TUI River Cruises is a relatively new kid on the waterway, but since its launch in 2021 it has won the Best River Cruise line at the Wave Awards, announced a ship to sail on the Nile and a brand-new build ship for 2025.

TUI Isla
TUI Isla

TUI River Cruises has set out to take on customer feedback and test and learn different concepts.

Heading into 2024 there are some changes to the onboard experience that the river cruise brand believe will create an even more varied and enjoyable experience.   

Chris Logan, Managing Director, Specialist Business said; “We don’t want to settle for a traditional River Cruise model. We of course offer incredible itineraries, onboard beautiful ships, with impeccable service, but we also want to be innovative and modern, responding to customers’ needs and demands. Many of our customers return to us, and so it’s imperative we evolve and offer as much variety as we can.” 

What’s coming up onboard  

  • As a first for any river cruise operator in entertainment, TUI River Cruises will have a team on board performing ‘bespoke vocal’ productions. The style will be a cross between an intimate cabaret set and a bigger performance in the evening. These evenings will be supported by local acts and additional elements such as quizzes to really add variety.  
  • TUI River Cruise is increasing the onboard team with the addition of a Cruise Experience Manager who will have sole responsibility for guest relations and delivering a first-class customer experience.  This will be alongside a three-person entertainment team.   
  • Enhanced craft activities with elements such as a chocolate painting workshop. Guided by the resident team, guests will learn the art of working with rich, velvety chocolate to explore flavours and create art. 
  • Introducing a digital escape room experience using augmented reality where guests can use their own devices or VR headsets available on board. 
  • Further improved top deck activities either hosted with a team member such as virtual reality golf, or for self-enjoyment with giant deck games. 
  • Added a digital games table for use at any time of day or night. 
  • Over half of our guests advised that destination is the most important factor when choosing a cruise, therefore destination enrichment activities have been added to the daytime programme, for example mobile photography workshops to help capture the moments when out and about. 
  • Continuing with favourites such as star gazing and silent disco 

Live Business, TUI River Cruises entertainment provider, recently won a tender to continue to provide its services for both daytime and nighttime programmes.

Katy Berzins, Head of River Cruises said; “The brief was fresh, and we tasked them with showing us what more we could do that perhaps isn’t typically seen on a River Cruise. We’re excited to roll out what is set to be a real showcase of enriching experiences. Guests can pick and choose what suits them, be as involved as much or as little as they please. The vocal productions on board River Cruise ships aren’t typically seen, and we are aiming for a real intimate professional experience.” 

The new programme aims to put customers truly at the core with strong considerations of different customer preferences, it offers variation and flexibility, and each itinerary and ship programme will have some links to the destinations visited.  

Live Business said “Live Business Group are extremely excited to continue our partnership with TUI River Cruises as the brand enters the next chapter of growth and development. Fundamentally, the TUI river cruise guests are at the forefront of every decision we make to provide the best possible onboard experience and service levels. Guests can expect to see a unique and innovative entertainment programme across the fleet, making TUI a market leader within the river cruise industry.  

By offering unrivalled and distinguished entertainment concepts throughout the daytime and evening within a remodeled entertainment structure, TUI & Live Business have broken away from the conventional model and redesigned the onboard experience that will shape the future of the river cruise industry for many years to come.” 

Source: TUI Group PR

Images: © 2024 TUI AG

TUI River Cruises – My Cruise Blog

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