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

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What is the price for unlimited laundry. I know that by the bag it is $20 per bag. I saw a posting on one of the 7 day cruises that it was $49 for unlimited laundry and pressing. I don’t remember that being asked/answered.

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They can also be used to praise staff who go beyond what you would expect of them. They are greatly appreciated and in the past we have received a happy “thank you” from those crew members we have given “kudos”to.

 

I’m glad that Crew News is addressing issues that are showing up on this itinerary. Hopefully the next sailing will have fewer “glitches”.

 

 

For clarification, the Comment Card has three sections: "Tell us what you like", "Tell us what you didn't like", and "Tell us about our crew".

 

My Comment Card submitted yesterday had comments in all three of the above sections. Since Comment Cards are often posted in the Crew area, praise of specific crew members should contain only a single crew member. At present, I will be providing praise for 9 individual crew members and thus 9 of my requested 15 Comment Cards will be used for them.

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Oh, that's an interesting aspect. I'm sure I have left a laundry-list of crew members on a comment card on the last day!!! Will rectify that on my upcoming cruise.

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Day 08 in Anchorage began with mostly sunny skies and the warmest temperatures encountered so far on this cruise. The day closed with partly cloudy skies but the bulk of my excursion day was cold, heavy overcast skies, and a hint of rain.

 

For the first time on my cruise, the Lido Market was crowded for breakfast.

My “26 Glaciers” excursion bus loaded just 50 yards from the very steep gangway. The bus proceeded towards the Prince William Sound in Whittier with an enroute stop at the Alaska Wildlife Center where I got some great pictures of brown bears, ravens, caribou, and elk. We learned that access to Whittier was through a single-lane 2.5-mile tunnel with Eastbound traffic proceeding at half past the hour and Westbound traffic proceeding on the hour. Buses had priority and our driver/guide timed our arrival in both queues with great skill so that we had little waiting time.

Our tour boat in Whittier held 335 passengers of which about 90 were from HAL. There was a very wedding party on the second deck. Our served hot lunch was salmon chowder, oyster crackers, bread w/butter, and cabbage slaw. Later in the excursion, chocolate chip cookies were served. Seating was assigned and very cramped with no place to store camera bags. The weather was cold and heavily overcast but the viewing was amazing. Black bears, humpback whales, otters, and kittiwakes were spotted. The centerpiece of the excursion was all of the glaciers. Speeding at 40 knots caused those standing outside to endure some extremely cold wind chill. The excursion required nearly four hours of bus riding with the good side being the onboard bathroom. The excursion arrived back at the Zaandam 45 minutes late. Fortunately, the Lido was open for that short 15-minute window.

 

I was 15 minutes late for my Canaletto Dinner. I opted again for the Zuppe di Pesci and the swordfish daily special. The soup was excellent and the half-portion swordfish (1.5 inches thick and 9 inches in diameter) was very good. The cannelloni dessert was delicious.

 

Tomorrow is a stop in Homer. Americas Test Kitchen will be demoing Flavors of the Mediterranean at 9:00 PM.

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Not only can it be so complicated, but it is. I appreciate how you make sure they know this is their problem to resolve with Seattle.

 

I am surprised they didn't spring the "Night Auditor" on you. Maybe that excuse has been retired.

 

Glad you got it worked out (after a manner)!

 

The Night Auditor corrected my Mariner Discount for Sel de Mer.

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The drop off and pickup point is the Eagan Center not far from the Visitor Center on 5th Street
Thank you, that's where it was the last time I was up there on a one way being dropped off in steward, so I was hoping it was the same place. Thank you very much for the information.

 

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Thank you, that's where it was the last time I was up there on a one way being dropped off in Seward, so I was hoping it was the same place. Thank you very much for the information.

 

Sent from my SM-G930VL using Tapatalk

 

 

 

Sent from my SM-G930VL using Tapatalk

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What is the price for unlimited laundry. I know that by the bag it is $20 per bag. I saw a posting on one of the 7 day cruises that it was $49 for unlimited laundry and pressing. I don’t remember that being asked/answered.

 

It is $7 a day.....$98 for this 14 day cruise....,,or $49 for a 7 day cruise....

 

If you are cruising in Europe....it is $9 a day....

