Norwegian Cruise Line

History, Review, Itineraries, Ships, Deck Plans, News

Norwegian Cruise Line cruise line logo

NCL-Norwegian Cruise Line Coronavirus update

NCLH's entire fleet (all vessels of the brands NCL-Norwegian Cruise Line, RSSC-Regent and Oceania) is with an expanded cancellation policy. All bookings on pre-scheduled itineraries (departures March 14, 2020, through April 30, 2021) were given the option to cancel (up to 48 hours prior departure) without penalties.

Eventually, NCLH cancelled all NCL cruises leaving between March 14, 2020, and April 30, 2021. Fleetwide operations are currently planned to resume on May 1, 2021.

Next are listed all NCL ships and their scheduled first departure dates/homeports in 2021 - May 1 (Bliss/Alaska from Seattle, Pride of America/Hawaii from Honolulu), May 2 (Breakaway/Miami, Pearl/Mediterranean from Athens, Encore/Alaska from Seattle, Breakaway/Miami, Epic/Mediterranean from Barcelona, Joy/Bermuda from NYC, Dawn/Mediterranean-Greece from Venice, Star/UK-Iceland from Southampton), May 6 (Sun/Alaska from Seattle), May 7 (Sky/Miami, Jade/UK from Amsterdam, Gem/Bermuda from Boston, Spirit/Mediterranean from Venice), May 10 (Jewel/Alaska from Vancouver, Getaway/Mediterranean from Rome), May 21 (Escape/Baltic from Southampton UK).

All affected bookings receive 125% refund in FCC (future cruise credit) transferred to a booking (any itinerary, fleetwide) for voyages departing through and on December 31, 2022. All cancelled bookings August 13 through October 18 received a 100% monetary refund (reimbursed to the original form of payment).

Norwegian Cruise Line fleet

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Review of Norwegian Cruise Line

Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, NCLH's entire fleet (all vessels of the brands NCL-Norwegian, RSSC-Regent and Oceania) is with an expanded cancellation policy. All bookings on pre-scheduled itineraries (departures March 14, 2020, through April 30, 2021) were given the option to cancel (up to 48 hours prior departure) without penalties.

Eventually, NCLH cancelled all NCL cruises leaving between March 14, 2020, and April 30, 2021. Fleetwide operations are currently planned to resume on May 1, 2021. All NCL repositioning cruises (mainly Transatlantic) were cancelled. Next are listed all NCL ships and their scheduled first departure dates/homeports in 2021 - May 1 (Bliss/Alaska from Seattle, Pride of America/Hawaii from Honolulu), May 2 (Breakaway/Miami, Pearl/Mediterranean from Athens, Encore/Alaska from Seattle, Breakaway/Miami, Epic/Mediterranean from Barcelona, Joy/Bermuda from NYC, Dawn/Mediterranean-Greece from Venice, Star/UK-Iceland from Southampton), May 6 (Sun/Alaska from Seattle), May 7 (Sky/Miami, Jade/UK from Amsterdam, Gem/Bermuda from Boston, Spirit/Mediterranean from Venice), May 10 (Jewel/Alaska from Vancouver, Getaway/Mediterranean from Rome), May 21 (Escape/Baltic from Southampton UK).

All affected bookings receive 125% refund in FCC (future cruise credit) transferred to a booking (any itinerary, fleetwide) for voyages departing through and on December 31, 2022.

The American-Bermudian passenger shipping corporation Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd (NCLH) was founded in 1966. NCLH is headquartered in Miami (Florida USA) and publicly traded (NASDAQ) company listed on NYSE (NYC). NCLH's major shareholders are the corporations Apollo Global Management (American), Genting Group (Malaysian) and TPG Capital (American). In 2017, NCLH (shipowner) had worldwide cruise market share 9,5% (passengers) and 12,8% (revenue), combining the fleets of its three subsidiary cruise companies (sister-brands) Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL), Oceania and RSSC-Regent.

Company history

NCL-Norwegian Cruise Line (website) was founded in 1966 (under the name "Norwegian Caribbean Line") by two shipping magnates - Knut Kloster (Norwegian, 1929-2020) and Ted Arison (Israeli, 1924-1999). Passenger shipping operations started with one vessel (cruiseferry/combined cruise ship and car ferry) operating on short and cheap Caribbean roundtrips from the USA. When Ted Arison left NCL in 1972 (to establish CCL-Carnival Cruise Lines), Knut Kloster acquired more ships for NCL's Caribbean operations. NCLH corporation's current President and CEO (through 2023) is Frank Del Rio. NCL's CEO is Harry Sommer (since 2020).

NCL Norwegian Cruise Line logo - CruiseMapper

The following table shows statistical data about NCL-Norwegian Cruise Line's market share (as fleet and passenger capacity / ship-berth numbers) in comparison to other major cruise companies.

Parent CompanySubsidiariesFleets (vessels per brand)Passenger Capacity (berths per brand)
Carnival CorporationCarnival2671300
Carnival CorpPrincess1742000
Carnival CorpAIDA1329300
Carnival CorpCosta1229200
Carnival CorpHolland America1525900
Carnival CorpP&O UK818600
Carnival CorpP&O Australia58200
Carnival CorpCunard36700
Carnival CorpSeabourn42000
Carnival CorpTOTAL103 ships233,200 berths
RCCL (Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd)RCI (Royal Caribbean International)2684,700
RCCLTOTAL64 ships141400 berths
NCLH (Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd)NCL (Norwegian Cruise Lines)1646600
NCLHRSSC (Regent)42600
NCLHTOTAL26 ships54400 berths
(other large brands)

1- MSC

2- Disney

3- Star Cruises (GHK)

4- Dream Cruises (GHK)

5- Hurtigruten

6- Viking Ocean

1- 15

2- 4

3- 5

4- 2

5- 15

6- 5

1- 44600

2- 8500

3- 8500

4- 6800

5- 6700

6- 4700

NCLH's ownership is equally shared by Star Cruises (subsidiary of Genting Hong Kong / GHK multinational corporation specializing in resorts, leisure, and gambling) and Apollo Global Management (among world's largest alternative asset management companies).

