Information for Booked Guests
TRAVEL DOCUMENTS AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION
We are excited that the 2020 Country Music Cruise is almost here! Please review below sections regarding important dates, online check-in, transportation and The Country Music Cruise events.
IMPORTANT DATES, LOCATIONS, AND TIMES
Departure Date: Saturday, January 25th, 2020
Departure City: Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Embarkation/Terminal: Check the midport pier signs for Nieuw Amsterdam Terminal
Ship: Holland America Nieuw Amsterdam
Terminal Doors Open: 10:30 a.m. Please do not arrive earlier.
Boarding Commencement Time: 11:30 a.m.
Mandatory Boarding Time: No later than 2:30 p.m.*
Ship Departure Time: 11:00 p.m.
Return Date & Time: Saturday, February 1st, 2020 at 7:00 a.m. (All times are EST)
SAFE deadline: November 30, 2019 Only applicable if you require special assistance and haven’t previously discussed your needs with a sales agent.
Please carry all essential personal items (medications, passport, id, change of clothes if desired, etc.) with you when you board. Once you complete the boarding process, you can proceed directly to the ship.
ONLINE CHECK-IN AT HOLLAND AMERICA LINE
Complete your online check-in now through Holland America Line. We strongly recommend guests complete their check-in online to greatly speed up the boarding process in the terminal.Please follow the below steps to check-in online now.
- Enter your Holland America Line Booking Number found in your emailed guest document. It is the 6-digit alpha-numeric character code. This code can also be found once you’re logged in to your StarVista LIVE account.
- Follow the instructions (please have your passport handy to complete this process). It will take about 10-15 minutes to fully complete your online check-in.
- Please remember to print the luggage tags. Do NOT apply to your luggage before your flight in case they rip or tear off your luggage enroute.
- Once you have completed check-in on the Holland America Line website, you can book spa appointments, indulgences and dinner reservations and shore excursions there.
- Deadline to check-in online is close of business January 22, 2020 (EST). If you miss the deadline, you may complete your check-in process in the Port Everglades terminal on January 25, 2020.
Holland America Line requires ALL guests to PRESENT A VALID PASSPORT from their country of origin at embarkation. There are no substitutes for this requirement. A valid passport is one that expires no less than 6 months after the date the cruise disembarks. Since the date of disembarkation is February 2, 2020, all passports must be valid through August 2, 2020. Guests with non-US passports are responsible for obtaining whatever visas they need to disembark at any and all ports of call.
Transportation From the Airport to the CRUISE TERMINAL
Suggested ground transportation options to get you to/from Port Everglades terminal
- Holland America Line shuttle service ($19/person from Fort Lauderdale and $29/person from Miami, each way). Please call Holland America Line at 866-929-2332 to make these reservations.
- Taxi from Fort Lauderdale Airport (approximately $25)
- Taxi from Miami Airport (approximately $85)
It is your responsibility to arrive at the ship in time for the departure and to secure your transportation at the end of our cruise.
TRANSPORTATION FROM HILTON MARINA HOTEL IN FORT LAUDERDALE TO THE CRUISE TERMINAL
For just $19 per person, we have private motor coach transportation available. You will need to bring your luggage down to lobby and transportation helpers will assist you loading your luggage into box trucks at the hotel and delivered to the terminal. Please make sure your bags are properly tagged with Holland America luggage tags and loaded onto the box truck before you board the motor coach.
To purchase this service simply log in to your StarVista LIVE account and add Hotel Transfer to Cruise Pier to your reservation or at the Hilton Marina from the transportation company (Elect Travel).
This service is only offered from the Hilton Marina Hotel.
Transfers are not included in the cost of the hotel and will be charged to the credit card on file connected to your StarVista LIVE account. For information or assistance, call us at 866-476-2879.
LONG TERM PARKING AT THE PIER
Port Everglades offers on-site covered parking for $15 per day. Please follow the signs to the midport garage.
- Handicap parking is complimentary only if there are ADA modifications done to the vehicle such as: hand controls, extended pedals, wheelchair ramp, etc. Also, 100% Disabled Veterans with ADA license placard will receive complimentary parking.
- For more information go to http://www.porteverglades.net/cruising/parking/
PREMIER CRUISE PARKING
Self-uncovered parking with free shuttle to cruise ship terminal.
Call 800-435-3195 and use rate code CMC20 to get a special rate of $9.50 per day. This also includes a courtesy round-trip shuttle to the cruise terminal. Reservations must be made up to 14 days prior to departure date to get the special Country Music Cruise rate.
