2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Copenhagen, Norwegian fjords, Iceland's Golden Circle, Scotland...what a cruise this was to be. And at a bargain price, DW and I had to sign on. We arrived in Copenhagen three days early and had a wonderful time in this beautiful ... Read More
Copenhagen, Norwegian fjords, Iceland's Golden Circle, Scotland...what a cruise this was to be. And at a bargain price, DW and I had to sign on. We arrived in Copenhagen three days early and had a wonderful time in this beautiful city. The Little Mermaid, Tivoli, Nyhavn, down the list. Great weather. A fine time was had. The Getaway was docked at Oceankaj, an easy public bus ride from our Nybro neighborhood hotel. (The bus service is available every day. Special express buses are available when ships are in town. Also, the Hop-on/off buses generally offer rides out, but check with them first to make sure.) Embarkation was a snap around noon, with a 4:00 PM departure set. Got a table in the Garden Cafe and soon found our cabin opened. Our inside cabin was very small and offered no drawers for clothes. The closet had very narrow side shelves, not really suitable for clothes. So, we lived out of our luggage for the duration. When four o'clock rolled around, we were going nowhere...logistical issues. We finally set off around 8. Problem was, the delay caused us to skip the first port of call, Haugesund, Norway. OK, the ship credited each room for $50 in compensation. These things happen. The sea day uncovered a problem with the Getaway that would haunt for the entire trip: It was cool (maybe 50F) and gray, with winds, keeping all but the most hardy inside. Getaway is a nice ship for warm weather cruising, but in the cold people cannot comfortably use the outside decks, hence are reduced to finding refuge inside...and the ship is not designed for that. In the context for 4000 passengers, there were too few activities to distribute people throughout the ship, so the masses were in the Garden Cafe or the Pub/Atrium areas. ...and there just isn't sufficient accommodating space for that. If you found a place to sit, you grabbed and held it. Our next stop was Flam, Norway, approached up a long, narrow fjord. Beautiful - be outside for the very best views. The various scenic delights kept one's head on a swivel. The town itself is nothing special, mainly a souvenir stop. Take the train up into the hills and enjoy more scenic excitement. Beware, tickets can be hard to come by. We were lucky as the narby tourist info office had self-service ticket kiosks and tickets available for the next train - leaving in a few minutes. The complicating factor was that the tickets are sent via e-mail. Take a picture of the order and receipt screens, to show the conductor in case your tickets fail to arrive. Mine finally arrived two days AFTER our stop. Without those pictures... Bergen is a cute small city. Take the funicular to the top of the hill. Take your pictures. Pet the goats. Then come back down and wander. It's very walkable, except to/from the dock. Pick up some whale meat sausage...or moose...or reindeer. Enjoyable place. Geiranger is another scenic wonder. Take the bus to the top and, again, get your pictures. Walk down from the museum along the raging stream and waterfalls. Beautiful. It was a short tender ride here. As at Flam, the scenery is the draw - a worthwhile trip again up a beautiful fjord. An at sea day was next, then Akureyri, Iceland. Nice small city. Easy walk to all the sights downtown. All of these places mentioned offer a hop-on/off bus service, as well as public transit buses. Reykjavik was next. There is ample opportunity to book a tour at the port tourist info office. The parking lot was full of buses and vans. Prices were reasonable. We independently did the Golden Circle tour, with a stop at "Secret Lagoon". We enjoyed a fine day. (If you go to Secret Lagoon, get the fish and chips there. Excellent!) Then another sea day to Invergordon, Scotland. The ship skipped the port due to weather issues. We were to dock there, and the port looked small. I'm guessing the ship was too big to enter port under the circumstances, which did not appear all that bad. As this was an act of God, no compensation was offered. Just another day of trying to claim some space. Edinburgh, Scotland, was our last port. The ship carries about 4000 passengers. Edinburgh is a tender port. Getaway took up a position fairly far from the harbour and tender dock. (About 60 minutes round trip.) We arrived early, with the first tender going off about 90 minutes earlier than originally scheduled. The problem was that there were no adjustments to ensure efficient use of the early tenders, and they were enforcing the tender group numbers issued, allowing group one to jump in at any time. The ship's excursion customers waited until time to catch their excursions...and this built a pig passing through the tender snake that was never fully digested. To make the story short, the last tender was scheduled to leave the harbour at 7:00 PM. By 5:30 PM the wharf looked like the Dunkirk evacuation. There were several hundred, if not over a thousand wrapped around the wharf and the little shopping area waiting for a ride back, with more coming. And then it began to rain. I digress at this point. There are behavioral differences that relate to culture. Some cultures do things like stand in line, while others prefer unruly mob scenes. When the two mix, it can get ugly. The ugly came when a large number of the mob culture showed up and rushed the orderly line, causing the line-standers to react similarly. It was like the last lifeboat was leaving! Port security just stood powerless to restore order. Once a line was reformed, people roamed around looking for their lost relatives, like a search for survivors. This was not the first, nor only such display of cultural difference on this voyage. Had it not been for the extended time in port there, the passenger load could not have been accommodated at all. Anyone with pad and pencil could have figured this out in two minutes. Tendering couldn't work in Edinburgh without the addition of larger, shore contracted boats, which eventually happened, passengers jammed from bow to stern to alleviate the shore stress. The ship finally got off well after 8. The public toilets had problems with auto flush not working well in several. They were a constant mess outside popular venues, such as the Garden Cafe. A large part was the apparent misuse by a certain segment of the passenger load, particularly ladies, who come from places where squatting is preferable to sitting on a toilet. It creates a mess that is compounded by those who don't know that used toilet paper can be flushed, not tossed into the receptacle provided for sanitary products. There is some education that needs to be done for these customers, or NCL can perhaps reconfigure toilets for squatters to use. Yeah, it was gross. Another problem was that a certain segment of customers enjoys drinking plain hot water in large quantities. In the Garden Cafe these customers would form a phalanx around hot water taps on coffee dispensers to fill bottles that held up to two liters, usually filling them by hand using coffee cups, and spilling water all over, besides denying access to coffee and tea drinkers at meal times. If possible, they inserted the dispenser into their bottles. Oddly, there is a sign in both English and German about the proper use of these dispensers, but none in the language of the mass of abusers. Worse, NCL personnel stood by the dispensers to assist the abusers, while others with mops tried to keep the flood from spreading. Certainly there must be a language-proficient officer and some markers with which to create temporary signs. Not to be outdone were others doing the same in the cold water line. Fill the things in your cabins, please. Same water. Of course, if NCL wasn't charging $5.50 for a bottle of H2O... There was an apparent cultural difference between passengers regarding the consumption of food. I have never before witnessed anyone eat a hard boiled egg and a bowl of oatmeal simultaneously, with the consumer putting the egg in mouth, taking a small bite, and spitting the whole egg back into the oatmeal to repeat. The exhibition was something to behold, by my standards. And then there was the sucking yolks off sunny-side fried eggs held to the mouth with one's fork. You had to be there! These were not isolated instances, either. A certain segment of the passengers had no understanding of queuing and waiting for one's turn. Didn't matter what was at the end of the line, they were to be first and grab the most. Ever see one person grab over a dozen bananas from the bowl at breakfast? I did. Grapefruit, oranges and other citrus was similarly popular. Much to be stuffed into a backpack. In the theatre there was a regular rush to skip tender queues. In at least one instance, the assistant cruise director implored someone who spoke their language to explain the process to the miscreants. By the end of the cruise there were many, including our party, that had had enough of the struggle and mess created by cultural difference and clashing behavioral norms. NCL had better take a hard look at this and fix things, either by modifying processes, such as setting aside hot water dispensers for bottles outside the beverage areas, or somehow segregating access. It's a shame, but a real fact that will be considered the next time we are shopping for a cruise. Oddly, there was not one sign in their language posted anywhere on ship - NONE! A third of the passengers, many of whom could speak no english, was without ship direction. This certainly needs to be rectified, as well as having announcements made in their language. We missed two ports. One due to a logistical issue (receiving a $50 credit), the other due to sea conditions. Two sea days with essentially nothing to do in the vacuum. Speaking of ports, there was literally zero port info passed to the passengers, the exception being Edinburgh, which sent out tourist reps with materials on the day of our visit. The port talks provided no practical info, mostly overly-detailed historical context. This was such a nice itinerary. It was not well served by the ship, many of its passengers, and some misplanning. NCL can do much better, starting with smaller vessels and a little imagination. The North Atlantic and Baltic are not the Caribbean. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
