The Rise of River Cruising

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River cruising….isn’t that for grandma and grandpa?  Not anymore.  Americans of all ages are flocking to river cruises in record numbers, making it one of the hottest trends in travel right now.

But, why?  These cruises are father to fly to, tend to be more expensive and don’t have as many amenities on board. Why wouldn’t I want to go on the traditional Caribbean cruise on an ocean cruise?

Well, first, river cruises are one of the best ways to explore inland of many countries, visiting cities, towns and villages that traditional big ships usually can’t access. Beyond the look of these smaller vessels, what makes a river cruise so different from an ocean cruise is the intense emphasis on the places visited.

River cruising is a great option for travelers who are looking to explore multiple memorable destinations in one vacation – but wait, don’t ocean cruises do that?  Well, yes, they do get you to multiple destinations, but where river cruises differ is they offer an intimate and immersive experience for people to explore new and different cultures.

Many people want to experience exotic locations, such as Vietnam, Cambodia, China or the Amazon. For some of these more exotic destinations, it’s comforting for passengers of any age to know they have the familiar ship and crew waiting for them at the end of their day exploring.

So why do I just hear about Baby Boomers booking these trips?

Well, based on current trends, Baby Boomers represent the largest segment that is booking mainly because they have more free time to travel and a greater desire to travel than previous generations.

As river cruising continues to develop and evolve, there is more thought being put toward what is being offered that will appeal to millennials and also families.  For example, Uniworld and AmaWaterways have broken the molds with 2 new concepts – Uniworld offering river cruises specifically geared to Millennials (read more here)  and AmaWaterways partnering with Disney to get families involved in river cruising.

River cruise companies are identifying that cruisers of all ages want an authentic experience.  On these ships, they enjoy dining on wonderfully prepared local cuisine, local guest lecturers and entertainers sharing their lives through history and local song and dance.  This isn’t something you typically find on your ocean mega ships where hamburgers and French fries are the go to for much of the ship’s guests.

What’s also appealing to many travelers that are looking for a more hassle-free approach to seeing exotic destinations is the ease and convenience of sailing to multiple destinations along a river, without having to pack and unpack or deal with different hotels and transportation.

River cruising is more like staying in an intimate boutique hotel that floats from one destination to the next.

River cruises travel along many of the major rivers in the world and just like big-ship cruise lines, each river cruise line has a different style and personality – so how do you know which one is right for you?

That’s where I come in.


Click HERE to schedule a consultation to discuss the perfect river cruise for you.

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