5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
Holland America has been declining for years. This was my 7th and last cruise with HAL.This particular cruise they failed to disembark guest at the Grand Cayman Port. Instead of admitting the port was too crowded, they lied to the guest ... Read More
Holland America has been declining for years. This was my 7th and last cruise with HAL.This particular cruise they failed to disembark guest at the Grand Cayman Port. Instead of admitting the port was too crowded, they lied to the guest and said the seas were too rough to tender to shore. Everyone on the ship knew it was lie.The Captain even came out to the Lido just to get first hand account of what the guest were saying. The seas were calm and other ships were tendering just fine but he was insistent on giving one lame excuse after the next. I emailed the Grand Cayman Port when I returned home and this a quote from the Port. "The Nieuw Amsterdam did not disembark passengers in Cayman on Jan 2 due to engine trouble and left the Cayman waters shortly after it attempted to tender passengers." I also purchased art work from Park West Galleries which I never received. After months of calls and emails between Park West and HAL the refund was finally approved by Park West but the credit has to come from HAL. As of August 8th, they still have not refunded my money and now refuse to respond to my emails now that they can't blame Park West any longer. 8 months and still no art or refund. As for the ship and staff, the Lidos staff seemed annoyed by the smallest request from a glass of water to where to find the butter. Guest were clearly an intrusion in their routine. The dining room staff was efficient but the food was slow to come out of the kitchen and they had to keep apologizing for the delays. Dinner service was two hours. The ship was small and veranda cabin was very cramped. Much smaller than their other ships. Overall, HAL has been on the decline for many years and each year they seem to get worse. I won't be sailing with them again. Read Less
23 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
So to give you a brief, i've sailed with cunard and celebrity prior so this isn't my first cruise. Now. to say say what was nice?.... The ship is nice, the rooms have lots of storage and that is about it. We stayed in cabin ... Read More
So to give you a brief, i've sailed with cunard and celebrity prior so this isn't my first cruise. Now. to say say what was nice?.... The ship is nice, the rooms have lots of storage and that is about it. We stayed in cabin 8080. The room itself is nice and had a great balcony. The problem with this cruise line is that they ALLOW SMOKING ON BALCONIES! This is absolutely disgusting. Everytime someone went out for a smoke i had to leave my balcony to come in and take my child with me. I will NEVER EVER sail with this company again! Second, My mini fridge didn't work. it was keeping drinks warm. so i called, They kept telling me that this isn't a "fridge" but more of a cooler. Lets just say i told them if i kept milk in there i would be poisoning myself and to fix it.. so they change it out.. i ask the guy who changed it if he had tested it?... nope. so guess what.. it doesn't work, again another waste of time , dealing with guest services. finally for the 3rd time it finally is fixed. yes by now its on the 4th day! 3rd. The lack of staff in the main dining room really shows. So for the first week of our 2 week cruise we tried to eat in the main dining room. well we would get there for 5:15 early to get the first seat of the night and by the time we actually received our entrees it was closer to 7pm! yes.. absolutely ridiculous. especially when you have a 5yr old who is starving! people all around us were so mad they kept leaving before they received their desert and coffee so they could go catch the show. This happened on at least 3 occasions in the first week. Also my husband asked the drink guy. he says "excuse me can i get a drink. The guy responds "what do you want?" .. WHAT?? My husband says... did you really just say "what do you want?" so i finally complained. i wrote a long letter and the restaurant manager finally sat us in his section and then things got better. 