13 Day Eastern Danube River Cruise with Budapest & Bucharest

From

$3499

Land Only

$4599*

Air & Land

13 Day Eastern Danube River Cruise with Budapest & Bucharest

From

$3499

Land Only

$4599*

Air & Land


Video
Book Now!
Friends & family

Not Included:
Optional shore excursions and gratuities.


Additional Information:
Cruise only price does not include arrival/departure transfers. Due to physical constraints and space limitations, wheelchairs and walkers are not allowed on motor coaches and/or river cruises. Kindly refer to our Terms for additional information.

While sailing with Monarch Cruises, passengers are subject to the cruise's Terms & Conditions which can be viewed at: Monarch Cruises Terms & Conditions.


Know Before You Book - High & Low Water

European river cruising has gained in popularity for very good reason. It's a relaxing and convenient way to experience Europe while enjoying the comfort of a deluxe ship. However, before making the decision to reserve your vacation, please be aware of potential conditions which may impact your cruise. While most of the time river cruises operate exactly as planned, weather conditions may result in high or low water levels which impact a ship's itinerary and, on occasion, render a ship unable to sail at all. On very rare occasions, other events such as heavy fog, a damaged lock, or an incapacitated vessel blocking the river, may impact a sailing. These events typically occur with little or no notice. In the event that a cruise is partially or completely impacted, the itinerary will be operated by deluxe motor coach, accompanied by a Tour Manager, with overnights in hotels. When the option exists, the operator will "swap ships" with another vessel sailing in the opposite direction, retaining the sailing experience. Crew, ship and cabin configuration may differ. The itinerary will include as many of the originally scheduled sightseeing features as possible, considering the travel time and distances required, as well as meals. While it is not possible to recreate the more leisurely comforts of sailings, we will endeavor to provide a comparable itinerary. These alternative services will be provided at no additional charge.


Entry Requirements:
Passengers traveling abroad require a passport valid for six months beyond their travel dates. All travelers are responsible to check if a visa is required for all countries on their itinerary. For visa information, check our Visas page.



Is This Trip Right for You?

This moderately active trip covers a fair amount of ground each day. Expect from three to four hours walking every touring day. The pace is moderate, however you will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes. There is a potential for a small number of sailings to be impacted by river water levels, or other factors which may impact safe navigation. This may cause part or all of the cruise itinerary to be operated by motor coach and may also involve hotel accommodations.

Accommodation Details





Room 1


  • Requests are not guaranteed and are subject to each hotel's discretion and availability

Additional Nights

Flight Details




River Cruise Package Includes

  • Flights New York-Budapest, Bucharest-New York or vice versa
    Other departure cities available. Click on date of departure for selection and prices
  • Airline taxes & fuel surcharges
  • 11 nights accommodations
    • 2 nights Budapest
    • 7 nights outside cabin aboard the Deluxe Monarch Queen
    • 2 nights Bucharest
  • River port charges of $190 per person
  • Cruise & hotel porterage
  • All transfers included only with airfare purchase on package arrival & departure dates†
  • 25 meals: 11 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 7 dinners
  • Cruise director & activities host throughout cruise
  • Local host in Bucharest & Budapest
  • Services of local guides in all major cities
  • Shore excursions per itinerary
  • Entrance fees per itinerary
  • Comfortable wireless earphones for enhanced touring during excursions
 

Special Features

  • During your Budapest City Tour, see the Parliament, Heroes Square, Royal Palace and Matthias Church
  • Visit the charming village of Holloko
  • View an exciting horse show in Puszta, Hungary
  • Enjoy an authentic Serbian dinner and folklore dancing
  • Explore the highlights of Belgrade, a city with turbulent history
  • Sail through the famed Iron Gates, flanked by the Carpathian and Balkan mountain ranges
  • Discover the history in Ruse, dating back to the Ottoman Empire
  • Gaze upon the Palace of the Parliament in Bucharest
 

River Cruise Features & Amenities

  • Welcome Dinner and Farewell Dinner
  • Wine and beer with dinners
  • Locally inspired recipes
  • Early riser breakfast in addition to buffet breakfast
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access in public areas
  • Self-serve coffee and tea station
  • Lounge serving premium spirits
  • Fitness center
  • Non-smoking ship interior
  • Shore excursions conducted exclusively in English

Know Before You Book - High & Low Water

European river cruising has gained in popularity for very good reason. It's a relaxing and convenient way to experience Europe while enjoying the comfort of a deluxe ship. However, before making the decision to reserve your vacation, please be aware of potential conditions which may impact your cruise. While most of the time river cruises operate exactly as planned, weather conditions may result in high or low water levels which impact a ship's itinerary and, on occasion, render a ship unable to sail at all. On very rare occasions, other events such as heavy fog, a damaged lock, or an incapacitated vessel blocking the river, may impact a sailing. These events typically occur with little or no notice. In the event that a cruise is partially or completely impacted, the itinerary will be operated by deluxe motor coach, accompanied by a Tour Manager, with overnights in hotels. When the option exists, the operator will "swap ships" with another vessel sailing in the opposite direction, retaining the sailing experience. Crew, ship and cabin configuration may differ. The itinerary will include as many of the originally scheduled sightseeing features as possible, considering the travel time and distances required, as well as meals. While it is not possible to recreate the more leisurely comforts of sailings, we will endeavor to provide a comparable itinerary. These alternative services will be provided at no additional charge.

†Transfers are available for purchase for land only or on alternative flight dates

Is This Trip Right for You?

This moderately active trip covers a fair amount of ground each day. Expect from three to four hours walking every touring day. The pace is moderate, however you will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes. There is a potential for a small number of sailings to be impacted by river water levels, or other factors which may impact safe navigation. This may cause part or all of the cruise itinerary to be operated by motor coach and may also involve hotel accommodations.

Book Now!

Select departures may operate in the reverse direction.

Watch our Video!
{{fromName}} wanted to share this vacation with you! Message: {{message}} Package Url : https://www.gate1travel.com/river-cruises/europe-river-cruises/2023/eastern-danube/danube-river-cruise-13dbbbudrou23.aspx This message was sent by {{fromEmail}} at Sep 28, 2022 at 2:26 AM
Note: your itinerary will change depending upon the day of the week you depart. Click a day above to see what is included.

DAY 1, Tuesday - Depart for Hungary
Depart for Hungary

DAY 2, Wednesday - Arrive in Budapest
Welcome Drink and orientation meeting with your local host at the hotel at approximately 6 PM, followed by a briefing about the journey. We recommend that you select flights which arrive in your destination no later than 4 PM on Day 2 or earlier, if possible
Overnight: Budapest

DAY 3, Thursday - Budapest City Tour
Your morning tour begins on the Pest side of the city; view the Parliament, City Park and Heroes Square. Cross to Buda to see the Royal Palace, Matthias Church and the graceful medieval architecture along the cobbled streets. Explore the city's wonderful shops and cafes this afternoon on your own. Tonight, an optional dinner and show in Budapest. Travel to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian Dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you'll be entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live music
Optional: Dinner & Show in Budapest (PM)
Overnight: Budapest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Friday - Holloko City Tour & Cruise Embarkation
Travel to the charming village of Holloko (meaning raven-stone) hidden in the Cserhát hills in northeastern Hungary. Take a walking tour of the historic village, a fine example of a preserved traditional settlement and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Experience the typical rural life of the Palóc people and see craftsmen at work. Spend free time in the village and perhaps try some Palóc dishes for lunch before heading back to Budapest. This afternoon, transfer to the port to embark your cruise. Tonight, meet your Cruise Director and enjoy a gala welcome dinner as it sets the mood for your delightful river cruise
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 5, Saturday - Puszta Horse Show
Awake this morning in Kalocsa, Hungary, a picturesque town that specializes in the production of paprika. One of the oldest towns in Hungary, Kalocsa is well-known for the horse shows of Puszta, in the rural region of the country. View an exciting show as you experience the countryside
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6, Sunday - Vukovar & Osijek
Arrive in Vukovar, the largest river port in Croatia. Spend the day learning about both the ancient and recent history of the area. The region is full of culture, with numerous museums conveying the story of Vukovar's chaotic past. Visit Osijek, the economic and cultural center of the eastern Croatian region of Slavonia. During lunch, set sail to Novi Sad, the second largest city in Serbia, offering picturesque architecture and vibrant night life, elected to be the European Capital of Culture in 2021
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7, Monday - Belgrade City Tour
Explore the highlights of Belgrade and learn about the city's turbulent history and architecture. Visit the imposing Kalemegdan Fortress dramatically situated at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers and the lovely park surrounding it. Perhaps, continue to the Republic Square and view the National Theatre, National Museum and the Prince Mihail monument. Stroll along Knez Mihajlova street, the main pedestrian and shopping zone in the city. Afterwards, arrive at the Vracar Plateau to view the Saint Sava Temple, the largest Orthodox Church in the city
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 8, Tuesday - Iron Gates & Scenic Sailing
Spend the day admiring the picturesque countryside as your travel eastward. Soak in the history as you view the Carpathian and Balkan mountain ranges. Sail through the famed Iron Gates, a gorge that contains a pair of hydroelectric dams and power stations. It is easy to understand why visitors flock to this stunning gorge. The landscape around the area is truly breathtaking
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 9, Wednesday - Full Day in Vidin
Cross the border into Bulgaria early this morning and arrive in the port town of Vidin. Today a guided tour explores this town with its many historic and cultural landmarks such as the Baba Vida Fortress and the town's Mosque. Be sure to sample the regional wine, as Vidin is known for its fertile climate ideal for the production of premium wine grapes. Perhaps join the optional Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress*. Travel through the scenic countryside to the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of the city's landmarks. Sail away mid-afternoon
*Passengers who choose this optional, will not be able to participate in the included tour of Vidin.
Optional: Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress (AM)
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Thursday - Ruse City Tour
Today explore Ruse, one of Bulgaria's most elegant cities, brimming with history from the Ottoman Empire. Enjoy a walking tour and view the building of the Tax Administration with its wonderful facade, adorned with seven different symbolic figures on the roof. You could step back in time during a visit to the Kaliopa House, preserved from the late 19th century. Or, journey south on the optional tour of the village of Arbanassi in Veliko Tarnovo. This soaring village atop a high peak exemplifies the Bulgarian National Revival architectural movement
Optional: Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanassi
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Friday - Bucharest City Tour
This morning, bid farewell to your Cruise Director and meet your local host as you disembark in Ruse and drive to Bucharest and delve into the history and culture of this complex city during a guided city tour. View the Palace of the Parliament, a massive structure built under Nicolae Ceausescu, to convey the power of the Communist rule. Other highlights include the Romanian Athenaeum, as well as the Arcul de Triumf, reminiscent of the similar-looking arch in Paris. Afterwards enjoy lunch in the Lipscani district of Bucharest. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure
Overnight: Bucharest
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 12, Saturday - Full Day in Bucharest
Today, enjoy the delights of Bucharest, perhaps join the optional Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia. On a tiny island in a lake just outside of Bucharest stands Snagov Monastery which local tradition states is the burial place of Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula
Optional: Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia (PM)
Overnight: Bucharest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 13, Sunday - Depart Romania
This morning transfer to the airport in Bucharest for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 1, Tuesday - Depart for Romania
Depart for Romania

DAY 2, Wednesday - Arrive in Bucharest
Arrive in Bucharest and transfer to your hotel. The remainder of the day is at leisure to discover Bucharest. This evening, enjoy a Welcome Drink and orientation meeting with your local host at the hotel at approximately 6pm, followed by a briefing about the journey. We recommend that you select flights which arrive in your destination no later than 4pm on Day 2 or earlier, if possible
Overnight: Bucharest

DAY 3, Thursday - Bucharest City Tour
Delve into the history and culture of this complex city during a guided city tour. View the Palace of the Parliament, a massive structure built under Nicolae Ceausescu, to convey the power of the Communist rule. Other highlights include the Romanian Athenaeum, as well as the Arcul de Triumf, reminiscent of the similar-looking arch in Paris. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure, or the optional Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia
Optional: Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia (PM)
Overnight: Bucharest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Friday - Cruise Embarkation in Giurgiu
Morning at leisure before a lunch in town. Transfer to the port in Giurgiu. After arrival formalities, time to relax on board. Tonight, meet your Cruise Director and enjoy a gala welcome dinner as it sets the mood for your delightful river cruise
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5, Saturday - Ruse City Tour
Today explore Ruse, one of Bulgaria's most elegant cities, brimming with history from the Ottoman Empire. Enjoy a walking tour and view the building of the Tax Administration with its wonderful facade, adorned with seven different symbolic figures on the roof. You could step back in time during a visit to the Kaliopa House, preserved from the late 19th century. Or, journey south on the optional tour of the village of Arbanassi in Veliko Tarnovo. This soaring village atop a high peak exemplifies the Bulgarian National Revival architectural movement
Optional: Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanassi
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6, Sunday - Vidin City Tour
Arrive this afternoon in the port town of Vidin. Today a guided tour explores this town with its many historic and cultural landmarks such as the Baba Vida Fortress and the town's Mosque. Be sure to sample the regional wine, as Vidin is known for its fertile climate, ideal for the production of premium wine grapes. Perhaps join the optional Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress*. Travel through the scenic countryside to the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of the city's landmarks. Sail away mid-afternoon
*Passengers who choose this optional, will not be able to participate in the included tour of Vidin.
Optional: Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress (AM)
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7, Monday - Iron Gates & Scenic Sailing
Spend the day admiring the picturesque countryside as your travel westward. Soak in the history as you view the Carpathian and Balkan mountain ranges. Sail through the famed Iron Gates, a gorge that contains a pair of hydroelectric dams and power stations. It is easy to understand why visitors flock to this stunning gorge. The landscape around the area is truly breathtaking
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 8, Tuesday - Belgrade City Tour
Explore the highlights of Belgrade and learn about the city's turbulent history and architecture. Visit the imposing Kalemegdan Fortress dramatically situated at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers and the lovely park surrounding it. Perhaps continue to the Republic Square and view the National Theatre, National Museum and the Prince Mihail monument. Stroll along Knez Mihajlova street, the main pedestrian and shopping zone in the city. Afterwards, arrive at the Vracar Plateau to view the Saint Sava Temple, the largest Orthodox Church in the city
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 9, Wednesday - Vukovar & Osijek
Arrive in Vukovar, the largest river port in Croatia. Spend the day learning about both the ancient and recent history of the area. The region is full of culture, with numerous museums conveying the story of Vukovar's chaotic past. Visit Osijek, the economic and cultural center of the eastern Croatian region of Slavonia. In the early afternoon set sail towards Hungary
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Thursday - Puszta Horse Show
Awake this morning in Kalocsa, Hungary, a picturesque town that specializes in the production of paprika. One of the oldest towns in Hungary, Kalocsa is well-known for the horse shows of Puszta, in the rural region of the country. View an exciting show as you experience the countryside. After lunch, sails towards Budapest. Tonight, enjoy a lavish gala dinner on board
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Friday - Budapest City Tour
This morning, bid farewell to your Cruise Director and meet your local host as you disembark in Budapest. Your morning tour begins on the Pest side of the city; view the Parliament, City Park and Heroes Square. Cross to Buda to see the Royal Palace, Matthias Church and the graceful medieval architecture along the cobbled streets. Explore the city's wonderful shops and cafes this afternoon on your own. Tonight, an optional dinner and show in Budapest. Travel to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian Dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you'll be entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live music
Optional: Dinner & Show in Budapest (PM)
Overnight: Budapest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 12, Saturday - Full Day in Budapest
Today, enjoy the delights of Budapest independently. Immerse yourself in the heritage of the "City of Baths" and visit a traditional Turkish bath house with its thermal pools and spas or, stroll along the Danube Promenade, a walkway along the Danube that goes from the Elisabeth Bridge to Chain Bridge, offering stunning views of the capital. Another option is to head to Margaret Island, a quite getaway within the city, that serves as a recreational park, located in the middle of the Danube River. Perhaps, join the optional half day Taste of Budapest. Explore the local food scene, while getting introduced to the history of the Hungarian cuisine. Sample local delicacies from Hungarian meats to local Budapest pastries
Optional: Half Day Taste of Budapest (AM)
Overnight: Budapest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 13, Sunday - Depart Hungary
This morning, transfer to the airport for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 1, Tuesday - Depart for Hungary
Depart for Hungary

DAY 2, Wednesday - Arrive in Budapest
Welcome Drink and orientation meeting with your local host at the hotel at approximately 6 PM, followed by a briefing about the journey. We recommend that you select flights which arrive in your destination no later than 4 PM on Day 2 or earlier, if possible
Overnight: Budapest

DAY 3, Thursday - Budapest City Tour
Your morning tour begins on the Pest side of the city; view the Parliament, City Park and Heroes Square. Cross to Buda to see the Royal Palace, Matthias Church and the graceful medieval architecture along the cobbled streets. Explore the city's wonderful shops and cafes this afternoon on your own. Tonight, an optional dinner and show in Budapest. Travel to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian Dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you'll be entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live music
Optional: Dinner & Show in Budapest (PM)
Overnight: Budapest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Friday - Holloko City Tour & Cruise Embarkation
Travel to the charming village of Holloko (meaning raven-stone) hidden in the Cserhát hills in northeastern Hungary. Take a walking tour of the historic village, a fine example of a preserved traditional settlement and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Experience the typical rural life of the Palóc people and see craftsmen at work. Spend free time in the village and perhaps try some Palóc dishes for lunch before heading back to Budapest. This afternoon, transfer to the port to embark your cruise. Tonight, meet your Cruise Director and enjoy a gala welcome dinner as it sets the mood for your delightful river cruise
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 5, Saturday - Puszta Horse Show
Awake this morning in Kalocsa, Hungary, a picturesque town that specializes in the production of paprika. One of the oldest towns in Hungary, Kalocsa is well-known for the horse shows of Puszta, in the rural region of the country. View an exciting show as you experience the countryside
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6, Sunday - Vukovar & Osijek
Arrive in Vukovar, the largest river port in Croatia. Spend the day learning about both the ancient and recent history of the area. The region is full of culture, with numerous museums conveying the story of Vukovar's chaotic past. Visit Osijek, the economic and cultural center of the eastern Croatian region of Slavonia. During lunch, set sail to Novi Sad, the second largest city in Serbia, offering picturesque architecture and vibrant night life, elected to be the European Capital of Culture in 2021
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7, Monday - Belgrade City Tour
Explore the highlights of Belgrade and learn about the city's turbulent history and architecture. Visit the imposing Kalemegdan Fortress dramatically situated at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers and the lovely park surrounding it. Perhaps, continue to the Republic Square and view the National Theatre, National Museum and the Prince Mihail monument. Stroll along Knez Mihajlova street, the main pedestrian and shopping zone in the city. Afterwards, arrive at the Vracar Plateau to view the Saint Sava Temple, the largest Orthodox Church in the city
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 8, Tuesday - Iron Gates & Scenic Sailing
Spend the day admiring the picturesque countryside as your travel eastward. Soak in the history as you view the Carpathian and Balkan mountain ranges. Sail through the famed Iron Gates, a gorge that contains a pair of hydroelectric dams and power stations. It is easy to understand why visitors flock to this stunning gorge. The landscape around the area is truly breathtaking
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 9, Wednesday - Full Day in Vidin
Cross the border into Bulgaria early this morning and arrive in the port town of Vidin. Today a guided tour explores this town with its many historic and cultural landmarks such as the Baba Vida Fortress and the town's Mosque. Be sure to sample the regional wine, as Vidin is known for its fertile climate ideal for the production of premium wine grapes. Perhaps join the optional Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress*. Travel through the scenic countryside to the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of the city's landmarks. Sail away mid-afternoon
*Passengers who choose this optional, will not be able to participate in the included tour of Vidin.
Optional: Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress (AM)
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Thursday - Ruse City Tour
Today explore Ruse, one of Bulgaria's most elegant cities, brimming with history from the Ottoman Empire. Enjoy a walking tour and view the building of the Tax Administration with its wonderful facade, adorned with seven different symbolic figures on the roof. You could step back in time during a visit to the Kaliopa House, preserved from the late 19th century. Or, journey south on the optional tour of the village of Arbanassi in Veliko Tarnovo. This soaring village atop a high peak exemplifies the Bulgarian National Revival architectural movement
Optional: Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanassi
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Friday - Bucharest City Tour
This morning, bid farewell to your Cruise Director and meet your local host as you disembark in Ruse and drive to Bucharest and delve into the history and culture of this complex city during a guided city tour. View the Palace of the Parliament, a massive structure built under Nicolae Ceausescu, to convey the power of the Communist rule. Other highlights include the Romanian Athenaeum, as well as the Arcul de Triumf, reminiscent of the similar-looking arch in Paris. Afterwards enjoy lunch in the Lipscani district of Bucharest. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure
Overnight: Bucharest
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 12, Saturday - Full Day in Bucharest
Today, enjoy the delights of Bucharest, perhaps join the optional Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia. On a tiny island in a lake just outside of Bucharest stands Snagov Monastery which local tradition states is the burial place of Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula
Optional: Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia
Overnight: Bucharest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 13, Sunday - Depart Romania
This morning transfer to the airport in Bucharest for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 1, Tuesday - Depart for Romania
Depart for Romania

DAY 2, Wednesday - Arrive in Bucharest
Arrive in Bucharest and transfer to your hotel. The remainder of the day is at leisure to discover Bucharest. This evening, enjoy a Welcome Drink and orientation meeting with your local host at the hotel at approximately 6pm, followed by a briefing about the journey. We recommend that you select flights which arrive in your destination no later than 4pm on Day 2 or earlier, if possible
Overnight: Bucharest

DAY 3, Thursday - Bucharest City Tour
Delve into the history and culture of this complex city during a guided city tour. View the Palace of the Parliament, a massive structure built under Nicolae Ceausescu, to convey the power of the Communist rule. Other highlights include the Romanian Athenaeum, as well as the Arcul de Triumf, reminiscent of the similar-looking arch in Paris. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure, or the optional Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia
Optional: Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia
Overnight: Bucharest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Friday - Cruise Embarkation in Giurgiu
Morning at leisure before a lunch in town. Transfer to the port in Giurgiu. After arrival formalities, time to relax on board. Tonight, meet your Cruise Director and enjoy a gala welcome dinner as it sets the mood for your delightful river cruise
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5, Saturday - Ruse City Tour
Today explore Ruse, one of Bulgaria's most elegant cities, brimming with history from the Ottoman Empire. Enjoy a walking tour and view the building of the Tax Administration with its wonderful facade, adorned with seven different symbolic figures on the roof. You could step back in time during a visit to the Kaliopa House, preserved from the late 19th century. Or, journey south on the optional tour of the village of Arbanassi in Veliko Tarnovo. This soaring village atop a high peak exemplifies the Bulgarian National Revival architectural movement
Optional: Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanassi
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6, Sunday - Vidin City Tour
Arrive this afternoon in the port town of Vidin. Today a guided tour explores this town with its many historic and cultural landmarks such as the Baba Vida Fortress and the town's Mosque. Be sure to sample the regional wine, as Vidin is known for its fertile climate, ideal for the production of premium wine grapes. Perhaps join the optional Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress*. Travel through the scenic countryside to the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of the city's landmarks. Sail away mid-afternoon
*Passengers who choose this optional, will not be able to participate in the included tour of Vidin.
Optional: Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress (AM)
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7, Monday - Iron Gates & Scenic Sailing
Spend the day admiring the picturesque countryside as your travel westward. Soak in the history as you view the Carpathian and Balkan mountain ranges. Sail through the famed Iron Gates, a gorge that contains a pair of hydroelectric dams and power stations. It is easy to understand why visitors flock to this stunning gorge. The landscape around the area is truly breathtaking
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 8, Tuesday - Belgrade City Tour
Explore the highlights of Belgrade and learn about the city's turbulent history and architecture. Visit the imposing Kalemegdan Fortress dramatically situated at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers and the lovely park surrounding it. Perhaps continue to the Republic Square and view the National Theatre, National Museum and the Prince Mihail monument. Stroll along Knez Mihajlova street, the main pedestrian and shopping zone in the city. Afterwards, arrive at the Vracar Plateau to view the Saint Sava Temple, the largest Orthodox Church in the city
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 9, Wednesday - Vukovar & Osijek
Arrive in Vukovar, the largest river port in Croatia. Spend the day learning about both the ancient and recent history of the area. The region is full of culture, with numerous museums conveying the story of Vukovar's chaotic past. Visit Osijek, the economic and cultural center of the eastern Croatian region of Slavonia. In the early afternoon set sail towards Hungary
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Thursday - Puszta Horse Show
Awake this morning in Kalocsa, Hungary, a picturesque town that specializes in the production of paprika. One of the oldest towns in Hungary, Kalocsa is well-known for the horse shows of Puszta, in the rural region of the country. View an exciting show as you experience the countryside. After lunch, sails towards Budapest. Tonight, enjoy a lavish gala dinner on board
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Friday - Budapest City Tour
This morning, bid farewell to your Cruise Director and meet your local host as you disembark in Budapest. Your morning tour begins on the Pest side of the city; view the Parliament, City Park and Heroes Square. Cross to Buda to see the Royal Palace, Matthias Church and the graceful medieval architecture along the cobbled streets. Explore the city's wonderful shops and cafes this afternoon on your own. Tonight, an optional dinner and show in Budapest. Travel to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian Dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you'll be entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live music
Optional: Dinner & Show in Budapest (PM)
Overnight: Budapest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 12, Saturday - Full Day in Budapest
Today, enjoy the delights of Budapest independently. Immerse yourself in the heritage of the "City of Baths" and visit a traditional Turkish bath house with its thermal pools and spas or, stroll along the Danube Promenade, a walkway along the Danube that goes from the Elisabeth Bridge to Chain Bridge, offering stunning views of the capital. Another option is to head to Margaret Island, a quite getaway within the city, that serves as a recreational park, located in the middle of the Danube River. Perhaps, join the optional half day Taste of Budapest. Explore the local food scene, at the Hold Street Market Hall, while getting introduced to the history of Hungarian cuisine. Taste local cheeses from family farms around Budapest and salami delicacies, along with Hungarian meats and sausages served with fresh bread and mustard. End the tour with a sweet Budapest pastry - local strudel and a cup of coffee
Optional: Half Day Taste of Budapest (AM))
Overnight: Budapest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 13, Sunday - Depart Hungary
This morning, transfer to the airport for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 1, Tuesday - Depart for Hungary
Depart for Hungary

DAY 2, Wednesday - Arrive in Budapest
Welcome Drink and orientation meeting with your local host at the hotel at approximately 6 PM, followed by a briefing about the journey. We recommend that you select flights which arrive in your destination no later than 4 PM on Day 2 or earlier, if possible
Overnight: Budapest

DAY 3, Thursday - Budapest City Tour
Your morning tour begins on the Pest side of the city; view the Parliament, City Park and Heroes Square. Cross to Buda to see the Royal Palace, Matthias Church and the graceful medieval architecture along the cobbled streets. Explore the city's wonderful shops and cafes this afternoon on your own. Tonight, an optional dinner and show in Budapest. Travel to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian Dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you'll be entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live music
Optional: Dinner & Show in Budapest (PM)
Overnight: Budapest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Friday - Holloko City Tour & Cruise Embarkation
Travel to the charming village of Holloko (meaning raven-stone) hidden in the Cserhát hills in northeastern Hungary. Take a walking tour of the historic village, a fine example of a preserved traditional settlement and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Experience the typical rural life of the Palóc people and see craftsmen at work. Spend free time in the village and perhaps try some Palóc dishes for lunch before heading back to Budapest. This afternoon, transfer to the port to embark your cruise. Tonight, meet your Cruise Director and enjoy a gala welcome dinner as it sets the mood for your delightful river cruise
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 5, Saturday - Puszta Horse Show
Awake this morning in Kalocsa, Hungary, a picturesque town that specializes in the production of paprika. One of the oldest towns in Hungary, Kalocsa is well-known for the horse shows of Puszta, in the rural region of the country. View an exciting show as you experience the countryside
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6, Sunday - Vukovar & Osijek
Arrive in Vukovar, the largest river port in Croatia. Spend the day learning about both the ancient and recent history of the area. The region is full of culture, with numerous museums conveying the story of Vukovar's chaotic past. Visit Osijek, the economic and cultural center of the eastern Croatian region of Slavonia. During lunch, set sail to Novi Sad, the second largest city in Serbia, offering picturesque architecture and vibrant night life, elected to be the European Capital of Culture in 2021
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7, Monday - Belgrade City Tour
Explore the highlights of Belgrade and learn about the city's turbulent history and architecture. Visit the imposing Kalemegdan Fortress dramatically situated at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers and the lovely park surrounding it. Perhaps, continue to the Republic Square and view the National Theatre, National Museum and the Prince Mihail monument. Stroll along Knez Mihajlova street, the main pedestrian and shopping zone in the city. Afterwards, arrive at the Vracar Plateau to view the Saint Sava Temple, the largest Orthodox Church in the city
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 8, Tuesday - Iron Gates & Scenic Sailing
Spend the day admiring the picturesque countryside as your travel eastward. Soak in the history as you view the Carpathian and Balkan mountain ranges. Sail through the famed Iron Gates, a gorge that contains a pair of hydroelectric dams and power stations. It is easy to understand why visitors flock to this stunning gorge. The landscape around the area is truly breathtaking
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 9, Wednesday - Full Day in Vidin
Cross the border into Bulgaria early this morning and arrive in the port town of Vidin. Today a guided tour explores this town with its many historic and cultural landmarks such as the Baba Vida Fortress and the town's Mosque. Be sure to sample the regional wine, as Vidin is known for its fertile climate ideal for the production of premium wine grapes. Perhaps join the optional Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress*. Travel through the scenic countryside to the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of the city's landmarks. Sail away mid-afternoon
*Passengers who choose this optional, will not be able to participate in the included tour of Vidin.
Optional: Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress (AM)
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Thursday - Ruse City Tour
Today explore Ruse, one of Bulgaria's most elegant cities, brimming with history from the Ottoman Empire. Enjoy a walking tour and view the building of the Tax Administration with its wonderful facade, adorned with seven different symbolic figures on the roof. You could step back in time during a visit to the Kaliopa House, preserved from the late 19th century. Or, journey south on the optional tour of the village of Arbanassi in Veliko Tarnovo. This soaring village atop a high peak exemplifies the Bulgarian National Revival architectural movement
Optional: Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanassi
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Friday - Bucharest City Tour
This morning, bid farewell to your Cruise Director and meet your local host as you disembark in Ruse and drive to Bucharest and delve into the history and culture of this complex city during a guided city tour. View the Palace of the Parliament, a massive structure built under Nicolae Ceausescu, to convey the power of the Communist rule. Other highlights include the Romanian Athenaeum, as well as the Arcul de Triumf, reminiscent of the similar-looking arch in Paris. Afterwards enjoy lunch in the Lipscani district of Bucharest. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure
Overnight: Bucharest
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 12, Saturday - Full Day in Bucharest
Today, enjoy the delights of Bucharest, perhaps join the optional Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia. On a tiny island in a lake just outside of Bucharest stands Snagov Monastery which local tradition states is the burial place of Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula
Optional: Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia
Overnight: Bucharest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 13, Sunday - Depart Romania
This morning transfer to the airport in Bucharest for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 1, Tuesday - Depart for Romania
Depart for Romania

DAY 2, Wednesday - Arrive in Bucharest
Arrive in Bucharest and transfer to your hotel. The remainder of the day is at leisure to discover Bucharest. This evening, enjoy a Welcome Drink and orientation meeting with your local host at the hotel at approximately 6pm, followed by a briefing about the journey. We recommend that you select flights which arrive in your destination no later than 4pm on Day 2 or earlier, if possible
Overnight: Bucharest

DAY 3, Thursday - Bucharest City Tour
Delve into the history and culture of this complex city during a guided city tour. View the Palace of the Parliament, a massive structure built under Nicolae Ceausescu, to convey the power of the Communist rule. Other highlights include the Romanian Athenaeum, as well as the Arcul de Triumf, reminiscent of the similar-looking arch in Paris. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure, or the optional Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia
Optional: Snagov Monastery & Mogosoaia
Overnight: Bucharest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Friday - Cruise Embarkation in Giurgiu
Morning at leisure before a lunch in town. Transfer to the port in Giurgiu. After arrival formalities, time to relax on board. Tonight, meet your Cruise Director and enjoy a gala welcome dinner as it sets the mood for your delightful river cruise
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5, Saturday - Ruse City Tour
Today explore Ruse, one of Bulgaria's most elegant cities, brimming with history from the Ottoman Empire. Enjoy a walking tour and view the building of the Tax Administration with its wonderful facade, adorned with seven different symbolic figures on the roof. You could step back in time during a visit to the Kaliopa House, preserved from the late 19th century. Or, journey south on the optional tour of the village of Arbanassi in Veliko Tarnovo. This soaring village atop a high peak exemplifies the Bulgarian National Revival architectural movement
Optional: Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanassi
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6, Sunday - Vidin City Tour
Arrive this afternoon in the port town of Vidin. Today a guided tour explores this town with its many historic and cultural landmarks such as the Baba Vida Fortress and the town's Mosque. Be sure to sample the regional wine, as Vidin is known for its fertile climate, ideal for the production of premium wine grapes. Perhaps join the optional Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress*. Travel through the scenic countryside to the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of the city's landmarks. Sail away mid-afternoon
*Passengers who choose this optional, will not be able to participate in the included tour of Vidin.
Optional: Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress (AM)
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7, Monday - Iron Gates & Scenic Sailing
Spend the day admiring the picturesque countryside as your travel westward. Soak in the history as you view the Carpathian and Balkan mountain ranges. Sail through the famed Iron Gates, a gorge that contains a pair of hydroelectric dams and power stations. It is easy to understand why visitors flock to this stunning gorge. The landscape around the area is truly breathtaking
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 8, Tuesday - Belgrade City Tour
Explore the highlights of Belgrade and learn about the city's turbulent history and architecture. Visit the imposing Kalemegdan Fortress dramatically situated at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers and the lovely park surrounding it. Perhaps continue to the Republic Square and view the National Theatre, National Museum and the Prince Mihail monument. Stroll along Knez Mihajlova street, the main pedestrian and shopping zone in the city. Afterwards, arrive at the Vracar Plateau to view the Saint Sava Temple, the largest Orthodox Church in the city
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 9, Wednesday - Vukovar & Osijek
Arrive in Vukovar, the largest river port in Croatia. Spend the day learning about both the ancient and recent history of the area. The region is full of culture, with numerous museums conveying the story of Vukovar's chaotic past. Visit Osijek, the economic and cultural center of the eastern Croatian region of Slavonia. In the early afternoon set sail towards Hungary
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Thursday - Puszta Horse Show
Awake this morning in Kalocsa, Hungary, a picturesque town that specializes in the production of paprika. One of the oldest towns in Hungary, Kalocsa is well-known for the horse shows of Puszta, in the rural region of the country. View an exciting show as you experience the countryside. After lunch, sails towards Budapest. Tonight, enjoy a lavish gala dinner on board
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Friday - Budapest City Tour
This morning, bid farewell to your Cruise Director and meet your local host as you disembark in Budapest. Your morning tour begins on the Pest side of the city; view the Parliament, City Park and Heroes Square. Cross to Buda to see the Royal Palace, Matthias Church and the graceful medieval architecture along the cobbled streets. Explore the city's wonderful shops and cafes this afternoon on your own. Tonight, an optional dinner and show in Budapest. Travel to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian Dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you'll be entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live music
Optional: Dinner & Show in Budapest (PM)
Overnight: Budapest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 12, Saturday - Full Day in Budapest
Today, enjoy the delights of Budapest independently. Immerse yourself in the heritage of the "City of Baths" and visit a traditional Turkish bath house with its thermal pools and spas or, stroll along the Danube Promenade, a walkway along the Danube that goes from the Elisabeth Bridge to Chain Bridge, offering stunning views of the capital. Another option is to head to Margaret Island, a quite getaway within the city, that serves as a recreational park, located in the middle of the Danube River. Perhaps, join the optional half day Taste of Budapest. Explore the local food scene, at the Hold Street Market Hall, while getting introduced to the history of Hungarian cuisine. Taste local cheeses from family farms around Budapest and salami delicacies, along with Hungarian meats and sausages served with fresh bread and mustard. End the tour with a sweet Budapest pastry - local strudel and a cup of coffee
Optional: Half Day Taste of Budapest (AM))
Overnight: Budapest
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 13, Sunday - Depart Hungary
This morning, transfer to the airport for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

Book Now!
Gate 1 Travel itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently.
Book your Optional Tours before you travel. See more, save time, save money.
  • Tours purchased while travelling may cost an extra 10% or more
  • Tours often sell out. Avoid disappointment
  • Save your cash. Credit card processing may not be possible locally
  • Travel insurance only covers services purchased prior to departure
  • Book Online or call to book these tours up to 1 week before your departure
  • The day the optionals operate varies by the day of the week
Dinner & Show in Budapest

Travel this evening to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you’ll be energetically entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live gypsy music.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #3 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $60.00
Dinner & Show in Budapest Thumbnail
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress

Depart Vidin, and travel through the scenic Bulgarian countryside to the town of Belogradchik, nestled amidst stunning rock formations. Arrive at the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before returning to Vidin. Upon arrival, take a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of its landmarks. Afterward, drive back to the ship.

*This tour will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes.

Approximate tour duration is 3.5 hours.

Day #9 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $40.00
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress Thumbnail
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi

Begin the day with a scenic drive through the expanses of the Danube plains, to the city of Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria’s former medieval capital. Tour the city that is one of the most picturesque places in Bulgaria, characterized by narrow cobbled lanes, medieval remains of fortifications and churches and an evocative handicraft market. Afterward, continue to the nearby historic village of Arbanasi, famous for its rich past and colorfully painted 15th century Church of the Nativity. Enjoy a typical Bulgarian lunch including local wine or beer.

Approximate tour duration is 8 hours.

Day #10 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $80.00
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi Thumbnail
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia

Head outside the capital and travel north towards Snagov Monastery. Visit the 15th century Christian-Orthodox monastery, located on a tiny island at the northern end of Snagov Lake. Legend has it that the monastery is the burial place of the infamous Prince of Wallachia, Vlad the Impaler, also known as Dracula. In the garden behind the church, enjoy a plum brandy tasting with local cheese. Afterward, continue with a visit to Mogosoaia Palace, the former residence of Wallachian royalty, built between 1698 – 1702. The palace is the finest surviving example of Romanian Renaissance architecture. Conclude the tour with a stroll along the beautiful manicured gardens by the lake and greenhouses.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #12 01 Jan 2022 - 31 Dec 2023 $39.00
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia Thumbnail
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia

Head outside the capital and travel north towards Snagov Monastery. Visit the 15th century Christian-Orthodox monastery, located on a tiny island at the northern end of Snagov Lake. Legend has it that the monastery is the burial place of the infamous Prince of Wallachia, Vlad the Impaler, also known as Dracula. In the garden behind the church, enjoy a plum brandy tasting with local cheese. Afterward, continue with a visit to Mogosoaia Palace, the former residence of Wallachian royalty, built between 1698 – 1702. The palace is the finest surviving example of Romanian Renaissance architecture. Conclude the tour with a stroll along the beautiful manicured gardens by the lake and greenhouses.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #3 01 Jan 2022 - 31 Dec 2023 $39.00
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia Thumbnail
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi

Begin the day with a scenic drive through the expanses of the Danube plains, to the city of Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria’s former medieval capital. Tour the city that is one of the most picturesque places in Bulgaria, characterized by narrow cobbled lanes, medieval remains of fortifications and churches and an evocative handicraft market. Afterward, continue to the nearby historic village of Arbanasi, famous for its rich past and colorfully painted 15th century Church of the Nativity. Enjoy a typical Bulgarian lunch including local wine or beer.

Approximate tour duration is 8 hours.

Day #5 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $80.00
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi Thumbnail
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress

Depart Vidin, and travel through the scenic Bulgarian countryside to the town of Belogradchik, nestled amidst stunning rock formations. Arrive at the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before returning to Vidin. Upon arrival, take a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of its landmarks. Afterward, drive back to the ship.

*This tour will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes.

Approximate tour duration is 3.5 hours.

Day #6 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $40.00
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress Thumbnail
Dinner & Show in Budapest

Travel this evening to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you’ll be energetically entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live gypsy music.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #11 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $60.00
Dinner & Show in Budapest Thumbnail
Half Day Taste of Budapest

Begin your tour at the Parliament. From here, walk to the Shoes Holocaust Memorial and continue to the Strudel House. Along the way, pass by the 1956 Uprising Monument, statue of Ronald Reagan, and Hungarian National TV building. Taste two kinds of strudel (apple and cheese) paired with coffee. Afterward, view St. Stephen's Basilica, before continuing by bus to the Great Market Hall, housed in a beautiful neo-Gothic style building. Explore the local food scene, while getting introduced to the history of the Hungarian cuisine. Sample locally sourced vegetables from family farms and different Hungarian sausages.

*Advance purchase is highly recommended for this tour. Tickets are limited and will not be available for purchase locally.

Approximate tour duration is 2 hours.

Day #12 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $48.00
Half Day Taste of Budapest Thumbnail
Dinner & Show in Budapest

Travel this evening to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you’ll be energetically entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live gypsy music.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #3 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $60.00
Dinner & Show in Budapest Thumbnail
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress

Depart Vidin, and travel through the scenic Bulgarian countryside to the town of Belogradchik, nestled amidst stunning rock formations. Arrive at the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before returning to Vidin. Upon arrival, take a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of its landmarks. Afterward, drive back to the ship.

*This tour will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes.

Approximate tour duration is 3.5 hours.

Day #9 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $40.00
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress Thumbnail
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi

Begin the day with a scenic drive through the expanses of the Danube plains, to the city of Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria’s former medieval capital. Tour the city that is one of the most picturesque places in Bulgaria, characterized by narrow cobbled lanes, medieval remains of fortifications and churches and an evocative handicraft market. Afterward, continue to the nearby historic village of Arbanasi, famous for its rich past and colorfully painted 15th century Church of the Nativity. Enjoy a typical Bulgarian lunch including local wine or beer.

Approximate tour duration is 8 hours.

Day #10 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $80.00
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi Thumbnail
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia

Head outside the capital and travel north towards Snagov Monastery. Visit the 15th century Christian-Orthodox monastery, located on a tiny island at the northern end of Snagov Lake. Legend has it that the monastery is the burial place of the infamous Prince of Wallachia, Vlad the Impaler, also known as Dracula. In the garden behind the church, enjoy a plum brandy tasting with local cheese. Afterward, continue with a visit to Mogosoaia Palace, the former residence of Wallachian royalty, built between 1698 – 1702. The palace is the finest surviving example of Romanian Renaissance architecture. Conclude the tour with a stroll along the beautiful manicured gardens by the lake and greenhouses.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #12 01 Jan 2022 - 31 Dec 2023 $39.00
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia Thumbnail
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia

Head outside the capital and travel north towards Snagov Monastery. Visit the 15th century Christian-Orthodox monastery, located on a tiny island at the northern end of Snagov Lake. Legend has it that the monastery is the burial place of the infamous Prince of Wallachia, Vlad the Impaler, also known as Dracula. In the garden behind the church, enjoy a plum brandy tasting with local cheese. Afterward, continue with a visit to Mogosoaia Palace, the former residence of Wallachian royalty, built between 1698 – 1702. The palace is the finest surviving example of Romanian Renaissance architecture. Conclude the tour with a stroll along the beautiful manicured gardens by the lake and greenhouses.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #3 01 Jan 2022 - 31 Dec 2023 $39.00
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia Thumbnail
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi

Begin the day with a scenic drive through the expanses of the Danube plains, to the city of Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria’s former medieval capital. Tour the city that is one of the most picturesque places in Bulgaria, characterized by narrow cobbled lanes, medieval remains of fortifications and churches and an evocative handicraft market. Afterward, continue to the nearby historic village of Arbanasi, famous for its rich past and colorfully painted 15th century Church of the Nativity. Enjoy a typical Bulgarian lunch including local wine or beer.

Approximate tour duration is 8 hours.

Day #5 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $80.00
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi Thumbnail
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress

Depart Vidin, and travel through the scenic Bulgarian countryside to the town of Belogradchik, nestled amidst stunning rock formations. Arrive at the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before returning to Vidin. Upon arrival, take a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of its landmarks. Afterward, drive back to the ship.

*This tour will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes.

Approximate tour duration is 3.5 hours.

Day #6 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $40.00
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress Thumbnail
Dinner & Show in Budapest

Travel this evening to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you’ll be energetically entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live gypsy music.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #11 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $60.00
Dinner & Show in Budapest Thumbnail
Half Day Taste of Budapest

Begin your tour at the Parliament. From here, walk to the Shoes Holocaust Memorial and continue to the Strudel House. Along the way, pass by the 1956 Uprising Monument, statue of Ronald Reagan, and Hungarian National TV building. Taste two kinds of strudel (apple and cheese) paired with coffee. Afterward, view St. Stephen's Basilica, before continuing by bus to the Great Market Hall, housed in a beautiful neo-Gothic style building. Explore the local food scene, while getting introduced to the history of the Hungarian cuisine. Sample locally sourced vegetables from family farms and different Hungarian sausages.

