By Phyllis Stoller, NABBW’s Group Travel Associate

We all have a travel bucket list, but as we get older our list changes. This is due to physical restrictions, changing diets, an altered tolerance for long flights,  and the fact that while we age our wanderlust likely does not abate, but many of us begin looking for easier ways to travel. 

The Women’s Travel Group has found that one of the best ways to travel if you have any restrictions is by river cruise. They offer several departures with special single and double rates. 

Here are some facts to consider:
  • River cruises allow you to stay in one cabin for the whole trip, unpack once and nest.
  • Since riverboats can dock near big cities, transfers from the airport to the ship are easy; major rivers in Europe cut through major cities: Rhine from Amsterdam to Basel, or the Danube from Budapest to other Eastern European capitals.
  • AMAWaterways cabins are more like hotel rooms, not the old cramped dark ship cabins. You get a flat screen tv, internet, movies and much more. (Something to note about going on a US riverboat is the television and movies will be in English and more to American taste. Bathrooms are comfortable and there are usually robes in your room, a safe, hairdryer, both US and continental plugs etc.)
  • You are never far from shore and are often docked in the middle of town. That means you always have something to look at from your cabin window or balcony. And excursions are shorter rides. Finally the best deal for more independent women is that you can walk into most of the destination stops since they dock in town. You can grab a drink on shore after dinner or take a stroll without the guides. And on some river cruises, there are bikes you can borrow.
  • River cruises are getting smarter and more in tune with our needs. AMA Waterways our company of choice, offers tours that start later, if you prefer to sleep in, walking tours that have fast walkers and others that have slow walkers. AMA, like most river cruise lines, include all excursions.
  • Your chance for seasickness is vastly reduced. While rivers do have slight waves, you will generally not suffer on a river cruise. There is a top viewing sun deck without all the wind you get on the ocean.  Following on that theme, you can enjoy the food without worrying about storms.
  • These are small ships with perhaps 100-150 guests. They are more intimate, with living areas where you can meet new friends. They might not have the big Broadway type theater, but they have a friendlier atmosphere especially if you are traveling solo. Entertainment will be offered in the living areas again giving you a chance to meet others.
Some additional things to look for — which we did when choosing AMA Waterways for our July Rhine and Christmas/New Year’s Danube cruise —
  • Dining is casual as most of us don’t want heavy packing anymore. Atmosphere is family festive.
  • Wine is included so no one has to pick up a check!
  • The captains table is offered to each guest one time each cruise. No one gets special treatment over others.
  • Language is English.
  • No smoking.
  • The crowd is small so everyone can get at the ship’s management for help.

Enjoy your next trips and please consider contacting The Women’s Travel Group for a woman friendly solo vacation. We also organize private trips for groups of 10+. For more information contact Phyllis@thewomenstravelgroup.com, or our website, TheWomensTravelGroup.com

 

Phyllis Stoller, NABBW’s Group Travel Associate is founder of The Women’s Travel Group, a tour operator which specializes in smart vacations for smart women, was recently honored as one of the 14 most influential women in Group Travel by Group Travel Magazine. The Women’s Travel Group works with travel agents and is a strategic partner of SITA World Tours.