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250 Norwegian (NCL) Port Canaveral (Orlando) Cruise Reviews

Only short cruse available to book at the time. Glad it was only 4 day. Made friends with some first time cruisers. ran into them later; talk about being disappointed. Told them not all cruise lines were like this. Arrived at pier at 1pm. ... Read More
Only short cruse available to book at the time. Glad it was only 4 day. Made friends with some first time cruisers. ran into them later; talk about being disappointed. Told them not all cruise lines were like this. Arrived at pier at 1pm. joined a wait line as long as the ship, no one greeting, no one with info, had to seek out where we could make show and dinner reservations. Service was hit or miss. some crew good some not, Supposed to leave at 8am. called our color, kept us in line for 11/2 hours asked to cut in line to get off. No reason no excuse made . Made our flight by 20 mins. good thing we were tsa pre. smoky casino, supposed to be separate. Get real thats not possible. lots more poor but Im tired of it and this 2nd class line. At least the entertainment was good. Cirque, beatles. burn the floor all good Girl that ran interactive shows was good. Lounge entertainment, guitar and piano were fantastic. Constant pre cruise emails to bid up to a private area. Had the Ultimate Drink Package. Not everything included. Must be a super ultimate somewhere!!! This ship is like the airlines. Three pounds in a two pound bag. Wont be back Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
I can’t ever see myself or our group doing NCL again. Poor service many errors and overall poor customer service. Billing issues on my account before even leaving port. 2 drinks $74 bill. Had drink package. Lack of bar service. ... Read More
I can’t ever see myself or our group doing NCL again. Poor service many errors and overall poor customer service. Billing issues on my account before even leaving port. 2 drinks $74 bill. Had drink package. Lack of bar service. Only cruise out of 27 or so I had to visit the guest service desk 4 times. I am really easy going person. Food in the taste did not come out together from 1st person getting apps to last person was 10 minutes and the meal was 15. The pub should be a place to show up and have some drinks but you must check in to get table and wait. Freestyle Cruising has missed the Mark. You much plan all your items like shoes and tenders to shore. Don’t try to do what you want or when you want to do it. I will not say it ruined the cruise because our group still make the best of it. Looks elsewhere if you have cruised other cruise lines. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Yes, things happen - understood. What is unforgivable is the delay in notification of altered embarkation and itinerary. I would certainly have cancelled the cruise if I had not already flown to Florida - would have been a good idea anyway ... Read More
Yes, things happen - understood. What is unforgivable is the delay in notification of altered embarkation and itinerary. I would certainly have cancelled the cruise if I had not already flown to Florida - would have been a good idea anyway after my experience. The incident that caused the problem occurred on Tuesday, notification was on Friday - the afternoon before scheduled embarkation. We did not go to any of the ports scheduled - only Nassau (which was not originally scheduled). A friend was tracking the ship via GPS and the last "fun day at sea" we went in circles apparently to prolong the trip so NCL would not have to refund any more money. Speaking of refunds...we were told that we "would be contacted" regarding refunds - still has not happened. There is at least an hour wait when calling NCL to ask questions and their email states a 15 day response. Sure didn't take that long for them to take my money! Generally poor customer service from Guest Services. I will never sail with Norwegian again because of the poor communication and poor customer service. I will say the food and service in the dining areas was good - never went hungry and choices for anyone's palate. Did not get to attend any of the desired shows due to lack of seating and long wait lines. Activities were varied but not a lot that appealed to me personally - most seemed geared to the younger crowd. I did play bingo a few times but it seemed high priced for the three games. Cannot speak to the ports and shore excursions because we did not go to any of the scheduled stops except Great Stirrup Key (Norwegian's private island). Nassau was an unscheduled port that I had visited before and had no desire to visit again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
I never thought it could happen to me and my family . . . but it did. Spent a boatload of $$$ to be in the Haven. Great cabin, great staff . . . and that's about it for the positives. Negatives started when tried to board the ship, ... Read More
I never thought it could happen to me and my family . . . but it did. Spent a boatload of $$$ to be in the Haven. Great cabin, great staff . . . and that's about it for the positives. Negatives started when tried to board the ship, the gangway was struck by a truck (I kid you not). We should have known better, but continued on. Again, Haven area and cabin were great. Omar, David and concierge staff were as helpful as they could be under the circumstances, but like the passengers, they were constantly left in the dark about what was going on. Day 1, got out of port late for an unknown reason (most believe the engines were already in trouble and NCL knew it). Thereafter, one or two engines die and we are left floating in the middle of the ocean without movement or real explanation. Ask everyone, we making Tortola? Each response, absolutely!. Never made Tortola. Later, still crawling along, we ask (after learning that we won't make Tortola . . . are we making St. Thomas? Each response, absolutely! Later that day, learn later . . . we are not making St. Thomas, but hey NCL offered a 50% credit on next cruise, cause we are still going to St. Juan and the Private Island as well. Note, San Juan was not a scheduled stop (had to stop there to fix the broken boat). Ok . . . what else could possibly happen? Well just youtube, Norweigan Epic and San Juan and you will see what else could happen. The boat literally attacked Puerto Rico. Fun stuff, if it wasn't so bloody scary to witness it and your kids start thinking the ship is going to sink. San Juan excursions. . . nope - NCL did next to nothing, so I was on my own. Luckily I overheard someone was going to the Marriott on a day pass and stole that idea and had a decent day. Next, after we limp out of San Juan, all of our suspicions were confirmed and we are finally told we ain't making the private island and will slowly cruise back to Port Canaveral. Although NCL had no idea when we would actually make it back to Florida. But hey, NCL will now give everyone a 100% credit toward their next cruise (did I mention this is my first cruise?). Awesome, I get the privilege of spending more money with a cruise line that sent me on a cruise to nowhere and made a real dent in Puerto Rico. Next day they tell us, ohh we are going to be late back to Florida (like by almost a whole day) so everyone has to change their flights (NCL to refund up to $300 change fees - mine were much more). What else could happen? Ohh, I know, they tell us the next day that we are going to back to Florida earlier than anticipated, so all those arrangements you changed . . . yeah go ahead and change them again (although they never said they would pay for any of those additional change fees - luckily those only cost me another $75/ticket so I got off cheap . . . only another $300 I will likely never get back. So just to review, gangway hit by a truck, 1 or 2 engines fail, slowly creep back and forth to Puerto Rico, never make any actual port of call, never got to any scheduled excursions, never actually got to a beach, the boat attacked and damaged Puerto Rico, spent 7 days at sea so NCL could repair its busted ship. It really wouldn't have been so bad if NCL had just been honest and/or offered some type of actual refund and not just a stupid credit toward your next cruise. NCL SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF ITSELF!!!! YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED, DO NOT USE THIS CRUISE LINE!!! If there is any problem they will keep you uninformed, misinformed or just in the dark. They have some fun commercials on TV, but PLEASE DON'T BE SUCKED IN, AVOID NORWEGIAN AT ALL COSTS!!!! This "vacation" cost me a small fortune and their answer to the nightmare . . . credit toward a future cruise. That's an awesome business model. I'm thinking class action lawsuit . . . who's with me? Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