*Advance purchase is highly recommended for this tour. Tickets are limited and will not be available for purchase locally.

Approximate tour duration is 2 hours.

Day #12 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $48.00
Half Day Taste of Budapest Thumbnail
Dinner & Show in Budapest

Travel this evening to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you’ll be energetically entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live gypsy music.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #3 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $60.00
Dinner & Show in Budapest Thumbnail
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress

Depart Vidin, and travel through the scenic Bulgarian countryside to the town of Belogradchik, nestled amidst stunning rock formations. Arrive at the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before returning to Vidin. Upon arrival, take a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of its landmarks. Afterward, drive back to the ship.

*This tour will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes.

Approximate tour duration is 3.5 hours.

Day #9 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $40.00
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress Thumbnail
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi

Begin the day with a scenic drive through the expanses of the Danube plains, to the city of Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria’s former medieval capital. Tour the city that is one of the most picturesque places in Bulgaria, characterized by narrow cobbled lanes, medieval remains of fortifications and churches and an evocative handicraft market. Afterward, continue to the nearby historic village of Arbanasi, famous for its rich past and colorfully painted 15th century Church of the Nativity. Enjoy a typical Bulgarian lunch including local wine or beer.

Approximate tour duration is 8 hours.

Day #10 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $80.00
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi Thumbnail
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia

Head outside the capital and travel north towards Snagov Monastery. Visit the 15th century Christian-Orthodox monastery, located on a tiny island at the northern end of Snagov Lake. Legend has it that the monastery is the burial place of the infamous Prince of Wallachia, Vlad the Impaler, also known as Dracula. In the garden behind the church, enjoy a plum brandy tasting with local cheese. Afterward, continue with a visit to Mogosoaia Palace, the former residence of Wallachian royalty, built between 1698 – 1702. The palace is the finest surviving example of Romanian Renaissance architecture. Conclude the tour with a stroll along the beautiful manicured gardens by the lake and greenhouses.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #12 01 Jan 2022 - 31 Dec 2023 $39.00
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia Thumbnail
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia

Head outside the capital and travel north towards Snagov Monastery. Visit the 15th century Christian-Orthodox monastery, located on a tiny island at the northern end of Snagov Lake. Legend has it that the monastery is the burial place of the infamous Prince of Wallachia, Vlad the Impaler, also known as Dracula. In the garden behind the church, enjoy a plum brandy tasting with local cheese. Afterward, continue with a visit to Mogosoaia Palace, the former residence of Wallachian royalty, built between 1698 – 1702. The palace is the finest surviving example of Romanian Renaissance architecture. Conclude the tour with a stroll along the beautiful manicured gardens by the lake and greenhouses.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #3 01 Jan 2022 - 31 Dec 2023 $39.00
Snagov Monastery & Mogosoia Thumbnail
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi

Begin the day with a scenic drive through the expanses of the Danube plains, to the city of Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria’s former medieval capital. Tour the city that is one of the most picturesque places in Bulgaria, characterized by narrow cobbled lanes, medieval remains of fortifications and churches and an evocative handicraft market. Afterward, continue to the nearby historic village of Arbanasi, famous for its rich past and colorfully painted 15th century Church of the Nativity. Enjoy a typical Bulgarian lunch including local wine or beer.

Approximate tour duration is 8 hours.

Day #5 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $80.00
Full Day Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi Thumbnail
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress

Depart Vidin, and travel through the scenic Bulgarian countryside to the town of Belogradchik, nestled amidst stunning rock formations. Arrive at the fortress of Belogradchik built by the Romans and expanded over the years by Bulgarian and Ottoman rulers. The fortress also known as Kaleto, is one of the best-preserved fortresses in the country, The view from the fortress of the surrounding fascinating sandstone rock formations is breathtaking. Free time to explore on your own before returning to Vidin. Upon arrival, take a panoramic drive through the historic part of Vidin, that includes brief stops at some of its landmarks. Afterward, drive back to the ship.

*This tour will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes.

Approximate tour duration is 3.5 hours.

Day #6 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $40.00
Belogradchik Rocks & Medieval Fortress Thumbnail
Dinner & Show in Budapest

Travel this evening to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you’ll be energetically entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live gypsy music.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

Day #11 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $60.00
Dinner & Show in Budapest Thumbnail
Half Day Taste of Budapest

Begin your tour at the Parliament. From here, walk to the Shoes Holocaust Memorial and continue to the Strudel House. Along the way, pass by the 1956 Uprising Monument, statue of Ronald Reagan, and Hungarian National TV building. Taste two kinds of strudel (apple and cheese) paired with coffee. Afterward, view St. Stephen's Basilica, before continuing by bus to the Great Market Hall, housed in a beautiful neo-Gothic style building. Explore the local food scene, while getting introduced to the history of the Hungarian cuisine. Sample locally sourced vegetables from family farms and different Hungarian sausages.

*Advance purchase is highly recommended for this tour. Tickets are limited and will not be available for purchase locally.

Approximate tour duration is 2 hours.

Day #12 01 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023 $48.00
Half Day Taste of Budapest Thumbnail

Know Before You Go
Although most of the planning and preparation is taken care of for you, there are still a few things you should know and some details you should take care of to ensure your comfort, safety and peace of mind. Please review the following information before your departure to ensure that any surprises along the way will only be pleasant ones.
Getting Ready to Go
Passports and Visas
It is each traveler's responsibility to have a passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the dates of travel and a visa if required. Please check the information at www.gate1travel.com/visas.aspx for the specific country/region you are visiting for more details. IMPORTANT: Passengers who are not U.S. citizens must check with the respective consulate or a visa agency to determine what personal identification is required. Passengers who enter, leave and then re-enter the same country on their itinerary should check if they require a double-entry visa. Passport applications are available at most U.S. Post Offices, as well as at regional Passport Agencies. Passengers requiring visas, whether obtained in advance or locally upon arrival, should ensure that their passport has blank pages.

Traveling with Friends or Family?
If you are traveling with friends or family who are booked on another reservation, please make sure that we are aware. On occasion, we may operate more than one vehicle on your tour departure in which case we will ensure that guests will be assigned together. This is achieved by connecting your reservations before your departure. Once you arrive in your destination, it may not be possible to make assignment changes. To check that your reservations are linked, log into https://www.gate1travel.com/res with your email and password, select your reservation number, and check to see that your reservations are indicated as "Traveling With" at the top right side of the display.

Trip Preparation
A little pre-planning can make your trip go a lot smoother. Several weeks before your trip, make a list of what you will need to take with you. Make sure your personal documents (passports, visas, driver's license) are in order. Make sure also that you have enough prescription medications to last through the trip and carry them with you in case your luggage is delayed. Bring a change of clothes in your carry-on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost. Lost luggage is common. We strongly urge you to consider carry-ons instead of checked bags when possible, and when checking a bag is necessary, choose a bag color and identification that stands out. We suggest that you make photocopies of passports, visas, personal ID and any other important travel documents and pack them separately from the originals. You may also make a digital copy of your passport to keep a clear picture with the important details in your cell phone or digital camera photos. If you lose the originals while traveling, you'll have copies for easier reporting and replacement. Pack a list of medications including dosage and generic names. You may consider bringing a small supply of over the counter medications for headaches and/or anti-diarrhea pills (especially when traveling outside of the USA and Western Europe). We recommend that you pack a portable alarm clock. Due to security reasons, many museums have restrictions on the size of bags that can be taken inside and backpacks, carry-on bags or large purses may not be permitted. It is recommended to bring a small shoulder bag or purse to use in these situations instead. Avoid placing valuables such as cameras in your checked luggage. Airplane pressure can cause similar pressure in your body, most notably in ears, as well as liquid tubes and bottles. Your physician can suggest medication for decongestion. We suggest that you place liquid containers into Ziploc bags to catch any leaks.

Travel Safety Advice: The safety of our guests is Gate 1’s #1 concern. Before making the decision to reserve your vacation, we want you to be aware of potential situations which may impact your holiday. While most of the time our programs run precisely according to plans, on rare occasion force majeure events including weather, transportation mechanical issues, or uninhabitable accommodation, civil unrest and even criminal or terrorist activities will present themselves unexpectedly and with little or no notice. Gate 1 will make the decision to cancel a tour only after receiving verifiable government issued information. We are otherwise obliged to comply with contractual airline and vendor agreements and carry out the tour until or unless we are advised otherwise. In the event of such an occurrence anytime after your date of departure, Gate 1 and the local destination ground staff, in coordination with government advisories, airlines, hotels, cruise ships and other vendors, will make decisions with regard to your safety first. We strongly recommend that tour participants review the destination country's specific information at https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/alertswarnings.html.

Travel Protection
Even the best-planned trips can be impacted by the unexpected. And that is why we recommend that you help protect yourself and your investment by purchasing Travel Protection for your Gate 1 trip. Travel Protection can help with medical coverage for illness or injury, trip cancellation and/or interruption, baggage loss, medical evacuation, and more. At any time before you complete Final Payment, you may choose to purchase Travel Protection. The protection plan premium is non-refundable after a 10-day review period. In addition, you must be medically able to travel at the time the premium is paid. For a summary of the plan details on coverages, benefits, limitations and exclusions, please refer to the Description of Coverage by visiting www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit (CFAR) is a non-insurance feature that allows you to cancel up to 72 hours before your scheduled departure for any reason not otherwise covered in the Travel Protection Plan. CFAR must be purchased at the same time as the Travel Protection Plan as well as within 21 days of the original booking date. Independent or escorted tour reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to the full cost of your trip, less the cost of initial deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. Sea or river cruise reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to 50% of the cost of your trip, less the cost of initial trip deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. All CFAR credits are valid for a period of two years from the original date of travel. CFAR Credits have no cash value and are not transferrable. Airline-assessed fees are generally $300 per person, but may be as much as fully non-refundable. Some non-refundable airline tickets may retain value, less airline-assessed fees. Your future air credit must be used to book with the same airline. Deadlines to rebook and complete travel vary by airline and may be as early as 12 months from when the tickets were originally issued (not the date of travel). For details, www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

This program does not apply to custom groups and Antarctica cruises. Residents of New York, Missouri & Minnesota may purchase this Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit separate from Travel Protection. Call to speak with a reservation agent for details. This Cancel for any Reason Wavier Benefit is not insurance and is provided by Gate 1 Travel.

Cell Phones & Calling Cards
You may wish to carry a cell phone while traveling. Check with your cell phone provider if your phone will work in the destination(s) you are visiting. If you can access the Internet as you travel, you can take advantage of email or a Skype Internet telephone (VOIP) account for the best value. Additionally, if your phone can connect to WiFi you may be able to make voice and video calls free of charge. Please contact your cell phone provider for further details. Alternatively, you may investigate renting a cell phone before you leave or buying an inexpensive phone locally. When calling the U.S. from a foreign country, you may also use a prepaid calling card; normally, the only additional charge (besides the prepaid long distance charges) is a local fee of a few cents and possibly a connection fee if you are using your card at your hotel. It is best to check with the hotel's reception desk prior to making phone calls to avoid unexpected charges. Please note that we are unable to provide compensation for phone calls regardless of reason.

Making Telephone Calls from One Country to Another
When dialing a number from one country to another, you should proceed as follows: dial your country's Exit Code (often indicated with a “+” sign), then the destination Country Code, then the Phone Number. For most countries, the exit code is 00. Exceptions include the USA and Canada (011), Hong Kong and Cambodia (001), Australia (0011), and Russia (8 Pause 10*). For Brazil, please consult with the local telephone company. If you are dialing from a mobile phone, you can enter a “+” instead of the international Exit Code (011, 001, 0011 or 00) by pressing and holding the 0 key. For most countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, South America and South Pacific, if you are calling from a local phone to a number within the same country, you should drop both the exit and country codes and then add a leading 0 (zero). Exceptions include Spain, Italy, Hungary and Malta (no additional zero needed to dial locally).

Example:
To dial the following number in Germany (as listed on your voucher): +(49) 0555-555
From USA or your US cell phone: 011-49-555-555
From another country in Europe: 00-49-555-555
From a German phone within Germany: 0555-555


WiFi Access
WiFi access has improved. Free or inexpensive WiFi internet is accessible at coffee shops, airports, restaurants, libraries and on some trains and buses. WiFi access in hotels and cruise lines often involves a fee, determined by that property. Signal strength is subject to local conditions and not guaranteed. Availability on cruises is also dependent upon its location while sailing through multiple countries. Please note that WiFi can be extremely slow, unreliable and sometimes nonexistent in developing countries or, on moving conveyances such as buses and cruise ships.

Staying Healthy While Traveling
All travelers should familiarize themselves with local conditions, such as high altitude or required immunizations, which could affect their health. We recommend you consult with your personal healthcare provider, the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov) and/or the World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/en/) for their recommendations.

There are several easy steps you can take to stay healthy while traveling which may help prevent contracting an illness while away from home.

  • Watch what you eat. Try new foods in modest quantities, and depending upon your destination, you may want to avoid street foods, salad bars, raw vegetables and fruits, unless they have thick peels like bananas or grapefruit.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink bottled water and avoid consuming ice cubes made with tap water.
  • If you have allergies to foods, medications or insect bites, or have any other unique medical issues, consider a medical alert bracelet and/or a physician’s note detailing required treatment should you become ill.
  • Wash your hands regularly and carry hand sanitizer.
  • Where appropriate, pack sunscreen and insect repellent (for both active and warm destinations).
  • You may also want to bring a small first-aid kit with bandaids, antibiotic cream, pain killers, bug bite cream, digestive aids like antidiarrheal or anti-bloat medications, antacids, and cold medicine. This is in addition to any prescription medications which should be adequate for the entire trip.


Notice on Aircraft Cabin Insecticide Treatment - Please note that some countries may require aircraft cabin insecticide treatment for in-bound foreign flights. A list of such countries is available at: http://www.dot.gov/office-policy/aviation-policy/aircraft-disinsection-requirements.

Consideration for Tour Participants (Escorted Tours)
For the benefit of all tour participants, we ask tour members to be considerate of their fellow travelers in the following ways:
  • Refrain from wearing colognes, perfumes and/or personal products containing excessive fragrance in respect for other guests who may be allergic
  • Avoid smoking cigarettes, e-cigarettes or cigars in the vicinity of other tour members, including in outdoor areas where smoking may be permitted but may still affect other tour participants
  • Avoid attire with political or religious messages that may offend other travelers
  • Respect your fellow passengers. Guests come from all walks of life and varied lifestyles. Please refrain from topics of conversation which might cause offense, such as religion and politics
  • Refrain from conversation or talking on mobile phones while commentary is in progress
  • Respect the mandatory seat rotation policy on the coach
  • Make use of the available hand sanitizer on the coach to support a healthy environment
  • Seek approval before taking photographs of other tour participants
  • Respect tour departures times to avoid delay and loss of sightseeing opportunities

Climate & Clothing
Bulgaria - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Romania - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Serbia - Spring and Autumn: 45–65°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 30–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Hungary - Spring and Autumn: 45–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops). In summer, bring a hat and sunscreen.

Hungary Average Temperatures: https://www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#central-europe-weather

River Cruises - Temperatures vary according to regional climate and season. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

About Drones
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or “drone” technology has quickly become affordable and is increasingly popular with recreational users. While some countries have clear, established drone laws, others do not, or existing regulations are undergoing review and change. Travelers who wish to bring a drone on their trip are responsible to research and abide by the laws and regulations of the countries they are visiting, as well as to check with their airline(s) regarding their rules for transporting drones. Please note that tours are unable to extend the length of scheduled visits and stops to accommodate use of drones.

Book & Film Recommendations
Many of our guests enjoy reading about their destination - either in advance of their trip or while traveling - as a way of adding context to their visit. Whether reading a traditional guide book, learning about the history and culture, or simply enjoying a fictional novel set in the destination, a good book can add greatly to your experience. Similarly, a good movie set in your destination helps set the mood before you travel. We asked our Tour Managers and staff to recommend books and films which past guests may have enjoyed. The following does not constitute an endorsement of any authors, books or films listed, it is merely a collection of guests’ recommendations.

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Books
Danube by Claudio Magris
Between the Woods and the Water by Patrick Leigh Fermor
Ballad of the Whiskey Robber by Julian Rubinstein
Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer
The Case Worker by Gyorgy Konrád
Fatelessness by Imre Kertesz
Blue River Black Sea by Andrew Eames

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Films
The Sound of Music (1965)
Amadeus (1984)

Preparing for Your Trip
Reconfirming Flights
It is not necessary to call your airline to reconfirm your flights. However, we do recommend that you check your airline’s website 24 hours prior to your flight to ensure that your flights remain on schedule and that flight times are unchanged.

Seat Assignments
As a courtesy service, complimentary airline seat assignments are requested on your behalf and, when available, are displayed in order of Passenger #1, #2 and so on. Assignments reflect the best available seats at the time of booking. Some airlines and/or fare types do not allow for pre-seating and require this be done at airport check-in only; in which case the display shows “N/A”. Seats are subject to change by your airline(s) including, for example, when there is a schedule change or equipment change after your initial booking; this may cause seat assignments to be changed or even cancelled. Some airlines offer preferred seating for an additional fee; these seats may only be purchased directly from the airline. You will need your family name and the 6-digit airline “Record Locator” which is displayed with the flight details on your reservation. In the event that you change seat assignments directly with your airline, changes will not be reflected on your invoice or documents. At the time that Gate 1 travel documents are issued, the currently assigned seats will be listed based on the assignments stored in your airline reservation at that time. Should you have questions regarding your assignments, please write to us at www.gate1travel.com/contactus.

Frequent Flier Programs
Passengers are responsible to contact their airline directly regarding mileage eligibility and accrual. Airline frequent flier programs determine whether to award miles in part or total based on their own rules which are updated frequently. Some discounted or promotional airfares as well as some code-share flights are not eligible for mileage accrual. Some private airfares, such as a “Gate 1 Travel Airfare”, are not eligible for mileage or may qualify for reduced mileage, even if the same airline class of service is eligible for full mileage when sold as an “Instant Purchase” published airfare. Not all published airfares are eligible for mileage. Gate 1 Travel will record frequent flier numbers when provided by the passenger prior to travel documents being issued. However, the addition of frequent flier numbers to airline records does not guarantee mileage eligibility which is at the sole discretion of each airline. Airline schedule changes may result in flights which were originally eligible for mileage accrual no longer being eligible. We highly recommend passengers to provide their frequent flier account information whenever checking in online and/or at the airport check-in desk. After travel has commenced, it is often not possible to apply for frequent mileage credit. Passengers are also responsible to determine whether previously earned mileage may be applied to flights to secure upgrades.

Known Traveler Number (KTN)
If you have a KTN number, you are normally able to join the TSA security line for expedited processing at the airport. Prior to check in, you should go online or call your airline and add your KTN number to your reservation record. In most cases, you will then see the letters "TSA PRE" printed on your boarding pass. If these letters are not printed, you will not be permitted on the TSA line. Please be aware that some airlines do not participate in the program and therefore even if there is a TSA line at the airport, you will not be given TSA PRE status. Sometimes you may not be selected by TSA (even if you entered a KTN number) and even a minor name discrepancy can result in TSA PRE being denied. It is your responsibility to register your KTN number with your airline and Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for denial of expedited security. Note: KTNs are issued by the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) after completing a background check through TSA's PreCheck® program. Global Entry members may also enjoy expedited customs processing.

Luggage & Packing
Checked bags are typically limited to a total dimension of 62 inches by adding length + width + height (example: 26"+26"+10" = 62”), and a maximum weight of 50 lbs (23kg). Smart Bags with a USB charging port, GPS tracking device and other high-tech features are prohibited as checked or carry-on baggage unless the bag is made with removable batteries and the batteries are removed and stored separately. Many airlines charge for checked bags including flights which begin and end within the USA. The most inexpensive airfare options commonly known as Basic Economy airfares do not include any checked bags nor seat assignments before the day of departure. However, for some airlines, other airfare categories also do not include checked baggage. This will be clearly displayed in our airfare selection and on your invoice. Where available, we highly recommend selecting airfares which include at least 1 piece of checked baggage. Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for checked bag fees, excess luggage or weight charges levied by an airline. Checked baggage allowances displayed on reservation details and invoices reflect the applicable allowance at the time of booking but are subject to change by your airline(s). For your airline’s requirements and fees, visit www.gate1travel.com/baggagefees.aspx. For important baggage information, visit www.gate1travel.com/luggage.aspx. Avoid placing valuables in your checked luggage. Federal law forbids the carriage of hazardous materials aboard the aircraft in your luggage, your carry-on or on your person. A violation can result in five years’ imprisonment and penalties of $250,000 or more (49 U.S.C. 5124). Hazardous materials include explosives, compressed gases, flammable liquids and solids, oxidizers, poisons, corrosives and radioactive materials. Examples: Paints, lighter fluid, fireworks, tear gases, oxygen bottles, and radio-pharmaceuticals. There are special exceptions for small quantities (up to 70 ounces total) of medicinal and toilet articles carried in your luggage and certain smoking materials carried on your person. Check the Transportation and Safety Administration (TSA) website www.tsa.gov to find out the current list of acceptable items you may bring on a plane before packing. We recommend that you use brightly colored luggage tags, straps or other identifiers to help you locate you luggage upon arrival or to describe it in the event that it is lost.

Carry on Luggage
Missed connections and lost luggage are more common than ever. We strongly suggest you use your carry on bag for those necessities you would miss if your checked bags went astray. Items to consider, but not limited to, are prescription medicines, eyeglasses, a change of clothes, mobile phone and charger, valuables (including jewelry and cash), passport, keys, insurance cards, local contact information. Refer to the TSA website for a complete list of items and their sizes which may be carried on board. We also recommend you bring a change of clothes in your carry on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost.

E-Tickets & Advance Check-In
Review the flight itinerary included in your documents. Print and carry a copy of the air itinerary which contains the 6-digit airline "Record Locator" and e-ticket numbers. Advance online check-in is available on some airlines. If available, you may enter your name and 6-digit Record Locator or Flight Ticket Number at the airline's website, and print the boarding pass on your home printer within twenty-four hours of departure. You may check-in online, even if you plan to check luggage at the airport. Airlines without advance online check-in require you to present your identification and e-ticket numbers at the airport self-service kiosk or check-in counter. Paper tickets will be provided in the rare instance when e-tickets cannot be issued.

Day of Departure
Arrive On Time
Due to increased security measures, you should plan to check in at least three hours prior to the scheduled departure time for international flights and two hours prior for domestic flights. Many airlines do not permit check-in less than one hour prior to the scheduled departure time. It is your responsibility to arrive on time for all scheduled flights. Enhanced security procedures, including passenger screening, canine inspection, and inspection of personal electronic devices, have been implemented for all flights into the United States, and therefore security procedures may take longer than normal.

Check-In
If your flight itinerary displays a flight as “Operated By” another carrier, you should check-in at the desk of the “Operated By” airline. When you arrive at the airport, check the airport monitors for updated check-in desk listings. At check-in, be prepared to provide your government issued identification (valid passport required when traveling internationally) and your e-ticket itinerary/ticket numbers to the agent. Once you've checked in and received your boarding passes and luggage claim tickets, proceed directly to the security check. Security lines are often backed up and can take time to get through. Once you've completed security check, proceed directly to your gate and check the large electronic flight screens for your flight time and departure gate for schedule and gate changes. Airport desk clerks will assist with unexpected changes. Once you are in the gate area you can relax, shop or buy a snack before your flight.

Connecting Passengers
Passengers connecting from another point within the USA should check their luggage through to their final destination. Although problems with lost luggage have been minimal, it is a possibility. Certain carriers do not allow baggage “interlining,” and luggage must be checked separately for each flight. When you check your luggage, please verify where your luggage is being sent. When connecting between flights in major airports, you may need to pass through multiple security checkpoints. Therefore, we recommend that you proceed immediately to the gate area for your connecting flight to avoid any unexpected delays which may cause you to be late. Passengers returning to the USA may need to collect their luggage at the first airport of entry and recheck their luggage for their connecting flight.

Flight Services
Avoiding Jet Lag
In order to minimize fatigue and general restlessness caused by jet lag, there are a few steps you may take including switching to your destination time zone when you board the plane, by sleeping and eating according to the new schedule, avoiding heavy eating, caffeine or alcoholic beverages before or during your flight, and by drinking plenty of water and/or fruit juice while flying. Try to sleep on overnight flights and then, upon arrival, avoid the temptation to nap until nighttime.

Airline Food
Unless you are a first or business class passenger, you will likely be treated to a pretty mediocre culinary experience. Reasons for this range from airline budget constraints to the logistics of high altitudes, low humidity and air pressure which tend to desensitize taste buds. Small galleys, tiny ovens and precooked food, plus previously mentioned cost-cuts in order to keep airfares as low as possible, add to some often pretty poor fare. Our suggestion is to stick to simple options, carry a few granola bars, and don't expect this to be your best dining experience.

Premium Economy or Business Class
Service may not be available on all flights or aircraft types, and therefore some flights within an itinerary may not include Premium Economy or Business Class seating. This includes, for example, some US domestic connections and/or short haul flights abroad. When service is not available, you will be accommodated in the best alternative class of service and seating. Please check your operating airline to determine the extra services you may receive.

US Customs & Immigration for Return Flights
In most cases, passengers with return flights that include a connection in the US will need to complete customs and immigration formalities in their first port of entry, requiring them to collect their luggage and check-in for their onward flight. However, there are some exceptions: certain airports in Canada and Ireland (Dublin), allow US Immigration formalities to be completed in the overseas airport at the gate area.

Foreign Domestic Flights
If your tour program includes foreign domestic flights, and those tickets are not included together with the e-ticket itinerary in your travel documents, you will receive those tickets at your destination from our local representative.

What to do if You Need Assistance

Whether you purchased your airfare from Gate 1 Travel or from the airline directly, please bear in mind that Gate 1 Travel does not own nor operate the airline(s), nor the airport facilities where they operate. At times, flying can be a frustrating experience, especially when things do not go exactly as planned, and airline explanations can be confusing or even misleading. Should you face a problem, remain calm and seek assistance either from the airline directly or from Gate 1. Please be aware that in most cases, on the day of your flight(s), airlines pass responsibility for your reservation to their staff at the airport and it is not always possible for Gate 1 Travel to intervene on your behalf, either through our reservations system or directly with your airline.

Emergency Assistance
The Gate 1 emergency line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call: 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676. From overseas, call: 001 215 572-7676. Outside office hours, listen to the prompts, then press 3. You will speak immediately with a representative, or you may be asked to leave a detailed message including your name, your booking number, and most importantly the telephone number where you can be reached. Your message will be forwarded immediately to a representative who will contact you at the telephone number provided.

Last Minute Schedule Changes & Flight Delays
On the day of travel, check the flight schedule and advise Gate 1 by phone, 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676, of any significant changes that might affect your arrival transfer or hotel reservation. Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for affected land services, including arrival and/or departure transfers should flights be changed without our knowledge. Gate 1 will make every effort to inform passengers of schedule changes and cannot be held responsible for changes in routing and/or the number of stops in the itinerary. Nor will Gate 1 provide compensation for changes or cancellations implemented by an airline.

Missed Flights
In the event that you miss your flight which departs as scheduled, for any reason, your airline will consider you a "no-show” and may resell your seat(s) to other customers. This will also result in the cancellation of any later flights in your itinerary. Similarly, if you voluntarily decide not to use any of the flights on your itinerary, the airline will consider you a “no show” and cancel remaining flights on your itinerary. In this case, please contact your airline immediately for assistance in getting you to your destination. Missed flights are typically fully non-refundable and you may be required to purchase new flights from the airline at your own expense. Once your alternative arrangements have been confirmed, please contact Gate 1 with your new flight details.

Missed Connection
If you are connecting from a domestic flight which is delayed for any reason, causing you to miss your international flight, ask the airline for assistance in getting you to your destination. Since all airline tickets are issued on special fares which carry restrictions and penalties if changed, it's the airline's responsibility to make alternate arrangements on your behalf as Gate 1 has no authority or control over airline activities and policies. Do not leave the airline check-in desk until an alternative itinerary has been confirmed.

Lost Luggage
If your luggage is lost or damaged by the airlines, a baggage claim form must be filed with the carrier before leaving the airport. Any cost to retrieve luggage will be your responsibility and you should retain receipts to submit to your insurance provider. You may be required to return to an airport to retrieve your luggage personally.

Arrival & Departure
Arrival Procedures
Upon arrival, please complete immigration formalities if necessary and claim your luggage. If your program includes airport arrival transfers, check your voucher for specific instructions, as they vary with every destination. In most cases, you will be met after collecting your luggage or passing through Customs by the local representative who will be holding a Gate 1 Travel sign and/or a sign with your name on it. In some instances you will be instructed to walk a short distance to a transportation counter. The company's name and location will be printed on your voucher. If for any reason you do not connect with the Gate 1 transfer personnel, go to the Tourist Information Desk and ask them to page the Gate 1 Travel representative or phone the number on your voucher. If you are delayed due to lost luggage, phone the number on the voucher or have a companion exit the Customs Area to advise the transfer representative.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Budapest - The Mahart Port is located on the Pest side of the city between the Elizabeth Bridge and the Lagymanyosi Bridge (also known as the Rakoczi Bridge). The distance between the bridges is approximately 2.5 miles. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Budapest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

Monarch Queen - If, for any reason, you are unable to locate the Monarch Queen, please telephone the ship to receive the most recent docking information. If calling from a local telephone, please dial: 0172 259 7194, or from an international telephone: 011 49 172 259 7194.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Giurgiu - The Giurgiu Post S.A is located on Soseaua Portului street just along the Danube river between the Port Capital of Giurgiu building and a large sailboat sculpture. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Bucharest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

What To Do When Your Flight Is Delayed
Airlines do not share flight manifest information. Therefore, the only way we may learn of a delay or schedule change while you are traveling is from you, the traveler. The sooner you are able to contact one of our offices, the better we can respond. Please refer to the Emergency Assistance instructions on this same document. Gate 1 Travel is only able to guarantee pre-reserved arrival transfers for up to one hour from the scheduled time, no matter the cause. In case you are delayed for any reason, and are unable to follow the instructions on your voucher, please make independent transfer arrangements and retain your receipts. Unused tour services, including transfers and hotel nights are not refundable. Upon you return home you will need to contact your airline and/or insurance carrier to investigate the possibility of reimbursement for any unused tour services.

Departure Procedures
If your program includes departure transfers, instructions will be stated on your voucher or provided locally.

Transfers
Due to local traffic and other extenuating circumstances, we ask that you allow 30 minutes from your scheduled transfer time for our representative to arrive. This includes hotel, airport and cruise transfers. Such possible delays are taken into consideration in scheduling transfers and you should therefore have no concerns about arriving late for your tour, flight or cruise. For transfers from a hotel, let the hotel reception desk or concierge know that you are waiting for a transfer. In the case of a missed transfer, reimbursement for your out-of-pocket expenses will be considered provided you obtain a written statement from the hotel's front desk verifying the length of time you waited, and the time you left the hotel, and a receipt for your transportation with time and date.

The cost of a transfer is more expensive than hiring a taxi, as a Gate 1 transfer necessarily includes round trip service, or 'dead-leg'. Often the places of call (airports, seaports, hotels) demand entrance and parking fees, where drivers may have to wait for up to an hour. Passengers comfortable hiring a taxi on their own and do not require assistance will save money.

About Your Accommodations
Hotels
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each hotel based on overall quality, location, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All rooms are standard twin-bedded (two single beds) rooms with private facilities. Special requests such as bed types, smoking preference and connecting rooms are subject to availability. Room selection in all cases, unless otherwise reserved, is strictly at the discretion of the hotel's management on a run-of-house basis. Triple rooms consist of standard twin beds or one double bed plus a sofa/folding bed or cot for third person except in the U.S. and Canada, where triple rooms often consist of two double/queen beds for three persons; where available, a fee may be charged by the hotel for the addition of a cot/rollaway. The number of persons accommodated does not dictate the room size. Although available at most 4 and 5 star hotels, the use of air-conditioning abroad differs greatly from the United States, and is often shut down at night and from the end until the start of the summer months. Some lodges and accommodations in remote regions may not have all of the amenities, such as hairdryer, alarm clock and room service, that you might find in a larger hotel located in a city center.

Hotel Check-in/ Check-out
Hotel check-in time is generally not before 4:00 p.m. and check-out time is prior to noon. If you will be arriving early in the day or departing in the evening, hotels will usually allow you to store your luggage in their luggage room. Ask at the front desk if the hotel can check you in earlier, or let you stay later.

River Cruises
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each cruise ship based on overall quality, itinerary, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All Monarch Queen cabins are standard rooms with private facilities, unless you have specifically requested and paid for an upgrade. All cabins have two twin beds that can be pushed together or separated. While at port, the vessel may be docked adjacent to another ship which may obstruct window views. We recommend you close the cabin curtains before turning in at night for privacy. We reserve the right to make ship substitutions with those of equal standard.

At Your Destination
Eco & Sustainable Tourism
We support global efforts to create a more eco-friendly world, intolerant of any forms of cruelty, abuse and intentional environmental destruction. To that end we ask that our clients maintain a watchful eye as they travel, and report any abuses they may encounter. One of the many benefits of tourism is the shared cultural knowledge and ultimate elimination of negative behavior through education. We rely on your good feedback to enable this element of symbiosis. As you travel and learn about foreign cultures, we ask first and foremost that you practice tolerance and respect for local customs.

Gratuities
Tipping is always a matter of personal discretion. For your convenience, please use the summary below as a guideline for recommended gratuity amounts. Gratuities may be paid in local currency or US dollar equivalent where accepted. Please be aware that tipping is considered by many locals to be a part of their normal remuneration and some may approach you for additional "compensation." There is no need to be intimidated by the request, nor should you feel pressured to pay more than recommended. If you become uncomfortable by any behavior you encounter, please advise your tour manager or phone our local office. Numbers are provided in your documents for your convenience.

Suggested Tipping: Escorted Tours

Tour Manager (Coordinator; may or may not act as a guide): US $7 per person per day
Driver (Provides chauffeur services and limited assistance with luggage) : US $3 per person per day, US $2 per half day
Local Guide (Offers in-depth information at specific locations. There may be one or many guides along a tour program): US $3 per person per day of sightseeing, US $2 per half day
Hotel porters and wait staff: Included

Suggested Tipping: European River Cruises

Crew: US $14 per person per day
Cruise Director (ship): US $4 per person per day
Activity Host (ship) US $2 per person per day
Tour Manager or Local Host (hotel) US $4 per person per day

Gratuities for the crew (shared by all crew members) may be paid via the on board ship account or dropped in the designated box at reception. Gratuities for the Cruise Director and Activity Host may not be charged to your on board ship account and should be paid in cash and given to the person directly.

You may also tip other service providers such as local guides, bus drivers and others who may have provided special services.

Suggested Tipping: Independent Tours

Hotel Porter: US $3 per bag
Hotel Wait staff: 5-10% of the bill (lunch or dinner)

Local Sightseeing Tours: Guide: US $3 per person per half day, US $6 per person per full day Driver: US $2 per person per half day, US $4 per person per full day

Bulgaria - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Romania - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Serbia - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Hungary - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists.

About Your Sightseeing
To ensure a pleasant and fair experience for passengers on our escorted tours, there is a mandatory seat rotation policy on our motor coaches which will be organized by your Tour Manager. Some buses are equipped with toilet facility, however they are strictly intended for emergency use only and often require the vehicle to stop for safety reasons before use. When travel dates coincide with religious holidays and national celebrations, some monuments and sites may be closed, sometimes without prior notice. On these occasions, escorted touring itineraries may be amended to reflect these closures. Occasionally, during holidays and certain periods, and/or due to other unforeseen circumstances including weather conditions, there may be last-minute changes, sometimes after arrival, which may affect the sequence of the tour and locations visited. National monuments and tourist sites regularly undergo renovations, which can obscure the monument's view. No tour will be canceled due to renovations, however Gate 1 will decide based on the conditions whether to amend an itinerary. To respect the privacy of all tour participants, your tour manager will not organize a group photo or collect passenger email addresses for a group list.

Land Only Passengers (Escorted Tours)
Your tour manager will contact you after your arrival at your hotel. Passengers who have not purchased arrival transfers from Gate 1 Travel should proceed directly to the hotel for check-in. The details of the hotel can be found in your documents.

Purchasing Tours Locally
On escorted tours, the guides will generally sell optional tours to passengers who have not pre-purchased them. Payment can be made by cash or credit card, unless otherwise noted below. This does not apply to Independent packages. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Independent Activities - Gate 1 itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently and with due consideration. Gate 1 is not responsible for any activities not expressly included in its programs. Caution should be exercised when selecting certain activities that may require physical strength, coordination or exertion. Particular care should be taken when considering animal rides, such as on camels, mules or horses

Water Level
A rise or fall in the river water level, or other factors which may impact safe navigation, can prevent the ship from passing under bridges and/or moving further along the river. This may cause part or all of the cruise itinerary to be operated by motor coach. If this becomes necessary, Gate 1 Travel will endeavor to provide equal or similar services, however no cruise will be canceled and no monetary compensation will be made for those changes. A fluctuation in water level can change in a matter of hours and may occur at any time of the year. In this case, the situation will be closely monitored by captain and crew to ensure services are delivered with as few substitutions as possible. If you have planned independent travel prior to the cruise it is advisable to leave local contact information with Gate 1 Travel before departing. Should an embarkation point be changed, Gate 1 Travel will attempt to contact passengers by phone or email.

Currency
We suggest getting a small amount of currency for the first country you're visiting before you depart (except India). It is a good idea to carry a chart with you to help you convert dollars to the local currency. It's also a good idea not to carry too much money. Many countries have ATM machines that accept most ATM cards, but be sure you know your ATM password in numbers-the keypads on foreign ATMs don't always have letters. ATM machines will only dispense cash in local currency. Check with respective consulates to learn current currency allowances and requirements. Use your credit card whenever possible. Should you decide to carry cash, please note that exchange at banks is typically more favorable than at hotels or exchange bureaus. However, bank hours are limited to Mondays through Fridays and sometimes only morning hours on those days. Please note that many banks and most vendors will not accept or exchange $100 bills. We suggest to carry $20 bills or smaller. In many destinations (except Western Europe), we suggest to bring between $50 to $100 in $1 bills which may be used to pay gratuities.

Bulgaria - The Bulgarian Leva is the currency of Bulgaria.

Romania - The Romanian Leu is the currency of Romania.

Serbia - The Serbian Dinar is the currency of Serbia.

Hungary - The Hungarian Forint is the currency of Hungary.

European River Cruises - The Euro is the currency used for purchases on board the ship, except for optional excursions which may be paid for in USD. Please note that while calling at port, other currencies may be used depending on the country being visited. Money-changing services (to Euro) will be available on board.

Ship Account and Payment: There is a cashless system on board. All on board expenditures (in the bar, restaurant, shop, and spa) are added to the ship's account. Closing invoices will be presented to the passengers for settlement. Payment can be made by cash in Euro or by credit card (VISA, MasterCard, American Express). Payment made by credit card may be subject to an international credit card transaction fee. Please note we cannot accept USD as a form of cash payment. Passenger's are not eligible for a Value Added Tax (VAT) refund for purchases made on board the ship.

Credit Cards
While credit cards are accepted in most destinations, it is advisable to carry local currency. Inform your credit card company that you are traveling to avoid your card being blocked for security reasons.
While most US-issued credit cards have the embedded microprocessor chip, there are still some that have the magnetic-strip technology. The “chip-and-PIN” cards require users to punch in a personal identification number (PIN) instead of signing for a purchase. For example, many automated ticket kiosks, such as those commonly found at train stations, gas pumps and parking garages, don’t accept cards without a chip and PIN. Most cash registers are equipped to handle American cards but if you encounter difficulties, offer an alternative credit card or politely insist that the cashier keep trying to swipe the credit card. ATMs typically recognize and accept US issued debit cards. For travel to Europe, should you anticipate using ticket kiosks or purchasing train tickets locally, you may consider buying tickets and other basic purchases prior to departure.

European River Cruises - On board expenditures are processed through a banking center in Cyprus. Passengers wishing to settle their on board account by credit card should advise their credit card provider of potential charges from Cyprus in addition to the countries that will be visited on your itinerary.

Shopping
Most people enjoy bringing home at least one souvenir from the countries they visit. However, some find any amount of shopping to be too much while others never find enough opportunities.

We have built into our Escorted itineraries a few shopping stops at recommended spots. These stops are designed to enhance your experience by providing an opportunity to see first-hand quality locally crafted merchandise which you may not be able to find on your own. Shops are checked to ensure the quality and authenticity of the products they offer, and we limit guides from visiting other locations. In some cases, we plan these stops to provide an opportunity to use clean bathrooms and to stretch your legs. All shops want your satisfaction, and therefore in case of any misunderstanding they ask that you kindly submit your claim to us within one week of the item's receipt. Claims submitted later will be subject to each store’s policies.

While shopping independently, we advise you to exercise care and common sense when making any purchase. Always get a formal receipt. And remember that, just like in this country, if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is!

About Tax-Free Shopping
Tax-Free Shopping allows shoppers to reclaim the VAT (Value-Added Tax) or GST (Goods and Services Tax) they have paid on their purchases in some foreign countries in accordance with restrictions and procedures as dictated by each country. Refund eligibility varies by country, but may require presenting a scanned copy of your passport at the time of purchase, a minimum amount spent, or providing original store receipts. For more details, check the respective country’s online website, with the shop salesperson, with your tour manager or at www.globalblue.com for specific country regulations and airport operation hours. Please keep in mind that you must apply for VAT refund in the airport of the country the items were purchased and allow enough time prior to your flight for the application.

U.S. Customs & Shipping Charges
You may carry items with a fair retail value totaling $800 into the U.S. Taxes may be applied to the next $1,000 worth of merchandise. U.S. Customs determines the value of your items, often honoring a genuine sales receipt. Items which are shipped home are always subject to duty when received in the U.S. (in addition to shipping charges). Some shops may offer to include shipping and duties in the price but this typically means shipping only to the customs facility closest to you and payment only of the export duties; you would still need to collect the item and pay U.S. import duties. Please be aware that it is illegal to import products made from endangered animal species. U.S. Customs & Border Protection will seize these items, as well as most furs, coral, tortoise shell, reptile skins, feathers, plants, and items made from animal skins.

Bulgaria - Bulgaria offers an assortment of articles that may be more difficult to find elsewhere, including World War II and Communist era memorabilia. The shopping experience itself can be just as worthwhile as the goods, with interesting boutiques lining cobblestone streets. These shops offer everything from Orthodox icons and antiques to leather goods, chic clothing and jewelry. Also, prices in Bulgaria are generally lower than in other European countries, making it an even more attractive draw.

Romania - Items of interest include intricately woven carpets, regional wines, ornately painted eggs and tiles, Italian clothes and shoes at discount prices, glass pieces, and porcelain wares. Of course there is also plenty of Dracula kitsch along with more unusual souvenirs like wild boar skins.

Serbia - In cities, small shops dominate shopping scene. Popular items include embroidery, lace, leather and metalwork. Clothing from top name designers can often be found at substantially lower prices than in Western stores. Shops are usually open weekdays from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, with shorter hours on Saturdays.

Hungary - Hungary is renowned for its food and beverage products, especially fine red paprika, brandies, and Unicum liqueur. Additionally, traditional items such as ceramics, embroidery work, painted eggs, crystal ware, and costumed dolls are highly popular.

Your Safety is Very Important
Prior to your trip, if you are traveling overseas, we strongly recommend that you visit the website of the U.S. Department of State at www.travel.state.gov, specifically the section which addresses International Travel. You should read the tips for foreign travel and travel warnings for the country or countries that you plan to visit.

It is also important that you do not allow your common sense to take a vacation while on your trip. Here are several tips which, if followed, will save much potential hardship:

  • Be aware of potentially dangerous places and situations as you would be at home. Avoid wearing expensive jewelry and carry your valuables concealed in inside pockets or hidden pouches. Your objective is to avoid drawing attention and to blend in with the crowd
  • Don't put all your valuables (money, credit cards, passports, etc.) in the same place (in case one wallet is stolen, you should have other valuables and identification in another safe place)
  • Do not leave valuables laying loose in your room or on the bus as Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for any loss. Use the hotel safe. Keep copies of your passports, credit card numbers and travelers checks numbers in the hotel safe
  • When possible we suggest traveling in pairs or groups when moving about independently
  • Do not pack valuables (cameras, computers, jewelry, etc.) in your checked luggage. Keep hard to replace valuables with you in your carry-on bag
  • Keep wallets safely tucked into front trouser pockets and/or wear a money pouch inside your clothing
  • Carry handbags close to your body, shoulder bags the cross-body method with the bag in front of your body
  • Credit cards are generally accepted everywhere and are safer than traveling with large amounts of cash

If you've purchased an escorted tour program, your travel documents will include telephone numbers of local Gate 1 Travel representatives who will do their utmost to assist you in the event of an emergency. The numbers are printed on your Gate 1 Travel vouchers. Please copy the numbers. Once you relinquish the voucher, you will not have this information. Passengers traveling independently should employ the services of hotel concierges and local authorities.

