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Cruise Ratings
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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
We only traveled Carnival before and decided to look for a new cruise experience. Cabin (see below). Dining: 1. Buffet, Breakfast was ok. Juices very sweet, tasted like fruit drink instead of juice. Bacon consistantly ... Read More
We only traveled Carnival before and decided to look for a new cruise experience. Cabin (see below). Dining: 1. Buffet, Breakfast was ok. Juices very sweet, tasted like fruit drink instead of juice. Bacon consistantly tasteless and greasy. Good fruit choices. 2. Main Dining: Steak was not cooked to standard. Lobster not available, even a la carte. Servers were very accomodating . Maître d' consistantly interested in dining experience. Entertainment: Excellent juggler/comedian, clever humor and routines, had me tearing up in laughter. Very good aerialist show. Average dancer routines not reflective of genre music styles. Service: Crew very helpful and some very entertaining. Shore Excursions: Costa Maya Party Bus & Beach Break overblown, dull. Value for Money: Prepaid gratuities headache, still tangling with them over issue of adjustments, pending.. Charged for use of room bar we did not use. Overall: Would recommend if cruise price is a bargain to the buyer. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2018
My daughter choose this cruise for our 40 anniversary we had a group of 11 The disembark seemed unorganized we were supposed to get a number to board The ship but never did don't understand why because they ask you what time you ... Read More
My daughter choose this cruise for our 40 anniversary we had a group of 11 The disembark seemed unorganized we were supposed to get a number to board The ship but never did don't understand why because they ask you what time you would like to board we were all corralled in a room We got a aft. Minni suite was nice but small compare to other cruise lines and the ship Rocked the whole week Dinners were ok for the main dining but we enjoyed the buffet and specialty dinning better Entertainment average Service overall was good except for the main dining we waited for at least 15-20 for someone to to ask us for a drink Ports were average we booked alot of the excursions on our own it was Cheeper The salons were nice I had my hair done by Casey The last night of our cruise the ship tipped sideways everything fell to the floor that was on my table it was scary but no one said anything rumors say that we hit a barge on the River and staff told my husband they took a sharp turn really then you shouldn't be steering Read Less
Sail Date: March 2018
We loved the itinerary and hadn't tried Norwegian yet. So we thought we'd give it a go. The food was among the best in the buffet as we have experienced on other lines. The main dining rooms were only so-so, and the service took ... Read More
We loved the itinerary and hadn't tried Norwegian yet. So we thought we'd give it a go. The food was among the best in the buffet as we have experienced on other lines. The main dining rooms were only so-so, and the service took forever. We skipped dessert twice to catch a show because dinner took over 2 hours from being seated to even getting the dessert menu. Breakfast wasn't much better. They apologized every meal, but it never got better. The worst part was their inflexibility on ages in the kids clubs. We have a tall, mature, identified as gifted 11-year-old daughter that we had planned to hang out with her shorter-but-older 13-year-old (also identified as gifted) brother. We use the buddy system on cruise ships for safety - no kid goes anywhere on the ship without a buddy. We knew the ages, but since 2 other cruise lines were able to evaluate the behavior of the child on the first day and make adjustments, we didn't expect problems. Boy were we wrong. We spoke with the kids club staff right after embarkation. She couldn't help us, which wasn't surprising, so she got her supervisor. She also couldn't help us. She told us it was a company policy written by lawyers, so there was nothing that anyone could do. She suggested I talk to the cruise director. And so I did. He didn't bother to meet me face-to-face; instead, he called my stateroom. He said it was company policy, so there was nothing he could do. So, instead of the freestyle cruise the ads promise, we had an 11-year-old and 13-year-old bored and hanging out with Mom and Dad on sea days. Really ruined that part of the cruise. Probably bad enough that we will stick with other cruise lines. The second biggest problem was that the disembarkation process was best described as utter pandemonium. There were no signs, no maps, no good instructions. Just crew members doing their best but giving conflicting directions. We were paraded back and forth for about 45 minutes trying to get off the ship. We finally walked out the door when a crew member said we couldn't. I figured if they kicked us off the ship, at least we'd be off the ship. We did our best to follow the rules, but they were beyond ambiguous - we walked stem to stern twice trying to follow their instructions. Once we got off the ship, there was no real problem - we carried off our baggage and got through customs in just about 30 seconds. That part was great. The juggler was good, the comedian was good, the singers/dancers were average at best - I think I can sing and dance better, but it wasn't too bad. The acrobats were amazing. There was smoking all over the ship, and no crew seemed to care. And the casino stunk up all of the cabins in the forward section of the ship. If they are going to allow smoking, they need to blow the smoke out the side of the ship like they do in the casinos in Vegas. A little negative pressure goes a long, long way. I do not play bingo, Deal or No Deal, or buy raffle tickets. I was harassed every couple of hours to try to get me to gamble with those "games." Must be a real money maker. The food in the buffet was really good. Better than the main dining room on some other ships we have sailed on. The service was good too. We found ourselves enjoying the buffet more than when we took the time to dine in the main dining rooms. As long as we could find a seat, of course. That could get a little tricky. Harvest Caye was not very good - not much to do or see unless you wanted to pay a lot extra. The water was murky, and all of the ground up coral made me sad - someone destroyed some significant reefs to make that island. I much preferred Half Moon Cay - the water and sand there were much better, and on Half Moon Cay, they feed you lunch. It wasn't a big deal - we just walked back to the ship for lunch. Just seemed silly that the private island tried to get you to buy lunch. Roatan was OK, but the poverty was really jarring. I was glad to get taken advantage of in the hopes that some of the money would help the rank and file islanders. Costa Maya was our favorite stop - it was really great. We took a taxi to Jaime's Blue Reef. Cozumel was OK, but our shore excursion had been cancelled (without Norwegian emailing us, preventing us from getting a refund) because of security concerns with Playa Del Carmen. But the replacement excursion we booked was good too, so no real complaints. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2018
The NCL Pear, l Western Caribbean Cruise from New Orleans was just ok. Embarkation in New Orleans was a breeze, and debarkation was also fast and easy. The food in the complementary dining venues was for the most part ok, nothing ... Read More