I really thought that the Carnival cruise taken on spring break years ago was the worst cruise ever, but this Norwegian ship certainly competes with that trip. First , the GOOD things; Wait staff at the restaurants, bars was ... Read More
I really thought that the Carnival cruise taken on spring break years ago was the worst cruise ever, but this Norwegian ship certainly competes with that trip. First , the GOOD things; Wait staff at the restaurants, bars was fantastic. Friendly, kind, attentive, remember your name and genuinely want you to have a pleasant experience. Sid Norman's House band was absolutely the best entertainment on the boat. Should be on the big stage. Specialty Dining food and service was Excellent, at a cost of course Agenda would have been among the best except they skipped two Ports (Norway and Scotland) giving us 5 days at sea instead of 3 to spend more $$$ on the ship (more on that) Now, the BAD; -No water to drink unless you PAY - everywhere -Entertainment was horrible, worst of any of our 8 cruises and worst attended as a result with 4000 passengers. Most music around the ship was very loud. Many times could not carry on a conversation at the table -TV movies were over 50% childrens movies for a crowd averging 62 years old. Less than 100 young people out of almost 4000 because of the itinerary. Very little news -Internet worked about 50% of the time. likely because of locations, but even when working, often took over 7 minutes to just open a website -In spite of the fabulous wait staff, food in the main dining rooms was average at best, Buffet was horrible. Often cold and wait times at Complimenterary Dining of sometimes 45 minutes for food, except dinner. -Guest Services was non exinstant. Never answered the phone with over a dozen trys, seldom did not provide any solutions when visited. -Never provided any maps, information about ports, except if you booked their overpriced Extortions (excursions) thru the ship. -NCL skipped 2 ports because of poor management. Left home port (Copenhagen) 5 hours late because of poor loading/time management and skipped the first port. $50/cabin credit was worse than spitting in my face. Port in Scotland was aborted because of high winds up to 50 MPH, except that outside and marine weather report said winds were 12-17 knots. Suspect poor docking skills or engine issues as diesel smell existed on decks 6-8 often. No Credit given. -Many passengers shared some or all of these issues. Management of this boat is poor at best. Substantial improvement is needed at most levels. -Itinerary WAS great before changes, Norway, Iceland, and Scotland were fabulous. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
What an absolute mess of an entire trip. Norwegian really really dropped the ball on this one. This was our 2nd time on that boat and the second trip was nothing like the 1st. The boat was right off of dry dock, all new staff, no one ... Read More
What an absolute mess of an entire trip. Norwegian really really dropped the ball on this one. This was our 2nd time on that boat and the second trip was nothing like the 1st. The boat was right off of dry dock, all new staff, no one knew what they were doing, never even met our room steward. No customer service to call, lines were hours long to get anything answered. Syd Norman nice addition with syd Norman band very entertaining. Burn the floor and million dollar quartet nice entertainment Dueling piano entertaining at first but played same songs over again No smoking in casino should be implemented. Smoke permeates bistro, makes whole 6th floor unusable Food in buffet was commonly cold, chicken over cooked. Indian food was not as wonderful as it was on the bliss. Specialty restaurants were exceptional - Brazilian, steak, Italian, raw bar. Missed 2 ports, one due to leaving 4hrs late and the other from what we hear was due to Norwegian passing it off as weather but it wasn't. The tendering was an absolute nightmare. Took hours to get off. Some ports you'd literally have 2hrs before having to come back and stand in another line for 90 mins to get a tender. HOT MESS. We are likely done with NCL after this one. First trip on Getaway in the Baltics was great, Bliss thru the Canal was wonderful, this was all unacceptable and they offered no refund for missed ports nor compensation for missed tours not refunded on the missed ports. Bad. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
The writing was on the wall with this cruise right from the get-go. We were 5 hours late leaving Copenhagen bound for Haugesund, Norway. Apparently at some point after we set sail, the captain decided that there was no point in going, so ... Read More
The writing was on the wall with this cruise right from the get-go. We were 5 hours late leaving Copenhagen bound for Haugesund, Norway. Apparently at some point after we set sail, the captain decided that there was no point in going, so we missed that port all together. (We heard that some passengers were late into Copenhagen and went directly to Haugesund to pick up the ship which never arrived there!!!) The Getaway had just come out of dry dock so the carpets were new, mattresses were nice and new. The face lift was appreciated. This is a sister ship to the Breakaway that I cruised on in October on a TA. Same problems exist on both ships. They are not designed for cold weather cruising with 4,000 passengers. There are absolutely no quiet places on this ship. It is noisy ALL THE TIME. Functions that should have been in the theatre took place in the atrium which is 2 stories of loud noise, music and yelling. You literally had to shout to someone sitting at your table in O'Sheehans and still could not be heard. Bad design all round. Next big disappointment was the tendering system NCL used in Geiranger. We had a private tour booked and PAID FOR. It took us 2 1/2 hours to disembark and missed our tour. First and foremost, if we had known ahead of time that this was a tender port, we could have adjusted our tour times. NCL should communicate which ports are tender and which are docking. Tenders were also used in New Haven (Edinburgh) and again, very poorly executed. In fact, we were hours late in leaving due to getting passengers back on board who had been waiting in line for over 2 hours. Just prior to arriving in Invergordon, the captain advised that we would be missing that port as well due to high winds. That made 2 ports missed out of our itinerary. The entertainment of Burn the Floor and Million Dollar Quartet were okay, but for 14 days on board, I expected more. The theatre doesn't hold anywhere near the number of seats to allow all passengers to enjoy the show. Once again, very poor design. Food was slightly better than the Breakaway although NCL would do well to get the food to the table while it is still hot. The kitchen must be a distance from the restaurants as it always arrived only warm at best. Coffee was good some days and horrible others. Not sure what that was all about. We had a specialty restaurant package and proved to be a good decision. Teppanyaki was good and entertaining. Cagney's was excellent and well worth it. La Cuccina was also better than the included restaurants. The large Tropicana restaurant was so noisy, it was disturbing. Only went once. Savor and Taste were okay and service was very spotty. Not sure what is going on with NCL wait staff. It seemed like there was alot of training going on. So many bosses lurking around doing nothing. The Getaway like the Breakaway, tried to get every penny they could out of you. Bingo games would run you $50 USD for 3 games. Doing the math, NCL kept the majority of the money spent on cards. NOTHING, absolutely NOTHING is free with NCL. They advertise a ''free'' beverage package with some bookings, yet charge you $200 to cover gratuities. Free should mean free. There were so many people I spoke to that said, this was their first NCL cruise and their last. NCL had better improve or they will eventually run out of passengers. I can say this will be my last NCL cruise. Two were more than enough. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
This is a repositioning itinerary, with a unique combination of Norway and Iceland. The detour via Scotland was something I was less interested in, especially Inverness. The Getaway just came out of a 2-week upgrade in the dry dock, and ... Read More
This is a repositioning itinerary, with a unique combination of Norway and Iceland. The detour via Scotland was something I was less interested in, especially Inverness. The Getaway just came out of a 2-week upgrade in the dry dock, and there was still a new-carpet smell. The trip started off badly - due to some vague explanation of delayed supplies, we left Copenhagen 5 hours late, and because this time could not be made up we had a day at sea the next day rather than the planned first stop at Haugesund, Norway. There is no excuse for this bad planning, and the only compensation we got was $50 per cabin!!! On the way back, there was another unplanned day at sea - we made it almost to Inverness, but then the captain made a U-turn because he felt the wind was too strong for the narrow strait. In return he promised an early arrival in Edinburgh, but it too was a disaster - the ship anchored way out from port and because there were few tenders available there was a minimum of 2 hours wait to get to and from shore. An additional minor gripe - the vertical water slides were broken the whole trip. Food and entertainment were fine. Because of the cold weather the outdoor space was hardly used, making for crowded conditions indoor, esp. the atrium. The wait times at the sit-down restaurants were quite long - often 40 minutes to be seated, and 2 hours from ordering to desert. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
we choose this cruise because of its places of visit and the right time for us. The ship was on its first cruise after refurnish and renew all its carpets. The system in this ship, does not give the possibility of choosing a fix time ... Read More
