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AVOID NCL ENCORE AT ALL COSTS


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12 minutes ago, PATRLR said:

I said it.  I know we did first day on Bliss.  We may have had to ask our way in "to check it out" but it wasn't a problem getting in to see it.  And I'm pretty sure we went into another ship's Vibe because the door was open first day.  Or maybe that was Bliss... 

 

I wonder if I can head to Q, get the tickets (hopefully) and then go "check it out" and if we don't like it, just hand back the tickets and not pay.  That may have to be our approach.

 

You can hand back the tickets.  I saw someone approach the staff member handing out the tickets, and give theirs back because the did not realize it was an adult only space, and had small children. So yes, you could do that for sure.

 

You could probably black market those tickets to cruisers at 2 pm, and make back half your cruise payment! (This is a joke, I am not serious, nobody get excited please...)

 

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13 minutes ago, PATRLR said:

I said it.  I know we did first day on Bliss.  We may have had to ask our way in "to check it out" but it wasn't a problem getting in to see it.  And I'm pretty sure we went into another ship's Vibe because the door was open first day.  Or maybe that was Bliss... 

 

I wonder if I can head to Q, get the tickets (hopefully) and then go "check it out" and if we don't like it, just hand back the tickets and not pay.  That may have to be our approach.


if you’ve already seen one wouldn’t it be pretty much the same? A deck with a bunch of loungers and a bar and a hot tub.  

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1 hour ago, mianmike said:

 

You have a much better memory.  Why people would complain there isn't more fee venue$ is beyond me. 🙄

 

It the new "space race". All of the mainstream family lines are trying to out do each other. These "things" are growing in popularity. Look back at the original price for the go-karts on Bliss vs. the current price. The popularity will lead to price increases. As the number of people who want things (even with fees) increases and the number of sun bathers decreases, deck space will be put to use for those "pay extra" things.

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I was also on the same cruise and a previous one 2 weeks earlier.

 

By and large, I enjoy Encore but I am neither a sun worshipper nor a smoker.   The Buffet is fine for late evening dining, otherwise "look out".

The assistant maitre d's look after me after I tell them of my special needs.  It helps to be recognized from previous NCL cruises.   

The Manhattan Room has been destroyed as a refined dining space, the dance floor removed with noise levels off the scale.

The issue for me were the entitled children running in the narrowed corridors, never heeding warnings and not brought to book by cruise staff.  By the end of the cruise, packs of teenagers had taken over The Observation Lounge.  As a contrast, I was on Carnival the week before and I never had a problem there.

 

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7 hours ago, marktwothousand said:

It should be a warning at 15 minutes and removal at 30. And there should be allowance for some people saving a chair or two to the left or right of them, in case someone has to run to the bar to get a drink, a smoke, run to their cabin for diharrea, etc. and quick things like that.

If you left your chair, I'm not sure how you would see a warning at 15 minutes....just saying.  

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I'm not sure why everyone seems so defensive about the OP review.  Some of you seem to feel personally attacked, and others insinuated that he was lying when he said that Vibe was sold out!  Some of you pointed out that he went during President's day week and what did he expect?  I'll tell you what I'd expect:  If you build a ship for 4k+ passengers then make sure it can accommodate them!  1 pool for that many people?  Doesn't seem logical.  I understand that not everyone wants to lounge in the sun, but clearly more do than there is room for.  I love to sit in a lounger on the pool deck on sea days for a bit as there are usually activities happening, and I just like the vibe.  If you read the reviews of the Bliss, many say the same thing.  I've never done a cruise on NCL, but the reviews that keep pointing out that they can't seem to handle the number of guests aboard their newer ships, are what keeps me from booking.  I appreciate an honest review.  

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11 hours ago, Two Wheels Only said:

When the limit is 60 minutes, people complain.

When the limit is 30 minutes, people complain.

When the limit is 15 minutes, people complain.

 

When NCL staff moves items after the allotted time, people complain.

When NCL staff doesn't move items after the allotted time, people complain.

 

When NCL offers VIBE, people complain that they couldn't get a pass.

When NCL offers a larger VIBE with triple the number of passes, people complain that VIBE takes up too much space.

 

When VIBE doesn't cost much, people complain that the demand is too high.

When VIBE cost more, people complain that the price is too high.

 

A question for everyone..."If you could, what changes would you make...knowing that some people will still complain?"

 

 

Hahaha, thats one reason why I no longer spend much time on this board. A  check periodically is plenty.

