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HAL alone in booking cruises out of Amsterdam in July, 2021


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I am fully paid on the 7-18-21, fourteen days on Nieuw Statendam out of Amsterdam.  No way this cruise will happen but yet unlike other lines, HAL hasn't cancelled.  And they will book you today on the cruise.  I suppose they are not eager to refund our money and are waiting for me to cancel in return for future cruise credits, not cash.

 

  Some revealing new fine print from HAL press release today:

 

"In light of COVID-19, Holland America Line is currently enhancing health and safety protocols and how they may impact future cruises. Our actual offerings may vary from what is displayed or described in marketing materials."

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Cruise contracts always have the caveat that the cruise can significantly change.  That said you should be covered by the original Cruise with Confidence contract which allows you to cancel for any reason up to 30 days prior.  I saved a copy, here is the quote

 

Holland America Line has temporarily adjusted our cancellation policy to make it easier for you to cancel or change plans.

Book any cruise that departs through October 31, 2021—you must book by January 31, 2021—and you can cancel for any reason up to 30 days before departure and automatically receive a Future Cruise Credit in the amount of non-refundable fees collected by Holland America Line (the remainder will be refunded to you). You can use the Future Cruise Credit when you're ready to book your next cruise vacation.

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As far as I understand, HAL still intends to start cruising from Amsterdam as from July 1st/2nd.  And out government still hopes most inhabitants will be vaccinated by that date (keep fingers crossed).

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HAL hasn't canceled our September Westerdam cruise from Athens either. As of now the Westerdam is anchored off the coast of Baja California and we do not see how she will get to Athens totally empty by this summer. Other cruise lines are already announcing their changes and additions to cruises this summer but from HAL we hear nothing. BTW HAL is still booking our cruise on the Westerdam.

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4 hours ago, MAVIP said:

As far as I understand, HAL still intends to start cruising from Amsterdam as from July 1st/2nd.  And out government still hopes most inhabitants will be vaccinated by that date (keep fingers crossed).

The question is by July will the EU allow people in from non-Schengen countries?  The Netherlands may have to “go rogue” like Iceland did and make the decision to allow people with proof of vaccination or previously having covid into the country if they are from non-Schengen countries.

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3 hours ago, Reagan0712 said:

The question is by July will the EU allow people in from non-Schengen countries?  The Netherlands may have to “go rogue” like Iceland did and make the decision to allow people with proof of vaccination or previously having covid into the country if they are from non-Schengen countries.

Iceland may have gone 'rogue' but as an island inward travel is manageable.  Onward travel to other Schengen countries is currently not possible.  This would be impossible to do in Nederland as it is too easy to access other EU/Schengen countries by road or rail with limited border controls.

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15 hours ago, Balliett said:

I am fully paid on the 7-18-21, fourteen days on Nieuw Statendam out of Amsterdam.  No way this cruise will happen but yet unlike other lines, HAL hasn't cancelled.  And they will book you today on the cruise.  I suppose they are not eager to refund our money and are waiting for me to cancel in return for future cruise credits, not cash.

 

  Some revealing new fine print from HAL press release today:

 

"In light of COVID-19, Holland America Line is currently enhancing health and safety protocols and how they may impact future cruises. Our actual offerings may vary from what is displayed or described in marketing materials."

I am booked on the very first sailing of the Nieuw Statendam July 11th out of Amsterdam and have paid in full. At this point I am giving it less than 10% chance of sailing but if it does we are committed to go. Just yesterday our Non-stop KLM flight home canceled but it ended up that KLM just changed dates that they would be flying to LAS. They are doing just 2 flights a week and instead of arriving on Sunday they now arrive on Saturday and over night and leave on Sunday back to Amsterdam so HAL needed to change our flight. I called to make sure they placed us on a flight that would work for us since we had Business Class seats.

I have to admit I am rather surprised that HAL has not canceled since they have been canceling previously prior to finals. Who knows maybe they know something we do not.

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2 hours ago, VMax1700 said:

Iceland may have gone 'rogue' but as an island inward travel is manageable.  Onward travel to other Schengen countries is currently not possible.  This would be impossible to do in Nederland as it is too easy to access other EU/Schengen countries by road or rail with limited border controls.

Agree.

It should also be noted that Iceland continues to strictly control entry for those vaccinated or those with showing previous covid. All must be tested upon arrival, their testing app must be downloaded to phone (which is traceable), the person must go somewhere until the test results are received (either wait at airport or check into hotel) and not interact with general public. Test results take around 4 hours. So far it appears to working.

Perhaps this is the sort of plan that will have to be in effect for other countries for a while in order to get tourism started again.

