- Dividing the ship's crew in to 2: those who run the ship as a sea-going vessel and those who service the passengers and have direct contact with them.
At Amsterdam the ship turned mid river but took awhile to come alongside the quay. The deck crew put at least 2 lines in the water before they could be recovered and the main lines paid out. The chap on the windlass managed to put lines in to the water - which took time to recover. It was acutely embarrassing so my wife and I joined the queue to disembark. We were in the queue for 1 3/4 hrs.
A similar course of events was re-enacted at Antwerp and then back at Tilbury.
The services crew who look after the passengers were very good. They work hard and one chap from Myanmar was especially cheerful - for no apparent reason so just a pleasant chap.
We had around 5 hours ashore at Amsterdam and a similar length of time at Antwerp.
I appreciate the ship sailed over 500 miles but for the time ashore (that being the whole purpose of going) it was poor value for money. I paid to see Holland and Belgium not to stand in queues.
The mandatory safety briefing before we left port was a shambles. No-one had authority or control. That is a mandatory requirement before the ship can put to sea and people treated it like a joke. The crew did nothing to disillusion the idiots. That too should have been treated with respect and done efficiently. We were lucky there was no emergency and that we were always within range of UK SAR.
There is a language barrier on-board. Most don't speak English so giving them a hand-held portable radio is pointless.
Published on: 20 May 2017