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Old July 16th, 2014, 10:27 AM
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Default Norwegian Revises Smoking Policy

As was mentioned yesterday in this forum, Norwegian Cruise Line today announced they have revised their smoking policy to ban balcony smoking as well as other restrictions. The new policy is as follows:

"As the health and well-being of our guests and crew is of the utmost importance, Norwegian Cruise Line will institute changes to its smoking policy for all sailings on or after November 1, 2014. The specific changes prohibit smoking on stateroom balconies and limit smoking in the casino to players. On Norwegian Getaway and Norwegian Breakaway, smoking on The Waterfront will be permitted on the starboard side, except by the outdoor dining areas.

Public areas throughout all our ships are smoke-free. If you smoke regular or electronic cigarettes, you can do so in designated areas only. If you prefer pipes or cigars, you can smoke in the Cigar Bar or designated smoking lounge. Smoking cigarettes, electronic cigarettes, cigars and pipes is permitted in outdoor public guest spaces and open decks where designated by the ship's management based on the ship's specific characteristics and arrangement. Smoking, including electronic cigarettes, is prohibited in or near venues serving food, the jogging track, outdoor sporting venues, The Haven outdoor areas and children's pool areas. On ships with The Waterfront, smoking is permitted on the starboard side excluding any food service areas. Active Casino players may smoke cigarettes in the Casino during gaming hours. Cigarette smoking is not permitted in any other indoor venue or location.

Guests are not permitted to smoke cigarettes, e-cigarettes, cigars or pipes in their staterooms or on their balconies. Cigar and pipe smoking in staterooms and on balconies is prohibited. Smoking inside your stateroom or on your balcony will result in a $250 cleaning charge added to your onboard account. If cigarette burns on furniture, linens, towels or carpeting are detected; guests will be advised and charged for the damages.

Electronic cigarettes cannot be used in public areas where there is a No Smoking policy in force; simply because these cigarettes look so realistic and therefore other guests' perception is that we are not enforcing the No Smoking rule."
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Old July 16th, 2014, 11:15 AM
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Looks like the rumors were correct. The ban for balconies is really the only real change as far as I can tell. The Waterfront area on one side already had a bar where smoking was allowed. And every ship has designated areas on the open decks.

Hopefully the smoking will not increase drastically in the casinos. If someone wanted to duck in and sit at a slot machine for a quick one or two, it would be difficult to enforce the active player rule, IMO.

We'll be cruising in a balcony before the ban takes place, but don't anticipate any real problem. We are usually lucky with our neighbors, or the airflow, and won't be out there much in any case.
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Old July 16th, 2014, 12:47 PM
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I was running some figures this morning based on CLIA statistics. CLIA says 3.5% of the U.S. population cruised in 2011 (not sure if there are newer figures but it probably hasn't changed much). The CDC says there are 42 million American smokers. Now, if that percentage holds true for the smokers then it would mean that in a year, 1.5 million smokers took a cruise. If you divide that up among the available ships it really isn't a lot of people on any given cruise that would be smokers.
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Old July 16th, 2014, 01:52 PM
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1.5 million cruise addicts took probably 4 cruises ea :-)
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Old July 17th, 2014, 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Dave Beers View Post
I was running some figures this morning based on CLIA statistics. CLIA says 3.5% of the U.S. population cruised in 2011 (not sure if there are newer figures but it probably hasn't changed much). The CDC says there are 42 million American smokers. Now, if that percentage holds true for the smokers then it would mean that in a year, 1.5 million smokers took a cruise. If you divide that up among the available ships it really isn't a lot of people on any given cruise that would be smokers.
It sure seems like there are a lot of them sometimes, and they are a very vocal group, but I'm sure you are right. According to a Wall Street Journal article, about 80% of adults are non smoking ( and the number of smokers is down 50% in the past 20 years). It stands to reason that the majority of cruisers are non smoking.

