Please carefully read this General Information, which contains useful details that you need to know before you book your cruise holiday. Should there be some additional information that you require or you have questions about any aspect of your cruise, please do not hesitate to contact us. Fuller, more detailed information will be forwarded in our pre-sailing booklet around two months before you sail.
There is no restriction on the amount of luggage that you may bring on board the cruises which depart from and return to the UK. If you are travelling on a fly-cruise, or are flying to your UK embarkation port, the amount of accompanying baggage will be limited by the airline baggage allowance, which is usually 15-20kgs per person, dependent on the carrier. In order to reduce the risk of accidental damage during baggage handling, please do not over-pack your suitcases and also ensure that no one item of baggage weighs more than 23kgs/50lbs or porterage services may be refused. As there are no separate Baggage Room facilities aboard our ships, it should be noted that all baggage must be stored within the cabin. Under bed storage is available in most cabins for suitcases not exceeding 23cms depth. We strongly recommend the use of security locks for your luggage for all parts of your journey. Jewellery, medication, travel documents, passport and other valuables should be kept in your hand luggage. All baggage should be clearly labelled, do not forget to specify your name and cabin number on the luggage labels. The Company has limited responsibility for any loss or damage to your luggage during transit to or from the ship. In case of loss or damage advise the carriers involved and your insurance company.
In order to travel aboard our ships it is important that passengers read and accept, or in the case of web bookings, acknowledge that they have read the Booking Conditions, which cover the detailed terms and conditions under which bookings are accepted. It is the passenger’s responsibility to ensure that all the ship’s manifest information, including, but not limited to, full names, dates of birth, passport details, travel insurance and medical declarations are provided to the company in a timely manner. Failure to provide such information and a signed acknowledgement of our Booking Conditions could result in a delay in boarding at Embarkation or, in extreme circumstances, the permissions to board being refused.
The information contained in this brochure has been checked for accuracy and is correct at the time of printing in December 2016. Worldwide events subsequent to this date may necessitate unavoidable alterations to our planned schedules. Any such changes deemed to be significant orfundamental to your booking will be advised to you accordingly. It should also be noted that the destination photography and maps are generic to the locations depicted and may not be a specific representation of sights or images to be viewed in a particular port of call on the cruise booked. Similarly, cabin photography is typical of the category shown but individual furnishings and colour schemes may vary within the same cabin grade.
Children and Teens
Please note that Magellan, Marco Polo, Astoria and Columbus are child-free (with the exception of cruises C708, C709) and therefore for the enjoyment of adult passengers only (16 years and above at the time of sailing). There are no dedicated recreational facilities for children aboard Astor but nevertheless accompanied children and teenagers under the age of 18 at the date of sailing are of course welcome on board and, when occupying a third or fourth berth in a cabin with two full fare paying passengers, travel at the beneficial rate shown under the ‘Fares’ boxes. Children and teens under the age of 18 at the date of sailing but occupying a twin cabin with just one accompanying adult, are charged at the full adult fare.
During the day, attitudes are very relaxed and informality is the key. Casual clothing is quite sufficient during the days at sea and for time spent ashore. On certain shore excursions and at some religious sites, discretion should be used so as not to cause inadvertent offence with inappropriate clothing. Advice will be given on board in such cases. Every day, the Daily Programme suggests, as a guide, a mode of dress for that particular evening’s events. Generally there are two ‘formal’ or gala nights planned on each cruise when many gentlemen wear a dinner jacket, although a lounge suit is quite acceptable. The ladies on these occasions have a chance to dress up and often opt for evening or cocktail dresses. On evenings proposed as ‘informal’, a suit or smart jacket and trousers, with or without a tie, for the men is suggested and the ladies have further opportunities to look elegant in a cocktail dress, trouser suits and stylish co-ordinates. A ‘casual’ recommendation often covers evenings spent in port or when a special event such as a deck party is scheduled. In these cases, the choice of dress is left entirely to you.
Duty Free Sales
The onboard shops are open daily when each ship is at sea, but local customs regulations do not permit the sale of duty free goods whilst a ship is in port. It should be noted that liquor and tobacco products purchased will only be delivered to your cabin on the last day of the cruise. Drink and tobacco may of course be purchased throughout the cruise from the ships’ bars at the listed shipboard prices.
All cabins feature 110v and 220v current and have an electrical socket to allow small appliances such as electric shavers, electric rollers and hair stylers to be used. Each cabin is equipped with a hair dryer. It is advisable to bring a UK three pin to European round two pin universal adapters in order to access electrical supply in the cabins. For safety reasons, irons and water heating devices are not permitted to be used on board. Astor & Columbus both have ironing room facilities for those passengers who wish to iron their own garments.
