Charter Information

There are three types of barge charters:

  1. Hosted charters aboard Vertrouwen - This is a cross between the "self-drive" and "total care" charters described below. You have a large comfortable barge with a knowledgeable skipper/host(s) to provide you with tips on history, what to see, and the best places to shop. Your skipper provides options, but you decide the schedule. The first person up normally gets fresh warm baguettes and croissants from the local "boulangerie" (bakery). You prepare lunch while underway and may either fix supper aboard or enjoy the fine French cuisine in local restaurants. You participate as much or as little as you wish in the operation of the barge. This is designed for the traveler who likes independence and wants to gain the maximum from the cruising experience. Rates are $6300 per week for up to six people (up to 8 may be accommodated). This is for the entire boat (not per person) and includes skipper, fuel, lock and moorage fees. Please click for information on Vertrouwen.
  2. Self-drive charters - This is a do-it-yourself bareboat adventure on 30-45' fiberglass boats, many of which are designed to resemble the bigger barges. You must select moorage spots, the bakery, seek out the history and special sites. This is geared for the independent traveler. We have personally inspected each of the "self-drive" barge charter companies in Europe - we offer no-extra-cost booking. The companies give us a modest commission and in turn we provide you with free advice on where to go and which charter company is ideal, based on cruising locale, group size, experience and vacation goals...and, frankly, our own experience over the past 2 decades of booking charters and cruising ourselves. You cannot get a better deal - guaranteed! We are in the U.S. and are available by phone - in English - to answer your questions and offer our hints for a most enjoyable experience.
  3. Total care - If you prefer someone else to taking care of all the barging details while you glide carefree and serenely through the countryside, I have two recommendations for you.

    Jack and Beth Hanson are "retired" experienced bargers whom we met decades ago during our travels. We've kept in touch since. Being experienced bargers, they know the canals and they know barges and they know the barge owners. You will get delightful service from them (especially if you say "Roger sent us"!)

    Kurt and Bente Arnild graduated from my week long barge skipper training program as we plied the rivers and canals around Berlin. Like 70% of my graduates, they "got the bug" and made plans for their own barge. Kurt and Bente, native Danes who lived and worked in Switzerland until recent retirement, designed their barge and had it custom built in the Netherlands. It is an amazing and beautiful craft! You will be hard pressed to find a more hospitable, fascinating and delightful couple. They are exploring the River Somme in northern France, especially the WWI areas.