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Norwegian Cruise Lines
Norwegian Cruise Lines
Overall Satisfaction Rating
2.58/5
  • 5 stars
    27
  • 4 stars
    20
  • 3 stars
    5
  • 2 stars
    13
  • 1 stars
    59
Based on 124 ratings submitted in the last year
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Norwegian Cruise Lines

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635 Norwegian Cruise Lines Consumer Reviews and Complaints

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Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 12, 2018

First of all I have been on several cruises, first time with NCL, overpriced, upgraded to get freebies, dining and beverage, almost impossible to get drinks. When you did they were watered down. Most bars closed at 10 pm, Los Lobos, didn't want to give you food you ordered, they wanted you to share. The savor food was very salty. Nearly 5000 passengers and they could not accommodate. Everything was booked, places only held few people, unless everyone stood up like sardines, ship was so noise/loud when you were in your room. Everything was a extra charge. I witness a injury, alerted the staff, it was like they didn't know what to do. Would not recommend this cruise line.

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Rated with 1 star
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 11, 2018

How DECEITFUL! I booked a cruise this morning following the ‘Free at Sea’ prompts. Through every single page it led me to believe I had the rate + 3 “Free at Sea’ items. I even upgraded to a balcony so I could choose more than 1 ‘Free at Sea’ item. Well, after I paid, I did not see where to choose. I called customer service and was told that I wasn’t eligible with my category. Now, if I just ‘looked over’ something I wouldn’t be so upset. However, the links provided by NCL website showed me eligible for ‘Free at Sea’ every step of the way!

I took the route through these pages:
• Link to Learn More on the main page (About the “Free at Sea’ Special)
• View Cruises link that took me to the available ‘Free at Sea’ cruises
• The list of those above listed cruises – each having ‘Free at Sea’ check boxes under each description

• View All Dates and Pricing shows a chart – WITH my balcony rate and a green color-coded hash next to it specifically. That green mark is explained as “Free at Sea’ below the chart.'

If ‘Free at Sea’ was something not available for what I chose – WHY put the green hash mark on EVERY option next to it as YOUR website leads me through the process? As a new customer, how am I to know what promotions are not available to me when you let me click on, PLUS show me in color code that it IS available? The only real thing made clear on these pages is that I may have an obstructed view from my balcony. Absolutely, there is fine print… "may not include promotional offers." Promotions – So what is a promotion? Could be promo codes, credit from past cruises, partial refunds, etc. How am I to know? On every page I followed it had the “Free at Sea’ listed on whatever I chose. I am not a novice web user and have booked MANY trips online. This was going to be my first with Norwegian. However, I will never sail this cruise line. This was total scheming or extremely poor web development – I’ll let you choose that one!

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Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 5, 2018

Before you decide to book a cruise with NORWEGIAN, read this… This was to be our 40th anniversary, once-in-a-lifetime cruise in Hawaii departing on August 25th. Unfortunately, hurricane Lane arrived and we were scheduled to fly at the height of the storm. Our United Airlines flight on August 24th was delayed indefinitely. Lane was a category five, a state of emergency had been declared by the governor of Hawaii, a federal disaster declaration issued, and the Honolulu harbor was closed. The governor stated that any residents and visitors to Hawaii have 14 days of food and water with them, even at the shelters, and that there is not enough room in shelters for everyone.

With the harbor being closed, Norwegian decided that our cruise was going to be delayed 2 days. We received a text from Norwegian and a letter from Vivian Ewart, Sr. Vice-President, Passenger Services on August 23rd stating that all passengers will receive a refund for the value of two days of the cruise fare. Because of the seriousness of the storm, United offered us a waiver to reschedule up to one year from the booking date. This was a much welcomed and rare offer from an airline. We were extremely alarmed at the possibility of trying to reschedule and fly into a hurricane, so we decided to accept the United Airlines offer and felt relieved that at least we had Norwegian's 2-day refund.

After a couple weeks of not receiving the refund, we were told that we will not be receiving it because we were unable to arrive in a hurricane for the new sailing date determined by Norwegian. In other words, we supposedly canceled. It was not stated in Ms. Ewart's letter that we had to risk our lives to arrive in a hurricane to receive the 2-day refund. We would understand not qualifying for the refund if we canceled well before the original departure date, but it hardly seems fair to penalize us the 2-day reimbursement for the very reason they are awarding it - unsafe to travel in the hurricane. After several appeals to Norwegian they refuse to reconsider and follow through with their written promise to refund the 2 days of cruise fare. So book your cruise with any other cruise line that has better customer service! They do not care about their customers!

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3 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 4, 2018

Our family of five were booked on 9 September cruise to Bermuda aboard NCL Escape. It was our dream vacation that we had been planning for the past 4 years. On 7 September we were advised that our itinerary was being changed to the Bahamas due to hurricane. We immediately contacted our travel agent with intent to cancel or reschedule this cruise and were advised that it would be up to NCL. Upon calling NCL we were told that neither of these options were possible and that we either cruise or lose our money and were referred to a fine print on the ticket.

