever book anything in that area because the bars are above you and all you get until 2 in the morning is banging, sliding of equipment and noises I never knew existed. Sleep was challenging to say the least. If you have any mobility problems don't do the Thermal Spa. Trying to get in and out of the hot tubs was difficult. I wasted $186 and could only go there once. I was terrified I'd fall trying to get in and out. I was not the only one who felt that way. Others had the same concerns. Unfortunately when they refurbished by the Jewel and the Jade they left the seats in the Stardust theatre with no upgrades. When you sit down it is almost like falling onto the floor and the seats are slanted downward so it is uncomfortable. Unless there is a destination only NCL does at a decent price, I am not sure I would cruise with them again. The specialty restaurants were okay but found the ones on the Jade better. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose this cruise as a family cruise. My self, wife , son, 2 grandkids and my 92 tear old mother. Cabin: Our cabin was 9545 and is the worst cabin by far that I have had on any cruise. Your could here the toilet flush in the ... Read More
We chose this cruise as a family cruise. My self, wife , son, 2 grandkids and my 92 tear old mother. Cabin: Our cabin was 9545 and is the worst cabin by far that I have had on any cruise. Your could here the toilet flush in the rooms around us. I don't know if there was a crew walk way, the other side of the wall at the back of the stateroom, Often through out the night we would get a loud rumbling sound that sounded like a loud clap of thunder. The hose to our shower was leaking where it was connected to the shower head. Cabin steward was notified the second day of the cruise. It was still leaking at the end of the cruise. Room was clean and made up good everyday. Dinning: Main dinning Hall: We had 2 dinner and a breakfast in the main dinning hall. The breakfast was wonderful. Eggs, waffles hash browns and corn beef hash. First dinner nothing memorable. I can't even remember what I had. The second meal I had seafood pasta. I didn't finish the dish. Chin Chin was nothing=g more than the middle of the road Chinese. I had the Orange Beef. Buffet: We had most meals their. The menu pretty much didn't change. I know the mixed berries were not fresh but frozen. I had chunks that hadn't thawed yet in my dish. I suspect that the pastries were frozen also. Over all just buffet food. I have been on 3 Royal Caribbean cruises, 2 Carnival cruises and 2 American Steamship cruises and the food by far would rank at the bottom. Crew: The crew was very friendly and extremely helpful to us. Especially my 92 year old mother. Entertainment and Activities: We did not attend the Stardust shows but the entertainment in the bars was real good. As far as activities go, I felt they were lacking on sea days compared to past cruises. Shore excursions: We went on 2 and they were both great. Juneau we went on one of the mushing trips. It was very interesting and the scenery was beautiful. Skagway we booked the railroad and gold panning excursion. It was well worth the price. Cruise was northbound July 15 Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose the Jewel to Alaska for several reasons. Entertainment, good food, Alaskan ports to visit, and the NCL family. Entertainment on the ship is always available. Our favorite venue is the Stardust evening shows. The cruise ... Read More
We chose the Jewel to Alaska for several reasons. Entertainment, good food, Alaskan ports to visit, and the NCL family. Entertainment on the ship is always available. Our favorite venue is the Stardust evening shows. The cruise performers put on three outstanding shows. The first was Velvet, a music and dance production with many costume changes and a fantastic light show set to the music. The second was a collection of songs and dances. It also had the wonderful voices, lights, dancing, along with the stage band. The last performance showcased the acrobatic abilities of the cast. Amazing!!! Other nightly shows included a very funny comedian with a late night bonus. He could really work the crowd. There was a Russian couple that performed feats of strength and balance, as well as aerials. Good food was found everywhere. Our favorite was the Garden Cafe. Rowen Luna, an assistant chef, was at a carving station. His salmon was the best on the ship, and I tried a couple different salmon dishes. He always greeted us and wished us an enjoyable cruise. He also took the time to explain how the meats were prepared in the big ovens. His roast suckling pig was a work of art and flavor. Of course, NCL strives to make everyone feel welcome and part of their family. That is the main reason we prefer NCL over the other cruise lines. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
This cruise was on my bucket list, with Panama canal, & a friend was interested enough to come with me. We arrived in Vancouver the evening before embarkation & overnighted in an airport hotel, as it was Canada Day we started ... Read More
