Great Ports, Ship & Crew, HAL's "EXC In Depth" Experience Was Terrible

Maasdam Cruise Review to Other (Asia/Africa/Middle East)

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 15

Overall rating:

3.6 out of 5

20 Night Southeast Asia Highlights (Singapre Roundtrip)

Sail date: February 15, 2019

Ship: Maasdam

Cabin type: Oceanview

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 2 years ago

Review summary

It has been 6 years since we did our last HAL cruise and we could see a definite difference in the on board experience. Cost cutting is very evident and although we are 4 star mariners would only choose HAL again if the itinerary was unique and not offered by anyone else. Such a disappointment from what was one of our favourite cruise lines


5 out of 5

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

4 out of 5

Onboard Activities

2 out of 5
Very few organised activities.


1 out of 5
Rating is reflective of the overall "EXC in Depth Experience" Entertainment was cut back and supposed to be replaced with "Cultural Events". On the bright side what they did bringing on guest chef's was great. However the stage entertainment was either non existing, repeated (The Jersey Tenors 6 times in 40 days!) or lame (a staff game show, really!).

Children's Programs

Didn't travel with kids

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
Staff was awesome!

Ship Quality

3 out of 5
It was just okay but it is an old ship and although it has been spruced up a bit it still showing its age. Great size of ship for meeting people.

Cabin / Stateroom

3 out of 5
What you would expect from a ship built in 1993. TV was so old it worked but had lots of fuzz and lines through it making it impossible to enjoy

Ship tip

If it is still doing "EXC In Depth" you better investigate exactly what that means or you may be in for a big shock.

Ports of call


5 out of 5
Great City with lots to do, no need for an excursion

Kuantan, Malaysia

2 out of 5
The town is a 30 minute drive from the port and really has nothing to offer.

Laem Chabang (Bangkok), Thailand

4 out of 5
Awesome. Would have rated it a 5 except the 3 hour drive in both directions to get there.

Sihanoukville, Cambodia

1 out of 5
The most 3rd world city I have ever been to on a cruise ship.

Nha Trang, Vietnam

4 out of 5
Small city but quite nice. Did an excursion that included a cooking class; it was good.

Hue (Da Nang), Vietnam

5 out of 5
The high rating is based on the excursion we did to Hoi An; an amazing place that we will return to.

Ha Long Bay City (Hanoi), Vietnam

5 out of 5
Sailing into and out of this port is worth the high rating alone. Best scenery you could imagine. A very active town with lots to see.

Hong Kong

5 out of 5
There is so much to do in Hong Kong and you do not need an excursion as long as you can ride the subway/bus system. The Temple Street night market is a must.

Phu My (Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnam

4 out of 5
90 minute drive to Ho Chi Minh City but well worth it. If you go to the war museum be prepared to have your senses assaulted and probably leave quite disturbed.


5 out of 5
Efficient with no problems
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