River cruise drinks packages and offerings can be slightly different to ocean cruises. If you’re planning a river cruise with AmaWaterways, it’s useful to understand what’s included and what isn’t. I’ve created this comprehensive AmaWaterways Drinks Guide to help you plan and budget for your European river cruise.
Disclaimer: I was invited to cruise onboard AmaMagna as part of a VIP Fam Trip organised by AmaWaterways. This blog post features my own, honest opinions of the cruise and what AmaWaterways has to offer.
AmaWaterways Drinks Policy
The drinks policy for AmaWaterways differs slightly depending on the destination. One aspect that is the same across all AmaWaterways cruises, is the complimentary drinks served during lunch and dinner onboard.
|Complimentary bottled water (daily)||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|24 hr Complimentary tea and coffee||Yes||Yes||No||Yes|
|Complimentary wine and beer with meals||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Additional cost for premium alcoholic drinks||Yes||No||No||Yes|
|Complimentary soft drinks and juices||Yes,|
|Yes||Yes, with meals||No|
|Sip and Sail Cocktail Hour||Yes||No||No||No|
Drinks on European River Cruises
AmaWaterways offers a huge selection of complimentary drinks onboard its European cruises. It has the greatest selection of drinks to passengers on its 14 ships based in Europe.
Complimentary bottled water is replenished in your stateroom on a daily basis. Water is also handed out as you leave the ship on excursions. Suite guests receive a complimentary stocked mini-bar (stocked once). Take a tour of a AmaWaterways’s suite.
In the main lounge, there is 24-hour access to tea and coffee making facilities including hot chocolate and herbal/fruit teas.
At breakfast, you can enjoy sparkling wine, juices, tea and coffee. During lunch and dinner, unlimited beer, wine and soft drinks are available with new selections offered daily. I would highly recommend choosing the carefully selected wine pairings, handpicked by the onboard sommelier.
Any additional drinks, such as premium alcoholic beverages, can be ordered at any time and added to your onboard account. Here are few examples of AmaWaterways’s drinks prices:
- Cocktails €7.00
- Fancy Martinis €6.30
- Mocktails €4.10
- soft drinks €1.50
- Bottled beer €2.75
- Glass of local wine €3.90
- Bottle of local wine €22.00
Sip and Sail Hour
A really nice feature of European river cruises is the daily Sip and Sail Hour that takes place in the main lounge and bar before dinner. There is a daily cocktail of the day and you can order complimentary wine, beer and spirits during this time.
This is an excellent opportunity to catch-up with fellow guests to chat and share stories about your day on land. At the beginning of the river cruise, the Captain’s welcome drinks reception is a good ice-breaker, with free champagne and canapes.
If you are sailing on the Danube and visit Vilshofen, you may also get to enjoy the AmWaterways’s Oktoberfest event. A marquee is erected on the dock to welcome river cruise passengers to a traditional Oktoberfest celebration with complimentary beer and pretzels on arrival. Read more in my guide to Vilshofen.
Special Interest Tours
AmaWaterways offers special excursions in many ports to enable guests to sample local food and drink. I personally loved these excursions as it helped us to learn more about the destinations through their specialties. There is no additional charge for these excursions.
Examples of some of these excursions include visiting a micro-brewery in Bratislava and wine tasting in Linz. The excursions are led by local experts, who share their knowledge and expertise in small group settings.
We enjoyed tasting a selection of apricot products on an excursion in Durnstein, hosted by the vineyard owner.
AmaWaterways offers wine cruises for those who want to explore popular wine regions such as the Douro Valley and Bordeaux. These themed cruises provide special interest tours of vineyards, wine cellars and tastings. These wine cruises have expert hosts to guide you on these tours and help to curate the wine and food pairings onboard. This offers a more immersive experience for cruisers who enjoy wine.
Can I bring alcoholic drinks on AmaWaterways?
You are welcome to bring drinks on to AmaWaterways river ships at any time during your cruise. This means that you can pick-up regional wines from the ports without needing to officially declare it. If you decide to drink your own alcohol onboard in the restaurant or public area, you may be charged a corkage fee of 8 euros per bottle.
Is AmaWaterways all-inclusive?
Technically, AmaWaterways is not all-inclusive but it offers a wide selection of alcoholic drinks throughout the day on European cruises. Sparkling wine with breakfast, local wine and beers at lunch and dinner, with the Sip and Sail Hour held before dinner every night. It feels very close to all-inclusive.
For more further information, check out what’s included on an AmaWaterways river cruise.
- AmaWaterways offers complimentary drinks with meals
- Although it isn’t all-inclusive, it is very close to being
- Bottled water is replenished daily in your stateroom
- Suite guests have complimentary soft drinks, juices and wine in their fridge
- Bottled water is handed out on excursions
- There’s a daily Sip and Sail Hour when you can enjoy complimentary cocktails, beers, wine and spirits
- Drinks prices are very reasonable
- There are special interest tours that include wine tasting
- AmaWaterways offers wine cruises for wine lovers
- You can bring alcoholic drinks onboard but there is a corkage fee of €8.00.