Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. As frequent (Platinum) and long-time cruisers of NCL and other cruise lines, we expected more from our experience. Our balcony cabin was very antiquated, décor in the bathroom looked like ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. As frequent (Platinum) and long-time cruisers of NCL and other cruise lines, we expected more from our experience. Our balcony cabin was very antiquated, décor in the bathroom looked like something out the '80s. Size not as large as we remembered in past cabins on other NCL ships. Safe located in bottom of closet, very inconvenient. Food in main dining rooms adequate, at best. However, food in specialty restaurants, especially Le Bistro, was very good. Entertainment very good in main theatre and in bars. Tours were mostly good, although lunch served in Invergordon terrible. This was all the good part. Our air travel to and from, arranged by NCL, was a nightmare. Weather delay at the onset, missed connection in Philly and lost luggage. However, this was not the fault of NCL. Towards the end of the cruise, we noticed our return airline tickets were booked for 1 day after the ship was docked at Southhampton. When we inquired at customer service, we were told it was a special rate and not able to be changed. We had no place to stay the night before these return flights and asked for help with booking a hotel in the terminal. We were told they could not help us, we would have to find our own hotel and pay for it. The rep then ushered us over to a computer and said help yourself! So at the end of our London tour, we were dropped off at Heathrow and had to make our own way to the Hilton Hotel, where we had booked a room. During our stay, we attempted to check-in online for our return flights on Virgin Atlantic to JFK, then on to Tampa via Delta. We were unable to do so. The next day at the airport, we were again unable to check-in. At customer service they informed us that we had no flights booked, that our original reservation had been cancelled and refunded!!! What a shock! So there we were, stranded at Heathrow! The Virgin Atlantic staff were very helpful and sympathetic, however, our only choice at that point was to rebook our flights, one-way, and pay for it ourselves to the tune of $4,921.75!! So we got on the flight. Towards the end of that leg of the return trip, 2 Virgin Atlantic crew members informed us we would not make our connection at JFK to Tampa......but they would book us on a flight the next day and put us up at a nearby Radisson Hotel at no cost to us. We finally arrived home back in Tampa on Sunday, 8/4 - exhausted and so disappointed. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
I love to cruise and fortunately do numerous ones each year!! Unfortunately I chose to be on NCL SPIRIT!! Having done three previous ones with NCL my only concern pre cruise was their twenty minute or longer response time to phone ... Read More
I love to cruise and fortunately do numerous ones each year!! Unfortunately I chose to be on NCL SPIRIT!! Having done three previous ones with NCL my only concern pre cruise was their twenty minute or longer response time to phone calls.( told they'd just hired 100 new staff..WOW!!) But it was a warning in hindsight that NCL does not effectively communicate. Examples 1. Never published use of tenders and or shuttles at most ports 2. To distribute tender tickets at 630 am yet when I arrived then they were out and getting more tickets printed! Asked Cruise Director and she said distributed early. I suggested announcing it and she replied she only does as instructed. 3. Speaking of Cruise Director only job she did was screaming to ask the audience for applauding entertainers. She had a captivate audience to announce port information. Instead there was 2 to 3 lines in the newsletter left each evening. 4. Getting off the ship at each port was problematic. Priority always given to passengers on ship purchased excursions. But that was problematic too as Instead of releasing each tour separately they dismissed everyone at once always creating a bottleneck. For people departing independent announcement made after hundreds already allowed off because staff afraid of a stampede. Poor crowd control which only built over course of Cruise. One day a passenger dared them to stop him from leaving staying "I've been patient everyday only be to be delayed for my tour !!". 5. Port times shortened...example in Kirkwall published as 7 until 1p. In fact because tender port passengers getting off independently couldn't get off until 9am and had to take tender back at 11am. Why??? Later tenders for passengers who bought excursions from NCL!!! I have lovely picture of people waiting. I spoke to a lot of folks regarding port issues. Some thought ports shouldn't allow ships to sail in. I view it as the responsibility of cruise line to let passengers know in information prebooking. Is info in contract which says they can treat passengers anyway they want?? 7. Returning of passport was a nightmare with folks standing in line for upwards of an hour. At some points was one staff member searching for them. I personally witnessed one staff member searching 15 minutes for 2 passports misplaced while one other staff handling remainder of crowd. Several passengers complained to guest services without any change to the process. 8. Beds were sleeping on hard floors!! But we did complain and got foam which helped minimally. 9. Phone issues..wake up calls couldn't be set. 10. At most ports had to pay to actually get to true port you paid to see!!! Charged $15 !!! Only 9ne port Portland had free shuttle provided by town not NCL!! POSITIVES 1. Food fine and plentiful. 2. Dining room staff excellent. 3. Entertainment excellent. Some performers had consistently standing room only. One example was Melvin in Henry's Pub. Sad cruise Director never realized so he could have been relocated to large lounge behind casino which was always empry!! Front desk knew!! As I stated earlier I love to cruise and sad such a great itinerary was overshadowed by poor and or lacking communication. Is it NCL or just management of this ship?! If a cruise Director responds to a suggestion by saying she does only as instructed it's a fundamental problem!! She represent NCL and she's saying the passengers concerns don't matter!! Because of NCL lack of response I'm writing this first public review!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
Overall I struggle with rating average or poor. We have cruised before with NCL and changed from Princess to NCL for our cruise around the British Islands as they had less ports with tenders and the service has previously been excellent. ... Read More
