Jump to content
English Voyager

Hapag-LLoyd Europa 2.

Recommended Posts

It does appear that Hapag-Lloyd is making a determined effort to appeal to a wider market with their new ship.

All cruises are bilingual (German/English) with a more informal atmosphere- there are no formal dress nights.

Entry level suites at 301 sq.ft plus a 75 sq.ft veranda,and a choice of 8 restaurants.

As a solo traveller, there is the offer, in the UK, for their Malta-Venice, Venice-Malta cruises in August/September with sole occupancy of a Category 1 Suite with no single supplement, and free flights from the UK.

An opportunity for me to sample an 'Europa' experience.

Is a similar effort being made by Hapag-Lloyd in the USA?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It does appear that Hapag-Lloyd is making a determined effort to appeal to a wider market with their new ship.

All cruises are bilingual (German/English) with a more informal atmosphere- there are no formal dress nights.

Entry level suites at 301 sq.ft plus a 75 sq.ft veranda,and a choice of 8 restaurants.

As a solo traveller, there is the offer, in the UK, for their Malta-Venice, Venice-Malta cruises in August/September with sole occupancy of a Category 1 Suite with no single supplement, and free flights from the UK.

An opportunity for me to sample an 'Europa' experience.

Is a similar effort being made by Hapag-Lloyd in the USA?

 

Don't see any bargains here and also would not put up with their smoking policy or lack thereof.:eek:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can understand the smoking policy but why would one look for bargains on a luxury cruise line? Perhaps a good deal but not a bargain!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Hapag Lloyd ships are all beautiful with great food and service. The consistently rank higher than all the U.S. based luxury lines. Up till now it helped to speak German though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What is the problem with their smoking policy? I know smoking is allowed in some areas and in some of the suites (you are asked not to in those), but is it really that bad? I only noticed a couple of smokers on the Hanseatic last year who were fairly easy to avoid.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Regent, Silversea and Crystal (effective 2014?) do not allow smoking in staterooms/suites or balconies. That seems to be the standard for U.S. and Canadian customers. Seabourn is the one hold-out and is no doubt getting all of the smokers who were formerly sailing on the other lines.

 

I do not know much about Hapag-LLoyd Europa 2 but do not believe that it is inclusive (tips, alcohol......). IMO, in order to do well in the U.S. and Canada, they would need to be competitive in all areas to the above named cruise lines.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Strangely for a line that is interested in breaking into a new market you see very little advertising or promotion from them. And I doubt seriously they will follow U.S. lines when it comes to smoking. They'd lose too much of their German clientele which is their bread and butter.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Whereas I am very interested in cruising with them because I get tired of the same thing over and over. It would certainly be a different experience.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Regent, Silversea and Crystal (effective 2014?) do not allow smoking in staterooms/suites or balconies. That seems to be the standard for U.S. and Canadian customers. Seabourn is the one hold-out and is no doubt getting all of the smokers who were formerly sailing on the other lines.

 

I do not know much about Hapag-LLoyd Europa 2 but do not believe that it is inclusive (tips, alcohol......). IMO, in order to do well in the U.S. and Canada, they would need to be competitive in all areas to the above named cruise lines.

 

Tips are included. Even if they weren't, this is a German cruise line and therefore tipping might be appreciated but definitely not necessary.

 

I prefer alcohol not to be included since I don't really drink and it always means a fare increase if they start to include drinks. Tea, coffee, and ice tea is always available and the prices for alcoholic beverages are fairly decent.

 

As for the smoking, I only noticed it twice on my recent Europa cruise (and I am a fairly rabid non-smoker ;)).

Edited by cathaana

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Finally read a write-up on the Europa 2. It apparently has accommodations for children and their nannies -- not something that U.S. luxury passengers are looking for. The staff speak both English and German and they even offer some excursions with English speaking guides (not many and they were described as being "vanilla".) In the USA Today article (dated July 5th), it sounds as though they are trying but have a long way to go in terms of attracting English speaking passengers.

 

Last week, the 516 passenger ship was carrying around "a half dozen" Americans.