Having no options we boarded NCL Escape on the 9 September and proceeded to Florida and Great Stirrup Cay. Third day into the cruise captain announced that our ship will not be going to Bahamas either. As a result of cancellation of the Bahamas stop, we've got neither and our dream vacation at this point was completely ruined. Totally a waste of our time and money. The Bermuda cruise is considered a premium destination and cost us around $3500 USD whereas the Bahamas cruise from the same port and same duration was selling for around $299 per person (approximately $1500 in total for 5 people).

All my attempts to reason with guest relations led to pointing at the fine print that they can do whatever they want and customers who pay and don't receive what they pay for, are screwed. To date we have not received any communication from NCL as to what compensation if any should be considered. We were not expecting a cash compensation, however, a price difference between two destinations would be fair. All I want to say to other customers is to stay away from these thieves who covers up with fine print. Even Carnival Cruise line has better customer service. Never again would we give our business to NCL.

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2 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 18, 2018

Cruise was ok... Shore excursion in Antigua should have been cancelled due to weather... They didn’t want to miss out on money so took us anyway... Excursion was catamaran/snorkel and beach day. Was only able to snorkel for 5 minutes due to rough seas and it rained 3/4 of the trip. Went to desk to see what could be done. Told me to fill out survey. The last day I purchased San Juan tour and then airport transfer. Had us meet in Stardust Theatre. I was appalled that made elderly folks walk down and up several flights of stairs to get to stage to get sticker. I personally helped an elderly woman get back up the stairs.

I went to inform a staff member that they need to move upstairs. They looked at me like I was speaking a foreign language. There were people in wheelchairs, walkers, elderly and obese blocking the entrance to theater. Again I went inform someone, not safe. Emaunual ** a concierge told me to shut up or was going to call security. Bad enough not to think that through putting shore excursion people at the bottom of three flights of stairs, but when brought to their attention, ignored it and threatened to call security. I only wish I would have taken a video of it all. Needless to say I didn’t want to take the San Juan tour and wanted my money back. They refused. So if you're thinking of planning cruise! Might want to look at Royal Caribbean or Holland. If cruise on Norwegian DO NOT GO ON EXCURSIONS!!!

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2 people found this review helpful
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Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 16, 2018

I booked a package through Expedia for flight and cruise. We just had a snow storm in NJ so all flights got canceled. I was on the phone with Expedia for 3 hours for them to tell me there’s nothing they can do because Norwegian said it’s sunny in Miami and they’re going to consider us a no show. They won’t reschedule or refund us. I been at the airport since 2 am and still here praying for a standby flight and NOTHING because EVERYONE is waiting for standby. I can’t believe Norwegian won’t even consider what we’re going through and making it as if we chose not to be there and they won’t accommodate us.

3 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 16, 2018

Boarding the Ship in Singapore. I arrived at the terminal by coach from my hotel in Singapore, from there I had to wait in a chaotic line for 2.5 hours before boarding the ship, the terminal was hot and overcrowded, the staff directing the passengers had different opinions on what was to be done and where people should be prior to boarding, so from 12.30pm until 3.00pm I had to navigate and endure what can only be described as a “train wreck”.

The Stateroom - I have been in staterooms before and the so-called “staterooms” on-board the Norwegian Jewel are definitely not staterooms. They are merely cabins, a real stateroom has room for at least 2 passengers to sit and dine in their room and they tend to be larger than cabins with more furniture. The balcony was average size for a cabin, however the 2 chairs were uncomfortable and the table was a mere 30cm x 30cm square (approximate) and about the same height, only enough space to put 2 glasses on, I had to be careful not to trip over it.

I also discovered the cabin door would not lock, the safe also did not lock and this took 2 hours to fix so consequently we had to wait in our cabin for that period of time. The bar staff at the stern. The 2 bar staff at the stern were extremely slow with queues building all the time, at times there were 13 passengers waiting for drinks which took up to 25 minutes to be served, the staff became rude to customers when they did not understand what drinks were required making the staff look incompetent.

The bar staff were consistently running out of drinks and stating to the passengers they will get some more later, the passengers needed their drinks then and not 2 hours later. What I did and a lot of other people did was to walk to the bar in the cafeteria area and get drinks there, it was a lot quicker and friendlier, the bar staff member there was a lot more professional and faster. By the time I walked there and back to the rear deck the same passengers were still waiting in the queue.

The Cafeteria Buffet and BBQ Deck - The food had been cooked and kept heated to a temperature of “just warm” so by the time you selected your food and found a table the food had gone cold. I also found most of this food was stale, it had been cooked some time ago. Main Dining Rooms - I found the menus needed to have more selections and also they needed changes to the menu each day, the food was also served warm so by the time I had finished eating the food had gone cold. I also found the food portions were too small and I was leaving the Dining Room feeling hungry.