BOARDING THE SHIP
Boarding will commence at 11:30 a.m. Please carry all essential personal items (medications, passport, ID, change of clothes if desired, etc.) with you when you board. Once you complete the boarding process, you can proceed directly to the ship. Lunch will be served in the Lido Market, Deck 9, starting around noon and you are free to tour the ship until the cabins are ready. Please keep in mind that the luggage delivery operations will run into the evening hours.
HOLLAND AMERICA LINE SMOKING POLICY
The smoking policy designates all interior space, including staterooms and casino, as non-smoking areas. This includes cigarettes, cigars and pipes. Electronic cigarettes are allowed in staterooms (because they do not leave any residual odor) but cannot be used in public areas. Anyone who violates the ban on smoking in the staterooms will be charged a $250 cleaning fee. No smoking of any kind will be permitted on stateroom balconies.
For guests who wish to smoke, there will be a designated area for smoking outside on Deck 9 Aft at the Sea View Bar and Pool. Clearly marked “Designated Smoking Area,” the area includes a sufficient number of ashtrays that are emptied regularly. Cigar and pipe smoking are permitted in the Designated Smoking Area.
Holland America Line reserves the right to modify the smoking policy on board or alter the locations where smoking is permissible at any time. Please refer to Holland America Line website for further information.
Other than drink and spa service charges, all tips for servers, cabin stewards, etc., have been pre-paid. However, please feel free to reward exemplary service with the internationally recognized sign of gratitude: “tipping.”
HOSPITALITY DESK AND SALES AREAS
Our Hospitality Desk is located on Deck 1, midship across from Guest Services. Our Sales Office is located on Deck 3 in the Hudson Room. Hours will be listed in the Daily Programs delivered to your stateroom. Please stop by to say hello! It’s always great to put a face with a voice.
The 2020 Country Music Cruise T-Shirt will arrive to your cabin on Saturday night. It will be the size you requested at the time of booking. If the T-Shirt you received is the wrong size, please bring it to the Hospitality Desk and we will happily exchange it, pending availability. Our Hospitality Desk on Deck 1 Midship will be open for exchanges on Sunday before the T-shirt party only. Hours of operation will be posted onboard.
COUNTRY MUSIC CRUISE ATTIRE
The overall dress for the cruise is “smart casual”.
Daytime attire is not subject to limitations, so guests may dress in appropriate and tasteful clothing of their choosing. Coverups and footwear are required in all venues and dining areas.
Evening attire is subject to the dress code for that evening. For six of the seven nights the evening dress code is “smart casual,” which means no shorts, tank tops or T-shirts in the main dining rooms or premium restaurants. Jeans are acceptable attire for the “smart casual” evenings. Our Boots and Buckles Ball night is Sunday. Our other 3 night themes offer you a chance to dress up in theme-appropriate clothing—Red, White & Blue Patriotic Night, Superbowl Pregame Sports Jersey Night & Beach Party.
COUNTRY MUSIC CRUISE PROGRAMS
To help you better prepare for Real Country Music and A Real Good Time, we will post our onboard show and event schedule on The Country Music Cruise website in late December. We hope this enables you to better plan your spa appointments and dining around the events you want to attend. Check it regularly for any updates as we fine-tune our time at sea.
During the course of the cruise we will continue to have special events:
- T-shirt Party - Join us Sunday afternoon on the Lido Midship, Deck 9 for the annual t-shirt party with T. Graham Brown. Wear your official 2020 Country Music Cruise T-Shirt to enjoy complimentary soda, punch, beer and wine during the show.
- Gameshows – A highlight on this cruise are the times when we can sit back and hoot and holler at the gameshows and those “creative” answers that Johnny Lee spits out. Back to defend his crown, Johnny Lee will go head to head with Moe Bandy in our version of Family Feud.
- Country Superstar Contest - This is your chance to rise above and shine as a true Country Music Superstar if you can sing and/or play an instrument. Sign-up times will be announced aboard the ship. Please ensure that you have your own backing materials and tracks. Each participant will be allowed two minutes to perform.
- Cornhole Tournament - Boards and bags will be available in the aft pool area all week for all to enjoy and practice if you choose to join in the friendly competition.
- Dance Classes - Don’t forget to pack your dancing boots! We will be offering Two-Step and line dancing classes. Check out the daily program onboard for the scheduled times.
ADDITIONAL PAID COUNTRY MUSIC CRUISE PROGRAMS
- Wine Tasting - Join Linda Davis and Lorianne Crook for a special wine tasting. Enjoy this knowledgeable and fun hour with our celebrities and the Nieuw Amsterdam’s own Sommelier, learning about wine’s aroma and body, flavor and finish. Bring home some great tips about choosing wine and great memories of a real good time.
