Second Mate

Joined: 07/09/2014
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About ldfinkelstein


ldfinkelstein's Past Cruises

Norwegian Breakaway

January 2017 - Norwegian Breakaway to Caribbean - Southern

Winter break

I went on a very similar cruise on the Breakaway last January (too similar). They used 90% of the same shows. While the talent is good you would like some variety. Otherwise, it is the same large but not exciting ship that does take you to beautiful islands. They continue to cut back on food choices in the main dining rooms unless you are willing to pay a hefty supplement. I was on the Star last Spring and thought it was a nicer ship.


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Carnival Splendor

June 2014 - Carnival Splendor to Caribbean - Eastern

Carnival Splendor June 25th

This was my 16th cruise and I have sailed on Royal Caribbean, Princess, Cunard, Seabourn, Carnival, Norwegian, the Maxim Gorkey and the Stella Maris. My last cruise was in March on Norwegian, also going from NYC to the Caribbean (9 nights).


Let's start by saying I had a good time. Cruises remain a reasonably priced vacation if you don't send on all the extras they push.


Ship had a lot of kids, sometimes the parents actually took care of them.


The ship is in good, not great shape. Staff were generally friendly, especial cabin and late seating restaurant. Traveling alone, I asked to be seated with many people. The large table I sat at was half empty (or full). This ship has fewer specialty restaurants and I heard very mixed reviews of the steakhouse.


The itinerary is a little awkward. You get in to San Juan at 3PM, limiting day activities. We got into St Thomas at 7AM and had to be back on ship by 3PM. Because it was a Sunday, stores started to shut down at 1PM. Grand Turks is almost like going to one the the cruise lines private islands, love the beach and water, nothing else to do.


Large shows were OK. The time where you would get top guest talents seems long gone. Comedy shows were mixed. Of the four comics who appeared, two were good, one fair and one needed to go to therapy and fine a new occupation. DJs seem to have replaced live music in many places.


Gym is OK; several pieces of equipment needed to be fixed ( I mentioned it to staff, they said they put in a work order, nothing was done). Locker room often had dirty towels lying around. Trend on ships is to limit amenities in locker rooms and then sell extras like steam rooms and nicer facilities.


As with most ships, they are about capitalism in its most pure form. Their mission statement must include how many bingo cards can they sell.

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ldfinkelstein's Tips

Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy - Other than being robbed in the train station and having almost no money the history and sites of the empire are fascinating.
Funchal, Madeira - Great jeep tour around the island (not run by NCL). Visited a good, inexpensive restaurant.
Marseille (Provence), France - Unfortunately, this was substituted for a Caribbean Island. Many of the places I wanted to visit were closed the day we arrived (NCL should have been aware of this)
Barcelona, Spain - Love Barcelona. Was there in the Spring. We arrived during a general strike which disrupted some transportation in the city. Has beautiful architecture and gone food.
Norwegian Star Norwegian Star - Lower your expectations and you will have a better time.

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received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Breakaway cruise review - Breakaway 14 Day Caribbean Cruise a mixed experience

received a helpful vote on their Carnival Splendor cruise review - Carnival Splendor June 25th

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Star cruise review - Much less than I had hoped and expected

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Star cruise review - Much less than I had hoped and expected

shared a quick tip for Norwegian Star"Lower your expectations and you will have a better time."

added Nov 5, 2017 cruise on Norwegian Star to their profile.

reviewed their Transatlantic cruise on Norwegian Star and gave it 3.0 stars!

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Breakaway cruise review - Winter break

added Jan 2, 2017 cruise on Norwegian Breakaway to their profile.

reviewed their Caribbean - Southern cruise on Norwegian Breakaway and gave it 3 stars!