we choose this cruise because of its places of visit and the right time for us. The ship was on its first cruise after refurnish and renew all its carpets. The system in this ship, does not give the possibility of choosing a fix time and fix table at the restaurants, which cause standing on lines whenever approach a restaurant. We had 2 cancellations of shore embrocation's during the cruise, which is 25% of the total. They just announced it very short time before the ship should arrive to he port. It is very annoying and loosing money for people who had pay for private turs. they do not compensate for it ! The food: very common and standard with same food each day. After a week many items were not available at all !\ The cabin we had was a mini suite with balcony. the size of it was disappointing. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
I wanted to visit the Azores and try a transatlantic cruise for the first time. Unfortunately a week before the cruise NCL decided to shorten our 12 day to a 10 day and eliminated 50% of our ports, I never saw the Azores. They canceled ... Read More
I wanted to visit the Azores and try a transatlantic cruise for the first time. Unfortunately a week before the cruise NCL decided to shorten our 12 day to a 10 day and eliminated 50% of our ports, I never saw the Azores. They canceled Portland England as well which we could have dealt with. They did all this to displace their guests in order to put the Getaway to dry dock earlier than anticipated. Saw the dry dock results, looks like Starbucks was added onboard and new furniture. I'm not sure why that was necessary to ruin our vacation to complete this upgrade earlier for NCL. The ship itself was dirty, service slow and passengers mostly upset. We made the best of the situation making some great people but still very disappointed with NCL's decision. Also the 25% credit towards a future cruise was what you had paid for the room charges only on the Getaway? Seemed like yet another way to disappoint us. Carnival has given us 25% off before, due to a hurricane cancellation and it was a % off the future cruise price itself. Was definitely able to see the NCL customer service difference, they don't seem to have any. The ship was dirty, public bathrooms smelt so bad they propped the doors open. Glassware was dirty, received a lot of drinks with a side of lipstick. The entertainment and enrichment activities were lacking. Either sold out so you couldn't attend, or completely pointless like Burn the Floor. Interpretive dance is meant to tell a story, no one seems to know what that was. The rock climbing, ropes course and water slides were closed most of the trip. Not enough shore excursions for the passengers after the last minute change in itinerary. The one we did manage to book, everyone was sick from the cruise. There was some respiratory bug that went around. Just overall a bad cruise experience, I've been on a lot of cruises and I have never experienced anything like this. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We had booked this cruise two months before the date and were looking forward to the 12-day transatlantic itinerary with a more southerly route from NYC to Ponta Delgada, Azores. I had previously been on the Getaway on its inaugural season ... Read More
We had booked this cruise two months before the date and were looking forward to the 12-day transatlantic itinerary with a more southerly route from NYC to Ponta Delgada, Azores. I had previously been on the Getaway on its inaugural season in the Caribbean out of Miami so was looking forward to being a returning guest. One week before our departure, NCL decided to let the passengers know that the 12 day itinerary had been cut to a 10 day and two ports (Le Havre and Zeebrugge) would be dropped. The only compensation would be a limited amount for airfare changes and 25% off the cruise fare. After serious backlash by passengers the compensation was increased, however just a few days before the cruise the itinerary was changed again, this time adding the previously dropped ports and dropping Portland UK (who cares) and Ponta Delgada, which of course ended any chance of warm weather on the crossing. These last minute changes that NCL claimed were due to 'circumstances beyond their control' caused a lot of grief and stress for us on what was supposed to be a relaxing vacation. We had negative feelings about our cruise before it even began and were hoping the staff would go above and beyond to make up for the disappointing changes. This however did not take place and the cruise itself was just as bad as the initial issues. Throughout the cruise there were long waits (20-40 mins) just to get into the complimentary dining venues. I had been on the Escape in December for Christmas with an above capacity 5000+ passengers and never waited more than 5 minutes yet on this under capacity transatlantic cruise we had to wait 40 minutes just to get into O'Sheehans, unacceptable! I have done 5 NCL Cruises and can tell you the service in the speciality restaurants on the Getaway was not on par with NCL standards. We asked for water refills multiple times and waited 5-10 minutes. Long waits between all courses. Our visit to Cagneys was over 2,5hours and this was not by our choice and by 2.5 hours our order for dessert was still not taken and we just gave up and left. We asked for extra bread in Le Bistro and this was forgotten and had a bottle of wine and no one offered to refill our glasses, we had to reach over and refill our glasses by ourselves, embarrassing and unacceptable when you are paying a hefty extra sum!!! The buffet was a total zoo which surprised me since there were barely any kids on this itinerary. Garbage food in the buffet, we went twice and gave up. The watermelon would always run out. The entertainment on board was not adequate for a transatlantic itinerary. There was barely any activities between 10am and 7pm. We enjoyed the guest lecturer at 9:30am but wish there would have been another enrichment activity in the early afternoon. Our favourite entertainment activities were the ABBA and Adele Tributes. In the theatre we went to Matt Johnson Magician Show which we enjoyed. We did not attend any other shows but heard they were all excellent. Entertainment in the night was fine, but daytime activities were scant, unacceptable for a cold weather cruise where everyone is inside and bored. If you wanted to do rock climbing and ropes course there were no waits, we did both. The service at the bars was the one bright spot for service on this cruise, and we frequented MIXX between Taste and Savour. We booked the D-Day landings excursion for Le Havre. Meeting time was 7:30am and we did not get off the ship until 8:45 ugh. Disembarkation was very disorganized on both port days. The tour buses were not ready for us when we arrived Sunday Morning in Le Havre, because of the delay, we missed an hour of our excursion which was the rushed. 20 minutes at the US Cemetery in Omaha Beach is not enough!! We felt ripped off on this excursion and would not recommend. D-Day beaches require multiple days to be properly experienced. We did however enjoy our Flanders Fields excursion in Zeebrugge. It was much more organized. Always long waits at Guest Services and Shore EX, but was mostly due to butchered itinerary. Overall we enjoyed our vacation albeit not due to this ship! A cruise is a cruise, we still had unlimited food, booze and thermal suite access so we cannot say it was a terrible time, however this cruise did not meet the previous standards I experienced with NCL and the unprofessionalism regarding last minute changes ruined our perception of the cruise line. We felt that the crew and staff just wanted to get us off the ship and get into dry dock. When we docked in Southhampton, crews were immediately on board and began work in front of us. We were to disembark at 12pm, and by 11am the buffet and all bars were closed shut. When I asked a crew member in the Garden Cafe where I could get drinking water she replied with an indifferent "I don't know, we're closed" we could not even get a glass of water to take with medications, How is that allowed? They just wanted us off the ship. We got that vibe throughout the cruise. In the minds of NCL it was just a repositioning of the ship, not a vacation of a lifetime for the guests. Avoid this ship! I enjoyed the Bliss and Escape, large ships but still had good service. This cruise however left us with a bitter taste of NCL and we will not be eager to cruise with them again. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
This was our 12th NCL cruise and we've always been pleased but this transatlantic cruise going to Europe was not good. It started to go bad when NCL cut the cruise down from 12 days 10 days a week before the cruise (cutting out two ... Read More
This was our 12th NCL cruise and we've always been pleased but this transatlantic cruise going to Europe was not good. It started to go bad when NCL cut the cruise down from 12 days 10 days a week before the cruise (cutting out two of the four ports). We had to scramble to change our other travel arrangements. The $300 per person reimbursement that they offered is not going to cover what it costs us to change our flights to Paris, two extra hotel days in Paris and the transfer to Heathrow. We will have to use some of the 25% refund that they are supposed to be giving to help defray the costs. Dining was a problem for breakfast and lunch for the first 2-3 days. There were huge lines for the two smaller dining rooms Savor and Taste (largest dining room not open for breakfast or lunch). I've never seen it like that before. I attribute that to a very high number of Latitudes members - something like 435 Latitudes Platinum and Platinum Plus with a huge number of Gold and Silver. The passengers were also an older crowd. With the Latitudes members and the age of passengers, I think that a lot people wanted to be waited on instead of having to go to the buffet. To make matters worse. The daily sheet only listed Savor open for breakfast and lunch, which was not actually the case. Don't know if they were trying to make a lot of people think that they had to go to the buffet. We discovered after a couple of days that Taste was also open and we got in without much trouble. As far as the quality of the food goes, the food in the dining rooms for dinner seem to have improved from our last cruise and we were very satisfied. The food