3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
My first experience with Norwegian Cruise Line was negative and I approached the Gem with low expectations. Happily, this cruise was miles better than the last and I'm looking at NCL in a new way. The Gem had some misses but overall ... Read More
My first experience with Norwegian Cruise Line was negative and I approached the Gem with low expectations. Happily, this cruise was miles better than the last and I'm looking at NCL in a new way. The Gem had some misses but overall we had a great cruise. The main reason was the crew - a friendly, hard-working group who seemed happy to help in any way. The Gem itself is a very comfortable ship. The layout is great - easy to negotiate and well laid out. Though our cruise sailed at close to full capacity, the ship almost never felt crowded. With the notable exception of disembarkation, we rarely stood in line for anything. The Gem has nice decor and well appointed public areas where we always found comfortable seating. As a ship it performed well, taking us through a small storm with minimal rocking. Though we have always liked having assigned dinner times and tables we decided to embrace the "free style" dining approach and ate in all but 2 of the Gem's restaurants. We found the Garden Buffet excellent - fresh food well prepared and plentiful. There were a few flubs (the pizza was often cold, even under heat lamps) but overall food was great - especially for a buffet. We had good meals at Orchid Garden, O'Sheehan's, and the Grand Pacific, three of the complimentary dining venues. The second main dining room, Magenta, gave us decent food with terrible service - our one really bad experience with the staff on board. Among the restaurants that charge an extra fee, we liked Le Bistro and loved Moderno (and I'm a vegetarian! Even not eating meat Moderno was terrific). La Cucina, the Italian restaurant, was a mix. I had a bad entree (overcooked pasta topped by under spiced shrimp) but the tiramisu at dessert was the best we had on the ship. Desserts were a weak spot overall. The desserts at the buffet were usually bad - marked by cheap tasting ingredients and a sense that they had been cooked with stability rather than taste as the prime goal. Desserts in the sit-down restaurants were better, though still below the level we've had on other cruise lines. And coffee not from the small coffee bar in the atruim was a loser too - always weak and often cold. Entertainment on the Gem was the real stand out. The two shows we saw done by the production cast were excellent. Not only was the quality of the signing and dancing high, the shows had been put together well and deserved the standing ovations they got. Bad weather caused a change in programming that gave us a cabaret night which was a treat - the four singers doing their favorite songs left the crowd every bit as happy as the scheduled show (which we saw later in the week). The three guest performers were uneven. We adored the juggler, were bemused by the acrobat/drummer brothers, and skipped the comedian after finding his preview set on the first night a yawn. We did hear others say he had been good in full performance so he may just have been off that night. We sampled the other music on the Gem also, liking the jazz band especially. We missed having classical music but are guessing we were in a very small minority with that preference. Activities on the Gem were not a good match for us and though we saw many in passing we participated in few. In part, NCL's preferred activities are not ours. Most of the passengers seemed to like the calls for raffles and bingo. There was certainly something going on all the time and many options. We missed having a real presentation about the port - the one advertised was only about shopping. We also missed getting a newspaper daily, something we have always liked on other ships. Our son used the teen Entourage lounge as a meeting place only, rarely trying the planned activities. That's not really a comment on the quality of the programming - teens are like that! The kids in the Splash Academy seemed very happy with their activities. We were happy to find the Gem has a real promenade deck with a full, outdoor circle. Unfortunately the crew were very - in our minds, overly - cautious about letting folks out and we were frequently prohibited from walking outside. The crew were almost uniformly good. Not only were they friendly towards the guests, they seemed genuinely happy to help each other and the approach to tasks ship-wide was one of teamwork. We were impressed at the wide variety of nationalities represented among the crew and lost track of how many different countries we'd seen people from. Bermuda is a lovely pace to visit and the port facilities were very good. The pier where we docked in under construction so we used a fairly ugly, temporary building but that wasn't a problem. We appreciated very much the free ferry provided to NCL passengers that travels between the Dockyard where the ship docks and St. Georges on the opposite end of thee islands. While we mostly chose to wander on our own, we took one excursion organized by NCL, an exploration of the Bermuda Railway Trail by bicycle that ended at a private beach. It was a great way to see some of the island. We sailed back to Boston feeling really good about NCL and thinking seriously about a future cruise. Then we disembarked. Honestly, it's hard to imagine the Gem could have done a worse good at getting passengers off the boat. Those of us who wanted to walk off with our luggage were told to simply do so - no tickets, no tally, no planning. Well, we ended up in line - on our feet - for well over an hour. It wasn't customs, they were very efficient. It was just poor planning. Not a good way to end what was in most ways a great cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
Food and service were excellent; however, NCL has a serious problem with design of its mini-suites and the staff's ability to determine reasonable fixes. NCL offered incentives to book mini-suites for two cruises that we booked, one ... Read More
Food and service were excellent; however, NCL has a serious problem with design of its mini-suites and the staff's ability to determine reasonable fixes. NCL offered incentives to book mini-suites for two cruises that we booked, one in April (7 days) and one in June (14 days). The April cruise we just completed became an issue about an hour after we gained access to our cabin. There are no electrical outlets next to the bed headboard. The fix was to string a residential extension cord across the cabin and duct tape it to the floor to allow use of a CPAP machine. We had an 11 year-old grandchild in the cabin; the dangling cord to the floor was a tripping hazard. The larger problem was the bath/shower combination in the mini-suite. The shower was over the bathtub, not a separate unit. This would have been fine if the design used a shower curtain; however, a 3-piece sliding glass door system was installed on top of the tub. It added four (4) inches to the access height. My spouse could not access the tub. Reception immediately send a 6-inch stool to the cabin to correct the problem. The response was so fast it must not be the first time it happened. My spouse attempted to use the stool; however, the fixed pane of the 3-piece glass door restricted access. So, for seven days, my wife had to take "bird baths" in a mini-suite. Our June cruise is on the Norwegian Pearl (same type ship). So, I attempted to obtain help to change our cabin for the upcoming cruise to one that has a usable bathroom. The staff on the Gem (Next Cruise) was rude, no help. The reception desk researched deck plans for the Gem and Pearl and gave helpful advice on which cabins would meet our needs. Caution: If you are 5'4" or less and have two knee replacements or any other medical restrictions, I recommend you avoid mini-suites on the Gem. We are trying to get NCL to revise our cabin assignment to one with only a shower or to one that has separate shower and bath facilities. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
