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Zaandam Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
558 Reviews

Cost Cutting Evident In Restaurants

Zaandam Cruise Review by PismoPat

9 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Jul 2019
  • Destination: Canada & New England
  • Cabin Type: Neptune Deluxe Verandah Suite

This was our second cruise with HAL. The first was through the Panama Canal and was memorable. This one was more memorable for the Cons than the Pros:


We like the Neptune suites because they are spacious and there is access to the Neptune Lounge, breakfast in the Pinnacle Restaurant, the complementry laundry, and the Concierge who is very helpful for anything that comes up.

The crew was excellent and our cabin stewards were very helpful. The drinks were well made and reasonable, but they do tack on a 15% gratuity in spite of the $16 per day gratuity assessment. Who does that go to?

The hamburgers by the pool were very good. The no sugar added desserts were excellent.

WIFI was faster than other ships. That means it was adequate. LOL


I thought the food was lacking, except for the Pinnacle Restaurant. We ate in the main dining room twice. The first time I had halibut which was overcooked and dry. The second time I had pot roast which was bland and required salt and pepper. I mentioned the overcooked halibut to the concierge and got a phone call from the head waiter offering to make another reservation and also the food services officer stopped by at our table at breakfast to apologize. This would indicate that the crew is very serious about the food. That's why I feel it is a budget constraint causing the "just average" food.

The food in the buffet was just average, except for the fried shrimp, which were so small that you could not see the shrimp in the breading and the NY steaks were somewhat tough. I think the budget was screwed down pretty tight.

A big problem was that the buffet seemed understaffed, causing lines at the various stations. By the time we found a table, our food was usually cold.

Kids were running around everywhere and the table density in the buffet was very high and made it hard to walk between tables.

WIFI is not included, but is available at a flat rate. $139 per week per device. The per device sucked as you had to knock off the other person to get on wifi. The speed was pretty good for shipboard wifi.

PismoPat's Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Neptune Deluxe Verandah Suite
Cabin SB 7010

Spacious cabin with a large veranda and very comfortable bed. Good storage and nice bathroom. The Neptune Lounge has a concierge and a nice array of fruit cups and finger sandwiches, breakfast items, and lunch items. There is also a very good expresso machine that grounds the beans and makes good coffee and expresso.

The young ladies that are there can help with anything, including getting onto WIFI.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

Quebec City

Typical city overview. Very good guide with interesting information.


Nice tour, moves slowly so you can take things in much more easily than from a bus.

Bar Harbor

City is close to the ship since you take a boat to town. Very nice tourist area with friendly people. We had a lobster role at a shoreline hotel. It was pricey, but very nice setting.

Charlottetown (Prince Edward Island)

Cruise terminal had some nice vendors. Prices were good.

Sydney (Nova Scotia)

Friendly vendors in the cruise terminal with some nice items.

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