4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
Just finished Viking Romantic Danube cruise. First time this Viking ship sailed, without interruption, from Nuremberg to Budapest. Only, maybe, the second week that any Viking ship made the cruise end-to-end without a ship swap. The ... Read More
Just finished Viking Romantic Danube cruise. First time this Viking ship sailed, without interruption, from Nuremberg to Budapest. Only, maybe, the second week that any Viking ship made the cruise end-to-end without a ship swap. The low water levels on both the Rhine and Danube will likely continue into 2019 season (begins in March). The cruise, when uninterrupted like ours, was great. Crew was great, very good customer service. Ship was in great shape. However, crew members did say it has been a very tough season - with all the ship swaps and motor coach substitutions, most of the "cruises" were filled with very disgruntled customers. This cruise and crew would entice me to take another Viking cruise. However, I plan to do even more due diligence before the next cruise. Viking management appears to be passing the buck to the crews, not informing cruisers of the "real situation" on the rivers, leaving the crews to inform the cruisers - who proceed to shoot the messenger. I'd be very leery of a future river cruise, given Viking's terms and conditions, which pretty much state that one you've paid, they can change anything. Bus you the whole way, etc. The silver beverage package should be closely evaluated - we considered, being that I like my high end spirits. Glad we chose to go "by the glass", because our ship was either out of stock, or very low, on many of the best spirits. Having to settle for a lesser beverage didn't sting quite so much, because I hadn't pre-paid. Also, the Viking air travel arrangement simply sucked. Very long layovers, early boarding calls, etc. All for Viking's convenience, with no concern for the customer. Next time, I do my own flight selections. Not getting up at 2 am again, just so Viking can save a bus trip. Or getting home 20 hrs later, just because the Viking scheduler bot saved $2 on the long layover. I'll pay more for better service, but Viking never offered. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
I could go on and on about this trip and how Viking was misleading and didn’t come close to delivering what they originally promised. I am going to touch on a few of the lowlights. First with something positive, the crew was been put in ... Read More
I could go on and on about this trip and how Viking was misleading and didn’t come close to delivering what they originally promised. I am going to touch on a few of the lowlights. First with something positive, the crew was been put in a tough situation and tried to make the best of it; however, I can’t give the cruise director a pass. Having seen this happen over and over, he is a willing accomplice to this train wreck; feigning surprise at every new disaster along the way. The first sign of the impending doom were the two emails I received within days of our departure stating the river was low and we might have to take a bus between ports. Once I received the letter, I immediately called Viking and asked for a refund. They assured me this was “very unusual and not to worry.” I encouraged them to do the right thing and give me a refund, but when push came to shove they said no cancellation or refund would be allowed and that this was “in my contract.” So my family and I hoped for the best and got ready for the trip. We have been on many cruises with nearly every cruise line. I mean how bad could it be, right? I kept thinking Viking wouldn’t have all these people spend all that money only to be put us on buses; that could kill their reputation. Passau, Germany. The wheels start coming off the train. Boat never made it to Passau. Instead we docked around Straubing in the middle of nowhere. Took a 3-hour, roundtrip bus ride from the boat to Passau. When we finally arrived in Passau, our day, of course, was cut short due to the drive. The bus pulled up to the dock right at the edge of town where the ship should have been. My wife and a bunch of other passengers paid a lot extra for the Salzburg excursion. This drive was an extra 1 ½ hours, which left very little extra time to explore. You have seen the commercials. They advertise that you will be cruising leisurely through the captivating Wachau Valley, laughing with drink in hand as the incredible scenery passes before you. No such luck. Instead, we awoke at 8 am to pack our bags and leave them in the hall. Then boarded a bus for a 3 ½ hour trip, including an hour long stop at a truck stop in the middle of nowhere. My wife and I did manage to get a romantic stroll through the parking lot and they did give us all tokens to use the bathroom. That’s right, you read that correctly. PACKED BAGS, TRUCK STOP AND 3 ½ HOUR DRIVE. Didn’t board the new ship till after 12pm for lunch and delivery of our luggage. But, the show must go on. A few brave souls that refused to be denied, walked to another bus for another 45 minute drive to the Gottweig Abbey tour. We were now so far behind schedule it was late, completely dark and foggy. Needless to say, we could not see anything. However, the abbey really looked beautiful from the pictures I have seen. On to Budapest! Up at 6am to pack our bags and put them at the door by 7:15am. By now we know the drill. Less like a vacation and more like the military. Bus departed at 8:21am for Budapest. Another 3 ½ hour drive, including an hour long stop at a (you guessed it) TRUCK STOP. Have you ever seen four packed tour busses unload at a small truck stop? If not, you