River Boat Double Veranda Cabin B Q – We have been told that AMA Waterways has double balcony cabins on its boats. Is this really true and how do we get one?

A – AMA first  designed double veranda cabins in 2010 with the  debut of the AmaBella. It is a rather unique cabin design and one that we think gives AMA guests a real advantage. The first balcony is French, with floor to ceiling window that opens. The second balcony is a true “American” balcony that accommodates a table and chair. It is tight but adequate for pre-dinner cocktails.

This will allow for lots of fresh air, wonderful unless you are cruising past one of the industrial zones on the Rhine or the Elbe. But we want to caution first-timers that it is likely they will want to look at land from the upper deck rather than a balcony that eliminates at least 50% of the available view. Our bottom line advice: Look at total square feet rather than the type or even number of balconies in your cabin. When it comes to riverboats, every square foot matters. The most common scenario in an unfortunate river cruise experience is a couple that booked a “mid-range” cabin that turned out to be something like 150 square feet, never realizing that there are some prison cells that are larger. The food, however, is somewhat better on Europe’s waterways.