My family (comprised of 4 kids (11/10/9 and 5) hoped to visit three unique ports-of-call (with private tour vendors) that were not offered by competitors such as RC. Instead, all three scheduled ports of call were canceled. We could not ... Read More
My family (comprised of 4 kids (11/10/9 and 5) hoped to visit three unique ports-of-call (with private tour vendors) that were not offered by competitors such as RC. Instead, all three scheduled ports of call were canceled. We could not even enjoy San Juan because we were provided cryptic and misleading information about when the boat would be repaired/underway. We lost security deposits and, in one case fully-funded, excursion costs to private vendors at 2 of the 3 scheduled stops. Epic's onboard fire, fire doors shutting, engine failures and collisions were all extremely alarming to my family. While the Splash Academy staff worked hard to offset the trauma of these events, certain things were difficult to overcome, such as the staff projecting disconcerting warning signs on the big screens inadvertently. Moreover, the lack of transparency from Captain and officers was unconscionable. They provided little to no feedback until events were already 'after-the-fact.' Therefore, we could not exercise options to leave the cruise early, etc. Furthermore, we spent the bulk of our time buying plane tickets out from San Juan and communicating with vendors trying to recoup our lost money (Tortola, St. Thomas and Fla) and making new travel plans because of our late return to Port Canaveral. Even some of the onboard entertainment was not 'kid appropriate' - even though we received no advanced warning. For instance, the circus exhibited significant erotic and homoerotic actions that were not suitable for my young kids. Because the ship arrived late / after scheduled return to Port Canaveral, we lost one of two non-refundable days at Universal Theme Parks. Disembarkation was a stampede - also an alarming event. Passengers were so eager to catch changed flights that the barreled aggressively like a mob to the two chokepoint exits on Deck 7. Embarkation was also terrible as the computer terminals failed in the concourse, leading to a long protracted tiring onboarding process with seemingly-interminable lines. All-in-all, a horrible vacation! I am so frustrated that NCL has offered only a voucher for future cruises v. a reimbursement -- that would be the fair and equitable recompense. The trip was worse than anything we could have forecast. My daughter acquired pneumonia on the cruise, to boot. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
The ship boarding took around 2 hours. It was our first cruise . We chose the cruise because we were looking forward to the ports . We understand that weather can affect a cruise. But we did not have weather issues. The ship was ... Read More
The ship boarding took around 2 hours. It was our first cruise . We chose the cruise because we were looking forward to the ports . We understand that weather can affect a cruise. But we did not have weather issues. The ship was running slow and had mechanical issues. The communication from the ship catptain was poor, We heard a very loud sound in the middle of the ocean. From there on I could feel the ship shake I thought it might be hesitation in the engine. The engine went thump thump! The ship was crowded and the pools are small. The elevators are crowded and the lights in the elevator flickered constantly. The elevators were out of service from time to time. We signed on for 3 ports. We only had 1 port on our 7 day cruise. We had no time to plan for it. Our ship crashed into the port. We should have flew home. But we stuck it out. A decision I regretted. The kitchen and food crew are great. They are hardworking.They made an effort to keep the kitchen and dining rooms very clean. The casino drink service was limited. Some of the bar servers were outstanding. I felt like a captive. The cruise was stressful! My opinion is we all know things happen and more clear honest communication is helpful. We managed to have fun despite the challenges. I wish I could of had some time on a beach., Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Worst vacation experience.! Overcrowded! Not enough room for people on the pool deck. Long lineups for everything. Not enough staff working very long shifts. The ship is under constriction taking up deckbspace with sounds of ... Read More
Worst vacation experience.! Overcrowded! Not enough room for people on the pool deck. Long lineups for everything. Not enough staff working very long shifts. The ship is under constriction taking up deckbspace with sounds of sawing and grinding metal. They stress hygine to avoid illness but can't keep the handsoap refilled in the washrooms (complained twice because ALL dispensers were empty). Add engine mechanical issues and we didn't make any of our ports of call. Hostages bouncing around the Atlantic with the same boring routine and every day more bad news from the captain. The one day we went to the unscheduled port of San Juan for repairs we hit the dock and finally made the news. Apparently things like this happen regularly a frequent cruisers are unfazed. An a first time cruiser, this is far from what I expected and not worth the hefty pricetag! Our return to our original port or Orlando would be 12 hours late which of course impacted flight schedules. After everyone rescheduled they announced we would return earier. Many of us could have made our original flights! How do so many mistakes happen? It very expensive waste of valuable vacation time. I have yet to see any type of compensation. Not for the ports we didn't visit, the excursions I didn't go on. The crappy ship. The extra expense of hotel and reschedule flights. I didn't get to swim in the sea or even walk on a sandy beach. DON'T DO IT!!! A cheap all-inclusive resort has the same quality of entertainment and you won't get screwed out of your hard earned vacation time and savings. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Someone talked me into trying this cruise line. The ship had way too many people for an space on the adult pool/lounge area, never any available chairs. The suite was nice but I had needed a fridge for my milk, ensure and food (to be ... Read More
