3 Norwegian Star Trans-Ocean Cruise Reviews

We chose NCL Star for the Ports of Call we had never been with them again, the boarding process in Singapore was ridiculous we waited 5 1/2 hours (boarded 4.30) to get on the ship it seemed that nobody knew what they were doing we were ... Read More
We chose NCL Star for the Ports of Call we had never been with them again, the boarding process in Singapore was ridiculous we waited 5 1/2 hours (boarded 4.30) to get on the ship it seemed that nobody knew what they were doing we were only offered water while we were waiting and once we were on the ship we went to get some food only to tell us that things were being closed down for the mandatory drill. We had an inside cabin which was very small and it was for four people with bunk fixed to the wall service in our room was excellent and always made up and nothing was too much trouble. The dining experiences were Ok the only Specialty Restaurant that was good was Cagney's, desserts need to be looked at as there were only ever two that were good. Entertainment was a hit and miss no good for repeat back to back cruises. NCL are very disorganized with disembarking for Ports of Call and our experience when in Israel was ridiculous as NCL were holding (Private tour passengers) for 2 hours and their own ship tours were allowed off early, shore excursions are extremely expensive and chose to do our own throughout the cruise and had an amazing time. Staff were helpful and friendly and always there to help. We had a bad experience in the shops and the sales assistance did not tell us the correct price when we were going to purchase a special item. Overall the experience was average. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
The ITINERARY, places we wanted to visit. Rich in culture and history. Reason for choosing this cruise:The cruise was March 9(Singapore)-April 16 (Venice). We choose this cruise because of the itinerary which was port intensive with ... Read More
The ITINERARY, places we wanted to visit. Rich in culture and history. Reason for choosing this cruise:The cruise was March 9(Singapore)-April 16 (Venice). We choose this cruise because of the itinerary which was port intensive with only 112 sea days. This is a part of the world that we had not traveled and this itinerary seemed an ideal way to see a number of countries. In this respect the cruise totally lived up to expectations as we visited 22 ports-including embarkation and disembarkation- that we had never visited before allowing us a small sample of what each place had to offer. Pre-embarkation: Singapore, we did on our own riding the subway all over, easy peesy. featuring Little India, Kampong Glam and Chinatown as well as some historic colonial areas and the Marina Bay Sands area. Lunch at Hawkers stalls was also a highlight. Embarkation:This took forever, this issue had been identified by previous reviewers and it appeared that little had improved, however NCL did provide chairs for the 2 hour plus wait that some people endured. In defense of NCL, after seeing their superb organization in getting passengers on/off the ship and dealing with boarding cards/visas I am led to conclude that the issues with Singapore embarkation are likely the responsibility of the Singapore government. Ports and Shore Excursions: NCL handling of immigration details at all of the ports was excellent and they proved adept at quickly adjusting when the 'rules' changed unexpectedly. While I heard considerable whining from some fellow cruisers I cannot fault NCL - we were not in Kansas! The shore excursions offered were standard cruise ship variety and priced similar to other cruise lines we have been on. We used ship provided excursions in 2 ports. Because of security reasons.! Ship: The Star has been refurbished recently and it shows. Lovely midsized ship that is very well maintained. There is a lack of quiet public areas to relax, it seems an inordinate amount of public space has been used for the 'specialty' restaurants. Liked the Atrium with band playing (very loud) and seating in O'Sheehan's, at the coffee bar, and even in the internet cafe where you could not have a conversation unless you shouted. Room and room steward: We were in two rooms ocean view and balcony. The room steward was exceptional, one of the best if not the best, in 25 cruises on 6 different lines over the years. Entertainment: pretty standard cruise line entertainment with a decent variety in guest performers, the 3 bands on board were all reasonably good and you could actually tell what songs they were playing/singing which is not always the case with cruise ship bands! Productions shows were below par compared to Princess and Celebrity Dining: NCL's slogan is "No one does dining like Norwegian" - I would hope not!! The food in the main dining rooms Versailles and Aqua, O'Sheehans, and Ginza ranged from awful to barely eatable. Service was rushed, . The tables were so crammed in that it was almost impossible for the waiter to serve and remove dishes. The pace can best be described as frenetic, it most certainly did not resemble a reasonable DINING pace. We have experienced various cruise lines version of 'open seating' in their main dining rooms and none had the issues of pacing experienced with NCL's Anytime Eating. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