Shore Excursions - The shore excursions I went on were poor value for the money charged, 1 excursion was canceled and I got very little notice so I had no time to choose another one. We were taken to venues not listed on the excursions like the “Gem Warehouse” for the purpose of buying gems, not what shore excursion are all about. if I want to buy something I will go to shopping in my own time.

On-board Laundry Service - There was very little instructions about how this service worked. I had to chase up crew members for laundry bags, the first lot of laundry I left for pick-up was left in the cabin so I went to the service desk waited for 25 minutes to be told I had not signed the bottom of the laundry list, it would have been far easier if the cabin crew had pointed this out on the day at that particular time instead of me wondering what’s going on and spending my time running around the ship to find out myself.

Reception Help Desk - It is stated in your cabin if you need assistance you can phone the reception/service desk, what a joke, in the 8 days I was aboard they never picked up their phone once so you had to trek down there and wait in line for assistance. There was no messages/advice coming through the speaker in our cabin so if you needed to hear vital information you had to be in a public area or stand outside your cabin to hear.

On-board Maintenance - I was woken up to the sound of crew members using power tools to repaint the ship outside of my cabin, I believe this should be done in port and not in the middle of my cruise and where it interferes with me. Cutting Short half a Day in Kuala Lumpur - For some reason, it was never explained fully to the passengers, the last day in Kuala Lumpur was canceled and the ship left early for Singapore, that’s not what I paid for. Please explain?

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5 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 11, 2018

CANADIAN AND INTERNATIONAL TRAVELERS BEWARE! When researching the cruise, the website (in Canada) is Canadian with Canadian prices. I thought the phone number would connect to an agent who was properly trained. He confirmed I was in their system and knew I was Canadian. I confirmed the price From the website and the cruise was booked. Later, my credit card was charged much more than what was agreed to and I discovered they had billed US dollars.

After hours of communication with several supervisors, I was told there was no customer service issue and it was up to me to state I want Canadian funds (even though they knew I was Canadian viewing the price on a Canadian website in Canadian dollars). They would not acknowledge their error. I requested an onboard credit and was told no as there was no service issue. I’m trying to figure out if this is done intentionally so they can make more money. (BTW past cruises have been great. So much for being a loyal customer!)

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3 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 10, 2018

My wife and I planned a Mediterranean cruise for our 25th anniversary. My luggage never made it on the ship. After two days of wearing the same clothes, NCL finally admitted it was in Barcelona. They would not ship it to a forward port. After some protest and appeal to the top customer service rep on the ship, I was offered a $100 onboard credit and told to buy clothes off the ship. I was told to keep receipts, and they would be considered upon return. I am now being told that they are only willing to offer a $200 credit on a future cruise. I travel for a living, and I am dumbfounded by the incompetence and lack of service exhibited by NCL. I will never use this company again and would strongly recommend that you think twice about paying your hard earned money. Apparently, it does not matter if they hold up their end of the contract. Let others know... #NeverNCL.

5 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 5, 2018

Was by far the worst cruise I have ever been and I have been on many! The food was awful. Drinks were watered Down. The waiters were not pleasant at all! I ordered Wi-Fi for my room and they refused to give it to me. The waiter in the Italian restaurant that we paid money for at first refused to give us butter for our bread because he said they don’t do it that way in this dining room. The regular dining room I ordered a medium rare New York strip steak, came out well done! Then when I ask him to redo it the waiter definitely had an attitude. I did have fun on the excursions. I just have to say the menus in the main dining rooms were just blah. We never saw a professional photographer for the first three days of our trip. Most of the bathroom around the pool and spa area were dirty.

On our last day we were sitting waiting to get off the ship and we sat down on the seventh floor in a restaurant area and there was a bucket of puke sitting on the table. I immediately went and told someone about it and an hour and a half later when we did get off the ship it was still sitting there! That is disgusting!! While booking this trip directly with Norwegian I was never told that the third adult in the room is not eligible for the ultimate drink package. I think that is something that they should’ve let me know about! Overall not a very good time. I will not be traveling Norwegian again.

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2 people found this review helpful
Rated with 2 stars
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 4, 2018

We missed the flight home, to Manchester, after a medical emergency, which took our ship off course, by several hours. Time the ship did not make up. Hundreds of passengers were affected, having to pay thousands of dollars, to rearrange travel arrangements, with an extra overnight stay, in New York, and, in our case, a cost of $850 each. We spent the last 3 days, of our cruise, stressed, and queuing for several hours, to use a computer terminal, and telephone. I have contacted our travel insurance, who say I can make a claim, for up to £250 each, leaving us at least £1800 out of pocket, THROUGH NO FAULT OF OUR OWN! I understand, that in the small print, of the cruise contract, we probably are not covered for any refund, from NCL, but is there such as thing as a GOODWILL gesture that could be made by the company? As a regular cruiser, on a first time trip, with NCL, I would certainly hope so!

