March 2016 - Pride of America to Hawaii
Bought this trip for my wife for her 50th birthday. This was not what I had in mind. I did a lot of research and thought this cruise would be what we have wanted to do. We were very excited about trip getting all line up for excursions and what we could do on ship for 5 days of cruising and Hawaii islands for 6 days. The day before cruise got a call from my emergency contact say she thought our ship may be delayed a day. Called ncl trying to get info and all they could tell me was it was delayed and need to be there the next day. After 4 hours on the phone the day before leaving was call tomorrow because ncl was closed. Got up at 5am to make sure to get them before getting on plane at 9am for San Francisco. Were told we would be comped for any motel fees and would be credited for one day of cruising. Thought that's ok we can make that work. Spent night in San Francisco and had good time. Next day was told to be at ship after 1:30 pm but would not boarding until 3pm. We arrived at 2:30 to get in line and got in line. Line was moving. We were middle of line. Got inside and all hell broke loose. There was no direction, people screaming at each other, people were frustrated with no direction from anyone. Almost got into a fight with one guy because he told my wife to get the hell out of the line if we did not have a number. Trying to figure out what he meant. Long story short finally figured out they were calling numbers to check in but no one knew where to get them. After 20 min of craziness. We were to sit down and wait for a # be handed out and they would not hand any out until we were sitting down and quiet (Felt like I was in grade school). After 3 1/2 hours of sitting there and them shoving water and cookies down us we finally made it on the ship. We were in the last group of 20 people. We get checked in and go to our room and our card key did not work. Had to get in line for another hour with other people so we could get in our room. Barely had enough time to grab a drink and head out to see us go under the golden gate bridge. Thought then the worst was behind us. Had 4 days of cruising over to Hawaii. A lot of stuff was shut down including the spa, had the deck to the front of the boat, sport court, shuffle board. Thought we would try relaxing out on the decks that were open but all you heard for 4 days was grinding on the ship and if you sat outside you would look down on you and your drink or food and you would find paint chips and metal fragments. We learned to sit outside with hand over drinks. Spent the extra money on a balcony suite to watch ocean from our room and sleep with door open to listen to ocean. All ways great when you are on vacation to get woken up at usually 6-7am and one mourning they were painting and moving ladders around at 4am. Made It to Hawaii and things were alittle better once we could get off the ship. Went on some great excursions that we found on our own. Going through ncl was a lot more expensive. Getting on and off boat was very easy but some of the people that work on docks were very rude. The food was good and the specialty dining was very good ( definitely worth paying the extra money for). Finally everything was opened up by the last night. It gave us something to do the last night to explore the ship. Overall I understand the work ( not happy with it especially when you pay $5000 to have fun) but even then the crew seemed very unorganized about a lot of stuff. Even when our tv went on the blink. It got fixed right away but they called 5 days later to check on it. Also had a girl when we got on with all the problems, took our room # down and would check on us to see if everything was ok. Never got that call either. Heard from a lot of people that said they have been on this cruise before and was not one of ncl best. Also when we disembarked there was suppose to be some instructions on when to get off and baggage instructions. We did not get that and when I went to see about what needed to be done the customer service lady was very rude and said everyone received one, you must have did something with yours. They did give us $199.98 dollars each back but nonrefundable ship credit, and 50% off our next cruise but needs to be used in a years time. Usually cruise with carnival cruise line in the past and never had any trouble and this was our first ncl cruise. Trying to figure out if I want to waste another 50% to try again.