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Veendam (2/21-2/28) Glitch

Discussion in 'Holland America Line' started by Anonymous User, Mar 5, 2004.

  1. Let me start this by saying we had a great cruise and would not hesitate to cruise Holland again. Key West and Belize was great and I spent too much money in Cozumel. This was our fifth cruise. The others were on Royal Caribbean. We are in are mid fifties and pretty much set in our ways. The cruise was great except for one glitch.
    When we arrived in Guatemala we decided to go to the four star resort for our land excursion. We left the ship at about 9:30 and were on the bus about 10am. When we arrived at the resort we were given a tour and a sales pitch for a time-share. When we got to the pool the resort was packed. There was hardly a place to sit down. About 75% of the people that were there was gay men from the Oosterdam. Now let me say that most of the men were there for some sun and swimming and behaved just fine. However, there were about a dozen or so that wore very tight Speedo type bathing suits that advertised their endowment. I found this a little offensive. We saw a few of them rub themselves in the pool so they were more pronounced when they got out. I do not appreciate this type of behavior from straight, gay, or any man for that matter. I could tell my husband was uncomfortable with this so I asked him if he wanted to leave before the bus picked us up. He said yes and we paid a cab driver twenty dollars to take us back to the ship. When we arrived at the ship we went to the excursion desk and asked why we were not told that the Oosterdam was charter by a gay group and that we may run into them on our excursion. We explained what we saw and told them we were not happy about it. They didn’t seem to care that we were dissatisfied with the excursion. We asked for the manager and told her. She apologized and said she would refund our money for the excursion. We went back to our stateroom and my husband gave me a hug and a kiss. He said that he knows we don’t say we love each other enough but asking him if he wanted to leave because he was uncomfortable with the situation showed him how much I loved him. AAAWWW!! So alls well that ends well.
    If I offended anyone I apologize but I don’t feel we need to be subjected to that type of behavior from anyone. Again, we loved the rest of the cruise and will cruise Holland again.
    Mike & Mary
     
  2. Cruzman

    Cruzman Guest

    No doubt that I would have felt extremely uncomfortable in a similar situation. I'm not sure about the responsibility, if any, regarding prior notification, but it would have been a nice gesture. The question remains whether anyone on the Veendam knew the status of the passengers on the "O". The bottom line is that you did get reimbursed which shows a lot of class on HAL's part, IMHO.
     
  3. sail7seas

    sail7seas Guest

    I'm not sure I understand the reason for this post.

    You were refunded the cost of your excursion and I assume you and your husband are both over 21 years of age. I have no reason to doubt you suffered discomfort being in that atmosphere. You are adult people who got your money back. I think that was generous of the shore excursion people. Are they supposed to ask passengers their feelings re: gay or lesbian people before selling an excursion ticket?
     
  4. monty

    monty Guest

    Well said s7s. Totally agree with your comments. Would not have particularly felt very comfort to be in the same situation though either.
     
  5. Lisa63

    Lisa63 Guest

    Yes, well said, s7s. Actually, the time-share pitch would have bothered me more.
     
  6. monty

    monty Guest

    The time-share thing would have made me long before I saw the other situation. Have mistakenly sat in on them before, hopefully never again.
     
  7. gizmo

    gizmo Guest

    Consider yourself lucky they refunded your money.

    There are many things that offend people smoking, kids, topless, gays, etc. There are offensive people anywhere you go depending on one's point of view. I don't see why you would blame Hal and expect a refund. Should one be refunded if they don't like being around a lot of kids and there are a lot kids present? I think not.

    Gays are people too.



    Post Edited (03-05-04 18:11)
     
  8. elmorejj

    elmorejj Guest

    What if the gay men hadn`t been from the Oosterdam, would you still have expected a refund? Or if there had been a bunch of topless women? You have to go with the flow in this world nowadays..jean
     
  9. Hap

    Hap Guest

    My wife and I were also at the resort that day, we saw the same things Mary did, and I was also offended by their actions. And as Mary said most were fine. It was just a dozen or so that acted in bad taste. Whether you’re gay or straight I don’t like that type of behavior from anyone. We complained to the excursion desk (about not being told about the Oosterdam) and didn’t get much help from them either. And by the way, the Veendam did know about the “Oâ€Â. We did not ask for nor did we get a refund. Maybe we should have called the manager also but we didn’t. The gay life style is controversial and there are those for it, those against it, and those in the middle as you can see from the posts. And yes we are over 21 and are adults so for that reason I think the Veendam should have informed us about the Oosterdam so we, as adults, can make the decision, not the Veendam, whether to be put in that situation or not. As far as avoiding the offensive things in life I don’t go too bars because of the smoke, I don’t cruise Disney because there would be too many kids, we don’t go to topless bars, topless beaches, or topless decks on cruise ships. We don’t go to these places because we know they are there. We have that information. I only wanted the common courtesy to know they were there. Then I can make an informed decision.
    I do commend you highly Mary for seeing the discomfort in your husband and reacting to it. Because I also believe that words of love are great, and should be spoken more, but actions and inactions can sometimes speak louder than words and can show how strong or weak a persons love is.
    In conclusion, I also will cruise with Holland again. Other than that it was a great cruise. Holland just needs to realize that we need as much information about the port as we can so we, as adults, can make the proper decision about taking an excursion or not.
     
  10. peaches

    peaches Guest

    The fact that a small number of the Oo pax acted inappropriately is unfortunate, but HAL would have no way of anticipating that and to think they warn people on any ship that there are gays around makes as much sense as saying I should be notified how many seniors, or kids, or widows are aboard. I feel just as offended with a heterosexual couple behaving in public so that I might want to say to them, 'Get a room',. If I see behavior I don't like I remove myself from it no matter who is doing it.

