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Jade Athens - Pre Board and Trip Experiences


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I know the first (July 25, 2021) cruise on the Jade from Athens has left, congratulations. I wanted to start this thread for people to share their experiences on these 2021 Greece cruises (Jade and other ships).  Specifically I am interested in these items, but share what you think matters, thanks:

  • Health protocols, procedures and testing pre-cruise, during flights (US perspective will be helpful) and airport arrivals/transfers and at ship
  • Onboard experiences - especially things that are different and perhaps if you think the change is +/-
  • Excursions - NCL or other and what steps/processes were in place
  • Touring in Athens - nothing available through NCL, were you able to tour on arrival day post check-in?

 

Overall I and I'm sure others will be grateful for whatever elements you want to share regarding your 2021 Greece cruise experience. We on August 29th, I will share here too. For starters we are using flights arranged by NCL via the promo, arriving on sailing day and departing immediately after the cruise, no deviations. Just my mother and I in a balcony  cabin. We have the 2 meal specialty package and will dine at LaCucina and LeBistro. We intend to book excursions exclusively with NCL, our usual practice. Mom loves to buy photos and we usually use our Latitudes discount or take advantage of an onboard promotion.

 

Online check-in process, more information will be required @21 days prior to sailing. They've requested that we upload a headshot photo and attest to the following:

I understand that in order to embark the ship I must provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19, including completion of the second dose (if applicable) at least 14 days prior to embarkation, from those vaccines that have been authorized for use by the World Health Organization (WHO), U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the European Medicines Agency (EMA). I also understand that I must consent to receive a COVID-19 antigen test, which will be administered and paid for by the cruise line, with a negative result prior to embarkation. 

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19 minutes ago, casofilia said:

@Nola26

 

Could I suggest that you join the Roll Call for the first cruise that left on the 25th July as there are people posting on there.

URL https://boards.cruisecritic.com.au/topic/2777452-norwegian-jade-roll-call-july-25-2021-greek-isles-round-trip-athens/page/6/?tab=comments#comment-61519709

 

Thanks, some helpful posts their!

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Despite what our NCL travel planner confirmed last week, there are no kids activities and no teen club (Entourage) and no opportunities for teenagers to meet up or participate in any age specific activity. Incredibly frustrating and a massive disappointment. According to cruise director no kids or teen activities until at least November. It sure would have been nice to be informed of this prior to flying halfway around the world. 

Screenshot_20210725-202245_Outlook.jpg

IMG-20210725-WA0017.jpeg

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I do realize the stream was not great but I mean, ship wifi, amirite??  LOL   And I do think he was having a ball.  I wish there were more reports from onboard, but I will continue to check online and report back what I find.

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I'll be interesting in hearing more about the COVID testing protocols and how NCL responds to various situations. When I booked the cruise two months ago I was pretty optimistic that COVID would be on the wane by the time we sail in middle September. Right now it seems to be ramping up again which increases the risks. So I am eager to learn do they re-test if you get a positive test to help protect against a false positive? As a citizen of the USA do they do the appropriate test for re-entry into the USA? What specifically happens if you fail the test when getting off the boat - do they have a place for you to stay and how long would you have to stay there before you could return home? etc. I had hoped that these scenarios would be so unlikely as not to consider but now they feel a bit more likely (although probably not so much so as to be a reason not to go at this point)

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1 hour ago, cfelbab said:

I'll be interesting in hearing more about the COVID testing protocols and how NCL responds to various situations. When I booked the cruise two months ago I was pretty optimistic that COVID would be on the wane by the time we sail in middle September. Right now it seems to be ramping up again which increases the risks. So I am eager to learn do they re-test if you get a positive test to help protect against a false positive? As a citizen of the USA do they do the appropriate test for re-entry into the USA? What specifically happens if you fail the test when getting off the boat - do they have a place for you to stay and how long would you have to stay there before you could return home? etc. I had hoped that these scenarios would be so unlikely as not to consider but now they feel a bit more likely (although probably not so much so as to be a reason not to go at this point)

I don't believe that vaccinated passengers require testing to disembark in the US.

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9 minutes ago, Karaboudjan said:

I don't believe that vaccinated passengers require testing to disembark in the US.

You need to have a negative test before boarding a flight to the US, vaccinated or not.

