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Q&A


By Ilona Kauremszky


Q: Can you provide info on cruise ships that supervise facilities for Kosher food?

A: Kosher cruise packages are gaining popularity. You'll find many are equipped with spa treatment facilities, fitness centres and yes, kosher cuisine. Here's a quick menu: Crystal Cruises offers kosher meats, poultry and prepared dishes. PR rep Mimi Weisband says, "Although Crystal Harmony, Crystal Symphony, and Crystal Serenity do not have a separate Kosher kitchen, all Crystal chefs, kitchen personnel, and dining room staff have been trained in kosher food preparation, handling and serving," and adds, "Only kosher pots, pans and utensils will be used, and all plates, silverware and glassware will be washed separately."

Crystal Cruises requests that guests who wish to dine kosher-style provide at least 90 days advance notice prior to sailing. Weisband concludes that due to limited resources, a maximum 20 guests per cruise can participate in the Kosher-Style Program. What is Crystal Cruises definition of "Kosher-Style?" The best bet is to contact Onboard Guest Services at 1-800-446-6620 and press Option #5. For cruise reservations, visit your nearest travel agent.

Ontario Travel Bureau, located in Ontario, California, is a travel agency specializing in kosher cruises and tours. It recently announced a series of cruises available for the next nine months. "These sailings are full ship charters, so all the food prepared on the ship is kosher," says travel rep Laurie Neuman van Esschoten and adds, "Even the crew will be eating kosher food throughout these trips, so there won't be any worries about any food being mixed with non-kosher items."

Further inquiries can be emailed to laurie@ontariotravelbureau.com. Alternatively, there are some excellent web directories such as eLuna.com packed with reviews and customer comments on all things kosher-related including tours and cruises worldwide.

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