Although Holland America is not known as a line that specializes in children, the ship's Alaska itineraries attract quite a few kids. On a late August sailing, for example, there were 174 passengers under 17 onboard. This figure radically diminishes when the ship does its longer voyages in the Panama Canal and Caribbean.
Club HAL, the ship's facility for younger children, is located on Deck 10. Children are divided into two groups: ages 3 to 7 and tweens ages 8 to 12. The club is open from 9 a.m. to 11: 30 a.m., from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. and from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Late-night babysitting is available from 10 p.m. to midnight, at a cost of $5 per child, per hour.
Activities for the younger kids include coloring contests, story time and junior ranger programs. There's a sign-in and sign-out policy. The tweens take part in a "kids in the kitchen" event, part of HAL's Culinary Arts program. They are allowed a little more freedom and can sign themselves in and out during the day.
Also on Deck 10, the Loft is a clubhouse for teens ages 13 to 17, open 10 a.m. to late. Activities include scavenger hunts around the ship, video game contests, movie screenings, ice cream parties and dance competitions. Teens are not required to sign in or out, and can come and go when they please.