Important Information & Booking Conditions

When you make a booking, you become the ‘lead’ or first name on the booking and you guarantee that you have the authority to accept and do accept on behalf of your party the terms of these booking conditions. These Booking Conditions, together with our privacy policy and any other written information we brought to your attention before we confirmed your booking, apply to your booking. References to “you” and “your” include the first named person on the booking and all persons on whose behalf a booking is made or any other person to whom a booking is added or transferred.

We act in the following capacities: as a Package organiser, and as an agent to help you to arrange individual holiday products or to book packages with third party tour operators. Our obligations to you may vary depending upon which arrangements you book with us, and we have tried to set them out below as clearly as possible. Section A contains the conditions which will apply to all bookings. Section B applies to agency bookings and Section C applies to Package bookings which we sell as organiser. A contract will exist as soon as we issue our confirmation receipt/invoice. This contract is made on the terms of these booking conditions, which are governed by English Law, and the jurisdiction of the English Courts. You may however choose the law and jurisdiction of Scotland or Northern Ireland if you live there and wish to do so.

Our booking conditions are designed to be easy to understand, however if you have any further questions then please contact our customer services team who will be happy to help you.

01. Booking

By making a booking, you agree on behalf of all persons detailed on the booking that you have read these terms and conditions and agree to be bound by them; you consent to our use of information in accordance with our Privacy Policy, and that you are over 18 years of age.

The lead member of the party guarantees payment to us of the total holiday price and any other applicable charges. In the event of there being entitlement to a refund from our company, due to holiday cancellation/amendment, or for any other reason, such refund will be made to the lead member of the party. Instructions regarding changes and/or cancellations will be taken only from the lead member of the party.

When you make your booking, you must pay the relevant deposit as specified at the time of booking, see clause 2 below. If you believe that any details on the confirmation receipt (or any other document) are wrong, you must advise us immediately as changes cannot be made later and it may harm your rights if we are not notified of any inaccuracies in any document immediately.

Please check that all names, dates and timings are correct on receipt of all documents and advise us of any errors immediately. Any changes to these details will incur the charges stated below. Please ensure that the names given are the same as in the relevant passport.

All Telephone bookings whether deposit or balance is subject to a 2% booking fee which is applicable to all Credit Card payments. No charge will be made for deposits and balances paid by Debit Card. All online bookings (where available on www.arenatravel.com) are subject to a 0% booking fee which is applicable to all card payments.

02. Payment

You will be required to pay a deposit as a minimum of £50.00 per person or make full payment for your booking at the time of booking. In some cases, the deposit may be higher: where, for example, we need to pre-purchase flights tickets, accommodation or other services. Where you only pay a deposit, you must pay the full balance by the balance due date notified to you, usually 90 days before your departure. If full payment is not received by the balance due date, we will notify the supplier who may cancel your booking and charge the cancellation fees set out in their Terms and Conditions. Where you have booked, a package organised by us, you will be subject to our cancellation charges, see Section C below.

03. Special requests

If you have any special requests (for example dietary requirements, cots or room location), please let us know at the time of booking. We will pass on all such requests to the supplier but we do not guarantee that they will be met and we will have no liability to you if they are not.

04. Insurance

Adequate travel insurance is a condition of your contract with either us or the supplier in question, as applicable. You must take out a policy of insurance to cover you and your party against the cost of cancellation by you; the cost of assistance (including repatriation) in the event of accident or illness; loss of baggage and money; and other expenses. If we have issued your policy, please check it carefully to ensure that all the details are correct and that all relevant information has been provided by you (e.g. pre-existing medical conditions). Failure to disclose relevant information will affect your insurance. If you fail to travel with adequate insurance cover, we will not be liable for any losses in respect of which insurance cover would otherwise have been available.

05. Accommodation ratings and standards

Accommodation ratings are displayed as provided by our suppliers. These are intended to give a guide to the services and facilities you should expect from your accommodation. Standards and ratings may vary between countries, as well as between suppliers. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of any ratings given and no warranty is given or implied.

Safety standards in some countries may differ from those applicable in the United Kingdom. All properties comply with applicable health and safety regulations. We strongly advise that all customers seek to minimise their exposure to injury by familiarising themselves with relevant safety information.

06. Flight prices

Prices and flight supplements are based on anticipated or latest known airfares for the flights and airlines featured. If a higher airfare applies at the time of booking, we may need to increase the price of your booking and we will advise you of this before your reservation is confirmed. Prices are based on flights from the airport specified in the booking description. Flights from alternative airports will incur a further charge. Scheduled flight charges and supplements are payable in full at the time of booking, and are non-refundable.

07. Accommodation/services descriptions

Our descriptions are based on information available at the time we agree a contract with the accommodation or other services supplier. It should be borne in mind that changes to descriptions may occur. Where such changes are brought to our attention we will use our best endeavours to ensure that our website description and reservations system are updated so that the changes may be notified to you at the time of booking.

Please note that whilst the facilities in single, triple and quadruple rooms are comparable to twin or double-bedded rooms, it should be noted that single rooms are not always in the same area of hotels as twin rooms and, by their very nature, are small. Triple rooms are usually a standard twin/double room with an additional bed, which may be a sofa bed or of rollaway style. Quadruple rooms usually consist of a room with two double beds.

08. Building work

From time to time, renovation or refurbishment and its associated noise are unavoidable at a hotel. Often, we do receive advance notice of when it will begin, in which case you will be informed prior to making your booking or within a reasonable time of us being notified. If in any case you have not been informed, and we consider the work will have a significant effect on your stay, we will then review the option of partial or full refund.

09. Reduced mobility or disability

We can make enquiries of the supplier about the suitability of arrangements for you and provide replies prior to booking. You must make all requests in advance before a booking is confirmed.

10. Behaviour

Please be aware that the booking conditions of the supplier will normally state that your stay can be terminated, with no refund, if the behaviour of your party falls below an acceptable standard. Suppliers will also often require you to pay for any damage you cause to the accommodation in resort. We are under no obligation to you if any event such as this occurs. You agree to indemnify us for the full amount of any claim (including all legal costs) made against us by the supplier or any third party because of your conduct. Please note that we have no control over the behaviour of other persons staying at or visiting your holiday accommodation and we are not responsible for any withdrawal or impairment of facilities/services or other loss or damage caused by them. Under no circumstances are you entitled to share your accommodation with, or sub-let it to, anyone other than the other members of your party.

11. Passports, visas and health

We can provide general information about the passport and visa requirements for your trip, but this is for guidance only and it remains your responsibility to check the requirements before you travel. Your specific passport and visa requirements, and other immigration requirements are your responsibility and you should confirm these with the relevant Embassies and/or Consulates. Neither we nor the supplier accept any responsibility if you cannot travel because you have not complied with any passport, visa or immigration requirements. Most countries now require passports to be valid for at least 6 months after your return date.

We can provide general information about any health formalities required for your trip but you should check with your own doctor for your specific circumstances. Visit also http://travelhealthpro. org.uk/

Up to date travel advice can be obtained from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice and/or www.gov.uk/knowbeforeyougo

12. Complaints

Where we are acting as agent, the contract for your arrangements is between you and the supplier and any queries or concerns should be addressed to them. If you have a problem whilst on holiday, this must be reported to the supplier or their local supplier or agent immediately.

If we are acting as organiser in the provision of your package holiday and you find that you are in any way dissatisfied with our service or the service of one or more of the suppliers whose services make up the holiday, in order that we may have the opportunity to correct the matter, you must advise our tour manager, or local representative immediately. Should the tour manager or local representative not be able to resolve the situation, you should report the complaint in writing or by email to our head office at 2 Betts Avenue, Martlesham Heath, Ipswich, IP5 3RH, (email address enquiries@arenatravel.com) no later than 28 days after the completion of the holiday quoting your booking number. Only the lead name should write/email us. Please note that post-holiday claims can be made only directly to us and not to one of our suppliers. If you fail to follow this procedure, there will be less opportunity to investigate and rectify your complaint. The amount of compensation you may be entitled to may be reduced or you may not receive any at all depending upon the circumstances. See also information on ‘ABTA’ above.