This cruise was on my bucket list, with Panama canal, & a friend was interested enough to come with me. We arrived in Vancouver the evening before embarkation & overnighted in an airport hotel, as it was Canada Day we started off for the port quite early, utilising the train service to get there. The streets around the port were crowded, but there were lots of people giving directions & we quickly found where to drop off our luggage. We were pretty early for our check in slot, so we made the most of the carnival atmosphere, sporting flags & temporary (we hoped) maple leaf tattoos. Once it was time to check in we proceeded to the hall, which is where it all went a little awry. As UK passport holders we were directed to a separate queue, this was smaller than the main queue, but it appeared there was only 1 (or possible 2) counters serving us compared to a dozen or so for the main, it moved incredible slowly. Then suddenly they started sending people to all different desks & things sped up, when we got to a desk the woman asked us how long we'd been there & seemed shocked at our response, considering we were processed in less than 5 minutes, I really don't know why it all took so long & can't really understand the logic in the separation to begin with. Anyway, after that we were quite soon aboard. We decided to check if the luggage had been delivered, it had, put in the cabin, take a quick look around, then go for our 1st cocktail of the cruise & a bite to eat. Our steward was often about when we were in the corridor & was always polite & friendly, tho I'm not sure he always understood what my friend was going on about, the room was always tidy & supplies stocked up. I found nearly all the officers & crew very polite & friendly, (there was 1 guy in one of the bars who always looked a bit fed up, but maybe that was just his face), the staff in the MDRs often had a quick chat, as Europeans I think we tended to eat later than a lot of the Americans, so it wasn't as busy as earlier in the evening, & the staff in the bar we mostly frequented realised quite quickly we didn't want 1/2 an iceberg in our drinks. We only used the included restaurants, mostly Azura & Tsar, we tried O'Sheenehan for lunch one day & one evening Chin Chin, the only one to disappoint. We didn't feel the need to go to the specialist places, also my friend is a mostly vegetarian (adding fish for this holiday). We did 2 excursions via NCL & 2 with another company, plus some independently. The NCL were in Ketchican, we went to the Rainforest Sanctuary & Alaska Raptor centre, we didn't see any wildlife, a matter of luck as the group 5-10 mins behind us saw 3 bears, but it was a very informative walk thro the Tongass forest with a naturalist & at the Raptor centre we had a flight demonstration and got pretty close to a large female bald eagle, the centre cares for & rehabilitates injured, but keep some which would be unable to survive in the wild. We also did a duck tour, something I've always planned to do on the Thames, which was fun. In Juneau we did a whale watching tour on a small boat with marine biologist & another naturalist, we saw several whales including a mother & calf, plus a sealion fighting off several gulls who were trying to steal it's salmon. We also went out to Mendenhall glacier & walked the path to Nugget Falls. Our last excursion was in Skagway where we did a coach trip up thro the Canadian border to Yukon, stopping at various interesting spots, a quite relaxing trip. The only shows we didn't attend were the comedian, I find them in general very polarising, but thought all the others very good. The best was undoubtedly Le Circe Bijou, although I also really enjoyed the couple who did the dancing/acrobatic show, but I overheard a woman who thought it was rubbish, horses for courses I suppose. All in all we had a very enjoyable week on board NCL Jewel, I hadn't known what to expect, all my previous cruises having been on European lines, but I would certainly travel with them again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
I did a B2B 6/17 to 7/1/19 because it was cheaper than one week if you consider how much more it was for the one way airfare to Vancouver and from Seward over the roundtrip to Vancouver. I don't know how much faith you can put into ... Read More
I did a B2B 6/17 to 7/1/19 because it was cheaper than one week if you consider how much more it was for the one way airfare to Vancouver and from Seward over the roundtrip to Vancouver. I don't know how much faith you can put into my review because these were my 10th and 11th cruise and I have enjoyed them all. Some were better than others but I had a good time on each one. The Jewel is my new favorite ship. It was cleaner and neater than most I have been on and I love the buffet layout. The buffet has 5 islands rather than long lines. If there is a line at the carving station, you can move to the other entrees and circle back later. I never had more than 3 people ahead of me for any item. Usually I had open access to the item I wanted. Part of what made this a great cruise is the Solo program. We had a great group and there were several of us doing a B2B. The solo hosts Raphael and Queena did a great job too. The Captain got us in close to the glaciers and seemed to do his best to make sure we got to see the sights. We had very good weather too, which didn't hurt. I saw the General Manager pick abandoned drink cups off the deck while wearing his dress uniform. This dedication to cleanliness and detail carries over to the crew too. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Alaska was on our "bucket list" so we started out with a 6 day NCL Land Tour from Fairbanks, ending in Seward. That trip alone was well worth it...but on to the cruise! Embarkation from Seward was a piece of cake. The first ... Read More