European River Cruises - You are on a ship with a high safety standard and reliable crew. In case of emergency, we ask you to follow the instructions of your crew. Please take further information concerning safety from the notice on your cabin door. Life jackets will be stored in your stateroom. When leaving the ship, kindly drop your cabin key off at reception and promptly pick it up upon arrival back to the ship. This procedure helps ensure your security by allowing the crew to immediately determine if all passengers are on board before continuing the cruise. While in port, please keep your cabin door locked.

Tourist Street Scams
Pickpockets and thieves can destroy an otherwise wonderful holiday. Be mindful of these precautions to help avoid being scammed or robbed:

  • Remain alert and cautious. Be wary of any unusual contact or commotion in crowded public places, including train stations, markets, subways and tourist sites;
  • Be especially careful when traveling independently, or leaving your tour group to explore on your own. Try not to travel alone, especially at night. Avoid narrow alleys and poorly lit streets;
  • Use only official taxis and check the change you receive from all taxi drivers and vendors;
  • Beware of pickpockets often working with an accomplice who will distract you by spilling something on you, dropping a wallet or other seemingly valuable object, or tripping and falling down in front of you;
  • Beware of aggressive street vendors who may approach you offering a demonstration which may end with you being pressured to purchase an item or act as a distraction for another pickpocket;
  • Don’t tip beggars;
  • Wear the shoulder strap of your bag across your chest;
  • Carry modest amounts of cash (US dollars) in small denominations so that you can avoid flashing large bills when paying for small items;
  • ATM machines can be a convenient way to carry less currency. However those machines too can be used for robbery. Be wary of anyone who can look over your shoulder when inputting PINs. Another scam involves rigging the machine with a plastic insert which makes your card retrieval difficult; the thief then removes your card after you walk away;
  • If you are confronted, do not fight back - give up your valuables. If your possessions are lost or stolen, report the loss immediately to the local police and keep a copy of the official report for insurance claims.


Local Emergency Phone Numbers
Bulgaria
  • Ambulance: 150
  • Fire: 160
  • Police: 166

Romania
  • Ambulance: 961 or 962
  • Fire: 981
  • Police: 955

Serbia
  • Ambulance: 94
  • Fire: 93
  • Police: 92

Hungary
  • General Emergency: 112

Languages
Bulgaria - Bulgarian is the local language.

Romania - Romanian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Serbia - Serbian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Hungary - Hungarian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Electricity
Please note: The U.S. uses 120 volts and you can purchase a converter and transformer at most hardware stores for your 120V appliances.

Bulgaria - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Romania - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Serbia - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Hungary - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Monarch Queen - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Code of Conduct
Bulgaria - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Smoking is prohibited in all indoor public places. Some restaurants, cafes, and nightclubs may have designated smoking areas.

Romania - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. When meeting someone for the first time, formal address should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Serbia - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Hospitality is highly important in Serbia, and if you are offered food or a drink, it is polite to accept. Normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Hungary - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Normal courtesies should be observed and when addressing a newly met acquaintance, both first and last name should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate. Smoking is prohibited on public transport and in public buildings.

Food and Meals
As specified in each itinerary. Meals are based on the hotel's or restaurant's buffet or set menu. In general, beverages are not included, unless specifically stated. Although Gate 1 cannot make guarantees, every effort will be made to honor special dietary requests submitted in writing at least 72 hours prior to departure at www.gate1travel.com/contactus. Terminology for dietary requests can vary from country to country and options may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you make your wishes known to your tour manager upon arrival, and at each hotel/restaurant.

Bulgaria - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Serbia - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Holidays
On public holidays, there may be reduced public transportation, as well as limited hours or closures of attractions, shops and restaurants.

Holidays - Bulgaria

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year's Day observed
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 8: St. George's Day observed
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas
Dec 27: Christmas Holiday

Holidays - Romania

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 22: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 24: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 25: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 12: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 13: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 14: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 16: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 17: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 4: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 5: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas

Holidays - Serbia

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 3: New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
May 3: Labor Day Second Day
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year Holiday observed
Jan 3: Second New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Hungary

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Disabled Facilities - European River Cruises
Due to physical constraints and space limitations, wheelchairs and walkers are not allowed on motor coaches and/or river cruises. The Monarch Queen is equipped with elevator access between the Violin and Cello decks, however passengers will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes while touring. Kindly refer to our Terms for additional information.
Embarkation
Embarkation will begin at 2 pm unless otherwise noted in your itinerary. Check your itinerary carefully for the port of embarkation and disembarkation. In the event that you arrive independently to the port of embarkation, note the location carefully. Please ensure that you are always on board before the ship's scheduled time of departure. For same day directions, please contact the Cruise Director at the number provided on your cruise voucher. Early arrivals may drop their luggage.

Upon embarkation all passengers will be required to hand over their passport to the Reception Desk for the duration of the cruise. The staff are required to provide these to the appropriate authorities as the ship sails through each country. These will be stored in a secure area and returned at the end of the cruise.

Disembarkation
You will receive all relevant information concerning disembarkation in detail by your cruise director on the afternoon of your last day onboard. Passengers who have purchased a transfer will be required to place their luggage outside of their cabin a few hours prior to their scheduled time of departure. Details will be advised locally. All passengers and luggage must be off board the ship at the final disembarkation time noted in your itinerary.

On Your Cruise - European River Cruises
Attire:
River cruise dress code is always casual. Modest attire (no bathing suits) is requested in the dining room at all meals. Remember to pack comfortable walking shoes and an umbrella.

Language:
The official language on board is English, although other languages may be spoken. All announcements and tours will be performed in English.

Meals and Dietary Restrictions:
There is open seating in the dining room for lunch and dinner. Please see your Maître d'hotel who is at your disposal for special needs. Passengers requiring special diet must advise Gate 1 Cruises at the least 20 days prior to departure. However we are pleased to assist within the limits of those products available on board.

Specialty Dining:
The Backlounge Steakhouse serves prime cuts of meat and fish in a relaxed open-kitchen dining room. Seating is limited and reservations can be made at Reception. There is a supplementary charge of 15 Euros per person. Full menu details will be provided on board and reservations cannot be taken in advance of boarding.

Smoking:
Smoking is only allowed in designated areas on the sundeck. Please do not throw cigarettes overboard.

Amenities:
A hairdryer is supplied to all cabins. Laundry service is available on board for an additional charge, however the ship is not equipped to care for dry cleaning. Charges are displayed on board. Valuables can be deposited in the cabin safe.

Jacuzzi:
The sundeck jacuzzi is open the entire season from 7am - 7pm. Hours are subject to change by the captain due to the sailing itinerary and weather.

Fitness Center:
The fitness center is equipped with one treadmill, one stationary bicycle and yoga mats.

Medical Services:
Ship's crew may be able to provide basic first-aid, however ships do not carry a doctor or nurse onboard. Should professional medical attention be required, local services will be contacted upon the passenger's request.

Excursions:
During your journey you will have the opportunity to take part in a variety of shore excursions. If you have not pre-booked the excursions, there will be an opportunity to do so on board with your Cruise Director. These excursions can paid for in cash (USD), or charged to your credit card. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Walking:
River Cruise tours dock at inland towns and excursions may include a fair amount of walking on uneven or cobblestone streets. The Monarch Queen is equipped with elevator access between the Violin and Cello decks, however passengers will be required to climb stairs to access the different decks of the ship. Many ports have limited ramps. You may also experience "double-docking." In some ports, where there are limited docks available for the number of visiting ships, you may find your ship docked adjacent to another and may have to walk across one or more other river cruise ships before reaching the dock area.

Children:
The vessels do not maintain facilities or services for children aboard the cruise. We regret that we cannot accommodate children under 16 years of age.

Telephone:
All cabins are equipped with direct dialing for an additional fee. If you need to be contacted while on board the ship, please provide the emergency numbers outlined in your documents to family and/or friends. It is possible that the emergency numbers are out of the telephone network at the time of dialing. If this is the case, a message will be provided by the telephone company in German. It is advisable to hang-up and dial a short time later.

Email and Post:
The Monarch Queen offers complimentary basic internet access onboard based on regional satellite for river cruise ships. Internet service is accessible in the reception lobby area. This service is complimentary and should enable you to browse the internet, check your email, access international publications, and view Facebook accounts on your personal device(s) during your sailing. You will be unable to download movies or video, send videos or access Netflix or Jetflicks. At the beginning of your sailing, you will be provided with an access code which you may use on any of your devices. Please note the possibility of potential interruptions in satellite signals based on terrain and weather, plus factors such as populated ports where many ships are utilizing the same satellite signal, which may cause slower online connections than you are accustomed to at home. Internet access will not be available in the port of Breisach, Germany.

Any mail with postage can be handed in at the reception. It will be posted at the next port of call.

Know Before You Go
Although most of the planning and preparation is taken care of for you, there are still a few things you should know and some details you should take care of to ensure your comfort, safety and peace of mind. Please review the following information before your departure to ensure that any surprises along the way will only be pleasant ones.
Getting Ready to Go
Passports and Visas
It is each traveler's responsibility to have a passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the dates of travel and a visa if required. Please check the information at www.gate1travel.com/visas.aspx for the specific country/region you are visiting for more details. IMPORTANT: Passengers who are not U.S. citizens must check with the respective consulate or a visa agency to determine what personal identification is required. Passengers who enter, leave and then re-enter the same country on their itinerary should check if they require a double-entry visa. Passport applications are available at most U.S. Post Offices, as well as at regional Passport Agencies. Passengers requiring visas, whether obtained in advance or locally upon arrival, should ensure that their passport has blank pages.

Traveling with Friends or Family?
If you are traveling with friends or family who are booked on another reservation, please make sure that we are aware. On occasion, we may operate more than one vehicle on your tour departure in which case we will ensure that guests will be assigned together. This is achieved by connecting your reservations before your departure. Once you arrive in your destination, it may not be possible to make assignment changes. To check that your reservations are linked, log into https://www.gate1travel.com/res with your email and password, select your reservation number, and check to see that your reservations are indicated as "Traveling With" at the top right side of the display.

Trip Preparation
A little pre-planning can make your trip go a lot smoother. Several weeks before your trip, make a list of what you will need to take with you. Make sure your personal documents (passports, visas, driver's license) are in order. Make sure also that you have enough prescription medications to last through the trip and carry them with you in case your luggage is delayed. Bring a change of clothes in your carry-on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost. Lost luggage is common. We strongly urge you to consider carry-ons instead of checked bags when possible, and when checking a bag is necessary, choose a bag color and identification that stands out. We suggest that you make photocopies of passports, visas, personal ID and any other important travel documents and pack them separately from the originals. You may also make a digital copy of your passport to keep a clear picture with the important details in your cell phone or digital camera photos. If you lose the originals while traveling, you'll have copies for easier reporting and replacement. Pack a list of medications including dosage and generic names. You may consider bringing a small supply of over the counter medications for headaches and/or anti-diarrhea pills (especially when traveling outside of the USA and Western Europe). We recommend that you pack a portable alarm clock. Due to security reasons, many museums have restrictions on the size of bags that can be taken inside and backpacks, carry-on bags or large purses may not be permitted. It is recommended to bring a small shoulder bag or purse to use in these situations instead. Avoid placing valuables such as cameras in your checked luggage. Airplane pressure can cause similar pressure in your body, most notably in ears, as well as liquid tubes and bottles. Your physician can suggest medication for decongestion. We suggest that you place liquid containers into Ziploc bags to catch any leaks.

Travel Safety Advice: The safety of our guests is Gate 1’s #1 concern. Before making the decision to reserve your vacation, we want you to be aware of potential situations which may impact your holiday. While most of the time our programs run precisely according to plans, on rare occasion force majeure events including weather, transportation mechanical issues, or uninhabitable accommodation, civil unrest and even criminal or terrorist activities will present themselves unexpectedly and with little or no notice. Gate 1 will make the decision to cancel a tour only after receiving verifiable government issued information. We are otherwise obliged to comply with contractual airline and vendor agreements and carry out the tour until or unless we are advised otherwise. In the event of such an occurrence anytime after your date of departure, Gate 1 and the local destination ground staff, in coordination with government advisories, airlines, hotels, cruise ships and other vendors, will make decisions with regard to your safety first. We strongly recommend that tour participants review the destination country's specific information at https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/alertswarnings.html.

Travel Protection
Even the best-planned trips can be impacted by the unexpected. And that is why we recommend that you help protect yourself and your investment by purchasing Travel Protection for your Gate 1 trip. Travel Protection can help with medical coverage for illness or injury, trip cancellation and/or interruption, baggage loss, medical evacuation, and more. At any time before you complete Final Payment, you may choose to purchase Travel Protection. The protection plan premium is non-refundable after a 10-day review period. In addition, you must be medically able to travel at the time the premium is paid. For a summary of the plan details on coverages, benefits, limitations and exclusions, please refer to the Description of Coverage by visiting www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit (CFAR) is a non-insurance feature that allows you to cancel up to 72 hours before your scheduled departure for any reason not otherwise covered in the Travel Protection Plan. CFAR must be purchased at the same time as the Travel Protection Plan as well as within 21 days of the original booking date. Independent or escorted tour reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to the full cost of your trip, less the cost of initial deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. Sea or river cruise reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to 50% of the cost of your trip, less the cost of initial trip deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. All CFAR credits are valid for a period of two years from the original date of travel. CFAR Credits have no cash value and are not transferrable. Airline-assessed fees are generally $300 per person, but may be as much as fully non-refundable. Some non-refundable airline tickets may retain value, less airline-assessed fees. Your future air credit must be used to book with the same airline. Deadlines to rebook and complete travel vary by airline and may be as early as 12 months from when the tickets were originally issued (not the date of travel). For details, www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

This program does not apply to custom groups and Antarctica cruises. Residents of New York, Missouri & Minnesota may purchase this Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit separate from Travel Protection. Call to speak with a reservation agent for details. This Cancel for any Reason Wavier Benefit is not insurance and is provided by Gate 1 Travel.

Cell Phones & Calling Cards
You may wish to carry a cell phone while traveling. Check with your cell phone provider if your phone will work in the destination(s) you are visiting. If you can access the Internet as you travel, you can take advantage of email or a Skype Internet telephone (VOIP) account for the best value. Additionally, if your phone can connect to WiFi you may be able to make voice and video calls free of charge. Please contact your cell phone provider for further details. Alternatively, you may investigate renting a cell phone before you leave or buying an inexpensive phone locally. When calling the U.S. from a foreign country, you may also use a prepaid calling card; normally, the only additional charge (besides the prepaid long distance charges) is a local fee of a few cents and possibly a connection fee if you are using your card at your hotel. It is best to check with the hotel's reception desk prior to making phone calls to avoid unexpected charges. Please note that we are unable to provide compensation for phone calls regardless of reason.

Making Telephone Calls from One Country to Another
When dialing a number from one country to another, you should proceed as follows: dial your country's Exit Code (often indicated with a “+” sign), then the destination Country Code, then the Phone Number. For most countries, the exit code is 00. Exceptions include the USA and Canada (011), Hong Kong and Cambodia (001), Australia (0011), and Russia (8 Pause 10*). For Brazil, please consult with the local telephone company. If you are dialing from a mobile phone, you can enter a “+” instead of the international Exit Code (011, 001, 0011 or 00) by pressing and holding the 0 key. For most countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, South America and South Pacific, if you are calling from a local phone to a number within the same country, you should drop both the exit and country codes and then add a leading 0 (zero). Exceptions include Spain, Italy, Hungary and Malta (no additional zero needed to dial locally).

Example:
To dial the following number in Germany (as listed on your voucher): +(49) 0555-555
From USA or your US cell phone: 011-49-555-555
From another country in Europe: 00-49-555-555
From a German phone within Germany: 0555-555


WiFi Access
WiFi access has improved. Free or inexpensive WiFi internet is accessible at coffee shops, airports, restaurants, libraries and on some trains and buses. WiFi access in hotels and cruise lines often involves a fee, determined by that property. Signal strength is subject to local conditions and not guaranteed. Availability on cruises is also dependent upon its location while sailing through multiple countries. Please note that WiFi can be extremely slow, unreliable and sometimes nonexistent in developing countries or, on moving conveyances such as buses and cruise ships.

Staying Healthy While Traveling
All travelers should familiarize themselves with local conditions, such as high altitude or required immunizations, which could affect their health. We recommend you consult with your personal healthcare provider, the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov) and/or the World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/en/) for their recommendations.

There are several easy steps you can take to stay healthy while traveling which may help prevent contracting an illness while away from home.

  • Watch what you eat. Try new foods in modest quantities, and depending upon your destination, you may want to avoid street foods, salad bars, raw vegetables and fruits, unless they have thick peels like bananas or grapefruit.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink bottled water and avoid consuming ice cubes made with tap water.
  • If you have allergies to foods, medications or insect bites, or have any other unique medical issues, consider a medical alert bracelet and/or a physician’s note detailing required treatment should you become ill.
  • Wash your hands regularly and carry hand sanitizer.
  • Where appropriate, pack sunscreen and insect repellent (for both active and warm destinations).
  • You may also want to bring a small first-aid kit with bandaids, antibiotic cream, pain killers, bug bite cream, digestive aids like antidiarrheal or anti-bloat medications, antacids, and cold medicine. This is in addition to any prescription medications which should be adequate for the entire trip.


Notice on Aircraft Cabin Insecticide Treatment - Please note that some countries may require aircraft cabin insecticide treatment for in-bound foreign flights. A list of such countries is available at: http://www.dot.gov/office-policy/aviation-policy/aircraft-disinsection-requirements.

Consideration for Tour Participants (Escorted Tours)
For the benefit of all tour participants, we ask tour members to be considerate of their fellow travelers in the following ways:
  • Refrain from wearing colognes, perfumes and/or personal products containing excessive fragrance in respect for other guests who may be allergic
  • Avoid smoking cigarettes, e-cigarettes or cigars in the vicinity of other tour members, including in outdoor areas where smoking may be permitted but may still affect other tour participants
  • Avoid attire with political or religious messages that may offend other travelers
  • Respect your fellow passengers. Guests come from all walks of life and varied lifestyles. Please refrain from topics of conversation which might cause offense, such as religion and politics
  • Refrain from conversation or talking on mobile phones while commentary is in progress
  • Respect the mandatory seat rotation policy on the coach
  • Make use of the available hand sanitizer on the coach to support a healthy environment
  • Seek approval before taking photographs of other tour participants
  • Respect tour departures times to avoid delay and loss of sightseeing opportunities

Climate & Clothing
Bulgaria - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Romania - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Serbia - Spring and Autumn: 45–65°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 30–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Hungary - Spring and Autumn: 45–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops). In summer, bring a hat and sunscreen.

Hungary Average Temperatures: https://www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#central-europe-weather

River Cruises - Temperatures vary according to regional climate and season. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

About Drones
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or “drone” technology has quickly become affordable and is increasingly popular with recreational users. While some countries have clear, established drone laws, others do not, or existing regulations are undergoing review and change. Travelers who wish to bring a drone on their trip are responsible to research and abide by the laws and regulations of the countries they are visiting, as well as to check with their airline(s) regarding their rules for transporting drones. Please note that tours are unable to extend the length of scheduled visits and stops to accommodate use of drones.

Book & Film Recommendations
Many of our guests enjoy reading about their destination - either in advance of their trip or while traveling - as a way of adding context to their visit. Whether reading a traditional guide book, learning about the history and culture, or simply enjoying a fictional novel set in the destination, a good book can add greatly to your experience. Similarly, a good movie set in your destination helps set the mood before you travel. We asked our Tour Managers and staff to recommend books and films which past guests may have enjoyed. The following does not constitute an endorsement of any authors, books or films listed, it is merely a collection of guests’ recommendations.

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Books
Danube by Claudio Magris
Between the Woods and the Water by Patrick Leigh Fermor
Ballad of the Whiskey Robber by Julian Rubinstein
Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer
The Case Worker by Gyorgy Konrád
Fatelessness by Imre Kertesz
Blue River Black Sea by Andrew Eames

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Films
The Sound of Music (1965)
Amadeus (1984)

Preparing for Your Trip
Reconfirming Flights
It is not necessary to call your airline to reconfirm your flights. However, we do recommend that you check your airline’s website 24 hours prior to your flight to ensure that your flights remain on schedule and that flight times are unchanged.

Seat Assignments
As a courtesy service, complimentary airline seat assignments are requested on your behalf and, when available, are displayed in order of Passenger #1, #2 and so on. Assignments reflect the best available seats at the time of booking. Some airlines and/or fare types do not allow for pre-seating and require this be done at airport check-in only; in which case the display shows “N/A”. Seats are subject to change by your airline(s) including, for example, when there is a schedule change or equipment change after your initial booking; this may cause seat assignments to be changed or even cancelled. Some airlines offer preferred seating for an additional fee; these seats may only be purchased directly from the airline. You will need your family name and the 6-digit airline “Record Locator” which is displayed with the flight details on your reservation. In the event that you change seat assignments directly with your airline, changes will not be reflected on your invoice or documents. At the time that Gate 1 travel documents are issued, the currently assigned seats will be listed based on the assignments stored in your airline reservation at that time. Should you have questions regarding your assignments, please write to us at www.gate1travel.com/contactus.

Frequent Flier Programs
Passengers are responsible to contact their airline directly regarding mileage eligibility and accrual. Airline frequent flier programs determine whether to award miles in part or total based on their own rules which are updated frequently. Some discounted or promotional airfares as well as some code-share flights are not eligible for mileage accrual. Some private airfares, such as a “Gate 1 Travel Airfare”, are not eligible for mileage or may qualify for reduced mileage, even if the same airline class of service is eligible for full mileage when sold as an “Instant Purchase” published airfare. Not all published airfares are eligible for mileage. Gate 1 Travel will record frequent flier numbers when provided by the passenger prior to travel documents being issued. However, the addition of frequent flier numbers to airline records does not guarantee mileage eligibility which is at the sole discretion of each airline. Airline schedule changes may result in flights which were originally eligible for mileage accrual no longer being eligible. We highly recommend passengers to provide their frequent flier account information whenever checking in online and/or at the airport check-in desk. After travel has commenced, it is often not possible to apply for frequent mileage credit. Passengers are also responsible to determine whether previously earned mileage may be applied to flights to secure upgrades.

Known Traveler Number (KTN)
If you have a KTN number, you are normally able to join the TSA security line for expedited processing at the airport. Prior to check in, you should go online or call your airline and add your KTN number to your reservation record. In most cases, you will then see the letters "TSA PRE" printed on your boarding pass. If these letters are not printed, you will not be permitted on the TSA line. Please be aware that some airlines do not participate in the program and therefore even if there is a TSA line at the airport, you will not be given TSA PRE status. Sometimes you may not be selected by TSA (even if you entered a KTN number) and even a minor name discrepancy can result in TSA PRE being denied. It is your responsibility to register your KTN number with your airline and Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for denial of expedited security. Note: KTNs are issued by the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) after completing a background check through TSA's PreCheck® program. Global Entry members may also enjoy expedited customs processing.

Luggage & Packing
Checked bags are typically limited to a total dimension of 62 inches by adding length + width + height (example: 26"+26"+10" = 62”), and a maximum weight of 50 lbs (23kg). Smart Bags with a USB charging port, GPS tracking device and other high-tech features are prohibited as checked or carry-on baggage unless the bag is made with removable batteries and the batteries are removed and stored separately. Many airlines charge for checked bags including flights which begin and end within the USA. The most inexpensive airfare options commonly known as Basic Economy airfares do not include any checked bags nor seat assignments before the day of departure. However, for some airlines, other airfare categories also do not include checked baggage. This will be clearly displayed in our airfare selection and on your invoice. Where available, we highly recommend selecting airfares which include at least 1 piece of checked baggage. Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for checked bag fees, excess luggage or weight charges levied by an airline. Checked baggage allowances displayed on reservation details and invoices reflect the applicable allowance at the time of booking but are subject to change by your airline(s). For your airline’s requirements and fees, visit www.gate1travel.com/baggagefees.aspx. For important baggage information, visit www.gate1travel.com/luggage.aspx. Avoid placing valuables in your checked luggage. Federal law forbids the carriage of hazardous materials aboard the aircraft in your luggage, your carry-on or on your person. A violation can result in five years’ imprisonment and penalties of $250,000 or more (49 U.S.C. 5124). Hazardous materials include explosives, compressed gases, flammable liquids and solids, oxidizers, poisons, corrosives and radioactive materials. Examples: Paints, lighter fluid, fireworks, tear gases, oxygen bottles, and radio-pharmaceuticals. There are special exceptions for small quantities (up to 70 ounces total) of medicinal and toilet articles carried in your luggage and certain smoking materials carried on your person. Check the Transportation and Safety Administration (TSA) website www.tsa.gov to find out the current list of acceptable items you may bring on a plane before packing. We recommend that you use brightly colored luggage tags, straps or other identifiers to help you locate you luggage upon arrival or to describe it in the event that it is lost.

Carry on Luggage
Missed connections and lost luggage are more common than ever. We strongly suggest you use your carry on bag for those necessities you would miss if your checked bags went astray. Items to consider, but not limited to, are prescription medicines, eyeglasses, a change of clothes, mobile phone and charger, valuables (including jewelry and cash), passport, keys, insurance cards, local contact information. Refer to the TSA website for a complete list of items and their sizes which may be carried on board. We also recommend you bring a change of clothes in your carry on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost.

E-Tickets & Advance Check-In
Review the flight itinerary included in your documents. Print and carry a copy of the air itinerary which contains the 6-digit airline "Record Locator" and e-ticket numbers. Advance online check-in is available on some airlines. If available, you may enter your name and 6-digit Record Locator or Flight Ticket Number at the airline's website, and print the boarding pass on your home printer within twenty-four hours of departure. You may check-in online, even if you plan to check luggage at the airport. Airlines without advance online check-in require you to present your identification and e-ticket numbers at the airport self-service kiosk or check-in counter. Paper tickets will be provided in the rare instance when e-tickets cannot be issued.

Day of Departure
Arrive On Time
Due to increased security measures, you should plan to check in at least three hours prior to the scheduled departure time for international flights and two hours prior for domestic flights. Many airlines do not permit check-in less than one hour prior to the scheduled departure time. It is your responsibility to arrive on time for all scheduled flights. Enhanced security procedures, including passenger screening, canine inspection, and inspection of personal electronic devices, have been implemented for all flights into the United States, and therefore security procedures may take longer than normal.

Check-In
If your flight itinerary displays a flight as “Operated By” another carrier, you should check-in at the desk of the “Operated By” airline. When you arrive at the airport, check the airport monitors for updated check-in desk listings. At check-in, be prepared to provide your government issued identification (valid passport required when traveling internationally) and your e-ticket itinerary/ticket numbers to the agent. Once you've checked in and received your boarding passes and luggage claim tickets, proceed directly to the security check. Security lines are often backed up and can take time to get through. Once you've completed security check, proceed directly to your gate and check the large electronic flight screens for your flight time and departure gate for schedule and gate changes. Airport desk clerks will assist with unexpected changes. Once you are in the gate area you can relax, shop or buy a snack before your flight.

Connecting Passengers
Passengers connecting from another point within the USA should check their luggage through to their final destination. Although problems with lost luggage have been minimal, it is a possibility. Certain carriers do not allow baggage “interlining,” and luggage must be checked separately for each flight. When you check your luggage, please verify where your luggage is being sent. When connecting between flights in major airports, you may need to pass through multiple security checkpoints. Therefore, we recommend that you proceed immediately to the gate area for your connecting flight to avoid any unexpected delays which may cause you to be late. Passengers returning to the USA may need to collect their luggage at the first airport of entry and recheck their luggage for their connecting flight.

Flight Services
Avoiding Jet Lag
In order to minimize fatigue and general restlessness caused by jet lag, there are a few steps you may take including switching to your destination time zone when you board the plane, by sleeping and eating according to the new schedule, avoiding heavy eating, caffeine or alcoholic beverages before or during your flight, and by drinking plenty of water and/or fruit juice while flying. Try to sleep on overnight flights and then, upon arrival, avoid the temptation to nap until nighttime.

Airline Food
Unless you are a first or business class passenger, you will likely be treated to a pretty mediocre culinary experience. Reasons for this range from airline budget constraints to the logistics of high altitudes, low humidity and air pressure which tend to desensitize taste buds. Small galleys, tiny ovens and precooked food, plus previously mentioned cost-cuts in order to keep airfares as low as possible, add to some often pretty poor fare. Our suggestion is to stick to simple options, carry a few granola bars, and don't expect this to be your best dining experience.

Premium Economy or Business Class
Service may not be available on all flights or aircraft types, and therefore some flights within an itinerary may not include Premium Economy or Business Class seating. This includes, for example, some US domestic connections and/or short haul flights abroad. When service is not available, you will be accommodated in the best alternative class of service and seating. Please check your operating airline to determine the extra services you may receive.

US Customs & Immigration for Return Flights
In most cases, passengers with return flights that include a connection in the US will need to complete customs and immigration formalities in their first port of entry, requiring them to collect their luggage and check-in for their onward flight. However, there are some exceptions: certain airports in Canada and Ireland (Dublin), allow US Immigration formalities to be completed in the overseas airport at the gate area.

Foreign Domestic Flights
If your tour program includes foreign domestic flights, and those tickets are not included together with the e-ticket itinerary in your travel documents, you will receive those tickets at your destination from our local representative.

What to do if You Need Assistance

Whether you purchased your airfare from Gate 1 Travel or from the airline directly, please bear in mind that Gate 1 Travel does not own nor operate the airline(s), nor the airport facilities where they operate. At times, flying can be a frustrating experience, especially when things do not go exactly as planned, and airline explanations can be confusing or even misleading. Should you face a problem, remain calm and seek assistance either from the airline directly or from Gate 1. Please be aware that in most cases, on the day of your flight(s), airlines pass responsibility for your reservation to their staff at the airport and it is not always possible for Gate 1 Travel to intervene on your behalf, either through our reservations system or directly with your airline.

Emergency Assistance
The Gate 1 emergency line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call: 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676. From overseas, call: 001 215 572-7676. Outside office hours, listen to the prompts, then press 3. You will speak immediately with a representative, or you may be asked to leave a detailed message including your name, your booking number, and most importantly the telephone number where you can be reached. Your message will be forwarded immediately to a representative who will contact you at the telephone number provided.

Last Minute Schedule Changes & Flight Delays
On the day of travel, check the flight schedule and advise Gate 1 by phone, 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676, of any significant changes that might affect your arrival transfer or hotel reservation. Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for affected land services, including arrival and/or departure transfers should flights be changed without our knowledge. Gate 1 will make every effort to inform passengers of schedule changes and cannot be held responsible for changes in routing and/or the number of stops in the itinerary. Nor will Gate 1 provide compensation for changes or cancellations implemented by an airline.

Missed Flights
In the event that you miss your flight which departs as scheduled, for any reason, your airline will consider you a "no-show” and may resell your seat(s) to other customers. This will also result in the cancellation of any later flights in your itinerary. Similarly, if you voluntarily decide not to use any of the flights on your itinerary, the airline will consider you a “no show” and cancel remaining flights on your itinerary. In this case, please contact your airline immediately for assistance in getting you to your destination. Missed flights are typically fully non-refundable and you may be required to purchase new flights from the airline at your own expense. Once your alternative arrangements have been confirmed, please contact Gate 1 with your new flight details.

Missed Connection
If you are connecting from a domestic flight which is delayed for any reason, causing you to miss your international flight, ask the airline for assistance in getting you to your destination. Since all airline tickets are issued on special fares which carry restrictions and penalties if changed, it's the airline's responsibility to make alternate arrangements on your behalf as Gate 1 has no authority or control over airline activities and policies. Do not leave the airline check-in desk until an alternative itinerary has been confirmed.

Lost Luggage
If your luggage is lost or damaged by the airlines, a baggage claim form must be filed with the carrier before leaving the airport. Any cost to retrieve luggage will be your responsibility and you should retain receipts to submit to your insurance provider. You may be required to return to an airport to retrieve your luggage personally.

Arrival & Departure
Arrival Procedures
Upon arrival, please complete immigration formalities if necessary and claim your luggage. If your program includes airport arrival transfers, check your voucher for specific instructions, as they vary with every destination. In most cases, you will be met after collecting your luggage or passing through Customs by the local representative who will be holding a Gate 1 Travel sign and/or a sign with your name on it. In some instances you will be instructed to walk a short distance to a transportation counter. The company's name and location will be printed on your voucher. If for any reason you do not connect with the Gate 1 transfer personnel, go to the Tourist Information Desk and ask them to page the Gate 1 Travel representative or phone the number on your voucher. If you are delayed due to lost luggage, phone the number on the voucher or have a companion exit the Customs Area to advise the transfer representative.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Budapest - The Mahart Port is located on the Pest side of the city between the Elizabeth Bridge and the Lagymanyosi Bridge (also known as the Rakoczi Bridge). The distance between the bridges is approximately 2.5 miles. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Budapest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

Monarch Queen - If, for any reason, you are unable to locate the Monarch Queen, please telephone the ship to receive the most recent docking information. If calling from a local telephone, please dial: 0172 259 7194, or from an international telephone: 011 49 172 259 7194.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Giurgiu - The Giurgiu Post S.A is located on Soseaua Portului street just along the Danube river between the Port Capital of Giurgiu building and a large sailboat sculpture. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Bucharest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

What To Do When Your Flight Is Delayed
Airlines do not share flight manifest information. Therefore, the only way we may learn of a delay or schedule change while you are traveling is from you, the traveler. The sooner you are able to contact one of our offices, the better we can respond. Please refer to the Emergency Assistance instructions on this same document. Gate 1 Travel is only able to guarantee pre-reserved arrival transfers for up to one hour from the scheduled time, no matter the cause. In case you are delayed for any reason, and are unable to follow the instructions on your voucher, please make independent transfer arrangements and retain your receipts. Unused tour services, including transfers and hotel nights are not refundable. Upon you return home you will need to contact your airline and/or insurance carrier to investigate the possibility of reimbursement for any unused tour services.

Departure Procedures
If your program includes departure transfers, instructions will be stated on your voucher or provided locally.

Transfers
Due to local traffic and other extenuating circumstances, we ask that you allow 30 minutes from your scheduled transfer time for our representative to arrive. This includes hotel, airport and cruise transfers. Such possible delays are taken into consideration in scheduling transfers and you should therefore have no concerns about arriving late for your tour, flight or cruise. For transfers from a hotel, let the hotel reception desk or concierge know that you are waiting for a transfer. In the case of a missed transfer, reimbursement for your out-of-pocket expenses will be considered provided you obtain a written statement from the hotel's front desk verifying the length of time you waited, and the time you left the hotel, and a receipt for your transportation with time and date.

The cost of a transfer is more expensive than hiring a taxi, as a Gate 1 transfer necessarily includes round trip service, or 'dead-leg'. Often the places of call (airports, seaports, hotels) demand entrance and parking fees, where drivers may have to wait for up to an hour. Passengers comfortable hiring a taxi on their own and do not require assistance will save money.

About Your Accommodations
Hotels
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each hotel based on overall quality, location, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All rooms are standard twin-bedded (two single beds) rooms with private facilities. Special requests such as bed types, smoking preference and connecting rooms are subject to availability. Room selection in all cases, unless otherwise reserved, is strictly at the discretion of the hotel's management on a run-of-house basis. Triple rooms consist of standard twin beds or one double bed plus a sofa/folding bed or cot for third person except in the U.S. and Canada, where triple rooms often consist of two double/queen beds for three persons; where available, a fee may be charged by the hotel for the addition of a cot/rollaway. The number of persons accommodated does not dictate the room size. Although available at most 4 and 5 star hotels, the use of air-conditioning abroad differs greatly from the United States, and is often shut down at night and from the end until the start of the summer months. Some lodges and accommodations in remote regions may not have all of the amenities, such as hairdryer, alarm clock and room service, that you might find in a larger hotel located in a city center.

Hotel Check-in/ Check-out
Hotel check-in time is generally not before 4:00 p.m. and check-out time is prior to noon. If you will be arriving early in the day or departing in the evening, hotels will usually allow you to store your luggage in their luggage room. Ask at the front desk if the hotel can check you in earlier, or let you stay later.

River Cruises
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each cruise ship based on overall quality, itinerary, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All Monarch Queen cabins are standard rooms with private facilities, unless you have specifically requested and paid for an upgrade. All cabins have two twin beds that can be pushed together or separated. While at port, the vessel may be docked adjacent to another ship which may obstruct window views. We recommend you close the cabin curtains before turning in at night for privacy. We reserve the right to make ship substitutions with those of equal standard.

At Your Destination
Eco & Sustainable Tourism
We support global efforts to create a more eco-friendly world, intolerant of any forms of cruelty, abuse and intentional environmental destruction. To that end we ask that our clients maintain a watchful eye as they travel, and report any abuses they may encounter. One of the many benefits of tourism is the shared cultural knowledge and ultimate elimination of negative behavior through education. We rely on your good feedback to enable this element of symbiosis. As you travel and learn about foreign cultures, we ask first and foremost that you practice tolerance and respect for local customs.

Gratuities
Tipping is always a matter of personal discretion. For your convenience, please use the summary below as a guideline for recommended gratuity amounts. Gratuities may be paid in local currency or US dollar equivalent where accepted. Please be aware that tipping is considered by many locals to be a part of their normal remuneration and some may approach you for additional "compensation." There is no need to be intimidated by the request, nor should you feel pressured to pay more than recommended. If you become uncomfortable by any behavior you encounter, please advise your tour manager or phone our local office. Numbers are provided in your documents for your convenience.

Suggested Tipping: Escorted Tours

Tour Manager (Coordinator; may or may not act as a guide): US $7 per person per day
Driver (Provides chauffeur services and limited assistance with luggage) : US $3 per person per day, US $2 per half day
Local Guide (Offers in-depth information at specific locations. There may be one or many guides along a tour program): US $3 per person per day of sightseeing, US $2 per half day
Hotel porters and wait staff: Included

Suggested Tipping: European River Cruises

Crew: US $14 per person per day
Cruise Director (ship): US $4 per person per day
Activity Host (ship) US $2 per person per day
Tour Manager or Local Host (hotel) US $4 per person per day

Gratuities for the crew (shared by all crew members) may be paid via the on board ship account or dropped in the designated box at reception. Gratuities for the Cruise Director and Activity Host may not be charged to your on board ship account and should be paid in cash and given to the person directly.

You may also tip other service providers such as local guides, bus drivers and others who may have provided special services.

Suggested Tipping: Independent Tours

Hotel Porter: US $3 per bag
Hotel Wait staff: 5-10% of the bill (lunch or dinner)

Local Sightseeing Tours: Guide: US $3 per person per half day, US $6 per person per full day Driver: US $2 per person per half day, US $4 per person per full day

Bulgaria - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Romania - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Serbia - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Hungary - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists.

About Your Sightseeing
To ensure a pleasant and fair experience for passengers on our escorted tours, there is a mandatory seat rotation policy on our motor coaches which will be organized by your Tour Manager. Some buses are equipped with toilet facility, however they are strictly intended for emergency use only and often require the vehicle to stop for safety reasons before use. When travel dates coincide with religious holidays and national celebrations, some monuments and sites may be closed, sometimes without prior notice. On these occasions, escorted touring itineraries may be amended to reflect these closures. Occasionally, during holidays and certain periods, and/or due to other unforeseen circumstances including weather conditions, there may be last-minute changes, sometimes after arrival, which may affect the sequence of the tour and locations visited. National monuments and tourist sites regularly undergo renovations, which can obscure the monument's view. No tour will be canceled due to renovations, however Gate 1 will decide based on the conditions whether to amend an itinerary. To respect the privacy of all tour participants, your tour manager will not organize a group photo or collect passenger email addresses for a group list.

Land Only Passengers (Escorted Tours)
Your tour manager will contact you after your arrival at your hotel. Passengers who have not purchased arrival transfers from Gate 1 Travel should proceed directly to the hotel for check-in. The details of the hotel can be found in your documents.

Purchasing Tours Locally
On escorted tours, the guides will generally sell optional tours to passengers who have not pre-purchased them. Payment can be made by cash or credit card, unless otherwise noted below. This does not apply to Independent packages. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Independent Activities - Gate 1 itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently and with due consideration. Gate 1 is not responsible for any activities not expressly included in its programs. Caution should be exercised when selecting certain activities that may require physical strength, coordination or exertion. Particular care should be taken when considering animal rides, such as on camels, mules or horses

Water Level
A rise or fall in the river water level, or other factors which may impact safe navigation, can prevent the ship from passing under bridges and/or moving further along the river. This may cause part or all of the cruise itinerary to be operated by motor coach. If this becomes necessary, Gate 1 Travel will endeavor to provide equal or similar services, however no cruise will be canceled and no monetary compensation will be made for those changes. A fluctuation in water level can change in a matter of hours and may occur at any time of the year. In this case, the situation will be closely monitored by captain and crew to ensure services are delivered with as few substitutions as possible. If you have planned independent travel prior to the cruise it is advisable to leave local contact information with Gate 1 Travel before departing. Should an embarkation point be changed, Gate 1 Travel will attempt to contact passengers by phone or email.

Currency
We suggest getting a small amount of currency for the first country you're visiting before you depart (except India). It is a good idea to carry a chart with you to help you convert dollars to the local currency. It's also a good idea not to carry too much money. Many countries have ATM machines that accept most ATM cards, but be sure you know your ATM password in numbers-the keypads on foreign ATMs don't always have letters. ATM machines will only dispense cash in local currency. Check with respective consulates to learn current currency allowances and requirements. Use your credit card whenever possible. Should you decide to carry cash, please note that exchange at banks is typically more favorable than at hotels or exchange bureaus. However, bank hours are limited to Mondays through Fridays and sometimes only morning hours on those days. Please note that many banks and most vendors will not accept or exchange $100 bills. We suggest to carry $20 bills or smaller. In many destinations (except Western Europe), we suggest to bring between $50 to $100 in $1 bills which may be used to pay gratuities.

Bulgaria - The Bulgarian Leva is the currency of Bulgaria.

Romania - The Romanian Leu is the currency of Romania.

Serbia - The Serbian Dinar is the currency of Serbia.

Hungary - The Hungarian Forint is the currency of Hungary.

European River Cruises - The Euro is the currency used for purchases on board the ship, except for optional excursions which may be paid for in USD. Please note that while calling at port, other currencies may be used depending on the country being visited. Money-changing services (to Euro) will be available on board.

Ship Account and Payment: There is a cashless system on board. All on board expenditures (in the bar, restaurant, shop, and spa) are added to the ship's account. Closing invoices will be presented to the passengers for settlement. Payment can be made by cash in Euro or by credit card (VISA, MasterCard, American Express). Payment made by credit card may be subject to an international credit card transaction fee. Please note we cannot accept USD as a form of cash payment. Passenger's are not eligible for a Value Added Tax (VAT) refund for purchases made on board the ship.

Credit Cards
While credit cards are accepted in most destinations, it is advisable to carry local currency. Inform your credit card company that you are traveling to avoid your card being blocked for security reasons.
While most US-issued credit cards have the embedded microprocessor chip, there are still some that have the magnetic-strip technology. The “chip-and-PIN” cards require users to punch in a personal identification number (PIN) instead of signing for a purchase. For example, many automated ticket kiosks, such as those commonly found at train stations, gas pumps and parking garages, don’t accept cards without a chip and PIN. Most cash registers are equipped to handle American cards but if you encounter difficulties, offer an alternative credit card or politely insist that the cashier keep trying to swipe the credit card. ATMs typically recognize and accept US issued debit cards. For travel to Europe, should you anticipate using ticket kiosks or purchasing train tickets locally, you may consider buying tickets and other basic purchases prior to departure.

European River Cruises - On board expenditures are processed through a banking center in Cyprus. Passengers wishing to settle their on board account by credit card should advise their credit card provider of potential charges from Cyprus in addition to the countries that will be visited on your itinerary.

Shopping
Most people enjoy bringing home at least one souvenir from the countries they visit. However, some find any amount of shopping to be too much while others never find enough opportunities.

We have built into our Escorted itineraries a few shopping stops at recommended spots. These stops are designed to enhance your experience by providing an opportunity to see first-hand quality locally crafted merchandise which you may not be able to find on your own. Shops are checked to ensure the quality and authenticity of the products they offer, and we limit guides from visiting other locations. In some cases, we plan these stops to provide an opportunity to use clean bathrooms and to stretch your legs. All shops want your satisfaction, and therefore in case of any misunderstanding they ask that you kindly submit your claim to us within one week of the item's receipt. Claims submitted later will be subject to each store’s policies.

While shopping independently, we advise you to exercise care and common sense when making any purchase. Always get a formal receipt. And remember that, just like in this country, if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is!

