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Amawaterways Sonata Rhine River Cruise vs. Ocean Cruises Recently made the journey from Amsterdam to Breslo, Switzerland on Amawaterways Sonata. Having only been on ocean cruises (SilverSeas), I have added some comparisons between the two. Hope you like it! Cruise Dates – We boarded on a Saturday afternoon and did not sail until Sunday afternoon. This is different from the ocean cruises, which sail same day. Translation: It may say 8 days cruise, but it’s really only 6. You don’t sail the first day, and you are out at 9:00 AM on the last day. Not complaining, but an ocean cruise is 7 days, not 6 since they sail same day. Cabins – OK, now I am going to complain. Six category upgrade gets me 210 feet? What? Two category upgrade gets me 330 feet on SilverSea. Yes, there was a French Balcony and Veranda, but we spent all our time on the sundeck up top. Would not get a Veranda again unless it was winter and bad weather. Just have to resign myself to bumping my elbows in the shower (there is no bathtub!) and running into my wife by the closet when I access the bathroom. Food – Excellent! Far better than SilverSeas. Their Chef’s Table is far superior to Le Champagne ($60 up charge!) on SilverSeas…and it’s free. You get it once per trip, but here is a tip: if it is not SOLD OUT you can get it multiple times. Here is the other BIG difference. Sonata had themed food for each country we visited. SilverSeas has an Italian restaurant. All Italian, all the time. Staff – No Butler like SilverSea. That is a bit of a bummer. Cabin Attendants on Sonata were superior to SilverSeas, as was our Cruise Manager Florentin. Brother was hustling 24x7. Desk Attendants were friendly, as were the tour guides. Tours – They are all included. Mostly hiking/biking, so best for active people, however there are also plenty of walking tours. NO CHARGE. My last bill on SilverSeas for tours was $2,000. It would be fine if they passed the tours through at cost, but they don’t. SilverSeas marks them up, and to my mind, gouges the customers. Entertainment – We had GREAT entertainment! Sonata had themed entertainment every night. German music in Germany and French music in France. That…was very cool. SilverSeas has production shows each night. Good, but different than themed music. Please Come Back! – They offered us 5% off the next cruise if we left a deposit. Let me make sure I have this right. You want me to pay 12 to 18 months in advance for a 5% discount? Seriously? Make it 15% and you have a deal. Amawaterways does discount, but they probably have to given the competition in the cruise market. And most people would tell you Viking is better. SilverSeas is like rolex: no discounts ever. One BIG Complaint – So here is my BIGGEST beef. Cruise companies need to control the passengers. Last out on SilverSeas we have a group of four drunks that were an issue most days. Playing their boom box by the pool while people were trying to relax or read a book. Getting wrecked on alcohol and stumbling around. Showing up 30 minutes late for tours and making us all wait. On the Sonata, same thing, a party of eight this time. They had issues…EVERY SINGLE DAY. Disrupted the introductions on day one. Disrupted dinner on day two. Late for all the tours. It is incumbent upon Amawaterways and Silverseas to NOT serve alcohol to passengers that are obviously inebriated and behaving badly. If I want that, I’ll cruise on Carnival. Bahahahaha!

Amawaterways Sonata Rhine River Cruise vs. Ocean Cruises

AmaSonata Cruise Review by mwayman

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Trip Details
Amawaterways Sonata Rhine River Cruise vs. Ocean Cruises

Recently made the journey from Amsterdam to Breslo, Switzerland on Amawaterways Sonata. Having only been on ocean cruises (SilverSeas), I have added some comparisons between the two. Hope you like it!

Cruise Dates – We boarded on a Saturday afternoon and did not sail until Sunday afternoon. This is different from the ocean cruises, which sail same day. Translation: It may say 8 days cruise, but it’s really only 6. You don’t sail the first day, and you are out at 9:00 AM on the last day. Not complaining, but an ocean cruise is 7 days, not 6 since they sail same day.

Cabins – OK, now I am going to complain. Six category upgrade gets me 210 feet? What? Two category upgrade gets me 330 feet on SilverSea. Yes, there was a French Balcony and Veranda, but we spent all our time on the sundeck up top. Would not get a Veranda again unless it was winter and bad weather. Just have to resign myself to bumping my elbows in the shower (there is no bathtub!) and running into my wife by the closet when I access the bathroom.

Food – Excellent! Far better than SilverSeas. Their Chef’s Table is far superior to Le Champagne ($60 up charge!) on SilverSeas…and it’s free. You get it once per trip, but here is a tip: if it is not SOLD OUT you can get it multiple times. Here is the other BIG difference. Sonata had themed food for each country we visited. SilverSeas has an Italian restaurant. All Italian, all the time.

Staff – No Butler like SilverSea. That is a bit of a bummer. Cabin Attendants on Sonata were superior to SilverSeas, as was our Cruise Manager Florentin. Brother was hustling 24x7. Desk Attendants were friendly, as were the tour guides.

Tours – They are all included. Mostly hiking/biking, so best for active people, however there are also plenty of walking tours. NO CHARGE. My last bill on SilverSeas for tours was $2,000. It would be fine if they passed the tours through at cost, but they don’t. SilverSeas marks them up, and to my mind, gouges the customers.

Entertainment – We had GREAT entertainment! Sonata had themed entertainment every night. German music in Germany and French music in France. That…was very cool. SilverSeas has production shows each night. Good, but different than themed music.

Please Come Back! – They offered us 5% off the next cruise if we left a deposit. Let me make sure I have this right. You want me to pay 12 to 18 months in advance for a 5% discount? Seriously? Make it 15% and you have a deal. Amawaterways does discount, but they probably have to given the competition in the cruise market. And most people would tell you Viking is better. SilverSeas is like rolex: no discounts ever.

One BIG Complaint – So here is my BIGGEST beef. Cruise companies need to control the passengers. Last out on SilverSeas we have a group of four drunks that were an issue most days. Playing their boom box by the pool while people were trying to relax or read a book. Getting wrecked on alcohol and stumbling around. Showing up 30 minutes late for tours and making us all wait. On the Sonata, same thing, a party of eight this time. They had issues…EVERY SINGLE DAY. Disrupted the introductions on day one. Disrupted dinner on day two. Late for all the tours. It is incumbent upon Amawaterways and Silverseas to NOT serve alcohol to passengers that are obviously inebriated and behaving badly. If I want that, I’ll cruise on Carnival. Bahahahaha!
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