While I just came off the NCL Pearl, I was able to view all the new TV spots from NCL. In the staterooms, NCL had one channel dedicated to the new "branding" ads especially geared towards the FREESTYLE program of dining. There are many different versions. You will notice that they are quick 15 to 30 sec spots. If you where to see and view all the ads, their new direction for FREESTYLE branding really hits home. And the ads say it best once viewing all of them. I remember about 4 to 6 different TV spots. The whole point is to show there are no regimented times for dining, you dine when you want. You are not told when to dine. It's a hard hitting branding effort by NCL and the ad agency. Over time, I do believe they will become more effective. Remember it's not Colin Veitch that sits down in some fancy office and makes these ads up. NCL has hired a major ad agency to develop, cast and produce their final "branding" ads for FREESTYLE cruising. The ads are carefully reviewed by NCL executives then finalized, produced and let out for television viewing. They are carefully aired in specific time slots and channels. While some may not like some of the ads, others are much better.
As for the Hawaiian thing, I have never been on NCL America, but looks like from the feedback, they need lots of help.
Although NCL has been cruising for 40 some years, NCL's new look over the past few years is a major advance from the small ships they offered in the past. With huge outlays for the Jewel, Pearl, Pride ships and the new Gem, they have invested billions of dollars in the past few years to become a big player. Carnival is by far the largest crise line company, then Royal Caribbean. NCL will produce one more Gem class ship when the NCL Gem is completed in late 2007. Then in 2010, the new F3 Class will be in line with 4200 passengers and crew of over 2000+. As an investment professional who watchs this industry closely as the major cruise lines are publicy traded, thus there financials are public. I see NCL in its infantcy of the new class of ship and has a bright future. NCL International, NCL America is part of the Star Cruise Line Company, which is publicy traded and releases financial information. It is a foreign stock that is traded on the Malaysian Exchange. If you want a real in depth look at profits, debt, weak and strong areas of NCL, just read the financials. I do believe that in the last quarter of NCL operations, the Pride Ships (NCL America) pulled in profitable numbers. Of course their is always room for improvement as with any business. Lets hope they can improve their image in Hawaii, with better reviews and comments from it's passengers. Sooner or later they will truely understand that "word of mouth" advertising is much stronger than TV spots.