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

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So my package meals days and times have already been assigned? If so, I won't know those days and times until I embark or call?

 

Only the ship knows your assigned Specialty restaurant times so a call to HAL in Seattle will be futile.

 

I have been told that the ship is given a list of prepaid reservations a few days before your cruise starts and then inserts all of the "package" reservation times around them with an emphasis on the restaurant's slow days/times. Those days are usually Embarkation Day dinner and days when the ship is in port during the evening dinner time from my experience.

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I live in Seattle and it's actually really fun to grab one of our pedal cabs. They ride along the waterfront and can take you to the grocery store for about $20 if you have time to do something fun. We also have Uber grocery delivery that will meet you at the dock with whatever groceries you want.

There is a Whole Foods about 1/4 mile from Pier 91. It's possible to walk it, but it's very much an industrial area with busy streets and not much provision for foot traffic. Personally, I'd want to take a cab.

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I live in Seattle and it's actually really fun to grab one of our pedal cabs. They ride along the waterfront and can take you to the grocery store for about $20 if you have time to do something fun. We also have Uber grocery delivery that will meet you at the dock with whatever groceries you want.

 

No pedal cabs around Pier 91, where HAL docks, that I've ever seen. We aren't talking about downtown Seattle, we're talking the commercial waterfront.

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There are several that go in the area of lower Magnolia and Alki along the trail. Interbay is also a short walk and they have a few fun transportation options. I am not allowed to post links but you can search for the companies and they will cheerfully pick you up at pier 91 if you call. I believe Holland actually docks right by discovery park and there are always 2 or 3 there.

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We buy OBC before the cruise. For example, for a 7 day cruise HSC would be $94.50 per person for non-suite (13.50 per day), so buy $100 OBC per person. That way, you won't have a big bill at the end of the cruise.

 

Not exactly pre-paying the HSC, but close.

Yes I have heard of that idea, but never the actually "preparing" the HSC. That's like having an OBC "purchased", loads up the account. Not a bad idea, if you don't want a bill at the end of the cruise. Good planning. Thank you.

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This is our first HAL cruise but we are one star mariner due to previously cruising on Carnival. The rep told us of 2 "perks" we would be getting, one being a Mariner's luncheon and I forgot what the other one was.

What's this? HAL Mariner credit for having sailed Carnival? How about for having sailed Princess? I've done both and would love to receive some Mariner credit before my first cruise with HAL. How can I do that?

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What's this? HAL Mariner credit for having sailed Carnival? How about for having sailed Princess? I've done both and would love to receive some Mariner credit before my first cruise with HAL. How can I do that?

 

any sailing on any ship in the Carnival Cruise Line family will give you 1* Mariner Status.

 

If you log in to the HAL website and choose "my account", you should see you are a 1* mariner which give you these "perks". They are pretty good about giving the credit.

 

If you don't, contact the Mariner Society with your sailing date on Princess.

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any sailing on any ship in the Carnival Cruise Line family will give you 1* Mariner Status.

If you log in to the HAL website and choose "my account", you should see you are a 1* mariner which give you these "perks". They are pretty good about giving the credit.

If you don't, contact the Mariner Society with your sailing date on Princess.

I don't and I have. Thanks.

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Got it! And I received a reply within a few hours of my inquiry. Here it is:

 

Thank you for your recent correspondence with Holland America Line. The number you provided [deleted by me] is a Vacation Interchange Program (VIP) number. When you sail on one of the World's Leading Cruise Line Alliances you are automatically enrolled in the Vacation Interchange Program, VIP. The World's Leading Cruise Line Alliance includes Carnival, Costa, P&O Australia, P&O Cruises, Princess, AIDA Cunard Line, Holland America Line and Seabourn. Your prior sailings on one of these lines would qualify you for the benefits of a Star Mariner with Holland America Line.

Cruises taken on other cruise lines are not transferable to your Holland America Line profile. Only sailings on Holland America Line will count towards your Mariner Society star level. Also, we have reviewed your upcoming sailing on the ms Rotterdam November 19, 2017 sailing and see that you have been given one-Star status.

As a Star Mariner you will be entitled to the following benefits:

A delft tile is given to each returning Mariner during the Mariner Champagne Brunch. Those who do not attend can collect their delft tile at the Front Desk onboard.

e-version of Mariner magazine

Special offers on select sailings

A 50% cruise fare discount on the 3rd/4th guest staying in your stateroom on select sailings

 

It appears that the Mariner Champagne Brunch is the best benefit of one star Mariner. Can anyone tell me how early I'd have to be onboard to take advantage of it?

