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Dinner with Officers for Platinum Plus on Escape 3/10-3/17

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We just returned from our week on the Escape. There were some great things about our cruise and some not great things, nevertheless, had a wonderful time.

The biggest disappointment for me was this perk that you are entitled to as a Platinum Plus member. The first time we were able to do this Dining with the Officers perk was April 2018 on the Gem. There were 5 passengers at the table, the captain and the Cruise Next manager. Place cards were awaiting us at the table. It was a wonderful evening! They even took our photos and had them on our bed later that night complimentary. Additionally, the captain invited us up to the bridge the following day for a coffee. We definitely felt special and that this was truly a perk for our loyalty to NCL.

In stark contrast, was our experience last week on the Escape. We were told to meet at the Guest Services area at 5:30 and then would be taken to the dining room together. We stood there with a few others feeling a bit foolish (waiting about 25 minutes with no direction), as someone named Shanty held a paper with our photos and tried to get organized.

Finally she gave us a group number ( Why we needed that was crazy with so few people) and marched us to the dining room. She said # 1's this side and # 2's the other side, and then reversed it when she sent us in with the host. We were taken to a long table for ten and there were 5 passengers (husband, me and our grown son, and a couple who was on their third cruise) and there were 2 officers (Manager of the shopping and a nurse). No one else filled the other spots which happened to be in the middle of our table. Shanty said she wasn't sure if anyone else would come. The other Platinum Plus passengers (I think there were 4 or 5) were on the totally opposite side of the dining room with an unknown assortment of officers.

The only "extra" we got was wine with dinner. We did not get the photos, the offer of cappuccinos and after dinner drinks like we had less than a year ago on the Gem.

I think NCL must be reminded that this perk is for devotees of NCL with about 20 or so cruises. I felt disrespected having to wait so long in the Atrium and being assigned numbers.

I think the person in charge of this perk on Escape needs to be helped a bit to treat guests less like children at school and more like the repeat cruisers they are.

Just my opinion and my comparison of the 2 experiences.

Wendy wwb

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Have never taken advantage of this perk,  I was thinking about signing up for it on my sailing next week on Gem.  I would regret it if my experience was as bad as yours.  I would rather they give P+ and above a 3rd specialty dinner.

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Posted (edited)

There are more and more stories similar to yours of getting people you wouldn't normally consider officers (photo place representative and others).  The crew probably feels it is sort of a punishment at times having to eat with us (we just got to PP after our last trip so haven't had the dinner yet).  I agree too, with vince that we'd probably rather just have a free specialty dinner for those in our room.

 

I'm also not so sure that they really care about our loyalty as much as we'd like to think they should but that is only a guess.  Maybe they make more money from less frequent cruisers?

Edited by dexddd

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Posted (edited)

We are also Platinum Plus and have done this dinner several times over the years and have never had dinner with the Captain or Hotel Director.  Our officers have been Personnel Managers, Guest Services, Accounting and Executive Housekeeping.  Only 1 did we get a photo taken of the table, but it wasn't given to us - it was available for purchase.

 

On our cruise on the Jewel last week, we had dinner with 1 other couple and the Chief Accountant and the Payroll officer.  We had met the Chief Accountant 2 years ago - it was nice to see him again.  The table next to us had 6 women and 1 officer - a young job training officer.  The third table had 8 people and dined with the Hotel Director.  We had wine with dinner and lattes after diner.  The photo of the 6 of us was delivered to our room the next day.

Edited by herdingdogmom

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Such inconsistency. They need to work on this, or as Vince said, give an extra specialty dinner instead.

NCL: are you listening?

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, wwb said:

We just returned from our week on the Escape. There were some great things about our cruise and some not great things, nevertheless, had a wonderful time.

The biggest disappointment for me was this perk that you are entitled to as a Platinum Plus member. The first time we were able to do this Dining with the Officers perk was April 2018 on the Gem. There were 5 passengers at the table, the captain and the Cruise Next manager. Place cards were awaiting us at the table. It was a wonderful evening! They even took our photos and had them on our bed later that night complimentary. Additionally, the captain invited us up to the bridge the following day for a coffee. We definitely felt special and that this was truly a perk for our loyalty to NCL.

