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3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
In retrospect I wish I didn't Never will cruise Norwegian again. Horrible service. Food was just as bad. Entertainment sub par. Worst cruise ever. I have gone on more than 10 cruises and first and last NCL cruise. Cabin was old and ... Read More
In retrospect I wish I didn't Never will cruise Norwegian again. Horrible service. Food was just as bad. Entertainment sub par. Worst cruise ever. I have gone on more than 10 cruises and first and last NCL cruise. Cabin was old and worn. Shower door broken. Bathroom door broken. A/C made terrible noise. Ship cannot comfortably accommodate number of passengers on a sold out cruise especially in inclement weather. They are short on staff and the attitude of the staff was the worst I have ever seen. You can seriously get better service at a fast food restaurant. Specialty restaurants are a joke. Same type of food and service just a different setting. Pool deck vastly overcrowded and on a 10 day cruise the 2 pools were only open once at the same time. For certain types of liquor you had to go to more than one bar to find it. Overall Royal Caribbean, Princess or Celebrity are better by far at the same price point. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Where should I start on that. I'm normally not someone who easily complaints about issues and who is willing to overlook things but this cruise was the worst cruise I have ever done. I mean we spend over $10K just for the cruise which ... Read More
Where should I start on that. I'm normally not someone who easily complaints about issues and who is willing to overlook things but this cruise was the worst cruise I have ever done. I mean we spend over $10K just for the cruise which was nothing what came close to what NCL is promising in their advertisements. But from the Beginning: Embarkation: We had chosen (My parents, my Fiance and my two boys) that we will take the 10am time slot as the ship were supposed to leave at 4pm and the Intrepid Museum is next door of the cruise terminal. Then we arrived there was already a huge line in front of the security control and announcements were made that the computer system isn't working and they will open the check in soon (I don't want to even know how people felt who had the 8am check in time). After about 15min wait the line actually started to move and we were all still in a good mood. Check in was quite easy and it didn't was anything different from any other American Cruise line we have sailed on (the European ones are much better organized and faster (AIDA, TuiCruises)). We were told not to leave the waiting area as boarding would start at 12pm anyways which we didn't really like as we wanted to go to the Museum with our boys but which we accepted. So at around 11.45 we found a seat and started to wait. Till 1pm nothing happened until an NCL crew member made the announcement that the ship has arrived late and they have to go through the procedure with the Port Authority which will take till 2.30pm. Uff. I mean our boys are easy to entertain but 2 1/2 hours in a waiting hall where nothing was is quite interesting. In between where were more announcements made that maybe it will be a little bit earlier and they will try everything to get us on board as soon as possible. At 2.30pm the next announcement was made that they will start any minute with the boarding. We had to wait till nearly 4pm to finally get on board of the ship (just a reminder 6 hours from arrival with two little boys (5 and 8)). Cabin: Okay at least we were on board now and could start enjoying our vacation. As we arrived in our cabin it was obvious that it wasn't really cleaned. We found the trash and the room card from the ones who were traveling in that cabin the cruise before. The mirrors had finger prints (and then I say fingerprint I mean dirt) and the tables were all sticky. I have slept in hotels in China which were below the 1 star rating and I didn't had any issues. But I knew what I paid for and what I had to expect. This stateroom wasn't anything near what I would expect for that amount of money spend. The good thing about the room was that the toilet was separate from the shower and the sink in its little own "room". Dining/Food/Crew: Exhausted from this start we just wanted to have some dinner so we thought it would be a good idea to go to the dinner restaurant so that we don't have to get our food from the buffet. We didn't have to wait at all to get seated and were really surprised that we had a table that fast. The waiter greeted us and asked what we would like to drink. As we had the Ultimate Beverage Package (includes Alcohol and sodas/juices and so on, but don't include coffee or sparkling water (to get that you have to buy another package for an additional $39 per day(!)). So we asked for a few sodas and apple juice for the boys. This was the first time we got eyed rolled on us (and not the last time). It took just 15-20 minutes to get our drinks, which means our waiter wasn't seen for the same amount