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We chose this cruise primarily for the itinerary, especially Normandy and Paris. We frequently cruise on Celebrity, Princess and Carnival but wanted to try a river cruise. It will be our last river cruise. For one thing, our room was incredibly small, with no room to pass between the bed and the dresser area. And we are not large people. We discovered that French Veranda means no veranda. Only a sliding door. At booking, I was told it was the only room left. That was interesting because we met another couple at dinner who said they had just gotten the last remaining room a few days before sailing. Worse than the size was the very loud rattling of the light housing above the entrance area of the room when the engine was running. We have a sound machine but could not turn it up loud enough to cover the rattling sound which kept us awake if the ship was moving. We complained six or seven times to the front desk, first by phone and then in person. After getting no response, my wife recorded the rattling on her phone and took it down to the front desk. Several hours later, a service man appeared, agreed it was a bad rattle, and left. That was the extent of it. We had to live with it the rest of the cruise. To make matters worse, I had called Viking prior to our trip and simply asked if there was any discount on future cruises if we booked during the cruise like other cruise lines. The agent said there was not, but if I would book right then, I could contact him after we sailed and get a $200 pp discount as previous customer. So I signed us up for a China cruise and bought the trip insurance. Because of our bad experience, I called and cancelled the China trip, with the assurance that since we were more than 210 days out from that sailing, I would only have to pay $100 pp penalty. However, they said I will have to pay more than $1,200 penalty because I have to pay for the insurance. I did not authorize them to activate the insurance since I had more than 90 days to cancel. It appears they will now be paid twice for this room on this cruise while I, living on a fixed income, will be out more than $1,200. If I had not given in to the pressure to sign up before the cruise (I told the agent we wanted to see if we liked it before signing up for another) I would not be out more than $1,200!! I realize I can forward this amount to another Viking cruise, but considering our experience, I just want to be rid of them. The food was generally good, but limited selections and availability if you're used to large cruise liners. Excursions were mostly good and with only one exception, were included in the cost of the cruise. The program director, Mimi, was very good and a hard worker. The extent of the entertainment was very limited television in the room and a pianist in the lounge.

First and last river cruise with Viking

Viking Rolf Cruise Review by choctaw9

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: August 2018
  • Destination: Europe
  • Cabin Type: French Balcony
We chose this cruise primarily for the itinerary, especially Normandy and Paris. We frequently cruise on Celebrity, Princess and Carnival but wanted to try a river cruise. It will be our last river cruise.

For one thing, our room was incredibly small, with no room to pass between the bed and the dresser area. And we are not large people. We discovered that French Veranda means no veranda. Only a sliding door. At booking, I was told it was the only room left. That was interesting because we met another couple at dinner who said they had just gotten the last remaining room a few days before sailing.

Worse than the size was the very loud rattling of the light housing above the entrance area of the room when the engine was running. We have a sound machine but could not turn it up loud enough to cover the rattling sound which kept us awake if the ship was moving. We complained six or seven times to the front desk, first by phone and then in person. After getting no response, my wife recorded the rattling on her phone and took it down to the front desk. Several hours later, a service man appeared, agreed it was a bad rattle, and left. That was the extent of it. We had to live with it the rest of the cruise.

To make matters worse, I had called Viking prior to our trip and simply asked if there was any discount on future cruises if we booked during the cruise like other cruise lines. The agent said there was not, but if I would book right then, I could contact him after we sailed and get a $200 pp discount as previous customer. So I signed us up for a China cruise and bought the trip insurance. Because of our bad experience, I called and cancelled the China trip, with the assurance that since we were more than 210 days out from that sailing, I would only have to pay $100 pp penalty. However, they said I will have to pay more than $1,200 penalty because I have to pay for the insurance. I did not authorize them to activate the insurance since I had more than 90 days to cancel. It appears they will now be paid twice for this room on this cruise while I, living on a fixed income, will be out more than $1,200. If I had not given in to the pressure to sign up before the cruise (I told the agent we wanted to see if we liked it before signing up for another) I would not be out more than $1,200!! I realize I can forward this amount to another Viking cruise, but considering our experience, I just want to be rid of them.

The food was generally good, but limited selections and availability if you're used to large cruise liners.

Excursions were mostly good and with only one exception, were included in the cost of the cruise. The program director, Mimi, was very good and a hard worker.

The extent of the entertainment was very limited television in the room and a pianist in the lounge.
Viking Cruises, Community Team has responded
We appreciate the opportunity to respond to your review, choctaw9. Your thoughtful praise of Mimi is delightful to hear, though we are sorry to learn of your displeasure with your first Viking voyage. The miscommunication regarding stateroom availability you’ve outlined is regrettable, as well as the in-cabin disruptions. Rest assured that all of your comments have been recorded for review by our Executive Team. choctaw9, if you haven’t connected with us already, we would welcome the opportunity to learn more about what could have made this the top-notch cruise you were expecting at TellUs@vikingcruises.com, and hopefully restore your faith in Viking. We hope to hear from you, and wish you a pleasant day.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of The Independent Traveler, Inc.
choctaw9’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

French Balcony
Cabin D 236
Very small. Not really enough room for two average size people. Bed was comfortable and they did bring us a sheet and blanket to replace the duvet which was much too heavy and hot. There was adequate storage for our clothes. The refrigerator was nice.
Middle Deck Balcony Cabins