Overall: C- cruise ship which may be enjoyable if only option based on port of call or schedule, or have low enough expectation. Worst aspects, 1) food; 2) dated feel; 3) NCL seemed to be looking to squeeze money from patrons at every ... Read More
Overall: C- cruise ship which may be enjoyable if only option based on port of call or schedule, or have low enough expectation. Worst aspects, 1) food; 2) dated feel; 3) NCL seemed to be looking to squeeze money from patrons at every turn; 4) pool area; 5) smoke-filled casino. The ship is dated to say the least, having been built in 2003. Despite being renovated a few years ago, the Gem was lacking in quality, style, technology and comfort. Compared to many other ships/brands, it is wholly underwhelming, with dark and unappealing public spaces and limited entertainment other than eating/drinking and spending money. The whole experience seemed to be focused on NCL trying to get passengers to spend more once onboard. You couldn't go 10 feet without encountering some way for staff attempting to sell services (more cruises, pictures, artwork, duty free, excursions, etc) or otherwise increase charges (food/drinks, Wi-Fi, casino); it came across as tacky to say the least. More information / specifics (trip was from Boston to Bermuda in mid-April): * Boarding: mostly straightforward and efficient enough. Took about an hour * "Lobby" on deck 7: small area which is often crowded, especially the bar. There is a piano and small stage with varying entertainment through the day, but limited seating so often crowds would congregate around all open areas * Cabin: 11th floor balcony room was ok/passable. Comfortable enough bed and room to survive if using cabin for sleep (which should be expectation on a cruise). Bathroom had major leak on day 1 which necessitated a maintenance call. Water pressure and temperature sufficient * Food: generally mediocre or below average - Buffet was pretty basic and often unappetizing; highlight may have been Asian soup offering for lunch - Main dining room had a pleasant, art deco design that elicits feel or old-world cruising glamour; however, quality / taste was lacking (especially fish entrees, which were generally horrible) - Tried various specialty restaurants 1) Cagney steakhouse: decent steak options, but not much better than main dining room. Tuna steak awful. Nice atmosphere. Fantastic desserts (highlight) 2) Hibachi: pleasant "chef" but amateurish and limited. Food was terrible 3) Le Bistro: best food experience on board. Felt special and worth the "splurge" * Drinks: we had the beverage package - were satisfied with the alcohol offerings - were quite surprised did not include juices or coffee outside of buffet / espresso drinks; seemed slightly absurd given the cost of the package * Service - mostly friendly but with some noticeable exceptions, such as many bartenders across various bars, including in lobby * Entertainment - many daily events required extra payment - nightly entertainment was decent but mediocre compared to offerings of bigger ships; dancers were pretty talented and engaging * Pool: tiny and cold. A few hot tubes which were always packed with teenagers/children. Lame/boring slide * Gym: one of best parts of the ship; modern and clean with plenty of cardio equipment, although weight room was small and would get crowded in the mornings * Kid zones: better than nothing, but under 3 area (Guppies) was essentially a 100 square foot room with 1 hour of activities a day * Excursions (Bermuda) - varied but highly overpriced - offered free ferry to St. George, which was much appreciated and quite comfortable * Wifi: basic service had average quality. Passable generally but was not functional at times. IT director helpful * Casino: disgusting as full of smoke and no ventilation. Also, have some "games" ("key", "claw") which may or may not be rigged and should be avoided. Blackjack uses auto shuffling machines; dealers had an impressive streak of 21 when we were there... Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
When we booked with norweign agent we requested twin bed with recliner and was told this would not be a problem. But when we arrived to our room it was a king size bed with no chair. Upon several calls and hours someone brought my ... Read More
When we booked with norweign agent we requested twin bed with recliner and was told this would not be a problem. But when we arrived to our room it was a king size bed with no chair. Upon several calls and hours someone brought my distilled water and a plastic pool low back for my husband. We had explained upon making reservations that he had a broken neck and needed a high back chair to sleep. We were accused of not making reservations with Norwegian agent because they wouldn't make that mistake. The embankment was ok but really needed a wheel chair for my husband. We did not received the distilled water and breakdown of bed and plastic chair until 10.30 PM. My husband had to sleep sitting on the bed and leaning back on the light with pillows he was unable to sleep more than 2 hours because of the pain. The excursion was terrible I fell asleep on the bus it was so boring the only good part was we stopped to shop but not enough time could only go into one store. The buffet was terrible but the specialty dining was fabulous. The service people were very helpful but everytime we ordered a wheel chair we needed a large and everytime we specified large but it didn't matter we received a small one. My husband was in so much pain from sleeping sitting up that he could not make the excursion. Our person who took care of our room was remarkable and all the dining and bars were wonderful. But with all the problems we had we should have been visited by upper management. On the last day we met the hotel director while he was smoking on the 13th deck. We spoke with him about our issues and he told us he would have a large wheel chair at our room at 8.30 am. No one ever came when our service person called to help us they refused to send someone so we had to make our way down to the 7th deck on our own. There we waited for a large wheelchair to disembark. The gentleman the helped us disembark was fabulous and very well mannered. Overall the cruise was terrible we spent a lot of time in our room because my husband was exhausted and in a lot of pain due to the sleeping conditions. We spoke to several families who had been on many cruises including the couples we were traveling with that this was the worse cruise they had been on and that the buffet was terrible. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this trip because we are from Boston and it's a great port to leave from. This was the first trip on the Gem out of Boston. The previous 7 years we had the Dawn. We were looking forward to having a new ship for a change. ... Read More
We chose this trip because we are from Boston and it's a great port to leave from. This was the first trip on the Gem out of Boston. The previous 7 years we had the Dawn. We were looking forward to having a new ship for a change. Embarkation was very smooth, although the ship was late arriving in Boston from New York. The good thing was that since no one was disembarking we were able to go straight to our rooms. this was a 14-day cruise. The first week the entertainment was great. The ship band was wonderful. The singers and dancers were great. The second week , in my opinion, was not as good for entertainment. They never repeated a show which was fine but I just don't care for the magician, juggler, acrobatic shows or the other shows they chose for the second week. We were in a two-bedroom haven room and were able to have lunch and breakfast in Moderno which was really nice although during a two-week cruise it would be nice to have a little variation in the choices especially at lunch time. We did the specialty restaurants , Cagney's was not as good as other ships we've been on. It was never full yet it said it was if you looked on line. The staff was very slow. They didn't seem to have enough staff on hand. One of our meals was a slow roasted prime rib but the prime rib was grilled which basically made it a steak. Moderno was wonderful, LaCuchina was fabulous and Teppanyaki great. We really enjoyed the entertainment in the atrium and Magnums, particularly Leo Jostol and the Vibz Quartet. Both were awesome and you wanted to go back and see them again and again. We enjoyed the casino especially meeting Angelo one of the hosts and Rodel, one of the slot attendants. Our Butler Ronald was wonderful, easy to talk to and took care of our every need. The concierge, Jahira was great. We had a couple of hiccups in the room but she addressed them immediately and they were taken care of promptly. The Haven pool area had a few tables and was attended by Made. He worked very hard but truly for a haven area there needed to be one or two more people working since both food and drinks had to be retrieved from different locations and brought back. He had to take care of two floors all by himself. He did a great job and always had a smile. Our steward, Komang, was efficient, pleasant and kept everything spotless. We've been to most of these islands so we only took three shore excursions and they were wonderful. If you take the train ride on St Kitts be sure to sit upstairs outside and you'll see more of what they're explaining. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