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Thank you so much, especially for scanning the "on Location" daily schedule. We will be on this cruise 7/2/18 and I do like to plan for yoga, gala nights, Pinnacle, Cannaletto, etc. Last time when we were on this cruise, they brought a brewmaster on board from Alaskan Brewing and had several beer events. I saw one tasting listed but I was curious if you noticed any special beer pairing lunches in the Pinnacle? That was one of our favorite meals.

 

Thanks, Sandy

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The Night Auditor corrected my Mariner Discount for Sel de Mer.

 

 

YAY, you!! Did you nearly fall off your chair for the second time?

 

I appreciate your postings as they so closely follow my experiences on some ships and I like to hear that you get problems resolved, if only in time, if only by persevering.

 

I agree that some Ft Desk staff do need more training. There can be a smugness that borders on being rude. I love the machine that prints out our account, so I don't have to go near the Ft Desk.

 

Great thread: thanks for all the info and the time you take to do this.

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It bothers me that these ill-informed Front Desk people are the ones who take turns being concierge in the Neptune Lounge. I'm used to getting many problems taken care of there.

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It bothers me that these ill-informed Front Desk people are the ones who take turns being concierge in the Neptune Lounge. I'm used to getting many problems taken care of there.

 

On this board you read about some great ones and some not-so-great ones in the Neptune Lounge. I think they are instructed to up their game when they act as Neptune Concierges.

 

I would expect they still smirk behind suite pax's backs, as it is a personality thing and you can train people only so much. We've had bar servers who were great, fantastic and some who need a serious attitude adjustment. It seems endemic.

 

One thing some pax do when they hit the wall with the Ft Desk staff is talk to one of the Ft Desk supervisors.

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Sorry to interject on Crew News' thread, but we are on the same cruise with him, and truly I have been less than thrilled with the Zaandam this trip. Alaska and being on a ship are always wonderful, and there have been many lovely crew members going the extra mile, however I do agree with the above statements that indicate that some of the ship's employees require both an attitude adjustment and/or more and better training. I think I am getting to the end of my patience with the overall HAL experience, with the reduction and elimination of so many features, such as lecturers, activities, live music venues, and the libraries. I'm also tired of being a constant sales target. We have one more cruise booked this fall on the Eurodam with our mother, and then I think I can say I am done. Next trip to Alaska will be a land trip that we design for ourselves. This is a personal viewpoint and decision only, which should not influence the decision of others. Many other passengers on our cruise are having a lovely time. Sorry Roger, for venting on your thread.

Edited by Old As Dirt Mom

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I agree with everything you said! It might be time for HAL to invest in additional interpersonal training for the front office staff. We had a similar experience on the Maasdam last fall, until Barbara from front office finally worked hard and found a solution to our concerns! We're on the Zaandam June 4th, and one more this fall in the Med. on the K-dam. After that, we'll decide if HAL is for us.😎👩🏻

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Day 09 In Homer began with heavy overcast skies, temps in the 40’sm and a strong hint of rain. The day ended just the same.

Another packed Lido Market for breakfast.

 

As I left the Zandaam, I noted the plethora of Kittiwake shore birds roosting everywhere. My “Best of the Bay” excursion met at the end of the pier and then proceeded to walk another 10 minutes to the boat. The ramp down to the harbor, filled with hundreds of watercraft, was the steepest angled ramp I have ever experienced with the Time Bandit of “Deadliest Catch” TV series in clear view as was Otto’s Constructor boat from the “Alaska Last Frontier” TV series. The ship’s captain lives 12 miles from Otto’s homestead on the series, “Alaska’s Last Frontier”. Otto’s constant worry about getting a moose to keep from starving was debunked since Otto has a grocery just two miles from his homestead.

 

The estimated 60 HAL passengers filled the warm indoor areas of the boat as well as a few spots in the wheel house. A few of us hardy souls staked a claim on the top open deck to get better pictures. A stop at a rookery allowed the viewing of otters with babies, kittiwakes, and two versions of puffins. Later in the excursion we spotted eagle’s nests, cormorants, and mountain goats high in the rocks. Of all days to not wear my long underwear, this was the worst. I was chilled to the bone for the first time on this cruise on this 3-hour excursion. The hot soup and salad lunch was just the right meal to break my chill.

 

Remarkably, I had excellent cellphone connection at the pier so far from town. I used my cellphone hotspot to update my website with the latest When & Where’s as well as the dining menus that I have collected so far.

Tomorrow is Kodiak at 7:00 AM with my excursion at 7:30 AM. America’s Test Kitchen is demoing Meatless Monday Meals at 2:00 PM.