4th. Walking through the hallway to get to the restaurant "we were in a rush" we see that they had put our pics up, so i grab my camera to snap a quick pic because they aren't always up and to view it later. The guy working there says" are you kidding me? what are you doing. so i tell him. there is no way i would ever want to use a pic of a pic to begin with but then this very disrespectful staff makes my decision to never buy a picture from this ship. They are so rude and arrogant. Who do they think pays their income? US! so i wrote to the manager of this department saying how rude their staff is. 5th. the kids place. I dropped off my daughter there from time to time for her to play with other kids. There were two staff working. The brunette and the blonde well call them. the brunette was fantastic. super friendly etc. the blonde. what a joke. i came up one time with my daughter to see what was going on, an hour left before they closed and she says "you realize we close in 30 min"... o really? is she not aware of the actual time? then my husband was 2 min late getting my daughter so she calls him and tells him that if he isn't capable then maybe he should find someone who is! Are you freaking kidding me! 6th. my bathroom overflowed on the last night we were there to make it a great memory of how this trip with this cruise line was. 7. my mom was inside room down the hall near the very back of the ship, for the first week she couldn't sleep because there was so much noise in the morning and at night of them dragging the loungers on the deck. absolutely no respect. as well they were doing construction on that same deck during the afternoon. so after her going down and complaining about all this they told her there were no available rooms. funny when i went to complain about the smoking from the balconies. where i never read any piece of info stating this ship had smoking in stateroom balconies or i would never have bought this cruise. they told me i could move to the 11th floor. well... funny how fast their lies came to surface when i walked down and said.. funny you say there aren't any rooms available but you just told me that there were???? This company lies and lies.... Anyways. the only people who would enjoy sailing with them is if they have no experience cruising. If you have then this is by far a very low class ship with no real customer service. like mentioned i've cruised with cunard and with celebrity and have had fabulous experience. and with this company it thought it would compare but in fact it failed miserably.. And yes, i have written to the company, i have written to customer services, spoken to everyone. hopefully they one day will rectify this cause its horrible! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2015
I am a member of the Mariner Society and have sailed a number of times on Holland America. It had been a few years between sailings and this past cruise was a hugh disappointment in almost every respect. Only the Indonesian staff have ... Read More
I am a member of the Mariner Society and have sailed a number of times on Holland America. It had been a few years between sailings and this past cruise was a hugh disappointment in almost every respect. Only the Indonesian staff have keep the high quality. The food was sub-par. The selections were terrible. Lunch at the Lido was just a mad house of trolling plates and not enough seating. Almost no music for dancing. Dull dull dull in every respect and I am writing this as a senior citizen. The casino would put you to sleep--after you could not figure out the slot machines that is. The deck chairs (if you can fine one) just ache your back and are impossible to get of for senior citizens. The fire on board surely didn't win any positive points either! No more HAL for me. It is just not the same Line I once knew. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2015
Venice' hotel was nice clean and a bus was just outside of hotel to centre of Venice.nieuw Amsterdam we got to Dubrovnik and had a lovely day we were looking forward to kotor, Corfu, Florence, and Livorno but we didn't get ... Read More
Venice' hotel was nice clean and a bus was just outside of hotel to centre of Venice.nieuw Amsterdam we got to Dubrovnik and had a lovely day we were looking forward to kotor, Corfu, Florence, and Livorno but we didn't get there.Thecaptain announced he couldn't get to these ports because of storms yet the oceanana p/0 was mourned next to us and got there in time,if he had left at his usual time of 8 30 am he would of made it ahead of storm, but wot he did was leave at 3 am then told us his dicision.they was passages from Australia,Canada,and America they were angry we were fuming,food in dining room was good and I have to mention Aston our mature Dee he was great, so was our waiters, Kember,Ackmad were really good.our room service was fab too Kandal,and Poni thanks.entertainment well wot can I say the piano man was good also B B kings,but dancers we saw them 3 times and were rubbish bar service was ok agirl called Belinda was all smiles all the time, also take note the indonesions crew were fantastic and having them throw bottles up in the air for our enjoyment was so crazy they don't get paid enough.we will never go on Hal again we were celebrating our 38 yrs anniversary I felt like a prisoner on the ship as we never got off nothing to do during the day and going through the storms was horrible I don't think this ship can cope with storms we have cruised on Cunard ,princess,Asamara and all were fantastic but never ever sail on Holland America. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