I think this opening statement from Princesses smoking policy is pretty telling: "In consideration of consumer studies which show smokers are a small minority of passengers.....". It makes sense that the cruiselines will set policy based on the wants of the majority of cruisers, while still trying to allow some concessions for those who do smoke.
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Old July 17th, 2014, 11:59 AM
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An agent acquaintance, who happens to smoke, put it in a different light yesterday when he said "space-wise, all NCL did today was take away around 30 to 40 square feet of smoking area for any individual cruiser so it's more of a convenience thing".
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Old July 17th, 2014, 01:20 PM
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An agent acquaintance, who happens to smoke, put it in a different light yesterday when he said "space-wise, all NCL did today was take away around 30 to 40 square feet of smoking area for any individual cruiser so it's more of a convenience thing".

All of the other places that were available for smoking, other than your balcony, are still available. But I have seen many people comment that they will stop cruising altogether if they must take a walk from their cabin every time they want to smoke. I realize for some, that might mean every 15 minutes or even more often.

But, what a sad thing when something as enjoyable as cruising must be given up simply because you cannot figure out a way to both smoke and enjoy a cruise. For someone in that situation, with a little advance planning, it is surely possible to find a cabin very close to exits to the decks where smoking is allowed. I know we had one on the Star which took about 15 seconds from our cabin door to the pool deck. I think after all the hoopla dies down, most smokers will calm down and realize it is doable.

I cruised once with 3 other ladies, two of which smoked. What an eye opener. Our entire trip was spent accommodating these two. One of them had to smoke every few minutes it seemed. Knock wood that I never have my life controlled by anything like this.
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Old July 17th, 2014, 02:09 PM
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I am a former cigarette smoker but I was never more than maybe a half a pack a day person, so I wasn't completely controlled by the nicotine as some are. I went on a group cruise in 1999 where the agent and a woman friend were both chain smokers. They were in the same cabin along with the agents husband (who didn't smoke, and yeah, that was an odd cabin arrangement). It was an inside cabin on the Celebrity Mercury and good grief, when they opened the door you'd think they had a camp fire going in there. I felt so bad for the husband. The agent had to have all sorts of dangerous heart surgery a couple years later and almost died. She ended up leaving the travel biz because she couldn't work.

I quit the cigarettes about 18 years ago, mostly because of blood pressure problems. Cold turkey. Had no withdrawal problems. I still have a very occasional cigar (maybe 5 or 6 a year), but those have been restricted to one or two places on ships for years. I don't even bother with it on cruises anymore. Just too much of a hassle.

I really don't understand how some people can afford to smoke cigarettes these days. It seems most of those who smoke (not all) are at the lower ends of the income scale living paycheck to paycheck, yet they will plop down whatever it costs for a pack of smokes, and I guess a good average is $5 a pack. Such is the power of nicotine.
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Old July 17th, 2014, 02:46 PM
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My husband and I are well past 50, and had been hoping to take a cruise to Europe for many years. Finally, we were going to take our first (and probably only) cruise to Europe and booked on the Norwegian Star from Miami to Copenhagen in May 2015. We are quiet non-drinkers, who were so looking forward to this. We are also smokers, which was the main reason we selected NCL, so we could relax and have a smoke on our private balcony, if we chose to. Now, they change the rules and we're told this consideration is being taken away. What a slap in the face.

I understand not smoking inside (so why allow it in the Casino? money perhaps?). But outside on our balcony? Nobody can tell me the minute particles/per billion in the atmosphere is hurting anybody else. If its a fire hazard concern, they simply need to provide proper butt disposal containers. Charge smokers extra for the service, no complaints. Anyone found smoking on their balcony without a paid-for container, being used properly, gets a hefty fine. If it's because there are some people who find the 'smell' offensive, I would suggest to you that there are many smells that can offensive to others (like over-powering perfume, or the reek of alcohol), but that doesn't mean we get on a band wagon to ban everything that might offend us.