Overall I struggle with rating average or poor. We have cruised before with NCL and changed from Princess to NCL for our cruise around the British Islands as they had less ports with tenders and the service has previously been excellent. Once again, the embarkation and disembarkation were smooth. The ship departed almost 12 hours late with no communication whatsoever. We were finally able to piece together from other passengers that NCL came very close to cancelling the cruise and sending us all back to London. After denying that this delay would not impact our shore excursions, they had to make another announcement owning up to the truth. The staff at the shore excursion desk were doing what they could given the circumstances. Clearer communication from the cruise director would have saved a lot of heartache and waiting in lines. We saw very few happy employees on board the ship in every department. They were putting forward minimal effort. Food on the buffet was not hot; boring; and, tasteless. Service in the sit down restaurants was less than acceptable. Finally with the help of an assistant Matri D, we were able to find a very fun and helpful server who we requested the rest of the cruise. The ship needs a lot of work and is scheduled for upgrading soon. It needs it. Not up to NCL standards at all, and may I add NCL has basically average standards. Thankfully, the lounge acts and shows were very good and the ports of call did not disappoint. We had purchased Cruise Next on our previous cruise with NCL so we are stuck taking one more cruise with NCL. It was hard not to look at the people discussing Cruise Next options and recommend "don't do it". We will be seeking another cruise line. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
We have been on the Spirit before. Actually we have been on 5 NCL ships. However, this time, the Spirit needs to go in for an overhaul, sooner rather than later. If your room was at the back of the ship, the extreme shaking and ... Read More
We have been on the Spirit before. Actually we have been on 5 NCL ships. However, this time, the Spirit needs to go in for an overhaul, sooner rather than later. If your room was at the back of the ship, the extreme shaking and vibrations from the engine were quite unbelievable. While you were swayed by waves in the other parts of the ship.....we were in a giant mixmaster, complete with rattling and banging of everything in our room when the ship picked up speed. We lost much sleep on this trip. As for the tender ports ...two of them....Hopefully you don't mind taking 2-3 hours to get off the ship. Only people with NCL excursions had no complaints about this. Everything else on the ship is fine, other the odd rude employee which you can get anywhere. But your room is an integral part of the vacation, and NCl should have spoken to all who were complaining and having this experience. DON'T get a room in the back if you have to take this ship. Otherwise, avoid taking it at all. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
My cabin was 9210 which was an aft suite. In this letter I will be detailing my experience onboard your vessel. Just a little background this was our sixth cruise with your company and have had a wonderful time previously. We have ... Read More
My cabin was 9210 which was an aft suite. In this letter I will be detailing my experience onboard your vessel. Just a little background this was our sixth cruise with your company and have had a wonderful time previously. We have cruised on the Getaway, Escape, Jade and Pearl. This was a honeymoon cruise for us and we had invited 2 other couples to cruise with us neither have even been on an NCL cruise before. Upon boarding the ship with great enthusiasm and excitement as we have been planning this trip for well over a year. The ship was delayed departing as it had a mechanical issue and did not depart till 1:30 AM the next morning. That is when things turned sour. In order for the ship to make up time it was cruising at a 22-24 knots according to the information screen. This caused our suite to vibrate uncontrollably with glassware clanging, draws opening and the safe door banging it was like traveling on the New York City subway. Everything started rattling, draws sliding open, safe door clanging, and bathroom items falling into the sink and to the floor. Please note in the pictures provided the vibration is so severe, the bathroom tiles had cracked and vibrated loose leaving it uneven. Monday July 22 upon us going to breakfast we spoke to the Concierge about being up all night and her response was she was going to look into it. Well the day progressed as the speed stayed consistence and at 5PM we went to guest services to speak with the manager, unfortunately the guest services rep had to be asked 4 times before my husband finally said that he was not happy and that he would start yelling if his request was not attended to. Finally, the front end manager came out along with the Concierge. Upon speaking with The supervisor we found out that the vibration problem was a known issue. She had said that vibration tests were done in our Suite and that the vibration occurred around 19 knots. She said that she would send an email to the Miami offices informing them of the issue. The immediate solution was to give us a room on deck 6 closer to the front of the ship with a window. So, on nights that the ship was going over 19 knots I was supposed to pack a bag and sleep in another cabin. We found this extremely inconvenient and ridiculous. We then asked for a schedule of cruising speed so we would have knowledge of sleeping arrangements. Well it was supplied but not exactly accurate we learned after the second sleepless night to add 5-10 knots per numbers supplied. By the third day after falling asleep on the bus rides for our excursions (yes paying a lot and missing a lot) I decided to set up an appointment with the Front-End Manager. Again, we found out that he was also aware of the vibration problem on the ship. By this time, I cannot understand how your company would still take $10,000 for a cabin with known issues and think it is OK. This is stealing money from your customers. So, we paid for a suite that could not be used when the ship was moving, and was offered a cabin with a window. Also, I do not understand why the concierge that did not utter a word to us after the first day. Not any staff member offered us any assistance to transition from one cabin to another as we slept in the other cabin for 6 nights. You would have thought that knowing the problem the staff would have been more accommodating and helpful to try to smooth over all of our discomfort. We then thought upon spending the night in Dublin we could stay in our cabin, the captain said that to prepare for dry dock in January they were going to be weighing the ship at night. The cruise director added that they were doing water testing. Well with the staff knowing the issues of our cabin you would think that someone would have suggested us to sleep in our other cabin. Well let me tell you what they did. The crew filled the ballast with water after moving the ship away from the dock. From 1:00am to 5:30am the crew was revving the engines up and down causing our suite to vibrate violently. I tried calling guest service but that was worthless as no one answered the phone. I find it comical how the entire ship knew the issue with the aft cabins but could not care about the guests occupying them. Later that day we had an appointment with management to hear the response from NCL corporate. They read us the response from corporate and My wife was in tears. After spending over $10,000 for the cruise it was like a slap in the face not only were we sleep deprived, falling asleep on buses to and from excursion locations and totally frustrated as not only did we have 2 other couples traveling with us this was my HONEYMOON that is being totally ruined. I felt that I was not considered a valued guest as with this cruise I was going to be a platinum member which does show the loyalty I had with your company. On top of the vibration issues, I was looking forward to a bath at night before bed. The tub had disgusting mold growing around it, and the staff had to step in and out of the tub to pull shade up or down. We had spent over 10,000 dollars for this cruise for a cabin we picked over a year ago, so we could entertain our friends with cocktails and cheese plates (which were ordered in advance). The vibration and noise did not allow any of this. I am not sure if you or a company representative have seen the condition of this ship but it should have been dry docked long ago. The bathroom tiles are cracked and have uneven surfaces as you could not walk barefoot to the toilet. The furniture was stained and looked dirty. The staff was very passive and inattentive. We heard the same issues from our neighbors, it was like the staff did not want to speak with us for fear of hearing more complaints. The service was not up to par with any other cruises we had taken with your company. Where the ship’s staff and corporate offices had knowledge of all the issues long before we had boarded, especially where vibration testing that had been done, these cabins should have never been sold or occupied. To take a customer’s money in advance and knowingly sell a room that does not allow for quiet enjoyment is stealing the customers money. