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Panama Canal Sky Reviews


carolmacey

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Waiting for seating depended on several things. What time you arrived, how many people in your group and whether or not you cared to share a table with others. I don't think we ever waited more than 20 minutes, and usually a lot less.

 

Eating dinner in the dining room took from

1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours. The 1 1/2 was two of us skipping soup and dessert- on our way to a show. The 2 1/2 was six people and eating almost all courses.

 

Serving staff did seem to have some time to wait for food from the kitchen so I assume the speed depended on the cooks somewhat. I can't remember food being cold, so I think we got served as soon as food arrived from the kitchens. I can't say that I saw waiters standing around. If there was work to be done, they were doing what needed to be done.

 

Entertainment was great except one juggler/comedian. He didn't seem especially good at either. All the other shows were very good to outstanding. The Jean Ann Ryan group was VERY tallented. It was hard to imagine the group on the Sky being split up and sent to other ships.

 

Shawn Farquar, the maigician, is amazing! I understand he is getting ready to build his own theatre in Canada so his daughter can be at home to go to school. Hannah has lived her first 3+ years aboard the ship.

 

The first week the CD was Adrian something. He left in San Juan with his fiancee from the sports program. The 17-day CD was Ray Carr. He had been with Celebrity last fall when we cruised to Alaska.

 

Norwegian Sky Back-to-back

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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by gardencat:

I read a post on another thread that said the wine package wasn't available on that cruise I guess you shouldn't depend on any of those programs being available on any given cruise.

 

<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

 

The wine program was advertized on both cruises. We did not partake, so I can't guarantee it.

 

Norwegian Sky Back-to-back

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Thanks for the wine info after the original post other people on other ships said the wine program was available on their cruises too. I'll try to see if I can find the original post to clarify which ship it was supposedly not available.

Thanks for the dinner info too.

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This was originally posted by Lesleyfb on the thread about NCL confiscating alcohol at the dock.

" posted 04-29-04 08:54 AM

I asked the wine waiter on our 7th April cruise if they had a wine package i.e. buy 5 get one free was was informed that they did not. "

I think, from other posts, that on 7th April Lesleyfb was on the Dream. Don't know if others were told there was no wine package.

It just seems that the special deals or packages may not always be available so maybe you shouldn't count on them.

Maybe if Lesleyfb is on the bnoard somewhere she could give us more details.

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Hey All, back on the air finally. Great cruise, great time, and great company. Glad everyone got home safe. I see since I have been off the air that some negativity has crept into the conversation. There is always negativity from someone because somthing didn't go right. And remember they do have the right to express thier opinions. But I think that mostly depends on the cruiser's attitude during the cruise. Speaking of attitude what about those kids working the dinning rooms. Not 1 with a bad attitude. Always smiling and will to do anything to make you happy. Granted they didn't always get it right but they sure as heck tried. Even when they were sick they keep there good humer to the front. How many did you see working with broken arms? I counted at least 4 and they were always pleasent. Some of us that overly complain ought to try working evey day of the week for months with no time off. Heck we complain when we have to work an extra hour over time or a Saturday off. Try what those kids are doing. At least their trying. I found the dropped tray more amusing then the continuos Happy Birthday singing of Carnival. Those that are going on NCL soon, you will enjoy it. You will find all the staff trying hard to please you, they might not always get it right but they will get it wrong with a smile. My hat goes off to James Deering and Sterling Paulos for the great job they are doing and the marvelous cruise they gave us.The rest of you guys that cruised with us keep in touch and lets do it again. Roger

 

CruiseDuo1

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Hi Roger and Ruth Ann,

Glad you're back.

 

It seems we 18 are starting to turn the tide of negativity that started. The biggest thing to remember, IMO, is your own attitude. If you go planning to have a great time, I think you will. If you going for things to complain about, then you will find things. I'd rather have fun than gripe!

 

Norwegian Sky Back-to-back

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I agree with Carol and Roger, we make our vacation and a good attitude is very important. I was sick for a few days on the cruise and finally went to the drs. office. It was only open for 1 hr. 4-5 on the Sunday afternoon. while I was down there I saw at least 2 workers who were there after getting hurt working. I did see them again working with the casts on. Don't remember where, but they were there.

I agree that they were all trying very hard, and mostly smiling and were willing to do almost anything to make it a good trip for all. As was posted earlier, they may not have always gotten it right 1st time around, but was very quick to fix it.

