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Dianna

Rhine River Cruise 2020 - FAQs

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Dianna

Here is the trip description and registration link: 

https://www.travelinghomeschoolers.com/rhine-river-cruise/

Is the trip still open? What cabins are left?

We’re currently at our max, but I'll put your registration on our waiting list and will let you know if spots come available. Please be prepared to pay in full (for the biggest discount) or half of the total non-discounted cruise fare. Regretfully, I can’t hold spots past the payment due date or offer other payment plans.

NOTE: I can’t tell you how long your wait might be. Not all families on waiting lists will follow through if offered spots, so even if there are 10 (or 100) families ahead of you, you may actually be the next family on the list.

Is the price quoted per person?

It's per cabin, and per person. Read the description under each cabin type for pricing.

Wow! That's a lot of money to send to someone I don't know. And no refunds! Can you provide references?

You're right to hesitate before sending money to anyone you don't know, especially someone you "met" on the internet. I could provide references from families who've traveled with me since I began doing these trips in 2006, but the references could be faked.

Instead, read my About page to find out more about our organization, then do a search of “Carolina Homeschooler trips" and "Traveling Homeschooler trips." If I’ve cheated anyone, it’ll be all over the internet. My “Traveling Homeschoolers” name is newer (created in 2016 it to differentiate between my local member trips, and trips that are open to everyone), so search both names.

You can also get a sense of who we are if you follow/read my Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/travelinghomeschoolers/

Please don’t register for any of my trips or send me money until you trust me. It's just too stressful!

Do you think you'll fill the ship and be able to confirm the trip?

We were able to with our first river cruise on the Danube. We had such an amazing experience on that trip that most of those families said they plan to go on the next cruise, too. If their plans haven't changed, I think there's a very good chance we'll fill the ship and be able to confirm by summer of 2019.

Update 7/21/18: The ship is full, but we're accepting waitlist registrations.

So did you enjoy your Danube River Cruise?

Yes. Absolutely yes. It was amazing in all respects. Most (maybe all) of us were ready to write the check for the next one before we left the ship. The adults loved it and the children (even the teens) loved it.

I've never been on a river cruise before. Can you give me an idea of the ship, activities, etc.?

The ship may change (since it's 2 years out), but I think most river cruise ships are typical - the top deck is open for viewing and hanging out in the sun. The remaining decks are half cabins, half social areas (lounge, seating areas, restaurants, etc.).

The cabins are 170 sq ft, and have French balconies, with two twins or 1 queen (they hook the twins together to make the queen). My website explains what meals, amenities, etc., are included in the price (almost everything).

The focus of river cruises is on the places we'll be visiting, not the ship (the opposite of ocean cruises), so there aren't a lot of planned ship activities during the day (because we're out touring). In the evenings, we enjoy socializing, playing games, getting to know each other, etc., and they often bring local entertainment (musicians, etc.) on board. There’s plenty to do, but also time for parents and children to socialize and bond. And they did plenty of that on our Danube cruise - it was wonderful!

How big are the cabins and beds?

Most of the cabins are 170 square feet. The two single cabins are smaller, and the suites are bigger. Check the cabin descriptions at my website for more information about each. The beds are smaller than US twins and queens. I had no complaints last time about the size of the beds, but if you have 3 in your party (with one age 10 or younger), really think about whether you want to share two twins or one queen among 3 people.

Does your website list everything we're doing? 

Cruise itineraries for 2020 haven't been finalized yet and is subject to change. We usually have a choice of tours each day, too, so you'll have a lot of choices - tours, walks, hikes, bike rides, etc.

When will you post information about the Switzerland extension?

I hope to post more information by the end of the month (July 2018) or early August.

I have young children. Can we all share one room?

You can have 3 in a cabin as long as one person is an adult (age 18 and up) and one is age 10 or under as of March 19, 2020 (age verification will be required). However, all three must use existing bedding (two twins or one queen that are smaller than US twins/queens). They can't add bedding (due to size of the cabins and safety issues). This trip is recommended for ages 8 and up.

Do they have cabins for families of 4, 5, 6...?

Cabins hold 2 people, or 3 as long as one person is an adult (age 18 and up) and one is age 10 or under as of March 19, 2020 (age verification will be required). Larger families will need more than one cabin.

I have a baby, toddler, preschooler - do they count in the price?

This trip is recommended for ages 8 and up, but everyone, regardless of age, counts in the price.

Should people with mobility issues go on this trip.

We'll have "gentle walker" versions of most tours to accommodate travelers with mobility issues. Describe your issues in the "special needs" section of the registration form and I'll make sure we can accommodate your issues before I confirm your spots and you mail your payment.

What cities will we fly to/out of?

Our cruise begins in Amsterdam, and ends in Basel, Switzerland. If you're doing the optional post-trip extension in Switzerland, we'll end in Zurich.

What payment methods do you accept?

Checks (personal and BillPay through your bank - not PopMoney), and transfers through Zelle (if your bank offers that service). I don't accept credit card payments for this trip.

Have any other questions? Please reply in this thread and I'll answer and add it to the list!

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Melissawilhoite

Do you have any idea the cost of airfare to the destination? 

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Dianna

We won't know for quite a while. But I'm not stressing about it as much as I did before we did the Danube because we were able to get group discounts that were much cheaper than anything we could find individually. My family saved around $500 per person, and others saved as much or more. Our rates were around $500 to $900 per person, depending on the hub. The Boston folks got the best deal!

That said, you can start doing test searches on Kayak (or whatever) and see what rates you can get for the end of March 2019. It will give you an idea, but we'll have to wait a while to see what rates will be for 2020.

Warmly,
Dianna

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