2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We were on a 12 day cruise. Food was completely terrible. Itinerary activities were awful....we literally walked around bored. My daughter was very excited to join the kids club. She went twice...again, no activities at all. Freestyle ... Read More
We were on a 12 day cruise. Food was completely terrible. Itinerary activities were awful....we literally walked around bored. My daughter was very excited to join the kids club. She went twice...again, no activities at all. Freestyle play is plenty. Service was pretty terrible around the ship. Restaurant dining took no less than 1.5 hrs and up to 2.5 hrs. Restaurants close at certain times and we walked around with no food choices except a very small buffet.....I mean burger and salad, that's it. Norwegian nickel and dimes you. It's better to pay a little more up front and know what is covered than to go on a cruise and be nickel and dimed to death. Housekeeping was another issue. We had to call (around 3:30 pm)and ask for our room to be cleaned multiple times...by the time it was finally cleaned, it was time to turn the cabin down for bed. Evening shows were AWFUL! There was one jazz band that was fabulous. Every other band had screeching singers and people would get up and leave the area. Never again will we cruise Norwegian! Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
Have spent about 75 days on 8 cruises with 5 cruise lines. This was by far the worst in our experience. Food: Went to the Brazilian steak house Moderno and would only recommend the pineapple and beef ribs. I had the crazy idea ... Read More
Have spent about 75 days on 8 cruises with 5 cruise lines. This was by far the worst in our experience. Food: Went to the Brazilian steak house Moderno and would only recommend the pineapple and beef ribs. I had the crazy idea they would serve steak from Brazil. Thank God we ate at a specialty restaurant early on as the buffet was better and didn't charge. I lost 4 pounds in 4 days as there wasn't very much that was worth eating but plenty of fresh fruits. The food tends to be cold even when your first but if you love pasta, you will be happy with the pasta bar. Cabin: Four times we took cold showers. One night out toilet did not work and I had to insist it was broken before the front desk sent a plumber. The pillows, carpet, bed and sofa had a foul smell. We used towels and an open balcony door to sleep. They changed the pillows and cleaned the rest but this was only good for one night so we slept with our door open every night. On the last night, because of the cold we had to endure another OFF night. Hospitality: Discovered an unauthorized room charge by O'Sheas for a shot of rum and some other alcohol. Had gone to this restaurant before 7am that morning and had BY FAR, the worst cup of coffee and cinnamon bun ever. Simply appalling. One sip and one bite was it. Could not digest it. But that afternoon they manually entered my room number for the bogus liquor charge. Because it was straight shots I wondered whether the bar was short alcohol. When I went to reception to fix the problem, they made me feel like it was my fault. Even though there was no signature and the entry was done manually, they had us waiting for the bar manager until I asked to be reimbursed for my time. Terrible service. Entertainment: Wasn't bad. Embarkation: On islands: Was good. Never waited more than about 5 minutes. Final departure: Terrible. Our departure plans were based on their 10 am arrival but they kicked everyone off the ship before 10 am because they arrived at 8 am. They lied that customs was waiting but we ended up waiting a half hour at customs. They wanted $45 per person for a shuttle to the airports. Rather than pay $90 and have to wait, we booked lyft for $56. Last time on Norwegian. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We choose this cruise since it left out of New York and we live in CT. The first night was a little rough since there was a coastal storm. The rest of the trip had good weather so the seas were calm. The worst part of the trip was the ... Read More
We choose this cruise since it left out of New York and we live in CT. The first night was a little rough since there was a coastal storm. The rest of the trip had good weather so the seas were calm. The worst part of the trip was the coffee on the ship. No matter where you went the coffee was consistently bad. The restaurants were not as good as in the past, especially the specialty restaurants. Most of the restaurants had food that came out lukewarm or cold. One night we had scallops and they were rubbery. The head of the restaurant happened by and made a new meal of scrimp which was much better. When we told the servers our food was cool/lukewarm they brought the dishes back with a hot plate but the food still cold. Modera was the worst. We were brought to our table. I asked for a bar drink