Viennese whirl: the Austrian capital always elates. Credit: Shutterstock

Riviera Travel offers river cruise first with ‘ultimate flexibility’ cruising

Author: Kendall Hayes

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Riviera Travel has released a new set of European cruises that will allow guests to enjoy increased flexibility during their cruise holiday.

Riviera Travel has unveiled ‘Cruise & Explore’ river sailings with three new European itineraries for 2022.

Cruise & Explore sailings offer cruisers a more flexible experience both on and off the boat. Riviera’s guests usually book a set package that includes trains, sailing, or flights with all its transfers, excursions, and transfers built-in.

Guests on Riviera’s Cruise & Explore River sailings will now instead create their own itineraries.

Cruisers will schedule their own transportation to and from the cruise, allowing them to have the ability to stay for a longer period at pre- or post-sailing locations of their choosing.

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Guests will be able to pre-book their own excursions through one of Riviera’s approved third parties or through the cruisers’ own independent research.

This will let guests create their own itinerary based on their specific wants and needs during their cruise.

- READ MORE: Which river cruise is best? -

Cruise & Explore river sailings will dock at ports for a longer period, giving guests the ability to spend more time onshore whether it’s eating a meal or exploring the area.

Despite the increased flexibility, guests will stay have the option to have an á la carte meal onboard and take full advantage of the ship’s facilities.

Riviera Travel: Guests will be able to pre-book their own excursions through one of Riviera’s approved third parties. Credit: Shutterstock

Starting next year, the options for this cruise experience will be available on Danube, Rhône, and Rhine with eight-day itineraries.

Each itinerary will have two departures: one at the end of March and one at the beginning of November.

- READ MORE: Riviera Travel’s breathtaking spring river cruises 2022 -

Fares for the Cruise & Explore River sailings are based on a half board, cruise-only basis, with transportation not included. Prices will start at £799 per person.

Cruise & Explore river cruises are created to appeal to the next generation of cruisers, eager to have more flexibility during their travels.

Discover the peaceful Rhône river with Riviera Travel. Credit: Shutterstock

Katja Hildebrandt, Head of River & Ocean Cruise Product at Riviera Travel, said: “We're really excited to be offering Cruise & Explore cruises next year.

“It’s vital we continue to adapt to guest feedback, so these itineraries mark a real change in the river cruise experience, including ultimate flexibility for everyone who travels with us. Guests are now welcome to arrange more of their cruise to suit their personal preferences, safe in the knowledge we're on hand to assist as required.

“We’re confident Cruise & Explore will prove a popular choice for people seeking a more flexible approach to their holiday, while wanting to travel in the luxury and comfort of a river cruise ship. This is the first time an option like this has ever been available for river cruise guests; we can't wait to see what the response is before, during and after sailings.”

- READ MORE: Danube river cruise guide: What to see & do -

Riviera Travel Cruise & Explore itineraries

Budapest, Vienna and more (Danube)

Eight-day sailing from Passau (Germany) to Linz, Melk, Vienna (all Austria) and Budapest (Hungary)

Departs March 25 and November 4, 2022

Cologne to Amsterdam (Rhine)

Eight-day sailing from Cologne (Germany) to Antwerp, Ghent (both Belgium), Nijmegen, Dordrecht, Rotterdam and Amsterdam (all Netherlands)

Departs March 25 and November 8, 2022

Lyon to the south of France (Rhône)

Eight-day sailing from Avignon to Arles, Viviers, Tournon, Vienne and Lyon (all France)

Departs March 28 and November 7, 2022

Amsterdam is beautiful any time of the year. Credit: Shutterstock

Riviera Travel had a big week last week at the World of Cruising’s glamourous Wave Awards, where Riviera Travel won the award for Best Escorted & Specialist Tour Operator.

Travel companies including Azamara, Saga Cruises, and Travelsphere were short-listed for the Best Escorted & Specialist Tour Operator award.

- READ MORE: Best cruise lines revealed in Wave Awards 2021 -

Riviera Travel was also short-listed for Favourite River Cruise Line, Best for Solo Travellers and Best River Cruise Line.

As for the winners of these categories, Viking River Cruises took home the award for Favourite River Cruise Line, Saga Cruises won the award for Best for Solo Travellers and the award for Best River Cruise Line went to Avalon Waterways.

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