in the buffet continues to decline in quality and selection. The desserts are especially bad with the the cake toppings made with chemical-laden ingredients. The lunch menu in the dining rooms need to have more variation. As always with us, we had one meal at Le Bistro and it was wonderful as usual. We also had one at Moderno. The Moderno salad bar is fabulous but their meat is not of good quality. They also slice it wrongly (with the grain and not against as one needs to do with less tender cuts). The meal for the Cirque show was great (surf and turf). For the first time in our 12 NCL cruises, our cabin attendant was not very good. In fact he was lazy. We had a difficult time getting clean glassware and didn't clean the bathroom sink very well. Disembarkation was terrible - worst of our 12 cruises and it could have been prevented. There was a disembarkation schedule with tags for the luggage color-coded for the time but it wasn't enforced. The problem was that tags are not given for carry-on luggage, which is what people have with them when they are disembarking so there was no way for the staff to tell if people were disembarking at the proper time. It was a free-for-all with terrible lines. I know that some people missed their bus for a London excursion. Also, there was not supposed to be people going through the disembarkation/customs process with all their luggage and that caused a bigger mess. I heard many people say that they wouldn't take another NCL cruise. I would not recommend doing an Europe bound transatlantic cruise. It was way too difficult to adjust to 6 nightly time changes losing an ho fqur each time. It's way easier for me to doing it all at once. We were constantly exhausted. We've gone on a transatlantic cruise in the other direction and it was fine. Since we're Latitudes Platinum and get quite a few perks, we'll stay with NCL but if this had been our first cruise with them, we'd never sail with them again. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
"We just completed a transatlantic trip on the Norwegian Getaway. A 12 day trip with intended stops in the Azores, Portland UK, Le Havre, Brugge and Southampton became a 10 day trip when the cruise company decided to cut it short. ... Read More
"We just completed a transatlantic trip on the Norwegian Getaway. A 12 day trip with intended stops in the Azores, Portland UK, Le Havre, Brugge and Southampton became a 10 day trip when the cruise company decided to cut it short. They changed ports dropping the French and Brussles area only to change again dropping the Azores and Portland. Having done that and accepted the changes, they provide a 25% discount on the trip and some refund on travel plan changes. Once the drama was over, (for us it was compounded by the fact that we were originally on the Oasis of the Seas which had an accident in dry-dock eliminating our trip), things went very well. While North Atlantic is notoriously unpredictable in Spring, it provided us with cold and rain but very smooth sailing. Because we were able to secure a spa suit and were in The Haven, a smaller area of the ship with a private dining and lounge area, we truly enjoyed the passage. The ship had great activities and good food. We enjoyed it thoroughly. However, I still wonder how Norwegian was unaware until the last minute that the long scheduled passage was to be cut 2 days short for a refitting in dry dock." Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
I chose this cruise to spend 12 days on vacation. It was my second NCL transatlantic experience and I had a great time on the first. I expected four nice ports and lots of relaxing, fun days at sea. A week before we sailed we were ... Read More
I chose this cruise to spend 12 days on vacation. It was my second NCL transatlantic experience and I had a great time on the first. I expected four nice ports and lots of relaxing, fun days at sea. A week before we sailed we were informed that we were cut to ten days, with two marginal at best ports. After much noise we got two better ports back, but the chaos caused by the changes were not worth the trouble. The changes caused a massive amount of upheaval and required multiple visits to the guest services and shore excursions desks to try to correct overcharges, cancelled excursions, etc. After being reassured for four days that I was on the list for a shore excursion I had booked and paid for, when tickets were issued to others I was told I had in fact not made the list and was out of luck. Not even an apology. There were not enough excursions for the number of passengers and the port changes were not planned for or handled well. I have a mobility issue that prevents long walks, multiple stairs, etc, but I do not need a wheelchair or other assistive device. There were minimal excursions planned at "Level 1" and the online sales descriptions were not complete. On the ship I was told I could not participate in the other two I had booked that I had been rebooked for because of the physical requirements. The only excuse given was "it's Europe". Again, not even "sorry". I am still waiting for refunds for the shore excursions that were taken away. We were redirected to a more northern shipping lane, resulting in it being too cold to spend any time outside. Almost 4000 people were crammed into the indoor spaces, resulting in MANY passengers coughing and reporting respiratory infections. One major annoyance was that from what some passengers reported, a very large block of rooms was sold at a low price to a large group of rude, unpleasant people. This group mostly pretended not to speak English as the pushed through lines and led their friends past people who'd been waiting patiently. They overwhelmed public spaces and the Garden Cafe, taking up full tables of seating all day, refusing to share, pushing through lines and hoarding food. They took over spaces with events scheduled for their own purposes and ignored requests to allow the events to take place. I personally witnessed this at least twice. The staff worked hard to deal with the changes and angry guests. There were many clogged toilets, many soap dispensers not working in public bathrooms. Twice I was served drinks in glasses with lipstick on them. Not mine! Cleanliness was next to impossible apparently. This could account for the many illnesses onboard. It was not all bad. My cabin and steward were wonderful, most of the specialty restaurants had good service and decent food. The O'Sheehan's staff did a wonderful job at breakfast no matter how large the crowd. Million Dollar Quartet was an exceptionally good show. Cirque Dreams and Steam was very entertaining. Burn the Floor was good but is getting a bit tired. The entertainment in the Atrium ranged from really good (music in the evenings) to horribly lame. The daytime events were always at volume that was much too high for the setting. The afternoon movies were too loud to even allow sitting in the general area. I have hearing issues from years of rock concerts and it was still too loud for me! I am not ready to give up on NCL yet, but I may not cruise out of NYC again if the partial charter nightmare continues. I hope they made enough money from the group to make up from the lost business from the people who's vacations were ruined by the constant stress of dealing with pushing, shoving and general rudeness. Lack of cleanliness is inexcusable when so many people are packing indoors in a relatively small space. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Many have already commented on the horrendous way that NCL waited to the last minute to announce a change in itinerary, and a bungled effort to respond to initial complaints. None of these comments is exaggerated, and it is what it is. ... Read More
Many have already commented on the horrendous way that NCL waited to the last minute to announce a change in itinerary, and a bungled effort to respond to initial complaints. None of these comments is exaggerated, and it is what it is. However, I'd like to say (even though I don't agree with how they handled my compensation (or lack of it), they at least put the two ports I went for (Belgium and Le Havre) back on the itinerary and from their point of view, 25% return of cabin fee, up to $300 each of hotel/transport expenses, and something off the next cruise was reasonable. We need to be honest and remember this is not a luxury line, and one of the draws for us is the initial (relatively) low cost of booking. That said, let me turn to the cruise itself. We are long time cruisers with 20 NCL cruises (going back to the Norway) and many others on many other lines, and at many price points, hence we've seen good, and bad. This one (one the ship) isn't high on the list, but somewhat typical of what NCL is becoming....they've given up the pretense of customer service for a much more functional service approach of providing "adequate". Now I note they are also trying to raise prices, so they apparently think many of us will take anything.....I hear some other lines (i.e. MSC) are matching status on their ships, so NCL may be going down a slippery slope. Boarding in New York was relatively normal for NY, and went reasonably well. The initial reaction to the ship was that it was big, somewhat in need of refurbishing (went to drydock so hopefully that will change) with indifferent, going through the motions staff. Food offerings in specialty restaurants (we went to Ocean Blue twice, Cucina twice, and Cagneys three times were inconsistent with service no better than the regular dining rooms. In Cagneys, had Filet Mignon twice - once wonderful and once tough as the poorest choice....pork chop was nothing special. The others were not memorable. Highlight of food experiences were for lunch in OSheehans, so average is what we found. Cabin service was average, not bad. Entertainment was actually better than the NCL standard, though the cruise director (as many of them) was too "hyped" for us. The terrible weather (sweater all the time) forced everybody to congregate inside, so it was more crowded than normal (big ships always more 'crowded feeling) but the need of many to pursue complaints had lines at Customer Service 15+ people long at most times. I stood in the onboard credit line to change money to British Pounds for the end of the trip (our disembarkation point) and after getting to the front was told "we didn't get any this trip!!!" Moreover was assured (2 different times) that the terminal would have exchange/atm which of course proved untrue.....just typical of new tell them whatever to get rid of them service approach!!!! Am I bitter....perhaps a little because the NCL of a few years ago had enthusiastic staff and much better service and we spent almost 200 days sailing with NCL.....sad to see it become euivalent to the two day excursion boats out of Florida for gambling. I understand cost cutting....just go not expecting a lot, and you will be pleased. Still a cheap way to travel the world!! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
