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New to Holland America? This is for you...AKA "HAL For Dummies"


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We are also in a Neptune Suite. I have two confirmations for my upcoming cruise. The one from my TA says "open dining" which, if I'm understanding Miss G, is Club Orange.  But the confirmation from HAL says "Dining - waitlisted early".  Does this mean that we are waitlisted for "early dining" in Club Orange or the MDR or what? If we want "As You Wish" dining, would we have to call HAL? 

What is "Club Orange" anyway?   

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8 minutes ago, islandwoman said:

We are also in a Neptune Suite. I have two confirmations for my upcoming cruise. The one from my TA says "open dining" which, if I'm understanding Miss G, is Club Orange.  But the confirmation from HAL says "Dining - waitlisted early".  Does this mean that we are waitlisted for "early dining" in Club Orange or the MDR or what? If we want "As You Wish" dining, would we have to call HAL? 

What is "Club Orange" anyway?   

 

That depends what ship you are on.  If you are on Pinnacle-class (Rotterdam, Koningsdam, Nieuw Statendam) then it is open dining in the Club Orange dining room.  You can arrive anytime you like.

 

If it is a non Pinnacle-class ship then you have anytime dining in the MDR.  Just go to the Club Orange podium and they will seat you.

 

To find out what Club Orange is, google “club orange Holland America” and you will see a link.  I am in Germany, right now, so it keeps forcing me to the DE website.

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Thank you all so much for your responses! That makes me feel so much better about the dining, for sure!!  Hopefully, based on what you’ve shared here, there will be a king bed. Now, if they will just put us in a cabin with a Neptune-worthy balcony!!🤪

 

Agree with you guys — HAL reps needs some serious training. They have been very nice (well, 2 were nice; one was more than a little snippy😖) but other than putting me on wait-lists for things that should be standard in a given category, they’ve all been woefully unaccomodating! 
 

Miss G , you are right — we shouldn’t HAVE to go online for answers, but I sure am grateful for the Cruisecritic boards!!  It’s my go-to for info on cruising/cruise lines. — so many knowledgeable folks willing to share their wisdom and experience!!  Thanks again, everyone!❤️

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17 hours ago, Kitecruisers said:

If you buy a wine or beer package can you take your bottles anywhere on ship? Like to the dining room, Crows Nest, etc? 

 

I have no experience with beer, but with the Cellar Wine Packages they will follow wherever you send them.  For example, if I start with one in the main dining room, they will keep it for me until the next night.  If I am going to a specialty restaurant, instead, then I will ask them to send it there.  Apparently they will also send it to a favourite bar if that is where you are going next, but I have no experience with that.  They will not give them to you all at once so there’s no need to cart them around.  

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1 hour ago, *Miss G* said:

Apparently they will also send it to a favourite bar if that is where you are going next, but I have no experience with that.

 

That was always our experience.....When we were at Billboard Onboard, the bartender would retrieve a bottle from our wine package, but I'm not sure that is still the case as I've read on here the fine print now on the Sommelier brochure that the wine is not to be consumed in bars.

 

Regardless, the wine package is, for us, the way we roll......Enjoy it. 

 

(And it would be great if any recent Mariners can relay if this is new rule is being enforced)

 

 

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We have been getting the 'have it all' package which gives you among other things, fifteen drinks a day. Per person. So we cannot order bottles but instead everything is by the glass.  Works well for us. No need to have a bottle follow us around. (as if😂) If we ask nicely, they'll let us order a 'double'.

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20 hours ago, '51 Pinot said:

 If we ask nicely, they'll let us order a 'double'.

 

Don't really even have to ask nicely, you can order a double any time. But it counts as two drinks against the 15 drink limit with the package. 🙂

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I’ve looked at the drink menus for the different bars, and I’m wondering if the listed cocktails are the only ones available. Can you order something standard like a cosmo or a sidecar anywhere on the ship?
 

Similarly, only the Lido Bar lists mocktails on the menu. Will other bars make them as well? How about restaurants?

 

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36 minutes ago, washiotter said:

I’ve looked at the drink menus for the different bars, and I’m wondering if the listed cocktails are the only ones available. Can you order something standard like a cosmo or a sidecar anywhere on the ship?
 

Similarly, only the Lido Bar lists mocktails on the menu. Will other bars make them as well? How about restaurants?

 

Yes to both questions.

