Tom Harper river cruise

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#1
Downers Grove, Illinois
17 Posts
Joined Jul 2001
Does anyone have any experience with the new river cruise line by Tom Harper? Please share your thoughts on them. Thanks.
#2
3,885 Posts
Joined May 2009
Googled them and got this PR release dated August 8 2013, they are apparently a new company with first cruise scheduled for summer 2014, so no one would have any experience with them yet....


New River Cruise Company Launches With an “Epic” Experience
Tom Harper River Journeys launches their first Epic river cruise in 2014 to Authentic Russia backed by the most generous loyalty rewards and deposit programs.


Tom Harper River Journeys
A truly all-inclusive experience, with no surprises, no gimmick pricing, and the most culturally rich itinerary on the market.
Newton, Massachusetts (PRWEB) August 08, 2013

Tom Harper River Journeys announces the successful launch of their company with their first “epic” river cruise experience: Authentic Russia 2014.
“Combining the dash of Tom Sawyer and the loyal companionship of Joe Harper” is how company CEO Bret Gordon describes their river cruising experience, aimed specifically at Baby Boomer travelers. In addition to a complete online and mobile shopping and purchasing experience, the company differentiates itself with an emphasis on authentic cultural and social experiences and a focus on “the destination, not the vessel,” according to Gordon.
River cruising by Americans is the fastest growing segment in the cruise industry according to recent CLIA publications. In fact, the industry is experiencing 10% annual growth for five years running, easily out-pacing the overall ocean cruise market. “We strongly believe the market will continue this renaissance for years to come and want to deliver a compelling experience that honors the destination,” continues Gordon.
A New Way to Enjoy Traveling — “Your Way”
The company sets itself apart by offering what Gordon describes as “a truly all-inclusive experience, with no surprises, no gimmick pricing, and the most culturally rich itinerary on the market.” Tom Harper’s exclusive “Experience Your Way” activities, allowing travelers the opportunity to choose from different styles of excursions in select ports of call, are another unique feature the company hopes will appeal to independent-minded Boomers.
With the “best loyalty program in the business” and a “generous deposit program that never expires and is fully transferable,” Gordon believes Tom Harper’s first journey, Authentic Russia 2014, will be just the beginning of a growing legion of Friends of Tom looking to share “epic travel experiences.”
From $3,799 per person, Authentic Russia will be departing May to August 2014, with Southeast Asia destinations launching soon to Vietnam’s Mekong River and Myanmar’s Irrawaddy. For more information, visit tomharper.com.
#5
3,885 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by Ritabob
You might want to read about a Canadian river cruise-all-all-inclusive company...Jerry Vandyke.
Hello that was unhelpful! Want to give your fellow members a name of the company???? Yes they might want to read about it but who exactly do you want us to read about???
#6
3,885 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by Ritabob
You might want to read about a Canadian river cruise-all-all-inclusive company...Jerry Vandyke.
Is the name of the company "Jerry Vandyke" or is that your name ?
#7
Ontario, Canada
2,756 Posts
Joined Nov 2008
Originally posted by Ritabob
You might want to read about a Canadian river cruise-all-all-inclusive company...Jerry Vandyke.
I am aware of Jerry VanDyke. It is a company - and river cruises are one part of the package. They also offer lands journeys and small escorted tours.

Originally posted by nana541
Hello that was unhelpful! Want to give your fellow members a name of the company???? Yes they might want to read about it but who exactly do you want us to read about???
This is the website.

http://www.jerryvandyke.com

They are completely all-inclusive - and the prices reflect it. I don't need that level of vacation management (at least, not yet....) Tom Sawyers' prices are much less - hence the question about marketing in Canada.

Fran

Fran
#8
Manito, IL
89 Posts
Joined Mar 2011
I've been reading their website and planned tours. Many of them look amazing, and to countries that most river cruises are not yet offering..Spain, Scotland.

However, from what I read (and am possibly misinterpreting)..they charter space aboard other already scheduled vessels and world passengers for their tour group. So not everyone on the boat, is part of the tour, group, or with the same agenda. The shipboard credits can be applied to other tours offered on the ship.

It sounds more like tour trips offered by travel agencies of "join us for..." they will put a group together with a host/tour guide. The vessels listed are small cruise ship type, rather than river boats.