This experience with Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) was so bad, I'd already filed a fraud claim with my state attorney general before I left. Let's do this first, though. The cruise itself was good. The on-board staff were, ... Read More
This experience with Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) was so bad, I'd already filed a fraud claim with my state attorney general before I left. Let's do this first, though. The cruise itself was good. The on-board staff were, for the most part, great. The Vibe Beach club remains the best deal and investment at sea, bar none. And the meals and entertainment were solid, even occasionally outstanding. If that was it, I'd have given this cruise four out of five marks. But that isn't it. The cruise I bought was to depart New York City for a 12 day, transatlantic trip with stops in the Azores, Western England, Belgium, France and finally in Southampton (London). Then six days before departure, NCL says they've decided to skip half the stops, canceling Belgium and France entirely AND arriving in London two days earlier, for which I've made no plans, no hotel, no activities, nothing. To compensate, NCL offers a 25% refund and a reimbursement of up to $300 per person for expenses. But if you've ever tried to book a hotel in London two weeks out, you know $300 is a joke. Not to mention the tours I had to cancel, the tickets I have to eat and so on and so on. By the way, no refunds. NCL says it was past the refund window. So I can blow 75% of my vacation and stay home or go on a cruise that is not the one I booked. It's shorter and does not go where I wanted to go. So, naturally, I am outraged. But I make the most of it, I book new activities, train tickets for a day in Paris, and get a hotel in London for the two days I'm there unexpectedly, which is WAY more than $300. And I cancel the stuff in Belgium and France and eat that cost. Then, two days before we go, I happen to notice on my trip summary page a whole new itinerary. This one cancels western England, where I'd already booked a tour to Stonehenge and Salisbury and skips the Azores where, likewise, I'd booked tours. And this new schedule puts back France and Belgium, but on new days so my original plans, now canceled, cannot be reinstated. I have to book a third set of tours, out of pocket. And here's the kicker, you won't believe this. The reason for the yo-yo about where we're going and the shorter cruise is that they (NCL) have decided to get the ship (The Breakaway) into dry dock two days early to start a long-planned refurbishment. Not weather, not emergency, not safety - they wanted to get started early on renovations. Since I'm pretty sure you don't just show up at dry dock with a 4,000 passenger cruise liner, I'm pretty sure someone knew this was possible a long, long time ago. Which means NCL sold me a cruse they knew they likely would not deliver. Like months ago. Someone figured it was cheaper for them to jerk me around and issue a 25% refund with no possibility of cancellations and start refurbishment early. Oh and thanks for letting me know I'll be the last person to sail on this ship before you make it better. That's nice. There were literally people from the Miami corporate office on the ship walking around in front of guests pointing out all the old, outdated stuff they were about to fix for the next cruise. Classy. But I digress. In addition to the 25% refund, NCL also wrote, "...as a genuine gesture of concern, we are extending an additional 25% future cruise credit which may be used towards any upcoming sailing with us." So even if you'd consider setting foot on an NCL cruise ever again, even that 25% "future cruise credit" isn't. What they said was clear, what they actually mean (and didn't tell anyone until we were on board) is that they will apply the amount of the 25% refund for THIS CRUISE to a future one. Not 25% off, but the value of the existing 25% refund. So if you paid $2,000 for this cruise, and they reimburse you $500, you get a $500 credit for a future cruise, not 25% off. How cheap can you possibly be? Oh, and that 25% refund - just the fare. Not taxes, not fees. So if you paid $2,000, for example, your refund is actually like $300. Frankly, I'm beyond angry, I feel defrauded. Outright mislead and stolen from. This is now a sham wrapped snugly in a farce. And here's why - this is like that scene in Vacation where Clark Griswald is about to leave for vacation and goes to get the new car he ordered. When he arrives, he is given a completely different car than than the one he ordered. Outraged, he tries to leave to find out the dealer has already crushed his trade-in and he has no choice - take the substitute car he does not want or cancel vacation. By not allow refunds for cancellation, that's exactly what NCL did. I ordered a red convertible. A week before delivery, they tell me I'm getting a blue mini-van and I cannot cancel the deal. It's not even the blue mini-van or nothing, it's the blue mini-van period. And since the blue mini-van of the ten day cruise costs less than the red convertible of the 12-day cruise to the Azores that I bought, NCL gets zero credit for the 25% refund. In fact, it's not a refund. The car/cruise they actually gave me costs less. They sold me x, delivered me y, in a contract they said I could not cancel. That they adjusted the price to reflect only y and called it a refund is not good business, it's dishonesty. "Hey, good news. I'm only charging you the thing you did not want. I'm great, right?" And I'm not the only one who's angry. Everyone I spoke with on the ship was simmering. It's clear here that NCL put their greed of an early dry dock above keeping faith with their customers. That's too bad. They could have at least offered a cancellation refund when they trashed half the ports. But they didn't. Refused to. It's sad because vacations matter, people save and spend on them. They are spiritually important. That is, unless you invest your money and hopes with Norwegian. Then, you know, dry dock and good luck to you, shame on you for thinking NCL would actually deliver the cruise you bought. They can break the contract, you can't. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Itinerary: We were booked on the RC Oasis of the Seas but it was cancelled after a crane fell on the ship, so we booked this transatlantic crossing on NCL's Getaway about three weeks before sailing. With only A WEEK TO GO, we were ... Read More
Itinerary: We were booked on the RC Oasis of the Seas but it was cancelled after a crane fell on the ship, so we booked this transatlantic crossing on NCL's Getaway about three weeks before sailing. With only A WEEK TO GO, we were informed that the 12-day itinerary (which it still shows here on CC) had been modified to a 10-day journey, cutting out two ports, Le Havre and Zeebrugge, and coming into Southampton two days earlier than anticipated. Actually, NCL didn't even communicate with us directly, but we found out from our travel agent. Apparently, it had to go into dry dock two days earlier than originally scheduled. We would not have booked the trip with the modified schedule and itinerary, but decided to make the most of it. NCL did offer a partial refund (it finally came through while we were on the cruise) and a future credit, as well as allowances for airline change fees. After hearing from many disgruntled passengers, NCL expanded their allowances to cover other travel expenses such as additional hotel and other transportation charges. FOUR DAYS BEFORE SAILING, they added Le Havre and Zeebrugge back into the itinerary, and cut out Ponte Delgada and Portland. While most were happy to have France and Belgium back in, the last-minute nature of these changes created a lot of hassle and confusion. We also received refunds of the port fees from the two missed ports as credits on our cabin accounts while on the ship. Ship: The ship is relatively new (2014), and everything was clean and felt up-to-date. I believe the carpet is being replaced in dry dock. It has swimming pools, hot tubs, water slides, mini golf, and a ropes course. This would be a much better ship for a warm weather cruise. However, our itinerary was a cold-weather cruise, which meant that most of these amenities were closed/unused, and the indoor venues were overcrowded. The ropes course was fun, but not for those afraid of heights. While there is an indoor pool, it's part of the spa, which you have to pay for. The public toilets, sinks, and soap dispensers were all automatic and functioned on sensors. However, they rarely worked as intended. Everyone was doing a dance trying to get the toilet to flush or the soap to dispense. It was really to the point of ridiculousness. Even the comedian did a routine about it. For an industry so concerned about the spread of germs and sanitation ("happy, happy, washy, washy"), they sure did make it hard to wash your hands. Entertainment & Activities: In warmer weather, people might have spread up to the pool and sports decks. But ours was a cold-weather cruise and the schedule of activities did not reflect that. The cruise had about 3700 passengers (max is 3900), and all the indoor venues were always crowded...not just crowded, but can't-find-a-chair-or-move crowded. Usually, that meant standing in long lines or having to be at activities 30-60 minutes before they started in order to get a seat. They had so many people show up for progressive trivia the first day in the Atrium, that they had to move it to the main Tropicana dining room. Other activities were few and far between. There were large gaps in the schedule and then three events happening