Cruise Ratings
1,217
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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
I choose this mini cruise as I had never been with NCL before and wanted to try a short cruise with them. So here’s a summary of my trip. Boarding: Barcelona port is easy to get to by taxi, but if you get there before 1pm be prepared ... Read More
I choose this mini cruise as I had never been with NCL before and wanted to try a short cruise with them. So here’s a summary of my trip. Boarding: Barcelona port is easy to get to by taxi, but if you get there before 1pm be prepared to queue in the building and then outside and down the side of the terminal. There is no shade at all, and you could be waiting an hour at least just to get in the terminal. I got there for 11:10 and within 20 mins was in the terminal but that only because they filled up the snakes queues with people. Once security opened and you got through to check in it went quite quickly and boarding was smooth. The ship: only having lifts front and back is a pain and you cannot take a lift straight down to level 5 where guest services are. You have to go to 6, walk through the casino and then take the escalator up and down. Guest services do not have enough people on for the number on the ship, be prepared for at least a 20 minute wait to talk to someone if you go between 8am and 9pm. There is no smoking inside the ship, but you can still smell it when you go through the casino. There seemed to be plenty of places to sit and enjoy the world going by and lots of loungers on deck. I never saw the marketplace lit up the way it is on the pictures and could not access H2O at any time on the first day as it was booked by a private party. I only ate in taste on a morning for breakfast and it was okay. I asked for toast and got two slices of slightly warm bread that quickly went damp and floppy, but the service was good. I ate in the 3 speciality restaurants le bistro, Teppanyaki and cagneys. The bistro was by far the best - excellent service and food. Teppanyaki was good, but very loud and go hungry as you get lots! By far the worst was cagneys, I had been really looking forward to this as I had read so many good reviews, but the service was poor and the food not great. The steak was not of great quality (I ordered filet mignon which should be full of flavour), but it tasted of nothing and the Parmesan fries were cold after a couple of minutes on my plate and the mac and cheese was gloopy and again tasted of very little. Desert was good, but the portion size was massive and the service was not great. I’ve had far better steak and service at home. I ate in o’sheehans once but to be honest it was just basic burgers, hotdogs and wings and again they were okay but nothing special. I had to wait 20 mins for a table but that was probably because it was a bad day at sea so everyone was eating and staying inside. Apart from le bistro the food was very much the ‘mass catering’ standard you would get at any middle of the road mall or chain restaurant. My cabin: I had 8192 aft balcony cabin. It was clean and tidy enough, but showing obvious signs of age and disrepair. Loads of storage and I didn’t mind the bathroom in the bedroom thing, but as I was travelling on my own I can see how it would not be great if you were travelling with someone else. The bed was comfy and the room stewards are amazing and work so hard - nothing was too much trouble for them! The main issue I had with my room was the noise, the first night was really rough and the creaking in the room was horrendous. I had to jam a beach towel over the safe as even with the door locked it banged, I had to take all the loose hangers down and wrap them in the other towel. I had to jam a facecloth in the shower sliding door as it didn’t click shut and so kept sliding backwards and forwards and banging. I had to put a towel under the door so that the light from outside didn’t come in and my shawl over the telephone as it gave out lots of light at night. But by far the worst was the noise from the engines, the vibration and the creaking that came from around the balcony door. I think I just about got 1-2 hrs sleep that night. When I went to guest services to complain they said it all because of the weather, but I’ve been on other ships in that kind of weather and it’s never been that bad. Shows: I went to both cirque and burn the floor. Both were excellent but you absolutely have to book them in advance if you want to go. Tours: I only went on 1 tour to sorrento and Pompeii, it was well organised but they did that thing that I really hate (that they don’t tell you about either) where you are forced to go on factory tours at each stop to basically get you to buy things, so at sorrento we had to walk round a wood working store for half an hour and then got an hour and a half to enjoy sorrento, then back on the bus to Pompeii. We had an hour and a half guided tour, but if your thing is to shuffle along with 40 other people trying to see about a third of somewhere then it’s all good. We then left and were driven to a cameo factory were we had a 10min ‘tour’ then had half an hour to shop. If I is was doing it again I would definitely just book something through trip advisor myself and not do the ship tour. Disembarkation: port citivatevecchia. I choose to get myself and my luggage off and I left at about 8am. It was super easy, I just took the lift down to 4, very little queue and was off by 8:10. The port at Rome is awful, basically just a big hanger with no seating or anything. There are buses laid on to take you to the port gates which is a long way away. I had a private taxi booked but again there was no organisation on the port officials side and you had to constantly watch out for the driver with your name. It cost €120 to go from the port to Rome central and it’s about an hour and a half by car. If you are taking a bus then train it is about the same time so that needs to be factored in if going on a day trip. Final thoughts: there is plenty going on on-board the ship, but it is showing it’s age now and the service ranges from excellent to can’t really be bothered. I will never get an aft room again and I don’t know if I would do an ncl cruise again. I got a good deal with drinks, internet, service charges and on board credit, but I would say it’s very middle of the road, mass catering feel to the whole thing. You were never really made to feel special which for me should be part of the cruise experience. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
A friend recommended a transatlantic cruise since my husband was retiring. We had not cruised in years, never transatlantic, and never been to Spain. It was a spur of the moment decision without the research I normally do on every ... Read More
A friend recommended a transatlantic cruise since my husband was retiring. We had not cruised in years, never transatlantic, and never been to Spain. It was a spur of the moment decision without the research I normally do on every vacation we take. When I found the time to look into it further, I was a bit concerned with some of the reviews I read of the Epic, but knew we would make the best of it especially with the deal we got for a sail away balcony. I can honestly say that we got more than we paid for with the Epic. We were in cabin 11012 which is the 4th from the front and has the total metal surround on the balcony so when sitting down you cannot see the ocean. But this blocks the strong sea breeze crossing the Atlantic. The balcony is huge and we had a chaise, 2 chairs, and a small table with room to spare. I agree with other reviewers about the configuration of the cabin being a bit odd and probably a bit tight for larger people, but it was not an issue with us. We had storage we did not use. My husband likes to use the pool and hot tub area but I like to read and watercolor in a quiet place. We were both happy with the facilities. We ate the majority of our meals in the dining rooms but did not utilize the specialty restaurants. The food was consistently good. We did eat some meals in the Garden Cafe which was also pretty good. We did not have the beverage package as we only drink a glass or so of wine daily but we did buy the wine package on board the first day. I think that is the only time it is available. We enjoyed some of the entertainment but did not bother with anything labeled “not for the easily offended.” We enjoyed meeting others on board as it was just the two of us. There were many other couples traveling alone. In short, we really enjoyed the cruise and have, in fact, booked the same cruise for next April. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
Overall, very good transatlantic cruise, seas were light to moderate and the weather was generally in the 70s. Embarkation and debarking were both quick and smooth. Would like to congratulate NCL for providing a bridge instructor and ... Read More
Overall, very good transatlantic cruise, seas were light to moderate and the weather was generally in the 70s. Embarkation and debarking were both quick and smooth. Would like to congratulate NCL for providing a bridge instructor and director for the sea days, Cheryl was excellent. Also NCL provided a pickle ball court for two hours on most sea days, good fun, thanks to Lisa and Mark. Entertainment was generally very good, the broadway shows were professionally done and very good. The duelling pianos were good as were several of the bands. Food was good for dinner at the main restaurants, however lunch at the buffet did not get any praise as was generally lukewarm at best and too salty and not tasty. The one major problem at the buffet was a lack of seating especially if the weather was not good enough to eat outside.Speciality restaurants were generally excellent, Cagney’s and Bistro were our best. We had the beverage package and always had excellent service, although the pool bar got very busy mid afternoons. Our room steward, Joel, was excellent and very responsive. Cabin layout was poor and this has been commented on many times. We have booked this cruise again for next year. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
First of all, starting from embarkation we came across with the same problem, again and again, we have Turkish special passport holders which do not require us to obtain a visa for certain countries. We told it each time to the embarkation ... Read More
First of all, starting from embarkation we came across with the same problem, again and again, we have Turkish special passport holders which do not require us to obtain a visa for certain countries. We told it each time to the embarkation personnel and passport officers but they cause us to wait sometimes 2 hours in order to get confirmation. Sometimes they do not accept official letters from embassies. So, they must update the visa requirements checklist including special passport holders. As a frequent traveler, I do not want to be treated as a missing visa issue again and again. Because I do not need to have a visa. Furthermore, as a premier guest, we experienced a lot of problems, some restaurant managers trying to tell me that there are 2000 platinum plus members staying on the ship. Therefore they can not give us a priority in the restaurants. Later I learned that this was a total lie. I reported the situation to the general hotel director and