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Going to add this for the pre travel or boarding information. Letter received from NCL today:

 

8/29 Sailing will make a technical stop in Turkey, not sure when, where, why or if we can leave ship during the stop. This may require Visas, check your letter to understand what is needed.

 

Confirmed that Greece requires passports to be collected at embarkation.

 

I completed the online Passenger Locator Form for Greece, required to enter the country. Confirmation comes via email and includes a QR code, that will be scanned upon arrival in Greece.

 

Greece requires vaccine status information. We have to test due to changing planes in Denmark, but Greece isn't requiring test results, just proof of vaccine OR negative test results OR proof of recovery from COVID-19.

 

Looking forward to hearing what other learn or experience.

 

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On 7/30/2021 at 9:58 AM, Nola26 said:

Going to add this for the pre travel or boarding information. Letter received from NCL today:

 

8/29 Sailing will make a technical stop in Turkey, not sure when, where, why or if we can leave ship during the stop. This may require Visas, check your letter to understand what is needed.

 

Confirmed that Greece requires passports to be collected at embarkation.

 

I completed the online Passenger Locator Form for Greece, required to enter the country. Confirmation comes via email and includes a QR code, that will be scanned upon arrival in Greece.

 

Greece requires vaccine status information. We have to test due to changing planes in Denmark, but Greece isn't requiring test results, just proof of vaccine OR negative test results OR proof of recovery from COVID-19.

 

Looking forward to hearing what other learn or experience.

 

 

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I'm scheduled to be on same cruise.  I believe this is a disingenuous way of NCL taking steps to reroute the ports of call.  If you look at different web sites, you will see the NCL mentions Turkey/Black Sea cruise for this sail date.  I'm not interested in revisiting the ports of call in Turkey.  I've also read that 3 major greek islands are in the high red category for COVID and only essential travel to those islands will be permitted (Santorini, Rhodes) among them and Mykonos is under a curfew.  Contacting travel agent to see if I can get our money back. 

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The technical stop in Turkey is to bypass the taxes for the EU.   

 

If you search for the Roll Call for the first Greece cruise on the Jade that left on July 25, they did the same thing.  No one got off or on the ship.  

 

The ship leaves Rhodes and enters Turkish waters in marmaris bay waits about 20 minutes and leaves. It doesn’t dock. It is done to prevent EU taxes

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On 8/3/2021 at 11:33 AM, goodmanl1975 said:

The technical stop in Turkey is to bypass the taxes for the EU.   

 

If you search for the Roll Call for the first Greece cruise on the Jade that left on July 25, they did the same thing.  No one got off or on the ship.  

 

The ship leaves Rhodes and enters Turkish waters in marmaris bay waits about 20 minutes and leaves. It doesn’t dock. It is done to prevent EU taxes

THANK YOU for the INFO!

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On 7/30/2021 at 8:58 AM, Nola26 said:

Going to add this for the pre travel or boarding information. Letter received from NCL today:

 

8/29 Sailing will make a technical stop in Turkey, not sure when, where, why or if we can leave ship during the stop. This may require Visas, check your letter to understand what is needed.

 

Confirmed that Greece requires passports to be collected at embarkation.

 

I completed the online Passenger Locator Form for Greece, required to enter the country. Confirmation comes via email and includes a QR code, that will be scanned upon arrival in Greece.

 

Greece requires vaccine status information. We have to test due to changing planes in Denmark, but Greece isn't requiring test results, just proof of vaccine OR negative test results OR proof of recovery from COVID-19.

 

Looking forward to hearing what other learn or experience.

 

The area of Turkey we sailed through last week was GORGEOUS.  My husband and I LOVED hanging out in The Great Outdoors enjoying the views! 

 

NCL said before the cruise they might collect our passports, but no one said a word about it onboard.  Our passports were with us or in our room safe the whole time.  

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My husband and I were on the first full sailing last week.  It was our first cruise with NCL.  

  • Health protocols, procedures and testing pre-cruise, during flights (US perspective will be helpful) and airport arrivals/transfers and at ship

We felt very safe onboard.  We had to show vaccination cards at the airport and at embarkation.  We filled out the PLF for Greece before leaving home, and filled out another for the UK at the airport when we missed our connection and got rerouted thru London.  We also registered online with Eurofins/TrustOne for the Covid testing at embarkation and onboard.  It was very easy - show your QR code at the port, get swabbed (very non-invasive) and wait 20-30 min for your results.  Your number is posted on a TV monitor and if you're negative, you get a wristband and proceed to boarding.  (Wristbands can be removed once onboard.).  End-of-cruise testing was done Friday evening/Saturday morning before Santorini.  You are assigned a time, and must be tested to be able to disembark at Santorini and Athens.  Very easy, again.  Took five minutes.  Scan QR code, swabbed, and then they email you your results.  A printed copy was also delivered to our room for us to show at the airport going home.  