  • In 2011, NCL had around 8% global market share. As of 2018, NCL's global market share is around 20%, ranking it world's 3rd largest passenger shipping company (after Carnival and RCCL).
  • In January 2013 NCL went public. In 2013 the company had revenues USD 2,57 billion (13% increase over 2012).
  • On August 31, 2014, was announced that NCLH is in "advanced talks" to buy the Miami-based company Prestige Cruise Holdings Inc (owner of RSSC-Regent and Oceania - a combined fleet of 8 top-luxury ships with total berths around 6500) for USD 3,025 billion (including debt's assumption). Prestige's owner (Apollo Global Management) also owns 20% of NCLH. On September 2 was announced the acquisition agreement. On November 19 the acquisition of Prestige Cruises International was completed.
  • In mid-August 2017, Apollo, GHK and TPG Global affiliated funds started selling 15 million NCLH shares to a group of underwriters (Barclays Capital, Citigroup Global Markets. Goldman Sachs). The negotiated fixed price per share was USD 54.57, or total value USD 0,8185 billion.
  • Until 2015, GHK was NCLH's principal shareholder, when the corporation started selling down its stake in order to buy Crystal Cruises, expand Star Cruises in Asia and create (in 2016) the premium brand Dream Cruises (Asia).
  • In 2018, NCLH had 8 ships on order (7 for NCL and 1 for RSSC) to be delivered 2019 through 2027. Company's newest class (Leonardo) has GT tonnage 140,000 tons and passenger capacity 3300.
  • On July 30, 2018, following industry's "eco-trend", NCL announced banning fleetwide single-use plastic straws. The policy also includes the private islands Great Stirrup Cay (Bahamas) and Harvest Caye (Belize). As result, annually will be eliminated 50+ million plastic straws.
  • In June 2019, NCL announced its exclusive partnership with Scarpetta Restaurants via LDV Hospitality (USA-based boutique hospitality company specializing in unique restaurant and bar experiences). By this deal, on the newbuild Norwegian Encore (2019) was introduced fleet's first "Onda by Scarpetta" - specialty restaurant offering dining premium experiences fleetwide. The new restaurant joins Scarpetta's land-based restaurants in NYC, The Hamptons (Long Island NY), Miami FL, Philadelphia PA, Newport RI, Las Vegas NV, and London OH. "Onda by Scarpetta" restaurant's menu showcases the unique flavours of the modern Italian cuisine featuring a selection of beautifully presented seafood and signature dishes, including daily handmade pasta and traditional gourmet desserts. The new NCL Scarpetta restaurant is similarly designed to the land-based venues, with an interior featuring walnut wood and Calacatta marble.
  • Since January 2020, NCL cruisers pay USD 9.95 per room service order. The mandatory fee was introduced in 2015 (April). Currently, from this rule are excluded only Haven Suite passengers and the Continental Breakfast orders.
  • On January 1, 2020, NCL became industry's first major company to eliminate single-use plastic beverage bottles fleetwide (via partnership with the 2012-founded JUST Goods Inc).

NCL's list of "cruise industry firsts starts with the first-ever fly-cruise deals (under the name "Cloud 9 Cruises"), the first cruise ships capable to ferry cars, the ever first cruise company with a private island (Great Stirrup Cay in Bahamas), the first company to develop new Caribbean seaports of call (Jamaica's Ocho Rios). Both NCL's first cruise ships - Sunward (1966) and Starward (1968) - were car-ferries, but later their car decks were refitted into cabin decks (housing staterooms) and a 2-deck high theatre lounge.

NCL cruise ship design (Breakaway-class) Breakaway, Getaway

A new history page for NCL Norwegian was the year 1979 when was purchased the Transatlantic ocean liner SS France - thoroughly refitted and renamed SS Norway. Cruise ship's drydock conversion cost over USD 100 million, but it was money well spent. Bigger than any other cruise liner, SS Norway in its time offered extra space for a great variety of onboard entertainment, thus starting the new era of "ship cruise for fun" and creating the time of mega-liners.

new NCL cruise ship design (Project Leonardo)

Norwegian Cruise Line (better known by the NCL abbreviation) as a brand represents one of world's top 3 major cruise line companies (following only Carnival and Royal Caribbean). It is best known for its revolutionary "Freestyle Cruising" (trademarked) concept signifying no fixed dining times or seatings, and no formal dress-code required fleetwide.

The list of NCL's destinations includes all the world's most popular ship travel regions - Alaska and Hawaii, Europe (including UK itineraries), Bahamas-Caribbean and Bermuda, Asia and Australia New Zealand. Under the brand name "Norwegian Capricorn Line" (1997-2001), NCL operated exclusively Australia and New Zealand. A whole new era for the company started in 2002 when it purchased the first Project America vessel (under construction at the time). The future Pride of America was towed (as hull) from its initial building yard at Pascagoula (MS, USA) to be completed in Germany by Lloyd Werft.

new NCL cruise ship design (Project Leonardo)

Pride of America is the largest US-flagged passenger ship, homeported in Honolulu for year-round Hawaiian Islands cruises with roundtrip itineraries. Due to financial considerations, the other NCL America ships in Hawaii - Pride of Aloha (now Norwegian Sky) and Pride of Hawaii (now Norwegian Jade) were later transferred to company's international fleet.

NCL's Caribbean itineraries always visit company's Bahamian private island Great Stirrup Cay (purchased in 1977). A port of call exclusively for NCL ships, Great Stirrup's vacation experience starts and ends with the "Bahama Rama Mama" tender boat (capacity of 300 passengers).

NCL cruise ship design (Breakaway-class) Breakaway, Getaway

On October 17, 2012, NCL Norwegian and Meyer Werft reached an agreement for the construction of two new Breakaway-Plus class vessels with scheduled delivery in 2015 and 2017. The order for the 2nd ship was placed in July 2013. In September 2013, the two new cruise ships were named Norwegian Escape and Norwegian Bliss, through an online campaign. The "Breakaway-Plus" project's contract value was estimated to be EUR 1.4 billion (USD 1.92 billion). Two more ships were ordered on July 14, 2014, to enter service in 2018 and 2019.

NCL cruise ship design (Breakaway-Plus class) Bliss, Escape, Joy

For FY2017 (fiscal year) NCLH reported the following data:

  • GAAP ("Generally Accepted Accounting Principle") net income was USD 760 million (USD 633,1 million FY2016).
  • The adjusted GAAP was USD 907,7 million (USD 776,3 million in 2016).
  • EPS ("Earnings Per Share") was USD 3,31 (USD 2,78 in 2016).
  • The adjusted EPS was USD 3,96 (USD 3,41 in 2016).
  • NCLH's Net Revenue was USD 4,2 billion (11,2% increase over 2016 / USD 3,8).
  • The adjusted ROIC (Return On Invested Capital") for 2017 was 16,26%.
  • NCLH's total revenue reached USD 5,4 billion (10,7% increase over 2016 / USD 4,9 billion).
  • Gross Yield (yield on investments before deduction of taxes and expenses) increased 4,4%.
  • Adjusted Net Yield increased by 5% (Constant Currency basis).
  • Marine fuel expenses in 2017 were USD 361 million.