This was the perfect itinerary with 7 ports in the beautiful Caribbean! Everything was top notch- fabulous Norwegian Gem and her crew. We enjoyed the specialty dining venues and the entertainment. Our cabin steward Lincey Mitchell was ... Read More
This was the perfect itinerary with 7 ports in the beautiful Caribbean! Everything was top notch- fabulous Norwegian Gem and her crew. We enjoyed the specialty dining venues and the entertainment. Our cabin steward Lincey Mitchell was outstanding! He had everything ready for before we could even ask. The washy-washy crew always greeted with a smile and a kind word. There was never crowd and plenty of seating for all the shows. We are always impressed by the quality of shows Norwegian presents. The casino was kind ;) this cruise too. It was busy but you could always find a machine you wanted to play. The only disappointment was the walk off disembarkation. Instead of lining up around the seventh floor like we have done on other Norwegian ships, they had us go to the Bliss Lounge. No order what so ever! People became quite aggressive about their position in the imaginary line. It left a very bad taste in our mouths after such a wonderful trip. Norwegian- you need to correct this. The walk off is very convenient but you must have someone there to keep order And the peace. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
Gem Review The Norwegian Gem—and NCL in general—have lost a lot of its sparkle. We booked this cruise because the departure and arrival out of Boston was convenient. I had another NCL cruise out of Boston booked, but I’m ... Read More
Gem Review The Norwegian Gem—and NCL in general—have lost a lot of its sparkle. We booked this cruise because the departure and arrival out of Boston was convenient. I had another NCL cruise out of Boston booked, but I’m canceling it. Our 14 day April-May 2019 cruise on the Gem put NCL on the bottom of our cruise choices. THE GOOD: • The entertainment was very good. The production shows were a notch above. The show band was superlative • The cabin shower was spacious! • “Freestyle” service in the main dining rooms was better than expected. And wait times--even during prime-time--were minimal. • The quality of NCL’s drinks is excellent. They tasted great and looked even better. And their drink cards are some of the best afloat (but come with a VERY steep price). • Like most cruise ships, there was an excellent selection of live music throughout the ship, especially at night. • Shore excursions were good without a lot of hurry-up-and-wait. THE BAD: • Many of the Oceanview staterooms have TINY portholes that are set a foot or so into the ship. Very difficult to see much through them unless you’re a contortionist. • The cabins are TINY. Most cabins have absolutely no room for a chair or sofa in them. • There was ONE closet in our cabin. • We had ONE 110 volt electrical outlet in our cabin. • Service is the specialty restaurants was only fair. It seemed the wait staff was stretched way too thin. • Food in the specialty restaurants was good, but most portions were beyond tiny and disappointing. • The main buffet was small, and the different stations often had the same food. The main salads could be seen in about three different places on the buffet. • The buffet was a huge dumping ground for leftovers—not so creatively disguised. Breakfast too often included many leftover vegetable dishes from days gone by. • Duty free liquor prices were more expensive on board than buying them at home. Do your homework. • The staff in the buffet area was sub-standard and not at all friendly. They often ran around like there was a fire in the galley. They avoided eye contact and rarely returned a smile. • It was sometimes difficult to get reservations in some of the specialty restaurants…but they were NEVER more than ½ to 2/3 full. They make you feel like there’s a huge rush or wait to get in. There isn’t. • NCL supposedly has an hour limit on reserved chairs in the pool area. I asked the pool deck staff to clear lounge chairs that had been reserved with towels and books for over two hours and they refused. I had pictures to back up my claim, but they didn’t seem to care. • The lunch menu in the main dining rooms never changes. It’s gets boring and repetitive quickly. • The NCL app is severely lacking. Only the daily activities were uploaded. Nothing else. Other cruise lines upload menus and opening and closing times for restaurants and bars. They offer a text and calling option for $10. No one seemed to use it. THE UGLY: • The outside chair cushions are threadbare and FILTHY. The plastic outdoor sun lounge chairs are way past their prime. • The main pool area is butt ugly and old. It’s flanked by 1960 style fake plastic palm trees. An enormous, unattractive bright blue slide tunnel takes up about 20% of the real estate. Hot tubs were occasionally closed with yellow caution tape. • Most bar areas have NO server. You usually have to belly-up to the bar if you want a drink. • NCL’s “perks” are costly and not competitive with other cruise lines. Internet is $25 per day and drink packages are $100 per day for unlimited. The Thermal Suite is also about $20 per day per person IF purchased for the entire cruise. • Many fares on NCL include “free” perks. The exorbitant gratuities for these “free” perks make them NOT free. The “free” internet was less than 20 minutes per day. Buyer beware. In summary, we enjoyed our cruise. There were some true vacation heroes. Our expensive “free” drink and dining package helped a lot, but I’m not sure it was worth the high cost. Some of the staff, especially in the buffet area, were not at all friendly. NCL has both new and aging ships. I was hoping that their “classic” ships would have classic service. Not the case. They need to polish their older gems. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
Value fantastic Value!!! service ,Itinerary, great food ,staff, .We enjoyed all the ports of call,entertainment , drink package..A incredable value for a amazing two week vacation! Friendly professional crew and entertainment director .The ... Read More
Value fantastic Value!!! service ,Itinerary, great food ,staff, .We enjoyed all the ports of call,entertainment , drink package..A incredable value for a amazing two week vacation! Friendly professional crew and entertainment director .The shows we very much looked forward to .The gentalman in charge of internet Outstanding customer service!! If we had somthing we could say need improvement hmmm..some meals ify we are not big foodies but a few ehh...washy washy crew happy happy all day !!The comitment of the crew to cater to pepole with disabilities Outstanding and a joy to witness really inspiring very inclusive. Overall we can not wait to cruise again and are very much looking forward to booking several more with this progressive cruise line and have our cruise next deposits purchased and have begun telling all our coworkers froends and family about our Amazing vacation experience with Norwegian cruise line !!Thank you All for a perfect vacation memory Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
