jdickeysc

jdickeysc
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Joined: 12/30/2015
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Norwegian Star

December 2015 - Norwegian Star to Caribbean - Western

Very Nice itinerary!

Let’s start with the positive. The ship is beautiful and well maintained. The cabins are small but very nice with comfortable bedding. No problems boarding or disembarking. The itinerary was fabulous. The people of Roatan and Belize could not have been nicer and both places are beautiful. Costa Maya was nice and Cozumel is one of my favorite ports, it may have something to do with the $1.50 Dos Equis. For excursions my young adult children highly recommend SNUBA diving (cross between SCUBA and Snorkeling) and Swimming with the Dolphins. We had an incredible Cabin Steward and we also enjoyed the 24 hour pub O’Sheehan’s. Overall the food and entertainment were good.

 

Unfortunately, I cannot say the same thing for the service. If you wanted to eat in the main dining rooms, particularly Versailles, there was a 20-30 minute wait unless you went before 6pm. Once you got in; the service moved very slowly taking around 30 minutes to get appetizers on multiple occasions. We ate in main dining rooms 5 nights and had a less than positive experience on 3 of them. I believe the wait, less than stellar service and slow food problems are created by the “Free Style” dining concept. I like having a fixed table at a fixed time with the same waiter. I believe this increases the efficiency of the kitchen and definitely gives your waiter an incentive to provide excellent service. The other issue was the almost nonexistence of bar waiters and wine stewards. Most drinkers appeared to have bought a prepaid (with 18% tip already included) beverage package which gives the waiters no incentive to serve drinks. On every cruise I have been on prior to this one a waiter would come by your chair on the deck every 5-10 minutes and offer a beverage. I would guess that 90% of the time I got a drink it required standing in line at a bar.

 

 Overall we had a great time, but I am definitely not a “Free Style” dining fan.

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jdickeysc's Tips

Cozumel, Mexico - Cheapest place to enjoy adult beverages and has by far the most shopping. Go into the downtown area not just the little mall at dock!
Costa Maya (Mahahual), Mexico - Make sure your negotiate with the vendors and don't believe the story about him not selling anything today or that his dad carved the chess set :)
Tampa, Florida - Use a Porter.... he knows where to go and what to do... $10 well spent. If you don't mind spending a little more extra money using the Port Valet Parking is the way to go. Once We cleared customs we were on the road in about 3 minutes. I know there are cheaper options but man that was nice!
Norwegian Star Norwegian Star - We really enjoyed O'Sheehan's Irish Pub. Had breakfast, lunch and late nite snacks there multiple times. Not reall what I would call an Irish pub though.

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received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Star cruise review - Very Nice itinerary!

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Star cruise review - Very Nice itinerary!

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Star cruise review - Very Nice itinerary!

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Star cruise review - Very Nice itinerary!

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Star cruise review - Very Nice itinerary!

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Star cruise review - Very Nice itinerary!

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Star cruise review - Very Nice itinerary!

added Dec 20, 2015 cruise on Norwegian Star to their profile.

reviewed their Caribbean - Western cruise on Norwegian Star and gave it 4 stars!

shared a quick tip for Norwegian Star"We really enjoyed O'Sheehan's Irish Pub. Had breakfast, lunch and late nite snacks there multiple times. Not reall what I would call an Irish pub though. "