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Special Dietary Needs? It’s Easy to Cruise with Holland America Line

No matter where you go on a cruise, food is an important part of the onboard experience, and it’s also a gateway to the cultures we visit. Today, more people are traveling with dietary restrictions, and we don’t want that to deter anyone from enjoying their vacation! Onboard all of our ships, we have plenty of options to make sure our guests with special dietary needs have an equally delicious experience as those without.

For guests who avoid meat and dairy, we have plenty of vegan choices in our restaurants. The main Dining Room offers an exclusive vegan and vegetarian menu with an extensive list of items to choose from. Guests can enjoy everything from vegetable spring rolls and grilled tostadas to vegetable jambalaya and tempeh kebobs! No matter what your taste, you’ll be sure to find something delightful. Just be sure to ask for the menu early in the cruise. Tamarind, our award-winning Pan-Asian alternative dining restaurant, gives guests many vegetarian dishes, as does the casual Lido Market. Many dishes in our other venues can be altered and made with substitutions to make them vegan friendly.

Veggies chopping

For guests who are vegetarian, we have even more options at your disposal. In the Dining Room, the main menu offers a variety of vegetarian selections spanning each course, and guests also can request the exclusive vegetarian and vegan menu. In addition to a number of choices in the Lido Market, alternative restaurants Pinnacle Grill, Tamarind, Canaletto, Rudi’s Sel de Mer, Dive-In and New York Pizza all have vegetarian choices. Each of these restaurants also features a leaf icon on the dishes that highlight the vegetarian-friendly food, making it quick and easy to scan for appropriate items. Our In- Room Service offers the same feature as well. Finding vegetable-based alternatives is easy task onboard.

Beyond meat and dairy restrictions, we understand that there are many guests who have food allergies that make it hard to travel and dine without extensive planning. Our travelers with Celiac’s disease or gluten sensitivities will find items made without gluten are marked with the symbol of wheat next to their descriptions. Our Dive-In burgers also can be made with gluten-free buns. While our main ingredients are listed with each menu item, you may not know if a meal contains trace amounts other common allergens such as nuts, milk or butter. If you are excited about a menu item, but not sure if it is gluten free or contains another allergen, speak to your server and our culinary team to be sure that each meal is safe and healthy for you to enjoy.

Chef greeting guests

The Main Dining Room has plenty of special options.

We do our best to keep our guests with dietary needs in mind when planning our menus. Traveling should be an enjoyable way to experience the world, and we encourage our guests to feel empowered to have a carefree vacation with Holland America Line! If you have special dietary needs that require assistance, please contact Ship Services at least three weeks prior to your departure: 1–800–541–1576.

  • Isadoria

    Hello, I will be cruising with my family on the Nieuw Statendam this August. I am vegan and I read that there is an alternative menu. I am just wondering if I need to contact ship services prior to boarding or I can inform the crew when I board.
    Many thanks!

  • Julie

    Hi Isadora, we recommend you contact ship services just to confirm, and once you get on board please mention to the staff that you are vegan and they will provide you with the menu.

  • Elizabeth

    I am hoping to travel on your Mediterranean Tapestry cruise in August 2020, with a group.
    My daughter is allergic to peanuts, tree nuts, soy protein, chick peas, beans, peas and lentils.
    Would you be able to accommodate her?

    Thank you,

  • Julie

    Hi Elizabeth, we accommodate a variety of dietary restrictions. Please contact Ship Services to discuss your specific needs: 800–541–1576

  • Julie

    I am traveling on the Canada/New England Cruise out of Montreal on June 29th. I am gluten intolerant. My travel agent said she made a note on the reservations. Do I need to contact HA beforehand to let them know?

  • Julie

    If you would like to ensure it was taken care of, please call Ship Services: 800–541–1576.

  • Batchen

    For your vegetarian menu should inform in advance or only ask when I board or at the dinner restaurant?
    I mean is it limited only to whom inform in advance?

  • Julie

    Hi Batchen, if you want the exclusive menu you can ask when you board. Or you can call ship services at 800–541–1576. But you will have access if you don’t call. There also are items on the main menu every day as well, and even vegetarian options at Dive-In! You’ll eat well on board 🙂

  • Livia

    Do you provide zabiha halal dietary option on beef, lamb and chicken?
    Cruise from Seattle to Alaska.

    Thanks in advance

  • Julie

    Please call ship services to speak to them about your special dietary needs: 800–541–1576

  • Dawn

    Due to a liver problem, I have been advised to be on a VERY low fat diet, however I am not a lover of salads etc. How will I know if the food onboard is very low fat?

  • Julie

    Dawn, please contact ship services to discuss your dietary needs: 1–800–541–1576

  • David Benn

    My wife has to keep her carbs down. We are sailing on the Volendam Jan.4/20 77 day round trip South America. Do you have low carb bread?

  • Julie

    Hi David, we do have gluten free, but please call Ship Services to ask about low carb options: 800-541-1576.

  • carol

    do you have a menu that is diabetic friendly?

  • Julie

    We can work with most dietary needs. Please call ship services prior to sailing so they can make arrangements: 800–541–1576

  • Jan S. Breemer

    My wife and I hope to travel on Nieuw Statendam in April 2022. She is severely allergic to any and all shellfish – shrimp, lobster, crab, etc., so much so that she will likely have an allergic reaction when she is within inhaling range of steaming warm shellfish. Any advice how she might safely enjoy dinner in the main dining room? Thanks.

  • Rebecca

    I’m sailing to Alaska and I’m on a no fat, oil, butter, dairy. Would this be something that can be accomadated ? 🙂

  • Julie

    Please contact ship services for your dietary needs. 800–541–1576

  • Julie


    My husband and I are booked for an Alaska cruise next year.

    I see a lot of other things, but are you able to accommodate a heart healthy and diabetic diet?

    Thank you

  • Julie

    Hi Julie, please work with out ship services team on your special diet and they will be happy to accommodate. 800–541–1576

  • Michael Gilroy

    I have a friend going with me on a cruise in four days and is an extremely finicky eater. He doesn’t do most vegetables, especially onions, tomatoes, mushrooms yet does olives. He is literally a meat and potatoes guy. He also doesn’t do. Seafood AT ALL. Can Holland accommodate a simply meat and potatoes diet?

  • Susanne Capehart

    Could you please send me a menu that shows items that are low in carbohydrates?

  • Julie

    Please call ship services: 800–541–1576

  • Ernie

    Can I get a list of sodium content of menu items?

  • Julie

    We do not have that information at the blog. You will need to call ship services: 800–541–1576

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