This is totally scary. My husband and I are celebrating our 25th Anniversary . We have never been on a cruise before . We are slated to go on the 5th of September on the POA. After reading the message boards I am not so sure this cruise thing was the best idea. We booked through AAA as we always have done for our vacations. Hopefully service and conditions will have improved somewhat. We"ll let you know
Hawaii is beautiful and hopefully you will enjoy that part of your vacation. Please don't judge cruising in general by what you might find on the POA cruise. NCLseems to be going through a period of bad customer service and of problems on the POA in particular but I don't think that is reflected in the cruise industry as a whole.
I am looking forward to your review when you return.
My husband and I and two other couples are also on this cruise with you. We are going with very low expectations as not be to too disappointed. Put it this way, you are in a port everyday. There are no sea days, so if you need something you can get it at the port (food and such). Hawaii is beautiful, the people are friendly and we will make the best of a bad situation. We are going to have a good time and we will, regardless. So sit back, relax and dont get too nervous, its HAWAII!!!
MVB, best you can do is go with low expectations. You can salvage this cruise if you do that. Each port is great and different. And there are plenty of restaurants for you to eat at since you are still in the good old USA. This was my 10th cruise (8-8), and the only one that I did not thoroughly enjoy. So please don't judge the cruise industry on this over-priced, second-rate excuse for a cruise. Enjoy yourself, and I wish you nothing but the best ... your first cruise deserves to be memorable for GOOD reasons.
Thank you to all that have responded. I really don't know what to expect since this is a new experience. We have decided to make the best of it and hopefully it will work out. I like the idea of going with "low expectations". That could just work. I am truly excited about seeing Hawaii. So we will make the best of it. Thanks again to all of you
My mother and grandmother just returned on August 22, 2004, from the POA, and my mother became extremely ill, due to some sort of fecally contaminated food or water. Not only did my mother become ill, but so did 11 other passengers travelling with her. Two resulting in hospitalization.
"MVB I too went with low expectations but it turned out okay. I read so much negativity about the ship and expected the worse. Hawaii is so beautiful! Congrats on the 25th Anniversary."
This is what I am talking about - scaring people who have never cruised before is not right. This will still be a good vacation for you. Yes, there are problems compared to other ships right now, but if you have never cruised before I doubt if you will even be thinking about "the problems" so much.
As stated, the people complaining here have been on many cruises. The service standards on cruise ships are extremely high, which makes problems on other ships appear abnormally worse.
Enjoy Hawaii, and quit listening to these bashers. I don't know what their agenda is, but to come here and comment on EVERY post someone makes here is beginning to look very selfish to me.
Thanks so much to all of you who have responded to my initial posting. We have decided that we are going to have a great time on this cruise and in Hawaii. Like I've said, we have never been on a cruise or to Hawaii so this should be an exciting vacation. We are going to go with lots of patience and since we have never cruised before we aren't quite sure what to expect so we may have an advantage here. We are counting the days until we sail and I am so ready to pack. The excitement is building. I know that I am a rookie at this but what the heck. There is a first time for everythng , right? So to me "Happy Sailing"
Sorry you Mother became ill but how do you know it was fecal matter that contaminated her food and that it was on the ship and not ashore or that she didn't pick up something on her hands? Please do not speculate, just factual information. If this was confiremed, then that is differant but never assume.
It was a doctors diagnosis, and it was not just my mother but 10 other passengers were sick with the same symptoms, and there have been other cases on this message board. So believe me I know the difference between assumptions and fact, and I never stated specifically stated that POA was the cause of the illness, but it just seems so coincidental that so many people who were in the same group, however, they branched off separatedly every day would get sick at the same time with the same symptoms. But, thank you for your concern for my mother!
My advise, if this is your first cruise, is to concentrate on what makes the rest of us keep going on cruises, the wonderful feeling at standing on deck, looking out on the ocean. Looking for signs of sea life, the expanse of the ocean. The wonderful people you meet, the shows, the rest, (if you do not overdue the excursions) the fun of exploring a new ship, laying on a longe chair, reading a book, you have not had time to read all year, exploring new places.
Markisha, again I really am sorry that your Mom got ill as well as the others. It really puts a bad taste on a vacation to come down with something. Unfortunately it isn't all that uncommon whenever there are large groups of people in a small area such as ships, planes, buses, tours, schools, office building. I do have a suggestion that may be a good idea in the future. Go ahead and treat yourself for what is commonly known as Montezuma's Revenge whenever you go on vactaion no matter where it is. The simple precausionary treatment is to take a dose of Pepto B in the am and the pm for a few days before you start out and keep them up thoughout your vacation. We do this when we travel on land to other countries and fortunately have not become sick. We do take normal precautions like you should as well but you never know what will happen and having this illness is really nasty.
The key to enjoying this cruise is to take advantage of as much time off the ship to enjoy Hawaii. I have taken several cruises - ones in which we were in port for severla days and others in which we were in different ports each day.
I think the timing of being in port on this cruise si great - on most islands you have at the very least a day and a half in port, enough time to run the second day and see something you might have missed on day one.
I also learned that it isn't always necessary to do all the excursions off the ship - in most ports, there are people waiting for you to get off the ship with other excursions that are less expensive and might show you some hidden wonders you wouldn't have seen otherwise.
We are planning to rent cars at several ports on this cruise when we go in October to expolore on our own.
From what I can gather, the islands weill be beautiful and staying off the ship as much as possible will allow you to enjoy Hawaii as it is meant to be.
My husband and the entire family we traveled with also became extremely ill. My friend's daughter was taken to the hospital and will have results tomorrow as to whether or not it was food poisoning. My husband is sitll not well a week later and was to the doctor last week. He was told he probably has food poisoning. It is no surprise since the conditions onboard ship were so unsanitary. I would NOT have sailed on this ship if I knew in advance about all of the problems. It was our 6th cruise and it was the WORST!!!! Long lines everywhere. If I wanted that on my vacation, I would have gone to DisneyWorld. A real shame. Try to cancel and stay at a hotel on the islands. Hawaii is gorgeous!!!!
As MJ said "I would NOT have sailed on this ship if I knew in advance about all of the problems." The more information people have the better off they are. I think most of the people on this board are intelligent enough to read what I and others have to say and determine if what we're saying is the truth or is relevant to them. Then they can decide if this cruise is for them.
And although I doubt it will happen, I hope the folks on this week's cruise are enjoying themselves right now and everything is perfect. I don't WANT people to have a bad cruise. In fact, it is exactly the opposite.
But to cover it up and just say things will get better ... well, I want those people to go on that cruise next week. It is real easy for someone who isn't shelling out money to say this cruise is OK. All of the people who have gone on this cruise and posted positive reviews ... more power to them. I respect their opinion for them. In fact, I REALLY respect people who can go on this cruise and come back happy. I couldn't do that, and based on the many negative reviews, a lot of other people feel the same way.