Not a cruise line I would recommend. We chose this cruise because of the ports of call. But once on board were informed that two ports we had booked to berth in had been change to tender ashore. Two of these ports were cancelled because ... Read More
Not a cruise line I would recommend. We chose this cruise because of the ports of call. But once on board were informed that two ports we had booked to berth in had been change to tender ashore. Two of these ports were cancelled because of "rough weather", some experienced cruiser said it was absolute rubbish, compensation, 1 hour free drinks with 2000+ passengers. The third port to be tendered ashore was the port with the shortest stay, time to get ashore, a cup of coffee then queue up to tender back to the ship. Cabin cleaning was very superficial, no clean linen. Meals did not vary much with only fair quality. As for entertainment, you're better off to read a book. BEWARE compulsory tipping is deducted from you account daily, it is up to you to alter this if you are not happy with the service. Overall this equates to a budget line without the budget price. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2014
Where do I start? We had a cabin that seemed fine but got 'upgraded' to the same cabin one floor above due to it being our honeymoon - to the cabin with noise problems (as even acknowledged in their own on board video). ... Read More
Where do I start? We had a cabin that seemed fine but got 'upgraded' to the same cabin one floor above due to it being our honeymoon - to the cabin with noise problems (as even acknowledged in their own on board video). Presumably someone in the know wouldn't book unless they got our original quiet cabin. Got no sleep all cruise (and not for fun honeymoon reasons - no energy for that, so tired!). I am vegetarian (husband is not) but they would drip the meat to carve up across the vegetarian dishes to carve on a chopping board, leaving meat juice and piece in the veggie food (= food poisoning!). Why not put the meat next to the chopping board, not the veggie dish that didn't need carving? Staff have no sense. DO NOT CRUISE WITH THEM IF YOU HAVE ALLERGIES - YOU COULD DIE. It was not just the food you can see that was a problem as I found meat in things that had been prepared out the back etc. Seems picky but you can get v ill from it if your body is not used to it (not to mention not nice/against ppl's beliefs etc) and obviously raises serious concerns for allergy suffers. Husband's meat was bad. Juice just water with hint of juice. Everything watered down - could do with trading standards weights and measures visit. We got photos on board and paid for whole package of all photos plus digital versions. Weirdly they scan the photos in order to give you the digital photos. Package dear yet when we got home realised we were missing photos. Scans also poor quality but had to purchase as part of package. Our room air con was freezing and very blowy - turned to highest temp but still cold and could not turn down the breeze. Both ended up with sore throats. i was bundles up in jumpers - bit of a waste of my honeymoon negligees! Cruise line have a film on repeat play about they sourcing of their seafood and make themselves out to love animals and be moral. However, they also promote the donkey taxis in Santorini which contravene EU laws (no water, no correct harnesses etc, no shade, out in heat all day lugging people up and down steep cliff). Service is v controversial and many other govs and charities have tried to get it rectified - people have even been given donated harnesses, drinking butts etc and nothing ever changes. Yet Holland America line promotes them! Presumably financial incentive to promote such illegality. We were shocked on arrival at Venice as transfer people gave the wrong instructions as to where to wait. We missed our transfer so stuck by them until the next bus (which annoyed them!). We then followed them to the bus which involved us having to run with our cases. There was a group of elderly people also there and some middle aged people - both groups got left behind. I pointed out that there were old people getting left behind to which I got the reply "that is there fault for being slow" (said with venom). On the way back our rep (as we paid for an overpriced official transfer so there would be no issues) abandoned everyone and no one knew where to go to the meeting point (and coach v late for some peoples flights). I found a rep who was very abusive - also called me a liar (despite all the other groups of other lost people). I could not believe what came out of her mouth. I then pointed out there had also been problems on the way (old people etc) and she said she did not care - I then loudly restated some of her ruder statements about the elderly and larger people in front of the older incoming passengers. She refused to give her name or who she was answerable too and said I could not complain about her as she was basically untouchable and was laughing (other reps said she was in fact the boss). Our whole experience was terrible. Before we went on our cruise, we were looking at another HALC but there is NO WAY WE WOULD EVER CRUISE WITH THEM AGAIN. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2013
