Sail Date: February 2019
We are first time NCL cruisers. I had been on Royal Caribbean and Disney before and I’ve taken a total of about four cruises. Our experience on embarkation was swift and painless. We were on the ship before we knew it. The energy ... Read More
We are first time NCL cruisers. I had been on Royal Caribbean and Disney before and I’ve taken a total of about four cruises. Our experience on embarkation was swift and painless. We were on the ship before we knew it. The energy The entertainment on the ship was amazing I was not disappointed in any of the shows we attended. Everyone that we met on the crew was amazing. Jackie, the cruise director and Jeffy made us feel welcome and part of the NCL family. Shout out to Fiona too. The dining room staff was amazing and attentive. We did the thermal suite spa package and it was the best money we spent on the cruise. Relaxing atmosphere and everything was clean and well-kept . Dining Room food was good , just didn’t knock my socks off good. We did the Teppenyaki and that was the best meal we had on th cruise. I love that style of restaurants so I’ve been to many and the one on the Jade is one of the best I’ve been to. The Champagne Art Shows was also sonwthing we enjoyed. The staff were so knowledgeable and professional. Only real complaint was that th food on our excursion to the ruins was not adequate (Ham and cheese on white bread and a bottle of water) and we were credited for a portion of the excursion price. We did the sale The Way package for a balcony and was placed in a mid ship on the 10th deck. I could not of been happier with our room. We had a full balcony and our room attendant was amazing. I celebrated a birthday on this cruise and between the bottle of champagne I got a the auction, the cake a Teppanyaki, and the chocolate covered strawberries in my room when we returned back from an excursion. It was amazing. I am looking forward to my next NCL cruise Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
This is a review of the NCL Jade 5 night cruise out of Miami. This cruise was a Christmas gift for my wife - our first cruise without the children. When booking, I envisioned a short relaxing vacation to get away from the cold of the ... Read More
This is a review of the NCL Jade 5 night cruise out of Miami. This cruise was a Christmas gift for my wife - our first cruise without the children. When booking, I envisioned a short relaxing vacation to get away from the cold of the Northwest. To that extent, the cruise was a success. As we had previously sailed on Disney and RCCL, I was looking forward to trying out another line. What got me to choose NCL was a good price and a lot of reviews touting the quality of the food (which is highly important to me). We flew into Ft Lauderdale the day before departure and took an Uber to Miami (Southwest doesn't fly into Miami International). The Uber cost ~$40 and was super simple. Just grabbed the bags, walked out to the ride share curb, and ordered up a ride. We stayed at the Hyatt Regency Miami which is about 2 miles to the Port of Miami. Downtown Miami was what you'd expect from a major city - lots of concrete and tall buildings. The most memorable thing about Miami was the traffic. I've never in my life heard so many horns being honked. It's like they have their own language/communication system consisting of just the horn (and a few hand gestures) :) We ordered another Uber in the morning to get over to the port (~$6) and arrived at around 10:15. The check in process was extremely quick which I'm guessing is from the early arrival time. Security was quick - metal detectors & routine stuff. We waited in line for maybe five minutes to get to the counter. Showed the agent our boarding docs, got our freestyle cards, and was assigned boarding group 2. Then up to the terminal to wait for boarding. I checked the time when we completed the process and it was 10:29 (yup, from curb to terminal waiting area was a whopping 14 minutes). We expected to be waiting until 12:00 to board, but the ship was ready early and we were onboard at 11:30. I couldn't be happier about the process. Once on board we headed to O'Sheehan's on deck 8. We were seated promptly and the service was good. We tried the fish-n-chips and the Shephard's Pie. The Shephard's Pie was tasty. The fish was greasy/soggy - While the taste wasn't too bad, it was very much standard school cafeteria fare, not even as good as a chain restaurant. After lunch we wandered around the ship a bit. Overall it was very nice. Everything was easily accessible and laid out well for a smaller ship. What did stand out was the lack of recreation options. There's a multi-purpose basketball/tennis court on Deck 13, but that's it other than the pool area. On that note, I'm glad my kids weren't with us, because this ship is not made with active teens/tweens in mind. Not a huge factor in this review, because I didn't select this cruise for that (just a heads up if you were thinking about bringing the kids). The staterooms opened up around 1:00 and we headed to