Viking Prestige Review

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Why Choose Viking Prestige?

  • Cruises Europe's Danube and Rhine Rivers
  • Shore tours at each port included in the cruise fare
  • Riverboat has six single occupancy cabins

Viking Prestige Overview

Editor Rating
Viking Prestige, which debuted in 2011, is Viking River Cruises' last new-build before it begins to introduce its revolutionary Longship series in 2012. The design of this vessel, a sister to Viking Legend, is considered the standard for Europe river cruise boats. There's a lounge and dining room forward, a library aft, a sun deck above and cabins on three decks. What makes this ship interesting, not to mention an extremely comfortable vessel in which to travel, is that the line has carefully updated and upgraded facilities, particularly with in-cabin features like flat-screen televisions and interactive channels, a superbly designed bathroom and a lounge that doubles as an alternative eatery.

Beyond that, Viking River Cruises remains one of the more traditional river operators, both onboard and in port. Mealtimes, particularly dinner, are at a set time, and while passengers can choose their tablemates from night to night, there are few, if any, intimate-sized tables, so the atmosphere fosters -- if not forces -- sociability. Shore excursions, many of which are included in the cruise fare, are standard offerings; there's nothing unusual, such as a recreational-oriented experience, say, a cycling tour that visits local wineries, or thematic, such as wine and food tastings.

On the other hand, on our Viking Prestige Danube cruise, we were impressed by the staff's commitment to entertainment that enriched passengers about the areas we were traveling through, from a well-presented lecture on the European Union to fun fare like a wandering accordion player, complete with Bavarian costume.

Interestingly, although it's a ship that's clearly aimed at a more senior traveler, there is no elevator aboard Viking Prestige. However, those with mobility issues are otherwise accommodated. (On walking tours, there's usually at least one group for those who need a more gentle pace, and tour brochures indicate levels of activity.)

Our rating for service reflects the fact that it varied fairly wildly on our cruise. Sometimes it was exceptional and intuitive. Other times, it was appallingly unprofessional. (In one instance, one of the bartenders, when asked for a glass of water, rudely told passengers to go and help themselves from the machines in the lobby.)

All in all, Viking may lack some of the more exciting bells and whistles being offered by other European river cruise operators, but it nevertheless offers a solid value-for-money cruise on Europe's rivers.

Viking Prestige Fellow Passengers

Viking attracts an older crowd; on our trip, 55-plus was the norm. Passengers are generally well-traveled, though more are likely to have signed up with tour operators than explore independently. There's an increasing percentage of travelers who have been longtime coastal cruisers and are just discovering rivers. Viking passengers come mostly from the U.S., but the line also appeals to those from the U.K., Australia and New Zealand.

It's a social group; many we met were traveling with groups of pals. It's also a marvelous ship for solo travelers because, in addition to the solo-dedicated cabins, passengers were convivial and definitely adopted singles into their groups.

Viking Prestige Dress Code

The dress code is casual, day and night. Passengers dress for comfort (slacks and Polos for men, slacks and blouses for women) during the day and don resort-casual attire at night. The only even remotely formal evening is the captain's gala dinner, but you'll fit in just fine in your nicest casual finery –-- no ties required.

Viking Prestige Gratuity

Tips are pooled among all onboard staff and crew, and the line recommends 12 euros per person, per day. You can pay in cash or by credit card. It's also suggested that you tip guides on shore excursions -- one or two euros is plenty, unless they went to extra effort for you.
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Viking Prestige Member Reviews

The Viking river cruise staff from cruise director, concierge, dining room waiters, house cleaning workers continue to be superb. They get to personally know you despite the short time you are on board. The on board meals are incredible and equal ... Read more
I always was intrigued by the TV commercials on PBS. Just looked to be a relaxing and enjoyable itinerary. It was! Wonderful shore excursions/sightseeing and amazing very comfortable cabin (I travelled as a single). The staff from cabin steward to ... Read more
Great trip golfer158
We went with friends to celebrate our 65fith birthday's. Starting with our AAA travel agent everything went great. Travel package presented before the trip outlined everything very well, flights were great, transfer went without a hitch both ends ... Read more
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Viking Prestige Ratings

Editor Rating 4.0 Member Rating
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