$39.99 per person, Availability is limited. To reserve your spot, simply log in to your StarVista LIVE account and add to your reservation or stop by the Country Music Cruise Hospitality Desk on Deck 1 Midship. This cost will be added to your shipboard account.
- Renewal of Vows - Country music is all about celebrations and family bonds. That is why we offer a special renewal of vows. So take your honey under your wing and join our Celebrity Host T. Graham Brown for a special reception that includes a photo, cake and a champagne toast! $55/couple. Availability is limited. To reserve your spot, simply log in to your StarVista LIVE account and add to your reservation or stop by the Country Music Cruise Hospitality Desk on Deck 1 Midship. This cost will be added to your shipboard account.
- Bourbon Tasting - Carefully taste the nuance of flavors at select Bourbon Tastings with either Coach Switzer or Johnny Lee in the Gallery Bar. To reserve your spot, service simply log in to your StarVista LIVE account and add this event to your reservation or stop by the Country Music Cruise Hospitality Desk on Deck 1 Midship. This cost will be added to your shipboard account. Availability is limited.
- TJ Martell LIVE Auction Once again we will be auctioning off an autographed guitar and a handful of silent auction items on display for bidding. All proceeds benefit TJ Martell Foundation.
PARTIES AND LATE-NIGHT THEMES
The Country Music Cruise will host a wide variety of gatherings and festive events. While it is not mandatory to dress in keeping with the themes, we do encourage you to have some fun and plan some outfits.
Saturday, January 25, Fort Lauderdale, Florida:
Welcome Party – Join Moe Bandy at the Lido Midship, Deck 9 for fun and dancing as we get the cruise started.
Nightly Theme: Welcome to The Country Music Cruise - No special outfits required. Get unpacked and settled in for the week ahead!
Sunday, January 26, At Sea:
Annual T-Shirt Party – Great live music and selected complimentary drinks at the Lido Midship, Deck 9 when you come dressed in your 2020 Country Music Cruise T-shirt.
Nightly Theme: Boots and Buckles Ball - Ball gowns and boots, couture and cowboy hats - no one does formal wear like a great country crowd and this is your night to shine.
Monday, January 27, At Sea:
Nightly Theme: Red, White & Blue – Be proud and show your heritage by dressing in your country’s colors or authentic wear – a night to be patriotic!
Tuesday, January 28, St. Maarten:
Nightly Theme: Superbowl Pregame/Sports Jersey Night – It’s that easy… Throw on your favorite sports jersey and support your favorite team in anticipation of Superbowl LIV
Wednesday, January 29, St. San Juan:
Theme: Opry At Sea - An opportunity to relive past memories of good times at the Ryman or Opryland. Enjoy a night off and dress to reflect your feelings about the music of this cruise tonight.
Thursday, January 30, At Sea
Nightly Theme: Beach Party – Celebrate under the Caribbean sky in your beach themed outfits with a great country jam session!
Friday, February 1, Half Moon Cay (private island):
Theme: Farewell Night - A celebration of the bittersweet feelings for the last night of a wonderful cruise. Wear whatever is still clean.
THE MAINSTAGE PERFORMANCES
Every guest will have the opportunity to see a nightly show based upon the designated show time.
The Mainstage Seating Card is color coded for easy identification for the ushers and will match the color of your Stateroom Key Card.
To ensure that the entry and seating procedure is both fair and easy, we have adopted the following policies and procedures:
- You must present your Mainstage Seating Card to the ushers at the entrance in order to enter The Mainstage for the appropriate show time. All seats have been assigned and we cannot accommodate seating requests or changes.
- There are four entrances to The Mainstage, two on Deck 2 and two on Deck 3. No other entrance is available for guests. The Mainstage Seating Card lists the suggested entrance best suited for your seat.
- Doors will open for each show approximately 30 minutes before scheduled show time. With assigned seating, there is no need to arrive early.
- All seats will be numbered clearly with The Country Music Cruise seat stickers, and ushers will be present to assist with any questions.
- Unfortunately we cannot allow guests to change seats. The guest who was assigned a specific seat may arrive late and it is too disruptive to everyone else to move once the show starts.
- Guests who interfere with the fair and safe entry into The Mainstage may risk forfeiting their rights to attend that show or other shows. Our goal is to provide the best entertainment experience for all our guests, and we request that you treat all guests and staff with respect. Any behavior that disrupts the enjoyment of other guests will result in removal from the show by security staff.