Someone talked me into trying this cruise line. The ship had way too many people for an space on the adult pool/lounge area, never any available chairs. The suite was nice but I had needed a fridge for my milk, ensure and food (to be discussed later), the room attendant started taking things out and put them in a cabinet, I told him he cannot take wine/beer and such out to get warm the refridgerate them again as they would be ruined in taste. Dining, let's see, I gave them things I could not have for special reasons and they made it that I was allergic to every thing. The F&B Director wasnever around, the maître de never helped out but did laugh in my face Valentine's night. The dining manager tried to run from me as he knew nothing and the Executive Chef would never come out to talk to me, he hid in the kitchen. The 5th day I finally got my lactose free milk but was opened so who knows what was put in there. One day I came back and there was a glass of something, I guess some type of milk, so I called down to RS and they aid they never sent anything up, why was I not informed and why was it not in the fridge? The Entertainment was awesome, the only good thing about the cruise. Service was excellent at the casino bar from Carol even though that was the only place Mike could get me bottled water, I do not remember the tall young guys' name in the Manhattan, he noticed the first night there was a problem and tried to help me out anywhere I was, he also stood at the fron of The Garden Café in the morning and was always smiling. The rest of the crew just ignored you or went around your questions especially the head people. Gee ports, never made them, which was horrible. San Juan we had been to. Excursions, again, never made it to any. No children. Depends on what ship and what we get back from this. We were charged for things we should have not and I will also refute 2 movies on the tab the days we did not make it to port. This cruise was a joke all around and they should not have left Port Canaveral in the first place as they knew they needed maintenance, that is just horrible, Norwegian should be ashamed of themselves and I will take action against them Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
First cruise. Heard favourable reviews previously about Norwegian. This cruise was an Epic Fail. Anything and everything went wrong. Lied to from beginning to end. Ship ran on one engine out of five. Fire on 4th deck.. Crew quarters. Then ... Read More
First cruise. Heard favourable reviews previously about Norwegian. This cruise was an Epic Fail. Anything and everything went wrong. Lied to from beginning to end. Ship ran on one engine out of five. Fire on 4th deck.. Crew quarters. Then engine mechanical problem. Told had to port in San Juan to assess situation. Never made it to any of the scheduled ports... Tortola, St. Thomas or Bahamas. Pilot steered ship into two moores at San Juan, resulting in 3 large dents in hull. Told we would be going to Bahamas after San Juan overnight then changed and told going straight to Port Canaveral. Told eta 8pm Saturday instead of 8am, then told 3pm. Only offered 100% credit of what we paid towards future cruise within 24 months. Really? What about a refund? Husband's birthday surprise cake from travel agent was never delivered. Never goin on Epic again. Only good thing was entertainment and food. Constant push to spend money all the time. Pools are a joke, almost the size of a jacuzzi. Can't believe this ship sailed out the following Monday. It should be docked and fixed. Those passengers were offered 50% refund and 50% towards next cruise and only a 5 nt cruise to Bahamas only. We were never offered a refund, but told to keep our receipts for any expenses arising out of the delays. We had to take a taxi to Melbourne airport to get our rental car because the rental depot we had booked closed at 4pm. Others had to change their flights and were only offered $300 per flight change... What a joke! Couldn't understand a word the Captain said. Mandy, the cruise director had to reiterate every single time. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Absolute worst experience. Aside from the contained fire day one, and the engine failure day two? The lack of communication was beyond aggravating. 2 hours we sat not moving in the ocean before we had an announcement which stated the ... Read More
Absolute worst experience. Aside from the contained fire day one, and the engine failure day two? The lack of communication was beyond aggravating. 2 hours we sat not moving in the ocean before we had an announcement which stated the obvious. Were not moving. Than you captain we noticed 2 hours ago... then proceeded to sit for an additional 3 hours before they figure out how to operate the ONE engine. The crash in San Juan ... not acknowledged. An apology for making us world news might be nice. The lies. They went on and on ... they knew we were never making it to the Bahamas be ause the engine wasnt fixed. It was a deep prayer and a cheap way out to put the passengers back on a ship with a broken engine and gashes in the side. Money came before safety. Honestly it wasnt what the multiple events over the course of the week that made it more hellish then the lines lack of communication. This was our first time with Norwegian and after out next one because of the credit toward another (we would have preferred a refund) it will absolutely be our last with Norwegian. This line should be embarrassed for how they handled each and every misfortune their ship faced in 8 days. Total embarrassment. #epicfail #nevernorwegian Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We chose this cruise because it was the one my cousin picked for their 10yr anniversary. They chose this cruise because it went to St Thomas, which is where they went on their honeymoon. Boarding was delayed because someone knocked out ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was the one my cousin picked for their 10yr anniversary. They chose this cruise because it went to St Thomas, which is where they went on their honeymoon. Boarding was delayed because someone knocked out one of the bridges. Engine failure on second day, which they apparently knew about and set sail anyways. They lied to us the entire time. Tugs pushed ship into docks when we arrived at Puerto Rico. That was the only poet we went to so they could try to fix ship, not on itinerary. We were supposed to still hit our last stop at Grand Stirrup Cay, and they cancelled that stop the night before. We slowed and were given stamp at international port so they didn’t get fined $700 per passenger. Disembarkation was a completely nightmare, as they had no control over who got off when. All of that, and they are only offering a credit. They refuse to give me my money back. Everything was terrible except drinks, food and weather! They could have handled the communication of the issues way better. If they had then all issues would have been overlooked, as we understand things are unpredictable. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Epic failure . This was our first and probably last Cruise. We had mechanical failures on the second day of leaving port. Very little communication between crew and passengers. All of our Port stops were cancelled. After destroying two ... Read More
Epic failure . This was our first and probably last Cruise. We had mechanical failures on the second day of leaving port. Very little communication between crew and passengers. All of our Port stops were cancelled. After destroying two piers in San Juan Puerto Rico they did not even inform passengers as to what had happened or what was going to be done about it . They just continued to say they were having mechanical issues . all they offered us was a free cabin fare to be taken in 2 years. Which means we have to spend another $1,500 to get what NCL calls a" free " Cruise. Three weeks after returning they still have not answered any of my complaints or reimbursed us for our additional airfare and cab fare to the airport. Very poor customer service and no communication. I would not recommend taking a cruise with Norwegian Cruise Lines. They don't appear to care about their customers or their reputation. Since Cruise Critic is refusing to post my review without more information here it is. Cabins average size plenty of storage room. Dining was horrible in the buffet. Specialty restaurants were very good. All other restaurants were average Entertainment if you didn't have reservations you had to wait in very long lines since we were unable to get off at any of our ports that's all that was left to do. Casino don't waste your money machines are very tight. Of course they made money off of us because there was nothing else to do. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We picked this cruise in order to get some winter sun and visit some ports that we thought might be interesting and different to us. We have been on a number of cruises over the years ranging from quite humble cruise lines to the more ... Read More