 

Another issue could be the German views on nudity. There are coed saunas, steam rooms and showers in the spa. This is something very common in Germany.

 

Another cultural difference is the way dinner is served. Europeans waiters take food orders first, before taking drink orders. Americans, of course, like their drinks brought out quickly, thank you -- and keep them coming.

 

If this were a new Silversea, Regent, Seabourn or Crystal ship, we would consider booking (without the quirks and children). They identify themselves with Seabourn. IMO, they are more closely related to Silversea since they are European-owned. Perhaps they could learn something from Silversea in terms of catering to English speaking passengers.

Edited by Travelcat2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Finally read a write-up on the Europa 2. It apparently has accommodations for children and their nannies -- not something that U.S. luxury passengers are looking for. The staff speak both English and German and they even offer some excursions with English speaking guides (not many and they were described as being "vanilla".) In the USA Today article (dated July 5th), it sounds as though they are trying but have a long way to go in terms of attracting English speaking passengers.

 

Last week, the 516 passenger ship was carrying around "a half dozen" Americans.

 

Another issue could be the German views on nudity. There are coed saunas, steam rooms and showers in the spa. This is something very common in Germany.

 

Another cultural difference is the way dinner is served. Europeans waiters take food orders first, before taking drink orders. Americans, of course, like their drinks brought out quickly, thank you -- and keep them coming.

 

If this were a new Silversea, Regent, Seabourn or Crystal ship, we would consider booking (without the quirks and children). They identify themselves with Seabourn. IMO, they are more closely related to Silversea since they are European-owned. Perhaps they could learn something from Silversea in terms of catering to English speaking passengers.

 

The 'accomodation for children and their nannies' refers to connecting suites called Familien Appartement (2x20sqm). I doubt you will find many children on board though considering the cost of about 10.000 Euros for the cheapest cruises.

 

Taking food orders before drink orders is not normal in Germany. And it's certainly not a Hapag Lloyd thing either since they didn't do that on either the Hanseatic or the Europa. But drink orders are often taken by a different waiter, so maybe the 'drink' waiter didn't get to them before the 'food' waiter did.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

TC2,

 

Perhaps I'd be more tolerant of children on American luxury lines if they came with nannies. But they rarely do. Mostly it's just oblivious parents.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The 'accomodation for children and their nannies' refers to connecting suites called Familien Appartement (2x20sqm). I doubt you will find many children on board though considering the cost of about 10.000 Euros for the cheapest cruises.

 

Taking food orders before drink orders is not normal in Germany. And it's certainly not a Hapag Lloyd thing either since they didn't do that on either the Hanseatic or the Europa. But drink orders are often taken by a different waiter, so maybe the 'drink' waiter didn't get to them before the 'food' waiter did.

 

It sounds like the U.S.A. Today article was incorrect about a few things. That is too bad because so many people will read it and believe what they have stated is true.

 

I do want to mention that we do find children on board luxury cruises during the summer and school breaks. Some passengers pay considerably more than 10,000 Euros on these cruises. For the most part, if there is a children's program, we expect children to be onboard. These programs coincide with school holidays and summer break (based on U.S. dates). There are some luxury cruise passengers that do not wish to sail with children at all and are therefore not happy if they take a cruise when school is in session and they see children on board.

 

It still seems that Hanseatic has a long way to go in order to present a product that English speaking guests will want to try. We have been in situations where were amongst the few guests who spoke English. It was very difficult to find people to have a conversation with. I'm sure if would be the same for non-English speaking passengers walking onboard Oceania, Regent, Seabourn or Silversea..... some of the crew would speak their language but only a handful of passengers.

 

wripro: So, you think that a nanny would prevent little ones from dive bombing into the pool? Not sure that I agree with you:-)

Edited by Travelcat2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I found the article and I think in that part they were talking about the separate area for children and the baby sitting service Hapag Lloyd offers (if there are 4+ children on board).

 

Hapag Lloyd has a number of 'kids cruises', usually during spring/summer/fall breaks when they offer special tours and activities for children. My next cruise on the Europa will be one of those.

