In the next two years, Holland America Line plans its most diverse offering of Caribbean cruise options with new ports, back-to-back itineraries, and the introduction of its newest ship, ms Eurodam, in late 2008.   Holland America Line has increased its presence in the region due primarily to the addition of the new 2,104-passenger Eurodam and has planned more 10-day and longer journeys along with some gateway changes to introduce in-depth itineraries.

Beginning in 2008, Holland America Line also will embark on a full season of a southern Caribbean itinerary that proved to be a popular change-of-pace to traditional eastern and western sailings.  The seven-day roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale visits Aruba, Curaçao and the premium line’s private island experience of Half Moon Cay, Bahamas.

“Next year we are thrilled to introduce our new Signature-class Eurodam to the Caribbean and know our guests will enjoy sailing on her,” said Richard D. Meadows, CTC, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs. “With our greatest selection of cruises and our push to lead the industry with longer, in-depth itineraries, Holland America Line stands out in the region as offering something very unique for cruisers.

“Our on-board product, the amount of time we spend in port, and our private island experience that is regularly lauded as the quintessential Caribbean experience all add to the premium cruise experience our guests receive,” added Meadows.

Holland America Line will have ten ships sailing the Caribbean in 2008 and through April 2009, offering 189 sailings.  In 2008, ships depart from Fort Lauderdale, Tampa and New York; in 2009, gateways feature Fort Lauderdale and Tampa.  The Noordam, which will sail out of New York in 2008, moves to Ft Lauderdale to offer the popular Seafarer/Wayfarer itineraries.

Caribbean ships include three Vista-class ships – ms Noordam, ms Zuiderdam and ms Westerdam – and the ms Maasdam, ms Prinsendam, ms Rotterdam, ms Veendam, ms Volendam, ms Statendam, and ms Eurodam.

Cruises will range from three-day Bahamas getaways to exotic 14-day adventures in the Southern Caribbean, some including the Panama Canal or South American ports. Many sailings are designed as combination cruises; for example, guests can combine a seven-day Western Caribbean cruise with a seven-day Eastern Caribbean sailing to experience more of the region.

Most cruises also plan a day at Half Moon Cay, Holland America Line’s acclaimed private island.  With its horseback riding and swimming excursion, guided AquaTrax watercraft tour, stingray adventure, and fun-filled family aqua park, Half Moon Cay continues to be the line’s highest rated Caribbean port of call.