I'll start by saying that this is my 10th NCL cruise in the last 3 years. I'll probably do this cruise again on the October 25 to Nov 08 sailing. The first person I'd like to compliment is the cruise director Ferdie! He ... Read More
I'll start by saying that this is my 10th NCL cruise in the last 3 years. I'll probably do this cruise again on the October 25 to Nov 08 sailing. The first person I'd like to compliment is the cruise director Ferdie! He is the best I've seen. He probably said hi to me three times a day. This man is always working! The people at guest services were very helpful and friendly. Cristina and the ladies at Cruise Next were friendly and informative. Aris, Camille, Millie, Josh, Zeng were some of the cruise staff that helped make the cruise great. Simone and Rose in Photography were fabulous! The restaurant staff was very accomodating with my special diet requests. Xia Lu and Afirin were a delight to see in the shops. The Ship was My destination! I spent all 14 days on the ship. I enjoyed the 7 port days in a row with most folks leaving the $700 million dollar ship to me! Lying out on the quiet sundeck listening to a book. Pure relaxation! The production show cast with excellent. I enjoyed outstanding singers Sarah and Nick. The Spinnaker lounge is awesome. It's on deck 13 forward and has 3 walls of windows for a great view. The Bliss lounge was fun for karaoke, and dancing. I was always able to find a treadmill in the fitness center. The painting classes were fun. Lastly I must say that the other guests were great. Almost everyone was cheerful and friendly! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
this cruise left from Boston MA which meant no flying, just a drive to the dock and the added advantage of 6 at sea days which are my favorites. it took a couple of days to get a feel for the ship and where things were in relationship ... Read More
this cruise left from Boston MA which meant no flying, just a drive to the dock and the added advantage of 6 at sea days which are my favorites. it took a couple of days to get a feel for the ship and where things were in relationship to our cabin. but once we worked that out all was well. the at sea days were filled with games and music and a small note in the schedule was a knitting and needlework informal gathering...we ended up being 25 or so knitters, tatters, chrochetters, cross stichers, and quilters. it was a very nice way to meet people. dining was ok the kind of food you can get at any steakhouse or good restarunt. the beef (once we got the idea that there was a cooked version between rare and medium) was delicious. I had a few fish dishes and they were excelent. Breakfast the first day out was a very big dissapointment as I truly HATE Starbucks coffee and that is all the had on this ship. or I believe it was an Italian rosat similar to Starbucks. I was very glad to get home to DD. the newsletter that you get with your turndown at nightis another story. it had the basics (day, date, temp, sunrise and set, as well as the drink of the day) and writeups about the shows and a schedule of the things going on around the ship, maps of the ports for the following day and stuff like that. However the editor of the newsletter (if there was one) had so many errors in spelling and grammar, as well as typos...it got to be a game with my roommate as to what we would find. the staff varied from "by the book" follow the rules kind of people to cutie happy happy types and the captain and his crew were on the aloof side. but all I have to compare them to is the staff on Disney cruise ships so I might not be as fair as I could be. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
This was my 27th cruise with NCL since 2004. They have progressively gotten worse since that time. Specifically the food, service, and loyalty to their returning customers. Lobster use to be available in the main dining room and ... Read More
This was my 27th cruise with NCL since 2004. They have progressively gotten worse since that time. Specifically the food, service, and loyalty to their returning customers. Lobster use to be available in the main dining room and specialty restaurants. Not anymore! The desserts used to be something to look forward to. Not anymore! The desserts are made for the masses now. You know every day in the buffet there will be some flavored sheet cake moose/gelatin cut into rectangles with a piece of chocolate stuck into it to look fancy! So disappointing! The service is much different now. We used to feel special. Now we are just another number. You would assume being a “platinum plus” member NCL would elevate you to a higher level. NOPE! NCL keeps taking away and taking away to make their numbers work at the expense of their customers and with a smile on their faces! So disappointing! So this cruise the jacuzzis didn’t open until 8am! WHAT!!! On past cruises I looked forward to watch sunrises from the jacuzzi. Now NCL has ruined that!!! So disappointing!!! NCL should be ashamed! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We LOVED that it was round trip from Boston! This made it a pleasure for us..as we live in Framingham, just west of Boston. An Uber took us to and from the pier! We loved the idea of two full weeks vacay! Sea days are great for us: so ... Read More
We LOVED that it was round trip from Boston! This made it a pleasure for us..as we live in Framingham, just west of Boston. An Uber took us to and from the pier! We loved the idea of two full weeks vacay! Sea days are great for us: so relaxing! Getting to the So. Caribbean islands was fun. We loved Magen’s Bay to which we took a taxi, had a swim in the heavenly water, and taxied ‘home’ to the ship. The heat and humidity was too much for us ‘oldies’, so we mostly stayed on the ship. We loved our routine: my husband did his early morning run every single day. After showering and enjoying coffee picked up by my husband, we went to the buffet for our leisurely breakfast - so many healthy, fresh, and delicious choices! Then we visited the library for about an hour of reading in that lovely atmosphere. Afternoon naps were lovely; afternoon bite and a cocktail in the shade by the pool, we’re always enjoyed! We loved the tremendous choice of wonderful food! No way we didn’t find MANY favorites to try...and the desserts...delicious! My favorite was the hot bread pudding with vanilla sauce! The soft serve cones...Mmm! Every single night we enjoyed the entertainment! From dance and song extravaganzas to a juggler, the variety and quality of the talent - awesome! We purchased a three-meals pkg for dinners at the specialty restaurants! They were fantastic! Cagney’s, Teppanyaki, and Cucina were equally ‘over the top.’ I look back st those two weeks as my husband/best friend and I getting to go to an elite overnight camp together! We had pure relaxation and fun, free style sailing and all the fun-filled activities made us feel gifted to get to attend such a great ‘camp’ for adults: Luxury and togetherness! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
Believe in second chances so we thought, why not . We are so wrong. Right from the start, we ran into issues with the hotel in Boston. Shutter bus took an hour to pick us up at the airport. Then, the next day, the driver dropped us off way ... Read More
