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Almost "Live" Ms Zaandam 14-Day to Alaska (May 21 - Jun 4, 2018)

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Curious as to which days did the seas seem the worst. Also, did you ever eat at pinnacle at lunch to know the foods then. Really enjoy this and feel ready for June 18th.

 

Sadly, I haven't made it to PG lunch this cruise but the menu has not changed in awhile.

 

The first night and yesterday seemed the worst seas but there were storms in the vicinity. Some rolling seas, or as the Captain says, "motion of the ocean," are not bad but that depends on the angle that they hit the ship. Another issue is the wind that treats the ship like a big sail.

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America's Test Kitchen will be demoing New Italian Favorites tomorrow at 11:00 AM. Tomorrow features a Sunday Brunch in the MDR.

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America's Test Kitchen will be demoing New Italian Favorites tomorrow at 11:00 AM. Tomorrow features a Sunday Brunch in the MDR.

 

All 14-day Alaska menus and When & Where for 14-day Zaandam Explorer are now posted on my website.

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America's Test Kitchen will be demoing New Italian Favorites tomorrow at 11:00 AM. Tomorrow features a Sunday Brunch in the MDR.

Are these free demos or classes I need to sign up (and pay) for?

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the demos are free, the special classes you pay for and sign up ahead of time. the demos listed in day plan are free and the host normally announces about any paid class at the end of the demos.

 

I heading to the ship in the morning.

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"Having a late breakfast brought me into contact with those just reading while their fellow passengers searched for empty tables."

I cannot understand why people do this, when there are plenty of other places just to sit around the ship. Once people have finished eating they should vacate the tables for others to eat.

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"Having a late breakfast brought me into contact with those just reading while their fellow passengers searched for empty tables."

I cannot understand why people do this, when there are plenty of other places just to sit around the ship. Once people have finished eating they should vacate the tables for others to eat.

Take a cruise out of Rotterdam some day - your head will explode because of this. It’s cultural.

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Take a cruise out of Rotterdam some day - your head will explode because of this. It’s cultural.

 

First - thank you Roger for taking the time to provide all this info. And I am looking forward to your pictures.

 

Second - SPPunk - Go Sox!

 

I will chime in my two cents about this issue. I often bring something to read, while I am waiting for my meal Companions to join me. Now if someone is not going to be eating soon, then I also do not understand why they would stay. Could they just be so absorbed in their reading material that they are unaware of what is going on around them?

 

Again, Roger, thank you for sharing this wealth of info with us.

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I've never had a Sunday brunch on board before. Is it something new? What time is it? Do you order of the menu or is it buffet style?

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Day 13 began with hazy skies and ended with overcast skies while sailing in the Pacific Ocean. Ship rolling is still present but not as bad as yesterday.

 

A few minutes after returning from dinner, the Chief of Facilities was at my door to apologize for the laundry staples. I learned that due to a broken part on the labeling machine, the staples were a temporary fix until they could pick up the new part in Seattle. After the first few days, safety pins were procured and in use so that staples would not damage those items without buttonholes/loops. Maybe they read my post on CC? So next week, the pesky but non-damaging tapes should return. The conversation ended with my commenting that the laundry service of the Zaandam was one of the best I have experienced with HAL. I was assured that the laundry folks would be glad to hear my comparison with other ships.

 

 

Thank you so much for the laundry update. Hope we get the labels when we send laundry out in a couple of days!

 

You have been a wonderful source of information!

 

Utahtea....so ready to board the Zaandam!

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

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A few minutes after returning from dinner, the Chief of Facilities was at my door to apologize for the laundry staples. I learned that due to a broken part on the labeling machine, the staples were a temporary fix until they could pick up the new part in Seattle. After the first few days, safety pins were procured and in use so that staples would not damage those items without buttonholes/loops. Maybe they read my post on CC? So next week, the pesky but non-damaging tapes should return. The conversation ended with my commenting that the laundry service of the Zaandam was one of the best I have experienced with HAL. I was assured that the laundry folks would be glad to hear my comparison with other ships.

 

Wow....this is fantastic.....and no more staples.....!!!

 

My husband said that the laundry turn-around on their May 7-21 cruise was excellent....many days they put the laundry sacks out in the morning and they were back that evening.....

 

Thanks so much for checking on this......:)

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here's a maybe silly question: regarding laundry. do you need to pre-pay for the unlimited laundry before you board? or is it like a box you can check somewhere like for room service? we've decided it will be worth it for us, rather than paying for checked baggage (and BUYING suitcases big enough to check; i only do carry on travel as i travel for work, so i legit do not own a real sized suitcase. just a little clamshell hard sided wheeled carryon and a business-person-laptop backpack.)

 

thanks!

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I've never had a Sunday brunch on board before. Is it something new? What time is it? Do you order of the menu or is it buffet style?

 

It is new to me as well. I think is is just a different MDR menu and I will compare them when I get home to a better internet connection.

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Day 14 began with hazy skies as we sailed to Victoria and ended with bright, sunny skies with strong winds. As the ship was allowing passengers ashore, a brief shower hit the city.

 

With another sleep-in day, the Lido Market was not crowded. While opening my second poached egg, I glanced at the sea and saw a whale blow. I saw a shallow dive with no fluke but with the whale heading north and the boat south, the encounter was very brief.

With all of my empty luggage on the bed, my packing process began but with an excursion in Victoria, I could not complete the process.

