We chose this cruise as a way to get back from Alaska to Vancouver. We were hoping for a smaller, less crowded, low-key cruise. What we got was a filthy ship, illness everywhere, change in itinerary, the worst customer service I've every experienced, really lame entertainment - I mean the worst!, and did I mention how dirty everything was? The good - our room was great. We had a verandah suite with a balcony. The Piano Bar and the BB King Blues Club was a blast. Our room stewards were amazing and we left them a very large tip. And now for the bad. I feel terrible writing all of this and hate to be a person who complains, but I'm hoping to warn people before they choose this cruise line or maybe catch the attention of HAL to make some changes (I did fill out their customer service survey, but didn't get a response). Be warned - this is not a young persons cruise. We are late 30's early 40's and I would not recommend this cruise to anyone under 70 - or hip and fun 80/90 year olds. You will be bored, hungry, and disappointed. The food selection. We've cruised before and were treated to wonderful food, awesome buffets, beautiful dining room experiences. This was the lowest quality food I've experienced, very little selection, terrible dining service, and very limited meal times. You know when they say that you can eat any time you want on a cruise? This is not the case on Holland. The food times are hit and miss and even then, there's very little selection. One evening I was really hungry so I went down to the Lido. I was told by one staff when the Lido was going to be open. I went down there and there was nothing available except the pasta bar. When I asked a group of employees about when it was going to open, they first half ignored me as if they couldn't be bothered (they were standing in a group just hanging out). Finally, one just told me the pasta bar was the only option. We gave up numerous times and tried to get room service. Well, half of the time no one answered and once you could get through, it would take over an hour to get the food. Half of the orders weren't even correct. I'm literally not exaggerating. We tried the dining room. We had one good night of dining on our 7 day cruise. One night, we were completely forgotten about. With HAL, you have to give them your entire order at the beginning of dinner. On other cruises, you could try anything you wanted and even order more of something if you really liked it. This is not the case on HAL. We ordered espresso to go with dessert. Well, they brought the dessert, and then about 30 minutes later brought over the coffee. Oh well. The food selection seemed to be kind of the same every night. Heavy meat, mashed potatoes and limp veges. There was a salad bar and that helped a little. There were very few dessert options and the pizza was sub par as well as their hamburgers on deck. I still don't understand how they can mess up a hamburger bun. For lunch there were pre-made sandwiches. That's right - nothing to order, you were at the mercy of what they decided to prepare that day (I'm lactose intolerant and literally went hungry and lost weight on this cruise). We tried to eat at the dining room for lunch one day and we missed it because they closed at noon. I felt the meal times and food selection catered to...hmmm...an older crowd. Mushy traditional food options felt retirement-homish. In one of the bars, the tables were filthy, there were empty glasses everywhere and we couldn't get any service, not even at the bar. We were told that we had to wait for the waitress to come around. After quite a wait, she finally came over (it was not busy at all), took our drink order and while she was leaving, we asked if she could take the empty glasses from our table. She acted completely put out, picked up the glasses and literally left the used napkins. There was no attempt to clean or wipe the sticky dirty table. We had to hold our drinks because it was unsanitary to put them down. One morning we bought coffee in the coffee shop before we got off the ship at a port. While we were getting off we were told that we couldn't take it with us. They never mentioned this at the coffee shop where we had just gotten the coffee (backpacks and gear clearly indicating that we were headed on shore). There was no apology, we were rudely told to dump it. We were given some lame excuse about the noro outbreak. Ok, no problem, but put up a sign at the coffee shop if that was the case. Interestingly, we were able to buy a bottle of water to take on shore right at the same place. $10 wasted! I went to the spa - which was ok. Not great, but ok. The waiting room didn't have any water or anything to drink. They claimed it was because of how many sick people were on board. Great! I was really thirsty after being in the sauna before my massage and mentioned this to my massuse who just said - sorry. I'm so glad I paid over $200 for this "luxury" spa experience. They could have put out some bottled water. The icing on the cake - they gave us the wrong disembark tag - 3 times! We had even booked our ship to airport transfer with them and filled out all of the paperwork and they still gave us a time that would make us miss our flight. After 3 visits to the front desk, I finally lost it. I demanded the earliest time, demanded that they refund our transfer fee, and we kept our suitcases and left as early as we possibly could. Thank goodness we did because this was the only way we were able to make our flight on time. They could care less. I've never felt more relief than getting off this ship in Vancouver. I could feel my whole body relax. We are both professional kind patient people (I'm a counselor with an advanced degree who works with children and families). I felt like we were on the cruise from hell. My biggest regret was not getting off in Juneau and flying home early. What a waste of money.

Worst Cruise Ever - Dirty, Terrible Service, Illness from lack of cleaning etc.

