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Amsterdam/Budapest-How many people are usually on the trip/ship?? Link to/Share this Topic     Watch      Print
billybowlegs
#1 Posted : Saturday, September 08, 2018 9:23:03 PM

Posts: 13

Just curious how many people are usually on this trip. I was expecting around 120-130 people and it looks like our cruise is fully booked. Was just reading other comments where some cruises only had 50-70 people.

I read where there is a tour director assigned to each group of 40 people.

Thanks for any input.....also, do you travel with the same tour director/group of people the entire time or do they move you around. We have only done one other tour with Tauk and it was a small group with just 1 tour director and only 20 people.
AshvEd
#2 Posted : Saturday, September 08, 2018 10:17:07 PM

Posts: 440

We had about 90 on our river cruise. There was 1 Cruise Director and 3 Tour Directors. We selected one of three colored poker chips for each person each morning and that color indicated the bus we got on. There were about 30 chips of each color so the group was evenly split up. We could have had any one of the 3 TDs on any given day off the ship.
Sealord
#3 Posted : Saturday, September 08, 2018 10:18:22 PM



Posts: 567

The bigger boats hold around 130 people. Same size boat on Viking holds 190. They are comfortable. They have one senior TD in charge, and several assistants. You have much more contact with the local guides than the TD’s on the river boat trips. On our Danube trip, they had boxes of poker chips that you chose. The number of chips was the number of people each local guide had to take care of. So you and your group could choose the same color chip to be in the same group, or just choose any at random. ‘Managing’ the poker chip thing sometimes became something of a game. You don’t always want to be the first person in the ‘chip’ line. (;-). Seeing what color chips other people choose can sometimes be helpful.
AlanS
#4 Posted : Saturday, September 08, 2018 10:42:48 PM



Posts: 2,077

billybowlegs wrote:
Just curious how many people are usually on this trip. I was expecting around 120-130 people and it looks like our cruise is fully booked. Was just reading other comments where some cruises only had 50-70 people.

I read where there is a tour director assigned to each group of 40 people.

Thanks for any input.....also, do you travel with the same tour director/group of people the entire time or do they move you around. We have only done one other tour with Tauck and it was a small group with just 1 tour director and only 20 people.


I can't answer for you particular trip, but if you read the cruise description or the information about the particular boat, you'll see a maximum number of guests. If the trip is fully booked (and everyone shows up) you can expect close to the maximum. There are exceptions, e.g. a single person reserves a room intended for two (Tauck doesn't force you to share, and if the room isn't covered by a single traveler exception, you pay more.) On the other hand, I believe they will allow 3 people in a Cat 7 cabin designed for two.

If the cruise is not fully booked the number on board will be less than max. On our recent Blue Danube river cruise we were on the MS Joy, one of Tauck's (Scylla's) new (2106) boats. The MS Joy "accommodates a maximum of 130 guests in a total of 67 cabins." We had only 88 guests on our 12 April cruise. We are looking at taking Rendezvous on the Seine on the MS Sapphire which accommodates "no more than 98 guests."

You can sail on either the MS Treasures or MS Esprit on the Amsterdam to Budapest river cruise. Both accommodate 98 guests.

On Blue Danube we had one Tauck cruise director and 3 tour directors. I don't know how many are on the smaller boats. We were broken into groups for touring, but did not use chips like Ed and Sealord. In some locations we had the choice of totally different excursions (selected 2 months earlier) so the size of a particular group and the number of groups depended on how many signed up for each option. Like Tauck land tours, we usually had local guides in most locations, in addition to the Tour Directors. No one was assigned to a specific group or TD.
Claudia Sails
#5 Posted : Sunday, September 09, 2018 7:09:03 AM



Posts: 1,060

First to answer billybowlegs (love the name):

On the Budapest/Amsterdam cruise, like any that have to traverse the Main canal, Tauck only uses the shorter, older ships in it's fleet like the Treasure, Esprit, Sapphire, Emerald, etc which are only 110 m long. These were all redesigned in 2017/18 to convert all the Ruby Deck 150 sqft staterooms into larger 225 sqft mini suites. That lowered the max passenger capacity to 98.

As to how many will be on your cruise, it's impossible to tell. We were on a Seine cruise in June 2017 on the Sapphire and only had 59 passengers. We've also been on cruises that were at the max.