should. It is quite the treat. No, I am not making this up. We arrived at Budapest exhausted and were shuffled off to the tour, already way behind scheduled and ending again IN THE DARK. None of the promised time to “explore the city.” No night time scenic cruise of the city. There was a lot more that happened, but you get the idea. There were bed bugs, torn sheets, boats stacked 3 deep on docks, no toilet paper on busses, only one on ship lecture, etc, etc. Viking pretty much gave up. By the time we boarded the third boat and with a completely different crew, they had completely given up. Bottomline, this is an expensive, bad bus tour between boat docks where they use their stationary boats as floating hotels. I still can’t believe they are getting away with this. Viking’s staff issued talking points are to try and tell you how unusual this is, but we spoke to vendors that work with Viking (think bus drivers, tour guides, taxi drivers) along the way and they all said this has been going on with Viking for some time now. It is a known issue (that is, the low river levels). Final story, as we were leaving for the airport, the next group of passengers were boarding the boat. I overheard a crew person trying to explain to the new guests how the boat would not be leaving and they would need to board a bus in the morning for their next destination. Needless to say the passenger was upset. Wow, good job Viking! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We purchased the very over-priced Viking Romantic Danube cruise, departing from Nuremberg and "sailing" to Budapest on Nov. 18, 2018. During the weeks and months prior to our first river cruise date, members of our foursome ... Read More
We purchased the very over-priced Viking Romantic Danube cruise, departing from Nuremberg and "sailing" to Budapest on Nov. 18, 2018. During the weeks and months prior to our first river cruise date, members of our foursome contacted Viking to confirm conditions were still good for our cruise. We were told that if we hadn't received any notifications indicating otherwise, all was well. On Nov. 14, 2 days before our long flights from YYC, Viking sent notice that low water levels meant we would travel on a similar longship "with all the comfort and style" of the Atla and that " on the morning of Day 7, we will likely need to disembark the ship in Vienna and travel by motorcoach to Budapest (150 miles)". Our river cruise and upgraded flights were all paid for, so we moved forward - hopeful that we wouldn't have to trade the most beautiful and anticipated part of our river cruise - the Wachau Valley - for a tedious 4 hour bus tour. But, of course we did - and not only did we miss the Wachau Valley because we reached it in the evening, but we endured another 4 hour bus ride on the busy Autoban while being shuffled around 3 different ships! Every few nights we had to pack up our rooms and set our bags outside for transfer to our next Longship We are frequent ocean cruisers and realise river cruising is different, but neither our ships nor our "French Balcony" stateroom could be described as comfortable or stylish. Our French Balcony was an expensive security risk - usually we were docked with another longship wedged up beside us - curtains had to be kept closed and balcony door locked - it was claustrophobic in the tiny room. Since there are no exercise facilities on the Viking Longboats, I took along water-weights, hoping to work out in our room, but that was impossible, since bags had to be packed up frequently and the room was far too small to allow any movement. All optional tours in Budapest were cancelled, due to our late arrival. The highlight of our trip was the days before and after the Viking cruise that we spent on our own in Nuremberg and Budapest. Our meals were good - nowhere near what we're used to on Ocean cruises (for a far less price). The rooms were clean. The staff were hardworking and friendly (so we paid the full recommended tips). The included shore excursions were good, however we only had opportunity to go on one optional excursion and that was very expensive but good, as well. Our upgraded liquor packages were not worth it, since they had run out of most of the wines we were told would be available to us, by the time we reached our last ship and they certainly weren't serving anything up on our bus hauls! The worse is yet to come!...our follow up. Viking offered us a future cruise credit "because we believe your overall cruise experience may have been affected by an unexpected situation". In other words, purchase another Viking cruise and they would be willing to pay for a small part of it - provided you did it within a year. When I said "thanks but no thanks" I was contacted by phone by a very unprofessional Viking agent. Our call consisted of so many long, pregnant pauses that I finally had to ask why she had called. She said she didn't want to insult me but wanted to make a deal. She offered a slightly larger cruise credit. When I asked how many times she thought we had changed ships, she gave it some thought and said "Oh, on this trip - maybe 3 or 4". Obviously, she hadn't even read my written complaint, but so much for the "unexpected situation"! When I told her that our travelling companions and other guests had been offered more, she told me that we were "entitled to nothing" and that we "can't make a deal" and proceeded to hang up. I can't imagine ever doing business with Viking again. Only their greed and confidence that they wouldn't be held liable could have allowed them to sell such a cruise (known low-water conditions) to unsuspecting fools like us. They were careful to keep the on-going situation hidden from us until the last days prior to sailing, and even more careful to include all kinds of self-serving protection in the fine print regarding "the carrier's rights". Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