13. Financial protection

In relation to package holidays sold by us as organiser, the Package Travel Regulations require us to provide security for the monies that you pay and for repatriation in the event of our insolvency. We provide this security by way of an ATOL (number 10117) administered by the Civil Aviation Authority. When you buy an ATOL protected flight or flight inclusive holiday from us you will receive an ATOL Certificate. This list’s what is financially protected, where you can get information on what this means for you and who to contact if things go wrong.

When we are acting as an agent, some of the travel arrangements that we sell may be protected in the case of the financial failure of the travel company. Please ask us about the protection that applies to your booking. If you receive an ATOL Certificate, then you will have ATOL protection.

We, or the suppliers identified on your ATOL Certificate, will provide you with the services listed on the ATOL Certificate (or a suitable alternative). In some cases, where neither we nor the supplier can do so for reasons of insolvency, an alternative ATOL holder may provide you with the services you have bought or a suitable alternative (at no extra cost to you). You agree to accept that in those circumstances the alternative ATOL holder will perform those obligations and you agree to pay any money outstanding to be paid by you under your contract to that alternative ATOL holder. However, you also agree that in some cases it will not be possible to appoint an alternative ATOL holder, in which case you will be entitled to make a claim under the ATOL scheme (or your credit card issuer where applicable).

14. Force majeure

Except where otherwise expressly stated in these booking conditions we will not be liable or pay you compensation if our contractual obligations to you are affected by any event which we or the supplier of the service in question could not, even with all due care, foresee or avoid. These events can include, but are not limited to war, threat of war, civil strife terrorist activity and its consequences or the threat of such activity, riot, the act of any government or other national or local authority including port or river authorities, industrial dispute, lock closure, natural or nuclear disaster, fire, chemical or biological disaster and all similar events outside our control or the control of the supplier concerned.

15. Law and jurisdiction

These booking conditions all bookings made with us are governed by English law and the courts of England and Wales have exclusive jurisdiction. You may however choose the law and jurisdiction of Scotland or Northern Ireland if you live there and wish to do so.

16. Conditions of suppliers

Many of the services which make up your holiday are provided by independent suppliers. Those suppliers provide these services in accordance with their own terms and conditions Those suppliers provide these services in accordance with their own terms and conditions which will form part of your contract with us. Some of these terms and conditions may limit or exclude the supplier's liability to you, usually in accordance with applicable International Conventions. Copies of the relevant parts of these terms and conditions are available on request from us or the supplier concerned.

17. Data protection and privacy

Please see our data protection and privacy policy for full information regarding the way in which we use and store your personal data. The booking information that you provide to us will be passed on only to the relevant suppliers of your travel arrangements or other persons necessary for the provision of your travel arrangements. The information may therefore be provided to public authorities such as customs or immigration if required by them, or as required by law. This applies to any sensitive information that you give to us such as details of any disabilities, or dietary and religious requirements. Certain information may also be passed on to security or credit checking companies. If you are traveling to the United States, the US Customs and Border Protection will receive this information for the purposes of preventing and combating terrorism and other transnational serious crimes. If you travel outside the European Economic Area, controls on data protection may not be as strong as the legal requirements in this country. If we cannot pass this information to the relevant suppliers, whether in the EEA or not, we will be unable to provide you’re booking. In making this booking, you consent to this information being passed on to the relevant persons. Full details of our data protection policy are available upon request.

18. Your contract

When making your booking, we will arrange for you to enter into a contract with the supplier (tour operator/airline/cruise Company or other supplier) named on your receipt. Details will be given at the time of booking. As an agent, we accept no responsibility for the acts or omissions of the supplier or for the services provided by the supplier. The supplier’s Terms & Conditions will apply to your booking and we advise you to read these carefully as they do contain important information about your booking. Please ask us for copies of these if you do not have them.

You may wish to purchase packages from tour operators booked through us as your agent, or individual flights, hotel, or other services featured on our website. Each component or package will be provided by different third party providers of the products you have selected. Your contract will be with the individual suppliers and not with us. Since you create your own travel arrangements by adding each component separately to create your own bespoke booking, this is not a package and therefore you are not protected under the Package Travel Regulations unless we specifically assist you in booking a package which is provided by a third-party tour operator. Until a component has been confirmed by the individual supplier, no contract has been formed.

19. Cancellation and amendment

Any cancellation or amendment request must be sent to us in writing and will not take effect until received by us. If you cancel or amend your booking the supplier may charge the cancellation or amendment charge shown in their Terms and Conditions (which may be 100% of the cost of the travel arrangements) and you must pay us the cancellation or amendment charge stated below.

Requests to alter bookings will be taken only from the lead member of the party. Where the request can be met, we will confirm the amendment by issuing a revised Confirmation Invoice. We will make an administration charge of up to £50 per person, per amendment (maximum £150 per booking reference number) which will be payable along with any price increase for the altered arrangements. In addition to our own administration charge, we will pass on any administration charges made by the relevant airline or other supplier(s).

20. Changes or cancellations by the supplier

We will inform you of any changes or cancellations as soon as reasonably possible. If the supplier offers alternative arrangements or a refund, you will need to let us know your choice within the time frame we stipulate. If you fail to do so the supplier is entitled to assume you wish to receive a full refund. We accept no liability for any changes or cancellations made to your arrangements by the supplier under your contract with them.

21. Our service charges

In addition to the amendment charges shown in clause 19 above, in certain circumstances we apply a service charge for the services we provide. These charges will be confirmed at the time of booking. Please note that the term Service Charge does not refer to us putting together a holiday package; it is our standard charge for the service of acting as booking agent.

22. Payment

If you have paid a deposit, you must pay the full balance by the balance due date notified to you. If full payment is not received by the balance due date, we will notify the supplier who may cancel your booking and charge the cancellation fees set out in their booking conditions. Except where otherwise advised or stated in the booking conditions of the supplier concerned, all monies you pay to us for arrangements will be held on behalf of the supplier(s) concerned.

23. Our responsibility for your booking

Your contract is with the supplier and its booking conditions apply. As agent, we accept no responsibility for the actual provision of the arrangements. Our responsibilities are limited to making the booking in accordance with your instructions. We accept no responsibility for any information about the arrangements that we pass on to you in good faith. However, if we are found liable to you on any basis whatsoever, our maximum liability to you is limited to twice the cost of your booking (or the appropriate proportion of this if not everyone on the booking is affected). We do not exclude or limit any liability for death or personal injury that arises because of our negligence or that of any of our employees whilst acting in the course of their employment.

If for any reason any court or authority determines that we have acted outside of our agency status in any circumstances, or we confirm to you that we are the principal, we will be acting as principal rather than agent in relation to that booking. In such cases, we have a duty to select the suppliers of the services making up your booking with us with reasonable skill and care. We have no liability to you for the actual provision of the services, except in cases where it is proved that we have breached that duty and damage to you has been caused. Therefore, providing we have selected the suppliers/subcontractors with reasonable skill and care, we will have no liability to you for anything that happens during the service in question or any acts or omissions of the supplier, its employees or agents. The limitations contained in Section C of these booking conditions will also apply.

24. Definition of package

A “Package Holiday” exists if you book a pre-arranged combination of at least two of the following components when sold or offered for sale at an inclusive price and when the service covers a period of more than twenty-four hours or includes overnight accommodation:- (a) transport; (b) accommodation; (c) other tourist services not ancillary to transport or accommodation and accounting for a significant proportion of the package. Where you have booked a Package Holiday with us, we will accept responsibility for it in accordance with these Booking Conditions as an “Organiser” under the Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992.

25. Pricing and surcharges

Changes in fees (including transportation costs, fuel costs, dues, taxes, fees such as landing taxes or embarkation/disembarkation fees at ports/airports and exchange rates) and services mean that the price of your travel arrangements may change after you have booked your holiday. However, there will be no change to the cost of your holiday within 30 days of departure. In relation to package holidays, we will absorb and you will not be charged for any increase equivalent to up to 2% of the price of your travel arrangements, which excludes insurance premiums and any amendment charges. If this means that you have to pay an increase of more than 10% of the price of your travel arrangements (excluding insurance premiums and amendment charges), you will have the option of accepting a change to another holiday if we are able to offer one (if this is of equivalent or higher quality, you will not have to pay more but if it is of lower quality you will be refunded the difference in price), or cancelling and receiving a full refund of monies paid, except for any amendment charges and cancellation charges already incurred. Should you decide to cancel for this reason, you must exercise your right to do so within 14 days from the issue date shown on your final invoice. Should the price of your holiday go down due to the changes mentioned above, by more than 2% of your holiday cost, then any refund due will be paid to you. However, please note that travel arrangements are not always purchased in local currency and some apparent changes have no impact on the price of your travel due to contractual and other protection in place.