Yes, they estimate 1 TD per 30-40 passengers plus the Cruise Director who generally stays on board at a desk in reception handling alot of the paperwork and the behind the scenes coordination that a land tour TD has to do on their own. You aren't designated a specific TD that you stay with the entire tour. One day you might be with one and the next one of the others. On the Seine we only had a CD, 2 official TDs and one who was cross training from the Danube to the Seine.

I'm not sure the poker chip system is still in use. It was kind of nice if you were traveling with a group because you could make an agreement each day to pick a specific color (we always picked green) or send one person up to the lounge to pick enough chips for all your group. We used it for 2 cruises then on the Seine cruise they didn't and I was told then that Tauck wasn't using it any more. You just got on which every bus you wanted to. Of course that may have been because our group was so small. Also, unlike the land cruises, there is no assigned seating on the bus. We almost always head to the back door where there is seldom a wait to get on and just grab a seat.

For Alan, are you sure about the Joy being refurbished? It only joined the fleet in 2016. It's part of the longer 135 m ships that started with the Inspire and Savor in 2014, then the Joy and Grace joined in 2016. They are completely different than the older fleet and the only ones with the loft cabins.
AshvEd
#6 Posted : Sunday, September 09, 2018 9:57:03 AM

Posts: 440

We were on the Ms. Joy's first paid voyage in 2016 and it was a brand new ship.
billybowlegs
#7 Posted : Sunday, September 09, 2018 12:13:49 PM

Posts: 13

Thanks for all the responses!! Great info. We will be on the MS Treasures and I looked at the ship info and it accomodates 98 people max.

We noticed that an iron/board are in the cat 7 rooms but not listed as an item in cat 6 rooms. Does this mean there is no iron/board in cat 6 rooms? Is there a an option to iron somewhere on the ship if this is the case or do you rely on laundry service?

We hope to minimize an iron need but it would come in handy if we didn't need to pack one.
Thanks!
British
#8 Posted : Sunday, September 09, 2018 12:34:41 PM

Posts: 3,018

Ships will sometimes not allow your own irons.. In all my tours I have never ever had a need to iron, I take clothes that do not require ironing and roll my clothing in the suitcase which prevents creasing. Believe me, I love ironing and like my clothing to look crisp. I always iron my sheets which some friends think is crazy. But for traveling I only take clothing that does not require ironing and goodness, Mr B would not allow it anyway, we are on vacation, well on tour, hardly a true vacation.
AlanS
#9 Posted : Sunday, September 09, 2018 1:07:42 PM



Posts: 2,077

AshvEd wrote:
We were on the Ms. Joy's first paid voyage in 2016 and it was a brand new ship.


You are correct, I confused the Joy (new in 2016) with MS Sapphire and MS Emerald, which along with Treasures and Esprit, has undergone total refits ("totally gutted") in 2016 and 2017. While having fewer cabins than MS Joy, I wish the others had been modified to the Joy configuration with loft cabins.
Claudia Sails
#10 Posted : Sunday, September 09, 2018 3:32:37 PM



Posts: 1,060

billybowlegs wrote:
Thanks for all the responses!! Great info. We will be on the MS Treasures and I looked at the ship info and it accomodates 98 people max.

We noticed that an iron/board are in the cat 7 rooms but not listed as an item in cat 6 rooms. Does this mean there is no iron/board in cat 6 rooms? Is there a an option to iron somewhere on the ship if this is the case or do you rely on laundry service?

We hope to minimize an iron need but it would come in handy if we didn't need to pack one.
Thanks!


You're correct that only the Cat 7 suites have their own. However, if you need an iron/ironing board you can ask at the reception desk and they will loan you one.

One of the big advantages of a river cruise is unpacking and hanging up your clothing as soon as you arrive (they supply hangers). I always bring a small empty spray bottle that I fill with water there. Using it and a blow dryer I can pretty much take care of any thing minor.
Claudia Sails
#11 Posted : Sunday, September 09, 2018 3:37:46 PM



Posts: 1,060

AlanS wrote:
You are correct, I confused the Joy (new in 2016) with MS Sapphire and MS Emerald, which along with Treasures and Esprit, has undergone total refits ("totally gutted") in 2016 and 2017. While having fewer cabins than MS Joy, I wish the others had been modified to the Joy configuration with loft cabins.


They have been known in the past to refresh the decor on the ships after a few years. Our first experience on the Swiss Emerald they had just eliminated the old crimson/gold bordello decor with the more neutral cream/tan.

