Are Canadians taking to river cruising?

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Ontario, Canada
58 Posts
Joined Oct 2013
We are new to cruising with one to Alaska and one in the south of France. Turns out we really like river cruising, however, only five Canadians out of 160 on that cruise. We loved meeting and mingling with the Americans and British but it would have great to hear at least a few Canadian accents. LOL. We are cruising Amsterdam to Budapest in May 2018 and wondering if we will see any fellow Canadians on board.
322 Posts
Joined May 2013
Originally posted by Bake apple
... but it would have great to hear at least a few Canadian accents. LOL....
Whoa, we Canadians don't have accents, but everyone else does. 😄
Every cruise is different, so maybe next time you'll meet someone from the next block. On our last cruise I met someone I dated over 40 years ago!
Ontario, Canada
2,376 Posts
Joined Mar 2008
We have done 3 and have been the only Canadians on them. We have quite a few friends that have river cruised but not with us. I think it is becoming more popular but it is more expensive than regular cruising so I know the price keeps a lot of people away. We are doing the Nile at the end of October and I would think it might be only the two of us from Canada. We shall see.
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Past Cruises

Viking Star- Danube river cruise - 2001
Avalon Tapestry - Rhine river cruise - 2008
Carnival Sensation - Bahamas cruise - 2008
AMA MS Tolstoy - Moscow to St. Petersburg - 2009
Golden Princess - Hawaii - 2010
Insight Vacations- Nile river cruise-2011-Cancelled
Emerald Princess - Baltic Cruise - 2011
Emerald Princess - Eastern Caribbean - 2012
Island Princess - Panama Canal - 2012
Emerald Princess - Southern Caribbean - 2013
Carnival Glory - Canada/New England - 2013
Celebrity Infinity - South America - 2014
HAL-Nieuw Amsterdam- East/West Caribbean-2015
Crown Princess - Mexican Riviera - 2015
HAL-Eurodam - Caribbean Collector - 2016
HAL-Oosterdam-Med cruise-Barcelona to Venice - 2016
Celebrity Equinox - Mardi Gras - 2017
Celebrity Equinox - Caribbean - 2017
Ms Media-Nile River Cruise - 2017
Ontario, Canada
58 Posts
Joined Oct 2013
True, I think we are hooked on river cruising now and we are talking it up with friends and family. Lots of comments about the cost being a bit steep and not everyone is looking for a port intensive vacation with few ship amenities. We will just have to raise both hands when the ship's Captain asks how many from Canada eh? LOL. Hope you post pics and comments from your Nile cruise as that one is in our bucket list. Safe cruising.
Calgary, AB Canada
2,498 Posts
Joined Mar 2001
Really depends on which cruise line you are on. Viking naturally would have a majority of Americans, we cruise Scenic and Canadians usually are the second largest group onboard after the Aussies.

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Toronto, Canada
1,015 Posts
Joined Mar 2010
To me the biggest issue is whether I can have a fixed price in Canadian dollars. If I have to deal with the vagaries of the exchange rate to pay in US dollars (or Euros) I am taking a risk. So I think that if the cruise line has Canadian dollar pricing your chances are better.
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AmaDara, Vietnam and Cambodia, 2017
Aegean Odyssey, Istanbul to Venice, 2015
Bike and Barge Holland, Bruges to Amsterdam, 2014
Uniworld, Vienna to Basel, 2011
Uniworld, Tulips and Windmills, Antwerp to Amsterdam, 2010
Nashville, Tennessee USA
1,103 Posts
Joined Mar 2014
I think that some lines are marketing more to Canadians. I know that last year Avalon featured Canadian singer Jann Arden on one of their Paris/Normandy cruises. We were on a northbound Rhone cruise the previous week, and several Canadians on board were transferring to the Seine cruise. Whereas our cruise was pretty evenly split between Canadians, Americans, British, and Australians, the Seine cruise was something like 3/4 Canadians.
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2018: The Douro: Portugal's River of Gold & Spain w/Madeira extension, Vantage Douro Serenity (April)
2017: Burgundy & Provence, Avalon Poetry II
2016: Canals, Vineyards, and Paris, Avalon Affinity II
2015: Switzerland & the Heart of the Rhine & Moselle, Vantage River Navigator
2014: Tulips & Windmills, Viking Atla
2013: Romantic Danube, Viking MS Vienna (leased)
2012: Cities of Light, Viking Sky
60 Posts
Joined Feb 2009
<p>Well this Canadian has taken to them...done 4 another for Christmas and New Years this year. &nbsp;Paris to Paris with uniworld.</p><p>We did a gate 1 from Amsterdam to Basel in June and the passengers were mostly Canadian. &nbsp;They had a great price, we all seem to have booked that special. &nbsp;We find we attach ourselves to Aussies when Canadians aren't &nbsp;on board...</p>
Ontario, Canada
58 Posts
Joined Oct 2013
Thanks all. Obviously we need to take a few more river cruises which will not be a hardship! The recent south of France cruise was with Viking as is the upcoming cruise. Perhaps we are still newbies and need a few more trips to meet up with other Canadians. As for price, well we did the math and even with the Canadian dollar up and down like a yo-yo we liked the 'free' airfare and our choice of routing and carrier since we live in one of the gateway cities. I asked the Viking rep if we could pay for the cruise in U.S. dollars but the answer was no because we needed a U.S. address for the document delivery. Seemed a bit unfair but again we are new at this.(Maybe we should have used a TA??). The difference was $2K so I was hoping for a break.
1,048 Posts
Joined Aug 2010
I took a river cruise two years ago with 6 or so Canadians on board, and this was on GCT which only advertises to Americans. I'm getting together with friends from that trip in October for a French river cruise, and the Canadians all declined because of the Canadian dollar, sad to say. I've cruised twice with Uniworld and there were quite a few Canadians on those trips well as Aussies, English, Welsh...
Surrey,British Columbia, Canada
22 Posts
Joined Feb 2011
We are Canadian and taking our fifth Uniworld cruise in April. So many discounts for paying in full before Sept.30, as well as previous Uniworld cruiser, and air credit. Our TA figured out total in CAD and USD and we saved about $1000.00 by paying in USD. We have had Canadians on all our cruises.
Ontario, Canada
2,767 Posts
Joined Nov 2008
This Canadian is leaving for #13 in less than 2 weeks --> #14 booked for next year. We have traveled with most of the main lines - and the number of Canadians on board varies.

