Going on a cruise in 2022 (and beyond, no doubt) requires an internet connection so it's important to know about the NCL WiFi packages. Remember when going on a vacation meant leaving work at the office? Friday afternoon before a getaway was spent changing the greeting on an answering machine or voicemail, creating an out of office reply that (in not so many words) said, "I'm outta here for a week and I'll get back to you when a couple days after I get back and get out of vacation mode." Ahh, the good old days. Today the expectation for immediate responses and met deadlines changes very little whether you're on the clock or in a hammock.
We workaholics have a reason to be connected while on vacation but we're not the only people concerned about the possibility of being "off the grid" for a period of time. Kids and teens need to stay connected because what would happen if Johnny dumped Susie and the message didn't make it to the ship? Young people need their internet but let's not forget others who need to keep in touch with family and friends. The need to be connected is real and the quality of the signal and connection matters to nearly everyone.
Related: Android Users Can't Text On Cruises
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Each cruise line handles WiFi differently and NCL is no exception. Free at Sea promotions list "Free WiFi" as one of the reasons to book your next cruise with Norwegian. Like other pieces of the Free at Sea promotion, free WiFi is purposefully vague leaving most to wonder about the specifics.
For starters, the Free at Sea version of free WiFi includes two logins per stateroom so if you're in a room with more than two people, you have to buy one of the NCL WiFi packages. That's still great though, right? Two people in a stateroom get free WiFi.
Great might be overstating it for most guests. Most of my clients end up buying one of the NCL WiFi packages, even with the Free at Sea WiFi. Why? The Free at Sea version of WiFi does not permit streaming and is limited to a set number of minutes for the whole cruise depending on the number of nights you're sailing. You could stretch out the minutes by turning WiFi off when you're not actively using the Internet but that might get old fast. Here are the number of WiFi minutes included with the Free at Sea perk:
- 75 minutes per person for 3-6 night cruises
- 150 minutes per person for 7-11 night cruises
- 300 minutes per person for 12+ night cruises
So what WiFi packages are available on NCL ships?
- 250 minutes anytime internet
- Unlimited WiFi
- Unlimited Premium WiFi
- Unlimited Social Media Wifi
Which NCL WiFi package you should choose depends on what how you use the Internet. Unlimited WiFi allow users to browse the web, send and receive email, and use social media platforms other than TikTok which is considered streaming. With Unlimited Premium WiFi you get all those benefits plus you can stream YouTube, Hulu, TikTok, Netflix, etc. and it includes VPN. These two options can be purchased as packages for 1, 2, or 4 devices.
Two other options exist, the 250 minutes which is self explanatory and Unlimited Social Media WiFi which again doesn't include TikTok but does include most other social platforms and messaging apps You should know that with this plan you won't be able to surf the web or use email. These two options are only available for one device at a time.
Think you're going to need one of the NCL WiFi packages? When you purchase WiFi, other than the 250 minute plan which is on-demand, you're paying a per-day fee. Save money by purchasing an upgraded WiFi package before you sail.
About the Author
Joel is a co-owner of JJ Travel Associates (a Dream Vacations franchise), blogger-in-chief at JoelKnowsTravel.com, lover of all things travel (especially UNESCO World Heritage Sites), wannabe comedian, and the person you should call if you're thinking of planning a vacation.