How to Oranize a Cruise Critic Meet & Mingle (Meet & Greet) on Holland America

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#1
Ewing, NJ
20,778 Posts
Joined Jan 2000
The information below has been compiled from the Holland America Forum, and is based upon individual experiences by members. It should be made VERY clear that there is no official sponsorship of Meet & Mingle Parties on board Holland America ships. We appreciate the generosity of Holland America in setting up these gatherings as they recognize the loyalty of Cruise Critic members. However, it should not be expected that each ship will offer the same amenities, or anything at all. Remember, too, that “paid” groups on board take precedence over non-paid groups, and there are often many groups on board vying for the same space. All of the above said, let’s get started with the party planning!


1) Before contacting anyone at Holland America, your first step should be to POLL everyone on your ROLL CALL to see if they are interested in attending a Meet & Mingle on your cruise. It would be helpful to consider your daily itinerary, and obtain a general consensus as to when our fellow cruisers would be most likely to attend. More than likely someone has been keeping a general “who’s sailing” list on the ROLL CALL throughout its duration. Keeping this listing “fresh” encourages others to continue to participate and to join in on the fun! Please make sure your efforts are coordinated so that only ONE person from each sailing is contacting the cruise line.

2) Once you have determined that there is enough interest, you will need to contact the Holland America On Board Events Coordinator for your ship no later than 5 weeks before your sailing. See the list here: http://b39b442ecbb8b8e977d6-70868d37...ber%202010.pdf


3) The On Board Events Coordinator will ask you to complete a Meet & Greet Space Request Forum. See the form here: http://b39b442ecbb8b8e977d6-70868d37...T-JAN-2010.pdf and return either via email or fax. Note you will have to return the form to HAL 30 days prior to departure. The On Board Events Coordinator will then contact the ship for space approval and get back to you with your confirmation.

4) Tips for Completing the Form: Be sure to ask for a NO HOST get-together, which means no one person will be responsible for payment..Indicate what you would like them to serve, such as Coffee, tea, pastries or a NO HOST Bar. Best bet is to choose only those items indicated as “no charge”. Also it's nice to invite Officers, such as the Beverage Mgr., Hotel Mgr. CD, etc. to attend your get together. You should have a general idea of when/where you’d like the party to be held. Offering up a few suggestions would be very helpful.



5) You may want to ask ROLL CALL participants to contact you with their full names & cabin numbers..You should consider creating an email address for this purpose (yahoo or gmail are good choices) since you will be posting it on the boards. Consider contacting the Beverage Manager once you are on board. He/she should be able to fill you in on any specifics for your Meet & Mingle, and you can update the headcount for them as well. If you are so inclined, it would be a nice touch to create a personalized invitation to the event. You can deliver the invites yourself, or you can ask if the Beverage Manager would be willing to assist with distribution.

Tip from LauraS: If you RSVP that you are going to the Meet & Mingle, GO! If any cruise line takes the time to set up a special gathering for Cruise Critic members, we should definitely do our best to attend.
Tip from LauraS: When you attend the gathering, DO NOT SIT DOWN. This is often the kiss of death at these events. There is no entertainment from the cruise line – you are there to meet your fellow Cruise Critic members. Get up, and MINGLE!


Tip from Member Spinner: “I think it's really important that we remember formally to thank these folks. I wrote little notes to the Bar Manager, Hotel M and the CD and dropped them by the Guest Relations desk to have them delivered, using the occasion to thank that staff again as well. I did this because I believe it is the correct and polite thing to do with no expectation of anything more but the feedback I got from all involved led me to believe that they don't get a lot of thanks; I was warmly thanked for the notes. Needless to say, the next meet/greet went just as well and I did the thank you notes again. I also wrote extremely favorable comment cards for each person who helped us as well. I sincerely believe it's the least we can do. Setting up an event like this which probably isn't going to generate any income for the ship and takes up the time of several important people for sometimes a very small group is a very gracious thing for them to arrange to drop into their busy schedules.”


Many thanks to members Garsons, Spinner & Serendipity14 for their contributions to the above information. If you have any information to add to the above, please drop me a note at [email protected]. Corrects/comments are welcome as well.
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Laura
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#2
Southern California
3,953 Posts
Joined May 2009
Being this is current and important information could this be made a Sticky?
(I know in the past it was).

Thanks!
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#3
Warwick, R.I. , USA
39,044 Posts
Joined Mar 2001
Originally posted by TiogaCruiser
Being this is current and important information could this be made a Sticky?
(I know in the past it was).

