As part of our series on cruising the Danube River, we compare the costs of a Danube River cruise and independent travel on the river. In addition, we help you navigate some of the unexpected costs -- like pre- and post-cruise stays, port excursions fees, and other parts that can add up.
Save travel costs with a European river cruise
We know that European cruise prices can be hefty upfront. The most high-end can even be in the tens of thousands. Still, they are often a cheaper alternative to traveling abroad on your own. Traveling Europe and the Danube River independently, you’ll be faced with the cost of hotels, transportation, tours, dining, and whatever else comes up along the journey. These costs add up quickly, especially if you choose to stay in nicer hotels or fly between cities.
Meals are usually included with our cruise lines, so you don’t have to search for food, knowing a world-class meal is waiting for you after a long day of exploring. Most cruises book your port excursion tours ahead of time, so you don’t have to waste time or money on another.
Lastly, don’t forget that your ship is your transportation -- saving you potential thousands of dollars in transportation costs. The average airplane ticket within Europe is approximately $200. If you plan to fly to all the countries along the Danube -- a total of ten -- you’ll be paying $2,000 just to get from place to place. A Danube European river cruise cost, on average, is far less than the cost of booking hotel rooms, transportation, and all the other things that go into traveling Europe.
Breaking down unexpected Danube River cruise costs
As the EU’s longest river, the Danube offers a ton of things to do on any of its river cruises. These voyages tend to be all-inclusive, but you can still be faced with a few unexpected costs depending on your cruise line and journey.
Some Danube River cruises include a limited number of excursions for you to take part in, and then charge port excursion fees if you plan to take part in any additional excursions beyond that. The average excursion cost is only a few hundred dollars, and is a great investment if you’re hoping to take advantage of the tours and activities arranged by your cruise line.
The last, more common unexpected expense is exploring each city you’ll visit along your river cruise. The Danube is filled with a number of exciting cities, and it’s enjoyable to participate in the culture, dining, and nightlife of each. If you’re picking up souvenirs, eating at restaurants, or grabbing cocktails at an interesting bar, these costs can add up. While your cruise ship has its own dining and drinks, it's best to estimate anywhere from $500 to $1,000 for additional fun in the city.
Learn more about our Danube River cruise costs
Our Danube cruise prices can vary based on the cruise line, length of the trip, and amenities included. At Authentic Voyages, we only offer the best. We constantly evaluate our offerings to ensure we’re connecting you with cruises that we’d take ourselves. To learn more about our current Danube cruise offerings, contact one of our river cruising experts today!
On a Danube River cruise, you’ll have the chance to see a large portion of Europe. Many great cities line the river, inviting cruisers to explore their culture, dining, art, history, and architecture. In addition, other sites and sights await, ensuring every moment along the Danube is memorable.
Prepare for the diverse Danube
Packing for a European river cruise on the Danube is one of the most important parts of getting ready for your journey. The river covers a lot of ground as the European Union’s longest river. It also visits more countries than any other river in the world. The Danube runs through or along Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria, Moldova and Ukraine. The river is massive, at just over 2,800 km in length. Comparatively, the distance from North to South in the United States is close to 2,600 km.
What we mean to say by all this is that the Danube features a wide range of cities, countries, and peoples along its course. With all that diversity also come different climates -- something one should be prepared for when taking a Danube River cruise. Here, we’ve listed the most important things to pack so you won’t have to worry, or make unexpected purchases, on your voyage.
Pack for every occasion with layers
Don’t overdress for your Danube cruise
As with many things nowadays, dress codes are relaxing and casual clothing has become the predominant way to dress for the majority of occasions. Danube cruises are no exception -- on board most ships, you’ll want to be dressed practically for whatever adventure awaits. We typically recommend our guests bring along a dress or a nice pair of trousers paired with a button-up, polo, or blouse for any nice dinners on the ship. When in doubt -- and whatever you choose to wear -- smart casual is a good, flexible option to take on anything the day may bring.
Bring interchangeable clothes to get the most bang-for-your-buck
Most of our cruise lines feature laundry rooms or services, so you won’t need to pack as many clothes. To help you get the most out of the clothes you do bring, we recommend packing clothing separates that can easily be worn with other items in your wardrobe. Going with a color scheme is one of the most popular ways to do this, so you’ll never have to worry about mismatched items.
Aside from these major things, packing as light and as organized as possible is always the way to go when traveling Europe. It’ll help you navigate smaller hallways, rooms, and elevators. Always be sure to consult one of our European cruise experts to ensure you pack accordingly for your voyage and the time of year. We hope these tips will help you make the most of your Danube River cruise experience, and wish you the best travels!
One of the world’s most beautiful rivers, the blue Danube River is a wonderful place to visit any time of year. During the Spring and Summer months, the river is lined with greenery and flowers in bloom, and the weather can be warm and sunny. In Fall and Winter, voyagers can find trees changing colors, fun urban life, and, if they’re lucky, even a bit of snow on their Danube River cruise.
Our favorite time of year for Danube cruises
Reasons to take a Fall Danube Cruise
The city of Munich, Germany is also a popular attraction along these river cruises. Though the Danube is kilometers away, many cruises include it as an excursion. The city is especially great during October, when the world famous (and world’s largest) Oktoberfest celebration takes place. Oktoberfest in Munich is an extravagant celebration, where the city's German beer history is showcased and lively music is found all over.
Another reason to visit during the Fall cruising season is the chance to see harvest time in the area’s vineyards. The Danube Wine Region encompasses a large area, offering a diverse range of wine varieties.
The weather on Fall Danube cruises is delightful too. Days spent on your luxury cruise ship’s sun deck can be fully enjoyed with a local glass of wine or a good book from the ship’s library. The temperature is never too hot or too cold, ensuring everyone has an enjoyable time. A jacket does come in handy for the crisp Fall evenings, but you won’t need a heavy coat just yet.
Enjoy cruising the Danube year-round
Though our favorite time to cruise the Danube is during the Fall, the river offers a great experience all year long. The Spring months are just as popular, and many would argue that they are the best time for Danube River cruise travels. Cruises during the Spring do see a bit more rain, but the river is lined with beautiful flowers and other plants in bloom. The weather can be about as perfect as can be, and the cities, mirroring the flowers, are teeming with life.
During the Summer, river cruises can be quite a bit warmer, but no less enjoyable. The river provides a cooling relief, while longer days allow more time to enjoy your ship’s sun deck. These are also quite popular along the Danube, especially for those who take the Danube all the way to the Black Sea.
Danube River cruises are some of the most popular in Europe for good reason. With countless things to do, cities to see, and ways to enjoy your voyage, these are one of the best ways to see Europe. To learn more about our offerings and what cruises are currently available, be sure to take a look at our Danube River cruise itineraries.