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About kwb101

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  1. I have to relate our experience this week (and last). I called our big-box TA on June 6 to transfer two bookings we made on Maasdam last month. After the TA contacted HAL by phone, the TA told me to fill out the Acrobat fillable firm they sent and return it to them by email. The TA's email instructions said not to worry about signing the forms. So, I believed them and returned the form the same day. A couple of days later, I got another email saying that HAL wanted a signature, so I signed and scanned the forms and returned them again on June 8. Then...crickets. The original and followup email both said to allow 24 to 72 hours for HAL to process. After hearing nothing, I called the TA June 17, and was told they had just gotten the OK from HAL, and proceeded to finalize the bookings. I was more than a little discouraged that HAL made it so difficult to transfer bookings. However, we'll be getting over $2100 OBC for these, so it was worth the bother.
  2. I think it would have to improve to be a shambles: more like a train wreck now, to use a landlubber's term.
  3. Thanks for the info: I kinda figured "V" was for visa, but couldn't determine the"X" part. A search turned up two links with VX, neither of which actually contained that letter-pair. Indeed. I think that perhaps VX stands for VeXing, which the site certainly has become since its reinvention as a glitzy but not-very-usable site, I wonder how much business this site has cost them.
  4. Hello. We'll be going to New Zealand and Australia in 2021, and the HAL website shows all ports for both countries with "VX" in the itinerary. Is this a reference to a visa requirement? Thanks!
  5. We were on Maasdam in Alaska in May, and the Orange Party was in one of the bars at 9.30 one night at the end of the voyage. We would've liked to have gone, but we're early risers, so... We were disappointed that it seemed to be more of a drinking party.
  6. I have to say that all this hoo-ha about carbon footprint and all considers the value of your time to be zero, since I never see anything about increased travel time that these beneficial means of transport will result in. Passenger railroads (at least in the U.S. for long-distance travel) are an anachronism, and, in some cases, use more fuel per passenger-mile than aircraft. For me, faster is better to get from one place to another, save for those trips that allow one to smell the daisies, which is what cruises are for.
  7. The refund info is at the bottom of this page: https://www.hollandamerica.com/en_US/shore-excursions/1010061/mount-roberts-tramway.html The tramway is very close to the dock. Be aware that it is a cable tram (suspended in the air on a wire rope), not one that rides on rails on the ground.
  8. Good advice! We managed to get there first thing in the morning (0700), but there were always folks in the room when we went back to either wash or dry. FWIW, during our cruise (May 7-28), the laundry on deck 5 started with three working washers but only one dryer (around May 15). That went to no working dryers a week later (but the washers soldiered on). We ended up using the laundry on deck 9, where all the machines worked. Good luck!
  9. On Maasdam, wash cycle was 29 minutes, dry was 45 (but be sure to set temp to high, or it'll take the rest of your voyage and still be damp). We found that two loads of wash would fit in one dryer, and would dry in one cycle. BTW, the machines were made by Speed Queen, so other brands may produce different results.
  10. We were on Maasdam for three weeks in May, and received promotional sheets on Antarctic voyages from the Future Cruise guy that said something like "2021 last chance?" (question mark in original).
  11. Some excursions, flying or not, can have low limits. We're just neck from Alaska on Maasdam, and one excursion (to a kelp and oyster farm) could take a maximum of only 14. On the January Antarctica voyage, we booked the Galapagos-only tour the day it appeared several months ago, and there are only three or four spaces left now...at a price of $5000.
  12. We did the 14-day Alaska-Yukon-cruise trip two years ago. The Tundra Wilderness Tour was scheduled for 8.30, and doesn't return until about 4.30. IIRC, most days started no later than 8.30, some earlier. We were usually up by 6.30 to finish packing, have breakfast, and get to the meeting place. Most baggage was required to be outside your door early each day you traveled.
  13. Sorry, the beds are sideways to the very large floor-to-ceiling windows (this from Zuiderdam cabin 4061 in Sept '19). The Vista class are generally alike. There is room between the bed and the window to get into bed from the window side.
  14. We're just off Maasdam, and the Orange Party was at 9.30 one evening in one of the bars during the last week of the voyage. Very disappointing that it want earlier in the day.
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