About Tax-Free Shopping
Tax-Free Shopping allows shoppers to reclaim the VAT (Value-Added Tax) or GST (Goods and Services Tax) they have paid on their purchases in some foreign countries in accordance with restrictions and procedures as dictated by each country. Refund eligibility varies by country, but may require presenting a scanned copy of your passport at the time of purchase, a minimum amount spent, or providing original store receipts. For more details, check the respective country’s online website, with the shop salesperson, with your tour manager or at www.globalblue.com for specific country regulations and airport operation hours. Please keep in mind that you must apply for VAT refund in the airport of the country the items were purchased and allow enough time prior to your flight for the application.

U.S. Customs & Shipping Charges
You may carry items with a fair retail value totaling $800 into the U.S. Taxes may be applied to the next $1,000 worth of merchandise. U.S. Customs determines the value of your items, often honoring a genuine sales receipt. Items which are shipped home are always subject to duty when received in the U.S. (in addition to shipping charges). Some shops may offer to include shipping and duties in the price but this typically means shipping only to the customs facility closest to you and payment only of the export duties; you would still need to collect the item and pay U.S. import duties. Please be aware that it is illegal to import products made from endangered animal species. U.S. Customs & Border Protection will seize these items, as well as most furs, coral, tortoise shell, reptile skins, feathers, plants, and items made from animal skins.

Bulgaria - Bulgaria offers an assortment of articles that may be more difficult to find elsewhere, including World War II and Communist era memorabilia. The shopping experience itself can be just as worthwhile as the goods, with interesting boutiques lining cobblestone streets. These shops offer everything from Orthodox icons and antiques to leather goods, chic clothing and jewelry. Also, prices in Bulgaria are generally lower than in other European countries, making it an even more attractive draw.

Romania - Items of interest include intricately woven carpets, regional wines, ornately painted eggs and tiles, Italian clothes and shoes at discount prices, glass pieces, and porcelain wares. Of course there is also plenty of Dracula kitsch along with more unusual souvenirs like wild boar skins.

Serbia - In cities, small shops dominate shopping scene. Popular items include embroidery, lace, leather and metalwork. Clothing from top name designers can often be found at substantially lower prices than in Western stores. Shops are usually open weekdays from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, with shorter hours on Saturdays.

Hungary - Hungary is renowned for its food and beverage products, especially fine red paprika, brandies, and Unicum liqueur. Additionally, traditional items such as ceramics, embroidery work, painted eggs, crystal ware, and costumed dolls are highly popular.

Your Safety is Very Important
Prior to your trip, if you are traveling overseas, we strongly recommend that you visit the website of the U.S. Department of State at www.travel.state.gov, specifically the section which addresses International Travel. You should read the tips for foreign travel and travel warnings for the country or countries that you plan to visit.

It is also important that you do not allow your common sense to take a vacation while on your trip. Here are several tips which, if followed, will save much potential hardship:

  • Be aware of potentially dangerous places and situations as you would be at home. Avoid wearing expensive jewelry and carry your valuables concealed in inside pockets or hidden pouches. Your objective is to avoid drawing attention and to blend in with the crowd
  • Don't put all your valuables (money, credit cards, passports, etc.) in the same place (in case one wallet is stolen, you should have other valuables and identification in another safe place)
  • Do not leave valuables laying loose in your room or on the bus as Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for any loss. Use the hotel safe. Keep copies of your passports, credit card numbers and travelers checks numbers in the hotel safe
  • When possible we suggest traveling in pairs or groups when moving about independently
  • Do not pack valuables (cameras, computers, jewelry, etc.) in your checked luggage. Keep hard to replace valuables with you in your carry-on bag
  • Keep wallets safely tucked into front trouser pockets and/or wear a money pouch inside your clothing
  • Carry handbags close to your body, shoulder bags the cross-body method with the bag in front of your body
  • Credit cards are generally accepted everywhere and are safer than traveling with large amounts of cash

If you've purchased an escorted tour program, your travel documents will include telephone numbers of local Gate 1 Travel representatives who will do their utmost to assist you in the event of an emergency. The numbers are printed on your Gate 1 Travel vouchers. Please copy the numbers. Once you relinquish the voucher, you will not have this information. Passengers traveling independently should employ the services of hotel concierges and local authorities.

European River Cruises - You are on a ship with a high safety standard and reliable crew. In case of emergency, we ask you to follow the instructions of your crew. Please take further information concerning safety from the notice on your cabin door. Life jackets will be stored in your stateroom. When leaving the ship, kindly drop your cabin key off at reception and promptly pick it up upon arrival back to the ship. This procedure helps ensure your security by allowing the crew to immediately determine if all passengers are on board before continuing the cruise. While in port, please keep your cabin door locked.

Tourist Street Scams
Pickpockets and thieves can destroy an otherwise wonderful holiday. Be mindful of these precautions to help avoid being scammed or robbed:

  • Remain alert and cautious. Be wary of any unusual contact or commotion in crowded public places, including train stations, markets, subways and tourist sites;
  • Be especially careful when traveling independently, or leaving your tour group to explore on your own. Try not to travel alone, especially at night. Avoid narrow alleys and poorly lit streets;
  • Use only official taxis and check the change you receive from all taxi drivers and vendors;
  • Beware of pickpockets often working with an accomplice who will distract you by spilling something on you, dropping a wallet or other seemingly valuable object, or tripping and falling down in front of you;
  • Beware of aggressive street vendors who may approach you offering a demonstration which may end with you being pressured to purchase an item or act as a distraction for another pickpocket;
  • Don’t tip beggars;
  • Wear the shoulder strap of your bag across your chest;
  • Carry modest amounts of cash (US dollars) in small denominations so that you can avoid flashing large bills when paying for small items;
  • ATM machines can be a convenient way to carry less currency. However those machines too can be used for robbery. Be wary of anyone who can look over your shoulder when inputting PINs. Another scam involves rigging the machine with a plastic insert which makes your card retrieval difficult; the thief then removes your card after you walk away;
  • If you are confronted, do not fight back - give up your valuables. If your possessions are lost or stolen, report the loss immediately to the local police and keep a copy of the official report for insurance claims.


Local Emergency Phone Numbers
Bulgaria
  • Ambulance: 150
  • Fire: 160
  • Police: 166

Romania
  • Ambulance: 961 or 962
  • Fire: 981
  • Police: 955

Serbia
  • Ambulance: 94
  • Fire: 93
  • Police: 92

Hungary
  • General Emergency: 112

Languages
Bulgaria - Bulgarian is the local language.

Romania - Romanian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Serbia - Serbian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Hungary - Hungarian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Electricity
Please note: The U.S. uses 120 volts and you can purchase a converter and transformer at most hardware stores for your 120V appliances.

Bulgaria - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Romania - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Serbia - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Hungary - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Monarch Queen - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Code of Conduct
Bulgaria - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Smoking is prohibited in all indoor public places. Some restaurants, cafes, and nightclubs may have designated smoking areas.

Romania - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. When meeting someone for the first time, formal address should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Serbia - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Hospitality is highly important in Serbia, and if you are offered food or a drink, it is polite to accept. Normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Hungary - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Normal courtesies should be observed and when addressing a newly met acquaintance, both first and last name should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate. Smoking is prohibited on public transport and in public buildings.

Food and Meals
As specified in each itinerary. Meals are based on the hotel's or restaurant's buffet or set menu. In general, beverages are not included, unless specifically stated. Although Gate 1 cannot make guarantees, every effort will be made to honor special dietary requests submitted in writing at least 72 hours prior to departure at www.gate1travel.com/contactus. Terminology for dietary requests can vary from country to country and options may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you make your wishes known to your tour manager upon arrival, and at each hotel/restaurant.

Bulgaria - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Serbia - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Holidays
On public holidays, there may be reduced public transportation, as well as limited hours or closures of attractions, shops and restaurants.

Holidays - Bulgaria

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year's Day observed
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 8: St. George's Day observed
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas
Dec 27: Christmas Holiday

Holidays - Romania

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 22: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 24: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 25: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 12: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 13: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 14: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 16: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 17: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 4: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 5: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas

Holidays - Serbia

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 3: New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
May 3: Labor Day Second Day
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year Holiday observed
Jan 3: Second New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Hungary

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Disabled Facilities - European River Cruises
Due to physical constraints and space limitations, wheelchairs and walkers are not allowed on motor coaches and/or river cruises. The Monarch Queen is equipped with elevator access between the Violin and Cello decks, however passengers will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes while touring. Kindly refer to our Terms for additional information.
Embarkation
Embarkation will begin at 2 pm unless otherwise noted in your itinerary. Check your itinerary carefully for the port of embarkation and disembarkation. In the event that you arrive independently to the port of embarkation, note the location carefully. Please ensure that you are always on board before the ship's scheduled time of departure. For same day directions, please contact the Cruise Director at the number provided on your cruise voucher. Early arrivals may drop their luggage.

Upon embarkation all passengers will be required to hand over their passport to the Reception Desk for the duration of the cruise. The staff are required to provide these to the appropriate authorities as the ship sails through each country. These will be stored in a secure area and returned at the end of the cruise.

Disembarkation
You will receive all relevant information concerning disembarkation in detail by your cruise director on the afternoon of your last day onboard. Passengers who have purchased a transfer will be required to place their luggage outside of their cabin a few hours prior to their scheduled time of departure. Details will be advised locally. All passengers and luggage must be off board the ship at the final disembarkation time noted in your itinerary.

On Your Cruise - European River Cruises
Attire:
River cruise dress code is always casual. Modest attire (no bathing suits) is requested in the dining room at all meals. Remember to pack comfortable walking shoes and an umbrella.

Language:
The official language on board is English, although other languages may be spoken. All announcements and tours will be performed in English.

Meals and Dietary Restrictions:
There is open seating in the dining room for lunch and dinner. Please see your Maître d'hotel who is at your disposal for special needs. Passengers requiring special diet must advise Gate 1 Cruises at the least 20 days prior to departure. However we are pleased to assist within the limits of those products available on board.

Specialty Dining:
The Backlounge Steakhouse serves prime cuts of meat and fish in a relaxed open-kitchen dining room. Seating is limited and reservations can be made at Reception. There is a supplementary charge of 15 Euros per person. Full menu details will be provided on board and reservations cannot be taken in advance of boarding.

Smoking:
Smoking is only allowed in designated areas on the sundeck. Please do not throw cigarettes overboard.

Amenities:
A hairdryer is supplied to all cabins. Laundry service is available on board for an additional charge, however the ship is not equipped to care for dry cleaning. Charges are displayed on board. Valuables can be deposited in the cabin safe.

Jacuzzi:
The sundeck jacuzzi is open the entire season from 7am - 7pm. Hours are subject to change by the captain due to the sailing itinerary and weather.

Fitness Center:
The fitness center is equipped with one treadmill, one stationary bicycle and yoga mats.

Medical Services:
Ship's crew may be able to provide basic first-aid, however ships do not carry a doctor or nurse onboard. Should professional medical attention be required, local services will be contacted upon the passenger's request.

Excursions:
During your journey you will have the opportunity to take part in a variety of shore excursions. If you have not pre-booked the excursions, there will be an opportunity to do so on board with your Cruise Director. These excursions can paid for in cash (USD), or charged to your credit card. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Walking:
River Cruise tours dock at inland towns and excursions may include a fair amount of walking on uneven or cobblestone streets. The Monarch Queen is equipped with elevator access between the Violin and Cello decks, however passengers will be required to climb stairs to access the different decks of the ship. Many ports have limited ramps. You may also experience "double-docking." In some ports, where there are limited docks available for the number of visiting ships, you may find your ship docked adjacent to another and may have to walk across one or more other river cruise ships before reaching the dock area.

Children:
The vessels do not maintain facilities or services for children aboard the cruise. We regret that we cannot accommodate children under 16 years of age.

Telephone:
All cabins are equipped with direct dialing for an additional fee. If you need to be contacted while on board the ship, please provide the emergency numbers outlined in your documents to family and/or friends. It is possible that the emergency numbers are out of the telephone network at the time of dialing. If this is the case, a message will be provided by the telephone company in German. It is advisable to hang-up and dial a short time later.

Email and Post:
The Monarch Queen offers complimentary basic internet access onboard based on regional satellite for river cruise ships. Internet service is accessible in the reception lobby area. This service is complimentary and should enable you to browse the internet, check your email, access international publications, and view Facebook accounts on your personal device(s) during your sailing. You will be unable to download movies or video, send videos or access Netflix or Jetflicks. At the beginning of your sailing, you will be provided with an access code which you may use on any of your devices. Please note the possibility of potential interruptions in satellite signals based on terrain and weather, plus factors such as populated ports where many ships are utilizing the same satellite signal, which may cause slower online connections than you are accustomed to at home. Internet access will not be available in the port of Breisach, Germany.

Any mail with postage can be handed in at the reception. It will be posted at the next port of call.

Know Before You Go
Although most of the planning and preparation is taken care of for you, there are still a few things you should know and some details you should take care of to ensure your comfort, safety and peace of mind. Please review the following information before your departure to ensure that any surprises along the way will only be pleasant ones.
Getting Ready to Go
Passports and Visas
It is each traveler's responsibility to have a passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the dates of travel and a visa if required. Please check the information at www.gate1travel.com/visas.aspx for the specific country/region you are visiting for more details. IMPORTANT: Passengers who are not U.S. citizens must check with the respective consulate or a visa agency to determine what personal identification is required. Passengers who enter, leave and then re-enter the same country on their itinerary should check if they require a double-entry visa. Passport applications are available at most U.S. Post Offices, as well as at regional Passport Agencies. Passengers requiring visas, whether obtained in advance or locally upon arrival, should ensure that their passport has blank pages.

Traveling with Friends or Family?
If you are traveling with friends or family who are booked on another reservation, please make sure that we are aware. On occasion, we may operate more than one vehicle on your tour departure in which case we will ensure that guests will be assigned together. This is achieved by connecting your reservations before your departure. Once you arrive in your destination, it may not be possible to make assignment changes. To check that your reservations are linked, log into https://www.gate1travel.com/res with your email and password, select your reservation number, and check to see that your reservations are indicated as "Traveling With" at the top right side of the display.

Trip Preparation
A little pre-planning can make your trip go a lot smoother. Several weeks before your trip, make a list of what you will need to take with you. Make sure your personal documents (passports, visas, driver's license) are in order. Make sure also that you have enough prescription medications to last through the trip and carry them with you in case your luggage is delayed. Bring a change of clothes in your carry-on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost. Lost luggage is common. We strongly urge you to consider carry-ons instead of checked bags when possible, and when checking a bag is necessary, choose a bag color and identification that stands out. We suggest that you make photocopies of passports, visas, personal ID and any other important travel documents and pack them separately from the originals. You may also make a digital copy of your passport to keep a clear picture with the important details in your cell phone or digital camera photos. If you lose the originals while traveling, you'll have copies for easier reporting and replacement. Pack a list of medications including dosage and generic names. You may consider bringing a small supply of over the counter medications for headaches and/or anti-diarrhea pills (especially when traveling outside of the USA and Western Europe). We recommend that you pack a portable alarm clock. Due to security reasons, many museums have restrictions on the size of bags that can be taken inside and backpacks, carry-on bags or large purses may not be permitted. It is recommended to bring a small shoulder bag or purse to use in these situations instead. Avoid placing valuables such as cameras in your checked luggage. Airplane pressure can cause similar pressure in your body, most notably in ears, as well as liquid tubes and bottles. Your physician can suggest medication for decongestion. We suggest that you place liquid containers into Ziploc bags to catch any leaks.

Travel Safety Advice: The safety of our guests is Gate 1’s #1 concern. Before making the decision to reserve your vacation, we want you to be aware of potential situations which may impact your holiday. While most of the time our programs run precisely according to plans, on rare occasion force majeure events including weather, transportation mechanical issues, or uninhabitable accommodation, civil unrest and even criminal or terrorist activities will present themselves unexpectedly and with little or no notice. Gate 1 will make the decision to cancel a tour only after receiving verifiable government issued information. We are otherwise obliged to comply with contractual airline and vendor agreements and carry out the tour until or unless we are advised otherwise. In the event of such an occurrence anytime after your date of departure, Gate 1 and the local destination ground staff, in coordination with government advisories, airlines, hotels, cruise ships and other vendors, will make decisions with regard to your safety first. We strongly recommend that tour participants review the destination country's specific information at https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/alertswarnings.html.

Travel Protection
Even the best-planned trips can be impacted by the unexpected. And that is why we recommend that you help protect yourself and your investment by purchasing Travel Protection for your Gate 1 trip. Travel Protection can help with medical coverage for illness or injury, trip cancellation and/or interruption, baggage loss, medical evacuation, and more. At any time before you complete Final Payment, you may choose to purchase Travel Protection. The protection plan premium is non-refundable after a 10-day review period. In addition, you must be medically able to travel at the time the premium is paid. For a summary of the plan details on coverages, benefits, limitations and exclusions, please refer to the Description of Coverage by visiting www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit (CFAR) is a non-insurance feature that allows you to cancel up to 72 hours before your scheduled departure for any reason not otherwise covered in the Travel Protection Plan. CFAR must be purchased at the same time as the Travel Protection Plan as well as within 21 days of the original booking date. Independent or escorted tour reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to the full cost of your trip, less the cost of initial deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. Sea or river cruise reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to 50% of the cost of your trip, less the cost of initial trip deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. All CFAR credits are valid for a period of two years from the original date of travel. CFAR Credits have no cash value and are not transferrable. Airline-assessed fees are generally $300 per person, but may be as much as fully non-refundable. Some non-refundable airline tickets may retain value, less airline-assessed fees. Your future air credit must be used to book with the same airline. Deadlines to rebook and complete travel vary by airline and may be as early as 12 months from when the tickets were originally issued (not the date of travel). For details, www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

This program does not apply to custom groups and Antarctica cruises. Residents of New York, Missouri & Minnesota may purchase this Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit separate from Travel Protection. Call to speak with a reservation agent for details. This Cancel for any Reason Wavier Benefit is not insurance and is provided by Gate 1 Travel.

Cell Phones & Calling Cards
You may wish to carry a cell phone while traveling. Check with your cell phone provider if your phone will work in the destination(s) you are visiting. If you can access the Internet as you travel, you can take advantage of email or a Skype Internet telephone (VOIP) account for the best value. Additionally, if your phone can connect to WiFi you may be able to make voice and video calls free of charge. Please contact your cell phone provider for further details. Alternatively, you may investigate renting a cell phone before you leave or buying an inexpensive phone locally. When calling the U.S. from a foreign country, you may also use a prepaid calling card; normally, the only additional charge (besides the prepaid long distance charges) is a local fee of a few cents and possibly a connection fee if you are using your card at your hotel. It is best to check with the hotel's reception desk prior to making phone calls to avoid unexpected charges. Please note that we are unable to provide compensation for phone calls regardless of reason.

Making Telephone Calls from One Country to Another
When dialing a number from one country to another, you should proceed as follows: dial your country's Exit Code (often indicated with a “+” sign), then the destination Country Code, then the Phone Number. For most countries, the exit code is 00. Exceptions include the USA and Canada (011), Hong Kong and Cambodia (001), Australia (0011), and Russia (8 Pause 10*). For Brazil, please consult with the local telephone company. If you are dialing from a mobile phone, you can enter a “+” instead of the international Exit Code (011, 001, 0011 or 00) by pressing and holding the 0 key. For most countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, South America and South Pacific, if you are calling from a local phone to a number within the same country, you should drop both the exit and country codes and then add a leading 0 (zero). Exceptions include Spain, Italy, Hungary and Malta (no additional zero needed to dial locally).

Example:
To dial the following number in Germany (as listed on your voucher): +(49) 0555-555
From USA or your US cell phone: 011-49-555-555
From another country in Europe: 00-49-555-555
From a German phone within Germany: 0555-555


WiFi Access
WiFi access has improved. Free or inexpensive WiFi internet is accessible at coffee shops, airports, restaurants, libraries and on some trains and buses. WiFi access in hotels and cruise lines often involves a fee, determined by that property. Signal strength is subject to local conditions and not guaranteed. Availability on cruises is also dependent upon its location while sailing through multiple countries. Please note that WiFi can be extremely slow, unreliable and sometimes nonexistent in developing countries or, on moving conveyances such as buses and cruise ships.

Staying Healthy While Traveling
All travelers should familiarize themselves with local conditions, such as high altitude or required immunizations, which could affect their health. We recommend you consult with your personal healthcare provider, the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov) and/or the World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/en/) for their recommendations.

There are several easy steps you can take to stay healthy while traveling which may help prevent contracting an illness while away from home.

  • Watch what you eat. Try new foods in modest quantities, and depending upon your destination, you may want to avoid street foods, salad bars, raw vegetables and fruits, unless they have thick peels like bananas or grapefruit.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink bottled water and avoid consuming ice cubes made with tap water.
  • If you have allergies to foods, medications or insect bites, or have any other unique medical issues, consider a medical alert bracelet and/or a physician’s note detailing required treatment should you become ill.
  • Wash your hands regularly and carry hand sanitizer.
  • Where appropriate, pack sunscreen and insect repellent (for both active and warm destinations).
  • You may also want to bring a small first-aid kit with bandaids, antibiotic cream, pain killers, bug bite cream, digestive aids like antidiarrheal or anti-bloat medications, antacids, and cold medicine. This is in addition to any prescription medications which should be adequate for the entire trip.


Notice on Aircraft Cabin Insecticide Treatment - Please note that some countries may require aircraft cabin insecticide treatment for in-bound foreign flights. A list of such countries is available at: http://www.dot.gov/office-policy/aviation-policy/aircraft-disinsection-requirements.

Consideration for Tour Participants (Escorted Tours)
For the benefit of all tour participants, we ask tour members to be considerate of their fellow travelers in the following ways:
  • Refrain from wearing colognes, perfumes and/or personal products containing excessive fragrance in respect for other guests who may be allergic
  • Avoid smoking cigarettes, e-cigarettes or cigars in the vicinity of other tour members, including in outdoor areas where smoking may be permitted but may still affect other tour participants
  • Avoid attire with political or religious messages that may offend other travelers
  • Respect your fellow passengers. Guests come from all walks of life and varied lifestyles. Please refrain from topics of conversation which might cause offense, such as religion and politics
  • Refrain from conversation or talking on mobile phones while commentary is in progress
  • Respect the mandatory seat rotation policy on the coach
  • Make use of the available hand sanitizer on the coach to support a healthy environment
  • Seek approval before taking photographs of other tour participants
  • Respect tour departures times to avoid delay and loss of sightseeing opportunities

Climate & Clothing
Bulgaria - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Romania - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Serbia - Spring and Autumn: 45–65°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 30–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Hungary - Spring and Autumn: 45–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops). In summer, bring a hat and sunscreen.

Hungary Average Temperatures: https://www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#central-europe-weather

About Drones
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or “drone” technology has quickly become affordable and is increasingly popular with recreational users. While some countries have clear, established drone laws, others do not, or existing regulations are undergoing review and change. Travelers who wish to bring a drone on their trip are responsible to research and abide by the laws and regulations of the countries they are visiting, as well as to check with their airline(s) regarding their rules for transporting drones. Please note that tours are unable to extend the length of scheduled visits and stops to accommodate use of drones.

Book & Film Recommendations
Many of our guests enjoy reading about their destination - either in advance of their trip or while traveling - as a way of adding context to their visit. Whether reading a traditional guide book, learning about the history and culture, or simply enjoying a fictional novel set in the destination, a good book can add greatly to your experience. Similarly, a good movie set in your destination helps set the mood before you travel. We asked our Tour Managers and staff to recommend books and films which past guests may have enjoyed. The following does not constitute an endorsement of any authors, books or films listed, it is merely a collection of guests’ recommendations.

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Books
Danube by Claudio Magris
Between the Woods and the Water by Patrick Leigh Fermor
Ballad of the Whiskey Robber by Julian Rubinstein
Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer
The Case Worker by Gyorgy Konrád
Fatelessness by Imre Kertesz
Blue River Black Sea by Andrew Eames

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Films
The Sound of Music (1965)
Amadeus (1984)

Preparing for Your Trip
Reconfirming Flights
It is not necessary to call your airline to reconfirm your flights. However, we do recommend that you check your airline’s website 24 hours prior to your flight to ensure that your flights remain on schedule and that flight times are unchanged.

Seat Assignments
As a courtesy service, complimentary airline seat assignments are requested on your behalf and, when available, are displayed in order of Passenger #1, #2 and so on. Assignments reflect the best available seats at the time of booking. Some airlines and/or fare types do not allow for pre-seating and require this be done at airport check-in only; in which case the display shows “N/A”. Seats are subject to change by your airline(s) including, for example, when there is a schedule change or equipment change after your initial booking; this may cause seat assignments to be changed or even cancelled. Some airlines offer preferred seating for an additional fee; these seats may only be purchased directly from the airline. You will need your family name and the 6-digit airline “Record Locator” which is displayed with the flight details on your reservation. In the event that you change seat assignments directly with your airline, changes will not be reflected on your invoice or documents. At the time that Gate 1 travel documents are issued, the currently assigned seats will be listed based on the assignments stored in your airline reservation at that time. Should you have questions regarding your assignments, please write to us at www.gate1travel.com/contactus.

Frequent Flier Programs
Passengers are responsible to contact their airline directly regarding mileage eligibility and accrual. Airline frequent flier programs determine whether to award miles in part or total based on their own rules which are updated frequently. Some discounted or promotional airfares as well as some code-share flights are not eligible for mileage accrual. Some private airfares, such as a “Gate 1 Travel Airfare”, are not eligible for mileage or may qualify for reduced mileage, even if the same airline class of service is eligible for full mileage when sold as an “Instant Purchase” published airfare. Not all published airfares are eligible for mileage. Gate 1 Travel will record frequent flier numbers when provided by the passenger prior to travel documents being issued. However, the addition of frequent flier numbers to airline records does not guarantee mileage eligibility which is at the sole discretion of each airline. Airline schedule changes may result in flights which were originally eligible for mileage accrual no longer being eligible. We highly recommend passengers to provide their frequent flier account information whenever checking in online and/or at the airport check-in desk. After travel has commenced, it is often not possible to apply for frequent mileage credit. Passengers are also responsible to determine whether previously earned mileage may be applied to flights to secure upgrades.

Known Traveler Number (KTN)
If you have a KTN number, you are normally able to join the TSA security line for expedited processing at the airport. Prior to check in, you should go online or call your airline and add your KTN number to your reservation record. In most cases, you will then see the letters "TSA PRE" printed on your boarding pass. If these letters are not printed, you will not be permitted on the TSA line. Please be aware that some airlines do not participate in the program and therefore even if there is a TSA line at the airport, you will not be given TSA PRE status. Sometimes you may not be selected by TSA (even if you entered a KTN number) and even a minor name discrepancy can result in TSA PRE being denied. It is your responsibility to register your KTN number with your airline and Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for denial of expedited security. Note: KTNs are issued by the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) after completing a background check through TSA's PreCheck® program. Global Entry members may also enjoy expedited customs processing.

Luggage & Packing
Checked bags are typically limited to a total dimension of 62 inches by adding length + width + height (example: 26"+26"+10" = 62”), and a maximum weight of 50 lbs (23kg). Smart Bags with a USB charging port, GPS tracking device and other high-tech features are prohibited as checked or carry-on baggage unless the bag is made with removable batteries and the batteries are removed and stored separately. Many airlines charge for checked bags including flights which begin and end within the USA. The most inexpensive airfare options commonly known as Basic Economy airfares do not include any checked bags nor seat assignments before the day of departure. However, for some airlines, other airfare categories also do not include checked baggage. This will be clearly displayed in our airfare selection and on your invoice. Where available, we highly recommend selecting airfares which include at least 1 piece of checked baggage. Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for checked bag fees, excess luggage or weight charges levied by an airline. Checked baggage allowances displayed on reservation details and invoices reflect the applicable allowance at the time of booking but are subject to change by your airline(s). For your airline’s requirements and fees, visit www.gate1travel.com/baggagefees.aspx. For important baggage information, visit www.gate1travel.com/luggage.aspx. Avoid placing valuables in your checked luggage. Federal law forbids the carriage of hazardous materials aboard the aircraft in your luggage, your carry-on or on your person. A violation can result in five years’ imprisonment and penalties of $250,000 or more (49 U.S.C. 5124). Hazardous materials include explosives, compressed gases, flammable liquids and solids, oxidizers, poisons, corrosives and radioactive materials. Examples: Paints, lighter fluid, fireworks, tear gases, oxygen bottles, and radio-pharmaceuticals. There are special exceptions for small quantities (up to 70 ounces total) of medicinal and toilet articles carried in your luggage and certain smoking materials carried on your person. Check the Transportation and Safety Administration (TSA) website www.tsa.gov to find out the current list of acceptable items you may bring on a plane before packing. We recommend that you use brightly colored luggage tags, straps or other identifiers to help you locate you luggage upon arrival or to describe it in the event that it is lost.

Carry on Luggage
Missed connections and lost luggage are more common than ever. We strongly suggest you use your carry on bag for those necessities you would miss if your checked bags went astray. Items to consider, but not limited to, are prescription medicines, eyeglasses, a change of clothes, mobile phone and charger, valuables (including jewelry and cash), passport, keys, insurance cards, local contact information. Refer to the TSA website for a complete list of items and their sizes which may be carried on board. We also recommend you bring a change of clothes in your carry on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost.

E-Tickets & Advance Check-In
Review the flight itinerary included in your documents. Print and carry a copy of the air itinerary which contains the 6-digit airline "Record Locator" and e-ticket numbers. Advance online check-in is available on some airlines. If available, you may enter your name and 6-digit Record Locator or Flight Ticket Number at the airline's website, and print the boarding pass on your home printer within twenty-four hours of departure. You may check-in online, even if you plan to check luggage at the airport. Airlines without advance online check-in require you to present your identification and e-ticket numbers at the airport self-service kiosk or check-in counter. Paper tickets will be provided in the rare instance when e-tickets cannot be issued.

Day of Departure
Arrive On Time
Due to increased security measures, you should plan to check in at least three hours prior to the scheduled departure time for international flights and two hours prior for domestic flights. Many airlines do not permit check-in less than one hour prior to the scheduled departure time. It is your responsibility to arrive on time for all scheduled flights. Enhanced security procedures, including passenger screening, canine inspection, and inspection of personal electronic devices, have been implemented for all flights into the United States, and therefore security procedures may take longer than normal.

Check-In
If your flight itinerary displays a flight as “Operated By” another carrier, you should check-in at the desk of the “Operated By” airline. When you arrive at the airport, check the airport monitors for updated check-in desk listings. At check-in, be prepared to provide your government issued identification (valid passport required when traveling internationally) and your e-ticket itinerary/ticket numbers to the agent. Once you've checked in and received your boarding passes and luggage claim tickets, proceed directly to the security check. Security lines are often backed up and can take time to get through. Once you've completed security check, proceed directly to your gate and check the large electronic flight screens for your flight time and departure gate for schedule and gate changes. Airport desk clerks will assist with unexpected changes. Once you are in the gate area you can relax, shop or buy a snack before your flight.

Connecting Passengers
Passengers connecting from another point within the USA should check their luggage through to their final destination. Although problems with lost luggage have been minimal, it is a possibility. Certain carriers do not allow baggage “interlining,” and luggage must be checked separately for each flight. When you check your luggage, please verify where your luggage is being sent. When connecting between flights in major airports, you may need to pass through multiple security checkpoints. Therefore, we recommend that you proceed immediately to the gate area for your connecting flight to avoid any unexpected delays which may cause you to be late. Passengers returning to the USA may need to collect their luggage at the first airport of entry and recheck their luggage for their connecting flight.

Flight Services
Avoiding Jet Lag
In order to minimize fatigue and general restlessness caused by jet lag, there are a few steps you may take including switching to your destination time zone when you board the plane, by sleeping and eating according to the new schedule, avoiding heavy eating, caffeine or alcoholic beverages before or during your flight, and by drinking plenty of water and/or fruit juice while flying. Try to sleep on overnight flights and then, upon arrival, avoid the temptation to nap until nighttime.

Airline Food
Unless you are a first or business class passenger, you will likely be treated to a pretty mediocre culinary experience. Reasons for this range from airline budget constraints to the logistics of high altitudes, low humidity and air pressure which tend to desensitize taste buds. Small galleys, tiny ovens and precooked food, plus previously mentioned cost-cuts in order to keep airfares as low as possible, add to some often pretty poor fare. Our suggestion is to stick to simple options, carry a few granola bars, and don't expect this to be your best dining experience.

Premium Economy or Business Class
Service may not be available on all flights or aircraft types, and therefore some flights within an itinerary may not include Premium Economy or Business Class seating. This includes, for example, some US domestic connections and/or short haul flights abroad. When service is not available, you will be accommodated in the best alternative class of service and seating. Please check your operating airline to determine the extra services you may receive.

US Customs & Immigration for Return Flights
In most cases, passengers with return flights that include a connection in the US will need to complete customs and immigration formalities in their first port of entry, requiring them to collect their luggage and check-in for their onward flight. However, there are some exceptions: certain airports in Canada and Ireland (Dublin), allow US Immigration formalities to be completed in the overseas airport at the gate area.

Foreign Domestic Flights
If your tour program includes foreign domestic flights, and those tickets are not included together with the e-ticket itinerary in your travel documents, you will receive those tickets at your destination from our local representative.

What to do if You Need Assistance

Whether you purchased your airfare from Gate 1 Travel or from the airline directly, please bear in mind that Gate 1 Travel does not own nor operate the airline(s), nor the airport facilities where they operate. At times, flying can be a frustrating experience, especially when things do not go exactly as planned, and airline explanations can be confusing or even misleading. Should you face a problem, remain calm and seek assistance either from the airline directly or from Gate 1. Please be aware that in most cases, on the day of your flight(s), airlines pass responsibility for your reservation to their staff at the airport and it is not always possible for Gate 1 Travel to intervene on your behalf, either through our reservations system or directly with your airline.

Emergency Assistance
The Gate 1 emergency line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call: 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676. From overseas, call: 001 215 572-7676. Outside office hours, listen to the prompts, then press 3. You will speak immediately with a representative, or you may be asked to leave a detailed message including your name, your booking number, and most importantly the telephone number where you can be reached. Your message will be forwarded immediately to a representative who will contact you at the telephone number provided.

Last Minute Schedule Changes & Flight Delays
On the day of travel, check the flight schedule and advise Gate 1 by phone, 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676, of any significant changes that might affect your arrival transfer or hotel reservation. Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for affected land services, including arrival and/or departure transfers should flights be changed without our knowledge. Gate 1 will make every effort to inform passengers of schedule changes and cannot be held responsible for changes in routing and/or the number of stops in the itinerary. Nor will Gate 1 provide compensation for changes or cancellations implemented by an airline.

Missed Flights
In the event that you miss your flight which departs as scheduled, for any reason, your airline will consider you a "no-show” and may resell your seat(s) to other customers. This will also result in the cancellation of any later flights in your itinerary. Similarly, if you voluntarily decide not to use any of the flights on your itinerary, the airline will consider you a “no show” and cancel remaining flights on your itinerary. In this case, please contact your airline immediately for assistance in getting you to your destination. Missed flights are typically fully non-refundable and you may be required to purchase new flights from the airline at your own expense. Once your alternative arrangements have been confirmed, please contact Gate 1 with your new flight details.

Missed Connection
If you are connecting from a domestic flight which is delayed for any reason, causing you to miss your international flight, ask the airline for assistance in getting you to your destination. Since all airline tickets are issued on special fares which carry restrictions and penalties if changed, it's the airline's responsibility to make alternate arrangements on your behalf as Gate 1 has no authority or control over airline activities and policies. Do not leave the airline check-in desk until an alternative itinerary has been confirmed.

Lost Luggage
If your luggage is lost or damaged by the airlines, a baggage claim form must be filed with the carrier before leaving the airport. Any cost to retrieve luggage will be your responsibility and you should retain receipts to submit to your insurance provider. You may be required to return to an airport to retrieve your luggage personally.

Arrival & Departure
Arrival Procedures
Upon arrival, please complete immigration formalities if necessary and claim your luggage. If your program includes airport arrival transfers, check your voucher for specific instructions, as they vary with every destination. In most cases, you will be met after collecting your luggage or passing through Customs by the local representative who will be holding a Gate 1 Travel sign and/or a sign with your name on it. In some instances you will be instructed to walk a short distance to a transportation counter. The company's name and location will be printed on your voucher. If for any reason you do not connect with the Gate 1 transfer personnel, go to the Tourist Information Desk and ask them to page the Gate 1 Travel representative or phone the number on your voucher. If you are delayed due to lost luggage, phone the number on the voucher or have a companion exit the Customs Area to advise the transfer representative.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Budapest - The Mahart Port is located on the Pest side of the city between the Elizabeth Bridge and the Lagymanyosi Bridge (also known as the Rakoczi Bridge). The distance between the bridges is approximately 2.5 miles. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Budapest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

Monarch Countess - If you are unable to locate the ship, please telephone the ship to receive the most recent docking information. If calling from a local telephone, please dial: 0152 015 06217, or from an international telephone: 011 49 152 015 06217.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Giurgiu - The Giurgiu Post S.A is located on Soseaua Portului street just along the Danube river between the Port Capital of Giurgiu building and a large sailboat sculpture. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Bucharest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

What To Do When Your Flight Is Delayed
Airlines do not share flight manifest information. Therefore, the only way we may learn of a delay or schedule change while you are traveling is from you, the traveler. The sooner you are able to contact one of our offices, the better we can respond. Please refer to the Emergency Assistance instructions on this same document. Gate 1 Travel is only able to guarantee pre-reserved arrival transfers for up to one hour from the scheduled time, no matter the cause. In case you are delayed for any reason, and are unable to follow the instructions on your voucher, please make independent transfer arrangements and retain your receipts. Unused tour services, including transfers and hotel nights are not refundable. Upon you return home you will need to contact your airline and/or insurance carrier to investigate the possibility of reimbursement for any unused tour services.

Departure Procedures
If your program includes departure transfers, instructions will be stated on your voucher or provided locally.

Transfers
Due to local traffic and other extenuating circumstances, we ask that you allow 30 minutes from your scheduled transfer time for our representative to arrive. This includes hotel, airport and cruise transfers. Such possible delays are taken into consideration in scheduling transfers and you should therefore have no concerns about arriving late for your tour, flight or cruise. For transfers from a hotel, let the hotel reception desk or concierge know that you are waiting for a transfer. In the case of a missed transfer, reimbursement for your out-of-pocket expenses will be considered provided you obtain a written statement from the hotel's front desk verifying the length of time you waited, and the time you left the hotel, and a receipt for your transportation with time and date.

The cost of a transfer is more expensive than hiring a taxi, as a Gate 1 transfer necessarily includes round trip service, or 'dead-leg'. Often the places of call (airports, seaports, hotels) demand entrance and parking fees, where drivers may have to wait for up to an hour. Passengers comfortable hiring a taxi on their own and do not require assistance will save money.

About Your Accommodations
Hotels
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each hotel based on overall quality, location, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All rooms are standard twin-bedded (two single beds) rooms with private facilities. Special requests such as bed types, smoking preference and connecting rooms are subject to availability. Room selection in all cases, unless otherwise reserved, is strictly at the discretion of the hotel's management on a run-of-house basis. Triple rooms consist of standard twin beds or one double bed plus a sofa/folding bed or cot for third person except in the U.S. and Canada, where triple rooms often consist of two double/queen beds for three persons; where available, a fee may be charged by the hotel for the addition of a cot/rollaway. The number of persons accommodated does not dictate the room size. Although available at most 4 and 5 star hotels, the use of air-conditioning abroad differs greatly from the United States, and is often shut down at night and from the end until the start of the summer months. Some lodges and accommodations in remote regions may not have all of the amenities, such as hairdryer, alarm clock and room service, that you might find in a larger hotel located in a city center.

Hotel Check-in/ Check-out
Hotel check-in time is generally not before 4:00 p.m. and check-out time is prior to noon. If you will be arriving early in the day or departing in the evening, hotels will usually allow you to store your luggage in their luggage room. Ask at the front desk if the hotel can check you in earlier, or let you stay later.

River Cruises
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each cruise ship based on overall quality, itinerary, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All Monarch Countess cabins are standard rooms with private facilities, unless you have specifically requested and paid for an upgrade. All cabins have two twin beds that can be pushed together or separated. While at port, the vessel may be docked adjacent to another ship which may obstruct window views. We recommend you close the cabin curtains before turning in at night for privacy. While double docked, ships often continue to run their engines for air-conditioning and other services. Depending upon the wind direction, residual engine fumes may enter some cabins. This is a temporary situation, alleviated once the ship moves. We reserve the right to make ship substitutions with those of equal standard.

At Your Destination
Eco & Sustainable Tourism
We support global efforts to create a more eco-friendly world, intolerant of any forms of cruelty, abuse and intentional environmental destruction. To that end we ask that our clients maintain a watchful eye as they travel, and report any abuses they may encounter. One of the many benefits of tourism is the shared cultural knowledge and ultimate elimination of negative behavior through education. We rely on your good feedback to enable this element of symbiosis. As you travel and learn about foreign cultures, we ask first and foremost that you practice tolerance and respect for local customs.

Gratuities
Tipping is always a matter of personal discretion. For your convenience, please use the summary below as a guideline for recommended gratuity amounts. Gratuities may be paid in local currency or US dollar equivalent where accepted. Please be aware that tipping is considered by many locals to be a part of their normal remuneration and some may approach you for additional "compensation." There is no need to be intimidated by the request, nor should you feel pressured to pay more than recommended. If you become uncomfortable by any behavior you encounter, please advise your tour manager or phone our local office. Numbers are provided in your documents for your convenience.

Suggested Tipping: Escorted Tours

Tour Manager (Coordinator; may or may not act as a guide): US $7 per person per day
Driver (Provides chauffeur services and limited assistance with luggage) : US $3 per person per day, US $2 per half day
Local Guide (Offers in-depth information at specific locations. There may be one or many guides along a tour program): US $3 per person per day of sightseeing, US $2 per half day
Hotel porters and wait staff: Included

Suggested Tipping: European River Cruises

Crew: US $14 per person per day
Cruise Director (ship): US $4 per person per day
Activity Host (ship) US $2 per person per day
Tour Manager or Local Host (hotel) US $4 per person per day

Gratuities for the crew (shared by all crew members) may be paid via the on board ship account or dropped in the designated box at reception. Gratuities for the Cruise Director and Activity Host may not be charged to your on board ship account and should be paid in cash and given to the person directly.

You may also tip other service providers such as local guides, bus drivers and others who may have provided special services.

Suggested Tipping: Independent Tours

Hotel Porter: US $3 per bag
Hotel Wait staff: 5-10% of the bill (lunch or dinner)

Local Sightseeing Tours: Guide: US $3 per person per half day, US $6 per person per full day Driver: US $2 per person per half day, US $4 per person per full day

Bulgaria - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Romania - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Serbia - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Hungary - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists.

About Your Sightseeing
To ensure a pleasant and fair experience for passengers on our escorted tours, there is a mandatory seat rotation policy on our motor coaches which will be organized by your Tour Manager. Some buses are equipped with toilet facility, however they are strictly intended for emergency use only and often require the vehicle to stop for safety reasons before use. When travel dates coincide with religious holidays and national celebrations, some monuments and sites may be closed, sometimes without prior notice. On these occasions, escorted touring itineraries may be amended to reflect these closures. Occasionally, during holidays and certain periods, and/or due to other unforeseen circumstances including weather conditions, there may be last-minute changes, sometimes after arrival, which may affect the sequence of the tour and locations visited. National monuments and tourist sites regularly undergo renovations, which can obscure the monument's view. No tour will be canceled due to renovations, however Gate 1 will decide based on the conditions whether to amend an itinerary. To respect the privacy of all tour participants, your tour manager will not organize a group photo or collect passenger email addresses for a group list.

Land Only Passengers (Escorted Tours)
Your tour manager will contact you after your arrival at your hotel. Passengers who have not purchased arrival transfers from Gate 1 Travel should proceed directly to the hotel for check-in. The details of the hotel can be found in your documents.

Purchasing Tours Locally
On escorted tours, the guides will generally sell optional tours to passengers who have not pre-purchased them. Payment can be made by cash or credit card, unless otherwise noted below. This does not apply to Independent packages. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Independent Activities - Gate 1 itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently and with due consideration. Gate 1 is not responsible for any activities not expressly included in its programs. Caution should be exercised when selecting certain activities that may require physical strength, coordination or exertion. Particular care should be taken when considering animal rides, such as on camels, mules or horses

Water Level
A rise or fall in the river water level, or other factors which may impact safe navigation, can prevent the ship from passing under bridges and/or moving further along the river. This may cause part or all of the cruise itinerary to be operated by motor coach. If this becomes necessary, Gate 1 Travel will endeavor to provide equal or similar services, however no cruise will be canceled and no monetary compensation will be made for those changes. A fluctuation in water level can change in a matter of hours and may occur at any time of the year. In this case, the situation will be closely monitored by captain and crew to ensure services are delivered with as few substitutions as possible. If you have planned independent travel prior to the cruise it is advisable to leave local contact information with Gate 1 Travel before departing. Should an embarkation point be changed, Gate 1 Travel will attempt to contact passengers by phone or email.