The embarkation procedures at UK ports normally commence four hours prior to the published sailing time. At final disembarkation, you should allow approximately 90 minutes from the scheduled arrival time before disembarkation will commence. The full embarkation and disembarkation procedures and timings will be confirmed when tickets and cruise documentation are despatched, usually 14 days prior to sail date.
Extras not included
Please refer to our 'Look Whats Included' section. Unless otherwise stated, the following extras are not included: travel insurance; travel joining costs to the port of embarkation (except for flycruises where specified); optional shore excursions; port parking; onboard expenditure of a personal nature i.e. drinks, gifts, shopping, laundry, communications etc; any visa & health certificate charges that may apply; and crew gratuities which will be automatically billed to your onboard account.
All fares published in this brochure and on our website for Astor are cruise only per person and exclude the outward and/or return cost of flights and/or transfers to/from the port of embarkation or disembarkation.
Many of the flight-inclusive holidays in this brochure are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. But ATOL protection does not apply to all holiday and travel services listed in this brochure. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it, those parts will not be ATOL protected. Please see our booking conditions for information, or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to www.atol.org.uk/ATOLCertificate
Our fares for fly-cruises are based on economy class scheduled/low cost/charter flights. Regional flights and upgrade options may be available at a supplement and subject to availability. It should be noted that our contracted fares may not always be available. In this case we will offer you the best available flights at a supplement which will be advised to you before you book. The earlier you book, the more chance you have that our low contracted fares are available. All flights are subject to availability and the Carrier’s terms and conditions of carriage and baggage restrictions (normally 15 – 20kgs per person unless stated otherwise). We reserve the right to determine the carrier and routing.
Except where otherwise expressly stated in these booking conditions, we regret we cannot accept liability or pay any compensation where the performance or prompt performance of our contractual obligations is prevented or affected by or you otherwise suffer any damage (or as more fully described under Our Responsibility in our main booking conditions) as a result of ‘Force Majeure’. ‘Force Majeure’ means any event which we or the supplier of service(s) in question could not, even with all due care foresee or avoid. Such events may include war or threat or war, riot civil strife, actual or threatened terrorist activity, industrial dispute, natural or nuclear disaster, adverse weather conditions, fire or similar events outside or our control.
According to international custom in the hospitality industry, tipping is accepted as the standard recognition of good service. For your greater convenience we operate an automatic tipping system aboard Astor, Astoria, Magellan, Marco Polo and Columbus; so instead of worrying how much and when to tip, an amount of £5.00 per person per night (£4.00 per person per night for cruises of more than 16 nights duration) or for Astor’s Australian season, the amount of AUS $10.00 per person per night (AUS $8.00 per person per night for cruise of more than 11 nights in duration) will be debited to your on board account daily throughout the cruise. Nevertheless, should you feel you have received exceptional service from a particular crew member, you are quite at liberty to additionally reward the individual concerned.
If we accept your booking, but are unable at the time to quote you a specific cabin number, or you have booked one of the Voyager Cabin Guarantees that are available on certain cruises, we shall allocate you a ‘guaranteed’ cabin at the fare quoted for your chosen grade of accommodation. Please note that you may ultimately be berthed in a higher grade of cabin for the same price, but in some circumstances this may be located on a lower deck, or have an obstructed view. In most cases, the cabin number will be confirmed at the ticketing stage; however, we reserve the right to make changes up to the time of embarkation. Please note a guaranteed cabin is referenced with the codes GT, IG or OG with a 3 or 4 digit number followings. This number does not constitute your cabin number and is for internal reference only. Your final cabin numbers will be confirmed with your cruise tickets.
Please check with your health care professional for up to date information on health and travel alerts from the countries you are visiting. It is the responsibility of passengers to ensure that they comply with all health and vaccination requirements and are adequately protected. You can also access online information resources from the World Health Organisation website at http://www.who.int/topics/vaccines/en/ and the Centres for Disease Control website at; www.cdc.gov/travel. At the time of going to press, passengers booked to travel on Magellan’s Northbound voyages from Auckland onwards and sectors), Columbus’s World Cruise C803 sailing 5th January 2018 (and sectors) and on Magellan’s Amazon Cruise G802 sailing on 5th January 2018 are recommended to obtain a Yellow Fever inoculation in advance of these cruises. Further details of this will be sent with Pre Sailing information. There are currently no mandatory vaccinations for visiting any of the ports of call for Magellan, Marco Polo, Astor, Astoria, or Columbus cruises mentioned in this brochure. Useful up to date information is also available at:
Holiday & Accommodation Information
In this edition of our brochure, we have endeavoured to provide as much essential information as space permits about our ships. However, please bear in mind that from time to time, certain facilities, activities entertainments and shore excursions may be altered or withdrawn due to adverse weather conditions, lack of demand, essential maintenance work or other reasons beyond our control.