In stark contrast, was our experience last week on the Escape. We were told to meet at the Guest Services area at 5:30 and then would be taken to the dining room together. We stood there with a few others feeling a bit foolish (waiting about 25 minutes with no direction), as someone named Shanty held a paper with our photos and tried to get organized.

Finally she gave us a group number ( Why we needed that was crazy with so few people) and marched us to the dining room. She said # 1's this side and # 2's the other side, and then reversed it when she sent us in with the host. We were taken to a long table for ten and there were 5 passengers (husband, me and our grown son, and a couple who was on their third cruise) and there were 2 officers (Manager of the shopping and a nurse). No one else filled the other spots which happened to be in the middle of our table. Shanty said she wasn't sure if anyone else would come. The other Platinum Plus passengers (I think there were 4 or 5) were on the totally opposite side of the dining room with an unknown assortment of officers.

The only "extra" we got was wine with dinner. We did not get the photos, the offer of cappuccinos and after dinner drinks like we had less than a year ago on the Gem.

I think NCL must be reminded that this perk is for devotees of NCL with about 20 or so cruises. I felt disrespected having to wait so long in the Atrium and being assigned numbers.

I think the person in charge of this perk on Escape needs to be helped a bit to treat guests less like children at school and more like the repeat cruisers they are.

Just my opinion and my comparison of the 2 experiences.

Wendy wwb

 

I enjoyed chatting with the Gift Store Manager, the Head of photo team, the chief security officer, as much as I did with the hotel director, the F & B director, the Captain, and the other passengers on our table.

I did not feel insulted, foolish, demoted, small, deprived or like a school child in any way. Just my experience.

Edited by Arzeena

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Arzeena: as I said, this was MY experience and MY opinion about this. How fortunate you are that you have never been disappointed.

Happy cruising!

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Had very similar experience!  Platinum plus. And had dinner with the captain on the Gem, enjoyed it so much, lots of laughs, and received a photo also!  

Digned up on th Escape and the Breakaway and sat with a photographer once and a theater director, was good.... it nothing like the one on the Gem🛳😀

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Posted (edited)

In the beginning when NCL started with this perk for Latitude Platinum Plus passengers, we used to sign up for it and had a great experience - with the other passengers also being Platinum Plus and the officers usually being one (or two) of the officers you meet at the M&G. But about a year ago, they changed it from being a Platinum Plus "perk" to being open for everyone on board. Meaning that everyone can sign up for these dinners. Only difference is that among the rest of the passengers there is a "draw" if there are too many people who signed up for it, but if you have Platinum Plus status you are "entitled" to participate IF you wish to/sign up for it. So not so "exclusive" anymore, but can still be a nice dinner - it depends very much on if the host is a "peoples person" or not (as all officers are now in "the mix")... 

Edited by TrumpyNor

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TrumpyNor:

I was not aware of that! Thanks for sharing that info. I now understand  a bit better.😊

 

Our conversation was good at the table. I certainly didn’t expect to get the Captain every time, or ever again. My husband really enjoyed his conversation with the Shopping manager.

I was simply sharing the comparison between my 2 experiences. Never realized that when you share, your opinion gets challenged and minimalized. I know now not to review any of MY feelings or opinions on these boards without backlash.🤐

wwb

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Hi all!

 

wwb ~ sorry to hear of the big difference between your 2 experiences! I've just become Platinum Plus so hope being on a smaller ship ie the Pearl, that I have a nice experience like you had on Gem.

I wonder if the size of the ship influences the experience in any way.

After Pearl I'll sail Jade then Epic so will hope for the best.

Thanks for your post.

 

~ Jo ~ 😊

 

 

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Posted (edited)
23 hours ago, wwb said:

Arzeena: as I said, this was MY experience and MY opinion about this. How fortunate you are that you have never been disappointed.

Happy cruising!

Not disputing your experience at all, just relating mine.

Yes we are very blessed. Thank you. Hope to see you too someday on our dinner table.

Edited by Arzeena

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We have done the dinner many times over the years.  It is always hit and miss.  Some ships do a great job, others not so much.  We have had the captain and hotel director but also the cruise next lady and the training officer.  Seems to vary ship to ship and month to month.

