Charter Guide, Cruise Charter Guide, FAQ

Cruise Guide - first guidance to cruise charter

With this charter guide we want to give you some more detailed information, answers and background information on common questions that arise in the context of charter inquiries, charter contracts and chartering in the cruise industry (river and ocean cruises). We are happy to answer any further questions you may have personally!

Charter Rate & Bed Capacity

The charter rate is usually charged per night (see also topic embarkation and disembarkation). In order to have a comparison and a calculation basis, the rate is often mentioned "per passenger per night". Within a full charter always the full bed capacity per night has to be paid as a charter rate (mainly based on double occupancy of cabins) and does not depend on the final occupancy by the charter client (for occupancy based models flexible cabin contingent contracts are useful, but not exclusive full charter contracts). The background to this is, that the main part of costs incurred on board are fixed costs that are not independent on occupancy (e.g. crew, fuel, technic, port costs, insurances).

Contractual Partner

The charter contract is concluded directly between the shipping company or the ship owner and the charter client. As a broker, we accompany both contracting parties while agreeing on the charter rate and the contract details.

Date, Duration and Deployment Area

In order to find the most suitable charter capacities for you, movements (empty ship transfer) of ships (e.g. to another deployment area or to another embarkation port) or the splitting of available charter periods between several charter customers are possible. The general operational planning of the shipping companies for the cruise ships may begins up to two years in advance of the respective season.

Embarkation & Disembarkation

Embarkation usually takes place on the first day in the early afternoon, disembarkation usually after breakfast on the last day. Accordingly, the catering services usually begin with dinner and end with breakfast. On the day of embarkation or disembarkation, the ship is thoroughly cleaned by the crew after breakfast and prepared for the new cruise trip.

Food & Beverage

The catering on board corresponds to the respective ship standard and is generally included in the charter rate, but can be individually adjusted as required. A mixture of table service and buffet form is often offered. In general up to 5 meals a day are served. Drinks are charged separately (if not based on AI-concept) on the on-board account, drink packages are often optionally available for sale.


If requested, the schedule can be amended according to your needs within the charter period and will in any case be verified nautically by the shipping company. If berths are not available, an alternative port or alternative routing is recommended. The start and end of the charter trip must always be located where the previous regular cruise ends or starts again.

Safety on Board

River and ocean-going cruise ships are considered to be extremely safe due to the highest building and operating regulations, the crew is regularly trained and carries out prescribed emergency exercises. All guests receive mandatory safety instructions on board.

Services (included)

Generally the following services are included in the charter rate:

  • Full board
  • Entertainment
  • Wellness and fitness facilities
  • Crew (nautical, technical, hotel / caterer)
  • Luggage service from the pier to the ship and back
  • Fuel (depending on the itinerary, surcharges may apply,
    so-called bunker clauses may also apply)
  • ship-related port fees (depending on the itinerary, surcharges may apply)
  • Insurance for ship, crew and guests for shipowners faults

Services (excluded)

The following services are usually not included in the charter rate:

  • Arrival and departure transportation, transfers
  • Drinks and beverage packages
  • personal expenses of the guests
    (such as shop, hairdresser, massages, restaurants with additional payment, tips)
  • Shore excursions
  • Passenger-related port fees (port fees, bed taxes, tourist taxes)
  • Insurances of the tour operator
  • VAT on transportation services (depending on the country for river cruises)



Smoking on board

Smoking on board is only permitted in designated smoking areas (such as the Cigar Lounge or special areas of the outside decks). However, smoking is strictly prohibited in most public areas and particularly in the cabins.

Tour Guide & Guest Relation

Within a full charter, the charterer (tour operator) himself provides the tour guide (often also cruise director). He is responsible for guest relation, shore excursions and the on-board program, but also acts as a contact and interface for the hotel manager and captain on board to discuss and flexibly amend the daily cruise program. If needed, we can recommend partners to provide tour guides and organize the shore excursions.