  • Onboard experiences - especially things that are different and perhaps if you think the change is +/-

They had social distancing markers onboard.  Some chairs/tables marked off, elevator signs said 4 people or less (at busy times, people often asked if anyone minded before hopping on - we never saw any issues with it), staircases had sides designated as up or down.  Masks were worn indoors until you were seated at a table.  Everyone MUST wash hands at the hand-washing stations upon entering the buffet area, and foods and drinks were served to you by crew members at each station.  Personally, we were very pleased with that.  Makes a buffet feel much cleaner overall, no weirdos touching all the food.  🙂

  • Excursions - NCL or other and what steps/processes were in place

We did some excursions through NCL and some on our own.  Masks indoors and on buses were the biggest difference.  On buses was a pain, (as they've been for the last 16 months) because it was hot...but it was worth it to be able to travel and see and do the things we did.  We had our vaccine cards with us at all times, but I think we only had to show it once at Olympia.  

  • Touring in Athens - nothing available through NCL, were you able to tour on arrival day post check-in?

I've been told you cannot leave the ship after embarkation.  We had planned to take a private car thru town to stop and see a couple sights...but we were on delayed planes the entire journey and when we arrived at ATH, we discovered our luggage had not.  So we ended up rushing to the port (sans luggage) at 7pm after spending a panicked hour of uncertainty in the airport not being able to reach any airline reps.  (Our luggage was found - in two different countries - and flown to Rhodes where an NCL rep collected it and delivered it to our room while we were out snorkeling.  So it turned out okay - but pack your carry-ons wisely!!)

 

Overall, we LOVED the cruise.  It was a dream.  Totally worth all the extra covid and travel delay hassles.   

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@swafly5909 Thanks for sharing your experience. We're booked on the August 29th cruise and your information really helps me understand what to expect.

The Ben & David YouTube video made it appear that they left the ship and explored Athens after testing and embarkation, but we'll just have to wait and see what options we have.

 

I am glad you found your luggage. Can you confirm your flight routes? We are Newark to Copenhagen to Athens, still trying to understand testing for Copenhagen, seems we need one to change planes there, but not one to enter Greece.

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58 minutes ago, Nola26 said:

@swafly5909 Thanks for sharing your experience. We're booked on the August 29th cruise and your information really helps me understand what to expect.

The Ben & David YouTube video made it appear that they left the ship and explored Athens after testing and embarkation, but we'll just have to wait and see what options we have.

 

I am glad you found your luggage. Can you confirm your flight routes? We are Newark to Copenhagen to Athens, still trying to understand testing for Copenhagen, seems we need one to change planes there, but not one to enter Greece.

Yes, Ben & David left the ship to explore Athens but theirs was a 4-night test cruise with NCL higher ups and social media promoters the week before our cruise.  Theirs was not a normal open-to-the-public cruise.  It also appeared they only sailed to Rhodes and back.  As a regular paying passenger on a regular non-test cruise, we were told by NCL that we could not leave the ship in Athens after checking in.

 

We were originally scheduled to make a connection in Munich but got rerouted thru London instead.  We had to present proof of vaccination for both, but did not have to test.  For the UK we also had to fill out PLFs like for Greece - except Greece was one PLF per household and the UK was a PLF for each passenger.  I'm not familiar with the requirements for Denmark.   

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Denmark doesn't require a test for US persons that are fully vaccinated! So we can fly to the Jade without testing, woo hoo! The US is an OECD member state. Anyone flying SAS may have a plane change in their Copenhagen hub.

 

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We have decided to cancel our trip, August 29th. For us the wildfires were the final straw. Wishing all who go a safe, fun and memorable experience!

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20 hours ago, Nola26 said:

We have decided to cancel our trip, August 29th. For us the wildfires were the final straw. Wishing all who go a safe, fun and memorable experience!

We're booked for September 29th and on the brink of making the same decision.  Too many unknowns are piling up.

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