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this cruise as a family cruise with my brother's family and my Father so there was 11 of us on the cruise. We have never Cruised the British Isles and thought this would be a great experience for the family. We have cruised ... Read More
We chose this cruise as a family cruise with my brother's family and my Father so there was 11 of us on the cruise. We have never Cruised the British Isles and thought this would be a great experience for the family. We have cruised with Carnival, Princess and Royal Caribbean in the past multiple times. This was our First Norwegian Cruise and will be our last. We have never been on a cruise where the family didn't want to go the dinning room. We ate in the Window's dinning room and the food and service were not up to standards. Many times we had to ask for water glasses to be filled and then when they went around and the pitcher got empty the never came back to fill the rest of the glasses until we asked them again. This happened multiple nights. The food wasn't up to the standards of the other cruises and half of the family most nights ended up not finding anything they liked on the menu and when up to the buffet or the Blue lagoon to eat. The Entertainment of ship was ok. The singers and dancers were excellent, but the Magician was better suited for small children. My 11 year old was not impressed and all of his tricks were just hidden box tricks. And unfortunately since the Magician is so intricate to the elements show it was as my kids say "cringey". The cruise staff was ok but the cruise director was not very engaging on all the other ships usually the cruise director comes out after the shows and explains what is happening the next day and is very outgoing, this cruise director was not. The Tender process was horrible and unorganized good thing they only tender twice, but one of the Tender's we are only in port for 4 hours and by the time they were done with excursions tendering off the boat people only had 2 hrs in port. When you get off the boat many of the Docks you dock at are working docks so transportation is required to get off the Dock. Usually they have 2 types of buses one that you pay to get to "city Center" which is usually 10-15 dollars or one that is free that just takes you through the dock. The free ones would work if they actually would take you out of the port. The one in Dublin doesn't even get you out of port or to a decent drop of place. Once they drop you off it is about a mile to 2 miles to get to the bus or Tram area. Overall the was a major disappointment for the family and we will not be going on a Norwegian again. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
This cruise was not our first by a long shot ...but we may not choose Norwegian again ..our room 6076 was very noisy ..under Henry's Pub and right across from the crew door which opened every day at 4:40 am ..as did the carts rolling ... Read More
This cruise was not our first by a long shot ...but we may not choose Norwegian again ..our room 6076 was very noisy ..under Henry's Pub and right across from the crew door which opened every day at 4:40 am ..as did the carts rolling overhead. Our bed was hard ...but the frosting on the cake was the Noro virus and NO Communication ...we never got an announcement from the captain telling us daily which level to disembark on...AND the people taking excursions thru Norwegian always got preferential treatment by getting off first... We had to find out for ourselves most mornings ...then there was the coughing ...but no one warned us it could be noro ...the infirmary on board will not file insurance for you and is expensive ..the ship needed an engine overhaul in Southampton and we were almost 12 hours late leaving messing up our paid for excursions through other companies, something that most people today are wise to do...food was basic ..only good meal was in the French restaurant..I chose this for the itinerary but if they do this poor of s job I hope some other line steps up and takes this slot ... Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We arrived in the UK a few days ahead of the cruise, and were able to travel from London to the port of Southampton very easily via train. Once at the Southampton train station, an easy ($10) trip to the port via cab. We choose this ... Read More
We arrived in the UK a few days ahead of the cruise, and were able to travel from London to the port of Southampton very easily via train. Once at the Southampton train station, an easy ($10) trip to the port via cab. We choose this trip due to the various ports of call, (Ireland, Iceland, Norway, Netherlands, and Belgium). While I certainly love big ships, the NCL Spirit reminds me how a smaller ship makes navigating a smaller ship so much quicker! The fact that the ship may not have all the bells and whistles of the newer ships in the fleet wasn’t a deal breaker since we were at so many ports (only 3 sea days in our 14 day sailing) it wasn’t a big impact. As usual NCL provided a great value as compared to the great service and food on the ship. The entertainment by the cruise performers was, as usual, fantastic. Some of the out side acts were not as great, but still fun to watch. (It’s hard to have knock out performances 14 days!). The ports of call were all very fun, and we didn’t have any issues at the ports, and the excursions that we took (I primarily use NCL excursions as it simplifies planning) were fun and interesting. The tour operators at each port were professional and the transportation was first notch! I can’t complain about any of the tours, and learned a great deal about each port by the knowledgeable guides. All in all, we had a fantastic time, and great weather (just missed the heat wave in Europe!) I would highly recommend this route! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We always sail with NCL. We enjoy their ships and services. We usually get the drink package, dinner package for free, and on our next cruise we are getting the drink package, dinner package, free WIFI (100min.) and 50$ off ever shore ... Read More
We always sail with NCL. We enjoy their ships and services. We usually get the drink package, dinner package for free, and on our next cruise we are getting the drink package, dinner package, free WIFI (100min.) and 50$ off ever shore excursion. We are very comfortable and we know what to expect. We are also the type of people that go out on our own and walk most ports. We drove to Southampton, UK from Germany. Very easy to park and find cruise port. We like that most of the cruises we have gone on with NCL do not have a lot of young children. We are a mid 50, couple who travel together and like to party. The Spirit is NCL smallest and holdest ship. It is going in for refit in Feb 2020. They were always working on the ship to keep it well maintained in the common areas. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