Believe in second chances so we thought, why not . We are so wrong. Right from the start, we ran into issues with the hotel in Boston. Shutter bus took an hour to pick us up at the airport. Then, the next day, the driver dropped us off way outside the cruise terminal and we had to walk 20 minutes to the entrance. We will never book with Comfort Inn baysidel if we are in Boston again. Checked in at the terminal, long wait because Gem was not ready to receive the passengers even though embarkation began. Below are the following why we will never given Gem a third chance: - Food was still bad. It was cold most of the time and morning coffee at Grand Pacific was not fresh. Services are non existence 80% of the time. Table was never set right and waitresses, and waiters looked angry all the time. Menu selections were bad too and the special nights at fine dinning do not include lobsters nor prawns or better steaks. - Services at Guest Service, OMG. Three issues, they know everything, argumentative and poor oral communication. They have no people skill. - Cabin steward, most part he was okay but there are times we needed to chase him down for supplies because he insufficiently stocking up the supplies after cleaning. - Cruise director is like a ghost. Didn't see him much. Saw him twice the first 4 days of the cruise. Two members of his team, how shall I put it, English was not their first language. - Entertainments was okay from the independent performers but Gem dances and singers, oh gosh, they are bad and loud. Either that they cranked the volume too high. - Orchid Garden food was bad. No taste and took a long tine to be served. - Staff at Trade Wind shops, same thing too. They know it all and they didn't seem to understand when there was a promotional that involved complimentary items, give them to the guests. There should not be hassling just because they wanted to sell. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
Just love the norwegian free style. Staff is very friendly, ship is been renovated and everything is kept clean. The different restaurants offer a good variety of food. But as I am vegetarien, I had to ask which plate was meatless. Just ... Read More
Just love the norwegian free style. Staff is very friendly, ship is been renovated and everything is kept clean. The different restaurants offer a good variety of food. But as I am vegetarien, I had to ask which plate was meatless. Just wish they put a pictogram beside the name of the dish to tell us if it has meat in it or not. Good show every night. As we disembark in Boston, that part was not well plan but I am sure that they learn from that expérience. But we had no problem for the embarkment. I recommend that you download theNorwegian apps before going on the ship. Very helpfull. The entertainment team was also very good to keep us busy while àt sea. As we were with a french group, they offer us the daily activity journal in french. With the shore excursions, eveything was perfect, no complaint there. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
First positive: -Departure from home town -Caribbean ports, lovely itinerary ( one port was canceled) - excellent crew attitude, polite and friendly Now the bad: -4.5 hours! to embark- absurd, standing in line for 4 hours ... Read More
First positive: -Departure from home town -Caribbean ports, lovely itinerary ( one port was canceled) - excellent crew attitude, polite and friendly Now the bad: -4.5 hours! to embark- absurd, standing in line for 4 hours with no option to sit - average food, over cooked, under seasoned, but we never went hungry. Just was average. - very boring unless all you want is read. Nightly entertainment was good. -Port was canceled due to storm prediction 3!!! days in advance. As the result, we arrived to nyc 4 hours earlier than scheduled. Out St Thomas Port was 5 hours! Thanks captain for stealing part of my vacation. - our room attendant was keeping linen on the floor under bed(see pic). Guest services resolved problem right away. -Cabin (balcony) was the tiniest I’ve ever seen. When beds were made, you had to climb over the beds, no room on the floor. Not good for 3 people. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
In retrospect I wish I didn't Never will cruise Norwegian again. Horrible service. Food was just as bad. Entertainment sub par. Worst cruise ever. I have gone on more than 10 cruises and first and last NCL cruise. Cabin was old and ... Read More
In retrospect I wish I didn't Never will cruise Norwegian again. Horrible service. Food was just as bad. Entertainment sub par. Worst cruise ever. I have gone on more than 10 cruises and first and last NCL cruise. Cabin was old and worn. Shower door broken. Bathroom door broken. A/C made terrible noise. Ship cannot comfortably accommodate number of passengers on a sold out cruise especially in inclement weather. They are short on staff and the attitude of the staff was the worst I have ever seen. You can seriously get better service at a fast food restaurant. Specialty restaurants are a joke. Same type of food and service just a different setting. Pool deck vastly overcrowded and on a 10 day cruise the 2 pools were only open once at the same time. For certain types of liquor you had to go to more than one bar to find it. Overall Royal Caribbean, Princess or Celebrity are better by far at the same price point. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
This 10-day eastern Caribbean Cruise was my first Caribbean cruise, and it was good for the most part. The service was good, the food was good, and I appreciate the capitain’s safety and care taken towards the ship and its passengers and ... Read More
This 10-day eastern Caribbean Cruise was my first Caribbean cruise, and it was good for the most part. The service was good, the food was good, and I appreciate the capitain’s safety and care taken towards the ship and its passengers and crew. However, there is one major issue that keeps me from giving the trip a five-star rating. That issue is the conflicting guidance I received on more than one occasion regarding NCL’s policies: First, when I booked the cruise, I picked $50 per port excursion credit as one of my free perks. However, it was not reflected in my account when the excursion charges hit on the first day. When I called the help line, they said it would hit at the end of the trip. When I followed up with guest services on the ship, they said it would show up as each excursion passed. Second, I picked a premium beverage package as another free perk. However, they failed to inform us that we would still get charged “National port charges” for drinks we ordered within US waters. Not only that, but apparently some personnel on the ship were unaware of such a charge (to the point where they were insisting that such was not the case). Third, on our second to last day, when we asked if we could get a few minutes of courtesy WiFi to check in for our flight, the guy at guest services said that’s ok and they did it all the time. However, when we went to the Internet cafe and asked, they said we would have to pay. One issue with conflicting guidance is one thing, but I was concerned how there was different guidance for several different issues I had. As a cruise line, NCL needs to ensure that all their personnel convey the same guidance to guests. It was frustrating to me that I had to end up asking more than one employee for guidance because I could not get a consistent answer. On a different note, I also feel like more sanitizing could have been done on the ship by the employees. They had sanitizing stations throughout the ship and employees standing throughout with sanitizing bottles, but I did not see employees scrubbing down the surfaces with disinfectant. To make matters worse, a stomach bug ravaged the ship on our cruise (which forced us to arrive in San Juan much earlier than anticipated). That alone should have been enough to get NCL employees to scrub down the public areas of the ship as often as possible. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
I'm platinum on NCL and Carnival. I prefer not to fly so I generally cruise out of NY or Baltimore. I chose this cruise as it was my 50th bday and didn't want to do the usual 7 day cruise to the Bahamas. I took my entire ... Read More
