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AClass Opera Cruise Review

Toronto, Canada
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81 posts
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AClass Opera Cruise Review

After doing a lot of research on TripAdvisor, we decided to book a 3 day/2 night cruise with AClass Opera for Nov 10-12. We didn't want the cheapest cruise but couldn't afford the $200+ per night cruises either. I didn't find a whole lot of detailed info on this specific cruise line so I wanted to provide a review in case anyone else needed more info.

The Opera boat is relatively nice and comfortable. We booked an Oceanview room for only $10 more than the Deluxe room and am glad we did as we were located on the 2nd floor. The Deluxe rooms are located on the 1st floor, which is the same as the engine room. It was noisy and smelled of diesel fuel whenever I went down there. Our cabin was cozy and clean, located towards the front of the boat.

The food was good unless you don't happen to like seafood. The kitchen will likely accommodate you if you don't, or if you have other dietary restrictions (we sat at a table with a vegetarian and she usually got her own portions of veggie food). Each meal (except for breakfast) is several courses (usually 5 or 6) so you won't be going hungry!

Now the biggest reason why we did a 2 night cruise was so we could get a full day in Halong Bay. Unfortunately this was also the day where we had the worst experiences. On the 2nd day, you leave the Opera boat and are put on a smaller "day" boat to take you around the bay. The guide described it as being "not as nice but it will be comfortable". It was far from! There weren't enough chairs on the deck for all the guests to sit on, so 8 of us were stuck sitting on the floor. They compensated by giving us 4 lounge cushions to share and sit on, but it simply was not comfortable. The worst was when we discovered the toilets on the boat did not flush and there was no toilet paper. Gross! Considering you spend ALL day on this boat, AClass should do a better job in chartering an adequate one.

As for itinerary, it was quite busy and something was usually scheduled. We wished more free time was allowed but I guess that's one of the downsides of being on an organized tour. There's also not as much swimming time as you would expect from reading their brochure itinerary and there was absolutely no snorkeling. If you do the 1 night tour, you won't get any swimming time at all.

All in all, AClass Opera cruise wasn't the best value for the money in my opinion. Halong Bay is beautiful though and should not be missed.

Last tip - As with the other cruises, they charge for ALL drinks on the boat, even water. So do yourself a favour and pick up a few bottles of drinking water on the mainland to take with you.

Nha Trang, Vietnam
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1. Re: AClass Opera Cruise Review

No toilet paper or useless Crêpe like toilette paper is a Vietnamese classic.

Birmingham, United...
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2. Re: AClass Opera Cruise Review

The toilet on our day boat left a lot to be desired too. You didn't mention kayaking. Was this available with this cruise as this will be important to some?

Toronto, Canada
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81 posts
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3. Re: AClass Opera Cruise Review

There was kayaking available on both days. The first day is just around the floating village (about an hour). The second day was a guided kayak tour (rather than let you explore on your own). I can understand why they want to keep it organized but I would have preferred going my own way. We kayaked for 1.5 hours or so at a very easy (slow) pace.

Italy
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4. Re: AClass Opera Cruise Review

How much did you pay for the cruise?

Toronto, Canada
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81 posts
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5. Re: AClass Opera Cruise Review

We paid $190USD each for the Opera.. shopped around at a few travel agents in the Old Quarter and this was the lowest price we found (brochure price is $265). The regular AClass boat (they have a smaller one with 11 cabins) was around $140 if I remember correctly.

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6. Re: AClass Opera Cruise Review

Hi there,we are going on the Opera in January 2013 and I want to know if one can take water and juices on the boat. I will buy something like Vodca on the boat!but drink a lot of water during the 24 hours. Please let me know. We go to the Portugese irlands from Durban Thankyou very much

Toronto, Canada
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81 posts
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7. Re: AClass Opera Cruise Review

Technically you're not allowed to bring outside beverages as they want you to buy from them.. but after reading previous posts about the drink prices on the baot, I did pack several bottles of water and a bottle of rum in our luggage. As long as you're discrete about it (ie. I wouldn't take the bottle up to the deck or anything), you shouldn't have a problem.

pacific palms
Destination Expert
for Mui Ne
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41 reviews
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8. Re: AClass Opera Cruise Review

I buy bottles of wine from the boat sellers and drink it on board, so carry a corkscrew with you onto the boat (not onto the plane), as they dont always have screwtops.

Cheers Ross

Bangkok, Thailand
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9. Re: AClass Opera Cruise Review

I have brought beers in my private luggage and enjoy them in the sundeck but it's ok because staffs in the cruise didn't say anything

Newcastle, Australia
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10. Re: AClass Opera Cruise Review

We stayed on the A Class Opera Cruise for 2 days and 1 night during October 2012. We did a lot of research and it seemed as though the Opera Cruise was great value and had a good itinerary.

We booked the honeymoon suite with a private balcony and it turned out that the private balcony wasn't so private. The main deck overlooked the private balcony and so did the neighbour honeymoon suite room. The room was quite nice and very clean. However, we didn't have any hot water at the end of the night which was a bit of a downer after a long day on the boat kayaking etc.

The pictures of the boat look slightly better than the real thing. The boat seems to be getting a little bit run down. In saying this, the boat was very large and still quite comfortable. The food was incredible and the servings were huge – so much food, we could never finish it all! Beware – the drink prices are definitely more expensive than the average prices around Vietnam.

Overall, we really enjoyed our trip and met some great people. The staff and tour guide on the AClass were fantastic and very friendly. Our trip included return bus trip transfers from Hanoi which was very handy as the trip was a 3 hour trip each way.