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#1
Milford, Ohio,usa
2,083 Posts
Joined Sep 2000
About to book our first cruise with NCL on the Getaway. We have 20 cruises under our belt on 3 other cruise lines. So what can we expect? It sounds like we need to make show reservations. We've never had to do that before. Any other differences we should be aware of? Don't want to board and not be prepared.
#2
In A House
4,377 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
The Getaway is a GREAT ship. You do not NEED TO make reservations at all. If you absolutely 100% want to see a specific show at a specific time then you CAN make reservations. NCL is a LOT less structured than other lines. It is basically do what you want when you want (especially eating). There are no 'early' or 'late' seating. If you want to dine at the specialty places, you can book at the 90-day mark by going to MyNCL, however even if a place sells out pre-cruise for the date and time you want, do not fret. Only about 30% or so of the available slots are open for pre-cruise booking.
#3
Florida
456 Posts
Joined Jan 2016
If you have a larger group reservations for dinner might help. On my last cruise when the group got bigger than 6 or 8 it threw them for a loop. The dining rooms operate like regular restaurants, so just like them if they don't know about a large group that takes more than two tables it can take them a while to open up enough tables next to each other.

And at least on my sailing saying we have a group of 14 but can be split up as we didn't care and that threw em for a loop too.

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#4
Rhode Island
19 Posts
Joined Mar 2014
You do not have to make show reservations but I highly recommend that you do at 90days before. They usually let those with reservations in first then if space is available open to others. You can always modify dinner and show reservations right on you tv.
#5
39 Posts
Joined Jan 2018
The water bottle in your cabin is not free. They will charge you for it if you open it. NCL nickle and dimes you for every expense. Even Carnival is nice enough to put a do not open sign on the water bottle with a price on it.

This is just one example. Most of the food in the free restaurants do not taste good and are cold. They will want money from you in the specialty dining rooms for a better experience. You always have to pay extra money on an NCL cruises to have a good time.
#6
Parkland, Florida
226 Posts
Joined Mar 2012
I was just on the Getaway in the Haven last month. I also stayed in a family mini-suite on Getaway a few years back. What type of cabin did you book and what perks did you select? What is included or not included in your cabin varies greatly depending on what room you have and what incentives you've chosen.
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#7
Milford, Ohio,usa
2,083 Posts
Joined Sep 2000
Originally posted by Lupush
I was just on the Getaway in the Haven last month. I also stayed in a family mini-suite on Getaway a few years back. What type of cabin did you book and what perks did you select? What is included or not included in your cabin varies greatly depending on what room you have and what incentives you've chosen.
I haven't booked yet. I need a handicap room so not sure if any will be available when we want to go. We always cruise last minute, so to speak. I'm looking at 3 different weeks in April. I'd love to try the Haven but not on our first NCL cruise. It's a lot of money if we aren't pleased. I plan on choosing the UBP and Specialty dining. Gotta have a balcony though. Thanks for the tips.
#8
Milford, Ohio,usa
2,083 Posts
Joined Sep 2000
Originally posted by Maniacal Cruiser
The Getaway is a GREAT ship. You do not NEED TO make reservations at all. If you absolutely 100% want to see a specific show at a specific time then you CAN make reservations. NCL is a LOT less structured than other lines. It is basically do what you want when you want (especially eating). There are no 'early' or 'late' seating. If you want to dine at the specialty places, you can book at the 90-day mark by going to MyNCL, however even if a place sells out pre-cruise for the date and time you want, do not fret. Only about 30% or so of the available slots are open for pre-cruise booking.
Thanks for the advice. Was hoping to not have to worry about scheduling and reservations. Haven't booked yet but looking at April. We can go at the drop of a hat so that's how we roll. Looking forward to it.
#9
Milford, Ohio,usa
2,083 Posts
Joined Sep 2000
Originally posted by smplybcause
If you have a larger group reservations for dinner might help. On my last cruise when the group got bigger than 6 or 8 it threw them for a loop. The dining rooms operate like regular restaurants, so just like them if they don't know about a large group that takes more than two tables it can take them a while to open up enough tables next to each other.

And at least on my sailing saying we have a group of 14 but can be split up as we didn't care and that threw em for a loop too.

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It will most likely be just the two of us. Maybe one other couple. I'd love to cruise with a group but no one can go when we want to. Thanks for the advice.
#10
Texas
2,785 Posts
Joined Jun 2010
Originally posted by Chris2018
The water bottle in your cabin is not free. They will charge you for it if you open it. NCL nickle and dimes you for every expense. Even Carnival is nice enough to put a do not open sign on the water bottle with a price on it.

This is just one example. Most of the food in the free restaurants do not taste good and are cold. They will want money from you in the specialty dining rooms for a better experience. You always have to pay extra money on an NCL cruises to have a good time.
Can we take it you won't be cruising NCL any more in the future? Wow...
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#11
Colorado
695 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Originally posted by Boozebabe
I haven't booked yet. I need a handicap room so not sure if any will be available when we want to go. We always cruise last minute, so to speak. I'm looking at 3 different weeks in April. I'd love to try the Haven but not on our first NCL cruise. It's a lot of money if we aren't pleased. I plan on choosing the UBP and Specialty dining. Gotta have a balcony though. Thanks for the tips.
Who do you usually cruise on? I’m curious because I’m wondering about getting a handicap room at the last minute. We usually have to book far in advance to get a HC room unless it’s an EB transatlantic- those seem to be open last minute.
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#12
Texas
2,785 Posts
Joined Jun 2010
Originally posted by Boozebabe
About to book our first cruise with NCL on the Getaway. We have 20 cruises under our belt on 3 other cruise lines. So what can we expect? It sounds like we need to make show reservations. We've never had to do that before. Any other differences we should be aware of? Don't want to board and not be prepared.
If you have 20 other cruises under your belts, you really know all you need to know. The product isn't much different from cruise line to cruise line.

