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NCL--Free/Discounted Air


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If you buy the discounted air and 2nd person free through Norwegian, do they pick everything, ie arrival and departure date and airline? Can you ask to get there 2 days before? Can you give a preferred airline?

 

If you've done it, would you do it again?

 

Thank you!

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have you received any comments about your posting for the air travel question? my wife and i just purchased this option for an upcoming trip in Jan of 2023. have you done this? what was your experience?

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Posted (edited)

As has been recounted in the numerous other threads on this (including a couple recently)- you get no choice of airline, seating class or when the flights are (time) but you CAN choose to deviate up to 2 days before and 2 days after the cruise.  There may be a fee for the deviation.

 

However - once the flight is ticketed you are free to log in to the airline website and choose seats, including paying to upgrade to a different class.

Edited by hallux
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8 minutes ago, hallux said:

As has been recounted in the numerous other threads on this (including a couple recently)- you get no choice of airline, seating class or when the flights are (time) but you CAN choose to deviate up to 2 days before and 2 days after the cruise.  There may be a fee for the deviation.

 

However - once the flight is ticketed you are free to log in to the airline website and choose seats, including paying to upgrade to a different class.

 

Thank you!

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My husband and I are going on the cruise to Greece in July and are using the 2nd guest flies free. I have not flown with NCL or to Europe before but we did use the cruise line airfare with Princess for our Alaskan cruise and it was flawless. A rep was waiting at baggage claim and we got right on a bus to the port. We like it for the peace of mind that we will get to the port on time and don't have to find our own way there.

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17 hours ago, kby1216 said:

A rep was waiting at baggage claim and we got right on a bus to the port

A point of note on this aspect - if you do a deviation pre-cruise they will still add the transfer to your fare.  If you choose not to use that transfer you CAN remove it, but if you choose to use it you will need to get back to the airport to hop on the shuttle.

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I just booked a cruise using the 2nd guest flies free.  We moved our flights to the day before and the day after the cruise, ended up getting a $25 CREDIT for each deviation, so instead of $199 for the flight it was $149.

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I've done it a handful of times when flying domestic. If the price is right, then it's worth it. Once it gets closer to flying date you'll get the record locator number in your edocs. Use that to go on the airline's website and pick your seats and upgrade to comfort + if you like (extra fees most likely for each of these, but it depends on the airline).

 

If there is any delay, it is NCL's job to get you to the ship on time or to get you caught up at the next port of call. We almost missed the ship when we were flying JFK - MIA due to delayed flights, but when we got to baggage claim there were plenty of reps there who assured us that if they were there - the ships weren't leaving without us. 


Used it again to go on the POA out of Hawaii. Again, lots of agents at baggage claim with clipboards who then walked us to the buses. No issues for us, but my sister who arrived ~15 mins after us had a bit of a snag with the buses. They wouldn't let us go on the same bus together as we were on different clipboard lists of passengers, and then when her group got to the buses people kept cutting the line. It worked out fine in the end though, and once we were all on board with drinks in hand no one remembered the bus challenges.

 

Third time using it was JFK - San Juan. We flew in a day early so cancelled the transfers going in, but no issues at all with the flights. Coming home we opted for a post-cruise tour of San Juan and the Bacardi distillery, with a drop off at the airport when we were done. Outside of having to sit at the airport for 3+ hours, no issues at all.

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I have been watching this thread with interest as we try to decide whether or not to make use of the "2 for 1" air from NCL/United Cruises for our r/t Barcelona cruise 9/11/22.  I spoke to someone at United Cruises yesterday and didn't feel reassured.  Her comment "if you're going to use it, do it ASAP, because there are a finite number of seats/air port and once they're gone-they're gone."  What?  How can they do that if my booking says 2 for 1 air?   

 

I assume because we booked through United Cruises that we would fly on United Airlines, but perhaps that isn't true?  

 

Another question: My family and I are flying from different states-2 from Charleston, SC, 1 from Detroit and 1 from San Francisco-so different flights and different destination arrival times.  No problem, but we would like to arrive on the Friday before our Sunday cruise.  The United agent said we could  arrive up to 2 days before the cruise, but not earlier.   I never got clear whether or not this means 2 calendar days, or literally, 48 hours before sail away and whether, eg we could leave on Thursday evening to arrive on Friday morning?  

 

And another question:  seating.  I understand that the seats are not assigned/released until fairly close to the cruise date.  My worry is that we could conceivably be stuck in the center of the center section (2 of us are very tall and have back issues).  Have any of you taken the 2 for 1 offer from the US to Europe and if so, what was the experience like? 

 

Thank you!

Kathy

 

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@bbqbears I suggest reading all posts in a thread before posting, several of your questions are answered in this very thread.

 

3 hours ago, bbqbears said:

And another question:  seating.  I understand that the seats are not assigned/released until fairly close to the cruise date.  My worry is that we could conceivably be stuck in the center of the center section (2 of us are very tall and have back issues).

See below

6 hours ago, Sailing12Away said:

Once it gets closer to flying date you'll get the record locator number in your edocs. Use that to go on the airline's website and pick your seats and upgrade to comfort + if you like (extra fees most likely for each of these, but it depends on the airline).