Alaska was on our "bucket list" so we started out with a 6 day NCL Land Tour from Fairbanks, ending in Seward. That trip alone was well worth it...but on to the cruise! Embarkation from Seward was a piece of cake. The first meal in Azura was bit slow and clunky but the food was good and we weren't in any big hurry! Overall the meals were fine, particularly the specialty restaurants. The food in the main dining rooms was "good", and the service was more than adequate. Specialty restaurants were SUPERB, especially Le Bistro and La Cucina! Our mini-suite was perfect and our Room Steward, Rolando did an excellent job keeping it clean and tending to any of our requests...kudos to Rolando! The extra USB ports were a nice add. Overall the refurbished ship was clean and redecorated nicely. I was a bit disappointed that the seats in the Stardust Theater were not replaced during the refurb. They were low and uncomfortable two years ago and they are the same now. We were so busy, we managed only one show..."Rock You Tonight". It was GREAT...wonderful singers, dancers and band. An awesome production! I do like the smaller ships like the Jewel where you do not need to make reservations to get into every event. The ship entertainment was good...some very talented folks. Lots of pop music & jazz. I do wish there was some "Classical" music on board, maybe in the main lobby. It might give the ship kind of a "high class" feel. (There is a grand piano there which I have never seen used.) The gym was clean and all the machines seem to be working. The bar service was spot on. I will say the wine in the wine tasting event was a step lower that those I've been to in the past...and believe me I am not a wine snob. But I did pay extra for some GREAT wine in the specialty restaurants. Of course you go to Alaska for the spectacular views and scenery. The glacier viewing was excellent. I did spot humpbacks on three occasions from our balcony. Lots of good "Kodak Moments". Just staring out the balcony at the snow capped peaks was awe inspiring (especially for a couple from "flat" Florida!) The best part of the cruise were the ports and excursions. We did the Zip Rider/Wale watching tour...WOO HOO, what an adrenaline rush! We did the Helicopter Ride to the Glacier and Dog Sled Mushing, which was probably the best shore excursion we've ever been on! We also did the Wilderness Glacier trip where we canoed up to a glacier...also an outstanding trip! Between my camera and my Go-Pro I took over 2100 pics...many great memories. Overall the ship, crew and cruise met all of our expectations. Kudos to General Manager Steve for running a tight ship. Kudos to Jenny, Group services Coordinator for coordinating the Meet & Mingle and kudos to Dilip our Concierge who was always ready to assist us! Now that Alaska is crossed off the bucket list, it's time for French Polynesia/Hawaii in 2020. THANKS NCL! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We went on this first cruise for our 30th anniversary. I chose this Norwegian cruise after reviewing choices from our travel agent. I based my choice on the itinerary of the trip, online reviews (including Cruise Critic), YouTube videos ... Read More
We went on this first cruise for our 30th anniversary. I chose this Norwegian cruise after reviewing choices from our travel agent. I based my choice on the itinerary of the trip, online reviews (including Cruise Critic), YouTube videos from previous passengers, the smaller size of the ship and the price for a balcony stateroom. Everything about this first cruise was fabulous! Every staff and crew member was polite, courteous and professional. They called us by name, looked us in the eyes, smiled all the time and all asked if we needed anything. The ship was very clean, attractive and had a great variety of events. We could also get away to the quiet of our stateroom and not hear our neighbors or people in the hallways. We made our hotel stay before the trip thru NCL. There was a representative from NCL at the hotel the morning of departure to explain to us what to expect in getting on the ship and there were 2 large buses to get us to the port. We did arrive in Vancouver Canada the day before the cruise and intended to explore the city but travel weariness had us staying in. In hindsight I'd book an extra night so that we would be able to spend a day in Vancouver, it looked beautiful from the bus. Our excursions were arranged through the ship ahead of time and were very easy to get on and off in time for the leaving from port. I appreciated the variety of excursions and the range of costs which allowed for anyone to meet budget constraints. We took the inflateable boat to Betten Island and hiked through a rain forest for our Ketchikan stop. We did see eagles and a whale on this trip. We did the Mendenhall Glacier/Nugget Falls and Mt Roberts Tram excursion in Juneau. I would recommend this as the glacier and falls were absolutely beautiful. The view from the top of Mt Roberts is incredible! I don't recommend eating in the restaurant at the top of the tram... very slow service and little choice on the menu. Our excusion in Skagway had to be cancelled due to circumstances beyond NCL control and we were reimbursed for the missed trip. However, we still saw the town and got a good appreciation for the settlers that opened the town and the gold rush