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Old December 30th, 2008, 02:51 PM
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Default Sickness on board the Gem



We did the NY Bahamas on the Norwegian Gem, A/K/A Norwegian GERM!! Half the passengers were sick with upper respiratory ailments. My husband had to go to the ship's doctor for antibiotics and he was in bed most of the cruise.

The food was 1+ (really not good!) They practically make you go to the restaurants that charge a fee. We went to the Mexican restaurant the last night and that was a 3 rating. We are both accustomed to good cuisine so if you are not then it is probably alright. Most people seemed to head to the buffet where we ate one lunch and I ended up with food poisoning.

The service was terrible outside of the first day. Never travel during the Christmas school vacation unless you want a ship full of little children running around with no supervision. All you heard was constant coughing throughout the ship. Even though there are Purell dispensers throughout the ship it did not help with all the infected people who came on board already sick in New York!!!

Weather was not good and we did not stop at Stirrup Cay and Freeport (now called Grand Bahama Island) was a dump as was Nassau (unless you went to the casino in Paradise Island). All in all, a cruise from hell. Everything was always disorganized, especially the dining rooms. I will never go on another cruise with freestyle dining at dinner. Also, would never go on another NCL cruise. We would now prefer smaller ships with a better class of people. As the old saying goes "You get what you pay for" Good luck to anyone traveling on the Norwegian GERM.

Stella
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Old December 30th, 2008, 04:04 PM
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Default Re: Sickness on board the Gem

Quote:
Originally Posted by flaka


We did the NY Bahamas on the Norwegian Gem, A/K/A Norwegian GERM!! Half the passengers were sick with upper respiratory ailments. My husband had to go to the ship's doctor for antibiotics and he was in bed most of the cruise.

The food was 1+ (really not good!) They practically make you go to the restaurants that charge a fee. We went to the Mexican restaurant the last night and that was a 3 rating. We are both accustomed to good cuisine so if you are not then it is probably alright. Most people seemed to head to the buffet where we ate one lunch and I ended up with food poisoning.

The service was terrible outside of the first day. Never travel during the Christmas school vacation unless you want a ship full of little children running around with no supervision. All you heard was constant coughing throughout the ship. Even though there are Purell dispensers throughout the ship it did not help with all the infected people who came on board already sick in New York!!!

Weather was not good and we did not stop at Stirrup Cay and Freeport (now called Grand Bahama Island) was a dump as was Nassau (unless you went to the casino in Paradise Island). All in all, a cruise from hell. Everything was always disorganized, especially the dining rooms. I will never go on another cruise with freestyle dining at dinner. Also, would never go on another NCL cruise. We would now prefer smaller ships with a better class of people. As the old saying goes "You get what you pay for" Good luck to anyone traveling on the Norwegian GERM.

Stella
Now you explained part of what ruined your cruise. Your husband being in bed and the weather sucked. Can you serviously blame anyone, especially NCL for either thing?

As for food poisoning, I doubt most people ended up with it, in fact, you may want to be a little careful what you say unless you can prove it. CDC would have made this public if indeed this was true. The same with 1/2 of the passengers having upper resporitory illnesses. BTW, this is something going around right now.

As for not cruising during Christmas week, I happen to agree, but you choose the week, no one else did. Had you asked your travel agent, he/she would probably advised you to think long and hard about cruising this time of the year unless you are going as a family. This has absolutely nothing to do with the class of people who cruise NCL or any other line. All mass marketed lines are more alike than different. My advise to you,

spend the money and cruise Oceana, Seabourn or some similar line, which, btw will be double what the mass marketed lines charge.

