Tag Archives: Photos

This pretty photo of Saguenay in Canada was made even more eye-catching with Instagram's new photo editing tools.
This pretty photo of Saguenay in Canada was made even more eye-catching with Instagram's new photo editing tools.

Social media is the best way to share your favorite Holland America Line cruise memories with all of your friends and family. And if you’re more about photos and less about status updates, Instagram is the channel for you. Unlike Facebook, Instagram is used to post only one picture at a time (rather than a whole album) so there’s no better platform to highlight your favorite cruise memories.

If you’re a beginner and need to learn the basics of Instagram, check out our previous post “Instagram Tips and Tricks – Learn to Share Your Cruise Travel Photos.” However, if you want to improve your Instagram skills and learn about how to use the app’s latest updates for the most striking pictures, keep on reading!

The new updates are all about manipulating the shape, size, texture and especially color of your photos. Once you’ve selected your favorite picture and hit “next,” you will be met with this screen:


The far left icon that looks like a circle with three lines inside lets you scroll left and right to choose from a variety of filters. These filters have pre-determined edits that manipulate the coloring of your photo. For example, Inkwell or Willow make the picture black and white, XX-Pro II and Lo-Fi make the colors more vibrant, and Valencia and Brennan make them more dull. You also have the option to not use a filter at all by choosing Normal.

The middle icon that looks like a sun adjusts Lux, which edits the exposure and contrast of a photo. Use the little circle shown in the middle of the scale to adjust. Simply slide the toggle left to decrease exposure and right to increase it.

The far right icon that looks like a wrench edits 10 different aspects of the photo: Adjust, Brightness, Contrast, Warmth, Saturation, Shadows, Vignette, Tilt Shift and Sharpen.

• Adjust is all about creating angles. You can turn the picture clockwise or counter-clockwise and tilt the picture side to side or up and down.
• Brightness will add more or less light to the picture by using the toggle (just like you do in Lux). This tool is especially helpful when your picture looks dark from being taken in low lighting.
• Use Contrast to make the colors in your photo blend or pop. High contrast looks great on photos with many bright colors, like an Alaskan glacier or a Caribbean sunset!
• Warmth will add pink, orange and yellow hints to a picture when increased, and blues when decreased.
• Saturation makes colors darken and pop when increased, and fade and lighten when decreased.
• The Highlights feature will lighten the lighter colors of a picture.
• The Shadows feature will darken the darker colors of a picture.
• Vignette will create a dark circular shadow around the photo. This draws attention to the center.
• Another way to draw attention to a particular area of a photo is by using the Tilt Shift feature. The radial option will create a clear circle in the middle of the photo and blur the outside, while the linear option will create a clear rectangle in the center and blur above and below it. You can expand and compress the size of the clear shape by moving the tips of your fingers together or apart on the screen. You can also move the shape to different areas of the screen simply by dragging it.
• Last is the Sharpen feature, which will bold the lines within the picture. This tool often helps make a picture look more clear and defined.

If at any time you want to see how your edits compare to your original photo, simply tap the photo and hold down. When you lift your figure you’ll be able to see your edits again.

Using our own preferences, we edited one our favorite shots from a Caribbean cruise. To bring out the vibrant blues and oranges of the ocean and sky, we increased the Lux, Contrast and Sharpen to about 60, and then we decreased Shadows to about negative 60.

A photo snapped in the Caribbean before, left, and after Instagram's enhancements.

A photo snapped in the Caribbean before, left, and after Instagram’s enhancements.

It’s amazing how a few simple edits can transform your memories into eye-popping works of art. Give these new tools a try the next time you upload a favorite cruise memory, and be sure to tag @HALcruises so we can see your masterpiece!

Do you have a favorite Instagram filter? Tell us in the comments!

Share your vacation memories and connect with Holland America Line on Twitter!
Share your vacation memories and connect with Holland America Line on Twitter!

Holland America Line loves to communicate with cruisers, and social media continues to offer guests unparalleled access to sharing memories, photos, and feedback. Since its inception nearly a decade ago, Twitter has become a household name. However, despite the fact that the popular social media site has over 288 million active users, for many it remains an enigma.

Currently the fastest growing demographic on Twitter is the 55-64 year-old bracket, and Holland America Line is here to de-mystify Twitter for anyone looking to get in on the fun! Whether you’re a casual tweeter who would like to learn more or a first-timer looking to join the conversation, read on for tips and tricks to master Twitter and share your love of cruising with the world.


If you’ve never used Twitter before then you can get started by signing up and choosing a handle. As mentioned in the Instagram 101 blog post, a handle is a nickname that is uniquely your own. Experts recommend using the same handle across platforms, so if you’ve got a catchy name on Instagram try to use it for Twitter too!


Follow @HALcruises for fun facts, postcards from paradise and new & exciting developments with the cruise line!

Follow @HALcruises for fun facts, postcards from paradise and new & exciting developments with the cruise line!

If you’re already on Twitter then you’re most likely following friends, and maybe some key news sources, but you might not know that Twitter can be an outstanding resource for travel tips, connecting with like-minded individuals and keeping up with your interests whatever they might be. For example, Holland America Line follows a host of cruise industry contemporaries, publications, bloggers and enthusiasts. In order to get the most valuable and enjoyable experience out of Twitter, follow a mixture of accounts — from your favorite comedian to hard news sites like the New York Times (@nytimes). To find fun personalities and publications just search in the toolbar based on your interests — i.e. “cruise” — and see what pops up! While you’re at, it don’t forget to follow Holland America Line at @HALCruises!


You can share a message, photo and link to more information all in one tweet!

You can share a message, photo and link to more information all in one tweet!