My husband wanted to go back to the Motherland of Hungary. We heard that Prague was a very beautiful city and we were not disappointed. With Germany and Austria in-between it was a Cruise perfect for what we were looking for. Season was ... Read More
My husband wanted to go back to the Motherland of Hungary. We heard that Prague was a very beautiful city and we were not disappointed. With Germany and Austria in-between it was a Cruise perfect for what we were looking for. Season was perfect with many of the tourists back to work and the weather cooperated whereas it was not to hot. The Staff on the ship was sensational and could not do enough to make the trip an exceptional experience. The food was perfect not overboard, but plentiful. Our room was very cozy and warm but everyone should get the full size sliding door to get the full effect of the beautiful scenery seen along the way. All shore trip excursions were well planned and organized to get the most out of the cities that were visited. Night time was for relaxing and making new friendships with a cocktail or two! The cruise was priced right. We are currently trying to plan our next Viking Trip! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
We had never taken a river cruise before. However after this trip we hope to do many more! We went on both the pre and post cruise extensions. Both Budapest and Prague were wonderful. The architecture was magnificent. The hotels were well ... Read More
We had never taken a river cruise before. However after this trip we hope to do many more! We went on both the pre and post cruise extensions. Both Budapest and Prague were wonderful. The architecture was magnificent. The hotels were well appointed and close to everything. The on shore excursions were well organized. We learnt a lot of very interesting history and had very informative guides. We had to change ships mid way and things went extremely smoothly. In fact if I had left a toothbrush in one bathroom I bet it would be in the exact same place on the next ship! The meals were very good with a lot of variety and something for everyone's taste. The staterooms were well appointed with a place for all your items. The crew were very friendly, very helpful and always willing to make sure you were happy. I highly recommend Viking! Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
Where we were going, have done Viking before and liked it. We did explore Budapest a bit before departure. The ship is spacious and very friendly staff. We had to switch boats and the staff recommended who we should look up after ... Read More
Where we were going, have done Viking before and liked it. We did explore Budapest a bit before departure. The ship is spacious and very friendly staff. We had to switch boats and the staff recommended who we should look up after switching. Shore excursions are fantastic. Informative and fun with very friendly tour guides. I would and will definitely go again. Once back on the boat there was time to relax a bit before cocktails, dinner and evening entertainment. When changing boats, the transition was as smooth as it could possibly have been. The food on board was all very good. There were plenty of options so everyone could have just what the wanted. We did purchase the silver drink package and it was definitely worth the money. I woill plan another Viking riverboat cruise and ocean cruise in the future. Thank you for making it such a great experience. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
I have to preface this review by saying that I have cruised every brand: from the super cheap to Seabourn and have been on 20+ cruises all over the world - usually crusing with the top-end: Seabourn, Silversea, Crystal, etc. We sailed ... Read More
I have to preface this review by saying that I have cruised every brand: from the super cheap to Seabourn and have been on 20+ cruises all over the world - usually crusing with the top-end: Seabourn, Silversea, Crystal, etc. We sailed on the Danube River from Budapest to Nuremberg and had to change ships due to low water levels like a few others had mentioned. There were many things that made me irritated about this cruise. I will delineate them: 1. The Viking Company: Viking knew we had to change ships but did not notify the guests until days before our sailing - just like one of the other reviews mentioned just recently. I was told by the crew on the ship that this had been going on for months! Really, Viking?! We are in a world where we can forecast rain well in advance (this affects the water levels, right?!), and they are in the River business and clearly can predict water levels and could have notified guests well in advance so that we could cancel and reschedule. Stop the games and fraudulent activity by not letting customers know in advance that they have to change ships in the middle of the cruise! And as an experienced cruiser, I don’t like having to pack and unpack and leave bags out in the middle of the night in the middle of my cruise! I especially didn’t appreciate the long bus ride to the next port instead of seeing part of the Danube by ship! The Tour Director said in one of his cruise briefings: “Be happy that you were not on the other bus going the other way, as they had to spend 3 1/2 hours on a bus!” Yes, spending 3 hours total (not 3 1/2) on a bus did make us happier... more about our Cruise Director later. 