ours. We were in cabin 11604 which is a mini-suite. To me, this "mini-suite" was comparable to the standard balcony cabins on Disney/RCCL. The room was nice enough - 2 double beds pushed together, a sleeper sofa, flat screen tv, coffee maker, and refrigerator/mini-bar. (Note: I left a note for the room attendant to empty the mini-bar so I could use the refrigerator. Instead of removing the items from the cabin, he just moved them to other shelves and under the desk area -- I guess I'll need to be more specific in the future, ie please remove from the room). Bathroom was nice with a full tub/shower and separate toilet area. I did find it weird to have a separate toilet area with a see through glass door? Kinda defeats the purpose in my mind. Overall the room was very quiet. The deck plan shows an open area on deck 12 above this room which I believe is a galley area. One night I think I heard a heavy cart being rolled somewhere - lasted all of 2 minutes and then silence again. Here's a huge thing to note - this ship is small and as I mentioned, there's not a lot of outdoor space. Finding a lounge chair near the pool or upper deck was dang near impossible unless you wanted to wake up a 0-dark thirty and reserve one all day! But - the balcony was a God-send and we spent a lot of time on it. I mention this because on the bigger ships I've been on, while I might not get prime seating near the pool, I've never been unable to find somewhere to sit outside - which was often the case on this ship -especially on the sea days! You've been warned! Food: We tried the Atrium, Grand Pacific, O'Sheehan's, the Garden Cafe (buffet) and the Outdoor cafe - we didn't eat at any of the specialty restaurants. The Atrium and the Grand Pacific share the same menu each night. The Atrium is the casual restaurant and the Grand Pacific is more dress up. To be honest though, the dress code at the Grand Pacific is a low bar to overcome - if you have long pants, you're in (and they do enforce that). You're supposed to have a collared shirt as well, but I saw many a t-shirt as well as numerous flip flops so shoes don't seem to be required. Overall, I liked the Grand Pacific better for the atmosphere. Food was good in the main dining rooms with a decent selection. Nothing over the top - no seafood nights, or anything special, just okay food. The buffet on the other hand was disappointing. Breakfast was blah and so was lunch and dinner. I found most of what I ate at lunch/dinner to be overcooked and under flavored. I was also underwhelmed by the variety. Ports: Harvest Caye - was a fun beach day. I would have liked to see some ocean inflatables to play on, but not having them was fine. Plenty of loungers and umbrellas - no reason to rent a cabana. People were enjoying the zip lines and there was an area to rent paddle boards etc. The pool was nice and had a swim up bar. Just an all around relaxing beach day. Costa Maya - We booked a tour to the Chochaben ruins through Native Choice travel for $110. Note: The EXACT same tour through NCL was $99 each - save your money! That was a great tour and very educational. Our host, Fabiola, was very knowledgeable about the history of the area and quite fluent in English. The trip was about 4hrs with a 45 minute drive to and from. Our group had 12 people which allowed us to ask questions and was very relaxed. When the cruise tours of 30 plus people showed up, I was even happier that I booked this on my own. After the tour, we walked around the port area. It's your typical Caribbean port - if you've seen one, you've seen them all. There was a taco stand near the Port entrance that's authentic and worth the visit. $3 for a beef or chicken taco - yummy. Entertainment: Prior to booking, I checked to see what the entertainment on board would be. I was super excited about the Blazin Boots country music show. Alas, it was replaced by an on-board production show... :( The local talent was okay and they put on a decent show, but it was not professional tier in my opinion. The comedy show was decent. The aerial rope show was quasi erotica and probably not a good choice for kids. They were exceptional athletes though - so I would recommend it just for that. The Cruise Director, Jackie Tran (nope, I didn't make that up), was a little hokey. Overall, the entertainment was subpar when compared to Disney and RCCL. Service: The crew lacked energy and excitement. I'm used to happy faces and engaging staff, but that is not the norm on the Jade. Most just seemed to "be there". Not happy, not sad, just there. Obviously, there were exceptions - Maria and Maria in the Grand Pacific were fun to talk to and joke with, and a bartender at the coffee shop was upbeat, but other than those three, I couldn't name a single person. I never met our room steward - he was a ghost. Overall: Overall I'd rate the entire experience at three stars. It wasn't bad, it was a good value, and I got what I paid for. It just wasn't memorable. As I cruise more, this particular vacation will not stand out in any way. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
