Cruisecritic.com has some great information, but you will find aggressive opposition to any negative concerns or comments, including complaints if you post more than one time... Many of us really want to have more than two stops on our itinerary. The absolute facts are that many of NCL's competitors have substituted other ports, while NCL is not.
Costa Maya appears to be the popular substitution for many other cruise lines. Progresso and Veracruz were visited by NCL on some sailings, too, but are not added for any others...!
The Cozumel port authority feels that they will be able to accept passengers by tender on Nov. 14, so hopefully NCL will add this at that time. If they do, we will have a shorter time on land due to the extra time by tendering, and I am sure the shore excursions will be very limited. A different port seems to be more sensible and more passenger-friendly. I think it would also serve NCL much better in the long term, rather than just staying at sea.
My calls to NCL were always met with a friendly attitude, but the listening skills were in need of fine-tuning.
Let's look at this situtation from NCL's point of view, before stating that NCL doesn't listen well.
To start with, on a week's cruise, NCL had 4 ports of call, while the other lines had only 3.
Hurricane Wilma destroys two of these, the closest to NCL's ships home ports.
To get 4 ports on a week long cruise, here's how it works.
Day 1 Departure Day
Day 2 At Sea
Day 3 Closer Port
Day 4 Farther Port.
Day 5 Farther Port
Day 6 Closer Port
Day 7 At Sea
Day 8 Arrival Day
Hurricane Wilma destroyed both of the Closer Ports on NCL ship's itinerary. While there are two nearby ports, Progresso and Costa Maya, neither were NCL ports prior to the hurricane.
Which means NCL has no deals with anyone ashore for shore excursions. Those NCL ships that did pull into alternative ports for the last month made no money selling shore excursions because NCL had no prior arrangments.
NCL would make more money selling you more on board activities than porting.
The other cruise lines pulling into the alternative ports had prior arrangements for selling shore excursions because they had ships sailing to these ports before Wilma. Instead of selling you a shore excursion at Cosumel, they can sell you a different shore excursion at the alternative ports. NCL couldn't.
I never expect any company to do anything against their interests. The NCL ships pulling onto alternative ports in the last month only did so to give their passenger ports. If they hadn't, there wouldn't have been any ports on their itineraries.
Listening is a two way street, and it would have been nice if NCL had better plans for backup ports with shore excursions. But NCL is less than half the size of both Carnival and Royal Caribbean, and don't have the number of ships to keep backup ports and backup shore excursions vendors happy.
That's why the other cruise lines did, and why NCL didn't.
You are right, Ron. Listening is a two way street. There is nothing to listen to when there is nothing to read/hear except from folks other than NCL. No updated information via their website to read, because it has been entirely pulled off. And, there is no information from customer service. I am not seeing that the other cruise lines were sailing to Progresso, Vera Cruz, nor Costa Maya in any number. Where did you see this? I did see that the other lines even shortened and revised itineraries and refunded major $ to the passengers, rather than keeping to the same length.
Progresso and Vera Cruz and Costa Maya vendors would definitely be happy to see NCL coming. It's not about them being a back up contract - not necessary. Costa Maya port authority already stated this, and was ready for "extra ships" with 100% of shore excusions operating...
We know it's about money. It should be, however, about the passengers' money.
Ron, Yes lets look at itineraries. The ports thy did call on for the dream were ports that they while we were on the boat were trying to arrange excursions on. They evidently didn't have aggreements with those ports either. Also NCL is still saying that they are going to belize and roaton but have as yet to do that on any cruise. When we got on the boat we were informed that the itinerary had changed. I believe the reason NCL didn't want to go to aalternate ports is because of not ony problems with the boat but they couldn't have such a high profit. For you to say that they were basically looking out for their interest is very appropriate and will come out in future lawsuits. Shame, shame on NCL.
rhondaroo i am with you. I believe that if a cruise liner modifies the itinerary then that is where they need to compensate. what happened to customer service??? i just got through calling NCL and the agent was rude and basicly told me that i was screwed if i didnt go on the cruise. that i would lose all of my money and that there was nothing she could do about it. when i asked to speak to someone else or a supervisor she hung up on me! I am sorry Ron but NCL has lost my future buiness and i will make sure i pass the word around to everyone i know! I work for a large firm that has constant international employees coming here and some take cruises and i will make sure NONE of them take NCL cruises. I have already notified the local media about all this not to mention they already did a small report on a recent cruise that had just returned. It was not good and almost all the passengers were complaining to NCL and signing petions. Once the news media gets a good hold of what NCL is doing, God only knows if they will still be in buiness! i plan to make the best of it because i am not going to let NCL take my HARD EARNED MONEY for a service they are never going to provide! Does the BB know they are providing such HORRIBLE SERVICE?? maybe someone needs to let them know what is going on. Now about the engine problem, they should have taken the boat out of the water and fixed it and not just "patch" it up! Now that is ridiculas! I bought my ticket in late August and they knew about the problem then, so why was i still sold 4 ports??? NCL needs more than just a slap in the hand, they need to be FINED! I DO NOT WANT TO BE OUT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE OCEAN HOPING AND PRAYING THE ENGINES CARRY ME TO THE NEXT PORT AND HOME SAFELY! Rhondaroo count me in on your petition!
Sportcat, the number i called was 1-800-327-7030 Good Luck calling. Hopefully they dont hang up on you like they did with me. I sail out of Houston on Nov. 12 and Hondruas and Belize are our only ports, hopefully we make it on our "patched" up engines! Good luck on your cruise. Let us know how it goes.
We are sailing on the Majesty on Nov 26. We just received notice that the stop in Cozumel has been cancelled. No other port is replacing it. Now there will be another day at sea. Hope this helps everyone.