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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
We returned from our 7 day cruise on the Epic on Saturday Feb. 3rd. I waited to write this because I didn't want to be one of those people that fires off an e-mail when they are upset. This was our first and last experience with Norwegian. ... Read More
We returned from our 7 day cruise on the Epic on Saturday Feb. 3rd. I waited to write this because I didn't want to be one of those people that fires off an e-mail when they are upset. This was our first and last experience with Norwegian. I can not believe how disappointed my husband and I were with the cruise.We have cruised on Royal Caribbean and Carnival before so we did have some previous experiences to compare it to. I don't know quite where to start. We were disappointed with the room in general - the curved design is not good. The toilet and shower were both very small and there were no drawers in the room to put our clothes in, just the cubby holes behind the couch. My husband is 6'1" and he hung off the bed because of the curvature of the room the bed was short on both sides. The only saving grace about the room was that the balcony was a nice size (although the glass was covered in salt residue and we were on deck 13). We did not even meet our cabin steward until the morning of the third day of the cruise. Every other cruise I have been on they have been there to introduce themselves the day we boarded and called us by name whenever they passed us in the hallway. Every day the hall ways were cluttered with laundry carts, making it difficult to pass if anyone else was in the hallway. I was surprised that I had to turn the dial outside our room to ask to have the room made up or turned down. Again in comparison, every other cruise I have been on it was like magic that every time I returned to my cabin it was made up. Two of our 7 nights we did not get a towel animal in the cabin and we never received a chocolate on our pillows. We received the 5 free offers which included the unlimited drink package, 3 nights of upgraded dining, wifi, etc. We had to pre-pay the bar tips before we ever got on the boat which would have been ok if the there had been enough wait staff and if the wait staff that was around actually had waited on customers. I really think the problem was that there was not enough wait staff to take care of all the passengers. I spent an entire day at the pool deck in the Spice H2O area and a waiter came by to take my drink order a total of 3 times in 6 hours. I had to go to the bar multiple times myself and stand in a long line to get a drink. We ran into the same problem when we went to a comedy show. There was one bar open in the small comedy room (Headliners) and the line was very long and there were no waiters. Once the show started the bar was shut down. The set-up for the Headliners room is very poor - bar stools with a table every 5-6 chairs. There was no place to put a drink if one was able to get one. When we went to one of the shows in the main theater I was shocked to see only 2 waiters for the entire room and again the bar and wait service stops when the show starts ( We went to another show in there on a different day and there were 3 waiters then - which is still not near enough for all the people that were in there). I am still trying to figure out how Norwegian markets itself as "freestyle". To me freestyle means you show up and go with the flow. We found out that you needed to have reservations for everything if you didn't want to wait in a line on stand-by or even to eat dinner in the main dining room. We had to wait 25 minutes one evening to eat in the Taste dining room because we didn't realize you need a reservation for the two main dining rooms. We had downloaded the app to use while on board but it didn't tell us what any of the reservations we had made were. I actually had to go to the customer service desk to get them to print us a copy so we could have it with us while we were walking around the ship. Because of the need for all of the reservations I felt like my entire vacation was very scheduled - not a term I would use as synonymous with freestyle. Now for the food - the specialty dining options we choose were Cagney's, Moderno and the Cirque Dreams. The food a Cagney's was ok - both my husband and I ordered the prime rib. It didn't have a lot of flavor but it wasn't bad. The food at the Cirque Dreams was actually the best dinner we had on the ship. Moderno was a good concept and the food was pretty good. I'm glad that we did get the specialty dining options included because I would have been miserable if all of our dinners were like the one we experience in the Manhattan dining room. I ordered I believe what was called