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The airteam, at that time based out of Estonia, failed to consider the inadequate ground time necessary for our SEATAC to Vancouver flight connection and consequently had to change our reservations too late to get seats together. We are glad that Seattle office is now handling air reservations. Air North at Vancouver airport was in no way equipped to handle Hurtigruten's number of passengers. There was only one check-in counter operational for our flight to Nome which meant several hundred passengers standing for over an hour. Given the demographics of the passengers and the total lack of seating available, this was unacceptable and avoidable. We had a balcony cabin on deck 7 and it was comfortable. Unfortunately the AC did not work adequately and we kept our balcony door open partway the entire time from Nome to Vancouver. The buffet dining was disappointing and nowhere near the standard of Fram. Choices were limited with a lot of fish and the menu was repeated several times. Desserts were boring with only 3 choices - none of which showed any culinary joy. Wait staff were wonderful. There are water dispensers all over the ship, but unfortunately the pour is very slow and the sparkling water option was never hooked up. The Science Center is too large and other than seating the overflow from the lecture hall, is not used to capacity. The very costly Zeiss microscopes are shrouded by their covers most of the time and we found members of the Expedition Team seeming to be mostly preoccupied behind their desks on their computers. One sometimes felt intrusive and reluctant to disturb them with a question and we generally did not feel the same connection with team members as we did on the Fram. The biggest issue expressed by many of the ship's passengers was about the inability to do landings in the Zirkelboats and consequently bypassing two of the Aleutian islands that were on our schedule. The inability to use the boats for landings in US territorial waters was clearly known to Hurtigruten well ahead of time and that should have been conveyed to the passengers accordingly, in a timely manner. The general sentiment was that the price of this voyage was too high for what was delivered. In Dutch Harbor there was a long delay before the one life boat was ready to take passengers ashore and cut down on the amount of time allowed on land. This was due to the crew's unfamiliarity with the equipment. In addition, passengers had to wait one hour to board the launch to return to the ship. After many complaints, the Captain said he would allow two life boats if we had to anchor offshore at future stops. I believe that this ship, with a capacity of over 400 passengers, is not the best choice for Antarctica. We sailed there on a small ship with another expedition company and there were only 120 passengers which allowed for 3 plus landings per day. Since there is a limit to the number of people that can disembark at any one time, and given the long lines we experienced as well as some general disorganization with relatively large life boats on the Amundsen, I would imagine trying to get 400 people ashore in small Zirkelboat groups could be a problem.

MS Roald Amundsen - a work in progress

MS Roald Amundsen Cruise Review by jonikal

23 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: September 2019
  • Destination: Alaska
The airteam, at that time based out of Estonia, failed to consider the inadequate ground time necessary for our SEATAC to Vancouver flight connection and consequently had to change our reservations too late to get seats together. We are glad that Seattle office is now handling air reservations.

Air North at Vancouver airport was in no way equipped to handle Hurtigruten's number of passengers. There was only one check-in counter operational for our flight to Nome which meant several hundred passengers standing for over an hour. Given the demographics of the passengers and the total lack of seating available, this was unacceptable and avoidable.

We had a balcony cabin on deck 7 and it was comfortable. Unfortunately the AC did not work adequately and we kept our balcony door open partway the entire time from Nome to Vancouver.

The buffet dining was disappointing and nowhere near the standard of Fram. Choices were limited with a lot of fish and the menu was repeated several times. Desserts were boring with only 3 choices - none of which showed any culinary joy. Wait staff were wonderful.

There are water dispensers all over the ship, but unfortunately the pour is very slow and the sparkling water option was never hooked up.

The Science Center is too large and other than seating the overflow from the lecture hall, is not used to capacity. The very costly Zeiss microscopes are shrouded by their covers most of the time and we found members of the Expedition Team seeming to be mostly preoccupied behind their desks on their computers. One sometimes felt intrusive and reluctant to disturb them with a question and we generally did not feel the same connection with team members as we did on the Fram.

The biggest issue expressed by many of the ship's passengers was about the inability to do landings in the Zirkelboats and consequently bypassing two of the Aleutian islands that were on our schedule. The inability to use the boats for landings in US territorial waters was clearly known to Hurtigruten well ahead of time and that should have been conveyed to the passengers accordingly, in a timely manner. The general sentiment was that the price of this voyage was too high for what was delivered.

In Dutch Harbor there was a long delay before the one life boat was ready to take passengers ashore and cut down on the amount of time allowed on land. This was due to the crew's unfamiliarity with the equipment. In addition, passengers had to wait one hour to board the launch to return to the ship. After many complaints, the Captain said he would allow two life boats if we had to anchor offshore at future stops.

I believe that this ship, with a capacity of over 400 passengers, is not the best choice for Antarctica. We sailed there on a small ship with another expedition company and there were only 120 passengers which allowed for 3 plus landings per day. Since there is a limit to the number of people that can disembark at any one time, and given the long lines we experienced as well as some general disorganization with relatively large life boats on the Amundsen, I would imagine trying to get 400 people ashore in small Zirkelboat groups could be a problem.
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