We wish we had read the reviews on this cruise prior to sailing. My sister and her husband traveled with us. This was cruise #4 for us and cruise #5 for them. This was by far the worst travel experience we have had to date! It would have been nice had our travel agent warned us it was the rainy season in Hawaii and the seas were rough.We boarded in Maui not Honolulu. The difference in our welcome aboard was very different. No welcome, no pictures just rushed.Check-in at the reception desk took three people and over an hour.Our Itinerary was changed from Kona to Hilo due to rough Seas and docking problems.
When we arrived in Kauai and tryed to disembark for our tour we were told our ship cards were invalid:we needed to check in. I thought we did.So back to the front desk, this happened on three separate occasions on this cruise.In Honolulu we returned to our adjoining balcony rooms to find tuxedos hanging outside the closet our balcony doors wide open TVs on and the beds totally rumpled and cigar smoke eminating from both the rooms.I called the front desk asked to speak to a supervisor and was disconnected.Kept calling and finally after 45 minutes a security representative arrived to investigate. Security had no explaination for this and said they would get back to us. This breech of security was totally mishandled instead of NLC making us feel safe and secure, we were made to feel as if we had done something wrong.We never felt safe in our cabins after that. By the way security finally got back to us 3 DAYS later with the explanation that the surveillance film was inconclusive.I told the head of security we had had high expectations of such a respected cruise line and that so far NLC had not lived up to them.We understand the reasons for going to Fanning Island but with the tendering process some people were only on the Island for 30 minutes and had to get back so we could set sail again.
Free style cruising is not what it is cracked up to be, if you don't mind waiting for and hour or more to be seated, and a less then attentive staff and meals that are just edible then you will like your dining experience.Breakfasts in the dining rooms were a disgrace. We waited over 45 minutes on two mornings for coffee creamer,our toast or hash browns never made it to our table after numerous requests.The food was either under cooked or cold.We were very disappointed with the Dining experience on this cruise. Hassle free tipping was convenient, but we found most of the staff did not go the extra yard to smile or be more helpful.My sister slipped and fell walking from the Stardust Theartre and NO ONE on the staff asked if she was injured or if they could assist us in any way. One waiter stood and watch us as we picked her up crying!
Disembark at your leisure meant that we were locked out of our rooms on deck #10 by 10:00 AM. Thats right our ship cards no longer worked again. Our cabin steward finally let us in to get our belongings. The positive is that this is a beautiful ship the facilities on board are remarkable and eventually we hope the staff will improve on it's service. If you really want to see Hawaii this is not the way to go, NLC's Itinerary doesn't give you enough time on the islands, your at sea most of the time going to and from Fanning Island.We wrote a letter to customer service at NLC and are awaitng a reply! I quess after reading the review from Alan I doubt we will get a response.The next cruise we book will be a RCCL or Princess or Celebrity not NCL!!