of time. Her back we started with ordering food and I did the mistake and asked for a 2nd starter which made me earn the next comment in Chinese and rolled eyes. By the time then the starters arrived (another 15 minutes later) we had drunk our sodas and juices but our waiter ignored that we had either water nor any thing else left in our glasses and just didn't asked if we would like to have anything. So I asked if we could get refills and earned the next pair of rolled eyes and rudeness. I think I have never been treated like that before. Unfortunately this attitude stayed the same the whole cruise with one exception. After we had complaint to the customer service the next evening dinning we had the restaurant manager and his staff at our table every 5 minutes so that it didn’t feel genuine as more as a thing they had to do. I didn't feel any better with that and honestly the interaction with our kids was quite creepy. Overall the service was very slow (one exception was the Moderno were the bar is right around the corner), inattentive and most of the times not friendly at all. They gave us the feeling we were just a burden and they have to do their job. By the way, I haven’t seen the Captain or his first officer or the hotel manager or the entertainment manager once during the whole cruise. This is not really a good thing. On top of that the food was nothing close to anything we had on different other cruise ships. I mean I can taste the difference between fresh mashed potatoes and instant ones. These were definitely not fresh ones. And when you bite on clumps of instant powder in a soup then you know that this one isn't made fresh either. The breakfast buffet didn't have had any variation (the same cheese every day, two types of ham, no honey, the same baked beans, the same pancakes, waffles and so on). I mean no variation at all. It was quite similar with the lunch and the dinner buffet but not as bad as the breakfast. This food was hardly enjoyable and had nothing from premium concept NCL is advertising. Entertainment: If you have kids stay away from the Norwegian Gem. There was nearly nothing to do for kids and we got most of the times the feeling they are just annoying and in the wrong place. I never had that my kids were treated with such a small amount of attention. Yes there were two exceptions who were awesome and super nice but unfortunately it were only two crew members. Other than that the entertainment was okay but nothing really exciting nor was it so much that we couldn’t decide. Money: Money is a big thing for Norwegian because as soon as you enter the ship it feels like they want to rip you off. I mean the Arcades for the kids were $1 (!!!) per minute. Yes you could buy a game pass for unlimited games for $175 for the cruise per kid (!). Before nearly every show they tried to sell their "awesome" offer to buy the next cruise and make the down payment and you get up to $500 on board credit for “free” (if you made a down payment for $1,000 at the same time). The photographer were rude and very pushy and in general we got the feeling they had to reach a certain amount of sales. During our specialty dinners the photographer pushed us to make a photo with him just to show us the result at the end of our dinner where we just wanted to enjoy our desert. The price tag for that picture was a cheap $25 for one (!) picture which wasn’t even really good. And then you say friendly “no thank you” you get either “Why? Isn’t it a good picture?” or “Are you really sure?” or they rip the photo out of your hand and just leave without any comment. As written before, having certain packages doesn't mean it is for free as they try to get still things paid on top. For example we had the dinning package (4 times special dinning for the 1st and 2nd person in our cabin but due to corporate policy (which is not written or shown on the website) we weren’t allowed to share this dinning package with our children who were cruising in the same cabin. There wasn’t even the possibility to buy these packages for the 3rd and 4th person cruising in the same stateroom. It wasn’t like I wanted to give it to another person on the ship to invite them. It was for our own children in the same stateroom. The restaurant manager just answered to our complaint that this is normal and they have the same complaints at least a few times per cruise. Why doesn’t NCL change it if this is such a big complaint or at least mention it on their website or somewhere. Ports/ Excursions: When we booked our cruise we had Saint Kitts in our itinerary but do to schedule issues NCL changed the itinerary to St. Marteen/St. Martin which was fine with me as I always wanted to see the famous beach where the planes land just a couple of feet above your head. But in general the planning of NCL for their ports is horrible. I mean then they say you will be at 4pm in the Port they are either early or late. I never have made such experiences with any other cruise line. I mean being early by half an hour or having some issues with clearing the boat so that it is a little bit later (half an