Avalon Waterways – Things You Need To Know Before European River Cruising With Them!

Hi I’m Gary Bembridge of Tips For Travellers. I’m
going to tell you things that you absolutely need to know about Avalon
Waterways to help you decide if this is the right river cruise line for you. The first thing you need to know about Avalon is what do they do the same, and
what do they do different. What makes them unique? So there are about five
things that they do that are very similar. First of all the ships. In terms
of their size, they are basically the same as everybody else.
River cruise boats are constrained by how long, wide and how high they can be by
the nature of the rivers that they cruise on. So their ships are basically the same
size and look very similar from the outside to pretty much all of the other
ships that you’ll see. So this means of course, like all river cruise boats, the
facilities are relatively limited. So on the ship you’ll find a main lounge,
will find a second lounge, you’ll have a dining room, a very small hairdresser, a
fitness center and a very large deck on top. Also very importantly, there’s no
medical centre or medical facilities on board. So if you have any medical issues,
they have to be dealt with on land. That’s true, of course, across all river
cruise boats. The second thing that they do that are very similar are the rivers
and itineraries. There are only so many rivers where you can go river
cruising on, and their routes are very similar because of course everyone wants to go and see the main and attractions. Whatever river cruise you want or look at, it’s likely that Avalon will have an itinerary that is the same. They cover all of the main rivers like the Rhine, the Danube, the Main, the Mossell, the Rhone and River Seine in France. The third thing
they do the same is in terms of their fares, which are largely all-inclusive –
and this is pretty consistent across river cruising. Your fare will include
your accommodation, includes your food so three meals a day.
Also on Avalon you will get afternoon tea around about four o’clock in the
afternoon, and also you will get a late night snack around about 10:30. Drinks
with meal times are included, so at lunch and dinner you can have soft drinks,
beers and wine are included. On board enrichment activities, so the port talks
are included. Wi-Fi is included. There’s also 24-hour coffee and tea and little
snacks available as well. Excursions are included and there’s normally at least one
excursion included every day. That’s fairly consistent with other river
cruise lines. When you go on tours they use the Vox system like most of the
cruisers do, and these are great. They are a little receiver and you have an earpiece
and the guide then transmits on whatever channel that you all set on. It’s great because you can actually wander away from the guide to go and
take pictures but stay in touch and hear the whole commentary. So you don’t have to huddle closely around the guide. The dress code is also very similar to other
river cruise lines. It’s pretty casual. People generally don’t dress up although some gentlemen might wear long sleeve shirt and slacks for dinner,
but it’s pretty informal. The food on board is also very good, and has some
local spins to it. So again that’s also fairly consistent with most river cruise lines. So those are all the things that they do similar, so what does Avalon do different? What are the things that you should consider if
you’re thinking about Avalon over other river cruise lines? Well first of all,
it’s part of Globus. So it’s part of a very big Travel Group. And that’s very
important because what they do is they have lots of expertise in most
the places they call upon, and also they have guides which they have personally
through Globus used, verified and tested over time. They do have a lot of
expertise in all of the destinations they go to, and lots of resources they
can draw on. This is quite unique to many of the other river cruise lines
which either are very specific river cruise lines or perhaps are spinoff of
ocean river cruise lines. The fact that they’re part of Globus, and all that they
can leverage and bring, is very important. The second thing is what they call the
“Signature Suite Ships”. The cabins are bigger than pretty much every other
River cruise line, certainly any other luxury river cruise line. On average
they’re about 30% bigger. One great thing is you have beds that point towards the
window, because they have room to do that, and so you can watch the scenery pass by. The other thing that’s very important is they have these massive big windows
which stretch from one side of the cabin to the other side – and bear in mind the
cabins are bigger. They can open up nearly seven feet. Certainly as the time
recording this, nobody has windows that open as big as this. The other thing that
I think makes them very different is they have a lot of special interest
cruises. Some of these include things like wine appreciation, culinary, beer,
music and jazz, art and impressionist, history (with a focus on World War Two
history and Hapsburg History), Jewish Heritage, Christmastime cruises, Golf
cruises, cruises focused around specific authors, garden and nature. Lots of other
cruise lines are experimenting with those, but certainly in my experience and from
what I’ve looked at, is Avalon really have a lot of special interest cruises –
and I think that does make them kind of interesting. The other thing that makes
them very different is that they have a big focus around a much more active
way of sightseeing. They have some very specific cruises which are “active
discovery” cruises and the idea is there are more hiking, biking and even
kayaking excursions. They have bicycles on board all ships, which you can then
use go cycling sightseeing. They also those Nordic Walking poles. The other thing
which they do, which I find very interesting, is they have a focus on
healthy eating. There’s an appreciation that people are much more
diet aware. One of the things that really struck me is they make a
big issue around allergies and dietary requirements. All the menus list in
lots of detail the different potential allergy issues, and they spend a lot of time
talking to guests understanding what their issues are and making sure that
they are tailoring the menu or identifying on the menu what you can’t
eat. You’ll always find healthy eating options – and these have been developed
with a partnership with two Austrian chefs called Karl and Leo Wrench (part of
a very high quality vegetarian restaurant in Austria). So these are all
vegetarian and vegan dishes. The other thing which I personally really like is,
they are very adult focused. So while a lot of river cruise lines are trying to
attract more families and more kids on board, actually what Avalon do is they are much
more adult focused. So you can’t bring any children under the age of 8 on board, and
they don’t provide kids clubs or they didn’t provide very kids specific
itineraries or kids specific programs. They are more focused on catering
for an adult audience. One of the things that really struck me onboard Avalon is that the sort of average age and the mix onboard Avalon was
more diverse than many other river cruise lines. I would say the average
age is younger than many other river cruise lines, up to now river
cruising is still seen very much as a slightly older activity. So many cruise
lines will have people in their 60s and 70s as the main age group. I would say
Avalon, based on my experience, is younger than that. It’s still
probably averages around 50 to late 50s, but much more diverse in terms
of age range and much wider age range. That could well be because of their link
to Globus. It is an english-speaking experience, so people on board are
English speaking. You’ll find a lot of Americans, a
lot of Canadian,s a lot of Australians, New Zealanders and a lot of people from the UK. I’ve spoken about what’s very similar, what they do different and hopefully
that’s helped you make up your mind if Avalon Waterways is the right company
for you to go on your European river cruise. I’d love it if you enjoyed the
video if you’d “like” the video, but very importantly subscribe to Tips For Travellers because you’ll get much more about river cruising, much more about
travel, lots of travel inspiration, advice and tips.