 

I do agree that outside a bilingual sailing I'm not so sure I would recommend Hapag Lloyd. The English speaking couple on my last cruise seemed pretty happy though. It might be better on the Europa 2 but I didn't find anybody who had sailed her (I asked around on my Europa cruise). We thought about booking them, but the mostly one week-routes they do at the moment are a bit boring.

Edited by cathaana

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

TC2,

 

In my experience children with nannies are far better behaved because nannies are more responsible in overseeing them than their own parents.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, Keith! Curious: Why not on your list? Is there something specific about the line that's a turn-off? Have been on Europa (1 so to speak) twice, and there are some good reasons to try it (mostly itineraries that aren't available to those cruising U.S.-oriented lines) and other reasons to avoid. But am curious because I know how well schooled you are in the luxury market....

 

 

Carolyn

 

Carolyn Spencer Brown

Editor in Chief

Cruise Critic

 

I would love to tour the ship one day but it's just not on my list to cruise.

 

Keith

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, wripro, just responded to Keith about why he wasn't interested. Very curious about what it is that intrigues you, on the other hand! What do you think a line like Hapag-Lloyd (or, say Le Ponant) will offer that is more interesting than Seabourn, Regent and others. Not a challenge to you, I really want to understand the different perspectives :)

 

Thanks.

 

Carolyn

 

Whereas I am very interested in cruising with them because I get tired of the same thing over and over. It would certainly be a different experience.
Edited by editor@cruisecritic

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, Travelcat. Am heading out Friday for a four nighter on Europa 2 and will report back. Laughing at your comment about the nudity. My other experiences with Europa's cruise line (Hapag-Lloyd) were all pretty normal to this American save for the spa. I was on Europa, having a massage, and when the time came for me to change and get on the table the male masseuse just sort of stood there. I finally said -- you need to go now so I can change :) Felt somewhat provincial but on the other hand.....

 

Carolyn

 

Finally read a write-up on the Europa 2. It apparently has accommodations for children and their nannies -- not something that U.S. luxury passengers are looking for. The staff speak both English and German and they even offer some excursions with English speaking guides (not many and they were described as being "vanilla".) In the USA Today article (dated July 5th), it sounds as though they are trying but have a long way to go in terms of attracting English speaking passengers.

 

Last week, the 516 passenger ship was carrying around "a half dozen" Americans.

 

Another issue could be the German views on nudity. There are coed saunas, steam rooms and showers in the spa. This is something very common in Germany.

 

Another cultural difference is the way dinner is served. Europeans waiters take food orders first, before taking drink orders. Americans, of course, like their drinks brought out quickly, thank you -- and keep them coming.

 

If this were a new Silversea, Regent, Seabourn or Crystal ship, we would consider booking (without the quirks and children). They identify themselves with Seabourn. IMO, they are more closely related to Silversea since they are European-owned. Perhaps they could learn something from Silversea in terms of catering to English speaking passengers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi, Keith! Curious: Why not on your list? Is there something specific about the line that's a turn-off? Have been on Europa (1 so to speak) twice, and there are some good reasons to try it (mostly itineraries that aren't available to those cruising U.S.-oriented lines) and other reasons to avoid. But am curious because I know how well schooled you are in the luxury market....

 

 

Carolyn

 

Carolyn Spencer Brown

Editor in Chief

Cruise Critic

 

Hi Carolyn, I guess my reservation stems from the fact that all that I read about Europa was that it was more oriented for those outside USA/Canada which I can fully understand because the whole world is not North America cruisers. With the launch of the new ship it seemed like a good opportunity for them to step up their communications and I just have not seen that.

 

With that said I have read so many positive reviews about Europa and Douglas Ward whose write ups I do have high regard for often says it is the true six star ship of them all.

 

As I great value your opinion, I will be very interested in your thoughts and if you have a lot of positives I will add it to our list of luxury ships to try out.