the sirloin Diane - it was one of the worst pieces of meat I have ever had. It was so full of fat and grisel that I could only eat about half of it. The wait staff in the dining room was more concerned with talking to each other than they were waiting on us. I was surprised that in the "fancy" Manhattan dining room that my sirloin was served with french fries. I ordered the molten chocolate lava cake for dessert since I didn't get to eat much of my dinner. I was so disappointed with the lava cake - it was not hot and it wasn't even cake nor was it molten - it was the consistency of flan and was cold. Another night I, while in O'Sheehan's I ordered a hot fudge sundae from the Ice Cream shop - it cost $4.80 (felt like I was being nickel and dimed for things - but that's a whole different topic) When the sundae arrived it had chocolate syrup on it instead of hot fudge. I pointed it out to the waitress who seemed confused at first. I showed her the menu and explained I ordered fudge not syrup. She then seemed to understand and said she would fix it. About 5 minutes later she came back and said her supervisor would be coming to talk with me in a few minutes and that they had to go down to the next deck to get the hot fudge. The supervisor came by a few minutes later and I explained the problem (since I was paying for it I wanted what I had ordered). She said it would be just a few minutes. It took a total of 20 minutes for me to get my hot fudge sundae and when it finally arrived it was fudge but it was not hot. I actually came back from a week long cruise and lost a pound and didn't visit the gym once! That's really sad and not an endorsement for the food in general. We had many other disappointments along the way - watered down drinks, the hot tub heater was broken, one of our shore excursions got cancelled the night before, got eaten by bugs on the private island, wait staff on the private island was as inattentive as it was on the ship, very long lines for food on the private island, and had to physically go to Guest Services to get our debarkation luggage tags and custom forms (every other cruise I've been on they deliver them to your cabin on the last night). Many other guests we spoke with were also disappointed in the cruise - as we were leaving I heard another passenger wish someone a better cruise on another line. I normally thoroughly enjoy cruising but I was so disappointed with this one and it was leaving such a bad taste in my mouth (literally and figuratively) that I used up the last of my wifi package during breakfast on Saturday morning before we disembarked from the ship to see when I could book another cruise on a different line. I found one that we booked and we are leaving tomorrow from Port Canaveral on Carnival for a 3 night trip to the Bahamas. I had to do something to have an enjoyable cruise experience so it didn't ruin cruising for me. If this had been my first cruise ever, I don't think I would ever want to go again after the experience we had. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
Disclaimer! everything i wrote below are true. i did not make anything up. i'm saying this because you will not believe so many things could go wrong in a 7-day cruise. This is my 7th cruise in 9 years. 5th time with norwegian. 2nd ... Read More
Disclaimer! everything i wrote below are true. i did not make anything up. i'm saying this because you will not believe so many things could go wrong in a 7-day cruise. This is my 7th cruise in 9 years. 5th time with norwegian. 2nd time on the epic. I consider myself a loyal norwegian cruiser but boy what a disappointment!! upon entering our stateroom, everything in the room seemed to be falling apart. i’m not even exaggerating! i need to start writing this review while i’m still on the ship because there’re so many things i might not remember them all! i’m in disbelief so many things could go wrong on the same trip. First thing we noticed upon entering our stateroom for the first time is the balcony. There is a very very thick and sticky layer of salt covering everything from the railing to the chairs and table and the floor. we used wet tissues to wipe it down and the tissue turned into a big chunk of salt. Then there’s the shower. It’s not cleaned. A plastic cap of a shaver was still there. when we turn on the water, the shower head sounds like a wolf howling. The vanity mirror is starting to fade on the edges. See picture. There’re only a little bit of tissue left. About 8 to be exact which i used them all to clean the balcony. Toilet paper, only a quarter of a roll left. The phone is broken. It went haywire in the middle of the night. It kept rebooting itself and the screen wouldn’t turn off. See picture. It’s super bright. I eventually needed to cover the screen