Cruise Line Profiles: Holland America Line

A modern cruise line with a storied history, the Holland America Line is a favorite for families. While it doesn’t boast the same kind of luxury as some of the more expensive cruise lines, it can still offer a variety of experiences that suit all types of travelers. Are you curious about what the Holland America Line has to offer? Let’s dive into it!


The Holland America fleet is currently made up of 14 ships across five different classes. The smallest is the S class, which is the MS Maasdam and the MS Veendam. They both fit close to 1300 passengers, with the Veendam being a little bigger. Next up is the Rotterdam class, which is taken up by the MS Rotterdam, the MS Volendam, the MS Zaandam and the MS Amsterdam, each holding around 1400 passengers. The next biggest is the Vista class, which is the MS Zuiderdam, the MS Oosterdam, the MS Westerdam and the MS Noordam. These ships each hold a little over 1900 passengers. Next is the Signature class: the MS Eurodam and the MS Nieuw Amsterdam, which hold over 2100 passengers each. Finally, there’s the Pinnacle class, which is the MS Koningsdam and the MS Nieuw Statendam. They’re the exact same size and both fit 2650 passengers.


Holland America Line is, in brief, quite affordable. There are trips as economic as a seven-day Caribbean that starts at $399. Longer trips (two weeks or more) climb up into the four digits, but there are so many options on the site that it’s likely you can find something in your price range no matter where you want to go. If you want to shell out a bit more cash, you definitely can, but most trips are undeniably on the cheaper end.


Casinos, test kitchens, fitness centers and places for the kiddos to go play are among some of the activities you can expect. Pleasantly, a lot of the onboard activities are included in your fare, though the spa is extra. Evenings feature a focus on live music, one of the interesting unique selling points Holland America Line has. For food, you have your choice between finer dining establishments, including an Italian restaurant, and more casual spots, like a burger joint or a marketplace that offers a ton of different cultures’ foods to try out. Some of the food is included in your price, some of it isn’t; it depends on where you’re eating.


Holland America Line is known to have great service and lots of food options for the price you’re paying. In general, it’s understood to be a step up in quality, elegance and price from mega-lines like Carnival or Royal Caribbean without being a luxury line. There’s a nice balance of a kid-friendly atmosphere and an adult-oriented air, though most shore excursions are said to cater to adults, which may leave the kids bored.

All in all, Holland America Line is respected as a great option for those wanting a step up from the craziness that the cheapest lines can sometimes offer. If you’re interested in checking out the cruise line, their website has (literally) thousands of itineraries to pick from. Go check it out!

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