From the moment we boarded we knew this ship would be a huge disappointment. However nothing prepared us for the what was to happen! Our stateroom, 4061- never seemed to cool off despite several calls to FD. After 2 days we noticed that ... Read More
From the moment we boarded we knew this ship would be a huge disappointment. However nothing prepared us for the what was to happen! Our stateroom, 4061- never seemed to cool off despite several calls to FD. After 2 days we noticed that the air conditioning system had been taped and the wall control was disconnected. Temp registered 28c. They told us that we could remove the clear tape ans they would pump cold air inside our cabin. Sounded like a great idea at the time except that we woke up sick as can be. A visit to the clinic revealed a severe upper respitory infection with sinusitis and laryngitis We spent the remaining of the cruise, which was supposed to be our 10th wedding anniversary, in bed with fever, chills and lots of antibiotics. When I advised the FD that our cabin should be sterilized for the next guests, we were dismissed and ignored. Nobody seemed to care. We heard lots of I am sorry but no follow up action. I must mention that the doctor did indeed call us back and offered for us to come down again to the medical center. It s amazing that one must declare to be healthy before boarding the ship but who cares how you disembark. . . . . Understandably when you cruise you subject yourself to the possibility of germs and des eases. But you don't expect to get this sick from the ventilation system. We are avid cruisers or rather we were avid cruisers. Never again on HAL! That we know for sure. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2013
We had paid for 2 weeks of cruising, but left the ship after one week, forfeiting nearly $4000 rather than endure the horrible experience of remaining on board for another week. Imagine how bad it had to be to walk away from such a ... Read More
We had paid for 2 weeks of cruising, but left the ship after one week, forfeiting nearly $4000 rather than endure the horrible experience of remaining on board for another week. Imagine how bad it had to be to walk away from such a substantial sum of money. We had previously cruised with Holland America & were satisfied, but it appears that the purchase of this line by Carnival has ruined it. Food was just plain bad; service was slow; cabins were not clean. One positive, the king sized bed was comfortable. We paid $25 per person extra to dine in one of the premium restaurants (Pinnacle Grill) hoping that the food would be better, but it was not: My filet was so tough that it was inedible. We encountered similar disappointment with their Asian premium restaurant (charged an additional $15 per person). We canceled our reservations for the Italian premium restaurant when we discovered that it was merely a section of the Lido deck's buffet. We had one good lunch and/or dinner, of the 14 we suffered through; but even that one good dinner had poor quality desserts. Breakfasts were OK. One of the things we had enjoyed on prior cruises w/Holland America was their pastry. That has also changed dramatically. There were a few tasteless, dry items offered at breakfast that were alleged to be pastry -- we've never had a baked item so poor. Further, there was never any French pastry available, such as had been available daily on prior HA cruises. We opted for a Veranda Suite, which was spacious as promised, but dirty upon arrival. Our accommodations were not vacuumed once during the week we were aboard. We learned that since Carnival purchased Holland America they now require each cabin steward (& one assistant) to take care of 28 suites every day -- far too many to enable the stewards to provide good service and a clean suite. We felt sorry for our cabin steward who was obviously working hard all day, every day, but hindered by the assignment of far too many suites. We were told that they also regularly run out of cleaning supplies due to the strict budget for cleaning supplies that is allegedly applied to each cruise; we were told this by staff that has worked for HA for years prior to the purchase by Carnival, and it was confirmed by one of the managers... so they know and just expect passengers to deal with it. It appears that Carnival has sacrificed quality in their quest for profits from Holland America. If you seek high quality food, good service, and clean cabins stay away from Carnival's version of Holland America! It was horrid!!!   Read Less
Sail Date: May 2013
We arrived at the Cruise Terminal after being collected with a private transfer. This year our luggage was taken and we had a long walk to the terminal. There should be assistance for people that are older. Check in was completed without ... Read More
