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About Btimmer

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

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  • Interests
    Motorcycling, camping, cruising
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Holland America
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call

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  1. We actually used the Zodiacs in the Maldives to go snorkeling and Captain Arno was our Zodiac driver, but I agree they had very limited use due to challenges in getting permission from the respective countries to use them. It was a great concept, but the implementation really struggled. When we last sailed on the Maasdam, I spoke with an onboard officer and he indicated that they were getting ready to purchase American made Zodiacs as the then present ones were built outside the USA and couldn't be used in Alaska.
  2. Based upon my discussions with various CD's over the years, all of HAL's entertainers are scheduled by personnel in Seattle.
  3. We found the inaugural EXC voyage from FLL to Papeete to be the best of the EXC voyages (and we did a number of them. The Easter Island stop was a definite high point.
  4. Here's a link to Captain Albert's latest update that I just received. https://www.captainalbert.com/2021-feb-17-waiting-for-better-times/
  5. Yes, I'll second that. We had many opportunities to chat with her one on one and was very impressed with her.
  6. We were on the inaugural EXC cruise from FL via Easter Island to French Polynesia plus another 2 weeks in Polynesia. We followed it up with a segment from Singapore to the Maldives and then from Seattle to Sydney. We thoroughly enjoyed the cruises, but nothing IMHO matched the inaugural cruise in terms of quality. Plus we met some terrific people on all of these cruises and we maintain contact to this day. Captain Arno was an outstanding a quite approachable skipper on our cruises.
  7. We were on that cruise as well and echo the comments. It's an amazing place. To see so much water 500 miles from the ocean is beyond stunning.
  8. I just checked my online account and there's now about $1300 posted there which has to be booked by 9/21/2021 for a cruise sailing by 12/31/2022. That's a reasonable extension of time for me given what we know today about the virus. I never received any email about the time extensions.
  9. What happens to those of us USA residents who cancelled a cruise in the spring of 2020 and received a FCC equivalent to the cancellation penalty but which has to be used on a cruise that occurs no later than 2021 AND booked prior to 12/31/2020? Is this a way for HAL to get out from under their March 6, 2020 email promise?
  10. We were on the Volendam's Amazon cruise in December, 2019 when it went aground in the Amazon at 4am in the morning. Personally, I felt nothing; but others did. It took around 7 hours to get freed under our own power.
  11. We, too, have undisplayed FCC's from a cancelled Maasdam cruise.
  12. Hands down I would do the Panama Canal. We've done the full transit three times (Celebrity Century, Amsterdam, and Maasdam) and it doesn't get old.
  13. Finishing our bedroom remodel (wiring, sheet rock, paint, new floor, and a seashore decor). On to the next project.
  14. We were on the Amazon trip as well as the following Caribbean cruise. We've sailed on the Volendam well over three months total time over the years. We also liked the Zaandam when we did an Antarctica cruise.
  15. We pack virtually the same for a two week cruise as a two month or longer cruise with the exception of meds we need to bring and the number of thumb drive or SD cards for pictures. We travel with a backpack and small roll-on but I'm aware that just doesn't work for some. One of the biggest challenges is when we need to prepare for radically different weather conditions.
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