Sneak peek: a sneak peek at the first Holland America ship to leave San Diego in 18 months


San Diego’s long-running cruise season is gaining momentum, as Holland America launches its first cruise this weekend since the pandemic early last year closed all crossings.

The 2,650-passenger Koningsdam, which had never before escorted passengers on a cruise from San Diego, was open to members of the media for tours on Friday before passengers began to embark on Sunday. COVID-19 vaccinations are mandatory and cruise ship staff will encourage passengers to sanitize their hands before entering restaurants and drinking places.

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As Holland America and other cruise lines increase over the next few months for San Diego’s October-June schedule, they will gradually increase their capacity. By design, many ships sail from US ports at well below 100% occupancy to help crew and passengers adapt to new navigation protocols, including wearing masks at all times. time, except outside or to eat and drink inside. The Koningsdam will sail at 70 percent occupancy.

The Disney Wonder recently returned from its first sailing in San Diego which left a week ago for a short trip to Mexico.

San Diego, CA – October 01: Passengers board the Disney Wonder for the first time since November 2019 in San Diego. (Jarrod Valliere / The San Diego Union-Tribune)

(Jarrod Valliere / The San Diego Union-Tribune)

Holland America, which has its home port in San Diego during its cruise season, is the most active cruise line here.

Of its fleet of 11 ships, Holland America has returned to service three ships – the Koningsdam being the third – and by the end of the year, when the Zuiderdam leaves for a voyage to the Sea of ​​Cortez, there will have been some. six are back on duty, Holland America spokesman Erik Elvejord said.

Here’s a look inside the 12-deck ship.