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Travel Tip: Sustainable River Cruising

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River cruising is one of the fastest growing segments of the travel industry…but did you know that it’s also a greener way to travel?

By definition, river cruising has some eco-friendly benefits—the ships are compact, they only carry a couple hundred passengers at a time, and the cruise lines have to follow basic environmental standards.

And now, several of the major cruise lines are even including eco-friendly features on their ships. Viking River Cruises started this trend with the Viking Legend back in 2009.

That ship and its sister, the Viking Prestige, have diesel-electric hybrid engines that use about 20 percent less fuel than diesel-only ships, and reduce vibration and noise pollution.

Vantage Deluxe ships have low-emission engines, LED lights, more efficient propulsion systems. Even their hull shapes were designed to use less power to reach a cruising speed.

AmaWaterways recently christened the AmaVida, which features solar panels to help generate energy for the ship’s operations.

And it’s not just about the features on the ship. Several river cruise operators, including Uniworld and Tauck, work with local organizations to work with the communities and promote sustainable shore excursions.

For more information, visit the Eco Travel archives.

Keep reading for more travel tips.