Less than a week after NCL-owned Oceania Cruises’ M/S Regatta experienced a power loss while cruising near Hawaii, the Norwegian Gem’s propulsion system partially failed according to a New York news station ABC-7NY.
The NCL cruise ship was rerouted to Barbados where passengers were reportedly "erratically divided into groups" and flown back to Newark Airport Friday to essentially "fend for themselves."
"There was no communication, we knew nothing about what was going to happen, if we were going to have a hotel to stay at," one passenger told the New York news station.
One passenger who contacted me said that "she was a "little disappointed because of the need to scramble and lose a day," but felt that NCL "did the best they could under the circumstances." She added "we were all notified Tuesday that we would by pass St. Thomas and were diverted to Grenada and disembarked in Barbados where NCL flew us to Newark and gave us hotel for the night and food vouchers."
In 2016, there were at least 18 partial or complete power losses of cruise ships operated by the major U.S.-based lines, including NCL’s Norwegian Star which experienced repeated power failures last year.
There seems to be some dissatisfaction amongst NCL guests who sailed aboard the Gem, with only a 25% discount on a future cruise. NCL issued the following statement about the shortened cruise:
"Due to a technical malfunction with the ship’s Azipod propulsion system that has resulted in the ship’s speed being restricted from full capacity, Norwegian Gem’s current 11-day Eastern Caribbean cruise that departed New York on October 31 will now conclude in Barbados on Saturday, November 11. Norwegian has arranged for flights to return all guests to New York and hotel arrangements for guests who returned home today.
Norwegian Cruise Line sincerely apologizes for this unexpected change to the ship’s scheduled itinerary. As a gesture of our appreciation for their patience, all guests will receive a future cruise credit of 25% of their cruise fare paid."
NCL also canceled the Norwegian Gem’s next cruise.
NCL just announced that it collected record third quarter profits of $400,000,000 despite the recent hurricanes in the Caribbean.
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Photo credit: Corgi5623, CC BY-SA 3.0, wikimedia.