Holland America fleet
Review of Holland America
Between 1873-1989, HAL was a Dutch mail, cargo, and passenger shipping company operating regularly scheduled Transatlantic crossings between Holland and North America (also to South America). HAL was founded in 1873 as "Dutch-American Steamship Company" headquartered in Rotterdam Netherlands. On October 15, 1872, started company's first cruise itinerary (15-day crossing from Rotterdam to NYC). In 1989, HAL was acquired by Carnival Corporation for around EUR 530 million.
Nowadays, the Holland America company's best assets include the Westmark hotel chain (Alaska-Yukon region), Worldwide Shore Services (warehouses and logistics) and the Caribbean private island Little San Salvador Island. Widely known as Half Moon Cay, it is at approx 160 km (100 mi) southeast of Nassau Bahamas and is an exclusive port of call for all Carnival Corporation ships. Westmark hotels allow Holland America to dominate completely the Alaskan cruise tours market, offering the most diverse and cheap land and sea Alaska travel packages.
One of the best cruise lines for couples, the best and cheapest for Alaska, Holland America is a featured brand of Carnival Corporation - world's largest passenger shipping company. One of the main operating companies in Carnival Group, HAL is also a member of the exclusive World's Leading Cruise Lines Alliance (WLCLA) - together with the sister-brands Carnival, Cunard, Costa, Seabourn, Princess, Windstar.
One of the best cruise lines for adults, Holland America fills in the category of premium-deluxe and mainstream ship travel brands. HAL cruise ships visit over 300 seaports in more than 100 countries worldwide, with over 500 traditional and Transoceanic itineraries annually. Itineraries lengths range from 2-day to 110+ days World Voyages. The majority of itineraries are 7-day, and many range between 10-21 days.
The company has a large fleet of unique liners with home-like staterooms, first-class theater shows, professional health and beauty onboard services, University at Sea (shipboard enrichment program), Club HAL (complimentary kids programs).
In 2017, HAL celebrated company's 70 years of Alaskan cruise tour operations. HAL's Alaska passenger shipping service was started in 1947 with a spontaneous cruise tour in Fairbanks, to grow into the company's "Alaska Land+Sea Journeys" - itinerary program that combines a cruise and land-based adventure tours to Denali and Yukon Canada.
The following table shows statistical data about HAL's market share (as fleet and passenger capacity / ship-berth numbers) in comparison to other major cruise companies.
|Parent Company||Subsidiaries||Fleets (vessels per brand)||Passenger Capacity (berths per brand)|
|Carnival Corp||HAL (Holland America Line)||15||25900|
|Carnival Corp||P&O UK||8||18600|
|Carnival Corp||P&O Australia||5||8200|
|Carnival Corp||TOTAL||103 ships||233,200 berths|
|RCCL (Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd)||RCI (Royal Caribbean International)||26||84,700|
|RCCL||TOTAL||64 ships||141400 berths|
|NCLH (Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd)||NCL (Norwegian Cruise Lines)||16||46600|
|NCLH||TOTAL||26 ships||54400 berths|
|(other large brands)|
3- Star Cruises (GHK)
4- Dream Cruises (GHK)
6- Viking Ocean
HAL's newest vessels are from the Pinnacle-class - named Koningsdam (2016) and Nieuw Statendam (2018). These are also the company's ever largest ships, with gross tonnage almost 100,000 (99500 tons) and max passenger capacity 3194.
In late-January 2017, the shipowner Carnival Corporation announced 2 more shipbuilding orders. The new liners were ordered for the brands Princess Cruises (Royal-class) and Holland America Line (Pinnacle-class). Carnival signed a MoA (memorandum of agreement) with the shipbuilder Fincantieri (Italy) to construct both vessels, with scheduled delivery in 2021 (Nieuw Ryndam for HAL, at Marghera yard) and 2022 (TBN for Princess, at Monfalcone yard). By the time when both shipbuilding contracts were finalized (February 2017), Carnival Corporation had a total of 19 new ships scheduled for delivery between 2017 and 2022.
HAL ships names
In company's over 130 years of maritime history, there are some quite charmingly special traditions and truly unique practices. One of them is that all HAL ships go with the “dam” suffix. They usually bear names of famous Dutch landmarks, the 4 compass points, or some of the most prominent river dams or port cities in the Netherlands. And this special list of “Dutch landmarks” includes rivers, mountains, sea, city/town.