asked him that if I can not get any priority why do I need to choose Norwegian again. I received no response. Therefore you can not receive any priority even if you are too loyal to the cruise line. For thermal suite packages, the ship sold more than the available limits in the spa area. Everybody who finds the door open just jumps in. Everybody start having an argument about sitting in lounge chairs. I was assaulted twice by other passengers. I also reported this situation to the general director but nothing changed. The spa personnel most of the time left the door open or some other guests invite others to use spa for free. Therefore the majority f the passengers get really angry for why they paid extra for thermal spa if everybody can jump inside freely. At last, during the disembarkation process, everything becomes chaotic. The ship personnel can able to collect and make passport stamps while we are on the ship and inside the European premises for one week we traveled to Portugal and Spain ports. But they preferred to do EU entry passport stamps on our own during disembarkation at Barcelona. I have to wait a lot of lines, ship exit line, passport stamp line, baggage collection line and taxi stand time. It takes a complete 3 hours. I have been cruised many times but have not seen such a thing in Barcelona for the recent 10 years. I have been many times cruised with Norwegian but their loyalty seems to be nothing more than 2 free special dinners which are limited to 25 USD max order per cabin not per member. I expect them to give unlimited internet or some more dining night for free but once you get platinum, do not try to get higher because once you reach plat plus only thing you get is a dinning chance with an officer as a group of 3-4 staterooms in a main dining room. Especially in this cruise from Cape Canaveral to Barcelona, most of the passengers are really annoyed because only three shows were presented as unique for 15 days. For other days they repeat the shows again and again. Everybody goes to bed at 7 pm after dinner. So we call the ship as a ghost at late times. Epic is a good ship I have traveled with her 4 times in the past. But it was managed well and the level of the service and fun was great. Use to be Burn the floor took a showplace in Manhattan but no more. I have never heard someone playing the piano in the taste also. Furthermore, the waiters are not trained most of them newly joined to the company. Sometimes you have to wait 2-3 hours for a 3-course meal. For even the laundry they keep saying that every day they receive 5000 bags of laundry, they work so hard, they have no time to rest etc. I do not understand why are they acting like this. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
A transatlantic cruise is on my husband’s bucket list and this timeframe and ports worked for us. I provid more detail below in the cabin review section as I did not realize I was to place it here. PLEASE SEE THIS SECTION FOR ... Read More
A transatlantic cruise is on my husband’s bucket list and this timeframe and ports worked for us. I provid more detail below in the cabin review section as I did not realize I was to place it here. PLEASE SEE THIS SECTION FOR SPECIFIC DETAILS Cabin - good, no lounger on balcony Food - poor Service - mixed, from poor to good Shows - excellent Ship layout - Fair, swimming pools look so odd compared to RCL. They are really unappealing to the eye. Itinerary - great ports considering a transatlantic cruise Time change - no time change for 3 days and then a change 3 days in a row. I think this could have been spread out more. Dining experience - freestyle means no reservations in the main dining rooms; this does mean you will wait from 5-30 minutes for a table. Cleanliness - good Fitness - good selection of classes; exercise area is a little too warm Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
After reading so many negative reviews, I wasn't even looking forward to our cruise. However, we couldn't cancel it, so I decided to prepare as much as possible and follow tips from previous passengers. We had never cruised on a ... Read More
After reading so many negative reviews, I wasn't even looking forward to our cruise. However, we couldn't cancel it, so I decided to prepare as much as possible and follow tips from previous passengers. We had never cruised on a ship this size before, and found that it was like visiting a big city versus a small town. We enjoyed the perks of a big city, such as entertainment, activities and good food, but also had to deal with rush hour and long lines. If you are scheduled to go on this ship, book all your shows, specialty dining and excursions as soon as you get your booking number. If you can't book online, call NCL and they will take care of it then email your confirmations. Many people were upset because they had waited till the week of the cruise, or the day of the cruise and everything was sold out. With reservations, we showed up about a half hour before showtimes and had no problem getting seats. If you do an excursion with NCL, you will get gold tickets in your stateroom which allow you to get off the ship first, no waiting for them to call a certain number. For the restaurants, we showed up at the time scheduled. BTW, you can also reserve seating in the main dining rooms. With our package, we were able to dine at 3 specialty restaurants and chose Teppanaki, Cagneys and Le Bistro. Le Bistro was by far the best. Service was outstanding and the food was delicious and beautifully presented. I wish we ate there all 3 nights! The steak at Cagneys was delicious, but service was horrible. Teppanaki was delicious and entertaining, but very loud and way too much