Bottom line, this is an inconsiderate and unnecessary restriction that is unfair and unreasonable. Smokers are now the minority, so obviously we are at the mercy of the majority, and I know we will not be given any further consideration. We will be cancelling the cruise, because this has really reduced our ability to enjoy 14 days on a ship, being treated like this.

I can't even express how saddened, disappointed and angry I am. Though, I shouldn't be surprised. Smokers are the current 'evil menaces' of our times. I wonder who it will be next?
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Old July 17th, 2014, 09:12 PM
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If you want to see sadness, disappointment and anger, just take a stroll by my father's bed at the nursing home. Smoked 2-3 packs a day for 60 years and now can't take a breath without his whole body shaking and heaving and turning blue. He never would go on a cruise with my mother because of the smoking restrictions either - now he would give up every cigarette he ever smoked just for one minute on a cruise ship. Not a judgment of you and your spouse...maybe just food for thought.
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Old July 18th, 2014, 12:40 PM
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My husband and I are well past 50, and had been hoping to take a cruise to Europe for many years. Finally, we were going to take our first (and probably only) cruise to Europe and booked on the Norwegian Star from Miami to Copenhagen in May 2015. We are quiet non-drinkers, who were so looking forward to this. We are also smokers, which was the main reason we selected NCL, so we could relax and have a smoke on our private balcony, if we chose to. Now, they change the rules and we're told this consideration is being taken away. What a slap in the face.

I understand not smoking inside (so why allow it in the Casino? money perhaps?). But outside on our balcony? Nobody can tell me the minute particles/per billion in the atmosphere is hurting anybody else. If its a fire hazard concern, they simply need to provide proper butt disposal containers. Charge smokers extra for the service, no complaints. Anyone found smoking on their balcony without a paid-for container, being used properly, gets a hefty fine. If it's because there are some people who find the 'smell' offensive, I would suggest to you that there are many smells that can offensive to others (like over-powering perfume, or the reek of alcohol), but that doesn't mean we get on a band wagon to ban everything that might offend us.

Bottom line, this is an inconsiderate and unnecessary restriction that is unfair and unreasonable. Smokers are now the minority, so obviously we are at the mercy of the majority, and I know we will not be given any further consideration. We will be cancelling the cruise, because this has really reduced our ability to enjoy 14 days on a ship, being treated like this.

I can't even express how saddened, disappointed and angry I am. Though, I shouldn't be surprised. Smokers are the current 'evil menaces' of our times. I wonder who it will be next?
I honestly feel very sorry for you. You are letting an addiction take away 14 days in Europe. You can smoke elsewhere, no one is saying you have to remain smoke free for 14 days. Plenty of other opportunities, yet you cancel because you can't smoke on your deck? WOW
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Old July 18th, 2014, 02:27 PM
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I honestly feel very sorry for you. You are letting an addiction take away 14 days in Europe. You can smoke elsewhere, no one is saying you have to remain smoke free for 14 days. Plenty of other opportunities, yet you cancel because you can't smoke on your deck? WOW
This is what I do not understand about smokers. As a non smoker, I must accept the fact that there are smokers and smoking allowed areas on the ships I cruise on. No getting around it unless I book a totally smoke free ship, but they are not my favorite line. So, because I love cruising, I will make whatever adjustments and concessions I must in order to be able to cruise. I don't like a smokey casino, but I can tolerate it if I must. Sometimes, the smoke on the balcony next door was bothersome if the draft was blowing the wrong way, but we learned to book aft facing or just go inside if we had to.

So, I don't understand the cut off the nose to spite the face reaction some smokers have with canceling their cruises. Why can't a smoker make the same concessions I do in order to enjoy a cruise? There are still many areas available to smoke in designated bars and open decks. An inconvenience for smokers, yes. But those smoking areas are an inconvenience to me also, but I have learned to tolerate the fact that they are there. I really don't see the difference.