This was our first Norwegian cruise. So many complaints! 1. Terrible customer service: upon boarding we discovered no drink or specialty dining packages were associated with our reservation, even though we had paid for them. We had ... Read More
This was our first Norwegian cruise. So many complaints! 1. Terrible customer service: upon boarding we discovered no drink or specialty dining packages were associated with our reservation, even though we had paid for them. We had booked through a travel agent (USAA Travel Services) and the ship customer service desk refused to help us because we had not booked directly through NCL. Very rudely told us to fix our own problem. After someone from the travel agency called the ship directly and provided proof of the purchase, they still would not fix the problem, told us it would take 2 days (of a 5 day cruise!) to update. 2. So many passengers falling down drunk most of the cruise. Could not take my kids to the family pool because of this. Ship employees did nothing about this and continued serving obviously intoxicated people. 3. Dining room staff indifferent and slow. Food quality uneven and often cold when served. Took at least 2 hours to eat a 3 course meal. 4. Very poor wine list. Mixed drinks were good if you could get served. If you didn’t have a bikini on the bartenders would ignore you completely. 4. Had a mini-suit on deck 11. Woken every morning before 5 due to noise from the buffet above. Very poor housekeeping in our suits. Never once met our steward. 5. The kids club had the weirdest hours. Made it very difficult to utilize. Staff was very rude. 6. The spa staff was forever trying to sell you their products. After a very relaxing massage the spa employee would not let me leave until I listened to her pitch, and then was extremely rude when I told her I wouldn’t buy anything. We will NEVER sail with NCL again!!!! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
I chose the Jade due to the lack of "kids" activities on the ship. My wife and I wanted to enjoy a vacation without youngsters all over which was the case. We have been on many cruises prior and on NCL vessels prior. I have ... Read More
I chose the Jade due to the lack of "kids" activities on the ship. My wife and I wanted to enjoy a vacation without youngsters all over which was the case. We have been on many cruises prior and on NCL vessels prior. I have recommended NCL after coming back from this cruise so I am in no way knocking NCL or any of it's ships and I am doing another NCL cruise later this year. The majority of the staff that we encountered from the service desk to the bar staff seemed to be very unhappy and unwilling to so much as smile, we have never run into this before on a cruise, the one huge exception was Marcia who was a wonderful cheerful person at the bar near the front desk area on the 6th floor(one floor down from the front desk) and the casino host who was head and shoulders above the rest. The boarding was the smoothest I have ever experienced, after chasing down our robes and beach towels which took a couple of hours we headed for the buffet for a bite to eat. The food was by far the worst I have ever had ANYWHERE! The buffet was changed very little for the entire week, we went to Alazar dining room on the second night and ordered the NY Strip which looked like it had been flattened by a steam roller with a ice cream scoop of instant massed potatoes, the food from the frozen section of a grocery store would have been a HUGE improvement over any food I had all week on the Jade! Our itinerary was just fine, no cheap shopping in Costa Maya the prices from the venders was more than I would pay anywhere stateside and a huge disappointment but the port is beautiful and the pool is fantastic. Belize is a beautiful port with all the goodies and was our favorite port. Great Stirrup Cay is also beautiful and NCL did a great job with the activities there and the general lay out of the island. This is a great ship even though it is older and if the crew didn't act like they hated us passengers it would have been much more pleasant but the food is absolutely unacceptable which I heard from many fellow passengers, I would be ashamed to offer any guest what we had for food options for the week. We did respond to the NCL survey with our complaints but have received nothing back from NCL. Thank you to the great team at the casino I will be giving NCL another opportunity later this year but on a different ship! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
So my wife found this cruise last minute. Thought we would try a different cruise line. Well to it's not really that good. Dont get me wrong its clean and looks well maintained. It just came out of a remodle. Food was off. Needed ... Read More