None of this is necessarily a bad thing, but more, if my interpretation is correct, on how they differ.
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#9
Ontario
82 Posts
Joined Aug 2010
Hi, I also am aware of this company. Friends of ours went with them a few years back and had a great time. However, when my husband and I were looking for a company last year we fairly quickly removed them from our list. This wasn't because we thought they offered a bad product, in fact they are an excellent company. However, they did not offer what we were looking for. Firstly, they do not have hotel beds, theirs are Pullman. No balconies, of any type. They put great store on the fact that they do not sail at night, ever. We would have not found this an advantage as the more day time sailing the less time in port. This probably suits their clientele, we crossed paths with them a couple of times during our cruise. The average age was quite a bit older than on our boat so less time in port, and walking, may have suited well. In addition, as already stated they are all inclusive, something we like, however, in their case it includes pick up at your door, I can call for a limo, and a tour guide who accompanies the guests on the flight. We were actually on the same flight. I feel that this complete hand holding is reflected in the price rather than boat amenities. I can't comment on excursion quality.
Bottom line I determined that this is a very good company which would suit older possibly less mobile passengers who want someone with them from the moment they leave their home and who don't mind sleeping on a pull down bed.
It all depends on what you want, which is why research is so important. Not many bad choices but important to get the right choice for you. We passed on JVD and went with Scenic, which we loved and will sail with again next year.
Mary
#10
1 Posts
Joined Nov 2013
Originally posted by Roadlamp
Does anyone have any experience with the new river cruise line by Tom Harper? Please share your thoughts on them. Thanks.
Tom Harper offerings are glossy, unique and really tempting, but I'd like to know more on why one would travel with a "start-up" company.
#11
Santa Paula CA
3,415 Posts
Joined Apr 2000
Originally posted by Dendrocopos
Tom Harper offerings are glossy, unique and really tempting, but I'd like to know more on why one would travel with a "start-up" company.
If they have their act together, I would not have a problem. I have traveled on Silverseas and Oceania when they were "start up companies"
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It serves no purpose to list all the cruises I have been on chronologically. Many of the lines or ships do not exist any more, or have been renamed. I have sailed on NCL,Bermuda Star, Regency, Royal, Silverseas, Mississippi Queen, Vantage, Marco Polo, Scottish Highlander, Princess, Victoria, Hebridean Princess, Paul Gauguin, Regent, Oceania, Cunard, Rembrandt, and Lev Tolstoy.
#12
1 Posts
Joined Jul 2014
We took the inaugural Russian River cruise with Tom Harper River Journeys. I have to tell you we were impressed, very impressed. Their website tells you that it is all inclusive and it is. Every excursion that you could think of was included. And every tip on the trip was paid for. That was a unique factor in choosing their trip. It is nice to reward your guides, your drivers, and the staff on board. It is always a concern for us that we need to make sure that we had enough cash for tipping in the right currency. But to know that it was taken care off, was just one thing we didn't have to think about. The tour was jam-packed with places to see and go. We were on the go from morning until night. The sights in Russia are incredible and very much worth your consideration if you are having thoughts about going there. One of the nice highlights was what they called a Cultural Exchange. We were invited by a Russian family to go to their home. It was wonderful to meet someone in their home and exchange information about one another. We were served vodka and later some tea, along with their local breads and desserts. It was a unique experience for us and we enjoyed it thoroughly.
Tom Harper River Journeys proved to be worthy of all their descriptions on their website and more. Everything was well organized and the ship we were on, the MS Pushkin, had wonderful staff, food and service. Everyone there was friendly and helpful. And our guide for our entire trip was outstanding. I would not hesitate to book with them again in the future.
#14
3,885 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by nana541
Hello that was unhelpful! Want to give your fellow members a name of the company???? Yes they might want to read about it but who exactly do you want us to read about???

I want to apologize for this post... Must of gotten up on the wrong side of the bed!


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#15
McMurray, PA
1 Posts
Joined Jul 2014
Did the May Harper riverboat cruise, Moscow to St. Petersburg - recommend it highly - was my first cruise - a fantastic trip, extremely well organized, very nice boat ("Alexander Pushkin"). Took in all the major sights in Moscow and St.Petersurg (did the two day extension there!), plus five most interesting stops as we sailed north. You will not go wrong by taking this cruise.
#16
Madison WI
179 Posts
Joined Aug 2012
Originally posted by denlee
Did the May Harper riverboat cruise, Moscow to St. Petersburg - recommend it highly - was my first cruise - a fantastic trip, extremely well organized, very nice boat ("Alexander Pushkin"). Took in all the major sights in Moscow and St.Petersurg (did the two day extension there!), plus five most interesting stops as we sailed north. You will not go wrong by taking this cruise.
I would very much appreciate a referral. My email is [email protected]. Please contact me.
Thanks
#17
Florida
2 Posts
Joined Jul 2014
Glad to read your comments, as a friend & I are doing the Tom Harper river cruise to Scotland in May. Their itineraries do sound intriquing. Hopefully, this cruise will be as good as the one you took to Russia, as I could do a few more from their brochure!
#18
S.E. MA
971 Posts
Joined Aug 2010
Originally posted by flgal2011
Glad to read your comments, as a friend & I are doing the Tom Harper river cruise to Scotland in May. Their itineraries do sound intriquing. Hopefully, this cruise will be as good as the one you took to Russia, as I could do a few more from their brochure!
Hi,
I hope you'll come back next year and tell us all about your trip! I'm leaving next week for 16 days driving around the highlands and islands, but recently read about your Scotland trip on the Tom Harper website and it sounds fantastic. I know it is far away, but I'm wishing you a wonderful trip!