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SukieMac

NCL Priority Access $$$$$

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Hi Everyone... Ive just returned from a 12 night vacation on NCL Dawn Eastern Caribbean. I recklessly purchased the Priority Access and wanted to share this negative experience.

 

So my husband and I went to the spa and spoke with the manager and discussed with her that we had a $50 credit (to be used on a port day)... she booked my husband and I in for a 'Fire & Stone Pedicure' costing approx $85 each.... So a few days after our pedicure we noticed no credits applied to our account...we spoke to one of the spa therapists' on duty and she informed us that "you must purchase a signature service of over $200 each to qualify for the discount"??!!!!!???!!! WOW!!!!! 

After some ado we explained that on our cruise e-docs it stipulates $50 credit on port days only, nor when I purchased Priority Access via NCL portal -  did  it indicate that we had to spend or purchase a signature service in order to qualify...  So this saga went on for a few days, with the Spa Manager (despite the fact that she was the person who booked our appointment and knew why we were doing so because of the credit) and myself at a disagreement. So my husband and I contacted the ships General Manager and within minutes he notified us that the credit would be applied and he apologised for the error and dismay. Also as for disembarkation you are not Priority either; you don't get the luggage tags sent to your cabin etc... you are still like every other guest and on our disembarkation we were actually the last to get our luggage. So for over $200 I feel swindled and to be honest I would compare Priority Access to a booby prize that you win when you come last in a competition. As they say in Ireland .... it was as useful as a chocolate fireguard.  So DO NOT waste your hard earned money on this additional feature!

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So did you get to embark before other passengers?

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Sorry it was such a disappointment. Thanks for the warning. Sounds like they haven't figured this one out. Hope you enjoyed your cruise otherwise.

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Hi Flaham... on the day of our embarkation we received an email that all guests were not to arrive at port before 12 noon. This email was sent out to all guests. Others who had not purchased Priority were on the ship at the same time as my husband and I. There was no priority embarkation.

 

Dear Valued Guests:

The following notice is regarding Norwegian Dawn's 12-Day Southern Caribbean from Tampa on January 21, 2020. All guests booked on this cruise must be aware of this change.

In order to ensure a smooth embarkation, check-in for Norwegian Dawn's sailing on January 21, 2020, has been delayed and will be from 12:00 P.M. to 2:30 P.M. Any guest who arrives prior to 12 P.M. will be asked to leave and return later.

We apologize for this unforeseen situation and thank you for your continued loyalty and support. We look forward to welcoming you on board soon and providing you with an exceptional vacation experience.

Thank you for your understanding. Our dedicated team is available to assist you with any question
s on the below contact information. For any guests booked outside of these countries, requiring a local number please visit www.ncl.com for contact details when handling your reservation.

 

Edited by SukieMac
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5 minutes ago, FLAHAM said:

So did you get to embark before other passengers?

Hi Flaham... on the day of our embarkation we received an email that all guests were not to arrive at port before 12 noon. This email was sent out to all guests. Others who had not purchased Priority were on the ship at the same time as my husband and I. There was no priority embarkation.

 

Dear Valued Guests:

The following notice is regarding Norwegian Dawn's 12-Day Southern Caribbean from Tampa on January 21, 2020. All guests booked on this cruise must be aware of this change.

In order to ensure a smooth embarkation, check-in for Norwegian Dawn's sailing on January 21, 2020, has been delayed and will be from 12:00 P.M. to 2:30 P.M. Any guest who arrives prior to 12 P.M. will be asked to leave and return later.

We apologize for this unforeseen situation and thank you for your continued loyalty and support. We look forward to welcoming you on board soon and providing you with an exceptional vacation experience.

Thank you for your understanding. Our dedicated team is available to assist you with any question
s on the below contact information. For any guests booked outside of these countries, requiring a local number please visitwww.ncl.com for contact details when handling your reservation.

 

 

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7 minutes ago, Pauser said:

Sorry it was such a disappointment. Thanks for the warning. Sounds like they haven't figured this one out. Hope you enjoyed your cruise otherwise.

Thanks... yea the waste of money was a real disappointment. But we met some great new friends and the crew were awesome.

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Sorry you didn't think you got your monies worth. FWIW, I would have also escalated the whole spa thing as well because it doesn't say anything about needing to purchase a signature service or a minimum either! 

 

As for the letter stating not to arrive before a certain time on embarkation day...those go out all the time and rarely do seasoned cruisers obey them. I've seen them from other cruise lines we sail on and we still arrive by 10 am.