 

The ship was delayed docking as another ship had to leave the same dock and clear the port before we could dock. We docked by 3:00 PM and every passenger swarmed to the gangway causing a huge jam at the same time that a passenger was being evacuated to an ambulance (I overheard). Passengers could not exit the elevators as there was no room to step out. At least three floors were pouring passengers into a single stairway from Deck 1 to A Deck. Needless to say, my excursion was delayed for one hour.

 

Our first stop was at a butterfly farm but without a warning that we would be in a “hot house” environment and we were coming from a cold rainy one, the visit was unpleasant. Advice to leave our coats in the bus would have been a good idea. I did get some good photos before joining a number of others desiring to escape the “hot house”.

 

The next stop for one hour and forty minutes was at Butchart Gardens for some truly great photos. We did get extra time at the Gardens to compensate for our late arrival.

 

A late Canaletto dinner, 20 minutes after my reservation, was quite delicious. Being in port, the Canaletto was nearly deserted when I began and ended my meal. The pistachio/almond tart was yummy.

 

Just to note that Guest Relations’ promise to get me copies of Club HAL activities turned out to be an empty one to make me feel that they were truly concerned with my comments.

 

In a few minutes my two pieces of luggage will be in the hallway and the cruise will only a few hours from being over.

 

I will post tomorrow my impressions of the disembarkation process (my time is 9:20 AM).

 

More tomorrow.

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here's a maybe silly question: regarding laundry. do you need to pre-pay for the unlimited laundry before you board? or is it like a box you can check somewhere like for room service? we've decided it will be worth it for us, rather than paying for checked baggage (and BUYING suitcases big enough to check; i only do carry on travel as i travel for work, so i legit do not own a real sized suitcase. just a little clamshell hard sided wheeled carryon and a business-person-laptop backpack.)

 

thanks!

 

You just check a box on the first laundry list that you send with your bag of laundry. I pack for only three days. The laundry turnaround here on the Zaandam is same day.

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"I cannot understand why people do this, when there are plenty of other places just to sit around the ship. Once people have finished eating they should vacate the tables for others to eat."

 

We agree!!! It's even more inconsiderate on cold climate cruises due to almost everyone being indoors. Given no other option, we'll just sit where there's room. Three people sharing a table for 6 is a bit more efficient than ONE, don't you agree? 😎👩🏻

Edited by Lenliner

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The day began with showers and as I post this, the sun is shining in Seattle.

 

Finally ashore and with a decent internet connection!! FWIW my Galaxy Tablet had a big update that downloaded up to 75% over a two hour period while placed on my balcony to get better reception before my connection was disconnected. While waiting in the lobby of the Sleep Inn near SEATAC, the download was completed and the update completed in 20 minutes.

 

After putting my luggage outside my door at 11:45 PM last night, I looked for my wallet to choose my tip for my amazing Room Stewards. It was missing. Suddenly realizing that the last time I had seen it was in the pants that were now in my luggage in the hallway. Opening the door, my suitcase was still there and the wallet was indeed in the pair of pants that I had worn earlier that day. As I pulled the zipper around my suitcase, I paused to think what I could have happened if my luggage had been removed before I could have retrieved my wallet. I now have a checklist for both packing and what items that must be placed on the desk (not packed) on the last cruise day.

 

Today, my Zaandam mail box (actually just a slot behind my room number plaque) still did not have the promised Club HAL activities lists that were promised by Guest Relations. The box did contain my final bill of $33 despite my losses in the Casino.

 

Breakfast at 8:00 AM on Disembarkation Day had no lines and lots of tables.

 

I stepped off the ship at 9:20 AM (my requested time) and entered the luggage hall to see about 50 remaining suitcases. As I headed for the Exit, several HAL reps reminded me to have my passport ready. With my passport in hand, I looked up and noticed only two passengers ahead of me. I looked around for the Customs Booths and saw only to agents standing behind their wheeled podiums. After a three-second stop to hand and receive back my passport, I walked straight to the taxi line directly ahead.

 

At 10:00 AM, I was seated in the lobby of the Sleep Inn across from the airport and waiting for a room to be readied. The only more efficient Disembarkation Day in my memory was 12 minutes when I disembarked the Veendam last December.

 

I received and completed my Cruise Survey with issues and commendations expressed in this thread.

 

The latest Mariner's Luncheon menu is now posted. On board images should be posted within two weeks. Excursion photographs will take a bit longer as there are nearly 4000 to review.

 

It needs to be noted that Art Gallery sales announcements were live and well nearly every day in my mail box this cruise.

 

For those who have asked questions, I hope that I have obtained all of the answers and my observations helped my fellow CC member's with their cruise planning.

 

My next "live" thread will be aboard the Konigsdam

 

I will continue to answer questions on this thread

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Thank you for doing your "live"blog. It's been very interesting to follow and especially since we'll be on the Zaandam in 4 weeks.

 

Thank you again and enjoy your next cruise!

 

Sent from my SM-G930VL using Tapatalk

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Thank you Roger for taking the time to do the live report and posting so much information on your website! We board in less than 4 weeks and your information has been a huge help to Walt and me.

 

Lisa

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Thank you so much, Roger. I'm an obsessive planner and I have spent a lot of time reading the activity sheets and menus.

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Thank you so much, Roger. I'm an obsessive planner and I have spent a lot of time reading the activity sheets and menus.

The most important tip in this thread is the secluded balconies accessed through the aft doors marked Emergency Exit on Decks 6 and 7. Lots of loungers and very few users.

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