How is Holland America for GLBT?

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#1
Pompano Beach, FL
2 Posts
Joined Oct 2012
Partner and I are on HAL/Noordam leaving Rome on 10/31/13 transatlantic back to Ft. Lauderdale. Anyone have any issues or comments on their experience with Holland America? Any problems for same sex couples?
#2
ft . lauderdale
416 Posts
Joined Sep 2004
Been on HAL twice. Its very gay friendly.They also usually have a GLBT gathering in a bar every night,before dinner.Its an older,sophisticated crowd.
#3
3,256 Posts
Joined Oct 2005
No problems for us. As garsny pointed out its usually an older sophisticated crowd but not always. However, in our experience, with or without a FOD, we never experienced any problems.
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#4
Washington, DC
987 Posts
Joined Jan 2001
Those transatlantic repositioning cruises attract a different passenger demographic than more usual cruises. And I have never been on one. But for regular cruises, HAL is a good place for older (45 to 99) gay couples. They have GLBT meetings and the staff is very welcoming. HAL has hosted many RSVP cruises. You should have a great cruise, unless you don't enjoy sea days.
#5
Henderson NV/Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
2,667 Posts
Joined Feb 2006
Also, on HAL it's very easy to make friends with the show cast and production folks as they have passenger priviledges and will be in the clubs and eating in the buffet and drinking at the bars with you.
Noordam is a beautiful ship, I have loads of pics in my Alaska gallery below. ENJOY!
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#6
Central Florida
489 Posts
Joined Mar 2009
Cruised the Eurodam in the fall of 2011 with my then partner and we had no problems at all. Meeting the singers and dancers in the Disco every night was a blast. There was a small group of us that got together each night for cocktails. We had the entire disco to ourselves. This was on a NE/Canada Cruise.
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#7
Daytona Beach
62 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
My husband and I have sailed on several HAL cruises and never had a problem with the staff, or noticed any issues with other passengers. As most have said, HAL draws an older crowd and while some might not approve, most have enough manners to keep their thoughts to themselves. The staff has always been accommodating, even helping us celebrate our 10th anniversary in the Pinnacle Grill. While I don't expect them to announce my sexuality when I enter the dining room, I will not deny it if asked. We have had some, um, interesting dining companions and conversations. We have even been seated with other GLBT couples during open seating meals, probably because we so obviously look and act as a couple.
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#10
Fort Lauderdale
154 Posts
Joined Feb 2009
We have been on 7 HAL cruises and have nothing but good things to say. Have met many fellow travelers at their LGBT get togethers.
#11
Kansas City,MO
90 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
My partner and I will also be joining you on this cruise. We have taken multiple HAL cruises in the past (many with RSVP) and took a transatlantic cruise out of Venice in 2011 with HAL. I will say staff has always been great. It took staff no time to figure it out and we were treated as any other couple. Passengers are much more well rounded and never had any issues or felt uncomfortable. On our TA they held a daily GLBT meeting which was listed in their daily activities and very well attended. We also like that HAL's cabins are more spacious than we've had on other cruise lines. Haven't been on the Noordam for years but they seem to keep all their ships clean and in very good shape. Will this be your first transatlantic?
#12
Pompano Beach, FL
2 Posts
Joined Oct 2012
Thanks for the response. This will be our first transatlantic and our first cruise on HAL. Spending a few days in Rome prior to trip...look forward to meeting you both at the first FOD meeting.
#13
Kansas City,MO
90 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
We will also arriving in Rome a couple of days early. Want to see a few more sites before boarding ship. Look foward to meeting you both also.
#14
Marysville, Australia
433 Posts
Joined Mar 2010
We are on the Ryndam 14 night Norse legends to Norway from May 5th, hoping to meet other GBLT folk! Rod & Barry
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#15
102 Posts
Joined Nov 2012
Originally posted by buffalobill15
Partner and I are on HAL/Noordam leaving Rome on 10/31/13 transatlantic back to Ft. Lauderdale. Anyone have any issues or comments on their experience with Holland America? Any problems for same sex couples?
Hi, sorry for the late response. We did have a problem 2 years ago on HollAm. We were on a Black Sea cruise out of Civitavicchi (Rome) for 12 days ending in Athens. The cruise director thought it was cool when he was on stage to continuously crack ugly anti-gay jokes, and made anti-gay slurs, and parodied exaggerated swishing lim wrist action and lisps. It got worse when their comedian joined in the fun. He was worse with comments we all have come to hate. I stayed to see how far they would go with it. They did not let up. I said something after the event, but was told I was too sensitive and to "get over it, and whenever they saw us they would chuckle. Even after I complained they continued to do it at later stage performances when he appeared. We encountered the comedian and the cruise director when we were on a shore excursion, and they found it necessar to say something crude to us.

The hispanic cabin stewart also kept placing the bible on the top of the nightstand by our bed. No pne ever did this before, plus neither of us are christians. I kept throwing it in the drawer, and the next time I came back to the cabin it was back up there again. This continued for days, until one time I was so pi**ed that I told the stewart that if he didn't take the thing out of our cabin, I would throw it overboard. It disappeared quick.

HollAm gave us a free dinner in their high end restaurant on the ship, and when we got home we received a (form) letter of apology giving us a discount on an upcoming cruise, to be used within a year. We never used it. HOll Am is owned by Carnival. We are both professionals, older, and our flames do not burn that bright. We were surprised as both of us have been on a lot of cruises over the last 25 years and this has never happened before. I was told that HollAm, and especially this itinerary, had an older, more conservative group of cruisers. This can happen on any cruise though.
#16
32 Posts
Joined Sep 2007
We were on the Noordam Transatlantic from Lauderdale to Rome in 2011. We organized an LGBT (no FOD for me) get together each night at the Atrium Bar from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm. The ship could not have been more accommodating. They advertised the event in the program, assigned the same two bar staff so we could get to know them and they us, arranged for complimentary hot and cold hors d'oevres and proved Champagne (real) on the two occasions when folks had birthdays. By the third night we were getting more than twenty showing up (it peaked one night at 35). A senior staff member dropped by most nights to say Hi and make sure everything was fine. It was certainly the most happening event on the ship at that hour, full of chatter and laughs. The senior bartender said she had never seen the Atrium bar so busy. Noordam simply couldn't have done it any better and the two terrific bartenders got tipped out big time. Hope this helps