The itinerary was amazing including Iceland (3days) and Norway (2 days). Leaving from Southampton was a little difficult. Cork, Dublin, Belfast were great ports of call. Not landing in Amsterdam meant that you had to take the ship"s ... Read More
The itinerary was amazing including Iceland (3days) and Norway (2 days). Leaving from Southampton was a little difficult. Cork, Dublin, Belfast were great ports of call. Not landing in Amsterdam meant that you had to take the ship"s excursion. This was indeed a money grab. NCL should prepare passengers by informing them ahead of time so that arrangements can be made. Some passengers were not able to get to Amsterdam. The large production shows were very good the rest was poor. The service at the main dining rooms for breakfast and lunch was very slow. The guest service was great at times and at other times very poor depending who was there serving you. The Scenic Cape tour was extremely poor. The guide spoke very poor English.The Stardust Theatre was terrible-poor sound, lighting and seating. The food at the buffet was better than the main dining rooms. The Lagoon"s chocolate brownie sundae was the best. The food was good, not exceptional, the service was OK and sometimes felt forced or strained and not genuine. There was of course some good service some of the time. The cabin was clean and that was all. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
Norwegian Spirit is the oldest ship they have. Its small and boring at day sea. The only time I would sail with them if the Itinerary not to be missed and just enjoy destination and a book to read. And this is why: This isn't our ... Read More
Norwegian Spirit is the oldest ship they have. Its small and boring at day sea. The only time I would sail with them if the Itinerary not to be missed and just enjoy destination and a book to read. And this is why: This isn't our first cruise with Norwegian Spirit. Five years ago we sailed with Norwegian Spirit and it was a fantastic holiday. Staff were friendly, quality of food was excellent and filled with entertainment. Unfortunately this time the quality of food was very poor (sea food option such as lobster, prawn was limited) no variety of tastes. Staff seems unhappy it must be something to do with the management leadership. Crew are short tempered and snaps quickly. (weren't like that in the past) Entertainment wasn't enough!! No activities on board.. one day they said their is a white party and when we went up it was created only to take pictures!! At sea days we were actually bored! Not much music around and outdoor is rainy with nothing to do indoor! the entertainment director is unfriendly, loud and do not want to listen she just raise her voice over you!! Don't think she is in the right place. Theatre shows are not that good apart from one or two. Shows are repetitive as for example if a singer performed one day - than will stay on ship and perform some other time later on the cruise (way of saving money) For gym their was only one guy who is doing all the sessions stretching, yoga etc therefore he was soo tiered that he didn’t take his shoes off during yoga session!! Nothing on this ship is for free! Most activities you need to pay for Some of the ports we docked in such as Amsterdam was a disaster! no taxies nor trains. Buses every hour and it arrives full. We visited Amsterdam on a previous cruise and we docked in a different port which was much better. The second destination of norway also did not have good transportation!! The shore excursion hours are very short! They are unavailable when we need them. I.e. 1-2 hours after docking. We paid 320 dollars for poor and expensive internet connection. Very slow. itinerary route should be planned better in which Sunday we stay at sea rather than arriving on a sleepy port. Beds are uncomfortable for couples - its two twin bed joined in which the edge of each bed is sharp in your back. TV in rooms are soo old ( we have never seen worse than this) Holland American cruise line would provide movies for free to watch in your rooms, plus channels, plus couple of episodes of well known tv shows. Port of calls were worth it . Iceland is just a woow. Which why we booked this holiday. Norway is expensive- no taxis (only four available throughout the day) transportation is difficult so i advise you to book a shore excursion to make use of the day otherwise its going to be a loss ( we couldn't find hope on hop off - as its every hour and arrives full. No taxies for private tour) don't make the mistake and get off on your own unless you just want to sit in a cafe and have lunch in the small village. We loved Ireland too - we took a private taxi for the whole day and paid a 100 euros each. That way you will get to know the city more especially Belfast as their is a political history that you will only know the details from Irish people themselves. They are friendly and helpful. ( don't forget to visit the wall of separation). Belgium was nice too but nothing much other than chocolate- you can enjoy it on your own via taxi (50 euro each way for all passengers) not more than that. The best department on board was The Cafe. They are excellent. The worst was the entertainment director Lorena. Will never cruise with Norwegian Spirit again or recommend it to anyone. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
For our first time to Europe, this itinerary was absolutely perfect. We were able to enjoy the old cathedrals and cobblestone streets yet also see waterfalls, lava fields and ride on top of a glacier. It was a perfect mixture of natural ... Read More
For our first time to Europe, this itinerary was absolutely perfect. We were able to enjoy the old cathedrals and cobblestone streets yet also see waterfalls, lava fields and ride on top of a glacier. It was a perfect mixture of natural and man made beauty. Overall the ship was fine. We knew the Spirit was scheduled for dry dock so we didn’t expect much. She was a little worn but overall not too bad. Since the Spirit was a smaller ship, the staff was more relaxed and we had the opportunity to get to know quite a few of them. The GM Carlos, was super friendly and I am sure his demeanor trickles down to his staff. We also had the best Concierge in the world, Monica Fortage. I wanted to bring her home with us to manage our everyday lives lol. Our cabin steward Rhandy was exceptional also. Finally, I cannot forget Marko and Rey - possibly the two best bartenders ever:) Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this cruise because we love NCL and because we wanted to see Iceland and Norway up close. The Spirit is an older ship, but it is maintained beautifully and the passenger count made it easy to find seating in restaurants, get off ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we love NCL and because we wanted to see Iceland and Norway up close. The Spirit is an older ship, but it is maintained beautifully and the passenger count made it easy to find seating in restaurants, get off and on the ship, etc. The entertainment options were plentiful for all ages in our family. We loved the buffet breakfast and and we went to a sit down or a specialty restaurant for each dinner. There was no shortage of exceptionally helpful staffers on this ship and everyone from the restaurant hosts to the lifeguards were personable. It has 2 little slides for kids on the back pool along with a hot tub there. 4 hot tubs and a big pool in the center and there were rarely more than a few people outside due to the cold temperatures, but we enjoyed our nightly dip. The ports were all nice, but I would suggest researching ahead of time how to get to the city or to a rental car if your idea is to rent something instead of taking an excursion. Amsterdam in particular was a port near very little in the way of transportation options. It all worked out great and we had an incredible family vacation. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