NCL ship refurbishments

Ship refurbishments were the biggest part of "The Norwegian Edge" (fleetwide upgrade program). Drydock refurbishments started in October 2015 with NCL Epic, followed NCL Gem in November 2015. Scheduled drydocks in 2016 were for Pride of America, NCL Dawn, NCL Sun. These dry docks were longer than usual for NCL ships (some up to 3 weeks).

NCL cruise ship design (Breakaway-class) Breakaway, Getaway

All NCL liners (except NCL Jewel) were refurbished by the end of 2017 (Jewel in 2018). The "Norwegian Edge" project covered 11 vessels - all older ships launched before NCL Breakaway (2013). On all these ships NCL added new venues, did extensive restaurant makeovers (La Cucina Italian, Cagney's Steakhouse, Le Bistro French, Moderno Churrascaria Brazilia). Decors were changed in MDRs (main dining rooms) and Lido-buffets. Most public spaces (including all lounges, bars, complimentary food bars) received new furniture and flooring, some were completely re-designed.

NCL cruise ship design (Breakaway-Plus class) Bliss, Escape, Joy

Another major upgrade was the shipwide Wi-Fi, installing interactive digital signage boards and way finders, new teak flooring (on open decks), new carpeting (hallways and corridors), adding more shaded seating areas, private cabanas and loungers/deck chairs on sundecks.

NCL's new drydock refurbishment program (2016-2018) was budgeted over USD 400 million. Along with the fleet upgrades, it also included updates of onboard culinary and enrichment programs, private island upgrades, enhanced cruise tour/destination amenities and services. Detailed refurbishment reviews per vessel you will find at their CruiseMapper's deckplan pages.

As part of the program was enhanced Great Stirrup Cay (NCL's private island in Bahamas), This project resulted in building new facilities, newly added bars, and lounges, redesigned and renovated venues, enhanced The Haven Suite passenger experience. Details on all these changes are available at the above island link.

NCL Great Stirrup Cay Island (Lagoon Retreat adult area)

In November 2017, the company MAN PrimeServ (a division of the marine engines manufacturer "MAN Diesel and Turbo") confirmed order from NCLH for SOLAS insulation upgrades for all 9 liners (44 diesel engines total) from the NCL fleet. MAN provided the necessary equipment for all engines with power output 375+ kW, which included heat insulation, spray protection, resistance to flammability and fluid density. Upgrades received all NCL ships with MAN marine diesel engines models 48/60B, 48/60A and 58/64. The project was scheduled for completion in 2018.

NCL cruise ship dining packages

On each of its ships, NCL offers up to 28 dining options. In 2016 on all ships were introduced upgraded main dining room menus (complimentary) with added new (a la carte priced) menu items. The upgraded complimentary food menus offer more variety of appetizers, soups, and salads, signature entrees, desserts. New are the seafood offerings (fresh grouper, shrimp ceviche, seared scallops).

  • Since January 31, 2016, NCL expanded brand's specialty dining menus on Norwegian Escape and introduced them fleetwide. These new menus are for at-fee restaurants - Cagney's Steakhouse, Le Bistro (French cuisine), La Cucina (Italian cuisine), Moderno Churrascaria (Brazilian Steakhouse) and Teppanyaki (sushi). Among the new menu choices are Bouillabaisse, pan-seared scallops, and sea bass filet, veal medallions, antipasti, risotto, Osso Buco Alla Milanese.
  • NCL has partnered with the ACF (American Culinary Federation) for training and certification of fleet's dining and culinary teams.
  • Since August 2015, NCL offers specialty dining packages available fleetwide. The new packages prices start at USD 59 per person (3-day package purchased prior departure). These deals help save on the cover charges of all onboard specialty restaurants (including Teppanyaki, Cagney's Steakhouse, Moderno Churrascaria, La Cucina, Le Bistro).
  • Specialty dining packages allow NCL passengers to dine at a la carte priced and cover charge restaurants at an additional cost raging USD 7-15. Follows the list of restaurants and the cover charge / fixed fee in USD (shown in brackets): sushi bar ($7), Raw Bar ($7), Pincho Tapas Bar ($7), Bayamo ($10), Illusionarium ($10 general- and $15 premium seating), Cirque Dreams ($10 general-, $15 premium- and $35 VIP seating), Ocean Blue ($15), Dear John Hughes ($15).
  • Packages can be purchased at discounted pricing online (prior to departure) or onboard (but only during the itinerary's first 2 days). On 3-day cruises, NCL dining packages are available for purchasing only on the 1st / embarkation day. Specialty dining reservations can be made online (within 90 days prior departure) or onboard.

NCL is noted for its high-quality shipboard foods, restaurants, unique dining concepts, well-trained certified chefs-waiters-sommeliers.

  • Almost all the shipboard food (98%) is made on the ship and from scratch - including all sauces, bread, pastries, and desserts.
  • All ships have full-service butcheries.
  • All fish is bought whole and cut and trimmed on the ship.
  • Cruise Itinerary-based regional dishes and local beers and wines are always available,
  • On NCL Bliss were introduced the restaurants Q (Texas BBQ smokehouse serving smoked meats, brisket, beef-pork ribs, pulled pork, various sides) and Los Lobos (Mexican, also serving tequilas and mezcals).

Private cruise island enhancements

NCL Norwegian expanded the company's plans for its Bahamian privately-owned island Great Stirrup Cay and the exclusive luxury resort destination Harvest Caye (Belize). Harvest Caye port features a large-sized swimming pool, private beach, shallow lagoon (watersport activities), private cabanas available for rent, as well as a huge flora and fauna diversity.

Great Stirrup Cay was last enhanced in 2014 and by 2017 spring will feature several new offerings and amenities (for details see the island's review above).

All-inclusive NCL cruise package

Since 2017, NCL offers all-inclusive cruise itineraries in some markets. Company's new program was named "Premium All Inclusive" and is included in NCL's fares. The new program is only available to travelers living in select countries and as destinations - on cruises to Alaska, Hawaii, Asia, Bermuda, Caribbean, Europe, Panama Canal, South America.