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Got it! And I received a reply within a few hours of my inquiry. Here it is:

 

Thank you for your recent correspondence with Holland America Line. The number you provided [deleted by me] is a Vacation Interchange Program (VIP) number. When you sail on one of the World's Leading Cruise Line Alliances you are automatically enrolled in the Vacation Interchange Program, VIP. The World's Leading Cruise Line Alliance includes Carnival, Costa, P&O Australia, P&O Cruises, Princess, AIDA Cunard Line, Holland America Line and Seabourn. Your prior sailings on one of these lines would qualify you for the benefits of a Star Mariner with Holland America Line.

 

Cruises taken on other cruise lines are not transferable to your Holland America Line profile. Only sailings on Holland America Line will count towards your Mariner Society star level. Also, we have reviewed your upcoming sailing on the ms Rotterdam November 19, 2017 sailing and see that you have been given one-Star status.

 

As a Star Mariner you will be entitled to the following benefits:

 

A delft tile is given to each returning Mariner during the Mariner Champagne Brunch. Those who do not attend can collect their delft tile at the Front Desk onboard.

e-version of Mariner magazine

Special offers on select sailings

A 50% cruise fare discount on the 3rd/4th guest staying in your stateroom on select sailings

 

It appears that the Mariner Champagne Brunch is the best benefit of one star Mariner. Can anyone tell me how early I'd have to be onboard to take advantage of it?

 

That is scheduled later in the cruise on a sea day. You will be notified a few days ahead of time.

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I used HAL's online chat feature asking about this question -- regarding the specialty meals -- not regular meals -- which your booking shows early, late or open. This was the reply :

 

In most cases, you'll need to pay at the time of making your reservation. However, it may be possible if you phone our Ship Services department to purchase the gift & ask about reserving at that time. You will need to contact our Ship Services department at 1-800-541-1576 (7 AM to 5 PM Pacific Time Monday through Friday) or e-mail them at hal_ship_services@hollandamerica.com. Fax# 1-(800)207-3547

I contacted them this morning, via ^^^ this email. Their response: because I purchased a package, Terms and Conditions -"Reservations can only be made once on board." So I guess the $10 pp I saved, is offset by not being able to pre-book a time and date before boarding. All those who pre-purchase the restaurants individually(and pay the full price), get to pick their dates and times, while those like me who buy the packages, get what's left. SMDH

 

Fortunately, we tend to prefer late dining, so maybe it will work out in the end.

Edited by cruisePack842
clarity

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On a relatively recent cruise, a friend was exiting sauna in men's locker room, a female spa employee appeared in doorway to locker room and was giving instructions to a young man. Our friend was wearing a towel and was not bothered by this. However, I suspect some men would be.

Has anyone seen a female in men's locker room for any reason?

Does HAL{Steiner} have an all female spa staff?

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On a relatively recent cruise, a friend was exiting sauna in men's locker room, a female spa employee appeared in doorway to locker room and was giving instructions to a young man. Our friend was wearing a towel and was not bothered by this. However, I suspect some men would be.

Has anyone seen a female in men's locker room for any reason?

Does HAL{Steiner} have an all female spa staff?

 

Now that you mention it, I have not seen any male staff members in the spa. Of course,that doesn't mean that there aren't any, and,I haven't been to the men's locker room;)

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I contacted them this morning, via ^^^ this email. Their response: because I purchased a package, Terms and Conditions -"Reservations can only be made once on board." So I guess the $10 pp I saved, is offset by not being able to pre-book a time and date before boarding. All those who pre-purchase the restaurants individually(and pay the full price), get to pick their dates and times, while those like me who buy the packages, get what's left. SMDH

 

Fortunately, we tend to prefer late dining, so maybe it will work out in the end.

 

I'm not sure if our experience relates to yours or not, but I purchased the ROV package for our upcoming September sailing (surprise for DW). :) The package includes (among other things) dinner for 2 in the PG. I was interested in selecting a particular night for our PG dinner, so a couple of months ago I was speaking with one of HAL's customer service reps and was advised that I could not select a specific night for PG in advance of sailing with this package, but that once onboard I could contact the PG and make our reservation then. I was told that only those that make online dinner reservations for PG in advance of sailing via HAL's web site could select a specific date and time.

 

Well yesterday I contacted Ship Services to purchase the ROV package, as well as a Bon Voyage bottle of wine and spoke with a very helpful representative. I explained what I wanted to do about our PG reservation and she said that she would email the PG Manager with our request. She said that she should hear back from the ship in the next couple days and she would then email me with the answer. She said that if our requested date/time wasn't available for some reason, the PG Manager would let us know what dates/times were still available for our sailing and we could select from that.