with a towel. There’s a constant vibration in the wee hours in a couple of nights which was really annoying. It never happened in any of my previous cruises. The vibration itself is already enough to keep me awake. it also makes the closet doors rattle. i needed to put a chair against it to quiet it down. One light is broken. see picture. A bath towel we got one day was stained. see picture. The ring that holds the hair dryer is broken. The hair dryer could only rest on the floor. See picture. The bottom drawer could only open half way. See picture. The door for the storage above the bed is broken. See picture. The door lock went out of battery without any warning on day 6 and we couldn’t enter our room with any of our room keys. The light flashed red when we insert our keys. See picture. We didn’t know what was going on and went to the front desk. They gave us new room keys but it still didn’t work. While we were standing outside our stateroom frustrated, a crew member walked by and said the lock went out of battery and she called someone for help. Another crew member replaced the batteries (aaa). a day later, same thing happened and we were locked out again!!! I called the front desk and they sent someone to reprogram the lock. The crew member was not even apologetic. The waiter at o’sheehan was super rude. We’re a family of 3 with my 3-year-old daughter. It took us a while to decide what we wanted to order so the waiter came back twice. He didn’t look too happy when he was taking our order. No smile at all whatsoever. Fine i didn’t really care. The next day, we went there again without our daughter and it was this same waiter. We ordered coffee and fruit plate. After 20 minutes, i went to pick up my daughter from the daycare while my wife stayed at o’sheehan. I walked to the waiter while he was standing at the bar and i asked him if we can see the menu again. He just pointed me to the front and told me “menus are over there and you need to go get it”. Ok fine. I can get my own menu. While i was gone, my wife ordered more food for my daughter. The waiter got irritated and asked my wife if she could order everything at once so he didn’t need to make so many trips because he is “very busy”. isn’t that part of your job? I don’t think people there would order 10 beers at once. That pissed me off. If you can’t handle the pressure, find another job. It was only 4pm and they were not really busy. Lots of bathroom stalls and paper towel dispensers out of order throughout the ship. Ice machines at buffet always not working. I encountered at least 4 times during my 7-day cruise. I finally couldn't tolerate any more thing break on me so i demanded to speak to a supervisor on day 6. he was saying things like we should've told him on the first day or 2 so he could give us another room or an upgrade and now he cannot give me any compensation. i'm sorry but not sorry. These things did not all happened at the same time. They happened over several days. I demanded to have my graduity refunded and they accepted. The epic already has the worst stateroom layout (i.e. Toilet and shower). They don't seem to even do any maintenance. It actually went on drydock for a major upgrade in 2015. wow really??? What was being done? i spoke to 2 different supervisor on different days in different locations and the funny thing is they both blame the ship being french made. unless they do a major major overhaul of the entire ship, namely the poorly designed staterooms, norwegian is putting their reputation at risk. i like norwegian as a company overall. I just went on a criuse on the dawn in november and it was very good. but the failure of the epic is telling me norwegian is not distributing their resources evenly as they had and will have several new ships. I'm giving it 2 stars only because of their youth program, good shows and overall good food. but never on the epic again! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2018
We chose the Norwegian Epic because of the price and perks offered by the cruise company. We definitely got our money's worth! The cabin had a lot to be desired. We shared a inside cabin so we were not expecting anything elaborate. ... Read More
