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Big Z Decision. Which would you choose?


Big Z Decision. Which would you pick?  

48 members have voted

  1. 1. Big Z Decision. Which would you pick?

    • Zandaam
      15
    • Zuiderdam
      33


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I'm torn between 2 last minute Alaskan HAL cruises.....the Zuiderdam or Zaandam.

 

Both are r/t Vancouver, 7 nights. The biggest difference is Zuiderdam cruises Glacier Bay and Zaandam cruises Tracy Arm, both of which I have never been to. I can do Tracy Arm from Zuiderdam, but it's by way of an excursion. Everything else itinerary wise is equal.

 

I know Glacier Bay probably trumps Tracy Arm, so I'm leaning toward Zuiderdam but what about the ships? Does Zaandam have a special feel to her? Are Vista Suites really any better than a Veranda on another ship?

 

Zuiderdam, I can do a veranda for $949, whereas on Zaandam I would do a Vista Suite for $1099.

 

Is this 6 in one, half dozen in the other?

 

Edit...sorry I spelled Zaandam wrong in the poll.

Edited by Aquahound
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By the way, please tell me if I'm reading this wrong. If Zuiderdam actually does cruise in to Tracy Arm, let me know. It looks like it's just an excursion opportunity.

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By the way, please tell me if I'm reading this wrong. If Zuiderdam actually does cruise in to Tracy Arm, let me know. It looks like it's just an excursion opportunity.

 

Can't really comment on whether the itinerary cruises Tracy Arm or not, don't know the dates you are looking at.

 

But, I'd vote for Glacier Bay over Tracy Arm, if you have to choose. However, we like Tracy Arm, also.

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I think the Zaandam is so much nicer than the Zuiderdam. Zaandam does Tracy Arm and Zuiderdam does Glaicer Bay. Love Zaandam's size and her more private Pinnacle Grill. She has the middle elevator as does the Zuiderdam. I've cruised on both ship numerous times.

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Can't really comment on whether the itinerary cruises Tracy Arm or not, don't know the dates you are looking at.

 

But, I'd vote for Glacier Bay over Tracy Arm, if you have to choose. However, we like Tracy Arm, also.

 

Hi Schmoo. The dates are Zaandam July 4 vs Zuiderdam July 5.

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Zaandam just went through a dry dock about 7 months ago. All the soft goods were replaced. It's a very nice ship.

 

I'm not a fan of Glacier Bay.

 

Double check the times in ports. Some ships have some really weird or short times.

 

I don't think you can go wrong with either one.

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We've been on both, I would choose Zaandam, because we like the smaller ships better. The Vista suite on Zaandam is larger than a balcony cabin on Zuiderdam, and if it matters to you , you will get 2x mariner points for the Vista suite.

 

We've been to Alaska many times, so itinerary is not a big thing for us there. Even though I would choose Zaandam myself, I think Glacier bay, especially on a sunny is beautiful, and not a lot of ships are allowed in there. In the future it may be even fewer. If you think this is a one time only trip to Alaska, than Zuiderdam for Glacier Bay alone.

 

Contradiction, I know, but it really depends on what is important to you.

Edited by sunviking90
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The Zuiderdam does not sail up Tracy Arm, but does allow for a shore excursion that sails there in a catamaran. To take the Zuiderdam would allow you to do both Tracy Arm and Glacier Bay.

 

Tracy Arm and Glacier Bay are two different experiences. Tracy Arm is a fjord, all closed in, with gorgeous scenery you can almost reach out and touch. There happens to be a glacier at the end of it. The focus of the sail is scenery, with the glaciers secondary.

Glacier Bay is a wide expanse of water, with many glaciers dotted in there. You sail by and up to a few glaciers during your time there. Glaciers are the focus of the day, with scenery a secondary attraction.

Both sailings are worthwhile.

 

Whichever you choose, you will have a good time. Take the other itinerary next time!

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and if it matters to you , you will get 2x mariner points for the Vista suite.

If it does matter to you, I'm not sure this is true. I believe the Mariner point suite bonus only applies to Neptune and Pinnacle Suites. You should verify this, if it matters to you.

 

All things being equal, I would definitely go with Zuiderdam and Glacier Bay. Its just stunning. I found Tracey Arm to be a little meh. I'm a little surprised that you can get a better deal on the Zaandam for a veranda as there are a lot fewer of them than on Zuiderdam. But nothing with respect to pricing on HAL surprises me much anymore.

 

Either ship you choose, I'm sure it will be magnificent.

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If it does matter to you, I'm not sure this is true. I believe the Mariner point suite bonus only applies to Neptune and Pinnacle Suites.

If it says "suite" it gets the double days.

On the S- & R-class ships (such as the Zaandam, which was the reference), the Vista Suites do get the double days, if paying a published rate.

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Paul I've only been on one HAL cruise and that was aboard the Eurodam which I did enjoy. I voted for the Zuiderdam as it's basically the same class of ship and will offer me IMHO. I think the itinerary it does for Alaska would also be a selling point for me

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If it says "suite" it gets the double days.

On the S- & R-class ships (such as the Zaandam, which was the reference), the Vista Suites do get the double days, if paying a published rate.

Thanks Ruth for clarifying this.

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We have sailed both. Zaandam is a bit smaller, and IMHO a little classier, than Zuiderdam. Zuiderdam offers a full-size thermal pool as part of it's Thermal Suites Spa package. Zaandam only has hot tubs in their Thermal Suites. With regards to the glacier visits, if that is a priority, I'd choose Zuiderdam as you have the opportunity for the small boat excursion for Tracy Arm, plus you will see multiple glaciers on the day you visit Glacier Bay. With Zaandam, you may or may not be able to approach the Sawyer Glacier due to the amount of ice in the water. There are more balconies and Neptune Suites on Zuiderdam, and therefore a bit cheaper than Zaandam.

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Hi Schmoo. The dates are Zaandam July 4 vs Zuiderdam July 5.

 

Well, the question was answered about whether or not you actually get into Tracy Arm.

 

I've been on both and I'd still go with the Zuiderdam. And take the optional excursion in Tracy Arm. That way you get both.

 

Zaandam was nice, and I kinda like the smaller ships, but between the two, I'd do Zuiderdam.

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Zuiderdam offers a full-size thermal pool as part of it's Thermal Suites Spa package.

This is a very good point of distinction. I absolutely love the thermal pools on the Vista ships. And in Alaska, nothing is better than warming up in that area after a chilly and rainy day.

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Thanks everyone for your advice. I really appreciate it. I went ahead and booked Zuiderdam, although I was still a little torn just before calling. :)

 

Congratulations Paul! Also look forward to your review

 

Sent from my HTC6600LVW using Tapatalk

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