- Captain Albert's Website and Blog -

Ocean Liner History and Stories from the Sea, Past and Present. With an In Depth focus on Holland America Line

2021 Dec. 21 Happy Holidays

Dear Readers

My blog is still in limbo as far as daily posts are concerned as I am still at home. I have not been able to obtain an L visa from the USA embassy in London yet as they are on reduced capacity and HAL Marine operation is also not ready to let me start hopping  from ship to ship again.

The fleet is slowly getting back on it’s fleet. The next ship Zuiderdam is due to depart for her first cruise on December 23 from San Diego to the Mexican Riviera.

By that date we will have:

Koningsdam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Rotterdam and Zuiderdam back in operation.

Which leaves Zaandam, Volendam, Oosterdam and Noordam and Westerdam still on standby.  Those are scheduled to come back in service in 2023. Please see www.HollandAmerica.com for the planned cruises.

So while I am still at home. much concentration is on the Holland America hobby side.

I have added  the biography of Commodore Bijl to the site. See under Captains of the past tab which might make for some interesting reading.

Then I am also starting to gear up for 2023 when the company will celebrate its 150 years of going strong. Several books are in the pipe line and more news about that in January when the draft cover designs have been made.

In the mean time I am wishing everybody a Merry Christmas and a Happy and also Healthy 2022.  Times might be difficult but no doubt there is a light at the end of every tunnel.


  1. Great to hear of ships returning to service. We have Noordam booked October 2022.

    Maybe you meant 2022 rather than 2023……


  2. I’m hoping you mean the rest of the ships are coming back in 2022 not 2023! Merry Christmas and Happy 2022.

  3. Thank you for staying in touch. As always your posts are informative and interesting.
    I wish you, your wife and family a very Merry Christmas and good wishes for a healthy and happy New York.

  4. Capt – did you mean 2022?

  5. We have enjoyed your posts but I think you have missed spoken when you said ships will be back in service by 2023. I assume you meant they would be back in 2022.

  6. Karen Laino Giannuzzi

    December 24, 2021 at 12:33 am

    I love hearing from Captain Albert. When he starts hopping, we will really be back in business!! Oy,oy,oy!!!

  7. Merry Christmas, All the best to you and your Queen.

  8. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your wife as well!!

  9. Hi Captain, I think you might’ve been a year out in your comments. I think next year is 2022.

  10. Merry Christmas to you and your family. Best wishes for a safe, healthy holiday season.

    Smooth Sailing!

  11. you to al from crossville tn

  12. Should your dates be 2022 instead of 2023?

  13. Albert:

    Happy Holidays! Currently onboard Rotterdam and other than strict indoor mask compliance it is typical HAL excellent and strong. Observed the new lifeboat davit system – on a future post please comment on the new system in comparison to the Pinnacle Class sisters.

  14. Thank you for the update. So hard to believe that the remaining ships have to sit out another year. 😥

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you also!🌲
    Sue in Nebraska

  15. Capt. Abert,

    Are you talking about the Zaandam, Volendam, Oosterdam and Noordam and Westerdam still on standby. Those are scheduled to come back in service in 2023.
    In the meantime, I am wishing everybody a Merry Christmas and a Happy and also Healthy 2023.

    Stay well & be safe,
    Happy and a healthy 2022.

  16. Merry Christmas / Vrolijk Kerstfeest and a Happy and Healthy New Year / en een gelukkig en gezond nieuw jaar, Kaptein Albert!

  17. Janvier & Maureen Smith

    December 24, 2021 at 2:48 am

    Thanks, Captain Albert. We miss being aboard too. We will be on Eurodam in February and Rotterdam in July. We are looking at a HAL cruise to Alaska in 2023. Chin up, things have to get better! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  18. Jan Willem Goudriaan

    December 24, 2021 at 3:32 am

    Dear Captain Albert,
    Thank you for your update, always appreciated!
    Wishing you and all crew and office staff a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year as well, for starters 2022….😂👍

  19. I have,so enjoyed your reports…especially about the new build the NS…because of all your reports we actually book the ship and took a 7 day. We were actually on her in one of the first sailings out of Ft Lauderdale when the engines failed. The Captain did a STUPENDOUS job in keeping everyone safe and informed. I can do anything as look as I know what’s happening. He was a great comfort to all.
    So please…keep the reposts coming. So much appreciated!

