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Hail to the YumYum Man ( Dining Room Greeter)!

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I Just wanted to start a topic in support of the Dining Room greeters onboard the HAL vessels, who give a

truly unique feeling to the HAL dining experience, and a remind us of the Golden years of Ocean Crossing and the Holoand America Heritage.

 

The Dining Room greeter, more popularly known as “ Yum Yum Man”, a term which the greeters DO NOT consider rude by the way, and has no bad meaning in Bahasa, is the crewmember in the unique old style uniform, somewhat resembling a Porter or Piccolo uniform. Their. uniform used to be very easily recognizeable as it was bright red with golden accents.

since the new Uniforms, it is white, with orange accents. They always wear a hat.

 

The main function is to welcome passengers ( call me oldfashioned, but I call guests onboard a moving platform passengers) into the dining room, Say goodbye to them while offering some after dinner sweets, notably mints and candied ginger ( a traditional stomach settler and remedy for mal-de-mer).

 

he also will go around the public rooms on the main decks with a xylophone right before the Early and Late ( called Main on HAL) Seating. He will then play a chime to kindly remind passengers that it is time head towards the Dining room.

 

I realize that these are very oldfashioned traditions, and I am all for a modernisation of HAL and its decoration and habits. However: some items must be preserved to keep the company

Unique. The Yum Yum man is within the core of HAL DNA.

Please do not eliminate the role!

 

Please feel free to share your stories, pictures of the HAL Dining Room greeters.

 

please tell us if you have found these wonderful Crewmen onboard your Cruise, particulary on KONINGSDAM/ NIEUW STATENDAM as it seems the new vessels

do not have this  function anymore, and no more before dinner chimes can be heard onboard the newest sisterships. 

 

 

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HAL should never do away with the position of YYM. It’s an utterly charming, fun, classic, unique tradition for all the reasons you mentioned. I look for him on every voyage. 

 

(The first time I saw a YYM, it reminded me of the Hong Kong Peninsula Hotel lobby staff who wore a similar hat.)

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We had the best yum yum man on the Prinsendam.

 

He would make us origami animals as we were leaving.  So impressed and so enjoyable I did a TUK (Tell us what you think) note.

 

Never, ever understimate what these mean to people.  He came to our table to thank us and made us a special animal.  

 

Every night as we got our ginger and dates he checked if we had "one of" and made another.

 

by the time we got off the ship, we had an entire charming zoo. They sat on my table the entire cruise.

 

They really can make your cruise special 🙂 

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There's so much homogenization among the mainstream lines (for better or worse).  The Yum Yum Man is unique to HAL.  

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I really don't remember the xylophone from my HAL cruises.  but I do remember hearing it on my first cruises in 1972/73, and on the Royal Princess in 1999.  They chimed 'Don't Cry for Me Argentina' as we left Buenos Aires.  Haven't heard that tradition on a cruise since.  EM

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We haven't sailed Holland for years but have booked for April.  The YYM was the first thing I thought of when we booked.  It is such a wonderful tradition.  We have pictures of several with the xylophones.

 

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I've only done open dining so I never paid attention to the chimes (now that people mention it, I suppose I do recall seeing them occasionally), but I loved him as a greeting and farewell, and of course the mints and ginger! We would go visit him even after meals in the Lido. It really is a special touch that makes a positive impact on the vast majority of cruisers for the cost of a single staff member. Far more passengers attend the MDR dinner at some point (and often repeatedly) vs any other onboard "activity"! 

 

Occasionally we would get candy from the table when he wasn't there (probably off ringing the chimes!) and it still was nice to have the after dinner treat, but in no way memorable. So I know that while I would be disappointed to lose the candy table, I would be more disappointed to lose his radiantly-positive presence.

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We just finished a wonderful 10 day partial canal cruise on the Zuiderdam (January 6-16) and quickly came to look forward to seeing Zeri every evening.   He was outrageously funny and made such a game of handing out the sweets after dinner.   Thanks for the history on his special position...... may Holland America long continue this tradition!   

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No Yum-Yum Man on the Premiere Voyage of the Nieuw Statendam.  At first we thought it was a one day mis-step. 

But, by the end of the cruise, everyone was commenting that this was a HAL change that we did not like.

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35 minutes ago, lcand1923 said:

No Yum-Yum Man on the Premiere Voyage of the Nieuw Statendam.  At first we thought it was a one day mis-step. 

But, by the end of the cruise, everyone was commenting that this was a HAL change that we did not like.

Did they still have the candy dish (mints, ginger and ??) out by the Dining Room exit at least? 

 

On our Prinsendam cruise last August, I noticed that he was absent a couple of times when we left the dining room, but the treats were still there. I never looked to see if it might be around Main Seating time and he was away doing the Dinner Call rounds. 

 

On our upcoming cruise, I'll have to pay more attention to the time we leave (and ask) if I notice him gone during times that are not aligned with Dinner Call. 

 

 

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The Yum-Yum Man's "treat-cart" was also AWOL on the Nieuw Statendam. Hopefully, it was just a case of the equipment not arriving yet and they will have it sometime soon.

 

There were some other things apparently missing on the early NS voyages, such as the cups for the self-serve soda machine.

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Mid December Prisendam cruise after dinner mints, ginger, dates etc. was a self serve station as you entered Ocean Bar area! No Yum Yum man!

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It will be a sad day if these colourful men disappear. They were always so friendly and were very busy helping out with all sorts of duties.

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My first cruise was in 2014 on MS Rotterdam, and he was there. As it was my first cruise, everything was special so it didn't strike me as extra special. 

 

In hindsight, having a crew member that is not responsible for seating, complaints or whatever, but just to say "hello" and hand out treats from his humble cart did add something.  I guess there's a Mickey Mouse doing the same thing on Disney cruises, but I love the old fashioned way. 

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Totally agree. We were thrilled to see Zeri every night upon exiting the Zuiderdam MDR. It was a wonderful way to exit the room. This, along with the spectacle of the soups being served elegantly in the bowls in front of you, are small things that for us distinguished HAL from our previous cruises. 

MVIMG_20190105_192656.jpg

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Yum Yum present on Kdam 2018 and Oosterdam 2018 cruises. A wonderful treat. 

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I had no idea they were called YumYum Men but I’ve enjoyed them on my HAL cruises and have had several photos taken with them.

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Captain Albert once commented, maybe jealously, that the Yum Yum man dressed in his red and gold European bell hop uniform, is the MOST photographed employee on the ship!  

I have often told the Matre'D how valuable he is to the company.  He is, when still present, a great asset to a line who takes pride in tradition.  Love to hear the dinner chimes.

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