We picked this cruise in order to get some winter sun and visit some ports that we thought might be interesting and different to us. We have been on a number of cruises over the years ranging from quite humble cruise lines to the more luxurious. We have previously sailed with NCL in Europe, North America and the Caribean. This cruise was, by far, the worst cruise I have ever had the misfortune to sail on. The initial embarkation process seemed to take an age although we later learned that one of the gangways onto the ship had been damaged and rendered inoperable thus slowing down the entire procedure. There was a second embarkation procedure brought about by the late return of this ship to its home port which necessitated the disembarkation and re-embarkation of passengers. This procedure lasted about 4.5 hours and was totally shambolic. The ship is large but, in my opinion lacks the 'wow' factor. It all seemed rather bland and second rate compared with any other ships that I have sailed on. The cabin had an unusual design which resulted in a tight space if two persons were moving around the cabin at the same time. The ship has only two sets of lifts, one fore and one aft and this results in a lot of queueing and walking the length of the ship. An aspect of the ship which I found anti-social was in traversing the length of the ship I frequently found myself walking through the extensive casino area where, surprisingly to me, smoking was allowed and the resultant smell of smoke permeated beyond the confines of the casino in a most unpleasant manner. Due to engine malfunction (allegedly known about prior to sailing) we were unable to visit any of our three scheduled ports of call but did call at a port which we were not scheduled to call at. At this time the ship was involved in a collision with the pier causing substantial damage to both. As a consequence of not visiting our scheduled ports and not having been offered any excursions at the unscheduled port of call I am unable to offer an opinion as to the quality or otherwise of the excursions originally on offer. As previously outlined there were no excursions on offer at our unscheduled port call. Suffice to say the failure to allow passengers the choice of an excursion on a seven day cruise is deplorable. On the plus side I found the entertainment and quality of food to be very good. We did not try any of the speciality restaurants partly due to a reluctance to pay even more money to a cruise line that was, at best, indifferent as to how it treated its passengers. In respect of my low rating with regard to service I do not have any criticism whatsoever with regard to cabin staff, bar staff or waiting staff. They were faultless in my experience of them. However the same cannot be said of the officers and crew present in the Guest Relations area of the ship who pedalled untruths and misinformation at the drop of a hat throughout the whole crisis described hereunder. Whether this course of action was intential or through their own ignorance as to what the actual position was is debatable. On the afternoon before we were due to dock (15 Feb) at Port Canaveral it was announced that instead of arriving in the early morning as scheduled we would not be arriving until 8pm the following night. This announcement immediately caused a logjam of several hundred passengers at the Guest services area of the ship as they tried to access the two phones allocated to them in order to change their flights. Some laptops were made available but as documented in other reviews they were inadequate in number, logjammed and represented a totally insufficient resource to deal with the self created castrophe brought wholly brought about by the actions of NCL. The officers and crew seemed as confused as the passengers and the cause of the problem varied depending upon which officer you last spoke to. It was complete and utter chaos. This choas was exacerbated when about noon on 16 Feb, the day of our scheduled arrival the docking time for the ship was changed yet again when it was brought forward to 3pm that day. This announcement meant that hundreds of passengers spent hours in a queue in order to change travel arrangements which, in many cases, it was now apparent, need not have been changed in the first instance. This course of conduct was typical of the way that this whole episode was managed, or more accurately mismanaged. I suspect that the main thrust of NCL operations at this time was not the welfare of its passengers at that time on board the Epic but attempting to arrange accomodation for the 4000 future passengers who had by now to be accomodated in the Cape Canaveral area and beyond. The response of NCL to this debacle was to initially offer 50% credit to a future cruise with them, this was later increased to a 100% credit to a future cruise with them as the situation worsened. In respect of travel arrangements they offered a maximum of $300 per passenger, which in many cases would have been totally inadequate. Again, the complete indifferance of NCL as to the welfare of their passengers is confirmed by their shoddy and skinflint approach to them whereby they embarked on a cruise which did not go to where it was supposed to go but went somewhere it was not meant to go to and failed to arrive back at its home port when it was supposed to. Could you make this up!! This entire incident has left me feeling very bitter towards NCL and at present I feel that it is most unlikely that I will sail with them in the future. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We booked this trip to Tortola, St Thomas, and Great Stirrup Cay because it offered a great way to combine relaxing days at sea with some fun adventures on the beaches of the Caribbean. Leaving Colorado in February for warmth and ... Read More
We booked this trip to Tortola, St Thomas, and Great Stirrup Cay because it offered a great way to combine relaxing days at sea with some fun adventures on the beaches of the Caribbean. Leaving Colorado in February for warmth and relaxation made it the perfect vacation for us, and it the first vacation vacation without kids for me in almost 20 years. Wahoo for a cruise that included Valentine's Day!! The ship didn't "feel right" from the moment we left port, with an odd shuddering periodically in addition to the normal rock and hum of a cruise ship. On our second day at sea, it was announced that "power issues" were going to divert us from our scheduled itinerary, and we'd be sailing slowly to San Juan for repairs. We docked with a bang, crashing into two dolphin piers and sinking them into the harbor. We were told we'd have a 50% credit on a future cruise, and that they hoped to make repairs quickly to get us underway to Great Stirrup Cay as scheduled. It's important to note that information was difficult to get - the captain was unintelligible, the cruise director that always repeated his message was vague - and doled out with an eye-dropper. Each day was a new variation on "not at all what you planned for." Our tour company was told that we'd be leaving in the evening, although the sign when disembarking said 5:30pm. We were halfway through our tour when we were rushed back to the ship because they wanted to leave at 5:30. We boarded and they closed the hatch behind us, but we didn't