Alex heard of Zoom Vacations years ago and had always wanted to join us on a tour. Our Danube River Cruise trip lined up perfectly for him and his travel-buddy, Steve, and they joined us on this unique Easter Europe vacation.
Zoom: What made you decide to take this trip with Zoom Vacations?
Alex: My friend Steve saw the itinerary and suggested it. When I learned Romania was part of the route it was an easy choice. Romania has always been a curious destination primarily due to stories and romanticism of Transylvania and of course Dracula. Ha!
Zoom: On this trip we visited many cities in different countries. What were your favorites?
Alex: My favorite cities/destinations were Budapest, Hungary, Belgrade, Serbia, and Bucharest, Romania. Bucharest being my absolute favorite.
Zoom: What surprised you about these destinations?
Alex: I was not particularly surprised at any one thing in this trip. However a couple things that popped and really stuck with me is one: the fact that in Eastern Europe the majority of the locals in all the cities read, write and speak English very well. Two: the obvious presence of the former Soviet Communism oppression that is visibly evidenced in building structures throughout the towns and cities as well as the economic and cultural rebuilding of their once flourishing societies. It was eye opening. Third: despite the economic struggles of the people, it was heartwarming and pleasant to experience that the locals are friendly and courteous people.
Zoom: How would this trip have been different had you taken a river cruise without Zoom Vacations?
Alex: This trip was definitely made more fun and entertaining with Zoom Vacations, without question. This particular river boat cruise is geared to the senior or retired demographic. Zoom did a good job of creating fun and entertainment everyday for all us Zoomers.
Zoom: Did you make new friends on the trip?
Alex: Something very special about the vacation model that Zoom puts together is that you can't help but make new acquaintances that you would not normally be exposed to and in turn make new long-term friendships.
Zoom: What was your highlight of the trip?
Alex: Going into this vacation my mind was pretty set that the "highlight" of the trip besides the obvious getting away from the grind, relaxation and good food, would be experiencing and seeing these cool off-the-main-grid cities and countries. However I was pleasantly disappointed and happy to say that was not the highlight. It turned out to be our host Bryan.
Bare with me. Something I think we all can relate to is the notion or feelings of being appreciated or simply thought of with the little and simplest of gestures. Zoom and Bryan does this very well. From the get-go you receive a personalized greeting and gifts. I felt special on the very first meet and greet with the personal touch Bryan included. And it continued through the course of the trip.
Zoom: How were the accommodations aspects of the river cruise ship?
Alex: The accommodations on the boat were great, and no complaints in terms of comfort and luxury. The decor was not exactly modern or to today's design and decor but the high level service more than made up for that. No complaints here.
Zoom: We know you recently took first place in a bodybuilding competition. Were you able to workout and eat as you needed to on this trip?
Alex: Ha! This question just makes my point about the personal interest Zoom, and in this case, Bryan affords. Yes, fortunately this type of vacation is most ideal for a systematic and particular eater like me. Ha. No complaints or challenges with getting my meals and amount and quality of food. Two thumbs up.
Zoom: Would you like to travel with Zoom again?
Alex: It's not even a question of whether I would like to travel with Zoom again. It’s simply a matter of when!