Noordam Cruise Review by CruisingK8

5 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: July 2017
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Deluxe Ocean-View Verandah Stateroom
We chose this cruise as a way to get back from Alaska to Vancouver. We were hoping for a smaller, less crowded, low-key cruise. What we got was a filthy ship, illness everywhere, change in itinerary, the worst customer service I've every experienced, really lame entertainment - I mean the worst!, and did I mention how dirty everything was?

The good - our room was great. We had a verandah suite with a balcony. The Piano Bar and the BB King Blues Club was a blast. Our room stewards were amazing and we left them a very large tip.

And now for the bad. I feel terrible writing all of this and hate to be a person who complains, but I'm hoping to warn people before they choose this cruise line or maybe catch the attention of HAL to make some changes (I did fill out their customer service survey, but didn't get a response). Be warned - this is not a young persons cruise. We are late 30's early 40's and I would not recommend this cruise to anyone under 70 - or hip and fun 80/90 year olds. You will be bored, hungry, and disappointed.

The food selection. We've cruised before and were treated to wonderful food, awesome buffets, beautiful dining room experiences. This was the lowest quality food I've experienced, very little selection, terrible dining service, and very limited meal times. You know when they say that you can eat any time you want on a cruise? This is not the case on Holland. The food times are hit and miss and even then, there's very little selection.

One evening I was really hungry so I went down to the Lido. I was told by one staff when the Lido was going to be open. I went down there and there was nothing available except the pasta bar. When I asked a group of employees about when it was going to open, they first half ignored me as if they couldn't be bothered (they were standing in a group just hanging out). Finally, one just told me the pasta bar was the only option. We gave up numerous times and tried to get room service. Well, half of the time no one answered and once you could get through, it would take over an hour to get the food. Half of the orders weren't even correct. I'm literally not exaggerating. We tried the dining room. We had one good night of dining on our 7 day cruise. One night, we were completely forgotten about. With HAL, you have to give them your entire order at the beginning of dinner. On other cruises, you could try anything you wanted and even order more of something if you really liked it. This is not the case on HAL. We ordered espresso to go with dessert. Well, they brought the dessert, and then about 30 minutes later brought over the coffee. Oh well.

The food selection seemed to be kind of the same every night. Heavy meat, mashed potatoes and limp veges. There was a salad bar and that helped a little. There were very few dessert options and the pizza was sub par as well as their hamburgers on deck. I still don't understand how they can mess up a hamburger bun. For lunch there were pre-made sandwiches. That's right - nothing to order, you were at the mercy of what they decided to prepare that day (I'm lactose intolerant and literally went hungry and lost weight on this cruise). We tried to eat at the dining room for lunch one day and we missed it because they closed at noon. I felt the meal times and food selection catered to...hmmm...an older crowd. Mushy traditional food options felt retirement-homish.

In one of the bars, the tables were filthy, there were empty glasses everywhere and we couldn't get any service, not even at the bar. We were told that we had to wait for the waitress to come around. After quite a wait, she finally came over (it was not busy at all), took our drink order and while she was leaving, we asked if she could take the empty glasses from our table. She acted completely put out, picked up the glasses and literally left the used napkins. There was no attempt to clean or wipe the sticky dirty table. We had to hold our drinks because it was unsanitary to put them down.

One morning we bought coffee in the coffee shop before we got off the ship at a port. While we were getting off we were told that we couldn't take it with us. They never mentioned this at the coffee shop where we had just gotten the coffee (backpacks and gear clearly indicating that we were headed on shore). There was no apology, we were rudely told to dump it. We were given some lame excuse about the noro outbreak. Ok, no problem, but put up a sign at the coffee shop if that was the case. Interestingly, we were able to buy a bottle of water to take on shore right at the same place. $10 wasted!

I went to the spa - which was ok. Not great, but ok. The waiting room didn't have any water or anything to drink. They claimed it was because of how many sick people were on board. Great! I was really thirsty after being in the sauna before my massage and mentioned this to my massuse who just said - sorry. I'm so glad I paid over $200 for this "luxury" spa experience. They could have put out some bottled water.

The icing on the cake - they gave us the wrong disembark tag - 3 times! We had even booked our ship to airport transfer with them and filled out all of the paperwork and they still gave us a time that would make us miss our flight. After 3 visits to the front desk, I finally lost it. I demanded the earliest time, demanded that they refund our transfer fee, and we kept our suitcases and left as early as we possibly could. Thank goodness we did because this was the only way we were able to make our flight on time. They could care less.

I've never felt more relief than getting off this ship in Vancouver. I could feel my whole body relax. We are both professional kind patient people (I'm a counselor with an advanced degree who works with children and families). I felt like we were on the cruise from hell. My biggest regret was not getting off in Juneau and flying home early. What a waste of money.
CruisingK8’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Deluxe Ocean-View Verandah Stateroom
Cabin VE 8022
The cabin was great! Fairly close to the elevators but not so close to hear people coming and going. The room was well laid out and the bathroom was spacious.
Navigation Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

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