Some vessel names have been reused (some of them several times) with old ship’s retirement. This practice of renewing ship names allows the company to emotionally connect its glorious past with its amazing business growth in our times.
HAL ship classes (ordered high to low)
- Pinnacle-class are Koningsdam (2016), Nieuw Statendam (2018) and Nieuw Ryndam (2021) - fleet's newest and ever largest vessels.
- Signature-class (enhanced Vista-class design) are Eurodam and Nieuw Amsterdam. Compared to Vista-ships, they have 1 additional deck (between Lido and Observation) allowing more staterooms (mostly spa cabins) and public venues (“Tamarind”, “Silk Den”).
- Vista-class are Zuiderdam, Oosterdam, Westerdam and Noordam.
- Single-class is Prinsendam (sold in 2018).
- Rotterdam-class (R-class) are Rotterdam, Volendam, Zaandam and Amsterdam.
- Statendam-class (S-class) are Statendam (now CMV Vasco de Gama), Maasdam, Ryndam (now Pacific Aria) and Veendam. They were fleet's 1st to have Atrium, 2-deck dining room, show lounge, Lido pool (with retractable glass roof).
NEWS: In July 2018, MS Prinsendam was sold to Phoenix Reisen, starting operations for the German company (as MS Amera) on July 1, 2019. Prinsendam's cruise schedule is assimilated by the fleet mates Rotterdam, Volendam, and Veendam.
Holland America Line refurbishments
In 2003-2008, by the SOE (“Signature of Excellence”) program, HAL upgraded all older vessels, on which were also added new venues, stateroom categories, and amenities.
In November 2015, HAL announced company's USD 300 million fleetwide drydock refurbishment program. The fleet upgrade project included Suite improvements (new decors, furnishings, amenities and services upgrades for all suite stateroom categories on Vista-Class, Signature-Class, and R-Class vessels. The first scheduled for dry-docks ships were Oosterdam and Eurodam, followed by Westerdam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Noordam,Zuiderdam,Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Volendam, and Zaandam. Eurodam was drydock refitted in December 2015 (Dec 7-20, in Freeport Bahamas). Oosterdam was drydock refitted in 2016 (April 3-18, in Fincantieri’s Palermo Sicily yard).
Each cruise suite was upgraded with a new sofa, chairs, headboard, carpet and wall coverings, privacy curtain, drapery, bed runner, bed skirt, quartz stone top (on the vanity desk), vanity lighting, dresser, dressing table, nightstands.
Other upgrades included 1 new USB outlet (on bed’s headboard), bedside LED lights, upgraded electrical outlets, lighted closet rod, new interactive TV system (allowing complimentary movies-on-demand, access to the ship's daily scheduled activities program, ship information - restaurants, bars, spa services, checking onboard accounts, Internet). Suite bathrooms received a wall of designer glass tiles (backdrop to the new dressing area with modern taps, under-mount sink), new mirrors (with integrated LED lighting), stylish floor tiles, nightlight.
Since 2016, all suites (fleetwide) received the following exclusive amenities - priority services (embarkation, disembarkation, tendering, dining reservations), complimentary services (laundry, pressing, dry cleaning), exclusive access to Neptune Lounge, private breakfast service (at Pinnacle Grill). The list of new suite cabin amenities includes a premium duvet, luxury bathrobes, and slippers, luxury bath products (by Elemis). BOSE SoundDock (iPod docking station), umbrella, binoculars, complimentary mimosa cocktails (with in-cabin breakfast), Nespresso coffee machine.
In 2018, HAL contracted ABB Group (Swedish-Swiss corporation specializing in robotics, marine power, and propulsion equipment) for installing shore-power systems fleetwide. The technology allows docked in ports cruise ships to receive shoreside power supply (from the city's grid) and turn off their engines, thus reducing to zero emissions and noise. ABB installed its shore-power equipment on 11x HAL ships. Switchover (ship-to-shore power) at seaports takes around 20 min.