  • The list of "select countries" includes Scandinavia and Russia, Belgium, Holland, Liechtenstein, Portugal, Poland, Romania, Croatia, Czech Republic, Slovak Republic, Hungary, Slovenia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Greece, Malta, Cyprus, Turkey, Morocco, Libya, Tunisia, Angola, Algeria.
  • Passengers 21+ yo enjoy drinks-inclusive cruises with included unlimited spirits, bottled and draft beers, wines (by the glass), cocktails (priced up to USD 15), light beers, soft drinks, juices. Even the NCL's 18% gratuity is included. A 20% discount is given on onboard purchased bottles of wine, champagne, sparkling wines.
  • Passengers aged 20-20-yo enjoy unlimited soft drinks, water and juices (excluding freshly squeezed) in all onboard bars, lounges, and restaurants during the entire cruise. here also the 18% gratuity is included.
  • The new NCL package also includes bottled water (1 L) per person per day (in the stateroom) and specialty coffees (in all restaurants at meal times).
  • All gratuities and service charge related to the new all-inclusive onboard services are cruise ticket price inclusive.
  • Passengers in "The Haven" staterooms and those in Suites receive 250 minutes of free WiFi, USD 100 in OBC (onboard credit) and complimentary specialty restaurants reservations (3 dinners on itineraries 3-9 nights, and 4 dinners on 10+ nights itineraries).

NCL's "Premium All Inclusive" deals were introduced on April 3, 2017, and include all cabin categories. Since September 2017, NCL offers "Premium All-Inclusive Plus" package. The new offer includes 5 additional benefits for passengers booking a selection of port-intensive longer voyages (9 nights or longer) in all worldwide destinations. The additional perks are 250-min internet package, 120-min phone package, US$50 shore excursion credit (per call port), up to GBP 75 hotel credit (in select call ports) and up to GBP 150 flight credit.


In 2015, on NCL Sun and NCL Sky ships was introduced fare-inclusive open bars for all passengers 21 years and older. However, this program was terminated in 2019 (effective for itineraries on or after September 7, 2019). Via NCL/s "Free at Sea" program on both vessels, passengers may continue to enjoy an unlimited open bar, complimentary specialty dining, free WiFi, excursion credits, family members sail free, reduced or free airfare.

NCL's Priority Access

In 2019, NCL started to test a program (Priority Access) that allows new customers to buy the perks generally associated with NCL's loyalty program (Latitudes). "Priority Access" is currently being tested on 2 liners (Norwegian Sky and Norwegian Breakaway) with pricing between USD 69 and 199 per stateroom.

NCL Priority Access passengers receive:

  • Priority check-in, security, boarding, tendering, debarkation (homeport)
  • Access to daily, complimentary Room Service Breakfast Menu
  • Spa Credit (USD 50) on port days only
  • Canapes (delivered on the 2nd day of the voyage)

NCL Priority Access prices (per stateroom) are:

  • US$69 - for itineraries 3-5 days
  • US$99 - for itineraries 6-9 days
  • US$149 for itineraries 10-15 days
  • US$199 for itineraries 16/16+ days

During this test period in 2019, Priority Access is limited to 25 cabins per cruise.

NCL cruise ship weddings

Since 2016, Norwegian Cruise Line offers weddings at sea, including same-gender ceremonies. The weddings are performed by the ship's Captain.

  • For now, these offers are only for the company's newest (largest) vessels of the Breakaway- and Breakaway-plus classes.
  • Formerly, couples were not allowed to marry at sea, but only ashore (in ports of call along the cruise itinerary). They also had to produce a marriage certificate before participating in an onboard ceremony. By the NCL's new policy, cruise ship captains can perform the wedding ceremonies on the ship, with a Bahamas-issued marriage license.
  • NCL also offers absolutely legal same-gender ceremonies. However, these offers are only available in cruise port destinations where such marriages are recognized by local law. The list of such destinations in the USA includes Hawaii, Boston MA, NYC New York, Los Angeles CA, Seattle WA, Florida (Miami, Port Canaveral, Tampa), also Vancouver BC (Canada).
  • NCL's new package "Wedding at Sea" includes a bridal bouquet, 1 matching boutonniere, 1 wedding cake for 2, champagne toast. The company also provides an experienced wedding coordinator.
  • In addition to the "Wedding at Sea" program, Norwegian Cruise Line also offers harborside ceremonies (when the ship is docked in ports of call along the itinerary), also destination weddings (beach and resort) and vow renewals.

NCL cruise ship lifeguards

In April 2017, NCL Norwegian Cruise Line announced the company will employ certified lifeguards on some of its vessels (in summer 2017) and fleetwide (by the year 2018). The news made NCL, the 3rd major cruise company with lifeguards onboard its ships - following Disney and Royal Caribbean.

  • The onboard lifeguards are stationed only at the family pools during scheduled swimming pool hours. This staff will be "American Red Cross" trained and certified.
  • NCL will also offer complimentary swim vests for both adults and kids. Parents can obtain safety vests at the Lido Deck's towel station during daytime hours.
  • The first NCL ships with lifeguards will be Norwegian Epic (homeported in Port Canaveral), Norwegian Escape (Miami), Norwegian Getaway (Miami) and Norwegian Breakaway (NYC New York).
  • NCL started testing monitoring through CCTV cameras at family pools (on fleet's largest ships only) since 2015. So adding full-time lifeguards was a decision for more safety on pool decks. However, it should be known that lifeguards don't replace parental supervision and that parents (legal guardians) remain the best form for preventing onboard accidents.
  • Disney Cruise Line employs certified lifeguards since 2013. RCI Royal Caribbean employs cruise ship lifeguards since February 2017 (by the line's "water safety program"). RCI's onboard lifeguards are dressed in special uniforms (bright red and white) and stationed at every onboard swimming pool, including the Solarium (adults-only retreat) during the complex' opening hours.

NCL cruise cabin upgrades

In February 2017, NCL started a new (industry's first) cruise cabin upgrade program that allows already booked passengers to bid for upgrades to higher-category staterooms.

  • The new "Norwegian Upgrade Advantage" program was tested and approved by a group of top travel agencies. The entire system is automated and don't require travel agent intervention and pays commissions on the enhanced fare.
  • NCL's senior sales VP Camille Olivere commented: "After final payment guests can bid on an upgrade and there's a little dial that will show them in red, yellow or green the likelihood their bid is going to be accepted. When NCL offers the cabin upgrade to the guest we email the travel agency of record, so they see the guest has been offered the ability to upgrade, and if the bid is accepted we notify the agency. The agency has to do absolutely nothing".
  • Once the passengers' bids are accepted, they are assigned to an available higher-level stateroom - interior to oceanview, oceanview to balcony, balcony to a suite or to The Haven accommodation. However, they can't choose the exact stateroom (number) to which they are assigned.