at the same time. But in reality, you couldn't plan to attend that many events because of the waiting times. The cruise director, Vincent, was outstanding! He led progressive trivia and was a constant at activities and events. Also, Romeo did a good job. However, most of the cruise director staff didn't seem to have the same energy or interest in interacting with guests. Activities seemed to be run of the mill for them and they made little effort to change things up based on our cruise itinerary/climate. They had enough staff and venues to keep things active and accommodate more guests, but didn't take advantage. I've been on other cruises with half the staff members with twice the activities and a lot more fun. As far as the evening entertainment, the shows were great, particularly "Million Dollar Quartet" (advanced tickets required). All three house bands were good, and we enjoyed the Bankaoke and Adele tribute. The Headliners venue served as a comedy club (advanced tickets required) and dueling piano bar. Both were great fun. One thing we enjoyed on this cruise was a guest talent show, which was much better than anticipated. Dining & Food: Three dining rooms (Tropicana, Taste, Savor), the buffet, Shanghai Noodle Bar, and O'Sheehan's were all complimentary. Margaritaville had free breakfast (a smaller buffet), but it closed after the second day. We were told that no one was going up there (it's outdoor, but covered) so they closed it. This left us to fend for a table in the buffet most mornings. We ate lunch in Taste/Savor two days. However, they maintain the same lunch menu from day to day and it never changes. Service for both lunch and dinner was painfully slow. One day, we sat for lunch at 12:40pm and didn't get our entrees until 1:50pm. O'Sheehan's was typical pub food, but sometimes a better option. The fajitas were good. The service in Tropicana for dinner seemed to be better than the other two dining rooms. A band played music during peak hours and people danced on the dance floor in the center. However, if seated anywhere in the center section of the restaurant, the volume of the music made it impossible to talk to others at the table. Getting reservations for the complimentary restaurants was impossible. We were told by a restaurant manager that all reservations were fully booked through online booking before the cruise even left. So much for "Freestyle" cruising. Every night, regardless of the hour, we had to wait in a long line (typically 20-30 minutes) to get to the host desk. Then we were usually given a pager and had to wait even longer. One night, we waited 90 MINUTES from the time we got in line until the time we were seated. This is unacceptable. The food itself was ok, not great. The buffet had a lot of options for breakfast and lunch. The quality of the food in the dining rooms did not meet the standard of past cruises, both on NCL and other cruise lines. They also didn't feel very balanced. If a dish included vegetables (some did not), they were minimal. One night I received two baby carrots, another night three small broccoli florets. Service: We had two wonderful, attentive, and hardworking waiters, Yuli and Mohammed, in the Tropicana dining room. Vincent the cruise director was fantastic. But otherwise, service was just ok, but not great. I don't know if it was because the ship was going into dry dock and some people were leaving or if this is always the case, but the staff seemed to lack energy. They very happily told you if something was not their job, handing you off to wait in another queue. All in all, with the final itinerary, we probably would not have booked this to start with. It has yet to be seen how easily they will handle reimbursement for travel expenses under the allowance. Regardless, after our experience, it is unlikely that we will cruise with NCL beyond our next cruise (using our future cruise credit), which will be cheap and cheerful. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
I booked a mini suite with a balcony for a handicap person. They put us in a crew room, no balcony, horrible smell, noise day and night, very humid and no balcony. My elderly mother almost died of food poisoning, I was charged $1169.32 ... Read More
I booked a mini suite with a balcony for a handicap person. They put us in a crew room, no balcony, horrible smell, noise day and night, very humid and no balcony. My elderly mother almost died of food poisoning, I was charged $1169.32 for hospital bill, for spoiled food she ate, right at their restaurant. Nothing to do in this boat, Cruise director was terrible, not enough seating, not enough accommodation, long lines at restaurants. Entertainment was horrible. They cut the trip short, less than a week before departure, they changed the destinations twice, a couple of days before departure. Charged 169 per person, for transportation to Paris, just to stay there for 3 hours, The line on the Service desk was long day and night, that's how everybody was disappointed. They had the same band, of four guys playing songs from the 70's a few times a day. Food was terrible, service was terrible. NCL, never again! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Our cabin (standard balcony) was a great layout and very spacious. It was the best thing about the cruise. The ship itself was really designed for a warm weather environment. Unfortunately, our cruise was in the northern latitudes (NY ... Read More
Our cabin (standard balcony) was a great layout and very spacious. It was the best thing about the cruise. The ship itself was really designed for a warm weather environment. Unfortunately, our cruise was in the northern latitudes (NY to Southampton) and, due to weather, most of the outside areas were closed. This lead to the ship feeling very crowded. As far as I'm concerned, freestyle dining is dead. Once upon a time, one could show up at a NCL main dining room and get a table fairly quickly. However, since NCL started allowing reservations, everything gets booked up on day one and now just showing up often entails a 30+ minute wait. I'd rather they offer a fixed seating. Even though this ship carries about twice the passengers of the other ships we've sailed on (The Dawn, Pearl, Jade, Sky, and Spirit), for some inexplicable reason they made the theatre about half the size. As a result, many of the shows require reservations. Unfortunately, their reservation offerings were inconsistent between what was printed, what was on the web, and what was on their TV screen. And some of the shows changed times or were canceled. Overall very frustrating. With a large ship, you'd expect a large atrium. Not so. It was small and noisy. Worst of all, the held the trivia sessions here even though several of us asked them to change it to another venue that was quieter and were we wouldn't have to compete with everyone else just to get a seat. It didn't happen. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
n my whole life I’ve never ever had a cruise so awful as that on the Getaway Sail date 27th April from New York to Southampton. Here are the bulletin points 1/ The expensive cruise I paid for was not the cruise I experienced. Cruise ... Read More
n my whole life I’ve never ever had a cruise so awful as that on the Getaway Sail date 27th April from New York to Southampton. Here are the bulletin points 1/ The expensive cruise I paid for was not the cruise I experienced. Cruise was cut short at the last minute 5 days before we sailed and even then it was changed the next day. 2/ Stateroom was filthy and unprepared 3/ The food was disgusting usually cold . The head Chef should be ashamed. 4/ The crew on board where arrogant, unhelpful and downright rude. They should have pulled out the stops for us but instead they did the opposite 5/ We sailed a northerly route 430 nautical miles from where the cruise I booked should have sailed. Result instead of some warmth we froze and out doors was blocked . 6/When it was opened the pool was freezing and unheated, when I enquired I might as well have asked a wall for all the guest service did in fact he never answered me 7/ We lost an hour for several nights did the hotel manager on board think about that no he still opened the breakfast restaurants at the same time closing at 9am . No interest in the passengers well being being considered and overcrowding in the Garden Cafe which I suspect was intentional as food was defiantly left over muck. 8/ Service in O’Sheehan’s was a mess we where allocated a table did anyone attend to us No and it was not that busy , not a cup or glass put on the table. We alerted an Officer who did nothing. I then spoke to a waiter who didn’t know what Manager meant so I shouted Boss that did the trick but I ask you what a disgrace. He did take out room number. 9/ Shanghai food awful spring roll frozen in the middle!!! 10/ The tension on the ship was awful passengers upset annoyed the staff sullen and unhelpful. 11/ The ship was sailing in the Atlantic and was cold with 11.5feet waves and the Cruise director behaved as if we where in the Caribbean I ask youth knew how upset passengers felt. 12/ last day Breakfast Your daily news said it opened at 6 but the staff despite many people in line said 6.30 . A retired Royal Navy Officer decided to approach the officer in charge who argued that it was 6.30 but ended up phoning to be told it was 6. We were glowered at during breakfast by her and deliberately served last. 13/ I had asked why we had 2 days taken off and the reason for dry dock No one from NCL replied However the Taxi driver at Southampton did!! 400 workers coming on board that day and repairs to the engines oh and the lovely fresh food seen at Southampton going on board for them!!!??? This was a demonstration of the lax arrangement of the crew on broad this ship. What a disgrace your 25% goes no way towards the loss and disappointment but I have done my research and you have your terms and conditions well slanted in you favour. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
The 12 day cruise included ports that we wanted to visit - but NCL shortened it a week before departure to 10 days and cut out the 2 ports that we were interested in!!! Our prearranged hotel and other travel arrangements could not be ... Read More