Nita
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Old December 30th, 2008, 11:27 PM
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It seems to me many of the things complained about, have really nothing to do with NCL. If NCL is in fact responsible for the weather, I must send them a thank you card as when we were on the GEM, we were blessed with day after day of sunshine. My only complaint with GEM was the art gallery - where the internet was supposed to origionally go, and is now stuck next to a large screene where you have no peace while typing an email-since I cannot stand the art galleries, and think ships can do away with them, I would rather see the internet area, which I do care about put where it was origionally intended. I also don't in fact like the large screene, but thats just me. The biggest TV we have is a 32 inch, and trust me I am not going out for anything more than that. I thought the GEM was beautifully laid out, the rooms made use of every nook and cranny, the bathrooms were nicely done, the bedding, beds and closet space was great. We enjoyed the main dinning rooms, we ate at Cagneys, a nice night but wuld not pay for it again, the tex mex was great, the italian was pretty good, and I say that as I am not really an Itallian food person, the kids said room service at late night was slow and poor, but to be honest, I didnt care about that, given how much DS ate in the day.....he was not going to starve........... It was clean, my goodness, she was brand spanking new when we went on her, The pool area was very nice, and we really enjoyed deck seven which afforded us a great meeting place to sit and talk and have fun.
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Old December 31st, 2008, 08:31 AM
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There were a couple of things of value that an unseasoned cruiser could glean from this review... it is no secret that if you choose to cruise during school Holidays the ship will be over run by children, probably the only thing worse than that is Spring Break when it is over run by University student who also seem to need parental supervision. I would like to think most people who have done their homework would be aware of this fact.

Secondly though it is kind of funny and witty to change the name of the Gem to the Germ, but in all honesty ships do not produce germs, the germs come from passengers who come aboard with their illnesses and ailments some unwittingly, though you can bet many are aware that they are cruising's equivalent to Typhoid Mary. Since your husband was in bed most of the cruise, and most of these bugs have some sort of an incubation period, I don't think it too far of a reach to draw the conclusion he was probably infected before he ever boarded. If that many passengers were sick, there were probably a fair amount of crew sick as well... was the dining room a little short handed perhaps?

To be honest I dislike all buffets and there have been few that have impressed. Anytime you have a large group of people in a line helping themselves to food it is possible to spread all sort of viruses and bacteria. So yes it is possible that you picked up something on the buffet, but the truth is you don't really know how you got sick. Germs and bugs are all around us. The best advice I can give anyone when cruising NCL is to take full advantage of their wide variety of eating venues. Avoid the buffets, sit down and enjoy breakfast in the dining room. Have lunch in the dining room or Blue Lagoon (great wings and Mac & Cheese here) and budget extra for the surcharge restaurants for dinner. I am not saying the dining rooms are bad, but the surcharge restaurants have definitely been very good in our experience and in my opinion worth the extra money. It is one of the reasons that we repeatedly choose NCL.

As for the itinerary... It's the Bahamas, what were you expecting? You knew the ship was going to the Bahamas didn't you? Or was it diverted at the last moment from the French Rivera?


Quote:
We would now prefer smaller ships with a better class of people.
Now Stella, what does this mean? You've completely lost me with this comment... a better class of people? That is kind of a nasty, snipy, elitest comment that really makes it hard for people like me to take your post seriously at all. Most cruisers I know, are hard working, salt of the earth type people who put in a lot of hours to support their cruising habit and are not in the least "low class". Most are not rich, but class is something they do have and they would never dream of insulting their fellow cruisers with a comment like that.
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Old December 31st, 2008, 10:06 AM
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Well said Beenie, I agree with you 100% !!
Bob
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Old December 31st, 2008, 10:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beenie weenie
There were a couple of things of value that an unseasoned cruiser could glean from this review... it is no secret that if you choose to cruise during school Holidays the ship will be over run by children, probably the only thing worse than that is Spring Break when it is over run by University student who also seem to need parental supervision. I would like to think most people who have done their homework would be aware of this fact.

Secondly though it is kind of funny and witty to change the name of the Gem to the Germ, but in all honesty ships do not produce germs, the germs come from passengers who come aboard with their illnesses and ailments some unwittingly, though you can bet many are aware that they are cruising's equivalent to Typhoid Mary. Since your husband was in bed most of the cruise, and most of these bugs have some sort of an incubation period, I don't think it too far of a reach to draw the conclusion he was probably infected before he ever boarded. If that many passengers were sick, there were probably a fair amount of crew sick as well... was the dining room a little short handed perhaps?