26. If we change or cancel your arrangements

As we plan your holiday arrangements many months in advance we may occasionally have to make changes or cancel your booking and we reserve the right to do so at any time. Changes If we make a major change to your holiday, we will inform you as soon as reasonably possible if there is time before your departure. You will have the choice of either accepting the change of arrangements, accepting an offer of alternative travel arrangements of comparable standard from us if available (we will refund any price difference if the alternative is of a lower value), or cancelling your holiday and receiving a full refund of all monies paid. In some cases, we will also pay compensation (see below). These options don’t apply for minor changes. Examples of minor changes include alteration of your outward/return flights by less than 12 hours, changes to aircraft type, change of London airports for example between Gatwick & Heathrow, change of channel crossing between ferry and tunnel, change of accommodation to another of the same or higher standard, changes of carriers. Please note that carriers such as airlines used in the brochure may be subject to change. Cancellation We will not cancel your travel arrangements less than 6 weeks before your departure date, except for reasons of force majeure or failure by you to pay the final balance. We may cancel your holiday before this date if, e.g., the minimum number of clients required for a particular travel arrangement is not reached. If your holiday is cancelled you can either have a refund of all monies paid or accept an offer of alternative travel arrangements of comparable standard from us, if available (we will refund any price difference if the alternative is of a lower value). In some cases, we will pay compensation (see below).

Insurance: If we cancel or make a major change and you accept a refund, we will provide a full refund of your travel insurance premiums if you paid them to us and can show that you are unable to transfer or reuse your policy.

Compensation: If we cancel or make a major change we will pay compensation as detailed below except where the major change or cancellation arises due to reasons of force majeure. The compensation that we offer does not exclude you from claiming more if you are entitled to do so.

IF WE CANCEL OR MAKE A MAJOR CHANGE TO YOUR HOLIDAY      

 Period before departure in which we notify you  Amount you will receive from us per person
More than 56 days £ nil 
 56 to 29 days £10 
28 to 14 days £15
Less than 14 days £20

Force Majeure. We will not pay you compensation if we must cancel or change your travel arrangements in any way because of force majeure, see clause 14 above.

27. Cancellation by you

Should you or any member of your party decide to cancel your/their booking once it has been made, notification of the cancellation instruction will be required in writing from the lead member of the party.

The effective date for cancellation is the date when we receive your written instructions at our registered office. Notification by email will be accepted and, for the purposes of calculating cancellation charges, emails will be treated as having been received by us 24 hours after they are sent. Receipt of emails will be acknowledged. We will have no liability to you in the event of emails not being received, or their delivery being delayed, for technical or other reasons.

If you or any member of your party cancels, a charge is payable by the lead member of the party by way of agreed damages to cover our estimated losses, calculated on the scale set out below:

Period before departure by which written instructions are received by us  Cancellation charge – shown as a percentage of total price (excluding insurance premium)
90 days or more  Loss of deposit/amount paid at time of booking.
89-42 days 50% or deposit (whichever is greater)
41-28 days   75% or deposit (whichever is greater) 
 27-14 days 90% or deposit (whichever is greater) 
 13-0 days 100% or deposit (whichever is greater)

 

Please note that for some flight bookings full payment will be required at the time your booking is made. Many flight bookings are non-changeable and cannot be altered/cancelled without 100% cancellation charges being applied, even where such cancellation occurs shortly after the booking has been made.

You may be able to make an insurance claim if the reasons for your cancellation fall within the terms of your insurance cover.

28. Our responsibilities to you in respect of package holidays

1) We will accept responsibility for the arrangements we agree to provide or arrange for you as an “organiser” under the Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992 as set out below. Subject to these booking conditions, if we or our suppliers perform or arrange your contracted holiday arrangements negligently, taking into consideration all relevant factors (for example following the complaints procedure as described in these conditions and the extent to which ours or our employees’ or suppliers’ negligence affected the overall enjoyment of your holiday), we will pay you reasonable compensation. Please note that it is your responsibility to show that we or our supplier(s) have been negligent if you wish to make a claim against us.

2) We will not be responsible or pay you compensation for any injury, illness, death, loss, damage, expense, cost or other claim of any description if it results from: -

(i) the act(s) and/or omission(s) of the person(s) affected;

(ii) the act(s) and/or omission(s) of a third party unconnected with the provision of the services contracted for and which were unforeseeable or unavoidable; or

(iii) unusual or unforeseeable circumstances beyond ours or our supplier(s) control, the consequences of which could not have been avoided even if all due care had been exercised; or

(iv) an event which either ourselves or suppliers could not, even with all due care, have foreseen or forestalled. 3) We limit the amount of compensation we may have to pay you if we are found liable under this clause:

(i) for loss of and/or damage to any luggage or personal possessions and money, the maximum amount we must pay you in respect of these claims is £25 per person in total because you are assumed to have adequate insurance in place to cover any losses of this kind;

(ii) for claims not falling under 3(i) above and which don’t involve injury, illness or death, the maximum amount we must pay you in respect of these claims is twice the price paid by or on behalf of the person(s) affected in total. This maximum amount will only be payable where everything has gone wrong and you or your party has not received any benefit at all from your booking.

(iii) for claims in respect of international travel by air and sea, or any stay in a hotel, the extent of our liability will in all cases be limited as if we were carriers under the appropriate Conventions, which include The Warsaw/Montreal Convention (international travel by air); The Athens Convention (with respect to sea travel); The Berne/Cotif Convention (with respect to rail travel) and The Paris Convention (with respect to hotel arrangements). You can ask for copies of these Conventions from our offices. Please contact us. In addition, you agree that the operating carrier or transport company's own ‘Conditions of Carriage’ will apply to you on that journey. When arranging transportation for you, we rely on the terms and conditions contained within these international conventions and those ‘Conditions of Carriage’. You acknowledge that all of the terms and conditions contained in those 'Conditions of Carriage' form part of your contract with us, as well as with the transport company and that those ‘Conditions of Carriage’ shall be deemed to be included by reference into this contract.

4) In any circumstances in which a carrier is liable to you by virtue of the Denied Boarding Regulation 2004, any liability we may have to you under our contract with you, arising out of the same facts, is limited to the remedies provided under the Regulation as if (for this purpose only) we were a carrier. When making any payment, we are entitled to deduct any money which you have received or are entitled to receive from the transport provider or hotelier for the complaint or claim in question.

5) It is a condition of our acceptance of liability under this clause that you notify any claim to ourselves and our supplier(s) strictly in accordance with the complaints procedure set out in these conditions. Where any payment is made, the person(s) receiving it (and their parent or guardian if under 18 years) must also assign to ourselves or our insurers any rights they may have to pursue any third party and must provide ourselves and our insurers with all assistance we may reasonably require.

6) Please note, we cannot accept any liability for any damage, loss or expense or other sum(s) of any description which based on the information given to us by you concerning your booking prior to our accepting it, we could not have foreseen you would suffer or incur if we breached our contract with you.

7) Excursions or other activities that you choose to book while you are on holiday are not provided by our company and do not form part of your contract with us. Such arrangements are therefore not covered by The Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992. On occasions, local excursions and activities will be made available for sale via our local/agency staff. In such circumstances those staff will be acting as sales agents for the supplier(s) of the offered excursion/activities. Therefore, unless you suffer personal injury or death caused by our negligence, we will not accept liability for any loss or damage you may suffer as a result of participation in a locally booked excursion or activity.

8) We do not exclude or limit any liability for death or personal injury that arises because of our negligence or that of any of our employees whilst acting in the course of their employment.

29. Delays, missed transport arrangements and other travel information

We cannot accept liability for any delay in your transport to or from the UK where the cancellation or delay is caused by adverse weather conditions, re-scheduling of times by an airline, decisions made by the port/airport authorities and/or the action of air traffic controllers, mechanical breakdown, strike, industrial action or otherwise. However, in certain circumstances, you may be able to make a claim under your insurance policy if the reasons for the delay fall within the terms of your insurance cover.