  20. Merry Christmas to you and your family. Thank you as always for the update and we look forward to much more from you in the months to come. I am looking forward to sailing the Konigsdam twice next year since she will be on the west coast of America.

  21. Irene Verschoor-Loggen

    December 24, 2021 at 4:46 am

    Fijne feestdagen en een gezond en happy cruise jaar 2022.
    Bedankt voor uw verhalen en foto’s. We hebben dit jaar genoten op de Eurodam in Griekenland.

  22. Robina Herrington

    December 24, 2021 at 7:01 am

    Thank you for the up date, very interesting, I know you will be busy
    Writing whilst at home in these troubled times
    Healthy, Happy Christmas and New Year to you and your Wife
    Best Wishes

  23. Wolfgang Mueller

    December 24, 2021 at 9:53 am

    Lieber Captain Albert auch ich wünsche Frohe Weihnachten und ein gesundes Neues Jahr 2022.
    Leider wurde meine gebuchte Jungfernreuse auf der “Rotterdam” von Amsterdam nach Ft. Lauderdale als Schengen Bewohner gecancelt??
    Mit freundlichen Grüßen
    Wolfgang Rüdiger Müller

  24. Many thanks for your message and a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you Captain Albert and your family.
    2021 has been a grim year for all and we are all praying for a better 2022 .
    Cant wait ( I will have to) to book a cruise on HAL again (although I did manage to travel on the ” ex” Amsterdam & Rotterdam ( Bolette and Borealis) as sailing from the UK. I also visited HAL original head office in Rotterdam, now a hotel . The pictures on board were mostly original. ie. ex HAL/Dutch maritime history, and as such whilst no longer a HAL vessel, had very much the feel and style of HAL ships (unsurprisingly) so there was a definite nostlagia for HAL on board.
    Hope we can get back to normal sailing in 2022
    Best wishes

  25. hans van bemmelen

    December 24, 2021 at 11:01 am

    gezegend Kerstfeest en een voorspoedig nautisch 2022

  26. Elbert L.J. Bosma

    December 24, 2021 at 11:23 am

    Dear Captain Albert,
    Thank you very much for your update. Wishing you and your loved ones a Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy return to the ships next year 2022.

  27. Fijne Kerstdagen en een voorspoedig Nieuw Jaar voor U en Uw familie en een Behouden Vaart.
    Ondanks de corona hebben we toch 24 dagen de Eurodam gedaan in september. Het was zoals altijd weer als van ouds, genieten van de voortreffelijke service en voeding.
    In oktober 7 dagen, speciaal voor mijn kleinkinderen, een reisje met de MSC Seashore gedaan.
    Dat was dag en nacht verschil, slechte service en eenzijdige voeding.
    Er gaat niets boven de HAL ……..toch?

  28. Vrolijk Kerstfeest en een gelukkig Nieuw jaar voor U en de familie

  29. Bruce from Newfoundland and Labrador

    December 24, 2021 at 7:58 pm

    Hello Captain Albert !

    You are very missed by all of your loyal Mariners. We had the opportunity to have a 10 day adventure on the Rotterdam in late November 2021. We would have liked to have many more days, but getting back to Canada with many more new health requirements and also more to get back home into Newfoundland and Labrador.

    Thank you for your update today, and we hope to have you and your family on the 150th voyage on MS Rotterdam in October 2022 . Please keep well and have a wonderful year end, and hopes for a New Year of Adventures for HAL. Kindest Regards from Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada

  30. Marijke en Wim Milikan

    December 24, 2021 at 10:38 pm

    Groeten vanaf de Rotterdam 7. Fijne feestdagen en een gezond 2022.

  31. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Captain. Thank you for the update!

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