seekers' experiences. Glacier Bay is so amazing and this cruise also went to Hubbard Glacier. We saw more whales in this fjord. Tip: don't try to take pictures or videos of whales! They are too quick and you'll miss them. Just watch these graceful creatures and buy souvenir photos. LOL! If you can, take a trip that goes to Hubbard!! So massive and beautiful! Not all itineraries include this stop, so be aware. We made a hotel booking independently of the cruise at the end of the trip so that we could rest before the return flight. Once the ship found out we had this reservation, they made arrangement to get our luggage from the ship to the hotel for us. We did shuttle from the ship to the city center in Anchorage with other passengers and then had to make our own arrangement to get from there to the hotel. Fortunately it was only a few blocks walk. Side note: we booked at the Sheraton Spa Hotel in Anchorage. It has no shuttle service to anything and the rooms had little sound dampening between rooms. We listened to our neighbors argue for 3-4 hours before bed. The food was very good. We did get a meal deal for 3 meals in the restaurants that are not complimentary. Cagney Steakhouse is the best!! We ate there twice. We also ate in the Italian venue La Cocina and it was ok.... not spectacular and not bad. The Garden Café and Great Outdoors had a large variety of food and each day there was a theme for one of the meals, as in Italian or German. This is a complimentary buffet and the food was fresh, never had any hint of being massed produced or under heat lamps. I am a nurse and was impressed with the ship's focus on hand hygiene as we boarded/re-boarded the ship and when entering food service areas. Now when I use the hand gel at work I smile and think "washy washy" as the crew would say :) We had a great time on this trip and have come away with great memories of Alaska. Thank You Norwegian! Thank you Zac Wilson at Daydream Vacations for being our travel agent! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
My wife and I chose this cruise because of the itinerary and the add on pre cruise tour of Cambodia. Embarkation was smooth and efficient. Once onboard we were told an announcement would be broadcast when our cabins were ready. After a ... Read More
My wife and I chose this cruise because of the itinerary and the add on pre cruise tour of Cambodia. Embarkation was smooth and efficient. Once onboard we were told an announcement would be broadcast when our cabins were ready. After a bit of exploring we went to the buffet for a drink and a snack. Much the same as all other buffets people piling plates like it was to be their last meal and difficult to find a seat. No announcement came so we went looking to find our cabin was ready. The room was clean and tidy but a bit on the small side to other cabins and rather less storage. The balcony was also on the small side and a bit scruffy. My wife's luggage turned up fairly prompt but no sign of mine so off we went exploring and to have a cocktail or two. Time for dinner and still no luggage. I informed our cabin steward who said she would go and find out where it was. We didn't see her again until 3 days later when she said hello and asked how we were. The next time was our last night when she asked us to fill out a card that chose a crew member who excelled. So it was off to dinner in the clothes I had been wearing all day. Dinner was ok but nothing to brag about. Back to the cabin still no luggage so off to customer services. I told them of the problem and rather offhandedly the lady asked me if I had checked the luggage room. when I replied no I though luggage was always delivered to the staterooms. She said I should have checked there. Keep calm I told myself. I had to ask her where it was and made my way there. I located my case in the said room and was told it had been held back because there was a pair of scissors in my case. I had to get the scissors out and show them and was then told they were ok and I could take my case. This was now 9.00pm. My wife asked them why the information had not been sent to our room instead of us having to go round investigating. Norwegians customer experience is slowly going down the pan. Dining was not a great experience. We used Azure once and thought the room was dark and the low ceiling made it feel too compact and the meal was average but service was very good. Chin Chin was bright and cheerful and the meal was excellent as was the service. The other nights we had dinner in the Tsars Palace. This is a very delightful room, bright, spacious and luxurious. Service was ok most nights but there were some excellent waiters. The meals were quite mediocre and didn't live up to the opulence of the room. One night I had a lamb shank that was served with a slice of carrot and half a roast potato. I am not a huge eater but this was a bit ridiculous. Another night we ordered Irish coffees and as soon as they arrived we could see they were not right. The cream had all dissolved into the coffee, we picked them up and they were cold. We told the waiter who took them away and replaced them. The replacements weren't cold but slightly warm. We just left them. We told our waiter the following night and he told us they had run out of the whipped cream and were using powdered cream. He told us he would personally make coffees for us. The ones he made were very good. We found a lot of the meals