Jump to content
mary_228

Can you cruise the Danube for less than $2500pp in high season?

Recommended Posts

Can anyone recommend a lower-cost river cruise line for the Danube? The prices I have been given from Viking and Avalon range from $5000-7000 per cabin for a seven-night itinerary. And yes, I am aware of other promos like free air, group discounts, etc.

 

I am on a committee planning a reunion cruise and I'd like to have some more affordable options to present to the group. We will have 30 or so in our group so even if the line markets to non-US citizens, I think we would be comfortable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A group booking thru a TA or the cruise line itself could possibly discount the price.

 

Roz

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought there would be a wealth of experienced and helpful cruisers right here who have sailed for less. Perhaps money is no object for posters on this forum.

 

Getting a discount on a group sailing would be a bonus on top of an already lower price, if such a thing exists.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with Roz that a good travel agent is important. With a group of 30, you might get some good deals. I know that several lines will give a free cruise if you get 10 cruisers in group. Someone has posted recently that he has a reunion trip with Viking and he's got all but two cabins--so a group of over 180! So for a big group, you probably won't find a lot of experience on the board, but TAs and the cruise lines should be willing to talk. Most should have a person or persons who deal exclusively with groups.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I thought there would be a wealth of experienced and helpful cruisers right here who have sailed for less. Perhaps money is no object for posters on this forum.

 

Getting a discount on a group sailing would be a bonus on top of an already lower price, if such a thing exists.

 

Really? Just because someone doesn't get a deluge of immediate answers doesn't mean we're all independently wealthy. :rolleyes:

 

To the OP, take a look at Gate 1 if you're looking for something at a lower price point.

 

Roz

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Patience, patience, please OP.

 

Fuel Science, I was going to suggest CroisiEurope, but cannot access prices from my "based in Germany" computer.

 

I also throw Arosa river cruises into the conversation.

 

How about an operator that charters ships, Road scholar has been mentioned, they use CroisiEurope ships.

 

Riviera Travel is just coming onto the North American market. I have had a look at Danube cruises including flight from Heathrow on their website (in pounds sterling of course, but sounds favorable). You could phone them up: https://www.rivieratravel.co.uk/book/the-blue-danube-river-cruise/Step-1

 

I cannot see a river cruise mentioned in your profile. If you have not been on one I expect you to be a little surprised at the price range. River cruises just cannot compete with ocean cruise prices.

 

But as you can see we are happy to help with info.

 

notamermaid

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What rivers are you looking at cruising, and when? Are you looking for a 1 or 2 week cruise? The price you listed seems high to me.

Croisieurope and Vantage often have lower prices, and you might be able to get an additional discount.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oops, I just reread your post and saw that you are interested in cruising the Danube. The prices you quote are actually pretty reasonable for river cruises. Sometimes cruise lines will have sales to fill cabins, and you can save $2000 or more per cabin. As others have stated, I think your best bet is to go through a travel agency that has experience with multiple river cruise lines. An experienced agent may not only find the best price but also facilitate the process with a large group.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks all for the replies. I found a website (River Cruise Advisor) that helped me sort out some of the price differences. There I noted Croisi Europe, Riviera and A-Rosa as some have mentioned. I will have to see whether my group would be good with cruising on a line that does not cater to Americans.

 

I am eager to take a river cruise, but must be sensitive to the budgets of the others in the group. It has been proposed to charter a bus for a tour, which I would dread, so I am doing my best to come up with more economical alternatives.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very carefully look at what is included in the price. Airports transfers to and from the ship, tips and adult beverages. Some lines appear cheaper but in fact are comparable to or cheaper than companies that at first glance seem more expensive. Look at Emerald.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Think about the 'dis-economies of [small] scale.' River ships hold less than 200 passengers. There is no way the cost per person/day can be as low as mass-market ocean ships -- and if you find one that seems to be so, you have to ask how is it possible? Do they include everything you expect? [Most river cruises include shore excursions -- are you going to be the unpaid TA who plans those for your group?] Is the quality of what they do include acceptable? [some lines have a fixed menu at dinner, or just a buffet.] etc. Also think about daily life in river cruising: almost all port days -- when is your group going to have time together? An ocean cruise would solve a lot of these problems.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As ever our host makes and excellent point. A river ship does not have a selection of bars or spaces which your group could gather in, nor could you guarantee to eat together or even be on the same excursion group. The more expensive the more that is included. Our last trip was on a luxury line but the only money were needed to spend was for one lunch and a few 50 cent coins for the public bathrooms.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Uniworld cruise I recently returned from had a group of 33 people from Brazil. Uniworld did reserve a section of the DR for them, and they had their own Portuguese-speaking tour guide. They would assemble as a group in the Lounge, and did tend to dominate it. The piano player had trouble singing over them.

 

Roz

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The Uniworld cruise I recently returned from had a group of 33 people from Brazil. Uniworld did reserve a section of the DR for them, and they had their own Portuguese-speaking tour guide. They would assemble as a group in the Lounge, and did tend to dominate it. The piano player had trouble singing over them.

 

Roz

Our first river cruise on Avalon had a somewhat smaller group, about 25 people who also had their own tour guide. They did tend to dominate the lounge, which was annoying as they congregated around the bar and talked loudly when the CD was giving the port talk prior to dinner. Several times the CD had to ask them to be quiet so people could hear her. They also had reserved a section of the DR; we quickly learned to sit far away from them because they became quite loud as the dinner progressed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I am eager to take a river cruise, but must be sensitive to the budgets of the others in the group. It has been proposed to charter a bus for a tour, which I would dread, so I am doing my best to come up with more economical alternatives.

 

It is a laudable objective, but I think you are going to struggle to close the gap between a bus tour and a river cruise...

 

I suspect you'll end up in a position where the cost will still be too high for those with lower budgets while the ship and amenities will be further down market than those with higher budgets will prefer.

 

Good luck though and do let us know how your research progresses for the benefit of others in the future with similar needs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Our first river cruise on Avalon had a somewhat smaller group, about 25 people who also had their own tour guide. They did tend to dominate the lounge, which was annoying as they congregated around the bar and talked loudly when the CD was giving the port talk prior to dinner. Several times the CD had to ask them to be quiet so people could hear her. They also had reserved a section of the DR; we quickly learned to sit far away from them because they became quite loud as the dinner progressed.

 

 

 

On our 2015 Scenic cruise there was a group of over 40 Acadians. Although they spoke French, they also spoke English. They were friendly and added to the multi national ambiance of the ship. Having a large group onboard isn't always a bad thing.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As someone with experience in this sort of thing, may I also suggest that you either consider the off season for your sailing. This will save a great deal of money, with the added benefit of lighter crowds, and you have more chance of finding a sailing with 15 available cabins.

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

×