- The taking of flash photos and the recording of the shows violates our contracts with the performers. Since it is impossible to easily discern what type of equipment can record, no electronic equipment of any kind will be allowed in The Mainstage during shows.
MAIN DINING ROOM INCLUDED IN CRUISE FARE
- Your Stateroom Key Card will be color coded for either early or late dining
- Early dining begins at 6:00 p.m. and late dining begins at 8:30 p.m.
- As both dinner seatings are completely full, we will be unable to accommodate any requests to switch your dining time.
- Guests who previously made table requests with our office will receive a letter in their staterooms on embarkation day with the assigned table number. These guests should enter the Upper Dining Room on Deck 3.
- All other seating will be open, meaning that once guests have their full party together, they should proceed to the Lower Dining Room on Deck 2 to be seated.
- In the spirit of the Country Music Cruise, guests with smaller parties may be seated with other guests.
OTHER DINING OPTIONS INCLUDED IN CRUISE FARE
- Please visit the Holland America Line website to view the Casual Dining (included in fare) and Fine Dining (additional cost) options on board. Click “The Experience”
- Reservations for Fine Dining (additional cost) are recommended and can easily be made through the Holland America Line website once you complete your Online Check-in or from your stateroom.
- Click “Already Booked” and login with My Account.
BAR SERVICE OFFERINGS
Special Beverage Packages! If you purchase before we sail, you save! Holland America Line offers alcohol and non-alcohol beverage packages.
Please note: All guests in a stateroom must purchase the same package. If you are interested in purchasing a beverage package now, please contact Holland America Line at 800-541-1576. Please visit the Holland America Line website to view the available bars and lounges on board the Nieuw Amsterdam. Click “The Experience” then go to “Activities”
ACTIVITIES ON BOARD
The Casino onboard Nieuw Amsterdam offers a variety of games for all levels, complimentary lessons from dealers, and tournaments for veteran players.
The Greenhouse Spa & Salon offers a luxurious beauty salon and spa treatments, and features a thermal pool, heated ceramic lounges, steam grottos and treatment rooms. Fees vary
The Fitness Center is equipped with state-of-the-art cardio and weight machines, and offers classes in yoga, Pilates, indoor cycling and more. Fees for classes vary.
Please visit the Holland America Line website to view some of the onboard activities offered during your cruise. Click “The Experience”.
Once you have completed your online check-in, you can book excursions directly at Holland America Line. Click “Already Booked” and login with My Account.
Choose your tour times, book tours and receive confirmation of your shore excursion reservations up until three days before sailing. Make your payment online and receive approximate tour departure times. Reservations made online receive priority handling and are processed prior to requests made on board. We recommend booking as early as possible because many of the popular excursions sell out quickly.
Holland America offers “Our Best Price Guarantee” which ensures you can book shore excursions with total confidence. Find a better price on any tour they offer and they’ll refund you 110 percent of the price difference in the form of an onboard credit.
Worry-free return to the ship. In the very rare event that your tour is late and the ship must leave, we will arrange at our expense to get you to the next port of call. With independently booked tours, you are responsible for rejoining the ship at the next port of call.
Please take a look at a sampling of Shore Excursions offered by Holland America. For details and more Shore Excursions to choose from please click here.
Philipsburg, St. Maarten:
Under Two flags Island Drive (2 Hours)
Activity level: Moderate | Adult $29.95
Board a modern, air-conditioned motorcoach to enjoy the charm and romance of this scenic island, that has been shared by Holland and France since 1648. You will travel past the once-great salt pond and up Mount William Hill for a beautiful view of the Dutch capital and harbor. Continue through the countryside towards the Dutch/French border. Take in a spectacular view of Orient Beach, nearby Pinel Island, and St Barth's and pass lovely beaches and typical, tranquil Caribbean villages.
Your first stop will be at Marigot, the French capital, where you will have 45 minutes of free time to browse at the outdoor food market, visit inviting sidewalk cafés, or shop at an array of duty-free shops. As you journey through Cole Bay, stop at the International Look Out Point, where you will capture the magnificent view of the western side of the island. Your tour ends back in Philipsburg.