The NCL Pear, l Western Caribbean Cruise from New Orleans was just ok. Embarkation in New Orleans was a breeze, and debarkation was also fast and easy. The food in the complementary dining venues was for the most part ok, nothing great, it was edible, however, it was by no definition "outstanding". The best meal we had was in the Irish Pub O'Sheehan's, the Corned Beef Ruben was delicious. In our opinion, NCL wants people to pay the extra for dining in the specialty restaurants, as anyone we spoke to that ate in those venues said the food was excellent. We feel that we pay enough for the cruise and good food should be part of the experience without paying extra for it. Our cabin was a mini suite and it was very nice, but was it worth the extra money for a mini suite vs. a balcony cabin, I don't think so. The only time we saw or even spoke to our cabin steward was when we hunted him down (we were supposed to have a bottle of sparkling wine in the cabin (latitudes members) and it hadn't arrived by the second day we had hunt down the cabin steward and ask him to get it for us), however, the room was always clean, but had to ask for towels a couple times. Casino was very smoky. Only saw one show and it was very good. As far as the wait staff went, we had two outstanding servers, Charles in the Pub and Red in the Summer Palace dining room. The bartenders in the Atrium Bar (Java Cafe) were excellent, they made the cruise. The pool bartenders at the pool bay were good, but the two bartenders at the Sky High Bar were absolutely miserable and extremely rude. Will we cruise on NCL again? Maybe. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2018
We selected this cruise because it had the ports of call we wanted and was leaving from New Orleans which was a convienant drive. We were traveling with our 11 and 14 year old boy and girl. We got a Balcony room with a bunk and a pull ... Read More
We selected this cruise because it had the ports of call we wanted and was leaving from New Orleans which was a convienant drive. We were traveling with our 11 and 14 year old boy and girl. We got a Balcony room with a bunk and a pull out. The room was a lot smaller than we expected and the bathroom extremely small. It was so small that my husband and son had to constantly go to the public area bathrooms to have room in the commode area. The pull out was too short for my son who is about 5'7. The beds were extremely uncomfortable. I must say that our previous cruise was with Disney so we are comparing this experience to our Disney Cruise Line experience. NCL could take some lessons. The disembarkation was extremely disorganized. My husband was ill with food poisoning from the fish at dinner Friday night. The medical clinic was helpful and gave us guidelines, etc from CDC. We were told we needed to get off the ship as early as possible and that someone could help us with the luggage since he could not handle his own. I was later told by ship that they could not touch our luggage and we could only get off at the 8:30 slot. Therefore a sick person who may or may not have been contagious was having to stand in line with many others for quite some time. I am pretty sure the CDC did not have this in mind as a way to keep something from passing to others if was something other than food poisoning. The Splash Academy and Entourage for the kids was great and they loved it. The food was mediocre and I expected more for the cost. We booked our excursions outside of the cruise. I highly recommend the Mayan Ruin tour with Native Choice in Costa Maya. We did not have time for the Mayan Experience which we would have loved to do but the ruin tour was excellent and very informative. It was worth walking to the office outside the gate and was cheaper. In Cozumel, I booked our dolphin experience directly to get the Ride and Swim and manatee package. We rented a Jeep and drove to the dolphin experience and around the island. It was a great time. Harvest Caye was nice but expensive. They don't take ship card because people in past had claimed they did not make the charges. They also only take cash and Visa/MC. This should have been told to us before getting off at Harvest Caye as we only had our Amex and were not able to purchase souvenirs or food/water etc. We could use our boat card for the activites like zip line etc. The zip line was great and safe and the paddle boards were great. Expensive but fun for the kids. They enjoyed the beach and everything was clean. I don't see us taking this cruise line again but if you want these ports of call and this is an option, I recommend upgrading to Haven Suites or at least getting connecting rooms if you have teens. The balcony room for 4 was just way too small. The bathroom was seriously almost to small for my 11 year old and she is not a big girl. My son who is 5'7 and husband who is 6'3 really had issue with the space in the bathroom (commode area). Our steward was great and kept things clean and was very helpful. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
I took my Wonderful Wife on this cruise for a birthday present. She loved the ship, the buffet, the wonderful crew. We dined in both main dining room to great food and service. we dined in three of the specialty dining room. ... Read More
I took my Wonderful Wife on this cruise for a birthday present. She loved the ship, the buffet, the wonderful crew. We dined in both main dining room to great food and service. we dined in three of the specialty dining room. Cagney's was Superior the food was Special and staff was excellent. The Italian and French establishments were poor and sadly a Great disappointment. Food selections were not Italian or French. Service at the French fair was none existent, I mean we sat for 3 hours with little contact. Hey you asked, I am telling. The was the worst of the trip. The BEST was the friendly rest of the day(s). On ship the people (staff) were great. The cabin good the bath design was awesome. I used the fitness facilities and took a book out of the library. I had forgotten how enjoyable it can be to sit and read. I have a strong complaint concerning the communications. PLEASE listen! the pamphlet is the room each day is great. Why can't you have interactive TV in the cabin. I should be able to access my billing status from the cabin. I like the bow camera but how about expanding the idea to include a banner with the time and temperature. The Map channel was poor cycling. The Screens by each elevator should be interactive. What information would I want? I want to see the daily schedule of event, Up-To-Date menus for all the dining rooms. Status of special events. NEWS and Anticipated WEATHER at local excursion areas. Excursions for the next port with filled or open slots, cost would be nice. I absolutely Certify This Information is Factual and True Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
We have sailed on 15 NCL cruises, but we weren't overly impressed with this particular ship. We had sailed on it prior to it's refurbishment and although the cabin changes were nice (thanks for all the USB ports!), it seemed ... Read More