 

I've purchased the Priority mainly because it will be my first NCL cruise (no status to get me on earlier) and I want to be able to get on as soon as possible and have priority tender, since there is a good chance we will have to tender in at least one port.

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3 minutes ago, MrsKC08 said:

Sorry you didn't think you got your monies worth. FWIW, I would have also escalated the whole spa thing as well because it doesn't say anything about needing to purchase a signature service or a minimum either! 

 

As for the letter stating not to arrive before a certain time on embarkation day...those go out all the time and rarely do seasoned cruisers obey them. I've seen them from other cruise lines we sail on and we still arrive by 10 am.

 

I've purchased the Priority mainly because it will be my first NCL cruise (no status to get me on earlier) and I want to be able to get on as soon as possible and have priority tender, since there is a good chance we will have to tender in at least one port.

Yes I was really unimpressed at the Spa personnels attitude and I did have to approach the GM to get the credit applied. The Spa Manager was still steadfast regarding the purchase of a signature service but I have emailed NCL corporate to have this information clarified further. Yes I can understand and appreciate that with tendering it is advantageous but in principal I feel that NCL are still experiencing serious issues with Priority Access and how it is implemented. I hope things go smoothly, and your experience is more positive than mine.

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We purchased Priority Access for the Encore out of Miami and luckily had a better experience. We walked on with the Platinum and Ambassador group, even though the terminal crew had no idea who or what we were. The announcement was clear. We also got priority disembarkation luggage tags. Our terms were pretty clear that the spa treatment booked had to be $100 or more. 

 

Who knows if the difference in ships had something to do with it. 

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28 minutes ago, novanoto said:

We purchased Priority Access for the Encore out of Miami and luckily had a better experience. We walked on with the Platinum and Ambassador group, even though the terminal crew had no idea who or what we were. The announcement was clear. We also got priority disembarkation luggage tags. Our terms were pretty clear that the spa treatment booked had to be $100 or more. 

 

Who knows if the difference in ships had something to do with it. 

Curious where your terms state this!? There was nothing in the terms stating this when I purchased. Simply that it was a one time credit per person and that it was to be used on a port day...period. I've also gone back to my printed confirmation and it doesn't state anything about a minimum or a signature service.

 

The below snip is directly from our documents as well:

image.png.7541a4b1b5ac5734f766584d5d711087.png

Edited by MrsKC08

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31 minutes ago, novanoto said:

We purchased Priority Access for the Encore out of Miami and luckily had a better experience. We walked on with the Platinum and Ambassador group, even though the terminal crew had no idea who or what we were. The announcement was clear. We also got priority disembarkation luggage tags. Our terms were pretty clear that the spa treatment booked had to be $100 or more. 

 

Who knows if the difference in ships had something to do with it. 

I also just went to NCL and the FAQ for the priority access. No where does it state the cost minimum, however it does state it needs to be a 50 minute or more face or BODY treatment. I can see that a pedicure might be construed as not a "body treatment", however...I would probably be one that would consider it as such.

 

image.thumb.png.7a088944338de795a38a134a15178b09.png

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21 minutes ago, MrsKC08 said:

Curious where your terms state this!? There was nothing in the terms stating this when I purchased. Simply that it was a one time credit per person and that it was to be used on a port day...period. I've also gone back to my printed confirmation and it doesn't state anything about a minimum or a signature service.

 

The below snip is directly from our documents as well:

image.png.7541a4b1b5ac5734f766584d5d711087.png

 

I want to say it was in a printout we received in our cabin, but don't quote me on that. I just remember seeing it somewhere. 

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10 minutes ago, novanoto said:

 

I want to say it was in a printout we received in our cabin, but don't quote me on that. I just remember seeing it somewhere. 

Ouch.... if you received the Spa T&Cs after purchasing and after boarding that is just not right...... I wonder if the pedicure doesn't count as a "treatment" and is less than 50 minutes which may explain it BUT as the OP said, she was talking to the Spa Manager who should've explained it.

 

Also, there's a possibility that the priority embarkation is only when conditions apply. It seems that she was told to arrive later which means there could've been an issue....... yet, I believe an OBC should've been given to them if brought that to the GM's attention. 

 

I've heard the Priority Access Program is a hit or miss..... sorry the OP had such a bad experience. 

