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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2014
We have traveled quite a bit but this was our first Riverboat Cruise! It was a wonderful experience and a great way to some of European cities we hear so much about plus some smaller towns that you don't hear so much about. The ... Read More
We have traveled quite a bit but this was our first Riverboat Cruise! It was a wonderful experience and a great way to some of European cities we hear so much about plus some smaller towns that you don't hear so much about. The service, the food, to cabin, and the excursions were all well thought out and executed. We had lovely weather which allowed us to enjoy the upper deck a lot! So nice to be floating along just enjoying the scenery for awhile and then exploring a town without having to pack and unpack or figure out where to eat that day! The locks were interesting to experience and see and the captain and his crew have our utmost respect. We would highly recommend Viking! My only suggestion is to offer bike riding along the Danube as an excursion. We saw folks gathering for a ride while walking to the bus for one of our excursions. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2013
We had heard very good things about Viking River Cruises and we anxious to give it a try. Our travel experience has been with luxury and premium cruise lines and we love to travel independently, making our own way via rental car, and ... Read More
We had heard very good things about Viking River Cruises and we anxious to give it a try. Our travel experience has been with luxury and premium cruise lines and we love to travel independently, making our own way via rental car, and private guides. We found the experience of Viking on their Bucharest to Budapest route to be closer aligned to a bus tour on a boat. The itinerary was less than wonderful - no way to get into a town in some places unless you took the long bus tours. Everything is done as a group: Excursions that lasted many hours on packed buses. Dinner with everyone heading to the dining room at 7pm - and no ability to have a quiet table for 2. Very loud dining room because the ceilings are so low. Unlike larger ships with 300-700 people, there was no attempt on this ship to learn the names of passengers or learn their likes or interests. Everyone is treated as a member of "the group". Corporate could initiate some low or no cost amenities that could make this a better experience for guests: 1. Encourage staff to learn some of the guests names. We were told by one officer who we had just handled our shore card with our names, on a day when we did not go on the tour, that "he couldn't be expected to know all 175 names of guests" 2. Encourage officers to mingle with guests when they have time. Especially if the ship is empty, when most are on a tour. 3. Provide a morning coffee or afternoon tea in the lounge for those staying on board and not going on the tours. Make it special - This would be a welcome activity for those guest who choose to stay onboard. Have officers who are not doing anything sit and talk with guests during this period. Simply bring the cookies near the coffee machine into the lounge and serve the coffee or tea. We found no fault with our cabin, it was comfortable and well decorated. Food onboard was quite good, but the buffets at breakfast and lunch were so crowded with people moving constantly. And the buffet area is right in the middle of the dining room. Overall it was a very disappointing experience for us. But then again, most people onboard enjoyed the trip and the Viking Experience. Just not a good fit for people who like independent travel   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2013
We, along with 188 other passengers anticipated our Viking River Cruise on the Idun departing Nuremberg on June 1. The cruise turned into a very expensive and deceptive bus trip through Europe. Unfortunately, the passengers had not done ... Read More
We, along with 188 other passengers anticipated our Viking River Cruise on the Idun departing Nuremberg on June 1. The cruise turned into a very expensive and deceptive bus trip through Europe. Unfortunately, the passengers had not done full due diligence prior to arriving to realize that the Danube river was ALREADY closed to river traffic and the ship would NOT be able to depart the canal it was on. The crew professed no prior knowledge of this and each day we had to see what the contingency plan was for the next day. The ship actually departed the canal dock in Nuremberg and sailed a short distance to Redensberg where we then proceeded to bus to either planned destinations or destinations such as Munich that VRC offered to keep everyone busy. The horrible part was the lack of information by the crew to the passengers and a continued message of optimism that the water levels would lower and we would sail. This was impossible as they did not even crest until after our 'cruise' had ended. VRC acted irresponsibly in transferring all guest by motor coach ( over 7 hours ) to Bratislava, Slovakia to the Viking Njord which was holed up in a totally flooded commercial shipping slip where passengers had to access the trip through a flooded parking lot walking on railroad ties and on a corrugated tin utility access cover that covered the electrical controls for the gantry crane that ran beside the ships. At 50 we were probably the youngest on the trip and there were many with disabilities that had to either stay on the ship or chance the path. VRC dropped one passengers suitcase in the water and did not even inform them. They used the Njord as a 'hotel' for us for two nights and bussed us back and forth to Vienna from Bratislava instead of DOING THE