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Cigar an September 15th, 2014 07:08 AM

What to wear?
Serious question! Our first ever cruise of any sort is Amsterdam to Budapest - last week in Oct and first week in Nov. We are assuming it will not be hot and not too cold. But what to wear ? We are in our seventies. I normally wear linen in summer and cords in winter. We've been advised that jacket and tie are not necessary but what is appropriate. I don't mind casual but I don't want to be the worst dressed on board. Any good suggestions ?

Cigar an September 16th, 2014 01:37 PM

Anything special required for dinner? Is it really as informal as the brochures lead us to believe? Has anyone here actually been on this cruise ?

Trip September 16th, 2014 05:32 PM

Welcome to Cruisemates ! I wish I could say I's a dream ...everything I have heard is that casual, is the way to go.. Nice casual slacks, with a knit shirt for the men, and for the ladies, travel knit separates, would work beautifully to mix and match.

I would though bring some light outerwear, to layer. Enjoy your fabulous cruise. September 16th, 2014 06:30 PM

First, Viking is a little less formal than some of the nicer river cruise companies, but all are more informal than ocean cruises. For dinner, I just wore khakis and an Oxford button-down shirt or a golf shirt, depending on the weather.

At that time of year, it will be cool, can be chilly with rain. I suggest taking items that you can wear in layers. For example, I have a long-sleeve shirt, then I have a fleece jacket I can wear over that if it's cool and dry. I have a nice rain jacket (which is a must have) that I can wear by itself if it's wet and not cold, or in conjunction with the fleece jacket if it's chilly and wet.

One thing that you have to have is a really good pair of sturdy walking shoes (not athletic shoes). Not only will you do alot of walking, but it'll be done on uneven surfaces and cobblestone.


Cigar an September 17th, 2014 06:30 AM

Well thanks for this advice. I'm a little perturbed ,as a first time cruiser, to hear your opinion that Viking is not one of the nicer companies. It had better be, it's not cheap, not for me anyway!
As a seventy year old from the UK, "khakis and an Oxford button down shirt" doesn't mean much to me and ,as a golfer myself, I don't consider a golf shirt to be appropriate at all. But if your recommendation is likely to be typical it certainly gives me food for thought. Thanks again. September 17th, 2014 02:23 PM

Didn't mean to 'perturb' you. Everyone's opinion is different. Just based on alot of feedback from our clients as well as our own personal experiences, Ama Waterways, Uniworld, and Avalon are just a bit nicer, and Tauck and Scenic Tours are much nicer. As for expensive, river cruises are all relatively expensive - more so than ocean cruises. Just depends on what you want, how much you want to pay, and the experience you're seeking. While I've not been on all of these, I have a very good friend of mine who has been on all of them many times (he lived in Germany for many years) and his taste and mine are very similar. His ranking (not mine), puts them in order; Uniworld, Ama Waterways, Avalon, and then Viking. Tauck & Scenic are in a higher luxury class by themselves. But as I said, everyone's opinion is different. We took a tour of several of these lines while we were on our Uniworld cruise and from our perspective I agreed with his assessment of Viking - nice, but rather bland. He's not saying their bad by any means, just some of the others are a bit nicer. Sort of like comparing ocean cruise companies. I have clients who love Viking and won't travel on any other as they absolutely love what Viking has to offer. But it's like anything else in life; you get what you pay for and sometimes paying a bit more gets a nicer product. Just depends entirely on what you want, your budget, and your lifestyle. For a first time cruise, Viking will provide you with a very nice experience and will leave you wanting to do it again.

Sorry about the shirt - wasn't sure what else to call it. Maybe someone else can help me on this one, but for lack of a better description, an Oxford shirt is a shirt with a button down collar that I might wear with a tie, but in this case would not wear the tie. As for khakis, just a nice pair of pants but not something I'd wear with a suit. Hope that helps. As for the golf shirt, it really does depend on the weather and your taste in clothes. I personally never wore a golf shirt for dinner, but I do tend to dress up a bit more than some. For example, on cool nights, I wore a sport coat, but I was one of the few and not the many. Bottom line, wear what makes you feel comfortable and don't worry about others.


Cigar an September 18th, 2014 05:44 AM

Thanks for taking the time to expand on your previous comments. Very helpful. September 18th, 2014 01:37 PM

Just this morning I got a cruise review from two couples who returned from an Avalon cruise last weekend. Their first river cruise was on Viking and when they were ready to book their next river cruise, they said they liked Viking but wanted something a bit more upscale, so I gave them the same list in order that I provided below. After looking at the websites and the prices, they decided to move up one step and wanted to give Avalon a try. Their review was very glowing and they said they definitely liked Avalon better than Viking. Of course, they also mentioned now they want to move up one more step and see what they next one has to offer.

That's the one good thing about cruising, there's something out there for everyone and half the fun is trying them all until you find one that matches your needs the best.

By the way, one of the cruise line companies I didn't put on the list (and there are many small ones out there) is A-Rosa. We got to tour one of their boats and it was wonderful. Would love to give them a try. They just started marketing to the No. American crowd and I haven't had a client book them yet, but from what I've seen, they look like they offer a wonderful product.

If only the money was there so we could try them all!

But they are a wonderful way to see Europe and once you go, you're hooked.


mellywils84 October 5th, 2015 04:43 PM

Casual but warm worked well for us! You can look at their introduction video to see what others are wearing :)

Sistersolo October 5th, 2015 07:46 PM

On the Viking cruises my husband and I have taken, very few people changed for dinner unless they had been doing something strenuous during the day. Cords and a clean shirt (or blouse for the lady) are fine. Going into November can get quite cool, so bring a sweater and jacket you can layer. Both Amsterdam and Budapest are worth spending extra time in, if you can.

Frederico October 11th, 2015 04:53 PM

So we are about to make a short, 3-day river cruise in November:

I had a chat with my friend who has like dozen of similar cruises through Europe. She usually wore like comfortable but nice looking pants with a decent looking top (no logos). She also wore long dresses and skirts. Ladies might want a light weight cardigan for visiting churches. She mostly wore comfortable sandals (not flip flops). They had one day of rain so bring an umbrella just in case.
Her overall tip was: dress comfortable but stylish and enjoy! Great time of year to visite Europe is: any time :D.

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