6 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 27, 2018

Let me start by saying that we knew the risks of planning a cruise during hurricane season, so we weren't really that bothered by our itinerary changing. What followed is the reason for this review. We were sent to Port Canaveral, Great Stirrup Cay, and Nassau. At Port Canaveral, there's not really anything to do besides the space center, which you really need more time for. So we didn't bother getting off the ship. At Great Stirrup Cay, they don't have a dock for a cruise ship, so you have to get carried to shore and back by tender boats. This process is so time consuming that you only get about 4 hours on the island. 2 hours into it, they shut down all the food stands and bars. Also, the swimming area is incredibly crowded - even worse than the pools on the ship. You are literally standing shoulder to shoulder.

Then, the captain skipped our last stop (the main attraction) at Nassau. Now, I understand that we had to go out to sea farther to avoid the hurricane on the way home. What pissed me off is that instead of skipping their stupid private island and going to Nassau, we skipped Nassau. I am pretty confident this was done because it saved them money since they own Great Stirrup Cay. They saved on port fees by not going to Nassau. It's clear they don't care about the happiness of their guests.

At this point, I would have expected them to offer SOME type of compensation or incentive for another cruise - ANYTHING. Especially when you consider that our new itinerary was exactly the same as one of their normal cruises, which is CHEAPER than the Bermuda cruise we booked. At the very least, a partial reimbursement for the price difference would have been the ethical thing to do. The other cruise lines that had to change course offered all their guests some type of compensation. Not NCL though.

Next, let's talk about the actual ship. A member of our group has been on several Norwegian cruises (and will never go on another one after this). The other ships are apparently laid out the same, except the Escape added 2 floors of guest rooms and holds like 2000 more passengers. So there aren't really any more attractions, but there are way more people to fill up those attractions. That was a MAJOR problem during our cruise.

Almost every single event/show/etc on the ship requires a reservation. By the 2nd or 3rd day, they were all booked. ALL OF THEM - not an exaggeration. We decided to try the standby line for one of the comedy shows. We showed up 45 minutes early and there were already about 70 people in the standby line (and the comedy club isn't all that big). We didn't even bother. You basically have to plan your entire trip and everything you want to do by the 2nd day. You can't be spontaneous at all.

There are 2 tiny pools they are ridiculously crowded at all times. I guess if you're into the frat party lifestyle where you're constantly grinding against other people all day you would really like this. For everyone else, it's miserable. Seriously, if you put both pools together, they would be about the size of a typical inground pool at a normal house in the suburbs. If that wasn't bad enough, they close all the pools and hot tubs around 10pm. Not for maintenance or anything - they just close them. By 11pm, pretty much everything except one restaurant/bar is closed. We are adults looking to stay out late and have fun on vacation, but that is apparently not on the menu with NCL.

The one thing I actually enjoyed, the speed slides, were shut down for HOURS every day. The mini golf course has holes/dips under the green that you can't see until you step on them and almost fall, not to mention the frustration of a great putt randomly changing direction or totally stopping. The Bocce Ball court was tapered downhill from the center on both sides, which rendered it all but useless. I realize nobody takes a cruise to play Bocce Ball, but it's just one more thing on the list.

They advertise the zip line that swings out over the side of the ship as a big attraction. What they don't tell you is that IT DOESN'T EVER WORK!!! In fact, 50% of the entire ropes course is permanently shut down. An employee told us that it's shut down because they have no way to work on it and maintain it. So this course probably only worked for the first year of the ship's life and will probably never work again.

If you're not familiar with NCL ships, they have an Atrium in the center that is open for 3 floors, with the casino surrounding it on the center floor. They allow smoking in the casino. By the 3rd day of the trip, the smoke has traveled throughout the entire atrium - all 3 floors. This is really fantastic when your wife is pregnant and trying to avoid second hand smoke.

We got the "ultimate" beverage package, which includes drinks up to $15. What they don't tell you is that they jack up the prices of everything so that the good stuff is just barely too expensive to get. You can get most mixed drinks and pretty much all beers, but if you're into sipping bourbon or scotch, you're only getting the middle shelf stuff.

After all that, NCL wouldn't offer us anything at all. Not even 10% off a future cruise. Not even the difference in price for the cruise we got vs the one we paid for. I have been on Carnival cruises and had a much better time. I hear Royal Caribbean is great as well. I can say that I will never go on another NCL cruise in my life. Neither will any of the 25 other people in my group. That's how bad it was. In fact, I never even write negative reviews on anything, but this was so bad I felt like it was my duty to make sure others don't have the same experience.