Beach Break & Lunch (4 ½ Hours)
Activity level: Easy | Adult $64.95
Caribbean beaches are legendary and are a favorite among seekers of sun and sand. Travel by air-conditioned transportation to an authentic, laid-back beach on the Dutch side of St Maarten. All beaches are public here, so feel free to roam and enjoy the magnificent sand stretching far away. This is not a resort -- it is just a local, down-to-earth Caribbean beach. Let the worries of everyday life wash away. The sea is warm and could be addictive. Enjoy a barbecue lunch and unlimited rum punch or fruit punch refreshments. After approximately three hours of fun and relaxation, return to Philipsburg and the ship. Guests who wish to stay in town to shop or explore independently are welcome to do so, but must make their own way back to the ship.
Flavors of St. Maarten: In Partnership with Food & Wine Magazine (4 Hours)
Activity level: Moderate | Adult $109.95
The culinary capital of the West Indies awaits you -- a Caribbean island with two very different personalities and different foodie finds. Traveling by air-conditioned van, with an expert foodie guide, you'll explore the hidden gems of this 37-square-mile island ringed with white-sand beaches. As you sample progressive tastings, savor panoramic views and learn about the history and culture of the island, which has been shared by two countries and two distinct cultures since the 1600s. You will head to a beautiful beach restaurant to sample Creole French fusion dishes with a cocktail in hand. You'll try barbecue and local specialties, such as johnny-cakes, at an authentic lolo -- a restaurant frequented by visitors and islanders alike.
San Juan, Puerto Rico
El Yunque Rain Forest Drive (4 Hours)
Activity level: Moderate | Adult $59.95
Choose to visit El Yunque National Rainforest and experience nature and its true beauty. It is the only tropical rainforest in the U.S. National Forest System. A 45-minute drive brings you to a panoramic view of this tropical woodland with its endemic flora. As you travel over the hills, you will enjoy several stops that will allow you to experience up close the sounds, scents and view of this captivating ecosystem, you'll stop briefly at a waterfall. Each stop allows you free time to explore on your own.
Amazing Grace: Old San Juan Pirate Harbor Cruise (1 ½ Hours)
Activity level: Easy | Adult $69.95
Relive history and enjoy a Pirates of the Caribbean-style experience. Step aboard the 83-foot topsail schooner Amazing Grace. The pirate crew will sail you around the enchanting views of the walled cultural city of Old San Juan. Learn about sailing this historical vessel, the likes of which fought the British in the War of Independence. She flies seven sails that can be used in different combinations to suit the wind conditions, making for incredibly fun sailing. Enjoy the beautiful sights around the bay, listening to an interactive narrated story of the El Morro Spanish fort, the Governor's Mansion, the Paseo La Princesa and more. The crew will 'seal the sail' with real canon fire.
Casa Bacardi, Old San Juan & Fortress (4 Hours)
Activity level: Moderate | Adult $69.95
Board an air-conditioned coach for a 25-minute drive to Casa Bacardi, enjoy a welcome drink and learn the story behind the legendary Bacardi cocktails and the birth of the iconic bat logo, and view a section of the plant from one of the exhibit windows. Re-board your motor coach to continue on a panoramic drive, leaving the town of Cataño passing through the modern Condado District. In Old San Juan, you will travel alongside 17th-century architecture, with a stop for a self-guided visit to Fort San Cristobal—the largest fortification built by the Spaniards in the New World.
Half Moon Cay, Bahamas:
Stingray Adventure (1 Hour)
Activity level: Moderate | Adult $29.95
Enjoy an educational encounter with the southern stingrays that make their home at Half Moon Cay. A short tram ride brings you to Stingray Cove where you'll learn about the stingrays' behaviors, habitat, feeding and breeding. After a safety briefing, grab your snorkel gear and enter the wading area with your guide to touch the rays' silky wings and feed these amazing creatures. A safety net ensures that other marine life remains outside the area. Return to the Fort San Salvador Welcome Center by tram.
Glass Bottom Boat (1 Hour)
Activity level: Easy | Adult $39.95
Stay dry while exploring Half Moon Cay’s undersea world aboard a new, fully enclosed, air-conditioned, state of the art glass-bottom boat. This vessel is equipped with two viewing areas as well as an open-air top deck, perfect for soaking up the warm Caribbean sun. Cruise on the beautiful turquoise waters while hearing tales of the history of Half Moon Cay as told by your helpful crew. Through each viewing area, take a glimpse into the blue and become immersed in a sea garden of different species of corals such as elkhorn, staghorn, fire coral, and brain coral. Find and identify groupers, stingrays, sharks, angel fish, snapper and other marine life that calls this unspoiled reef home.
Snorkel by Boat (1 ½ Hours)
Activity level: Moderate | Adult $59.95
Travel by boat to a site off the coast of Half Moon Cay to snorkel from the boat in limpid waters that teem with gloriously colored fish and coral.