I'd heard that NCL was similar in quality of food and service as Celebrity, but I quickly found this not to be true. The timing was right and I wanted to visit Iceland and Norway, so I booked a guaranteed outside cabin. ... Read More
I'd heard that NCL was similar in quality of food and service as Celebrity, but I quickly found this not to be true. The timing was right and I wanted to visit Iceland and Norway, so I booked a guaranteed outside cabin. Southampton was not easy to get to from Scotland by public transport, and it wasn't my first choice for starting a cruise, now I've done it once, I'll avoid it in future. Embarkation was smooth for me, I did need a wheelchair to avoid standing in line, something which has become a challenge for me. The staff were really kind and helpful, so I was feeling very positive about the cruise. I enjoyed a nice lunch with wine in Windows, but I never saw this pair of waiters again. It was freestyle dining, so you could sit with different people every day. That was a nice touch, but the dishes on the menu were repeated almost every day. The flavours weren't strong and there were some odd combinations. If you like bland food, a rib eye steak option and bruschetta every day for dinner, then Windows or Garden are the place to be, but some of the desserts were very sweet and also lacking in flavour. I also like vegetarian food from time to time, but the dishes I chose were usually overcooked and not balanced. The vegetable sides were usually good, but my prime rib, although huge, was undercooked and cold and I needed horseradish to bring out the light flavour. I found out that the food is sourced from USA for this European cruise, so I guess the meat and fish were frozen. I missed the wonderful range of fresh berries, but I can recommend the pineapple and melon in Raffles! My cabin was close to the elevators and I had a direct line to Raffles, the buffet where I went for most breakfasts and lunches. I had to walk to the next set of lifts, go up 2 floors, then walk back and down 1 flight if stairs to reach Windows, so I didn't want to go to Windows often (I had the option to call for a wheelchair, but I was trying to get fitter without exhausting myself). I did try a speciality restaurant, Shogun. I was told the sushi was good - it was certainly a big portion! I'd been warned about the menu already, so selected the orange beef which was chewy and I couldn't taste or see any orange. The TV didn't always work in my cabin, I had problems with the WC too, but the shower was lovely. The bedroom was big for one person and it was kept clean by my steward, but I missed the cute towelling animals I'd seen on other cruises every night before bed. Spa usually a highlight, but disappointing on this ship, but I did appreciate the facial and the hot stones massage! The entertainment scheduling was bad, with most of the 'best' shows scheduled on days when we were late leaving port, so if you wanted to eat first, you missed the show. Being a morning person, I cannot comment on the late night entertainment. Some of the shows were fantastic, others mediocre. Something for most tastes and all family shows. I attended a Martini tasting which was excellent and a few of us guests wondered if this was the main focus of the cruise - alcohol - I did buy a basic drinks package, and enjoyed a few cocktails - the bar staff were always chatty, no matter which bar; my favourite was the Cafe because she was generous with the nutmeg on my Painkiller! I didn't visit the casino, but it seemed adequate. We only had 1 day suitable for swimming, (most days fine, but we did cruise north, so it wasnt warm enough for me) and I went for a look after the shore excursion. Of course, it was packed, so I missed out. Others enjoyed the pool regularly, or huddled close by in thick sweaters and coats on the colder days. We were very lucky with the weather on most of our shore excursions. It rained in Belfast, but the trip to the Antrim coast and Giants Causeway was beautiful and the rain did stop a few times. I also enjoyed Blarney Castle, but regret not spending some time in Cobh, so I will go back again. I had to pace myself due to recent illness, so I didn't take excursions every day. NCL does charge a lot for the excursions, but the guides are good and on one, we got a Gaelic coffee, on the Golden Circle tour, we got soup and salmon - I can recommend this beautiful tour with so much geology and history, but I'd advise to search for a local tour, it may be better value. I liked Njordfjord, but others didn't. It's a new cruise stop, so not too touristy compared to Geiranger. I enjoyed my walk to the replica Viking Ship. The views at both Norway locations are outstanding! I have a great video of the geyser! For Amsterdam, the journey by local bus and train was almost an hour in each direction. There were tours available either by bus or canal. For Bruges, the port is another ferry port, so very busy and quite a distance by public transport - I was tired that day, and the weather was overcast, so I stayed on board, along with a few people, but the entertainment offered didn't appeal to me so I read another book. I was travelling alone and joined the Solo group. It was quite well attended, and we were invited to join activities other than eating together. You could join in as much as you wanted. It was fun to meet people from other countries. I was surprised at how many countries we represented. Spanish is always helpful on a cruise, especially with the staff, but a lot of passengers also spoke that language and we had different European countries represented as well as Australians and Americans. I'd visit these areas again, but not with NCL. Spirit is being refurbished in January 2020, but until their staff are better trained, I wont be joining a NCL cruise. Most of the staff I met were new. I met one person who'd been with other cruise lines and had 10 years+ experience compared with most of the others with 1-3 months on their first cruise ship. His customer service was excellent, but some of the staff ignored you or pushed past to get into the elevators. I was not the only one disappointed in the food and service. I also know that other passengers enjoyed the cruise a lot more than me, and they will go back. Different people with different tastes - this one just didn't suit me. I also missed the formal nights. I'd been told there was a white party, so I had packed accordingly, but it was only on once, and began during the second show, a late night event, so I could have saved the space in my bag! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We choose this cruise because of the itinerary. What could be better than the British Isles in the summer time! While I have travelled on Norwegian many times I have been somewhat disillusioned with my recent cruises. Sa s a result my ... Read More