About the only thing I'd suggest is making advance reservations for Specialty Restaurants if you have specific nights and times you want to go. But you don't even have to do that if you're flexible about your dining times.
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NCL Pride of America, 3/15/14 Hawaii (POA review here) (Hawaii Rental Car Summary)
NCL Jewel, 12/29/13 Western Caribbean
NCL Pearl, 8/5/12 Alaska & Glacier Bay
NCL Dawn, 12/4/11 Southern Caribbean
NCL Spirit, 7/17/11 Western Caribbean
NCL Sun, 1/1/11 Eastern Caribbean
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#13
USA
11,477 Posts
Joined Apr 2015
Originally posted by Boozebabe
About to book our first cruise with NCL on the Getaway. We have 20 cruises under our belt on 3 other cruise lines. So what can we expect? It sounds like we need to make show reservations. We've never had to do that before. Any other differences we should be aware of? Don't want to board and not be prepared.
You need to make reservations for shows and specialty dining. Complimentary dining is feeestyle, show up when you are ready and wait for the next table.
#14
Milford, Ohio,usa
2,083 Posts
Joined Sep 2000
Originally posted by Id rather be diving
Who do you usually cruise on? I’m curious because I’m wondering about getting a handicap room at the last minute. We usually have to book far in advance to get a HC room unless it’s an EB transatlantic- those seem to be open last minute.
Our first cruise 25 years ago was on RoyalCaribbean. Sailed 6times on them. 2times prIncess and 12 times on Carnival. We have been sailing in a Suite on cCarnival lately. But they dont have a walk in shower. They have a tub. Ive never had an actual HC room but I know we would not be comfortable in a regular cabin. I use a scooter and also bring my own shower stool. Carnivals shower stool does not fit in their tub. Crazy!! I'm hoping we can get a HC cabin on short notice.
#15
Bloomington MN USA
2,790 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
Originally posted by BirdTravels
You need to make reservations for shows and specialty dining. Complimentary dining is feeestyle, show up when you are ready and wait for the next table.
feeestyle Shirely you jest - Complimentary with a fee ? LOL !

Recent trends with the MDR show up get a beeper go off to a lounge/bar or somewhere a bit more comfortable
than SRO and when the beeper beeps go get seated - works great and this is a real customer pleasing deal.
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#16
Milford, Ohio,usa
2,083 Posts
Joined Sep 2000
Originally posted by BirdTravels
You need to make reservations for shows and specialty dining. Complimentary dining is feeestyle, show up when you are ready and wait for the next table.
Free style is what we like. We will adapt as far as reservations for shoes and Specialty dining. Thanks.
#17
Florida
456 Posts
Joined Jan 2016
Originally posted by Boozebabe
It will most likely be just the two of us. Maybe one other couple. I'd love to cruise with a group but no one can go when we want to. Thanks for the advice.
For less then four I think the most I've waited is no more than ten minutes, but we were eating after 8 each night and didn't mind walking to a different MDR if the one we went to had a wait.

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#18
Bloomington MN USA
2,790 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
Originally posted by Boozebabe
Our first cruise 25 years ago was on RoyalCaribbean. Sailed 6times on them. 2times prIncess and 12 times on Carnival. We have been sailing in a Suite on cCarnival lately. But they dont have a walk in shower. They have a tub. Ive never had an actual HC room but I know we would not be comfortable in a regular cabin. I use a scooter and also bring my own shower stool. Carnivals shower stool does not fit in their tub. Crazy!! I'm hoping we can get a HC cabin on short notice.
If you require a HC cabin - when you make your reservation make it known to NCL that you do require one OR
one that will cater to your specific needs. If all the HC cabins are booked (by mobility impaired guests) then the
situation is seeing if an alternate solution is possible.
If one of those HC cabins is booked by someone not really needing it then NCL can bump that guest out and
move them somewhere else.
Not the case then you will have to accept whatever alternate cabin can best suit you.
On some ships deluxe balcony and suites can accommodate HC guests - what fare they will charge for this is
a matter of discussion with NCL.

Regarding the shower stool that you use - there is no standard design of bath facilities.
It may not work on RCCL Carnival HAL or Princess and you certainly will find out on NCL if it does.
I may offer a solution if in a balcony cabin take the deck chair off the balcony and use it in the shower/bath.

Other readers may have solutions - perhaps using the SPA facility for bathing showering.
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Golden Princess, Aloha 631, Ship Positioning YVR-LGB 08/06
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#19
6,037 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Originally posted by Chris2018
The water bottle in your cabin is not free. They will charge you for it if you open it. NCL nickle and dimes you for every expense. Even Carnival is nice enough to put a do not open sign on the water bottle with a price on it.

This is just one example. Most of the food in the free restaurants do not taste good and are cold. They will want money from you in the specialty dining rooms for a better experience. You always have to pay extra money on an NCL cruises to have a good time.
Almost all business hotels I’ve stayed in has the same nit free water bottle, even my kids know not to drink it. I’ve enjoyed all of the food in the MDRs, no need for specialty. Since it appears the OP is an experienced cruiser, he or she already knows about paying for extras, like photos, excursions, spa services, internet...
#20
Daytona Beach, FL
186 Posts
Joined Mar 2009
Originally posted by VideoTech
Can we take it you won't be cruising NCL any more in the future? Wow...
He apparently had a bad experience on NCL and spent most of yesterday posting a similar screed on every thread he could find.