Thanks!
Oh, please, NO, not another one. Not unless two are removed to compensate.
We just got rid of several stickies, only to have them replaced with other stickies. It's back to three hits on the "page down" button just to get past them to the threads.
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It fixes everything.
#4
Cleveland Hts., OH USA
1,725 Posts
Joined Nov 2000
Thank you for the updated information. I have been in charge of one several years ago, and didn't have this much information then. I may be in charge of another, in February, and hope it can be arranged five weeks before!
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Pat
#5
British Columbia
10,099 Posts
Joined Feb 2013
I think you will see that this message is now a sticky on the roll calls - and perhaps that is the place for it!
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Ann
#6
Warwick, R.I. , USA
39,044 Posts
Joined Mar 2001
Originally posted by Vict0riann
I think you will see that this message is now a sticky on the roll calls - and perhaps that is the place for it!
You're right. If it has to be a sticky anywhere, that's the appropriate place.
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CCASE/LSSE

Chocolate is to women what duct tape is to men.
It fixes everything.
#7
New Brunswick
46,176 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Ironically, I find the information above a bit incorrect - at least for me.

I've done a number of meet and greets and yes, of course I make sure there is interest and numbers before I book.

I have never had to complete any form. I simply call. They say it is easier for them to do it That, or I have lucked out!

In any case, I get an email with all my details to confirm - from then on, I email with updated numbers, etc.

HAL is very good at arranging meet and greets
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Jacqui emailme Prinsendam April 12/19 Med Riviera & River Explorer Spreadsheet

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#8
Southern CA
1,572 Posts
Joined Mar 2007
I've headed up quite a few of the M/G's on HAL ships; as Kazu says, HAL makes it easy. It's easier for me to send the form; then I have a paper trail start to finish but I'm sure calling works just as well. I've never had the reservation "lost" and usually there's a confirmation in my cabin mail when we board the ship. Very often I know the entertainment manager (this is an onboard, office position pretty much; this is the person who prepares the daily program, works with Seattle re the onboard talent, schedules events, etc--most people won't even see him/her.) onboard because I've met them doing this before and there will be a personal note added on because they recognized my name when they created the notice, it's all very friendly. How much trouble it is mostly depends on the size of the roll call; managing a group of more than 100 is like herding cats but the Cruise Director has always helped out a lot. Smaller groups, pretty easy, and I don't mind doing it at all.
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marney
marney at wilde dot org
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#9
City of Angels, CA
29,300 Posts
Joined May 2005
Originally posted by Spinner2
I've headed up quite a few of the M/G's on HAL ships; as Kazu says, HAL makes it easy. It's easier for me to send the form; then I have a paper trail start to finish but I'm sure calling works just as well. I've never had the reservation "lost" and usually there's a confirmation in my cabin mail when we board the ship. Very often I know the entertainment manager (this is an onboard, office position pretty much; this is the person who prepares the daily program, works with Seattle re the onboard talent, schedules events, etc--most people won't even see him/her.) onboard because I've met them doing this before and there will be a personal note added on because they recognized my name when they created the notice, it's all very friendly. How much trouble it is mostly depends on the size of the roll call; managing a group of more than 100 is like herding cats but the Cruise Director has always helped out a lot. Smaller groups, pretty easy, and I don't mind doing it at all.
Welcome home neighbor!
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#10
Southern CA
1,572 Posts
Joined Mar 2007
Thanks, neighbor! It's colder here than it should be and the traffic on our east-west boundary streets is worse than ever. Gas prices are down though. Fewer Christmas lights up than usual too, I'd say. I think you said you're off-contract at the end of this current cruise?

Everybody, Copper 10-8 is one of those delightful staff members who will come to your Meet/Greet if he happens to be on board!
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marney
marney at wilde dot org
Our Cruise Blog & Maps
#11
Oregon
1,308 Posts
Joined Jun 2013
Originally posted by RuthC
Oh, please, NO, not another one. Not unless two are removed to compensate.
We just got rid of several stickies, only to have them replaced with other stickies. It's back to three hits on the "page down" button just to get past them to the threads.
I know. It's becoming very sticky
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#12
New Brunswick, Canada
9,709 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Originally posted by kazu
Ironically, I find the information above a bit incorrect - at least for me.

I've done a number of meet and greets and yes, of course I make sure there is interest and numbers before I book.

I have never had to complete any form. I simply call. They say it is easier for them to do it That, or I have lucked out!

In any case, I get an email with all my details to confirm - from then on, I email with updated numbers, etc.