We have sailed on 15 NCL cruises, but we weren't overly impressed with this particular ship. We had sailed on it prior to it's refurbishment and although the cabin changes were nice (thanks for all the USB ports!), it seemed like they made the ship harder to get around. The hallways in the cabin areas (at least on deck 8 where our cabin was) twisted and wound around making it twice as far to get to down the hall, and especially difficult with a wheelchair (more about that later.) In places, it was impossible to get the chair down the hall if they had carts or laundry bags in the hall without having to move everything to get by. It appears they added some crew areas for storage or whatever and our cabin happened to be directly next to one. It wasn't a huge problem, but it was quite noisy in the evening when they were turning down cabins. Although most of the crew we encountered were perfectly friendly, the service on this ship seemed to be significantly slower than other ships we've sailed. Most evenings it took over an hour and a half to have dinner in the dining room. We started going to O'Sheehans because it was quicker and the food was as good or better. The first night of the cruise, we were missing one suitcase. We asked our cabin steward and he said there might have been something that needed to be confiscated. We couldn't think of what it could be since we pack the same things on every cruise. Well, they confiscated my 4 inch USB powered fan. When I went to guest services to ask why, the woman working the desk was very rude and said she had "been on ships for 2 years" and they had always confiscated fans. I replied that that was untrue because I had been on 4 cruises in the last 2 years and have never had it confiscated. Long story short, she agreed to have the electricians take a look at my fan to see if i could have it back. They agreed that it was no risk and I picked it up the next day. My mom slipped getting into one of the hot tubs on the pool deck and hurt her foot so we got to visit the medical center on a ship for the first time. We were impressed with the staff and the facilities. They were able to x-ray her foot and give her a hard boot to keep her foot stabilized. We were able to rent a wheelchair at Guest Services for the remainder of the cruise. It made things much easier for her, but gave us an appreciation for what mobility impaired people have to go through on a daily basis. We had to plan our routes around the ship to avoid places the chair couldn't easily go, which usually meant much more walking and elevator rides just to get where we wanted to go. On the last night of the cruise, we called guest services to see what we needed to do to return the wheelchair we had rented. They said we could just leave it in our cabin and the cabin steward would take care of it. Easy peasy, or so we thought. When they scanned my mom's card to get off the ship, an alert came up that we had not returned the wheelchair so we had to step aside and wait while they had someone go check our cabin to see if it was there. Seems like they don't communicate well between departments. We probably won't cruise on this ship again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
Mardi Gras in New Orleans was a great party as expected before we went on our cruise. Over all we had a good time on our vacation although there were a few unexpected disappointments. Obviously we did not use our magnifying glasses to ... Read More
Mardi Gras in New Orleans was a great party as expected before we went on our cruise. Over all we had a good time on our vacation although there were a few unexpected disappointments. Obviously we did not use our magnifying glasses to read the fine print when we purchased our on board packages. There were 2 couples in our group. We both purchased the "ultimate beverage package" and discovered quickly that it does not include water, juice, or gourmet coffee. It also does not include the beverages in your mini bar, bottles of wine, or any beverage over $15. Not to worry though, you can purchase a 6pk of water for a mere $14.99 or a 24pk for $58.00. We also had the excursion package which does not cover any excursion, but they will give you a $50.00 on board credit, per stateroom, for any excursion booked through the cruise line. Activities on the ship included tennis, golf, shuffle board, bingo, rock climbing, bag toss, and ping pong, all provided weather permitted and for an additional charge. Our Ports of call were Cozumel, Roatan, Harvest Caye, & Costa Maya. All ports had shops built specifically for cruise lines so you felt very safe. According to the locals who worked in these tourist traps, they were only open when cruise ships were docked in port. We booked a private excursion through Viator for a mini submarine aka (BOB) in Cozumel. It was an unforgettable experience. Harvest Caye was absolutely beautiful but the beverage packages do not extend to the Norwegian owned island. We booked an excursion that day for the Nim Li Punit ruins just so we could actually experience the true culture of Belize. Our tour guide was very knowledgeable and the vendors at the ruins were very polite. We had time to walk around Harvest Caye upon our return but do not make the mistake of thinking you can walk bare footed on the beach. It has been created from what appears to be crushed sea shells. The entertainment on the ship exceeded our expectations. The acrobatic couple, magician, comedian, dancers, singers, etc were all very good and I would suggest going to every event possible. The Newlywed not so newlywed game that was hosted by the cruise director Vincent, was absolutely hilarious. We spent a lot of time in the casino which was actually more liberal than we anticipated. We were lucky enough to have a waiter named Roddy, from India, who worked on the pool deck and in the casino who was outstanding! I have given this vacation a 3 star rating in part because the ports of call are not authentic but mostly for falsely representing their cruise packages. I am still trying to figure out their definition of "all inclusive." Read Less
Sail Date: January 2018
Weather was cooler than usual. Inside cabin was fairly big 8623 inside and bed was comfy and was really cleaned well each day. Loved all the food options but buffet seemed to be same old every day. Only liked two of the ports Harvest ... Read More
Weather was cooler than usual. Inside cabin was fairly big 8623 inside and bed was comfy and was really cleaned well each day. Loved all the food options but buffet seemed to be same old every day. Only liked two of the ports Harvest Caye was nice but two expensive for souvenirs would loved to be able to buy from the locals. Did not like the house band lace. There was a charter on board so a lot of areas were closed for private functions. Loved our cabin Stewart Victor. We left 2.5 hours late so we did not get to see the Mississippi River so another disappointment. Took that long to load all of the luggage. Getting on and off the ship was good. Navigating around the ship was confusing. Would like to have more activities like line dancing on deck during the day. Would not go on this ship again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
This was a reunion Cruise that left out of New Orleans. Check in at the Terminal was not a quick process. Once through Security we were herded into a waiting room with no direction or what to do. After about 10 minutes a lady came ... Read More