 

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5 hours ago, cmp702 said:

I'm not sure why everyone seems so defensive about the OP review.  Some of you seem to feel personally attacked, and others insinuated that he was lying when he said that Vibe was sold out!  Some of you pointed out that he went during President's day week and what did he expect?  I'll tell you what I'd expect:  If you build a ship for 4k+ passengers then make sure it can accommodate them!  1 pool for that many people?  Doesn't seem logical.  I understand that not everyone wants to lounge in the sun, but clearly more do than there is room for.  I love to sit in a lounger on the pool deck on sea days for a bit as there are usually activities happening, and I just like the vibe.  If you read the reviews of the Bliss, many say the same thing.  I've never done a cruise on NCL, but the reviews that keep pointing out that they can't seem to handle the number of guests aboard their newer ships, are what keeps me from booking.  I appreciate an honest review.  

I agree.  This is the Op's personal experience. And when it comes to chair hogging, that always brings out some interesting replies.  I guess the problem for some is the post is sensationalized.  That we should avoid the Encore at all costs!  It is a little dramatic and over the top.  

Edited by megansdad1
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I think the OP's experience is how I'd imagine it to be by looking at deck plans and photos from the first cruises.  Those lounge chairs are so close together!  I would not want to sit that close to a stranger!  After doing that research, I know the Encore is not the ship for me...research is key!

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22 hours ago, Mike_DeA said:

Thank you for your review.  I'm sorry you didn't enjoy your cruise, it seems like the Encore is not the ship for you.

 

I don't care about pools, hot tubs, smoking or bar service, so maybe the Encore is a good fit for me. 

  I agree with you Mike_DeA.  I can't handle the sun or the smoke.  I loved the Encore.  Beautiful ship and a great areas to people watch.  

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WOW!!!!!! I have a completely different prospective. For me****** I'm just happy being on a ship. With all there is to eat, I will check out ALL my choices. With so many, it's o.k. for me if I don't see anything apealing in the buffet, cause I've made a meal out of french fries, or soup and bread with butter (yummy), or chicken wings from O'Sheehans. I've probably eaten more chicken wings in my life than anything else, and that is o.k. with me. I don't care to sit in the sun (past breast cancer survivor) so no lounge by the pool is fine with me. I don't care to swim in the pools or be in the hot tubs, (I'm somewhat of a germaphobic) I know they chlorine it well but I'm just as happy staying dry. I have gone to the main dining room, by myself,  for just the appitizers because that is what I wanted. I've made milk shakes from the ice cream and milk. My own special dessert from a little bit of this and that from here and there. If I get a steak that's a little chewy, I eat more potatoes. I'm happy with a bag of popcorn in the Atrium watching a movie. I'm free to do what ever I want to do. I can go take a nap, play in the casino (if open) people watch, do trivia or watch another activity or just wonder around and play a game on my phone. I have an in home day care and am happy I'm NOT cooking, cleaning, changing diapers. I'm just happy being on a cruise. Yes there are things that I may not like, but I then find something else to do. My choices are endless. I have an upcoming cruise on the Escape in 3 days, in a solo cabin. I guess if life throws me  a lemon, I make lemonade or a pie. There are a whole lot more issues in life that I spend my time worring about. Not condeming anyone. To each their own, this is just my prospective of my cruising experiences.

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Thanks for your review!  Exactly as I thought the ship would be after seeing the deck plans and those upper decks.  NCL already packs way to much crap (ie "attractions) on to those upper decks, and ENCORE takes it to new heights.  And one adult pool for 4000+ pax is a complete joke.  For anyone that enjoys the simplicity of a quiet spot in the sun and a decent pool to cool off, this ship is obviously not for you.  I suppose that is asking too much, as neither produce revenue although leave it to NCL to figure out a way (Vibe).  ENCORE would be my last choice in the entire NCL fleet.  

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Personally, I enjoyed the Encore and echoed the same issues about the sun deck as the OP. I believe that the Encore would be an awesome experience  in cooler climates such as Alaska since deck space is no longer a issue and for longer voyages where the ship is not filled to capacity such as the Panama Canal. 

The OP did sail during a peak time where kids were off as well which would lead to more congestion on the sun deck compared to when I cruised with not many kids onboard. I would be cautious of booking the Encore, Joy, Bliss if I was traveling with families with kids in the Caribbean. If you do your research, you can prepare yourself for these types of issues and decide if this ship is right for you. The Encore would not be a ship I would sail on again with the same itinerary (Eastern Caribbean), but i would be open to book it again for Alaska depending on the price.

Yes we all want to sail the newest and sometimes the biggest ships, but sometimes the company doesnt necessarily have your personal preference in mind. This is why there are a wide variety of ships in the NCL fleet and also on other cruise lines. 

