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Juleigh DePriest

Age: 36

Occupation:domestic goddess

Number of Cruises: 2

Cruise Line: Norwegian

Ship: Norwegian Majesty

Sailing Date: April 3rd, 2004

Itinerary: Western Caribbean

Cruised the Norwegian Majesty. Left 4/03/04. There is a SEVENTY-dollar parking fee upon arrival.... We were not told of this so it was a shocker! Please be aware of the parking fee!

Cruise left two hours late because we had to wait for a "container" of supplies that was caught in a traffic jam. Cruise started off great except it was fifty degrees and the kids were freezing in the SALT-WATER pool! (The kids were packed in a tiny pool that was half covered by the stage!) Brown yucky salt water!

There was a scavenger hunt type activity where the emcee parted the ship's guests into two teams.... and the team to get the requested items to the emcee first got the points. This was comical and fun and got us all in the "vacation" spirit until the cocktail servers were upon us!

OH THE COCKTAIL SERVERS! Cocktail waiters are constantly coming to you like carnival barkers wanting you to purchase alcoholic beverages....we obliged for the first couple of rounds...but then we wanted nothing more to drink for that evening. The cocktail waiters (pushers) act as if they are offended if you aren't knocking down alcohol 24/7. We aren't tea totalers...nor are we alcoholics...but the pressure to buy alcohol is unreal! Oh and they hand you a pen with your receipt so you can sign it and hopefully you will add a tip to the ALREADY included tip on the receipt. Make sure you notice that everything you order has an automatic 15% tip added to it. You order a $6 drink, you pay .90 tip.... You order an $18 bucket of pay a $2.70 tip! You will order what you think is a $2.00 drink SPECIAL.... It will arrive in a "SOUVENIR" cup and the drink will actually be $5.95 because the cocktail pusher "just assumed" you wanted the souvenir keepsake plastic cup! Which increases his tip from .30 to .89! It is a plot, a ploy, a scheme, and a scam! WATCH THE COCKTAIL PUSHERS people! They are nickel and diming you to death on the cruise ship! They know they have you trapped and they are working it!

Then came time for dinner! The brochure stated "resort casual for dinner - why dress up for your vacation!? It's your vacation! Dress how you want!" HAH! Resort Casual is dress pants for gentlemen (NO FLIP FLOPS - NO SHORTS ALLOWED). Since we were not clear on this, my husband only packed walking shorts for our cruise. So, for the first three nights of the cruise, we all had to eat at the buffet.

OH SOMEBODY STOP ME! THE BUFFET is a JOKE! The buffet is left over from the restaurants the night is just disguised as some kind of "gourmet" dish that you can't pronounce NOR would you want to eat it. GAG! Our kids ate at the San Marco pizzeria every day and night. The pizzeria serves Pizza, hotdogs and hamburgers. I myself resorted to the pizza for two nights because I refused to eat at the cleverly disguised leftover bar. But, the leftover buffet is not much worse than the "fine" restaurants on board.

The pizzeria is great! Pizza is really get your choice of cheese or pepperoni. Hotdogs and hamburgers are grilled and are very good as well...but we paid THREE THOUSAND DOLLARS for the four of us to go on this FUN FILLED OCEAN VOYAGE and we expected more than hamburgers, hotdogs and pizza. But, if you want good will hang out at the San Marco Pizzeria.... or dine at the Shoney’s FINE restaurants aboard the NORWEGIAN MAJESTY! HURL!

There is a restaurant on board called the BISTRO. We didn't visit this restaurant. There is a FIFTEEN-dollar per person fee that you have to pay to enter into this fine establishment! HUMMMMM...maybe that is where all the good food is served on its first trip to the kitchen...then it is revamped and disguised and served in the fine restaurants next...then if finally makes its way to the buffet! We will never know...we refused to pay forty five dollars extra (for the three of us) to eat at a restaurant - on top of the three grand we had already dropped on this money sucking ship.

Breakfast buffet is pretty good! Just get in line behind the rest of the HERD! You can take your food into the restaurant by the buffet on deck ten, but it is unlikely you will find a table. (Seating is limited) you can take your breakfast and eat by the bathtub/pool side and enjoy the mach ninety winds blowing food all over the open air deck as you watch the ocean waves drift by! (Just my opinion here...but, the restaurant on deck five serves breakfast from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and you get waited on, without the mach ninety winds and your teeny tiny coffee cup [all coffee cups are thimble sized] won't be blowing over and it will stay full! So, every morning, we rushed up out of bed to the restaurant to get breakfast so we could avoid the cattle call on deck ten!)

