We had a fairly quick and easy time through customs and boarding the Ryndam on our cruise to Alaska and back. Printed forms on the Holland America website eased the way and as we boarded the ship we were told there was a buffet luncheon waiting for us. Hopefully our rooms would be ready with our luggage there within the hour - and it was! There was also a sail-away-party that afternoon at 5:00 as we left port.
The entire experience was one of subtle luxury - our cheapest inside room was fairly large and did not give me claustrophobia at all; our room steward was fantastic and cleaned and tidied up our room many times during the day ensuring that our ice bucket was always full; all the staff was very friendly and attentive. The entire ship was clean and bright and well-maintained.
We cruised the Inside Passage stopping at Juneau, Skagway and Ketchikan - very interesting stops. My husband did 2 floatplane tours while in port, and we both took city tours of Skagway and Ketchikan. The city tour of Skagway was fantastic - I highly recommend this tour. We also did the Yukon Jeep tour in Skagway which was fun. I booked the tours through Holland-America's website and they were on time, well-organized, and we were met by staff as soon as we got off the ship.
The food was excellent - we had breakfast and lunch at the Lido buffet and the food was hot with lots of choice and variety. There was always someone to assist carrying your tray if you needed assistance and we never had to wait for a table. No lineups for anything other than slot machines at the casino! We ate dinner in the dining room where the service was excellent, as was the food. I had "warm" soup one evening - otherwise the food and service was excellent. We chose "As You Wish" dining which meant we could arrive at any time between 5 and 9 for dinner. We chose to sit with other diners and enjoyed the company of different cruisers every night.
There was plenty of entertainment happening all day long - we seldom participated because we enjoyed walking the decks and watching the scenery but it was available. The evening shows were quality Vegas-type shows - excellent. There were several guest appearances - a pianist/magician, a comedian. Excellent entertainment.
We arrived in every port on time - we were fully aware of everything that was happening and available during the cruise. We chose to disembark at 8:20 a.m. and it was quick and easy. Off the ship, through customs and in our vehicle ready to head for home in 40 minutes!
I am now a Holland America fan! I loved this experience.