sail for several hours, as we needed a tugboat to take us out of port. Once underway, we were told that we would not sail to GSC as planned, but would in fact go back to Port Canaveral. The next day, we were told we'd arrive at 8pm, which was the final injustice. Frantically changing airline plans and transport plans, the wifi and phone systems were overwhelmed. It was helpful that the cruise director gave the wrong code to get a landline in the announcement... it made it easier for those of us who asked at Guest Services to use the right one, but led to a massive crowd in a very warm atrium as a result. Many passengers had change fees and flight costs in excess of $500 per person because they were buying much more expensive tickets two days ahead of flying than those they'd purchased well in advance. The cruise line reimbursed them a maximum of $300 per person. Transport fee changes were not reimbursed at all. More importantly, since the cruise for the following week would be cut short, they were rescheduled to a 5 day cruise to Nassau (rather than a 7 day cruise to Jamaica), given a 50% credit AND a 50% refund, as well as the option to not sail and receive a full refund. We asked for a refund or the ability to use the credit on one of Norwegian's other cruise lines, and received a form letter in response that they were sorry we were "disappointed" but they stood by their offer of a 100% credit to be used within 24 months. A six page letter from me was answered via a form letter. "Disappointed" was not a word I would use. The engine problems and propeller problems were out of their control, but communication was horrible, consideration for guests who suffered significant financial hardship, and their complete failure to adjust the onboard schedule so that people wouldn't have run out of things to do by Thursday (virtually all Sea Days will do that) was absolutely in their control. Without valid data, when traveling at 10-12 knots with one propeller, people tend to fill in the blanks themselves. Anger, fear, panic attacks... that's not a vacation. It was a nightmare. It was being kidnapped with a buffet. Speaking of buffets and speaking of food... the specialty restaurants were incredible. I'm grateful we took advantage of the "3 free" offer. The main dining rooms can best be described as "dorm food." Steaks are too thin to truly be cooked to order, chicken was rubbery, seafood was overcooked and oversauced, the buffet food suffered from too much time under warming lamps, and portions were small and often disproportionate (picture a "Philly Cheesesteak" which has a large bun with a minimal amount of filling). Finally, not once did I see anyone changing out the serving utensils in the buffet lines. Hand sanitation standards on this ship were much lower than what I've experienced on others. I've been on ships where you were not permitted to enter a dining area until you'd taken a hand wipe. It was very much optional and often inconveniently located on the Epic. The rooms are smaller than I've experienced on other cruise lines and oddly laid out. The "queen bed" was far shorter than a standard bed. so prepare to sleep with your feet hanging off the end. One closet had no hangars, so be sure to bring your own. The other closet has those "unstealable" hangars that hang from a holder on the bar in the closet which can't be removed (or moved to the other closet). Finally, "freestyle cruising" means that rather than tipping individuals based on your service experience, you are charged a daily service fee that requires a form to change... and I couldn't increase it, only decrease it. My apologies to Marco, our cabin steward, who deserved more than the standard but wasn't able to get it because of the process. The ship is very large, with insufficient elevators for the number of people aboard. It was rare to be able to board the first elevator that stopped, as they were often full. It wasn't unusual to wait 10+ minutes to have an elevator you could ride, particularly from 6pm-10pm. In short, our experience on the Epic was #EpicFail. I would not recommend it to others. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We choose the cruise as we had six of us, one that had never been on a cruise befor and the one couple that had said we would probably enjoy Norwegian as the food and entertainment was good. The food was amazing and so were the staff, ... Read More
We choose the cruise as we had six of us, one that had never been on a cruise befor and the one couple that had said we would probably enjoy Norwegian as the food and entertainment was good. The food was amazing and so were the staff, entertainment lower than expected, told they would be more like “theatre actors” really not much better than all inclusive entertainment. We took this cruise as the 3 couples all had special celebrations, retirement, special birthdays and special anniversary’s, well the epic experience will be one we don’t forget and not for good reasons. The biggest complaint I have is lack of communication on and off the ship. Just before you leave you get contacted daily to upgrade, book specialty restaurants but trying to talk to someone after you embark, nothing said they would contact us in 15 days.. Can’t believe a company this size would not want to be all over ensuring unsatisfied clients were compensated. Realize things can happen were and when ever you travel but never thought request for contact would not be top on priority. I have no desire to ever travel with them again and as I share my experience with others they find it hard to believe that a company of this size that advertises like no one else does not care about their reputation, they DONT. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Twenty years ago we spent our honeymoon on a Norwegian ship. It was an excellent experience. We decided to try Norwegian cruise line again with the Epic. It was a complete failure. The design of the ship is laid out badly and confusing. ... Read More
Twenty years ago we spent our honeymoon on a Norwegian ship. It was an excellent experience. We decided to try Norwegian cruise line again with the Epic. It was a complete failure. The design of the ship is laid out badly and confusing. There are only elevators at the front and the back of the ship. There is always long lines and crowds for the elevators. What makes it worse is the crowds pile in the elevator which has no air conditioning. It is like standing in a packed sauna. The ship decor and staterooms have a very dark paneling which gives it a bad lighting atmosphere. The ship was so overcrowded that it wasn't relaxing. It was like standing in long lines at Disney World just to get on a ride. You had to arrive at restaurants and shows at least one hour prior to their scheduled times because long lines formed early for each event. Nobody made it clear that you needed to book showtimes and non specialty restaurants reservations before boarding the ship. To add to the frustration all show activities are located in the same area of the ship. You couldn't move because long lines formed early for each show. You always had to wait in lines for everything and make sure you got there early. For the shows you didn't reserve, there was still long lines and standing room only crowds. The comedian acts repeated their same shows. Had we known we wouldn't have waited for the same show in standing room only crowds. The juggler Dan Bennett and the magician were the only good shows. While Priscilla had wonderful costume changes and singers, the show was definitely not appropriate for a cruise ship audience. Especially as the main entertainment show. The bad design of the ship also included very small pools that were more like the size of a bath tub especially with over 3000 cruisers onboard. The sports deck did not include the traditional miniature golf course that is featured on all