Carnival vs. Holland America

I am planning a cruise in the fall & both of these lines have cruises that I might be interested in. If anybody has sailed with both, I would love to hear how they compare. How is the food & entertainment? What age groups are the passengers on HA? Carnival seems to have a lot of passengers from all age groups. Is the dining room dress code a lot more formal on HA, or are they similar?

25 Answers

I would like to try them all eventually & see which one I like the best. Right now, I think RCI & Carnival might be my best bet. Or Princess.

The secret to that is to not get hung up on the loyalty programs. Find a line (or 2) that you like before you go after the super elite platinum diamond plus level.

Holland is announcing starting January 2017 they are now including the balonies in their no smoking policy.

New Policy Dates Effective ms Maasdam January 2, 2017 ms Rotterdam January 2, 2017 ms Volendam January 3, 2017 ms Noordam January 4, 2017 ms Veendam January 4, 2017 ms Zuiderdam January 4, 2017 ms Nieuw Amsterdam January 6, 2017 ms Eurodam January 7, 2017 ms Westerdam January 7, 2017 ms Koningsdam January 8, 2017 ms Zaandam January 10, 2017 ms Oosterdam January 13, 2017 ms Amsterdam April 26, 2017 ms Prinsendam May 6, 2017

Haven't been on HAL for a while.

I used to cruise all the time on Carnival. The very short cruises, 3,4 or 5 days that they offer are basically non stop partying. Longer cruises, 7 days + are less so but still draw a younger crowd.. If you wish to party and stay up late, then Carnival is for you. If you are looking for a more relaxing experience, then HAL is best. HAL ships have fewer amenities like rock climbing walls or water slides than the Carnival ships have. The two cruise lines although both under the Carnival umbrella are very different. Evening dress codes are more relaxed on both cruises but more so on Carnival. I think that the quality of food and service is higher on HAL but I always enjoyed the food on Carnival, too. Please write a review and tell us how your cruise went..

* is not a booking agent or travel agency, and does not charge any service fees to users of our site. Our partners (travel agencies and cruise lines) provide prices, which we list for our users' convenience. does not guarantee any specific rates or prices. While prices are updated daily, please check with the booking site for the exact amount. is not responsible for content on external web sites.