hour) but most of the ports I have visited with other cruise lines were on time. Not with NCL. One port we arrived like 4 hours early another port late and none of the ports on time. I mean I stopped to look in to the cruise journal as it didn’t matter at all what was written for the arrival time. It wouldn’t work anyways so it was easier just to accept that we will be there then we are there. And it isn’t such a big issue as we still had our fun on the different islands but what was really annoying that NCL canceled our last port because of a “storm” on our route and they want to make up the time they will lose in the storm so that we can be “safer”. Sounds at the beginning right and good that the company is taking that good care of us. But then you find out that you are back in the NY port by 3am docked while it was planned to dock at 10am and you miss going by the Statue of Liberty in daylight which was one of the main reasons why we booked this cruise when you get the first questions. When you then hear that this was the last cruise on this route and the ship goes without passengers to Boston afterwards then this is getting even more irritating. Especially then I let you know how the disembarkation worked. Disembarkation: Two days before the arrival you had the choice to get tags for your suitcases for either going from board with your luggage or at a certain time. We decided to take the latest possible time which was 12pm for going of board. The evening before we arrived we got the information from our steward that we have to leave the cabin no later than 8am. Okay, but we thought okay we will find a place in the restaurant or on deck. No big issue. Next morning we got ready so that we could leave the cabin by 8am as we were told to do so. At 7.30am the first announcement came that now all individuals with luggage can leave the boat. We thought wow they are starting early with disembarkation especially as we were not planned to be back in port before 10am. But we didn’t thought anything bad and went for breakfast. At 8.30 they called the first passengers with luggage tags and only 15 minutes the next group. Our group was called at 9am. Again we were supposed to be not from board before 12pm and made our travel arrangements accordingly. So we thought okay it is just a nice information that our luggage is now available. And again we were so wrong. At 9.15am they called again all groups and at 9.30am they made the last call for all passengers. 9.30am (!). Half an hour before we were even supposed to arrive back in New York. So we made our way to the check out where the next surprise was waiting for us. While everyone out of my family was allowed to leave the ship I was quite rude informed that I have to go back to the customer service because there is an account issue. Not that we were waiting already in line for getting off board for 20 minutes and not that this was the time to inform passengers about another corporate policy no you wait till check out and then you have one of your big security guards moving you out of the line. As I got to know afterwards the security was even more rude to my children and my family as the wanted to either go with me or at least wait for me as they didn’t know anything of what was going on. Nevertheless, I went back to the customer service where the customer manager informed me that I have some board credit left on my account. When I asked him what the problem is as they have my Credit Card on file where they could have easily booked the money to I just got the answer it is corporate policy to pay it out cash. I never had any issues with board credit not being able to get it back in my account but it seems like all what NCL can do is charging. So all of this trouble only for paying my board credit in cash and this as rude as possible. Fun fact about safety with NCL: We had to use an escalator for going down to our luggage. When my son (5 years) stepped onto the escalator I wanted to follow immediately as how it is done by good parents not expecting what would come next. Instead of making my way on the escalator I got stopped very rudely from another NCL employee with a stick until my son was already a few steps down. Then the stick was lifted and I was allowed to enter the escalator. The same with the rest of my family and other passengers behind us. As I wanted to get to my son as he has sometimes trouble to get of the escalator I moved forward which earned me a again a very rude: “Sir, don’t move on the escalator”. Just in case you don’t know how to use the escalator just ask NCL. They will tell you! In general the employees at the check out and in the terminal were very rude. Waiting for family members where answered with: “SIR, KEEP moving!”