HAL's Club Orange
"Club Orange" program provides exclusive amenities to HAL's Suite passengers booked in cabin categories Neptune and Pinnacle. The bonus perks by this program include:
- priority services (check-in, disembarkation, tendering, dining reservations)
- 24-hour concierge service (assistance, information, reservations, hotline)
- exclusive dining venue (serving complimentary Pinnacle Grill breakfast and Dining Room dinner, plus exclusive dishes)
- dedicated Concierge Desk (Guest Services and Tours)
- room service (a la carte breakfast menu with complimentary gourmet dishes - including smoked salmon with eggs Benedict, steak and eggs), sparkling wine (welcome glass, at embarkation day)
- Club Orange tote bag (welcome gift)
- premium bathrobes (in-cabin use, available for monogramming and purchasing)
Club Orange is also available for a limited number of non-suite staterooms per voyage. The program was launched in December 2018 (on Koningsdam and Nieuw Statendam) and available fleetwide since 2019. On other HAL ships, Club Orange Restaurant is designed as a dedicated section in MDRs (Main Dining Rooms) opened for breakfast and dinner. On Koningsdam and Nieuw Statendam, "Culinary Arts Center" was renamed "Club Orange Restaurant".
In October 2019, HAL implemented fleetwide new Club Orange amenities, including cabin upgrades (within the booked category) and the "Captain's Choice" event.
- HAL customers purchasing the "Club Orange" package receive a cabin upgrade to the best available (within the booked category) stateroom (based on availability at the time of the package purchase).
- The "Captain's Choice" is during the voyage and offered as an exclusive event for Club Orange passengers only. It could be one of several pre-scheduled experiences - like exclusive pre-opening shopping access, behind the scenes hotel department tour, private coffee chat with Music Walk musicians, etc.
The Club Orange package costs USD 35 per person per day (on Koningsdam and Nieuw Statendam) and USD 25 pp per day on all other HAL cruise liners. Stateroom's first and second passengers are both required to buy the package. Stateroom's 3rd and 4th passengers are not charged. Club Orange must be purchased prior departure (not available for onboard purchasing).
(NEW 2019) Holland America Line's coffee brand "Rotterdam 1873"
Since February 2019, passengers on all HAL ships (fleetwide) can enjoy the new specialty coffee "Rotterdam 1873". The new brand was created exclusively for Holland America Line via partnership with Beukenhorst Coffee USA Inc (Dutch coffee house in West Palm Beach, Florida).
"Rotterdam 1873" is a small-batch roasted coffee blend named after the port city Rotterdam and the year in which Holland America Line was established. The new coffee blend consists of the best Indonesian and Central-South American Arabica coffee beans. It is available for purchasing (by the cup) in all shipboard beverage venues. As souvenir (at ship's Grand Dutch Cafe, and Explorations Cafe) is available for purchasing regular and decaffeinated 12-oz bag (Rotterdam 1873 beans).
The new coffee blend is roasted fresh in batches (by Beukenhorst Coffee USA) then supplied to the liners. Since 1989, HAL offered as an alternative (at extra cost) the Netherlands-imported "Beukenhorst Koffie" in Main Dining Rooms, Lido Market (buffet restaurants) and other onboard venues serving complimentary coffee.
(NEW) HAL cruise gratuities 2019
Prior December 2018, HAL's daily gratuities per person (pp) were USD 13,50 (interior-oceanview-balcony staterooms, applied to both adults and kids) and USD 15 (suites).
On HAL cruises after December 1 (2018), daily gratuities are increased to USD 14,50 pp per day (non-suite passengers) and USD 16 pp per day (for suite passengers).
Daily gratuity is an automatic service charge (applied to both adults and kids) that is added to passenger's onboard account each day. Passengers can prepay cruise gratuities. The amount of gratuities is split between the ship's staff (dining, housekeeping, cabin stewards).
Note: On May 1, 2017, Holland America Line raised daily gratuities from USD 12,50 to 13,50 pp (non-suite pax).
Holland America fly-cruise deals
In August 2015, Holland America added enhanced features to its flight booking program "Flight Ease". HAL's website allows travelers to choose flights (departure and return) separately, also to compare real-time airfares, plus detailed schedules. HAL also allows adding of stopover flight segments.
Flight Ease's improved functionality includes:
- calendar for flight cruise planning based on the cruise itinerary's departure and arrival dates
- independent selection of departing/return flights
- improved website navigation - you can move across fly bookings, including search, select, summary, pay
- improved search box filters to select best flights as preferred airlines, number of stops, ticket price, departure time, flight duration
- easy airfare comparison for the same flight
- flight schedules with detailed info on aircraft types, flight connections, layover times.