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8 people found this review helpful
Rated with 3 stars
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 27, 2018

Having just cruised for 12 days on the NCL Gem we would like to know if this ship has a Captain, we never heard or saw him in 12 days, yes he has an assistant who attended the senior officer discussion meeting on the 11th day of the cruise. He is either very shy or aloof. We have yet to find out. On other NCL cruises we have been introduced to Captain, senior officers, chiefs etc quite early in the cruise. Not so on this cruise. Oct 07-21 2018. If there is a Captain could he please tell us why were the Jacuzzi's only warm when complaint after complaint was made about this problem which was not resolved in 12 days. Entertainment aimed at the wrong age group. Fair to poor.

2 people found this review helpful
Rated with 2 stars
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 27, 2018

When is the cruise you booked NOT the cruise you booked. NCL Norwegian Breakaway 9 Day Baltic Cruise - 23/9 - 2/10 2018. Cancelled 3 out of 5 destinations. Departure was delayed by 1 day and we were only informed after boarding. The reason given for not sailing as planned and not going to Windermere Germany was “weather conditions”? When the ship finally sailed at about 3pm on Monday the 24th we spent 2 full days at sea. Tallin, Estonia turned into a 2 day destination. Reason given the floodgates at St Petersburg were closed due to “conditions” in the gulf of Finland.

Subsequently we were informed that to give us the planned 2 days in St Petersburg the decision had been made by head office in Miami to cancel Helsinki and Sweden. We then spent some 60 hours at sea at an extremely slow pace returning to Copenhagen within arms reach of both Finland and Sweden, watching the ferries easily handle the conditions.

Every disappointed passenger on board was able to easily work out how they could have achieved 1 if not 2 of these destinations. Instead we the paying passengers were left disappointed and feeling that the cruise we experienced was NOT the cruise we choose and paid for. The only explanation we were given was a very loose reference to weather conditions.

Might Norwegian have saved $$$ on docking fees and fuel, in a glorified hotel room. We felt cheated and disappointed. Sure weather is beyond the cruise liners control, but at very least communication could have been better. Additionally why not make it up to passengers, a free bus into town or let's try one port for 1/2 special day nothing was forthcoming. We subsequently learnt this may very well be a tactic by NCL. Promise 5 yet deliver less? Why?

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5 people found this review helpful
Rated with 5 stars
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 25, 2018

Fellow cruisers and future cruisers: After reading all the complaints regarding NCL I must say hogwash to them all. I have cruised NCL 12 times and also a cruise with Holland America and Costa and I can tell you that NCL is far above them all period. The complaints given are BS! NCL have the happiest staff and I have yet to have any negative experiences at all... I can only guess that the complaint is prob work for another cruise line and or are loyal to the same. From the food to the entertainment NCL is fantastic!!! Having said this one certainly has their own opinion and tastes but for me I sail like a Norwegian???

8 people found this review helpful
Rated with 2 stars
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 23, 2018

We were a party of 10 on the Norwegian Breakaway beginning on September 23, 2018 from Copenhagen. We were to visit 5 countries. We missed going to Sweden, Finland and Germany. We should have been provided more detailed information as to why we could not get to certain ports. We saw other cruise ships sailing. The only information provided was we will not be sailing because of “the safety of our passengers.” The ship could have asked the performers on board to offer additional times or discounts at restaurants. You had to pay for the inconvenience. We had to endure of not being able to leave the ship or sailing for 3 straight days. I wrote to the President of Norwegian Cruise Lines. As I expected no one has reached out to me.

5 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 20, 2018

So last July at 5:00 in the morning I was told by an airlines that I did not have an airline reservation and there is nothing they could do about it. The airline rep was very upset and tried to console me. NORWEGIAN Cruise Lines had made that reservation in conjunction with a Wyndham exchanged Alaskan Cruise. I called every number but nothing was answering until after 9 am. Then I didn't get an apology. I got a, "I'll call you back." They called at 11:00. Hard to understand but they were offering to fly me to catch up with the cruise. Oh, hell no. I can't bounce back that fast and I'd received no apology or explanation.

I was not reimbursed until 2 weeks ago and they did not include interest on this money. I had a feeling this cruise wouldn't happen because the cruise line has not been communicative beforehand. I'm writing this as a cautionary tale about NCL. Their customer service is very uncaring. That offer to catch the cruise is illegal and they provided no apology, explanation or direct contact with me. However, I do now get posts daily from NCL for discounted cruises. Really, I don't feel safe with your poor customer care.

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4 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 17, 2018

Based on the information of other passenger onboard and in Germany (**), the crew and company knew that the ship will not embark at Warnemunde (Berlin) Germany on 22 September. However, no email was sent to us who embarked at Copenhagen on 23 September beforehand. We were told there was storm at Berlin when we check in. In fact, there was no storm at Warnemunde on both 23 & 24 September. (**). The evidence is clear enough that NCL breakaway didn't depart Copenhagen was not because of weather but other hidden reason and the company knew the reason at least one day before without informing us. We planned the trip in Nov 2017 according to our receipt and paid before the due date. We reserved excursion to Berlin before boarding as well. If the company told us the ship would not embark at Berlin, we might have cancelled our trip.