This was a reunion Cruise that left out of New Orleans. Check in at the Terminal was not a quick process. Once through Security we were herded into a waiting room with no direction or what to do. After about 10 minutes a lady came walking through yelling that if you are not in line to get a boarding number you need to get in line. Once in line we were handed a numbered card. At the check in counter the representative was nice enough. She took out passports and processed our paperwork and gave us our Ship Cards. Once this process was completed we were herded into another waiting room to await our boarding number to be called. About 30 minutes later our number was called. At the security check point before the gangway we were stopped by security. My wife's photo and personal information was on the magnetic strip on my Ship Card and mine on hers. We were directed to the on board Guest Service desk where we stood in line for about 45 minutes. We explained to the Guest Service rep the issue and he took out cards to a back room. A few minutes later he emerged and said everything was good. We went to our cabin only to find our Ship Cards would not open the cabin door. Back to Guest Service for another 30 minute wait in line. Again the rep took out cards and when he returned said everything was good to go. We went back to our cabin and my card was able to unlock the door. After a trip to the lido deck, when we returned to our cabin again the cards would not unlock the door. Again back to Guest Service,this time the rep wanted to see for himself and took our cards to the room to verify they would not work then back to guest service where were told everything was good to go. While at the bar we learned that until we were well into the Gulf of Mexico we were being charged an alcohol tax even though we had the unlimited beverage package. Day two we made a trip to the Casino on board the ship. When my wife and I inserted our Ship Cards into the slot machines her name and DOB was assigned to my card and mine to hers. Once again back to guest services where we were told the Casino needed to fix the issue. after a trip to the Casino guest services everything was fixed, or so we thought. After the fix our cards would not unlock out door. Once again back to Guest Services where the issue was finally fixed. The cruise line charges a fixed daily service charge (Prepaid Gratuity based on cabin cost) which they explain is split among the service staff on board. The bar tending staff and servers obviously know this and were not very friendly or customer service oriented. Restaurants: The menu in the ships restaurants did not change much at all from day to day. The food was bland and very small portions. we ate at Lotus Garden the ships Oriental Restaurant. The waiter forgot to place our Sushi order. The food was bland and portion size was very small. I ordered a beef and vegetable dish with rice noodles. There were plenty of noodles but one small slice of beef and two slivers of carrot. Ports of call. Cozumel: We did the Mexican Cooking Excursion which was absolutely fantastic and fun. Roatan Island Honduras: The port is a dump. We took a tour van, no through the Cruise Line, to tour the island and had a blast with our tour guide. We were able eat at a local restaurant which was an adventure in itself. Be prepared for street vendors to approach you wherever you go anywhere near the port. Harvest Kaye Belize: You are in Belize territory but not really in Belize. This is an island owned by the Cruise line. The shops are manned mostly by Canadians. Nothing really authentic here. Your Drink Package is not honored here although the Cruise Line owns the island and shops. Costa Maya Mexico: Not much here but shopping at the port unless you want to pay for an excursion through the Cruise Line. We did the Salsa Making and Dancing class which is advertised as having alcoholic beverages during the entire excursion. Entire = 2 Either a Margarita or a Beer. On a scale of 1 to 10 I rate this excursion a 5. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
Overall, everything good. The Norwegian Pearl was beautiful, the food & service was excellent, the cabin and bed comfortable. I was a little disturbed that the cruise lines now seem to like to contain their passengers by the ship ... Read More
Overall, everything good. The Norwegian Pearl was beautiful, the food & service was excellent, the cabin and bed comfortable. I was a little disturbed that the cruise lines now seem to like to contain their passengers by the ship rather than encourage them to go into town where REALITY is. I would rather give my money to the locals (and get better prices) than to pay the ridiculous prices to the cruise lines. They have built little markets, pools, etc. right by the ship (which are very beautiful) but it encourages people to stay close by rather than venture out into the cities. We had one drink each (I don't drink anymore) because it was our honeymoon and the charge was $24.00! That is highway robbery. Also, the thing that really frosted me is that NCL doesn't allow you to bring water bottles onboard. It's bad enough that the airlines do that. When we embarked on the Norwegian Pearl, security threw my water bottle in the trash. I am accustomed to going into the first port and buying a case of water for the week, but that was not allowed. I feel this is a violation of my rights. Water is essential and I don't drink tap water, only spring water. I was without water for two hours. I had to buy NCL's spring water when I got onboard for $6.60 each! I don't believe this is about safety at all (you can bring hairspray and other things you could make bombs from!) I believe it's all about REVENUE. :( We had some nice weather but also some chilly weather. We left from New Orleans, so went thru the Mississippi River, then thru the Gulf of Mexico down to the Caribbean. The Gulf was windy, chilly and cloudy both ways and my husband got sea sick. We had two ports where the weather was cloudy and cool, and two ports where it was nice and hot. There was a band that played Latin music that was good, another band similar that was good. Two solo artists, one was fairly good and the other was pretty bad. It seemed that everywhere we went the DJ came and started playing rap / dance music which I don't like at all. Most of the guests were 40 yrs and up, so couldn't figure out why they didn't look at their demographic before selecting music. We saw 3 shows. The first night, a preview for upcoming shows. Decent. We saw a 60's show midway thru the cruise and it was very good. We saw a variety show toward the end and it was good also. The cruise director was so-so. This was my 10th cruise and he wasn't as good as most. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
I will start by saying we have cruised with NCL 18 times, and have never complained. My attitude is "If you can't find the good , that is your problem." This was the 8th time on the Dawn the 4th re-po.We chose this cruise ... Read More
I will start by saying we have cruised with NCL 18 times, and have never complained. My attitude is "If you can't find the good , that is your problem." This was the 8th time on the Dawn the 4th re-po.We chose this cruise because we love taking reposition cruises, especially if Boston is at the beginning or end. We live in central MA which allows for only one way flight. We spent 2 days in NOLA. We stayed at the Greenhouse Inn in the garden district. The Inn was very quaint and relaxing. We enjoyed the city using the day passes on the trolley. Embarkation was very confusing, with conflicting instructions. The service on the ship was excellent, however the itinerary was poorly planned. We went to San Juan after Cartagena which require all cruisers and staff had to leave the ship for customs . Wasting 3 hours of our day to get off the ship. We seemed to get the "bad" pier everywhere we went. In Cozumel and San Juan we were at the Royal Caribbean pier leaving us far away from the usual shopping . In Cozumel we were in a port with high rent shops. We went on the semi submersible sub which was excellent. Roatann we were tendered in, where we went to The Tabyana Beach Party which was fair. In Cartagena we went on the Horse Drawn Old City tour. The idea is very nice, but it was so hot inside the walls no breeze. The city is beautiful. When ever we stopped we were "attacked" by venders. I wanted to purchase some emeralds and the only shop we went to was ridiculous. She started at $480, I declined she went to $360 .again I declined then she asked me how much I would spend. at the point I told her I was not interested. In Tortola we went to Jost Van Dyke. That was the best excursion we had ,"Best Day Ever". We met some wonderful new friends in the staff. We enjoyed breakfast in O'Sheehans every day, and enjoyed Patti and Jose' in the evenings. We also made new friends up in the Bimini. Wilfred, Ana ,Krista, and Leo all very attentive and friendly. Our biggest problem with this cruise was it seemed like we were an afterthought to who ever arranged the cruise. If San Juan cannot be the first port it should be skipped due to the need of having customs done before entering a US port. Non American cruisers were treated like criminals. Disembarking was the usual mess. The idea of having everyone off the ship in 2.5 hours is an enormous task, to be turned around in 4 hours . Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2017