we had were very average and quite often they were only warm. This was the only cruise where I only had one cooked breakfast due to the first one being lukewarm. The rest of the time it was toast, fruit and cereals. Bar service in general was very good except for when they ran out of mint for the mojitos. There was only one night where the entertainment was excellent. This was the Circus act. Some of the acrobatics were spectacular. The rock night was enjoyable. Two of the nights had solo female singers who I thought we just ok. The other night was not my scene at all with some very weird artists. the strangest being one huge overweight guy dancing in a leotard. It made me wonder why females have to cover their breasts when this guy had bigger breasts than some of the girls and he had them swinging about everywhere. But he was well received but not by me. The resident band were very good and performed a wide variety of songs. I cant comment on the activities on board as we only had one sea day so didn't explore. Cant comment on excursions either as we planned our own. We could not find any information on the ports we visited. This was our first Norwegian cruise and we found nothing that would make us want to cruise with them again Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary although we had been to all of the countries that were on the itinerary as recent as on a river cruise in 2017 to Viet Nam and Cambodia. The embarkation took 2 1/2 hours of which was the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary although we had been to all of the countries that were on the itinerary as recent as on a river cruise in 2017 to Viet Nam and Cambodia. The embarkation took 2 1/2 hours of which was the longest embark that we had to endure after a long flight from US to Hong Kong one day prior. We were tired and hungry, but all of the restaurants were closed by the time we got on board because it was time for Muster. Our package included premium beverage, four specialty dining restaurants, unlimited internet, which was nice although the internet was crawling most of the time, and 120 free phone calls of which we used 55 minutes. We were extremely dissapponted to find out that we had to pay NCL $69 each to get a Viet Nam Visa and $89 each for a Cambodia Visa at embark. Of course, we were not aware of getting visas in advance because we planned not to get off in Cambodia because the ship only port one day there, and because we were in Cambodia 2017. The River Cruise Company advised us in advance that we had to get visa for Nam and Cambodia, but NCL did not. Moreover, Viet Nam charges $25 for its Visa; Cambodia charges $30, and it took us less than 5 weeks to get both visa. NCL charged $69 and $89, 3x the charge??? When several passengers asked the crews at the reception, one said because it was an emergency visas; other said to me because they “are merchant” visas. I pointed to that crew member the Viet Nam visa that was stapled to my passports in 2017 indicating that was a “merchant” visa, too, yet, I didn’t have to pay $69 and I got to keep the visa. I don’t know if that crew member got trained appropriately or he thought he could fool me into believing his feeble infor. On this trip, we had to turn in our Nam Visa on the last port day in Nam. So for those who want to keep it for souvenir are of our luck! The food in the Specialty Dining Restaurants was mediocre and poor in some instances. The restaurants’ staffs seemed trying but the execution was poor. At Cagney’s Steak house, I asked for a medium rare filet mignon, it came out rare. The server took it back, the kitchen recooked the steak that I already cut into instead of giving me a new one. What happened if I were sick with a cold or have some kind of contagious illness? Some thoughts for the management. Another incident at Chin Chin, Asian Fusion Restaurant, a line item on the menu, “Chinese Chicken...” one of the passengers asked the server, “what is Chinese Chicken?” The server responded with a laugh, “may be it’s small...” He then apologized later knowing what he said was inappropriate. Note for NCL management, there should be no Chinese Chickens, no American Chickens, and etc...on the menu. There were many more that we could name. In summary, we have cruised many times on large cruise ships and many more on river cruise ships, our experiences were better than NCL, which was our first time. We are not so sure if we want to give NCL a second chance! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Was the first time we cruised with Norwegian and very likely the last. The cruise line policy includes many extra charges that make the value for the money poor. It starts with drinking water (!), the cruise offers for sale packages of ... Read More