The same happened in Tallinn. The weather at Tallinn was not bad enough for the ship not to depart. Ferries that were much smaller than Breakaway kept arriving and departing the port at the evening on Sept 26. The weather at Tallinn was clear after 18:00, 1.5 hours delay (**). The rain at St Petersburg September 27 was only 0.08 inches that would not cause flooding (**). All evidence showed that the decision of not departing Tallinn to St Petersburg on 26 September was wrong. We missed 3 out of 5 ports (>50%) in our trip because of the wrong decision. And the crew kept telling lies.

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10 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 15, 2018

Today I was looking at Norweigan's 5 Free at Sea promotion and considering booking a cruise. I had one or two questions so I called the Personal cruise consultant assigned to me. I asked my two questions and then told him I would probably book this trip through AAA travel agency because I had some significant travel credit with them. He read me the riot act and berated me for wasting his time when I intended to book an fairly expensive trip with HIS Company using travel agent. I was stunned by his response. We will not be vacationing with this cruise line again.

13 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 8, 2018

We arrived in San Francisco for the day (October 3rd, 2018). We were informed everyone had to get off the boat for custom checking, this started at 8:00 am. They were doing deck by deck, ours was the first, but being disabled and a diabetic, I needed to have breakfast first, so I did. Got off the boat around 10:30 am, did a short walk as my husband has disabilities as well. Returned to get on the boat around 11:30 am, but no not allowed to return to the boat until everyone still left on the boat passed through customs.

Well it is almost 2:00 p.m. and the terminal area is now full of a lot of angry passengers wanting to get back to their cabins, possibly have a late lunch and then rest in the comfort of their cabins. When we asked Norwegian how they could trap passengers in a terminal for almost 7 hours, their answer was it was the customs fault! I asked why Norwegian didn't have the customs come on the boat and do their custom checking on the boat, that way after a passenger was screened they could continue to enjoy their day and not be tortured for 7 hours sitting in a cruise terminal. The answer I got was customs refused that option.

I find this hard to believe because we have been on other cruise lines and that is exactly how that takes place; custom officers are all over the boat, in fact they seem to be enjoying everything the boat has to offer especially all their meals are looked after by the cruise lines. I will be getting in touch with customer to find out the truth!

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6 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 8, 2018

After several port changes/cancelations wrote to several executives regarding the poor treatment due to a hurricane. The changes were not the issue, however two competing cruise lines offered comps and huge discounts off next cruises. NCL has denied its customers and I have received no responses from CEO of NCL Corp, CEO of NCL Cruise Lines nor EVP of Guest Relations. Disgusted that a loyal customer that has spent a lot of hard earned money with NCL cannot even receive a note back that I matter.

8 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 5, 2018

The NCL website is inaccessible. I enter my screen name/pw and the sign-in screen simply returns. I reset my name/pw and the sign-in screen reappears again!

So, I tried calling NCL (3 times) during business hours. They answered on two of those calls after waiting 25 minutes each. The first agent transferred me to another department where I waited another 35 minutes and finally hung up. On my 3rd and final call I finally spoke with Diana in Arizona after a 40 minute wait and I demanded that a supervisor contact me to ensure the check-in process is complete. I’m still awaiting that call.

How can a company as big as NCL not offer the callback feature? “No... Let’s make them wait so we can advertise more over the phone.” Elevator music would have been less painful. My cruise is less than two weeks away and I’m already displeased with their customer service. I cannot get my questions answered and am no longer looking forward to this cruise. I shall consider cancelling the cruise this evening. Even if I could get ahold of someone that may be able to assist me, I’m forced to question the validity in their response. There is no shortage of bad reviews and questionable decisions on NCL’s behalf. Great job NCL. I haven’t even set foot on the boat and am already dissatisfied. But hey... At least I still have both my arms! - $$$. "Aug 2018, Arbitrator Orders NCL to Pay $3,337,500 to Seriously Injured crew member." It’s seems terrible customer service and poor decisions are the norm at NCL.

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6 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 1, 2018

This was the worst cruise by far. I had high hopes though, as my first cruise was with Norwegian, which has been the bar in which I measure all cruises; it was very fantastic. This cruise was seemingly doomed from the get go. Getting on the ship was a pain, the porters were not helpful, the food was terrible, the wait staff was hit and miss, the stateroom was way too small for three people, the bathroom was too small for even one person, our toilet was broken the whole cruise, the service desk was slow to help, the service desk was further rude and unwilling to listen to complaints, the NCL reservation staff I spoke to at our first port was highly rude and unwilling to listen (instructed to wait till after the cruise to fill my complaints through their automated review process).