RIGHT THING and putting people in a hotel in Vienna instead of saving money this way and wasting even more of our time on busses. Everyone was empathetic to the situation the crew was in HOWEVER, the cruise that was scheduled to sail the next day from ours gave the passengers the option to go home / full refund or take the 'bus cruise'. VRC should have or fully knew the situation and pushed to get us through the system and out the back door. VRC offered passengers a 75% cruise credit (time expired in 2015) to people that saved years for this trip and/or will never do another river cruise again. A few communications with VRC in California resulted in a reinforcing letter that they feel they did everything to accommodate and compensate according and that they will not move from this position. BEWARE OF VIKING RIVER CRUISES. Competitive cruise lines did the right thing and cancelled cruises and/or offered refunds and compensation where VRC weight the options of the impact on its business and made a fiscal decision, not a customer focused decision. Boat was good. Crew was good. Food was good. If the water was fine, it would have been good however a corporation is judged by how it reacts when things to WRONG and there are hundreds of very disappointed and upset passengers that feel that we were tossed along like hot potatoes, outright lied to and misled by the crew ( even to the point that the transfer to Bratislava was with the 'hope' that we would sail to Budapest form there ( THEY KNEW THE RIVER WAS CLOSED AND RISING ) but did not communicate that to the passengers. The cost of doing the right thing would have been much less than the loss of business they will encounter from this. Even a partial refund in cash vs a time expired credit would have been the right thing. Peed off in the North Read Less
Sail Date: June 2012
We are at about age 50 but extremely active, and some days wore us out. The excursions were extremely interesting and most had good guides with excellent grasps of history. We also took the optional excursions, some being great, others not ... Read More
We are at about age 50 but extremely active, and some days wore us out. The excursions were extremely interesting and most had good guides with excellent grasps of history. We also took the optional excursions, some being great, others not so great. We learned so much about Europe, more than I ever did in school. Yes, there were dead times, but when you work 50 hours a week, a few hours of down-time are appreciated. We spent hours on the sun deck, watching beautiful vineyards and ancient cities going by as we got some sun. If the one-man band drove us crazy in the lounge, we'd either go up top or to our room, but this wasn't often. When the ship was docked for the night, you weren't locked-in, you could hit the town and party with locals. Our best meals were in some of the restaurants in the towns. If you are looking for a party ship, go to the Caribbean. Yes, most guests were over 55, but there were teens with their parents and grandparents as well. We were hardly the youngest aboard. The excursions required brisk walking for long periods, but for those less-able, there were slower groups with less walking. The people at our dinner table ranged from pompous rich people all the way to the chicken farmer we met (he and his wife were our favorites). The crew was almost annoyingly accommodating. They tried their hardest to make everything right and did a great job. The breakfast buffet got a little old but overall it was okay. Dinners were fabulous, bar service was good. Cabins are tiny, but don't stay there- go out and enjoy your day. You can survive without your computer and Facebook for a few days, you just have to remember how you had fun before the computer ran your life. Overall we were very impressed and will recommend Viking to our friends and family. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2012
We had previously done river Cruises with Viking on the Rhine and the Seine. Having had very good experiences in the past we were really looking forward to our cruise through the Netherlands on a new ship the Viking Njord. Upon boarding ... Read More
We had previously done river Cruises with Viking on the Rhine and the Seine. Having had very good experiences in the past we were really looking forward to our cruise through the Netherlands on a new ship the Viking Njord. Upon boarding we, got into our "new" room and found it to be clean but very tight, as it was only 139 sq.ft. The bathroom appeared to be a nice improvement over previous bathrooms as the shower was bigger. One of the features of the shower, however, was one which allowed the wall facing the bedroom to become transparent. Consequently if you hit the wrong button your shower became public. This would have been a interesting feature 40+ years ago on our honeymoon, but it clearly missed the demographic on the cruise ship. The closet was another issue as it had a bump out at the back of it that did not allow the hangars to fit so it made accommodating hanging clothes very difficult. The room had only one very small stool under the vanity with no back for support and it was virtually impossible to use anyway because the room was so compact. These, however were fairly minor issues compared to the cruise itinerary and the ship's lounge. As it turned out, due to delays, this was the ship's maiden voyage. The itinerary we received was not followed. While we understand the Cruise line reserves the right to alter the itinerary, the problem on this cruise was that no revised itinerary was every published, despite repeated requests from the passengers. We were advised the night before at the daily briefings where we would be going the next day. That presented major problems as