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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.

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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.

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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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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.

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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.

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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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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.

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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.

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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.

 

Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk

 

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.

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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...:rolleyes:

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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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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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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.

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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.

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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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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.

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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.
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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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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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...

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Can we take it you won't be cruising NCL any more in the future? Wow...:rolleyes:

 

He apparently had a bad experience on NCL and spent most of yesterday posting a similar screed on every thread he could find.

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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.

 

Here's what I'd say "you need to know," as your title to the thread states:

 

Read the NCL forum. Just about anything you want to know has been posted. Invest the time to research and find the answers.

 

No time and instead expect someone to spoon feed you without you doing the work? Then a good option would be to select a travel agent that specializes in NCL cruises. It won't cost you more money, you will have an expert plan for you, and given that they're most likely interested in your repeat business, they'll strive to make your cruise everything you want it to be.

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been on Escape and Sky, booked Epic late 2018. my $0.02:

 

book entertainment early. they do "sell out".

 

if you are a drinker get the UBP free at sea option. do not book cheapest room in category, Sail Away deals do not include beverages. I lost $ on Escape booking cheap balcony but paying for drinks. my fave knob creek bourbon was $22 (so I only had one!)

 

specialty restaurants were really good. the MDR was fine, so were the buffets. I'm a bit of a foodie but also enjoy simple comfort foods.

 

I've enjoyed every interaction with ncl (and Carnival and MSC) employees.

 

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Go in with an open mind. A lot of things on NCL are different, and not necessarily for the better. No bottled water in drink package, no bar open during comedy, no premium liquors on drink pacakage, no available lounger on the deck, undersized pool/sun decks for quantity of passengers, etc. etc.

 

There are some good qualities though. The waterfront is really cool, the food was VERY good - definitely do the specialty restaurants, and the service on our NCL trip was outstanding. You should have a good time, but go in with the right expectations. I think someone who enjoys sitting around at the bars or the waterfront and loves the specialty dining will generally really enjoy NCL as they do that very well. If you like to sit out by the pools and things like that, it may not be for you.

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Posted (edited)

For the ropes course, you must have closed-heel and closed-toe shoes - like tennis shoes. If you only pack sandals, you won't be able to do it.

 

For the drop slides, you can't wear any jewelry or have any metal on your swimsuit.

Edited by LrgPizza

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For the ropes course, you must have closed-heel and closed-toe shoes - like tennis shoes. If you only pack sandals, you won't be able to do it.

 

For the drop slides, you can't wear any jewelry of have any metal on your swimsuit.

 

Those drop slides!!! Super fun. I kept my card in my pocket and it blasted right out. I didn't expect that! Definitely nothing in pockets on that slide.

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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.

 

 

I got tired of their chair not fitting so I found a small folding stool that folds flat in my luggage. I think it is actually a garden stool. It's aluminum legs and plastic seat so it dries quickly to pack. I think I paid $7 for it.

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Those drop slides!!! Super fun. I kept my card in my pocket and it blasted right out. I didn't expect that! Definitely nothing in pockets on that slide.

 

Wish I was still able to do those activities, especially the slides. Arthritis and back injuries prevent me from getting wild in my old age. But I can "give 'em hell" in the casino.

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