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geri 11-01-2005 12:32 PM

I need to post a few questions regarding our Rhine cruise on the MS Ravel on Dec. 30th with Grand Circle.
1. do the ATM machines in Amsterdam and Germany accept debit cards?
2. Do we need a gift for the host family and if so, what is suggested?
3. Are the tips for the Program Director given in US cash or Euros?

Oggy Boy 11-01-2005 02:28 PM

Yes, they should work fine. Using an ATM is the best way to access cash in the local currency. I believe that Grand Circle is dollar based, so I would assume that it is quoted in dollars, not euros. I could be wrong though, as I have never sailed with Grand Circle.


geri 11-02-2005 10:10 AM

Thank you, Tom, for answering me. From everything I read, I know you are so knowledgeable about ship travel. In regards to the Riverboats, is the evening dress a little bit nicer than the daytime travel clothes? I know it is not as dressy as an ocean cruise but I wonder if we should pack a few nicer things for evening, especially since our first night aboard is New Years Eve.

oppis 11-02-2005 02:07 PM

My parents have done the Rhine cruise from Cologne to Swisse and they enjoyed it so much.

But it could be very cold in december here in germany.

About nicer things for the evenings. They dont have the same dress code than on an ocean cruise ships, but in the evenings people dressed nicer than during the day. And partys on New Years Eve are for sure more festive than other evenings.

So, dont forget to pack some really warm clothesand some really nice clothes.
Almost every time when we come back from a vacation in a warm country like Florida in november, december, we have snow or sheet ice and have problems to get home from the airport to the town we live.

Enjoy your cruise, the regions next to the Rhine are beautiful and Im sure, you`ll like my homecountry germany and my second homecountry Holland.

best regards

Oggy Boy 11-02-2005 04:17 PM

I have not sailed on Grand Circle, but my experience on other river boats is that the evening's dress is still casual (Shirt and slacks for men, equal for women). There is usually one "Captains" evening where folks will wear a sport coat and optional tie, but that is about it.


geri 11-03-2005 01:37 PM

Hi Marita, thank you for your informative reply. We are Florida residents now but formally lived in New England and will be in Rhode Island previous to our Rivercruise, so we will be somewhat prepared for the weather. We are hoping to still see some of the holiday decorations in the towns we will be visiting. We are so looking forward to seeing what we can of your beautiful country. As this will be our first rivercruise, we have a lot to look forward to. We will be sure to bring warm clothes with us. A question: will your ATM machines accept my debit card?
Thanks, Geri

oppis 11-03-2005 02:28 PM

Im sorry Geri, but Im not familiar with your debit cards.

We have special ATM machines, located outside of different banks and you can use them, to get money with your creditcard, like Mastercard, Visa.
But I guess, a debit card is different.

You will probably see some christmas decorations, but unfortunately the christmas markets close on december 24th and thats what Germany is famous for.

But Im sure, that you will enjoy my country, so as I enjoy yours. I have been in New England with a cruise and have been in Florida several times and I love it.

Best wishes to Florida

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