40 thoughts on “Avalon Waterways – Things You Need To Know Before European River Cruising With Them!

  1. What do you think based on what they do the same and different to other river cruising lines? Would you like to cruise on Avalon, and why?

  2. I don’t think river cruises are for me, would be brilliant to have excursions and WiFi included though!

  3. We would love to try a river cruise! Very surprised how spacious the river cruises are! I would have assumed a smaller boat wouldn't have all those amenities! We will do one of these one day!!!

  4. I would love this line and the cruises….they seem so relaxing and slow. I love that…thanks for the post. Happy Thanksgiving….

  5. Wi-Fi is included! Vegan vegetarian dishes!!! Gary: they have Jewish heritage themed cruises?

  6. Thanks a lot! Such a complete review! So I've a question. How does it cost (approximately) a all-incl river cruise like Avalon Waterways experience?

  7. This cruise line sounds like one i would enjoy. First and foremost is the "healthy food" being vegan I feel confident i wont starve ! I also like the theme cruises, very diverse and exciting. English speaking staff can be a bonus, not missing out on important details because you dont speak the language. Thanx for the review it was really helpful

  8. How much movement do you feel of the ship? I suffer from fairly bad travel sickness so while I would love to go on a cruise, the thought of being stuck on a rocking (disconbobulating !) ship for several days has put me off.