Surprisingly, we have met people from our area on a number of cruises - and have kept in touch with some of them for a few years now.

Our dollar certainly does have an impact. I do get lots of comments about how expensive river cruises are, but manage to book on a regular basis by watching for sales and having some flexibility on dates/itineraries. Now that our dollar is slowly inching up, I am hopeful that we will see this reflected in the prices.

New Zealand
101 Posts
Joined Apr 2016
I agree with cruiseyyc. We were on Scenic last year and Canadians were the 2nd largest group on our trip too. A handful of Americans, British, and 6 of us New Zealanders. Part of the fun for me is meeting different types of people.

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3 Posts
Joined Sep 2017
I am currently on the Grand European Tour with Viking (Amsterdam to Budapest). There are 19 Canadians aboard including my wife and I. Several Brits and about 4 Aussies. Majority is, of course, Americans.
Ontario, Canada
58 Posts
Joined Oct 2013
Larsh: that's the cruise we will be taking in May, I hope you are enjoying it and will post your observations and recommendations. We can't wait. Obviously Canadians are well represented on the river cruise front and I just didn't realize that given our one experience. We have been lucky enough to travel around a bit in Asia, Europe and South America. Since my husband always wears a Toronto Maple Leaf ball cap he tends to be the magnet for fellow Canadian travellers who want to talk NHL hockey or offer him a word of sympathy. I'll have to get him a new one for river cruising. Enjoy safe travels, speedy locks and chilled wine.
3 Posts
Joined Sep 2017
The cruise was really quite good. The only unexpected "deficiency" was the inability to sit up on the sun deck for about a week. The Amsterdam to Budapest goes through 67 locks and under several low bridges. As a result, they lowered canopy and folded in all the handrails. We were told to expect this, but the implication was that they would only be down sporadically at bridges, not for about 6 days straight. It made it quite crowded on the Aquavit terrace when passing certain points. Also, in a few cases, some of the shore stops were quite short; either a guided tour and sail or tour, hour free time, then sail. Your personal thoughts would depend on your adventerousness and curiosity at those stops. The stops were great though; lots of history and great local guides at each. It was our first river cruise, so no other reference for comparison. I'm assuming you're familiar with the longboats and Viking policies having sailed with them before. If you have any more questions, ask away!

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McKinney, TX
83 Posts
Joined May 2009
We've taken two river cruises and w enjoyed a good contingent of Canadians on both. The firs time we sailed with Scenic from Budapest to Amsterdam. The Ausies let the head count by a wide margin followed by Brits then Canadaians and finally those of us from the US.
This year we sailed with Uniworld. US citizens were the most common on that trip but we had lots of folks from the Vancouver area and from Toronto too. Canada was well represented.

Nova Scotia
14 Posts
Joined Nov 2011
We are just back from the Scenic Amber, Gems of the Danube. Out of 161 PAX there were 102 fellow Canadians. This was not a charter. It just ended up that way. I was expecting more Aussies as it is an Australian company, but there were only six on board. It was a great trip which I can highly recommend.
Ontario, Canada
58 Posts
Joined Oct 2013
Clearly lots of Canadians are on board somewhere in Europe! I guess that means we are not all snowbirds all the time. We have read so many of the reviews from cruise veterans and can't wait for Amsterdam to Budapest trip in late May. There are tons tips and much great advice about the excursions all of which we will note. Given so many Canadians are travelling and have taken to river cruising there just may be someone on board to discuss the Maple Leafs or the Blue Jays with my DH. LOL. Thanks all for your responses.