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So, I have one more day of the waiting game.  Final payment is due tomorrow on our 18 July HAL Iceland cruise.  I'm worried about having tons of money tied up in Future Cruise Credits.  I think reading all the fine print, if I pay, I can still cancel up to 65 days out and get my money back.  It is a lot of money to have tied up.  Even if the cruise goes, I don't think we can.  Based on local rules, we live in Germany, I'm not sure we can make the trip and if we did, we would likely have to quarantine for two weeks on our return.  Really just want HAL to cancel and roll the reservation to next Summer.

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3 hours ago, reidjacobs13 said:

So, I have one more day of the waiting game.  Final payment is due tomorrow on our 18 July HAL Iceland cruise.  I'm worried about having tons of money tied up in Future Cruise Credits.  I think reading all the fine print, if I pay, I can still cancel up to 65 days out and get my money back.  It is a lot of money to have tied up.  Even if the cruise goes, I don't think we can.  Based on local rules, we live in Germany, I'm not sure we can make the trip and if we did, we would likely have to quarantine for two weeks on our return.  Really just want HAL to cancel and roll the reservation to next Summer.

 

I believe you will only receive your money back for the portion that is excluded from the penalty.  The remainder will be in Future Cruise Credits.

If you look at page 2 of your contract, you will see when the various penalties start and what percentage will be refunded.

HAL’s Cruise with Confidence - https://www.hollandamerica.com/en_US/book-with-confidence.html

 

This link is for North America so perhaps it is different in Europe?  I would definitely confirm before making final payment IF you do not want Future Cruise Credits.

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7 hours ago, reidjacobs13 said:

So, I have one more day of the waiting game.  Final payment is due tomorrow on our 18 July HAL Iceland cruise.  I'm worried about having tons of money tied up in Future Cruise Credits.  I think reading all the fine print, if I pay, I can still cancel up to 65 days out and get my money back.  It is a lot of money to have tied up.  Even if the cruise goes, I don't think we can.  Based on local rules, we live in Germany, I'm not sure we can make the trip and if we did, we would likely have to quarantine for two weeks on our return.  Really just want HAL to cancel and roll the reservation to next Summer.

 

Do you think the EU will even allow Americans in this summer for tourism? I am scheduled on the August 1 cruise out of Amsterdam. 

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17 minutes ago, ChinaShrek said:

 

Do you think the EU will even allow Americans in this summer for tourism? I am scheduled on the August 1 cruise out of Amsterdam. 

From what I am reading Greece will by May 15th with proof of vaccinations and negative testing before arrivals. I think once Greece opens up more in the EU will follow.

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24 minutes ago, terrydtx said:

From what I am reading Greece will by May 15th with proof of vaccinations and negative testing before arrivals. I think once Greece opens up more in the EU will follow.

 

That could work. I am vaccinated but would we still need a Covid test to return to the US? Maybe the ship could arrange that before our flights home?

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Posted (edited)
13 minutes ago, ChinaShrek said:

 

That could work. I am vaccinated but would we still need a Covid test to return to the US? Maybe the ship could arrange that before our flights home?

Greece Will Reportedly Reopen To U.S. Tourists Next Week—If They Meet These Conditions (forbes.com) 

 

This story says US tourist who are either vaccinated or have a negative test will be allowed to enter. Does not cover getting a tested to come back to the US, but I believe that cruise lines resuming cruises from Athens like Celebrity, are going to have testing available on board prior to the end of cruises. So far nothing from HAL about Greek cruises other than a rumor about the Eurodam moving to Athens for the summer.

Edited by terrydtx
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12 minutes ago, terrydtx said:

Greece Will Reportedly Reopen To U.S. Tourists Next Week—If They Meet These Conditions (forbes.com) 

 

This story says US tourist who are either vaccinated or have a negative test will be allowed to enter. Does not cover getting a tested to come back to the US, but I believe that cruise lines resuming cruises from Athens like Celebrity, are going to have testing available on board prior to the end of cruises. So far nothing from HAL about Greek cruises other than a rumor about the Eurodam moving to Athens for the summer.

 

Hmm. Bars and restaurants remain closed but tourist sites would be open. For the Amsterdam cruise, I just want to spend a couple of days sightseeing in the Netherlands or Belgium before the cruise. If I can do that then I'm happy. If nothing is open in Benelux then I may move the cruise to 2022. I have no interest in flying in and going right on the ship.

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We are also booked on the 18 July cruise.  Hoping if the Netherlands/EU is still closed to North Americans, HAL looks at moving the port of embarkation to the UK, assuming England is open for business.

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1 hour ago, ChinaShrek said:

Do you think the EU will even allow Americans in this summer for tourism?

