How does tendering work on NCL's larger ships?

Only having cruised on the Pearl and the Jade, I have either queued up for a tender ticket or taken an excursion at a tender port. The tender ticket in my opinion is a not a good system, as passengers seem to take up all the space on the stairs regardless of which ticket number they are holding, which of course causes massive congestion and irate passengers. I understand though that on the Breakaway, Getaway and the Epic,(which we have a booking for next year) that you can book your tender time slot by the inter-active TV in your cabin.My question however to those who have cruised on these ships, is how does it work in actually getting on to the tender at your time slot if you do not hold any actual paper work? Does everybody simply arrive at the designated area to get onto the tender at their time slot with nobody trying to push in? If this is the case, I will be surprised (nicely)

Tags: Norwegian Cruise Line

5 Answers

I have not been on NCLs larger ships and I'd like to hear the answer to your question. I have been on RCCLs Oasis & Allure and passengers did congregate although the crew did their best to discourage it. I had priority boarding on the tenders so I got off right away.

We took the Epic last year and we tendered in Grand Cayman. Although the ship is huge, we simply walked down from 5 to 4 and waited with the throng. Yes, people congregate on the stairs, but they load up quickly. I never bother with tender tickets. After the first 2 or 3 boats, nobody even checks for tickets.

Thanks, but I am trying to establish what happens to the on-screen timed tenders that you book yourself from your cabin TV. How does anybody know what time you are scheduled for if you don't have any paperwork?

they scan your key card when you leave. the info is on there, but I do not think they really check to see what time you are scheduled. they seem to work on the honor system. load 'em up matey and ship them out.

This is mainly due to poor management of the process, rather than the process in and of itself. We experienced a fairly orderly process on two other cruise lines so I think it can be handled with efficiency. It just has to be done in a clearly organized manner and passengers have to be turned away when they start to clog up the passageways.

* is not a booking agent or travel agency, and does not charge any service fees to users of our site. Our partners (travel agencies and cruise lines) provide prices, which we list for our users' convenience. does not guarantee any specific rates or prices. While prices are updated daily, please check with the booking site for the exact amount. is not responsible for content on external web sites.