The shows on board were terrible and far too few. There was little to do on the ship that didn’t require a reservation. Some items such as laser tag and go carts had a cost and were not indicated as such at the time the reservations were made. The Wi-Fi service was terrible and barely worked. It cost additional to set up my online account after already paying for Wi-Fi access. The elevator access was terrible. There was no onboard self serve laundry. The on board laundry service was slow overall, was impossible to book reservations due to not knowing what was going on on the ship more than a few hours in advance. There was little instruction on disembarking the ship on the final day. Getting off the ship was far slower than I have ever experienced. I could go on and on but this was horrible. I’m pretty sure I will never sail with Norwegian again.

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10 people found this review helpful
Rated with 4 stars
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 29, 2018

My wife and I have taken NCL for 18 different cruises. Generally speaking, I was pleased with them all. I read a great many complaints. If you want a really outstanding experience, try and book a haven suite. The caliber of service and the perks are amazing. Now both my wife and I are so spoiled we wouldn't book any other category. From the time you first check in and your butler show you to private waiting area through final disembarkation, when the concierge whisks you off the ship within 10 minutes, believe me, it's all worth the price of admission. We're doing the 19 day trans-Atlantic Oct 2019 and have already booked the haven forward penthouse suite.

4 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 18, 2018

NCL has specialty restaurants available at additional costs. We were traveling for two birthdays and wedding anniversary so we booked 3 dinners plus a dinner/performance. Steak was mediocre quality, two did not allow any selection options, one took upwards of 2 hours due to kitchen delays (the food at this was quite good). Another turned us away on embarkation day for cruise casual attire (my hubby's birthday) despite us checking directly at the restaurant a few hours earlier with posted signage that stated all restaurants were cruise casual on embarkation date. Per the maitre d' NCL changed their policy a few weeks earlier but their signage had not been updated.

8 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 14, 2018

I recently completed (8/4/18) a 7 day cruise to Alaska with my immediate family of six and my extended family of an additional 18 travelers. Our aggregate booking probably exceed $30,000. After setting sail, my wife's luggage, containing everything for the week, never arrived in our stateroom. After days of searching and countless calls to us, Norwegian Cruise Lines (NCL) advised the missing bag had never been loaded on board in Seattle. My wife was forced to endure everything accompanying this loss of luggage; family reunion photos in borrowed clothes that didn't fit, no swimming, exclusion from activities requiring closed toed shoes etc. Guest relations on board placed a small stipend, initially $100 and finally an additional $150 on my wife's account and said they could do no more.

After returning to Seattle my wife's luggage was returned. NCL corporate later said the most they were willing to offer were partial nominal credits (approx $900), toward a future cruise that we needed to book within 11 months. They split these credits across multiple names necessitating we book multiple persons on the future cruise, at far more cost than the compensation offers, to take advantage of the very small offsets. Clearly a ploy to generate additional revenue as we were still reeling from our recent experience. Needless to say, their offer was essentially worthless to us.

The main purpose of this rating is to advise that any future person considering booking on NCL should seriously reconsider. My assigned case coordinator will not answer phone calls directly, the main guest relations personnel are very dismissive and only willing to transfer me to the case agent's voicemail. Despite repeated requests to speak to a supervisor, I have been denied each and every time. I was originally told NCL had 15 working days to get back to me with an update. That did not happen.

There are many more details regarding the callous disregard for the paying customer but suffice it to say, NCL does not care about doing the right thing for their customers. Not a good way to build a loyal customer base. NCL violated a contract I formed with them by providing incomplete service in exchange for the full fund fare(s) we paid. As a matter of reference, I have taken many cruises over the years, on board many different cruise lines and I have never had to write a letter such as this. Good luck if you choose NCL and ever encounter any type of problem.

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13 people found this review helpful
Rated with 2 stars
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 13, 2018

I traveled from U.S. to cruise on Norwegian Star. Embarkment was swift, and luggage didn't take long to arrive. First problem was the time was delayed leaving the Venice port. The stateroom was not properly cleaned, and I had to do touchup before I felt comfortable. The food was terrible and often cold, or leftovers from the previous day. The dining room menu was mostly the same every day. Entertainment was just fair. Activities were a hit or miss. Tours were overpriced, and not enough time to explore. Getting off the ship at each port was a disaster. NCL needs to do better. We don't travel this far to pay, and receive crappy service. I'll not cruise with NCL again!!! Cruise 09/02/18, Venice Italy, to Greek Islands.

10 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 12, 2018

I booked my cruise on NCL.com and paid over 5000.00 for 7 day Alaska. The website said to pick a PERK option so I picked Free alcohol/drinks. When I got on the boat they denied my perk for no reason & they said I was NOT entitled to any perks or free alcohol. They said they would look into it after I complained and 2 days later confirmed that I was NOT entitled to any perk with my booking!! What a RIP OFF!!! I was nickle and dimed for every expense on this cruise with service fees ranging from going into the Jacuzzi and sauna for 300.00 to 8 overpriced pictures for 200.00. I was mislead and feel like it was a bait and switch scam where this company does not uphold its offers and shows no integrity or customer service. HORRIBLY DISAPPOINTING ON THIS FAMILY VACATION!