30. Prompt assistance in resort

If the contract we have with you is not performed or is improperly performed as a result of failures attributable to a third party unconnected with the provision of the services, or as a result of failures due to unusual and unforeseeable circumstances beyond our control, the consequences of which could not have been avoided even if all due care had been exercised, or an event which we or our suppliers, even with all due care, could not foresee or forestall, and you suffer an injury or other material loss, we will offer you such prompt assistance as is reasonable in the circumstances.

31. Foreign Office Advise

For the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information check www.gov.uk/travelaware

Privacy policy

Arena Tours Ltd respects the importance of your privacy and we remain committed to protecting your personal information.

In providing a service to you, we collect some personal information and this policy details how we will use your personal data after it has been collected, and your rights.

Who are we?

We are ARENA TOURS LIMITED trading as The River Cruise Line and Arena Travel – registered address: 2 Betts Avenue, Martlesham Heath, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP5 3RH.

What information do we collect?

We may collect the following information:-
* Name, Date of Birth, Address, Telephone Number, Email Address
* Passport Details
* Travel Insurance Details
* Special requirements such as those relating to any disability or medical condition which may affect the chosen arrangements or dietary requirements which may disclose your religious beliefs
* Credit/Debit card details including card number, name and expiry.

You are responsible for ensuring that other members of your group are aware of the content of our privacy policy and consent to acting on their behalf in all of your communication and dealings with us.

Some of the information that we collect from you may be considered sensitive information under the Data Protection Act including the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR). We will collect this information from you on the understanding that we have your prior consent to process it – we will ask for this consent when necessary. The sensitive information will only be used to act in your interest, and to cater to your needs as part of a contract of sale.

How do we collect this information?

We will only collect the information above by asking for it when you do one of the following:
* When you purchase a product or service from or through us
* When you subscribe to our newsletter
* When you speak to any of our team
* When we use cookies (See our additional cookie policy below)

How is this information used?

We have a legitimate business interest in handing your personal data for the following purposes:-
We will use your Name, contact details and card details to process a booking you have made with us.
We will use your contact details to notify you of changes to our services, or any changes to your bookings.
We will use your personal information to carry out our obligations arising from any contracts entered into by you and us.
To send you marketing communications that you have asked to receive from us.
We may need to disclose your information where required to do so by law and where such a request is made to us by a legal authority.

We may also disclose information to organisations who act as “data processors” on our behalf, or to other organisations that perform business functions on our behalf, some of whom are outside the UK/EEA. These functions include administration, providing services (and contacting you where necessary), customer care, business management and operation, re-organisation/structuring/sale of our business (or our group companies), risk assessment, security and crime prevention/detection, research and analysis, marketing, monitoring, measuring and assessing customer purchasing preferences and trends, dispute resolution, credit checking and debt collection.
We may from time to time contact you with information about special offers, brochures, new products, forthcoming events or competitions where you have asked us to. If you do not wish to receive such information, you may ask us in writing not to receive it.
We may pass your details to other parties who offer goods or services which we feel may be of interest to you. However we will not do this where you have indicated that you do not wish us to contact you in this way.
We would also like to store and use your personal details for future marketing purposes (for example, emailing you our newsletter). All details you give us in connection with your booking will be kept but we will use only names and contact details for marketing purposes unless you have indicated that you do not wish us to do so.
We have taken all reasonable steps to have appropriate security measures in place to protect your information. Outside the European Economic Area, controls on data protection may not be as wide as the legal requirements in this country. The transmission of information via the internet is never completely secure. We exclude our liability for personal data lost in transmission to the website.

What are my choices?

You have a choice as to whether you want any additional communication from us – such as marketing emails. Should you not want this, you can choose not to opt-in to our subscribers list at the time of booking. You can also opt-out of a list at any time either by emailing us at privacyrcl@rivercruiseline.co.uk , calling us on 01858 438330, or by clicking an unsubscribe link on our marketing communication. You can also choose not to provide us with some of the information we request, however as a result we may not be able to complete some or all of your arrangements.

How can I access my information?

If you would like to update any of the information we hold on you, you can contact us in writing by emailing privacyrcl@rivercruiseline.co.uk . You also have the right to see what information we hold about you, and for us to correct any inaccuracies. To do this, please email us using the contact address above.

What is our cookie policy?

A cookie is a text-only string of information that a website transfers to the cookie file of the browser on your computer's hard disk so that the website can remember who you are. Cookies will typically contain the name of the domain from which the cookie has come, the "lifetime" of the cookie, and a value, usually a randomly generated unique number.
Two types of cookies are used on this web site - session cookies, which are temporary cookies that remain in the cookie file of your browser until you leave the site, and persistent cookies, which remain in the cookie file of your browser for much longer (though how long will depend on the lifetime of the specific cookie).

We use cookies in the below ways:

Session Cookies
* To allow you to carry information across pages of our site and avoid having to re-enter information.
* To allow you to maintain a shopping basket.
* Within registration to allow you to access stored information.

Persistent Cookies
Cookies allow us to obtain information regarding users of our site which essentially helps us to provide you with a better user experience and tailor our services to your individual needs. We may collect information such as your IP address, online activity, web browser details and online activity. We will not however collect or store any of your passwords or other highly sensitive data.

How is my information secure?

We take website security very seriously and we are committed to safeguarding your personal information. We take a number of administrative and technical steps to ensure the security of the information you provide to us.

Transferring your information outside of Europe

As part of the services offered to you through this website, some of the information which you provide to us may be transferred to countries outside the EEC, by way of example if we are required to send passenger details to a 3rd party such as a hotel or airline which you agree to as part of the contract of sale. We have taken reasonable measures to implement adequate safeguards and ensure that the information is processed by 3rd parties in a secure way.

External Links

Please note that our website contains certain literature and hyperlinks to websites owned by third parties. This privacy statement covers websites owned and controlled by us only. Links to other websites and any information collected by these sites are not covered by this privacy statement.

Frequently Asked Questions


Here at The River Cruise Line, we make booking your holiday as straightforward and stress-free as possible by providing you with all the information you need to plan your perfect trip.

Below, we have listed some of the most frequently asked questions about our wide range of river cruises. Take a look and see if the answer to your query has been included. If not, feel free to get in touch.

Planning your holiday? Read our Brexit FAQ's here.

 

ON THE SHIP:

How will I know what is planned on each day?
Is there a dress code onboard?
What is the cruise ship entertainment like?
How can I pay for things onboard?
What will my cabin be like? 
Will my cabin be noisy?
Will the ship sail at night?
Should I tip on a river cruise?
What type of power outlet do your ships provide?
How can I stay connected on my river cruise?
Can I smoke during my river cruise?
How can I celebrate a special occasion onboard?
Do you offer a laundry service onboard your vessels?
What kind of items does the onboard shop stock?
Can river cruises make me seasick?
Will my passport be held when I board my cruise ship?


How will I know what is planned on each day?
As well as the information you will receive with your travel documents, a daily programme will be placed in your cabin and displayed in the main reception area onboard. This will list the places you are due to visit and a timetable for the day that includes meal times.

To ensure the smooth running of the tour and the wellbeing of our passengers, your cruise director and cruise manager are available throughout the trip. We encourage you to go to them with any questions you might have. However, due to the nature of our cruises, the director and manager will not always join the coach journeys to and from the UK.

Is there a dress code onboard?
We want you to be comfortable throughout your river cruise, so we are happy for you to dress informally for the duration of the trip. Be sure to pack suitable clothing for the time of the year and the climate of your destination. We also advise you to take a sturdy, comfortable pair of shoes, especially for daytime activities or excursions, as some tours may involve walking over cobblestones or other uneven surfaces.

The only dress code we ask our guests to follow is for no denim or shorts to be worn in the ship’s restaurant in the evenings. And on one night of the cruise, there will be a captain’s party night for which some people do like to dress smartly.

What is the cruise ship entertainment like?
With our varied selection of entertainment, there is something to suit all tastes. Each of our vessels has an onboard musical entertainer, and we also host quizzes, bingo, sing-alongs and for those that want to indulge there’s a dance floor too. We will be sure to keep you updated with entertainment listings in your daily programme.