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I have a friend who wants to take his 1st cruise and has asked for my help to select and set up.  He will need a motorized scooter.  A few years ago, used one while recovering from surgery. It was great - EXCEPT that we were were told they couldn't be parked in the halls and it barely fit into our cabin.  So tight that I needed help to get it out.  There are very few cabins that are listed as accessible.  Bernie will most likely be traveling solo (don't recommend I go with - he's he's an ex).  So I'm wondering, could they take out one of the twin beds in a standard cabin to make room for a scooter?  I know they move the beds together and apart - but can they take one out for the duration of a cruise?  

 

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24 minutes ago, Djb.zville said:

I have a friend who wants to take his 1st cruise and has asked for my help to select and set up.  He will need a motorized scooter.  A few years ago, used one while recovering from surgery. It was great - EXCEPT that we were were told they couldn't be parked in the halls and it barely fit into our cabin.  So tight that I needed help to get it out.  There are very few cabins that are listed as accessible.  Bernie will most likely be traveling solo (don't recommend I go with - he's he's an ex).  So I'm wondering, could they take out one of the twin beds in a standard cabin to make room for a scooter?  I know they move the beds together and apart - but can they take one out for the duration of a cruise?  

 

The problem isn't only room to store the scooter in the cabin, there's also a problem with getting it through the door, and past whatever comes next before you get into the larger part of the cabin. 
Many cabins have the door (which the scooter barely fits through), then comes the outside wall of the bathroom on one side, and a wall of closets on the other. It is much too narrow to maneuver a scooter through, let alone drive one. Then, there would be the problem of turning it around. 

There are a few cabins on some ships that will accept a scooter, however; I have been using one for years. 
The two R-class ships, and the Vista and Signature class ships all have some cabins that will take a scooter; all the ones I know and have used are insides. If your friend is looking at any of these, I will be happy to direct you to possible cabins. 

Obviously, an accessible cabin will accept a scooter, but those do sell out quickly, and since you didn't mention it, I didn't go into it. I assume an accessible cabin has already been ruled out, for whatever reason. 

He could also have his TA check into the possibility of having his scooter taken and stored, then returned when he needed it. In the past I have heard of that being done, but don't know if HAL does that now. 

Good luck. 

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I have a question for people who have cruised on HAL recently.  I read somewhere that if one person on a shore excursion tests positive for covid, everyone in the group would be required to quarantine regardless of whether they test negative or have no symptoms.  I looked online and found nothing about that on the FAQ.  When I called HAL to ask, the person said that as long as you test negative and have no symptoms you wouldn't need to quarantine.  Can anyone confirm? 

 

Also, could anyone tell me where the medical area on the Rotterdam is located?  It isn't on the deck plan and the person on the phone didn't know (which made me less confident about her answer to my quarantine question).  I hope my room isn't too close to it.

 

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Hello I am a 67 year old male veteran cruiser with several other lines and will be trying HAL for the first time this winter. Traveling solo will I be in other company similar to mine or will it be mostly couples on board thank you

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Icystorms: With two 20+ day cruises within the past year, I haven't heard nor can't imagine a whole group from a shore excursion getting quarantined, seems unlikely.

Medical Area is normally on the lowest deck and there are no staterooms on that deck.

Kcool: Of course there will be mostly couples but there are plenty of singles. Male and female. We almost always meet new ones when dining at a large table in the main dining room. It's easy to make new friends that way.

 

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19 hours ago, kcool said:

Hello I am a 67 year old male veteran cruiser with several other lines and will be trying HAL for the first time this winter. Traveling solo will I be in other company similar to mine or will it be mostly couples on board thank you

Join the solo cruisers group on board on the first meet if there is one. Many of us join these whether we are traveling solo or twins sharing with a companion. There were as many men as woman. That way we always see a familiar face to in activities eg trivia, joining a table etc. HAL also orgainizes join dinners etc  Also join the roll call especially to join private excursions and the FB site for your ship.

 

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On 10/14/2022 at 7:24 PM, kcool said:

Traveling solo will I be in other company similar to mine or will it be mostly couples on board thank you

Our only Holland America cruise was last January and there seemed to be lots of singles. Afternoon tea was the big meeting spot for single sailors, it appeared, and we loved meeting them there!

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On 9/27/2022 at 9:53 PM, Euby said:

@Clay Clayton I'm not sure about the slippers, but I do know that you can request a bigger robe from your cabin steward.  This is regardless of whether you have a spa cabin or not.

Larger sized robe- Yes.  Will it fit a large very tall man- sort of but will look pretty silly.

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4 hours ago, ski ww said:

Who cares what you look like, nobody will see you in your cabin. 

 

Have you been in the Lido buffet or even poolside in the early morning of late? Bathrobes seem to be a thing there for some people these days (don't ask me why). 😟

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