So my wife found this cruise last minute. Thought we would try a different cruise line. Well to it's not really that good. Dont get me wrong its clean and looks well maintained. It just came out of a remodle. Food was off. Needed salt everything and that still didnt help half the stuff. I dont like using salt, but the water had more taste. The drink package said we should get mugs. Was even told there in our room on check in. Found out that was a lie. Had not been doing that for over a month before our sail date. The app and the paper flyer are not the same. Times and places for events are differant. Had days where nothing was planed or was canceld without notice. There was a 10dollar sale where we was in the check out line for 45mins. The tenders was 30 to 45 min wait once we sat down and we wasn't the 1st people on. We reported all of this stuff and just got a look like Tuff deal with it. We where not the only people that notice this stuff. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
My wife and I took this cruise with another couple. We chose it based on price first, itinerary second. We did not have any children with us which was a good thing because this particular ship is not overly kid friendly. There were no ... Read More
My wife and I took this cruise with another couple. We chose it based on price first, itinerary second. We did not have any children with us which was a good thing because this particular ship is not overly kid friendly. There were no water slides and there was a small splash pad, but overall, it is on the lower end of what I've seen on four other NCL ships. Embarkation was straightforward. We landed in Miami around 9am, were in the waiting room by 10:30. I think we boarded about 11:30. We were careful to fill out all our pre-boarding documents and so on. We stayed in a balcony cabin. It was fine for just the two of us, but based on other cruises in mini-suites, we really missed the larger bathroom. I probably would have paid the extra $200 for a mini-suite and higher deck looking back. But the cabin was fine. The Jade looks pretty new overall. The refit was money well spent. We went to many activities such as bingo, trivia and bean bag competition. We went to the illusionist and comedy shows and we spent a lot of time in the Spinnaker lounge dancing and drinking. We enjoyed all of those activities immensely. On this trip we got 3 nights in specialty restaurants (Moderno, Cagney's, Teppanyaki.) We very much enjoyed all three, the fee dining is a big step up, if you can get it for free, it's a no-brainer. We also got the ultimate beverage package and were pleasantly surprised. There was some top shelf liquor (Grey Goose vodka) that wasn't allowed, but it was easy to find a substitute. We only paid some port taxes the first day. Basically we drank as much as we wanted for maybe $30 on the credit card. The cruise director, Jackie Tan (?) was a blast. This was definitely a more adult oriented cruise, in my opinion. He really knows how to get a party started. Service was good overall, but a little uneven. We did not find our cabin steward overly friendly, but he had the cabin cleaned and ready to go whenever we returned. We thought that was a notch down from what we've experienced before. In the bars, some servers were friendly, others not as much. I wonder if all the packages and throw ins that NCL does has affected their pay. The Ports were Costa Maya, Harvest Caye and the Bahamas island. We did a non-NCL excursion, going to the pyramids then to a local family for a lunch. That was $75 all inclusive and was quite the experience. Many other people were going to the beach to drink cervezas and margaritas which is fun, but not unique. Overall the ports weren't fantastic, but we didn't choose the cruise based on that. This was a couples getaway, to recharge and miss a week of bad mid-western weather. It was definitely all that. We will be going on Norwegian again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
I chose this cruise because I had heard that Norwegian was a great cruise line and, as a single person, I was able to get an interior stateroom for less than $1,000 including taxes and port fees, so price had a lot to do with it. However, ... Read More
I chose this cruise because I had heard that Norwegian was a great cruise line and, as a single person, I was able to get an interior stateroom for less than $1,000 including taxes and port fees, so price had a lot to do with it. However, the reason I took that is I was offered a much better deal the night before and told they would hold it 24 hours while I checked airfare. When I called back 12 hours later, I was told by another customer service agent that it was given to someone else and that the guy that said he would hold it was inexperienced and shouldn't have made me that promise. So I took the Jade offer. I was assigned a person to call if I had questions, so I did asking if I could get the $50 credit on each port's excursions offered on the previous deal. She said she had to rush off to a meeting and would call me back but never did. So a few days later I called again and the answer was "no". When I arrived in Ft. Lauderdale I panicked somewhat because I was supposed to be on the ship by 2 and Norwegian's transfer bus was nowhere to be found. On a previous cruise I used a private shuttle and they