Number of Cruises: 2
Cruise Line: Norwegian
Ship: Norwegian Wind
Sailing Date: November 17th, 2001
Itinerary: Southern Asia
2 Lectures were few and generally dull. The one on Thailand consisted in large part of a overly general commercial--at the end, all one learned was that Thailand was the country of smiles--which was repeated over and over. At least the art auction lady was entertaining.
3. Excursion desk people were surprisingly unknowledgeable. Know that NCL had been going to Asia for a short time but would have thought they would have hired someone familiar with the ports or at least required the staff to read a travel book. There were no reference material in the library to help. People seemed generally satisfied with the tours (Vietnam) although unhappy with the cost and that in several cases, items were listed as being visited but then omitted (I understand without explanation or even acknowledgment of the deletion).Despite tour desk's and Newsletters statements of "Very Limited" or "extremely limited" taxis, I did not have any trouble finding them (or rather their finding me) for independent excursions.
4 Safety. Supposedly the required lifeboat drill had taken place when the ship was in port in Hong Kong--but many of the passengers had not yet arrived while others were off ship shopping. According to one ship's officer there was a makeup drill but I (as well as at least 10 other cabins I spoke to)missed the drill and never received notice of this "makeup" (The two cabin stewards spoken to also said there was no notice). In view of September 11 as well as NCL having a prior ship accident I am amazed that NCL is not more careful of safety issues and wonder if there maybe other risk areas also not taken seriously. I know that the lifeboat drill is a pain but it is necessary and should logically take place the first day (which was at sea) with all taking part.
5 Misleading Ports. Almost everyone leaving the ship at Bangkok was surprised to learn that the port would actually be Laem Chabang, which is 2 1/2 hours away. Since returning home I have learned that other lines also use Laem Chabang port, but the other line looked at specifically identified not only that it would be the port but also gave its distance to Bangkok. In contrast, NCL left this information as a surprise.