International Date Line
Please note that the durations stated for cruises that cross the International Date Line are based on the calendar year. These cruises are however priced accordingly to take account of any lost or gained days when crossing the Date Line.
It should be noted that the cruise itineraries published in this brochure are subject to amendment. Should major changes to the ports of call, other than timing adjustments or the order in which they are visited, become necessary we shall endeavour to notify you in advance. Please note that in the event of adverse weather or sea conditions that prevent a vessel from calling at one of the scheduled ports of call, alternative arrangements will be made where possible. This is particularly pertinent to cruises around the waters of the British Isles. The order of visiting scheduled ports of call may also be varied due to congestion, tidal or other operational reasons. It should also be noted that the viewing of natural phenomena such as the Aurora Borealis or the Midnight Sun are entirely dependant on favourable weather and/or atmospheric conditions at the time.
Whilst our cruises are ostensibly sold to the British cruise market, we continue to welcome passengers of other nationalities.
Manage My Cruise
Our online facility Manage My Cruise, accessed through our website, enables you to view your booking at any time and complete or amend the personal information of all of the passengers on your booking. Visit www.cruiseandmaritime.com and click on ‘Manage My Cruise’ on our home page. Please also see the Online Booking section overleaf.
In the interest of your own safety and well-being, you must be fit and healthy to take your cruise and all other travel arrangements that you book with us. Therefore, the Company must be advised at the time of booking of any pre-existing medical condition and of any change to a passenger’s condition that occurs between booking and the sailing date. Medical Declarations, made either online at Manage My Cruise or on the Company’s official form, will be required by all passengers including those who a) are pregnant or b) have a psychological or physical disability, including mobility limitations. Cruise & Maritime Voyages reserves the right in its absolute discretion to refuse boarding to persons who in the opinion of the Company’s Medical Consultant are unfit to undertake the cruise or who have failed to make full disclosure of the nature of their condition. Upon arrival at the embarkation port, you will also be required to complete a Public Health Questionnaire. If you have suffered from any viral symptoms such as diarrhoea, vomiting or flu-like symptoms within the 48 hours before sailing, you must immediately contact your GP and notify us providing details of the symptoms suffered. Based on the information you provide, if we reasonably feel that you are not fit to travel, we will not allow you to board. The Company regrets that it cannot accept bookings from passengers who will be twenty-eight weeks pregnant or more by the end of their cruise. Please note that a failure to disclose a specified medical condition may additionally invalidate your travel insurance.
The services of our qualified medical staff are available to you on board in the event of ‘mal de mer’ or an emergency. It should be noted that the NHS does not cover treatment on the ship and there is a scale of charges for surgery visits and medical treatment. Such charges, which are usually claimable under your travel insurance policy, less any excess amounts, must be paid in full prior to your final disembarkation. Seasickness tablets are available from Reception at a nominal charge.
If you or one of your travelling companions has a mobility limitation or special needs, it is essential that you contact our office to allow us to discuss your requirements before you make a booking. Firstly though, please read the panel headed ‘Maritime Passenger Rights’ within the Booking Conditions as this contains important information. In the interests of safety, and in order to ascertain whether you or members of the party travelling with you have specific mobility or other special needs, you will be asked a series of questions. The answers to these will enable us to determine that you, any other person in your booking, and any equipment that you or they are intending to bring on board can be carried safely for the duration of your cruise. This will then be confirmed in writing to you, and will enable your booking to proceed. A cruise is quite unlike a land based holiday and the ships of our fleet are not ideally suited to prospective passengers in wheelchairs or those who have limited mobility. It should be noted that the layout of the ship could considerably restrict such passengers’ movement around the vessel and indeed preclude access to some of the ports of call, where gangway conditions are not conducive or passengers are conveyed ashore by tender. At anchorage ports, access to or from the tenders or launches requires a certain level of mobility which is necessary to manage the steps to the tender platform and to physically board and disembark from the vessel. It should therefore be noted that, on safety grounds, those with restricted mobility may be unable to go ashore at such ports.
