Norwegian Gem Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Reviews: 4
Helpful Votes: 74

Overall rating:

2.6 out of 5
Norwegian Gem

10 Night Southern Caribbean (New York Roundtrip)

Sail date: November 22, 2019

Ship: Norwegian Gem

Cabin type: Suite

Cabin number: 11048

Traveled as: Family (older children)

Reviewed: 2 years ago

Review summary

Would never go on the NCL Gem again. As a facility, the ship is fairly well maintained given it's age. The food is inedible at the buffet (except for the last night - it was great.) You really have to be specific when ordering your drinks or they mix up whatever and act annoyed doing it. I don't think they even know whats on the drink menu. Carefully choose excursions - they seemed like ripoffs to us. Getting off the ship is a nightmare and seems really unsafe. Passengers are herded into narrow hallways and stairwells. Tour guides will berate you for being late when it's due to no fault of your own. There doesn't seem to be any leadership on this ship.


1 out of 5

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

2 out of 5
Buffet is gross and unappetizing; bartenders obviously don't read drink menu - they mix up whatever. Food in specialty restaurants is good.

Onboard Activities

1 out of 5
Pretty boring cruise. Thermal spa is good when it's open but they will close thermal pool during high seas.


2 out of 5
Shows got better last two days of cruise. No comedy shows to speak of. Shows are better on other NCL ships - the bigger ones.

Service and Staff

3 out of 5
Service is mixed. Our room attendants were great. Bartenders can be dismissive. Ship seemed understaffed. Staff gave conflicting info - not very well trained.

Ship Quality

4 out of 5
For an older ship (there was an ashtray mounted to the wall next to the toilet) it is very well maintained. Except for dirty dishes stacking up in hallways, ship seemed clean. Public bathrooms were fairly clean - sometimes they had a septic odor.

Cabin / Stateroom

4 out of 5
Nice size stateroom centrally located. Cabin steward was great. Decor was nice. A benefit of an older ship is great water pressure - our shower was awesome.

Ship tip

Pick another ship.

Ports of call

New York, New York

5 out of 5
Love NYC - we always visit for a few days before the cruise.

San Juan, Puerto Rico

1 out of 5
Getting off the ship is a nightmare and feels quite unsafe. We arrived at 4pm and were herded like cattle into stairwells. People had been drinking all day and became aggressive and angry. Staff were nowhere to be found and no one knew what was going on.

Basseterre, St. Kitts

3 out of 5
Over crowded catamaran. Snorkeling was just ok - reef is dead/dying and they have to attract fish by feeding them.

Castries, St. Lucia

3 out of 5
Took a water taxi to Margot Bay. If you buy drinks at Dr. Doolittles you can use their beach, chairs and pool for free. Pretty little bay.

St. John's, Antigua

2 out of 5
Again, dead/dying reef and food is used to attract fish. Lots of moon jelly fish. People complained about being stung. This is an open sea snorkel - not in a protected bay. Water was very rough. Catamaran was over crowded. Not good for inexperienced snorkelers.

Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas

1 out of 5
they cancelled this stop on us due to weather (?)


1 out of 5
Total nightmare - no direction from staff; staff not visible. Ship is understaffed.
Was this review helpful? 7


Leave a comment

Remember: Be polite and respectful. Our diverse community is home to members with different opinions and a broad range of cruise experiences.

Other reviews of this sailing