As for the soda stickers, we too stopped using our mugs, and when asked about the soda stickers and how we got them, we finally told people it was a perk from travel agents. We did not want to flaunt the fact that it was a gift from the staff. I don't know, and it was never explaind why they weren't available for purchase.

I agree with Carol, I have been on 5 or 6 other cruises, and I don't ever remember seeing so few people purchasing drinks. Alcoholic or non.

Len and Jan, my ears are still not ok, Debbie is feeling better. Hope your granddaughter is getting better. Also hope that Len doesn't have to go without his clothes too much longer. You know what Deb would say KIn-- S--

Donna

 

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Sky April 25, 2004 PANAMA CANAL

 

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Hi Again,

About the Soda cards. It was Ruth Ann and I that asked about them becuase we are diet coke addicts and it would cost us more for soda then the cruise if the cards were'nt there. I was surprised when we got our stickers we just wanted to buy the things. But was pleased we got the perk. Ruth Ann and I used good old Wal-Mart 44oz mugs and we never stopped using them. I just gave it to the bar tender and he filled them up. Didn't flaunt it just filled it up and drank them. I have seen several people on several cruises that got things we didn't but didn't complain about it instaed we tried very hard to be interseted in the staff and whats its like for them. As we rode more we got more. Sometimes dues have to be paid. My out look is they gave me what I paid for and the rest was because they really cared becuase we took interest in them. Not feeling guilty at all.

Roger

 

CruiseDuo1

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Thanks everyone for all your info on the Sky! We are a group going on the June 20th San Fran to Hawaii and have all gotten into such a positive attitude since the Pride of America sank and the hassles everyone had on rebooking their cruises. It's a relief to know that since I already have met up with a great group through the boards who are going and we are all ready to do our best to make this the best cruise ever!!!! I must admit I was a little worried when I heard about the training of the new staff, but we'll just "go with the flow".

Gene-hope you and the girls weren't scared off.

 

icon_cool.gifNancy

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If you want to set up a meeting room for a get together, contact James Deering or Sterling Paulos, Mr. Deering's assistant. They had a room set up for us with coffee, juices, and pastries. Not that we needed them. It was also great to meet them, along with several of the staff, including the cruise director Ray, the Food and Beverage director and a few others.

They made the trip much more interesting by understanding some of the going ons of the ship.

 

Donna

 

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Sky April 25, 2004 PANAMA CANAL

 

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Hi everyone,

Finally was able to get my e-mail through. I put his name on it and it was not required!! Leave it to me to make something that was not complicated...complicated, Glad to hear everyone is home safe and sound. Has any one heard from Joanne & John?

Carol did you ever receive the e-mails I sent you? These machines confuse me at the best of times so when something simple does not work I wait for #1 son-in-law to fix it!!

Hope Jan & Lenny get their suitcase soon. At least they are at home and can use other things.

Thanks to each and every one of you for making our trip thu the Panama such a great time. I keep telling all the people I work with what a great time we had and now they want to go!

Carol what a great rep you are! no wonder we relied on you to set things up. I have agreed with every thing you have posted about our trip. Unfortunately just to busy to sit and write it all on my favorite machine!! Thanks for letting everyone know it was not perfect but we still had fun and that is what matters.

Talk to all of you again soon..promise a review by this weekend....

 

Anne

 

Norwegian Sky 04/04

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Well I think I would have felt uncomfortable about the soda cards.

As I said before, if they had given you yours for free and let the other passengers purchase theirs, I think I would just regard it as a nice perk of being a CC member. But to see them refusing to sell the soda cards to the other passengers, without any explanation, while I still got a card (and for free) would have made me feel like I was being paid off to come back and say nice things on the boards about NCL.

I'm not sayimg you should have felt that way, we all look at things differently but it would have made me feel badly.

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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by gardencat:
But to see them refusing to sell the soda cards to the other passengers, without any explanation, while I still got a card (and for free) would have made me feel like I was being paid off to come back and say nice things on the boards about NCL.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>So you think they were being bribed?

Cecilia
[email]ladyndnver@aol.com[/email]

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My Wedding!
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Does anyone know if they weren't selling the soda cards on this sailing only, or if that will be the norm on the ship? I can't imagine why they wouldn't sell them, unless it just isnt profitable on such a long journey with so many sea days.

