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Norwegian Joy Review

Find a Norwegian Joy Cruise from £545

Norwegian Joy
4.0 / 5.0
282 reviews

Pros
Great selection of dining venues, plus fun activities like go-karts, laser tag and a VR arcade.
Cons
Most dining venues and activities cost extra; and everything requires reservations.
Bottom Line
A fun ship that has plenty to keep you busy.

About

Passengers
3,804

Crew
1,821

Passenger to Crew
2.09:1

Launched
2017

Shore Excursions
527
Sails To
Western Caribbean, Eastern Caribbean, Bahamas, Panama Canal & Central America, Bermuda, Canada & New England, Caribbean
Norwegian (NCL) Cruise Deals
Dori Saltzman
Cruise Critic Contributor

Norwegian Joy Overview

Norwegian Joy is packed with engaging activities and spaces, and while there's no doubt it has quiet areas -- such as the gorgeous and serene Observation Lounge -- the ship's character is driven more by all there is to do than anything else.

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Maybe it's the ship's name that gets everyone in the mood for fun, but so many of the activities onboard are sure to put a smile on your face -- from go-kart racing and virtual reality gaming all day long to comedy, live music and the Broadway musical "Footloose" at night. Deck 8, which is lined from front to end with busy restaurants and bars is another spot where the energy level is high and everyone is having fun. Plus, the crew are among the friendliest we've encountered at sea -- you can't go 2 feet without being greeted or asked how your day is going -- and it's infectious.

But all the fun does come at a premium, and anyone sailing on Norwegian Joy should be prepared for a variety of extra costs onboard, including most of the outdoor fun (water slides are free, but that's about it), the virtual reality playroom Galaxy Pavilion and all of the specialty dining.

Longtime cruisers used to a more all-inclusive cruise experience may balk at all the extra charges, but for most people onboard, the pay-for-what-you-want system is appreciated. And all the "big kids" onboard have no problem shelling out for a few laps around the go-kart or 90 minutes shooting zombies, racing "Star Wars" pod racers or "Jeeping" it away from "Jurassic Park" dinosaurs in Galaxy.

A few notable missteps on this ship should be noted, as they certainly could color your enjoyment on the ship: Other than the suites-only pool, there are just two small pools to serve everyone onboard, plus the pool deck is one of the oddest we've seen. The two small pools are located diagonally across the deck from each other, leaving a massive open space in between. It's covered with deck chairs in warm weather, but it's a lot of wasted space and just looks weird. Additionally, there is no spa thermal suite or relaxation room. Adults can hit the Spice H2O sun deck to get away from the under-18s, but you won't get the same relaxed vibe you would in a spa thermal suite.


Inclusions

Included with your cruise fare:

  • Three main dining rooms, the buffet and The Local Bar & Grill
  • All mainstage theater shows and comedy in the Social
  • Use of the pool, hot tubs and water slides
  • Daily activities, unless noted below
  • Use of the gym, but not most classes

Not included with your cruise fare:

  • Gratuities ($14.99 per person, per day, or $17.99 per person, per day, for those staying in suites)
  • Automatic beverage and spa tips (20 percent for both)
  • All drinks beyond water, tea (including iced tea), coffee and select juices in the buffet
  • Spa treatments
  • Shore excursions
  • Wi-Fi
  • Activities including, but not limited to, the Galaxy Pavilion, go-karts, laser tag, tastings (wine, whiskey, beer)
  • Vibe Beach Club sun deck
  • Photos and artwork

Top Norwegian Joy Itineraries

Norwegian Joy
7 night bermuda - new york (nyc/nyc)

New York (Manhattan), King's Wharf, King's Wharf, King's Wharf, New York (Manhattan)

7 Night Bermuda - New York (NYC/NYC)

Norwegian Joy

View All Norwegian Joy Itineraries (18)

Norwegian Joy Dress Code

Daytime: Casual, with jeans, shorts and tees most common inside the ship and bathing suits and cover-ups on the pool deck.

Evening: The dress code at night is the same as during the day: casual. Norwegian Cruise Line doesn't have any official formal nights, but passengers are encouraged to dress up for the line's Norwegian's Night Out. Long pants (including dark jeans) and collared shirts for men, and dresses for women are the norm that night. If you want to be prepared for any theme nights, bring along a few glow party, cowboy and 60s/70s/80s regalia along with you; that way you've got your bases covered.

Not permitted: Bathing suits are not permitted in any of the dining venues, but beyond that pretty much anything goes. Le Bistro, Cagney's and Ocean Blue do maintain a dress code, however; you'll need long pants and a collared shirt for the guys, and nice pants or a skirt with blouse, or dress for the ladies.