  9. REally appreciate your fair reviews and assessments. Much appreciated the fact that this line is hyper aware of food allergies as my nephew has an extreme peanut allergy. It's always a concern for us. Cheers

  10. I am going on the Avalon cruise at the end of June, First river cruise , I am so exited.

  11. I'm impressed and interested, but I wonder how safe traditional European venues are after the influx of, well, sorry, masses of primitives from the 3rd world. I visited Italy a few years ago and was disgusted. Is there a classical Europe left to visit? Is one even allowed to ask?

  12. Do all of the rooms have those giant windows? Or just the more expensive rooms?

  13. Why that ugly man cover all the videos images? The video maker, also, si is a stupid amateur also the owner of the ship who approves that poor job is exactly that same of his stuff…

  14. When people ask about wifi it just goes to show you how stupid people are in society today. Your on VACATION! and you paid thousand's of dollar's for this trip & instead of enjoying the scenery & the company of fellow passenger's your concerned about texting & yaking on a phone! Go figure you idiot's! just stay home so you can stay connected to wifi, because God forbid you wouldn't want to miss a text! If I spent the money for one of these trip's & my wife spent her time on the phone BOTH her & the phone would end up in the WATER! NUF SAID!

  15. Great Vlog, we will be traveling with Avalon in September 18. Good to have an independent review. Looking forward to the trip from Australia.

  16. Single supplement for solo traveler?

    Really love your videos – they are better than all the rest.

  17. Avalon Cruises. Just got back after 2 weeks on the Rhine and Moselle Rivers. 200% recommend them . Bring on the Danube next. Great crew great company great food. Great room with excellent views.

  18. πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ‘πŸ» to larger staterooms and definitely MAJOR πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ‘πŸ» to not being child friendly!

  19. I've been researching the river cruises and was still not quite sure which one to choose–this video clinched the deal for me –AVALON! The beds facing the window was the biggest draw and glad to hear about the diversity and age of the passengers on Avalon! Thank you, TFT.

  20. You are so good at what you do! I wish I had found your company long ago. Do you have any impressions on Avalon compared to Vantage Cruise lines? Additionally, we are taking the Vantage cruise of Germany over Christmastime. I would be interested to hear your thoughts about Christmas holiday cruises.

  21. Are there winter European river cruises, and are they cheaper than other seasons cruises?

  22. Debating between a Europe Avalon river cruise vs Carnival Caribbean cruise. Never been on either, what do you prefer a river or ocean cruise?

  23. Worked for Globus in the late 80s/early 90s. Top notch. Avalon not a part of Globus at the time.

  24. I'm sticking with Viking. We've done a half dozed ocean and river cruses with them. We've actually encountered crew who recognized us.

  25. Have you cruised with Scenic? They cover almost all the things you mentioned plus more such a premium drinks anytime not only with meals, Butler service, laundry service and there was usually 3 excursions each day to choose from. On our particular cruise, airfare and all transfers were included.

  26. Just returned from Avalon cruise. Best vacation ever, can’t wait to go back. I found the review to be very accurate.

  27. Took an Avalon active Danube cruise in Sept 2018. We thought it was wonderful. This video provides great truthful information in line with our experiences. We will be takung a Rhine cruise in 2020 on Avalon.

  28. I’ve been on 3 Avalon cruises & Love them! The bed facing the French balcony is a huge deal for us ❀️ The food & customer service are excellent. I can’t wait to book another Avalon Cruise

  29. I love their panoramic suites. My wife speaks only french so avalon is probably not for us.

  30. Are you allowed to take alcohol onboard these river boats ….. such as duty free

  31. any reviews about emerald, tauck, other cruise lines, and how about railbookers, vacations by rail, other train tours escorted and independent packages. ?

  32. do you review any museums, concert venues, palaces, churches , ruins, gardens, whether they are worth time, and cost of admission?

  33. Thank you for such an informative overview. This video help us choose Avalon. We are excited about our upcoming trip.

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