Mature-traveller, I hope you can change your cruise to another cruise line which has a more lenient policy. But if not, it would be a shame to miss this wonderful trip.
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Old July 18th, 2014, 04:50 PM
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I realize it is difficult for non-smokers to understand, and I will not try to justify my choices. Nor would I expect drinkers to justify their choice. I will only tell you that I have smoked for over 40 years, and my husband and I still enjoy it. True, we can traipse out to the designated smoking areas and have a cigarette, in every kind of foul weather, and at whatever hour of the night or morning. But I would ask you, how would you feel if you wanted to relax on your private balcony and enjoy a glass of wine, but you were told you couldn't, because the people beside you might find the smell annoying? After all, you could drink in the bars, or by the pool, right? Would you not feel that your ability to relax and enjoy your cruise has been restricted?

It is also frustrating to learn that smoking in the Casino, which is indoors, is still permitted - provided you are playing and spending money. So, the pretense that the decision was made out of concern for 'health' is nonsense.
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Old July 18th, 2014, 06:18 PM
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I realize it is difficult for non-smokers to understand, and I will not try to justify my choices. Nor would I expect drinkers to justify their choice. I will only tell you that I have smoked for over 40 years, and my husband and I still enjoy it. True, we can traipse out to the designated smoking areas and have a cigarette, in every kind of foul weather, and at whatever hour of the night or morning. But I would ask you, how would you feel if you wanted to relax on your private balcony and enjoy a glass of wine, but you were told you couldn't, because the people beside you might find the smell annoying? After all, you could drink in the bars, or by the pool, right? Would you not feel that your ability to relax and enjoy your cruise has been restricted?

It is also frustrating to learn that smoking in the Casino, which is indoors, is still permitted - provided you are playing and spending money. So, the pretense that the decision was made out of concern for 'health' is nonsense.
Yes, I would feel like my cruise had been restricted. But I wouldn't cancel a vacation over it. I'd suck it up and find a bar. If one line put in this policy then sure, cancel, move to another cruise line. But you're running out of options!
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Old July 18th, 2014, 06:26 PM
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I realize it is difficult for non-smokers to understand, and I will not try to justify my choices. Nor would I expect drinkers to justify their choice. I will only tell you that I have smoked for over 40 years, and my husband and I still enjoy it. True, we can traipse out to the designated smoking areas and have a cigarette, in every kind of foul weather, and at whatever hour of the night or morning. But I would ask you, how would you feel if you wanted to relax on your private balcony and enjoy a glass of wine, but you were told you couldn't, because the people beside you might find the smell annoying? After all, you could drink in the bars, or by the pool, right? Would you not feel that your ability to relax and enjoy your cruise has been restricted?

It is also frustrating to learn that smoking in the Casino, which is indoors, is still permitted - provided you are playing and spending money. So, the pretense that the decision was made out of concern for 'health' is nonsense.
You surely can't equate the smell of wine with toxic cigarette smoke, but, if the rule was that there was no wine drinking allowed on the balcony, then I would adjust to it and drink my wine elsewhere. I have stayed at lovely inns where there was no drinking at all allowed on the premises. Not to our liking, but that is the accommodation we had to make in order to stay there. Same accommodation we used to make when neighbors like you were allowed to smoke on balconies. Our ability to relax and enjoy our cruise was somewhat restricted. You have to see it from the point of view of the non smoker as well.
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Old July 18th, 2014, 08:14 PM
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I've been a smoker for most of my life but I have little problem sailing on lines that do not allow smoking on the balcony or in the cabin. As long as there is an outdoor and covered/indoor venue to smoke I can get along just fine.

I haven't smoked inside the cabin in ten years out of consideration for my wife.

Granted: It is nice to sit on the balcony and have a cigarette but it isn't a "deal breaker".

I even handled the old Renaissance cruise lines "No Smoking Anywhere" policy. Luckily they were port intensive cruises. What "irritated" me was that by the crew stairwells you could smell smoke coming under the doors. The crew could smoke in the crew areas.

Take care,
Mike
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