and was told they only served wine. While sitting at our table, many patrons received bar drinks by their servers. Our server seated us and said she would be back shortly and never came back. Later we asked a waiter to find her and he wound up taking care of us. Until we were almost done, we never received the cards with red/green choices. We hardly ever saw the servers with the skewers. When the servers did come, most of the time the food was almost all gone, dry and chewy. Would not go back again. The ports were good. The room standard. The room steward was okay. We had little time with him - he cleaned the room and then was gone - not a relationship. We met a steward going into the buffet - he remembered us from a trip on the Breakaway and he greeted us in a friendly manner. We had a wonderful time with him during our trip. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
Nothing do do after 11PM. Not sure if it was the itinerary or just the cruise director. Very disappointed, for instance, that the hot tubs all closed at 10. At least three times things that were supposed to be opened were closed. ... Read More
Nothing do do after 11PM. Not sure if it was the itinerary or just the cruise director. Very disappointed, for instance, that the hot tubs all closed at 10. At least three times things that were supposed to be opened were closed. Piano entertainer Justin Golan was the highlight of the trip as far as entertainment goes. Food and service at all but one restaurant ranged from excellent (Bistro) to better-than-expected (Grand Pacific Main Dining Room). However, NCL should be embarrassed by how awful the food is at Orchid Garden. A 6 year old with a microwave and an easy bake over could have whipped up a better meal. Great decor, but terrible food. Very annoyed and disappointed in NCL that when we didn't dock at the actual cruise ship terminal (but an industrial cargo shipping port instead) in St. Kitts that NCL chartered busses and wanted to charge $10 each to bring us to where we were supposed to go (only about a mile away, but for a ship that was seemingly all old people it wasn't quite walkable). For comparison, we took a taxi to the other side of the island (about 40 minutes each way) for $14 a person round trip. The $10 wasn't the problem -- it's the principal of money grabbing and profiteering off of the circumstance. Disembarkation/Reboarding at some of the ports was painful, mostly due to the "security" (really only concerned about bringing alcohol onboard, but that's another story all together) being a choke point. 6 people would be working inside, one scanning IDs, one looking at the security scanner and four people standing around looking bored. Those four people should have been checking bags in the line. The system was so poorly managed that we were in port an hour later than we should have been in St. Thomas due to how long the lines were. The FOD nightly was scheduled in Bliss Lounge, with children's karaoke scheduled in there 15 minutes later (which of course means that the kids come barging in at the same time that the FOD event starts). Really? I got the impression from this and a few other happenstances that the Cruise Director isn't a fan of the gays. It may not read this way, but we did have a great time -- mostly because we were traveling with a group of 5 other friends. Tip: Stick to the Grand Pacific main dining room, the other main dining room (with the same exact food) felt drab and cramped in comparison. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
* We stayed in a balcony room. It was what you would expect - room was kept clean and well maintained by staff. *Excursions from NCL were ok. I thought the catamarans were too crowded. *One thing I loved about the cruise dining is ... Read More
* We stayed in a balcony room. It was what you would expect - room was kept clean and well maintained by staff. *Excursions from NCL were ok. I thought the catamarans were too crowded. *One thing I loved about the cruise dining is that you can make reservations that fit your timeline. We also appreciated that we could sit as a couple or iwith newly found friends, but we were not restricted to a time or the same people every am and pm. * Food on the ship was very good. We were not a fan of the main buffet, but the Magenta and main dining room food was very good. The specialty restaurants were exceptional. We would highly recommend Cagney’s and Le Bistro. * We did not participate in too many onboard day activities. We did play bingo, however I thought the price of the games were exorbitant. *We did go to the shows at night. The comedian was very good. The productions were ok. Great singers but lacked to be a cohesive show. * Casino was fun. It is not smoke- free, but ok. Overall enjoyed our vacation and will plan our next cruise soon. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
