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Free Wi-Fi & All-Inclusive Cruising like a Norwegian

In the 21st century, free Wi-Fi has become the traveler’s Holy Grail. It is the number one hotel amenity guests expect the world over. All manner of establishments ply visitors with free Wi-Fi almost the point of ubiquity. Unless you are on a cruise ship. Suddenly, Wi-Fi is crazy expensive. There is good reason for that; maintaining radio signals and satellite connections at sea are not simple tasks, and require costly equipment and services.

Image: Norwegian's Freestyle Choice

Source: Norwegian Cruise Lines (

In an effort to draw more travelers aboard, and provide an experience on par with (if not far beyond) a land-based vacation, Norwegian Cruise Lines is tossing the world’s most coveted amenity your way, for free. Let’s soak in that for a moment: Wi-Fi. On a ship. At sea. For free.

You’re still here? Okay, here’s the deal. Free Wi-Fi is included in Freestyle Choice on select sailings, meaning that you can choose to stay connected during your cruise without buying an expensive package. Or, you could choose other enticing offerings: A specialty dining credit, free onboard credit to spend as you will, or shore excursion credits. The value of each is related to the class of cabin you book, except for the Wi-Fi offer, which is a 250-minute package worth $100. (Haven and Suite passengers get all four offers.)

Image: Norwegian's Freestyle Choice

Source: Norwegian Cruise Lines (

Of course, there is a huge BUT. At least for now, you must book your cruise this month (May 2015) for this promotion. Also, free Wi-Fi is limited to one log-in per stateroom, meaning that everyone has to share. Still, it’s a great offer while it lasts. Details are at Norwegian Cruise Lines.

Photo: Norwegian Sky at Miami Beach

Our new favorite All Inclusive Resort! (Photo: Norwegian Sky courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Lines)

Norwegian also appears to be venturing onto the turf of all-inclusive resorts, having just introduced All-Inclusive Cruising on the Norwegian Sky for 2016. That includes free entertainment, free dining, and unlimited beer, wine, and premium sprits (or unlimited juice and soft drinks for those under 21). It’s the company’s trademark Freestyle Cruising taken to the logical extreme. Norwegian Sky will continue sailing three- and four-day itineraries from Miami to the Bahamas, year round. No word whether All-Inclusive Cruising will come to other ships.

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Disclaimers & Details: maintains no financial or marketing relationships with Norwegian Cruise Lines, though we have enjoyed being paying guests on their ships.

4 comments on “Free Wi-Fi & All-Inclusive Cruising like a Norwegian

  1. at this day and age- wi fi – or a more reasonable internet package should be a must on the cruises. it feels really “old” and odd to say the least that it is still difficult to communicate while on board. it is supposed to be a relaxing vacation and the passengers should be free to chose their relaxation preferences. that said, I did enjoy the benefits of “forced” unplugging during my recent Carnival cruise

    • Hi Victoria – Thanks for stopping by! With land-based Wi-Fi being almost omnipresent, it does seem like there should be simple, affordable options at sea. If Norwegian’s offering attracts customers, you can bet we will see more offers like it! From a technical POV, I’m sure it’s still an expensive proposition, but demand is certainly there. I imagine it’s just a matter of capacity keeping pace. Of course, we could just enjoy the “digital detox” as you did!

  2. I can’t think of a single hotel that doesn’t offer free Wi-Fi in this day and age. Free Wi-Fi is just something I take for granted, now. Not having Wi_fi on a cruise ship would make me incredibly less likely to go on a cruise. My mother went on a cruise. Her opinion of it was “meh.” And this is from a woman who’s idea of a good time is laying in the sun drinking beer!

    • Hi Nicky – Thanks for stopping by the blog! Personally, I really enjoy cruising. I’m pretty active when off of the ship, but that doesn’t usually include hunting down free Wi-Fi so having it on-board would be really nice. It would let me enjoy that much more time in the port cities!

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