(new) NCL cruise gratuities (2019-2020 cruises)

Daily gratuities are per person (pp):

  • USD 14,50 pp (interior, oceanview, balcony staterooms, both adults and kids) - increased from USD 13,99 pp (effective since April 1, 2018)
  • USD 17,50 (suites receiving concierge / butler services) - increased from USD 16,99 pp (effective since April 1, 2018)
  • Gratuities increases apply to all NCL cruise vessels, excepting Norwegian Sky (which is drinks-inclusive). On NCL Skyship, standard cabin and mini-suite passengers pay per person USD 18,99 per day, while suite passengers pay USD 21,99 pp per day.
  • Daily gratuity is an automatic service charge added to the passenger's onboard account each day.
  • Passengers can prepay gratuities.
  • The amount of gratuities is split between the ship's staff (dining, housekeeping, cabin stewards, butlers, concierges, support).
  • Ship's specialty restaurants (a la carte priced or cover charge venues) add an 18% gratuity service charge.

NEWS: Since April 1, 2019, NCL increased fleetwide (except Sun and Sky ships) the daily tips to USD 15 pp (all cabin categories through Mini-Suite) and USD 18 pp (for Suites and The Haven staterooms).

(new) NCL Cruise Cancellation Policy

Since January 2016, NCL adjusted the company's final payment and cancellation policies. Under the new cruise cancellation policy, booked NCL customers will incur penalties further from departure date when canceling.

  • Before 2016, NCL cruise itineraries 6 days or longer, canceled 56 to 75 days prior to embarkation date guaranteed full deposits back. Under the new cancellation policy, final payment for itineraries 6 or more days is due 90 days prior to departure date (vs the old policy's 75 days). Cancellation penalties start 89 days prior to departure date.
  • NCL's cruise deposit schedule also shifted. Previously, for itineraries 6 to 9 nights long, booked customers had to put down a USD 250 pp (per person) deposit. After January 2016, that was changed to USD 250 pp for itineraries 7 to 9 days, and USD 100 pp for itineraries 2 to 6 nights long.
  • Final payments for holiday cruises (Christmas and New Year) are now due 120 days prior to departure dates, only excluding cruises on the ship Norwegian Sky.

Itinerary of Norwegian Cruise Line

All NCL cruise ships are either new or recently refurbished. As you can see from their list below, the oldest one (NCL Sky) is just 14 years old. NCL's fleet is one of the world's biggest and most innovative ones. NCL ships are big (to really large), well-equipped, offering feature amenities and onboard activities, and sailing worldwide.

NCL ships itineraries overview

Ship NameHomeportsItineraries Changes

NCL Bliss

Seattle WA

Miami Florida

Los Angeles

  • 2021: 7-day Alaska itineraries, visiting Juneau, Ketchikan, Icy Strait Point, and Victoria BC beginning on April 24, 2021.
  • As of December 17, 2022, NCL Bliss homeports in Miami for 7-day Western Caribbean roundtrips through April 1, 2023, visiting Roatan Island, Harvest Caye, Costa Maya, Cozumel.
  • October 30, 2022, through April 16, 2023: US West Coast between Los Angeles CA and San Diego (Mexican Riviera 5-7-8-day roundtrips)
  • Summer 2023: debut of NCL Norwegian Bliss at the Royal Naval Dockyard during her 7-day roundtrip sailing to Bermuda from New York City on May 21; Norwegian Bliss is due to visit Norfolk, Virginia, and make her debut at Bermuda's Royal Naval Dockyard as she begins a series of 5- and 7-day roundtrip cruises from New York City

NCL Breakaway

NYC New York

Port Canaveral Florida

Miami Florida

  • As of April 13, 2021, NCL Breakaway sails on 5-7--9-day Eastern-Western-Southern Caribbean itineraries from Miami. Eastern Caribbean cruises visit Puerto Plata, St Thomas, Tortola, Great Stirrup Cay. Western Caribbean itineraries visit Roatan Island, Costa Maya, Cozumel, Harvest Caye. Southern Caribbean voyages visit Oranjestad, Willemstad, Kralendijk, Puerto Plata.
  • Following the Caribbean program from Miami on August 24, 2021, NCL Breakaway offers 7-day Canada and New England voyages from NYC New York to Bar Harbor, Portland, Halifax, Saint John.
  • 2022: Northern Europe (for the first time) with a 10-day British Isles cruise from London (May 14, 2022) to Dublin and Edinburgh prior disembarkation in Amsterdam.
  • 5-7-9-day Western Caribbean roundtrips (starting November 20, 2022)
  • May-October 2023: 5- to 11-day voyages through the Mediterranean

NCL Dawn

NOLA New Orleans

Boston MA

Quebec City

USA departures (New Orleans and Boston) and Canada (Quebec City)

  • 7-day Boston to Bermuda
  • 14-day Boston to New England
  • 7-day Western Caribbean - New Orleans to Mexico
  • 14-day relocation Boston to New Orleans visiting Jamaica

Beginning on May 2, 2021, NCL Dawn cruises the Greek Isles from Venice (7-day itineraries) with Kotor, Dubrovnik, Corfu, Santorini, Mykonos, Argostoli.

NCL Epic

Port Canaveral Florida



San Juan Puerto Rico

  • Miami, Barcelona, Venice, Rome, Southampton (the UK, repositioning) departures
  • 7-day Western Caribbean Miami to Jamaica
  • 3-, 4-, 7-day Bahamas/Caribbean from Port Canaveral
  • 7-day Mediterranean Barcelona, Rome
  • 14-day Mediterranean departing from Venice

On all ex-Port Canaveral cruises is featured Great Stirrup Cay, which adds island-wide enhancements, new features, and amenities over the next 16 months. Norwegian Epic also sails alternating 7-day eastern and western Caribbean voyages. The eastern route includes St. Thomas, Great Stirrup Cay, and Tortola, while the western itinerary has Grand Cayman, Ocho Rios, Great Stirrup Cay, and Cozumel.

On April 25, 2021, NCL Epic returns to Europe for 7-day itineraries from Barcelona and Rome and visits Naples, Livorno, Cannes, Palma de Mallorca.

May-October 2023: 5- to 11-day voyages through the Mediterranean

NCL Encore

Miami Florida

Seattle WA

NCL Encore entered service in November 2019. From homeport Miami, the ship operates roundtrips (Sunday departures) on 7-day Eastern Caribbean itineraries with call ports San Juan Puerto Rico, St Thomas USVI, and Tortola BVI.