This is a repeat cruise, convenient from Manhattan. Captain was a delight to speak to, other members of senior staff seemed distant. Food was very tasty, good variety except for lunch in Grand Pacific which did not change for the 11 days ... Read More
This is a repeat cruise, convenient from Manhattan. Captain was a delight to speak to, other members of senior staff seemed distant. Food was very tasty, good variety except for lunch in Grand Pacific which did not change for the 11 days we cruised. We had the Drink package but got charged for 1 drink on the last night of the cruise, mistake or calculated error? A lot of folks were scrutinizing the folio before paying it. I saw several charges that were not consistent with our spending pattern. Seems you have a unique way of naming your general ledger accounts. Why is "Bake Shop" the name used for "additional port charges" for a drink? Shore excursion team needs focus to improve - several occasions they lacked knowledge about ports. St Kitts was a money maker for NCL - you charged guests $9 RT to go from a remote dock to the main disembarking area - are you kidding, when the airlines can't land at the correct airport they hire buses (at no charge to passengers) to get us to the destination. Your excursion person explained the charge and when another passenger explained that she did not want to pay for it the passenger got the reply " if you can afford a cruise you should be able to afford the bus." Barbados was a joke - we got a note about buses the night before that was not adequately worded to explain what to do when we reached port; there were multiple lines but NO excursion people at the ship, the buses were delayed by a construction crew doing work at the end of the pier and we missed the excursion bus (saw it leave the terminal building but refused to return when radioed). The Excursion person told us we were 5 minutes late - no apology for the calamity at the dock - we were late! I asked for the name of the Excursion manager and was told " I don't know." Why don't the excursion people know who they report to? We agreed to a different excursion so as not to have a total loss for the day. I asked Customer Service on Deck 7 to have the excursion manager call me but was told to go to the excursion desk that was open at that time. We were on our way to dinner so I declined and asked that the manager call me the next morning - same answer - desk is open at 8am! I spoke to the cruise director that evening and mentioned that she and her staff were saving the cruise, at least for us. She inquired why and I explained - I got a call from the Excursion manager the next day and another from the Guest Services manager soon after. Both apologized, but the damage was done. Fortunately the beach trip to Antigua was a delight. St Thomas reboarding was a fiasco - everyone was told to be back by 12:30 and everyone was there, all 2000 of us. It took 1/2 hr waiting on lines in the blistering sun to get through security. why even stop in St Thomas ( the most shopped port in Carribean) if you have to leave by 1pm to get back to NY? Arriving in Puerto Rico at 4pm is a waste of time and money - it gets dark at 6pm and there's congestion and confusion caused by all the cruise ships that dock there - we were #6, couldn't even get a cab to go anywhere close. You should designate decks and sides of the ship as non-smoking cabins. we were next to someone smoking cigars on the balcony and had to stay inside our cabin with the door closed. or put all smokers on the tail end of the ship so smoke travel out to sea while we are underway. Of course that doesn't solve the problem when you are in port. There are many small things NCL can do to improve - NCL just has to decide where they want to be on the Excellence Continuum. My impression that "World Class" is not the target. If average generates adequate revenue I can understand why you are not spending money on improvement. My business is Service Quality - Baldrige National Quality Award level so I know it when I see it. We just got to Platinum level on this cruise, I'm not sure I want to continue the loyalty you seek but don't strive to achieve. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
My cousin invited me on her cruise. I actually did not care for it. Some of the crew were rude, the food was bland, the sellers were pushy, for instence the art gallery, you are over priced. Your drink packages was ridiculous, the only ... Read More
My cousin invited me on her cruise. I actually did not care for it. Some of the crew were rude, the food was bland, the sellers were pushy, for instence the art gallery, you are over priced. Your drink packages was ridiculous, the only thing I enjoyed was the Stardust entertainment. The spa was nice, I enjoyed the massage. I do not plan on another cruise. Its not for me. Each embankment was breathtaking, but we were not there long enough to enjoy it. The excursions were too expensive.i did not like the cruise I will not be going again. The cabin was ok, but for what I paid I expected a little more of a first time experience, I was not wowed, the ship was beautiful inside and out, but it's not what I expected it to be. I was disappointed. With the reviews I read, and the star ratings I saw, I was disappointed Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