    Should HAL be 'warning' their heterosexual pax with a sign 'Gays On Board'? Offensive people are offensive people- they are all over and we all can't be 'protected'. But demanding a refund? Maybe the grocery store should give me my groceries free because of the idiots screaming into their cell phones behind me on the checkout line. That's what I find offensive on a daily basis.
     
  11. Hap

    Hap Guest

    HAL would not know if there are gays on a regular cruise but in this case the entire ship was bought out by a gay organization. Seniors, kids, and widows are not controversial but the gay issue is. We found out that several people on board knew about this and didn't even get off the ship that day because of it. And if you read my message I said we didn't ask for nor did we receive a refund. I also said whether your gay or not I do not accept that behavor from anyone. However, we did not see this behavor from a heterosexual on the entire cruise. And comparing someone rubbing himself in the pool to make himself more pronounced to someone talking on a cell is ridiculous. And we did remove ourselves.
    I figured this would be a hot issue. Thats why its called controversial. Some people don't like to speak up but thats not my way. Anyway thats my opinion. And as they say, "I may dissagree with what you say but I will fight to death for your right to say it."
     
  12. bep_sf

    bep_sf Guest

    Let me start out saying that I was a passenger on Oosterdam that week, although I was not at the resort that day...

    I'm very sorry that you were made to feel uncomfortable by a few of my fellow passengers, and I must agree with you that the behavior that you saw was inappropriate. I believe that I would probably have been just as uncomfortable if I were at the resort that day - but from the standpoint that that there might be folks such as yourselves who would not appreciate seeing such behavior, and the general lack of respect that these guys had towards their fellow travelers.

    However, I don't necessarily agree that HAL should have let you know that there might be gay and lesbian folks in port or at the resort that day. I was just as surprised that Veendam was in port with us. We ran into many Veendam passengers on our Quiriuga ruins tour - some nicer and more open-minded than others. The next day, we were in port with Radiance in Roatan - were RCCL supposed to let them know about us too? We were not advised as to the presence of other ships and their passengers, nor did I feel that it was necessary - it's a fact of life.

    I believe that each individual is responsible for their own actions, and in the absence of good taste and restraint I believe one might have asked the pool manager from the resort to counsel their guests for inappropriate actions - whether they be for general drunkeness, lewdness or whatever.

    I'm glad that HAL refunded your money for the excursion, primarily because one shouldn't have to pay for a salespitch, but also because it says something about HAL that they do their best to take good care of their diverse range of clients. I too am looking forward to my next (gay) cruise on HAL, as I feel that they went the extra mile to make us feel welcome.

    I'm also glad that you and your hubby were able to make lemonaide out of lemons and enjoy the rest of your cruise - a little love and understanding go a long way.
     
  13. sail7seas

    sail7seas Guest

    bep sf.......what a nice post. Thank you for it.
     
  14. ewheelock

    ewheelock Guest

    If your ship was given the information about the passengers on the O, don't you think that that would be discrimination? Who likes to be discriminated against? You did what you should have done if it bothered you.
     
  15. peaches

    peaches Guest

    Hap, I was replying to the original poster, not you when I referred to a refund. I realize you did not ask for nor get one. I should have addressed that by name as the replies just come in line and can be unclear as to whom one is replying.

    I agree with ewheelock. IMO, there is no way any ship is going to 'warn' their excursion pax as to who they may run into. It would be very discriminatory and where would it start and stop. If you were gay and on the Veendam and going on that excursion how would you feel if ,as you gathered as a group, there was an announcement made that Veendam pax might want to cancel as they would be encountering 'gays'. Come on. I really don't know how you would expect any ship or tour to do this without being discriminatory, but would be interested in exactly how you think the Veendam should have handled it pre-excursion.

    The gay pax also paid for their cruise and deserve common courtesy as individuals. Were a number of them out of line in their behavior- ABSOLUTELY! Would I have liked it myself- NO! But I would not expect any cruiseline or tour operator to protect me from something offensive.
     
  16. AlCruiser

    AlCruiser Guest

    Mary,
    I cant agree more! This day we live in people thing they can do what they want. I cant tell you how many cruises I have been on and how many resorts that I have been at that things like this have happened. The worst is when men in there 50's try to look sexy and wear there bathing suits and there big hairy bodies. Ithink they should have to wear shirts and shorts to there knees. Then there are the women, guts haning over, boobs to the ground...that really grosses me out. Personally I need to complain about that on my next cruise. Thanks again for bringing these awful things to our attention. Chad
     
  17. Markandrews

    Markandrews Guest

    Gay's in Guatemala??? Whats the Carribean coming too?? M&M, you might want to stay clear of any and all ships. I have met gay crew memebers on each and every one of my 20+ cruises. BTW, gay people sail on straight cruises too. Your post was very 1960's. The guys should not have done those things in mixed company, but they were on vacation too.
     
  18. Typhoon

    Typhoon Guest

    I wonder if M and M support gay marriage.
     
  19. S. B.

    S. B. Guest

    No Subject

    Post Edited (03-21-04 20:00)
     
  20. M&M
    I am so sorry to hear that you can not go to Europe, where you will find they change their clothes on the beach, not behind a towel.Most of the men wear this Speedo type of swimming suit, and the women less unless they are over 50, then they wear a suit like you would find from the 20's.
    I am off my point, I would have asked for my money back if I had to sit though a Sales Pitch on a Paid Excursion, I am sorry that you were offended, but there are different people in this world, even if the US is trying to change that now.

    Barry

    P.S. I forgot, don't watch any Baseball Games, they grab and rub themselfs all the time.ha ha ha



    Post Edited (03-20-04 21:04)
     

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