On the third day of our cruise, my husband bought some long pants at a shop in Grand Cayman. We were all excited that we could now dine in the "fine" restaurants! What a joke! Here, now, I must mention that the food on Norwegian is awful! It is "Shoney's" grade food with a beautiful presentation and served on white china plates.... LOOKS YUMMY...tastes bad!

We would order several entrees in case we didn't like one - we could eat the other. One particular meal - (if you want to call it that) I ordered seven different food items (appetizers, salads, entrees). Two of the items were pretty good. Just a warning people...don't go on this ship thinking you will be eating like a king! I didn't gain ONE pound on this cruise...I actually LOST weight.

Okay, so we have our "resort casual" clothes...we can dine in the "fine" restaurants...but our clothes are all wrinkled from being packed in suit cases...not to worry, because we have packed an iron! RIGHT? WRONG! One of our suitcases was confiscated upon boarding the ship. We were concerned because five out of six of our suitcases made it to our OH SO CRAMPED "CABIN".... My husband went to the purser to find that our bag was confiscated because we had alcohol (two pints of alcohol), an iron, and NARCOTICS! NARCOTICS???? Our son is ADHD and we had his Adderall prescription in our bag. Adderall is NOT a narcotic. It is an amphetamine. WHATEVER! They made my husband remove these items from our bag and they kept them in the holding room until the night before we debarked the ship. We could, however, keep our son's "PRESCRIPTION NARCOTIC!!"

Great!!! Now we have to DRESS for dinner, but we can't iron our clothes! What should we do? WELL, it just so happened that a pamphlet was delivered to our room that advertised a "special" on valet pressing service! "Half off for one night only"! HAH! Well, now we see why we couldn't pack an iron. It is a ploy to get you on the ship with wrinkled clothes, no iron, which leads you desperate for pressing service, RIGHT? NOT, I was allowed to bring my curling iron and hair straitening iron.... So we used my hair straitening iron to press what we could in emergencies.

OH and for travelers that are confused on what "resort casual" is! The ship has RENTAL clothes for you to wear to dinner. For the low low price, of course! *smile*

The excursions are over priced!! We booked three excursions on-line and when we got on board we only received tickets for one of our booked excursions. Which worked out great because the excursion we were going to do in Grand Cayman was a snorkel/beach excursion at "7 mile beach". We went on our own because we didn't want to go at 8:30 a.m. till 11:30 a.m. (when I booked on-line it said the shore excursion was from 9:45 till 12:45.) Very unorganized huh!? So, we took a cab to "7 mile beach" and the cab driver dropped us off. We could see the other Norwegian guests snorkeling down the beach. They had no better beach facilities than we did.... Nor could they see any better aquatic life than we could. And we saved a hundred dollars doing our own excursion. We were relieved that we didn't get our "tickets" for that excursion. It was a joke!

In Cozumel, we visited the Playa Sol Beach. Hire a taxi to take you there...I think it was a fifteen-minute ride. Hispanic taxi drivers drive like madmen! American cops would have a ticket writing coronary down in Mexico! Just be warned...But hey, they are used to it wear your seatbelt and enjoy the scenery as it goes by at 95 mph! The park costs $29 for adults and $19 for children. This was a beach park facility that the kids could stretch out, play and relax...finally, some ROOM to roam! Park includes all you can drink alcohol for the adults and kids receive soft drinks. Your food is extra. If you do this "excursion" take snorkel gear as we did. Otherwise you will be charged an extra $12 for snorkel gear to view their "replicas" of Mayan ruins. This was a joke! I think they had six pieces of 4 X 3 concrete structures that were shaped like Mayan ruins. I have no idea what it was for. It didn't attract fish. We are avid snorkelers and we were unimpressed with this "snorkel" area. The beach was clean and service is great...but, keep in mind, the native Hispanics are ALWAYS holding out their hands and demanding tips for anything they do. If they bring you a raft, they want a tip for it. And are not shy to ask for a tip. Take dollars with you...they are demanding suckers! There is a chlorinated pool in the park with a swim up cash bar. You will have to utilize the other "bracelet" bars though because this swim up bar is cash only. All in all this was a nice excursion and the price was very reasonable. I recommend it.