I'm platinum on NCL and Carnival. I prefer not to fly so I generally cruise out of NY or Baltimore. I chose this cruise as it was my 50th bday and didn't want to do the usual 7 day cruise to the Bahamas. I took my entire family on this trip (8 of us) and 3 friends came as well. I upgraded to a 2 bedroom suite on the private Haven floor, room 14006. My family, friends, and I had an excellent time. The food was great. Service in the Grand Pacific dining room the 1st night didn't go so well, but we'll chuck it up to our large group and 1st cruise night issues. My only 2 complaints are: 1. They skipped the last port of St Thomas Mon 3/25/19 because they were expecting a storm on Wednesday and wanted to get ahead of it. Other passengers stated they were on this same cruise before and the same thing supposedly happened. 2. We were supposed to arrive back in NY at 10am. I had hired a limo service to pick us up at 11am. We arrived in NY at 6am and they MADE us get off the ship BY 10am (the time we were SUPPOSED to arrive) so my family and friends had to stand outside for over an hour in 40 degree cold waiting for our ride from PA because NCL didn't stick to their own itinerary & because the inside terminal was closed due to the ship not picking up any new passengers as the ship was repositioning to Boston. This was my 7th time on the NCL Gem. I enjoy this ship. I truly enjoy the Haven and have sailed in that type of room often. I did have an excellent 50th birthday, my family truly enjoyed themselves. However an otherwise perfect cruise was tainted by an inconvenient, avoidable, and frustrating debarkation. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We love to cruise any of the NCL fleet. The ships all have a unique personality created by the crew attitude toward us. This was an anniversary celebration, they knew it but at our request they didn't make a big deal about it. We ... Read More
We love to cruise any of the NCL fleet. The ships all have a unique personality created by the crew attitude toward us. This was an anniversary celebration, they knew it but at our request they didn't make a big deal about it. We wanted it to be our time. Shortly before the bookings were closed another couple decided to join us and had no problem getting a great cabin. Each time we needed to change our reservations from 2 to 4 it was handled immediately and without issue. They made it happen. I was amazed at how many of their staff could keep such a high attitude toward personal customer service. We enjoyed the free style dining experience and made use of four of the specialty dining rooms. We've been on this ship three times before but still found new items offered each day and new creative entertainment offerings we could not keep up with. We went on a cruise on a great medium sized ship that stopped at islands we already know and love but this time we never left the ship for a single excursion. I stand behind the captain's decision to cut the island hopping by one day and head home to avoid hitting the strong weather head-on at full speed. The turbulence was not disturbing to anyone I spoke with. Thanks to NCL for a memorable anniversary celebration. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
Wanted to visit St. Lucia and Antigua and the bonus was St Maarten and Puerto Rico. Missed St. Thomas due to weather but happy with the decision for safety. We are Disney Cruise ravers and this cruise line is equal and even exceeds in some ... Read More
Wanted to visit St. Lucia and Antigua and the bonus was St Maarten and Puerto Rico. Missed St. Thomas due to weather but happy with the decision for safety. We are Disney Cruise ravers and this cruise line is equal and even exceeds in some area. Beautiful ship and wonderful Cruise Director and crew. Balcony cabin was smaller than others but our stateriom steward was excellent! Lots of activities and the music was fabulous - not the head banger junk - actual dancing music! Motown and party music. Loved the swing dance lessons and bingo was entertaining. The shows were our favorite - really first rate broadway type with unbelievable energy and top of the line dancing. Blazing Boots was so exhilarating it was hard to catch your breath and the dancers taught the swing class making it even more exciting! The Russian Circus Acrobats should be headliners for Cirque du Soleil as their duo act was astonishing! The comedy of Keith Bender had us on the floor and aching for more! The buffet and main dining food was delicious and La Cuchina and Cagneys was top of the line! The Regetta shore excursion in Sin Maarten was a real treat and the kyack and snorkel excursion in Antigua were two of our all time favorites. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
Embarkation did not go well. We did not get on the ship until 4 or so. There were a lot of upset people including myself and my husband. The ship was nice and organized. Our balcony cabin was very nice. Dining, well that was ... Read More
Embarkation did not go well. We did not get on the ship until 4 or so. There were a lot of upset people including myself and my husband. The ship was nice and organized. Our balcony cabin was very nice. Dining, well that was another story. We did not have one hot meal from the buffet or the restaurants we ate at. The flounder was not much thicker than a couple of pieces of paper and tasteless. I had the shrimp and mushroom Alfredo a few times and the pasta was not cooked all the way. So I ended up eating a lot of salads and fruit. The only thing hot was the coffee. Entertainment and Activities were good. Service was good. Ports and shore excursions were good until our last port got canceled due to weather going home. Yes we will go again but not in the spring and sorry but not on Norwegian. We didn't travel with children. We went on this cruise for our 47th anniversary and the only thing that the cruise line offered us was a piece of cake in one of the top of the line restaurants. No thank you. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
Really enjoy NCL cruises as they offer a great choice of ports, The other passengers were friendly and we enjoyed chatting over meals. I love the variety of cocktails included in the drinks package. The entertainment is 1st class ... Read More
Really enjoy NCL cruises as they offer a great choice of ports, The other passengers were friendly and we enjoyed chatting over meals. I love the variety of cocktails included in the drinks package. The entertainment is 1st class especially in piano bars were Justin kept us entertained with singalongs - very talented guy. We enjoy relaxing listening to the music after dinner or after a show. The staff throughout the ship were professional and food in all the restaurants we ate at were excellent. The pool area had enough sun beds and was well maintained although during this cruise the pool wasn’t busy due to the weather being very changeable as it was autumn. The Gem is a smaller and older ship which suits us as the bigger ships aren’t as cosy. We enjoyed it so much we’ve already booked our next cruise, heading to South America in Feb 2020. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Overall good. Minor issues as follows: Many chairs in the Great Outdoors seating outside of the buffet were lacking seat cushions. Seat cushions that were available were generally quite dirty. It would be a simple fix for NCL to ... Read More
Overall good. Minor issues as follows: Many chairs in the Great Outdoors seating outside of the buffet were lacking seat cushions. Seat cushions that were available were generally quite dirty. It would be a simple fix for NCL to replace seat cushions. The buffet closes early at 9:30 p.m. Would be nice to be able to visit after the 9 p.m. show. Too many staff looked bored or tired. Just a few were energetic or at least would say hello. Cagney's was disappointing. Very slow service, food no better than main dining room. O'Sheehan's wasn't all that good. Need to improve quality. Large screen in atrium underutilized. Generally just showed NCL advertising. No bargain shopping in the on board shops, no deal days. Still overall a good cruise. This issues listed above could easily be corrected. Main dining in Grand Pacific was excellent and service was prompt.Get there at 5pm and get seated without wait. Shows were good. Would cruise NCL again just wish minor issues would be addressed then this would be a 4 star cruise. One other note, embarkation was a disaster, 3 hour wait in line with no seating. This is not all NCL's isuue but an issue with the Port of N.Y. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We took this cruise because it had the ports we wanted to visit. The shows were very good. We loved the Orchid and O'Sheehans. The food in the Orchid was excellent. WE enjoyed the barbeque by the pool on Sea days and then they went ... Read More
