Just disembarked from our first HAL cruise also !! We are Elite with Princess, and Platinum Plus with NCL (previously our two favorites), have also sailed several times on Celebrity and Carnival. This was our 42nd cruise.
Decided to try HAL (finally) we live in Arizona - easy to cruise in and out of San Diego.
Will write a complete review when I get the chance - but just wanted to make a couple of comments - the service and attitude (friendly, smiling, welcoming) of all of the HAL Crew/Staff was absolutely wonderful ! - We were in a Neptune Suite - didn't use the services of the Neptune Lounge Concierges' very much - but loved the other suite perks - the breakfast in the Pinnacle Restaurant each morning, etc.
A couple of (small, but very much appreciated) Suite perks that HAL offers that the other cruise lines do not were: the clock on the wall in our room (that changed whenever there was a time-zone change automatically - I think 3 times on a 7 day cruise) and the FREE Laundry !
We really missed out on the Entertainment, I guess. There was absolutely no description of the type of entertainment in the daily "What and Where" literature each day. W had no idea if the entertainment was a magician, a juggler, a vocalist , or whatever ! - We did happen to catch the 2 piano players in the Billboard Lounge one night (by accident)
Loved the size of the ship - and that we NEVER had to wait for an elevator !
We did find out the the ship only had 1732 passengers on this itinerary, and that 9 Korean Nationals were denied boarding;
and that only 1500 or so passengers were booked for the one following ours (departing San Diego on March 8th) the Concierge commented on the large number of cancellations.
Question: Our Credit Card was charged $822.22 on the 2nd day of our Cruise (March 1st) -
(in addition to our actual charge for the week - which was charged the day we disembarked (which makes sense)
Is that strange amount of $822.22 supposed to represent just a "test hold" on our Credit Card ??? or ???