How can I pay for things onboard?
On your arrival at the ship, we will give you a cabin card which can be used to pay for extra items onboard, such as bar and shop purchases. Depending on your ship, the card can either be topped up at the beginning of the cruise or charged at the end. Payments to your card can be made in cash, with euros, or by credit or debit card.

What will my cabin be like?
All of the cabins on our ships are ideal for rest and relaxation after a day’s exploration. Our cabins come in a range of sizes to accommodate your party’s needs, although availability of certain cabin sizes will depend on which ship you are travelling on. All of our cabins are fully air conditioned to keep you comfortable, and our private bathrooms include a selection of toiletries and soaps for your convenience (please note that neither of these facilities are available on the African Queen). With fresh linens, a great view, and easy access to shower and toilet facilities, your cabin will feel like a home away from home.

Your cabin will be cleaned every day, and we are happy to resupply your bathroom with fresh towels and soap on request. The electric supply is 220V AC and a European two pin adaptor is required. Each cabin has a safety deposit box (standard hotel size of 30cm x 30cm x 25cm), and a hairdryer will either be included or available to hire from reception. Please note that our cabins do not have tea or coffee facilities, but refreshments are available from the bar.

To find out which cabin options and facilities are available on each of our vessels, visit our ships page.

Will my cabin be noisy?
Whichever cabin you are in, you can expect some level of noise when the ship is moving. The closer you are to the engine room, the more noise there will be in your cabin. However, the vast majority of sailing will be done during the mornings and early afternoons, which you will most likely spend in the lounge or dining room. On some itineraries, there may be the need to set off in the early hours of the morning to ensure we are able to share all of the excellent locations with you on your trip. We include sailing times on your daily programme onboard, keeping you informed every step of the way.

Will the ship sail at night?
The majority of our cruises ships arrive in the afternoon and do not set sail again until the following morning, though this can sometimes be in the early hours. Some itineraries, however, will require the ship to sail overnight, though this is not common. Please visit our cruises page of the website to find more detailed itineraries for each cruise. They are also available in our brochures which you can read or order here.

Should I tip on a river cruise?
We do not have a cruise tipping policy, and believe that any tips should be completely discretionary and reflect your satisfaction with the standard of service you have received. At the end of your trip, a questionnaire for the attention of the captain will be left in your cabin, along with an envelope where you can leave a tip for the crew, if you wish to acknowledge their service. A general guideline for tipping the crew is 7-10 euros per day. Please note that this tip does not include the cruise director, cruise manager and coach drivers, who you may wish to tip separately.

What type of power outlet do your ships provide?
Our European cruises supply a 220V AC current to your cabin, accessible through a two-pin euro plug. As such, European adapters will be necessary for UK appliances.

How can I stay connected on my river cruise?
All of our ships offer Wi-Fi services onboard that you can connect to. This service is chargeable and fees will vary from ship to ship. Please note that our Wi-Fi service may not always be available due to satellite connections being affected by sailing conditions.

Can I smoke during my river cruise?
Smoking is only permitted in the designated smoking areas onboard; the rest of the ship is designated as strictly non-smoking, including the use of e-cigarettes. Please ask your cruise manager where the smoking area can be found on your ship.

How can I celebrate a special occasion onboard?
If your cruise is for a special occasion, there are a few extra things that we offer to help you celebrate. We offer three packages that you can purchase to make your cruise as memorable as possible:

Our birthday celebration package is priced at £20 and includes a birthday cake and a bottle of red or white wine.

Our anniversary celebration package is priced at £38 and includes a bottle of sparkling wine and flowers.

If you would like to order one of these packages for your cruise, or you would like more information, give our holiday advisors a call on 01858 438 490.

Do you offer a laundry service onboard your vessels?
Most of our ships are unable to offer this service, but the ms Serenity, has an onboard laundry service that is chargeable to your cabin card. Please note that none of our ships are able to offer a dry-cleaning service.

What kind of items does the onboard shop stock?
The shops onboard our vessels stock a variety of souvenirs such as postcards, pens, keyrings, glasses, mugs, scarves, jewellery, and local biscuits/sweets. They also stock a small range of everyday essentials such as toothbrushes, toothpaste and combs.

Can river cruises make me seasick?
Probably not. As river cruises don’t tend to sail on open water, they are not exposed to waves in the same way that an ocean cruise ship is. The only wave motion to be found on a river is probably the wave from a passing ship, which wouldn’t cause much turbulence. If for some reason you do find yourself on choppier waters, there are a few things you can do to combat the condition. The NHS has detailed information on seasickness and how you can alleviate its symptoms.

Will my passport be held when I board my cruise ship?
Yes, on many of our cruises it is common for passengers' passports to be held on embarkation for passport/visa purposes when crossing borders. Passports are usually returned to passengers the following day.


FOOD AND DRINK:

What is the food and drink like onboard?
Do you offer tea and coffee onboard?

What is the food and drink like onboard?
Time and time again our guests comment on the exceptional quality of the meals served onboard our cruises. All of our ships offer full board (every meal is included), with delicious cuisine served in one of our beautiful restaurants. Meal times will be included in your daily programme, together with the day’s menu.

Breakfast is buffet style, providing you with a choice of cereal, fruit, yoghurt, cold meats, cheeses, or a traditional cooked breakfast. Lunch and dinner are either a set menu with waiter service, or a buffet with a fine selection of hot dishes.

Do you offer tea and coffee onboard?
Yes, we are pleased to offer tea and coffee as part of your lunch and evening meal, as well as part of our early risers and mid-morning gatherings in the lounge. Tea and coffee is also available throughout the day, but is chargeable to your cabin card.

Are you able to cater for my dietary requirements?
We are more than happy to accommodate any dietary requirements you may have. Simply let us know at the time of your booking and the crew will try to make the necessary preparations.

 

DISABILITIES AND MEDICAL CONDITIONS:

What if I have a medical condition or disability?
Are your ships suitable for wheelchairs, rollators or walking frames?
Travel Arrangements
What happens if there is a medical emergency onboard?

What if I have a medical condition or a disability?
Please advise us of any medical conditions or disabilities when you book your river cruise. It is vital that we know this in advance, so we can ensure that your needs can be met. Mention any special requirements to one of our holiday advisors and they will be happy to pass this information on to one of our dedicated mobility team members. We will do our utmost to prioritise your special request; however, we cannot guarantee that all needs can be met.

If you have purchased our insurance, please read the policy carefully to ensure it meets your personal requirements. We also suggest that you make yourself and your special requirements known to the cruise director, the cruise manager and the crew.

Are your ships suitable for wheelchairs, rollators, or walking frames?
When booking your cruise, please inform us of any passengers with the need for a wheelchair, rollator, or walking frame. There are several considerations you should keep in mind when planning a cruise with one of the aforementioned items.

Luggage for each guest is taken on and off the river cruise ship by the crew, however it is not possible for the crew to be available to personally attend to passengers with reduced mobility therefore a travelling companion would need to be able to help with any physical needs.

We cannot always guarantee that where we will be docked will be wheelchair/rollator/walking frame friendly. Therefore, we cannot guarantee that it will always be possible to accommodate passengers with reduced mobility.

The structure of some of our ships does not allow for the use of wheelchairs, rollators, or walking frames onboard: narrow doors, steep stairs and limited ship access are just some of the obstacles that prevent their use. Some of our larger vessels have accessible parts and even lifts that operate between decks; however, check the deck plans of our ships to familiarise yourself with the layout before booking.

You should also be aware that the day excursions on some of our cruises may require passengers to walk up slopes or on streets with cobblestones. These may prove difficult for people using mobility aids.

Whilst cruising onboard your ship there will be the opportunity to take in the spectacular scenery and there is a lot to enjoy from the comfort of the ship. If you can’t do many shore excursions, river cruising can still be very enjoyable and worthwhile, please contact us with any concerns you may have.

Travel arrangements
Depending on your choice of transport to your cruise a degree of mobility will be required for example rail journeys will involve carrying luggage on and off and between trains. The coaches used for our travel arrangements to a cruise ship or for excursions have not been adapted for wheelchair access.

What happens if there is a medical emergency onboard the ship?
Each of our cruise ships has designated crew members who can offer first aid in the event of an emergency. We do not have medical facilities or a physician onboard, but with our ships never being far from port, medical assistance can quickly be provided ashore.