What a wonderful itinerary, and bolstered by our last NCL experience on Epic we booked the Star for the Singapore to Dubai leg. Many of our fellow cruisers had been on the previous legs dogged by the Azipod failures and some were staying ... Read More
What a wonderful itinerary, and bolstered by our last NCL experience on Epic we booked the Star for the Singapore to Dubai leg. Many of our fellow cruisers had been on the previous legs dogged by the Azipod failures and some were staying on after we departed. As usual a highlight of the cruise was the fellow cruisers, a very international bunch this time. We enjoyed the freestyle ambience and took advantage of the free drinks package this time. Cabin - inside 5573 - was fine although the cupboard space was tight, our cabin steward good. The majority of our catering experience were good, waiting staff atentive and professional. Indeed all staff interactions were good apart from Guest Servces who were universally poor. Entertainment was good to average, some excellent acts such as the Barricade Boys but also some very average. The onboard entertainers were young and enthusiastic. Some negatives. Boarding was OK but the check-in staff member mistakenly associated my photo with my wifes card and vice-versa. When we boarded this was detected immediately but could not be corrected, so we had to visit Guest Services for two more cards. Later a drinks waiter told me my card was not working, but at dinner we had no issues ordering drinks so assumed the problem was fixed. Disembarking in Port Klang neither of our cards worked. So we had to get two more cards. Later that day my wife received her landing card for Phuket. Her name had been mispelt. On contacting Guest Services we were told that a new landing card would be delivered to our cabin. It never came. On caliing Guest Services again we were told that they had run out of landing cards. We adapted the original landing card and were able to get off with little difficulty. However, we had to get another cabin card for my wife to correct her name. At no time did anyone in Guest Services say 'sorry' and the final interaction suggested it was my wife's fault that she had had to have so many cards. Re disembarkation - on three occasions there were announcements by the Captain and Cruise Director that the ship had docked and all passengers could disembark. Most passengers then had to wait whilst those who were on NCL tours could get off first. This included pasengers with gold and platinum status who should have had priority, but regardless was at best a waste of time and worst very dangerous as it meant stairs and corridors were blocked with passengers unable to disembark. On final disembarkation matters reached a crisis when there was a general call for disembarkation at 8:30 - all colours were called simulatenously. The risk of crowded stairwells and corridors was obvious to anyone who has cruised before. At mid-ship the queue went from deck 4 to deck 9 stairs. Had there been an incident on the ship at that time the danger would have been potentially catastrophic. Management on this ship never learned from their mistakes. There were other issues with Guest Services but our attitude on cruises is to go with the flow and the vast majority of our interactions with staff generally were good - the waitress in the Spinnaker bar in the afternoons was particularly good and Janice in Versailles. The bars were good, food good as usual - our only disappointment was when we paid to use Le Bistro which was crowded and noisy and the food no better than the main restaurants. Having said that it was clear that there were many passengers with onboard credit earned from the previous cruise leg issues so all of the fee restaurants were being used more like the free one's as passengers struggled to use their credits! We never had trouble getting a seat in the Stardust Theatre (unlike our experience on the Epic) and as stated the entertainment was generally good, on occasion excellent. Most of the cruise director's team were good, the quizzes were fun. Not much to do on a rainy day though - little imagination by the cruise director. For us this cruise was all about the intinerary though. Singapore, Port Klang (Kuala Lumpur), Penang, Phuket, Colombo, Cochin, Goa, Mangalore, Mumbai, Muscat and Abu Dhabi were all very interesting and good, some better than others. Fujairah and Khasab were not so good, and due to flights we had litle time in Dubai. We organised most of our shore excursions through cruise critic but noted the NCL tours were extremely expensive this time. We will definitely cruise with NCL again but do feel that there needs to be an investigation into the management of this ship and that there needs to be a major overhaul of 'Guest Services' on this ship, I would suggest breaking the group up and assigning them to other ships. Our score below for service relates to Guest Services and is not a criticism of other services onboard. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
Norwegian Star Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.0
Dining 3.0 3.7
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 3.9
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.7
Family 4.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 2.0 3.2
Service 4.0 4.0
Value For Money 4.0 3.7
Rates 4.0 4.0

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