It's obviously a matter for individual countries how they control their borders but, with varying vaccination rates, I think it unlikely that the whole EU will open up to countries not in Schengen as early as summer. And, with infection rates in an increasing number of countries already heralding the predicted third wave, I doubt whether it would be a risk free trip. We have our usual 3 week trip to Spain booked in January and I'm hopeful that will go ahead, but am not confident that it will.

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30 minutes ago, Harters said:

 And, with infection rates in an increasing number of countries already heralding the predicted third wave, I doubt whether it would be a risk free trip. We have our usual 3 week trip to Spain booked in January and I'm hopeful that will go ahead, but am not confident that it will.

 

You make a good point about how much risk I would be taking. I have faith in Europe's health care system but I have no desire to quarantine for 10-14 days if I get Covid before I could return to the US. I am vaccinated but that is not 100% protection from Covid.

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11 hours ago, reidjacobs13 said:

So, I have one more day of the waiting game.  Final payment is due tomorrow on our 18 July HAL Iceland cruise.  I'm worried about having tons of money tied up in Future Cruise Credits.  I think reading all the fine print, if I pay, I can still cancel up to 65 days out and get my money back.  It is a lot of money to have tied up.  Even if the cruise goes, I don't think we can.  Based on local rules, we live in Germany, I'm not sure we can make the trip and if we did, we would likely have to quarantine for two weeks on our return.  Really just want HAL to cancel and roll the reservation to next Summer.

I believe you can cancel up to 30 days before the cruise sailing date, but will not get a cash refund.

attached are the terms for EU bookings.

Maybe you should call HAL Rotterdam 00800 1873 1873  and ask for confirmation.

Book a Cruise _ Cancel Cruise Anytime with Our Guarantee _ Holland America Line T&C.pdf

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Posted (edited)

We are booked on the 24-day Capitals and Transatlantic aboard the new Rotterdam. Originally we had booked the second Northern Isles cruise to Iceland which is now a single sailing due to construction delays. Then we switched to this six week later cruise thinking it would provide additional time for some sort of normalcy to return. Also our travel plans have contracted the closer we get to the sailing date. We had planned on spending two weeks before the Iceland cruise touring Switzerland. Changing cruise dates we had the same thought for the October cruise. Then it changed to just spending two days in Amsterdam before embarking. The latest revision was our flight on UAL was changed from a non-stop IAD-AMS to a 1-stop IAD-EWR-AMS. I am thinking that UAL is looking in their crystal ball and doesn't see passenger loadings to Europe returning by that time.

 

If we can cruise on the Capitals/Transatlantic will Belgium, France, Ireland, and the United Kingdom be open to cruise ships that have multi-national passengers? It could be that even by October 10 it may be difficult to cruise in Europe for US citizens. 

 

Now some will say that the Rotterdam needs to be in the US for the Caribbean cruises this Fall. In the last year cruise lines have been repositioning ships without passengers. So that wouldn't be any different to sail it to Ft. Lauderdale empty. There is also the ability for HAL to substitute ships for other ships. The Nieuw Statendam's schedule was changed to substitute for the first Rotterdam Northern Isles in July. The Rotterdam may just stay in Europe.

 

 

Edited by Heartgrove
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3 hours ago, terrydtx said:

From what I am reading Greece will by May 15th with proof of vaccinations and negative testing before arrivals. I think once Greece opens up more in the EU will follow.

Yes, that is what the Greek Tourism Minister wants to do, but Greece is within the Schengen Zone and any third party arriving in Schengen Zone requires a visa, which is then valid for the entirety of the Zone.  Greece cannot admit third parties without the agreement of the other Schengen Zone countries.

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Posted (edited)
12 minutes ago, VMax1700 said:

Yes, that is what the Greek Tourism Minister wants to do, but Greece is within the Schengen Zone and any third party arriving in Schengen Zone requires a visa, which is then valid for the entirety of the Zone.  Greece cannot admit third parties without the agreement of the other Schengen Zone countries.

 

We are on one of the four Viking Ocean Cruise sailings circumnavigating Iceland in July. Iceland is party to the Schengen Agreement but does not require a visa for US citizens visiting under 90 days. But travel beyond to other Schengen countries is prohibited.

 

 

Edited by Heartgrove
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Just now, Heartgrove said:

 

We are on one of the four Viking Ocean Cruise sailings circumnavigating Iceland in July. Iceland is party to the Schengen Agreement but does not require a visa for US citizens under 90 days. But travel beyond to other Schengen countries is prohibited.

Yes I mentioned that on another thread.  It is comparatively easy for Iceland being an Island.

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