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Jhfoley

RC or Norwegian?

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We are wanting to take our kids (9, 7&6) on their first cruise. We are looking for that “WOW” factor. We are an active family, like to be busy, and are not picky about food. I have always had my eye on RC oasis class ships but have found better deals on Norwegian-specifically breakaway. I have also heard that RC charges you extra for some of their activities. I guess I’m asking if we will get that “wow” factor on Norwegian or will I be disappointed?  Looking for a little more insight on these two line. 

 

Thanks!

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Frankly, nothing "wows" like RCI's Oasis Class.  

 

All the major lines charge you for extras.  Yes, RCI does do that.  However, I think NCL is the worst at it.  I tend to refer to NCL as the Spirit Airlines of the cruise industry.

 

That said, Breakaway is a good ship with great entertainment.  Pool area sucks though, and the ship is VERY crowded.

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I have only been on Breakaway, but I think that Oasis class has a much bigger wow factor. However, since your kids are new - an Oasis ship will still be "wow" even after going on Breakaway. So, personally, I'd do the cheaper one now and save up for the other one. Here's my experience on the Breakaway if you're interested in more reading: http://laurenofalltrades.blogspot.com/2017/11/ncl-breakaway-cruise.html

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I have been on both lines and consider them pretty comparable.  We were on older ships so maybe the larger, newer ships might give you the WOW you are seeking but I don't find much difference between RC, NCL and Carnival. I have had ships I enjoyed more as opposed to cruiseline.  

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We have been on NCL Epic, Breakaway, and Getaway as well as Allure, Oasis, Anthem, and Harmony.  I have to say, they were all fabulous.  Do you plan on sharing a cabin?  If so, NCL will most likely be much less expensive.  This would allow more money for amazing excursions. They are all spectacular ships with lots to do.  

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On ‎12‎/‎15‎/‎2018 at 4:12 PM, Jhfoley said:

We are wanting to take our kids (9, 7&6) on their first cruise. We are looking for that “WOW” factor. We are an active family, like to be busy, and are not picky about food. I have always had my eye on RC oasis class ships but have found better deals on Norwegian-specifically breakaway. I have also heard that RC charges you extra for some of their activities. I guess I’m asking if we will get that “wow” factor on Norwegian or will I be disappointed?  Looking for a little more insight on these two line. 

 

Thanks!

We have been on 8 RCL and 4 NCL cruises .I believe that RCL is better for kids.However, we took ours on an NCL and they had a great time ,they were 5 and 9 (grand kids)

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Our son, 23, has sailed DCL, Princess, Celebrity, RCCL & NCL, starting when he was 10. 9 (no mega ships; all 2-3K passengers)/

I asked him about NCL...he said, its still a cruise but a step down from the others.

There are VERY few true activities that cost extra on any cruise--scrapbooking, jewelry making, wine tastings... by no means exclusive to RCCL. (well, except "free makeovers", "free charm", "liquor tastings" "free champagne", "free port talk"--to TRY to get you to spend more $!)

DH & I did the Allure a few years ago & LOVED it--our fav cruise. We have been dying to share w/ our kids.

We are taking them close--Anthem this New Years.

For their first experience, I am sure NCL Breakaway would WOW them...because it seems like once you try the Oasis ships everything else is just NOT quite as good...

 

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On 12/15/2018 at 5:19 PM, Aquahound said:

Frankly, nothing "wows" like RCI's Oasis Class.  

 

All the major lines charge you for extras.  Yes, RCI does do that.  However, I think NCL is the worst at it.  I tend to refer to NCL as the Spirit Airlines of the cruise industry.

 

That said, Breakaway is a good ship with great entertainment.  Pool area sucks though, and the ship is VERY crowded.

 

I have to disasgree with you about NCL charging being the worst. My experience is that RCCL is the worst follwed by CCL, and then NCL, especially since NCL has all of the perks available.

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10 minutes ago, zqvol said:

 

I have to disasgree with you about NCL charging being the worst. My experience is that RCCL is the worst follwed by CCL, and then NCL, especially since NCL has all of the perks available.

 

My opinion is based on the way NCL charges gratuities on their so-called "free" perks like the beverage package and dining package.  RCI doesn't do that.  Nor does any other line as far as I know.  NCL has also gone to ala cart pricing in most of their specialty restaurants which results in a higher charge.  Then there's Harvest Cay, one of NCL's private islands,  where you have to pay to eat.  There is no free lunch like every other line's private islands.  

 

On the other hand, I'm hard pressed to think of something RCI charges for that NCL doesn't.  

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I can't imagine anything provides the same wow factor as the Oasis class, having sailed it after several cruises on other lines over the years. As far as the extras, in my experience it's mostly the same stuff across all lines that costs extra - stuff being shilled in the gift shops like jewelry and watches, specialty dining, alcohol, photos, shore excursions and of course the famous, silly, ridiculous art auctions.  I never mess with things like the spa and beauty treatments which are extra on all lines.

 

There were plenty of ways to drop extra $$ on Oasis of the Seas, but in my humble opinion, zero reason to feel compelled to do so.  There are something like 6 included meal venues, endless entertainment, and beautiful spaces like Central Park, multiple pools including a very good adults-only Solarium, and the Promenade to just. . . enjoy.

 

Some people dislike the Oasis class precisely because of its size, but we loved every inch of her.  Also, by choosing an inside guarantee cabin, we were able to keep the price under control.  We use the room really just for sleeping and showering, and it certainly served its purpose.  Ultimately though, you know what you and your family like; our opinions are just that!

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Nothing compares to Oasis Class. They are amazing ships with the best entertainment at sea. 

 

As for nickel and diming, NCL is the worst in the industry. 

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They are kids.. They will be wowed on ANY ship... PS.. Having high expectations results in disappointments...  The kids will be fine.

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Posted (edited)

I seen this and have taken my son on many different cruise lines.  Our favorite is Disney Cruise Lines by a long way but they have priced us out of the market.  With that said the one cruise we did with NCL was a disaster for me and my son.  I did a review and called it "Motel 6 on the water".  My son was 10 years old and because the cruise had lots of kids they put the 12 year olds in a meeting room and gave them Lincoln logs and logos to say busy.  None of the 12 year olds stayed in the room so there was no place to meet friends.  Without finding new friends to meet he spent all the time with me and being board.  When we went on Royal Caribbean we had a great time and I did not see my son except for dinner because he was so busy having fun.

 

One note:  Make sure your kids go to the kids area the first night.  They will meet new friends and have a great time.

Edited by MikeAndNick

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