 

On a positive note, I have a new saying "useful as a chocolate fireguard" 😁 

Edited by esm54687

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1 hour ago, SukieMac said:

Others who had not purchased Priority were on the ship at the same time as my husband and I.

To be fair - I don't believe the package is "board before anyone that doesn't have priority", it's more of a "we have a special line for you to check in through so there's less wait, then you can get right on the ship".

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1 hour ago, MrsKC08 said:

Curious where your terms state this!? There was nothing in the terms stating this when I purchased. Simply that it was a one time credit per person and that it was to be used on a port day...period. I've also gone back to my printed confirmation and it doesn't state anything about a minimum or a signature service.

 

The below snip is directly from our documents as well:

image.png.7541a4b1b5ac5734f766584d5d711087.png

Yes I agree - my terms are exactly as your documentation states ($50 spa credit per person on port days only)...

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44 minutes ago, novanoto said:

 

I want to say it was in a printout we received in our cabin, but don't quote me on that. I just remember seeing it somewhere. 

Well that is not right, period. The terms and conditions cannot be modified AFTER purchase. If that is the case, then they should be notated in the terms and conditions available when making a decision whether to purchase or not.

 

33 minutes ago, esm54687 said:

Ouch.... if you received the Spa T&Cs after purchasing and after boarding that is just not right...... I wonder if the pedicure doesn't count as a "treatment" and is less than 50 minutes which may explain it BUT as the OP said, she was talking to the Spa Manager who should've explained it.

 

Also, there's a possibility that the priority embarkation is only when conditions apply. It seems that she was told to arrive later which means there could've been an issue....... yet, I believe an OBC should've been given to them if brought that to the GM's attention. 

 

I've heard the Priority Access Program is a hit or miss..... sorry the OP had such a bad experience. 

 

On a positive note, I have a new saying "useful as a chocolate fireguard" 😁 

Personally, I think this is just such a "new thing" that people have not been trained properly to know how to handle those with PA. That's why it seems to be "hit or miss" depending on the sailing, the port of embarkation, the ship, etc.

 

5 minutes ago, hallux said:

To be fair - I don't believe the package is "board before anyone that doesn't have priority", it's more of a "we have a special line for you to check in through so there's less wait, then you can get right on the ship".

It states Priority Boarding, which means you get to board prior to those who have not purchased Priority Access, but behind those who have Platinum status, Haven guests, etc. It isn't just a "special check in line".

I think the problem lies in the fact OP didn't arrive at the port earlier and the Priority Access folks had already been allowed to board, and then the boarding numbers called. Had she gotten there earlier, she probably would have gotten on along with Platinum guests, as others have reported.

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2 hours ago, SukieMac said:

Hi Everyone... Ive just returned from a 12 night vacation on NCL Dawn Eastern Caribbean. I recklessly purchased the Priority Access and wanted to share this negative experience.

 

So my husband and I went to the spa and spoke with the manager and discussed with her that we had a $50 credit (to be used on a port day)... she booked my husband and I in for a 'Fire & Stone Pedicure' costing approx $85 each.... So a few days after our pedicure we noticed no credits applied to our account...we spoke to one of the spa therapists' on duty and she informed us that "you must purchase a signature service of over $200 each to qualify for the discount"??!!!!!???!!! WOW!!!!! 

After some ado we explained that on our cruise e-docs it stipulates $50 credit on port days only, nor when I purchased Priority Access via NCL portal -  did  it indicate that we had to spend or purchase a signature service in order to qualify...  So this saga went on for a few days, with the Spa Manager (despite the fact that she was the person who booked our appointment and knew why we were doing so because of the credit) and myself at a disagreement. So my husband and I contacted the ships General Manager and within minutes he notified us that the credit would be applied and he apologised for the error and dismay. Also as for disembarkation you are not Priority either; you don't get the luggage tags sent to your cabin etc... you are still like every other guest and on our disembarkation we were actually the last to get our luggage. So for over $200 I feel swindled and to be honest I would compare Priority Access to a booby prize that you win when you come last in a competition. As they say in Ireland .... it was as useful as a chocolate fireguard.  So DO NOT waste your hard earned money on this additional feature!

Thank you for posting this.

The Fire and Ice Mani and Pedi done together are a Signature Service. So why the Spa Manager was playing games with you, I do not understand. If you have the Spa Menu sheet with you it is specified there with a small lotus sign next to it. The lotus specifies it is a Signature Service. It is not $200. But it is a Signature Service and very much eligible for the discount. The spa manager was trying to take advantage and not give you the discount. I am glad you spoke with the General Manager and he took care of it. Was it Alain? In our experience he is one of the best in the fleet.


