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Old 07-11-2005, 01:03 PM
NEWBIE ROSE's Avatar
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Hi!! I have been reading and reading but finally decided to post for myself. Hope someone with recent experience on this ship can advise me. Thanks in advance

I am booked on Veendam to Alaska in Sept(05). Lots of little wonderings, such as:
LUGGAGE: do checked-in bags have to be hard-sided as suggested in brochure? Or is good quality soft-sided adequate?
TERRY ROBES: are these provided for use on this ship?
THE PATCH: is this the best defense against seasickness?
CABIN TV: What is the deal with the movies? Is there a good selection? Are VCR's for loan/rent?
TIPPING: Is there a preferred currence for on the spot tipping? We are canucks

This is a great site, mostly older posts, though. Hope someone's out there!!
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September '05 Veendam to Alaska
January '06 Volendam to S. Caribbean
May '06 Volendam to Alaska
July '06 Tahitian Princess Honolulu to Papeete
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Old 07-11-2005, 09:15 PM
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first of all, welcome to Cruise-Chat.com. Your quality soft sided luggage should be fine. When they bring the luggage aboard, it is piled several suitcases deep and if you have beakable items and are unlucky enough to be on the bottom, you might have some damage. If you pack like it is going to be squished, then you will be fine.

It depends on what category cabin you are in if you get robes or not. HAL should be able to tell you taht in a quick phone call.

There is very little movement on an Alaska cruise simply because much of it is done in the inside passage, which is more like a small river than the ocean. You chouldn't have any problem with motion sickness whatsoever. But if you are super-vunerable, then the patch would be a great idea.

I am not sure about the TV situation on HAL, simply because I do not watch TV at all. I will leave that for someone else to answer.

On-the-spot tipping can work to your advantage in some situations, but on HAL it is not expected or required.

Have a great cruise!

Tom
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Old 07-11-2005, 10:17 PM
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thankyou, Tom!

We are in outside cabin 810 which is on A deck a bit aft of midship. The TA assured me this is a great/stable location. We are doing the northbound route which ends up at Seward and I have read a few comments by cruisers who experienced a bit of rough water in that area. I'm not unduly worried about it but would rather be safe than sorry as I am travelling with my (88 yr old) mother. We're both first-timers and are looking forward to a once in a lifetime experience. At least mom is!! I'm looking at it as the start of a long and happy love affair....figuratively speaking of course

I don't expect to watch that TV myself but my roomie might want it. I'll wait for someone else to jump in. As far as the robes go, I guess we're in the cheap seats so I'm thinking the answer is no. Would have been nice for traipsing back and forth to the pool.

Thanks for your help
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September '05 Veendam to Alaska
January '06 Volendam to S. Caribbean
May '06 Volendam to Alaska
July '06 Tahitian Princess Honolulu to Papeete
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Old 07-12-2005, 05:21 AM
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Now, I may be wrong - but it is my understanding that HAL provides bathrobes to all guests - no matter what their stateroom category. As for VCR's on the Veendam, they are provided in all Verandah Suites and higher (category BC - penthouse) and there is a video library onboard. But, I do not believe that individual VCR's are available for rent.

Also, a note about tipping. Tom, HAL has changed their tipping policy and a gratuity of $10 per guest per day is now automatically added to the shipboard account. A 15% gratuity is automatically added to any bar purchases or wine in the dining room. So, there is no need for on the spot tipping - but if there are special services or people that you wish to recognize - any currency is okay with staff. (They have onboard accounts that makes this a non-issue)
Nancy
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Old 07-12-2005, 07:55 AM
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newbie rose,
I was just wondering if you had heard about using ginger root for seasickness? I got that information off one of the cruise boards. Fortunately, we didn't have to use it, but I bought a bottle just in case. I also had some patches which my sister had used. The problem using them is you are not supposed to be out in the sun when using them and she had a very bad reaction. So be careful! Also, drinking ginger ale is supposed to help. Don't forget that over the door shoe holder, it's a lifesaver for all our bathroom toiletries! OH, we were on the Fantasy. I wasn't expecting robes either, but they were in the closet. Just wore one for a picture, had brought a cover up to wear to pool.
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Old 07-12-2005, 01:24 PM
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thankyou, Nancy and jbmm,

Isn't this fun?!! Having read innumerable posts over the past two weeks, it's great to actually get in on the conversation.

I'm a great believer in ginger myself, eat the crystallized slices when feeling woozy but you have to like the taste, or should I say bite. But capsules would work. Regarding the patch and sun, don't want to seem pessimistic but I'm not expecting a whole lot of sunbathing on this trip, in fact I have heeded the advice of others and have put rain pants/hats and gloves on the packing list. Am also aware that anything can happen so we'll be prepared for the whole array of possibilites.

Will probably bring an assortment of meds along and hopefully won't need them. Bearing in mind the post that said ... don't wait til you feel sick to take something; by then it'll be too late. So we'll see.

I think you're right about the robes. Went onto HAL's site and under their new improved services campaign, it seems the nice sheets, better beds, robes, fruit basket etc is extended to all rooms. Hurray!! Was feeling a bit left out when reading about all the perks for those in high places -- ie suites. Am getting exciteder and exciteder

Rose
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September '05 Veendam to Alaska
January '06 Volendam to S. Caribbean
May '06 Volendam to Alaska
July '06 Tahitian Princess Honolulu to Papeete
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Old 07-12-2005, 05:59 PM
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Hmmmm, I had better take another HAL cruise soon. I seem to be out of touch with their current policies. It is tough work, but you know....VBG

Tom
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Old 07-14-2005, 02:06 AM
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VBG........hmmmm.
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September '05 Veendam to Alaska
January '06 Volendam to S. Caribbean
May '06 Volendam to Alaska
July '06 Tahitian Princess Honolulu to Papeete
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Old 07-16-2005, 07:06 AM
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We were on the Veendam in January and can confirm that we even had terry robes in our inside cabin. It also had the new beds which we found were the most comfortable bed we have ever slept in. Can't say about the TV re movies as we were too busy doing other things to do other than catch up quickly on the news. NancyN is right about the new tipping policy, it was charged to our room account. We spoke to our dining room waiter and he said the staff were very happy with the new system.
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Old 07-17-2005, 10:06 PM
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Thanks Keith. I am feeling very good about our decision to go with HAL.

I have one other little question. Re: the spa and beauty facilities. Does anyone know approximately what they charge for, say, a shampoo/roller set (mom) in the beauty salon? I plan to take the curling iron but may need the services of the salon as well. Also, the HAL website lumps the massage and therapeutic treatments together with sauna, steamroom and fitness classes. Is there a charge to use these latter items as well or are they included in the price of the cruise?

Thanks for all the great info, folks!!
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September '05 Veendam to Alaska
January '06 Volendam to S. Caribbean
May '06 Volendam to Alaska
July '06 Tahitian Princess Honolulu to Papeete
 
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