other cruise ships. The bad design of the ship also involved being forced to walk through smoked filled casino areas to get to other venues and restaurants on the ship. This is very harmful for non smokers. While sitting in the Taste Restaurant you could even smell the smoke from the Casino above. We were also very unhappy to find out that even with the beverage package, you could not get bottled water for free. Why? We are not heavy drinkers and I am sure bottled water is cheaper than alcohol. As long time cruisers, we enjoy booking the spa suite balcony level or higher. The only redeeming factor on the Epic is the Thermal Suite Hydrotherapy area in the spa. Access to it is included in a spa level stateroom. This area provides the much needed stress relief from the constant crowds and lines in all areas of the Epic ship. The balcony in the spa area is the quietest area on the ship even with the roar of the rear engines. Again though this area would become so crowded because everyone agreed it was the only place to escape the craziness of this ship. We booked this vacation for my husbands birthday. His favorite food is Italian. We choose La Cucina for that reason. We both were very sadly disappointed with this restaurant. How does an Italian restaurant not offer pasta selections? My husband left the restaurant without eating. The waiter felt so bad that he gave us pizzas to eat later. This cruise was an "Epic" failure. We will never book Norwegian again. Celebrity cruise line has shown that they treat their passengers royally with better ship features, indoor, and outdoor facilities, and entertainment while having comparable prices. I noticed in other posts where they mentioned catching a bad cold at the end of their Epic cruise. We had the same problem. We were not sick when we got on the Epic but left our vacation with a bad cold despite constant hand washing. We noticed many other cruisers were coughing by the end of the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
Friends found deal. Long lines for dinner & shows. Nothing to be had with coffee on deck ( pastries, bagels etc.) before 7:30am. Every major event seemed to be routed through the casino. Smallest pools I've ever seen. ... Read More
Friends found deal. Long lines for dinner & shows. Nothing to be had with coffee on deck ( pastries, bagels etc.) before 7:30am. Every major event seemed to be routed through the casino. Smallest pools I've ever seen. Food was good, but not the lines. Service was excellent. Not enough entertainment choices for a 10 day cruise. Only place for any kind of food before 7:30 am was Irish bar on deck 6. Dark and not inviting for a early morning snack. Also, bar is in the middle of smoke smelling casino. Not interested. All in all I cannot recommend NCL with a clear conscience to friends, family, colleagues or anyone else that asks. I will say again, I'm completely turned off about "Freestyle" sailing. Back to the size of the pools. We've been on many ships, NCL Epic has the smallest pools weve ever experienced. On top of that, the pool on the H20 deck (aft) was out of service the last day and a half of the cruise. I don't usually write negative reviews but I was really dissatisfied with NCL Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
Started off very badly with a 2 + hour wait to embark. No one would tell customers what the issue was. Some blamed TSA. Others said the ship was 2 hours late arriving in port. It was after we got on that we learned the real reason (just ... Read More
Started off very badly with a 2 + hour wait to embark. No one would tell customers what the issue was. Some blamed TSA. Others said the ship was 2 hours late arriving in port. It was after we got on that we learned the real reason (just google Norwegian Epic Drug bust January 2019). The staff seemed pre-occupied and un-attentive; meals were mediocre unless you paid surcharge for certain restaurants. We did so twice and the food and service was much better. Bar drinks are not great and overpriced (most mixed drinks avg $12 USD). A can of pop cost over $4.00 USD - insane! There are few interior areas where one can go to sit and look out on the water (think HAL Crow's nest). The card room is about 25' square - much too small for the size of the ship. The library is very small. The corridors are narrow in places. Lines are long for restaurants and entertainment. The theatre holds 600 people. The main show - Priscilla played two nights, 2 shows a night. If you do the math, that means 2400 people could see the show (if you had a reservation or was lucky to get in on standby). The rest were out of luck. The only plus was the weather and the shore excursions that we booked ourselves prior to cruising - and NCL had nothing to do with that. We have cruised many times with many cruise lines and this will be one to forget. Embarkation when smoothly because we walked off with our own luggage - and boy were we happy to get off! Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We initially chose this cruise for the itinerary, and the port it was departing from. We are experienced cruisers, having been on many different cruise lines - Holland America, Royal Caribbean etc. The embarkation process was the WORST ... Read More
We initially chose this cruise for the itinerary, and the port it was departing from. We are experienced cruisers, having been on many different cruise lines - Holland America, Royal Caribbean etc. The embarkation process was the WORST we have ever experienced! We stood outside in the hot sun in a line that went on forever. It took several hours to even get to the point of check-in. It was disorganized and chaotic. When we tried to ask a few people behind the scenes what the delay was, we received two different explanations (please note - no one from the ship went along the line to provide any type of communication at all). The first explanation that we received was that the ship was late into the port that morning by two hours, setting everything back. The next explanation that we received was that it was customs that had held up things that morning. We would discover later that the truth was there was a huge issue with drugs on the ship that had delayed disembarkation, as it had made the news. We finally get on board and go to our rooms. I had purchased an internet package, but there was nothing in the room telling me that I had purchased the package, with any instructions as to how I could access the internet. Later on, using the NCL app, I discovered that we had a $50 shipboard credit. Thinking this was an error, I went to guest services to inquire, to find out that a family member had purchased it as a gift for us. I explained it would have been nice to know that, and any other ship I have been on would have had a note card left in our room to tell us. I spoke with the Assistant Guest Service Manager and he made it very apparent that he didn't care. There was no - I'm sorry, we apologize, nothing, no explanation. When I asked about the embarkation process the previous day, again, no explanation was provided. While up on deck for the sail-a-way, we heard several people complaining that their staterooms were not clean. Ours was okay, but the carpet was stained. The rooms (we had an inside stateroom), are the SMALLEST we have ever had on any cruise we have been on. The only two great meals we had on this ship were the two nights we went to restaurants on the ship that we paid EXTRA for. The food and service in the main dining rooms was not great, we did not feel well cared for. By this point, we all came to the conclusion that Norwegian doesn't know what customer service is, and they just don't care. Let's talk about the drinks! We didn't have one really great drink while on board. The cost - $12.95 plus they charge a gratuity. What was really upsetting was that on top of that, when they bring you the