texted me to tell me where they were. I finally found a man with a Norwegian sign who said, yeah we were looking for you and then had to wait another hour before the bus left, arriving well after 2. Checking in was fine, except that the person gave me a room number that was already occupied. So I had to go down to customer service with my luggage to find out what the room number actually was. My experience after that point was not all bad, which is why I gave them two stars rather than one. The room was clean except for a dingy carpet and quiet except for banging sounds at 3 am on Thursday night. Generally the service aboard was very good, as was the food. And the dine anytime system is much better than the two seatings most cruise lines have. But the Jade has the fewest things of interest of any ship I've been on. No water slides, no big outdoor television, no skating rinks, surfing, indoor malls or atrium that goes all the way to the top, all of which I've found aboard other ships. And the scheduled activities were standard cruise ship stuff. As to the ports, I loved Costa Maya, but all the excursions the excursion desk offered were expensive. So I got off and found one that was just $40 for a boat ride to go snorkeling. I paid for it with my cruise card, which means that it was official but they didn't offer it onboard to try to get you to buy a more expensive excursion. Outrageous. The next port, Harvest Caye, was a private island they own, which makes you wonder why there are port charges. It is also a sanitized and entirely manufactured bland tourist island. Yes, they had zip lines and such, but if you travel to get a sense of other cultures, avoid this island because it's just the same people you are on the ship with. I rented a kayak there and discovered I could only kayak in a small enclosed (and polluted with suds and an oil sheen) lagoon. And the kayak apparently leaked because it was filling up with water. But no one was interested in refunding me. Fortunately, that day was saved by a round trip boat trip to the mainland, Placencia, that was just $20. Placencia is wonderful, full of places to eat and people selling hand made items and the most beautiful beach I've ever seen. So the best things were not where we docked. You had to find them on your own. The third port was also a private island in the Bahamas and there was no means to go elsewhere. This one had a nice beach where I could relax and snorkel but the only taste of Bahamian culture was from a few souvenir sellers. Whatever makes them think people want their private islands, I don't know, but I will never book a cruise that goes to one again. At the end, getting off was easy, but we had to wait a very long time in the sun for the transfer bust arrive. But I wasn't finished with them yet, because when I got home I discovered that instead of the onboard charges I had agreed to, they charged me a much higher amount. So I called and the woman I spoke with said she didn't have the information to explain the additional charges and I should call back Wednesday. I can afford one cruise a year, but this is both the first and the last one I will ever take with NCL. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
Our sail date was Jan. 25, 2019. We booked this sailing in Sept 2018. Cabin was 9502, forward Penthouse Suite, non-Haven. We checked in at 1:00pm. Friendly and efficient staff got us aboard quickly. We booked this sailing because of the ... Read More
Our sail date was Jan. 25, 2019. We booked this sailing in Sept 2018. Cabin was 9502, forward Penthouse Suite, non-Haven. We checked in at 1:00pm. Friendly and efficient staff got us aboard quickly. We booked this sailing because of the sea days and the ports. Two out of three ports were NCL's private islands-and that's what we were looking for. Ship was in very good condition, we did not encounter any negative issues all week. We did dine in specialty restaurants every night and in the free Jasmine oriental restaurant one night. All above average to superb. Service and food were a consistent 7-8-9-10 out of 10. We purchased the UBP and never really had an issue waiting too long for a beverage. We also always give a $1.00 bill when we order along with our key card, perhaps that helps. Entertainment on board was weak. Shows and singing trio's were very average. Comments through the ship echoed our opinion. We did use the thermal spa. We purchased the week-long package in advance. It was always clean and in very good shape. We used their specialty services as well. Discounts apply to services while in port, even if you schedule the service as the ship is sailing away. Say, 5:00pm. Pool area was very clean an neat. Cabin steward was excellent. Joshi, was visible, communicative and knew his job very well. ** Wife is making me write this-the blow dryer in this cabin had a nozzle/tip.... Our cabin also came with a butler, Leo. He was a rock star, a seasoned pro. This class of cabin came with dedicated locations for breakfast and lunch. Moderno's and Cagney's respectively. Very nice staff at those