 

Keith

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HI Carolyn,

 

What interests me is that it is different. I'm not saying better, just different and I like to experience different approaches to luxury cruising. I love Seabourn and have hundreds of days aboard them but I also love to try other lines to see what they offer. Hapag Lloyd is truly unique so why not give them a shot?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Carolyn: Really looking forward to hearing about your experiences on Europa 2 -- especially hoping you try another massage:-)

Edited by Travelcat2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Laughing, Travelcat2. I haven't yet decided about the massage :)

 

Carolyn

 

Carolyn: Really looking forward to hearing about your experiences on Europa 2 -- especially hoping you try another massage:-)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Totally agree, wripro. I am enjoying the experience (will write about it shortly, Internet's a bit slow for serious work-related stuff though fine for vacation-minded efforts), though I'm thinking my next holiday cruise will probably be Seabourn. Same concept. Less effort. Especially if what I want is an easy Caribbean holiday.

 

Carolyn

 

HI Carolyn,

 

What interests me is that it is different. I'm not saying better, just different and I like to experience different approaches to luxury cruising. I love Seabourn and have hundreds of days aboard them but I also love to try other lines to see what they offer. Hapag Lloyd is truly unique so why not give them a shot?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Carolyn,

 

I hope you get to sail one of the triplets to the Caribbean before they disappear. They're perfect for the islands.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Carolyn, I would be interested what aspects are above those of other luxury lines, those that are the same and any that fall below what you have experienced. Also, would like to hear about the passenger mix and also the crew.

 

Keith

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Totally agree, wripro. I am enjoying the experience (will write about it shortly, Internet's a bit slow for serious work-related stuff though fine for vacation-minded efforts), though I'm thinking my next holiday cruise will probably be Seabourn. Same concept. Less effort. Especially if what I want is an easy Caribbean holiday.

 

Carolyn

 

Carolyn, we are waiting with baited breath for your review. Did you post it somewhere else???

 

TC2 (Jackie)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm very tempted to take a 7-day western Mediterranean cruise next summer aboard this ship...

 

I've secured a quote from an agent, and am just mulling it around. It's not inexpensive; for even a standard room it runs about $15K for two on a 7 day cruise. That's with a 5% early booking discount.

 

I went on a couple cruises back in the 80s with my parents when I was a teenager. I cannot recall the names of the boats now, but they were a let-down. This ship looks beautiful and the itineraries are quite nice. Also, many of the things that I found ridiculous about those earlier cruises seems to have been eliminated from the Happag Lloyd format (no tuxedos and assigned dinner companions, "captains dinner" etc.).

 

Despite my preference for non-formal attire, I don't want to immerse myself into a too casual scene where people are running around in beach wear all day.

 

The issues cited by others as reasons for hesitating, like paying for drinks (I don't drink), and being surrounded by non-English speaking passengers actually make me like the idea all the more.

 

I've looked at Seabourn and am not as excited about their itineraries nor the longer duration. Jumbo ships do not interest me in the least.

 

While I like the Europa 2 the best so far, any insights into other small ship lines would be appreciated.

 

Thanks in advance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While I like the Europa 2 the best so far, any insights into other small ship lines would be appreciated.

 

Thanks in advance.

 

Another vote for Oceania

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm very tempted to take a 7-day western Mediterranean cruise next summer aboard this ship...

 

I've secured a quote from an agent, and am just mulling it around. It's not inexpensive; for even a standard room it runs about $15K for two on a 7 day cruise. That's with a 5% early booking discount.

 

I went on a couple cruises back in the 80s with my parents when I was a teenager. I cannot recall the names of the boats now, but they were a let-down. This ship looks beautiful and the itineraries are quite nice. Also, many of the things that I found ridiculous about those earlier cruises seems to have been eliminated from the Happag Lloyd format (no tuxedos and assigned dinner companions, "captains dinner" etc.).

 

Despite my preference for non-formal attire, I don't want to immerse myself into a too casual scene where people are running around in beach wear all day.

 

The issues cited by others as reasons for hesitating, like paying for drinks (I don't drink), and being surrounded by non-English speaking passengers actually make me like the idea all the more.

 

I've looked at Seabourn and am not as excited about their itineraries nor the longer duration. Jumbo ships do not interest me in the least.