food. Taste and Manhattan had the same menu, but we preferred the ambiance of Manhattan much more. We tried to avoid the Garden Cafe (buffet) as much as possible. It's so loud and difficult to find seating. A tip for the buffet, you can go to the back of the restaurant, there is a staircase leading down a level to La Cucina where they allow you to sit for breakfast and lunch. It's much prettier and quiet. Bring your food down there to eat in peace. Entertainment was outstanding on this ship. We went to the Cirque show the first night and were so amazed at the talent these people had. It was jaw dropping! Do not miss it. We also loved Priscilla the Desert Queen, but I wish they had chosen a musical that was more family friendly. They had several signs discouraging children under the age of 16. Burn the Floor was awesome as well. They also had a Beatles tribute in the Epic Theater which was outstanding. We went to Howl at the Moon and the Cavern Club for shows as well. Get there at least 45 minutes early and order some drinks or you'll be standing the whole time. They do not have reservations. Again, fantastic entertainment like you'd find in NYC! Although booking shore excursions through NCL allowed us to get off the ship quicker, they were not too good. We did the jet skis on the private island which was fun, but the island itself isn't worth the hassle of getting on and off the ship via tenders. In Jamaica, we did the Martha Brae bamboo rafting. While the rafting was peaceful and beautiful, what NCL doesn't advertise is that it is an hour and a half drive to get there. UGH. So that was 3 hours of our short day wasted in a bus. We also did the stingray and turtle adventure in Grand Cayman. That was a good one, but the bus that took us there smelled like cat litter and the tour guide mainly pointed out fast food restaurants as we drove. Not too educational. I would recommend booking your own shore excursions with smaller groups, but keep in mind that it takes forever to get off the ship without the gold tickets. TIP: during busy times, especially when getting on and off the ship, get on the elevator going up to go down and vice versa. If you wait for a certain direction, you'll be there a long time. When you aren't going ashore, I thought the ship had plenty of activities to offer. If you're a gambler, you'll be in heaven. The casino is huge and unlike other reviews, I didn't think the smoke smell was that bad. The pools are tiny but the waterslides are terrific. They also have a rock climbing wall, bowling alley and bungy trampoline. If you are having trouble finding a deck chair, or just want some quiet time, take the elevator from the deck 15 pool area up to deck 18. Then walk all the way to the front of the ship. They have brown wicker loungers there with thick cushions. They also have waiters and a cart of cold beers and other drinks. Speaking of drinks, I recommend ordering a double each time. It may be a long time before someone comes along for another drink order:) Another tip is to bring a Brita water bottle you can fill up in your room. They charge for water bottles, even if you have the unlimited drink package. Activities for children were plentiful. That's another bonus of this big ship. Our 16 year old son came with us and had a blast at the Teen Club. We didn't see him much except at meal times and some shows. I was worried because he was without his siblings, but he made a lot of friends at the club. He still keeps in touch with several of the kids he met on the cruise. Keeping in touch on the ship was easy with the NCL app. Be sure to download the app prior to getting on the ship! Once on board, the internet was spotty. The best part of the app was being able to text our son. You have to pay about $10/person/cruise for this feature, but it was worth it. We had unlimited texting while on the ship with him. This is only for texting and calls with other passengers on board, it is not for getting ahold of people back home. Our cruise package also came with 250 minutes of internet. This was enough for me to check my email daily. To use it, you have to login and logout each time. If you forget to logout, you could get a huge bill at the end of your vacation! All in all, it was a great cruise. However, because it's such a huge ship, way too much time was spent researching and making reservations. Also, getting on and off the ship was a nightmare. I felt like I was at Disney in those long lines. This ship is better for staying on board. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
This was our first family cruise and we had a blast. I was a little nervous choosing the EPIC due to recent negative reviews but we really enjoyed our cruise and had no complaints. Embarkation was smooth, and even though the line was ... Read More
This was our first family cruise and we had a blast. I was a little nervous choosing the EPIC due to recent negative reviews but we really enjoyed our cruise and had no complaints. Embarkation was smooth, and even though the line was long when we arrived to port around 11:15 it really didnt take all that long until we boarded the ship. Disembarkation took a little longer than I anticipated and we chose to carry our bags off. We went to the Western Caribbean and enjoyed all our port stops. It was windy the day we went to Great Stirrup Cay and tendering took long but I was happy to get on the island and we kept busy playing ping pong until our tender was called. We really enjoyed the food - we ate first night in Manhattan, 3 nights in Taste, one night at the buffet. We ate at O'Sheehans for lunch twice although the service was awful the 2nd day. We had breakfast every morning at the buffet and we always found something everyone in our family liked. We saw Burn the Floor, did the Cirque dinner one night and watched the Beatles band in the theatre one night as well - we enjoyed all 3 of these shows. We were in a family mini suite with our two teens and I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of storage in our room. While some people complain about the split bathroom etc, that configuration actually worked in our favor. Someone could get ready behind the curtain, someone could brush teeth or put contacts in while someone else was showering etc. We can't wait to cruise again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
