January 2014 - Norwegian Epic to Caribbean - Eastern
While this is a very large and beautiful ship there are many problems for most people cruising on the Epic. To get to either of the only two complimentary dining rooms or the only complimentary restaurant, or most showrooms, or aid restaurants, adults and children have to walk the gauntlet thru the casino which is so smoke filled it makes a non smoker choke. There is no other way to get to these rooms. Even though the buffet is on the 15th floor, when you get out of the elevators you are immediately greeted by heavy smoke. You would think in this day and age, Norwegian would have this be mainly a non smoking ship. Entertainment on board is great, however there is only showroom entertainment for 4 nights. We were on a seven day cruise. Yes there is other entertainment but it is in the bars. The bars are small and even more filled with smoke than the casino so again for a non smoker it was almost impossible to take a breath so for those nights no entertainment. All during the cruise it seemed that the staff was nickel and diming everyone putting a lot of pressure to make reservations in the paid dining restaurants. In the buffet and free dining rooms during each meal we were approached at least 3 times wanting to know if we wanted reservations in one of the paid restaurants.
We also had some special needs in regard to food and this was a constant fight. We had made special arrangements with Norweigian prior to sailing but these were never conveyed to the ship. Dealing with guest services subjected us to very rude staff. We were told there was a refrigerator in the room which there wasn't. It is a mini bar full of stuff you pay dearly for and does not keep anything cold.
While there was little wait for most elevators, once on they do not go to each floor, so be prepared for a lot, and I mean a lot of walking. Even the stairs were blocked off in many areas. If you have mobility issues this is definetly not the ship for you.
On the plus side, other than the guest services staff, all the other staff on the ship were friendly and upbeat, doing their best to serve.