 

PASSPORTS AND TRAVEL INSURANCE:

Do I need travel insurance for a river cruise?
What is a European Health Insurance Card and why do I need one?
What are the passport requirements for my cruise?
Are there any cruise visa requirements?
Are there any health requirements for your cruises?

Do I need travel insurance for a river cruise?
If you are travelling abroad, travel insurance is a necessity. To make things easier for you, we have arranged competitive travel insurance from P J Hayman & Company Ltd that you can purchase from us. This saves you the time and trouble of having to arrange it yourself. We recommend that you take out the insurance cover we offer, and that you also take a copy of the insurance policy with you on holiday, in case you need to refer to it.

When you receive your policy, please read through it to understand what is and what isn’t covered, and to make sure all of the activities you wish to do on your trip are included. If you decide that the insurance is not adequate and you have not travelled or made a claim, you can return the policy, proof of premium and any other related documents to us within 14 days and we will refund the premium in full. You can access a specimen copy of the policy wording here.

Should you decide not to take out our insurance, you must provide us with details of your alternative insurance. Please make sure that your alternative insurance is as comprehensive as ours, containing equivalent cover and a 24-hour medical emergency number.

Please note: If you have a pre-existing medical condition; are currently taking any medication; have suffered from a serious, chronic, or recurring illness; or are waiting to go into hospital as an inpatient, you must call our insurance provider’s Healthcheck helpline on 0203 829 3855 to declare it.

What is a European Health Insurance Card and why do I need one?
A European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) entitles you to free or discounted state-provided medical care in many European countries. It has replaced the no longer valid E111 form which served the same purpose. It is useful for accidents or injuries which will save you claiming from your insurance company. The card will also cover treatment of pre-existing medical conditions and routine maternity care, and will cover your treatment until you return to the UK.

It should be noted that this card is not an alternative to taking out travel insurance. It will not cover any private healthcare costs, stolen or lost property, or flying you back to the UK. It is incredibly important to have both an EHIC and comprehensive travel insurance before you leave for your cruise. You can find out further information on the NHS website, and you can apply for your EHIC free of charge via the dedicated online application form. You can also apply by telephone on 0845 606 2030 or by picking up a form at your local post office.

What are the passport requirements for my cruise?
We ask all passengers to bring their passports with them on our cruises. Please make sure your passport will have a minimum of six months validity from the date of your return to the UK, although this can be subject to change and can depend on the countries you are travelling through. You can check with the relevant embassies for further advice on this matter. If you hold a non-UK passport, you should check the issuing country’s regulations and the relevant embassies in the countries you are travelling for any specific visa requirements.

If you do not currently hold a valid passport, you should aim to obtain one a minimum of 12 weeks before your departure date. Applications can be made online, by post, or by using the Post Office’s Passport Check and Send service. You can get more information on HM Passport Office’s renew adult passport page, or by calling 0300 222 0000.

Are there any cruise visa requirements?
For UK passport holders countries we sail through are either members of Europe’s Schengen Area or have a non-visa agreement with the UK. For holders of non-UK passports, you should check with the relevant embassies to see what visa requirements are in place for the country your passport was issued.

Are there any health requirements for your cruises?
There are currently no vaccinations which are compulsory for any of our cruises. General health regulations in different countries are subject to change, and we do recommend you obtain an EHIC which covers any medical treatment that becomes necessary during your trip. For further information, please visit the government’s foreign travel advice page for a country-by-country guide.

 

LUGGAGE

How much luggage can I take on my River Cruise?
How is my luggage transported to the ship?
What should I do if I lose any of luggage?

How much luggage can I take on my river cruise?
Due to the space restrictions onboard our vessels, we kindly ask that you restrict your luggage as much as possible in accordance with the duration of your trip:

On shorter cruises, we recommend one small suitcase (no more than 15kg in weight) per person, with additional light hand luggage.

On longer cruises, we recommend one medium-size suitcase (no more than 20kg in weight) per person, with additional light hand luggage.

Please make sure your suitcase is clearly marked with your name, though for security reasons you should avoid including your address. You will find luggage labels as part of the documentation sent to you when you receive your joining instructions.

If you are flying before your cruise, it is advisable to attach your River Cruise Line labels after you have landed, as airline staff may remove them to attach their own labels. If you are flying, make sure you are aware of your airline’s own luggage restrictions.

What should I do if I lose any of my luggage?
Unfortunately, we cannot take any responsibility for items left behind by our passengers. We do ask that passengers ensure they have all of their belongings with them before disembarking. Also, we cannot guarantee that any items left behind by passengers will be found or returned.

How is my luggage transported to the ship?
Your luggage will be loaded and unloaded from the ship on the day of embarkation and disembarkation. The crew will deliver your luggage to your cabin at the start of the journey.

 

MY BOOKING:

What if I or one of my companions can no longer travel on the holiday?
Can I transfer someone’s place to another person?
Will there be any alterations to my holiday?
When is the balance payment due? Will I be sent a reminder?
How can I pay the balance of my trip?
Can I make alterations to my booking?
Can I book cruise excursions while onboard?
When should I book the excursions for my trip?
What happens if I want to cancel an excursion?
How is my cruise booking protected financially?
Are your cruises suitable for children?
What currency will I need to take?
When will I receive my travel documents?
When is the best time of year to book my river cruise?
Can I request a brochure?
Can I buy gift vouchers?

What if I or one of my companions can no longer travel on the holiday?
If you or one of your party can no longer travel, the person who made the booking must notify us in writing. Your cancellation will be effective when we receive it in writing or when we receive your express telephone instructions. You can find our address on our contact us page.

Once we have received your notice and have confirmed that your payments are up to date, we will send you a cancellation invoice that will indicate what the cancellation fee is. For more information on cancellation fees, please refer to clause 27 of the booking conditions. They are available as part of your booking documents and also in The River Cruise Line handbook. Provided you have comprehensive insurance, you may be able to claim these fees back, as long as your cancellation reason falls within your policy’s cover. Please make any insurance claims direct with your insurance company.

Can I transfer someone’s place to another person?
Yes, this is possible. Please ensure that the person who made the booking notifies us of the transfer in writing no less than 14 days before your departure date. It is advisable to use recorded or registered post to confirm that we have received your notice. There is an amendment fee of £20 which you will have to pay before the transfer can be made. If we are notified less than 14 days before the departure date then full cancellation charges will apply.

Please note: If you are flying, be aware that name changes on flight tickets can’t be made within 28 days of travel.

Will there be any alterations to my holiday?
Our brochures are produced many months in advance, so occasionally we may have to make changes to your trip. If this happens, we will notify you in line with clause 26 of the booking conditions, which are available as part of your booking documents. You can also view these conditions in our handbook.

Please be aware that river cruises have certain requirements for water levels in order for vessels to sail. In the drier months the water level can drop significantly, and rise in the wetter months. In the event that this affects your booking, we will make alternative arrangements and notify you as soon as possible.

When is the balance payment due? Will I be sent a reminder?
Your balance payment is due 10 weeks before the date of departure, with the exact date given towards the bottom of your booking confirmation. There are no fees for payments by debit or credit card.

Please be aware that no final balance reminder is sent to you, so it is essential you are aware of when it is due. The next piece of paperwork you will receive will be your joining instructions.

How can I pay the balance of my trip?
We are pleased to be able to offer you several options for the payment of your trip:

You can book and pay online through our website. Simply select the cruise of your choice, check the availability of your preferred dates, confirm your departure point and holiday extras, and provide us with your customer and payment details. Our website makes this process incredibly easy with instructions and prompts to assist you.

Call our booking office on 01858 435 657.

If you wish to pay by cheque, please make cheques payable to the River Cruise Line.

Can I make alterations to my booking?
If you would like to make any alterations to your holiday, such as a change of departure point, you must notify our UK sales and marketing office in writing as soon as possible. Check our contact us page for the address to write to. We charge a fee of £10 for each alteration which must be paid before an amendment can be made. While we endeavour to accommodate your requested change, we cannot guarantee that it will be met. In the case of flight bookings, any amendments may incur extra charges. Please refer to clause 19 of the booking conditions in the The River Cruise Lines handbook or your booking documents for full details.

Can I book cruise excursions while onboard?
Yes, we are happy to assist you with booking excursions while onboard our ships, just let your cruise manager know. You can pay in euros or sterling, and also by credit or debit card (there is an extra fee chargeable for card payments). You can book excursions before you travel please call 01858 438 490 for availability.

