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GORDONCHICK

Disappointed in Thanksgiving on the Breakaway (not the actual day or food)

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55 minutes ago, GORDONCHICK said:

Not that I needed anyone to validate my thoughts, opinions or experiences, thanks for your input.  It was the first 7 night sailing for Breakaway out of NOLA, and I don't think they have another one until Christmas.  The whole thing did seem "off" as you put it.  Some people were on point, but it seemed like the majority weren't - and that has never been our experience on NCL.  I never got a "happy crew" feeling while on this sailing.  I was happy most of the time - not the issue in O'Sheehan's, but otherwise I was.  Just because I notice or experience not great service, that doesn't mean it changes my mood.  But I still take a mental note.

 

I guess our 7 day cruise on Dec 16 will be the second 7 day cruise out of NOLA for the Breakaway. I hope the crew is happy by then.

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12 minutes ago, vpearlkc said:

 

I guess our 7 day cruise on Dec 16 will be the second 7 day cruise out of NOLA for the Breakaway. I hope the crew is happy by then.

 

I did Breakaway class around that time frame, low season.  I remember MDR service also being slow.  Waited for our dessert menu for half an hour and gave up and went up to the buffet.  The MDR food was good at both lunch and dinner but the service was just too slow at dinner time.  Unfortunately the buffet food was not that good, at least imho.  We tried O'sheehan twice, once the food was good and service decent, another time food was decent and service just non existent.  All very inconsistent.  

 

I can only imagine a holiday week must be more so.  

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3 hours ago, zqvol said:

 

Everyone lines up for tenders, unless you are platinum or above where you are escorted to the front of the line.

 

This was not true on either of my two cruises this year.

 

On the Epic, it was necessary to sign up in advance for tender groups, which could be done through the television in one's cabin. No paper tickets were used; they swiped each passenger's card. Paperless tickets, if you like.

 

On the Gem, passengers were called by decks, from the top down. In that case, it included an immigration check since the ship was coming from a Canadian port.

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Thanks for your review/thoughts.  I thought it was overall quite balanced.  We're on the Getaway out of NOLA in 2020 and it'll be our first big ship, but I agree I LOVE cruising down the Mighty Mississip!  What did you think about the other parts of the ship - the Waterfront, atrium, bars, roof(s)?

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3 minutes ago, LeesaB said:

Thanks for your review/thoughts.  I thought it was overall quite balanced.  We're on the Getaway out of NOLA in 2020 and it'll be our first big ship, but I agree I LOVE cruising down the Mighty Mississip!  What did you think about the other parts of the ship - the Waterfront, atrium, bars, roof(s)?

The waterfront is fine.  We don't drink much so no thoughts on the bars.  Very long lines for the ropes courses and for mini golf.  The atrium is nice but the one thing I didn't like it for was for live music.  Everyone is sitting at the same level, chairs pulled into whatever configuration, and it would have been helpful if there had been an elevated stage for music.  Otherwise, it worked fine for the not so newlywed game and the others they played.  I would have rathered had the football games shown there than the Bliss Lounge.  It's a pretty ship, but with a ridiculously small theatre.  After seeing it, I understood why you needed to have reservations.  We had reservations for 2 shows but never went.

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5 hours ago, GORDONCHICK said:

Since the fan was returned by 7pm that evening, it didn't impact my view of the whole cruise.  It would have had it not been returned.

 

The stewards DO get a portion of the DSC - confirmed by several HDs I've known over the years.

 

My friends' experience of not being able to get into any MDR until after 9pm is atypical?  Maybe when you don't make reservations on a big ship.  They waited more than 2 hours with one of those pager things.  I know my friends, their expectations and values, while I do not you.  I will continue to listen to them.  Had I not, we wouldn't have been able to get into specialty dining until after 9pm and sometimes not at all - and we had the dining plan plus the platinum vouchers.

 

I've heard both good and bad about MSC.  And I'm getting lots of good info from a friend who's an HD with MSC. 

My family of 7 has never even been given a pager at any MDR at any time (and I was hoping to get one as an excuse to have a drink at the bar first, but the kids don’t want to wait). We always go to the largest MDR though.

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6 hours ago, vpearlkc said:

 

I guess our 7 day cruise on Dec 16 will be the second 7 day cruise out of NOLA for the Breakaway. I hope the crew is happy by then.

Actually, our November 11th to 18th Breakaway cruise was the first one out of NOLA this season.   The Thanksgiving cruise boarded as we left.  We boarded on the first cruise after the repositioning cruise.  There were some hiccups at boarding, but the majority of the cruise was great.  Three ports but no tendering.

 

I think service in the MDRs is slower than it was years back due to under-staffing.  O'Sheehans was a little slow too.  We ate 5 nights in specialties.    Overall, we had no problems with the staff.  Some excellent service and some more hectic service.  Employees didn't seem unhappy to us.

We have cruised on Escape (x4), Getaway (x3), Epic and all the smaller ships.  This was our 2nd cruise on the Breakaway (first was Inaugural season).  We had a great cruise with not as many children as this Thanksgiving cruise appears to have had. 