2. The staff: Most of them were very UNaccommodating! I was traveling with a group, and we all shared the same consensus about the horrific level of service independent of one another. You think I was asking for a million dollars when I asked a few staff members over the course of the cruise a few basic things that I neeeded. The attitude was just plain disgusting. My comment to Viking: If your staff members hate their jobs, get rid of them. There were so many who clearly hated working on the ship and were forgetting that they were hired to provide great service to their guests - novel concept for a “high-end” ship. The staff needs and overhaul! Basically, I never asked for anything again after a couple of days since I didn’t want to “inconvenience” your staff. The suite: Now seriously, what does it take to clean the balcony and the furniture on it? There were so many spider webs and spiders that I did not want to spend any time on the balcony! I paid a premium for the balcony but deemed it “unusable.” Inside the stateroom, there were bug splatters on the ceilings and walls where people have taken insect control in their own hands - it was just simply gross! Viking: Just clean your staterooms from the ground up - literally! How much effort does this take? The food: I’ve had better and more creative meals at Denny’s. I understand that feeding 180+ passengers is a lot of work and expensive, so stop trying to “save money by going “cheap” and fast with your meals. My poor husband’s ribeye steak was gray (yes, as it was “old”) and 1/2 inch thick. I get it: If you want to feed two people one ribeye steak, then cut it in half - lengthwise! What a great way to save money and fool your guest that they are getting a real ribeye! Most of the dinners were “edible,” but heaven forbid if you asked for anything outside of each passengers’ quota for an appetizer, entree, and dessert. Don’t get me started on this one: I lost weight on this cruise (not by choice) - yes, that’s a first! The Cruise Director (Anthony): He was very funny when he was entertaining the guests but, one-on-one, he was not so accommodating. Again, the bad attitude - and appeared to be annoyed if you asked him anything. I saw enough of his interactions with other passengers (and me) to come up with this suggestion. It is clear that I will never sail with Viking again. Don’t waste your money or valuable vacation time. What a huge disappointment! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
I have been to several countries since 1992, but never to Hungary, Austria and Germany. The cruise was wonderful traveling along the Danube River. It was wonderful not having to always leave the ship to see so many interesting sights. ... Read More
I have been to several countries since 1992, but never to Hungary, Austria and Germany. The cruise was wonderful traveling along the Danube River. It was wonderful not having to always leave the ship to see so many interesting sights. We had an outside balcony so we could sit and enjoy the beautiful scenery along the way. We really liked the optional tours we took by bus. I had a bi-lateral knee operation two years ago and the walking tour was excellent, as I was in the leisure strollers group and I used my cane. The guides were so well versed and ready to answer any questions we had. The food was excellent and we had many dining choices such as buffet, sit down dinners and snacks and we got to choose from standard choices like hamburgs and sandwiches and ethnic foods, like Hungarian Goulash. I taught a Foods class and attended the Culinary Institute in Hyde park, N.Y., so i know what a good chef we had. I love classical music and the concert by the residence Orchestra at a castle in Vienna was wonderful. I also taught History at one time and the trip to the courtroom where the Nazis were on trial was spell binding. The guide was such an excellent speaker and during the hour we were there, the guide was spell binding. The service was excellent and if we wanted anything, such as more sauce for a meat, it arrived immediately after it was requested. I certainly would go again. I haven't been to Sweden and my Paternal Grand-Mother was born in Stockholm, so Id like go go there. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
I wanted to try a river cruise as I don't want to sail the ocean. It looked like so much fun. I wanted to see Europe from the water. In most of the commercials we would see the huge building in Budapest with the red roofs. I ... Read More
I wanted to try a river cruise as I don't want to sail the ocean. It looked like so much fun. I wanted to see Europe from the water. In most of the commercials we would see the huge building in Budapest with the red roofs. I wanted to go there and see that. We saw it from a bus ride through Buda and Pest. We slept on a boat docked on the Danube near the Chain bridge. It was beautiful and magical. The next morning we took a bus tour around Budapest and then took a 3+ hour bus ride to Vienna. This would be wonderful trip turned out to be a huge disappointment. We met lots of new people who all felt like we did. This is not what we were sold, not what we expected or what we paid for. The water level was low on the Danube but it had been all summer. Viking didn't let us know until days before we were to embark that levels were low. They did not give us the option to cancel our trip. We were on 3 ships in 7 days and traveled half the river by bus and the other half at night with the exception of one afternoon and one late evening. We upgraded to a Veranda room so we could enjoy the river from there but that was a waste of money. What a major disappointment. It wasn't relaxing. We couldn't unpack and kick back. We were on the go all the time. We had to get up early and put our bags in the hallway to be ready for the next ship change.. Not much of a vacation. The food was ok. The ships were clean. We saw some beautiful and interesting sites. The staff did their best to make the trip pleasant. They seemed understaffed on the last ship and not as attentive however. We'd get our disappointing news in the evening about what the next day would bring. I cannot recommend Viking. They have not tried to make this right. They offered 25% off a future cruise....to be taken within a year. That does nothing for the unsatisfactory trip we just had. Viking is the only winner in that scenario. We wasted a lot of money and don't want to see others do the same thing. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