. I mean we were within the last passengers going of the boat so that there not really more masses on people to expect but yeah the nearly empty arrival hall was still to small to make it possible for me to wait for my children and my family. Overall Yeah, I think you know my conclusion and what I want to say. But another fun fact before I come to the conclusion everyone is expecting. It was a lucky coincident that my son was chosen to draw the lucky winner of a future cruise with NCL and he drew the couple sitting next to us. After the draw then a person from NCL had explained everything to the couple I asked them if I could get to know what kind of cruise it is. They answered that it is a 5 day Caribbean cruise but that all the taxes, port fees, gratuities and so on aren’t included in the “free” cruise. Just to let you know if you get a “free” cruise from NCL be careful, it might not be for free. Okay but now to my conclusion. If you are a foody or you are travelling with your family or your taste buds are still working in a good way or you like to relax and have a friendly atmosphere, then run and don’t book with NCL. If you don’t know what to do with your money, and you like instant and frozen food, and you want to get bothered by employees trying to sell you what you have already bought then NCL is the right cruise line for you. For me I can say that I will NEVER ever cruise with NCL again because if I would have the feeling it was just this ship then I would be like “meah” lets try another ship but this experience has shown pretty much that this is a corporate issue and not a ship or crew issue. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
My husband and I area living in New York, then we decided to take this ship + Caribbean route. We are in mid-40-50 and most of the cruisers were much older, few youngers. Embarkation & Desembarkation (New York port): We have been ... Read More
My husband and I area living in New York, then we decided to take this ship + Caribbean route. We are in mid-40-50 and most of the cruisers were much older, few youngers. Embarkation & Desembarkation (New York port): We have been cruising with other cruise lines (Royal, Celebrity and Carnival. First with NCL and probable the last. The embarkation and disembarkation are very disorganized. DINING We had one night at ‘Moderno’ Restaurant (Brazilian steakhouse), that was very disappointing. First, we are Brazilians and the way they serve the food is not the same. Rice and beans are served together in Brazil. At Moderno, rice was on the buffet and beans are served as a side dish, later. The meat was very spicy and salty. The service was very slow also. It was my birthday dinner ... The waitresses sang a ‘Happy Birthday’ and gave me a very hard and old cake, as a gift. I tried to eat but I just couldn’t. We went twice to ‘Garden Café’, complementary, we felt very chaotic and the food was not good, not healthy at all. To get a table, we were having breakfast before 7:00am and lunch before noon. The rest of the days and nights we had dinner and lunch at the ‘Grand Pacific’, which the food was OK, nothing special, the lunch menu was the same every day, the dinner had a daily variation with few options. DAYS AT THE SEA We felt bored with few options of entertainment. Sales onboard were range for cheap stuff (in quality) to expensive jewelry/watches. Very few options to buy as a souvenir. EXCURSIONS: • Most of the NCL shore Excursions which include a beach do not mention the name of the beach. Pay attention!!! Puerto Rico: We docked at 4:00pm in San Juan and decided to walk around the Old San Juan, El Morro and churches. We had few time at El Morro before closing. The weather was very windy and started raining. Were Back to the ship at 6:00pm. Supposed to left at 10:00pm, but We left only at 11:00pm due to a late excursion. We book shore excursions for all the other Ports through NCL. Philipsburg, St Maarten, St Martin: We had a city tour on both sides of the island (Dutch and French) + 1 hour at the beach (Dutch side). The island still has a lot of destruction from previous hurricanes, If you don’t like to see it, go straight to the beach. This trip was booked on September/2018 for March sailing. St Kitts was scheduled for the second Port, but all the sudden NCL changed for St Maarten with no announcement. St Lucia, Castries – It was a lovely day with a city tour to the Pitons, Prayer Garden and volcano. Antigua, St John – We choose the ‘Hop on Hop Off’ catamaran com option to visit 2 beaches. (90 minutes per beach) Dickenson Bay beach (beer $10) and Runaway beach. Be careful on Runaway beach Restaurant, we ordered beers (we get it) + fish burger (which we never get it). We had only 1 hour at that beach and they had all excuses (a lot of orders, we are doing our best, etc. We had to take a taxi on order to be on time for ship time, the catamaran was overboard taking people from Dickenson beach and left us at Runway beach. Not only our group (8), but more than 50 people from other cruise ship/excursions. St Thomas, US Virgin Islands – we spend 2 hours at Maegan’s Beach. Lovely beach. Previouly, we are supposed to arrived at 8:00am and leave St Thomas only at 5:00pm. Again, NCL changed with no announcement and we left St Thomas at 1:00pm. Will I cruise again? Yes, but with other cruise Companies, NCL never again. After bad reviews about WIFI onboard, we decided not go for a 39.99 per day. We also had a big issue, that was resolved only after 5 days of disembarkation. We always book our cruises through a Travel Agent, always receive a credit onboard. NCL not only denied our credit during our trip but also my Travel Agent had to fight with them for many days and finally they admitted their mistake. I complained on board (NCL customer service) 3 times, even call my Agent. What a stress! Be careful! Another annoying part from NCL are the pre-payment that are placed few days before the end of the cruise on your credit card, that only disappear 4 days after the end of cruise. Not mention, the full invoice already charged on your credit card on the last day. Good point: the size of our balcony + bed was good + size of the bathroom shower. