Norwegian Epic Cruise Review to Caribbean - Western

Contributor Level: Purser

Experience
7+ cruises

Review
1

Helpful Votes
6

3 out of 5

NCL is Great, but this ship is not...

Sail Date: November 30, 2014

Reviewed: 1 year ago

Traveled As: Couple

Room Type: Balcony

First off, we love NCL and think the staff is the best.  And we appreciate all the cruises we get to go on, so this review highlights only the nits....there wasn't anything of a great magnitude that is negative...it just doesn't fit our style as much as other ships/cruise itineraries.  That said, the entertainment is lacking:  Blue Man Group performed the same skit as the last time we were on this ship 2 years ago.  Legends was a disappointment w/acts from Jimmy Buffet, Adele & Aretha Franklin.  Howl at the Moon is great, but was only available 1 night during hours that we are awake.  2nd City is so hit or miss, we just never go.  We didn't like the blues band, and the last time we were on this ship, the blues band was really good,but played the same set every night.  So, bottom line, is that we were lacking for some good entertainment at night.  We hate the room layout, but the size of the shower in the balcony rooms is nice.  We prefer the buffet, and it was pretty good, but I hate that the cruise ships are now serving Tilapia which is just cheap garbage.  The pool layout is bad, and when they have pool 'events' they're held all the way at one end of the pool and face away from the pool....very poor planning when they designed this ship.  Do not, under any circumstances, order the fish & chips in the Irish bar (or any NCL ship for that matter)...our last 2 cruises I ordered it and it is just awful (tons of bread, soggy and very little fish).  NCL mgmt needs to sample that b/c it used to be really good.  NCL is usually really good at arranging their times in port (not like Carnival which is the worst I've ever seen), but we were scheduled to debark in Cozumel @ 1000!?  The pier was empty when we arrived....we should have been there by 8.  To make matters worse, there was some sort of snafu at the dock, and we didn't get off the ship until 1100, and it was major mooo time b/c the entire ship was in line by that time waiting to get off the ship.  In closing, we'd still do it again at the price we paid, but there's better NCL ships & itineraries to pick from if the price is right. 

Ship Quality
Too big, disorganized, bad layout of balcony rooms
Food and Dining
We like the buffet, and they used to provide better variety on a night to night basis.
Cabin / Stateroom
Bad for layout, Great for shower size = OK overall.
Service and Staff
NCL staff is the greatest!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Entertainment
Not enough variety, music around the ship was mostly mundane, and other good shows were not offered when we were still awake.
Onboard Activities
Fairly standard....we did not partake b/c there wasn't anything unique here.
Destinations and Excursions
Bad b/c of the port hours in Cozumel, Great for all others = OK
Miami, Florida
We hate Miami, and fly into and out of FLL
Ocho Rios, Jamaica
It's hard to rate it b/c this was our first time there, and it rained off and on all day, some of it torrential, so we just hung out in the bar at Margarittaville.
George Town, Grand Cayman
We booked our own excursion and didn't spend much time in port....it seemed okay, but man is it pricey!!!!
Cozumel, Mexico
We love going to Cozumel, but you have to run the gauntlet (twice!) to get to and from the ship to your excursions...do those vendors really think it helps their chances to pester every single bystander!?


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