Chose this cruise on the spur of the moment. First time with Norwegian, we have cruised Carnival and Royal Caribbean but there are only so many times you can go back to the same Caribbean islands and Norwegian had Grand Cayman and Ocho ... Read More
Chose this cruise on the spur of the moment. First time with Norwegian, we have cruised Carnival and Royal Caribbean but there are only so many times you can go back to the same Caribbean islands and Norwegian had Grand Cayman and Ocho Rios which we had not been to. I give it average 3 stars more for the layout of the staterooms and the small pools on deck 15 and H2O, on one of the sea days we could not get a sun-bed anywhere and yet towels were left on them with no one anywhere to be found and that continued all around deck 15 and 16 we could have checked up higher but we were hoping to see some of the entertainment and deck 18 is kinda blah for atmosphere, and a dip in one of the pools would have been nice. Food was good both on the buffet and the Irish bar, we did not go to the dining rooms as my husband had been unwell with some treatments he had been receiving before the cruise and dining different courses was going to be too much for him so we stuck with the buffet and the Irish bar/restaurant. Very impressed with Grand Cayman stop,Ocho Rios was just okay and Cozumel we had been to before, but we do like Cozumel. Norwegian private island did not look to have as much to do as the other cruise lines private island that was docked without having to tender in. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We wanted to try NCL for their "freestyle cruising". First the embarkation was great. It was fast and efficient. The cabin was standard size for a cruise ship (we have cruised several); however, the beds were too short. I am ... Read More
We wanted to try NCL for their "freestyle cruising". First the embarkation was great. It was fast and efficient. The cabin was standard size for a cruise ship (we have cruised several); however, the beds were too short. I am 5'3" and my feet were hanging of the bed - my husband is 6'2" need I say more. His back was bothering him by the end of the cruise. Toilet is way too small. If you close the door, you have limited space to take care of business. Cabin lighting was horrible. Husband had a hard time shaving and I had a hard time putting on makeup. No make up mirrors. Free entertainment was okay; however, you had to pay for the really good shows. Bingo was expensive compared to Carnival or Royal Caribbean. Some activities were not available as the ship was under construction getting ready to cruise to Spain. Best service received was in the gift shops (of course); otherwise, we were not impressed with the service at all. On one excursion day, we took an afternoon nap and did not awaken until around 8 p.m., I asked for cabin service and was told that they were off duty, which I would not expect from my cabin steward! Good choice of ports. Shore excursions were very nice. Prices for excursions were reasonable and as expected. Took the Dunns River Falls, was nervous at first, but the guide was very good and patient. Would definitely recommend doing that excursion. Most of the free food was not tasty to us, but edible. Debarkation was a nightmare. Elevators were shut down with no notice or as to why. Crew members had no answers as to what was going on so they could not give clear direction. They had you in a line winding around different levels on the ship to leave. We were standing for about an hour and 15 minutes dragging our carry-on's all the way. NCL is more expensive, but not better service. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
The variety of ports of call were the mail reason we selected this cruise. I feel that most of the entertainment was geared to adults, so there was not much evening entertainment that I felt comfortable taking my 12 year old to. We were ... Read More
The variety of ports of call were the mail reason we selected this cruise. I feel that most of the entertainment was geared to adults, so there was not much evening entertainment that I felt comfortable taking my 12 year old to. We were pleased with the staff and the crew. The cabin was comfortable and we were not put-off with the layout, as several other guests commented about. The dining was very good (we used the main dining rooms). I was very disappointed that they chose to close one of the 2 pools (for maintenance? cleaning?) on our last day at sea? People were packed into the one small pool. Also, the water features at the pools (the things that spray water when you walk under them) did not work for the entire trip. The excursions that we chose were fun, interesting, and a good value. In total, we had a very good trip. Read Less
Norwegian Epic Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 5.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 5.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 3.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 4.0 0.0

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