My group of three chose this cruise due to the length of the cruise and the ports of call. We responded to an ad online from an agent out of Las Vegas, NV. We had all sailed on Norwegian previously however it had been over 15 years for ... Read More
My group of three chose this cruise due to the length of the cruise and the ports of call. We responded to an ad online from an agent out of Las Vegas, NV. We had all sailed on Norwegian previously however it had been over 15 years for each of us. I would point out the age of our party was 70, 70 and 80. We made clear with the agent we would need three twin beds and decided on an oceanview cabin. We were assured we would have two twin beds and a couch which would convert to a third bed. Upon arrival on the Dawn, we were surprised to open our cabin to find two beds and a bunk bed. We were then told they could put the third bed between the other two beds. This created three twin beds wall to wall with no walking space at all between the beds. One had to crawl onto the bed from the foot of the bed. Needless to say, the first time one of the passengers attempted to get on the bed it collapsed to the floor. I pursued the matter with housekeeping and the customer service department and was told there was nothing they could do. Norwegian made NO attempt to offer any resolution to our problem. I realize the issued arose due to the handling and promise by the agent. However, the travel agent of Norwegian acts on behalf of Norwegian and ultimately Norwegian is responsible and liable for the actions of their agent. The cabin itself was tiny. There was no room for three adults to co-exist for a week much less 12 days - many of which were spent at sea. The bathroom was EVEN smaller! Dining, entertainment and the ports and shore excursions were good. Needless to say, the three of us are unlikely to cruise again with Norwegian. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2017
Received a free cruise and upgraded to balcony, think it would be a good time to go , no bad weather and not so hot. Did know that it was spring break, over 800 college students onboard, for the most part most behaved however very, very ... Read More
Received a free cruise and upgraded to balcony, think it would be a good time to go , no bad weather and not so hot. Did know that it was spring break, over 800 college students onboard, for the most part most behaved however very, very noisy on the pool deck and tons and tons of drinking, so many underage yet were served. We've sailed NCL 8 times, and and are Platinum members and probably won't sail again on NCL, one big reason, price of drinks.....17 dollars for a martini, over 10 dollars just for a mixed drink.....way to much, we ordered coffee and baileys at the coffee bar it was over 25 dollars......NCL you've gone too far, now I'm not a drinker but like a drink now and then, but now as then we can't afford it. Overall service was good, shows were pretty good, casino, so so. Only saw cruise director once, seems he has his helpers do all the work, other ships you saw the cruise director all the time. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2017
I chose this cruise to get away from winter and to relax. I was traveling by myself. This ship had only one pool that was crowded during sea days but lovely when I was on the ship on port days. I didn't do any of the specialty ... Read More
I chose this cruise to get away from winter and to relax. I was traveling by myself. This ship had only one pool that was crowded during sea days but lovely when I was on the ship on port days. I didn't do any of the specialty dining this cruise but the offerings in the main dining rooms was satisfactory, even good. Service oveall was good on this cruise. New Orleans for a embarkation port was very disorganized and not as smooth and easy as other ports. As noted in my room review other than having poor sleep all week and being generallytired all week (avoid room 10607 if possible) it was overall what I expected. The cruise staff were all friendly and helpful. I was surprised at the limited number and variety of bars and lounges on this ship. Often at night, the one lounge on deck 6 there wasn't any seating available. The layout was very confusing on the upper levels near the pool and fitness area, you had to go through areas and I was still confused on how to get to an elevator. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2017
Norwegian Cruise lines is trying too hard to be in the leagues of much better cruise lines (IMHO) as Royal Caribbean or Celebrity Cruises - achieving little more than a second city status (BTW Second City Comedy troupe was FABULOUS and ... Read More
Norwegian Cruise lines is trying too hard to be in the leagues of much better cruise lines (IMHO) as Royal Caribbean or Celebrity Cruises - achieving little more than a second city status (BTW Second City Comedy troupe was FABULOUS and laugh out loud funny..one of the few highlights on this cruise). Tired of nickel and diming for substandard dining and entertainment. OK, I probably was spoiled by my last cruise on Celebrity where we had a butler, free dining/drink packages, superior dining options (Celebrity had a separate dining room for concierge levels on up), an additional indoor pool, unique drinks and restaurants, etc. NCL should be ashamed of themselves for charging double the rates of most cruise lines for drink packages and offering poorer quality of food at least for the average cruiser. For example: I had Pad Thai that was savory and not sweetened with tamarind as it should be. At the Bamboo restaurant, I had chow fun which should be large flat rice noodles in a savory brown sauce. Instead, this was an overly sweet, gloppy concoction with skinny spaghetti noodles. Seems the kitchen has an issue with noodle dishes. Except for the spaghetti and meat sauce which was decent and tasty, dishes such as linguini and clams (or calamari - in another dish) came in as a congealed cheesy messes. And the house dancers/singers in NCL were sophomoric compared to Broadway caliber performances on Celebrity Cruises. Some singers were even a bit off-key. As for the pros: staff was nice and professional and the room was decent. The House band was also fantastic. All in all a nice cruise, but have been to better ones. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
We have been on many NCL cruises and have alway found the employees helpful and courteous. On the NCL Dawn the guest service were down right rude. Basically knew very little and didn't seem to care when asked a question. We had keys ... Read More
