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Old November 6th, 2008, 05:53 PM
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Default Norovirus on Zuiderdam

My husband I depart on the Zuiderdam Nov. 9, 2008 (in 3 days!) Holland America called today to notify us that we will be emarking at 9 pm because the ship must be sanitized due to Norovirus on the ship this week. They also told us we will not be stopping at Half Moon Cay....what a disappointment. I hope the rest of the cruise makes up for it! They did give us the option of rebooking on a later date or giving us a full refund, but we have nonrefundable airline tickets. They are also giving us a $75 shipboard credit for the inconvenience. I will be packing the hand sanitizer for sure!
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Old November 6th, 2008, 08:15 PM
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Default Re: Norovirus on Zuiderdam

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jiminy
My husband I depart on the Zuiderdam Nov. 9, 2008 (in 3 days!) Holland America called today to notify us that we will be emarking at 9 pm because the ship must be sanitized due to Norovirus on the ship this week.
Unfortunately, this sort of thing occasionally happens ... especially on cruise ships. But it doesn't have to mean the whole cruise is a bust. Frankly, I kind of enjoy it when things don't go as planned. Frequently you have the best cruises as a result.

Just stay flexible and enjoy the moment. HMC is a beautiful place, but missing it is not the end of the world. I've missed it on a few cruises myself.

I remember a b2b sailing I did on the Zuiderdam in August/September of 2004. Between hurricanes and norovirus we missed a whole bunch of ports and wound up with something like five sea days in a row at one point. A lot of the passengers were grumbling despite the fact that we got some major OBC, not to mention refunds for shore excursions. I just stayed flexible and had a wonderful time right on the ship. They put in a whole bunch of special activities that normally would never run on a seven-day Caribbean cruise ... like special coffee chats with officers and whatnot, a "behind the scenes" tour, a special "caberet" type afternoon show with several of the onboard entertainers, some game shows and cooking-type demonstrations, etc. I just enjoyed the heck out of all those things, and out of spending all the money I saved in the form of refunds and OBC. It actually worked out to be a pretty enjoyable cruise.

Trust me, yours can be wonderful too ... if you let it.

Blue skies ...

--rita
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Old November 7th, 2008, 02:02 PM
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I copied the information below from another forum. He apparently had more details on the Zuiderdam Norovirus.

I don't know if anyone else has heard but the Zuiderdam is now under Red alert due to a Norovirus outbreak. According to my information, the virus has affected 12.31% of the passengers and 1.7% of the crew. The 11/9 cruise is to leave FLL around 12:00 Midnight on Sunday rather than their normal time because of the required cleaning. Between the Midnight departure, not wanting to possibly spread this virus to the Westerdam, which will be at HMC at the same sceduled time as the Zuiderdam and Tropical storm that is forming off South America, the Zuiderdam will not be stopping at HMC on this particular cruise. The ones sailing on this cruise have been just as excited as us and now their trip starts off pretty rough. I really feel for them, but I bet they still have a wonderful cruise.

Bill
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Old November 7th, 2008, 05:41 PM
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All because some ignorant boars couldn't bother to wash their hands after using the rest room.

Wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands.

The extra work for the crew and expense to the cruise line is immense. The inconvience and disruption to guests....... so very unnecessary.

We've sailed under Code Red and there were times it was a bit annoying but for the most part it wasn't a big deal.

The worst is the library is closed. You cannot serve yourself anything in Lido. I find it hard to get my salad bar salad the way I like it rather than the way the steward wanted me to like it as hard as they tried. They couldn't figure out I really wanted a ton of mushrooms but skip some of the things most others want.

The lines were slow with stewards doing all the serving but no big deal. What was our hurry?!!

No salt and pepper shakers on tables. No bread basket. No newspapers or magazines. Gloves in the casino. Paper towels in restrooms rather than hand cloths. No nut dishes in lounges. No puzzles or board games out in Explorations Cafe. ETC
Hopefully, they'll get the numbers of ill people down and they will be able to lift the Code Red.

Wash your hands.
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Old November 7th, 2008, 06:48 PM
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Thanks for the info. Have a wonderful time bon voyage...MD
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Old November 9th, 2008, 12:06 PM
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Good luck on your cruise, hope they clean up the ship for you, as it was not properly cleaned when we boarded in Venice three weeks ago. There had been a outbreak with the staff and passengers the week before. Everyone washed their hands every 5 minutes it seemed like and hundreds were still affected. Even the musicians were down....17 days of code red...We did not get sick but had to pay the price of being at sea for 6 days with many of the activities being canceled. We were also canceled to half moon cay, but then again we were given a open bar one day while at sea....Everyone I spoke with was glad to get off the ship....
(Be kind to the staff they had a very hard previous cruise)
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Old November 11th, 2008, 08:57 PM
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Very much hope the next sailing will be fine! The Code Red does limit many things!
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Old November 12th, 2008, 10:35 AM
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Quote:
All because some ignorant boars couldn't bother to wash their hands after using the rest room.
or someone came on board with the virus and without consideration to all the other passengers spread it to them and the crew.

