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Arrived at Seatac on Fri. afternoon with reservations for Shuttle Express to our hotel. Had to wait an hour plus while their vans came and went, putting us into rush hour traffic when it was finally our turn. Would never use again - taxi from pier back to airport was only $10 more so that little bit of savings not worth it. Pleasant night at the Quality Inn-Seattle Center a few blocks from Space Needle. Arranged for shuttle to pier next morning ($7/each), but another long wait. Although the sight of the giant embarkation warehouse and hundreds of people in zigzag lines was intimidating, it moved quicker than expected. We only had carry-on bags so opted to take our own luggage aboard. Easily found our cabin, unpacked, and went to buffet. It was probably the busiest we ever saw it, but food was good and able to share table with some interesting people. Our cabin was bigger than expected and very clean and nicely decorated. Tub with shower (liked the shampoo, etc. dispensers), plenty of space for toiletries. Comfortable bed with choice of pillows, nightstands on each side (lamps too low for reading in bed comfortably), sofa, chair and table (just right for room service tray), dresser with TV and ice holder on top, mini-bar beneath. Balcony had 2 chairs, an ottoman and small table. We were just around corner from elevators and stairs (never any noise problems) and one floor down from Lido deck (ice water, tea and coffee available 24/7) Our cabin stewards did a great job keeping our cabin clean and making sure ice bucket was filled. They place each day's activity list in your "mailbox" late in afternoon of the day before. We highlighted activities we didn't want to miss - like dress code, destination, shows, etc. We only went to dining room on the 2nd formal night because they were serving steak and lobster. It was very good, but wish the lobster had had drawn butter served with it. Frankly, we wouldn't drag those dressy clothes with again. You could get whatever they were serving delivered to your room by room service if you checked menu posted outside dining room door and called between 5 & 6PM. The food at buffet was always good, lots of selections, and dress casual. Disappointed that there were no crab legs on ship. There were plenty of activities to keep busy, lots of nooks and crannies to explore, and fun times at the outside bar on Lido deck. Captain was able to get us very close to glaciers in Glacier Bay, making an exciting day from whichever place you decided to observe. Booked all our excursions on HAL website - the ones we wanted were no more expensive there than on their own website. We were delighted with all of them - Taku Glacier Float Plane in Juneau, Grizzly Mt. 4X4 in Sitka, and Berring Sea Crab Fisherman's tour in Ketchikan (the highlight of our trip!) We didn't get off ship in Victoria, BC as Canadian officials held ship up for 2 hours before letting us dock. Probably somebody didn't fill out their customs form which you had to do even if you weren't going to get off ship. Captain did announce that anyone who had booked tours would get to take them. We chose to handle our own luggage for disembarkation (you have to fill out their form to do so). Had room service breakfast and was in line by 7AM and off ship by 7:30, quick and easy and no delays. All in all a wonderful trip that we'd highly recommend to anyone.

Enjoyable cruise to magnificent Alaska

Westerdam Cruise Review by sunroomsilly

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2013
  • Destination: Alaska
Arrived at Seatac on Fri. afternoon with reservations for Shuttle Express to our hotel. Had to wait an hour plus while their vans came and went, putting us into rush hour traffic when it was finally our turn. Would never use again - taxi from pier back to airport was only $10 more so that little bit of savings not worth it. Pleasant night at the Quality Inn-Seattle Center a few blocks from Space Needle. Arranged for shuttle to pier next morning ($7/each), but another long wait. Although the sight of the giant embarkation warehouse and hundreds of people in zigzag lines was intimidating, it moved quicker than expected. We only had carry-on bags so opted to take our own luggage aboard. Easily found our cabin, unpacked, and went to buffet. It was probably the busiest we ever saw it, but food was good and able to share table with some interesting people.

Our cabin was bigger than expected and very clean and nicely decorated. Tub with shower (liked the shampoo, etc. dispensers), plenty of space for toiletries. Comfortable bed with choice of pillows, nightstands on each side (lamps too low for reading in bed comfortably), sofa, chair and table (just right for room service tray), dresser with TV and ice holder on top, mini-bar beneath. Balcony had 2 chairs, an ottoman and small table. We were just around corner from elevators and stairs (never any noise problems) and one floor down from Lido deck (ice water, tea and coffee available 24/7) Our cabin stewards did a great job keeping our cabin clean and making sure ice bucket was filled. They place each day's activity list in your "mailbox" late in afternoon of the day before. We highlighted activities we didn't want to miss - like dress code, destination, shows, etc.

We only went to dining room on the 2nd formal night because they were serving steak and lobster. It was very good, but wish the lobster had had drawn butter served with it. Frankly, we wouldn't drag those dressy clothes with again. You could get whatever they were serving delivered to your room by room service if you checked menu posted outside dining room door and called between 5 & 6PM. The food at buffet was always good, lots of selections, and dress casual. Disappointed that there were no crab legs on ship.

There were plenty of activities to keep busy, lots of nooks and crannies to explore, and fun times at the outside bar on Lido deck. Captain was able to get us very close to glaciers in Glacier Bay, making an exciting day from whichever place you decided to observe.

Booked all our excursions on HAL website - the ones we wanted were no more expensive there than on their own website. We were delighted with all of them - Taku Glacier Float Plane in Juneau, Grizzly Mt. 4X4 in Sitka, and Berring Sea Crab Fisherman's tour in Ketchikan (the highlight of our trip!) We didn't get off ship in Victoria, BC as Canadian officials held ship up for 2 hours before letting us dock. Probably somebody didn't fill out their customs form which you had to do even if you weren't going to get off ship. Captain did announce that anyone who had booked tours would get to take them.

We chose to handle our own luggage for disembarkation (you have to fill out their form to do so). Had room service breakfast and was in line by 7AM and off ship by 7:30, quick and easy and no delays.

All in all a wonderful trip that we'd highly recommend to anyone.
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