We arrived at the Cruise Terminal after being collected with a private transfer. This year our luggage was taken and we had a long walk to the terminal. There should be assistance for people that are older. Check in was completed without any problems and we went onboard around midday. We arrived at our cabins, which were interleading and were totally shocked. The cabins were filthy to say the least. The sheets looked like they had been on the bed for months and the pillow cases had large holes. The dirt bins had been used to get sick in and not cleaned. The smell in the bathroom was absolutely atrocious. We complained and by the end of the day the cabins had been cleaned and new linen was put on the beds. One would think that after that welcome, that would be the end. The cabin saga went on for the duration of the cruise. We booked and paid for 2 Lido Cabanas on the 9th floor for the 24 night cruise. My husband was recovering from major surgery and my mom did not enjoy the sun, so it was a perfect arrangement. Almost everyday, repairs were taking place, so one had continual noise and if repairs were not taking place then they would start to set up at 10 in the morning for a function in the evening. It was absolutely awful. Sanitizing was a total joke....for the first 2 days when one entered the Lido area somebody stood half heartedly and sanitized a persons' hands. Thereafter nothing and many times there was nothing in the containers, hence the awful germ that spread around the ship. Imagine more than 1 000 people coughing as if they had whooping cough. The food this year was completely inedible. We have always enjoyed the Kosher cuisine on Holland America. I don't know what happened this year. It was disgusting. Food was always cold, even the desserts were not nice. We are Mariner Members, so our profile will always come up on booking. Strange that nobody from Holland America found it necessary to inform the travel agency that always does our bookings that the main entertainment on the ship was the same as the previous year. We needed to be given the information to make a choice whether we wanted to travel again with the same entertainment. The balance of the entertainment was well below par. We never take shore excursions, but on 2 occasions noticed the prices being charged if one wanted a shuttle into town. I am referring to Corfu and Marseilles. On both occasions people were completely ripped off. It was far cheaper to take a taxi. The officers around the ship were most unfriendly and rude to say the least. They never deemed it necessary to greet one in a passage. If one was in a queue, they pushed in. In 24 days, I heard the captain's voice almost daily and never set eyes on him. Strange......very strange. I have done so many cruises, many cruise lines that I have done don't even exist or their names have changed from Chandris to Celebrity, etc. This is the first time that I have experienced an awful cruise from day one to the end. To actually count the days until one disembarks, is not the way to have a holiday. Disembarkation was fine, we know the drill and have done it so many times!!!! Holland America Lines start taking real concern. You are not what you used to be and what a shame. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2011
I never thought i would write a review it is just not something that interests me mainly because i am a restaurateur and find reviews can be self serving and biased especially if that written by a professional. But I feel i would be doing ... Read More
I never thought i would write a review it is just not something that interests me mainly because i am a restaurateur and find reviews can be self serving and biased especially if that written by a professional. But I feel i would be doing a great injustice to my lifelong passion if i did not express how unacceptable the food and wine are on this particular cruise line. First things first my wife and I have owned and operated 2 upscale restaurants for the past twenty years I am a chef by trade and my wife is a US certified sommelier and we need to warn fellow foodies of the unacceptable and outdated wine and food offeered on holland america. The Food i was surprised at the low quality of ingredients used in the dining room and buffet(lido) the salad dressings came from prefab jars with everything we now know about the unhealthy affects of additives and preservatives in our foods i was surprised that they would use these products. in the dining room our food was on most nights unpalatable the beef was of the lowest grade imaginable every fish dish we ordered were bland meaning that it was frozen and probably freezer burned. the sauces were loaded with preservatives ie. msg and tasted prefabricated. all the soups came from powders and were laden-ed with salt to mask the blandness the vegetable were obviously frozen which would be acceptable if they weren't over cooked to a mushy constancy and again over salted also the mash