We were on the 13 October sailing to the Panama Canal. This was our 39th cruise and our 5th with HAL> We had not sailed HAL for 10 years but decided that the 10 night Ft Lauderdale round trip was the ideal itinerary as we both work full time.
Embarkation was painful. Took us on ehour from the time we were called to get in line until we checked in.
Muster Drilol - Absolutely terrible. There were many older senior citizens on board and they had us stand for the Muster Drill for at least 30 to 45 minutes in the heat. Watched people drop like flies. In fact, we were almost an hour leaving port as an ambulance was dispatched to the ship for one of these poor souls.
Dining Room - We had late seating and our waiters were good not great but good.on sizes were pitiful. I am not a big eater, howerver, when you order a scallop appetizeerppetizer and it arrives on a large plate and there are 2 tiny scallops that's small. The food selection was very limited and the More
overall food was barely good. On the positive side, the one night they served steamed littleneck clams and they were very good. So good, I had two orders for my dinner. The other issue at dinner was that you were always beingiven the upsell for wine and wine packages.
Photographs - as I mentioned earlier, we cruse often, mstly on RC as we are Diamond Plus. I have never seen such expensive photographs. They charged $40 for an 8/10, 5/7 and 2 wallet size. I cannot use that many photographs. I asked if I could buy an 8 x 10 and they said absolutely at the same $40 price.
Air Conditioning - when we first went to our cabin is was extremely warm. After sailing went to desk and inquired and they said yes they were having an AC problem but that it would clear up in about 6 hours. Well inever did get better. Went to desk 2nd time and was told they would check themselves to be sure there really was a problem,. It didn't get any better. Finally went the 3rd time, and they said they didn't have any record that we complained the first 2 times. Again they said they would check. When we got back that night, the AC was definitely better. That lasted one day and back to the same problem,.
Relatives traveling with us came home on e evening and their toliet would not flush. They called the front desk and an hour later someone came, looked at the problem and said Yes it is broke. They had to use the public restroom during the night (in jammies). The smell was terrible in the cabin.
Entertainment one night was a comedian. I have seen teenage talent shows 5 times better. It was horrible. One night after we waited for 30 minutes, the cruise director came out and said the show had to be cancelled as there was a major malfunction. Needless to say, with all the cruise options available today, we will never sail HAL again. We steered away from RC and we learned our lesson. Less
Zuiderdam Cruises to the Panama Canal & Central America