16 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 10, 2018

I want to warn everyone about the service I have received before, during and after a recent cruise on Norwegian Cruise Lines. Before the cruise, anytime I need to call for help, I was on hold over 30 min. before someone answered. Most times, the person was not able to help anyway. That should have been a clue and I should not have booked the cruise. However, I did book and once booked the poor service continued.

I found the service to be deficient. It started when I checked in. I was not given any directions as to what to do. I was only pointed to what I thought was a place to board the ship. When I got to the end of the walkway I was in an empty room with no one guiding me. I had to find someone to ask what to do. At that point I was told to go into another room and I was given a boarding number and told to wait.

When I finally did get on the ship, I proceeded to the dining room where I had a horrible meal. It started off with something floating in my iced tea. Next a Greek salad with only two pieces of lettuce and finally an overcooked, dry chicken. When I got in my stateroom, I found out that there was only one working electric outlet. That is not enough for anyone so I called down to guest services to see if maybe I had just overlooked it. After waiting over 20 min. for someone to answer, I was told that was all there was and I would need to come down to the guest service desk to pick up an extension. I asked why it could not be delivered and I was told that was not possible. I had to go down and wait in line just to get what should have been in my stateroom already.

When we arrived at the first port, I exited the ship and walked around and explored all day. When I returned to the ship, hot and tired from my outing I saw that they were not letting anyone on the ship. They said it was because it was too windy. I have been on many cruises and it was not that windy so I’m sure that was just a made up reason. Regardless, I waited over an hour in the hot sun before they started letting people on and off the ship in groups of around 10. At no time did anyone apologize or explain what was happening.

The final straw was my post cruise excursion, the hop on hop off Miami airport. What a waste of time and money. I had to wait to get off the ship with the group. We then exited the ship and waited by the bus for what I thought was the hop on hop off bus, but no this was just a bus to take us to the hop on hop off bus. By the time we got to the actual location, it was over an hour later. When we got to the location, we had to wait another 45 min. before the bus arrived. By the time I got on the bus, I only had two hours. Since the round trip on the bus was 90 minutes, there was no way to hop off because the buses only come every 40 minutes (especially when I saw that people were waiting to get on the bus and there were no seats so they could not get on). There was a second route that I would have liked to take, but there was not enough time. Needless to say, all I did was sit on a bus for 90 minutes and then wait for the bus to the airport.

When I got home I opened a case with NCL to discuss my disappointment. I have been waiting for over a month for a response that has not come. I have called to see the status and the first time I waited on hold 35 min. before I was told they had 15 business days to respond. Today I called (27 business days) and inquired again. This time I was told the case manager said I would hear by the end of the week. I asked to speak to the case manager and was transferred to a phone that rang for 40 min. before they hung up on me. After this experience, my next cruise will not be with NCL. I just want to let others know about the service that NCL provided before, during and after the cruise so they can make a more informed decision when booking their next cruise.

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15 people found this review helpful
Rated with 1 star
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 9, 2018

We booked a last minute cruise that was supposed to leave in 2 weeks. 3 Days after booking something came up and we could not go. No refund. Incredibly rude support. Do not go here. Go to somewhere else.

12 people found this review helpful
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Norwegian Cruise Lines expert review by ConsumerAffairs

Norwegian Cruise Lines has been in business for over 48 years; it developed the concept of freestyle cruising, which means a relaxed dress code, that lets guests enjoy the cruise at unscheduled, individual paces.

  • Svedka & Inniskillin ice bar: The Svedka & Inniskillin ice bar is a bar set in an arctic chamber; the walls, the bar and everything inside is made from ice.

  • Waterfront: Norwegian's Waterfront is a quarter-mile deck where guests can walk and enjoy oceanfront views.

  • Walk the Plank: Thrill seekers can experience walking the Plank, which is a narrow beam traveling 8 feet out over the water.

  • Great Stirrup Cay: One of Norwegian's unique stops is the company's private island, where guests can explore and play in the shoreline.

  • Broadway at sea: Norwegian Cruise Lines guests can take in exclusive Broadway shows while on board.

  • Best for: The Norwegian Cruise liner is best for budget-conscious families and adults looking for a relaxed, less formal cruise experience.

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ConsumerAffairs Research Team

The ConsumerAffairs Research Team believes everyone deserves to make smart decisions. We aim to provide readers with the most up-to-date information available about today's consumer products and services.

Norwegian Cruise Lines Company Information

Company Name:
Norwegian Cruise Lines
Year Founded:
1966
Address:
7665 Corporate Center Drive
City:
Miami
State/Province:
FL
Postal Code:
33126
Country:
United States
Phone:
(866) 234-7350
Website:
www.ncl.com
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