 

On 4/22/2021 at 12:19 PM, hallux said:

However - once the flight is ticketed you are free to log in to the airline website and choose seats, including paying to upgrade to a different class.


 

 

3 hours ago, bbqbears said:

I assume because we booked through United Cruises that we would fly on United Airlines, but perhaps that isn't true?  

See below.

On 4/22/2021 at 12:19 PM, hallux said:

you get no choice of airline, seating class or when the flights are (time)

If you use the NCL air offer there is no assurance of a particular airline.

3 hours ago, bbqbears said:

eg we could leave on Thursday evening to arrive on Friday morning?

Most likely you would travel on Friday.  Since you don't get to pick your flight times, as indicated, you don't get the overnight flight option but it COULD happen I guess.

3 hours ago, bbqbears said:

Another question: My family and I are flying from different states-2 from Charleston, SC, 1 from Detroit and 1 from San Francisco-so different flights and different destination arrival times.

Check the terms of the promo (https://www.ncl.com/termsandconditions/promotions)

Although that seems a little confusing - if you do the "Travel with guarantee" to have different reservations linked for travel, you have to depart from the same airport. It does not indicate that for all guests on the same reservation.

 

That promo information also DOES indicate that "Air gateways are capacity controlled and subject to availability".

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It might be worth it, but be careful... In 2019 we tried this for a January 2020 cruise. We wanted to deviate to come a day early, because we live in a cold snowy place and didn't want to worry about flight delays causing problems with our arrival time, and getting to the port on time to make the cruise. But that didn't happen, and we were scheduled to fly in only 3 hours ahead of departure. With any flight delays, we would be screwed. NCL refused to change anything, in spite of multiple conversations (and BTW, we only learned of our flight days/times 23 days before departure due to a "glitch" in their system that took days to resolve). So, we decided to book new flights and save ourselves from stressing. No refund from NCL on the previously booked flights (which, although they were advertised as "free", they were simply reduced fare). The agent told us their policy was to get people in by a 3 hour window... But we were flying in the winter from an airport that often has weather delays, with a stop in another location... No wiggle room to speak of. But, our travel with our new flights went smoothly. For our cruise next year, we booked our own flights, as fares are pretty reasonable right now and we had control over which flights would be booked. Caveat emptor.

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@Lottosal65your experience is exactly why it's advised to fly in at least 1 day before when you have a decent distance to go and why NCL offers the deviation option (which needs to be exercised BEFORE final payment and ticketing of the flights).  NCL doesn't know your local airport's flight history during certain times of the year, NCL just knows you want to go A to B and want to be at B by a certain time of day.

 

Here was my experience in 2019 -

I was flying from New York (Upstate, not from NYC) to LA, with a layover at MDW.  I got to MDW on time, for my 4 hour layover.  The plane coming in to service my flight to LAX was delayed by the incoming weather system.  After a couple of equipment shuffles (an issue with another plane they were going to use for the flight) I ended up spending 6 hours at MDW.  I got to LA right around 4 PM, I was originally supposed to get there at 1:30.  Had I not chosen to fly the day before I wouldn't have made the ship.

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Thanks everyone for the good info as we were curious how this works.   We are cruising out of NOLA in January and I can anticipate issues getting there due to weather and such.  We also would like to spend a day in NOLA as my son has never been there, so we were wondering if we could take a flight a day earlier and how we would go about working with NCL to do this.    Would this be a phone call with them to have it changed?   I normally hate flying in the same day as the cruise because you just never know with air travel.    Anyone who's done this scenario, how did  you work it out with NCL?

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39 minutes ago, steveknj said:

We also would like to spend a day in NOLA as my son has never been there, so we were wondering if we could take a flight a day earlier and how we would go about working with NCL to do this.    Would this be a phone call with them to have it changed?   I normally hate flying in the same day as the cruise because you just never know with air travel.    Anyone who's done this scenario, how did  you work it out with NCL?

 

On 4/22/2021 at 12:19 PM, hallux said:

As has been recounted in the numerous other threads on this (including a couple recently)- you get no choice of airline, seating class or when the flights are (time) but you CAN choose to deviate up to 2 days before and 2 days after the cruise.  There may be a fee for the deviation.

 

However - once the flight is ticketed you are free to log in to the airline website and choose seats, including paying to upgrade to a different class.

So.. yes, you can.  Contact your TA or NCL directly (whichever way you booked).  If you're still within the window where the change can be made, make it...

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Deciding if I want to take the airfare offer to Miami. 2 people from Newark to Miami is $199 - great deal. But I've heard some stories about a 3 hr flight taking 10 hrs with layovers & change plans in Chicago. One person said they lucked out and got a direct flight but having to wait til 2-3 days before cruise to get your flight information is a little stressful for me.

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13 minutes ago, kitty-sail said:

but having to wait til 2-3 days before cruise

You don't have to wait until THAT close, the flight information is usually available around 45 days before the cruise.  But as noted before - if you accept the flight offer you can't back out of it if you don't like the flights, once they're ticketed you're locked in...

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