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-   -   How long for docs? (http://www.cruisereviews.com/forum/holland-america-line/18948-how-long-docs.html)

oreo 01-13-2008 10:02 AM

What is the usual time prior to sailing for the documents to arrive? 1 week-2 weeks ?????

TrvlPro 01-13-2008 10:36 AM

If your agent is anything like me, you were told to prepare for them to come a week or two prior to your sailing. This is done as a worst case senario as sometimes we do get them this late. Normally you'll have them a lot sooner. Don't worry about the packet though. If it never arrived you're still not going to be denied boarding. The thing you can do that's more important than the packet itself is go ahead and register online so they have your info in the system when you arrive. Otherwise they'll have to delay you while the enter your immigration, passport, emergency contact info, etc. from the little form they send you with the docs. Once you register, the docs become souveniers and not much more.

Have a great vacation!

Cheers, Neil

f-mattox 01-13-2008 02:47 PM

Hello oreo; Neil's advice to register online before you go is excellent advice. We had a party of four and were onboard Veendam 10 minutes after entering the terminal. You can print your boarding pass after you complete the registration; then all you have to do is show the boarding pass and passport, and you're on! Some didn't even have the forms filled out yet, and the people in line behind them were not happy.

Dave 01-13-2008 03:02 PM

I'll never understand the fools who show up for a cruise and have never looked at their docs. These are the people who create hate and discontent everywhere they go.

oreo 01-13-2008 07:59 PM

Hi all,
I have pre-registered. I am leaving here in 16 days. (Going down a couple of days early) Agent only said that the cruise line would be sending them via mail. No other info! So you think there would be no problem boarding with out the "offical" papers? Thanks for you help.

Berick1234 01-14-2008 10:30 AM

I've booked some last minute cruises two days before the ship left...Never a problem getting on...But, do go and pre-register online...saves time and then print out a copy to take with...nothing more discouraging as to be in line with someone that can't find their passport, photo ID or their credit card..or they are trying to get an up grade before getting on the ship....Shame on them....gets the cruise off to a bad start....Happy Cruising....

Bob E

TrvlPro 01-14-2008 12:09 PM

oreo, paper tickets are not the official docs. They're a feel good measure. The ships manifest is the official record and it's now electronic. If you have tickets and the customs or cruiseship computer goes down you aren't getting aboard until the sytem comes back up. But if you show up with nothing in your hand but a passport and did the online registration (assuming the computer is working) you're on the ship without delay. Electronic info has replaced the need for tickets or any paper forms of any kind. I really wish all the lines would adopt a paperless system altogether. But as has been stated here by many and countless times people feel better having something in hand and actually prefer the old fashioned tickets to eDocs. As long as you register that's fine but never think that that slip of paper is what you need and all you need to board or you'll have a lot of people behind you in line very upset about the delays from handing the agent your paper.

Cheers, Neil

oreo 01-14-2008 12:39 PM

Yes, I have did the on line registration and I have my passport ready to go. I do know what you are talking about with regards to people not having the necessary document i.e. passport ect. out and ready no matter where they are, not just at cruise ports but in lines to check in to airports or hotel counters (credit cards).......need I go on? One that never ceases to amaze me are the people going through the fast food/coffee shops drive through and don't get the purse/wallet out until they are at the pick up window!!! Oh well it takes all kinds. It took a bit of getting used to the e-ticket for flights, had a problem "trusting" the computer systems (ha ha) but now it is common place and so far, so good with them having me in their system when I get to the airport. I will not worry about it any more.
Feb 1st and on to the Voolendam, YAAHOOOOOO!!!Thank all of you for your helpful advice. Smooth Sailings, Sharon

Destin Mom 01-14-2008 06:43 PM

Just read this and have a question...we will be leaving over a month prior to our sailing. I was worried we would not get our docs prior to flying to Europe. Do we even need them? Per this string, it sounds like we just need our passports? Is that correct? Thank you!

f-mattox 01-14-2008 08:06 PM

You can print your boarding passes as soon as you complete the online registration--I did it about six weeks before the cruise. All you need is your passport, your boarding pass and a credit card or equivalent. You may not even need the boarding pass; but I would think it would make things go a little smoother.


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