HAL's "Flight Ease" air booking program offers up-to-the-minute flight schedules and selection of 2 competitive pricing on flights with arrival/departure dates same as the booked cruise itinerary. All flight cruise deals booked through HAL's Flight Ease program feature 24-hour assistance and “Next Port Protection”. The latter guarantees that in case of flight delays or cancellations, Holland America Line takes care of the flight changes in order to join the cruise ship at the next port of call along the booked itinerary.
Airfare payments are due with HAL cruise's final payment. Restricted Fares include cancellation fees and require full payment for the flight reservation at booking time.
(NEW) HAL cruise shore excursions "Best Price Guarantee"
Since November 2017, HAL offers a "best price guarantee" for customers with pre-booked shore excursions (land tours). The new program is available fleetwide and on all cruise itineraries, excluding only voyages in Asia. By the program, any booked passenger who finds a comparable excursion/tour deal (offering same amenities, including date, duration, transfers, transportation, meals) elsewhere at a lower price will receive an OBC ("onboard credit") of 110% of the price difference.
The request must be submitted online up to 7 days prior cruise ship departure. Booked passengers are notified within 2 days of submission if the tour/excursion meets the "Best Price Guarantee" requirements. If eligible, booked passengers receive a non-refundable OBC to be used during the voyage.
Best Price Guarantee applies only to publicly available and advertised with pricing tour deals. Passengers canceling their HAL tour on the ship are not eligible for "Best Price Guarantee" OBC. The new program further guarantees HAL tour deals' exceptional value, competitive pricing, and best quality. As of 2018, through HAL can be purchased over 4100 tours/excursions in around 550 cruise ports.
Holland America smoking policy
Implemented in January 2017, Holland America Line has a new cruise ship smoking policy banning smoking on all cabin balconies. As previously, in-cabin smoking is also not allowed. Smoking E-cigarettes and vaping devices is permitted in designated areas, as well as inside passenger staterooms (but not on cabin balconies).
Passengers who violate the company's ship' smoking policy will be fined a cleaning fee USD 250 per day.
There are smoking-allowed areas for active slot machine players located in all HAL cruise ship casinos - excepting on MS Oosterdam and MS Eurodam, which casinos are entirely smoke-free. Follows the list of Holland America ships' designated smoking-allowed areas:
- MS Maasdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
- MS Veendam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
- MS Volendam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
- MS Zaandam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
- MS Rotterdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
- MS Amsterdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
- MS Noordam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side and the Oak Room
- MS Oosterdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side
- MS Eurodam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side
- MS Zuiderdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side
- MS Prinsendam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the port side
- MS Nieuw Amsterdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side
- MS Westerdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side
- MS Koningsdam and MS Nieuw Statendam - Seaview Bar/ Pool (aft portside on deck 9) and Sun Bar (aft starboard on deck 11).
Holland America Alaska crui￼setours (land-and-sea packages)
The 7-day "Alaskan Explorer" (roundtrip from Seattle WA) is company's signature cruise tour itinerary for this unique destination.
The other itinerary (7-day "Inside Passage") is roundtrip from Vancouver Canada.
HAL liners in Alaska offer cruisetours with lengths 10-13-14-15 days. They are inclusive of 3-day cruising (between Vancouver-Juneau) plus scenic train travel (Juneau-Anchorage) on the White Pass-Yukon Route Railway.
- (Y5C) 10-Day Yukon+double Denali (Vancouver to Anchorage)
- (Y3C) 13-Day Yukon+triple Denali (Vancouver to Anchorage)
- (Y3L) 14-Day Yukon+triple Denali (Anchorage to Vancouver)
- (Y2l) 15-Day Yukon+triple Denali (Anchorage to Vancouver).
Itinerary of Holland America
The list of Holland America cruise destinations features Alaska, Caribbean, Hawaii, Europe (Mediterranean), Australia, Asia, Canada New England, Transatlantic (repositioning), South America, Caribbean, and Round The World Cruises. Here you will be able to easily compare all Holland America cruise line itinerary changes – all the new HAL itineraries and new cruises on a single page. The comparison on all Holland America destinations by ship will give you all home-port and itinerary changes in the HAL’s sailing program.