Currency
We suggest getting a small amount of currency for the first country you're visiting before you depart (except India). It is a good idea to carry a chart with you to help you convert dollars to the local currency. It's also a good idea not to carry too much money. Many countries have ATM machines that accept most ATM cards, but be sure you know your ATM password in numbers-the keypads on foreign ATMs don't always have letters. ATM machines will only dispense cash in local currency. Check with respective consulates to learn current currency allowances and requirements. Use your credit card whenever possible. Should you decide to carry cash, please note that exchange at banks is typically more favorable than at hotels or exchange bureaus. However, bank hours are limited to Mondays through Fridays and sometimes only morning hours on those days. Please note that many banks and most vendors will not accept or exchange $100 bills. We suggest to carry $20 bills or smaller. In many destinations (except Western Europe), we suggest to bring between $50 to $100 in $1 bills which may be used to pay gratuities.

Bulgaria - The Bulgarian Leva is the currency of Bulgaria.

Romania - The Romanian Leu is the currency of Romania.

Serbia - The Serbian Dinar is the currency of Serbia.

Hungary - The Hungarian Forint is the currency of Hungary.

European River Cruises - The Euro is the currency used for purchases on board the ship, except for optional excursions which may be paid for in USD. Please note that while calling at port, other currencies may be used depending on the country being visited. Money-changing services (to Euro) will be available on board.

Ship Account and Payment: There is a cashless system on board. All on board expenditures (in the bar, restaurant, shop, and spa) are added to the ship's account. Closing invoices will be presented to the passengers for settlement. Payment can be made by cash in Euro or by credit card (VISA, MasterCard, American Express). Payment made by credit card may be subject to an international credit card transaction fee. Please note we cannot accept USD as a form of cash payment. Passenger's are not eligible for a Value Added Tax (VAT) refund for purchases made on board the ship.

Credit Cards
While credit cards are accepted in most destinations, it is advisable to carry local currency. Inform your credit card company that you are traveling to avoid your card being blocked for security reasons.
While most US-issued credit cards have the embedded microprocessor chip, there are still some that have the magnetic-strip technology. The “chip-and-PIN” cards require users to punch in a personal identification number (PIN) instead of signing for a purchase. For example, many automated ticket kiosks, such as those commonly found at train stations, gas pumps and parking garages, don’t accept cards without a chip and PIN. Most cash registers are equipped to handle American cards but if you encounter difficulties, offer an alternative credit card or politely insist that the cashier keep trying to swipe the credit card. ATMs typically recognize and accept US issued debit cards. For travel to Europe, should you anticipate using ticket kiosks or purchasing train tickets locally, you may consider buying tickets and other basic purchases prior to departure.

Shopping
Most people enjoy bringing home at least one souvenir from the countries they visit. However, some find any amount of shopping to be too much while others never find enough opportunities.

We have built into our Escorted itineraries a few shopping stops at recommended spots. These stops are designed to enhance your experience by providing an opportunity to see first-hand quality locally crafted merchandise which you may not be able to find on your own. Shops are checked to ensure the quality and authenticity of the products they offer, and we limit guides from visiting other locations. In some cases, we plan these stops to provide an opportunity to use clean bathrooms and to stretch your legs. All shops want your satisfaction, and therefore in case of any misunderstanding they ask that you kindly submit your claim to us within one week of the item's receipt. Claims submitted later will be subject to each store’s policies.

While shopping independently, we advise you to exercise care and common sense when making any purchase. Always get a formal receipt. And remember that, just like in this country, if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is!

About Tax-Free Shopping
Tax-Free Shopping allows shoppers to reclaim the VAT (Value-Added Tax) or GST (Goods and Services Tax) they have paid on their purchases in some foreign countries in accordance with restrictions and procedures as dictated by each country. Refund eligibility varies by country, but may require presenting a scanned copy of your passport at the time of purchase, a minimum amount spent, or providing original store receipts. For more details, check the respective country’s online website, with the shop salesperson, with your tour manager or at www.globalblue.com for specific country regulations and airport operation hours. Please keep in mind that you must apply for VAT refund in the airport of the country the items were purchased and allow enough time prior to your flight for the application.

U.S. Customs & Shipping Charges
You may carry items with a fair retail value totaling $800 into the U.S. Taxes may be applied to the next $1,000 worth of merchandise. U.S. Customs determines the value of your items, often honoring a genuine sales receipt. Items which are shipped home are always subject to duty when received in the U.S. (in addition to shipping charges). Some shops may offer to include shipping and duties in the price but this typically means shipping only to the customs facility closest to you and payment only of the export duties; you would still need to collect the item and pay U.S. import duties. Please be aware that it is illegal to import products made from endangered animal species. U.S. Customs & Border Protection will seize these items, as well as most furs, coral, tortoise shell, reptile skins, feathers, plants, and items made from animal skins.

Bulgaria - Bulgaria offers an assortment of articles that may be more difficult to find elsewhere, including World War II and Communist era memorabilia. The shopping experience itself can be just as worthwhile as the goods, with interesting boutiques lining cobblestone streets. These shops offer everything from Orthodox icons and antiques to leather goods, chic clothing and jewelry. Also, prices in Bulgaria are generally lower than in other European countries, making it an even more attractive draw.

Romania - Items of interest include intricately woven carpets, regional wines, ornately painted eggs and tiles, Italian clothes and shoes at discount prices, glass pieces, and porcelain wares. Of course there is also plenty of Dracula kitsch along with more unusual souvenirs like wild boar skins.

Serbia - In cities, small shops dominate shopping scene. Popular items include embroidery, lace, leather and metalwork. Clothing from top name designers can often be found at substantially lower prices than in Western stores. Shops are usually open weekdays from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, with shorter hours on Saturdays.

Hungary - Hungary is renowned for its food and beverage products, especially fine red paprika, brandies, and Unicum liqueur. Additionally, traditional items such as ceramics, embroidery work, painted eggs, crystal ware, and costumed dolls are highly popular.

Your Safety is Very Important
Prior to your trip, if you are traveling overseas, we strongly recommend that you visit the website of the U.S. Department of State at www.travel.state.gov, specifically the section which addresses International Travel. You should read the tips for foreign travel and travel warnings for the country or countries that you plan to visit.

It is also important that you do not allow your common sense to take a vacation while on your trip. Here are several tips which, if followed, will save much potential hardship:

  • Be aware of potentially dangerous places and situations as you would be at home. Avoid wearing expensive jewelry and carry your valuables concealed in inside pockets or hidden pouches. Your objective is to avoid drawing attention and to blend in with the crowd
  • Don't put all your valuables (money, credit cards, passports, etc.) in the same place (in case one wallet is stolen, you should have other valuables and identification in another safe place)
  • Do not leave valuables laying loose in your room or on the bus as Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for any loss. Use the hotel safe. Keep copies of your passports, credit card numbers and travelers checks numbers in the hotel safe
  • When possible we suggest traveling in pairs or groups when moving about independently
  • Do not pack valuables (cameras, computers, jewelry, etc.) in your checked luggage. Keep hard to replace valuables with you in your carry-on bag
  • Keep wallets safely tucked into front trouser pockets and/or wear a money pouch inside your clothing
  • Carry handbags close to your body, shoulder bags the cross-body method with the bag in front of your body
  • Credit cards are generally accepted everywhere and are safer than traveling with large amounts of cash

If you've purchased an escorted tour program, your travel documents will include telephone numbers of local Gate 1 Travel representatives who will do their utmost to assist you in the event of an emergency. The numbers are printed on your Gate 1 Travel vouchers. Please copy the numbers. Once you relinquish the voucher, you will not have this information. Passengers traveling independently should employ the services of hotel concierges and local authorities.

European River Cruises - You are on a ship with a high safety standard and reliable crew. In case of emergency, we ask you to follow the instructions of your crew. Please take further information concerning safety from the notice on your cabin door. Life jackets will be stored in your stateroom. When leaving the ship, kindly drop your cabin key off at reception and promptly pick it up upon arrival back to the ship. This procedure helps ensure your security by allowing the crew to immediately determine if all passengers are on board before continuing the cruise. While in port, please keep your cabin door locked.

Tourist Street Scams
Pickpockets and thieves can destroy an otherwise wonderful holiday. Be mindful of these precautions to help avoid being scammed or robbed:

  • Remain alert and cautious. Be wary of any unusual contact or commotion in crowded public places, including train stations, markets, subways and tourist sites;
  • Be especially careful when traveling independently, or leaving your tour group to explore on your own. Try not to travel alone, especially at night. Avoid narrow alleys and poorly lit streets;
  • Use only official taxis and check the change you receive from all taxi drivers and vendors;
  • Beware of pickpockets often working with an accomplice who will distract you by spilling something on you, dropping a wallet or other seemingly valuable object, or tripping and falling down in front of you;
  • Beware of aggressive street vendors who may approach you offering a demonstration which may end with you being pressured to purchase an item or act as a distraction for another pickpocket;
  • Don’t tip beggars;
  • Wear the shoulder strap of your bag across your chest;
  • Carry modest amounts of cash (US dollars) in small denominations so that you can avoid flashing large bills when paying for small items;
  • ATM machines can be a convenient way to carry less currency. However those machines too can be used for robbery. Be wary of anyone who can look over your shoulder when inputting PINs. Another scam involves rigging the machine with a plastic insert which makes your card retrieval difficult; the thief then removes your card after you walk away;
  • If you are confronted, do not fight back - give up your valuables. If your possessions are lost or stolen, report the loss immediately to the local police and keep a copy of the official report for insurance claims.


Local Emergency Phone Numbers
Bulgaria
  • Ambulance: 150
  • Fire: 160
  • Police: 166

Romania
  • Ambulance: 961 or 962
  • Fire: 981
  • Police: 955

Serbia
  • Ambulance: 94
  • Fire: 93
  • Police: 92

Hungary
  • General Emergency: 112

Languages
Bulgaria - Bulgarian is the local language.

Romania - Romanian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Serbia - Serbian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Hungary - Hungarian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Electricity
Please note: The U.S. uses 120 volts and you can purchase a converter and transformer at most hardware stores for your 120V appliances.

European River Cruises - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Bulgaria - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Romania - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Serbia - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Hungary - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Monarch Countess - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Code of Conduct
Bulgaria - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Smoking is prohibited in all indoor public places. Some restaurants, cafes, and nightclubs may have designated smoking areas.

Romania - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. When meeting someone for the first time, formal address should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Serbia - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Hospitality is highly important in Serbia, and if you are offered food or a drink, it is polite to accept. Normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Hungary - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Normal courtesies should be observed and when addressing a newly met acquaintance, both first and last name should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate. Smoking is prohibited on public transport and in public buildings.

Food and Meals
As specified in each itinerary. Meals are based on the hotel's or restaurant's buffet or set menu. In general, beverages are not included, unless specifically stated. Although Gate 1 cannot make guarantees, every effort will be made to honor special dietary requests submitted in writing at least 72 hours prior to departure at www.gate1travel.com/contactus. Terminology for dietary requests can vary from country to country and options may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you make your wishes known to your tour manager upon arrival, and at each hotel/restaurant.

Bulgaria - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Serbia - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Holidays
On public holidays, there may be reduced public transportation, as well as limited hours or closures of attractions, shops and restaurants.

Holidays - Bulgaria

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year's Day observed
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 8: St. George's Day observed
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas
Dec 27: Christmas Holiday

Holidays - Romania

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 22: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 24: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 25: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 12: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 13: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 14: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 16: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 17: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 4: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 5: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas

Holidays - Serbia

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 3: New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
May 3: Labor Day Second Day
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year Holiday observed
Jan 3: Second New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Hungary

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Disabled Facilities - European River Cruises
Due to physical constraints and space limitations, wheelchairs and walkers are not allowed on motor coaches and/or river cruises. There are no elevators aboard the ship, so passengers will be required to climb stairs to access the different decks of the ship. Kindly refer to our Terms for additional information.
Embarkation
Embarkation will begin at 2 pm unless otherwise noted in your itinerary. Check your itinerary carefully for the port of embarkation and disembarkation. In the event that you arrive independently to the port of embarkation, note the location carefully. Please ensure that you are always on board before the ship's scheduled time of departure. For same day directions, please contact the Cruise Director at the number provided on your cruise voucher. Early arrivals may drop their luggage.

Upon embarkation all passengers will be required to hand over their passport to the Reception Desk for the duration of the cruise. The staff are required to provide these to the appropriate authorities as the ship sails through each country. These will be stored in a secure area and returned at the end of the cruise.

Disembarkation
You will receive all relevant information concerning disembarkation in detail by your cruise director on the afternoon of your last day onboard. Passengers who have purchased a transfer will be required to place their luggage outside of their cabin a few hours prior to their scheduled time of departure. Details will be advised locally. All passengers and luggage must be off board the ship at the final disembarkation time noted in your itinerary.

On Your Cruise - European River Cruises
Attire:
River cruise dress code is always casual. Modest attire (no bathing suits) is requested in the dining room at all meals. Remember to pack comfortable walking shoes and an umbrella.

Language:
The official language on board is English, although other languages may be spoken. All announcements and tours will be performed in English.

Meals and Dietary Restrictions:
There is open seating in the dining room for lunch and dinner. Please see your Maître d'hotel who is at your disposal for special needs. Passengers requiring special diet must advise Gate 1 Cruises at the least 20 days prior to departure. However we are pleased to assist within the limits of those products available on board.

Smoking:
Smoking is only allowed in designated areas on the sundeck. Please do not throw cigarettes overboard.

Amenities:
A hairdryer is supplied to all cabins. Laundry service is available on board for an additional charge, however the ship is not equipped to care for dry cleaning. Charges are displayed on board. Valuables can be deposited in the cabin safe.

Medical Services:
Ship's crew may be able to provide basic first-aid, however ships do not carry a doctor or nurse onboard. Should professional medical attention be required, local services will be contacted upon the passenger's request.

Excursions:
During your journey you will have the opportunity to take part in a variety of shore excursions. If you have not pre-booked the excursions, there will be an opportunity to do so on board with your Cruise Director. These excursions can paid for in cash (USD), or charged to your credit card. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Walking:
River Cruise tours dock at inland towns and excursions may include a fair amount of walking on uneven or cobblestone streets. There are no elevators aboard the ship, so passengers will be required to climb stairs to access the different decks of the ship. Many ports have limited ramps. You may also experience "double-docking." In some ports, where there are limited docks available for the number of visiting ships, you may find your ship docked adjacent to another and may have to walk across one or more other river cruise ships before reaching the dock area.

Children:
The vessels do not maintain facilities or services for children aboard the cruise. We regret that we cannot accommodate children under 16 years of age.

Telephone:
All cabins are equipped with direct dialing for an additional fee. If you need to be contacted while on board the ship, please provide the emergency numbers outlined in your documents to family and/or friends. It is possible that the emergency numbers are out of the telephone network at the time of dialing. If this is the case, a message will be provided by the telephone company in German. It is advisable to hang-up and dial a short time later.

Email and Post:
The Monarch Countess offers complimentary basic internet access onboard based on regional satellite for river cruise ships. Internet service is accessible in the reception lobby area. This service is complimentary and should enable you to browse the internet, check your email, access international publications, and view Facebook accounts on your personal device(s) during your sailing. You will be unable to download movies or video, send videos or access Netflix or Jetflicks. At the beginning of your sailing, you will be provided with an access code which you may use on any of your devices. Please note the possibility of potential interruptions in satellite signals based on terrain and weather, plus factors such as populated ports where many ships are utilizing the same satellite signal, which may cause slower online connections than you are accustomed to at home. Internet access will not be available in the port of Breisach, Germany.

Any mail with postage can be handed in at the reception. It will be posted at the next port of call.

Know Before You Go
Although most of the planning and preparation is taken care of for you, there are still a few things you should know and some details you should take care of to ensure your comfort, safety and peace of mind. Please review the following information before your departure to ensure that any surprises along the way will only be pleasant ones.
Getting Ready to Go
Passports and Visas
It is each traveler's responsibility to have a passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the dates of travel and a visa if required. Please check the information at www.gate1travel.com/visas.aspx for the specific country/region you are visiting for more details. IMPORTANT: Passengers who are not U.S. citizens must check with the respective consulate or a visa agency to determine what personal identification is required. Passengers who enter, leave and then re-enter the same country on their itinerary should check if they require a double-entry visa. Passport applications are available at most U.S. Post Offices, as well as at regional Passport Agencies. Passengers requiring visas, whether obtained in advance or locally upon arrival, should ensure that their passport has blank pages.

Traveling with Friends or Family?
If you are traveling with friends or family who are booked on another reservation, please make sure that we are aware. On occasion, we may operate more than one vehicle on your tour departure in which case we will ensure that guests will be assigned together. This is achieved by connecting your reservations before your departure. Once you arrive in your destination, it may not be possible to make assignment changes. To check that your reservations are linked, log into https://www.gate1travel.com/res with your email and password, select your reservation number, and check to see that your reservations are indicated as "Traveling With" at the top right side of the display.

Trip Preparation
A little pre-planning can make your trip go a lot smoother. Several weeks before your trip, make a list of what you will need to take with you. Make sure your personal documents (passports, visas, driver's license) are in order. Make sure also that you have enough prescription medications to last through the trip and carry them with you in case your luggage is delayed. Bring a change of clothes in your carry-on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost. Lost luggage is common. We strongly urge you to consider carry-ons instead of checked bags when possible, and when checking a bag is necessary, choose a bag color and identification that stands out. We suggest that you make photocopies of passports, visas, personal ID and any other important travel documents and pack them separately from the originals. You may also make a digital copy of your passport to keep a clear picture with the important details in your cell phone or digital camera photos. If you lose the originals while traveling, you'll have copies for easier reporting and replacement. Pack a list of medications including dosage and generic names. You may consider bringing a small supply of over the counter medications for headaches and/or anti-diarrhea pills (especially when traveling outside of the USA and Western Europe). We recommend that you pack a portable alarm clock. Due to security reasons, many museums have restrictions on the size of bags that can be taken inside and backpacks, carry-on bags or large purses may not be permitted. It is recommended to bring a small shoulder bag or purse to use in these situations instead. Avoid placing valuables such as cameras in your checked luggage. Airplane pressure can cause similar pressure in your body, most notably in ears, as well as liquid tubes and bottles. Your physician can suggest medication for decongestion. We suggest that you place liquid containers into Ziploc bags to catch any leaks.

Travel Safety Advice: The safety of our guests is Gate 1’s #1 concern. Before making the decision to reserve your vacation, we want you to be aware of potential situations which may impact your holiday. While most of the time our programs run precisely according to plans, on rare occasion force majeure events including weather, transportation mechanical issues, or uninhabitable accommodation, civil unrest and even criminal or terrorist activities will present themselves unexpectedly and with little or no notice. Gate 1 will make the decision to cancel a tour only after receiving verifiable government issued information. We are otherwise obliged to comply with contractual airline and vendor agreements and carry out the tour until or unless we are advised otherwise. In the event of such an occurrence anytime after your date of departure, Gate 1 and the local destination ground staff, in coordination with government advisories, airlines, hotels, cruise ships and other vendors, will make decisions with regard to your safety first. We strongly recommend that tour participants review the destination country's specific information at https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/alertswarnings.html.

Travel Protection
Even the best-planned trips can be impacted by the unexpected. And that is why we recommend that you help protect yourself and your investment by purchasing Travel Protection for your Gate 1 trip. Travel Protection can help with medical coverage for illness or injury, trip cancellation and/or interruption, baggage loss, medical evacuation, and more. At any time before you complete Final Payment, you may choose to purchase Travel Protection. The protection plan premium is non-refundable after a 10-day review period. In addition, you must be medically able to travel at the time the premium is paid. For a summary of the plan details on coverages, benefits, limitations and exclusions, please refer to the Description of Coverage by visiting www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit (CFAR) is a non-insurance feature that allows you to cancel up to 72 hours before your scheduled departure for any reason not otherwise covered in the Travel Protection Plan. CFAR must be purchased at the same time as the Travel Protection Plan as well as within 21 days of the original booking date. Independent or escorted tour reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to the full cost of your trip, less the cost of initial deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. Sea or river cruise reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to 50% of the cost of your trip, less the cost of initial trip deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. All CFAR credits are valid for a period of two years from the original date of travel. CFAR Credits have no cash value and are not transferrable. Airline-assessed fees are generally $300 per person, but may be as much as fully non-refundable. Some non-refundable airline tickets may retain value, less airline-assessed fees. Your future air credit must be used to book with the same airline. Deadlines to rebook and complete travel vary by airline and may be as early as 12 months from when the tickets were originally issued (not the date of travel). For details, www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

This program does not apply to custom groups and Antarctica cruises. Residents of New York, Missouri & Minnesota may purchase this Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit separate from Travel Protection. Call to speak with a reservation agent for details. This Cancel for any Reason Wavier Benefit is not insurance and is provided by Gate 1 Travel.

Cell Phones & Calling Cards
You may wish to carry a cell phone while traveling. Check with your cell phone provider if your phone will work in the destination(s) you are visiting. If you can access the Internet as you travel, you can take advantage of email or a Skype Internet telephone (VOIP) account for the best value. Additionally, if your phone can connect to WiFi you may be able to make voice and video calls free of charge. Please contact your cell phone provider for further details. Alternatively, you may investigate renting a cell phone before you leave or buying an inexpensive phone locally. When calling the U.S. from a foreign country, you may also use a prepaid calling card; normally, the only additional charge (besides the prepaid long distance charges) is a local fee of a few cents and possibly a connection fee if you are using your card at your hotel. It is best to check with the hotel's reception desk prior to making phone calls to avoid unexpected charges. Please note that we are unable to provide compensation for phone calls regardless of reason.

Making Telephone Calls from One Country to Another
When dialing a number from one country to another, you should proceed as follows: dial your country's Exit Code (often indicated with a “+” sign), then the destination Country Code, then the Phone Number. For most countries, the exit code is 00. Exceptions include the USA and Canada (011), Hong Kong and Cambodia (001), Australia (0011), and Russia (8 Pause 10*). For Brazil, please consult with the local telephone company. If you are dialing from a mobile phone, you can enter a “+” instead of the international Exit Code (011, 001, 0011 or 00) by pressing and holding the 0 key. For most countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, South America and South Pacific, if you are calling from a local phone to a number within the same country, you should drop both the exit and country codes and then add a leading 0 (zero). Exceptions include Spain, Italy, Hungary and Malta (no additional zero needed to dial locally).

Example:
To dial the following number in Germany (as listed on your voucher): +(49) 0555-555
From USA or your US cell phone: 011-49-555-555
From another country in Europe: 00-49-555-555
From a German phone within Germany: 0555-555


WiFi Access
WiFi access has improved. Free or inexpensive WiFi internet is accessible at coffee shops, airports, restaurants, libraries and on some trains and buses. WiFi access in hotels and cruise lines often involves a fee, determined by that property. Signal strength is subject to local conditions and not guaranteed. Availability on cruises is also dependent upon its location while sailing through multiple countries. Please note that WiFi can be extremely slow, unreliable and sometimes nonexistent in developing countries or, on moving conveyances such as buses and cruise ships.

Staying Healthy While Traveling
All travelers should familiarize themselves with local conditions, such as high altitude or required immunizations, which could affect their health. We recommend you consult with your personal healthcare provider, the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov) and/or the World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/en/) for their recommendations.

There are several easy steps you can take to stay healthy while traveling which may help prevent contracting an illness while away from home.

  • Watch what you eat. Try new foods in modest quantities, and depending upon your destination, you may want to avoid street foods, salad bars, raw vegetables and fruits, unless they have thick peels like bananas or grapefruit.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink bottled water and avoid consuming ice cubes made with tap water.
  • If you have allergies to foods, medications or insect bites, or have any other unique medical issues, consider a medical alert bracelet and/or a physician’s note detailing required treatment should you become ill.
  • Wash your hands regularly and carry hand sanitizer.
  • Where appropriate, pack sunscreen and insect repellent (for both active and warm destinations).
  • You may also want to bring a small first-aid kit with bandaids, antibiotic cream, pain killers, bug bite cream, digestive aids like antidiarrheal or anti-bloat medications, antacids, and cold medicine. This is in addition to any prescription medications which should be adequate for the entire trip.


Notice on Aircraft Cabin Insecticide Treatment - Please note that some countries may require aircraft cabin insecticide treatment for in-bound foreign flights. A list of such countries is available at: http://www.dot.gov/office-policy/aviation-policy/aircraft-disinsection-requirements.

Consideration for Tour Participants (Escorted Tours)
For the benefit of all tour participants, we ask tour members to be considerate of their fellow travelers in the following ways:
  • Refrain from wearing colognes, perfumes and/or personal products containing excessive fragrance in respect for other guests who may be allergic
  • Avoid smoking cigarettes, e-cigarettes or cigars in the vicinity of other tour members, including in outdoor areas where smoking may be permitted but may still affect other tour participants
  • Avoid attire with political or religious messages that may offend other travelers
  • Respect your fellow passengers. Guests come from all walks of life and varied lifestyles. Please refrain from topics of conversation which might cause offense, such as religion and politics
  • Refrain from conversation or talking on mobile phones while commentary is in progress
  • Respect the mandatory seat rotation policy on the coach
  • Make use of the available hand sanitizer on the coach to support a healthy environment
  • Seek approval before taking photographs of other tour participants
  • Respect tour departures times to avoid delay and loss of sightseeing opportunities

Climate & Clothing
Bulgaria - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Romania - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Serbia - Spring and Autumn: 45–65°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 30–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Hungary - Spring and Autumn: 45–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops). In summer, bring a hat and sunscreen.

Hungary Average Temperatures: https://www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#central-europe-weather

About Drones
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or “drone” technology has quickly become affordable and is increasingly popular with recreational users. While some countries have clear, established drone laws, others do not, or existing regulations are undergoing review and change. Travelers who wish to bring a drone on their trip are responsible to research and abide by the laws and regulations of the countries they are visiting, as well as to check with their airline(s) regarding their rules for transporting drones. Please note that tours are unable to extend the length of scheduled visits and stops to accommodate use of drones.

Book & Film Recommendations
Many of our guests enjoy reading about their destination - either in advance of their trip or while traveling - as a way of adding context to their visit. Whether reading a traditional guide book, learning about the history and culture, or simply enjoying a fictional novel set in the destination, a good book can add greatly to your experience. Similarly, a good movie set in your destination helps set the mood before you travel. We asked our Tour Managers and staff to recommend books and films which past guests may have enjoyed. The following does not constitute an endorsement of any authors, books or films listed, it is merely a collection of guests’ recommendations.

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Books
Danube by Claudio Magris
Between the Woods and the Water by Patrick Leigh Fermor
Ballad of the Whiskey Robber by Julian Rubinstein
Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer
The Case Worker by Gyorgy Konrád
Fatelessness by Imre Kertesz
Blue River Black Sea by Andrew Eames

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Films
The Sound of Music (1965)
Amadeus (1984)

Preparing for Your Trip
Reconfirming Flights
It is not necessary to call your airline to reconfirm your flights. However, we do recommend that you check your airline’s website 24 hours prior to your flight to ensure that your flights remain on schedule and that flight times are unchanged.

Seat Assignments
As a courtesy service, complimentary airline seat assignments are requested on your behalf and, when available, are displayed in order of Passenger #1, #2 and so on. Assignments reflect the best available seats at the time of booking. Some airlines and/or fare types do not allow for pre-seating and require this be done at airport check-in only; in which case the display shows “N/A”. Seats are subject to change by your airline(s) including, for example, when there is a schedule change or equipment change after your initial booking; this may cause seat assignments to be changed or even cancelled. Some airlines offer preferred seating for an additional fee; these seats may only be purchased directly from the airline. You will need your family name and the 6-digit airline “Record Locator” which is displayed with the flight details on your reservation. In the event that you change seat assignments directly with your airline, changes will not be reflected on your invoice or documents. At the time that Gate 1 travel documents are issued, the currently assigned seats will be listed based on the assignments stored in your airline reservation at that time. Should you have questions regarding your assignments, please write to us at www.gate1travel.com/contactus.

Frequent Flier Programs
Passengers are responsible to contact their airline directly regarding mileage eligibility and accrual. Airline frequent flier programs determine whether to award miles in part or total based on their own rules which are updated frequently. Some discounted or promotional airfares as well as some code-share flights are not eligible for mileage accrual. Some private airfares, such as a “Gate 1 Travel Airfare”, are not eligible for mileage or may qualify for reduced mileage, even if the same airline class of service is eligible for full mileage when sold as an “Instant Purchase” published airfare. Not all published airfares are eligible for mileage. Gate 1 Travel will record frequent flier numbers when provided by the passenger prior to travel documents being issued. However, the addition of frequent flier numbers to airline records does not guarantee mileage eligibility which is at the sole discretion of each airline. Airline schedule changes may result in flights which were originally eligible for mileage accrual no longer being eligible. We highly recommend passengers to provide their frequent flier account information whenever checking in online and/or at the airport check-in desk. After travel has commenced, it is often not possible to apply for frequent mileage credit. Passengers are also responsible to determine whether previously earned mileage may be applied to flights to secure upgrades.

Known Traveler Number (KTN)
If you have a KTN number, you are normally able to join the TSA security line for expedited processing at the airport. Prior to check in, you should go online or call your airline and add your KTN number to your reservation record. In most cases, you will then see the letters "TSA PRE" printed on your boarding pass. If these letters are not printed, you will not be permitted on the TSA line. Please be aware that some airlines do not participate in the program and therefore even if there is a TSA line at the airport, you will not be given TSA PRE status. Sometimes you may not be selected by TSA (even if you entered a KTN number) and even a minor name discrepancy can result in TSA PRE being denied. It is your responsibility to register your KTN number with your airline and Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for denial of expedited security. Note: KTNs are issued by the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) after completing a background check through TSA's PreCheck® program. Global Entry members may also enjoy expedited customs processing.

Luggage & Packing
Checked bags are typically limited to a total dimension of 62 inches by adding length + width + height (example: 26"+26"+10" = 62”), and a maximum weight of 50 lbs (23kg). Smart Bags with a USB charging port, GPS tracking device and other high-tech features are prohibited as checked or carry-on baggage unless the bag is made with removable batteries and the batteries are removed and stored separately. Many airlines charge for checked bags including flights which begin and end within the USA. The most inexpensive airfare options commonly known as Basic Economy airfares do not include any checked bags nor seat assignments before the day of departure. However, for some airlines, other airfare categories also do not include checked baggage. This will be clearly displayed in our airfare selection and on your invoice. Where available, we highly recommend selecting airfares which include at least 1 piece of checked baggage. Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for checked bag fees, excess luggage or weight charges levied by an airline. Checked baggage allowances displayed on reservation details and invoices reflect the applicable allowance at the time of booking but are subject to change by your airline(s). For your airline’s requirements and fees, visit www.gate1travel.com/baggagefees.aspx. For important baggage information, visit www.gate1travel.com/luggage.aspx. Avoid placing valuables in your checked luggage. Federal law forbids the carriage of hazardous materials aboard the aircraft in your luggage, your carry-on or on your person. A violation can result in five years’ imprisonment and penalties of $250,000 or more (49 U.S.C. 5124). Hazardous materials include explosives, compressed gases, flammable liquids and solids, oxidizers, poisons, corrosives and radioactive materials. Examples: Paints, lighter fluid, fireworks, tear gases, oxygen bottles, and radio-pharmaceuticals. There are special exceptions for small quantities (up to 70 ounces total) of medicinal and toilet articles carried in your luggage and certain smoking materials carried on your person. Check the Transportation and Safety Administration (TSA) website www.tsa.gov to find out the current list of acceptable items you may bring on a plane before packing. We recommend that you use brightly colored luggage tags, straps or other identifiers to help you locate you luggage upon arrival or to describe it in the event that it is lost.

Carry on Luggage
Missed connections and lost luggage are more common than ever. We strongly suggest you use your carry on bag for those necessities you would miss if your checked bags went astray. Items to consider, but not limited to, are prescription medicines, eyeglasses, a change of clothes, mobile phone and charger, valuables (including jewelry and cash), passport, keys, insurance cards, local contact information. Refer to the TSA website for a complete list of items and their sizes which may be carried on board. We also recommend you bring a change of clothes in your carry on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost.

E-Tickets & Advance Check-In
Review the flight itinerary included in your documents. Print and carry a copy of the air itinerary which contains the 6-digit airline "Record Locator" and e-ticket numbers. Advance online check-in is available on some airlines. If available, you may enter your name and 6-digit Record Locator or Flight Ticket Number at the airline's website, and print the boarding pass on your home printer within twenty-four hours of departure. You may check-in online, even if you plan to check luggage at the airport. Airlines without advance online check-in require you to present your identification and e-ticket numbers at the airport self-service kiosk or check-in counter. Paper tickets will be provided in the rare instance when e-tickets cannot be issued.

Day of Departure
Arrive On Time
Due to increased security measures, you should plan to check in at least three hours prior to the scheduled departure time for international flights and two hours prior for domestic flights. Many airlines do not permit check-in less than one hour prior to the scheduled departure time. It is your responsibility to arrive on time for all scheduled flights. Enhanced security procedures, including passenger screening, canine inspection, and inspection of personal electronic devices, have been implemented for all flights into the United States, and therefore security procedures may take longer than normal.

Check-In
If your flight itinerary displays a flight as “Operated By” another carrier, you should check-in at the desk of the “Operated By” airline. When you arrive at the airport, check the airport monitors for updated check-in desk listings. At check-in, be prepared to provide your government issued identification (valid passport required when traveling internationally) and your e-ticket itinerary/ticket numbers to the agent. Once you've checked in and received your boarding passes and luggage claim tickets, proceed directly to the security check. Security lines are often backed up and can take time to get through. Once you've completed security check, proceed directly to your gate and check the large electronic flight screens for your flight time and departure gate for schedule and gate changes. Airport desk clerks will assist with unexpected changes. Once you are in the gate area you can relax, shop or buy a snack before your flight.

Connecting Passengers
Passengers connecting from another point within the USA should check their luggage through to their final destination. Although problems with lost luggage have been minimal, it is a possibility. Certain carriers do not allow baggage “interlining,” and luggage must be checked separately for each flight. When you check your luggage, please verify where your luggage is being sent. When connecting between flights in major airports, you may need to pass through multiple security checkpoints. Therefore, we recommend that you proceed immediately to the gate area for your connecting flight to avoid any unexpected delays which may cause you to be late. Passengers returning to the USA may need to collect their luggage at the first airport of entry and recheck their luggage for their connecting flight.

Flight Services
Avoiding Jet Lag
In order to minimize fatigue and general restlessness caused by jet lag, there are a few steps you may take including switching to your destination time zone when you board the plane, by sleeping and eating according to the new schedule, avoiding heavy eating, caffeine or alcoholic beverages before or during your flight, and by drinking plenty of water and/or fruit juice while flying. Try to sleep on overnight flights and then, upon arrival, avoid the temptation to nap until nighttime.

Airline Food
Unless you are a first or business class passenger, you will likely be treated to a pretty mediocre culinary experience. Reasons for this range from airline budget constraints to the logistics of high altitudes, low humidity and air pressure which tend to desensitize taste buds. Small galleys, tiny ovens and precooked food, plus previously mentioned cost-cuts in order to keep airfares as low as possible, add to some often pretty poor fare. Our suggestion is to stick to simple options, carry a few granola bars, and don't expect this to be your best dining experience.

Premium Economy or Business Class
Service may not be available on all flights or aircraft types, and therefore some flights within an itinerary may not include Premium Economy or Business Class seating. This includes, for example, some US domestic connections and/or short haul flights abroad. When service is not available, you will be accommodated in the best alternative class of service and seating. Please check your operating airline to determine the extra services you may receive.

US Customs & Immigration for Return Flights
In most cases, passengers with return flights that include a connection in the US will need to complete customs and immigration formalities in their first port of entry, requiring them to collect their luggage and check-in for their onward flight. However, there are some exceptions: certain airports in Canada and Ireland (Dublin), allow US Immigration formalities to be completed in the overseas airport at the gate area.

Foreign Domestic Flights
If your tour program includes foreign domestic flights, and those tickets are not included together with the e-ticket itinerary in your travel documents, you will receive those tickets at your destination from our local representative.

What to do if You Need Assistance

Whether you purchased your airfare from Gate 1 Travel or from the airline directly, please bear in mind that Gate 1 Travel does not own nor operate the airline(s), nor the airport facilities where they operate. At times, flying can be a frustrating experience, especially when things do not go exactly as planned, and airline explanations can be confusing or even misleading. Should you face a problem, remain calm and seek assistance either from the airline directly or from Gate 1. Please be aware that in most cases, on the day of your flight(s), airlines pass responsibility for your reservation to their staff at the airport and it is not always possible for Gate 1 Travel to intervene on your behalf, either through our reservations system or directly with your airline.

Emergency Assistance
The Gate 1 emergency line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call: 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676. From overseas, call: 001 215 572-7676. Outside office hours, listen to the prompts, then press 3. You will speak immediately with a representative, or you may be asked to leave a detailed message including your name, your booking number, and most importantly the telephone number where you can be reached. Your message will be forwarded immediately to a representative who will contact you at the telephone number provided.

Last Minute Schedule Changes & Flight Delays
On the day of travel, check the flight schedule and advise Gate 1 by phone, 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676, of any significant changes that might affect your arrival transfer or hotel reservation. Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for affected land services, including arrival and/or departure transfers should flights be changed without our knowledge. Gate 1 will make every effort to inform passengers of schedule changes and cannot be held responsible for changes in routing and/or the number of stops in the itinerary. Nor will Gate 1 provide compensation for changes or cancellations implemented by an airline.

Missed Flights
In the event that you miss your flight which departs as scheduled, for any reason, your airline will consider you a "no-show” and may resell your seat(s) to other customers. This will also result in the cancellation of any later flights in your itinerary. Similarly, if you voluntarily decide not to use any of the flights on your itinerary, the airline will consider you a “no show” and cancel remaining flights on your itinerary. In this case, please contact your airline immediately for assistance in getting you to your destination. Missed flights are typically fully non-refundable and you may be required to purchase new flights from the airline at your own expense. Once your alternative arrangements have been confirmed, please contact Gate 1 with your new flight details.

Missed Connection
If you are connecting from a domestic flight which is delayed for any reason, causing you to miss your international flight, ask the airline for assistance in getting you to your destination. Since all airline tickets are issued on special fares which carry restrictions and penalties if changed, it's the airline's responsibility to make alternate arrangements on your behalf as Gate 1 has no authority or control over airline activities and policies. Do not leave the airline check-in desk until an alternative itinerary has been confirmed.

Lost Luggage
If your luggage is lost or damaged by the airlines, a baggage claim form must be filed with the carrier before leaving the airport. Any cost to retrieve luggage will be your responsibility and you should retain receipts to submit to your insurance provider. You may be required to return to an airport to retrieve your luggage personally.

Arrival & Departure
Arrival Procedures
Upon arrival, please complete immigration formalities if necessary and claim your luggage. If your program includes airport arrival transfers, check your voucher for specific instructions, as they vary with every destination. In most cases, you will be met after collecting your luggage or passing through Customs by the local representative who will be holding a Gate 1 Travel sign and/or a sign with your name on it. In some instances you will be instructed to walk a short distance to a transportation counter. The company's name and location will be printed on your voucher. If for any reason you do not connect with the Gate 1 transfer personnel, go to the Tourist Information Desk and ask them to page the Gate 1 Travel representative or phone the number on your voucher. If you are delayed due to lost luggage, phone the number on the voucher or have a companion exit the Customs Area to advise the transfer representative.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Budapest - The Mahart Port is located on the Pest side of the city between the Elizabeth Bridge and the Lagymanyosi Bridge (also known as the Rakoczi Bridge). The distance between the bridges is approximately 2.5 miles. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Budapest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

Monarch Countess - If you are unable to locate the ship, please telephone the ship to receive the most recent docking information. If calling from a local telephone, please dial: 0152 015 06217, or from an international telephone: 011 49 152 015 06217.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Giurgiu - The Giurgiu Post S.A is located on Soseaua Portului street just along the Danube river between the Port Capital of Giurgiu building and a large sailboat sculpture. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Bucharest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

What To Do When Your Flight Is Delayed
Airlines do not share flight manifest information. Therefore, the only way we may learn of a delay or schedule change while you are traveling is from you, the traveler. The sooner you are able to contact one of our offices, the better we can respond. Please refer to the Emergency Assistance instructions on this same document. Gate 1 Travel is only able to guarantee pre-reserved arrival transfers for up to one hour from the scheduled time, no matter the cause. In case you are delayed for any reason, and are unable to follow the instructions on your voucher, please make independent transfer arrangements and retain your receipts. Unused tour services, including transfers and hotel nights are not refundable. Upon you return home you will need to contact your airline and/or insurance carrier to investigate the possibility of reimbursement for any unused tour services.

Departure Procedures
If your program includes departure transfers, instructions will be stated on your voucher or provided locally.

Transfers
Due to local traffic and other extenuating circumstances, we ask that you allow 30 minutes from your scheduled transfer time for our representative to arrive. This includes hotel, airport and cruise transfers. Such possible delays are taken into consideration in scheduling transfers and you should therefore have no concerns about arriving late for your tour, flight or cruise. For transfers from a hotel, let the hotel reception desk or concierge know that you are waiting for a transfer. In the case of a missed transfer, reimbursement for your out-of-pocket expenses will be considered provided you obtain a written statement from the hotel's front desk verifying the length of time you waited, and the time you left the hotel, and a receipt for your transportation with time and date.

The cost of a transfer is more expensive than hiring a taxi, as a Gate 1 transfer necessarily includes round trip service, or 'dead-leg'. Often the places of call (airports, seaports, hotels) demand entrance and parking fees, where drivers may have to wait for up to an hour. Passengers comfortable hiring a taxi on their own and do not require assistance will save money.

About Your Accommodations
Hotels
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each hotel based on overall quality, location, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All rooms are standard twin-bedded (two single beds) rooms with private facilities. Special requests such as bed types, smoking preference and connecting rooms are subject to availability. Room selection in all cases, unless otherwise reserved, is strictly at the discretion of the hotel's management on a run-of-house basis. Triple rooms consist of standard twin beds or one double bed plus a sofa/folding bed or cot for third person except in the U.S. and Canada, where triple rooms often consist of two double/queen beds for three persons; where available, a fee may be charged by the hotel for the addition of a cot/rollaway. The number of persons accommodated does not dictate the room size. Although available at most 4 and 5 star hotels, the use of air-conditioning abroad differs greatly from the United States, and is often shut down at night and from the end until the start of the summer months. Some lodges and accommodations in remote regions may not have all of the amenities, such as hairdryer, alarm clock and room service, that you might find in a larger hotel located in a city center.

Hotel Check-in/ Check-out
Hotel check-in time is generally not before 4:00 p.m. and check-out time is prior to noon. If you will be arriving early in the day or departing in the evening, hotels will usually allow you to store your luggage in their luggage room. Ask at the front desk if the hotel can check you in earlier, or let you stay later.

River Cruises
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each cruise ship based on overall quality, itinerary, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All Monarch Countess cabins are standard rooms with private facilities, unless you have specifically requested and paid for an upgrade. All cabins have two twin beds that can be pushed together or separated. While at port, the vessel may be docked adjacent to another ship which may obstruct window views. We recommend you close the cabin curtains before turning in at night for privacy. While double docked, ships often continue to run their engines for air-conditioning and other services. Depending upon the wind direction, residual engine fumes may enter some cabins. This is a temporary situation, alleviated once the ship moves. We reserve the right to make ship substitutions with those of equal standard.

At Your Destination
Eco & Sustainable Tourism
We support global efforts to create a more eco-friendly world, intolerant of any forms of cruelty, abuse and intentional environmental destruction. To that end we ask that our clients maintain a watchful eye as they travel, and report any abuses they may encounter. One of the many benefits of tourism is the shared cultural knowledge and ultimate elimination of negative behavior through education. We rely on your good feedback to enable this element of symbiosis. As you travel and learn about foreign cultures, we ask first and foremost that you practice tolerance and respect for local customs.

Gratuities
Tipping is always a matter of personal discretion. For your convenience, please use the summary below as a guideline for recommended gratuity amounts. Gratuities may be paid in local currency or US dollar equivalent where accepted. Please be aware that tipping is considered by many locals to be a part of their normal remuneration and some may approach you for additional "compensation." There is no need to be intimidated by the request, nor should you feel pressured to pay more than recommended. If you become uncomfortable by any behavior you encounter, please advise your tour manager or phone our local office. Numbers are provided in your documents for your convenience.