For more information, visit Cruise Line Dress Codes: Norwegian Cruise Line


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Norwegian Joy Ratings

CategoryEditorMember
Cabins4.53.9
Dining4.03.4
Entertainment4.03.6
Public Rooms4.53.7
Fitness Recreation3.53.4
Family3.53.4
Enrichment3.52.9
Service4.53.8
Value For Money3.53.1

Already Booked?

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More about Norwegian Joy

Where does Norwegian Joy sail from?

Norwegian Joy departs from Seattle, Miami, Vancouver, Los Angeles and Manhattan

How much does it cost to go on Norwegian Joy?

Cruises on Norwegian Joy start from £545 per person.

Awards and Recognition

Norwegian Joy Member Reviews

Norwegian Joy
CDRjack
Sail Date: Dec 2019
NCL Joy failed to meet expectations based on cruising Norwegian in the past. Norwegian seems to have changed its business strategy from focusing on value to focusing on marketing.... Read More
Norwegian Joy
calaforte
Sail Date: Mar 2020
There were extra precautions put in place with sanitation throughout the Joy and instructions for everyone to “washy washy” their hands as frequently as possible.... Read More
Norwegian Joy
BirdTravels
Sail Date: Aug 2019
A few months later, we are ready to experience the beautiful Norwegian Joy for the first time!... Read More
Norwegian Joy
2pedersens
Sail Date: Feb 2020
When we went to Mexico last year on the Bliss, we really enjoyed the whiskey bar, but on the Joy, it seems like the bar was dark, dingy and unfriendly.... Read More

Norwegian Cruise Line Fleet

Norwegian Sky
3.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

2195 reviews

One of Norwegian's oldest, smallest ships; main attractions are the 24/7 open bar on its three-night Bahamas cruises and four-night sailings to Cuba.

Norwegian Sky Cruises to the Bahamas Norwegian Sky Cruises to the Eastern Caribbean View All Norwegian Sky Cruises
Norwegian Sun
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


One of the smaller ships in the Norwegian fleet, Norwegian Sun offers 1,936 passengers 14 dining options, nine bars, five hot tubs, golf driving net, Mandara Spa and a walking/jogging track.

Norwegian Star
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Launched in 2001, 2,348-passenger Norwegian Star was the first Norwegian ship custom built for Freestyle Cruising, which touts a plethora of dining, cabin and entertainment options.

Norwegian Dawn
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Freestyle cruising means lots of choice for free and for-fee dining, drinking and entertainment, and no set dining times; holds some 3,000 cruisers.

Norwegian Spirit
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Mid-sized family-friendly cruise ship carries 2,018 passengers; offers 17 dining venues, Buccaneer's Wet & Wild Kids’ Pool, Bollywood-style nightclub and large theatre

Pride of America

The year-round, all-Hawaiian island itineraries are the ship's main draw; also offers nearly a dozen free and for-fee dining options; can hold near 3,000.

Norwegian Jewel
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Freestyle cruising means two dozen free and for-fee restaurants and bars to choose from, plus no set dining times or assigned tables; holds about 3,000 cruisers.

Norwegian Pearl
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Plenty of eateries, bars and daily activities keep this 3,000-passenger ship hopping; often chartered for music and pop culture theme cruises.

Norwegian Gem
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


More than 10 restaurants offer everything from a traditional steakhouse to Brazilian and Japanese; entertainment includes big stage shows; holds some 3,000 cruisers.

Norwegian Jade
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Family-friendly and carries 2,402 passengers; offers nine dining options, casino, Haven Courtyard, large pool deck with two pools and the Wipe Out Teens Club.

Norwegian Epic
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating


19-deck mega-ship carrying about 4,500 people; features "Priscilla, Queen of the Desert" stage show, the Beatle's-inspired Cavern Club lounge and solo cabins.

Norwegian Breakaway
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating


An NYC-themed mega-ship, carrying some 4,500 cruisers; highlights include outdoor restaurant seating, a ropes course, multistory water slides and 18 dining venues.

Norwegian Getaway
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating


A Miami-themed megaship, holding some 4,500 cruisers; features outdoor restaurant seating, a ropes course, multistory waterslides and 18 dining venues.

Norwegian Escape
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Carries some 4,500 people; features Broadway-style entertainment, an expansive ropes course and 17 restaurants including the first at-sea Margaritaville.

Norwegian Joy
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Norwegian Joy is packed with engaging activities and spaces, and while there's no doubt it has quiet areas -- such as the gorgeous and serene Observation Lounge -- the ship's character is driven more by all there is to do than anything else.

Norwegian Bliss
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Norwegian's newest ship, which will sail in Alaska and Caribbean, launches June 2018; highlights include 82 solo cabins with virtual ocean views and a massive observation lounge.

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