What is U by Uniworld? - January 2018
Think of river cruising and you would be forgiven for imagining smaller vessels travelling at a slower pace along some of the finest waterways Europe has to offer. Each ship is elegantly designed and caters to an older generation of holiday-maker, while excursions see passengers climb aboard coaches and travel into cities or to landmarks on a signpost-led walking tour. The food is nothing short of spectacular and the entertainment enriches the cultural experience.
2018, however, is a year of change and one that looks set to knock down all your pre-established assumptions of the river cruise industry. Imagine a river cruise that appeals to millennials, exclusively available to those aged between 21 and 45, where on board activities include yoga, silent discos and wine classes. Excursions break away from the traditional walking tours, with experiences including treasure hunts around the Louvre, secret tours of Versailles, and exploring Paris via rooftop.
This is exactly what U by Uniworld will seek to achieve when the concept is unveiled in April this year. Itineraries will see younger passengers travel along a series of rivers including the Danube, Seine and Rhine and enjoy unique experiences that are catered towards them. Passengers will travel aboard one of two distinctive ships known as ‘The A’ and ‘The B’. Both simplistically-named vessels have been decorated with a black exterior design, while the interiors offer chic appeal. The open-air rooftop lounge is the place to meet new people and admire your surroundings, while the chequer-designed Ice Bar offers a range of refreshing signature cocktails and craft beers.
You can enjoy speciality teas and coffees from the 24-hour Mugs Coffee Bar or meet up with friends prior to heading out in the U Lounge. In addition to this, there are other amenities available including a contemporary gym and a relaxing spa area. Last, but not least, the staterooms and suites offer modern features including USB charging points, Bluetooth speakers, flat-screen televisions and luxurious Savoir mattresses. There are spacious suites and options for solo travellers, with the opportunity to even share a triple room with like-minded cruisers.
‘The A’ will be positioned on Rhine, Main and Danube itineraries, while ‘The B’ will operate sailings along France’s iconic Seine River. While experiences remain authentic to the destinations visited, the general message is that they will appeal to a younger generation of holiday-maker and ultimately open up the industry to a market that would never have previously considered a river cruise for as a holiday option.
That said, popular features such as the gourmet culinary offering on board will largely remain the same – with both breakfast and dinner meals available on board the ship. Passengers will even be able to opt – for no extra charge – to enjoy their farm-to-table meals in the privacy of their own room. Meals are likely include spaghetto Pomodoro, quinoa burgers, miso-marinated wild salmon, and even peanut butter and bacon chocolate bars.
Having a ship and experiences that appeal to a younger market is one thing, but the product needs to be able to speak to the consumer and become part of a way of life for them over the course of their duration on board the ship. Fortunately, Uniworld has hit the nail on the head by offering communication-based Whatsapp services that enable passengers to stay up to date with what is happening on and off the ship. It also provides a platform which passengers can use to stay in touch with one another after their holiday. There will also be on-screen menus in the dining venues and even an app that allows users to stay up to date with the latest news and current affairs.
U by Uniworld offers a completely new and bold dimension into what may have previously seemed like a regimented sector of the river cruise industry. Uniworld has found a way in which to appeal to a younger market and, with itineraries due to start in April 2018, it looks set to be a successful voyage.
For more information about the full range of itineraries available with U by Uniworld or to book your next cruise holiday, contact our friendly GoCruise team via freephone:
0800 121 8250 or complete the online enquiry form.