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Having cruised over 10 times and with several cruise lines we are definitely not new to cruising. Overall the itinerary made us glad that we went but Holland America seriously needs to consider what customers they are targeting. We will not go with them again for 4 main reasons. 1. The crew seem to have become jaded and not as responsive to customer needs as would be expected of an industry leader. This was the first time we have felt that the crew's needs have impinged on the needs of the passengers. To keep this short just a couple of examples: this was the first time that we found crew pushing past passengers on the gangway, and on excursions with local guides running the operation a crew member was 'escorting' but they would keep the customers waiting on the bus because the only person late back after a stop was the crew 'escort'. It got so bad on one occasion that the passengers spontaneously started clapping our 'escort' when he finally appeared. 2. The food is generally poor. The good dishes are like islands in a vast sea of mediocrity. The buffet needs some serious attention as to how it can be managed better. A couple of examples of poor food: the dreadful quality of vegetables and the same two hot puddings every day for 2 weeks. 3. The passenger mix is very diverse, which could be a very good thing but there is a high percentage of non-English speaking passengers. However pro one might be of a multicultural society there is nothing more frustrating than having to spend nearly 2 hours at dinner in the evening on a table where you are not just the only ones able to speak English but you get the feeling that you are crashing a private party. 4.We all expect cruise lines to try to squeeze as much revenue out of their captive market but it went too far. A fairly high percentage of the on-board activities advertised daily were charged for. However, this was our first experience of having to pay for a shuttle bus to get to the advertised place from a sea port that was in a 'no walking zone', and too far away. It smacks of fraud to me to sell a cruise on the basis of visiting certain places but then charging US$16 per person for a round trip on a coach to be able to actually visit the location on the cruise itinerary.

A company that claims to be above the average, but is actually very weak.

Volendam Cruise Review by flyseafly

18 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: January 2016
  • Destination: Asia
  • Cabin Type: Vista Suite with Verandah
Having cruised over 10 times and with several cruise lines we are definitely not new to cruising. Overall the itinerary made us glad that we went but Holland America seriously needs to consider what customers they are targeting. We will not go with them again for 4 main reasons.

1. The crew seem to have become jaded and not as responsive to customer needs as would be expected of an industry leader. This was the first time we have felt that the crew's needs have impinged on the needs of the passengers. To keep this short just a couple of examples: this was the first time that we found crew pushing past passengers on the gangway, and on excursions with local guides running the operation a crew member was 'escorting' but they would keep the customers waiting on the bus because the only person late back after a stop was the crew 'escort'. It got so bad on one occasion that the passengers spontaneously started clapping our 'escort' when he finally appeared.

2. The food is generally poor. The good dishes are like islands in a vast sea of mediocrity. The buffet needs some serious attention as to how it can be managed better. A couple of examples of poor food: the dreadful quality of vegetables and the same two hot puddings every day for 2 weeks.

3. The passenger mix is very diverse, which could be a very good thing but there is a high percentage of non-English speaking passengers. However pro one might be of a multicultural society there is nothing more frustrating than having to spend nearly 2 hours at dinner in the evening on a table where you are not just the only ones able to speak English but you get the feeling that you are crashing a private party.

4.We all expect cruise lines to try to squeeze as much revenue out of their captive market but it went too far. A fairly high percentage of the on-board activities advertised daily were charged for. However, this was our first experience of having to pay for a shuttle bus to get to the advertised place from a sea port that was in a 'no walking zone', and too far away. It smacks of fraud to me to sell a cruise on the basis of visiting certain places but then charging US$16 per person for a round trip on a coach to be able to actually visit the location on the cruise itinerary.
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Cabin Review

Vista Suite with Verandah
Cabin A 6015
The cabin was very nice, definitely worth the extra money for the balcony and the cabin steward was excellent and a very nice person. A few problems with the toilet that had clearly been on-going for some weeks before this cruise but HA had just not bothered to take seriously.
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