locations lead by Emelina, Asst Head Waiter and Karen the hostess. Always smiling and engaging. Casino on board was very clean. And, although smoking was allowed, their air scrubbers were some of the best that I have seen on older, smaller ships. Casino staff was very friendly and engaging.Tables were dropped to $5.00 on Ultimate and Three Card. All others were $10.00 minimums. Several slots were seen hitting as well. I believe this sailing did not sail at capacity, as it was rumored that a charter aboard had cancelled, thus that could be why this sailing only started to appear available the first of September. In closing, this was a very nice sailing experience. We left happy and content. We made new friends, we had great service, we were in the Caribbean in January, and we were provided a very good value and product. We would definitely sail again on her. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
Last year we cruised the Jade on a revised itinerary due to the hurricane in the Eastern Caribbean. For some reason it was the only time on an NCL ship we felt things were lackluster. Not this year! From the crew to the food, to the ... Read More
Last year we cruised the Jade on a revised itinerary due to the hurricane in the Eastern Caribbean. For some reason it was the only time on an NCL ship we felt things were lackluster. Not this year! From the crew to the food, to the overall atmosphere it was perfect. We flew into Miami two days before and stayed at the Marriott Biscayne Bay. We always get the same type of room with a view of the cruise port as it is fun to wake up in the morning and see which ships are in port. We spent our time just relaxing and also walking along the waterfront.It is only a ten minute trip from the hotel to the cruise port. We took a taxi embarkation day from in front of the hotel. The fare was under $20 total plus tip. Embarkation was fast. We were in the Haven and they have a lounge in the Miami terminal with coffee, tea, pastries, and sandwiches to eat while you wait. We usually stay in the same stateroom and I was happy to see that all the little things that needed to be fixed were fixed that we noticed last year were in good condition, plus it was sparkling clean. The food was outstanding. The meat at the carving station in the buffet was a cut above what it was last year. I especially liked the pork roast with applesauce. We ate at two specialty restaurants Cagney's and LaCucina. LaCuchina has a new menu. Gone are the lasagne, meatballs with spaghetti, eggplant parm, etc. My husband had the veal marsala and I had a T-bone steak which wasn't on the menu but the waiter offered it as an off menu item. Both were large portions and very delicious. Cagney's was great as usual. I had the pork chop and my husband had petite filet. Both were outstanding. Our evening was slightly ruined by a table that had 5 small children under the age of 4. We asked to be moved but we could still hear the screaming and crying. Not fun while trying to enjoy a nice meal on vacation. I felt sorry for the small children. They should not have been there. We had been to all of the ports before so we knew what to expect. First stop was Costa Maya. I felt the shopkeepers were very polite and helpful.Last year we had gone to the water park and didn't have time to shop so we were pleasantly surprised at what great experience it was. Next stop was Harvest Caye. We rented a pool cabana just like last year. It was very comfortable for the two of us and the two local Belizean women who help you were outstanding. If you are planning on going to the beach be sure to bring water shoes. The sand is very coarse. Last stop was Great Stirrup Cay. We decided to stay on the ship as it wasn't a good beach day and also it was very choppy water and I didn't want to tender in those conditions. We have been there before and rented a small cabana. It is great as long as the weather holds. We did not go to any of the shows as they were the same as last year. Instead we spent our time walking the promenade deck and enjoying relaxing in our stateroom. We did spend time at the atrium bar and met quite a few really nice people who were a pleasure to talk to. I always dread the disembarkation process but this time it was flawless. From the time we left our stateroom and we were sitting at our gate in Miami it was only an hour or so. We did self disembark and had priority disembark. That was worth the extra cost of being in the Haven alone. I have to say the whole crew including officers were very upbeat and happy and it made for a great experience. We are glad we gave the Jade a second chance. Read Less
Norwegian Jade Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.5 4.2
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 5.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 4.1
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.8
Family 4.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 3.3
Service 5.0 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 3.9

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