We choose this cruise because of the itinerary. What could be better than the British Isles in the summer time! While I have travelled on Norwegian many times I have been somewhat disillusioned with my recent cruises. Sa s a result my recent cruises have been with Viking river and ocean and RCL. Both lines was an upgrade to my recent Norwegian experiences, nonetheless I purchased this cruise and have to say I was extremely pleased. While the Spirit is the oldest ship in the fleet the upgrades made over the years made this ship a favorite. The crew was attentive and caring about the passengers. We had two complementary meals and I have to say the Windows dinning room was just as good. The daily menu met both my wife and my food preferences very well. The daily buffet was very serviceable and as good as other cruise lines. As I said the ship is the oldest (built in 1998) in the fleet and it does show, the most inconvenient part is there was only one 120 volt electrical outlet per cabin. This made charging our electronic devises very problematic, especially as the cabinet attendants had instructions to unplug any unattended outlets. The entertainment was outstanding. A lot of this was because while the ship is small the stage was large and allowed for audience participation and a dramatic (forgot the name) show on the second from the last day on the trip. They had the usual singers and dancers both ship company and fly ins. One group sang Motown and at passenger requests they had an additional performance prior to leaving the ship. Other Norwegian ships have a broadway type of presentation this was more Cirque du Soleil and was very impressive. In fact, even the meet the crew was entertaining as the crew singers sang as the crew came on stage. As I said we choose this trip because of the itinerary and it did not disappoint. The only port we did not do a ship tour was the last stop. Weymouth England, and it proved to be one of the more interesting stops. Because it was Saturday, and the sun was shinning the locals were out along with our ships passengers. It was a typical England port and reminded me of any tourist seaside port here in the US. With quant shops to pubs with food and beverages. Our first port Gangemouth was a tender port and weather came up during the day and it resulted in delays getting back onboard. Some passengers were upset that it took several hours to get back on board, but as the captain explained they had to relocate the anchorage for safety sake and they could only load on one side of the ship. Everyone got on board safely so I would call it a good day. We also were able to see the Open golf course in Portrush Bushmills Northern Ireland. Pretty cool!!! British Isle weather sucks but we were very lucky only one hour of rain and mostly high 60 temperatures. It is a shame that Norwegian only does this trip a couple of times a year, but if it meets your timetable I would strongly recommend both the itinerary and Norwegian Spirit. Oh did I mention it is going in for a 5 week refurb in March so it should be better than ever. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
The allure of the midnight sun attracted us to this cruise. We'd been on the Spirit before (Western Caribbean) and we found that the asian decor seemed a little out of place. Still the same decor - and perhaps may change next time it ... Read More
The allure of the midnight sun attracted us to this cruise. We'd been on the Spirit before (Western Caribbean) and we found that the asian decor seemed a little out of place. Still the same decor - and perhaps may change next time it is in for refit. Staff was great. Cruise directors staff came from all parts of the globe, and for some they struggled with the English language and made trivia sessions interesting with some of the pronunciations =) We had the beverage package included in our package and I can't believe how much the service charge has increased (now 20%) since we started traveling with NCL (SC included 4 years ago and tipped as you saw fit ...). Bar staff was good as were the serving staff throughout the ship. We did not engage in the specialty dining package but did go to the Bistro on a single night. We were not totally impressed with the food on this night. An appetizer came out cooler than what I had thought it should be and an entree came out not as expected. In both cases we were made to feel that we were the one's in the wrong ... that we did not ask the right questions of the wait staff in regards to our meals. I could let something like this go in one of the dining rooms, but when we are paying an additional fee for our meals ... well, we expect a bit more. That was the downside of the cruise - a single meal in a specialty restaurant. The meals in the Garden and Windows restaurant were good and was flavourful. There was a good assortment of menu options. The scenery in the Norwegian Fjords was impressive, and we were so fortunate that the weather cooperated. It was quite an experience being on deck after midnight with the sun above the horizon. The excursions through the ship were handled well in getting the passengers together and then off the ship. We did the Flam railway and the Geiringer bus tour. Both good tours but expensive - based on posted rates if one were to book on their own. We attended most trivia events that fit our schedule, and found that Champagne Charlies was woefully small for the evening event. The Galaxy Lounge was hopping most nights as the entertainment was good. They played music that most enjoyed and lots of people took advantage of the dance floor. The teen area, directly above the Galaxy Lounge did not appear to be used all that often and, especially on this itinerary, could have been utilized for viewing the scenery by other passengers. The fitness area was small and there was not a lot of selection of bikes / equipment / however, when I went early in the morning it was adequate. The area that one would use for stretching was closed until 7 am when the area opened up for group sessions. Entertainment was very good - with the ship's dance troupe doing a great job on their nights. The magician was fair; the singer very good, as were the aerialists. NCL fits our traveling needs. We will always consider them for future cruises. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We did the Norwegian fjords and had a great time. Sun seemed to emerge every day at exactly the right moment. The ship is the oldest of the Norwegian fleet and will be refitted early next year. Still the public rooms were well appointed, ... Read More
We did the Norwegian fjords and had a great time. Sun seemed to emerge every day at exactly the right moment. The ship is the oldest of the Norwegian fleet and will be refitted early next year. Still the public rooms were well appointed, no issues. The balcony cabin seemed a bit small as did the balcony. Still no real problem until you get to the very dated bathroom. Ours had a soft spot in the floor that they covered with a bathmat. Food was good in the main dining hall and better in the specialty restaurants, although we learned to avoid fish entrees. One of the most popular excursions is the Flam railway. It was outrageously priced. Norwegian did refund 20%. I am not a fan of independent tour booking but in this case I would make an exception. Norwegian charged $169 for roundtrip with a stop for waffles. The trip is beautiful but skip the waffles and buy a roundtrip ticket at the rail station next to the pier. About $60. You'll board before the excursion and go all the way to the top. Skipping the waffle stop also avoids a half hour wait on the platform (in the rain) for the return train. trains run every hour, get an early one and no problem with all aboard time. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