After her first summer season in NYC, NCL Encore returned to Miami for 7-day Western Caribbean itineraries visiting Roatan Island, Harvest Caye, Costa Maya, Cozumel. Also sails 12-13-day Panama Canal cruises with visits to Puerto Plata, Kralendijk, Willemstad, Oranjestad, Santa Marta, Cartagena, Colon, Puerto Limon.

  • 2021: NCL Encore starts an Alaska season (May 2, 2021, 7-day roundtrips from Seattle) to Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan, Victoria BC. All Alaskan itineraries include Glacier Bay.
  • October 23, 2022: 21-day Panama Canal repositioning cruise Seattle to Miami.
  • December 23, 2022: 11-day roundtrip Southern Caribbean from Miami to Castries, St Lucia, Saint John’s, Oranjestad, Willemstad, Kralendijk, St Thomas, Puerto Plata.
  • Between April 22-October 15, 2023, Alaska welcomes 4 NCL ships: Norwegian Sun, Norwegian Jewel, and two of the brand’s Breakaway Plus Class - Norwegian Joy and Norwegian Encore. The ships sail 5- to 9-day cruises from Seattle, Vancouver, and Seward. Every 7- and 9-day itinerary offers a glacier experience.

NCL Escape

Miami Florida

Southampton England

  • Miami and Southampton (Transatlantic) departures
  • 10-day Southampton to Miami Inaugural cruise
  • 7-day Eastern Caribbean departing from Miami

Returning to Europe on May 28, 2021, NCL Escape offers 9-day Baltic itineraries from Copenhagen to Warnemunde, Tallinn, Helsinki, Stockholm, Saint Petersburg Russia (overnight).

2022: sailing the Greek Isles for the first time on an 11-day Greek Isles roundtrip from Rome (October 21, 2022) to Piraeus-Athens, Livorno, Santorini.

2023: Sailing roundtrip from Miami FL, Norwegian Sky and Norwegian Escape offer a mix of 5- to 9-day cruises between Eastern and Western Caribbean. 


NYC New York

Boston  MA

New York City departures

  • 7-day Florida and the Bahamas
  • 7-day Canada New England
  • 9-10-day to Puerto Rico (Eastern Caribbean)

From April 18, 2021, NCL Gem sails on 7-day Bermuda itineraries from Boston and 7-day Canada and New England voyages (out of Boston and Quebec City) to Bar Harbor, Portland, Halifax, Sydney, Saguenay, Charlottetown.

2022: sailing the Greek Isles for the first time on a 9-day Greek Isles roundtrip from Venice (May 20, 2022) to Corfu, Mykonos, Dubrovnik.

NCL Gem also offers 11-12-day voyages to and from NYC and Panama City (January-February 2023).

May-October 2023: 5- to 11-day voyages through the Mediterranean

NCL Getaway

Miami Florida

Copenhagen Denmark

NYC New York

Miami Florida

  • 7-day Bahamas and Eastern Caribbean departing from Miami

As of April 29, 2021, NCL Getaway offers 10-11-day Greek Isles and Italy voyages from Rome to Kotor, Dubrovnik, Corfu, Santorini, Mykonos, Piraeus-Athens, Naples, Livorno.

November 14, 2022: 13-day repositioning from Southampton to Civitavecchia-Rome visits Oporto, Villefranche-sur-Mer, Cadiz-Seville, Malaga, Cartagena, Palma de Mallorca, Barcelona, Lisbon, Le Havre-Paris, Livorno, Naples.

On January 8 and February 26, 2023, NCL Getaway has scheduled 12-day roundtrip Southern Caribbean cruise from NYC to Antigua (St John’s), San Juan, Basseterre, Castries, Bridgetown, Puerto Plata, St Thomas.

December 23, 2022, through April 8, 2023, NCL Getaway cruises on 8-day Bahamas and Florida roundtrips from NYC to Port Canaveral, Nassau, Great Stirrup Cay.

In December 2022 and February-March 2023 are planned 5-day roundtrips.

May 8-October 17, 2023: Norwegian Getaway’s 9-day Baltic roundtrip cruises from Copenhagen feature overnight and a total of 36 hours in port, in the culturally rich Saint Petersburg, Russia

NCL Jade



Miami Florida

Tampa Florida

Europe cruises (MEDITERRANEAN)

  • Barcelona (on repositioning), Venice and Houston TX departures
  • 14-day Venice to Turkey and Greece (Mediterranean)
  • 7-day Houston to Mexico (Western Caribbean)

NCL Jade is homeported in Tampa for Western and Southern Caribbean voyages (through April 11, 2021). 7-day Western Caribbean cruises visit Roatan, Harvest Caye, Costa Maya, Cozumel. Southern Caribbean itineraries visit George Town, Oranjestad, Willemstad, Kralendijk, Castries, Basseterre, St John's, St. Thomas, Puerto Plata.

In December 2021 - January 2022, Jade offers NCL's first South African itineraries leaving roundtrip from Cape Town. The 12-day "Extraordinary Journeys" visit Namibia (Luderitz, Walvis Bay) and Durban, with overnights in Richards Bay and Cape Town.

Summer 2023: Norwegian’s first visit to Nessebar, Bulgaria on NCL Norwegian Jade’s Extraordinary Journeys through the Mediterranean and the Black Sea; first visit of the ship to Bodrum and Paros during her 7-day roundtrip cruise from Athens (Piraeus); May-October: 5- to 11-day voyages through the Mediterranean

NCL Jewel

Sydney NSW

Auckland NZ

Vancouver BC

Seward AK

Los Angeles CA

San Diego CA

Colon Panama

NCL Jewel has planned Australia and New Zealand itineraries to NZ's Milford Sound, Dusky Fjord, Doubtful Fjord, Dunedin, Wellington, Picton, Napier, Tauranga, Auckland, Bay of Islands.

NCL Jewel also visits ports in French Polynesia, Hawaii, South Pacific Islands (spring 2021). These 11- to 21-day cruises (from Sydney NSW, Papeete Tahiti, Honolulu, Vancouver BC) visit Bora Bora, Moorea, Raiatea, Nuku Hiva, Lautoka, Dravuni, Noumea, Ille des Pins, Mystery Island, Port Vila, Hilo and Kailua-Kona, Maui (Kahului), Kauai (Nawiliwili), Oahu (Honolulu).

2021: Beginning on May 10, 2021, NCL Jewel cruises between Vancouver BC and Seward AK with 7-day Glacier Bay Northbound and Inside Passage itineraries.

November 12, 2022: starts 12-day Panama Canal cruises (from Los Angeles, San Diego, Colon Panama) with calls to Cabo San Lucas, Puerto Vallarta, Acapulco, Huatulco, Puerto Quetzal, San Juan del Sur, Puntarenas, Acajutla.

