How can I get from our hotel in Amsterdam to the Rotterdam cruise port? The train is just not viable due to the amount of luggage we have. Private cars are so pricey
If you have a huge amount of luggage bite the bullet and reserve a private transfer. Or does your cruise line offer transfers? If you take the train, it will entail a taxi from your hotel and a taxi from the station in R'dam plus 2 fares from A'dam to R'dam so maybe that will make the private car price look a little less expensive.
If you think the private cars are too pricy, then you have no option other than the train. It is simple and cheap. We have made that run once and will do so again in September. First thing, reduce your luggage. There is no sane reason to have that much luggage. For the two us, we get by very nicely with a total of three carry-on size bags - two backpack style and one rolling. Our next cruise is 22 days beginning late Sept. You can take the train to Rotterdam - about an hour, walk from the station to the tram ticket office - 30 yards, step outside and take the tram to the Holland American HQ and check in. Cannot miss it - very obvious. Another 30 yards from the tram stop to the luggage check point where you unburden yourself. Walk up stair and check in. Lots of people doing the same thing so just follow the crowd. Is this your first cruise? Our first cruise had so much luggage we hired a van.
You could try taxi + train + taxi. But using the train if you can carry on your own all your luggage is difficult.
But she already posted that the train was not viable because of luggage. All questions do not have good answers.
Are you already in Amsterdam? If so, how did you get there with all that luggage. If not, how do you plan to get there with all that luggage? I'm guessing you are not in Amsterdam yet. I know it's hard to fathom, but what people say about traveling light is real. My husband and I travel to Europe for a month each year. We carry our bags onto the plane, no checking. He takes a RS backpack and a messenger bag. I take a 22" roll aboard and a tote. If you haven't already, check out the info on Packing Light under Travel Tips on this very website. We don't even take as much as is listed there and get along just fine. I have seen people with lots of luggage in Europe looking for someone to help them with it and never finding anyone (except a taxi driver) because there isn't anyone to do that. You schlep what you bring yourself, so if you can't do that, you brought too much. But you do have a choice. If you want to take that much, you pay the price for a taxi or driver or rental car. As others have said, there really are no other options.
Renting a big car is an option worth considering. A one day rental of a big cars might cost around 140 euros, and fees for drop-off in other cities are rather low (like 10-15 euros sometimes). Hertz has an "hourly rental" scheme in some cities here in the Netherlands, though I'm not sure it covers the big car you'd need. How much luggage will you be actually carrying? If it is really a lot as in 3 big bags per person, you need either to rent a van, or put up with a private transfer.
Thanks for all the responses. By lots of luggage I mean 1 carryon & 2 large suitcases. I don't know how you can do a cruise with just a couple of carry ons. Don't you have day wear, evening wear, dress shoes, etc. It seems to add up. This is our 4th cruise and we have pared down from 5 bags to 3 but the two large ones are tough to manage. The cruise is mid Sept
I will be glad to email you our packing list. We have been on seven European cruises, longest 21 days, and get by very well on three carryon. You do have to be creative in what you pack and especially how everything cross matches. It is a learned process. On our first cruise we were grossly over-packed with hanging bags, train cases, and large suitcases. Next three were two carry on plus one large rolling suitcase. Now we are down to three carry on bags. The big change was a reduction of shoes, eliminated the tux and the long formal gown. As we got older the lighter luggage load was a big benefit. Our next is 22 days on Holland Am out of Rotterdam last week of Sept.
We must be on a similar cruise except ours leaves 9/14
I have never been on a cruise, so I am totally ignorant. I did know about the "formal" evenings, but I read recently that those are going the way of the Dodo bird and that there are lots of other options to avoid them. I also read that it is possible to rent formal wear for such events on some cruises if you want to attend them. If rental is possible for yours, that might be a better option than setting yourself or someone else up for injury from a too heavy bag. Here's what the IATA says: http://www.iata.org/whatwedo/passenger/baggage/Pages/check-bag.aspx. As already mentioned, coordination is the key. Here's a good source for learning how to coordinate: http://theviviennefiles.blogspot.com/?view. There are many posts specifically on packing for a trip, but the general ones are also good for cutting back. Somebody, maybe RS, says if you're not going to wear it at least 3 times, don't take it.
You might want to check out the cruise packing lists on cruisecritic.com, but here's my experience: You'll find that on many cruises the "formal" nights are mostly women in cocktail dresses (I bought a reversible one) and men in ties and sport coats. I used compression bags, which don't lighten your load but let you fit more things in a small suitcase. I took a rolling 21", a small duffel bag and a day pack (yes had to check one of the three on my flight). My husband did the same. You can toss a small duffel on top of a rolling bag for those long corridors in the stations. We were on a 7 night cruise to Alaska in June so had cameras, laptops, 1 pair dressy shoes each, plus jackets and layers for expeditions. I cut back on blouses and undies and washed some in the sink in our stateroom. Have a great time!
"Formal wear" on most cruise lines consists of what you would wear to a nice dinner party, actually, not a long gown, not a prom dress, nothing fancy-schmancy. In other words, no jeans or casual going-to-the mall outfits. As well, some ships have laundry rooms (QM2 does) and others offer laundry services and it's worth the price to be able pack less stuff.
Our ship does have laundry but our last ship didn't so we took advantage of the ship's laundry and it was not the greatest idea. They must wash everything in the same harsh detergent as my brand new blue twill pants & other dark clothes came out washed out and shrunk! It's great when you can do your own laundry but their laundry services leave me wanting better.