Avalon Shares 8 Characteristics Of Small-Ship River Cruising

Open Jaw

In the last 10 years, Avalon Waterways says river cruising has grown by 250%, showing that when it comes to bodies of water and ships, bigger is not necessarily better. So, what makes river cruising so special? To answer this question, the river cruise line laid out eight characteristics of small-ship sailing with Avalon.

  • Size Matters

River cruise vessels are built to maneuver the world’s weaving rivers, to sail under centuries' old bridges, and squeeze between 12-meter-wide locks. Avalon Waterways' floating “boatique” hotels hold an average of 150 guests, although some are much smaller. Avalon’s onboard crew ratio is 3:1, which means travellers will be cared for every moment of every day.

  • See Not Sea

On a river cruise, travellers are not at sea. Instead, river cruises wind and bend through the heart of fascinating countries providing a panoramic view of ancient cities.

  • Cruising Focused On "To Dos"

River cruise itineraries are destination-focused, with local guides who help travellers have authentic experiences. Most river cruise itineraries sail off-the-beaten-path, visiting small fairytale villages and quaint village squares. 

Further, Avalon's excursions typically accommodate no more than 30 guests at a time, providing an immersive experience.

  • Avalon's Panorama Suites

Onboard Avalon’s Suite Ships, guests on two decks are welcomed with 200-square-foot Panorama Suites, each featuring floor-to-ceiling windows that open 7 feet wide. Every Deluxe Stateroom and Panorama Suite offer guests natural light and most feature beds facing the outdoors. 

Avalon’s Suite Ship Sky Decks run the length and width of each vessel with wide-open spaces and lounge chairs aplenty.

  • Investing In The Local Communities

Avalon says it works to engage with communities visited by hiring local drivers, guides and operators for land activities. This “give back” mentality extends to the purchase of local produce, wines, beers, and even bread, further connecting its guests to people, places, and culture.

  • On A Sustainable Course

Avalon Waterways says it has improved monitoring to reduce its environmental impact, to save water, to limit waste and to foster a sustainability culture among their crew and guests.

  • Ship-Shape Suite Ships

The company has developed a new Avalon Assurance program dedicated to ensuring that the cleanliness of its operations "exceeds today’s standards from start-to-finish. Details can be found at http://www.avalonwaterways.ca/avalon-assurance/.

  • Not Everything In The World Goes As Planned…

That’s why Avalon Waterways says it is prepared to offer the highest standards in the lowest situations. 

“Avalon Waterways understands that our value and our service is measured by what we do when things go wrong even more than when everything runs as planned,” said Pam Hoffee, Avalon's managing director. 

“We are there for our guests, offering refunds for missed services, alternative sightseeing or the opportunity to rebook and try again another time. We are a long-term business, prepared to tackle short-term obstacles. Our hope is that travellers choose to explore the world with time and time again.”

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