5 Tips for First-Time Cruisers on Holland America Line

March 4, 2024

Holland America Westerdam cruise to Alaska with Effy Jewelry.

Less than six months until the Escape with Effy Charter Cruise with Holland America Line sets sail for Alaska! Exciting preparations are underway for everything onboard, including jewelry shopping parties, VIP meet-and-greets, champagne soirees, grand galas, and so much more. Hurry to book your Alaska cruise stateroom.

For novice cruisers, this summer sailing is as exciting as it is new. So, to help navigate these uncharted waters, we’ve tailored a list of quick tips for first-time cruisers to ensure your Alaska summer vacation at sea is nothing short of spectacular.

From packing essentials to dining pro tips, here’s how to make your maiden voyage smooth sailing.

1. Pack Like a Pro


Weather the Weather:
Alaska’s beauty comes with a side of unpredictability. Pack layers to transition from misty mornings and rainy afternoons to chilly evenings. Make it a mix of casual wear and formal attire for special nights.

Gear for the Great Outdoors: Binoculars and pro camera equipment like an extra battery pack ensure you’re always ready for post-worthy footage. A good pair of walking shoes will come in handy onboard as well as outdoors — trekking the distance from a jewelry party on the stern to a sweepstakes giveaway on the bow requires some comfy kicks.

Embarkation Essentials: From passports to prescriptions, remember to keep the travel and life essentials (like medications and IDs) in an organized, easy-to-access part of your carry-on.


2. Chart Your Onboard Course


Early Bird Gets the Easy Check-In:
Arrive at the Seattle cruise port with time to spare. Holland America Line offers a streamlined check-in, but early arrival means less stress and more time to explore the exclusive Effy gemstones onboard your floating home.

First Day Finds: Once checked in, get to know the Westerdam with some onboard exploring. Find your stateroom, then take a self-guided tour of the ship keeping a keen eye out for the Effy Jewelry boutique on the promenade deck. And don’t miss the observation deck for once-in-a-lifetime Alaskan views.

Day By Day: Check the daily itinerary for your Escape with Effy events. Find the venues ahead of time to ensure you don’t miss a thing. Also check the dedicated TV channel in your stateroom for the latest updates to the week — and deals — ahead.

Shop for Effy jewelry onboard a Holland America cruise to Alaska.


3. Savor the Journey


Navigate the Dining Delights:
From the upscale setting of Pinnacle Grill to family style at Canaletto and Pan-Asian at Tamarind, the Westerdam caters to all tastes. First-time cruisers take note that these specialty restaurants are well worth the extra cost.

Taste of Alaska: Famous for fine dining at sea, Holland America Line’s Main Dining Room serves certified, sustainable Alaska seafood as part of its Global Fresh Fish Program.

Pro Tips: Reserve a table at the specialty restaurants asap because they book up fast. And buy the beverage package ahead of time, too. Like the specialty restaurants, it’s well worth the cost for a stress-free time aboard.


4. Seas the Days


Get Active Onboard: In addition to all the jewelry events Effy has in store, the Westerdam offers an ocean of activities on the ship. Play pickleball at sea in Alaska, try your card luck in the casino, and party to live bands and karaoke.

Self-Care at Sea: When it’s time to relax and rejuvenate, there’s a Greenhouse Spa & Salon onboard. Pamper yourself with a facial and manicure, creating a fresh canvas for the sparkle of your new Effy necklace and ring.


5. Cruise & Connect


Staying Social: Keeping in touch with life back home is a common concern for first-timer cruisers. Holland America’s Westerdam offers Wi-Fi packages with daily rates from surfing to streaming, so you can post and stay connected. Because how else will your world see how truly breathtaking this world is?

With these tips in your traveler’s toolkit, you’re set for an Alaska cruise filled with discovery, memories, and all new jewelry.

BOOK NOW to join us for the 7-day cruising adventure August 18 – 25, where the sparkling beauty of the gems onboard will rival that of the icy-blue glaciers you can see from your balcony.