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We were really looking forward to this cruise. Embarkation was fairly swift via a shopping mall in Hong Kong. Well signposted and staff to send us in right direction. Good idea to take passports at check in to arrange visas for Vietnam and Cambodia. Glad we did this, rather than arrange back in U.K. O.k. more expensive, but a lot less hassle. Cabin was adequate for our requirements, and bathroom was well equiped. Don't think our bathroom had been updated, but shower was perfectly good. Our friends had cabin next door, and although supposed to be same size, only had 1 chair instead of sofa and stool. That is not satisfactory, there are 2 people in the cabin, where is 1 person supposed to sit? Food in Lido good, athough finishing lunch service at 2p.m. did not allow for people who were late back from a morning excursion, or the 8p.m. finish in the evening. I, for one, do not want to start eating my main meal of the day, at 7.15p.m. and finish at 8p.m. Food in main restaurant was alright. Choice was limiting and there were the 4 options every day the same, making the choice look larger than it was. Can't Holland America put a separate sheet in to offer these options should the days choice not be satisfactory rather than make it look bigger choice? Other cruise lines do. Formal nights - as a previous critic has said - is virtually non existant. Why bother when no one else does? Jeans and t shirts are, in my mind, not formal wear. Ports of call - The only one which should definately be removed is Sihanoukville. Absolutely awful. We arrived for the shuttle transfer into the town at 9.30a.m. Buses coming back had people on them. We had only docked at 8a.m so that should have told us how bad it was. I am sure the only reason the boat stopped here was to collect the people who had been to Ankar Watt and needed collecting 2 days later. Think again Holland America with regard to this stop. One thing that caused us great concern - one morning at 5.15a.m. the alarm bell sounded for a short time. No explanation until 5.45a.m. by which time, people were thinking the worst. The Staff Captain told us that smoke had been detected in the Crows Nest. All fine now. What he didn't tell us, the Captain did at 8.30a.m. (or thereabouts) was that the PA system went down at the same time! That is very frightening to think that we COULD have been in trouble with no means on alerting the passengers, other than trying to get staff to allert everyone. Surely, that is something that must be checked out. The library, where we spent a lot of time, is excellent. Wonderful seating and good atmosphere. Disembarkation at Singapore, satisfactorily done. All in all, a good cruise apart from a few niggles which should be addressed. Not sure I would consider Holland America again unless good bargain price for destination I wanted to go to.

Could be better

Volendam Cruise Review by Sharrystar

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: January 2015
  • Destination: Asia
  • Cabin Type: Large Ocean-View Stateroom
We were really looking forward to this cruise. Embarkation was fairly swift via a shopping mall in Hong Kong.
Well signposted and staff to send us in right direction. Good idea to take passports at check in to arrange visas for Vietnam and Cambodia. Glad we did this, rather than arrange back in U.K. O.k. more expensive, but a lot less hassle. Cabin was adequate for our requirements, and bathroom was well equiped. Don't think our bathroom had been updated, but shower was perfectly good. Our friends had cabin next door, and although supposed to be same size, only had 1 chair instead of sofa and stool. That is not satisfactory, there are 2 people in the cabin, where is 1 person supposed to sit? Food in Lido good, athough finishing lunch service at 2p.m. did not allow for people who were late back from a morning excursion, or the 8p.m. finish in the evening. I, for one, do not want to start eating my main meal of the day, at 7.15p.m. and finish at 8p.m. Food in main restaurant was alright. Choice was limiting and there were the 4 options every day the same, making the choice look larger than it was. Can't Holland America put a separate sheet in to offer these options should the days choice not be satisfactory rather than make it look bigger choice? Other cruise lines do. Formal nights - as a previous critic has said - is virtually non existant. Why bother when no one else does? Jeans and t shirts are, in my mind, not formal wear.
Ports of call - The only one which should definately be removed is Sihanoukville. Absolutely awful. We arrived for the shuttle transfer into the town at 9.30a.m. Buses coming back had people on them. We had only docked at 8a.m so that should have told us how bad it was. I am sure the only reason the boat stopped here was to collect the people who had been to Ankar Watt and needed collecting 2 days later. Think again Holland America with regard to this stop.
One thing that caused us great concern - one morning at 5.15a.m. the alarm bell sounded for a short time. No explanation until 5.45a.m. by which time, people were thinking the worst. The Staff Captain told us that smoke had been detected in the Crows Nest. All fine now. What he didn't tell us, the Captain did at 8.30a.m. (or thereabouts) was that the PA system went down at the same time! That is very frightening to think that we COULD have been in trouble with no means on alerting the passengers, other than trying to get staff to allert everyone. Surely, that is something that must be checked out.
The library, where we spent a lot of time, is excellent. Wonderful seating and good atmosphere.
Disembarkation at Singapore, satisfactorily done.
All in all, a good cruise apart from a few niggles which should be addressed. Not sure I would consider Holland America again unless good bargain price for destination I wanted to go to.
Sharrystar’s Full Rating Summary
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