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We are not first time cruisers, but this was our first (and last) cruise with Norwegian. We chose this cruise because of its date and itinerary. We hadnt heard anything bad about Norwegian so we figured we'd give them a try. A ... Read More
We are not first time cruisers, but this was our first (and last) cruise with Norwegian. We chose this cruise because of its date and itinerary. We hadnt heard anything bad about Norwegian so we figured we'd give them a try. A series of unfortunate events turned our 11 day cruise into a 10 day cruise. We understood the weather is something no one can control so that is not Norwegians fault. However the day before our departure day and even departure sail we recieved about a dozen notifications that the ship would be departing 2 hours late. (Bad weather had delayed its return to New York) Because of the weather our plane was delayed. We were worried we'd miss the departure but fortunately we landed and met uo with our Norwegian tranfer rep. She got us on our shuttle reassuring us we'd made it in time. Got to the peir.... no ship! Now informed the ship was not able to safely dock. Its about 2pm. (This cruise leaves earlier in the day to travel as far as we were to go) With no help from Norwegian we are dropped off to find a place to stay overnight. We had never been to New York before so we took a bit of time to find a hotel that was a reasonable price and distance to the peir. This extra night in New York was not cheap. We had burgers for dinner at a chain restaurant with a pop each (just my husband and I) and that came to about $80. Plus the $300 for a hotel room, breakfast not included there so another meal about $50 more. The whole time we were trying to keep our spirits up. Also the rumour from the other guests was Norwegian would help with the costs. Finally at 4pm we got the first text message that the cruise would not be sailing this day. (Of course we already know a couple hours before) How can they send us so many notices for a 2 hour delay but then nothing on the sail date. They knew for at least 2 hours before sending any notices. We boarded the next day to only discover that our 11 day 6 port cruise would now be a 10 day 4 port cruise. No explanation from anyone as to why we had lost 1 day but 2 ports. Still kept spirits up. Disappointed of course. We found the service was just ok. As was the food. My husband and I both work in customer service and it drove us both crazy to see how it seemed like the staff didnt really care to be there. No one looked happy really. Smile while beside a guest, look unhappy away from guests. I dont expect people to be jolly all the time but they just looked like they were going through the paces. No one did anything extra for a guest. We saw a few times where someone was waiting for service or a table and the staff would see them too. No acknowledgment was made and even saw a table get up and leave. Towards the end of the cruise my husband and I went to ask about getting money back for our missed day and for any help for expenses. They told us that we would have to submit for expenses and to watch the website and our Visa for the days refund. A week after returning home we finally saw our days refund. We got a whopping $149. We were happy to see we did get our shuttle fare back, since we had to get our own transportation to the ship. (The second try!) A few days later we heard that Norwegian will not be helping in anyway towards expenses in new york. My husband had taken the number of days of the cruise and divded it by the cruise total. Came to $300, not $149. Theres never been anything on their website or any emails. Nothing in our Norwegian account. No communication. The deals they were offering to try to get cruises to return were fantastic but the lack of service and the no communication we've had with Norwegian has left us realizing we will never cruise Norwegian again. We are escalating our complaints with Norwegian. Hopefully we at least get a full day refunded. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
My wife and I have been on several cruises before but this was our first and last cruise with Norwegian Cruise Lines. Their lack of communication and unwillingness to take any responsibility for anything is astounding. Our departure was ... Read More