bill to sign, and there is a place to add an ADDITIONAL Gratuity. Like we haven't paid enough with the already over inflated prices. The result for us - we drank very little on the cruise, which was disappointing, because we enjoy having cocktails while on vacation. The couple we were traveling with brought wine with them. When we were unloading when we first arrived, there was a porter saying to take the wine out of your check-in luggage but didn't say why. To unpack and repack in the chaos was not something they were about to do, so they left the wine in the luggage they were checking. BIG MISTAKE!! They were fully prepared to pay the $15 per bottle corkage fee, but they essentially held that piece of luggage hostage because of the wine. They got the runaround about how to retrieve the luggage, and after several trips to guest services, being sent different places, it was 11 p.m. before they were able to retrieve their luggage. The entertainment was okay, but there was nothing that we were completely "wowed" by. Because of the way embarkation happened, I do not believe that they properly vetted people, and that many must have lied about their health on the health declaration. We have never gotten sick on a cruise, but our entire party fell ill, with sore throats and upper respiratory. As I sit here and write this, I am still not recovered (Day 10). Everywhere we went people were sneezing, coughing. Two last things I will leave you with, every other ship we have been on, has a deck that goes around the entire ship that you can get out on to walk around and look at the view. This ship did not have this. The decks that you could go out on (Deck 7) was only on each side of the ship (one was the jogging/walking "track") and the lifeboats blocked any view. Other ships have always had a room that you could go and relax in with comfortable chairs to read or play cards (like the Crow's Nest on Holland America), there was no such place on this ship. The only thing that we liked about Norwegian was the fact that the dress code for dining is more relaxed. Not having to take suits, ties, and being able to wear a nice pair of capris with a dressy top, or for the guys, dress pants with a golf shirt was a nice change, and so much easier packing. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
Started out with a 3 hour wait to get on ship due to the “Holy Ship” fiasco. They were late getting passengers off ship because the authorities had to come on and arrest 15 passengers who were detained in ship jail, due to drug ... Read More
Started out with a 3 hour wait to get on ship due to the “Holy Ship” fiasco. They were late getting passengers off ship because the authorities had to come on and arrest 15 passengers who were detained in ship jail, due to drug trafficking. We actually saw people being escorted off ship in handcuffs. Then a crane had to take the stage down off of top deck, all while we waited. By the way, there was a small sign in the corner stating “Porters are salaried employees, and tipping is not required”. This sign was hidden in a corner, after you paid the porters, who were aggressive. Security was lax, just to get the huge backlog of passengers on ship. By the time we got on, all food areas closed, had to run to Muster Drill. BTW, all staff were tight lipped on the arrests. A copy of the “Holy Ship” itinerary was left in my room and it showed the last music group ending at 5:30am on our embarkation day. Therefor, everyone was probably passed out in their cabins, drunk, with staff unable to wake them and get them off the ship. NCL sold out to the music festival and cheated next passengers out of first day of cruise. Everywhere you go on ship, it smells. The smells ranged from spoiled milk to feces. The staff looks overtired and grouchy. Our room steward was excellent though. Tried the Manhattan dining room twice, each time dinner took 3 long hours. Wait staff is curt, slow and unfriendly. Food was cold and tasteless. Taste was a better food option, but entire place smelled of smoke and spoiled milk. Specialty places were alright, got them free from Costco, otherwise would have skipped. YOU CANNOT USE ONBOARD CREDIT TOWARDS GRATUITIES, no other cruise line does that. Did not find this out till last day. Even Costco told us we could use for gratuities, not true. Food in Garden Cafe was good, with enough seating. Ship is odd with elevators only in front and aft. Whole ship is detailed in dark wood, so ship has a dark and dank feel about it. Cabins are very dark with insufficient lighting. Toilet and shower on opposite ends is dumb. The carpeting everywhere is filthy. The ship is under construction, so top deck is limited. Make sure you ask if construction is done before planning. Overall, tired, dirty, smelly ship that should be in dry dock. Never again. Try Holland or Celebrity, much better service and cleaner ships. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
Along with several hundred others, I made the mistake of traveling on NCL during the college football bowl season. I should have checked with NCL but just a assumed they would televise the playoffs. NCL then got to sell me the $500 ... Read More
Along with several hundred others, I made the mistake of traveling on NCL during the college football bowl season. I should have checked with NCL but just a assumed they would televise the playoffs. NCL then got to sell me the $500 premium streaming internet package that didn’t even work. Of course, no refunds. Beyond this, so many other issues that made this the worst cruise I have taken (out of 7). The food was not good (except specialty dining, which is an extra cost) and everything had lines or was sold out. Excursions, shows, everything needed pre planning or you were out of luck. Also, if your room was in the aft, you needed to walk through the Smokey casino to get to a lot of places or take a long route around. Worst part was nobody cared to help you resolve issues. In terms of positives, the kids loved the pool water slides and bar service was pretty good given how full the ship was. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
The summary of this cruise would be oversold and understaffed! This cruise line packed as many people as possible and there were no where near the available amenities to serve the people! Excursions were cancelled due to staffing, there ... Read More
The summary of this cruise would be oversold and understaffed! This cruise line packed as many people as possible and there were no where near the available amenities to serve the people! Excursions were cancelled due to staffing, there were no chairs available most of the time, it took forever to get served anything! I actually felt sorry for the staff, or at least for the ones who weren't incredibly rude! On day two, my adult children woke up to a sweltering hot room! It took about 8 hours and 3 requests for someone to finally come fix their air! Also on day two I was eating breakfast and bit into a piece of glass! They took my room number! On day 6 I pulled a piece of glass out of my lip from my bar drink! Again, they took my room number! On day two my niece and nephew were assaulted by a very drunk passenger! They took our room number! On day two they ran out of mint, an essential ingredient in the only drink my husband likes other than premium bourbon (which they do not serve)! There were long lines for anything you needed and there were no seats in any bar or any entertainment venue unless you got in line an hour before opening! The day on their private island was simply a change of venue with the same issues! Not enough chairs or food and beverage service! Long lines and not enough staff! So besides the glass in the food and the long lines to be served, the food itself was terrible. I am not incredibly picky, but I found myself saying, "well this meal wasn't too terrible" on occasion. My parents paid for for 16 of us to go on this cruise! I hate that they wasted so much money on something that was so incredibly disappointing! Oh and by the way, as many times as they took our room number, they never actually did anything about our issues. This was our first and last NCL cruise! I will stick with Crystal! The only positive thing I can say is that our cabin steward was incredibly sweet and accommodating! She was the best part of NCL! She should go work for Crystal! Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Planned New Years cruise to relax - didn't necessarily care about the ports. From day one it was a bad experience - the room was filthy, dirty carpet with rat droppings all over. The sofa was filthy, I put a towel on it before I ... Read More