To be honest I dislike all buffets and there have been few that have impressed. Anytime you have a large group of people in a line helping themselves to food it is possible to spread all sort of viruses and bacteria. So yes it is possible that you picked up something on the buffet, but the truth is you don't really know how you got sick. Germs and bugs are all around us. The best advice I can give anyone when cruising NCL is to take full advantage of their wide variety of eating venues. Avoid the buffets, sit down and enjoy breakfast in the dining room. Have lunch in the dining room or Blue Lagoon (great wings and Mac & Cheese here) and budget extra for the surcharge restaurants for dinner. I am not saying the dining rooms are bad, but the surcharge restaurants have definitely been very good in our experience and in my opinion worth the extra money. It is one of the reasons that we repeatedly choose NCL.

As for the itinerary... It's the Bahamas, what were you expecting? You knew the ship was going to the Bahamas didn't you? Or was it diverted at the last moment from the French Rivera?


Quote:
We would now prefer smaller ships with a better class of people.
Now Stella, what does this mean? You've completely lost me with this comment... a better class of people? That is kind of a nasty, snipy, elitest comment that really makes it hard for people like me to take your post seriously at all. Most cruisers I know, are hard working, salt of the earth type people who put in a lot of hours to support their cruising habit and are not in the least "low class". Most are not rich, but class is something they do have and they would never dream of insulting their fellow cruisers with a comment like that.
good post, you covered everything very well...

Nita
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Old December 31st, 2008, 01:04 PM
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My grandmother, coming from a rather wealthy family, ended up in a concentration camp in the last world war. After the war, they built up a very comfortable life starting all over again, with many emotional wounds. The one thing she always taught me, is we are all the same, Class is something people create to some how make them selves feel better about who they are, to make them selves feel above others. It is what is largely responsible for the wars and hatred we have in life. She demanded at all times us children to be completely respectful of the persons who worked in the house, and she made clear they were the best class of people ever, working hard for their families, for a better life for their children. I am often reminded of the saying "every ones $h-t smells the same". Rich , poor, black, white..........we are all people, human beings, with thoughts feelings ideas and opinions. You know what we LOVE about NCL? There are people from every walk of life, people who have money coming out of their ears, others who saved for years for that one cruise, I just love it!
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Old December 31st, 2008, 05:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Delft
My grandmother, coming from a rather wealthy family, ended up in a concentration camp in the last world war. After the war, they built up a very comfortable life starting all over again, with many emotional wounds. The one thing she always taught me, is we are all the same, Class is something people create to some how make them selves feel better about who they are, to make them selves feel above others. It is what is largely responsible for the wars and hatred we have in life. She demanded at all times us children to be completely respectful of the persons who worked in the house, and she made clear they were the best class of people ever, working hard for their families, for a better life for their children. I am often reminded of the saying "every ones $h-t smells the same". Rich , poor, black, white..........we are all people, human beings, with thoughts feelings ideas and opinions. You know what we LOVE about NCL? There are people from every walk of life, people who have money coming out of their ears, others who saved for years for that one cruise, I just love it!
Great teaching by your grandmother. I doubt the OP will be back to defend herself or apologize for her comments about class.


Oh and btw i read a few comments from other (on a dfferent website) about the same cruise, most had a wonderful time, said the kids were so well behaved they couldn't beleive it and none referred to any sickness, not upper respitory or food poisoning. They did comment on the crappy weather.

Nita
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Old January 4th, 2009, 01:12 PM
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The Norwegian Gem was filled with many sick passengers with URI infections which was confirmed by the physician on board.

In regards to class: It is something that cannot be bought and it is not associated with money. You either have it or you don't and most of the passengers did not. That is my opinion. As a matter of fact, most of the Gem employees (many from the Phillipines) were a lot "classier".

When you see "gang members" in the dining room this reflects, again, on the caliber of the passengers.

Even our cabin steward complained about the unsupervised children. Maybe these other passengers are oblivious to this because their children are some of the unruly ones. Again, you get what you pay for usually and, hopefully, on a more expensive cruise the element will be better.
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Old January 4th, 2009, 01:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flaka
The Norwegian Gem was filled with many sick passengers with URI infections which was confirmed by the physician on board.