When should I book the excursions for my trip?
You can book your excursions at any time from the date of booking up until when you are onboard the ship (subject to availability). Please be aware that if you are booking onboard, the excursions will be slightly higher in price — you will not be able to take advantage of our pre-book package price. For more information, please visit our optional excursions page.

What happens if I want to cancel an excursion?
If you wish to cancel an excursion before you travel, you must notify us immediately and we will cancel your place and refund you the full cost (this option is not available if you are cancelling the whole holiday). Any excursions cancelled onboard are non-refundable but you may be able to claim on your insurance.

How is my cruise booking protected financially?
With The River Cruise Line you can book with confidence knowing that we are fully ABTA and ATOL registered. For more information on our membership with both of these organisations you can visit our protection information page.

 

GENERAL INFORMATION: 

Are your cruises suitable for children?
What currency will I need to take? 
Does The River Cruise Line offer a reward scheme?
When will I receive my travel documents?
Can I request a brochure?

Are your cruises suitable for children?
Unfortunately, due to the smaller layout of river cruise vessels, we are unable to offer any facilities or entertainment for children. Due to this, we are unable to accept children under the age of 12 on our cruises. Can I buy gift vouchers?

What currency will I need to take?
The currency that you require will depend on the countries you are travelling to. We do not offer a cruise currency exchange onboard our vessels, so you will need to make sure you have enough money before the trip. There will be opportunities to exchange more currency at the locations we visit. As we sail through a number of countries, please see the below guide for the currency you will need:

Euros                France, Belgium, Holland, Austria, Germany, Portugal, Slovakia and Luxembourg 
Swiss Franc      Switzerland (some tourist parts of Switzerland accept the Euro) 
Hungarian        Forint Hungary 
Romania          Leu Romania 
Bulgarian         Lev Bulgaria 
Croatia             Croatian Kuna 

Check with your local Post Office for the latest advice. Check with your local Post Office for the latest advice. Check with your local Post Office for the latest advice. There are ATMs in most of the towns and cities that we visit, and in most cases they accept UK credit and debit cards. An alternative is to use a pre-paid travel card, which acts like a debit/credit card so it can be used at many cash machines, shops and restaurants. Before you travel, you can add a certain amount to the card in the currency of your destination. These funds are also guaranteed should your card be lost or stolen. You can find more information about these cards on Money Saving Expert’s guide to pre-paid travel cards. The guide also contains advice on finding the best card for you.
Please note: If you are planning on using your credit or debit card on your trip abroad, you should contact your bank to inform them of when you will be travelling abroad and when you are returning home. This will prevent your card from being blocked by fraud-detection processes put in place to protect your bank account. There is usually a number you can call printed on the back of your bank card.

Does The River Cruise Line offer a reward scheme?
We are pleased to be able to offer our regular travellers membership in our Ambassador’s Club, where you can enjoy great discounts each time you book. You can then use this for your next cruise with us. For full details, please see our Ambassador’s Club information page.

When will I receive my travel documents?
You can expect to receive your joining instructions, luggage labels and cruise itinerary approximately 14 days before the departure date for your cruise.

When is the best time of year to book my river cruise?
The weather in Europe is at its best in the spring and summer (May to August), and it is best to avoid the school holiday periods if you want to experience the memorable locations with less crowds. Many of our cruises operate all year round so there is plenty of choice, but as some of them are seasonal (like our Christmas and New Year trips) the scope for booking can be a lot narrower.
You can stay up to date on the latest weather forecasts for Europe on these websites:
UK Met Office
AccuWeather
BBC Weather
The Weather Channel

Can I request a brochure?
Yes, you can request a copy of our latest brochure free of charge on our brochures page. Simply select which brochures you would like to receive and fill out the contact form on the page. You can also view online versions of the brochures from this page.

Can I buy gift vouchers?
Yes. We are pleased to be able to offer our customers a range of holiday vouchers that can be purchased and later redeemed against the value of one of our holidays. You can choose from amounts of £25, £50 and £100. To order yours, call our holiday advisors on 01858 438 490. For more information, please visit our gift vouchers page.

 

TRAVEL:

Contact telephone numbers during your holiday?
If I am travelling by coach, how many additional pick-up stops will be made?
If I am driving to the departure point, will I be able to park my car?
Where will I find the details of my travel hotel?
When will I receive my flight times and documents?
What do I need to do if I am travelling independently by air?
What happens if I want to stay overnight on the day I return?
What time will I depart and arrive back if travelling by coach?
How often will we stop for breaks on the coach?
What will the coach be like?
Where can I find my coach seat number?
Will my coach pick-up point definitely operate?
Travel Aware

Contact telephone numbers during your holiday
We strongly advise you to bring your mobile phone with you on your trip. Make sure it is switched on and you are contactable on your day of departure, as we will try to contact you if there will be any problems, such as a delay with the coach. If you have not already provided us with your mobile number, please give our office a call on 01858 438 490 so that we can update your records.

We also have a 24-hour emergency phone line, which you can call should you experience any problems while on your holiday. You can reach this phone line on 01858 438 464.

Please note: We can only provide assistance on holidays that are currently underway on this phone number. If you have a query regarding a past or future trip, please call the above office number for support.

If I am travelling by coach, how many additional pick-up stops will be made?
We understand that when you get on one of our coaches, you are eager to arrive at your destination and begin enjoying your holiday. With this in mind, we can guarantee that when you have boarded your tour coach, there will be no more than six additional pick-up stops en-route to the UK port of departure (excluding motorway services and overnight hotel stops).

If I am driving to the departure point, will I be able to park my car?
There is car parking available at the Newcastle, Hull, Harwich and Dover ferry terminals for those passengers with cars. Car parking at Hull is £7 per 24 hours, Newcastle is £12 per 24 hours, and Harwich is £9 per day. You do not need to pre-book either of these terminal car parks.

Car parking at Dover is £9 per 24 hours, and you do have the option to pre-book a space when arranging your holiday with us. Your parking directions and voucher for Dover will be sent to you with your travel instructions.

Please note: Parking at Dover may not always be close to the ferry terminal, and may be with a company who collect your car from the terminal and take it to a secure car park further away. Your car will be returned upon your arrival back at Dover.

If you are joining us at an airport, parking costs will vary depending on which one it is. You can visit the airport’s website for information about parking.

Please note: All prices listed here are correct at the time of publication.

Where will I find the details of my travel hotel?
If you are staying at a hotel en-route to or from your cruise, you will find contact details on your joining instructions. You can pass these details onto your next of kin while you are away on holiday. Your joining instructions will also include confirmation of your room type (ie twin, double, single, or triple). If you have any queries about your hotel, please get in touch with our holiday advisors on 0844 409 7971.

When will I receive my flight times and documents?
Your flight times and documentation will be sent to you approximately 14 days before departure. Your e-ticket or flight reference number, as well as details of what to do, will be sent with your joining instructions approximately 14 days before travel. Please check with the relevant airline for your luggage allowance.

What do I need to do if I am travelling independently by air?
We will provide you with a map of where the ship will be berthed and your boarding time with your travel documents. Remember that the vessel is not always berthed close to the relevant airport, so you will need to make your own arrangements to reach it. Please note that you will not be able to board the ship until approximately 6pm on the first day, and will be required to vacate your cabin by 8.30am on the final day. This is to allow for housekeeping etc.

What happens if I want to stay overnight on the day I return?
It is advisable to book an overnight stay for your return to the UK in advance of the cruise, but should you decide to while still onboard, it can still be arranged (subject to availability). Please notify your cruise manager of your intentions, and they will confirm availability for you. If there is a room available, you will need to pay the cruise manager aboard the ship.

What time will I depart and arrive back if travelling by coach?
Before we can estimate what time you will arrive home, we have to wait for all passengers to book so that we can create an accurate route and timetable for your trip. We start work on this around two weeks before the departure date, after which your joining instructions with exact times will be sent to you. Any times given prior to this are for guidance purposes only and subject to change. From our experience we can tell you that we aim to be at the port of departure as follows:

Daytime sailing:
Dover – 9am 
Harwich – 1pm

Overnight sailing:
Newcastle – 2pm 
Hull – 5pm 
Harwich – 9pm

How often will we stop for breaks on the coach?
When and where the coach stops for breaks is at the discretion of the driver, though we do ask that they make regular stops for your comfort, which is usually every three to four hours. We would also advise you to take refreshments with you, particularly if you have a medical condition or special diet to follow.
Please note: Euros are needed for services in European countries.