HAL is very good at arranging meet and greets
Maybe the answer is that you called. I have organized two meet and greets where I had to mail in a form but I made my requests by email.
From this I would gather that the method of contact dictates whether a form is needed or not.
#13
New Brunswick
46,176 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Originally posted by sapper1
Maybe the answer is that you called. I have organized two meet and greets where I had to mail in a form but I made my requests by email.
From this I would gather that the method of contact dictates whether a form is needed or not.
Probably that is it sapper. The first time I called because it was my first meet and greet and I had a couple of questions - everything was done for me and in fact, she helped me with something else. I ended up doing a complimentary letter to her supervisor She told me to call any time I was doing one and encouraged me to do more. So, that's what I do
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Jacqui emailme Prinsendam April 12/19 Med Riviera & River Explorer Spreadsheet

Upcoming Cruises: Prinsendam April12, 2019- 24 day Med Riviera & European River Explorer. Zaandam March 7, 2020 - 31 day South America, Inca & Panama Canal Collectors
#14
Ottawa area, Canada
3,974 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
My experience has been to just print the form from the link, fill it out and email it to the events co-ordinator. I received an email back the next day and everything was set. The week before we cruise I send another email with the final count.
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#15
113,593 Posts
Joined Jul 2001
Originally posted by RuthC
Oh, please, NO, not another one. Not unless two are removed to compensate.
We just got rid of several stickies, only to have them replaced with other stickies. It's back to three hits on the "page down" button just to get past them to the threads.
I agree with you RuthC.

We were down to 5 and then within a few days, more stickies were added.
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#16
South Western Ontario
1,812 Posts
Joined Jun 2005
I've organized quite a few M&G's as well. I used to send the form but the last few times I've phoned and it is so easy. I receive a confirmation email that same day.

I print out the confirmation and bring it with me. I usually check in with the event manager on the first day.

Our last cruise on the Ryndam was a BTB so we had two M&G's. I was fairly stressed before we left from all my volunteer gigs. I left all my printouts sitting on my desk by the printer.

On this cruise I received a letter in the cabin confirming the first M&G so I wasn't concerned and didn't meet with the event manager ahead of time. On the morning (2am) of the second M&G I realised that I didn't get a letter of confirmation. I went to Chirsty's office at 8 am. She had no record of it but called the beverage department and everything was set up for our 11 am party. I was pretty impressed.
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cheers
jan


"I haven't been everywhere but it's on my list."
- Susan Sontag

Prior Cruises:
NCL (1); HAL - Prinsendam, Volendam (2), Statendam, Oosterdam, Westerdam, Veendam (2), Rotterdam (4); Crown Princess; Ryndam
Last cruise:
Ryndam, Southern & Western Caribbean, 2013
Next up:
nothing planned
#17
Northern Virginia USA
2,829 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Originally posted by OVgirl
My experience has been to just print the form from the link, fill it out and email it to the events co-ordinator. I received an email back the next day and everything was set. The week before we cruise I send another email with the final count.
That's what I have done as well. I have also set up additional M&Gs on board the ship with no problem. I've found that as long as you're nice to the Beverage Manager from the beginning, they'll be nice to you and help you out whenever possible.
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Lady Chew

//Royal Caribbean Diamond//Celebrity Elite
#18
Chicagoland
2,571 Posts
Joined Apr 2013
Is there a more up to date list of the person to call for a M&G on a specific ship?
http://c3270052.r52.cf0.rackcdn.com/...ber%202010.pdf

I'm specifically asking about Noordam.
Thanks!
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#19
Victoria Harbour, ON
3,683 Posts
Joined Nov 2007
Originally posted by LauraS
The information below has been compiled from the Holland America Forum, and is based upon individual experiences by members. It should be made VERY clear that there is no official sponsorship of Meet & Mingle Parties on board Holland America ships. We appreciate the generosity of Holland America in setting up these gatherings as they recognize the loyalty of Cruise Critic members. However, it should not be expected that each ship will offer the same amenities, or anything at all. Remember, too, that “paid” groups on board take precedence over non-paid groups, and there are often many groups on board vying for the same space. All of the above said, let’s get started with the party planning!


1) Before contacting anyone at Holland America, your first step should be to POLL everyone on your ROLL CALL to see if they are interested in attending a Meet & Mingle on your cruise. It would be helpful to consider your daily itinerary, and obtain a general consensus as to when our fellow cruisers would be most likely to attend. More than likely someone has been keeping a general “who’s sailing” list on the ROLL CALL throughout its duration. Keeping this listing “fresh” encourages others to continue to participate and to join in on the fun! Please make sure your efforts are coordinated so that only ONE person from each sailing is contacting the cruise line.

