Holland America wires up for mobiles

In today’s constantly connected world, guests aboard Holland America Line ships will soon be able to use their own personal cell phones and personal digital assistants (PDAs) to stay tied to family, friends and business associates while cruising on one of the line’s premium cruise ships. The service is currently available on the ms Volendam and will be operational on all ships by March 2007.

Guests will simply make and receive calls and use text messaging as they would on land with their personal cell phone. Phones and PDAs must be activated for international dialing with the guest’s home provider, but otherwise no special codes or software is needed.

International roaming fees apply to all shipboard cell phone calls or messages and appear on the guest’s personal cell phone bill.

“Staying connected is a way of life for most of us, our guests included,” said Stein Kruse, president and CEO of Holland America Line. “Now, whether cruising with Holland America Line in Europe, the Caribbean, Alaska or sailing around the world, our guests can connect at sea anywhere at anytime.” Holland America Line’s new cell phone service utilizes SeaMobile’s proprietary technology, a sophisticated IP/software based solution that works with any type of wireless phone. Worldwide roaming agreements established by SeaMobile provide transparent connectivity for wireless services with billing provided by the guest’s home carrier.