Volendam Cruise Review by Springflower29: Copied and agreed with Crusiecustomer
Member Since 2014
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Copied and agreed with Crusiecustomer
I agree with the other Asia post about this voyage. Compared to other cruise liners Holland America really falls short on service standards from management.
The waiting staff were fine, it is management I am upset with.
The fine dining restaurant Rotterdam served really tough food. Their salmon and steak was tough and undercooked. The Alaskan bake dessert came out all melted like it has been dropped a few times on the floor. The Lido buffet did serve a lot of luke warm food and towards the end of the trip the "fresh" fruit there had gone bad and smelt off.
The entertainment was a hit and miss. There were a few nights where instead of a show all they gave you was a movie, Wolverine and can't remember the other one.
The company makes a huge premium from additional items they sell you. Everyone is charged $45 usd and $55 usd for cambodia and Vietnam visas whether you get off at the port or not. All their port tours cost 2 to 3 times more than what you More would pay if you joined another tour company. They even have a land tour that cost $3000 USD to visit Ankor Wat, Cambodia which is exorbitant as it is almost twice as much as I paid for the whole trip. In fact this is probably the reason they stop at Sihauanoukville port as there is nothing to see at that place other than 3rd world misery. As soon as we arrived in Sihuanouckville we were swarmed and followed by beggars. We hopped back on the ship within 1 hour because we were so scared and distressed with what we saw. However this is the stop where they have their $3000 USD tour so I guess this is why they stop here, and also so they can charge your the compulsory $45 visa for Cambodia.
They charge you heaps for every drink you have on the ship. There are heaps of salesmen trying to sell you something (most of their show entertainers ask you to buy their cd afterwards, photographers snapping you throughout the trip then asking you to buy, the onboard shops having constant sales off their highly inflated prices. Not to mention there is a compulsory $11.50 per day tip charged to your ship account and you don't have control who that tip goes to. I don't mind if it goes to the waiting staff and my cabin stewards but definitely not the management at Volendam who are racist and offer poor service.
PS. As an almost 4 star mariner with HAL this review sums up the many complaints we heard on the ship. It's not the wonderful Indonesian and Philippine crew it's the management and officers that need rehabilitating. The disembarkation was the worst ever. They couldn't organize a p-up in a brewery Less
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