The 12 day cruise included ports that we wanted to visit - but NCL shortened it a week before departure to 10 days and cut out the 2 ports that we were interested in!!! Our prearranged hotel and other travel arrangements could not be changed at such a late date forcing us to book elsewhere to fill in the time at very short notice. All food on the ship was served Luke warm instead of hot with the exception of the pasta which was heated to order. In the buffet, the selection of teas available varied minute by minute with the most popular flavours being unavailable most of the time. Some food items (most notably the sausages) had their name changed with no discernable difference in flavour and some items with the same name were a totally different product on the other side of the ship! The quality of cabin cleaning and replenishment of supplies was variable however the cabin itself was incredibly quiet and the bed extremely comfortable. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We chose this Transatlantic for the time and itinerary. We had a bad experience on Getaway Transatlantic 2017 with ship mechanical problems, skipped, shortened ports and crew unable to get passengers on and off the ship efficiently (3 ... Read More
We chose this Transatlantic for the time and itinerary. We had a bad experience on Getaway Transatlantic 2017 with ship mechanical problems, skipped, shortened ports and crew unable to get passengers on and off the ship efficiently (3 hours to get off at Brest.) We felt this couldn't happen a second time, but the 2019 TA was cut short by Norwegian for their convenience with minimal notice. We were on another trip when notice came out and had to scrambled just before cruise date to fill two extra days in our itinerary. Phone ncl was not helpful. Ship was a circus with long lines at customer service with people who did not get notification and had to have help getting further arrangement made. We only knew of the itinerary change due to our TravelAgent. Trip was okay with good food, good entertainments/activities BUT everyone was on edge. This just was not handled right. The drydock date could not have happened suddenly. Repair facilities must be booked ahead. Everyone on the ship felt NCL knew they would not make the 12 day crossing all along but sold it to fill the shjip on a 2 port only voyage and them three everyone into making new plans. We have loved NCL and are Platinum. We have encouraged our children and friends, Brian Eades, Melissa Thibodeau, Miranda Thibodeau and Denise Clark to cruise with us thus providing new customers for NCL. Now we feel the line is not organized, not forthcoming about their plans and callous toward passenger service. No one wants to start a trip to Europe amid upheaval. We previously purchased Cruise Credits but declined after two bad trips on the Getaway. We also traveled a second time with a friend on Escape and found the dining room music to be jazz, not dinner music and club music to be disco only. Ventilation for the casino was terrible compaared to 2015. Our friend who we had persuaded to come on her first cruise said"never again." With all this we probably look for other lines despite the years of enjoying NCL. Another shame of this is the incredible burden this disarray put on the Getaway staff. Tfhey all worked to hard to make the cruise good despite the line's last minute decision. They were victims of the situation and should be commended for their efforts. I don't know who makes the decisions at NCL to inconvenience travelers in such a blasé fashion. I know some financial compensations is being offered but cruisers would rather have a nice, pleasant, uneventful cruise instead. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We chose this cruise because it had the itinerary we wanted. However before the cruise they shortened the cruise by 2 days..cut 2 major ports. We couldn’t get our money back so we took the cruise ..upon check in they notified us the the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it had the itinerary we wanted. However before the cruise they shortened the cruise by 2 days..cut 2 major ports. We couldn’t get our money back so we took the cruise ..upon check in they notified us the the 2 ports had been added back and the other 2 removed.. the answer they gave was that the ship had to go to dry dock. One would think they would know that ahead of time.. The ship was nice, venues were over crowded. Food was okay. Not typical Norwegian quality. We took excursions they were very unorganized.!!! Starting from the meeting place to boarding the bus. It seemed as though it was everyone’s first time...at the end of the cruise getting off the ship was a nightmare and I mean every single person was whining and complaining about the lines. It was just nuts... maybe it’s just these mega ships or maybe the crew was just ready to leave for vacation and we just got the brunt of it...I’ve been on many Norwegian Cruises they are my preferred. This was a miss!!!! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
There is so much to say... First, this was our first cruise as Norwegian Platinum members. We chose this cruise because we like Transatlantic voyages, it was very reasonably priced and it was the only cruise that fit our specific time ... Read More
There is so much to say... First, this was our first cruise as Norwegian Platinum members. We chose this cruise because we like Transatlantic voyages, it was very reasonably priced and it was the only cruise that fit our specific time frame. We live in NYC and love the ability to take a cab directly to the ship. The motivating force was a desperate need to have a vacation after a hard winter. Also, we had never been to either the Azores or Belgium, so that was a plus. We booked a sail-away balcony (our first time not booking a specific cabin). We were assigned a decent cabin on deck 8 that turned out to be really well located for this cruise. One week and one day before sailing (late in the afternoon on Good Friday) we got an email from NCL announcing an itinerary change that shortened the cruise by two days and eliminated the French and Belgian ports. Much has been written on the roll call thread about this fiasco. In short, NCL managed to screw up, piss a lot of people off, and then, in their attempt to fix the screwup (by bringing back the French and Belgium stops at the cost of the Azores and Portland stops) pissed off even more people. In our case, we just booked two more nights in London to cover the earlier arrival and adjusted our other arrangements to suit. As Platinum customers, embarkation was an absolute breeze. We were checked in and eating lunch in no time (although seating in the cafe was insufficient). We had previously sailed twice on the Breakaway, a ship we really didn’t care for. This cruise convinced us never to book a large ship again. There may be some really great large ships on other lines, but we don’t feel like finding out. The large NCL ships feel much more cramped than the Jewel class, a class we have cruised multiple times and have really loved. Let’s break down the issues: The biggest one is that whenever any area in the ship is crowded, it feels like being stuck in rush hour traffic. We came to avoid the atrium completely. It’s a mess. Much too small, too loud, too few chairs and, worse, it also acts as a thoroughfare. We completely avoided all of the events held there, some of which we wanted to attend. The Garden cafe is too loud, and suffers from the same design problem, it is almost impossible to walk through without bumping into people who are hauling plates of food in seemingly random patterns. Also there is just not enough seating. The aforementioned fiasco meant that there was always a long line at guest services. Exceptionally poor communication from NCL about refunds and bill adjustments made any interaction with them difficult because of the crowds. In short, the ship design with poor traffic management, and a claustrophobic feel and an emphasis on outdoor space better suited to warm climates meant that the whole experience was cramped. Disembarkation was slow. The itinerary change meant that we couldn’t pick up the immigration officials in the Azores which meant another long line to be navigated upon arrival all the while watching the clock to see if we we would make our train (we didn’t but there was a subsequent train, so there was no real issue). As usual, the crew was quite good. What our cabin steward lacked in friendliness, he more than made up for in ruthless efficiency. Our room was always done quickly and correctly without impacting our use thereof. The wait staff was friendly, as was everyone else we dealt with. As for food, we felt that the free sit-down restaurants were hit-or-miss. We had a couple of good meals (prime rib one night, a solid burger another at O’Sheehans), a couple of meals that were poor at Taste and Savor and one good and one not-so-good at the Tropicana. As for the Garden Cafe, it was okay, not as good as we have experienced before. The specialty restaurants were much better. The filet at Cagney’s was excellent. That was comped as a Platinum perk. We paid a la Carte at Le Bistro, a meal I was really looking forward to, as I had loved both the Trois Cornets appetizer and the Canard a l’Orange on previous voyages. Both are gone from the menu, a big disappointment. The other comped meal at Moderno was exceptional. The waiter comped our glasses of wine as well. As for the journey, we found it hard to deal with the constant time changes. There is no getting around the fact that crossing time zones is difficult, but by the third or fourth one, we just wanted it to be over. The weather, although cold and mostly gray, was good. As for entertainment, the Million Dollar Quartet show was a standout, we also enjoyed the Cirque Dreams dinner show although, despite being first in line and having paid extra for floor seats, discovering that we had poor sight lines because the Haven guests got the best seats (something that we didn’t know would happen) was a bit frustrating. Music about the ship suffered from the poor design. The open atrium made for terrible acoustics and an unwelcoming experience. The ship open-space performers were just okay, in my opinion. We were looking forward to hearing some decent blues in the Fat Cats club (as we had on the Breakaway) but it was taken over by Karaoke almost every night