 

Edited by tx121
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15 hours ago, SunnyTahitianDaze said:

 

omg...can you actually do this??  I have no shame...

It is not on the banned items list and it collapses to a size that easily fits in a suitcase.  On our last cruise, I saw a few people who had the small "golf tournament" chairs with them in ports that they used while waiting in line for their excursions.

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21 hours ago, BirdTravels said:

Not to worry. You've been on other NCL megaships and the gripes are about the same. 

 

We enjoyed our Encore cruise to the Eastern Caribbean. We like it so much that we have booked another cruise on the Encore to Bermuda in a few months. 

What day, BirdTravels?  We are on the May 31 sailing.

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I was on the Encore in the Haven February 2-9, 2020. That was our 38th cruise ever (multiple cruise lines) 5th Haven cruise. In the Haven you don’t have to fight for a chair but I did see the chaos on the pool deck when we went to the go carts one day.  It was far more crowded than any ship I’ve ever seen. Over all service was ok, not horrible just ok. The specialty restaurants we ate at were not good, the Haven was better, accept menu never changed so we went to the Garden cafe and the main dining room which took 2 hours. The great things about this ship are that the 2 slides are free, we love the Haven and all that comes with that. The show Choir of men was the best show I’ve ever seen on NCL in my 7 cruises with them, GO see it for sure. The never ending ice cream machine is not good if you have no self control. We loved our room steward Win and our butler Lucky was good even though we only saw him 3 times. The rest of the Haven staff was ok. Disembarking the ship was 5 minutes, seriously a new record in my cruise experience! Bottom line though we could have almost taken 2 Haven cruises on other ships for what this one cost so I guess we have some buyers remorse cruising this ship. We like NCL in fact are getting on the Pearl this weekend, but this ship left us feeling underwhelmed and over priced, I’ve never felt like that in a Haven suite. I enjoyed the Getaway and The Epic Havens but to one persons value is not another.  It would take a really great, great, great deal in the Haven to get me back on this ship, sorry to say. Photo of the deck is from the afternoon when many people have left.

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Edited by Best Life
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On ‎2‎/‎25‎/‎2020 at 10:38 AM, Two Wheels Only said:

When the limit is 60 minutes, people complain.

When the limit is 30 minutes, people complain.

When the limit is 15 minutes, people complain.

 

When NCL staff moves items after the allotted time, people complain.

When NCL staff doesn't move items after the allotted time, people complain.

 

When NCL offers VIBE, people complain that they couldn't get a pass.

When NCL offers a larger VIBE with triple the number of passes, people complain that VIBE takes up too much space.

 

When VIBE doesn't cost much, people complain that the demand is too high.

When VIBE cost more, people complain that the price is too high.

 

A question for everyone..."If you could, what changes would you make...knowing that some people will still complain?"

 

I would bag the Breakaway Plus class ships, as NCL is doing going forward.  Nice that we still have the Jewel class ships that have 1/2 the passengers, FREE open air deck space, good entertainment and food.  As others mentioned, to each their own, but having recently spent 23 days on the Bliss, and the 10 days on the Gem, its Jewel Class all the way for me.  Sure the ship is a little long in the tooth, but you can't beat the service and free public open areas, including the Great Outdoors and the 7th deck walkaround.  Give me the classic ocean liner and save the mega ships for the masses who suffer and complain.

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This review just confirms why I don't want to sail on the Encore.  We loved H20 and spent most days there so that alone would be a big reason for me to forego this ship.  It's a shame as we really wanted to sail to Bermuda from NY and loved BA but decided to try another cruise line this time as we have no interest in the Encore.  

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1 hour ago, thistimeplease said:

This review just confirms why I don't want to sail on the Encore.  We loved H20 and spent most days there so that alone would be a big reason for me to forego this ship.  It's a shame as we really wanted to sail to Bermuda from NY and loved BA but decided to try another cruise line this time as we have no interest in the Encore.  

Yep, I think the OP has some valid points. Even tho not into laying in the sun, loss of H20 and convenient bar service is disappointing, as are buffet references as compared to Escape, etc.  

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16 hours ago, cmp702 said:

I'm not sure why everyone seems so defensive about the OP review.  Some of you seem to feel personally attacked, and others insinuated that he was lying when he said that Vibe was sold out!  

 

 

It's a strange phenomenon I've seen with pretty much every cruise line.  Certain people will get very defensive and protective over "their" ship and cruise line, and protect & defend it like it's a newborn child.  One tactic they use is to try and discredit the perpetrator, because if it didn't happen to them, or it doesn't apply to them, then no way can it be legitimate.  It could be a fascinating study in human sociology. 

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