The next day we docked at Key West. This was a great place to visit...IF we only had more time. The boat docked and hour late and it took an hour and forty minutes to get all the guests off the boat. (Three hours of our port of call taken up by tardiness and disorganization!) The other two hundred guests that signed up for overpriced shore excursions got to get off first and were shuttled to their destinations. The remaining thirteen hundred guests stood in line outside the boat (some for over an hour) waiting on two train trolleys to cart them to downtown Key West. Fifteen Hundred guests on board and it took about seventy-five guests per train to the downtown area! It was crazy! Everyone stood lined up out in the heat waiting to be transported off the dock. NO walking on the dock in Key West. We got downtown at 5:30. All the museums were closed at 5 p.m. So, we couldn't do much touring. We had to be back on the last trolley by 9:15, which gave us four hours to visit Key West. Very nice place! People are so friendly and the street performers are entertaining. We wished we had more time here. Three other cruise ships were also docked at the same time we were.... So the restaurants were extremely crowded with long wait times. So, we opted to forgo the Wonderful Island cuisine for our "much better cruise food” HAH!

The last day was a day at sea. Great! MORE fun on the ship around the tiny salt-water pool packed with kids. Kind of looked like a can of Vienna sausages with all the little tikes packed in there! Hubby and I busied ourselves with our travel Scrabble Board and deck of Phase 10 cards. If we hadn't brought them we would have been so bored. Our 5-year-old was happy as a lark playing in the chlorinated hot tub that was also packed with kids. His lips were raw from the salt-water bathtub that is called a pool. So, he opted to hang and socialize with his newfound friends in the Jacuzzi.

The chairs around the salty bathtub/pool are limited.... So get there at 6 a.m. and stake claim or you will end up on the other end of the ship WAY away from the bathtub/pool. JUST A WARNING.

The activities aboard the ship are very corny! The emcee was a Bob Saggett look and act - alike! And the reggae band played the same Forty songs over and over each day. Good music...but the same songs over and many times can people dance to the Electric Slide and the Macarena? *sigh*

My five-year-old loved the kid program. He was in the 2-5 year old group. This was a perk point (one of the few)! The kid program met every night from 7 p.m. till 10 p.m. So, we put him in there while we went to Shoney's for the "gourmet" dinner in the "fine" restaurant. He loved the kid program and couldn't wait to get there! He met lots of kids his age that he played with at the tiny salty bathtub/pool during the day. He had a blast and his cruise review would contradict mine greatly.

Our room was tiny and it was called a "cabin". CABIN! It was a foxhole with 4 fold down twin bunk beds! The bathroom is an all-in-one time saving concept. One can use the toilet, shave their face, brush their teeth and take a shower at the same time. WHAT A REVOLUTION! How ingenious! I need to remodel my bathroom at home to utilize this speedy process!

The toilets are a vacuum system and make sucking gurgling noises all throughout your cruise. They will freak you out! That might explain why the halls smell of garbage and sewage aboard the beautiful sailing vessel!

Our foxhole was on deck 7, the promenade deck! We could hear the nightclub BUMPING AND BOOMING from 11 p.m. till 2 a.m. every evening. It was soooooooooooooo exciting to try to sleep with a nightclub 50 yards from our room. ON the last night of our cruise, a bar fight broke out at 2:10 a.m. I could hear the punches and slaps and the two men screaming and cursing one another...then one of the men's women got involved in the fight. Punches and slaps and curses right outside our foxholes! They broke through the door of one foxhole (don't know what those guests thought) and continued their brawl till 2:45 a.m. I heard a call over the paging system in each foxhole at 2:45 that said "Code Alpha report to stairwell C deck Four”. This was repeated 3 times over the paging system in each foxhole of the ship! So, one could deduce that it took the security over a half-hour to break up a bar fight! While the fight was taking place on our floor in our hall, I stood by the door (I didn't dare open it for fear they would end up in our foxhole). So, security is great for getting on and off the ship and doing drug and alcohol searches in your luggage...but when it comes to your personal protection - Forget about it!

Upon embarkation, every guest is given a card key. This card key is your credit card for ordering each and everything you need on the ship from cigarettes, alcohol, shore excursions, gifts in the gift shop, etc. NO cash is accepted on the cruise ship.... Everything goes on your card. Make sure you keep up with your ship credit card.... If it is lost, another guest can use it to purchase things aboard.

When it comes time to settle up your tab....make sure you check every single receipt and shore excursion that is charged to your card. We were charged twice for our Playa Sol Park excursion and had to dispute this with the clerk. She took it off after we brought it to her attention.

We have cruised before with Carnival Cruise Lines. We were much more impressed with Carnival. Carnival has wonderful food and the cocktail servers aren't as pushy as used car salesmen. They let you bring alcohol and irons aboard and their activities are wonderful for the kids. We will NEVER cruise again for fear it will remind us of this Norwegian Cruise that has scarred us for life...but, if we had to sail again.... We would choose Carnival.

Don't throw away your money on this cruise! It is awful!

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