Between September 2019 - May 2020, HAL has 7 liners with scheduled Panama Canal transition cruises. From the total 32 itineraries, 16 are full transits (ranging between 14-23 days) and 16 partial transits (10-11 days) with included Southern Caribbean ports.
Holland America cruise itinerary changes
|Ship Name||Homeports||Itineraries Changes|
7d Alaska from Vancouver
(December special) 15-17d Panama Canal California to Florida (leaving from San Francisco and San Diego to Fort Lauderdale).
10d Canada New England (Fall) 10d NYC-Quebec City, and the reverse).
October 2019-April 2020
The Caribbean from Fort Lauderdale
7-14d Canada New England from Boston and Montreal
(Oct-Nov) Transatlantic (21d Florida-Rome, 21d Rome-Florida, 42d roundtrip).
(Jan-Feb) South America
October 2019-April 2020
Mediterranean (itinerary changes)
7d Caribbean from Lauderdale
Transatlantic repositioning (Florida-Barcelona, Barcelona-Florida.
MS Nieuw Amsterdam explores the eastern and western regions of the Caribbean on a series of 7-day cruises, featuring calls at Saint Thomas, San Juan, Cozumel, Grand Turk, Georgetown, Ocho Rios.
2020: the ship spends a full 2020 season in the Mediterranean and offers 12-day Mediterranean Tapestry, Mediterranean Empires and Mediterranean Romance cruises to Italy, Greece, and Turkey roundtrip from Venice or between Venice and Civitavecchia (Rome) or Barcelona, as well as 12-day Greek Odyssey and Adriatic Dream itineraries between Venice and Rome.
new Mediterranean itineraries
The Caribbean from Fort Lauderdale
Transatlantic Florida-Barcelona, Rome-Florida.
7d Alaska from Seattle (Tracy Arm, Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan, Victoria). Australia from Sydney
repositioning from Alaska to Australia New Zealand, and reverse.
April – October 2016
October 2019-April 2020
Europe from Amsterdam (departing from Rotterdam)
World cruise (90d from Rotterdam (88d from Southampton).
(Nov) 35d Transatlantic roundtrip to the Caribbean from Europe (departing from Rotterdam) and 33d from departing from UK (Southampton).
April-September 2020: 7- and 14-day roundtrips from Rotterdam. The ship also visits the British Isles, Baltic, and Iberia.
South America cruises
7d Canada New England (Boston-Quebec City, and the reverse Quebec City – Boston), special 7d roundtrip Boston.
(July) Transatlantic with Iceland and Greenland
from San Diego CA
Panama Canal repositioning
7d Alaska from Vancouver (Tracy Arm, Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay, Ketchikan). 34d Around Australia (50d combined with Sydney to Singapore).Asia cruises
(world cruises 2020-2021) 77-day Grand South America and Antarctica Voyage departs January 5, 2020. The 2021 cruise (74-day itinerary) departs on January 4.
7d Alaska from Seattle (Juneau, Glacier Bay, Sitka, Ketchikan, Victoria).The Caribbean from Fort Lauderdale
(special) 30d roundtrip to Hawaii and Tahiti from San Diego, California.
relocation (Spring) Panama Canal (Florida-Alaska), San Diego – Vancouver, Vancouver-Seattle, and the reverse in Fall.
(September 2019-April 2020) ms Westerdam extensively explores Cambodia, Japan, China, the Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, and Singapore, on itineraries ranging from 13 to 16 nights, sailing from Yokohama (Tokyo) in Japan, Hong Kong and Shanghai in China, and Singapore.
7d Vancouver to Alaska
from San Diego CA (21d “collectors”)
Kicking off the 2021 season in April, ms Amsterdam, ms Rotterdam, and ms Zaandam sail a collection of fifty cruises that visit 23 exceptional ports of call on itineraries departing from Boston MA, Fort Lauderdale FL, and Montreal, Quebec. In addition to Greenland, the sailings visit some of the most iconic destinations in the region, including Charlottetown (Prince Edward Island), Maine’s Acadia National Park, Cape Breton’s Bird Islands, and Red Bay, Labrador.