 

So it turns out that yes, we will be able to select our preferred date/time for the PG grill in advance of sailing (even when the PG is part of a package); and even though we were initially told that we couldn't. :)

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I'm not sure if our experience relates to yours or not, but I purchased the ROV package for our upcoming September sailing (surprise for DW). :) The package includes (among other things) dinner for 2 in the PG. I was interested in selecting a particular night for our PG dinner, so a couple of months ago I was speaking with one of HAL's customer service reps and was advised that I could not select a specific night for PG in advance of sailing with this package, but that once onboard I could contact the PG and make our reservation then. I was told that only those that make online dinner reservations for PG in advance of sailing via HAL's web site could select a specific date and time.

 

Well yesterday I contacted Ship Services to purchase the ROV package, as well as a Bon Voyage bottle of wine and spoke with a very helpful representative. I explained what I wanted to do about our PG reservation and she said that she would email the PG Manager with our request. She said that she should hear back from the ship in the next couple days and she would then email me with the answer. She said that if our requested date/time wasn't available for some reason, the PG Manager would let us know what dates/times were still available for our sailing and we could select from that.

 

So it turns out that yes, we will be able to select our preferred date/time for the PG grill in advance of sailing (even when the PG is part of a package); and even though we were initially told that we couldn't. :)

That all seems quite relevant.

 

I should've been able to do this online. I'll wait until boarding.

 

Heck, by purchasing the packages, I am guaranteeing our patronage(and fees) to all 3 restaurants. If anything, I should've gotten first dibs on dates and times. Oh well.

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Hi all,

 

This is a fantastic place to learn about the ways of HAL!!

So many people know so much and I've learned so much already......only on today!! First time on Hal coming up.

 

Eg. I've Gold Princess and will write re Mariner. What is ROV please.

 

Also I'm looking at an Elite Drinks package.......does anyone have a wine list for the Oosterdam. The per glass limit is $15 so I'd like to see what the wines at $15 or under are like.

All help gratefully received.

 

Thanks

Deeko

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does anyone have a wine list for the Oosterdam. The per glass limit is $15 so I'd like to see what the wines at $15 or under are like.

 

Check out this site for current HAL drink menus which are pretty consistent on all the 'dam ships. They'll give you an idea of pricing.

 

http://www.rogerjett-photography.com/specialty-2/hal-regular-and-specialty-restaurants/hal-beverage-menus/

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CAN YOU BRING MIXERS ONBOARD WHEN YOU PURCHASE A BOTTLE OF VODKA FROM HAL?

I would like to buy a bottle of Absolut from HAL and enjoy dirty martinis and bloody marys on my balcony. If I purchase the vodka through HAL, can I carry a jar of olives and a bottle of bloody mary mix onboard with me?

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Heck, by purchasing the packages, I am guaranteeing our patronage(and fees) to all 3 restaurants. If anything, I should've gotten first dibs on dates and times. Oh well.

In exchange for purchasing in advance, you are getting a discount on the price. You are giving HAL the opportunity to sell dining times which otherwise might not have takers, and they give you a break on the deal. It makes money for both of you.

 

If you want the absolute right to choose from all the available dining times, you are free to do so, just without the dining package. Or, you can purchase the package and take your chances on being able to get an acceptable time.

You can still cancel the package and pay for the times of your choice.

But you can't get total choice of times and a discount, too.

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hi Puppy and hi Kruz

 

Thanks for that......you are really on the ball........thanks

 

Deeko

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In exchange for purchasing in advance, you are getting a discount on the price. You are giving HAL the opportunity to sell dining times which otherwise might not have takers, and they give you a break on the deal. It makes money for both of you.

 

If you want the absolute right to choose from all the available dining times, you are free to do so, just without the dining package. Or, you can purchase the package and take your chances on being able to get an acceptable time.

You can still cancel the package and pay for the times of your choice.

But you can't get total choice of times and a discount, too.

I agree, though I also saved $5 each, pre-purchasing our Signature Beverage Packages. Didn't give up anything for that, that I'm aware of.

 

So I can expect 3 different restaurant reservation cards(w/assigned dates and times) in my cabin, when we arrive?

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CAN YOU BRING MIXERS ONBOARD WHEN YOU PURCHASE A BOTTLE OF VODKA FROM HAL?

I would like to buy a bottle of Absolut from HAL and enjoy dirty martinis and bloody marys on my balcony. If I purchase the vodka through HAL, can I carry a jar of olives and a bottle of bloody mary mix onboard with me?

You absolutely can :)

 

You can bring any kind of mixer, soda, olives or other sealed goodies without an issue. Suggest it be carried on as you have posted ;)

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Does HAL do a chef's dinner similar to princess and RCCL? How much and what was it like?

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

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