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Nieuw Amsterdam Cruise Review
4.5 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
872 Reviews

Cruisers beware! Ship is broken!

Nieuw Amsterdam Cruise Review by TNTbeer

7 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Jan 2020
  • Destination: the Eastern Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Deluxe Ocean-View Verandah Stateroom

I previously experienced 2 great cruises with HAL in November and December 2019, thoroughly enjoyed both. I was excited to take my daughter on this cruise, albeit, we had orginally booked Cuba as our destination but had to change due to the restrictions. We chose this one because if Grand Turks, Puerto Rico and Saint Maarten. Unbeknown to us prior to sailing, the ship had propeller problems 2 weeks prior and we only had 1 working. They felt it was safe to travel however, they had to alter our itinerary because of the inability to travel at faster speed that would enable us to go to Saint Maarten. They chose St. Croix instead and gave us 25 shipboard credit. My first issue is that they knew there was a problem and did not inform us prior to sailing so we could decide whether we wanted to still go on this cruise or opt to get credit and take it when the ship was fixed.

2nd issue- Because of the slowness of the ship our port times were shorter.

3rd- St. Croix was horrible. Obviously it still has much work to be done in regards to rebuilding after the past hurricanes. It was dirty, only a few places open, the beach was too crowded . Time was short so didn't want to take a chance on exploring the island on our own and honestly without the internet, we had no opportunity to look up our options. This port was definitely not up to par with St. Maarten.

4th. Though we wanted to go to PR, we learned late morning of the 6.4 earthquake that had hit the island that morning and the decision was made to go ahead and pull into port. Along with Carnival and NCL. 3 large cruise ships docked in a city that was mostly without power. The pharmacy was open because they had a generator, and closed at sundown. Only a couple of restaurants were open. Ft. Morro was closed due to no power. Basically you could walk around the city, but at dark, no street lights etc. There were no instructions given by the Capt of the ship what to do in case of another earthquake or large aftershock if we were on land. The PR governor admitted they do not have an emergency preparedness plan for earthquakes, yet you dump 6000 passengers + crew out into the town, there wasn't even power in the cruise ship terminal. We did feel several.aftershocks while walking by the port.

5th die to unforeseen illness of a passenger we had to alter our course so the coast guard could medevac the passenger via helicopter, which took us several hours out of our travel. The next day we arrived in Half Moon Cay to do nothing. We couldn't anchor, the tenders couldn"t safely get passengers off the ship so that port was canceled. I do understand that the cruiseline does not have control over the weather. But, obviously the captain has access to weather reports etc prior to making his way there. Poor planning.

The adult only area, pool and hot tub had young children in it all the time.

Finally, did the cruise line consider what would happen if the other propeller went out while we were out to sea? We would have been dead in the water. Much to my amazement, we disembarked and the next set of passengers embarked. Still the propeller is not fixed. At what point will the cruiseline look beyond their pocketbook and fix the ship before another cruise?

I bragged about how awesome this cruise line is to my family and friends, but after this experience I am hesitant to promote.

There were good things; our cabin steward was wonderful. The food was delicious after the first night. Lunchtime at the Lido restaurant Asian station was some of the best we have eaten.

I appreciate that the ship is non-smoking except on the Adult sea deck, but wished that was also non smoking.

Thoroughly enjoyed Lincoln center stage, however due to the popularity, each performance had standing room only. We had to go to the venue an hour and a half prior to showtime to get a seat. The room is much too small, and the acoustics are terrible. Surely, the ship should change where these shows are performed to accommodate the passengers that want to hear without lining up down the hallway.

We enjoyed the Step One dance company and the comedian.

TNTbeer's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
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Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Deluxe Ocean-View Verandah Stateroom

Smaller than what I expected. I was in the same type of cabin on the Nieuw Konningsdam and Nieuw statendam previously and those rooms had more closet space and room space.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

Everglades Tour

Air boat ride was awesome, though we only saw an iguana and osprey while out on the water.

View All 149 Everglades Tour Reviews
San Juan

See my review. No power, nothing open. We had purchased Bioluminescent bay, but canceled for safety reasons due to earthquake activity.

St. Croix

Horrible, dirty, nothing to do on island, mainly a few stores opened, a couple of vendors were by the port.

Grand Turk

Went to Rainbow beach via taxi. Snorkeling was horrible visibility. Ended up back by the cruise pier and the snorkeling was great.

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