All prices on board Magellan, Marco Polo, Astoria and Columbus are quoted in Sterling and in Australian Dollars aboard Astor. A cashless system is in operation for all of your on board purchases. An account is opened for you at the start of your cruise and you sign a debit when purchasing goods and services on board. This is charged to your shipboard account and a final invoice is presented at the end of the cruise itemising all charges. This can be settled by Travellers’ Cheques, which incur a 3% transaction fee, or by MasterCard or Visa credit cards, or by Visa debit cards, and of course, cash. It is not possible to use personal cheques to settle on board accounts. The Reception staff also offer a facility to purchase small amounts of certain foreign currencies for use in some of the ports of call. Please note that an extra charge may be levied by your issuing bank for using your credit/debit card onboard the vessel, as these payments are processed outside of the UK. Therefore please ensure you notify your bank that you are traveling outside of the UK. We now accept Pre-Paid Credit Cards (showing the VISA or Mastercard symbol) on our vessels.
For a quick and convenient way to make your cruise booking, please book online at our site www.cruiseandmaritime.com. Our online booking service offers you a choice of cabin numbers and an immediate confirmation sent direct to your email address. Once made, you can also view and maintain or add additional information through our Manage My Cruise facility, described above.
A passport is essential for all cruises, including mini-cruises and sailings around the British Isles and Republic of Ireland and all British Citizens must hold a full ten year passport. Many countries, including most of those visited during the winter cruise programme and on the Astor cruise schedule, require visitors to hold passports that have at least six months validity beyond the return date of the cruise. It is the responsibility of holders of non-British passports to check with the relevant consular authorities of the countries to be visited to ascertain if there are any specific restrictions or requirements for their planned itinerary. Any passenger arriving at the departure port without a passport, or with the incorrect documentation, will not be allowed to embark. Such circumstances are not covered by insurance and no refund claims will be entertained.
A number of cabins can accommodate a third or fourth passenger in upper Pullman berths. Such berths are accessed by a short ladder, which is stored in the cabin and when not in use, the berths are folded back against the cabin wall. Potential occupants of Pullmans therefore need to be to sufficiently fit and able to climb the ladder to reach their berth. Please refer to the deck plans to ascertain which cabins offer Pullman berth capacity for additional occupants.
In order to maintain a high standard of customer service, please be aware that telephone calls made to our Reservations & Customer Services Departments are recorded for monitoring and training purposes.
Complimentary tea and coffee is available from the relevant refreshment station on each ship between the hours of 06.00 and midnight each day (with the exception of Magellan & Columbus which is 24 hours). Outside of these times, you may purchase hot drinks and a range of speciality coffees from any of the ship’s bars.
Restaurant & Table Reservations
Whilst breakfasts and lunches are generally served in the restaurant on an open seating basis, two sittings with allocated seating are operated for dinner in the evening. On days at sea, these sittings are normally timed to commence from 18.00hrs and 20.15hrs and these timings may vary during port days. You should state any preferences for a particular dinner sitting and/or table size at the time of booking. Please note that requests for specific dining sittings and/or table sizes will be treated strictly on a ‘first come, first served’ basis and will be subject to availability. Whilst every effort will be made to accommodate preferences, no guarantee or confirmations can be given.
Safety on Board
Shortly before the ship sails, or if this is not possible within 24 hours of departure, a full safety drill will be held and this compulsory exercise will give passengers precise information of what to do and where to muster in the event of an emergency on board as well as important instructions about life jackets and the emergency procedures in place. In the event of adverse weather or sea conditions it is important to take extra care moving around the ship, making use of the handrails and heeding any special instructions given over the P.A. system. In certain sea conditions, use of the passenger lifts may be suspended for the duration and outside cabins on the lower decks may have protective covers, known as deadlights, placed over their portholes. These covers will therefore exclude natural light from the cabins affected. Such restrictions will be lifted as soon as it is practicable.
For your complete security and peace of mind, there are stringent security measures in force, particularly at UK ports. All cabin baggage will be electronically screened, hand baggage may be examined and you will be required to pass through an X-Ray arch prior to boarding the vessel. At embarkation you will be issued with a personalised ID card which is used for gangway control purposes and validates you as a bona-fide passenger.
An attractive programme of optional excursions is offered at each of our ports of call. The exact content and pricing of the programme will be finalised closer to your cruise. You will be sent full details, including information on how to pre-register for your excursions online or by post, with your pre-sailing information around eight weeks prior to sailing. Availability permitting, you will also be able to book on board with our Shore Excursion staff who will be pleased to assist you in selecting the excursions most suitable for your requirements.
Smoking is no longer permitted inside our ships. Consequently, all internal areas, comprising cabins, lounges, restaurants and other public rooms are non-smoking areas. Designated areas for smokers are available externally in selected areas of the open decks. We reserve the right to alter our smoking policy during the cruising season and should new national or international maritime legislation subsequently affect this policy, passengers will be informed on board accordingly. E-cigarettes or similar are only permitted to be used in designated smoking areas.