 

More tomorrow.

Edited by Crew News

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Just got caught up.

Anchorage -- sorry that the boat excursion was so crowded and you all were assigned seats. We have been lucky not to ever have that happen.

Your excursions are the type we like to see all the wild life.

Great reports.

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It bothers me that these ill-informed Front Desk people are the ones who take turns being concierge in the Neptune Lounge. I'm used to getting many problems taken care of there.

 

 

Over the years we have been fortunate to have many wonderful concierges in the Neptune Lounge. But we have had a couple who had attitude problems.

HAL does need to retrain a lot of people and add more crew.

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Over the years we have been fortunate to have many wonderful concierges in the Neptune Lounge. But we have had a couple who had attitude problems.

HAL does need to retrain a lot of people and add more crew.

Let's hope Seattle reads and heeds.

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Day 08 in Anchorage began with mostly sunny skies and the warmest temperatures encountered so far on this cruise. The day closed with partly cloudy skies but the bulk of my excursion day was cold, heavy overcast skies, and a hint of rain.

 

For the first time on my cruise, the Lido Market was crowded for breakfast.

My “26 Glaciers” excursion bus loaded just 50 yards from the very steep gangway. The bus proceeded towards the Prince William Sound in Whittier with an enroute stop at the Alaska Wildlife Center where I got some great pictures of brown bears, ravens, caribou, and elk. We learned that access to Whittier was through a single-lane 2.5-mile tunnel with Eastbound traffic proceeding at half past the hour and Westbound traffic proceeding on the hour. Buses had priority and our driver/guide timed our arrival in both queues with great skill so that we had little waiting time.

Our tour boat in Whittier held 335 passengers of which about 90 were from HAL. There was a very wedding party on the second deck. Our served hot lunch was salmon chowder, oyster crackers, bread w/butter, and cabbage slaw. Later in the excursion, chocolate chip cookies were served. Seating was assigned and very cramped with no place to store camera bags. The weather was cold and heavily overcast but the viewing was amazing. Black bears, humpback whales, otters, and kittiwakes were spotted. The centerpiece of the excursion was all of the glaciers. Speeding at 40 knots caused those standing outside to endure some extremely cold wind chill. The excursion required nearly four hours of bus riding with the good side being the onboard bathroom. The excursion arrived back at the Zaandam 45 minutes late. Fortunately, the Lido was open for that short 15-minute window.

 

I was 15 minutes late for my Canaletto Dinner. I opted again for the Zuppe di Pesci and the swordfish daily special. The soup was excellent and the half-portion swordfish (1.5 inches thick and 9 inches in diameter) was very good. The cannelloni dessert was delicious.

 

Tomorrow is a stop in Homer. Americas Test Kitchen will be demoing Flavors of the Mediterranean at 9:00 PM.

 

We did this excursion, too, on the prior cruise. It was a long day, but so much to see, and the crew on the boat was super sweet. I think it's one of the more memorable excursions we've done. Some just stick in one's mind. And now, thanks to you, Crew News, good photos. (We're terrible about taking pictures.)

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Love your MDR menus, but you missed the Mains on the Homer one.

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We did this excursion, too, on the prior cruise. It was a long day, but so much to see, and the crew on the boat was super sweet. I think it's one of the more memorable excursions we've done. Some just stick in one's mind. And now, thanks to you, Crew News, good photos. (We're terrible about taking pictures.)

I’m enjoying all the posts from Crew News. Where does one access the photos? Thank you. Jan

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Thank you so much for taking the time to write. My sons and I look forward to reading daily as we will be going on this trip the end of July. Any chance you have info on the teen area or activities? I saw online they have a nice outdoor as well as indoor area BUT I know this cruise isn’t gear to kids so I’m not sure if the Picts I googled were accurate!!!

 

 

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Love your MDR menus, but you missed the Mains on the Homer one.

 

I have been promised replacements.

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Any specific excursion or all of mine?

 

I am really enjoying your journey, thanks for all your information posts and beautiful pictures. I have been interested in this itinerary for some time so following with great enthusiasm.

 

 

With regard to excursions, what is the price for excursions from Anchorage to Whittier or Seward? I thought I read one time there were tours available by train or bus to those places.

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I was on this ship during the winter and leaving for Alaska June 4th

 

the "outdoor" area that used to be for teens is now for crew only.

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