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Freestyle: Good or Bad?

Discussion in 'Norwegian Cruise Lines' started by DJP, Jun 30, 2003.

  1. kimmy

    kimmy Guest

    Hi Love,

    I did not like the overdone decor (too in-your-face for me), the quality and variety of food, the service levels, the overall cleanliness and upkeep of the ships. Staff was not particularly friendly on either the Fantasy or Inspiration. Also, the ships and passengers were very casual and that is not my taste. The cabin sizes were great, however.

    Also, I expected great night life and was disappointed. My cruise on the Inspiration was really a dud.

    I just think Carnival is tacky overall.

    I have heard good things about the Dawn and enjoyed my recent cruise on the Sun. The ship layout was a little cumbersome but the staff is terrific.

    There is a ship and cruise line for everyone, right?

    Have fun!

    kimmy
     
  2. kimmy

    kimmy Guest

    Kathy,

    The standard cabins on all of the RCI ships are small. Celebrity definitely has an advantage there.

    On my AOS sailing in March I was upgraded to a Deluxe Suite and it was simply amazing! I sailed solo and had so much room and took advantage of every bit of it. Walk-in closet, sitting area, large tiled bathroom and big balcony.

    I have a balcony stateroom booked on my upcoming Enchantment cruise because now I am really spoiled and cannot imagine going back to the standard inside/outside cabins.

    kimmy
     
  3. Cruzman

    Cruzman Guest

    Different strokes for different folks! I have sailed Carnival 4 times and enjoyed them all, even though by many standards I am an old f--t. I found the food, entertainment, and service to be on a par with RCCI, on which I have also sailed 4 times. Sure, the decor on many Carnival ships is flashier and somewhat loud (especially the Fantasy class), but it didn't turn me off, either. The Spirit class ships are much more beautiful and the decor is relatively subdued if that is an issue. As for freestyle, count me out. One of the reasons I enjoy cruising is having the pleasure of meeting and dining with the same people each evening and being served by the same waiters. Usually a comradery develops that enhances the overall cruising experience. As for how Princess handles their version of "freestyle", it is quite different. When you book with Princess, you are offered a choice of early or late traditional dining, or "Personal Choice" dining. One dining room is reserved for those who choose the latter. I find this to be an acceptable alternative to NCL's "Freestyle".
     
  4. fuzzlekins

    fuzzlekins Guest

    To all of you who have cruised a gazillion times ... I'm wondering if you guys travel frequently in general or you just love cruising more than any other form of travel. Do you take other land-based trips throughout the year or just cruise once or twice a year? What got you hooked? Just curious. I can't relate yet ... talk to me in November after our first cruise.:) But I really enjoy travelling by car to other places ... like Vermont. I LOVE Vermont. If you've never been, I highly recommend it. The season doesn't even matter (unless it's mud season). It's so beautiful year-round and there's so much to do. You haven't lived until you've snowmobiled!:) I also loved Sandals. You just can't beat not even having to carry a wallet -- all-inclusive is a beautiful, albeit expensive, thing. The service is impeccable, entertainment outstanding, accomodations spacious, and activities ample. I think I'd be addicted to those if it weren't for the expense and the flying ... I HATE to fly.

    Regarding my earlier comments and all the responses on the tipping and all the extras on cruises ... I'll revise my earlier statement about wishing cruise lines would be all-inclusive. I wish that cruise lines would go all-inclusive except for alcohol and casinos. We don't really drink and I know alcohol is expensive, so I'm fine with paying extra for that. And clearly casino expenses can never be included. But I see no reason why ALL tipping, restaurants, soft drinks, etc. can't be included in one price -- I'm all for that!
     
  5. kimmy

    kimmy Guest

    I love to travel, period, and hate to drive anywhere that takes more than30 minutes.

    I cruise a lot because I was introduced to it an early age, 9, and got hooked. Also, I live in FL so we get good deals and can drive to many ports. A three day weekend is really easy.

    Cruising is great for romance, for girls weekends away, for family reunions and for solo I-just-have-to-cruise vacations. And I have only been on a few that were really awful.

    I also love Sandals but because it is couples only it is not always an option for me.

    I get to Europe about once a year and also to my favorite north American cities- NY, San Francisco, Vancouver -whenever possible.

    So, to answer your question, I work to be able to travel and hope to be able to enjoy the world by air and by sea for a very long time.

    kimmy
     
  6. fuzzlekins

    fuzzlekins Guest

    How awesome to be so close to cruise ports in FL! You get to avoid the rough Atlantic! I can definitely see where you're coming from. If I lived close to several major ports, I think I'd do the same. You are so fortunate to have travelled so much and so young. I would LOVE to see Europe, etc. I keep saying, "If they'd just build a bridge ..." LOL!! ;)
     
  7. We are lucky to have airline benefits and I am a retired TA, prior to that I worked 12 years for a major hotel chain so we have done the whole thing, from driving trips to cruises to Europe, Caribbean and the Pacific Rim. We have 2 favorite vacations which we do at least once a year; cruising and Las Vegas for a week where we own a time share. Other vacations depend on finances pretty much. Being retired the money doesn't seem to be as plentiful as in the past we some travel just doesn't happen. By the way we just booked on Celebrity cause of our cancelled Norway cruise.
    Nita
     