We chose the Norwegian Epic because of the price and perks offered by the cruise company. We definitely got our money's worth! The cabin had a lot to be desired. We shared a inside cabin so we were not expecting anything elaborate. However, there was minimal privacy when using the shower or commode. More solid doors needed on commode area that ensures privacy and provides somewhat of a sound barrier. Besides that fact, the bed was great and storage was more than enough for two people. A unique factor I consider interesting is that the key card is needed to turn of room lights. This saves energy and probably helps with costs. I considered the food good, in general, subject to one's taste preferences. Always available if you know where to look----just check the Daily Acitivity sheet. Entertainment was excellent! Enjoyed shows and comedians. So many activities it was hard to make choices of which ones to enjoy. Service was good and more than we expecte We only utilized one port------------Stirrup Cay. The food and enviroment was very good, but equipment rental at this island was too excessive for the small amount of time it was utilized---$30 per person. Bring your own. In general, a very friendly ship with great staff! Disembarkation was chaotic, but we survived the experience We traveled with a group of friends and would go again. And, yes, we would bring our grandkids. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
We chose this ship because we wanted to go to Jamaica and the Cayman Islands. We flew into Orlando and took the Go Port Canaveral transfer package from airport/ to hotel/ to the ship/ to the airport. It was an easy process. It took ... Read More
We chose this ship because we wanted to go to Jamaica and the Cayman Islands. We flew into Orlando and took the Go Port Canaveral transfer package from airport/ to hotel/ to the ship/ to the airport. It was an easy process. It took about an hour to get from the hotel to the port. IMPORTANT TIP: To speed past much of the line, find the elevator. It drops you at the top of the stairs! At that point, it still took 45 minutes to get on the boat. So, any shortcut helps! We stayed in a mini suite on the 13 floor. This was a good location, as it was a short 2 floors up the stairs to the pool deck and buffet. The gym was up one deck. The room was very strange, as many reported. We adjusted without much problem. There was a lot of storage space and closet space. However, electric outlets were sparse. They were located under the cabinet opposite the bed. Not very convenient at all. Bring your own body wash and shampoo. They have some stinky herbal stuff that was short of disgusting. And lady's, there is no conditioner!!! Bring your own. Last year we were in a suite on the Dawn, and had some awesome Bvlgari products. This is our 3rd Norwegian cruise. This was our worst in terms of service. We had the drink package. It was hard to find a bartender that was attentive or not rude. No one smiled. They seemed annoyed to be there. We never experienced that on other ships. We were in Spice H20 most of the time during the day. Finding waiters was difficult, at best. We waived, yelled, etc.. to get their attention (when there was one to be seen). They would wave and then make their way after 5 minutes or so. Again, annoyed to be there and no smile or friendly words. The restaurants were OK. The menu never changed, so if you wanted variety, you needed to try another entre or go to a specialty restaurant. NOTE: We usually dress up for dinner and got great service in the Manhattan. However, we ate in Cagney's twice- both times the service was without a smile. The experience in Teppanyaki was good. It was entertaining. The food was just ok. I had steak. It was under seasoned. So was the rice. My wife had shrimp and scallops. The scallops were very fishy and seemed undercooked. The Garden Cafe was fine, however, many of the "American" dishes were far from tasting that way. I think they need to invest in an American cookbook, because American staples should look and taste accordingly. Pool Deck- get there early and reserve a spot, or you may find slim pickings on finding chairs- especially at Spice H20. We like being in the hot tubs. One day they were very hot, other days cool or luke warm. No consistency. Entertainment- I thought Norwegian was supposed to be "freestyle"? There were many venues that required reservations. Even tenders? We reserved the Burn the Floor show several months in advance. Upon boarding the ship, we had a letter in our cabin that said we were bumped, and rescheduled to another show (on the last night of the cruise). Not cool. Also, we paid for premium seats for the Cirque show and were seated upstairs. We didn't get what we paid for. The show was outstanding, but we got the bait and switch. The Epic Beatles were also very good, however, get there at least an hour early if you want a chance at getting to sit down. The bartender is not very friendly in there either. We got into the dueling piano bar, which was OK... I've seen better singers. We never were able to get tickets to Escape the Big Top. This ship is big and crowded. Tours- In Jamaica, we went to Dunn's River Falls plus the VIP Beach tour. This was a very good experience. In Cayman- we went shopping and went to a restaurant and had lobster tails for lunch. When we returned, we found