NCL Cruise Line have transformed their company and their ships to offer only Freestyle Cruises.
Freestyle cruises are different then traditional cruises in many ways. Below you will find what we find are the advantages and disadvantages to Freestyle cruising, and the answer to the question:
These are what I think are the top freestyle cruising advantages (you may not agree - these are my opinions only):
Family Bowling on board the Gem
These are what I think are the top disadvantages to NCL cruise lines freestyle cruising.
Will you like NCL Cruise Lines' freestyle program? Only you will know. We have listed the advantages and disadvantages above.
I think what it comes down to is this: If you are a true blue cruise fan and love the "traditional" cruise experience, then chances are you won't like freestyle cruising. Stick with Princess Cruises or Celebrity.
My sister tried the Norwegian Pearl recently, and didn't like the experience. She enjoyed the cruise but would prefer to to go back to "traditional" cruising. She said that she didn't like that she didn't eat in the same place every night, or get to know her waiter. She likes going to dinner at the same time and not having to worry about it. She said it made her feel more taken care of. She didn't like that you had to pay extra for restaurants etc.
We will be trying out the Pearl in March of 2012, so we will report back and see what we think.
Warren and I always look to NCL and freestyle first. So I guess it is up to you and what you like. Worse case scenario - if you are curious, take a short cruise with NCL. Try it out. And make sure you come back and tell us what you think!
Before you go, do your research. Learn how the system works. Know that you have to make a reservations 24 hours prior for some of the restaurants. It may be freestyle but a little bit of planning will make it more freeing! :-)
What are your favorite or not so favorite NCL cruise experiences? We would love to hear about your experiences and we know other visitors would too.