Suggested Tipping: Escorted Tours

Tour Manager (Coordinator; may or may not act as a guide): US $7 per person per day
Driver (Provides chauffeur services and limited assistance with luggage) : US $3 per person per day, US $2 per half day
Local Guide (Offers in-depth information at specific locations. There may be one or many guides along a tour program): US $3 per person per day of sightseeing, US $2 per half day
Hotel porters and wait staff: Included

Suggested Tipping: European River Cruises

Crew: US $14 per person per day
Cruise Director (ship): US $4 per person per day
Activity Host (ship) US $2 per person per day
Tour Manager or Local Host (hotel) US $4 per person per day

Gratuities for the crew (shared by all crew members) may be paid via the on board ship account or dropped in the designated box at reception. Gratuities for the Cruise Director and Activity Host may not be charged to your on board ship account and should be paid in cash and given to the person directly.

You may also tip other service providers such as local guides, bus drivers and others who may have provided special services.

Suggested Tipping: Independent Tours

Hotel Porter: US $3 per bag
Hotel Wait staff: 5-10% of the bill (lunch or dinner)

Local Sightseeing Tours: Guide: US $3 per person per half day, US $6 per person per full day Driver: US $2 per person per half day, US $4 per person per full day

Bulgaria - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Romania - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Serbia - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Hungary - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists.

About Your Sightseeing
To ensure a pleasant and fair experience for passengers on our escorted tours, there is a mandatory seat rotation policy on our motor coaches which will be organized by your Tour Manager. Some buses are equipped with toilet facility, however they are strictly intended for emergency use only and often require the vehicle to stop for safety reasons before use. When travel dates coincide with religious holidays and national celebrations, some monuments and sites may be closed, sometimes without prior notice. On these occasions, escorted touring itineraries may be amended to reflect these closures. Occasionally, during holidays and certain periods, and/or due to other unforeseen circumstances including weather conditions, there may be last-minute changes, sometimes after arrival, which may affect the sequence of the tour and locations visited. National monuments and tourist sites regularly undergo renovations, which can obscure the monument's view. No tour will be canceled due to renovations, however Gate 1 will decide based on the conditions whether to amend an itinerary. To respect the privacy of all tour participants, your tour manager will not organize a group photo or collect passenger email addresses for a group list.

Land Only Passengers (Escorted Tours)
Your tour manager will contact you after your arrival at your hotel. Passengers who have not purchased arrival transfers from Gate 1 Travel should proceed directly to the hotel for check-in. The details of the hotel can be found in your documents.

Purchasing Tours Locally
On escorted tours, the guides will generally sell optional tours to passengers who have not pre-purchased them. Payment can be made by cash or credit card, unless otherwise noted below. This does not apply to Independent packages. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Independent Activities - Gate 1 itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently and with due consideration. Gate 1 is not responsible for any activities not expressly included in its programs. Caution should be exercised when selecting certain activities that may require physical strength, coordination or exertion. Particular care should be taken when considering animal rides, such as on camels, mules or horses

Water Level
A rise or fall in the river water level, or other factors which may impact safe navigation, can prevent the ship from passing under bridges and/or moving further along the river. This may cause part or all of the cruise itinerary to be operated by motor coach. If this becomes necessary, Gate 1 Travel will endeavor to provide equal or similar services, however no cruise will be canceled and no monetary compensation will be made for those changes. A fluctuation in water level can change in a matter of hours and may occur at any time of the year. In this case, the situation will be closely monitored by captain and crew to ensure services are delivered with as few substitutions as possible. If you have planned independent travel prior to the cruise it is advisable to leave local contact information with Gate 1 Travel before departing. Should an embarkation point be changed, Gate 1 Travel will attempt to contact passengers by phone or email.

Currency
We suggest getting a small amount of currency for the first country you're visiting before you depart (except India). It is a good idea to carry a chart with you to help you convert dollars to the local currency. It's also a good idea not to carry too much money. Many countries have ATM machines that accept most ATM cards, but be sure you know your ATM password in numbers-the keypads on foreign ATMs don't always have letters. ATM machines will only dispense cash in local currency. Check with respective consulates to learn current currency allowances and requirements. Use your credit card whenever possible. Should you decide to carry cash, please note that exchange at banks is typically more favorable than at hotels or exchange bureaus. However, bank hours are limited to Mondays through Fridays and sometimes only morning hours on those days. Please note that many banks and most vendors will not accept or exchange $100 bills. We suggest to carry $20 bills or smaller. In many destinations (except Western Europe), we suggest to bring between $50 to $100 in $1 bills which may be used to pay gratuities.

Bulgaria - The Bulgarian Leva is the currency of Bulgaria.

Romania - The Romanian Leu is the currency of Romania.

Serbia - The Serbian Dinar is the currency of Serbia.

Hungary - The Hungarian Forint is the currency of Hungary.

European River Cruises - The Euro is the currency used for purchases on board the ship, except for optional excursions which may be paid for in USD. Please note that while calling at port, other currencies may be used depending on the country being visited. Money-changing services (to Euro) will be available on board.

Ship Account and Payment: There is a cashless system on board. All on board expenditures (in the bar, restaurant, shop, and spa) are added to the ship's account. Closing invoices will be presented to the passengers for settlement. Payment can be made by cash in Euro or by credit card (VISA, MasterCard, American Express). Payment made by credit card may be subject to an international credit card transaction fee. Please note we cannot accept USD as a form of cash payment. Passenger's are not eligible for a Value Added Tax (VAT) refund for purchases made on board the ship.

Credit Cards
While credit cards are accepted in most destinations, it is advisable to carry local currency. Inform your credit card company that you are traveling to avoid your card being blocked for security reasons.
While most US-issued credit cards have the embedded microprocessor chip, there are still some that have the magnetic-strip technology. The “chip-and-PIN” cards require users to punch in a personal identification number (PIN) instead of signing for a purchase. For example, many automated ticket kiosks, such as those commonly found at train stations, gas pumps and parking garages, don’t accept cards without a chip and PIN. Most cash registers are equipped to handle American cards but if you encounter difficulties, offer an alternative credit card or politely insist that the cashier keep trying to swipe the credit card. ATMs typically recognize and accept US issued debit cards. For travel to Europe, should you anticipate using ticket kiosks or purchasing train tickets locally, you may consider buying tickets and other basic purchases prior to departure.

Shopping
Most people enjoy bringing home at least one souvenir from the countries they visit. However, some find any amount of shopping to be too much while others never find enough opportunities.

We have built into our Escorted itineraries a few shopping stops at recommended spots. These stops are designed to enhance your experience by providing an opportunity to see first-hand quality locally crafted merchandise which you may not be able to find on your own. Shops are checked to ensure the quality and authenticity of the products they offer, and we limit guides from visiting other locations. In some cases, we plan these stops to provide an opportunity to use clean bathrooms and to stretch your legs. All shops want your satisfaction, and therefore in case of any misunderstanding they ask that you kindly submit your claim to us within one week of the item's receipt. Claims submitted later will be subject to each store’s policies.

While shopping independently, we advise you to exercise care and common sense when making any purchase. Always get a formal receipt. And remember that, just like in this country, if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is!

About Tax-Free Shopping
Tax-Free Shopping allows shoppers to reclaim the VAT (Value-Added Tax) or GST (Goods and Services Tax) they have paid on their purchases in some foreign countries in accordance with restrictions and procedures as dictated by each country. Refund eligibility varies by country, but may require presenting a scanned copy of your passport at the time of purchase, a minimum amount spent, or providing original store receipts. For more details, check the respective country’s online website, with the shop salesperson, with your tour manager or at www.globalblue.com for specific country regulations and airport operation hours. Please keep in mind that you must apply for VAT refund in the airport of the country the items were purchased and allow enough time prior to your flight for the application.

U.S. Customs & Shipping Charges
You may carry items with a fair retail value totaling $800 into the U.S. Taxes may be applied to the next $1,000 worth of merchandise. U.S. Customs determines the value of your items, often honoring a genuine sales receipt. Items which are shipped home are always subject to duty when received in the U.S. (in addition to shipping charges). Some shops may offer to include shipping and duties in the price but this typically means shipping only to the customs facility closest to you and payment only of the export duties; you would still need to collect the item and pay U.S. import duties. Please be aware that it is illegal to import products made from endangered animal species. U.S. Customs & Border Protection will seize these items, as well as most furs, coral, tortoise shell, reptile skins, feathers, plants, and items made from animal skins.

Bulgaria - Bulgaria offers an assortment of articles that may be more difficult to find elsewhere, including World War II and Communist era memorabilia. The shopping experience itself can be just as worthwhile as the goods, with interesting boutiques lining cobblestone streets. These shops offer everything from Orthodox icons and antiques to leather goods, chic clothing and jewelry. Also, prices in Bulgaria are generally lower than in other European countries, making it an even more attractive draw.

Romania - Items of interest include intricately woven carpets, regional wines, ornately painted eggs and tiles, Italian clothes and shoes at discount prices, glass pieces, and porcelain wares. Of course there is also plenty of Dracula kitsch along with more unusual souvenirs like wild boar skins.

Serbia - In cities, small shops dominate shopping scene. Popular items include embroidery, lace, leather and metalwork. Clothing from top name designers can often be found at substantially lower prices than in Western stores. Shops are usually open weekdays from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, with shorter hours on Saturdays.

Hungary - Hungary is renowned for its food and beverage products, especially fine red paprika, brandies, and Unicum liqueur. Additionally, traditional items such as ceramics, embroidery work, painted eggs, crystal ware, and costumed dolls are highly popular.

Your Safety is Very Important
Prior to your trip, if you are traveling overseas, we strongly recommend that you visit the website of the U.S. Department of State at www.travel.state.gov, specifically the section which addresses International Travel. You should read the tips for foreign travel and travel warnings for the country or countries that you plan to visit.

It is also important that you do not allow your common sense to take a vacation while on your trip. Here are several tips which, if followed, will save much potential hardship:

  • Be aware of potentially dangerous places and situations as you would be at home. Avoid wearing expensive jewelry and carry your valuables concealed in inside pockets or hidden pouches. Your objective is to avoid drawing attention and to blend in with the crowd
  • Don't put all your valuables (money, credit cards, passports, etc.) in the same place (in case one wallet is stolen, you should have other valuables and identification in another safe place)
  • Do not leave valuables laying loose in your room or on the bus as Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for any loss. Use the hotel safe. Keep copies of your passports, credit card numbers and travelers checks numbers in the hotel safe
  • When possible we suggest traveling in pairs or groups when moving about independently
  • Do not pack valuables (cameras, computers, jewelry, etc.) in your checked luggage. Keep hard to replace valuables with you in your carry-on bag
  • Keep wallets safely tucked into front trouser pockets and/or wear a money pouch inside your clothing
  • Carry handbags close to your body, shoulder bags the cross-body method with the bag in front of your body
  • Credit cards are generally accepted everywhere and are safer than traveling with large amounts of cash

If you've purchased an escorted tour program, your travel documents will include telephone numbers of local Gate 1 Travel representatives who will do their utmost to assist you in the event of an emergency. The numbers are printed on your Gate 1 Travel vouchers. Please copy the numbers. Once you relinquish the voucher, you will not have this information. Passengers traveling independently should employ the services of hotel concierges and local authorities.

European River Cruises - You are on a ship with a high safety standard and reliable crew. In case of emergency, we ask you to follow the instructions of your crew. Please take further information concerning safety from the notice on your cabin door. Life jackets will be stored in your stateroom. When leaving the ship, kindly drop your cabin key off at reception and promptly pick it up upon arrival back to the ship. This procedure helps ensure your security by allowing the crew to immediately determine if all passengers are on board before continuing the cruise. While in port, please keep your cabin door locked.

Tourist Street Scams
Pickpockets and thieves can destroy an otherwise wonderful holiday. Be mindful of these precautions to help avoid being scammed or robbed:

  • Remain alert and cautious. Be wary of any unusual contact or commotion in crowded public places, including train stations, markets, subways and tourist sites;
  • Be especially careful when traveling independently, or leaving your tour group to explore on your own. Try not to travel alone, especially at night. Avoid narrow alleys and poorly lit streets;
  • Use only official taxis and check the change you receive from all taxi drivers and vendors;
  • Beware of pickpockets often working with an accomplice who will distract you by spilling something on you, dropping a wallet or other seemingly valuable object, or tripping and falling down in front of you;
  • Beware of aggressive street vendors who may approach you offering a demonstration which may end with you being pressured to purchase an item or act as a distraction for another pickpocket;
  • Don’t tip beggars;
  • Wear the shoulder strap of your bag across your chest;
  • Carry modest amounts of cash (US dollars) in small denominations so that you can avoid flashing large bills when paying for small items;
  • ATM machines can be a convenient way to carry less currency. However those machines too can be used for robbery. Be wary of anyone who can look over your shoulder when inputting PINs. Another scam involves rigging the machine with a plastic insert which makes your card retrieval difficult; the thief then removes your card after you walk away;
  • If you are confronted, do not fight back - give up your valuables. If your possessions are lost or stolen, report the loss immediately to the local police and keep a copy of the official report for insurance claims.


Local Emergency Phone Numbers
Bulgaria
  • Ambulance: 150
  • Fire: 160
  • Police: 166

Romania
  • Ambulance: 961 or 962
  • Fire: 981
  • Police: 955

Serbia
  • Ambulance: 94
  • Fire: 93
  • Police: 92

Hungary
  • General Emergency: 112

Languages
Bulgaria - Bulgarian is the local language.

Romania - Romanian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Serbia - Serbian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Hungary - Hungarian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Electricity
Please note: The U.S. uses 120 volts and you can purchase a converter and transformer at most hardware stores for your 120V appliances.

European River Cruises - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Bulgaria - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Romania - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Serbia - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Hungary - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Monarch Countess - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Code of Conduct
Bulgaria - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Smoking is prohibited in all indoor public places. Some restaurants, cafes, and nightclubs may have designated smoking areas.

Romania - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. When meeting someone for the first time, formal address should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Serbia - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Hospitality is highly important in Serbia, and if you are offered food or a drink, it is polite to accept. Normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Hungary - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Normal courtesies should be observed and when addressing a newly met acquaintance, both first and last name should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate. Smoking is prohibited on public transport and in public buildings.

Food and Meals
As specified in each itinerary. Meals are based on the hotel's or restaurant's buffet or set menu. In general, beverages are not included, unless specifically stated. Although Gate 1 cannot make guarantees, every effort will be made to honor special dietary requests submitted in writing at least 72 hours prior to departure at www.gate1travel.com/contactus. Terminology for dietary requests can vary from country to country and options may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you make your wishes known to your tour manager upon arrival, and at each hotel/restaurant.

Bulgaria - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Serbia - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Holidays
On public holidays, there may be reduced public transportation, as well as limited hours or closures of attractions, shops and restaurants.

Holidays - Bulgaria

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year's Day observed
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 8: St. George's Day observed
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas
Dec 27: Christmas Holiday

Holidays - Romania

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 22: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 24: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 25: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 12: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 13: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 14: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 16: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 17: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 4: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 5: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas

Holidays - Serbia

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 3: New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
May 3: Labor Day Second Day
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year Holiday observed
Jan 3: Second New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Hungary

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Disabled Facilities - European River Cruises
Due to physical constraints and space limitations, wheelchairs and walkers are not allowed on motor coaches and/or river cruises. There are no elevators aboard the ship, so passengers will be required to climb stairs to access the different decks of the ship. Kindly refer to our Terms for additional information.
Embarkation
Embarkation will begin at 2 pm unless otherwise noted in your itinerary. Check your itinerary carefully for the port of embarkation and disembarkation. In the event that you arrive independently to the port of embarkation, note the location carefully. Please ensure that you are always on board before the ship's scheduled time of departure. For same day directions, please contact the Cruise Director at the number provided on your cruise voucher. Early arrivals may drop their luggage.

Upon embarkation all passengers will be required to hand over their passport to the Reception Desk for the duration of the cruise. The staff are required to provide these to the appropriate authorities as the ship sails through each country. These will be stored in a secure area and returned at the end of the cruise.

Disembarkation
You will receive all relevant information concerning disembarkation in detail by your cruise director on the afternoon of your last day onboard. Passengers who have purchased a transfer will be required to place their luggage outside of their cabin a few hours prior to their scheduled time of departure. Details will be advised locally. All passengers and luggage must be off board the ship at the final disembarkation time noted in your itinerary.

On Your Cruise - European River Cruises
Attire:
River cruise dress code is always casual. Modest attire (no bathing suits) is requested in the dining room at all meals. Remember to pack comfortable walking shoes and an umbrella.

Language:
The official language on board is English, although other languages may be spoken. All announcements and tours will be performed in English.

Meals and Dietary Restrictions:
There is open seating in the dining room for lunch and dinner. Please see your Maître d'hotel who is at your disposal for special needs. Passengers requiring special diet must advise Gate 1 Cruises at the least 20 days prior to departure. However we are pleased to assist within the limits of those products available on board.

Smoking:
Smoking is only allowed in designated areas on the sundeck. Please do not throw cigarettes overboard.

Amenities:
A hairdryer is supplied to all cabins. Laundry service is available on board for an additional charge, however the ship is not equipped to care for dry cleaning. Charges are displayed on board. Valuables can be deposited in the cabin safe.

Medical Services:
Ship's crew may be able to provide basic first-aid, however ships do not carry a doctor or nurse onboard. Should professional medical attention be required, local services will be contacted upon the passenger's request.

Excursions:
During your journey you will have the opportunity to take part in a variety of shore excursions. If you have not pre-booked the excursions, there will be an opportunity to do so on board with your Cruise Director. These excursions can paid for in cash (USD), or charged to your credit card. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Walking:
River Cruise tours dock at inland towns and excursions may include a fair amount of walking on uneven or cobblestone streets. There are no elevators aboard the ship, so passengers will be required to climb stairs to access the different decks of the ship. Many ports have limited ramps. You may also experience "double-docking." In some ports, where there are limited docks available for the number of visiting ships, you may find your ship docked adjacent to another and may have to walk across one or more other river cruise ships before reaching the dock area.

Children:
The vessels do not maintain facilities or services for children aboard the cruise. We regret that we cannot accommodate children under 16 years of age.

Telephone:
All cabins are equipped with direct dialing for an additional fee. If you need to be contacted while on board the ship, please provide the emergency numbers outlined in your documents to family and/or friends. It is possible that the emergency numbers are out of the telephone network at the time of dialing. If this is the case, a message will be provided by the telephone company in German. It is advisable to hang-up and dial a short time later.

Email and Post:
The Monarch Countess offers complimentary basic internet access onboard based on regional satellite for river cruise ships. Internet service is accessible in the reception lobby area. This service is complimentary and should enable you to browse the internet, check your email, access international publications, and view Facebook accounts on your personal device(s) during your sailing. You will be unable to download movies or video, send videos or access Netflix or Jetflicks. At the beginning of your sailing, you will be provided with an access code which you may use on any of your devices. Please note the possibility of potential interruptions in satellite signals based on terrain and weather, plus factors such as populated ports where many ships are utilizing the same satellite signal, which may cause slower online connections than you are accustomed to at home. Internet access will not be available in the port of Breisach, Germany.

Any mail with postage can be handed in at the reception. It will be posted at the next port of call.

Know Before You Go
Although most of the planning and preparation is taken care of for you, there are still a few things you should know and some details you should take care of to ensure your comfort, safety and peace of mind. Please review the following information before your departure to ensure that any surprises along the way will only be pleasant ones.
Getting Ready to Go
Passports and Visas
It is each traveler's responsibility to have a passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the dates of travel and a visa if required. Please check the information at www.gate1travel.com/visas.aspx for the specific country/region you are visiting for more details. IMPORTANT: Passengers who are not U.S. citizens must check with the respective consulate or a visa agency to determine what personal identification is required. Passengers who enter, leave and then re-enter the same country on their itinerary should check if they require a double-entry visa. Passport applications are available at most U.S. Post Offices, as well as at regional Passport Agencies. Passengers requiring visas, whether obtained in advance or locally upon arrival, should ensure that their passport has blank pages.

Traveling with Friends or Family?
If you are traveling with friends or family who are booked on another reservation, please make sure that we are aware. On occasion, we may operate more than one vehicle on your tour departure in which case we will ensure that guests will be assigned together. This is achieved by connecting your reservations before your departure. Once you arrive in your destination, it may not be possible to make assignment changes. To check that your reservations are linked, log into https://www.gate1travel.com/res with your email and password, select your reservation number, and check to see that your reservations are indicated as "Traveling With" at the top right side of the display.

Trip Preparation
A little pre-planning can make your trip go a lot smoother. Several weeks before your trip, make a list of what you will need to take with you. Make sure your personal documents (passports, visas, driver's license) are in order. Make sure also that you have enough prescription medications to last through the trip and carry them with you in case your luggage is delayed. Bring a change of clothes in your carry-on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost. Lost luggage is common. We strongly urge you to consider carry-ons instead of checked bags when possible, and when checking a bag is necessary, choose a bag color and identification that stands out. We suggest that you make photocopies of passports, visas, personal ID and any other important travel documents and pack them separately from the originals. You may also make a digital copy of your passport to keep a clear picture with the important details in your cell phone or digital camera photos. If you lose the originals while traveling, you'll have copies for easier reporting and replacement. Pack a list of medications including dosage and generic names. You may consider bringing a small supply of over the counter medications for headaches and/or anti-diarrhea pills (especially when traveling outside of the USA and Western Europe). We recommend that you pack a portable alarm clock. Due to security reasons, many museums have restrictions on the size of bags that can be taken inside and backpacks, carry-on bags or large purses may not be permitted. It is recommended to bring a small shoulder bag or purse to use in these situations instead. Avoid placing valuables such as cameras in your checked luggage. Airplane pressure can cause similar pressure in your body, most notably in ears, as well as liquid tubes and bottles. Your physician can suggest medication for decongestion. We suggest that you place liquid containers into Ziploc bags to catch any leaks.

Travel Safety Advice: The safety of our guests is Gate 1’s #1 concern. Before making the decision to reserve your vacation, we want you to be aware of potential situations which may impact your holiday. While most of the time our programs run precisely according to plans, on rare occasion force majeure events including weather, transportation mechanical issues, or uninhabitable accommodation, civil unrest and even criminal or terrorist activities will present themselves unexpectedly and with little or no notice. Gate 1 will make the decision to cancel a tour only after receiving verifiable government issued information. We are otherwise obliged to comply with contractual airline and vendor agreements and carry out the tour until or unless we are advised otherwise. In the event of such an occurrence anytime after your date of departure, Gate 1 and the local destination ground staff, in coordination with government advisories, airlines, hotels, cruise ships and other vendors, will make decisions with regard to your safety first. We strongly recommend that tour participants review the destination country's specific information at https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/alertswarnings.html.

Travel Protection
Even the best-planned trips can be impacted by the unexpected. And that is why we recommend that you help protect yourself and your investment by purchasing Travel Protection for your Gate 1 trip. Travel Protection can help with medical coverage for illness or injury, trip cancellation and/or interruption, baggage loss, medical evacuation, and more. At any time before you complete Final Payment, you may choose to purchase Travel Protection. The protection plan premium is non-refundable after a 10-day review period. In addition, you must be medically able to travel at the time the premium is paid. For a summary of the plan details on coverages, benefits, limitations and exclusions, please refer to the Description of Coverage by visiting www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit (CFAR) is a non-insurance feature that allows you to cancel up to 72 hours before your scheduled departure for any reason not otherwise covered in the Travel Protection Plan. CFAR must be purchased at the same time as the Travel Protection Plan as well as within 21 days of the original booking date. Independent or escorted tour reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to the full cost of your trip, less the cost of initial deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. Sea or river cruise reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to 50% of the cost of your trip, less the cost of initial trip deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. All CFAR credits are valid for a period of two years from the original date of travel. CFAR Credits have no cash value and are not transferrable. Airline-assessed fees are generally $300 per person, but may be as much as fully non-refundable. Some non-refundable airline tickets may retain value, less airline-assessed fees. Your future air credit must be used to book with the same airline. Deadlines to rebook and complete travel vary by airline and may be as early as 12 months from when the tickets were originally issued (not the date of travel). For details, www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

This program does not apply to custom groups and Antarctica cruises. Residents of New York, Missouri & Minnesota may purchase this Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit separate from Travel Protection. Call to speak with a reservation agent for details. This Cancel for any Reason Wavier Benefit is not insurance and is provided by Gate 1 Travel.

Cell Phones & Calling Cards
You may wish to carry a cell phone while traveling. Check with your cell phone provider if your phone will work in the destination(s) you are visiting. If you can access the Internet as you travel, you can take advantage of email or a Skype Internet telephone (VOIP) account for the best value. Additionally, if your phone can connect to WiFi you may be able to make voice and video calls free of charge. Please contact your cell phone provider for further details. Alternatively, you may investigate renting a cell phone before you leave or buying an inexpensive phone locally. When calling the U.S. from a foreign country, you may also use a prepaid calling card; normally, the only additional charge (besides the prepaid long distance charges) is a local fee of a few cents and possibly a connection fee if you are using your card at your hotel. It is best to check with the hotel's reception desk prior to making phone calls to avoid unexpected charges. Please note that we are unable to provide compensation for phone calls regardless of reason.

Making Telephone Calls from One Country to Another
When dialing a number from one country to another, you should proceed as follows: dial your country's Exit Code (often indicated with a “+” sign), then the destination Country Code, then the Phone Number. For most countries, the exit code is 00. Exceptions include the USA and Canada (011), Hong Kong and Cambodia (001), Australia (0011), and Russia (8 Pause 10*). For Brazil, please consult with the local telephone company. If you are dialing from a mobile phone, you can enter a “+” instead of the international Exit Code (011, 001, 0011 or 00) by pressing and holding the 0 key. For most countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, South America and South Pacific, if you are calling from a local phone to a number within the same country, you should drop both the exit and country codes and then add a leading 0 (zero). Exceptions include Spain, Italy, Hungary and Malta (no additional zero needed to dial locally).

Example:
To dial the following number in Germany (as listed on your voucher): +(49) 0555-555
From USA or your US cell phone: 011-49-555-555
From another country in Europe: 00-49-555-555
From a German phone within Germany: 0555-555


WiFi Access
WiFi access has improved. Free or inexpensive WiFi internet is accessible at coffee shops, airports, restaurants, libraries and on some trains and buses. WiFi access in hotels and cruise lines often involves a fee, determined by that property. Signal strength is subject to local conditions and not guaranteed. Availability on cruises is also dependent upon its location while sailing through multiple countries. Please note that WiFi can be extremely slow, unreliable and sometimes nonexistent in developing countries or, on moving conveyances such as buses and cruise ships.

Staying Healthy While Traveling
All travelers should familiarize themselves with local conditions, such as high altitude or required immunizations, which could affect their health. We recommend you consult with your personal healthcare provider, the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov) and/or the World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/en/) for their recommendations.

There are several easy steps you can take to stay healthy while traveling which may help prevent contracting an illness while away from home.

  • Watch what you eat. Try new foods in modest quantities, and depending upon your destination, you may want to avoid street foods, salad bars, raw vegetables and fruits, unless they have thick peels like bananas or grapefruit.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink bottled water and avoid consuming ice cubes made with tap water.
  • If you have allergies to foods, medications or insect bites, or have any other unique medical issues, consider a medical alert bracelet and/or a physician’s note detailing required treatment should you become ill.
  • Wash your hands regularly and carry hand sanitizer.
  • Where appropriate, pack sunscreen and insect repellent (for both active and warm destinations).
  • You may also want to bring a small first-aid kit with bandaids, antibiotic cream, pain killers, bug bite cream, digestive aids like antidiarrheal or anti-bloat medications, antacids, and cold medicine. This is in addition to any prescription medications which should be adequate for the entire trip.


Notice on Aircraft Cabin Insecticide Treatment - Please note that some countries may require aircraft cabin insecticide treatment for in-bound foreign flights. A list of such countries is available at: http://www.dot.gov/office-policy/aviation-policy/aircraft-disinsection-requirements.

Consideration for Tour Participants (Escorted Tours)
For the benefit of all tour participants, we ask tour members to be considerate of their fellow travelers in the following ways:
  • Refrain from wearing colognes, perfumes and/or personal products containing excessive fragrance in respect for other guests who may be allergic
  • Avoid smoking cigarettes, e-cigarettes or cigars in the vicinity of other tour members, including in outdoor areas where smoking may be permitted but may still affect other tour participants
  • Avoid attire with political or religious messages that may offend other travelers
  • Respect your fellow passengers. Guests come from all walks of life and varied lifestyles. Please refrain from topics of conversation which might cause offense, such as religion and politics
  • Refrain from conversation or talking on mobile phones while commentary is in progress
  • Respect the mandatory seat rotation policy on the coach
  • Make use of the available hand sanitizer on the coach to support a healthy environment
  • Seek approval before taking photographs of other tour participants
  • Respect tour departures times to avoid delay and loss of sightseeing opportunities

Climate & Clothing
Bulgaria - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Romania - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Serbia - Spring and Autumn: 45–65°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 30–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Hungary - Spring and Autumn: 45–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops). In summer, bring a hat and sunscreen.

Hungary Average Temperatures: https://www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#central-europe-weather

River Cruises - Temperatures vary according to regional climate and season. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

About Drones
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or “drone” technology has quickly become affordable and is increasingly popular with recreational users. While some countries have clear, established drone laws, others do not, or existing regulations are undergoing review and change. Travelers who wish to bring a drone on their trip are responsible to research and abide by the laws and regulations of the countries they are visiting, as well as to check with their airline(s) regarding their rules for transporting drones. Please note that tours are unable to extend the length of scheduled visits and stops to accommodate use of drones.

Book & Film Recommendations
Many of our guests enjoy reading about their destination - either in advance of their trip or while traveling - as a way of adding context to their visit. Whether reading a traditional guide book, learning about the history and culture, or simply enjoying a fictional novel set in the destination, a good book can add greatly to your experience. Similarly, a good movie set in your destination helps set the mood before you travel. We asked our Tour Managers and staff to recommend books and films which past guests may have enjoyed. The following does not constitute an endorsement of any authors, books or films listed, it is merely a collection of guests’ recommendations.

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Books
Danube by Claudio Magris
Between the Woods and the Water by Patrick Leigh Fermor
Ballad of the Whiskey Robber by Julian Rubinstein
Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer
The Case Worker by Gyorgy Konrád
Fatelessness by Imre Kertesz
Blue River Black Sea by Andrew Eames

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Films
The Sound of Music (1965)
Amadeus (1984)

Preparing for Your Trip
Reconfirming Flights
It is not necessary to call your airline to reconfirm your flights. However, we do recommend that you check your airline’s website 24 hours prior to your flight to ensure that your flights remain on schedule and that flight times are unchanged.

Seat Assignments
As a courtesy service, complimentary airline seat assignments are requested on your behalf and, when available, are displayed in order of Passenger #1, #2 and so on. Assignments reflect the best available seats at the time of booking. Some airlines and/or fare types do not allow for pre-seating and require this be done at airport check-in only; in which case the display shows “N/A”. Seats are subject to change by your airline(s) including, for example, when there is a schedule change or equipment change after your initial booking; this may cause seat assignments to be changed or even cancelled. Some airlines offer preferred seating for an additional fee; these seats may only be purchased directly from the airline. You will need your family name and the 6-digit airline “Record Locator” which is displayed with the flight details on your reservation. In the event that you change seat assignments directly with your airline, changes will not be reflected on your invoice or documents. At the time that Gate 1 travel documents are issued, the currently assigned seats will be listed based on the assignments stored in your airline reservation at that time. Should you have questions regarding your assignments, please write to us at www.gate1travel.com/contactus.

Frequent Flier Programs
Passengers are responsible to contact their airline directly regarding mileage eligibility and accrual. Airline frequent flier programs determine whether to award miles in part or total based on their own rules which are updated frequently. Some discounted or promotional airfares as well as some code-share flights are not eligible for mileage accrual. Some private airfares, such as a “Gate 1 Travel Airfare”, are not eligible for mileage or may qualify for reduced mileage, even if the same airline class of service is eligible for full mileage when sold as an “Instant Purchase” published airfare. Not all published airfares are eligible for mileage. Gate 1 Travel will record frequent flier numbers when provided by the passenger prior to travel documents being issued. However, the addition of frequent flier numbers to airline records does not guarantee mileage eligibility which is at the sole discretion of each airline. Airline schedule changes may result in flights which were originally eligible for mileage accrual no longer being eligible. We highly recommend passengers to provide their frequent flier account information whenever checking in online and/or at the airport check-in desk. After travel has commenced, it is often not possible to apply for frequent mileage credit. Passengers are also responsible to determine whether previously earned mileage may be applied to flights to secure upgrades.

Known Traveler Number (KTN)
If you have a KTN number, you are normally able to join the TSA security line for expedited processing at the airport. Prior to check in, you should go online or call your airline and add your KTN number to your reservation record. In most cases, you will then see the letters "TSA PRE" printed on your boarding pass. If these letters are not printed, you will not be permitted on the TSA line. Please be aware that some airlines do not participate in the program and therefore even if there is a TSA line at the airport, you will not be given TSA PRE status. Sometimes you may not be selected by TSA (even if you entered a KTN number) and even a minor name discrepancy can result in TSA PRE being denied. It is your responsibility to register your KTN number with your airline and Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for denial of expedited security. Note: KTNs are issued by the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) after completing a background check through TSA's PreCheck® program. Global Entry members may also enjoy expedited customs processing.

Luggage & Packing
Checked bags are typically limited to a total dimension of 62 inches by adding length + width + height (example: 26"+26"+10" = 62”), and a maximum weight of 50 lbs (23kg). Smart Bags with a USB charging port, GPS tracking device and other high-tech features are prohibited as checked or carry-on baggage unless the bag is made with removable batteries and the batteries are removed and stored separately. Many airlines charge for checked bags including flights which begin and end within the USA. The most inexpensive airfare options commonly known as Basic Economy airfares do not include any checked bags nor seat assignments before the day of departure. However, for some airlines, other airfare categories also do not include checked baggage. This will be clearly displayed in our airfare selection and on your invoice. Where available, we highly recommend selecting airfares which include at least 1 piece of checked baggage. Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for checked bag fees, excess luggage or weight charges levied by an airline. Checked baggage allowances displayed on reservation details and invoices reflect the applicable allowance at the time of booking but are subject to change by your airline(s). For your airline’s requirements and fees, visit www.gate1travel.com/baggagefees.aspx. For important baggage information, visit www.gate1travel.com/luggage.aspx. Avoid placing valuables in your checked luggage. Federal law forbids the carriage of hazardous materials aboard the aircraft in your luggage, your carry-on or on your person. A violation can result in five years’ imprisonment and penalties of $250,000 or more (49 U.S.C. 5124). Hazardous materials include explosives, compressed gases, flammable liquids and solids, oxidizers, poisons, corrosives and radioactive materials. Examples: Paints, lighter fluid, fireworks, tear gases, oxygen bottles, and radio-pharmaceuticals. There are special exceptions for small quantities (up to 70 ounces total) of medicinal and toilet articles carried in your luggage and certain smoking materials carried on your person. Check the Transportation and Safety Administration (TSA) website www.tsa.gov to find out the current list of acceptable items you may bring on a plane before packing. We recommend that you use brightly colored luggage tags, straps or other identifiers to help you locate you luggage upon arrival or to describe it in the event that it is lost.

Carry on Luggage
Missed connections and lost luggage are more common than ever. We strongly suggest you use your carry on bag for those necessities you would miss if your checked bags went astray. Items to consider, but not limited to, are prescription medicines, eyeglasses, a change of clothes, mobile phone and charger, valuables (including jewelry and cash), passport, keys, insurance cards, local contact information. Refer to the TSA website for a complete list of items and their sizes which may be carried on board. We also recommend you bring a change of clothes in your carry on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost.

E-Tickets & Advance Check-In
Review the flight itinerary included in your documents. Print and carry a copy of the air itinerary which contains the 6-digit airline "Record Locator" and e-ticket numbers. Advance online check-in is available on some airlines. If available, you may enter your name and 6-digit Record Locator or Flight Ticket Number at the airline's website, and print the boarding pass on your home printer within twenty-four hours of departure. You may check-in online, even if you plan to check luggage at the airport. Airlines without advance online check-in require you to present your identification and e-ticket numbers at the airport self-service kiosk or check-in counter. Paper tickets will be provided in the rare instance when e-tickets cannot be issued.

Day of Departure
Arrive On Time
Due to increased security measures, you should plan to check in at least three hours prior to the scheduled departure time for international flights and two hours prior for domestic flights. Many airlines do not permit check-in less than one hour prior to the scheduled departure time. It is your responsibility to arrive on time for all scheduled flights. Enhanced security procedures, including passenger screening, canine inspection, and inspection of personal electronic devices, have been implemented for all flights into the United States, and therefore security procedures may take longer than normal.

Check-In
If your flight itinerary displays a flight as “Operated By” another carrier, you should check-in at the desk of the “Operated By” airline. When you arrive at the airport, check the airport monitors for updated check-in desk listings. At check-in, be prepared to provide your government issued identification (valid passport required when traveling internationally) and your e-ticket itinerary/ticket numbers to the agent. Once you've checked in and received your boarding passes and luggage claim tickets, proceed directly to the security check. Security lines are often backed up and can take time to get through. Once you've completed security check, proceed directly to your gate and check the large electronic flight screens for your flight time and departure gate for schedule and gate changes. Airport desk clerks will assist with unexpected changes. Once you are in the gate area you can relax, shop or buy a snack before your flight.

Connecting Passengers
Passengers connecting from another point within the USA should check their luggage through to their final destination. Although problems with lost luggage have been minimal, it is a possibility. Certain carriers do not allow baggage “interlining,” and luggage must be checked separately for each flight. When you check your luggage, please verify where your luggage is being sent. When connecting between flights in major airports, you may need to pass through multiple security checkpoints. Therefore, we recommend that you proceed immediately to the gate area for your connecting flight to avoid any unexpected delays which may cause you to be late. Passengers returning to the USA may need to collect their luggage at the first airport of entry and recheck their luggage for their connecting flight.

Flight Services
Avoiding Jet Lag
In order to minimize fatigue and general restlessness caused by jet lag, there are a few steps you may take including switching to your destination time zone when you board the plane, by sleeping and eating according to the new schedule, avoiding heavy eating, caffeine or alcoholic beverages before or during your flight, and by drinking plenty of water and/or fruit juice while flying. Try to sleep on overnight flights and then, upon arrival, avoid the temptation to nap until nighttime.

Airline Food
Unless you are a first or business class passenger, you will likely be treated to a pretty mediocre culinary experience. Reasons for this range from airline budget constraints to the logistics of high altitudes, low humidity and air pressure which tend to desensitize taste buds. Small galleys, tiny ovens and precooked food, plus previously mentioned cost-cuts in order to keep airfares as low as possible, add to some often pretty poor fare. Our suggestion is to stick to simple options, carry a few granola bars, and don't expect this to be your best dining experience.

Premium Economy or Business Class
Service may not be available on all flights or aircraft types, and therefore some flights within an itinerary may not include Premium Economy or Business Class seating. This includes, for example, some US domestic connections and/or short haul flights abroad. When service is not available, you will be accommodated in the best alternative class of service and seating. Please check your operating airline to determine the extra services you may receive.

US Customs & Immigration for Return Flights
In most cases, passengers with return flights that include a connection in the US will need to complete customs and immigration formalities in their first port of entry, requiring them to collect their luggage and check-in for their onward flight. However, there are some exceptions: certain airports in Canada and Ireland (Dublin), allow US Immigration formalities to be completed in the overseas airport at the gate area.

Foreign Domestic Flights
If your tour program includes foreign domestic flights, and those tickets are not included together with the e-ticket itinerary in your travel documents, you will receive those tickets at your destination from our local representative.

What to do if You Need Assistance

Whether you purchased your airfare from Gate 1 Travel or from the airline directly, please bear in mind that Gate 1 Travel does not own nor operate the airline(s), nor the airport facilities where they operate. At times, flying can be a frustrating experience, especially when things do not go exactly as planned, and airline explanations can be confusing or even misleading. Should you face a problem, remain calm and seek assistance either from the airline directly or from Gate 1. Please be aware that in most cases, on the day of your flight(s), airlines pass responsibility for your reservation to their staff at the airport and it is not always possible for Gate 1 Travel to intervene on your behalf, either through our reservations system or directly with your airline.

Emergency Assistance
The Gate 1 emergency line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call: 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676. From overseas, call: 001 215 572-7676. Outside office hours, listen to the prompts, then press 3. You will speak immediately with a representative, or you may be asked to leave a detailed message including your name, your booking number, and most importantly the telephone number where you can be reached. Your message will be forwarded immediately to a representative who will contact you at the telephone number provided.

Last Minute Schedule Changes & Flight Delays
On the day of travel, check the flight schedule and advise Gate 1 by phone, 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676, of any significant changes that might affect your arrival transfer or hotel reservation. Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for affected land services, including arrival and/or departure transfers should flights be changed without our knowledge. Gate 1 will make every effort to inform passengers of schedule changes and cannot be held responsible for changes in routing and/or the number of stops in the itinerary. Nor will Gate 1 provide compensation for changes or cancellations implemented by an airline.

Missed Flights
In the event that you miss your flight which departs as scheduled, for any reason, your airline will consider you a "no-show” and may resell your seat(s) to other customers. This will also result in the cancellation of any later flights in your itinerary. Similarly, if you voluntarily decide not to use any of the flights on your itinerary, the airline will consider you a “no show” and cancel remaining flights on your itinerary. In this case, please contact your airline immediately for assistance in getting you to your destination. Missed flights are typically fully non-refundable and you may be required to purchase new flights from the airline at your own expense. Once your alternative arrangements have been confirmed, please contact Gate 1 with your new flight details.

Missed Connection
If you are connecting from a domestic flight which is delayed for any reason, causing you to miss your international flight, ask the airline for assistance in getting you to your destination. Since all airline tickets are issued on special fares which carry restrictions and penalties if changed, it's the airline's responsibility to make alternate arrangements on your behalf as Gate 1 has no authority or control over airline activities and policies. Do not leave the airline check-in desk until an alternative itinerary has been confirmed.

Lost Luggage
If your luggage is lost or damaged by the airlines, a baggage claim form must be filed with the carrier before leaving the airport. Any cost to retrieve luggage will be your responsibility and you should retain receipts to submit to your insurance provider. You may be required to return to an airport to retrieve your luggage personally.

Arrival & Departure
Arrival Procedures
Upon arrival, please complete immigration formalities if necessary and claim your luggage. If your program includes airport arrival transfers, check your voucher for specific instructions, as they vary with every destination. In most cases, you will be met after collecting your luggage or passing through Customs by the local representative who will be holding a Gate 1 Travel sign and/or a sign with your name on it. In some instances you will be instructed to walk a short distance to a transportation counter. The company's name and location will be printed on your voucher. If for any reason you do not connect with the Gate 1 transfer personnel, go to the Tourist Information Desk and ask them to page the Gate 1 Travel representative or phone the number on your voucher. If you are delayed due to lost luggage, phone the number on the voucher or have a companion exit the Customs Area to advise the transfer representative.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Budapest - The Mahart Port is located on the Pest side of the city between the Elizabeth Bridge and the Lagymanyosi Bridge (also known as the Rakoczi Bridge). The distance between the bridges is approximately 2.5 miles. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Budapest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

Monarch Duchess - If you are unable to locate the ship, please telephone the ship to receive the most recent docking information. If calling from a local telephone, please dial: 0152 015 06222, or from an international telephone: 011 49 152 015 06222.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Giurgiu - The Giurgiu Post S.A is located on Soseaua Portului street just along the Danube river between the Port Capital of Giurgiu building and a large sailboat sculpture. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Bucharest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

What To Do When Your Flight Is Delayed
Airlines do not share flight manifest information. Therefore, the only way we may learn of a delay or schedule change while you are traveling is from you, the traveler. The sooner you are able to contact one of our offices, the better we can respond. Please refer to the Emergency Assistance instructions on this same document. Gate 1 Travel is only able to guarantee pre-reserved arrival transfers for up to one hour from the scheduled time, no matter the cause. In case you are delayed for any reason, and are unable to follow the instructions on your voucher, please make independent transfer arrangements and retain your receipts. Unused tour services, including transfers and hotel nights are not refundable. Upon you return home you will need to contact your airline and/or insurance carrier to investigate the possibility of reimbursement for any unused tour services.

Departure Procedures
If your program includes departure transfers, instructions will be stated on your voucher or provided locally.

Transfers
Due to local traffic and other extenuating circumstances, we ask that you allow 30 minutes from your scheduled transfer time for our representative to arrive. This includes hotel, airport and cruise transfers. Such possible delays are taken into consideration in scheduling transfers and you should therefore have no concerns about arriving late for your tour, flight or cruise. For transfers from a hotel, let the hotel reception desk or concierge know that you are waiting for a transfer. In the case of a missed transfer, reimbursement for your out-of-pocket expenses will be considered provided you obtain a written statement from the hotel's front desk verifying the length of time you waited, and the time you left the hotel, and a receipt for your transportation with time and date.

The cost of a transfer is more expensive than hiring a taxi, as a Gate 1 transfer necessarily includes round trip service, or 'dead-leg'. Often the places of call (airports, seaports, hotels) demand entrance and parking fees, where drivers may have to wait for up to an hour. Passengers comfortable hiring a taxi on their own and do not require assistance will save money.