  8. tokathy

    tokathy Guest

    I'm not a gazillion time cruisers or a TA but love to cruise. We have taken and still take land based vacations in addition to the cruises. We started out staying a week at a time at various Caribbean destinations (St John USVI, Nevis, Anguila, Aruba, Cayman, Cancun, Turks & Caicos, etc.) and then decided why be on one Island at a time when we can see many. When cruising, when we find an Island that we like we often go back for that week long land vacation.......I think Tortola/Virgin Gorda BVI will be our next land destination...It was one of our ports while on the NCL Dawn this past April and it's a beauty! I found when ever we travel I was always the one to find the hotel, book the rental car, find restaurants, plan daily activities, sights to see, etc so I decided the cruises were my "no hassle" vacation where I have to do nothing but show up! We tried a few alI-inclusives and I found I was yearning to leave the compound and travel around and see all the local sights, try the local cuisine, etc......I know when you cruise you don't get to stay long enough at many of the ports, but that's a trade off I don't mind making a few times a year.......
     
  9. fuzzlekins

    fuzzlekins Guest

    Another question for you frequent cruisers ... There are only so many cruise itineraries out there, so some of you have clearly done laps around them. Do you ever get tired of seeing the same place? Or, do you just try to keep picking different excursions each time? I'm a long way from this, but I'm just curious.
     
  10. kimmy

    kimmy Guest

    I very rarely take an excursion as I prefer to go off on my own or with friends as opposed to being herded around.

    Yes, the port situation is limiting but I choose the ship first as what I really love is the cruise experience itself. The itinerary I enjoy most is Southern Caribbean. I am a beach person so I tend to find a pretty beach and spend the day there, having lunch off the ship. Occasionally I shop but it gets to all look the same. I am a hot sauce nut so I bring back sauces from many of the places I visit.

    Often if we are in a port I do not care for - St. Thomas, Nassau - I stay aboard and enjoy having the ship to myself. It's great!
     
  11. linnie

    linnie Guest

    I do not like freestyle as usually my husband and I go alone and like to sit with the same people. I go on NCL, because of the itineary I want. If another ship did the same itineary I would pick the other ship. I am going on the NCL Dawn in November with daughter and 3 grandchildren. Only ship that goes in november, so we had no choice. Did it with 9 people before and the service was awful.
     
  12. BigAl

    BigAl Guest

    I guess I have to throw my two cents into this discussion. I liked the freestyle dining. We sailed on the Sky in January and had no problem getting in to any of the dining rooms, however we ate early so didn't hit the peak periods. We eat out when we are at home and very seldom go to the same place all the time, so never get servers who know us that well. I don't look for this at home nor on a cruise. I'm not a suit kind of guy, so I appreciate the option of dressing casually. I guess that's why this topic has so very many opinions. We are all different. That's why it's good there are options of other lines or choosing to dress every night for freestyle. I tend to look at itineraries, cost, and timing as being the most important. We're booked for the Dawn next month :)
     
  13. SHIPLOOKOUT

    SHIPLOOKOUT Guest

    i have never done free style did my first cruise last year on carnival triumph and doing my second cruise next month on the norwegian dawn so cant say as to wether i will like it or not yet but it is quite interesting reading all the opinions on this topic
     
  14. DJP

    DJP Guest

    Thanks to everyone who responded and I appreciated all of your comments. We are now booked on the NCL Majesty for the week of Christmas so we will give freestyle cruising a whirl and see how it compares to our other seven cruises without it.
     
  15. Just Awesome!!
     
  16. Parrothead,

    I think I will make a copy and save for future referance is you don't mind.
    Thanks a bunch,

    Nita
     
  17. lamayboy

    lamayboy Guest

    Freestyle was fine, but when it comes to numerous eateries and open seating PERSONAL CHOICE(Princess) is much better!
     
  18. Einstein

    Einstein Guest

    Gotta totally agree with Cruzman & lamayboy on this subject and YES it can be quite an opinionated topic for sure. The BEST answer is "Different Strokes for Diffrent Folks". While I personally did NOT like the Freestyle Dining because of MANY of the reasons mentioned above it certainly did NOT ruin Our Gr8 cruise of the Hawaiian Islands on the NCL Star. I do understand how people can enjoy the freedom but my take was that it was a bit less personal with regards to choices of menu and different options. For US we just prefer NOT to have to worry each night whether we might have to wait or with whom we will be dining with. YES I know there is a chance tha twe can get stuck with someone while dining but thts is a slim chance and if so then we can always opt for a different seating assignment with a visit to the Maitre'D. Just my =twocents worth!!! If the right itinerary or pricing comes available on NCL we would certainly cruise with them again but given a choice probably not.

    .
     
  19. collie

    collie Guest

    My husband and I sailed on the NCL Sun in April 2002. One of the reasons we chose NCL at that time was because of the Fresstyle dinning. We NEVER EVER had to wait in line for dinner, and we usually ate around 6 PM. And we always were able to get a table for two. Overall we liked it, though it would have been nice to meet some fellow cruisers.....which I understand you can request to sit with others, however, our shy selves didn't do that.
     

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