One cruise we were on the a group in the PH had been quarantined, but some of them were seen wandering the ship, oblivious to the fact that they were spreading the germ. They should have stationed a guard outside their room!

Then there was the lady who was ill in the terminal at Canada Place on an Alaska cruise a few years ago - apparently she had left home feeling ill. She was checked by a nurse at the terminal, was allowed to board with the stipulation that if she was still sick before the ship sailed, she would be removed. When the nurse checked on her, she was in the bathroom being sick, so they were put off the ship. Their travelling companions were not happy, but the nurse and doctor had to make a quick decision & I feel they did the right thing.

We have been on the ships a number of times when we've been in Code Red and because we took precautions we were fine.
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Old November 13th, 2008, 05:05 PM
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You can take all the precautions we all know to do and still get it.

I know. I did. Who knows where, how, what infected me? We are as cautious as anyone/everyone.

I contracted it last day of our Veendam cruise some years ago.
After all the days at sea we have, we are well versed in all precautions. No matter how careful you are, you can still get it.

DH did not catch it when I did.
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Old November 20th, 2008, 10:50 AM
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We just returned from our Zuiderdam cruise. We remained at Code Red (no salt and pepper on tables, no self serve on Lido, no hot tubs, etc) for about 5 of our 10 days. As far as we know, there were few illnesses reported. We were told we had to go 48 hours with no reports of illness before the restrictions were lifted. Our hands have never been so clean.....Purell dispensers everywhere!
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Old November 20th, 2008, 11:03 AM
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So glad to hear they finally got things under control and finally got a hand on this sickness, so did people actually go into the hot tubs?
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Old November 20th, 2008, 11:10 AM
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Yes, people were in the hot tubs and hydro pool. I will be posting soon on our dining experiences on the Zuiderdam, and will be curious to hear others experiences. A hint......very disappointing.
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Old November 20th, 2008, 12:12 PM
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Oh no, I was just hoping things were so bad since everyone was sick!

Never had such bad service in a Dinning room....Dinners were not as bad, but if you wanted to eat Breakfast or Lunch it took 2 hours and forget about getting water or coffee the staff would walk right by and make sure they did not make eye contact, and act as if they were hard of hearing....Things were so bad you could count on your dinning experience as being a complaining session with your table mates....it made you only want a table for two and they were only available for the first 10 minutes of each meal...to which the man at the door would loudly proclaim you should have come earlier if you wanted a table alone, I saw many people leaving angry after being publicly scolded.
I have never been on a cruise where everyone was counting the days when they could get off!!!
Not to mention this was the most BORING cruise ever! Nothing to do, no Staff in the little shorts and pollo shirts getting the cruisers up and busy having fun, we were told they cater to a older group that are not so active....
Who knows, maybe in another 40 years I will be the correct age to enjoy this ship.....
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Old November 21st, 2008, 04:20 PM
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We were counting the days to get home ! We have been on many cruises( including several on HAL) and have never had such a disappointing trip. In retrospect, I regret that we did not cancel when we were given the opportunity. I did not know that the outbreak was as severe as it was and that we would sail under Code Red conditions for the first 2 days and again for an additional day when there was another suspected oubreak.It put a pall over everything.

It would have been better if the cruise were delayed a day so that they could have gotten their ship up to the standard which one expected.
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Old November 21st, 2008, 05:34 PM
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At least you were given the option.....We were all herded into a warehouse type building with seating for about 20% and made to wait there not being told anything....while they made a quick attempt to clean the ship after the previous voyage started the outbreak. We would have loved to been told what was going on. The majority of us had flown in early on the same flight with the thought of checking in and then spending the day in Venice. Instead we spent a lengthy amount of the day waiting to check in and board. We never made it into Venice. We had been there in the summer so it wasn't so disappointing for us, as for many others.
The illness started with the crew....they were really hit hard. We even had the ladies from the Spa serving in the Lido deck food lines. Our room was not even made up until the late afternoon many days....
We tried to stay positive with the staff but by the time we were at sea, that's when they seemed to come unglued....no happy service with a smile....I heard from the majority of people many who had been on lots of HAL ships that this was the last time for HAL.
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Old November 23rd, 2008, 08:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeeDee
Quote:
All because some ignorant boars couldn't bother to wash their hands after using the rest room.
or someone came on board with the virus and without consideration to all the other passengers spread it to them and the crew.

One cruise we were on the a group in the PH had been quarantined, but some of them were seen wandering the ship, oblivious to the fact that they were spreading the germ. They should have stationed a guard outside their room!

Then there was the lady who was ill in the terminal at Canada Place on an Alaska cruise a few years ago - apparently she had left home feeling ill. She was checked by a nurse at the terminal, was allowed to board with the stipulation that if she was still sick before the ship sailed, she would be removed. When the nurse checked on her, she was in the bathroom being sick, so they were put off the ship. Their travelling companions were not happy, but the nurse and doctor had to make a quick decision & I feel they did the right thing.

We have been on the ships a number of times when we've been in Code Red and because we took precautions we were fine.
Good point DeeDee, even a crew member could have started it. In close quarters like a ship keep clean and get plenty of fresh air in your cabin.
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