My wife and I have been on several cruises before but this was our first and last cruise with Norwegian Cruise Lines. Their lack of communication and unwillingness to take any responsibility for anything is astounding. Our departure was delayed by one day because of bad weather which we understand. However, we do not understand why Norwegian did not communicate that to us. Instead our Norwegian shuttle picked us up at the airport and drove us to the pier where the dock hand informed us that our ship would not be arriving until the next day. Our shuttle driver unloaded our luggage and told us we would have to find ourselves a hotel for the night. There we were wondering the unfamiliar streets of New York City looking for a hotel that had room along with the other 2000 guests of the ship that were in the same predicament. The next morning at embarkation they handed us a sheet of paper telling us that because of the delay in departure they had cancelled 2 of our scheduled ports with no reason given and that they would be refunding us for 1 day of our cruise. It is now more than a month since the cruise ended and we are still fighting for our 1 day refund and they will not even reply to my emails. It was not the cruise itself that we have a problem with it is Norwegian's complete lack of customer service that we find unacceptable. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
had terrible service at bars. bar tenders worked hard, but needed help to keep up. Drink package extremely too high. traveling friend did not drink, but was forced to pay $1,700 for both if interested. I just didn't drink that ... Read More
had terrible service at bars. bar tenders worked hard, but needed help to keep up. Drink package extremely too high. traveling friend did not drink, but was forced to pay $1,700 for both if interested. I just didn't drink that much on cruise. Just ok service at restaurants, even the specialty ones (3). Both cabin beds felt like they had nails poking out of them. Had to take pain pills to get thru the night. A lot of over charges that I am having to dispute. A lot of double charges. Charged for lot of drinks I did not receive and don't have receipts for so going to have to dispute those also. Embarkation took over hour and half after we got to pier just waiting in cab. Once inside like chaos boarding. Same for disembarking. Mile long waiting lines to get off! I waited until latest point to go get final bill so it would more likely be close to accurate only to find when I got home and checking credit card bill os all the erroneous charges that even put me over my limit several thousand dollars and effect my credit rating negatively. This was fourth time on this particular ship with prior cruises OK. They just did about everything you could do wrong on this voyage and charged me dearly for it. They don't like it when you win in the casino and was told so! Everyone just suppose to act like sheep and lose a thousand or so and go home happy. Not good business and very unprofessional This is first time after about 65 cruises that I have complained. I just felt this time I had to let other cruisers know things don't always go right but this was awful. Thanks, Im getting writers cramp so will bid you farewell for now. Already have had another cruise planned for April on Symphony of the Seas. Will be first time on this ship. I sure hope things go better.. Bye Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
This was part of back to back cruises. There was an outbreak of Neuro Virus on the cruise before. At check in they continuously gave false info kept people waiting for hours overloading the terminal. They never said outright at ... Read More
This was part of back to back cruises. There was an outbreak of Neuro Virus on the cruise before. At check in they continuously gave false info kept people waiting for hours overloading the terminal. They never said outright at terminal there was an outbreak. They did not give us option to cancel at pier and get money back. When on board we called NCL and my agent called NCL. They refused to offer us a thing. The ship was a complete mess Everything was cleared away. No menus on bars no spa no vacuum for a week. Service was just absolutely awful and NCL just has terrible customer relations and just don't care. Other cruise lines that had this kind of outbreak offered you option to not sail and refund your money or sail get partial money back and large discounts on next cruise On top of that right while we were sailing they removed tons of drinks from the menu and made their prices outrageous You now have to buy a premium drinks package above the regular one at $35 a day to cover it. That was not available yet. The only thing was after a wrote a stinging not to hotel director did customer service supervisor do something for me on second part of cruise. The Epic just had a crash and NCL refused to give any money back. Only 50% off on next cruise. This CEO is really something. No customer relations at all. They just don't care about anything or anybody. Read Less

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