I’ve just returned home from my third overseas trip since our ships resumed cruising on July 3, 2021. I have traveled through Germany, France, The Netherlands, Jordan and Egypt – filling out the necessary forms to comply with each country and of course with the airlines that I traveled with. I was excited to join our guests and crew on board our lovely new ship, AmaSiena, as she was christened in Lahnstein, Germany. My cruise was cut a little short as I headed to Jordan where I met up with our first guests on the pre-Egypt cruise land package. What a thrill to have incredible sites like Petra and Mt. Nebo almost to ourselves. Next stop was Cairo where we met up with more guests preparing to embark in Luxor for the inaugural cruise of our newest ship, AmaDahlia, on the Nile. The last leg of this journey brought me back to France where I was joined by our guests on board AmaKristina as she is sailing her first Colors of Provence season on the Rhône River between Lyon and Avignon.
I can’t begin to thank all our amazing crew, local travel partners and pioneering loyal guests who have shared these incredible journeys with me, making them so memorable and energizing.
While international travel may require more preparation, patience, and attention to detail than in the past, I can confidently say that the rewards are countless and the experiences have never felt so precious. Crowds are almost non-existent and I was swept away by the warm and genuine welcomes I received from local guides, restaurant owners and taxi drivers everywhere I went. There is such a genuine and heartfelt gratitude that American and Canadian travelers are back visiting their countries.
Part of what makes river cruising so special is that our intimate ships take our guests into the heart of a region, offering the opportunity to interact with the local communities and contribute directly to their economic and social recovery. There are some small changes evident on board in order to implement the highest standards of health and safety protocols, but our amazing crew continue to pamper our guests with delectable cuisine, hand-picked regional wines and lots of healthy open-air tours and sun-deck activities to enjoy. While the changing entry regulations may require careful review, once you are on board our ships, our Cruise Managers take care of all the details – from printing out any required forms to assisting with creating QR codes to organizing the PCR or Antigen tests you need for your return trip home.
Staying flexible, positive and open to change are important to enjoying any overseas holiday. Here are a few tips that I would like to share which helped me remain stress-free during my international travels:
- Check the validity of your passport early and ensure you are fully vaccinated at least two weeks before your departure. Americans may want to access a free service like “Clear” to digitally register their vaccination card and create a QR code.
- Even if not required by your airline or destination, for added peace of mind, book a PCR test to be taken within 72 hours prior to your departure flight.
- Leave yourself extra time for everything – arrive at the airport early, add a pre-cruise day or two, and have ample time between connecting flights.
- Pay close attention to any emails you receive regarding your trip and double check the travel entry requirements on our website and those of your airline before you leave.
- Be organized and carry paper copies of all your documents – digital versions are convenient but cell phone batteries always seem to run out when you need them most.
- As always, be sure you have sufficient Travel Cancellation, Medical and Trip Interruption Insurance and verify that it covers all Covid-19 related expenses.
- Finally, work with a travel advisor who will take care of the details so you can focus on fulfilling your much-anticipated travel dreams and making new memories with friends and family.
Please enjoy this new video where our guests share their heartfelt feedback on Why River Cruise Now?