Posted May 3rd, 2013, 05:18 PM
What is the dress code for dinner on river cruises?
Are there always options other than seafood for dinner?
Do you tip your guide on shore (I would assume so), or is that included?
Re #1 - We've always done 'country club casual' with dressier sweaters or blouses for the less casual nights (e.g. Captain's dinner, welcome dinner). About 20% of men had sport jackets for those evenings, with maybe 5% ties and the rest without. The balance of evenings it was collared shirts/sweaters for men and sweaters or shirts for ladies w/ nice slacks or chinos. Almost no women wore skirts/dresses on our sailings, but the weather was on the cooler side so perhaps that explains it.
Re #2 - There should be 'always available' menu items such as steak, chicken etc on the menu in addition to the evening's offerings. I think there was also always a non-fish alternative main course, but I could be remembering incorrectly in the fog of rich meals and nice wine.
Re #3 - Yes, please tip the guides, unless they were just awful (this happened to us only one day out of perhaps 20 so far). We also give the bus drivers (when there have been buses) a small gratuity per person as well. Many times the guides are licensed and have mandatory education requirements before they are allowed to provide guide services; hopefully you will also find that a tip is well worth it for them as we almost always do.
Many river cruises charge gratuities or add them into the fare, but I do not believe the land-side tour guides are ever included in these arrangements unless it is specifically stated as such.