many people who reserved tours had them canceled due to rough seas. We decided not to go to the private island. The tender reservation schedule just wasn't worth the hassle. We heard there wasn't much shade, the food wasn't very good and the beach was crowded. Glad we skipped it. Next time, we will be more selective to not book cruises with more than one tender. Gym- The gym had plenty of equipment and machines. However, there were no towels the first few days, which was annoying. Also, no attendants there. Maid- She was great, pleasant, smiling and very friendly! We tipped her extra! All together, we like Norwegian, but this trip just seemed like less service and less for our money. Maybe that's what you get with the bigger ships? We still had fun and made the best of it. It just wan't for us. So, we won't be cruising on the Epic again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
Nice cruise when i finally got a quiet room. don't ever book in cabin 11533 studio. i had to move because it was so noisy next to a "crew area" which turned out to be an elevator where they roll things out of the crew elevator ... Read More
Nice cruise when i finally got a quiet room. don't ever book in cabin 11533 studio. i had to move because it was so noisy next to a "crew area" which turned out to be an elevator where they roll things out of the crew elevator all the time. the room vibrated from all the noise. i had to request to be moved. the room i moved to was perfect. i am not telling which one it was!!! The leg of lamb was succulent, the prime rib outstanding, the garden cafe was okay. taste the mdr are the places to go. FOOD - GREAT PEOPLE - GREAT SOLO COORDINATOR - GREAT NEW ROOM - OUTSTANDING Traveled solo and would do it again. travelling solo with access to the studio lounge is important to me. i have had an inside, balcony and studio. i loved the balcony but adore the access the solo cabin affords me to the lounge, to connect with others. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2018
I read a lot so-so reviews on the Epic - but, it worked for us and we really liked it - I would travel the Epic again. It is 'different' with the unique cabin layout and separated bathroom / shower, but, we really liked out balcony room, ... Read More
I read a lot so-so reviews on the Epic - but, it worked for us and we really liked it - I would travel the Epic again. It is 'different' with the unique cabin layout and separated bathroom / shower, but, we really liked out balcony room, very comfortable and great storage. Solid NCL customer services with entire staff - from room steward, bartenders, to servers. They know how to move a lot of people thru the ship, so it does not feel that crowded. The Unlimited Beverage package and Speciality Dining was included with a promotion. Hard to eat and drink like that for a week - but, I did my part! The buffet was the best one on the many cruises we have taken. I typically don't like the buffet and we only go out of convenience when necessary -- but, this probably one of the better 'food' choices. In the main dining rooms I was a little disappointed with the service. The speciality dining you get a bit better service - but, the food is all pretty much the same, good, but really nothing amazing in the dining rooms. Overall NCL Epic offered a good value for the experience, with excellent entertainment choices and venues. The shows on the Epic were some of the best performances you will find on a cruise ship. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
As our first time on a ship designed to carry 4,000+ people on board for a week, we drove the five hours from our home to the port with a certain level of excitement. This soon dissolved upon arrival at the port when the driver from the ... Read More
As our first time on a ship designed to carry 4,000+ people on board for a week, we drove the five hours from our home to the port with a certain level of excitement. This soon dissolved upon arrival at the port when the driver from the extended parking lot announced that we could either sit in the van or we could unload and stand in line for an hour or more. We all chose the latter. Once in the unloading bay, the driver cheerfully asked that we all stay inside until our luggage was unloaded from the trailer. Some left the van early only to be corralled by the porters until their work was done. Then everyone was cleared to leave the van. The porter then announced: “Who wants to show their appreciation for the porters please step forward and identify your luggage” What? This classic shakedown is usually reserved for correctional institutions. I stepped forward while pushing my four-wheel trunk with a small token saying to my new luggage “I hope to see you again”. Couple hours later we were