Was the first time we cruised with Norwegian and very likely the last. The cruise line policy includes many extra charges that make the value for the money poor. It starts with drinking water (!), the cruise offers for sale packages of NCL branded drinking water. If you want any other brand, you need to buy it from the bar where the price (including automatically 20% service) comes to over $6. 20% service is for handing you the bottle. Specialty restaurants are extra. Best choices for shore tours are sold at a price too high for the level of this cruise. The activities may become overcrowded in particular in shore tours. From the specialty restaurants. we preferred the steakhouse Cagney's and Chin Chin Chinese, Sushi). Chin Chin is included except sushi, Cagney's is extra with prices on a la carte menu. It is worth to purchase the specialty restaurant package that basically includes 5 meals in any specialty restaurant. Out of 8 entertainment opportunities, only 2 were of good quality, both in the last days of the cruise. There is one shore trip included in each port, however we found out that in about 50% of the ports we preferred to purchase non included shore tours which are relative expensive. If you want to enjoy, plan to spend around $2000 extra per cabin - that would include gratuities, specialty restaurants, shore tours and reasonable drinking. The unlimited drink package is about $100/pp/day, for a 14 days cruise, only this may be $2,800..... Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This was a couples cruise to Asia covering Singapore (2 nights Pre-cruise) Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam & Hong Kong (2 nights post cruise) as part of celebrating my retirement Positives include quality of the ship (Refurbished in ... Read More
This was a couples cruise to Asia covering Singapore (2 nights Pre-cruise) Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam & Hong Kong (2 nights post cruise) as part of celebrating my retirement Positives include quality of the ship (Refurbished in 2018), quality of the food & choice of restaurants and shows performed by the ship’s cast were of a very high standard Negatives & where NCL really need to up their game are 1. Lack of organisational skills especially on-shore excursions. We booked 2 thru NCL & both times there was considerable delays in getting bus numbers allocated & getting all guests ashore. Worse was on Koh Samui where tenders were required & NCL only used 5 to transport around 2000 people over a journey that too 20 minutes each way. No surprise that we were 3 hours delayed on leaving port that night!! One other complaint about staff were those involved in teh excursions team. It is normal that they will have local knowledge & experience of the various local ports as well as fact sheets that help guests doing their ‘own thing’. NCL staff had neither & could only provide detail on the shore excursions that they offered 2. Costs - altho NCL came in around the same package cost as other cruise lines the fact they offered extras in the form of on-board credit & internet access anything that had to be paid for on the ship was way more expensive than experienced with other cruise lines. Average cost per excursion was €99 some of which we could have done ourselves at a fraction of the cost. We were also forced to purchase a Visa for Cambodia even if we were NOT going on-shore & staying on the ship. I enquired Pre-cruise & the embassy could provide this @ €35 per person it didn’t state that we would need a visa if we were not disembarking however, NCL billed us €99 per person. Considerable admin fee in my opinion 3 altho the ship’s cast provided excellent shows the acts brought on-board were less than impressive. In fact out of the 5 acts only one, Mary Jess, provided the standard of performance experienced on other ship’s 4. The locations visited were part of the reason we booked the cruise however, was surprised that the ship docked in what can only be described as container yards or working shipyards with the majority miles from the locations that we wanted to visit. For example, in Da Nang it was a 30 minute shuttle bus transfer (@$15pp) to the town/beach & that was the best/closest. Worse was Bangkok (2.5hr drive) & Hanoi (3hr drive) Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Cabin Type: Balcony Day two into our holiday cruise i received a rather rude letter in my stateroom, a courtesy phone call would have been nicer, stating that my credit card was stopped and i had my ship card cancelled,having checked ... Read More
Cabin Type: Balcony Day two into our holiday cruise i received a rather rude letter in my stateroom, a courtesy phone call would have been nicer, stating that my credit card was stopped and i had my ship card cancelled,having checked and called my bank it had never been stopped..it was the the ships staff's fault..no apology and rude service at the service desk. Drink package extremely too high. My wife did not drink, but was forced to pay $1,700 for both if interested. The drinks were grossly overpriced and had another 20% added on top plus USD prices then converted to AUD...biggest rip off ever. The tender service was shocking at every port, waiting lines up to three hours in the hot sun. The food was terrible even in the restaurants, the buffet was cheap and sloppy. Just ok service at restaurants, even the specialty ones (3). The cabin beds were hard Had to take pain pills for a severe bad back pain .The whole 19 days were pretty dismal. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
This was our second NCL cruise and found the experience excellent. Embankment was fine although in Sydney it takes a little while to clear customs. The ship had been recently refurbished and was like new. However some of the updates ... Read More
