HAL Westerdam vs. Carnival Glory

Old Apr 14th, 2005, 07:02 PM
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HAL Westerdam vs. Carnival Glory

We are looking for a cruise with an excursion to the Mayan ruins at Chichen Itza. Both of these ships have the excursion, HAL from Cozumel and Carnival from Progresso. It's a long excursion which is at least a couple of hours further from Cozumel, but I have never sailed with Carnival which I am not sure whether I would like. Any comments or suggestions?
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Old Apr 14th, 2005, 07:23 PM
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Holland America is generally a level higher in quality than Carnival, yet the prices are quite similar. Holland America has smaller ships and has the new Signature of Excellence upgrades throughout the ships - everything from mattresses to stemware has been upgraded. The Carnival Glory is a newer ship than the Westerdam, but Holland America is a more sophisticated cruise line with classical music in the evenings, fine art throughout the ship, fresh tropical flowers around every corner. Carnival will be a bit more mainstream, but is still an excellent quality cruise line. It is more a question of your personal preferences and personal style.

Best Regards,
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Old Apr 14th, 2005, 08:37 PM
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If the destination is really important to you then i would have to suggest Carnival. When we cruised on HAL they changed one of our stops a month before we left and then changed the times for another stop after we were already onboard. I can give them the benefit of the doubt that it was out of their control, but they also drastically reduced the amount of time for a shore excursion we booked with them and never notified us. We found out on accident. But, even worse than that, my parents booked a cruise on the Vollendam last year to go the the western caribbean and HAL changed the whole itinerary to the eastern without even notifying them. Unbelievable! They found out accidentally when friends went to book the same cruise. When they called HAL confused, HAL first denied their cruise was ever going to the western carib., but backtracked when my mom persisted telling them she was looking at their brochure. Then they admitted it had been originally scheduled to go to the west but they changed it due to buyer demand for the eastern. Highly unlikely in my opinion, so who knows what their real story is or if they ever planned on notifying the passengers. It would be quite a shock to get on a ship thinking you were going one place and finding out you were going somewhere else. Good luck with your choice.
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Old Apr 15th, 2005, 04:39 AM
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I agree with Julia that HAL and CCL offer a very different cruising experience. HAL caters to an senior crowd and IME the entertainment and cuisine reflect this. Their ships are elegant, refined and very well maintained. It was too subdued for me.

CCL is the polar opposite. Their ships are bold in decor and remind me of being in Vegas. I found them to be crowded and noisy, with lots of announcements pushing bingo, shops, etc. The service on my 2 CCL cruises was not of the caliber of HAL, nor was the cuisine.

Neither of the two lines are my cup of tea but I suggest you check out the reviews at cruisecritic.com to get a clearer picture. The Glory seems to have more inconsistent ratings than most of the other CCL ships.
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Old Apr 15th, 2005, 12:12 PM
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I really can't compare because we have not taken HAL. However we do like Carnival. The food and service was to our liking. In fact the chef on the Destiny in 2003 when we cruised it actually is well recognized in his craft ans has received several awards in his field. I have read where Carnival spends more $ for food per passenger than many other lines. I disagree with the idea thats floats around about equating Carnival to a "blue collar" line. In fact I find it offensive. I think you will be fine with them IMHO and we would cruise with them again w/o hesitation. BTW we are in our mid 50's and are hardly party animals. One fact to consider is that if your cruise is in the summer and its HOT in Mexico then. Those extra two hrs. could mean alot. Actually its 4 hrs. isn't it counting the trip back. Of course that is what a cold Corona con limon is for. . Bes tof luck and enjoy whichever cruise you take.
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