By the way, it would take more than a free soda card to substantially change my opinion on a cruise line...however, if they want to throw a free one my way on my upcoming cruise I would happily take it [img]http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif[/img]

Patty

Pride of Aloha
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NCL was not selling cards that trip because it was longer than usual and it was a repositioning cruise as well as the last cruise for the SKY before she becomes the Pride of Aloha. If you want to say I was bought off with a soda card after 28 sailings (5 on NCL) then that is your opinon and I respect that. But I already had an Hawaii cruise for October '04' and the NCL Dream to Rome April '05' booked before this last cruise. I would sail NCL even if they made me sleep on deck.
Roger

CruiseDuo1
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I don't think NCL looked at all the CC members cruise history and booked cruises before deciding to give you the free soda cards.
I think someone at that original CC meeting just figured that since you were all CC members and you know the soda program is usually available and ,as CC members there was a good chance you would be posting your impressions of this cruise, it would be of more benefit to NCL to give a few passengers (you) the cards and have you come back and post positive reviews of your NCL experience rather than to annoy you by denying you the use of that program.
However, they were quite willing to deny the program to other passengers who were likely less knowledgable and less vocal.
Whether or not you consider that 'bribery' is up to you.

I do think that most of you,at least subconsciously, did feel a bit uncomfortable about it. If not, why would Donnabres make up the story about 'travel agent perks' instead of just telling other passengers the truth and why did Carolmacey find that "trying to use our glasses drew attention and too many questions so we used the sticker on our ID cards instead."
This is just my opinion and I am looking back at the situation after the fact. I'm not saying that you are horrible people for accepting the cards I'm just saying that, looking at it from outside, it seems kind of hard on the regular passengers and not quite fair on NCL's part.
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I don't know why they did not sell the card for our trip. Personally, I only used mine approx. 5-6 times the whole trip. I am not a big soda drinker and would not have purchased one. I did use my cup though, I ended up sick and had to drink LOTS of water. I love Cristal Lite and had brought that with us. This is what I drank out of the cup instead of soda.
The reason that we said that about the travel agents gift is that we did not want to rub it in that we got a gift from the crew.
I did not feel bribed at all. I truly did enjoy the trip even though everything was not perfect. I'm not saying that I did not enjoy the perks, who wouldn't? But even without them, I would do it again.
Donna

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Sky April 25, 2004 PANAMA CANAL
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Donnabres
I'm glad you enjoyed your cruise. If you could say that after getting sick it must have been a good cruise indeed.
Thanks too for the idea. I know crystal lite comes in a powdered form. If I don't want to buy sodas I can just bring drink crystals and mix with water. I know this probably makes me sound dumb but I had never thought of that. Lighter to carry too than trying to bring on bottles of soda or juice.
As for the soda card question, that's it for me. I wasn't even on this cruise so I never meant to get that involved in this discussion just thought it sounded a little unfair to the other paying customers.
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I think it was great that NCL/crew gave you "perks." NCL is a great cruise line and this is just their way of saying "thank you" for cruising with them and for taking the time to arrange a meeting with them. Enjoy your freebies and don't feel bad that others didn't get them. I'm glad that you didn't come back trashing the crew and training process. I'm not a big lover of the all American staff, but do feel that they are getting a bad rap for there training.

OceanDreams
[I]"Living life to the fullest"[/I]
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Gardencat,
I like Donna drank Crystal lite most of the time. They do sell it in "singles" so that each package is enough for one glass. I took lots of varieties of them so I would not get tired of it. I took them out of the boxes and put them in a sandwich bag to keep them all together and just threw it in my bag along with my insulated cup. Upon arrival and meeting our cabin stewarts I requested that my ice bucket be filled a couple of times a day as I used a lot of ice with my crystal lite. As requested I never ran out of ice and on days we went on shore and we used bigger containers full of ice they were quick to fill them with no negative feed back and always with a smile. I could have gone up to the Lido deck to get my own ice out of the machine but found the ice they used lasted longer as it was bigger pieces. I am not a big pop or water drinker and as I did not want to become an alcohilic on this trip this was the perfect solution for me. The coffee was way to strong for me. I used more than half a cup of hot water then used a bit of the coffee they make. Boy you could have stood a spoon in it with no problem!! To each our own. This was how I solved my problem. Hope it helps you.

Anne [img]http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]

Norwegian Sky 04/04
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