While I loved our Cat 6 on the Sapphire last year (and same cabin booked on the Treasures next) I would have been fine if they'd left the smaller 150 sqft cabins with just a refresh/modernization like new decor, usb plugs, etc. You aren't the only one that wishes they had loft cabins on all their fleet.
Anne Fran
#12 Posted : Monday, September 10, 2018 1:17:27 PM

Posts: 1

We just came back from Amsterdam to Budapest. We boarded the MS Sprit in Amsterdam and were bussed to the MS Treasures half-way throuhg the trip due to low water on the Danube. We had 78 tourists, one cruise director and two tour directors. The CD is responisble for all on ship issues and the TDs are responsible for all off ship issues. The bussing, after a city excursion, took 3 hours! But we were served cookies, crackers and wine on the bus by our tour directors to ease the pain - yes, it was painless! The Sprit and Treasures are sister ships and we kept our same cabin number! I believe the mazimum passenger count is around 90, i.e., 45 staterooms. Tauck does have larger ships.
billybowlegs
#13 Posted : Sunday, September 16, 2018 11:38:46 AM

Posts: 13

Glad we can checkout irons/boards if needed. You can pack using rolled clothes/small packing bags, wrinkle free clothes but will still have some ironing needed, especially for sport coat/jackets. One item we always bring when limited access to irons/reasonable fees for dry cleaning is "Downy wrinkle release spray" This really works and comes in handy while traveling.
AlanS
#14 Posted : Sunday, September 16, 2018 9:05:04 PM



Posts: 2,077

Anne Fran wrote:
We just came back from Amsterdam to Budapest. We boarded the MS Sprit in Amsterdam and were bussed to the MS Treasures half-way throuhg the trip due to low water on the Danube. We had 78 tourists, one cruise director and two tour directors. The CD is responisble for all on ship issues and the TDs are responsible for all off ship issues. The bussing, after a city excursion, took 3 hours! But we were served cookies, crackers and wine on the bus by our tour directors to ease the pain - yes, it was painless! The Sprit and Treasures are sister ships and we kept our same cabin number! I believe the mazimum passenger count is around 90, i.e., 45 staterooms. Tauck does have larger ships.


I’ m curious if your transfer coincided with a transfer of Tauck guests from Treasures to Esprit? That might explain the three hours- time to collect luggage and deliver it to the other ship, and also time to change sheets and to give each stateroom a quick cleaning. Tauck will often do something similar on land tours- when you arrive in a new town/new hotel, they will herd you into the lobby for a hot towel and refreshing drink (while bags are taken off the bus), then have you re-board the bus for a city tour (while the porters take bags to the rooms.)
Travelcrazy
#15 Posted : Monday, September 17, 2018 11:41:30 AM



Posts: 33

Claudia Sails wrote:
I always bring a small empty spray bottle that I fill with water there. Using it and a blow dryer I can pretty much take care of any thing minor.


What a good idea! I always hang my clothes as soon as I arrive and even when I had a suite, I didn't bother with ironing anything. But your suggestion would be so much easier. That and the Downey wrinkle releaser should handle anything.
dmdiehl
#16 Posted : Sunday, October 07, 2018 7:19:00 AM

Posts: 6

Just finished Amsterdam to Budapest . Due to water level, The transfer from the Espirit to the Treasures included a 3 hr Motorcoach drive. We did a day of sightseeing and we were given 20 euros each for lunch. Our luggage was driven separately in the a.m. and arrived before we did and was in our room when we arrived. We arrived 4 hours later due to accident on the road. TDs surprised us with fun things to keep us happy on bus. We also had an additional 1 1/2 hrs each way on bus since we were docked at different place due to the transfer for the next day tour, but it is what it is and we all made the best of it. There were subtle differences in the cabins. We were on Deck 3 and our room was mirror image. Our 3rd floor suite was huge. Cruise Director, Tea and the Tauck Director Emil were great. Had 88 guests and all were fun. The entire cruise and crew on both ships were great. After disembarking yesterday, we took a flight to Prague and will be here 3 nights at the Four Seasons. Just finished a private walking tour and will have a private tour tomorrow with drivers and same guide we had today.
Emma
#17 Posted : Wednesday, February 06, 2019 5:01:13 PM

Posts: 25

We are on this trip in September. Is this o a private trip to Prague or did you use a tour company?

Thank you