About Your Accommodations
Hotels
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each hotel based on overall quality, location, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All rooms are standard twin-bedded (two single beds) rooms with private facilities. Special requests such as bed types, smoking preference and connecting rooms are subject to availability. Room selection in all cases, unless otherwise reserved, is strictly at the discretion of the hotel's management on a run-of-house basis. Triple rooms consist of standard twin beds or one double bed plus a sofa/folding bed or cot for third person except in the U.S. and Canada, where triple rooms often consist of two double/queen beds for three persons; where available, a fee may be charged by the hotel for the addition of a cot/rollaway. The number of persons accommodated does not dictate the room size. Although available at most 4 and 5 star hotels, the use of air-conditioning abroad differs greatly from the United States, and is often shut down at night and from the end until the start of the summer months. Some lodges and accommodations in remote regions may not have all of the amenities, such as hairdryer, alarm clock and room service, that you might find in a larger hotel located in a city center.

Hotel Check-in/ Check-out
Hotel check-in time is generally not before 4:00 p.m. and check-out time is prior to noon. If you will be arriving early in the day or departing in the evening, hotels will usually allow you to store your luggage in their luggage room. Ask at the front desk if the hotel can check you in earlier, or let you stay later.

River Cruises
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each cruise ship based on overall quality, itinerary, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All Monarch Duchess cabins are standard rooms with private facilities, unless you have specifically requested and paid for an upgrade. All cabins have two twin beds that can be pushed together or separated. While at port, the vessel may be docked adjacent to another ship which may obstruct window views. We recommend you close the cabin curtains before turning in at night for privacy. While double docked, ships often continue to run their engines for air-conditioning and other services. Depending upon the wind direction, residual engine fumes may enter some cabins. This is a temporary situation, alleviated once the ship moves. We reserve the right to make ship substitutions with those of equal standard.

At Your Destination
Eco & Sustainable Tourism
We support global efforts to create a more eco-friendly world, intolerant of any forms of cruelty, abuse and intentional environmental destruction. To that end we ask that our clients maintain a watchful eye as they travel, and report any abuses they may encounter. One of the many benefits of tourism is the shared cultural knowledge and ultimate elimination of negative behavior through education. We rely on your good feedback to enable this element of symbiosis. As you travel and learn about foreign cultures, we ask first and foremost that you practice tolerance and respect for local customs.

Gratuities
Tipping is always a matter of personal discretion. For your convenience, please use the summary below as a guideline for recommended gratuity amounts. Gratuities may be paid in local currency or US dollar equivalent where accepted. Please be aware that tipping is considered by many locals to be a part of their normal remuneration and some may approach you for additional "compensation." There is no need to be intimidated by the request, nor should you feel pressured to pay more than recommended. If you become uncomfortable by any behavior you encounter, please advise your tour manager or phone our local office. Numbers are provided in your documents for your convenience.

Suggested Tipping: Escorted Tours

Tour Manager (Coordinator; may or may not act as a guide): US $7 per person per day
Driver (Provides chauffeur services and limited assistance with luggage) : US $3 per person per day, US $2 per half day
Local Guide (Offers in-depth information at specific locations. There may be one or many guides along a tour program): US $3 per person per day of sightseeing, US $2 per half day
Hotel porters and wait staff: Included

Suggested Tipping: European River Cruises

Crew: US $14 per person per day
Cruise Director (ship): US $4 per person per day
Activity Host (ship) US $2 per person per day
Tour Manager or Local Host (hotel) US $4 per person per day

Gratuities for the crew (shared by all crew members) may be paid via the on board ship account or dropped in the designated box at reception. Gratuities for the Cruise Director and Activity Host may not be charged to your on board ship account and should be paid in cash and given to the person directly.

You may also tip other service providers such as local guides, bus drivers and others who may have provided special services.

Suggested Tipping: Independent Tours

Hotel Porter: US $3 per bag
Hotel Wait staff: 5-10% of the bill (lunch or dinner)

Local Sightseeing Tours: Guide: US $3 per person per half day, US $6 per person per full day Driver: US $2 per person per half day, US $4 per person per full day

Bulgaria - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Romania - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Serbia - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Hungary - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists.

About Your Sightseeing
To ensure a pleasant and fair experience for passengers on our escorted tours, there is a mandatory seat rotation policy on our motor coaches which will be organized by your Tour Manager. Some buses are equipped with toilet facility, however they are strictly intended for emergency use only and often require the vehicle to stop for safety reasons before use. When travel dates coincide with religious holidays and national celebrations, some monuments and sites may be closed, sometimes without prior notice. On these occasions, escorted touring itineraries may be amended to reflect these closures. Occasionally, during holidays and certain periods, and/or due to other unforeseen circumstances including weather conditions, there may be last-minute changes, sometimes after arrival, which may affect the sequence of the tour and locations visited. National monuments and tourist sites regularly undergo renovations, which can obscure the monument's view. No tour will be canceled due to renovations, however Gate 1 will decide based on the conditions whether to amend an itinerary. To respect the privacy of all tour participants, your tour manager will not organize a group photo or collect passenger email addresses for a group list.

Land Only Passengers (Escorted Tours)
Your tour manager will contact you after your arrival at your hotel. Passengers who have not purchased arrival transfers from Gate 1 Travel should proceed directly to the hotel for check-in. The details of the hotel can be found in your documents.

Purchasing Tours Locally
On escorted tours, the guides will generally sell optional tours to passengers who have not pre-purchased them. Payment can be made by cash or credit card, unless otherwise noted below. This does not apply to Independent packages. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Independent Activities - Gate 1 itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently and with due consideration. Gate 1 is not responsible for any activities not expressly included in its programs. Caution should be exercised when selecting certain activities that may require physical strength, coordination or exertion. Particular care should be taken when considering animal rides, such as on camels, mules or horses

Water Level
A rise or fall in the river water level, or other factors which may impact safe navigation, can prevent the ship from passing under bridges and/or moving further along the river. This may cause part or all of the cruise itinerary to be operated by motor coach. If this becomes necessary, Gate 1 Travel will endeavor to provide equal or similar services, however no cruise will be canceled and no monetary compensation will be made for those changes. A fluctuation in water level can change in a matter of hours and may occur at any time of the year. In this case, the situation will be closely monitored by captain and crew to ensure services are delivered with as few substitutions as possible. If you have planned independent travel prior to the cruise it is advisable to leave local contact information with Gate 1 Travel before departing. Should an embarkation point be changed, Gate 1 Travel will attempt to contact passengers by phone or email.

Currency
We suggest getting a small amount of currency for the first country you're visiting before you depart (except India). It is a good idea to carry a chart with you to help you convert dollars to the local currency. It's also a good idea not to carry too much money. Many countries have ATM machines that accept most ATM cards, but be sure you know your ATM password in numbers-the keypads on foreign ATMs don't always have letters. ATM machines will only dispense cash in local currency. Check with respective consulates to learn current currency allowances and requirements. Use your credit card whenever possible. Should you decide to carry cash, please note that exchange at banks is typically more favorable than at hotels or exchange bureaus. However, bank hours are limited to Mondays through Fridays and sometimes only morning hours on those days. Please note that many banks and most vendors will not accept or exchange $100 bills. We suggest to carry $20 bills or smaller. In many destinations (except Western Europe), we suggest to bring between $50 to $100 in $1 bills which may be used to pay gratuities.

Bulgaria - The Bulgarian Leva is the currency of Bulgaria.

Romania - The Romanian Leu is the currency of Romania.

Serbia - The Serbian Dinar is the currency of Serbia.

Hungary - The Hungarian Forint is the currency of Hungary.

European River Cruises - The Euro is the currency used for purchases on board the ship, except for optional excursions which may be paid for in USD. Please note that while calling at port, other currencies may be used depending on the country being visited. Money-changing services (to Euro) will be available on board.

Ship Account and Payment: There is a cashless system on board. All on board expenditures (in the bar, restaurant, shop, and spa) are added to the ship's account. Closing invoices will be presented to the passengers for settlement. Payment can be made by cash in Euro or by credit card (VISA, MasterCard, American Express). Payment made by credit card may be subject to an international credit card transaction fee. Please note we cannot accept USD as a form of cash payment. Passenger's are not eligible for a Value Added Tax (VAT) refund for purchases made on board the ship.

Credit Cards
While credit cards are accepted in most destinations, it is advisable to carry local currency. Inform your credit card company that you are traveling to avoid your card being blocked for security reasons.
While most US-issued credit cards have the embedded microprocessor chip, there are still some that have the magnetic-strip technology. The “chip-and-PIN” cards require users to punch in a personal identification number (PIN) instead of signing for a purchase. For example, many automated ticket kiosks, such as those commonly found at train stations, gas pumps and parking garages, don’t accept cards without a chip and PIN. Most cash registers are equipped to handle American cards but if you encounter difficulties, offer an alternative credit card or politely insist that the cashier keep trying to swipe the credit card. ATMs typically recognize and accept US issued debit cards. For travel to Europe, should you anticipate using ticket kiosks or purchasing train tickets locally, you may consider buying tickets and other basic purchases prior to departure.

European River Cruises - On board expenditures are processed through a banking center in Cyprus. Passengers wishing to settle their on board account by credit card should advise their credit card provider of potential charges from Cyprus in addition to the countries that will be visited on your itinerary.

Shopping
Most people enjoy bringing home at least one souvenir from the countries they visit. However, some find any amount of shopping to be too much while others never find enough opportunities.

We have built into our Escorted itineraries a few shopping stops at recommended spots. These stops are designed to enhance your experience by providing an opportunity to see first-hand quality locally crafted merchandise which you may not be able to find on your own. Shops are checked to ensure the quality and authenticity of the products they offer, and we limit guides from visiting other locations. In some cases, we plan these stops to provide an opportunity to use clean bathrooms and to stretch your legs. All shops want your satisfaction, and therefore in case of any misunderstanding they ask that you kindly submit your claim to us within one week of the item's receipt. Claims submitted later will be subject to each store’s policies.

While shopping independently, we advise you to exercise care and common sense when making any purchase. Always get a formal receipt. And remember that, just like in this country, if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is!

About Tax-Free Shopping
Tax-Free Shopping allows shoppers to reclaim the VAT (Value-Added Tax) or GST (Goods and Services Tax) they have paid on their purchases in some foreign countries in accordance with restrictions and procedures as dictated by each country. Refund eligibility varies by country, but may require presenting a scanned copy of your passport at the time of purchase, a minimum amount spent, or providing original store receipts. For more details, check the respective country’s online website, with the shop salesperson, with your tour manager or at www.globalblue.com for specific country regulations and airport operation hours. Please keep in mind that you must apply for VAT refund in the airport of the country the items were purchased and allow enough time prior to your flight for the application.

U.S. Customs & Shipping Charges
You may carry items with a fair retail value totaling $800 into the U.S. Taxes may be applied to the next $1,000 worth of merchandise. U.S. Customs determines the value of your items, often honoring a genuine sales receipt. Items which are shipped home are always subject to duty when received in the U.S. (in addition to shipping charges). Some shops may offer to include shipping and duties in the price but this typically means shipping only to the customs facility closest to you and payment only of the export duties; you would still need to collect the item and pay U.S. import duties. Please be aware that it is illegal to import products made from endangered animal species. U.S. Customs & Border Protection will seize these items, as well as most furs, coral, tortoise shell, reptile skins, feathers, plants, and items made from animal skins.

Bulgaria - Bulgaria offers an assortment of articles that may be more difficult to find elsewhere, including World War II and Communist era memorabilia. The shopping experience itself can be just as worthwhile as the goods, with interesting boutiques lining cobblestone streets. These shops offer everything from Orthodox icons and antiques to leather goods, chic clothing and jewelry. Also, prices in Bulgaria are generally lower than in other European countries, making it an even more attractive draw.

Romania - Items of interest include intricately woven carpets, regional wines, ornately painted eggs and tiles, Italian clothes and shoes at discount prices, glass pieces, and porcelain wares. Of course there is also plenty of Dracula kitsch along with more unusual souvenirs like wild boar skins.

Serbia - In cities, small shops dominate shopping scene. Popular items include embroidery, lace, leather and metalwork. Clothing from top name designers can often be found at substantially lower prices than in Western stores. Shops are usually open weekdays from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, with shorter hours on Saturdays.

Hungary - Hungary is renowned for its food and beverage products, especially fine red paprika, brandies, and Unicum liqueur. Additionally, traditional items such as ceramics, embroidery work, painted eggs, crystal ware, and costumed dolls are highly popular.

Your Safety is Very Important
Prior to your trip, if you are traveling overseas, we strongly recommend that you visit the website of the U.S. Department of State at www.travel.state.gov, specifically the section which addresses International Travel. You should read the tips for foreign travel and travel warnings for the country or countries that you plan to visit.

It is also important that you do not allow your common sense to take a vacation while on your trip. Here are several tips which, if followed, will save much potential hardship:

  • Be aware of potentially dangerous places and situations as you would be at home. Avoid wearing expensive jewelry and carry your valuables concealed in inside pockets or hidden pouches. Your objective is to avoid drawing attention and to blend in with the crowd
  • Don't put all your valuables (money, credit cards, passports, etc.) in the same place (in case one wallet is stolen, you should have other valuables and identification in another safe place)
  • Do not leave valuables laying loose in your room or on the bus as Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for any loss. Use the hotel safe. Keep copies of your passports, credit card numbers and travelers checks numbers in the hotel safe
  • When possible we suggest traveling in pairs or groups when moving about independently
  • Do not pack valuables (cameras, computers, jewelry, etc.) in your checked luggage. Keep hard to replace valuables with you in your carry-on bag
  • Keep wallets safely tucked into front trouser pockets and/or wear a money pouch inside your clothing
  • Carry handbags close to your body, shoulder bags the cross-body method with the bag in front of your body
  • Credit cards are generally accepted everywhere and are safer than traveling with large amounts of cash

If you've purchased an escorted tour program, your travel documents will include telephone numbers of local Gate 1 Travel representatives who will do their utmost to assist you in the event of an emergency. The numbers are printed on your Gate 1 Travel vouchers. Please copy the numbers. Once you relinquish the voucher, you will not have this information. Passengers traveling independently should employ the services of hotel concierges and local authorities.

European River Cruises - You are on a ship with a high safety standard and reliable crew. In case of emergency, we ask you to follow the instructions of your crew. Please take further information concerning safety from the notice on your cabin door. Life jackets will be stored in your stateroom. When leaving the ship, kindly drop your cabin key off at reception and promptly pick it up upon arrival back to the ship. This procedure helps ensure your security by allowing the crew to immediately determine if all passengers are on board before continuing the cruise. While in port, please keep your cabin door locked.

Tourist Street Scams
Pickpockets and thieves can destroy an otherwise wonderful holiday. Be mindful of these precautions to help avoid being scammed or robbed:

  • Remain alert and cautious. Be wary of any unusual contact or commotion in crowded public places, including train stations, markets, subways and tourist sites;
  • Be especially careful when traveling independently, or leaving your tour group to explore on your own. Try not to travel alone, especially at night. Avoid narrow alleys and poorly lit streets;
  • Use only official taxis and check the change you receive from all taxi drivers and vendors;
  • Beware of pickpockets often working with an accomplice who will distract you by spilling something on you, dropping a wallet or other seemingly valuable object, or tripping and falling down in front of you;
  • Beware of aggressive street vendors who may approach you offering a demonstration which may end with you being pressured to purchase an item or act as a distraction for another pickpocket;
  • Don’t tip beggars;
  • Wear the shoulder strap of your bag across your chest;
  • Carry modest amounts of cash (US dollars) in small denominations so that you can avoid flashing large bills when paying for small items;
  • ATM machines can be a convenient way to carry less currency. However those machines too can be used for robbery. Be wary of anyone who can look over your shoulder when inputting PINs. Another scam involves rigging the machine with a plastic insert which makes your card retrieval difficult; the thief then removes your card after you walk away;
  • If you are confronted, do not fight back - give up your valuables. If your possessions are lost or stolen, report the loss immediately to the local police and keep a copy of the official report for insurance claims.


Local Emergency Phone Numbers
Bulgaria
  • Ambulance: 150
  • Fire: 160
  • Police: 166

Romania
  • Ambulance: 961 or 962
  • Fire: 981
  • Police: 955

Serbia
  • Ambulance: 94
  • Fire: 93
  • Police: 92

Hungary
  • General Emergency: 112

Languages
Bulgaria - Bulgarian is the local language.

Romania - Romanian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Serbia - Serbian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Hungary - Hungarian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Electricity
Please note: The U.S. uses 120 volts and you can purchase a converter and transformer at most hardware stores for your 120V appliances.

Bulgaria - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Romania - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Serbia - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Hungary - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Monarch Duchess - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Code of Conduct
Bulgaria - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Smoking is prohibited in all indoor public places. Some restaurants, cafes, and nightclubs may have designated smoking areas.

Romania - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. When meeting someone for the first time, formal address should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Serbia - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Hospitality is highly important in Serbia, and if you are offered food or a drink, it is polite to accept. Normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Hungary - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Normal courtesies should be observed and when addressing a newly met acquaintance, both first and last name should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate. Smoking is prohibited on public transport and in public buildings.

Food and Meals
As specified in each itinerary. Meals are based on the hotel's or restaurant's buffet or set menu. In general, beverages are not included, unless specifically stated. Although Gate 1 cannot make guarantees, every effort will be made to honor special dietary requests submitted in writing at least 72 hours prior to departure at www.gate1travel.com/contactus. Terminology for dietary requests can vary from country to country and options may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you make your wishes known to your tour manager upon arrival, and at each hotel/restaurant.

Bulgaria - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Serbia - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Holidays
On public holidays, there may be reduced public transportation, as well as limited hours or closures of attractions, shops and restaurants.

Holidays - Bulgaria

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year's Day observed
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 8: St. George's Day observed
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas
Dec 27: Christmas Holiday

Holidays - Romania

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 22: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 24: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 25: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 12: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 13: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 14: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 16: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 17: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 4: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 5: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas

Holidays - Serbia

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 3: New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
May 3: Labor Day Second Day
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year Holiday observed
Jan 3: Second New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Hungary

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Disabled Facilities - European River Cruises
Due to physical constraints and space limitations, wheelchairs and walkers are not allowed on motor coaches and/or river cruises. There are no elevators aboard the ship, so passengers will be required to climb stairs to access the different decks of the ship. Kindly refer to our Terms for additional information.
Embarkation
Embarkation will begin at 2 pm unless otherwise noted in your itinerary. Check your itinerary carefully for the port of embarkation and disembarkation. In the event that you arrive independently to the port of embarkation, note the location carefully. Please ensure that you are always on board before the ship's scheduled time of departure. For same day directions, please contact the Cruise Director at the number provided on your cruise voucher. Early arrivals may drop their luggage.

Upon embarkation all passengers will be required to hand over their passport to the Reception Desk for the duration of the cruise. The staff are required to provide these to the appropriate authorities as the ship sails through each country. These will be stored in a secure area and returned at the end of the cruise.

Disembarkation
You will receive all relevant information concerning disembarkation in detail by your cruise director on the afternoon of your last day onboard. Passengers who have purchased a transfer will be required to place their luggage outside of their cabin a few hours prior to their scheduled time of departure. Details will be advised locally. All passengers and luggage must be off board the ship at the final disembarkation time noted in your itinerary.

On Your Cruise - European River Cruises
Attire:
River cruise dress code is always casual. Modest attire (no bathing suits) is requested in the dining room at all meals. Remember to pack comfortable walking shoes and an umbrella.

Language:
The official language on board is English, although other languages may be spoken. All announcements and tours will be performed in English.

Meals and Dietary Restrictions:
There is open seating in the dining room for lunch and dinner. Please see your Maître d'hotel who is at your disposal for special needs. Passengers requiring special diet must advise Gate 1 Cruises at the least 20 days prior to departure. However we are pleased to assist within the limits of those products available on board.

Smoking:
Smoking is only allowed in designated areas on the sundeck. Please do not throw cigarettes overboard.

Amenities:
A hairdryer is supplied to all cabins. Laundry service is available on board for an additional charge, however the ship is not equipped to care for dry cleaning. Charges are displayed on board. Valuables can be deposited in the cabin safe.

Jacuzzi:
The sundeck jacuzzi is open the entire season from 7am - 7pm. Hours are subject to change by the captain due to the sailing itinerary and weather.

Fitness Center:
The fitness center is equipped with one treadmill, two stationary bicycles, dumbbells and yoga mats.

Medical Services:
Ship's crew may be able to provide basic first-aid, however ships do not carry a doctor or nurse onboard. Should professional medical attention be required, local services will be contacted upon the passenger's request.

Excursions:
During your journey you will have the opportunity to take part in a variety of shore excursions. If you have not pre-booked the excursions, there will be an opportunity to do so on board with your Cruise Director. These excursions can paid for in cash (USD), or charged to your credit card. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Walking:
River Cruise tours dock at inland towns and excursions may include a fair amount of walking on uneven or cobblestone streets. There are no elevators aboard the ship. Many ports have limited ramps. You may also experience "double-docking." In some ports, where there are limited docks available for the number of visiting ships, you may find your ship docked adjacent to another and may have to walk across one or more other river cruise ships before reaching the dock area.

Children:
The vessels do not maintain facilities or services for children aboard the cruise. We regret that we cannot accommodate children under 16 years of age.

Telephone:
All cabins are equipped with direct dialing for an additional fee. If you need to be contacted while on board the ship, please provide the emergency numbers outlined in your documents to family and/or friends. It is possible that the emergency numbers are out of the telephone network at the time of dialing. If this is the case, a message will be provided by the telephone company in German. It is advisable to hang-up and dial a short time later.

Email and Post:
The Monarch Duchess offers complimentary basic internet access onboard based on regional satellite for river cruise ships. Internet service is accessible in the reception lobby area. This service is complimentary and should enable you to browse the internet, check your email, access international publications, and view Facebook accounts on your personal device(s) during your sailing. You will be unable to download movies or video, send videos or access Netflix or Jetflicks. At the beginning of your sailing, you will be provided with an access code which you may use on any of your devices. Please note the possibility of potential interruptions in satellite signals based on terrain and weather, plus factors such as populated ports where many ships are utilizing the same satellite signal, which may cause slower online connections than you are accustomed to at home.

Any mail with postage can be handed in at the reception. It will be posted at the next port of call.

Know Before You Go
Although most of the planning and preparation is taken care of for you, there are still a few things you should know and some details you should take care of to ensure your comfort, safety and peace of mind. Please review the following information before your departure to ensure that any surprises along the way will only be pleasant ones.
Getting Ready to Go
Passports and Visas
It is each traveler's responsibility to have a passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the dates of travel and a visa if required. Please check the information at www.gate1travel.com/visas.aspx for the specific country/region you are visiting for more details. IMPORTANT: Passengers who are not U.S. citizens must check with the respective consulate or a visa agency to determine what personal identification is required. Passengers who enter, leave and then re-enter the same country on their itinerary should check if they require a double-entry visa. Passport applications are available at most U.S. Post Offices, as well as at regional Passport Agencies. Passengers requiring visas, whether obtained in advance or locally upon arrival, should ensure that their passport has blank pages.

Traveling with Friends or Family?
If you are traveling with friends or family who are booked on another reservation, please make sure that we are aware. On occasion, we may operate more than one vehicle on your tour departure in which case we will ensure that guests will be assigned together. This is achieved by connecting your reservations before your departure. Once you arrive in your destination, it may not be possible to make assignment changes. To check that your reservations are linked, log into https://www.gate1travel.com/res with your email and password, select your reservation number, and check to see that your reservations are indicated as "Traveling With" at the top right side of the display.

Trip Preparation
A little pre-planning can make your trip go a lot smoother. Several weeks before your trip, make a list of what you will need to take with you. Make sure your personal documents (passports, visas, driver's license) are in order. Make sure also that you have enough prescription medications to last through the trip and carry them with you in case your luggage is delayed. Bring a change of clothes in your carry-on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost. Lost luggage is common. We strongly urge you to consider carry-ons instead of checked bags when possible, and when checking a bag is necessary, choose a bag color and identification that stands out. We suggest that you make photocopies of passports, visas, personal ID and any other important travel documents and pack them separately from the originals. You may also make a digital copy of your passport to keep a clear picture with the important details in your cell phone or digital camera photos. If you lose the originals while traveling, you'll have copies for easier reporting and replacement. Pack a list of medications including dosage and generic names. You may consider bringing a small supply of over the counter medications for headaches and/or anti-diarrhea pills (especially when traveling outside of the USA and Western Europe). We recommend that you pack a portable alarm clock. Due to security reasons, many museums have restrictions on the size of bags that can be taken inside and backpacks, carry-on bags or large purses may not be permitted. It is recommended to bring a small shoulder bag or purse to use in these situations instead. Avoid placing valuables such as cameras in your checked luggage. Airplane pressure can cause similar pressure in your body, most notably in ears, as well as liquid tubes and bottles. Your physician can suggest medication for decongestion. We suggest that you place liquid containers into Ziploc bags to catch any leaks.

Travel Safety Advice: The safety of our guests is Gate 1’s #1 concern. Before making the decision to reserve your vacation, we want you to be aware of potential situations which may impact your holiday. While most of the time our programs run precisely according to plans, on rare occasion force majeure events including weather, transportation mechanical issues, or uninhabitable accommodation, civil unrest and even criminal or terrorist activities will present themselves unexpectedly and with little or no notice. Gate 1 will make the decision to cancel a tour only after receiving verifiable government issued information. We are otherwise obliged to comply with contractual airline and vendor agreements and carry out the tour until or unless we are advised otherwise. In the event of such an occurrence anytime after your date of departure, Gate 1 and the local destination ground staff, in coordination with government advisories, airlines, hotels, cruise ships and other vendors, will make decisions with regard to your safety first. We strongly recommend that tour participants review the destination country's specific information at https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/alertswarnings.html.

Travel Protection
Even the best-planned trips can be impacted by the unexpected. And that is why we recommend that you help protect yourself and your investment by purchasing Travel Protection for your Gate 1 trip. Travel Protection can help with medical coverage for illness or injury, trip cancellation and/or interruption, baggage loss, medical evacuation, and more. At any time before you complete Final Payment, you may choose to purchase Travel Protection. The protection plan premium is non-refundable after a 10-day review period. In addition, you must be medically able to travel at the time the premium is paid. For a summary of the plan details on coverages, benefits, limitations and exclusions, please refer to the Description of Coverage by visiting www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit (CFAR) is a non-insurance feature that allows you to cancel up to 72 hours before your scheduled departure for any reason not otherwise covered in the Travel Protection Plan. CFAR must be purchased at the same time as the Travel Protection Plan as well as within 21 days of the original booking date. Independent or escorted tour reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to the full cost of your trip, less the cost of initial deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. Sea or river cruise reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to 50% of the cost of your trip, less the cost of initial trip deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. All CFAR credits are valid for a period of two years from the original date of travel. CFAR Credits have no cash value and are not transferrable. Airline-assessed fees are generally $300 per person, but may be as much as fully non-refundable. Some non-refundable airline tickets may retain value, less airline-assessed fees. Your future air credit must be used to book with the same airline. Deadlines to rebook and complete travel vary by airline and may be as early as 12 months from when the tickets were originally issued (not the date of travel). For details, www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

This program does not apply to custom groups and Antarctica cruises. Residents of New York, Missouri & Minnesota may purchase this Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit separate from Travel Protection. Call to speak with a reservation agent for details. This Cancel for any Reason Wavier Benefit is not insurance and is provided by Gate 1 Travel.

Cell Phones & Calling Cards
You may wish to carry a cell phone while traveling. Check with your cell phone provider if your phone will work in the destination(s) you are visiting. If you can access the Internet as you travel, you can take advantage of email or a Skype Internet telephone (VOIP) account for the best value. Additionally, if your phone can connect to WiFi you may be able to make voice and video calls free of charge. Please contact your cell phone provider for further details. Alternatively, you may investigate renting a cell phone before you leave or buying an inexpensive phone locally. When calling the U.S. from a foreign country, you may also use a prepaid calling card; normally, the only additional charge (besides the prepaid long distance charges) is a local fee of a few cents and possibly a connection fee if you are using your card at your hotel. It is best to check with the hotel's reception desk prior to making phone calls to avoid unexpected charges. Please note that we are unable to provide compensation for phone calls regardless of reason.

Making Telephone Calls from One Country to Another
When dialing a number from one country to another, you should proceed as follows: dial your country's Exit Code (often indicated with a “+” sign), then the destination Country Code, then the Phone Number. For most countries, the exit code is 00. Exceptions include the USA and Canada (011), Hong Kong and Cambodia (001), Australia (0011), and Russia (8 Pause 10*). For Brazil, please consult with the local telephone company. If you are dialing from a mobile phone, you can enter a “+” instead of the international Exit Code (011, 001, 0011 or 00) by pressing and holding the 0 key. For most countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, South America and South Pacific, if you are calling from a local phone to a number within the same country, you should drop both the exit and country codes and then add a leading 0 (zero). Exceptions include Spain, Italy, Hungary and Malta (no additional zero needed to dial locally).

Example:
To dial the following number in Germany (as listed on your voucher): +(49) 0555-555
From USA or your US cell phone: 011-49-555-555
From another country in Europe: 00-49-555-555
From a German phone within Germany: 0555-555


WiFi Access
WiFi access has improved. Free or inexpensive WiFi internet is accessible at coffee shops, airports, restaurants, libraries and on some trains and buses. WiFi access in hotels and cruise lines often involves a fee, determined by that property. Signal strength is subject to local conditions and not guaranteed. Availability on cruises is also dependent upon its location while sailing through multiple countries. Please note that WiFi can be extremely slow, unreliable and sometimes nonexistent in developing countries or, on moving conveyances such as buses and cruise ships.

Staying Healthy While Traveling
All travelers should familiarize themselves with local conditions, such as high altitude or required immunizations, which could affect their health. We recommend you consult with your personal healthcare provider, the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov) and/or the World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/en/) for their recommendations.

There are several easy steps you can take to stay healthy while traveling which may help prevent contracting an illness while away from home.

  • Watch what you eat. Try new foods in modest quantities, and depending upon your destination, you may want to avoid street foods, salad bars, raw vegetables and fruits, unless they have thick peels like bananas or grapefruit.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink bottled water and avoid consuming ice cubes made with tap water.
  • If you have allergies to foods, medications or insect bites, or have any other unique medical issues, consider a medical alert bracelet and/or a physician’s note detailing required treatment should you become ill.
  • Wash your hands regularly and carry hand sanitizer.
  • Where appropriate, pack sunscreen and insect repellent (for both active and warm destinations).
  • You may also want to bring a small first-aid kit with bandaids, antibiotic cream, pain killers, bug bite cream, digestive aids like antidiarrheal or anti-bloat medications, antacids, and cold medicine. This is in addition to any prescription medications which should be adequate for the entire trip.


Notice on Aircraft Cabin Insecticide Treatment - Please note that some countries may require aircraft cabin insecticide treatment for in-bound foreign flights. A list of such countries is available at: http://www.dot.gov/office-policy/aviation-policy/aircraft-disinsection-requirements.

Consideration for Tour Participants (Escorted Tours)
For the benefit of all tour participants, we ask tour members to be considerate of their fellow travelers in the following ways:
  • Refrain from wearing colognes, perfumes and/or personal products containing excessive fragrance in respect for other guests who may be allergic
  • Avoid smoking cigarettes, e-cigarettes or cigars in the vicinity of other tour members, including in outdoor areas where smoking may be permitted but may still affect other tour participants
  • Avoid attire with political or religious messages that may offend other travelers
  • Respect your fellow passengers. Guests come from all walks of life and varied lifestyles. Please refrain from topics of conversation which might cause offense, such as religion and politics
  • Refrain from conversation or talking on mobile phones while commentary is in progress
  • Respect the mandatory seat rotation policy on the coach
  • Make use of the available hand sanitizer on the coach to support a healthy environment
  • Seek approval before taking photographs of other tour participants
  • Respect tour departures times to avoid delay and loss of sightseeing opportunities

Climate & Clothing
Bulgaria - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Romania - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Serbia - Spring and Autumn: 45–65°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 30–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Hungary - Spring and Autumn: 45–60°F; Summer: 60–80°F; Winter: 25–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops). In summer, bring a hat and sunscreen.

Hungary Average Temperatures: https://www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#central-europe-weather

River Cruises - Temperatures vary according to regional climate and season. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

About Drones
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or “drone” technology has quickly become affordable and is increasingly popular with recreational users. While some countries have clear, established drone laws, others do not, or existing regulations are undergoing review and change. Travelers who wish to bring a drone on their trip are responsible to research and abide by the laws and regulations of the countries they are visiting, as well as to check with their airline(s) regarding their rules for transporting drones. Please note that tours are unable to extend the length of scheduled visits and stops to accommodate use of drones.

Book & Film Recommendations
Many of our guests enjoy reading about their destination - either in advance of their trip or while traveling - as a way of adding context to their visit. Whether reading a traditional guide book, learning about the history and culture, or simply enjoying a fictional novel set in the destination, a good book can add greatly to your experience. Similarly, a good movie set in your destination helps set the mood before you travel. We asked our Tour Managers and staff to recommend books and films which past guests may have enjoyed. The following does not constitute an endorsement of any authors, books or films listed, it is merely a collection of guests’ recommendations.

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Books
Danube by Claudio Magris
Between the Woods and the Water by Patrick Leigh Fermor
Ballad of the Whiskey Robber by Julian Rubinstein
Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer
The Case Worker by Gyorgy Konrád
Fatelessness by Imre Kertesz
Blue River Black Sea by Andrew Eames

EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES: Films
The Sound of Music (1965)
Amadeus (1984)

Preparing for Your Trip
Reconfirming Flights
It is not necessary to call your airline to reconfirm your flights. However, we do recommend that you check your airline’s website 24 hours prior to your flight to ensure that your flights remain on schedule and that flight times are unchanged.

Seat Assignments
As a courtesy service, complimentary airline seat assignments are requested on your behalf and, when available, are displayed in order of Passenger #1, #2 and so on. Assignments reflect the best available seats at the time of booking. Some airlines and/or fare types do not allow for pre-seating and require this be done at airport check-in only; in which case the display shows “N/A”. Seats are subject to change by your airline(s) including, for example, when there is a schedule change or equipment change after your initial booking; this may cause seat assignments to be changed or even cancelled. Some airlines offer preferred seating for an additional fee; these seats may only be purchased directly from the airline. You will need your family name and the 6-digit airline “Record Locator” which is displayed with the flight details on your reservation. In the event that you change seat assignments directly with your airline, changes will not be reflected on your invoice or documents. At the time that Gate 1 travel documents are issued, the currently assigned seats will be listed based on the assignments stored in your airline reservation at that time. Should you have questions regarding your assignments, please write to us at www.gate1travel.com/contactus.

Frequent Flier Programs
Passengers are responsible to contact their airline directly regarding mileage eligibility and accrual. Airline frequent flier programs determine whether to award miles in part or total based on their own rules which are updated frequently. Some discounted or promotional airfares as well as some code-share flights are not eligible for mileage accrual. Some private airfares, such as a “Gate 1 Travel Airfare”, are not eligible for mileage or may qualify for reduced mileage, even if the same airline class of service is eligible for full mileage when sold as an “Instant Purchase” published airfare. Not all published airfares are eligible for mileage. Gate 1 Travel will record frequent flier numbers when provided by the passenger prior to travel documents being issued. However, the addition of frequent flier numbers to airline records does not guarantee mileage eligibility which is at the sole discretion of each airline. Airline schedule changes may result in flights which were originally eligible for mileage accrual no longer being eligible. We highly recommend passengers to provide their frequent flier account information whenever checking in online and/or at the airport check-in desk. After travel has commenced, it is often not possible to apply for frequent mileage credit. Passengers are also responsible to determine whether previously earned mileage may be applied to flights to secure upgrades.

Known Traveler Number (KTN)
If you have a KTN number, you are normally able to join the TSA security line for expedited processing at the airport. Prior to check in, you should go online or call your airline and add your KTN number to your reservation record. In most cases, you will then see the letters "TSA PRE" printed on your boarding pass. If these letters are not printed, you will not be permitted on the TSA line. Please be aware that some airlines do not participate in the program and therefore even if there is a TSA line at the airport, you will not be given TSA PRE status. Sometimes you may not be selected by TSA (even if you entered a KTN number) and even a minor name discrepancy can result in TSA PRE being denied. It is your responsibility to register your KTN number with your airline and Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for denial of expedited security. Note: KTNs are issued by the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) after completing a background check through TSA's PreCheck® program. Global Entry members may also enjoy expedited customs processing.

Luggage & Packing
Checked bags are typically limited to a total dimension of 62 inches by adding length + width + height (example: 26"+26"+10" = 62”), and a maximum weight of 50 lbs (23kg). Smart Bags with a USB charging port, GPS tracking device and other high-tech features are prohibited as checked or carry-on baggage unless the bag is made with removable batteries and the batteries are removed and stored separately. Many airlines charge for checked bags including flights which begin and end within the USA. The most inexpensive airfare options commonly known as Basic Economy airfares do not include any checked bags nor seat assignments before the day of departure. However, for some airlines, other airfare categories also do not include checked baggage. This will be clearly displayed in our airfare selection and on your invoice. Where available, we highly recommend selecting airfares which include at least 1 piece of checked baggage. Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for checked bag fees, excess luggage or weight charges levied by an airline. Checked baggage allowances displayed on reservation details and invoices reflect the applicable allowance at the time of booking but are subject to change by your airline(s). For your airline’s requirements and fees, visit www.gate1travel.com/baggagefees.aspx. For important baggage information, visit www.gate1travel.com/luggage.aspx. Avoid placing valuables in your checked luggage. Federal law forbids the carriage of hazardous materials aboard the aircraft in your luggage, your carry-on or on your person. A violation can result in five years’ imprisonment and penalties of $250,000 or more (49 U.S.C. 5124). Hazardous materials include explosives, compressed gases, flammable liquids and solids, oxidizers, poisons, corrosives and radioactive materials. Examples: Paints, lighter fluid, fireworks, tear gases, oxygen bottles, and radio-pharmaceuticals. There are special exceptions for small quantities (up to 70 ounces total) of medicinal and toilet articles carried in your luggage and certain smoking materials carried on your person. Check the Transportation and Safety Administration (TSA) website www.tsa.gov to find out the current list of acceptable items you may bring on a plane before packing. We recommend that you use brightly colored luggage tags, straps or other identifiers to help you locate you luggage upon arrival or to describe it in the event that it is lost.

Carry on Luggage
Missed connections and lost luggage are more common than ever. We strongly suggest you use your carry on bag for those necessities you would miss if your checked bags went astray. Items to consider, but not limited to, are prescription medicines, eyeglasses, a change of clothes, mobile phone and charger, valuables (including jewelry and cash), passport, keys, insurance cards, local contact information. Refer to the TSA website for a complete list of items and their sizes which may be carried on board. We also recommend you bring a change of clothes in your carry on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost.

E-Tickets & Advance Check-In
Review the flight itinerary included in your documents. Print and carry a copy of the air itinerary which contains the 6-digit airline "Record Locator" and e-ticket numbers. Advance online check-in is available on some airlines. If available, you may enter your name and 6-digit Record Locator or Flight Ticket Number at the airline's website, and print the boarding pass on your home printer within twenty-four hours of departure. You may check-in online, even if you plan to check luggage at the airport. Airlines without advance online check-in require you to present your identification and e-ticket numbers at the airport self-service kiosk or check-in counter. Paper tickets will be provided in the rare instance when e-tickets cannot be issued.

Day of Departure
Arrive On Time
Due to increased security measures, you should plan to check in at least three hours prior to the scheduled departure time for international flights and two hours prior for domestic flights. Many airlines do not permit check-in less than one hour prior to the scheduled departure time. It is your responsibility to arrive on time for all scheduled flights. Enhanced security procedures, including passenger screening, canine inspection, and inspection of personal electronic devices, have been implemented for all flights into the United States, and therefore security procedures may take longer than normal.

Check-In
If your flight itinerary displays a flight as “Operated By” another carrier, you should check-in at the desk of the “Operated By” airline. When you arrive at the airport, check the airport monitors for updated check-in desk listings. At check-in, be prepared to provide your government issued identification (valid passport required when traveling internationally) and your e-ticket itinerary/ticket numbers to the agent. Once you've checked in and received your boarding passes and luggage claim tickets, proceed directly to the security check. Security lines are often backed up and can take time to get through. Once you've completed security check, proceed directly to your gate and check the large electronic flight screens for your flight time and departure gate for schedule and gate changes. Airport desk clerks will assist with unexpected changes. Once you are in the gate area you can relax, shop or buy a snack before your flight.

Connecting Passengers
Passengers connecting from another point within the USA should check their luggage through to their final destination. Although problems with lost luggage have been minimal, it is a possibility. Certain carriers do not allow baggage “interlining,” and luggage must be checked separately for each flight. When you check your luggage, please verify where your luggage is being sent. When connecting between flights in major airports, you may need to pass through multiple security checkpoints. Therefore, we recommend that you proceed immediately to the gate area for your connecting flight to avoid any unexpected delays which may cause you to be late. Passengers returning to the USA may need to collect their luggage at the first airport of entry and recheck their luggage for their connecting flight.

Flight Services
Avoiding Jet Lag
In order to minimize fatigue and general restlessness caused by jet lag, there are a few steps you may take including switching to your destination time zone when you board the plane, by sleeping and eating according to the new schedule, avoiding heavy eating, caffeine or alcoholic beverages before or during your flight, and by drinking plenty of water and/or fruit juice while flying. Try to sleep on overnight flights and then, upon arrival, avoid the temptation to nap until nighttime.

Airline Food
Unless you are a first or business class passenger, you will likely be treated to a pretty mediocre culinary experience. Reasons for this range from airline budget constraints to the logistics of high altitudes, low humidity and air pressure which tend to desensitize taste buds. Small galleys, tiny ovens and precooked food, plus previously mentioned cost-cuts in order to keep airfares as low as possible, add to some often pretty poor fare. Our suggestion is to stick to simple options, carry a few granola bars, and don't expect this to be your best dining experience.

Premium Economy or Business Class
Service may not be available on all flights or aircraft types, and therefore some flights within an itinerary may not include Premium Economy or Business Class seating. This includes, for example, some US domestic connections and/or short haul flights abroad. When service is not available, you will be accommodated in the best alternative class of service and seating. Please check your operating airline to determine the extra services you may receive.

US Customs & Immigration for Return Flights
In most cases, passengers with return flights that include a connection in the US will need to complete customs and immigration formalities in their first port of entry, requiring them to collect their luggage and check-in for their onward flight. However, there are some exceptions: certain airports in Canada and Ireland (Dublin), allow US Immigration formalities to be completed in the overseas airport at the gate area.

Foreign Domestic Flights
If your tour program includes foreign domestic flights, and those tickets are not included together with the e-ticket itinerary in your travel documents, you will receive those tickets at your destination from our local representative.

What to do if You Need Assistance

Whether you purchased your airfare from Gate 1 Travel or from the airline directly, please bear in mind that Gate 1 Travel does not own nor operate the airline(s), nor the airport facilities where they operate. At times, flying can be a frustrating experience, especially when things do not go exactly as planned, and airline explanations can be confusing or even misleading. Should you face a problem, remain calm and seek assistance either from the airline directly or from Gate 1. Please be aware that in most cases, on the day of your flight(s), airlines pass responsibility for your reservation to their staff at the airport and it is not always possible for Gate 1 Travel to intervene on your behalf, either through our reservations system or directly with your airline.

Emergency Assistance
The Gate 1 emergency line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call: 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676. From overseas, call: 001 215 572-7676. Outside office hours, listen to the prompts, then press 3. You will speak immediately with a representative, or you may be asked to leave a detailed message including your name, your booking number, and most importantly the telephone number where you can be reached. Your message will be forwarded immediately to a representative who will contact you at the telephone number provided.

Last Minute Schedule Changes & Flight Delays
On the day of travel, check the flight schedule and advise Gate 1 by phone, 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676, of any significant changes that might affect your arrival transfer or hotel reservation. Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for affected land services, including arrival and/or departure transfers should flights be changed without our knowledge. Gate 1 will make every effort to inform passengers of schedule changes and cannot be held responsible for changes in routing and/or the number of stops in the itinerary. Nor will Gate 1 provide compensation for changes or cancellations implemented by an airline.

Missed Flights
In the event that you miss your flight which departs as scheduled, for any reason, your airline will consider you a "no-show” and may resell your seat(s) to other customers. This will also result in the cancellation of any later flights in your itinerary. Similarly, if you voluntarily decide not to use any of the flights on your itinerary, the airline will consider you a “no show” and cancel remaining flights on your itinerary. In this case, please contact your airline immediately for assistance in getting you to your destination. Missed flights are typically fully non-refundable and you may be required to purchase new flights from the airline at your own expense. Once your alternative arrangements have been confirmed, please contact Gate 1 with your new flight details.