The cruise started off badly. There was really terrible weather leaving NYC and the ship was rocking from side to side fiercely during the entire night. The worse I have experienced on any ship. There wasn't an announcement from the ... Read More
The cruise started off badly. There was really terrible weather leaving NYC and the ship was rocking from side to side fiercely during the entire night. The worse I have experienced on any ship. There wasn't an announcement from the captain indicating what we were experiencing or offering some calming words. The buffet area of the ship was unclean and the food was basically tasteless. The food in the main dining room was really bad each night that I was there. I did have a good experience in a specialty restaurant but the food in Moderno was horrible and cold. I usually don't take part in many of the activities of the ship but enjoy the sail away music. There was little if any leaving most of the ports and none during the day while at sea. I was truly disappointed and I have done many cruises on various cruise lines including two on this ship. I will be taking a long, long break from cruising on any line as result of my disappointment with NCL Gem. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
Chose this cruise fo spend the Thanksgiving holiday in the Caribbean with family. Upon embarkation, I commented to the representative that I should have filled out the health questionaire online, she promptly told me "Madam, they ... Read More
Chose this cruise fo spend the Thanksgiving holiday in the Caribbean with family. Upon embarkation, I commented to the representative that I should have filled out the health questionaire online, she promptly told me "Madam, they don't have pens online". She then told me that she needed my home home number, not my cell phone number, I said I thought that is what I already gave, she then told me not to interrupt her, since she was so rude, I changed to another representative, good start. When I booked, I was given three free offers, I chose a drink package and two specialty dinner packages and was told I could use one of the specialty dinner packages for my family that was traveling with me (two people). When we went to the first specialty resaurant I was charged $59.88, I was told by the assistant Maitre D' at Moderno Restaurant to sign for the check and the amount would be credited as soon as my extra specialty dining packge was verified, After I did sign, I was told I wouldn't be credited because my dining package was not transferrable. Salad bar was great at the Moderno Restaurant but the food itself was horrible. I was looking forward to showing my grandaughter the monkies when we docked in St Kitts, only to find out that there wasn't room for our ship at the regular dock, so we docked at the container port, not happy! On top of all these issues, the food was the worst I've ever had on any cruise, I've always enjoyed the food on all of the many cruises that I have previously taken. Very disapointed in NCL and the Gem!! Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We don't cruise often and were not sure what to expect. Generally, we take active vacations with plenty of sightseeing. To our surprise, the 12 days passed so quickly and we didn't want to get off :) Norwegian Gem is a beautiful ship ... Read More
We don't cruise often and were not sure what to expect. Generally, we take active vacations with plenty of sightseeing. To our surprise, the 12 days passed so quickly and we didn't want to get off :) Norwegian Gem is a beautiful ship and can be compared to a 5-star hotel. Layout is excellent and so it never felt crowded - the lounges and restaurants are spread out. We didn't have to wait in line on most days for dining and on the day of Thanksgiving, we waited only 15 minutes. Everything met or exceeded our high expectations (cabin, service, dining, activities, shopping, etc). Almost everyone we spoke to were repeat customers. Here are a few highlights: Art gallery and art auctions were particularly interesting - we bought artwork. Nice jewelry and watch collection for sale on-board. Acrobatics show featuring a Russian couple was spectacular! Would not hesitate to take this cruise again! Read Less
Norwegian Gem Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 5.0 3.9
Public Rooms 5.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.6
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 4.0 4.1
Value For Money 5.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 3.8

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