How many ships does The River Cruise Line have in its fleet? 

We currently have seven ships in our fleet. Our flagship, The Lady Anne is a three-star ship with four-star service. Originally a barge, in the 1960’s it was converted into the ship it is today, offering a comfortable, homely and friendly feel for those who cruise aboard it. MS Serenity is a large, modern vessel built in 2006 with four-star comforts. MS Princess, last renovated in 2010, is warm and welcoming. The MS Princess’ special dimensions allow her to sail on smaller rivers.

The African Queen is an award-winning floating hotel and one of the very few that sail the River Thames. Its small capacity of 14 ensures guests have a personalised, intimate experience whilst on board. MS Rhone Excellence is a premium vessel oozing with sophistication. The Russ cruises the Russian waterways and finally, MS Z Shashkov is a large five-deck ship purpose built for river cruising, allowing passengers to enjoy majestic countryside views.

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How does The River Cruise Line compete with other similar businesses?

We offer a personalised experience tailor-made to suit our British audience; this includes everything from onboard catering to crew announcements. The hassle free experience is also a benefit for many of our customers. Additionally, we guarantee that our prices remain stable year round to ensure our customers know they are getting the best deal possible.

What makes river cruising a popular activity for groups?

There’s something great about a floating hotel. Plus, our groups are all in one place and therefore, are able to dine and socialize together. They also have quick and easy access to the ship between excursions – so they can truly experience the history and culture of their destination.

What is the most popular time of year for group bookings?

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Amsterdam.

Most group travel organisers (GTOs) like to book over a year in advance, giving them time to plan and promote their river cruise. Booking later may mean that they are not able to secure their preferred sailing dates or cabins.

Recommended UK and European destinations for groups?

Our most popular destinations in the UK include Chatsworth House and Buckingham Palace. Our selection of garden and flower shows are also very well received. Looking further afield, we have popular visits to Normandy, Paris and Bruges, as well as some of Europe’s best Christmas markets.

What does The River Cruise Line offer groups?

There are many benefits available for groups, such as free places, free pick-ups and travel, free drinks packages, free excursion packages, bespoke tailor-made packages and presentations, and marketing materials upon request. Benefits are subject to product, duration and group size.

How does The River Cruise Line help GTOs plan their trips?

We have a dedicated team for groups, which is lead by Janet Fielding. Janet provides a truly personal and bespoke service, liaising directly with partners to ensure all aspects of the trip are in place. Janet was recognised for this fantastic service when she won a Group Travel Award in 2015. Contact Janet by email on janet.fielding@diamondhols.co.uk or call on 01858 435631.

What are the most important aspects of a group itinerary?

The journey to the ship needs to be well organised and there should be a clear day-to-day itinerary for the duration of the cruise, including full details of excursions, sightseeing and activities. This enables all members of the group to get maximum enjoyment from their bespoke river cruise.

House tanners, Petite France district. Strasbourg, France

House Tanners, Petite France District. Strasbourg, France

Are there any new developments for 2016/17?

The River Cruise Line has a variety of new and exciting itineraries for 2016. Passengers are invited to celebrate 15 years cruising with captain Wido aboard the Lady Anne in 2016. The captain’s choice explores Nijmegen – the oldest city in the Netherlands – and follows through the rivers and canals, discovering the magnificent Maasplassen, the historic Dordrecht and the pioneering architecture of Rotterdam.

Discover the hidden treasures of the Rhine, where pretty towns line the riverbanks, docking at some of Germany’s oldest and most beautiful locations, cruising all the way to Strasbourg, a picturesque city in France, and finishing the trip at Braubach, where cruisers are free to explore the medieval architecture before heading back to the UK. Passengers can enjoy Dutch and Belgian highlights aboard MS Serenity, where cruisers spend the first night of their voyage in culture-rich Amsterdam, where they can enjoy smooth landscapes and vast views as they sail through the Netherlands countryside and explore a trio of medieval Belgian cities.

Finally, cruisers can discover ancient treasures, natural scenery and an old-world atmosphere whilst exploring the medieval towns of Bavaria and the Rhine Valley aboard MS Serenity. Further details of The River Cruise Lines’ new cruise packages are available in their 2016 Brochure, which offers detailed itineraries and information, from onboard dining to an overview of their friendly team.

For more information visit www.rivercruiseline.co.uk