2) Once you have determined that there is enough interest, you will need to contact the Holland America On Board Events Coordinator for your ship no later than 5 weeks before your sailing. See the list here: http://c3270052.r52.cf0.rackcdn.com/...ber%202010.pdf


3) The On Board Events Coordinator will ask you to complete a Meet & Greet Space Request Forum. See the form here: http://c3270052.r52.cf0.rackcdn.com/...JAN%202010.pdf and return either via email or fax. Note you will have to return the form to HAL 30 days prior to departure. The On Board Events Coordinator will then contact the ship for space approval and get back to you with your confirmation.

4) Tips for Completing the Form: Be sure to ask for a NO HOST get-together, which means no one person will be responsible for payment..Indicate what you would like them to serve, such as Coffee, tea, pastries or a NO HOST Bar. Best bet is to choose only those items indicated as “no charge”. Also it's nice to invite Officers, such as the Beverage Mgr., Hotel Mgr. CD, etc. to attend your get together. You should have a general idea of when/where you’d like the party to be held. Offering up a few suggestions would be very helpful.



5) You may want to ask ROLL CALL participants to contact you with their full names & cabin numbers..You should consider creating an email address for this purpose (yahoo or gmail are good choices) since you will be posting it on the boards. Consider contacting the Beverage Manager once you are on board. He/she should be able to fill you in on any specifics for your Meet & Mingle, and you can update the headcount for them as well. If you are so inclined, it would be a nice touch to create a personalized invitation to the event. You can deliver the invites yourself, or you can ask if the Beverage Manager would be willing to assist with distribution.

Tip from LauraS: If you RSVP that you are going to the Meet & Mingle, GO! If any cruise line takes the time to set up a special gathering for Cruise Critic members, we should definitely do our best to attend.
Tip from LauraS: When you attend the gathering, DO NOT SIT DOWN. This is often the kiss of death at these events. There is no entertainment from the cruise line – you are there to meet your fellow Cruise Critic members. Get up, and MINGLE!


Tip from Member Spinner: “I think it's really important that we remember formally to thank these folks. I wrote little notes to the Bar Manager, Hotel M and the CD and dropped them by the Guest Relations desk to have them delivered, using the occasion to thank that staff again as well. I did this because I believe it is the correct and polite thing to do with no expectation of anything more but the feedback I got from all involved led me to believe that they don't get a lot of thanks; I was warmly thanked for the notes. Needless to say, the next meet/greet went just as well and I did the thank you notes again. I also wrote extremely favorable comment cards for each person who helped us as well. I sincerely believe it's the least we can do. Setting up an event like this which probably isn't going to generate any income for the ship and takes up the time of several important people for sometimes a very small group is a very gracious thing for them to arrange to drop into their busy schedules.”


Many thanks to members Garsons, Spinner & Serendipity14 for their contributions to the above information. If you have any information to add to the above, please drop me a note at [email protected]. Corrects/comments are welcome as well.
The form that has to be filled out in para three reference the info required for the M&G will not let me print or fill it out on line to send to HAL.
Allan
#20
Ottawa area, Canada
3,974 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Originally posted by ski ww
The form that has to be filled out in para three reference the info required for the M&G will not let me print or fill it out on line to send to HAL.
Allan
You will have to print it first and then fill it out by hand.
I've done that in the past with no problem. Are you having a problem with your printer?
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24/2/19 Nieuw Statendam-7 days, 10/2/19 Nieuw Statendam-14 days, 25/2/18 Koningsdam-10 days,18/2/18 Koningsdam-7days,
25/11/17 Nieuw Amsterdam-7days, 19/2/17 Nieuw Amsterdam-14 days, 31/1/16 Eurodam-14 days, 24/1/15 Westerdam-7 days, 7/2/14 Noordam-21 days,
10/2/13 Nieuw Amsterdam-14 days, 29/1/12 Nieuw Amsterdam-14 days, 30/1/11 Nieuw Amsterdam-14 days,24/1/10 Noordam-20 days, 9/2/09 Galaxy-10 days,
15/3/08 Zuiderdam-18 days, 23/2/07 Galaxy-10 days, 1/2/06 Volendam-10 days, 10/3/05 Maasdam-10 days, 1/2/03 Zaandam-7 days, 14/6/52 Leerdam