We have been on many NCL cruises and have alway found the employees helpful and courteous. On the NCL Dawn the guest service were down right rude. Basically knew very little and didn't seem to care when asked a question. We had keys to our cabin that didn't work and Guest Service even questioned if we knew how to use them and if we were at the right cabin. WHAT, Get real already. We are platinum members with several platinum one is a bottle of Champaign in stateroom upon arrival. I asked a man behind an inside bar(without customers) if I could please have two Champaign glasses, even explained we didn't get glasses with our bottle of Champaign. He said get them from your cabin steward. Really, he is no where to be found!! He finally gave me glasses slamming them on the counter and walking away. The Moderno restaurant is way below standard, filet mignon was tough & couldn't eat it. The meat types went down hill from there, the only bright spot was the grilled chicken. The waiters and room stewards were excellent and friendly. Another point, NCL changed their Latitude reward system, now it seem platinum members get fewer amenities. Before the change, we had two dinners in speciality restaurants with our choice of a bottle of wine. With the new program we get just one bottle of wine with the first speciality restaurant the second restaurant NO bottle of wine. NCL GOES THE CHEAP ROUTE. Oh, they gave us a bottle of water in our cabin which was supposed to replace the wine. It just seems for the prices they charge and to gain locality of returning customers they should at least keep the same amenities. Not at all happy with NCL's new latitude rewards. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2017
We chose Norwegian to try the casual dining aspect and the itinerary was a new one for us. I had never been to New Orleans and with that being the departure port we were able to spend a few days there before the cruise. The Dawn had been ... Read More
We chose Norwegian to try the casual dining aspect and the itinerary was a new one for us. I had never been to New Orleans and with that being the departure port we were able to spend a few days there before the cruise. The Dawn had been recently refurbished so that also appealed to us. Leading up to the cruise we took advantage of the cabin upgrade from a balcony room to the 2 bedroom suite, Compared to Holland, Norwegian is stingy with the extra services unless you go to their top tier rooms. With Holland you can do the mid level suites and get quite a bit more service included vs Norwegian. We also found Norwegian's customer service lacking empowerment to fix things. Having watched their CEO on Undercover Boss you can see how his cheap attitude filters down to the "little people". We had an issue with the phone agent being less than honest about a noise issue with one of the "upgrade" cabins and in the end were offered a whopping $25.00 room credit. The room itself was fine inside except for the sofa being VERY uncomfortable and a sewer odor.. The sofa was designed for someone 6' 3" for some reason and the odor was taken care of with some treatment in the bathroom drains. . We were very disappointed in the balcony condition. The ship was supposedly refurbished less than a year ago and there was substantial visible rust on top and bottom railings which took away from the experience of paying for an upgraded room. Dining was very good in Cagney's steakhouse and ok in the Italian restaurant. We tried Bamboo one night and it might be the worst restaurant meal we've had in many years. Our local Panda drive thru has better food. We didn't have a meal in the buffet but did go up to check it out and had a small snack. The decor looked like it was from the 80's and the staff seemed miserable. While we sat for a short while no one came over to offer any assistance and it was not busy. The casino was very nice and was usually busy. The bars were very well staffed and we ended up at Osheehan's most of the time, great bartenders and decent food. The one issue was one of the blenders used for icy drinks had a bad bearing and was so loud the staff would plug their ears when in use. I brought it to bar manager's attention twice but it didn't stop them from using it. We just sat at the end of the bar to avoid the noise but it showed the lack of respect management has for their employees and customers. The stops were all over the place. The one stop with tenders was a DISASTER, we didn't even get off and quite a few people had to cancel excursions because the tenders were so far behind. The "Norwegian" island, Harvest Caye was a joke. It felt like we were at the ultimate tourist trap. There is this depressing mini enclosed lagoon for most of the water activities, a poorly stocked bar and over priced shops. The shops were creepy in that the staff would follow you around like you were a shoplifter. Yep, we just spent several thousand dollars on our cruise so we could steal your junky trinkets. Harvest Caye is also advertised as a stop in Belize. Sort of, if you really want to experience Belize you're about a 45 minute to an hour ferry ride from the fake island. not much day left if you actually left the Norwegian encampment. Costa Maya was also disappointing. Unless you do excursions you can not get out of the shopping area. weirdest stop ever on a cruise. Cozumel was fine, easy off and we spent the day at Nachi-Cocom beach that we booked ourselves. Short cab ride, good food and service, nice beach. We're debating if we would use Norwegian again. The crowd was fun and most of the staff was good but the ship itself was a letdown for having just been refurbished and stops on this cruise were below average at best. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
You can tell the ship is in need of an upgrade the interior is dated and several areas show a lot of wear from age. It should be remodeled or replaced. The lighting in the cabins was okay. We had quite a bit of storage. The sink in our ... Read More
You can tell the ship is in need of an upgrade the interior is dated and several areas show a lot of wear from age. It should be remodeled or replaced. The lighting in the cabins was okay. We had quite a bit of storage. The sink in our room did not drain very well at all. The a/c in the room could have been better we were hot and had to ask for a fan from housekeeping (they gave us a beat up box fan). The food was average. The dining room was good our food came out fairly warm and was decently seasoned, I would definitely suggest the dining room for breakfast and dinner. The buffet was bland and tasted like the food was not very fresh even though it was the beginning of a the meal. The other restaurants (Guy's burger, chopsticks, and blue iguana) were very good, it was very fresh and hot and well seasoned my group and I primarily ate there. On a positive note, the staff went above and beyond my expectations. I was surprised that house keeping and the wait staff in the dining room remembered all of our names (9 adults and 1 child). They were very helpful and quick to help us out with my 1 year old daughter. My wife and I got off at both ports. Cozumel is really nice and has several shops and a huge duty-free shop. If we went on this cruise again I would not get off the boat at Progresso there isn't much to see the duty-free shop was closed and we witnessed a brawl break out with the locals on the street were the bus dropped us off in town from the boat. Bottom line, you get what you pay for. I will not be taking this cruise again. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
Ok, so first. I just want to say, regardless of anything else, I definitely had a great time! It's hard not to have fun when you're on a cruise and I've been on a lot. However, the ship itself needs to be dry docked ... Read More