reunited, so the tip worked. Then we were off to find the end of the line, which happens to be two serpentine columns of humanity over and down to reach the social end of the line. The social end is defined as the far end, an absence of cutting, and cheating-in where most reasonable people go to join the queue. A shout out goes to the majority of the people that respected this social norm. However, a small minority used brazen cutting and a subtle move that was straight out of Oceans Eleven. Feinting to need the restroom they jumped on the elevator away from view to be transported well ahead of the masses below. To say the process was a joke would be an insult to bad jokes. Getting to the ship was a mix of super bowl madness and animal house. Some lines were a simple “L” shaped right to the counters, while another serpentine throughout the too small terminal. For an experiment, I approached one of the line keepers and said: “We are in the Owner’s suite, is there a different line?” He replied, “No, that doesn’t make a difference here”. So, we waited and waited, 120 minutes in all. In it together vibe and positive attitudes of the passengers, we endured together with a shrug and a smile. NCL really needs to look at this as it’s on the cutting edge of their experience. Made our way to Guests Services immediately upon making it onboard. In search of the holy *Posh Pass …the CSR walking the line nearly burst out laughing when we asked if we could. “Purchase a Posh Pass?” She replied, “Oh no, we only had 20 and they sold out with the first hour”. Ok. Off we went to gather some food, it’s now 2:45 pm, and venues begin to close at 3:00 pm. O’Sheehans is the closest and we head there for a Ruben sandwich and fish and chips. Long wait, good service, pedestrian food. Finally, off to the room, a mini-suite, not really, just a matchbox stood on its side. Curved walls, curved bed, the curved couch, with semi-opaque glass encased toilet on the immediate right after entry. The shower is directly across from the toilet. One word on the toilet area, small. If you are over 6-foot-tall, you’ll be qualified for Cirque du Soleil at the end of your business. Thank goodness for a strategically placed handhold. A small dimly lighted sink is located next to the too short bed. We waited for the polite knock on the door to meet our steward/stewardess, uh? Nowhere to be found, no quick hello or here’s how to reach me. Enjoy your cruise. No turn down the first night and after morning breakfast was tucked in we roamed the ship for 3 hours. The room should be made up by now don’t you think? Ahhh, no. Had to wait until well after 3:00 pm to have the room looked after. Finally visited guest services after this became a reoccurring theme. Ronnie told us this was the person’s first solo run as a steward. No tip adjustments needed (though offered), everyone deserves a second chance and an opportunity to improve. Management was gracious with a nice bottle of wine and some chocolate dipped strawberries. Expected service and marked improvement after our visit. The “Free-Style” dining is a bit of a pain if you are just a couple. They don’t take reservations for couples. We tried, only to be told to visit the desk down the way, to be told, “we don’t make a reservation for two” you have to get in line and they hand out clickers that ping when seats are available. The lines or mobs at both main dining rooms were incredible with 90-minute wait times. Of course, you could always go to the $peciality dining restaurants or the buffet, or O’Sheeans (bar food), Noodle Bar, or Chinese restaurant. Not our cup of tea. If you want a nice sit-down meal be prepared to sit around like you were in the Outback waiting for your ding-ding. Update: Fourth day of freestyle cruising and since half the ship complained about the draconian procedures, NCL’s came off their high horse and “allowed” couples to make dinner reservations via phone. How thoughtful. On the sixth night when we were able to secure a rezzy at Taste (6:45p), a floor supervisor stopped by for a chat. “How are you enjoying the freestyle dining experience?” she said smiling. My wife and I locked eyes and I could see that “Oh, Noooo…” look in hers. I suggested the reservation procedures for couples should be revisited, what if someone had plans or a show to see, only to be told it would be a 90+ minute wait for a table? How does that translate to convenience? What’s the message, travel in a group or be prepared to stand in line, or visit the bar for a $10 cocktail? The floor supervisor listened attentively and wrote down my feedback, which was very good. She promised to forward our concerns to her superiors. We were awarded a glass of wine for our honesty. The food in Taste was good; service was appropriate for the churn of