Avalon – Take Me Away

Last week I had the opportunity to attend a lunch-and-learn offering made by Globus Family Brands.  If you haven’t heard of Globus they are comprised of four unique and truly incredible products.  Globus is fully escorted tours both in the US and abroad.  Monograms is independent (non-escorted) world wide travel.  Cosmos is value escorted vacations in Europe and US.  Then, there is Avalon Waterways which is what I wanted to tell you about today.  I will write other articles going into the other brands but today I want to focus on the exceptional quality and experience of Avalon.   I’m very, very excited to be able to bring you such incredible adventures.

Avalon Waterways is river cruising at its best.  They offer river cruises in Europe, Asia, Egypt and the Galapagos Islands.  Each itinerary is incredibly well thought out and offers unique experiences.  Doesn’t this look like something you want to do?

Cruising the Rhine

There are several differences in cruising the large ocean going ships and the smaller more intimate river cruising ships.  One, of course, is the size.  On a river cruise, instead of being aboard with 5,000 or so other passengers as you would be on an ocean cruise, you are more likely to have a mere 130 to 160 passengers.

For those who don’t feel comfortable with being in the middle of the ocean, river cruising could be an excellent option.  You will have land on both sides of you throughout the trip and never leave sight of land at all.

These cruises are all-inclusive.  Yep, all-inclusive!  Some of the included features that you must pay extra for on a large ocean liner are:  shore excursions, pre or post-night hotels (included on many of the cruises), dining options and 5 course welcome and farewell dinners, (wine, beer or soft drinks) with meals, specialty coffees 24 hr., wi-fi access, outside cabins, 80% open air balconies, destination guidebook and cruise documents.  The inclusions are just part of what makes this company such an outstanding choice for cruising.

With Avalon each stop along the way is an opportunity for a shore excursion into ports that the larger ships cannot reach.  Imagine starting your voyage in Amsterdam then  stopping at several scheduled excursions in Germany and ending up in Paris by high speed train.  What about a cruise along the Nile in Africa or the Yangtze in Asia?  These cruises are more like guided tours than anything you will experience on the typical ocean voyage.

Speaking of tours, each destination has a tour guide who knows the area intimately and will show you around and acquaint you with the locality.  On each excursion, you have a headset to listen to the guide.  This is really nice because you can be up to 100 feet away and still hear them.  Ladies, this means you can shop along the way or browse things on your own and still learn everything you wanted to learn!  Now, it doesn’t get much better than this.

Chain Bridge in Budapest

I could go on and on about Avalon and all the things they offer.  This is truly a wonderful opportunity to combine the experience of cruising with luxury and sightseeing all on the same vacation.  I am just tickled to be able to share it with you.  I’m thinking that I can knock “Paris in the Spring” off my bucket list by taking one of these fabulous cruises!!

I’m happy to announce that we now have our new Avalon website set up where you can browse all the offerings they have, information regarding their fleet and itineraries, as well as request quotes and rates.  Check it out here.  If you have any questions or need any information, please let me know.  I’ll be happy to help you.  Also, if you have taken an Avalon Waterways cruise, I would love to hear all about it.

Happy Travels,

Edwina Parker

Categories: all-inclusive, Cruise, Cruising, Travel, Travel, Yapa Now Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

A Beginners Guide To Group Cruising

Last week in the article Business on the High Seas, I shared with you some of the reasons businesses are choosing to use group cruises to draw customers to seminars, training and sales meetings.

But what if you are not a celebrity or business owner? Do you belong to a social group, networking group, church group or any other type of association with like-minded people? Then a group cruise could be a great benefit to you also.

For those who are interested in a group cruise for social reasons only, many of the same benefits apply. A group can be many things; family reunions, girls getaways, social clubs, weddings, culinary clubs or any other variety of group. If you are a group of this type, all you need to do is give your group information to everyone you are inviting and have your travel agent take care of everything for you. Each person makes their payment to the travel agent so you do not have the burden of handling everyone’s finances. For the individual, or host/hostess, group cruises are a great way to score a free cruise and enjoy time with your friends or family.

Imagine instead of everyone meeting at Aunt Millie’s house this summer for the family reunion, you all chose to get together for a cruise. Gone is the chore trying to figure out where everyone would sleep or who should be responsible for what duties in the kitchen. For the first time at your family reunion, everyone would have the opportunity to visit, enjoy each other’s company and explore different ports together.

Cruises are great for girls getaways too. By the time you each pay for a hotel room and meals in your chosen destination you could have paid for a cruise! Lounging by the pool, dancing til dawn, exploring other cultures, an assortment of excursions and priceless time together make cruising a wonderful option.

You might be surprised how many people you know who would join you for a group cruise. You might also be surprised how many people are already taking cruises when you mention it to them. Remember, any type of group is an opportunity. The key here is to be the host/hostess before someone else gets the idea. As the group leader, the only responsibility you have is getting the word out to your group. The benefits for you are tremendous. You can be cruising for free and you can score on board credits for yourself and your group.

If you would like to explore the possibility of a group cruise please feel free to contact me. My services as a travel agent are free to you as always. I am paid by the suppliers just like the online agencies so I never charge a fee. If you already have an agent, give them a call. They can help you with all the planning and coordinating of events. By using a travel agent, you can also make a small deposit and pay for your trip in installments. Often, we can get the initial deposit down to a very small sum depending on the sales at the time.

Happy travels,


Categories: Cruise, Cruising, Destinations, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

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