and, as far as I could tell, nobody on board could play or sing the blues. We paid extra for access to the thermal suite, something we have done on every NCL cruise. Our normal routine is to hit the gym, shower off and soak. The gym was always crowded. Some of the equipment was broken and there were times when it wasn’t possible go work out. The thermal spa was, likewise, fairly crowded. The staff is doing a better job of policing the reservation of both the heated and regular lounge chairs, a consistent problem in the past, so that is an improvement, Despite all of my issues with the ship, it was a very enjoyable cruise. That, largely, was due to some of our fellow passengers and our decision to be more social than in the past. We made some initial connections via the roll call thread that led to one of the best times, the mad beer-sampling dash through Bruges. In LeHavre, we walked into town determined to have coffee, baguettes and butter which we found in the Sunday market in the center of town. We were determined not to let the problems ruin our vacation and we have succeeded. It is clear, however, that our non-stop string of being NCL-only customers is at an end. The emphasis on packing people in is taking its toll. I do recognize that what you get for your money is still a good deal, but it may no longer be for us. NCL has cut both service and some quality in recent years and we would prefer for our cruise experiences not to resemble traveling on budget airlines where the emphasis is on upcharges and post-sales opportunities, Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
Around a week before our start date, NCL changed the itinerary by reducing the cruise from 12 to 10 nights and removing La Harve and Zeebrugge. A few days later it changed again adding La Harve and Zeebrugge again but removing the Azores ... Read More
Around a week before our start date, NCL changed the itinerary by reducing the cruise from 12 to 10 nights and removing La Harve and Zeebrugge. A few days later it changed again adding La Harve and Zeebrugge again but removing the Azores and Portland. So before the cruise started we had to re-arrange travel and could only claims our expenses back after the start of the cruise. Once onboard a lot of the shows required everyone to book in advance and then queue up 30 minutes before the show starts. If you didn't manage to book in advance you had to queue even longer. The issue was there was no organisation of the queue, so people who hadn’t booked were in the wrong queue and vice versa. Once they decided to open the door to the theatre or headliners everybody needed their cruise card to be scanned, slowing down the process even more. The most stupid part of the process, is that it wasn’t for all shows. The shows that didn’t require booking as you may have guessed were very well organised and nobody had to queue at all. A plus point on the entertainment for us was duelling pianos at the Headliners bar and you didn’t need to book it. The food was generally quite good, but there were problems with service. Sometimes very slow then other times too quick, we had main meals arrive, while we were still eating starters, toast arrived after we had eaten breakfast and there are other examples. Two days before we left the ship, we informed customer services that we had a early flight and needed to leave early but the earliest time they would give us is 8.15 unless we paid them $72(55ish) to book a transfer to Southampton airport which is about 6 miles away and a £27 taxi ride. We started the leave the ship at 8.15, but didn’t get off until 9.15 and our flight was at 10.25. Despite the inadequacies of NCL we arrived at the airport at 9.40, 15 minutes after luggage drop off. But Southampton airport was great and we still managed to get our flight. Overall we enjoyed the cruise, but would have preferred the itinerary we originally booked, better organisation in the restaurants, no booking for any of the free shows and a guest services team that listened. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
Transatlantic crossing. My husband and I have sailed many times on NCL (Platinum Members) and thought a transatlantic crossing would be different and exciting. It sure was. Although seas were calm, it was cold and/or raining. No ... Read More
Transatlantic crossing. My husband and I have sailed many times on NCL (Platinum Members) and thought a transatlantic crossing would be different and exciting. It sure was. Although seas were calm, it was cold and/or raining. No outdoor activities to be had so indoors 95% of the journey. The ship was big and confusing, sectioned off, not flowing like most ships. Some areas were off limits entire cruise and we never were able to explore the entire ship. We found some public restrooms in a deplorable state. It was a first for us, we never experienced that before on NCL. Crew always pleasant, our room steward Fedilia was excellent, sweet and pleasant. Dining was good except buffet wasn't as exciting as previous cruises - pretty much same food every day. Only one dining room experience at Taste was bad due to incompetent rude servers. We were served bread with no plates or silverware. My husband flagged a waiter to set our table. We ordered cocktails and immediately the food waiter came to ask for our order. We said we'll order when we're done having our cocktails and the waiter walked away. During cocktails, another waiter came by and took all the silverware off the table. One minute later, 2 entrees came, neither was ours. Waiter said sorry and walked away and never replaced the utensils that had been removed earlier. My husband flagged our waiter and asked for our utensils back. Waiter gave him a snarky look and walked away to get them. During cocktails my husband could see two staff - our waiter and the one who delivered wrong entrees, talking and staring at us while giving the stink eye. Ordered dinners, then came dessert. Waiter shoved a menu in front of me from behind without saying a word. Did the same to my husband from the front of him. Rude, inappropriate behavior for dining staff. We never returned. We're not big show people but did see Cirque's Steam which was excellent. We're big Cirque fans. The itinerary was changed twice, first time was just 1 week before and it completely burst our bubble building up to this vacation. So much confusion and indifference to passenger travel arrangements that they changed the itinerary again 3 days before disembarkation to appease the onslaught of complaints and possibly legal threats. Two countries were added back. We originally booked a 12 day cruise and ended up with 10 days. Originally 5 ports, actual ports 3, LaHavre(Paris), Brussels/Brugges Belguim and Southampton/London. Excursions are always great, after all that's why we travel - the destinations. This time there just wasn't enough ports and 7 days straight at sea without being able to enjoy the outdoors was a bit much. At the end the ship docked in Southampton and we were prepared for a tour of London before flying home. Our mistake was booking an excursion that was 7 hrs and our flight was within 5. We were reimbursed immediately and grabbed a cab to Heathrow. The itinerary changes were due to NCLs decision to go to dry dock 2 days earlier than originally advertised. We never experienced a cruise before with so many disgruntled and disappointed loyal NCL passengers as this one. Collectively it was not a happy bunch. My husband and I made the best of it. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
As the title suggests, lukewarm food on Deck 6 was the main letdown. I found the food in the Deck 15 buffet more enjoyable because it was hot. Take note, the powers-that-be who read these reviews. The lukewarm food in Savor and Taste was a ... Read More
As the title suggests, lukewarm food on Deck 6 was the main letdown. I found the food in the Deck 15 buffet more enjoyable because it was hot. Take note, the powers-that-be who read these reviews. The lukewarm food in Savor and Taste was a regular occurrence. NCL, you need to get the food to the table much more quickly. And why not heat the plates? That would help. Cabin 9196 had a bad odour coming from the bathroom drains. This was not fixed until I asked the attendant. He knew of this problem but did nothing until I raised the issue. Chemicals were then used to fix the problem. The bed was very comfortable and the pillows were just right. I'd like to see a few more movie channels made available in the cabins. The movies that were played in the Atrium needed tho have the volume turned down. It made the Atrium area very noisy. Oswald, who worked the bar adjacent Savor and Taste, was a real professional. He learnt the regulars' names as well as their favourite drinks. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
This whole trip felt like we were in a line. Getting on the ship took 2 hours or more. Disembarkation was super unorganized, we were late to Florida and only enjoyed 2 hours after paying for a 30$ shuttle. They failed to announce tender ... Read More
This whole trip felt like we were in a line. Getting on the ship took 2 hours or more. Disembarkation was super unorganized, we were late to Florida and only enjoyed 2 hours after paying for a 30$ shuttle. They failed to announce tender reservations were required to get off on the private island which was our second stop, so we waited for hours again. Third stop we were in a line as well, although this one moved a little bit faster. Food was horrible. Nothing great even about the special restaurants. Some were booked even on the first day on thru the entire cruise. The staff was hit or miss. Some not very nice at all. Entertainment was cool. Adult only area wasn’t adult only and no one even tried to keep it in order. No chairs to lay on by pool or sun deck on more than one day. Just too many things didn’t go well. I needed a vacation after my vacation. One great thing was the gentleman who cleaned our room. Read Less
Norwegian Getaway Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 5.0 3.9
Entertainment 5.0 4.0
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.8
Family 5.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.7
Enrichment 2.0 3.5
Service 4.0 4.0
Value For Money 4.0 3.6
Rates 4.0 N/A

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