Cruise Ship: Nordic Empress
Cruise Destination: Bermuda
Cruise Dates: June 18-25, 2000
Guest Contributor: Kathy
We chose this cruise because our family had always heard that Bermuda was beautiful and it was a great place for families to visit. Our family consists of my mom, my dad, my sister (11 yrs. old) and ME, Kathy (14 years old).
Royal Caribbean Air/ Sea Program
We chose to use the Air/Sea program because we thought that it would save us time. Boy, were we wrong! We went to the travel agent about two weeks before our cruise and picked up our travel documents. Our air itineraries had us departing from Dallas, Texas at eight in the morning the day of the cruise and arrive in Newark, New Jersey. This was fine. But, our air itinerary back to Dallas at the end of the cruise had us departing from Newark, New Jersey at three in the afternoon, and connecting in Missouri, then finally back to Dallas. With this air arrangement we wouldn't get home until ten at night. (Add a two-hour drive from the airport to our hometown) This wouldn't work for us because my dad had to go to work the next morning. So, our travel agent called Royal Caribbean and tried to get us a new air itinerary. Royal Caribbean told us that they would change our air itinerary for $70 a person!! The 'reason' for this is that computers make all of the air arrangements, and it would be difficult for Royal Caribbean to change it. Whatever! This little policy really outraged my parents. We really had no other choice but to pay to the $70 per person, so we paid, and we got an acceptable air itinerary. But, rest assured that my parents wrote several letters to Royal Caribbean about that little incident. Royal Caribbean still hasn't replied
Royal Caribbean Nordic Empress Embarkation
What a nightmare! We arrived in Newark, New Jersey and we went to the baggage claim to meet a Royal Caribbean cruise rep. We had to wait about five minutes but eventually a rep showed up. He was really nice. He tried to strike up some conversation with us and called a Super Shuttle for us. When the Super Shuttle arrived he loaded our bags into the back of it, and we were on our way! On the Super Shuttle we rode with some people that were going to be cruising on the Pacific Princess. They were very nice and a pleasure to talk to. When we got to the pier we unloaded our bags and there was no one there to help us. There were no Royal Caribbean helpers there. So, we made our way towards a small group of confused looking people and asked them if they knew what to do. They said that they had been standing there for 30 minutes and no one had helped them and they had no idea of what to do. Finally, my dad went looking for a porter and he found one sitting on the curb smoking. The porter loaded up our bags and said, 'Fix me up now or you'll never see your bags again.' We found that very rude. We tipped him and he went on his was to deposit the bags to the ship. After that we went upstairs and got in the long line to check in and activate our Super Charge accounts. The line moved quickly and soon enough we were walking up the gangway and onto the ship. Once on the ship the Royal Caribbean staff welcomed us and pointed us in the direction of our rooms.
The Nordic Empress Cruise Ship
The Nordic Empress is about ten years old, but she looks much younger. She has been kept in great condition. Throughout our cruise we saw workers painting the ship and replacing patches of carpet. The Nordic Empress has a nice color scheme with pale pinks and other tropical colors. There is a lot of brass and glass used on the Nordic Empress to reflect lights and make the ship seem open and airy. The centrum is nine decks high and there are many waterfalls, and fountains. There are tropical flowers adorning one of the waterfalls. That's a really nice touch. Also, on each deck with passenger cabins there is a sitting area with two or three leather chairs and a glass table. There are potted plants (mainly trees and shrub like things) everywhere on this ship. The ship had two outdoor pools one of them was for kids. During the afternoon the pool deck got very crowded at it was difficult to find chairs. But in the morning and evening it was easy to get chairs by the pool.
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