If you, or a member of your party, have a particular dietary requirement, we are able to offer the following dietary options: gluten-free, lactose-free, low cholesterol, low fat, low salt and vegetarian meals. If you have not done so at the time of booking, please advise any requirements no later than two weeks prior to departure. Pre-packed Kosher and Halal meals are available but only if requested at least 6 weeks prior to sailing.
A technical call, as highlighted by the * in the itinerary, is a short duration visit to a port which is made for a specific purpose only. Such reasons for scheduling a technical call include the taking on of fresh water or fuel oil or embarking or disembarking participants of an organised shore excursion which commences at one port and rejoins the vessel at another. It is not possible for independent passengers to go ashore during these brief technical calls.
It is a condition of booking that all passengers hold fully comprehensive travel insurance cover that is valid for the entire duration of your cruise holiday and provides health cover for pre-existing conditions and the costs of medical repatriations. It should also include Personal Luggage insurance since there is a limited liability for loss or damage. South Quay Travel & Leisure Ltd is able to offer a comprehensive travel insurance policy to passengers that are booked directly with them and details are shown on here. If you are booked through a travel agent or a tour operator, or opt not to purchase this insurance, you must give details of the alternative cover that you have in place, including the name of your insurer, policy number and most importantly the telephone number of the insurer’s Emergency Assistance service. You may be refused boarding if you are unable to provide this information.
Each cabin has the facility of a personal safe for your valuables and important papers. The Company is not responsible for any theft or loss of any items not kept in the safety boxes. The Company does not accept responsibility for loss or theft of cameras, video cameras, chargers and other valuable electrical items which are your responsibility at all times.
Together with our preferred visa provider CIBTVisas, we are pleased to provide any British passport holders with a simple online solution to all your visa requirements. Detailed visa information specific to your cruise, any required documentation needed to support applications, plus the official application forms can all be found on the CIBTVisas website. Please visit www.cibtvisas.co.uk/cruiseandmaritime or call on 0207 593 6223. Please note that as you are travelling by sea, your visa requirements may be different to the standard advice supplied for air travel. Your visa requirements may differ if you do not hold a British passport. You should contact relevant embassies or consulates for further advice. It is a passenger’s own responsibility to ensure that they hold the correct documentation to visit the countries shown on their chosen itinerary. Failure to have the correct documents prior to sailing will result in you being denied boarding.
Due to the stringent security measures in force, it is regretted that it is not possible to allow visitors on board our vessels during their calls to UK ports
River Cruise General Information
Please carefully read the General Information section above, which contains useful details that you need to know before you book your cruise holiday. In addition, the following specific information applies to CMV Signature River Cruises.
According to international custom in the hospitality industry, tipping is accepted as the standard recognition of good service. Although discretionary, we suggest a gratuity of Euros 8 per person per night shared amongst your crew on board.
It should be noted that the river cruise itineraries published in this brochure are subject to amendment. Should major changes to the ports of call, other than timing adjustments or the order in which they are visited, become necessary, we shall endeavour to notify you in advance. Please note that in the event of adverse weather or other factors outside our control leading to unsuitable tidal, river, bridge or lock conditions that prevent a vessel from calling at one or more of the scheduled ports of call, alternative arrangements will be made where possible. Water levels, bridge and lock conditions on rivers can change on a daily basis and in serious cases it is possible that the itinerary can be affected with little or no warning. These changes do not constitute a major change to the holiday.
Travel Information - Fly Cruise
Air travel from/to the UK is included on all our river cruises together with transfers from the airport to the ship and the ship to the return airport. Our fares are based on economy class scheduled/low cost/ flights. Regional flights and upgrade options may be available at a supplement and subject to availability. It should be noted that our contracted fares may not always be available. In this case we will offer you the best available flights at a supplement which will be advised to you before you book. The earlier you book, the more chance you have that our low contracted fares are available. All flights are subject to availability and the Carrier’s terms and conditions of carriage and baggage restrictions (normally 15 - 20kgs per person unless stated otherwise). We reserve the right to determine the carrier and routing.
Cruise Fare Include
- River cruise passage in the cabin category of your choice
- Return flights from/to UK
- Overseas transfers airport/ship/airport
- Full board cuisine
- Entertainment including local folkloric at selected ports
- Port charges
Extras Not Included
Travel insurance. Travel joining costs to the UK departure airport/station. Optional shore excursions. Long term airport parking. Expenditure of a personal nature on board ship – drinks (other than those included with lunch/dinner as specified), gifts, shopping, laundry, communications etc. Any visa & health certificate charges that may apply, crew gratuities – see above.