Published at Thursday, June 07th 2018. by noah seihan in Cruise Ship Cabins.
At 153000 tons with a passenger capacity of 4100 (based on double occupancy) the Norwegian Epic is by far the largest ship in the NCL fleet. In fact with the exception of Royal Caribbean`s Oasis of the Seas (which was launched in December 2009) NCL`s Epic is among the largest cruise ships at sea. It is also one of the most uniquely designed cruise ships that I have ever been on (... and I`ve been on quite a few). In most cases that uniqueness is a very positive attribute which reflects the thoughtfulness and attention that the Epic`s designers must have paid to maximizing the use of space to achieve a much bigger wide-open feel to all of the ship`s public areas. And the way that one area just seemed to flow into the next (without the cookie-cutter rigidity sometimes found on cruise ships) was truly remarkable. But in a few areas I did not perceive the unique design of the ship to be an advantage. For instance the exterior shape of the ship seemed a bit odd to me. The bow is somewhat stubby-looking and the stern is squared-off so that the ship does not have a sleek appearance from the outside. Adding to the irregular look is a massive 3-deck appendage that was seemingly plopped on top of the front section as an afterthought (or more likely to further maximize the ship`s interior space). Obviously the ship`s designers had to make some trade-off`s to accomplish everything they did inside the ship and after all from a passenger`s perspective the interior design is far more important.
Cruise ship vacations are a great way to travel relax and visit exotic lands. Every cruise I take I learn something new that makes my next trip more enjoyable. Here are 10 secrets that will make all your cruise ship vacations memorable. 1. Most cruise lines offer special discounts for past guests police officers and firefighters military personnel (active duty retired and sometimes even veterans with as little as 2 years service) senior citizens airline employees and more. I had already been on several cruises before I found out I was eligible for a military discount. Don`t rely on your travel agent to point it out. In fact it was a fellow passenger who gave me this hot tip. You can find this information on the cruiseline`s website but it might take a little digging. (Hint: start at FAQ or search for `special cruise pricing.`) It`s worth the effort -- the military discount I received applied to both me and my wife and was very generous. 2. When you`re booking your cruise you may be able to choose where you want your cabin -- toward the front of the ship the rear or the middle; upper decks or lower. Generally the higher the deck the more expensive the cabin. Here are some things to keep in mind when choosing your location: ~ being close to the elevators might be convenient but it can also be noisy. This is especially true of service elevators. ~ avoid being under the disco or gym because you`ll hear people partying late into the night or working out early in the morning. ~ the front and rear of the ship can be noisy from anchors and propellers. 3. The elevators get crowded especially at mealtimes and when getting off the ship in port. I always push both call buttons and get on whichever elevator gets there first. Even if I have to go the opposite direction I found it`s still faster than waiting in the lobby for the right elevator. 4. To save closet space in your cabin slide your suitcases under the bed after unpacking. You won`t need them until it`s time to disembark. 5. If you attend any of the shopping and excursion orientations sit up front. They frequently throw free stuff out into the audience to build excitement. 6. Some cruise ships have a cruise director`s TV show to keep guests informed about the ship`s activities. Call or write in with comments or questions and you`ll likely win a free bottle of champagne or other gift. Cruise directors love guests who participate. 7. Bring a small flashlight or plug in night light. The cabins get very dark especially inside cabins. 8. There`s always plenty of food on a cruise ship but try not to overdo it. Set food goals. If you have a big breakfast have a light lunch. Maybe the next day do the opposite. Try to balance what you eat in terms of carbs proteins sweets etc. 9. Instead of waiting in the buffet line for breakfast and hoping you`ll find a table eat breakfast in the dining room. It`s hardly ever crowded and you`ll get some great choices for breakfast that you probably won`t see on the buffet line. 10. Pack a travellers first aid kit with sun block aspirin bandaids ointment and be sure to include insect repellent. On a recent cruise we toured a zoo in the jungles of Belize and the insects were overwhelming! My wife came back covered in bug bites. While cruise ships have a medical doctor on board there`s a charge to see the doc... it can be pretty expensive for treatment of minor mishaps.
Operating a cruise ship is expensive. The expenses include the cost of fuel labor maintenance repairs spares food port charges insurance technical management shore management registration and the other costs of operating the ship. At first glance these costs may seem expensive but in reality the cost of living at sea is actually a bargain considering what you get based upon what you pay. The best value does not always translate to the cheapest price. If the ship is well managed the management will seek the highest quality goods services and labor at the very best global value. If the owners are dissatisfied with either technical or shore management they replace them.
One of the hallmarks of NCL`s acclaimed Freestyle Cruising is the choice of dining options and not surprisingly the Epic takes this feature to a new level. In addition to the two main dining areas the Epic offers 17 other dining venues each with its own cuisine and ambiance. This includes the spacious main buffet area (the Garden Cafe) in which the food was consistently fresh and of high-quality (albeit with somewhat less variety than we`ve experienced on some other ships). It also includes the poolside grill (Spice H2O) O`Sheehan`s (a huge sprawling pub that became the meeting place and social nucleus for many of the ship`s guests) and several specialty restaurants such as La Cucina Italian restaurant (which was even more attractively decorated on the Epic than on other NCL ships) Tepanyaki Japanese grill (much larger than on other NCL ships) and Le Bistro French restaurant just to name a few. Each of the specialty restaurants has a cover charge (which ranges from $10 to $35 per person) but in my opinion they are all well worth the money.
The first obvious benefit of shared ownership is acquisition cost. There are many cruise ships on the market in all price ranges sizes ages and conditions. There are many smaller and older cruise ships available for less than one million dollars. At the lower end some smaller cruise ships in fair condition can be acquired for about $250000. At the highest end the biggest new mega cruise ships now cost about $500 million to build.
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