Posted July 12th, 2013, 12:29 PM
Its funny, the pros for one person are not the same for another. Everyone is different. I actually do not like free style dining at all unless you are in a suite (i.e. concierge to make sure you have a table waiting so you don't have to wait in line!). Our first NCL cruise we were in a regular room, and nearly every night we went to dinner (which was usually 7:30 or later as we are used to late seating in traditional dining) we had to wait in line to eat. I don't consider that freestyle, we decided when we wanted to eat then waited in line, not my idea of cruising or vacation. I don't even like waiting in line to eat at home, we usually go elsewhere if there is a line. I really love traditional dinning, you don't have to "plan" you know when you eat, you go there at that time, walk in and sit and you talk to your servers who get to know you and your preferences etc. (such as having a glass of milk waiting for my husband each night). I also don't find the food or service as good on NCL as Royal. We only go on NCL now when we are meeting up with good friends (that we met on a previous cruise) and it has to be a suite!!
We don't book suites on any other lines - NCL suites are amazing. We had a suite on Carnival and the amenities are non-existent.
No cruise is a bad cruise, it is just better if you know what to expect going in. We now know what NCL is like and know what to expect before hand. Our first NCL cruise we went expecting it to be more like our previous cruises, and because of that expectation we were very disappointment. We tried NCL the second time because of a very great deal on a repo (we a really cheap upgrade to a DOS at the last minute) and then we met great friends so we are going back for #3!
We don't have kids though, I think "Freestyle" and the NCL cruise in general would be great with kids, much more laid back.
Celebrity Eclipse - 14 days Exotic Caribbean - March 4, 2018
Celebrity Equinox - 7 Days - June 30, 2018
Celebrity Equinox - 21 days - Oct 26 and Nov 5, 2018 (B2B)
Celebrity Silhouette - 12 days - March 3, 2019
Celebrity Equinox - 7 days - June 29, 2019
Celebrity Summit - 14 days - Nov 2 and 9, 2019 (B2B)
Celebrity Silhouette - 21 days - Feb 23 and March 6 (B2B)
Past Cruises: Carnival Sensation - Nov 1999 (7 days) ~ Carnival Glory - May 2004 (14 days) ~ Sun Princess - March 2006 (10 days) ~ Carnival Victory - May 2007 - Caribbean (7 days) ~ Carnival Liberty - May 2007 - (7 days) ~ Carnival Valor - Dec 2007 and Jan 2008 (14 days) ~ HAL Maasdam - Oct 24, 2008 (14 days) ~ HAL Ryndam - April 2009 - Sea of Cortez (10 days) ~ NCL Jewel - Oct 2009 (Repo) (14 days) ~ Caribbean Princess - Jan 2010 (14 days) C209 ~ Celebrity Constellation - Dec 2010 (14 days) aft 7206 ~ RCI Rhapsody of the Seas - April 2011 - Repo Hawaii to Vancouver (13 days) ~ NCL Star - April 2012 (Repo) (12 days) - Our first Suite (SA, DOS - 12502) ~ RCI Jewel of the Seas - Oct 2012 - (Repo) (14 days with Hurricane Sandy!) 8670 ~ Carnival Legend - Jan 2013 - Vista Suite - 8268 (7 days) ~ Celebrity Eclipse - April 2013 - 8122 (14 days) ~ Celebrity Summit - Nov 2013 - 6065/7173 (14 days B2B) ~ Celebrity Summit - Jan 25-14 - 6035 (7 days) ~ NCL Dawn - April 2014 (Repo) (12 days) - Garden Villa 14500 ~ Celebrity Summit - Nov 2014 - 6031 (14 days B2B)~ Celebrity Reflection - Jan 2015 - 7286 (7 days) ~ Celebrity Eclipse - March 2015 - 7271 (14 days) ~ Celebrity Summit - Oct/Nov 2015 - 6035 (21 days) ~ Celebrity Summit - March 2015 - 3134 (14 days) ~ Celebrity Summit - October 2016 - 3134 (27 days B2B2B - with my mom) ~ Celebrity Summit - Nov 2016 - 6035 (21 days B2B2B) ~ NCL Escape - April 2017 - 9738 (14 days B2B) ~ Celebrity Equinox - Aug 2017 - 6240 (7 days) ~ Celebrity Equinox - Oct/Nov 2017 - 7134 (20 days B2B)