We took this cruise because it had the ports we wanted to visit. The shows were very good. We loved the Orchid and O'Sheehans. The food in the Orchid was excellent. WE enjoyed the barbeque by the pool on Sea days and then they went around with mango smoothies and fruit on skewers. They had plenty of seats at the pool even on sea days. The food in the main dining room was ok. The muster stations were inside which was good since it was cold out. Disembarkation went smoothly. We were off the ship at 8:00 AM. Embarkation was slow since the ship came in late. We din't get on the ship until 2:15 PM. We have never been on the NCL smaller ships and were pleasantly surprised. We had an inside cabinet. There was plenty of closet space and drawers to put our clothing away. The bathroom had shelves. The refrigerator kept food nice and cold. The service was very good. We had a very nice time on this ship. it seemed very cozy. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Where should I start on that. I'm normally not someone who easily complaints about issues and who is willing to overlook things but this cruise was the worst cruise I have ever done. I mean we spend over $10K just for the cruise which ... Read More
Where should I start on that. I'm normally not someone who easily complaints about issues and who is willing to overlook things but this cruise was the worst cruise I have ever done. I mean we spend over $10K just for the cruise which was nothing what came close to what NCL is promising in their advertisements. But from the Beginning: Embarkation: We had chosen (My parents, my Fiance and my two boys) that we will take the 10am time slot as the ship were supposed to leave at 4pm and the Intrepid Museum is next door of the cruise terminal. Then we arrived there was already a huge line in front of the security control and announcements were made that the computer system isn't working and they will open the check in soon (I don't want to even know how people felt who had the 8am check in time). After about 15min wait the line actually started to move and we were all still in a good mood. Check in was quite easy and it didn't was anything different from any other American Cruise line we have sailed on (the European ones are much better organized and faster (AIDA, TuiCruises)). We were told not to leave the waiting area as boarding would start at 12pm anyways which we didn't really like as we wanted to go to the Museum with our boys but which we accepted. So at around 11.45 we found a seat and started to wait. Till 1pm nothing happened until an NCL crew member made the announcement that the ship has arrived late and they have to go through the procedure with the Port Authority which will take till 2.30pm. Uff. I mean our boys are easy to entertain but 2 1/2 hours in a waiting hall where nothing was is quite interesting. In between where were more announcements made that maybe it will be a little bit earlier and they will try everything to get us on board as soon as possible. At 2.30pm the next announcement was made that they will start any minute with the boarding. We had to wait till nearly 4pm to finally get on board of the ship (just a reminder 6 hours from arrival with two little boys (5 and 8)). Cabin: Okay at least we were on board now and could start enjoying our vacation. As we arrived in our cabin it was obvious that it wasn't really cleaned. We found the trash and the room card from the ones who were traveling in that cabin the cruise before. The mirrors had finger prints (and then I say fingerprint I mean dirt) and the tables were all sticky. I have slept in hotels in China which were below the 1 star rating and I didn't had any issues. But I knew what I paid for and what I had to expect. This stateroom wasn't anything near what I would expect for that amount of money spend. The good thing about the room was that the toilet was separate from the shower and the sink in its little own "room". Dining/Food/Crew: Exhausted from this start we just wanted to have some dinner so we thought it would be a good idea to go to the dinner restaurant so that we don't have to get our food from the buffet. We didn't have to wait at all to get seated and were really surprised that we had a table that fast. The waiter greeted us and asked what we would like to drink. As we had the Ultimate Beverage Package (includes Alcohol and sodas/juices and so on, but don't include coffee or sparkling water (to get that you have to buy another package for an additional $39 per day(!)). So we asked for a few sodas and apple juice for the boys. This was the first time we got eyed rolled on us (and not the last time). It took just 15-20 minutes to get our drinks, which means our waiter wasn't seen for the same amount of time. Her back we started with ordering food and I did the mistake and asked for a 2nd starter which made me earn the next comment in Chinese and rolled eyes. By the time then the starters arrived (another 15 minutes later) we had drunk our sodas and juices but our waiter ignored that we had either water nor any thing else left in our glasses and just didn't asked if we would like to have anything. So I asked if we could get refills and earned the next pair of rolled eyes and rudeness. I think I have never been treated like that before. Unfortunately this attitude stayed the same the whole cruise with one exception. After we had complaint to the customer service the next evening dinning we had the restaurant manager and his staff at our table every 5 minutes so that it didn’t feel genuine as more as a thing they had to do. I didn't feel any better with that and honestly the interaction with our kids was quite creepy. Overall the service was very slow (one exception was the Moderno were the bar is right around the corner), inattentive and most of the times not friendly at all. They gave us the feeling we were just a burden and they have to do their job. By the way, I haven’t seen the Captain or his first officer or the hotel manager or the entertainment manager once during the whole cruise. This is not really a good thing. On top of that the food was nothing close to anything we had on different other cruise ships. I mean I can taste the difference between fresh mashed potatoes and instant ones. These were definitely not fresh ones. And when you bite on clumps of instant powder in a soup then you know that this one isn't made fresh either. The breakfast buffet didn't have had any variation (the same cheese every day, two types of ham, no honey, the same baked beans, the same pancakes, waffles and so on). I mean no variation at all. It was quite similar with the lunch and the dinner buffet but not as bad as the breakfast. This food was hardly enjoyable and had nothing from premium concept NCL is advertising. Entertainment: If you have kids stay away from the Norwegian Gem. There was nearly nothing to do for kids and we got most of the times the feeling they are just annoying and in the wrong place. I never had that my kids were treated with such a small amount of attention. Yes there were two exceptions who were awesome and super nice but unfortunately it were only two crew members. Other than that the entertainment was okay but nothing really exciting nor was it so much that we couldn’t decide. Money: Money is a big thing for Norwegian because as soon as you enter the ship it feels like they want to rip you off. I mean the Arcades for the kids were $1 (!!!) per minute. Yes you could buy a game pass for unlimited games for $175 for the cruise per kid (!). Before nearly every show they tried to sell their "awesome" offer to buy the next cruise and make the down payment and you get up to $500 on board credit for “free” (if you made a down payment for $1,000 at the same time). The photographer were rude and very pushy and in general we got the feeling they had to reach a certain amount of sales. During our specialty dinners the photographer pushed us to make a photo with him just to show us the result at the end of our dinner where we just wanted to enjoy our desert. The price tag for that picture was a cheap $25 for one (!) picture which wasn’t even really good. And then you say friendly “no thank you” you get either “Why? Isn’t it a good picture?” or “Are you really sure?” or they rip the photo out of your hand and just leave without any comment. As