guests pouring through dinner service. This was our first and last foray into the large ship category (4,000+) expect lines for everything, elevators, food, shows. The battle for the pool chairs was being played at its highest level. People after breakfast clipped their towels and close the chairs not to return until high noon. This selfish practice is not reserved for NCL it’s practiced among passengers from all cruise lines to the inconvenience of those that chose to play by the “encouraged” sailing etiquettes. How do you police rudeness? Well, I’m not saying whom, but after scoping the field out for an hour or so you might just move the ships towels off the saved lounges and move in for some sun and fun. If the scoundrel's return play dumb and enjoy your seats. The waiters are interested in selling and delivering drinks not enforcing social rules. I mention this because 4,000 people put a hell of a strain on the overall ship amenities. Oh almost forgot, to those of you that purchased the drink package, guess what they charge full tip (18-20%) on your libations. What a great deal! There is an adult pool (Spice.H2O) aft that has NO children squealing and splashing it up. Wasn’t a problem to get a couple chairs. A good place to sun and read. One note on service, well maybe a couple notes, floor officers were very cordial and smiling when encountered, however, the frontline service personnel had well-worn looks on their face and acted as if this was the last sailing on their contract before going home. The normal short happy engagement from all levels we experienced on other cruise lines was noticeably absent. Most especially noticed restaurant gatekeepers at all complimentary venues. Neutral to stern looks abound with the occasional “your card please” with the flavor of checking ones’ papers. Off-putting. One bonus is the photo-group in much tamer than on other lines, a simple wave of the hand will call them off. You don’t have to hunt for your pictures, as the binder is marked on your keycard and you can quickly check them on a computer station in the photo area. Maybe it has to do with the size of the ship, 4,000 are a lot to handle for a week. When you consider the level of difficulty to secure couples reservations at either of the main venues, maybe it’s contrived to push you towards either the pay to eat places or shuttle you to the cheaper buffet option. Money saved no servers, just cooks, busboys/girls over waiters. Serve the same type of food you can purchase at your local Kroger’s deli department. Even the “specialty” restaurants push the drinks, as the margins on alcohol are ridiculous. But hey, free ice cream! Running neck-and-neck for first place annoyance is the price of goods and services. A bottle of water is $4.45. Most cocktails and beer is in $15-$5-dollar range. You cannot bring your own bottled water onboard, the “Quarantine” bins were full of half-empty water bottles collected prior to carryon inspection. Spa costs are crazy. The cost to gamble is up with a minimum of $10 at all table games. Lots of empty tables with dealers bored out of their minds. How they survive without tips is beyond me. The slots were the tightest we’ve ever seen; the casino supervisor did make a big win announcement of $25.00 win on a penny machine. Smoking is allowed in the casino and not policed in the “non-smoking” areas. Which like the restaurants of the late 80’s and early 90’s would have non-smokers immediately adjacent to smokers without barriers. Second-hand smoke and smelly clothes are guaranteed. Yuck. In summary, the trip was pleasant, not over the top. Room was neat and clean (when it got done), plenty of hot water. The storage in the room was many and varied in place and shape. The boarding process is broken beyond belief and needs immediate attention to streamline. Additionally, NCL should have an observer to monitor the porter’s shakedown for tips scheme. Crew disposition needs a bit of inspiration, especially the almost supervisor types that seemed to be bothered at the slightest request (our perception). With 4,000 plus, be prepared to WAIT in lines. The feeding frenzy at the garden buffet is something you have to experience for yourself. The highlight is the “washy washy, happy happy” girl that sprays germ killer on your hands as you enter the Garden Buffet. The disembarking walk-off was an absolute breeze when compared to the death march when boarding. Again, no more ‘freestyling” for us, 4,000+ passenger ships, and sadly; no more bookings on NCL in the future. Bon Voyage folks. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
First the Food: Cagneys steak house excellent. La Cuccina very good. O'Sheehans very good (open around the clock). Taste ( main dining room) fair. Ate there 3 times. slow service and messed up orders twice. food cold. Buffet about what ... Read More