potatoes came from powder again...unacceptable Service: the servers are split between food servers and alcohol servers I`ll start with the food servers I have one comment train your staff every question we asked about our food was met with an I don`t know or let me check we ask simple questions that any waiter on land would know if they were indeed a professional also my wife being called moma was insulting. Wine: I you know anything about wine you will not be impressed markups are how we as hospitality professionals make our living but these markup for the quality of wine is borderline fraudulent the wine industry has grown by leaps and bounds over the past couple of decades but Holland America is light years behind the other cruise lines and land restaurants. the selections are outdated and of very poor quality I do not mind spending money on good wine and price is not a determining issue when choosing a wine but the selections are grocery store quality and having a `wine stewards or a cellar master peddling these wines is a waste of time and money which brings me to the next point the wine servers and so called cellar master we went to a wine tasting that was stale unprofessional and a waste of time to say the least. the wine servers in the dining room obviously working on commission as when i asked for guidance the most expensive wine was offered or a undescriptive comment like it is good or it is nice asking for the grape varietal was a foriegn question to them. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2010
This review is for the Nieuw Amsterdam 7 day Caribbean sailing leaving from Fort Lauderdale in the second week of November 2010. Other reviews have been given on the ship's appearance, dining, public rooms, cabins, ... Read More
This review is for the Nieuw Amsterdam 7 day Caribbean sailing leaving from Fort Lauderdale in the second week of November 2010. Other reviews have been given on the ship's appearance, dining, public rooms, cabins, entertainment and such. Overall, we found the ship to be beautiful, and the dining was good. This review will not detail these aspects, but rather focus on customer service given during and after our cruise with Holland America. Customer service was lacking on board the ship, and remained lacking afterwards. They were unable to provide the correct solutions to the numerous problems we encountered. Over 600$ worth of items went missing from our stateroom. In these items there were spa products, purses, crystal ware, camera equipment, tobacco, cigars, Belgian chocolates, etc. We reported the incident to the front office. Our cabin was searched briefly a first time by Guest Relations in order to exclude the possibility we might have misplaced the items ourselves. A second "official" search was deemed necessary by Security. This event was unpleasant, and serious business. Plastic gloves and flashlights came out. During this search, we felt as though we were the thieves. They went through everything - not an inch was spared. They searched through our already packed luggage, they even took the time to open my purse from the closet, and rummage through it with a flashlight. It was not pleasant either to have someone going through my dirty underwear. It was an extremely thorough search, enough to discover various items which did not belong to us: a paperback book from under the bed, hair accessories, a wonderfully used tea bag and two discarded and soiled tissues. So much for sanitization measures. Procedures which required paperwork to be signed were not followed after the theft was reported. We were never able to obtain official paperwork. As other reviewers have pointed out, cleaning services were poor onboard the ship. After these events, our stateroom was not cleaned for over 24 hours; there was no toilet paper or clean towels. We did not receive our guest survey forms although every other stateroom seemed to have received theirs. We had to ask for a copy at the front desk. It was mayhem. Many mistakes were made from the moment we reported the events until we were able to disembark; it has continued as we or our travel agent tried to deal with Guest Relations Headquarters in Seattle. Indeed, we eventually received a letter on their part (they did not give recognition that theft occurred, but they did give recognition of how poorly issues had been dealt with) and a small credit for a future cruise. The credit represented 10% of what the cruise cost us, and 90% of our cruise went awry. We had asked for a reimbursement of our cruise. We will not be traveling with Holland America again. Read Less
Nieuw Amsterdam Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.5 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.5 0.0
Public Rooms 4.5 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 4.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 4.0 0.0
Service 4.5 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 4.0 0.0

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