Planned New Years cruise to relax - didn't necessarily care about the ports. From day one it was a bad experience - the room was filthy, dirty carpet with rat droppings all over. The sofa was filthy, I put a towel on it before I could sit. Paid for a suite with a balcony as usual. Would not have stayed if it were a hotel. The shows were very good, easy to get into, very pleased. Dining was OK- seemed to have lots of leftovers on the buffet, but it a buffet.... Service was very much less than expected - while we have been on other Norwegian cruises I have never seen staff speak to guests as I saw on this cruise - had them bark at me and suggest I go to another place for service as they were busy. Saw them making fun of other guests....really, at least go behind closed doors if you are going to make fun of the people paying your paycheck. Never again - not just done with Norwegian Epic - done with Norwegian - period. Will lose almost $2,000 in deposits but would never do it again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
I chose this particular cruise as it is one we had been on before on a different cruise line. We enjoyed that one so much, I thought, how different could it be on another cruise line with what I thought was a pretty reputable name. I ... Read More
I chose this particular cruise as it is one we had been on before on a different cruise line. We enjoyed that one so much, I thought, how different could it be on another cruise line with what I thought was a pretty reputable name. I couldn't have been anymore mistaken. This cruise was actually our Christmas and graduation from college gifts to our two children. Only one of my two children had cruised before and knew pretty much what to expect. As my one child put it...he had a better time on the what he referred to as the "budget cruise line" than he did on this particular cruise. My daughter has traveled the world, mostly by air and said she was less that impressed with cruising. I told her that she shouldn't base her dislike of cruising from this particular cruise because as we know, they can be much different. Our New Years cruise aboard the Norwegian Epic to the Eastern Caribbean left us with few good things to say about this cruise. The ship was on the small size and was completely packed. While I understand it was a holiday cruise, there were not enough amenities for a full house. While our cabin was nice and our cabin steward was delightful, along with most of the other hands on workers including the bartenders, waiters and waitresses, etc., some of the phone operators in particular guest services were quite unfriendly. We didn't care for the fact that the higher up managers walked around in their white uniforms checking out how the workers were doing their jobs and being condescending to some of them. As part of our cruise package, we chose the unlimited beverage package and the three specialty dinners package. How do you run out of a certain ingredient to make a particular drink, which happened to be mint on the third day of a cruise?? The specialty dinners were not very memorable with the exception of the Brazilian steak house, and perhaps because we had never experienced that food adventure before, The french choice seemed ok, though not as good as the first and the last, Italian is not even worth commenting on. Then the next very annoying challenge was trying to find chairs around any of the pools, or for that matter, finding a chair anywhere outdoors. I'm not sure what time people came out to stake out their chairs but we were out fairly early, around 9:00 am without an unclaimed chair in sight. Even if more chairs were available, there was no place to put them. They chair were lined up like sardines. The last stop on our cruise was to Norwegians private island which turned out to be a real disaster. We had to be tendered out to the island and I believe ours was at 10:00 AM and again, by the time we arrived, there wasn't a chair to be found except at a picnic table. We turned right around and took the next tender back to the ship. Because most everyone was on the island, we ended up having a better time on the ship. We could pick any chair we wanted and there wasn't a line at the bar or any of the restaurants. I believe it was the most enjoyable day on the ship. People came back from the island complaining about the long times for food and drink. So while I haven't given up on cruising, because I know it can be enjoyable, it certainly won't be on Norwegian Cruise Lines again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
We were looking for somewhere to go over Christmas and this offered a decent itinerary. The #1 worst part of this cruise was the lines. Lines everywhere. My wife waited in line for 46 minutes for sub-par tacos on their private island. ... Read More
We were looking for somewhere to go over Christmas and this offered a decent itinerary. The #1 worst part of this cruise was the lines. Lines everywhere. My wife waited in line for 46 minutes for sub-par tacos on their private island. Boarding the tenders was always a nightmare; count on standing in line for at least half an hour. Leaving their private island the tender was WAY overloaded - people were standing everywhere and I am certain they were over the legal capacity for that vessel. I bought the upgraded tickets to the Cirque show and (on good advice) showed up an hour early to stand in line to get a good seat. I spoke with a lady that showed up ONLY 45 minutes early to wait in line and they got seated on the upper deck. No reason that process couldn't be managed better. Our most recent other cruises were aboard Celebrity and Disney so maybe we had set the bar too high with our expectations on food and service because both were terrible on this boat by comparison. The food at Cirque was poor quality. My wife took our child to the bathroom when they were bringing out the entree. When she returned, they told her they didn't have anymore so she didn't even get to eat. We asked for glass of wine before show started and they never brought it. We had mixed reviews of Le Bistro. One night was pretty bad - way overly salty (Dover Sole) ruined a perfectly good piece of fish. The 2nd time we went it was good. Cagney's was okay. They basically heavily season the meat to cover up for not so great cuts. We liked the little sushi place. The worst food experience was always Garden Cafe. LINES! We almost saw a fight on the first morning when someone tried to hop the 20+ minute line for an omlet. Definitely best to avoid the rush around 10:00 am if you just have to go there. The two main dining rooms with sit down service were okay. Not nearly as good as the aforementioned Celebrity and Disney but okay. The one area where they did a good job was the kid's club. Our 6 year old wanted to go every day and the staff was great. We are scarred from this experience and not sure if we will ever return to a big boat for vacation but if we do it darned sure will not be aboard another NCL boat. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
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