well. Everyone was expected to attend the daily briefings, but the lounge could only accommodate about 60% of the less than 200 passengers. In our opinion this was yet another design flaw with this ship. Why book two hundred passengers and then only accommodate 60% for all of the community activities which included briefings and entertainment? If one intended to catch up on cruise pictures, the itinerary or ports of call, using the new flat screen TVs, that was impossible also. Although the TV menu listed all of these features/programs none of them ever became available during the entire cruise. Our cruise was entiled Tulips and Windmills and by and large we missed the tulip fields. Our cruise began in Amsterdam and should have begun with a tour of the Tulip Gardens. Instead it was the very last day of our cruise. Our guide for the Garden tour began by telling us that had we been there a week earlier we would have gotten to experience a lot more of the garden's beauty. The one part of cruise which was superb was the ding room team. The food was very good and our wait staff, especially Ronaldo, was an absolute pleasure to be around. They were all well trained, efficient and most accommodating. We enjoyed them immensely and credit them with making our meals most enjoyable. I should note that our cruise ship staff seemed a bit harried. Perhaps it was the fact that this was the maiden voyage and there were a lot of questions, especially about the itinerary that they were unable to answer. We had not experienced anything like that in our other two Viking cruises. We are planning a trip on the Danube and also a Russian Cruise and were certain we would continue cruising with Viking, but we are exploring other Cruise lines now. In an effort to be helpful to Viking, I wrote a 7 page critique of our experience and submitted it on the last day of the cruise. Weeks later I received a call from Viking when we were not available to answer it. In the message, I was told there was no need to return the call as they had a record of my concerns. As A loyal Viking Cruiser I had higher expectations in terms of their interst in my feedback. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2011
My husband and I are usually solo travelers, with a full agenda of art, antiquities and scenic wonders to see, and food to sample, taking photographs as opportunities present. Some places are not so easy for the solo traveler. For two of ... Read More
My husband and I are usually solo travelers, with a full agenda of art, antiquities and scenic wonders to see, and food to sample, taking photographs as opportunities present. Some places are not so easy for the solo traveler. For two of those, Russia and China (so far), we've had outstanding experiences on Viking. Our Waterways of the Czars cruise on the Viking Kirov (now renamed Truvor) was exceptional. The Kirov was very comfortable: not too big, recently updated, good wi-fi reception throughout, and ample seating inside and out; the food was very good with lots of choices; and service throughout was attentive. Ours was the last cruise of the season (October 9 to 22), which gave us stunning foliage, many glorious cool days interspersed with some rain and even some snow, which we could enjoy without the crush of other tourists. There are many treasures to see and much history and culture to absorb in Moscow and St. Petersburg, and at ports in between. Viking seems to attract informed and curious travelers, and it makes every effort to ensure that everyone can do and see as much and as thoroughly as they wish. The guides (there were 6 who accompanied the trip from beginning to end, each responsible for approximately 26 passengers), were well educated and informed, and were refreshingly candid in discussing Russia's recent past and present. The tour director and her staff were very helpful (and quite entertaining). It was a great trip! We look forward to seeing more of Russia on Viking. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2011
I felt very comfortable with Viking from the very first time I spoke to a representative to the minute I said goodbye. We were sure that it could not be as simple and as easy as the people said, but I was wrong. Everything went without a ... Read More
I felt very comfortable with Viking from the very first time I spoke to a representative to the minute I said goodbye. We were sure that it could not be as simple and as easy as the people said, but I was wrong. Everything went without a hitch. No sudden surprises, no additional bill because it was in the fine print. The meals were excellent! The wine and company makes us smile yet today when Iwe think back on it. I had never wanted to leave the U.S. or take a cruise, but I did want to make my wife happy. I now plan to take her on as many more Viking River Cruises as I can manage. There were absolutley no, none, zero unhappy members of the staff. EVERYONE smiled and it always felt real. The ports were great, the excursions were fantastic! I loved the way we each had an ear piece so we could hear the tour guide. I watched other tours come through us, in a hurry, in a tight group so they could hear, and then the rest of their group straggleing behind with no clue as to what they were seeing. EVERYONE on our ship could tell you about any part of the tour because they were all able to hear it! The tour guides really seemed to know their stuff, partly because they actually live there. The guides had humour, the worst guide was better than I expected for all of them. We were close to the youngest couple aboard and we did not feel out of place. I can't say enough good about this cruise line and its people. THANK YOU--Jeff and Mandie from Montana Read Less

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