 

Best things about our Breakaway cruise were Syd Norman's Pour House (great music!), Lobster Rolls at Ocean Blue's walk-up window on at Sea days, and complimentary breakfast and lunch buffets at Modernos. 

Edited by Sand and Seas
spacing :)

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We went on the Allure last Thanksgiving.  We hated it.  I thought it would really be my style but it isn't .  I like the mid size ships much better.  Sorry your cruise left you a bit disappointed.

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12 hours ago, Sand and Seas said:

Actually, our November 11th to 18th Breakaway cruise was the first one out of NOLA this season.   The Thanksgiving cruise boarded as we left.  We boarded on the first cruise after the repositioning cruise.  There were some hiccups at boarding, but the majority of the cruise was great.  Three ports but no tendering.

 

I think service in the MDRs is slower than it was years back due to under-staffing.  O'Sheehans was a little slow too.  We ate 5 nights in specialties.    Overall, we had no problems with the staff.  Some excellent service and some more hectic service.  Employees didn't seem unhappy to us.

We have cruised on Escape (x4), Getaway (x3), Epic and all the smaller ships.  This was our 2nd cruise on the Breakaway (first was Inaugural season).  We had a great cruise with not as many children as this Thanksgiving cruise appears to have had. 

 

Best things about our Breakaway cruise were Syd Norman's Pour House (great music!), Lobster Rolls at Ocean Blue's walk-up window on at Sea days, and complimentary breakfast and lunch buffets at Modernos. 

Have to agree service in MDRs has suffered in recent years, but not bad overall. We do a lot of specialty dining and buffet a few times, but not for dinner. Lunch for us is often O'Sheehans. We have never had bad service or even particularly slow but never had a really friendly server either I don't think. It is just what it is meant to be: a pub or fast food type of eatery. And yes the bigger ships have a problem with over crowding, especially during family sailing weeks like Thanksgiving. unfortunately some families have few choices as to when they can sail. 

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Thanks for your well balanced review. 

 

We've only done one NCL cruise, the Escape two years ago in March and we'll be doing the Getaway this coming January (end of month). 

 

On our one and only one cruise, service for dining was fine for six out of seven dinners (three specialty and three main dining room), but we had issues with major slowness at one of the specialty restaurants (had to wait over an hour for food).  They apologized and gave us a special card to give to our server at the next specialty restaurant we went to (maybe to say to take extra good care of us, due to previous screw up).   I made reservations for specialty ahead of time online early to get the seating times we wanted and main dining day of after having to wait 20 minutes to be seated the first time we tried the main dining room for a party of seven (NCL recommendation to reserve). 

 

Cruising on one of the big ships felt a little bit like going to WDW where you reserve fastpasses for rides 30 day in advance.  It doesn't feel too free style when you have to decide ahead of time where to eat every night, but I'm a bit of a planner so am OK with that.  We booked shows and dining (even main dining room due to party of 11) ahead of time for our upcoming cruise in January.  And we will book comedy right when we get on the ship.  We didn't do that last time and couldn't get tickets to any of the shows.  But we did enjoy the walk in "Howl at Moon" .

 

Our son is most impressed with the big ships for amenities and is who talked us into doing a cruise in the first place, so I don't think a small ship is in our future.  We picked NCL the first time and to do NCL again because DH had a gambling certificate that gave us about $1000 off our room for booking thru the casino desk.  That was a big enough incentive for us to do NCL instead of another line (my guess or assumption is that in general different lines are more similar than different or at least that is what my parents who have cruised on many different lines tell me -- Their favorite is MSC for the music and second the RCL Oasis for the great ship design and not feeling crowded, but are cool with any cruise really).  I really prefer land based vacations though -- more of a national park or city vacationer vs. a cruiser (just what I like doing more).  A cruise is a nice easy way to travel with a large group, though, so should be fun again.

 

The only other line we've cruised besides NCL is Carnival and we never had dining service issues there (easier I think for them with assigned main dining room times and more limited specialty restaurants).  

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GORDONCHICK:

 

What did your son enjoy most about Entourage?  Just curious.

 

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3 hours ago, kathy884 said:

I really prefer land based vacations though -- more of a national park or city vacationer vs. a cruiser (just what I like doing more).  A cruise is a nice easy way to travel with a large group, though, so should be fun again.

 

We do both cruises and land-based vacations.  Usually one, possibly 2 cruises a year, and one long driving vacation.  One year, we drove to all 5 national parks in Utah.  Another year, we drove to Niagara Falls, Ontario, swung through Boston, the Louisville, and St. Louis - that was a lonnnnngggg trip!  The initial allure of cruising to us was seeing different places but only unpacking once.

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On ‎11‎/‎29‎/‎2018 at 10:41 AM, newmexicoNita said:

Go to the access desk after you are booked and just prior to sailing. We do with because hubby uses a wheel chair for getting on the ship at the embarkation port. They will have any special needs on a list. You should not have any more problems. 

Thanks for this suggestion.  I just talked to the access desk and they said whenever we book, then email them.  They will email back saying they will contact the ship and let them know it's okay, then to carry their email with my fan.  They said not to pack it in checked luggage.

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