7d Vancouver to Alaska (Tracy Arm, Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay, Ketchikan).(Caribbean) Panama Canal cruises from Fort Lauderdale (Florida round-trips to Panama)
(Dec Caribbean Holiday specials)
repositioning (with Panama Canal crossing)
May-June 2020: 12-day Mediterranean itineraries. The beauty of the North Atlantic in summer 2020 is the highlight of Zuiderdam’s Viking Passage itinerary out of Copenhagen to New York. The ship visits picturesque ports in Norway, Greenland, Iceland, and Canada, and retraces the route the Vikings that was sailed centuries ago.
April-October 2020: 6-, 7-, 8-, 10-, 11- and 14-day Canada & New England voyages departing from Boston, Fort Lauderdale, New York City, Montreal, and Quebec City. The itineraries feature calls at some of the most iconic destinations of the region, including Charlottetown, Sydney, Halifax, and Bar Harbor, Maine.
In September 2020, ms Zuiderdam begins the fall season with a trio of 10-day Colors of Canada & New England voyages between New York and Quebec City. On September 7 and 27, ms Zuiderdam departs from New York and calls at Boston, Halifax, Bar Harbor, Sydney, Charlottetown, and Quebec City. A similar itinerary is offered on September 17 departing from Quebec City. The cruises feature sailing through the Gulf of Saint Lawrence and Saguenay Fjord
MS Zuiderdam offers an 11-day Atlantic Coast voyage departing from Quebec City on October 7, 2020, calling at Charlottetown, Halifax, Sydney, Bar Harbor, Boston, Newport, New York, prior to concluding at Fort Lauderdale FL.
Holland America itineraries themed "Signature Experiences"
HAL new culturally themed "Signature Experiences" are available on select cruise itineraries departing out of Montreal (Quebec Canada) and in Europe - from Amsterdam, Barcelona, Copenhagen, Civitavecchia-Rome and Venice.
- These are pre-cruise packages created exclusively for HAL with included evening event (themed on culture or culinary), 2-night luxury hotel stay and bus transfers to the cruise ship. Guests booking a suite cabin on these eligible cruises receive the package complimentarily, but as space is limited reservations are required.
- The pre-cruise "Signature Experiences" tour packages for non-suite passengers as prices range between USD 700-1000 per person (double occupancy). Taxes and port fees are additional.
- "Taste of Montreal" pre-cruise tour package is on select Canada New England cruises from Montreal. The tour visits the city's most popular sights. The package also includes a 2-night hotel stay and complimentary ship transfers. HAL passengers visit Place Ville Marie and its observation deck (Au Sommet Place Ville Marie) for fabulous city views. The tour culminates with the Pointe-a-Calliere museum where a private party with appetizers and open bar is held.
- Port of Amsterdam Holland - the pre-cruise tour package includes an evening at Rijksmuseum - after-hours private tour, cocktail reception with hors-d'oeuvres in the museum's foyer, Rijksmuseum Honor Gallery tour, followed by a 3-course dinner in its cafe.
- Port Barcelona Spain - the pre-cruise tour package includes an evening at Casa Batllo - private tour, followed by informal dinner with tapas and drinks while enjoying flamenco music by Son de Cajon.
- Port Copenhagen Denmark - the pre-cruise tour package includes a night at Kronborg Castle (UNESCO Heritage Site) where guests are entertained by local actors providing a history of Shakespeare's Hamlet, then follow appetizers and beverages.
- Port Civitavecchia (Rome Italy) - the pre-cruise tour package "A Night Out in Ancient Rome" includes an evening at Casa dei Cavalieri di Rodi. The formal dinner is on a terrace overlooking the Roman Forum. After in appetizers and prosecco, guests enjoy a private tour of the Colosseum lead by an expert guide.
- Port Venice Italy - the pre-cruise tour package "An Evening on the Grand Canal" includes an evening canal cruise to the entrance of a privately owned palace overlooking the Grand Canal. The guests enjoy a formal dinner with appetizers, drinks and live music, all in the company of the countess or member of her noble family.
- Signature Experiences" pre-cruise tour packages for departure ports in Australia, New Zealand, South America, and Asia will be added soon.
HAL cruises to Cuba
HAL Holland America Line scheduled cruises to Cuba roundtrip from Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale Florida) on ms Veendam. HAL's 7-, 11-and 12-days long Cuban cruise itineraries also visit other Caribbean ports of call. HAL's prices started at USD 900 per person (double occupancy inside cabin rates).