Viking Cruises now has a loyal customer for life! Not only was the cruise AMAZING! But I feel like you learn a lot about a company based off of how they deal with obscacles. Four days before our cruise started, we were informed that ... Read More
Viking Cruises now has a loyal customer for life! Not only was the cruise AMAZING! But I feel like you learn a lot about a company based off of how they deal with obscacles. Four days before our cruise started, we were informed that the water was low and we would be aboard Ship Jarl (not original ship) instead of Ship Atla (orginal ship) and that there was a possibilty that if the water didn't rise, we would have to swap from the Jarl to the Atla.  How fabulous is it that the moment they knew of the issue, they informed us! When we got on the Jarl, our WONDERFUL Cruise Director, Mario, told us what he knew, what we could expect if we had to switch ships, and when he'd give us our next update. They were honest and kept us informed as they promised. Where we did have to switch ships, because mother nature wasn't in our favor, they did EVERYTHING they could to make the change comfortable. Mario worked countless hours with other individuals behind the scenes to get us to the Atla with as much ease as they could provide. All inconveniences were minimal. We had to pack and unpack an additional time. And if you can even call it an inconvenience, we were able to take the most beautiful country side drive through Germany for 3 hours. We saw farms, villages on the hill side, and gorgeous churches and their different architecture. AND a tour that they thought they'd have to cancel, Mario worked it out so we'd be able to do the tour at a later time after we reached the Atla. We were so impressed by how they handled the issue. And it's worth noting that there was another cruise line (that I can't remember the name of) that wasn't able to fulfill on their itinerary because of the low water issue as there isn’t much you can do when it’s a Mother Nature issue. Viking did everything in their power to keep us on track and they did a phenomenal job. The water level was out of their control, but they took control of the issue and provided solution after solution to keep us happy and comfortable. Now, that I've gushed a bit about how they handled that issue (and I could gush more!), I want to gush about the boat, food, staff, and tours. Boat - Easy to navigate. Even the smallest room felt open and roomy. The upper deck was perfect way to end the day. We’d watch the country side as we talked and had our evening tea. THE FOOD!! We were so fat and happy after our trip. The dinners were especially delicious and we loved that it was local cusiune!! So nummy!! Our waiters would give us their recommendations and they never steered us wrong. There were times when all the desserts looked so scrumptious, we got them all!! And had our bellies not been so happily extended, we would have had more!! Staff - Oh, the staff. It didn't matter if we were on the Jarl or Atla, the people were fabulous. Attentive. Funny. Sweet. Caring. Personable. Informative. They made life on the boat a home. We loved how quickly we were able to make jokes with them. They always remembered our drink preferences for meals and would cater their recommendations based off of what we said we’d liked from previous meals. When we’d retire to bed, a blanket that I brought from home was always folded in a new way. My favorite was when Alexander made it into a bow tie! It was a wonderful environment to be in. A huge thanks to Dragan, Connie, Jayson, Radu, Alexander, Skiffy, Emanuel, and Nikolas. They’re who we were able to personally get to know during our trip. And where we were able to get to know them, every person on those ships deserve recognition for how hard they worked to give other guests the same attention and care our little boat family gave us! Tours - Viking picked the BEST people to give tours. They were local to the area and they where very knowledgable and passionate about what we did. It was great to talk to them as they had multiple generations of family that lived in the area and were able to tell us about their own history. No book or class will ever provoke feelings or thoughts like walking around the cities with people who know not only the history stories, but their family’s history as well. You appreciate it so much more. Having that opportunity gave the cities a whole new life and meaning to me. And whether it was the included or optional tours, you can't go wrong. You learn history on such a personal level. Read Less
Viking Atla Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 3.0 0.0
Public Rooms 5.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 1.0 0.0
Family 1.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 4.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 3.0 0.0
Rates 4.0 0.0

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