 

While I like the Europa 2 the best so far, any insights into other small ship lines would be appreciated.

 

Thanks in advance.

 

Unfortunately there are few reviews of Europa 2 from passengers in the U.S. All you seem to be getting are cheerleaders from Oceania and Azamara which, IMO, are not in competition with Europa 2. From my perspective, the big question is whether or not you would be concerned that most of the passengers (around 90%) speak German. Also German passengers have a different way of doing things than those of us in the U.S.

 

If you are looking for a cruise line that includes alcohol and/or, you may want to look at luxury cruise lines (IMO, Regent). If you would like a premium plus experience, look at Azamara next year when they will become all-inclusive. Of, if you do not drink much and want the most beautiful ship at sea with incredible food (in the specialty restaurants), look at Oceania. Hope this helps:-)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm very tempted to take a 7-day western Mediterranean cruise next summer aboard this ship...

 

I've secured a quote from an agent, and am just mulling it around. It's not inexpensive; for even a standard room it runs about $15K for two on a 7 day cruise. That's with a 5% early booking discount.

 

I went on a couple cruises back in the 80s with my parents when I was a teenager. I cannot recall the names of the boats now, but they were a let-down. This ship looks beautiful and the itineraries are quite nice. Also, many of the things that I found ridiculous about those earlier cruises seems to have been eliminated from the Happag Lloyd format (no tuxedos and assigned dinner companions, "captains dinner" etc.).

 

Despite my preference for non-formal attire, I don't want to immerse myself into a too casual scene where people are running around in beach wear all day.

 

The issues cited by others as reasons for hesitating, like paying for drinks (I don't drink), and being surrounded by non-English speaking passengers actually make me like the idea all the more.

 

I've looked at Seabourn and am not as excited about their itineraries nor the longer duration. Jumbo ships do not interest me in the least.

 

While I like the Europa 2 the best so far, any insights into other small ship lines would be appreciated.

 

Thanks in advance.

I took the plunge - booked a Southeast Asian cruise on Europa 2 next year. It is an anniversary for us so the expense could be justified. It is about double what we usually pay for an overseas vacation.

 

I am beyond excited about the trip. Like you I am not daunted by the thought of spending time among non-Americans, and actually look forward to it - kind of a mini-vacation in Germany. Unlike you I do drink alcohol, but I like the Hapag LLoyd reason for not including alcohol in the price; they say the quality would be less than their customer base is known to want. The ship itself looks elegant, and service and food are reported to be superb. Finally the itinerary is unusual, and very appealing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I took the plunge - booked a Southeast Asian cruise on Europa 2 next year. It is an anniversary for us so the expense could be justified. It is about double what we usually pay for an overseas vacation.

 

I am beyond excited about the trip. Like you I am not daunted by the thought of spending time among non-Americans, and actually look forward to it - kind of a mini-vacation in Germany. Unlike you I do drink alcohol, but I like the Hapag LLoyd reason for not including alcohol in the price; they say the quality would be less than their customer base is known to want. The ship itself looks elegant, and service and food are reported to be superb. Finally the itinerary is unusual, and very appealing.

 

Like you, I took the plunge. I booked for the western Mediterranean next year. I couldn't find a better 7-day itinerary, and the ship just looks amazing. Also, I prefer not to subsidize the heavy drinking of others in my ticket price. ;)

 

Many thanks to the rest of you for your suggestions on the other lines, which looked nice as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi, Travelcat. Am heading out Friday for a four nighter on Europa 2 and will report back. Laughing at your comment about the nudity. My other experiences with Europa's cruise line (Hapag-Lloyd) were all pretty normal to this American save for the spa. I was on Europa, having a massage, and when the time came for me to change and get on the table the male masseuse just sort of stood there. I finally said -- you need to go now so I can change :) Felt somewhat provincial but on the other hand.....

 

Carolyn

 

Was this review ever posted? I can't find it anywhere on the site.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Win a Cruise with the Most Highly-Awarded Small Ship Cruise Line in Alaska
      • Q&A with Daniel Skjeldam, CEO Hurtigruten
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Community Contests
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×