You might think it’s tough to get much information from 140 characters … not true! With added links, photos and videos, tweets often read like a headline or call to action allowing users to scan a lot of information in a very short period of time and quickly decide if they would like to know more or engage in a particular topic. For instance, Holland America Line typically tweets with links to stories about onboard entertainment, Rudi’s recipes, interesting itineraries and featured sales.

Want to add a link or photo of your own? No problem! There is an option to add a photo or location every time you tweet. Links can be pasted into the body of the tweet and will automatically shorten so they don’t use up all your characters. It should be noted, however, that a photo and a link take up at least 20 characters each, leaving just 100 to get your message across. But that’s ok, sometimes it’s like a fun puzzle when you master the art of delivering a message with limited letters, punctuation and spacing!


Tap into your favorite hashtag for fun on Twitter!

Tap into your favorite hashtag for fun on Twitter!

Chances are you’ve heard that hashtags are an integral part of the Twitter experience. Around the world individuals and organizations establish hashtags to label the topics of their conversations, making them easily searchable and working to facilitate easy communication. Through hashtags people can weigh in live on their favorite television programs, comment on current events, and even have some fun. You’ll notice a bar along the left side of your Twitter feed (if you’re using desktop) that lists a number of trending topics. Those are the people, places and things that the collective “Twitterverse” is talking about in real time.

Want to get in on the fun? Some regular hashtags and trending topics are like games. For instance, Holland America Line loves to tap into #FriFotos, a photo sharing hashtag with a different topic each week. Other fun hashtags include #TravelTuesday, with which folks share their travel stories and favorite destination photos; #TBT (Throwback Thursday), a prompt to re-visit old memories and pictures; and #DidYouKnow, a tag for sharing fun facts!


Retweet photos & information to share with your followers!

Retweet photos & information to share with your followers!

Hit the retweet button.

Hit the retweet button.

Now that you know how to find and join conversations and share information, how about taking it one step further and finding your community! Retweeting is a great way to share the information of others with one quick click. Even strangers appreciate a retweet — unlike Facebook and some other social media channels, people generally use twitter to share and find information from the community.

Want to take it one step further? Join a Twitter chat! Twitter chats are hosted by publications and organizations to connect the community on a particular topic. For example, Travel + Leisure holds a chat every Tuesday using the hashtag #TL_Chat. Topics vary from week to week covering a range of topics from destinations to cruises to air travel tips. Holland America Line recently participated in National Geographic’s Travel Twitter Chat that was put on in partnership with the U.S. Dept. of the Interior and featured National Parks.


The one tweet, alone, earned 56 retweets and 110 favorites! To join a chat just follow the host and answer the questions as they come using the agreed upon hashtag.

Twitter Tip: If you add a period in front of the @ handle that you’re including (ie: .@NatGeoTravel), your tweet will appear on all of their followers’ news feed, too! That could mean a lot of exposure for your tweet.

Are you ready to get into the Twitter game? Let us know what you think in the comments, and don’t forget to follow @HALcruises!

Amy Maleh submitted her "Perfect Day" in Greece.
Amy Maleh submitted her "Perfect Day" in Greece.

Holland America Line’s “Perfect Day Cruise Sweepstakes” is well underway on Facebook, and one lucky fan will win a seven-day cruise for two in a verandah stateroom!
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Try a selection of different wines onboard by purchasing a wine package.

Among the many delights of a Holland America Line cruise are the thoughtful and unexpected touches that make your vacation especially memorable. Guests, as well as their friends and family traveling together, are invited to indulge and get into the spirit of creating special moments with our onboard gift program. Holland America Line offers the perfect gift for everyone, from flowers to wine, photo and specialized celebration packages, offerings for couples and more.

While Holland America Line features more than 150 unique items, below is just a sampling of the different packages and indulgences that are part of our cruise experience.

The Cellar Master Package gives guests a premium wine tasting experience throughout the length of the cruise. The package includes two wine tasting events conducted by our Cellar Master, an evening of fine dining in the Pinnacle Grill, five vintage bottles based on personal preference, a HAL commemorative bottle and a wine gift. Guests also can choose from three, five and seven-bottle packages.

With a Beverage Package, guests can enjoy a bottle of their favorite spirit onboard. From Vodka to Scotch to Gin, Holland America Line has more than 40 different spirits to choose from. A Spirit Package also adds three cans of a mixer for guest to make their favorite cocktail. Those who prefer beer can order a 6-pack of domestics like Miller Genuine and Budweiser, or imports like Corona and Heineken.

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Jul 2013

Thanks to guest Jaap van Tuyll for sending in these two photos of Maasdam in some stunning settings.


Maasdam at Torshavn, Faroe Islands.

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Adventure traveler and Dutch TV personality Charlotte Van Hoorn was on board Zaandam for an Alaska cruise and will be sharing her adventure with us.

Thanking the HAL crew with these snapshots for welcoming my first time cruiser friends so warmly. Beverage Manager Hans Becker well represents the personal charm of HAL’s officers. It was a happy surprise to reconnect with him from another voyage and he added so many touches to our group events that made the journey a total success. As a Canadian of Mexican and German heritage, he has the diverse cultural experiences that make it easy for him to connect with so many guests. I forgot to ask how many languages he speaks, but with his world-wide training, he is fluent in planning the beverage stock needed to satisfy guests’ desires as the demographic changes as the ship sails through the oceans continent to continent. Personally, it sounds like a dream job, but he also enjoys a respite in his home on the lake near Toronto with its cultural and outdoor sports available.

Beverage Manager Hans Becker.

Beverage Manager Hans Becker.

Back aboard with Cellar Master Anton and others of his staff, we enjoyed the well-planned beverage events and Captain van Maurik’s receptions beautifully catered as thanks for repeat guests as members of the Mariner Society. Safe sailing, Zaandam, and enjoy the photos of one happy crew.

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