In regards to class: It is something that cannot be bought and it is not associated with money. You either have it or you don't and most of the passengers did not. That is my opinion. As a matter of fact, most of the Gem employees (many from the Phillipines) were a lot "classier".

When you see "gang members" in the dining room this reflects, again, on the caliber of the passengers.

Even our cabin steward complained about the unsupervised children. Maybe these other passengers are oblivious to this because their children are some of the unruly ones. Again, you get what you pay for usually and, hopefully, on a more expensive cruise the element will be better.
sorry, to me, anyone who comments on the lack of class someone else has, lacks class themselves. AS for the upper resp infections, again, this takes days to develop, so you husband getting ill on the ship (early on as you said cause you referred to him as being in bad most of the cruise) has nothing to do with the other passengers or the crew. He probably was exposed before you got on board. This junk is going around all over the country as reported by many news articles and our own doctor. We just got back from church, couldn't have our annual meeting because so many were sick. I think your overall review is explained in the first part: 1/2 of the passengers had an upper resp infection, the doctor said several did, 1/2 appears to be an exaggertation. As I said earlier, many things spoiled your vacation, that is too bad, but I doubt any were directly the fault of NCL.

Weather, not their fault, don't we wish every vacation came with a promise of perfect weather?

Sick passengers, maybe it is time we all have a complete physical at the pier before we board?

Class of cruisers, I guess all lines whould allow you to approve those who board before sailing?

Unrulely kids, even though serveral reports refute your comments, let's say they are true: what do you expect when cruising over a major holiday? I would suggest you pick another time to cruise..I also suggest you pay attention to many of the adults that are unrulely on cruise lines. all mass marketed lines, from Carnival to Celebrity are very similar. Family holiday time brings out kids, some kids (a very small number mind you) can cause most of us to sit up and take notice.

Nita

ps; one more thing, what kind of a remark was that? Even the crew (mostly from the Philapines had more class)? I wonder how many from Asian countries would take offense to such a remark?
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Old January 4th, 2009, 07:12 PM
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I agree wholeheartedly with Nita and Beenie. What have you learned Flaka?

1. Don't cruise over ANY major holiday if you don't want hordes of unruly kids running around.

2. Kids, especially in winter, carry tons of viruses they pick up at school and they love to pass them around.

3. No one can control the weather, but December is not the best month for cruising in the Atlantic.

4. When you are having a bad day, you tend to blame things on the cruise line that are no one's fault but your own, because of the choices you made.

5. a short crusie from NY to Bahamas will NOT attract many seasoned cruisers -- there are reasons for that.

Even a tiny bit of research and forethought would have cleared these things up for you.

My advice, given your particular likes and dislikes: Next time spend lots more money, choose a longer cruise, at least 14 days (fewer families with kids,) and a more 'sedate' line such as Holland America. Do some research next time! Start by reading these boards.

Here's a clue for you though, this time of year, lots of ships (even the 'classy' ones) have colds and other URIs on board, they come not from the ship but from people just like you and your husband, i.e. the passengers!!
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Old January 6th, 2009, 08:04 PM
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We were on this cruise, my family of 4 and our first Xmas cruise. Our preferred cruise line is RCL but choose this cruise since we would not have to fly.

We had a wonderful time, great service and good meals. We ate mostly in the Grand Pacific and Magenta which was good.

I did not see anyone sick. I spent the extra money and had a courtyard villa so we rarely saw anyone except our family or butler. We will do another NCl cruise.
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Old January 7th, 2009, 10:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alexk54
We were on this cruise, my family of 4 and our first Xmas cruise. Our preferred cruise line is RCL but choose this cruise since we would not have to fly.

We had a wonderful time, great service and good meals. We ate mostly in the Grand Pacific and Magenta which was good.

I did not see anyone sick. I spent the extra money and had a courtyard villa so we rarely saw anyone except our family or butler. We will do another NCl cruise.
thanks, it is amazing how different people see things differently. Glad you enjoyed your cruise...

Nita
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