Ok, so first. I just want to say, regardless of anything else, I definitely had a great time! It's hard not to have fun when you're on a cruise and I've been on a lot. However, the ship itself needs to be dry docked and completely overhauled. The main public areas have been redone and are very nice, but areas such as by the Aft pool look run down and falling apart. The cleanliness of the ship was not that great. When you take your finger and run it across the top of a picture in your stateroom, it should not come off full of dust. You should be able to see through the windows to your balcony at least. And the mirror should not look filthy when steamed up. We had to mention this to our stateroom attendant and it was however quickly addressed and taken care of but we should not have had to do that. The service in the main dining room was very inconsistent. Many times orders got messed up or an item forgotten. Coffee was not offered every night. It seemed we had to ask or beg for everything. The proper utensils were not always provided. It really came down to a lack of attention to detail. If attention to detail is focused on, the service will be amazing. I also noticed the staff seemed to be terribly overworked. In my opinion, hire a few more stateroom attendants for each floor and few more helpers in the main dining room and service will be greatly improved. Our cabin had a lot of broken things. The handle to the balcony was stuck in the open position, some light panels were cracked and some lights were out. Beds however were great. The food was great. The seafood selections (paid) I enjoyed the Crab Legs but it would be nice to be provided with the little fork and a set of crab crackers instead of just a regular fork and a butter knife. Again. Attention to detail!! Fix those things, dry dock and redo the ship, it will be a great ship. I've been on older which seemed to be much better taken care of. Overall though, it was still a fun, great cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2017
I joined my parents and Aunty on this cruise, we chose it primarily for the stops as we really wanted some winter sunshine. We flew in from the UK and did a stop in Memphis before travelling to New Orleans on the Amtrack and enjoying ... Read More
I joined my parents and Aunty on this cruise, we chose it primarily for the stops as we really wanted some winter sunshine. We flew in from the UK and did a stop in Memphis before travelling to New Orleans on the Amtrack and enjoying the city for a couple of days before we set sail, NOLA was fabulous, very vibrant and a great vibe. Embarkation was generally fine, although they took our UK Passports off us to be authorized, is a little uncomfortable to not know where your passport has gone. We're assuming they had to check the system for our ESTA's but it would have been nice if they could do that from their system in front of them. My Aunt and I were in an inside Cabin, Parents had a balcony and both rooms were nice. The inside is small but 1 bonus over other ships is that the showers are a good size. We tried a few of the complimentary restaurants and overall they were good, Aqua was a bit loud and so that spoilt the ambience a little. The Bamboo was not very good, all our food was cold and had to be sent back and generally it was a bit bland and tasteless. My parents tried the paid for Mexican and said the meal was excellent and worth paying for. I do wonder if perhaps they are focusing on the paid for restaurants to look at up-selling and losing focus on their complimentary ones. Entertainment...not great, we felt like there wasn't very much happening at the pool areas and the quizzes weren't great (we like a quiz!) Fernando had loads of energy but the rest of his team seemed a bit tired. I think maybe for us it was tailored towards to American Audience, which is understandable considering the demographic of the ship...but the daily crossword and quizzes were very American. Second City definitely missed the mark for us Brits. They do play the Premier League football though so that was a bonus, although the 6:30am start to watch my team get beat was a bit tough. Overall the service was good, there are a lot of hard working staff making sure everything is clean and you have what you need. A couple of areas, like the bar staff in the Gatsby and the Bliss Lounge were a bit disappointing and it felt they were being a bit indifferent. I've not known this on a cruise before. O'Shennans on the other hand were fabulous. Our first port was Cozumel and My Dad and I went on the Secret River Excursion which we really enjoyed, our guide (Joshua) was fab it was a bonus to get some lunch. Had some time at the end to take in the beach before heading back to the ship. Roatan next, plenty of shore excursion operators on the port side. We didn't have anything planned for this stop and I bumped into a group who were heading to do the Zip Wires, we really enjoyed this and the guides around were awesome. We then headed to the private beach. I did find that if you hadn't booked an exercusion there was very little information provided about how to get about on your own, i asked guest services and they were helpful though. Harvest Caye, I was a bit disappointed, i'm not sure what i was expecting...but it is just an NCL Island. The sand in the beach is really tough and the water not that clear. Pool area was nice. I stayed a couple of hours and then took the opportunity to have some quiet time at the ships pool whilst everyone was at the beach and get some lunch since everything on the island was chargeable. Costa Maya, we went on the Chacchoben Ruins...whilst we enjoyed it, it is heavily populated with tour groups. We had a wander back through the port and checked out the Dolphins who were performing at the dock side. Disembarkation...a nightmare! We chose to walk off with our bags which seemed the easiest option. Queuing to leave we waited ages, apparently there was some sort of emergency and only one official checking you back through, it took almost an hour from leaving the ship to getting to immigration (it's not far, so a lot of standing about) There are lots of taxis and things but found there wasn't really anywhere to actually walk off the port side, we were only 3 blocks but had to duel with cabs to make it out and walk to the hotel. Overall we had a nice time, but I struggled a bit with the age range...previous cruises I've met other groups of similar ages (i'm 34) so I could spend time with others even if i was cruising with my parents. This time the demographic on the ship felt a little older. There always seemed to something going on that you could meet other people whereas here is felt a little lacking. I don't think I'd personally sail with Norwegian again, i'll probably go back to Royal Caribbean. However my parents really enjoyed it and they probably would cruise with them again. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
The cruise itinerary fitted perfectly with our Christmas holidays. We booked well in advance because it was expensive over the festive period and we like a balcony cabin. Our flights from Manchester to New Orleans and back from ... Read More
The cruise itinerary fitted perfectly with our Christmas holidays. We booked well in advance because it was expensive over the festive period and we like a balcony cabin. Our flights from Manchester to New Orleans and back from Barbados on the Dreamliner were excellent. We were in Premium and thought it was much better than Business Class on both Virgin and BA. We were quickly through customs and onto the coach and there was no delay checking onto the ship. Unfortunately things went downhill from there. Our cabin was ok, not great compared to other ships. No bath robes? Never been on a ship that doesn't supply them before. We bought some and brought them home. However, our steward was very good. We had anytime dining in Peninsular Restaurant. We always asked for a table for 2 and sometimes had a buzzer but never a long wait. Service was usually good, although it often took ages to get wine. Menu choices uninspiring, although the soups were always hot and tasty. We ate in all the speciality restaurants. Liked the Glass House best. The service at all these restaurants was always good. The buffet! Poor. Luke warm food, no service at all. Staff couldn't care less. Stayed away from the sail away parties, it's just not our thing. Enjoyed the terrace pool on sea days as it was handy for our cabin. Overall we enjoyed our holiday although we prefer a more cosmopolitan atmosphere on board. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2016