Missed Connection
If you are connecting from a domestic flight which is delayed for any reason, causing you to miss your international flight, ask the airline for assistance in getting you to your destination. Since all airline tickets are issued on special fares which carry restrictions and penalties if changed, it's the airline's responsibility to make alternate arrangements on your behalf as Gate 1 has no authority or control over airline activities and policies. Do not leave the airline check-in desk until an alternative itinerary has been confirmed.

Lost Luggage
If your luggage is lost or damaged by the airlines, a baggage claim form must be filed with the carrier before leaving the airport. Any cost to retrieve luggage will be your responsibility and you should retain receipts to submit to your insurance provider. You may be required to return to an airport to retrieve your luggage personally.

Arrival & Departure
Arrival Procedures
Upon arrival, please complete immigration formalities if necessary and claim your luggage. If your program includes airport arrival transfers, check your voucher for specific instructions, as they vary with every destination. In most cases, you will be met after collecting your luggage or passing through Customs by the local representative who will be holding a Gate 1 Travel sign and/or a sign with your name on it. In some instances you will be instructed to walk a short distance to a transportation counter. The company's name and location will be printed on your voucher. If for any reason you do not connect with the Gate 1 transfer personnel, go to the Tourist Information Desk and ask them to page the Gate 1 Travel representative or phone the number on your voucher. If you are delayed due to lost luggage, phone the number on the voucher or have a companion exit the Customs Area to advise the transfer representative.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Budapest - The Mahart Port is located on the Pest side of the city between the Elizabeth Bridge and the Lagymanyosi Bridge (also known as the Rakoczi Bridge). The distance between the bridges is approximately 2.5 miles. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Budapest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

Monarch Duchess - If you are unable to locate the ship, please telephone the ship to receive the most recent docking information. If calling from a local telephone, please dial: 0152 015 06222, or from an international telephone: 011 49 152 015 06222.

River Cruise Docking Locations in Giurgiu - The Giurgiu Post S.A is located on Soseaua Portului street just along the Danube river between the Port Capital of Giurgiu building and a large sailboat sculpture. The exact dock is not known prior to arrival as this is strictly controlled by the Bucharest river authorities. The name of the ship should be clearly visible on the side of the vessel.

What To Do When Your Flight Is Delayed
Airlines do not share flight manifest information. Therefore, the only way we may learn of a delay or schedule change while you are traveling is from you, the traveler. The sooner you are able to contact one of our offices, the better we can respond. Please refer to the Emergency Assistance instructions on this same document. Gate 1 Travel is only able to guarantee pre-reserved arrival transfers for up to one hour from the scheduled time, no matter the cause. In case you are delayed for any reason, and are unable to follow the instructions on your voucher, please make independent transfer arrangements and retain your receipts. Unused tour services, including transfers and hotel nights are not refundable. Upon you return home you will need to contact your airline and/or insurance carrier to investigate the possibility of reimbursement for any unused tour services.

Departure Procedures
If your program includes departure transfers, instructions will be stated on your voucher or provided locally.

Transfers
Due to local traffic and other extenuating circumstances, we ask that you allow 30 minutes from your scheduled transfer time for our representative to arrive. This includes hotel, airport and cruise transfers. Such possible delays are taken into consideration in scheduling transfers and you should therefore have no concerns about arriving late for your tour, flight or cruise. For transfers from a hotel, let the hotel reception desk or concierge know that you are waiting for a transfer. In the case of a missed transfer, reimbursement for your out-of-pocket expenses will be considered provided you obtain a written statement from the hotel's front desk verifying the length of time you waited, and the time you left the hotel, and a receipt for your transportation with time and date.

The cost of a transfer is more expensive than hiring a taxi, as a Gate 1 transfer necessarily includes round trip service, or 'dead-leg'. Often the places of call (airports, seaports, hotels) demand entrance and parking fees, where drivers may have to wait for up to an hour. Passengers comfortable hiring a taxi on their own and do not require assistance will save money.

About Your Accommodations
Hotels
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each hotel based on overall quality, location, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All rooms are standard twin-bedded (two single beds) rooms with private facilities. Special requests such as bed types, smoking preference and connecting rooms are subject to availability. Room selection in all cases, unless otherwise reserved, is strictly at the discretion of the hotel's management on a run-of-house basis. Triple rooms consist of standard twin beds or one double bed plus a sofa/folding bed or cot for third person except in the U.S. and Canada, where triple rooms often consist of two double/queen beds for three persons; where available, a fee may be charged by the hotel for the addition of a cot/rollaway. The number of persons accommodated does not dictate the room size. Although available at most 4 and 5 star hotels, the use of air-conditioning abroad differs greatly from the United States, and is often shut down at night and from the end until the start of the summer months. Some lodges and accommodations in remote regions may not have all of the amenities, such as hairdryer, alarm clock and room service, that you might find in a larger hotel located in a city center.

Hotel Check-in/ Check-out
Hotel check-in time is generally not before 4:00 p.m. and check-out time is prior to noon. If you will be arriving early in the day or departing in the evening, hotels will usually allow you to store your luggage in their luggage room. Ask at the front desk if the hotel can check you in earlier, or let you stay later.

River Cruises
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each cruise ship based on overall quality, itinerary, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All Monarch Duchess cabins are standard rooms with private facilities, unless you have specifically requested and paid for an upgrade. All cabins have two twin beds that can be pushed together or separated. While at port, the vessel may be docked adjacent to another ship which may obstruct window views. We recommend you close the cabin curtains before turning in at night for privacy. While double docked, ships often continue to run their engines for air-conditioning and other services. Depending upon the wind direction, residual engine fumes may enter some cabins. This is a temporary situation, alleviated once the ship moves. We reserve the right to make ship substitutions with those of equal standard.

At Your Destination
Eco & Sustainable Tourism
We support global efforts to create a more eco-friendly world, intolerant of any forms of cruelty, abuse and intentional environmental destruction. To that end we ask that our clients maintain a watchful eye as they travel, and report any abuses they may encounter. One of the many benefits of tourism is the shared cultural knowledge and ultimate elimination of negative behavior through education. We rely on your good feedback to enable this element of symbiosis. As you travel and learn about foreign cultures, we ask first and foremost that you practice tolerance and respect for local customs.

Gratuities
Tipping is always a matter of personal discretion. For your convenience, please use the summary below as a guideline for recommended gratuity amounts. Gratuities may be paid in local currency or US dollar equivalent where accepted. Please be aware that tipping is considered by many locals to be a part of their normal remuneration and some may approach you for additional "compensation." There is no need to be intimidated by the request, nor should you feel pressured to pay more than recommended. If you become uncomfortable by any behavior you encounter, please advise your tour manager or phone our local office. Numbers are provided in your documents for your convenience.

Suggested Tipping: Escorted Tours

Tour Manager (Coordinator; may or may not act as a guide): US $7 per person per day
Driver (Provides chauffeur services and limited assistance with luggage) : US $3 per person per day, US $2 per half day
Local Guide (Offers in-depth information at specific locations. There may be one or many guides along a tour program): US $3 per person per day of sightseeing, US $2 per half day
Hotel porters and wait staff: Included

Suggested Tipping: European River Cruises

Crew: US $14 per person per day
Cruise Director (ship): US $4 per person per day
Activity Host (ship) US $2 per person per day
Tour Manager or Local Host (hotel) US $4 per person per day

Gratuities for the crew (shared by all crew members) may be paid via the on board ship account or dropped in the designated box at reception. Gratuities for the Cruise Director and Activity Host may not be charged to your on board ship account and should be paid in cash and given to the person directly.

You may also tip other service providers such as local guides, bus drivers and others who may have provided special services.

Suggested Tipping: Independent Tours

Hotel Porter: US $3 per bag
Hotel Wait staff: 5-10% of the bill (lunch or dinner)

Local Sightseeing Tours: Guide: US $3 per person per half day, US $6 per person per full day Driver: US $2 per person per half day, US $4 per person per full day

Bulgaria - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Romania - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Serbia - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Hungary - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists.

About Your Sightseeing
To ensure a pleasant and fair experience for passengers on our escorted tours, there is a mandatory seat rotation policy on our motor coaches which will be organized by your Tour Manager. Some buses are equipped with toilet facility, however they are strictly intended for emergency use only and often require the vehicle to stop for safety reasons before use. When travel dates coincide with religious holidays and national celebrations, some monuments and sites may be closed, sometimes without prior notice. On these occasions, escorted touring itineraries may be amended to reflect these closures. Occasionally, during holidays and certain periods, and/or due to other unforeseen circumstances including weather conditions, there may be last-minute changes, sometimes after arrival, which may affect the sequence of the tour and locations visited. National monuments and tourist sites regularly undergo renovations, which can obscure the monument's view. No tour will be canceled due to renovations, however Gate 1 will decide based on the conditions whether to amend an itinerary. To respect the privacy of all tour participants, your tour manager will not organize a group photo or collect passenger email addresses for a group list.

Land Only Passengers (Escorted Tours)
Your tour manager will contact you after your arrival at your hotel. Passengers who have not purchased arrival transfers from Gate 1 Travel should proceed directly to the hotel for check-in. The details of the hotel can be found in your documents.

Purchasing Tours Locally
On escorted tours, the guides will generally sell optional tours to passengers who have not pre-purchased them. Payment can be made by cash or credit card, unless otherwise noted below. This does not apply to Independent packages. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Independent Activities - Gate 1 itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently and with due consideration. Gate 1 is not responsible for any activities not expressly included in its programs. Caution should be exercised when selecting certain activities that may require physical strength, coordination or exertion. Particular care should be taken when considering animal rides, such as on camels, mules or horses

Water Level
A rise or fall in the river water level, or other factors which may impact safe navigation, can prevent the ship from passing under bridges and/or moving further along the river. This may cause part or all of the cruise itinerary to be operated by motor coach. If this becomes necessary, Gate 1 Travel will endeavor to provide equal or similar services, however no cruise will be canceled and no monetary compensation will be made for those changes. A fluctuation in water level can change in a matter of hours and may occur at any time of the year. In this case, the situation will be closely monitored by captain and crew to ensure services are delivered with as few substitutions as possible. If you have planned independent travel prior to the cruise it is advisable to leave local contact information with Gate 1 Travel before departing. Should an embarkation point be changed, Gate 1 Travel will attempt to contact passengers by phone or email.

Currency
We suggest getting a small amount of currency for the first country you're visiting before you depart (except India). It is a good idea to carry a chart with you to help you convert dollars to the local currency. It's also a good idea not to carry too much money. Many countries have ATM machines that accept most ATM cards, but be sure you know your ATM password in numbers-the keypads on foreign ATMs don't always have letters. ATM machines will only dispense cash in local currency. Check with respective consulates to learn current currency allowances and requirements. Use your credit card whenever possible. Should you decide to carry cash, please note that exchange at banks is typically more favorable than at hotels or exchange bureaus. However, bank hours are limited to Mondays through Fridays and sometimes only morning hours on those days. Please note that many banks and most vendors will not accept or exchange $100 bills. We suggest to carry $20 bills or smaller. In many destinations (except Western Europe), we suggest to bring between $50 to $100 in $1 bills which may be used to pay gratuities.

Bulgaria - The Bulgarian Leva is the currency of Bulgaria.

Romania - The Romanian Leu is the currency of Romania.

Serbia - The Serbian Dinar is the currency of Serbia.

Hungary - The Hungarian Forint is the currency of Hungary.

European River Cruises - The Euro is the currency used for purchases on board the ship, except for optional excursions which may be paid for in USD. Please note that while calling at port, other currencies may be used depending on the country being visited. Money-changing services (to Euro) will be available on board.

Ship Account and Payment: There is a cashless system on board. All on board expenditures (in the bar, restaurant, shop, and spa) are added to the ship's account. Closing invoices will be presented to the passengers for settlement. Payment can be made by cash in Euro or by credit card (VISA, MasterCard, American Express). Payment made by credit card may be subject to an international credit card transaction fee. Please note we cannot accept USD as a form of cash payment. Passenger's are not eligible for a Value Added Tax (VAT) refund for purchases made on board the ship.

Credit Cards
While credit cards are accepted in most destinations, it is advisable to carry local currency. Inform your credit card company that you are traveling to avoid your card being blocked for security reasons.
While most US-issued credit cards have the embedded microprocessor chip, there are still some that have the magnetic-strip technology. The “chip-and-PIN” cards require users to punch in a personal identification number (PIN) instead of signing for a purchase. For example, many automated ticket kiosks, such as those commonly found at train stations, gas pumps and parking garages, don’t accept cards without a chip and PIN. Most cash registers are equipped to handle American cards but if you encounter difficulties, offer an alternative credit card or politely insist that the cashier keep trying to swipe the credit card. ATMs typically recognize and accept US issued debit cards. For travel to Europe, should you anticipate using ticket kiosks or purchasing train tickets locally, you may consider buying tickets and other basic purchases prior to departure.

European River Cruises - On board expenditures are processed through a banking center in Cyprus. Passengers wishing to settle their on board account by credit card should advise their credit card provider of potential charges from Cyprus in addition to the countries that will be visited on your itinerary.

Shopping
Most people enjoy bringing home at least one souvenir from the countries they visit. However, some find any amount of shopping to be too much while others never find enough opportunities.

We have built into our Escorted itineraries a few shopping stops at recommended spots. These stops are designed to enhance your experience by providing an opportunity to see first-hand quality locally crafted merchandise which you may not be able to find on your own. Shops are checked to ensure the quality and authenticity of the products they offer, and we limit guides from visiting other locations. In some cases, we plan these stops to provide an opportunity to use clean bathrooms and to stretch your legs. All shops want your satisfaction, and therefore in case of any misunderstanding they ask that you kindly submit your claim to us within one week of the item's receipt. Claims submitted later will be subject to each store’s policies.

While shopping independently, we advise you to exercise care and common sense when making any purchase. Always get a formal receipt. And remember that, just like in this country, if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is!

About Tax-Free Shopping
Tax-Free Shopping allows shoppers to reclaim the VAT (Value-Added Tax) or GST (Goods and Services Tax) they have paid on their purchases in some foreign countries in accordance with restrictions and procedures as dictated by each country. Refund eligibility varies by country, but may require presenting a scanned copy of your passport at the time of purchase, a minimum amount spent, or providing original store receipts. For more details, check the respective country’s online website, with the shop salesperson, with your tour manager or at www.globalblue.com for specific country regulations and airport operation hours. Please keep in mind that you must apply for VAT refund in the airport of the country the items were purchased and allow enough time prior to your flight for the application.

U.S. Customs & Shipping Charges
You may carry items with a fair retail value totaling $800 into the U.S. Taxes may be applied to the next $1,000 worth of merchandise. U.S. Customs determines the value of your items, often honoring a genuine sales receipt. Items which are shipped home are always subject to duty when received in the U.S. (in addition to shipping charges). Some shops may offer to include shipping and duties in the price but this typically means shipping only to the customs facility closest to you and payment only of the export duties; you would still need to collect the item and pay U.S. import duties. Please be aware that it is illegal to import products made from endangered animal species. U.S. Customs & Border Protection will seize these items, as well as most furs, coral, tortoise shell, reptile skins, feathers, plants, and items made from animal skins.

Bulgaria - Bulgaria offers an assortment of articles that may be more difficult to find elsewhere, including World War II and Communist era memorabilia. The shopping experience itself can be just as worthwhile as the goods, with interesting boutiques lining cobblestone streets. These shops offer everything from Orthodox icons and antiques to leather goods, chic clothing and jewelry. Also, prices in Bulgaria are generally lower than in other European countries, making it an even more attractive draw.

Romania - Items of interest include intricately woven carpets, regional wines, ornately painted eggs and tiles, Italian clothes and shoes at discount prices, glass pieces, and porcelain wares. Of course there is also plenty of Dracula kitsch along with more unusual souvenirs like wild boar skins.

Serbia - In cities, small shops dominate shopping scene. Popular items include embroidery, lace, leather and metalwork. Clothing from top name designers can often be found at substantially lower prices than in Western stores. Shops are usually open weekdays from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, with shorter hours on Saturdays.

Hungary - Hungary is renowned for its food and beverage products, especially fine red paprika, brandies, and Unicum liqueur. Additionally, traditional items such as ceramics, embroidery work, painted eggs, crystal ware, and costumed dolls are highly popular.

Your Safety is Very Important
Prior to your trip, if you are traveling overseas, we strongly recommend that you visit the website of the U.S. Department of State at www.travel.state.gov, specifically the section which addresses International Travel. You should read the tips for foreign travel and travel warnings for the country or countries that you plan to visit.

It is also important that you do not allow your common sense to take a vacation while on your trip. Here are several tips which, if followed, will save much potential hardship:

  • Be aware of potentially dangerous places and situations as you would be at home. Avoid wearing expensive jewelry and carry your valuables concealed in inside pockets or hidden pouches. Your objective is to avoid drawing attention and to blend in with the crowd
  • Don't put all your valuables (money, credit cards, passports, etc.) in the same place (in case one wallet is stolen, you should have other valuables and identification in another safe place)
  • Do not leave valuables laying loose in your room or on the bus as Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for any loss. Use the hotel safe. Keep copies of your passports, credit card numbers and travelers checks numbers in the hotel safe
  • When possible we suggest traveling in pairs or groups when moving about independently
  • Do not pack valuables (cameras, computers, jewelry, etc.) in your checked luggage. Keep hard to replace valuables with you in your carry-on bag
  • Keep wallets safely tucked into front trouser pockets and/or wear a money pouch inside your clothing
  • Carry handbags close to your body, shoulder bags the cross-body method with the bag in front of your body
  • Credit cards are generally accepted everywhere and are safer than traveling with large amounts of cash

If you've purchased an escorted tour program, your travel documents will include telephone numbers of local Gate 1 Travel representatives who will do their utmost to assist you in the event of an emergency. The numbers are printed on your Gate 1 Travel vouchers. Please copy the numbers. Once you relinquish the voucher, you will not have this information. Passengers traveling independently should employ the services of hotel concierges and local authorities.

European River Cruises - You are on a ship with a high safety standard and reliable crew. In case of emergency, we ask you to follow the instructions of your crew. Please take further information concerning safety from the notice on your cabin door. Life jackets will be stored in your stateroom. When leaving the ship, kindly drop your cabin key off at reception and promptly pick it up upon arrival back to the ship. This procedure helps ensure your security by allowing the crew to immediately determine if all passengers are on board before continuing the cruise. While in port, please keep your cabin door locked.

Tourist Street Scams
Pickpockets and thieves can destroy an otherwise wonderful holiday. Be mindful of these precautions to help avoid being scammed or robbed:

  • Remain alert and cautious. Be wary of any unusual contact or commotion in crowded public places, including train stations, markets, subways and tourist sites;
  • Be especially careful when traveling independently, or leaving your tour group to explore on your own. Try not to travel alone, especially at night. Avoid narrow alleys and poorly lit streets;
  • Use only official taxis and check the change you receive from all taxi drivers and vendors;
  • Beware of pickpockets often working with an accomplice who will distract you by spilling something on you, dropping a wallet or other seemingly valuable object, or tripping and falling down in front of you;
  • Beware of aggressive street vendors who may approach you offering a demonstration which may end with you being pressured to purchase an item or act as a distraction for another pickpocket;
  • Don’t tip beggars;
  • Wear the shoulder strap of your bag across your chest;
  • Carry modest amounts of cash (US dollars) in small denominations so that you can avoid flashing large bills when paying for small items;
  • ATM machines can be a convenient way to carry less currency. However those machines too can be used for robbery. Be wary of anyone who can look over your shoulder when inputting PINs. Another scam involves rigging the machine with a plastic insert which makes your card retrieval difficult; the thief then removes your card after you walk away;
  • If you are confronted, do not fight back - give up your valuables. If your possessions are lost or stolen, report the loss immediately to the local police and keep a copy of the official report for insurance claims.


Local Emergency Phone Numbers
Bulgaria
  • Ambulance: 150
  • Fire: 160
  • Police: 166

Romania
  • Ambulance: 961 or 962
  • Fire: 981
  • Police: 955

Serbia
  • Ambulance: 94
  • Fire: 93
  • Police: 92

Hungary
  • General Emergency: 112

Languages
Bulgaria - Bulgarian is the local language.

Romania - Romanian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Serbia - Serbian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Hungary - Hungarian is the local language. Limited English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Electricity
Please note: The U.S. uses 120 volts and you can purchase a converter and transformer at most hardware stores for your 120V appliances.

Bulgaria - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Romania - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Serbia - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Hungary - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Monarch Duchess - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Code of Conduct
Bulgaria - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Smoking is prohibited in all indoor public places. Some restaurants, cafes, and nightclubs may have designated smoking areas.

Romania - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. When meeting someone for the first time, formal address should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate and normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Serbia - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Hospitality is highly important in Serbia, and if you are offered food or a drink, it is polite to accept. Normal courtesies should be observed. Please be aware that most restaurants do not have non-smoking sections.

Hungary - Shaking hands is a standard form of greeting. Normal courtesies should be observed and when addressing a newly met acquaintance, both first and last name should be used. Conservative casual dress is appropriate. Smoking is prohibited on public transport and in public buildings.

Food and Meals
As specified in each itinerary. Meals are based on the hotel's or restaurant's buffet or set menu. In general, beverages are not included, unless specifically stated. Although Gate 1 cannot make guarantees, every effort will be made to honor special dietary requests submitted in writing at least 72 hours prior to departure at www.gate1travel.com/contactus. Terminology for dietary requests can vary from country to country and options may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you make your wishes known to your tour manager upon arrival, and at each hotel/restaurant.

Bulgaria - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Serbia - While it is generally safe to eat fully cooked meats and vegetables, care should be taken to avoid undercooked meat and uncooked fruits and vegetables. Because tap water is not potable, visitors should only drink bottled water or water that has been boiled and filtered. Avoid ice, as it is usually made from tap water.

Holidays
On public holidays, there may be reduced public transportation, as well as limited hours or closures of attractions, shops and restaurants.

Holidays - Bulgaria

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year's Day observed
Mar 3: Liberation Day
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Sunday (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: Labor Day
May 2: Labor Day observed
May 6: St. George's Day
May 8: St. George's Day observed
May 24: Bulgarian Culture Day
Sep 6: Unification Day
Sep 22: Independence Day
Nov 1: National Revival Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas
Dec 27: Christmas Holiday

Holidays - Romania

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 22: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 24: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 25: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 12: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 13: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day (2 day celebration)
Jan 24: Unification Day
Apr 14: Orthodox Good Friday
Apr 16: Orthodox Easter Sunday
Apr 17: Orthodox Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 1: Children's Day
Jun 4: Orthodox Pentecost
Jun 5: Orthodox Pentecost Monday
Aug 15: St. Mary's Day
Nov 30: St. Andrew's Day
Dec 1: Union Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Second Day of Christmas

Holidays - Serbia

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 3: New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 22: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 23: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 24: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 25: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
May 3: Labor Day Second Day
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year Holiday observed
Jan 3: Second New Year Holiday
Jan 7: Christmas Day (Orthodox)
Feb 15: National Day
Feb 16: National Day Holiday
Apr 14: Good Friday (Orthodox)
Apr 15: Holy Saturday (Orthodox)
Apr 16: Easter Day (Orthodox)
Apr 17: Easter Monday (Orthodox)
May 1: May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
Nov 11: Armistice Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Hungary

Holidays 2022

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2023

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Mar 15: National Day (1848 Revolution Memorial Day)
Apr 15: Good Friday
Apr 17: Easter
Apr 18: Easter Monday
May 1: Labour Day
Jun 5: Whit Sunday
Jun 6: Whit Monday
Aug 20: State Foundation Day
Oct 23: National Day (1956 Revolution Memorial Day)
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Disabled Facilities - European River Cruises
Due to physical constraints and space limitations, wheelchairs and walkers are not allowed on motor coaches and/or river cruises. There are no elevators aboard the ship, so passengers will be required to climb stairs to access the different decks of the ship. Kindly refer to our Terms for additional information.
Embarkation
Embarkation will begin at 2 pm unless otherwise noted in your itinerary. Check your itinerary carefully for the port of embarkation and disembarkation. In the event that you arrive independently to the port of embarkation, note the location carefully. Please ensure that you are always on board before the ship's scheduled time of departure. For same day directions, please contact the Cruise Director at the number provided on your cruise voucher. Early arrivals may drop their luggage.

Upon embarkation all passengers will be required to hand over their passport to the Reception Desk for the duration of the cruise. The staff are required to provide these to the appropriate authorities as the ship sails through each country. These will be stored in a secure area and returned at the end of the cruise.

Disembarkation
You will receive all relevant information concerning disembarkation in detail by your cruise director on the afternoon of your last day onboard. Passengers who have purchased a transfer will be required to place their luggage outside of their cabin a few hours prior to their scheduled time of departure. Details will be advised locally. All passengers and luggage must be off board the ship at the final disembarkation time noted in your itinerary.

On Your Cruise - European River Cruises
Attire:
River cruise dress code is always casual. Modest attire (no bathing suits) is requested in the dining room at all meals. Remember to pack comfortable walking shoes and an umbrella.

Language:
The official language on board is English, although other languages may be spoken. All announcements and tours will be performed in English.

Meals and Dietary Restrictions:
There is open seating in the dining room for lunch and dinner. Please see your Maître d'hotel who is at your disposal for special needs. Passengers requiring special diet must advise Gate 1 Cruises at the least 20 days prior to departure. However we are pleased to assist within the limits of those products available on board.

Smoking:
Smoking is only allowed in designated areas on the sundeck. Please do not throw cigarettes overboard.

Amenities:
A hairdryer is supplied to all cabins. Laundry service is available on board for an additional charge, however the ship is not equipped to care for dry cleaning. Charges are displayed on board. Valuables can be deposited in the cabin safe.

Jacuzzi:
The sundeck jacuzzi is open the entire season from 7am - 7pm. Hours are subject to change by the captain due to the sailing itinerary and weather.

Fitness Center:
The fitness center is equipped with one treadmill, two stationary bicycles, dumbbells and yoga mats.

Medical Services:
Ship's crew may be able to provide basic first-aid, however ships do not carry a doctor or nurse onboard. Should professional medical attention be required, local services will be contacted upon the passenger's request.

Excursions:
During your journey you will have the opportunity to take part in a variety of shore excursions. If you have not pre-booked the excursions, there will be an opportunity to do so on board with your Cruise Director. These excursions can paid for in cash (USD), or charged to your credit card. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional

Walking:
River Cruise tours dock at inland towns and excursions may include a fair amount of walking on uneven or cobblestone streets. There are no elevators aboard the ship. Many ports have limited ramps. You may also experience "double-docking." In some ports, where there are limited docks available for the number of visiting ships, you may find your ship docked adjacent to another and may have to walk across one or more other river cruise ships before reaching the dock area.

Children:
The vessels do not maintain facilities or services for children aboard the cruise. We regret that we cannot accommodate children under 16 years of age.

Telephone:
All cabins are equipped with direct dialing for an additional fee. If you need to be contacted while on board the ship, please provide the emergency numbers outlined in your documents to family and/or friends. It is possible that the emergency numbers are out of the telephone network at the time of dialing. If this is the case, a message will be provided by the telephone company in German. It is advisable to hang-up and dial a short time later.

Email and Post:
The Monarch Duchess offers complimentary basic internet access onboard based on regional satellite for river cruise ships. Internet service is accessible in the reception lobby area. This service is complimentary and should enable you to browse the internet, check your email, access international publications, and view Facebook accounts on your personal device(s) during your sailing. You will be unable to download movies or video, send videos or access Netflix or Jetflicks. At the beginning of your sailing, you will be provided with an access code which you may use on any of your devices. Please note the possibility of potential interruptions in satellite signals based on terrain and weather, plus factors such as populated ports where many ships are utilizing the same satellite signal, which may cause slower online connections than you are accustomed to at home.

Any mail with postage can be handed in at the reception. It will be posted at the next port of call.

11 Day Danube River Cruise with Budapest, July 2022
Dummy Image

Our trip was excellent! Enjoyed the Monarch Empress, very friendly crew. The food was excellent and we enjoyed our cabin. Loved our cabin steward Lilly and our activity leader and assistant Adrien and Betty. Our stops and cities we visited were excellent. Overall I would rate the entire experience at a 9.5 and will be back soon to do the Rhine. Will be doing Costa Rica in the spring with Gate 1.

Keith A.
12 Day Danube River Cruise with Prague, July 2022
Dummy Image

This was our first Gate 1 trip as well as our first river cruise and Gate 1 didn't disappoint us at all. We had an excellent trip from our start in Prague right to the end of our trip at Budapest. A shout out to the tour manager Mira in Prague, the ever approachable and helpful cruise director Adrien, activity host Betti who did an excellent job keeping us entertained and engaged during our cruise, all the crew especially Shani, Albin who served us at all our meals and Nenghah who kept our room spotlessly clean. A big thank you to the Captain of the ship who brought us safely through our full journey. Once again thank you Gate 1.

Lawrence N.
11 Day Oberammergau with Danube River Cruise From $5099 Land Only $5929* Air & Land, June 2022
Dummy Image

Our trip to Oberammergau and Danube River Cruise was wonderful. Everyone on the trip was pleasant and very welcoming. We would like to acknowledge a few people who did an exceptional job. Our Cruise Director Mick, was very organized and knowledgeable about each area of our trip. Betti, Activity Host, added her special fun and adventure spirit to the trip. Betti's yoga class each morning was a great way to start the busy day. The Dining Director and his crew did a fantastic job. The meals were delicious and a great variety according to the region. Our waitress Arda, and waiter Tarek, were exceptional. They were very attentive to our table and special requests. The Cabin Steward, Dhanu, and the Bartender, Marcus, were also very pleasant and attentive to special requests. We have wonderful memories of a fantastic trip.

Christine B.
11 Day Rhine, Main & Danube River Cruise, April 2022
Dummy Image

Both the Cruise Director and Activities Host were great and worked as a Team keeping passengers informed with upcoming events and helping them with misc. things. I truly loved the 2 speakers Bart had who came and talked with the passengers. Speakers were informative and the time went too fast. It was nice to get a different perspective of history. This should be offered as a standard on this cruise. Loved Bart's commentary about the castles one lazy afternoon. Very knowledgeable. He was always a relaxed and sincere 'meet and greet' to the passengers. Debbie from our group was going on to Italy and Daniele spent time talking and showing her about the train system, car rentals, tours etc. and made phone calls get her answers. That saved her time and frustration navigating all the unfamiliar websites which she was doing initially. Your staff was great at remembering names and little things such as ice tea vs water at meals. Little things add up to big memories. Three of the crew (Shorty, Marcin, and Daniele) were on my first cruise and I got my picture to remember them. Nice to see same people on other cruises. Warm, fuzzy feeling.

Ruth D.
9 Day Christmas Markets River Cruise, December 2019
Dummy Image

Dan and I really enjoyed the trip. The cruise boat was clean and inviting. Loren was always informative and helpful to all of the group on the tours in each city stop. The crew on the boat was wonderful made sure all passengers were comfortable. The chef and kitchen staff were great serving the perfect portion of tasty food. We had a great and relaxing time. Would recommend this to friends and family.

Regina M. Lillian, AL
9 Day Christmas Markets River Cruise, December 2019
Dummy Image

It was great. Fantastic crew on the Monarch ship and Lorin, the trip director, was phenomenal! I liked that we had ample time in each city to explore on our own.

Patrick C. Washington, D.C.
12 Day Danube River Cruise with Prague, July 2019
Dummy Image

Our trip with Gate 1 river cruises was amazing. The boat, captain, staff, chef, and cruise director were professional, well-informed, and friendly. Lorin, the cruise director, really made our trip. All excursions, guided tours, and transportation were flawless. It was an incredible trip and we will be back. Way to go Monarch Princess!!

Gerald & Krista C. Beavercreek. OH
14 Day Danube River Cruise with Budapest & Prague, July 2019
Dummy Image

The trip was fantastic- one of the best trips we ever took. The river cruise was terrific- the cabin, dining room and lounges were beautiful. The ship crew was so friendly. The food on the ship was excellent. Our cruise director, Katerina, worked so hard to make every one happy and she succeeded. The evening entertainment with Amir was so much fun. We are telling our friends to take a river cruise with Gate 1.

Amy Y. Scarborough, ME
16 Day Classic European River Cruise, June 2019
Dummy Image

Excellent, enjoyed it very much. Appreciated all the effort staff made right across the ship. Also the booking process, payment process - absolutely everything was easy. Thank you Gate 1. We loved how organized everything was and big credit and thanks to absolutely everyone on that ship ... Love you Gate 1. You will be seeing us again.

Lyn Q. Parrearra, Australia
11 Day Rhine River Cruise with Lucerne - Amsterdam to Basel, June 2019
Dummy Image

It was beyond our expectations!!! The ship was beautiful, all the crew were so friendly and Alex, our tour director, was fabulous. We had an absolute wonderful time. Already looking for next years vacation.

Frances K. Ruskin, FL
16 Day Classic European River Cruise, May 2019
Dummy Image

We had a great time on the Monarch Baroness. Arrived to an immaculately clean ship kept that way by hardworking house staff. Cabins were very comfortable with better storage than I expected. We were blessed with mostly good weather & no problems with low or high water levels. Special mention to our cruise director George. The guy has everything covered & does it with good humor. Ably assisted as he was by activities director Laura. Would happily take another European River cruise with Gate 1.

John & Sharon N. Carlingford, Australia
9 Day Danube River Cruise, April 2019
Dummy Image

The river cruise was absolutely perfect. The staff was so accommodating from the minute we landed in Budapest until we left Munich. Arnon and Karol were so attentive to our needs from day 1 when we arrived at the ship. They couldn't do enough to make our trip a memorable one. The entire staff was always willing to attend to our needs. Day tours and special events ran very smoothly with the color coded tickets and boarding passes. The weather was rainy but following each day tour the staff was waiting for us at the ship with smiles, hot towels and warm drinks. Great personal touch continually. The waiters in the restaurant were always pleasant and accommodating. The bartenders always had a smile. The DJ was fantastic as we danced and sang the nights away. This is the third time we traveled with Gate 1 and will be planning more trips in the future, inviting some of our other friends This company certainly dots every I and crosses every t. Thank you to Gate 1 for helping us make such fabulous memories.

Linda D. Stamford, CT
9 Day Danube River Cruise - Passau to Budapest, April 2019
Dummy Image

My trip was absolutely wonderful! This was my first, but hopefully not last river cruise. Can't begin to tell you how wonderful it was and the staff on the Monarch Duchess was. From my first step toward the ship to my last step off the ship, someone was always there to greet me and ask if anything can be done for me. My compliance to everyone, for the dishwashers to the captain, thank you so much!

Patricia B. Minneapolis, MN
14 Day Danube River Cruise with Prague & Budapest, April 2019
Dummy Image

It was outstanding thanks to the great people that work for Gate 1. I like to mention the great waiter Ivan, the activities director Kristina and everyone that was in charge. They all made our trip remarkable. Thank you, looking forward to my next trip to Greece, and next year to Vietnam!

Luisa M. Fredericksburg, VA
14 Day Danube River Cruise with Prague & Budapest, October 2018
Dummy Image

Our Gate 1 trip exceeded all expectations. The guides and assistants were very knowledgeable and helpful. The Monarch Empress was a newer ship and the crew were superb. The chef and food was excellent. Tours, (both optional and included) were enjoyable. Congratulations to Gate 1 tours.

Robyn K. QLD, Australia
14 Day Danube River Cruise with Budapest & Prague - Budapest to Vilshofen, October 2018
Dummy Image

We enjoyed our Danube River Cruise very much. We had been on the bus trip from Prague to Budapest, but this was a different experiencing being on the river and sightseeing some different cities and villages. Beautiful scenery, great accommodations and fabulous food! Lots of history and the day excursions on foot or by bus were very fun and enlightening. Our guides were very knowledgeable too. We plan to take more Gate 1 trips. Thank you for a memorable trip!

Sue S. Luxemburg, WI
16 Day Classic European River Cruise - Budapest to Amsterdam (Monarch Queen), September 2018
Dummy Image

We had an amazing trip. We speak very highly of Gate 1 Travel and the lengths the company went to to ensure we got maximum time on the boat while the water levels were so low. We appreciated it.

Jeanette, D. Palmerston North, New Zealand
9 Day Danube River Cruise - Vilshofen to Budapest, July 2018
Dummy Image

It was a wonderful trip and we have absolutely no complaints, only praise ... Our tour director (Adriene) was unbelievably attentive and also upbeat even at the most challenging times, and Activity Cooridinator (Daniele) always had something going for us to look forward to. The dining room staff, reception staff, and cabin staff were equally attentive. The food was excellent and there was always plenty to choose from. The small size of the boat allowed us to meet and get to know many great people that we plan on keeping in contact with. Every day was extremely well-organized and our time at each stop was utilized to the max. We will definitely recommend this cruise to others.

Donna C. Staatsburg, NY
12 Day Danube River Cruise with Prague - Budapest to Vilshofen, July 2018
Dummy Image

We had a wonderful time! Everything was so organized and there was so much to do. This was our first time on this type of cruise and I would highly recommend it, especially for people who do not like crowded ships! The staff on board were wonderful and so accommodating! All of the tour guides were professional and so knowledgeable! Our cruise tour director, Soma, was wonderful and so organized! The crew members were all great! Thanks again for making our trip a success and hassle-free!

Sandra H. Greenwich, RI
12 Day Danube River Cruise with Munich, July 2018
Dummy Image

We had a wonderful time on the Monarch. Jean Pierre was great and all trips went like clockwork. Guides were all excellent. Dining was perfect with good food. Cabins were spacious and well equiped. To cap it all we had wonderful weather. We would certainly use Gate 1 again.

Michael G. new South Wales, AU
9 Day Rhine River Cruise - Basel to Amsterdam, June 2018
Dummy Image

We had a wonderful trip. It was our first cruise of any kind and all our expectations were met. We have no interest in large cruise ships and really enjoyed the intimacy of the smaller river boat. The staff were great, food was very good and with a nice number of options, and we enjoyed the arranged walking and bus tours with local guides. We hope to do this again some day and will definitely recommend Gate 1 and the river cruise to others.

Daniel B. Cincinnatti, OH
12 Day Danube River Cruise with Munich - Budapest to Vilshofen (Monarch Princess), June 2018
Dummy Image

We had a wonderful experience with Gate1. As we moved into Austria & Germany ... the Guides were very knowledgeable & made the history of each location come to life. Miklos Jaros worked tirelessly to be available at all times for questions or suggestions; he made sure everyone knew in advance what to expect, and when & where to assemble for every outing. He was a fountain of interesting information, and we were so very happy to have him come with us to Munich for the final days of our trip. Everyone on the Ship was friendly, pleasant & very helpful. They answered all our questions, engaged us in conversation, and when asked they were willing to share their story with us, so that we could learn about them & where they originated from. I will surely encourage Gate1 Travel among my friends & relatives.

Joanne E. Aberdeen, NJ
16 Day Classic European River Cruise - Amsterdam to Budapest, June 2018
Dummy Image

We had a fantastic time. The River Cruise was amazing ... The cruise staff was so friendly, kind and helpful. They couldn’t do enough for us. The ship was filled with well traveled passengers so we asked around for favorite trips which we are keeping in our minds for future adventures. We would highly recommend this trip to anyone and now that we have experienced the intimacy of river cruising, we would do it again in a heartbeat.

Michele B. Dresher, PA
16 Day Classic European River Cruise - Budapest to Amsterdam, June 2018
Dummy Image

We were very pleased with Gate 1 travel. We had a wonderful cruise that exceeded our expectations. The staff were incredible and Rudy, the cruise director, was outstanding. The food was excellent and the daily tours were extremely well organised and insightful. We are now looking at our next cruise with Gate 1.

Clinton, P. Victoria, AU
9 Day Danube River Cruise - Vilshofen to Budapest (Monarch Baroness), May 2018
Dummy Image

I was in the travel industry for 31 years as a travel agent ... I feel well qualified to tell you that your company does a wonderful job for a very reasonable price ... I will say that Adrien Kiss the cruise director and Daniele the activities host did what I can only describe as a fantastic job ... Jason (of your meet and greet staff) assisted my traveling companion in retrieving a lost bag. He too did an excellent job. The attention to detail by the Gate 1 staff is extraordinary. I have been on numerous cruises ... and the staff on this one was just wonderful ... Adrien is a true gem and it is a credit to you that she is in your employ.

Meredith L. Belfast, ME
16 Day Classic European River Cruise - Amsterdam to Budapest, April 2018
Dummy Image

We had an awesome river cruise. The weather was great! The Monarch Queen ship was great. All of the staff were amazing. The cruise director did a good job keeping things going when the ship encounter some technical difficulties. We did not miss a thing. It was a very peaceful, relaxing vacation. The ports were interesting and fun to visit. I will never forget sailing through all the castles--stunning. The food was excellent on the ship!! We could not have asked for anything to have been better!!!

James P. Lenoir, NC
9 Day Danube River Cruise, April 2018
Dummy Image

We had a great time. It exceeded our expectations. The crew was so efficient and pleasant. Katarina our tour director was amazing, keeping us in the know about the upcoming tours and daily events. Our activities director, Daniele was so much fun keeping us entertained in the evenings. This was our first Gate 1 trip and it won't be our last.

Mary P. Dunkirk, MD
12 Day Danube River Cruise with Prague, March 2018
Dummy Image

We were on the Danube River Cruise with Prague March 24th. Wonderful! Everything met or exceeded our expectations. The Monarch Baroness was beautiful and spotless. Lorin, our cruise director, was very personable and knowledgeable, as well as Saber, the activities director. Susannah and her hotel crew were wonderful. The meals were delicious and the presentation beautiful. Kris, our waiter, was great. The local guides were all knowledgeable about their areas. Our hotel in Prague, the Imperial, was beautiful and Mira was very helpful. Definitely the trip was tops on our list. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend the trip and Gate1 to anyone.

Judy H. Atlanta, GA
9 Day Danube River Cruise - Budapest to Regensburg (Monarch Empress), November 2017
Dummy Image

Trip was perfect. Riverboat was spotless. Food delicious. Crew was friendly and always ready to assist. Entertainment in the evening was just enough. Towns were charming. Great tours and tour guides. A fair amount of free time everywhere. Christmas markets were so festive!

Liz M. Langhorne, PA
14 Day Danube River Cruise with Budapest & Prague - Budapest to Regensburg, November 2017
Dummy Image

This river cruise down the Danube from Budapest to Prague was now one of our top three vacations ever. The picturesque towns we visited lent themselves so easily to photographs which was one of our major reasons for taking this particular river cruise. What made it even better was the attention to detail and service provided by Gate 1. At every juncture they made us feel almost like royalty; from the carefully planned tours to the transfers and chosen hotels to the unbelievable food service provided on board by Martin and his staff. Martin was particularly gracious every minute of our trip and it really made a difference. We are seasoned travelers and yet we were so impressed by Gate 1, that we have already decided that Gate 1 will plan our next vacation. Thank you so very much for making out trip such a delightful experience.

Patrick W. Menifee, CA
16 Day Classic European River Cruise - Amsterdam to Budapest, October 2017
Dummy Image

It was wonderful - more than exceeded our expectations. Great service, great food, wonderful crew. There were only 104 passengers on this cruise - it was very intimate and friendly. Loved it!!! Thanks Gate 1

Marilyn B. Currans Hill, AU
9 Day Rhine River Cruise - Basel to Amsterdam (Monarch Baroness), October 2017
Dummy Image

Our trip was great thanks. We really enjoyed our Rhine Cruise. The boat was comfortable, our room was good, the staff and food and entertainment were excellent. I will certainly recommend gate 1 travel to my friends.

Nancy P. Ballina, NSW
14 Day Danube River Cruise with Budapest & Prague - Budapest to Regensburg, October 2017
Dummy Image

We had a wonderful trip. The crew on board the Empress were fantastic. The activities well planned. The food enjoyable. We are looking forward to our two future trips booked with Gate1 next year.

Stephen G. Fishermans Paradise, NSW
18 Day Germany, Switzerland & Austria with Danube River Cruise, September 2017
Dummy Image

The trip was awesome from start to finish. Annette is ... the funniest, most energetic, happiest and most organized tour manager I've ever seen. She was hilarious! The crew on the Monarch Empress were also wonderful...especially my waiter, Gints from Latvia, and the restaurant manager. They really made the trip! Wish I could do it again!!!!

Carol L., Littleton, CO
9 Day Rhine River Cruise, September 2017
Dummy Image

My trip on Gate 1 on the Rhine was amazing and I would recommend it to anyone. The staff were courteous, hardworking and entertaining.

Wendy R. Victoria, Australia
14 Day Danube River Cruise with Budapest & Prague, September 2017
Dummy Image

The Gate 1 trip was great. The ship and staff met expectations. The cruise director and activities director both fun but in control. Great experience.

Joseph M. NSW, Australia

#Gate1Travel

Check out these #Gate1Travel photos from past travelers. After your trip, come back and share some of your own!

VIEW GALLERY ADD A PHOTO