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Zaandam Review

4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating
558 reviews
5 Awards

Beware; Overrated

Review for Zaandam to Alaska
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2-5 Cruises • Age 70s

Rating by category


Additional details

Sail Date: Aug 2015
Cabin: Large Interior Stateroom

We are not cruisers so we do not expect much. We are happy if our luggage arrives. That was not the case here. Our trip started with a land portion going to Denali and for that HAL requires to physically split the luggage to use a part of it in Denali and then the next suitcase on the ship. They call it "Meet-me-on-ship" or similar.. We parted with our suitcases in Anchorage and three nights later we boarded the ship in Sewall. The suitcases were not there. The cruise found then in Anchorage, Westmark Hotel, forgotten. It took three additional days to get them in Haines. They were express-shipped via Alaska Air, and one suitcase was damaged beyond repair. Cruise line offered a financial compensation to get a replacement in Juneau, but we refused; we wanted a suitcase. WE did not come to buy a suitcase in Juneau, we came to enjoy the cruise. After two negotiating sessions with the representative we did get replacement yet we were annoyed by unwillingness of the cruise line to solve their problem, and put responsibility on us. And, we found, talking to some people that we were not alone about a similar issue.

The ship is registered in The Netherlands and flies the Dutch flag, Yet, they fully take advantage of American naivete. In this, it is tipping. I do not mind to tip, but I do resent that tipping is compulsory. It is not necessary in The Netherlands either.The tips should be rewards, not necessity. In our case the tips were automatically added to the ship account and we found that out on the day we clear the ship account. If HAL wants to add the tips, why not to say that at the time the cruise is paid for? I do not like a bushman's attitude and this cruise line is good at it. Beware. The "compulsory" tip came to about 20% of cruise cost..

This ship is old. The maintenance crew moved constantly doing paint repairs and the promenade smelled of oily substance.

Cabin Review

Large Interior Stateroom

50 Helpful Votes

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