I feel that the quality of the ship, the restaurants, the food, but not the employees, has declined. I really do not like what was done with the Venitian restaurant. Really seems to be a lot of 5 dollar and 10 dollar-ing. A la carte in the ... Read More
I feel that the quality of the ship, the restaurants, the food, but not the employees, has declined. I really do not like what was done with the Venitian restaurant. Really seems to be a lot of 5 dollar and 10 dollar-ing. A la carte in the specialty restaurants seems to be just to get more money. Let's get the quality up if you are going to do that. I really was disappointed with this cruise. I was hoping my husband would enjoy his first cruise. I feel he did, only because he didn't know that way it used to be. Also, it seemed like the ship moved more through the water. More up and down, side to side. I had never noticed this before even with higher seas. Embarkation and debarkation when along smoothly. Did self debarking. I noticed that there were custom forms set out. I had my husband go down to guest services to get one for us. It is much nicer if we are given them the night before. Read Less
44 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
My 2nd time on Crystal, and the first since the new owners Genting took control, I did not check reviews beforehand and am not looking at any now, I just feel compelled to share my thoughts on how things have changed subtly in some areas, ... Read More
My 2nd time on Crystal, and the first since the new owners Genting took control, I did not check reviews beforehand and am not looking at any now, I just feel compelled to share my thoughts on how things have changed subtly in some areas, and obviously in others. My aha moment for writing this came when I overheard a conversation about Genting always wanting to be the Number One cruise line in the world (having previously owned NCL) and rather than keep working it, “they bought their way to supremacy” Today is the last day of this trip a sea day and a gentle cruise to Miami. There is no television this afternoon on the ship, we did have pictures and no sound, now nothing, a day when news of tragedies in Berlin and Turkey make it important to know what is going on, It seems frivolous to be writing this review at all in reality so please forgive this. Tastes restaurant is closed “for maintenance” tonight, why would that be other than to push people into the main dining room or the $30 PP extra at the specialty restaurants. Nobody is working on maintenance, it closed at 2:30 pm as it does every day. The verandas were unavailable last night and all day today as they hosed them down, no notice just a guy and a hosepipe suddenly watching me get dressed (more sickening for him in fairness) It seems like there is constant maintenance going as generally, the first three days had internet that was unavailable, (while they fixed something) The first two days the casino was closed (as they were installing all new slot machines and did not complete the job on time. The main dining room is dirty, there is no other word for it. Walking to the table last night there was some pasta and a French fry on the floor, it was still there an hour later. It is clear that there are a huge % of people in training, that is fine, but the ship is far from full and when you ask a question as simple as “where is the nearest restroom, erm..toilet, sorry” you might expect something other than “I can get you a map of the ship” then the colleague next to the young man slaps him (literally) and says "show him where" Our room is very nice, 10079, spacious wardrobe, nice and quiet, lovely full bathroom, great butler and very pleasant room attendant. The front desk was excellent, very helpful with my many requests for print outs of documents that I could sign and scan back, nothing was too much trouble for them, a great team all round. A high point of the trip was spending evenings at the sushi bar with the superb Executive Chef called Toku, the Toro was incredible, his culinary skills superb and the atmosphere perfect. Prego was much better this trip than last, I had lamb rack twice and it was perfect both times. The expansion that is underway is clearly challenging the business and its most important resource, its people. The push into river cruises, air cruises and mega ships with residences is removing the focus that is laser like still at Seabourn and Silversea, luxury cruise lines that have stood the test of time. In some respects, it feels like a company in transition, we might have been the unlucky ones that had to suffer disruption to get the ship ready for the next guests out of Miami on the 20th December, but having lived in Hong Kong and see what Star Cruises is like I get the distinct impression that the focus is moving from a focus on serving the ultra-luxury market to one focused on the ultra-wealthy, there is a clear difference. I run a business, we have happy customers and some of the time we also let people down, it’s hard to be on top of your game all of the time and I will take things away that will help me in my own company for sure. One huge takeaway is you can not expect your customers to get less than they expected just because you are doing maintenance however you disguise it. If the ship needed so much work, it should have been taken out of service, or as hotels do, tell you in advance that they are renovating the pool/lobby etc and book if you don’t care about those things. Yes, I am disappointed with the trip but I have had a rest, met some nice people one of which taught me to play craps properly rather than my terrible way, in that respect the educational part of the trip was a winner! Ultimately when you are paying top dollar, you should get the best, nothing less and if you do not, you have the option to vote with your wallet and spend money elsewhere, for me that will be back to Seabourn with the whole family this summer. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
This was my first cruise on Norwegian but my 12th cruise. I have cruised with Princess, Celebrity, Royal Carribean and Cunard. I liked the idea of freestyle so I decided to give it a try. Well embarkation was disorganized and slow. The ... Read More
This was my first cruise on Norwegian but my 12th cruise. I have cruised with Princess, Celebrity, Royal Carribean and Cunard. I liked the idea of freestyle so I decided to give it a try. Well embarkation was disorganized and slow. The daily activities were limited but the night performances were awesome. The food was terrible not many choices. The complimentary dinning included selections were you had to pay. If it is complimentary why did they charge for some entriees? The dinner package provided excellent selections. The Moderno, Caigneys, and Teppanyaqui were amazing. Truly recommend all three. The service was excellent. The crew on the ship went above and beyond in service. The music was pretty good but there was no variety. Same type of music every night. There was no supervision of teenagers. Kids would run up and down hallways and nothing was done. I reported once but it continued during the whole cruise. The curfew for teenagers was till 1:00 am. Too late for pre teens. Did not see to much security. I don't think that I will cruise with Norwegian again. Read Less

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