What will the coach be like?
Our coaches are of executive standard with toilets and air conditioning. If you fly to the continent, coaches used on transfers may not have these facilities but they will be comfortable. On some occasions, taxis or mini buses may be used for part of the journey. Smoking (including e-cigarettes) or drinking alcohol is not permitted on any of our vehicles, but regular stops will be made during the journey.

Where can I find my coach seat number?
Your coach seat numbers will be confirmed on your travel documents and will take into account, as far as possible, when your booking was made and any special requests made at the time of booking. There are a limited number of seats towards the front of the coach (usually the first three rows) that can be reserved for just £10 per person. If you have not already requested these, and you now wish to do so, please call one of our holiday advisors on 01858 438 490 and they will be able to check availability for your chosen cruise.

Will my coach pick-up point definitely operate?
Where coach travel is offered as part of the holiday, there is a minimum number of passengers required to operate a coach pick-up point. In the unlikely event that your chosen departure point does not achieve sufficient numbers, we will offer you alternative travel arrangements.

Foreign Office Advise
For the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information check www.gov.uk/travelaware 

Life on board

  • MS Serenity
  • MPS Lady Anne Crew
  • MV Dream Lounge area
  • MS Serenity
  • Captain Wido Arts MPS Lady Anne
  • MV Dream sun deck
  • Entertainment on the MPS Lady Anne
  • Swiss Ruby Bar Area
  • MS Serenity travellers
  • Douro Spirit spa area
  • MS Serenity reception
  • Captain Wido Arts mps Lady Anne
MS Serenity MPS Lady Anne CrewMV Dream Lounge area MS SerenityCaptain Wido Arts MPS Lady AnneMV Dream sun deckEntertainment on the MPS Lady AnneSwiss Ruby Bar Area MS Serenity travellers Douro Spirit spa area MS Serenity reception Captain Wido Arts mps Lady Anne

As our Captain carefully navigates the ship along celebrated waterways, your every need is catered for by the friendly crew whose priority is your comfort and enjoyment. Daytimes are spent relaxing in the lounge and admiring the panoramic views from the Sun Deck.

Delicious cuisine is served in the restaurant and when the sun sets you can enjoy drinks at the bar along with the entertainment.

When our ship is moored up you are free to come and go as you please, taking part in the included and optional excursions or just enjoying some time to yourself. You can do as much or as little as you choose, as part of a group or individually; and all without ever having to re-pack and move from the comfort of your ship.

Our ships

  • ms Serenity
  • mps Lady Anne
  • mps Lady Anne
  • ms Serenity
  • mps Lady Anne, Captain Wido Arts
  • African Queen
  • African Queen
  • mps Lady Anne Sun Deck
  • mps Lady Anne Restaurant
ms Serenity mps Lady Annemps Lady Anne ms Serenitymps Lady Anne, Captain Wido ArtsAfrican QueenAfrican Queenmps Lady Anne Sun Deckmps Lady Anne Restaurant

Below, you will find more detailed information about our cruise ships.

MS Serenity

MS Serenity

This stylish 4-star vessel allows passengers to explore the great waterways of Europe whilst being under the care of a friendly and attentive crew.

mps Lady Anne

MPS Lady Anne

This floating home-from-home brings together an experienced and friendly crew whose aim is to ensure you have a relaxing and enjoyable break while cruising through great scenery.

MV Dream

Experience the holiday of a lifetime aboard this modern ship, as you sail the crystal clear waters of the Adriatic Sea and take in the beauty of Croatia's coast.

African Queen

African Queen

This floating hotel combines an attentive crew and beautiful English countryside, ensuring a relaxing and unforgettable river cruise.

MS Douro Spirit

MS Douro Spirit

The MS Douro Spirit is a 4 star ship where modern design and attention to detail go hand in hand, to ensure a fantastic experience along Portugal’s most famous river - The River Douro.

MS Chernishevsky

Sail the Russian Waterways in style aboard the MS Chernishevsky. Purpose built for European river cruising and with your comfort in mind, the recently refurbished ship has everything you need.

MS Johannes Brahms

Both graceful and timeless, the MS Johannes Brahms is the ideal floating hotel if you’re looking to journey to the Baltic Isles.

MS Swiss Ruby

MS Swiss Ruby

Sail the spectacular waters of the River Seine aboard the luxurious 4 star Swiss Ruby. Designed with comfort in mind the ship has a warm and friendly atmosphere making it the perfect place to relax as you take in the stunning scenery of France.

MS Thurgau Rhone

The four star MS Thurgau Rhone is a contemporary and comfortable ship, aboard which you will be able to sail the River Rhone in style!

MV Infinity

MV Infinity

Built in 2015, this luxury yacht cruiser boasts an outstanding finish and sets the standards for an unforgettable cruise experience around the spectacular Dalmatian coast.

MS Seine Princess

MS Seine Princess

The MS Seine Princess was built in 2002 and tours the Seine River, providing passengers with a chic and stylish way to explore France

MS Princess

MS Princess

This ship allows passengers to enjoy their trip in cosy surroundings, as well as being given an unrivalled vantage point to see the passing attractions.

River Cruise Experience

  • River Rhine
  • mps Lady Anne
  • Rhine Valley
  • Strasbourg
  • Heidelberg
  • mps Lady Anne
  • Amsterdam
  • Budapest
  • mps Lady Anne
  • Rhine Castle
  • Budapest
  • ms Serenity
  • Cochem
  • River Rhine
  • Moselle Valley
  • Bratislava
River Rhinemps Lady AnneRhine ValleyStrasbourgHeidelbergmps Lady Anne AmsterdamBudapestmps Lady AnneRhine Castle Budapestms SerenityCochemRiver RhineMoselle ValleyBratislava

We’ve all heard the saying “the world is your oyster” – on a river cruise it really is, as you effortlessly glide through different countries, gazing at natural wonders and stopping at quaint towns and historical cities along the way. This is where life moves at a slower, more leisurely pace and every second counts towards your holiday, whether we’re moored at the riverside or cruising to our next destination.

Our ships

Find more detailed information about our cruise ships.

Frequently Asked Questions

We are committed to providing you with all the information you need for your holiday, so we have listed the following frequently asked questions:

Life on board

Read more about life on board our ships

Optional Excursions

Our Superb Range of Excursions

Thank You

Thank You for contacting us.

Your enquiry is very important to us, therefore we will endeavor to reply within the next 24 hours (excluding weekends and bank holidays).

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Inspiration

  • Keukenhof Gardens
  • Berlin Christmas Market
  • Rhine in Flames
  • River Rhine
  • River Danube
  • Budapest
  • Cologne
  • Wine Tasting
  • Wine Tasting
Keukenhof GardensBerlin Christmas MarketRhine in FlamesRiver RhineRiver DanubeBudapestCologneWine TastingWine Tasting

Whether you are new to river cruising or a seasoned traveller looking for your next adventure on the water, we at the River Cruise Line have something to suit all requirements. We cater for those looking for grand journeys on iconic rivers; seasonal trips showcasing countries at their most beautiful; and cruises unveiling local events and festivals. Whatever you choose, we guarantee a memorable holiday.

Keukenhof Gardens

Springtime Breaks

Sit back and relax on a springtime break to some of the most beautiful gardens in the world. Cruise through the picturesque waterways of the Netherlands, France and Belgium and enjoy some of the most immaculate landscapes Europe has to offer. 

7 days from £945

Keukenhof Gardens

Spring Gardens in Holland & Belgium 2019

Experience the ultimate spring sensation at some of the most beautiful gardens in Europe.
Porto on Portugal River Cruise

Summer Inspiration

New year, new destinations! Now that Christmas is over it's time to look for a little inspiration. Explore the stunning coastline of Croatia, sit back and relax on a cruise through the vineyards of Portugal or unwind on a tour of the lavender scented countryside of Provence. 

8 days from £2095

Porto

River Douro Cruise 2019

In a sundrenched corner of Europe, the Douro has created a spectacular valley as it wends its w...

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