I chose this cruise for the itinerary...12 days in Norway, including the Arctic Circle sounded like the trip of a lifetime. My only apprehension was that the ship was older than dirt and rather small. But, I am glad to say that the trip ... Read More
I chose this cruise for the itinerary...12 days in Norway, including the Arctic Circle sounded like the trip of a lifetime. My only apprehension was that the ship was older than dirt and rather small. But, I am glad to say that the trip exceeded my expectations. Wonderful food and crew members...great entertainment. As if I was on any of the bigger or newer ships in the Norwegian fleet -- I didn't feel like we were being neglected because the ship was small and old. The ship was just that---a ship. Very basic amenities, but that was more than enough for me. I actually appreciated it only have to take 5 minutes to get from Point A to Point B. On bigger ships, walking around gets complex. But not on this ship. Easy, easy. Getting to my cabin and the buffet was super easy. Minor complaints: the Asian-themed decorations were weird considering that this boat doesn't go to Asia. But that was a minor nuisance. My inside cabin was spacious. So yeah, I had a great time! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We had a relaxing time on Norwegian Spirit. Great itinerary. Good restaurants and service staff. Our cabin was comfortable and clean although dated and the toilet had a smell that wasn’t pleasant no matter how often it was cleaned. ... Read More
We had a relaxing time on Norwegian Spirit. Great itinerary. Good restaurants and service staff. Our cabin was comfortable and clean although dated and the toilet had a smell that wasn’t pleasant no matter how often it was cleaned. Buffet was fine but not happy wth pushy people who don’t know how to queue and while the food was usually ok it was all very salty. I preferred the dining rooms. I was surprised that there was no gluten free range. I found the shore excursions very expensive. We did our own for half what they charged. I was disappointed that they didn’t offer any free exercise classes. I did a few stretch classes but the instructor wasn’t very good. I appreciated the care that bar, dining and cabin staff displayed. They were always pleasant and their jobs can’t be easy. Don’t know that I would travel on this ship again. It is quiet old and dated. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We wanted to select this specific itinerary to go to Wales, Belfast, Rejkavik, Norwegian Fjords and Bruges. The ship was too small to smoothly sail the North Sea between Ireland and Iceland, so in our 12 foot seas (I know, that's not ... Read More
We wanted to select this specific itinerary to go to Wales, Belfast, Rejkavik, Norwegian Fjords and Bruges. The ship was too small to smoothly sail the North Sea between Ireland and Iceland, so in our 12 foot seas (I know, that's not very big) there were lots of barf bags being used. But that was only 1 day out of 14 so everyone forgot it. We loved the greenery of Ireland and Wales, plus their unique histories. Iceland has a stark beauty that's not to be missed. But Norway is the creme'-de-la-creme' if you are looking for majestic beauty! The Flam train coursed thru green mountains surrounded by waterfalls and was truly breathtaking! It is touted as the Most Beautiful Train Ride in Europe, and we believe it. It is a definite Bucket List for any adventurer. But Bruges, Belgium was the Piece'-de-Resistance'. This little village is perhaps the most charming and quaint location in Europe. The ship is a bit old, but we knew that going in and were not bothered by it. The itinerary is what drove us to select this cruise. The staff were all wonderful and the entertainment was actually second to none. It was all very good. We'd love to do this same cruise again, and I can recommend it strongly. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
This was my 13th cruise with NCL and every year they seem to get worse and worse.The Food,entertainment and overall service is deteriorating like anything. Food is cold even in specialty restaurants. The spirit should be grounded as ... Read More
This was my 13th cruise with NCL and every year they seem to get worse and worse.The Food,entertainment and overall service is deteriorating like anything. Food is cold even in specialty restaurants. The spirit should be grounded as soon as possible as it is in a terrible run down condition and most areas of the ship seem to be in need of an upgrade or repair. The service in specialty restaurants is extremely slow and in the end you get cold horrible food. the menu is extremely limited in all restaurants. The music was sub standard throughout the ship. The air conditioning is virtually zero as it is centrally controlled and they are trying to save money by keeping the cooling to a minimum. I stayed in a penthouse this time which was in an old depleted condition with foul smell in the bath area. Everything seems to be needing some kind of upgrade. I am Platinum member a status which has virtually no benefits. Am seriously considering shifting to other cruise carriers for my future cruises. 'I STRONGLY DO NOT RECOMMEND NCL TO ANYONE" It has really really deteriorated over the years .Total waste of money. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We are retired and have done 9 cruise's in the last 4 1/2 years with 5 different lines. Went on a 7 day on the NCL Gem. Had a great time food was wonderful and people were grand. We bought NCL dollars for the next cruise. Book a Spain ... Read More
We are retired and have done 9 cruise's in the last 4 1/2 years with 5 different lines. Went on a 7 day on the NCL Gem. Had a great time food was wonderful and people were grand. We bought NCL dollars for the next cruise. Book a Spain trip and brought family. Started with the life boat drill. Staff did not even have a life jacket to show people. The Engineer that was head of our station was more into talk with other workers and laugh that you could not hear and was not taken with any responsibiliey. We have all done them before but very unnerving. The Spirit is In my opinion is one of the best ship's in lay out and size we have been on. It dose show its age. The ship is so dated and worn out. The bath room always smelled of sewage and a lot of other had the same problem. Not very many Ice or water points and they never had the pool side station open. First port came we had paid for a tour. Getting off the boat you had to pay again to take a bus out of port. This turns out on all ports. You could not walk and was more the attitude of the cruise. They never had any maps you had to buy at the local tour office. They did not know anything about the ports and could give NO help. They just took your money again for the bus and you were on your own. Yes we had some very wonderful people on the cruise. But I have never seen so many workers than were unhappy. No smiles and just putting in there time. It was from the heads of departments. Morning breakfast with all early tours. In the main buffet trying to eat had the women that did the fresh juice yell at 5 of us as the was no yogurt and the women asked her about it. She began YELLING " not my Job" loud enough that the manager came around the corner took her away for a second then she returned to just stand there and give the hate looks. The mornings we had early tours and were trying to eat and get out they would have the poor girl clean the bathrooms during the middle of us all trying to do what we needed and get off the ship. Just SO much poor or no planning and for site. Getting on the tours in the stage was a total joke. The manager was no where to be seen. In Window dinning three nights we could get no water. Could never get a second glass of wine. And took close to 2 hours to eat. Manager was told all for not. Others bought the drink package and could not get refills more times than they could. Managers were what I saw the problem. So many servier just doing what they had to. NO Smiles nothing extra Very depressing. The food was so plain. No taste or spice. Nothing like the Gem. More like some of the other cheep lines. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