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We had a similar experience.  We were told to meet in the atrium.   A vague not very precise meeting location.  We wandered around until we found people who were dressed such that we thought they might be going to the dinner with an officer.  Luckily they were also waiting.  We waited over 20 minutes and were escorted to the restaurant.  We were seated with another 10 people which included the Spa Manager and a 2nd Engineer.  I sat next to the 2nd engineer.  I was expecting higher level officers.  Luckily the 2nd engineer was very chatty.  I learned a lot about his home country, crew life and crew pay structure.  He told me things I'm sure an upper level officer would never share with passengers.  So I enjoyed the dinner.  Those who sat next to the Spa Manager seemed bored out of their minds.   

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2 hours ago, Love my butler said:

We have done the dinner many times over the years.  It is always hit and miss.  Some ships do a great job, others not so much.  We have had the captain and hotel director but also the cruise next lady and the training officer.  Seems to vary ship to ship and month to month.

How many times did the CN person try to sell you certs during dinner?

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On our last NCL cruise we also signed up for dinner with the officers. I was very excited about this, until.... we were assigned to the Art Auction Manager/Auctioneer.  I was kind of deflated since he is not an employee of NCL technically, but of Park West.  I was truly expecting it to be "an officer" of the ship who has stripes. I had questions ready for that scenario. 

As others have mentioned, they also corralled us in the atrium where people were having to literally yell the roll call for the various groups  due to a boisterous game show going on in the atrium.  Nevertheless, we still had nice company except for one disgruntled lady who griped for the entire dinner about any and every little thing that was wrong in her opinion.  No wonder why officers don't want to dine with passengers if it is two solid hours of gripes!

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We just had Dinner with an Officer on the Getaway.  It was a nice evening with a fairly new Officer (his first DWO) and the Cruise Next rep (she didn't try to sell anything).   I wondered why we were lucky enough to talk with her but then learned she's the officer's girlfriend.  We all had place cards at the round table and it was easy to converse.  While we didn't get photos or lattes we did enjoy a glass or two of the house wine.  All in all, a nice dinner.  I encourage PP and PP+ Latitudes members to sign up the day you embark and also register for the behind the scenes tour.

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Posted (edited)
On 3/20/2019 at 8:18 PM, wwb said:

TrumpyNor:

I was not aware of that! Thanks for sharing that info. I now understand  a bit better.😊

 

Our conversation was good at the table. I certainly didn’t expect to get the Captain every time, or ever again. My husband really enjoyed his conversation with the Shopping manager.

I was simply sharing the comparison between my 2 experiences. Never realized that when you share, your opinion gets challenged and minimalized. I know now not to review any of MY feelings or opinions on these boards without backlash.🤐

wwb

 

Sorry to hear of your experience. Always remember that when you voice an opinion that is not fully positive of NCL, you will get immediate push back. It is just par for course.

I have been lucky so far with the dinners with officers. We did not meet in the Atrium which isn't a good location. On my last two, we met in Bliss and were offered a drink of choice and did a little chatting until everybody arrive. On the Gem in January, our table had the Staff Captain and Spa Manager. The cruise last December had an officer (don't remember his title) and the Cruise Next assistant manager. We did not have any empty seats and it was quite lively. Like many things on ships, it can be hit or miss.

Edited by IrieBajan54
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On 3/20/2019 at 9:18 PM, wwb said:

TrumpyNor:

I was not aware of that! Thanks for sharing that info. I now understand  a bit better.😊

 

Our conversation was good at the table. I certainly didn’t expect to get the Captain every time, or ever again. My husband really enjoyed his conversation with the Shopping manager.

I was simply sharing the comparison between my 2 experiences. Never realized that when you share, your opinion gets challenged and minimalized. I know now not to review any of MY feelings or opinions on these boards without backlash.🤐

wwb

Awwww always share your review or issue, Wbb. You never know who you might help 😊. I did a review once and mentioned not getting a towel animal for my sil the first night in the Garden Villa (it was his first cruise) and you would have thought I was a monster. Lol  Don’t let it bother you 😊

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