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shirleywbob

Zaandam or Amsterdam?

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We are thinking about booking a New England/Canada cruise for next summer. HAL has two ships sailing that area. Zaandam or Amsterdam? Are they basically the same ship? They seem to be in the same class. Thoughts or comments?

Also, is there any chance that HAL will implement any of their new music partnerships such as Billboard Onboard, BB Kings or Lincoln Center Stage on either of these ships? I know they are small and have limited space, but maybe they convert some of their existing space.

Thanks

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They are both R class ships.  We have sailed on both ships.

 

We like the Amsterdam better -- she is more classic -- more beautiful.

 

Can't help you on the other part.

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1 hour ago, shirleywbob said:

Also, is there any chance that HAL will implement any of their new music partnerships such as Billboard Onboard, BB Kings or Lincoln Center Stage on either of these ships? I know they are small and have limited space, but maybe they convert some of their existing space.

Probably not, as there just isn't much to give up without causing problems elsewhere. Most of the evening entertainment venues are below cabins, which would disturb sleep for a good number of passengers. The BB King group was on the similar Rotterdam for a while, but were removed.

The larger ships have those offerings, if they matter. It's nice that the smaller ships still offer a choice.

As of May, at least, the Amsterdam still had a Piano Lounge for evenings. I believe the Zaandam has The Mix instead.
That's about it for differences between the ships.

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Amsterdam!  I feel that the ship is in top notch shape plus it has a great crew.  I do not know if it is because she does the World "Cruises or not, but we think that the Amsterdam is a "cut above" overall.

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Can't really give a reason but I slightly favor the Zaandam.  I guess one thing that might enter my mind is that the Amsterdam seems to have some pesky plumbing problems; I don't know if it'j just the Amsterdam is talked about more here of if there really is a difference.  Now that the Prinsendam is gone they are pretty much tied as my favorite HAL ships.

 

Roy

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Isn't Zaandam going in for a refurb soon?  I had read somewhere on these boards that they plan to remove Mix and put in Billboard Onboard.  Am I remembering correctly?

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Posted (edited)

In  the new England cruise...the smaller the ship the better as many ports are either tender or limited     Amsterdam is 1360  Zanndam is almost 100 more rats in the same box

Too  the best ports are Bar Harbor, Portland, Newport  New Brunswick.. and a cruise day gulf of St Lawrence

If  they show the same ports  go for the smallest....  then compare ports.     If the cruise ends in NY/Boston it will be easier than Canada.    Happy cruising

Edited by Hawaiidan

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On 8/12/2019 at 7:59 AM, RuthC said:

Probably not, as there just isn't much to give up without causing problems elsewhere. Most of the evening entertainment venues are below cabins, which would disturb sleep for a good number of passengers. The BB King group was on the similar Rotterdam for a while, but were removed.

The larger ships have those offerings, if they matter. It's nice that the smaller ships still offer a choice.

As of May, at least, the Amsterdam still had a Piano Lounge for evenings. I believe the Zaandam has The Mix instead.
That's about it for differences between the ships.

I believe Zaandam had a piano player in the Mix when I was on her in 2018.

 

The thing I like more about Amsterdam is that she seems to have more places outdoors, especially with the steamer chaises. She has several on her aft decks. 

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We were on Zaandam March/April of this year. The piano bar is unchanged, it is part of what they call "The Mix". In the Ocean bar, there was a gent playing the piano for early diners and on to about 8:00 or so. Then a 3-person group of instrumentalists plus a vocalist came on to coincide with the end of the first evening performance in the show lounge (not what they called it, but you know what I mean). All were good at what they did. We were on from Buenos Aires to Ft. Lauderdale. There was a bit of a change of musicians in Santiago, but all were good.

Amsterdam's layout is similar.

We did not feel crowded on either ship.

Jim

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We are just off the Zaandam 8/3-8/10 NE/Canada cruise from Boston to Montreal. Embarkation seemed well-organized and fairly speedy. The muster drill, however, seemed quite disorganized. Lots of passengers had gathered on deck near their assigned lifeboat station prior to the drill. But they then made everyone go back inside and reassemble again. It was a mess but didn't last too long.

We had to tender at Bar Harbor, which is usual, and then again at Sydney, which can sometimes occur if there is another ship that takes precedence at the main dock. Then, at Quebec City, we had to dock quite some distance from the usual dock at the base of the Old City. They did provide shuttles. The docking situation was disappointing but nothing that one cannot manage.

I never felt crowded except at the Lido, which we avoided whenever possible. We almost always dined in the main dining room. The service was fine and the food was generally good.

We had an ocean view cabin, 1873, which was mostly quiet and spacious enough for a 7 day port-intensive cruise. There was a surprising amount of storage. I was impressed by that. The bathroom contained a tub/shower combo which was fine for us but I don't see how anyone with limited mobility could climb into and out of the tub. I would recommend taking a nightlight to plug into the bathroom outlet. The  wall hairdryer worked fine for us as we both have short hair. Be aware that the handle gets extremely hot if you have it on for long. Cabin service was just fine.

I had low expectations for this ship but, overall, was pleasantly surprised and generally pleased. This being high tourist season, all ports were extremely crowded and I would not do this itinerary at this time of year again. But we still had a good time!

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Posted (edited)

Hi, 

 

This information is helpful. I recently booked the Boston to Montreal cruise on the Amsterdam that departs on August 22, 2020. I chose the Amsterdam because it does the longer cruises and was designed to be (along with the Rotterdam) one of the line's flagships. Hopefully, the ports won't be as crowded since we are sailing later in August. 

 

Chuck

Edited by seacruise9

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Does the flagship tend to get the better, more experienced crew?  How does HAL decide crew assignments?  Thanks.

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14 hours ago, Stevedan said:

Does the flagship tend to get the better, more experienced crew?  How does HAL decide crew assignments?  Thanks.

I do not know for certain, but my eperience says that they do.  We were on the Amsterdam in Jan. for 2 weeks and it was the best HAL crew we have experienced in 25 cruises.

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