written before, having certain packages doesn't mean it is for free as they try to get still things paid on top. For example we had the dinning package (4 times special dinning for the 1st and 2nd person in our cabin but due to corporate policy (which is not written or shown on the website) we weren’t allowed to share this dinning package with our children who were cruising in the same cabin. There wasn’t even the possibility to buy these packages for the 3rd and 4th person cruising in the same stateroom. It wasn’t like I wanted to give it to another person on the ship to invite them. It was for our own children in the same stateroom. The restaurant manager just answered to our complaint that this is normal and they have the same complaints at least a few times per cruise. Why doesn’t NCL change it if this is such a big complaint or at least mention it on their website or somewhere. Ports/ Excursions: When we booked our cruise we had Saint Kitts in our itinerary but do to schedule issues NCL changed the itinerary to St. Marteen/St. Martin which was fine with me as I always wanted to see the famous beach where the planes land just a couple of feet above your head. But in general the planning of NCL for their ports is horrible. I mean then they say you will be at 4pm in the Port they are either early or late. I never have made such experiences with any other cruise line. I mean being early by half an hour or having some issues with clearing the boat so that it is a little bit later (half an hour) but most of the ports I have visited with other cruise lines were on time. Not with NCL. One port we arrived like 4 hours early another port late and none of the ports on time. I mean I stopped to look in to the cruise journal as it didn’t matter at all what was written for the arrival time. It wouldn’t work anyways so it was easier just to accept that we will be there then we are there. And it isn’t such a big issue as we still had our fun on the different islands but what was really annoying that NCL canceled our last port because of a “storm” on our route and they want to make up the time they will lose in the storm so that we can be “safer”. Sounds at the beginning right and good that the company is taking that good care of us. But then you find out that you are back in the NY port by 3am docked while it was planned to dock at 10am and you miss going by the Statue of Liberty in daylight which was one of the main reasons why we booked this cruise when you get the first questions. When you then hear that this was the last cruise on this route and the ship goes without passengers to Boston afterwards then this is getting even more irritating. Especially then I let you know how the disembarkation worked. Disembarkation: Two days before the arrival you had the choice to get tags for your suitcases for either going from board with your luggage or at a certain time. We decided to take the latest possible time which was 12pm for going of board. The evening before we arrived we got the information from our steward that we have to leave the cabin no later than 8am. Okay, but we thought okay we will find a place in the restaurant or on deck. No big issue. Next morning we got ready so that we could leave the cabin by 8am as we were told to do so. At 7.30am the first announcement came that now all individuals with luggage can leave the boat. We thought wow they are starting early with disembarkation especially as we were not planned to be back in port before 10am. But we didn’t thought anything bad and went for breakfast. At 8.30 they called the first passengers with luggage tags and only 15 minutes the next group. Our group was called at 9am. Again we were supposed to be not from board before 12pm and made our travel arrangements accordingly. So we thought okay it is just a nice information that our luggage is now available. And again we were so wrong. At 9.15am they called again all groups and at 9.30am they made the last call for all passengers. 9.30am (!). Half an hour before we were even supposed to arrive back in New York. So we made our way to the check out where the next surprise was waiting for us. While everyone out of my family was allowed to leave the ship I was quite rude informed that I have to go back to the customer service because there is an account issue. Not that we were waiting already in line for getting off board for 20 minutes and not that this was the time to inform passengers about another corporate policy no you wait till check out and then you have one of your big security guards moving you out of the line. As I got to know afterwards the security was even more rude to my children and my family as the wanted to either go with me or at least wait for me as they didn’t know anything of what was going on. Nevertheless, I went back to the customer service where the customer manager informed me that I have some board credit left on my account. When I asked him what the problem is as they have my Credit Card on file where they could have easily booked the money to I just got the answer it is corporate policy to pay it out cash. I never had any issues with board credit not being able to get it back in my account but it seems like all what NCL can do is charging. So all of this trouble only for paying my board credit in cash and this as rude as possible. Fun fact about safety with NCL: We had to use an escalator for going down to our luggage. When my son (5 years) stepped onto the escalator I wanted to follow immediately as how it is done by good parents not expecting what would come next. Instead of making my way on the escalator I got stopped very rudely from another NCL employee with a stick until my son was already a few steps down. Then the stick was lifted and I was allowed to enter the escalator. The same with the rest of my family and other passengers behind us. As I wanted to get to my son as he has sometimes trouble to get of the escalator I moved forward which earned me a again a very rude: “Sir, don’t move on the escalator”. Just in case you don’t know how to use the escalator just ask NCL. They will tell you! In general the employees at the check out and in the terminal were very rude. Waiting for family members where answered with: “SIR, KEEP moving!”. I mean we were within the last passengers going of the boat so that there not really more masses on people to expect but yeah the nearly empty arrival hall was still to small to make it possible for me to wait for my children and my family. Overall Yeah, I think you know my conclusion and what I want to say. But another fun fact before I come to the conclusion everyone is expecting. It was a lucky coincident that my son was chosen to draw the lucky winner of a future cruise with NCL and he drew the couple sitting next to us. After the draw then a person from NCL had explained everything to the couple I asked them if I could get to know what kind of cruise it is. They answered that it is a 5 day Caribbean cruise but that all the taxes, port fees, gratuities and so on aren’t included in the “free” cruise. Just to let you know if you get a “free” cruise from NCL be careful, it might not be for free. Okay but now to my conclusion. If you are a foody or you are travelling with your family or your taste buds are still working in a good way or you like to relax and have a friendly atmosphere, then run and don’t book with NCL. If you don’t know what to do with your money, and you like instant and frozen food, and you want to get bothered by employees trying to sell you what you have already bought then NCL is the right cruise line for you. For me I can say that I will NEVER ever cruise with NCL again because if I would have the feeling it was just this ship then I would be like “meah” lets try another ship but this experience has shown pretty much that this is a corporate issue and not a ship or crew issue. Read Less
Norwegian Gem Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.7
Entertainment 5.0 3.9
Public Rooms 5.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.6
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 4.0 4.1
Value For Money 5.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 3.8

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