This was our second NCL cruise and found the experience excellent. Embankment was fine although in Sydney it takes a little while to clear customs. The ship had been recently refurbished and was like new. However some of the updates looked like it had been a rush job but it was still very good. We found the ship very easy to navigate and explore. This was stark contrast to our previous cruise with MSC in Northern Europe. The food on board was probably the best we have experienced on a cruise particularly the buffet and the french restaurant. Simple but good. Cruise staff were friendly but not overly friendly and our cabin was well maintained, As per usual NCL Ports of call were excellent and getting off and on the ship was seamless.Did not use onboard excursions as it was much cheaper to organise our own. Disembarkment in Sydney was excellent and the quickest we have experienced. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
I chose this cruise because of the private watercolor class which was offered to me on full cruising days through Art in the Mountains. Because of that class, I was busy on all of the cruising days. We came early to Sydney and stayed a ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the private watercolor class which was offered to me on full cruising days through Art in the Mountains. Because of that class, I was busy on all of the cruising days. We came early to Sydney and stayed a couple more days after leaving the ship. This were great days of exploring the city and learning about Australia's history. I felt like the excursions were expensive for what we got. And that the descriptions of the excursions were not always accurate or maybe a little misleading. This was disappointing. Additionally, the descriptions of next day locations did not always appear accurate, ie. distances to a specific site which needed a car, when people could walk without difficulty; car needed when public buses were available; cycling along path, when actually frequently along traffic. Big problem between what we found on line and what excursion staff told us, who did clearly not have any personal experience or knowledge of the excursion. Quite frustrating. We also did not get any of our boarding paper work before leaving home. It was a mess!!! Were it not for a well versed hotel desk clerk, we would have not had any of the things we needed including suitcase tags, etc. Your communication was not good. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
Traveling with a disabled person, was concerned that it would be a nightmare but was very happy with the attention given that made sure our trip was comfortable. Every issue and concern was resolved immediately. Embarkation and ... Read More
Traveling with a disabled person, was concerned that it would be a nightmare but was very happy with the attention given that made sure our trip was comfortable. Every issue and concern was resolved immediately. Embarkation and disembarkation was easy. Sydney was an absolutely beautiful pier. The food and service at Cagneys was delightful. Selection of food was varied and very good in all other restaurants. Felt the taste of the food of the Chinese restaurant Chin Chin did not live up to my exceptional experience in the Norwegian Gem. Not sure if they modify the food taste and spices based on where in the world is sailing from. The tours were all good to excellent. My cabin Stewart was one on the best I ever had and I have been on dozens of cruises. The disability officer on board was exceptional. We were lucky and had exceptionally smooth voyage with minimal rough seas. The entertainment was varied and unquie. The cirque Bijou was mesmerizing and worth the trip. One on the better shows I have seen. The other shows were good as well. Had great lounge singers. Fell in love with Carrie who played guitar and sang songs in some of the lounges. Had small glitches in the 13 days aboard but every one was resolved to my satisfaction. Pleased with the customer service orientation. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
I decided I would like to take a Christmas/New Year cruise to relax for awhile. Our first couple of days were not too bad as we found our way around and studied the dining facilities etc. On our third day we arrived in Melbourne where we ... Read More
I decided I would like to take a Christmas/New Year cruise to relax for awhile. Our first couple of days were not too bad as we found our way around and studied the dining facilities etc. On our third day we arrived in Melbourne where we would spend the next two nights and fortunately we have relatives there so spent the time with them. Two days at sea took us towards New Zealand and the sounds. Then everything went wrong. First of all I came down with acute gastro which we were told was taken onto the ship by a passenger and this was the night before Dunedin so had to spend the next couple of days in the cabin with room service (not that I was up to eating anything). As I started to recover my husband came down with it so another two days spent in the cabin. By the time we were feeling well enough to venture about we had missed the first 4 ports of call. I went up to the Garden Cafe as I did not really want to eat too much and thought that it would be the best approach. How wrong could I have been. None of the food there could persuade me to eat other than a couple of crackers and two slices of french stick. I found most of the bread on board seem to be sweet as though there was sugar in it. Had a look at a desert and whereas I like apple crumble I could not persuade myself to have choc/orange sauce on it. (where was the vanilla custard) so decided against it. I think they need to change