The current list of passenger shipping lines offering cruises to Cuba includes:
- Carnival Paradise leaving from Tampa Florida - prices started from USD 480 pp
- Royal Caribbean (ship Empress of the Seas) from Miami and Tampa since April 2017
- MSC Cruises (ship MSC Opera, leaving from Havana)
- Oceania Cruises (ships Marina and Regatta) starting in 2017, Cuba circumnavigation, stops in Cienfuegos and Havana, also part of some Panama Canal transition itineraries.
- NCL (ship Norwegian Sky) 4-day itineraries with Havana overnights - starting May 2017
- Azamara Cruises (ship on Azamara Quest from Miami)
- Compagnie du Ponant (yacht Le Ponant, leaving from Miami Florida)
- Pearl Seas Cruises (ship Pearl Mist, leaving from Fort Lauderdale Florida) since January 2017
- Thomson UK / Marella Cruises (ship Marella Dream) 7-day, leaving roundtrip from Jamaica (Montego Bay) to Havana
- Lindblad Expeditions (chartered sailing ship MS Panorama II, leaving from Havana)
- Celestyal Cruises (ship Celestyal Crystal, leaving from Havana and Montego Bay Jamaica)
- Grand Circle Cruise Line (ship MV Clio / ex Tere Moana) one-way from Miami to Havana, or the reverse from Havana to Miami (embarkation/disembarkation in port Cienfuegos).
- International Expeditions (leaving from Havana, charter flights out of Miami)
- Victory Cruise Lines - MS Victory I (former MS Saint Laurent) - fly-cruises from Miami to Havana (home-port Cienfuegos /departures)
Note: According to the current Cuban law, US citizens of Cuban origin (born in Cuba) are not allowed to visit the island country (including on cruise ships). Regardless of their US citizenship status, Cuban-born Americans were denied booking on cruise itineraries visiting ports in Cuba. However, the situation changed in April 2016, after Carnival Corporation negotiated with the Cuban government for allowing ships with Cuban-born passengers, as such US citizens are allowed to visit the country on USA-Cuba charter flights. The Carnival-fathom line started Miami to Cuba cruises in May 2016.
Alaska Airlines offers regular nonstop flights to Havana from Los Angeles (California USA). An 80-min ling JetBlue flight from Fort Lauderdale (Florida) to Havana costs less than USD 100. Previously, air travel from the USA to Cuba was thought charter flights only.
IMPORTANT: On June 4, 2019, the US Government announced new regulations (economic sanctions) that ended group travel to Cuba, including via US-homeported cruise liners, effective immediately. The ban relates to "private and corporate aircraft, cruise ships, sailboats, fishing boats, and other similar aircraft and vessels". The US travel restrictions impacted hundreds of pre-scheduled cruise itineraries, which were adjusted to no longer stop in Cuban seaports.
Holland America related cruise news
Because of the uncertainty of ports accepting cruise liners in Asia, Holland America decided to cancel ms Westerdam’s 4 March & April 2020...February 21, 2020
A Turkish airliner chartered by Holland America Line to evacuate cruise passengers from MS Westerdam was turned around mid-flight on Thursday...February 21, 2020
Malaysia barred the entry of remaining passengers from a Holland America cruise ship docked in Cambodia after an 83-year-old American traveller...February 17, 2020
Passengers and crew aboard a Holland America Line ship, who were denied entry at several ports in Asia in recent days due to fears of...February 15, 2020
Cambodian authorities announced on Thursday, February 13, that at least 20 passengers of MS Westerdam who had been ill would have their blood samples...February 13, 2020
Passengers onboard Holland America's ms Westerdam remain stuck at sea, after approval to dock in Laem Chabang, Bangkok, was revoked. The vessel...February 11, 2020
The Hawke's Bay Rescue Helicopter service was brought into an emergency involving a cruise ship off the east coast of the North Island. A long-haul...February 5, 2020
Up to 2000 people were stuck on a cruise liner in the South China Sea after the Holland America ship was refused entry to the Philippines due to...February 3, 2020
- Cruise Industry
Holland America Line’s 2021 Canada and New England program includes 3 new voyages to Greenland. From April through October, passengers can...January 18, 2020
Holland America Line announced it will not sail the February 1 ms Nieuw Amsterdam voyage because of an issue with one of the two azipod propulsion...January 15, 2020
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