October 30, 2022, through April 16, 2023: US West Coast (between Los Angeles and San Diego) are operated 5-7-8-day Mexican Riviera roundtrips.

Between April 22-October 15, 2023, Alaska welcomes 4 NCL ships: Norwegian Sun, Norwegian Jewel, and two of the brand’s Breakaway Plus Class - Norwegian Joy and Norwegian Encore. The ships sail 5- to 9-day cruises from Seattle, Vancouver, and Seward. Every 7- and 9-day itinerary offers a glacier experience.


Seattle (USA)

Los Angeles (USA)

Miami FL

NYC New York

Port Canaveral FL


NCL Joy is homeported in Miami (for the first time) for 5- to 7-day Western and Eastern Caribbean cruises. Western Caribbean roundtrips visit Roatan, Harvest Caye, Costa Maya, Cozumel, while the Eastern Caribbean roundtrips are to Puerto Plata, St Thomas, Tortola, Great Stirrup Cay.

Beginning on April 14, 2021, NCL Joy homeports in NYC (for the first time) for Bermuda, Canada and New England itineraries. The 7-day Bermuda roundtrips offer 3 full days stay. The 5-day Canada and New England roundtrips visit Maine, Halifax, Portland.

December 4, 2022: NCL Joy departs from Port Canaveral on a 14-day repositioning cruise to Los Angeles CA that visits San Juan Del Sur (first time), Cartagena, Puerto Caldera-Puntarenas, Puerto Quetzal, Puerto Vallarta, Cabo San Lucas.

November 2022: NCL Joy cruises to Bermuda on 5- and 7-day roundtrips from New York City with Royal Naval Dockyard overnights.

October 30, 2022, through April 16, 2023: US West Coast (between Los Angeles and San Diego) operates 5-7-8-day Mexican Riviera roundtrips.

Between April 22-October 15, 2023, Alaska welcomes 4 NCL ships: Norwegian Sun, Norwegian Jewel, and two of the brand’s Breakaway Plus Class - Norwegian Joy and Norwegian Encore. The ships sail 5- to 9-day cruises from Seattle, Vancouver, and Seward. Every 7- and 9-day itinerary offers a glacier experience.

NCL Pearl

Miami Florida

NCL Pearl cruises to the Western and Southern Caribbean plus Bahamas and Panama Canal itineraries from Miami (beginning November 4). The 5-day Western Caribbean itineraries visit Harvest Caye and Costa Maya. The 11-day Panama Canal cruises visit Cartagena, Colon, Puerto Limon, Roatan, Harvest Caye, Costa Maya. The 14-day Southern Caribbean itinerary visits Oranjestad, Willemstad, Kralendijk, Castries, Bridgetown, St John's, St Maarten, St Thomas, San Juan, Puerto Plata. The 4-day Bahamas cruise visits Nassau, Great Stirrup Cay, Freeport.


Miami Florida

January 20, 2023, through May 29, 2023, NCL Sky cruises on 3- and 4-day roundtrips from Miami to Nassau, Freeport, Great Stirrup Cay.

Starting June 2 through December 29, 2023, Norwegian Sky sails 3- and 4-day roundtrip cruises from Miami Florida, calling at Freeport, Nassau, and Great Stirrup Cay. Sailing roundtrip from Miami FL, Norwegian Sky and Norwegian Escape offer a mix of 5- to 9-day cruises between Eastern and Western Caribbean. 

NCL Spirit

Tampa Florida




Southampton England

EUROPE cruise (Mediterranean, Canaries)

  • repositioning Transatlantic
  • 9- to 15-day cruises from Tokyo and Hong Kong showcasing the best of the region, including 4 new ports of call for the brand: Kumamoto, Beppu, Nagoya, and Niigata.

NCL Star

Sydney NSW

  • repositioning Transatlantic

In January 2021, NCL Star cruises to Antarctica (14-day "Extraordinary Journeys") from Buenos Aires Argentina to Elephant Island and Deception Island.

In March 2022, NCL Star offers fleet's first South American cruise that visits in Brazil Fortaleza and Salvador de Bahia (15-day out of Rio de Janeiro). In 2022 (departures July 14 and July 25) are planned Northern European voyages (10-day and 11-day B2Bs) that depart from Reykjavik Iceland and visit Greenland (NCL's first-time) with 3 port calls - Nuuk, Qaqortoq, Nanortalik.


Port Canaveral Florida

Valparaiso-Santiago Chile

Buenos Aires Argentina

  • Alaska, South America
  • 14-day Alaska cruises roundtrip from Vancouver
  • 14-day from Buenos Aires and Santiago to South America

In November 2021 - March 2022, for NCL Sun is planned an inaugural season in Asia. The itinerary program includes NCL's first visits (maiden calls) to ports in Japan (Nagoya, BeppuHimeji), The Philippines (Manila, Coron), Malaysia (Kota Kinabalu, Malacca), Brunei (Muara) and Cambodia (Kampot, in Jan 2023).

Between April 22-October 15, 2023, Alaska welcomes 4 NCL ships: Norwegian Sun, Norwegian Jewel, and two of the brand’s Breakaway Plus Class - Norwegian Joy and Norwegian Encore. The ships sail 5- to 9-day cruises from Seattle, Vancouver, and Seward. Every 7- and 9-day itinerary offers a glacier experience.

NCL America

Pride of America

Honolulu Hawaii

The NCL America ship continues cruising the classic 7-day Hawaii inter-island itinerary which offers ~100 hours of port time in Hawaii and visits Hilo, Kona, overnights (in Kahului, Maui, Nawiliwili), afternoon cruising along Na Pali Coast Wilderness Park. Pride of America departs from homeport Honolulu every Saturday.

In 2021-2022, NCL has planned a collection of new European voyages with 7 liners deployed in the region and port-intensive itineraries that are often with late departure times. NCL's 2021-2022 Mediterranean program is based on homeporting in (departures from) Piraeus-Athens, Barcelona, Civitavecchia-Rome, Venice and Dubai UAE. NCL's Northern Europe cruises depart from Southampton, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Stockholm and Reykjavik Iceland.

In September 2020, NCL-Norwegian Cruise Line introduced a range of winter 2022-2023 worldwide voyages for 13 of its 18 liners, providing guests with a variety of warm-weather destinations to choose from:

EXTRAORDINARY JOURNEYS: The new sailings offer a selection of Extraordinary Journeys - longer, one-of-a-kind port-rich cruises.