their menu a little more as most days there might have been a couple of different dishes but mostly everything was the same. It is also a sad affair that I had to purchase a half a dozen bottles of water for the cabin which obviously went on our bill but could have drunk as much alcohol as we liked because we had the drinks package included in our fare which by the way was not cheap. We paid over $11,000 or the two of us and heard a few passengers bragging that they had managed to get their trip for $1,500 each. OK they had an inside cabin but that is a big difference. On a good note the ship itself has a good layout and the couple of shows I did manage to see where very good. I was surprise there wasn't a few more chairs with small tables on deck 7 most of the seating was around the swimming pool area and in the sun so found myself sitting on the balcony of the cabin so I could have a drink at my side and look out to sea. We have traveled extensively on cruise ships previously so in the end was very disappointed with this venture on a new to us cruise company. No more Norwegian for me. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Itinery was good, until they changed the whole 19 days , the day before we sailed. This ship had the worst service, worst food and as far as things to do on board,,,,bored,bored,bored. Its all about making as much money as they can on ncl. ... Read More
Itinery was good, until they changed the whole 19 days , the day before we sailed. This ship had the worst service, worst food and as far as things to do on board,,,,bored,bored,bored. Its all about making as much money as they can on ncl. When you complained about things they just say thanks for your feedback. We got off after 9 nights, this was a 19 night cruise. Never had such rude staff, bland boring food. No one was happy on board. The woman at Azure dining room didnt even greet you at night, just looked at you. Buffet staff didnt help cleaning tables etc. Didn't have range of beer, and what they did have was flat. If you complained to pool deck bar staff, they just ignored you and walked away then charged you for drinks you didn't even have, another argument with concierge staff. Don 't know how they can take your money, then change itinery to below what you had booked for. Seats in theatre were so low down, shows were ok. Started repeating acts. I would never recommend to anyone, we have been on several cruises with other lines and they were all great. So many unhappy people on board, glad we disembarked half way through wasn't going to stay another night on the cruise from hell. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
Ship is just renovated cabin with larger shower area. Cabin is always clean! Thanks to our cabin service. Always love flexibility diner restaurants timing with so excellent services they gave to us. Entertaining is marvelous with ... Read More
Ship is just renovated cabin with larger shower area. Cabin is always clean! Thanks to our cabin service. Always love flexibility diner restaurants timing with so excellent services they gave to us. Entertaining is marvelous with différents shows but some with same performers. Service are excellent with smiles in their face and minds. Embarkation and disembarkation were smooth as supposed to be. Singapore is very model and clean with many excellent facilities, Bali is beautiful but to many traffic. Love Darwin with manageable small town and large botanical garden. Brisbane is modelly beautiful with rich historical town. My wife love all activities and joined many of them. For the ports and shores are mostly excellent (that’s why I choose this itineraries!) only some required tending in the rough sea but that understandable. Some port is kind of miss and hit but we just site relax on the ship with nice jacuzzi and swimming pool. I love to go again with Norwegian Cruise in the future with different itineraries since the world has so many wonderful places to visit. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
Lots of issues This is the worst experience we had with NCL. A/C not working, hot water & cold change during shower, shower door jam would not close, problem with ship engine, not getting to port on schedule and leaving early, staffs ... Read More
Lots of issues This is the worst experience we had with NCL. A/C not working, hot water & cold change during shower, shower door jam would not close, problem with ship engine, not getting to port on schedule and leaving early, staffs not train (service terrible). for example, the waiter pour coffee for our friends but forget to pour it for us. In the past, our room were service for 3 times a day, on this cruise skip the morning service. We spoke with a lot of guests on this cruise, they also also indicated NCL have cut back on their service. Over all we had a bad experience. we were hoping for some compensation but no offer of compensation were made. No A/C in rm for hrs. No TV for couple days. Staff not trained, poor service. Rm cleaned late afternoon. No Port talks given and little info on ship. Arrive Ports late and cuts. Worst cruise experience! Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
Norwegian Jewel Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 4.1
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 1.0 3.4
Service 3.0 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 3.0 4.1

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