First the Food: Cagneys steak house excellent. La Cuccina very good. O'Sheehans very good (open around the clock). Taste ( main dining room) fair. Ate there 3 times. slow service and messed up orders twice. food cold. Buffet about what you would expect. good selection. hard to find a seat most times. great deserts and ice cream. Ate at Manhattan room(other main dining room) only once. Very slow service and so-so food.(cold soggy lasagna,Yuck)I would give food on Epic 3 stars, The Entertainment: Cirque show excellent. The meal (surf and turf) ok. had upcharge floor seating. very close to the action. We happened to get there about 25 minutes early and glad we did as 6 of the 10 people that sat at our table were already seated and had appetizers. Burn the Floor show amazing. get there early as long lines form. (make sure you make reservations as soon as they are offered as the shows fill up fast. Some you can make online before you cruise and some you cant. but as soon as you settle into your cabin (our cabin was ready at 2pm) go on your tv and make reservations. there are standby lines for most shows also if you cant get reservations. We saw a lady singer (Nora something) in the headliners club one night and wife really enjoyed it. Pricilla queen show was high quality production but not really my cup of tea.( drag queen show) but a lot of people really enjoyed it. Glow show on Thursday night in spice H2O area was pretty good.I would give entertainment 5 stars. Embarkation line was very long but moved at a good pace. Took about an hour and 15 minutes to get onboard. Disembarkation was smooth until you get to baggage claim which is a madhouse. after I found our bags I hired a porter to assist us and we sailed right thru (best 20 bucks I spent) The Cabin: Very cramped. our bed was by the balcony which is probably preferable than the couch by the balcony. cant squeeze by the wife when she is seated at the desk doing makeup so have to walk on the bed to get thru, feet hung off end of bed (i'm 5'11'')..plenty of storage. very poor lighting. very dark without balcony curtain open. not ideal but no real problem with the weird bathroom configuration. Room gets 2 stars. Although a lot of cruisers I seldom felt overcrowded other than long elevator lines. Never really could get where I wanted to go without a map. I don't smoke and Casino wasn't overly smokey. Bridge viewing room on deck 13 was kind of cool. very windy but shipped rode the waves well. Service was hit or miss. some friendly and some not so much. cabin steward Felix did a good job. I had him clean the mini bar out of our fridge when we got onboard. You can call the operator if you need an iron and they will bring it to you but they will be back in 1 hour to get it. We had the unlimited drink package and upscale restaurants for 3 meals as perks and put them to good use. Hard to find a lounge chair in prime areas if you eat breakfast before going out on deck. too bad they couldn't devise a lounge chair timer for unoccupied ones with towels on them for hours. Originally scheduled to go to the Virgin islands before the hurricane. Ended up going to Falmouth Jamaica. Grand Caymans. And Great stirrup cay. Overall we really enjoyed the Cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2018
We had previously sailed on NCL to Alaska 2 years ago on the Jewel and had such a good experience we decided to try them again. I was not as impressed as I think I was supposed to be with the Epic, if that makes sense. The layout of not ... Read More
We had previously sailed on NCL to Alaska 2 years ago on the Jewel and had such a good experience we decided to try them again. I was not as impressed as I think I was supposed to be with the Epic, if that makes sense. The layout of not just the cabins but the ship itself at times was confusing and didn't flow well. While we enjoyed the entertainment, it seemed that some shows were held in too-small spaces for the amount of guests on the ship. The service overall was good, and our room steward Assit did a wonderful job and was always cheerful. The food was great in La Cucina and Cagney's and good in the main dining room Taste. The buffett was "eh" as was O'Sheehan's (which I thought was great on the Jewel). The pool area was good, and we would've enjoyed Spice H2O better had they had some umbrellas or partial shade available. Embarkation took longer than I've experienced in the past. Debarkation went very well and fast once we got a porter to take our bags which allowed us to skip the long line at the terminal. Getting on/off the ship at Jamaica and tendering in Grand Cayman and Great Stirrup Key was fast and easy. Read Less
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