PANAMA CANAL: From October 2022 through March 2023, Norwegian Cruise Line offers a variety of itineraries ranging from 8 to 21-day sailings traversing the Panama Canal onboard NCL Norwegian Encore, Jewel, PearlBlissGem, and Joy. The ships visit popular destinations in Latin America and the Caribbean.

  • Norwegian Encore begins a 21-day Panama Canal cruise on October 23, 2022, sailing from Seattle, repositioning to Miami FL. During the sailing, 8 out of 11 port-of-calls include a minimum of 9 to 11 hours of port time.
  • Norwegian Joy debuts in Port Canaveral FL as she departs on a 14-day trip from Orlando to Los Angeles CA on December 4. During the voyage, she also calls at San Juan Del Sur for the first time and visits Cartagena, Puerto Caldera (Puntarenas), Puerto Quetzal, Puerto Vallarta, and Cabo San Lucas.
  • Kicking off the New Year, NCL Norwegian Gem offers 11- and 12-day voyages to and from New York City and Panama City in January-February 2023. During her 12-day cruise from New York City on January 2, she debuts in Puerto Limon and the Pacific Cruise Terminal in Panama City during an 11-day trip on January 14.

CARIBBEAN: Beginning January 28, 2022, through May 17, 2023, the cruise company offers a range of 5- to 14-day sailings across the Eastern, Western, and Southern Caribbean. NCL's itineraries include visits to Harvest Caye, the line’s resort destination in Belize, as well as calls at its private island resort in the Bahamas, Great Stirrup Cay. Ships sailing the Caribbean include NCL Bliss, BreakawayDawn, Encore, EpicEscape, Gem, Getaway, Pearl, and Sky.

MEXICAN RIVIERA: Sailing from the West Coast between Los Angeles CA and San Diego CA, passengers can take in the Mexican Riviera beauty with a mix of 5-, 7-, and 8-day roundtrip sailings between Norwegian Bliss, Joy, and Jewel beginning October 30, 2022, through April 16, 2023.

  • Norwegian Joy kicks off her sailings on December 18, 2022, with an 8-day roundtrip sailing where she visits San Diego CA for the first time.

BAHAMAS: From December 23, 2022, through April 8, 2023, NCL Norwegian Getaway sails select 8-day voyages to the Bahamas and Florida from New York City which include calls at Port CanaveralNassau, and Great Stirrup Cay. Beginning January 20, 2023, through May 29, 2023, NCL Norwegian Sky sails 3- and 4-day roundtrip voyages from Miami FL, calling at Nassau, Freeport, and Great Stirrup Cay.

BERMUDA: In November 2022, NCL Norwegian Joy offers passengers a Bahamian winter escape on 5- and 7-day roundtrip sailings from New York City featuring overnights at the Royal Naval Dockyard. NCL Norwegian Getaway also offers a selection of 5-night cruises in December 2022, February & March 2023.

NCL cruises to Cuba

In December 2016, NCLH (Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings) received permission to operate cruises to Cuba - beginning March 2017. The first-ever NCL ship visiting Cuba was Norwegian Sky.

  • NCL Sky's itinerary program offers 4-night cruises from Miami that include Havana overnights. The itinerary also visits the NCL private island Great Stirrup Cay (Bahamas).
  • In 2018, NCL expands its Cuba cruise program to a total of 63 itineraries, most of which offer Havana overnight.
  • Norwegian Sun completed her first season of voyages to Cuba from Port Canaveral FL with her last roundtrip on September 3, 2018, before she moved to Miami for select itineraries before South America (for fall/winter season). Being the first Port Canaveral-homeported vessel to Cuba, NCL Sun ship served 30,000+ travelers on 15 roundtrips (4-day Cuba itinerary) during summer 2018 season, visiting Key West Florida and Havana (overnight). Following the successful first season, NCL Sun returned to Port Canaveral in April 2019 with Cuban itineraries.

IMPORTANT: On June 4, 2019, the US Government announced new regulations (economic sanctions) that ended group travel to Cuba, including via US-homeported cruise liners, effective immediately. The ban relates to "private and corporate aircraft, cruise ships, sailboats, fishing boats, and other similar aircraft and vessels". The US travel restrictions impacted hundreds of pre-scheduled cruise itineraries, which were adjusted to no longer stop in Cuban seaports.

NCL's Cuban cruise program was based on two Florida-homeported liners - Norwegian Sky (from Miami) and Norwegian Sun (from Port Canaveral). Following the US Gov's June 2019-issued ban on group travel to Cuba from USA, NCL revised all its scheduled itineraries visiting Cuban seaports. All planned departures beyond September 2 (2019) were auto-cancelled. Cuba-visiting itineraries prior September 2 were modified to exclude Havana and visit other Caribbean ports - including in Bahamas (Great Stirrup Cay Island, Freeport, Nassau) and Florida (Key West). The list of passenger shipping lines offering cruises to Cuba included:

According to the current Cuban law, US citizens of Cuban origin (born in Cuba) are not allowed to visit the island country (including on cruise ships). Regardless of their US citizenship status, Cuban-born Americans were denied booking on cruise itineraries visiting ports in Cuba. However, the situation changed in April 2016, after Carnival Corporation negotiated with the Cuban government for allowing ships with Cuban-born passengers, as such US citizens are allowed to visit the country on USA-Cuba charter flights. The Carnival-fathom line started Miami to Cuba cruises in May 2016.

Alaska Airlines offers regular nonstop flights to Havana from Los Angeles (California USA). An 80-min ling JetBlue flight from Fort Lauderdale (Florida) to Havana costs less than USD 100. Previously, air travel from the USA to Cuba was thought charter flights only.

NCL cruise cancellation policy changes

In 2016, Norwegian Cruise Line adjusted its final payment and cancellation policies. Under the new policy, vacationers incur penalties further from departure date when cancelling, effective for bookings since January 2016. Before, itineraries 6 days or longer cancelled 56 to 75 days in advance of embarkation guaranteed passengers full deposit back. Under the new policy, final payment for sailings 6 or more days is already due 90 days prior to cruise versus the old policy of 75 days. Cancellation penalties will start 89 days prior to sailing.

The deposit schedule of NCL has also shifted. Previously, for cruises of 6 to 9 nights, cruisers would need to put down a deposit of US$250 per person. On/after January 1, 2016, that shifts to US$250 per person for cruises 7 to 9 days; cruises 2 to 6 nights only require a US$100 deposit per person. Final payments for holiday cruises during Christmas and New Year are due 120 days (about 4 months) prior to sailing dates, excluding voyages on Norwegian Sky.

Norwegian Cruise Line related cruise news

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