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Norwegian Prima Inaugural Transatlantic (September 2022)

Ports of call

Like most transatlantic cruises, it was obviously not for ports of call that you had to embark on this one. Only 3 stops were planned, but only 2 finally remained on the program (the first stop in Kirkwall was canceled due to bad weather).

I will come back to several examples showing that NCL is not doing very well with its choice of stops in another article. Here, for example, we were able to appreciate Halifax: not only was the Prima not on the main wharf, but on an adjoining wharf, far from the terminal, and the ban on walking required the setting up of shuttles. .. which was clearly poorly piloted. Result: a huge queue has formed and the waiting time has exploded. There were not enough shuttles, and their frequency was too low. We even witnessed a big dispute when the crew members who were allowed to go ashore were turned back and sent back on board, to relieve the already catastrophic situation. Compared to my last visit to this magnificent port, with a ship (from another company) moored at the main quay and leaving directly on the port… you can see the difference in the involvement of the companies. And this consistency: no excuses from NCL.

The Prima, a successful bet?

It seems that this new ship is not very suitable for too cold climates. Depriving it in this case of its exterior part, the very numerous public spaces then turn out to be too small and regularly saturated. The desire to offer many (too many?) different places is obvious, at the expense of everyone’s capacity.

The cabins are presented as larger than the market average. Perhaps. But that does not apply to the rest of the ship! The discussions between passengers came most of the time to mention the lack of space… a sign that does not lie.

Yet the result is sumptuous, and should be worth it in warmer seas (but probably not so much at full ship capacity). The Haven is magnificent but, by increasing the number of Suites that make it up to such an extent, it will have a hard time retaining its qualification as a “haven of peace”.

The sure values of the company are still there: shows, amusements, variety of places… and an undeniable effort for the quality of the food, all restaurants combined.

The price

The starting fare for this Penthouse Suite was $6700 per person for 12 nights ($558 per day). After a few price changes and especially with the cancellation of the very first Prima cruise that we had initially booked, which earned us a discount that we were able to apply to this inaugural transatlantic, the actual price was around $4500. ($375 per day). The reservation included 4 dinners for 2 in the specialty restaurants as well as the standard drink package.

To this price are added the $40 of service per day (for 2 people in a Haven suite) and various possible options (wifi, premium drink package, paying restaurants, excursions…). A luxury company price… without the level of service that this price level would justify!

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