This was the first non-Carnival cruise my partner and I have been on, out of nine prior voyages. We were excited to try another cruise line as the destinations Carnival offers are limited, and have heard excellent feedback concerning NCL. ... Read More
This was the first non-Carnival cruise my partner and I have been on, out of nine prior voyages. We were excited to try another cruise line as the destinations Carnival offers are limited, and have heard excellent feedback concerning NCL. The new ships NCL deploys each year, the itineraries, and the Free at Sea specials initially had us regretting years of exclusive loyalty to another company. However, NCL failed to live up to even our most basic of expectations and here is why. Our first negative interaction with the company was in regard to the "Free at Sea" specials. My partner and I selected an inside cabin on a lower deck as we are rarely inside of our cabin, and appreciate the lower decks as it mitigates the risk of sea sickness. We selected this voyage based on the substantial number of ports offered, and at the time felt comfortable with the cruise fare as we assumed the Free at Sea specials provided an excellent deal. However, the Free at Sea specials are not available to every cabin category, and this can only be discovered by reading through the terms and conditions. In addition, their online booking system allowed us to select the Unlimited Drinks package, which should not have populated as an option in the first place. When we called to confirm our promotion selection, we were told we would have to upgrade our cabin in order to qualify which due to the price and misrepresentation opted not to do. Embarking the vessel was one of the smoothest experiences we have ever had, and we had literally no wait at any point. I will give NCL credit for managing the embarkation process, as is the passenger's first impression of the vessel. Once on-board, I quickly realized how much the ship was in need of either of an overhaul or scrapping. The first blemish I noticed were the huge water stains on the carpet in numerous locations throughout the ship. As other reviewers mentioned, multiple buckets were positioned to catch the slow drops of water originating from pipes in the ceiling. Several faucets I used outside of my cabin in public-use restrooms supplied brown water from the sink faucets. None of the outlets in our cabin worked, and other small abnormalities stood out. Finally, I felt myself continually comparing NCL to Carnival, fully aware that both are separate entities and as such have the right to operate however they feel is best. However, if the overpriced cocktails on NCL was not enough to draw a conclusion, the "fun" and plethora of activities Carnival offers their passengers that was missing on NCL certainly made up my mind. As another reviewer mentioned, there is virtually nothing to do after the last performance which means going to sleep no later than 10:30. This voyage was the highest price point of any trip I have ever invested in, and my expectations were regrettably unmet. I realize that we all have our experiences, and what I interpret as acceptable and unacceptable is based on my opinion. However, I cannot imagine that too many of my fellow passengers on this journey felt any better about investing their hard-earned money on a vacation of this level. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
I always choose because of the Ports of Call. If I like where the ship is going, then I sign on and this cruise was great. Been to most places but not Malta, Sicily and Crete and they were 100% especially Malta. I had a great cabin and ... Read More
I always choose because of the Ports of Call. If I like where the ship is going, then I sign on and this cruise was great. Been to most places but not Malta, Sicily and Crete and they were 100% especially Malta. I had a great cabin and great neighbours who were considerate and quiet. My cabin was located in a nice area of the ship. I was travelling on my own not for any particular reason but just to travel and to see places I have not visited before. I am 75 and I guess I would have to check off the fact that I was on a senior cruise which is not true. I had lots of fun with young people on the cruise and enjoyed their conversations and I shared with them lots of tips about places I had been several times before. I also enjoyed the young crew and their zest for life. Cruising for me is going places and seeing places and meeting people from the countries I visit. I am not interested in gaining points or reaching a certain status....I just want to learn more about the world. The cruise was perfect - no complaints. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
This cruise was chosen by friends. The food was mediocre at best in the dining room and Raffles buffet. Raffles was always too crowded and waiters to clean up tables were scarce. They serve ice cream soup in dining room and Raffles. When ... Read More
This cruise was chosen by friends. The food was mediocre at best in the dining room and Raffles buffet. Raffles was always too crowded and waiters to clean up tables were scarce. They serve ice cream soup in dining room and Raffles. When asked why they can't serve ice cream properly frozen they said because they lack the proper refrigeration. We experienced polluted brown water on three occasions in our cabin. Each time called passenger services they said to let in run for 3 to 5 minutes and it would clear, they failed to apologize or offer any explanation. Running water for more than 10 minutes didn't help to resolve the brown color. Once in the dining room the waiter asked if we minded if our "drinking water" had color, we told him of course we mind. Apparently the problem was ship wide, passenger services could have provided notices, warnings and information, but they didn't. One of our friends cabins reeked of sewer smell. It took them 2 days to find a plumber to fix the problem. It was so bad they actually slept in another friends room. NCL could give lessons on how not to manage crowds. The do not organize orderly lines. They just have guest form a mob waiting to enter theater, exit ship or whatever. Usually the mob ends up cutting off access to other areas and ultimately people can't get past. I saw lots of angry people in the mobs and almost some fights. On the good side our cabin was fine and our cabin steward was great. Entertainment in the theater was excellent. Read Less
Norwegian Spirit Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.8
Dining 4.5 3.7
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.1
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.6
Family 3.5 3.6
Shore Excursion 3.5 3.7
Enrichment 2.0 3.2
Service 5.0 4.1
Value For Money 4.5 3.8
Rates N/A 4.0

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