March 2016 - Norwegian Spirit to Caribbean - Western
I booked 3 balcony rooms for my family, and then we had another family travel with us. The first oddity that I noticed-our room steward never introduced himself, and never bothered to learn our names-I have never had this happen before, they always know our names, usually by the end of the first day and greet you all the time. Our room was not clean-we had to wash stains off the couch and found someone else's socks in the closet. We were often missing towels, and had to remove used food/drinkware when done. One room had a substantial leak from the bathroom, out through the entry into the hall-all week. We brought it to the steward's attention, and an industrial fan was used, both in the room and in the hall to attempt to dry the floor, to no avail. A bottle of wine was left (for my underaged son) as an apology. On day 3 all 4 bathroom toilets would not flush, which we also brought to the stewards attention (apparently it was a larger than just our 4 room problem), but when we returned to our room the following day there was a card reminding us what we can and can not flush-we are flush aware-that was not the problem (at least in our rooms) which we found offensive. Several nights at dinner we found a wait (20 min+) at our table before a server would come to take an order, and a wait between order and arrival of food (20+ min between finish of one course and arrival of next), in both cases without apology or explanation. I had shore excursion credit on 2 of my cabins, and asked several times about how to use it, both at the shore excursion desk (on day 1) and the guest services desk (on day 4), and learned on the final night of the cruise that I was shorted $250 of that money, as I was given false info from the shore excursion desk, and guest services was unwilling to assist/resolve. Given that this was an older ship, I was unable to access my onboard account on the tv or thru a kiosk, and had to rely on guest services, which was just an inconvenience. I was not always charged the correct drink prices for the drink of the day-which resulted in charges to my onboard account, that I would not otherwise have had, given that I had the beverage package. At disembark one of my suitcases was misplaced, which took an additional 30 minutes to locate (no clue where it went), and when located, it was damaged (brand new suitcase now has a broken wheel), and my sons suitcase also received a broken wheel in this process. These suitcases were fine at 11pm when we placed them in the hall, and by 8am we had 2 broken. Shows were ok, not spectacular, food was ok, staff was decent but not great, shops onboard nothing to write home about, bar entertainment funny, but the same script night after night, went to the Sushi bar and the sushi was good but it is only open at 5:30 pm-which conflicts with supper, so if I am buying sushi, I would rather do it at lunch time, and then go to supper. The main dining room does have a dress code for dinner, no shorts. I found that the signs onboard were lacking, and people were often left wondering where they were supposed to go, and often printed info was conflicting in the daily guide, citing a start or stop time as one thing on one page and different on a different page. On deck there were parts of the deck that were roped off for the majority of the cruise, and deck chairs were often tied up/stacked, even when there were no empty ones available and people walking looking for a free one. Tendering process was as confusing as always, they line you up on pool deck, in front of an open bar, that morning to grab tender tickets, and then when they call the tenders, everyone runs, regardless of the number they have. Staff often does not turn away a wrongdoer. One day we scored some priority tender tickets, and were in line for tender #1, but staff got confused and moved the line and the priority folks ended up on tender #2 and had to wait about 30 minutes longer than they otherwise should/would have, had the line not been moved (I would have been pissed if I had paid for the suites and then lost that benefit there). Port Canaveral was very easy to park, drop luggage, and embark. I have cruised on 3 lines, multi times each, and just found this one/this time to be sub par, especially for what I paid, and unfortunately has left a sour taste for Norwegian and likely to be my last with this company.