I would never buy the Priority Access. And yes I agree it is like the booby prize......the prize one gets with he lowest number of correct trivia answers or like the one when somebody gets no numbers called out during Housie (Bingo).😁

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Like with the perks most items have T&C.  While it's "open bar", it isn't everything at the bar and has very little choice of wine.  You also have to prepay the packages gratuities and tax up front.  Free internet is usually only 250mins.

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Suki Mac, I was on this sailing and I foolishly bought the priority pass as well, Here is my experience with it. I stupidly obeyed the email regarding the later boarding time, I had planned on arriving at the port by 10 am o I could take advantage of the earlier boarding. (only silver level here), However got there by 12 and snaked through security(not too bad) and once through checked in and walked right on ship Meanwhile others had all ready boarded. Got the canapes the next day, never used free breakfast room service deal. Hubs and I got 50 minute massages on a port day and we were each given the 50 credit. The worst part of this was getting off the ship. Yellow tags were delivered to our room. Supposed to disembark at 815, After easy walk off, then priority, plats etc. They call light blue tags instead. Rumor was yellow tagged luggage was still on the ship. Finally got called around 845, got shoved through gangway, waited for escalator/elevator got downstairs grabbed a porter and got out. whole process was 45 min . Would I do this again? Probably not especially in Tampa port.  

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3 hours ago, owlgirl31 said:

Suki Mac, I was on this sailing and I foolishly bought the priority pass as well, Here is my experience with it. I stupidly obeyed the email regarding the later boarding time, I had planned on arriving at the port by 10 am o I could take advantage of the earlier boarding. (only silver level here), However got there by 12 and snaked through security(not too bad) and once through checked in and walked right on ship Meanwhile others had all ready boarded. Got the canapes the next day, never used free breakfast room service deal. Hubs and I got 50 minute massages on a port day and we were each given the 50 credit. The worst part of this was getting off the ship. Yellow tags were delivered to our room. Supposed to disembark at 815, After easy walk off, then priority, plats etc. They call light blue tags instead. Rumor was yellow tagged luggage was still on the ship. Finally got called around 845, got shoved through gangway, waited for escalator/elevator got downstairs grabbed a porter and got out. whole process was 45 min . Would I do this again? Probably not especially in Tampa port.  

Hi Owlgirl31 - yes I too feel that it wasn't as accessible as it should have been. I have emailed someone in corporate as I feel they need to review it as it is not as advertised and my experience wasn't positive. Yes we waited on our luggage in a little screened area in the port, we were told by a cruise official "Priority wont be Priority today" lol 

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I'm flabbergasted by the comment "Priority won't be Priority today".  Yikes!  What the heck did you pay for then?

Interested in what corporate says in response to your email.

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21 hours ago, MrsKC08 said:

It states Priority Boarding, which means you get to board prior to those who have not purchased Priority Access, but behind those who have Platinum status, Haven guests, etc. It isn't just a "special check in line".

I think the problem lies in the fact OP didn't arrive at the port earlier and the Priority Access folks had already been allowed to board, and then the boarding numbers called. Had she gotten there earlier, she probably would have gotten on along with Platinum guests, as others have reported.

 

I'd say that's what happened. There's no priority when every can walk on the ship as long as they got their card. Priority likely boarded at the regular time despite the letter. 

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On 2/4/2020 at 4:18 PM, novanoto said:

We purchased Priority Access for the Encore out of Miami and luckily had a better experience. We walked on with the Platinum and Ambassador group, even though the terminal crew had no idea who or what we were. The announcement was clear. We also got priority disembarkation luggage tags. Our terms were pretty clear that the spa treatment booked had to be $100 or more. 

 

Who knows if the difference in ships had something to do with it. 

We were on the same Encore cruise and also booked the PA. We boarded with all the Platinum folks. We got the $50 discount in the spa. My daughter and wife took advantage of it. We also were able to book all of our shows and Vibe without any issues. We received Yellow tags on debarkation day and were among the first to leave the ship after the folks who carry their own luggage off the ship. Is it expensive? Yes. But i don't feel like it was a complete sham. I wish they offered a few more extras with this package. Maybe a discount on Go Karts/Laser Tag. Maybe a casino credit. But I don't think it's a sham

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