Thank You for your review. I see you noticed the difference from the mega ships like the Epic compared to the smaller "?" cruise ships.There have been many discussions regarding the size and the amount of passengers on these large ships. HAL usually cost more and therefore moves it notch above the standard NCL package. I've been on Princess and NCL and I do expect better on Princess than NCL. I trust that you will keep cruising now that you are aware of the differences between vessels.
Review by CruisingAddicts
In response to review, Johngold says ...
thanks for the review, I appreciate the comparing of larger ship to the smaller ones. I have not done a mega ship yet. I keep looking and thinking about it.
My favorite cruise line is HAL. Although I am a non-smoker, I appreciate that smokers have rights, too. HAL is the only cruise line that permits smoking on balconies. I have the feeling that another HAL cruise may be in your future. The ms. Amsterdam may be the perfect sized HAL ship for you.
Bubba54, you will not really know if a larger ship is for you unless you take a cruise on one. I love large ships but understand that many others do not. What is good about the mega ships is the greater variety of entertainment - more elaborate too - especially the theater shows. Some of them blew away my mind. There are more things to do on the ship and you will find that there is not enough time to do everything. I suggest that you plunge on in and book on one of them. If you do, be sure to post a review. I would enjoy reading it to be sure.
I think a better compromise can be made re smoking (and I say this as a non smoker). Rather than making ALL balconies non smoking, you could possibly make a section of balconies smoking (in one area) that way if you particularly want to smoke on your balcony you choose one of these.
There are different types of Mega ships. RCI, NCL and Carnival have the mega ships with all the latest and greatest things to do on them, Water slides, rock walls, sky diving simulators, surf simulators, bumper cars and what not. They have greater selection of entertainment but the venue's are smaller so not everyone can go. On some of the new ships you have to scheduled and make reservations for shows and activities.
Celebrity and HAL also have large ships that are not floating amusement parks (Solstice Class ships) That have lots of space per passenger so you do not feel packed in like a Sardine by the pool or going to the MDR.
Cruisingaddicts hit the point, # of passengers for the size of the ship. for example
âQuantum of the Seans 167,800 tons 4905 passengers = 34.02
Celebrity Equinox 122,000 tons 2850 passengers = 42.81
NCL Epic 153,000 tons 4200 passengers =36.43
Carnival Dream 128,000 tons 3646 passengers = 35.14
HAL Eurodam 86,000 tons 2044 passengers = 42.074
HAL Ryndam (old ship) 55,451 tons 1266 passengers = 43.80
The ship you pick will dictate the vacation you will have, high energy crowded or relaxed and spacious. I can appreciate both and have had good times on both. I will say for a short trip 7 night or less the high energy crowded ship is fine, for longer cruises I prefer the more relaxed spacious ships.
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Crowds on the bigger ships are inevitable. Consider less popular travel dates. Such as after holidays, mid-week cruises and longer duration. I have been on Princess, Carnival, Norwegian and Celebrity. (With more than a dozen total cruises so far and have been on 2 cruises this year with another scheduled in October and next January and a possibility of another this summer... not bragging, just giving you a frame of reference.) I like smaller ships for the smaller crowds, but also enjoy the opulence on the mega ships. (My personal favorite thus far is the Celebrity Reflection). Cruise On !!