7 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
11 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
17 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
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
So, the sad thing is that I know Viking wants to be the best in the business. But, they did not deliver what I purchased - a river cruise. A long-anticipated and saved-for vacation dream turned into a nightmare of long daily bus rides ... Read More
So, the sad thing is that I know Viking wants to be the best in the business. But, they did not deliver what I purchased - a river cruise. A long-anticipated and saved-for vacation dream turned into a nightmare of long daily bus rides less than halfway through the trip. So, the great food and great service didn't matter anymore. Since both the problems we encountered seemed avoidable to me*, and Viking's response to a ruined trip was to offer a discount if I spent more money on another trip (that might be just as disastrous), I cannot recommend this for your vacation cruise dream. (*Here's what happened to stop the river travel: First, Viking took a day of our trip to stop and repair some part of the engine that they knew about before the trip began. Then, a light rain in Passau caused the river to rise. Apparently their boats are built too tall to fit under a bridge if the river rises.) Here are things that went well and I would look for in another tour company: Embarkation was a breeze in Budapest, Hungary. Budapest tour was very good and the night tour was beautiful. The French balcony cabin is delightful - highly recommend the extra expense to get the full window. The intimate group of passengers and the open seating worked well to mix up people and ensure familiar faces everywhere you went. The walking tours were fine, but were rushed and shortened due to our bussing situation. The staff was exemplary and asked that we separate their service ratings from our overall unhappiness ratings! The food was fabulous, but we had to eat lunch in restaurants several days because the boat was miles away. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
My main issue with this cruise was that I had called prior to the cruise and specifically asked about the issue regarding water levels in the Danube. I was told that there was no problem with our trip at that time AND that, if there were, ... Read More
My main issue with this cruise was that I had called prior to the cruise and specifically asked about the issue regarding water levels in the Danube. I was told that there was no problem with our trip at that time AND that, if there were, we would be notified prior to leaving. This DID NOT HAPPEN. After we boarded the ship, we were told that there MIGHT be an issue on day 3. Well, come to find out that the issue had been happening all summer and, with no rain in the forecast, would continue to happen throughout. I started writing emails ( the wi fi was slower than dial up on the ship) on day 3 of the cruise. None of my emails were answered. I had to wait until I got home to call customer service. The person did apologize and offered me minimal compensation toward a future cruise. I will NEVER cruise with VIKING again unless I go free. This is analogous to the VOLKSWAGON issue to me. I was intentionally mislead and spend half of my vacation on buses. A river cruise with no river is not a river cruise at all. The correct course of action for VIKING, in my opinion, would have been to notify guests in advance via email that there were drought conditions in Europe and that there was a possibility that the trip might be altered. That way, people could have made an informed choice rather than being left feeling tricked. The ship was lovely although the staterooms and bathrooms were microscopic. AND expensive... This was supposed to be 5 star. I travel frequently and this trip was a major dissappointment. The shore excursions were variable. One excursion was included each day and when 180 people from our Viking ship along with another 400 from sister ships descended on a small medieval town it was a cross between a grade school field trip and attack of the geriatric body snatchers. Food was uniformly excellent. Staff worked very very hard but it was difficult to overcome the issues generated by the company. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
Viking does a great job marketing and we were sold a “first class experience” when booking one of two explorer suites. These suites are right above the engines in the back of the boat. Low water on the Danube exasperated the loudness ... Read More
Viking does a great job marketing and we were sold a “first class experience” when booking one of two explorer suites. These suites are right above the engines in the back of the boat. Low water on the Danube exasperated the loudness if the suite and the vibrations made our teeth chatter. We had to be moved to another room on the cruise. Horrific experience and very poor customer experience. Viking also has no automation for passenger boarding and leaving ship. Traditional ocean liners have an automated system where you put in your card upon entering and exiting the ship. Viking does this work paper cards that you are given (and have to wait in line for) each time you enter or exit the ship. Ridiculous and so old school! They cruise officers were always looking for people at each port. I would also never add anything port extensions on with Viking. Very poor hotels, especially the Corenthia in Prague Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We were not told that there was a broken lock preventing us from leaving the ugly canal filled with factories in Nuremberg until the second day of the cruise. The staff was nice but made it clear that they had absolutely no power to help ... Read More
We were not told that there was a broken lock preventing us from leaving the ugly canal filled with factories in Nuremberg until the second day of the cruise. The staff was nice but made it clear that they had absolutely no power to help us. They were vague and noncommittal and made it seem as if we were crazy to be upset about being bussed for several hours to see the sites. The Viking Atla stayed parked in the dismal canal for four days. Each night we were given a vague update. At these meetings the waiters offered drinks. We assumed that Viking would pick up the tab considering the information they were imparting to us, but we were told the drinks would be charged to our room. Eventually, we were taken on a 4 1/2 hour bus trip from Nuremberg to Austria to meet our new boat, the Viking Jarl. The bus we were on was not a Viking bus. The seats were tiny, cramped and uncomfortable . The bus made a stop at McDonald’s for 45 minutes because we are told drivers are not allowed to drive for 4 hours without stopping for 4 hours. Vienna was lovely and things went smoothly there. The next mishap occurred the morning we were to arrive near Budapest. We were told that over night we spent too much time waiting to go through the locks, so we would all need to stay on the boat directly to Budapest . Although this resulted in beautiful scenery, our sightseeing in Budapest was cut down to 4 hours and all of our excursions had to be cancelled. At this point even the staff agreed this was pathetic! Viking was no help on the phone while this is happening and has not reached out at all. Their customer service is horrible!’ Read Less
5 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
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
Bad food.....wine...very small shower...not worth the money! First.....and last time using Viking.....for the price of this river cruise the food should have been the best ever....was in fact barely eatable for the evening meals! Breakfast ... Read More
Bad food.....wine...very small shower...not worth the money! First.....and last time using Viking.....for the price of this river cruise the food should have been the best ever....was in fact barely eatable for the evening meals! Breakfast was good....lunch was fair...but dinner...was very poor. Poor quality and small portions. Their house red wine was not good, For $10,000 for 7 days everything should have exceeded our expectations...but it did not.. Staff was very friendly....rooms very clean but very small..especially the shower...could not wash you hair without bumping your elbows on the shower door handles...Excursions were good but several were just too short...1.5 hours, not including the drive time...Looked forward to sitting on the top deck for the view but most of the time it was closed....say they had to close it for safety because of low bridges and locks.....Many others also were unhappy especially about he food.....we'll be looking for a different river cruise line! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
We really enjoyed our river cruise, the meals were Delicious, the optional tours were exceptional. All of tour directors were very knowledgeable. The service from the staff was excellent. We could not ask for a better tour. . We had ... Read More
We really enjoyed our river cruise, the meals were Delicious, the optional tours were exceptional. All of tour directors were very knowledgeable. The service from the staff was excellent. We could not ask for a better tour. . We had a standard cabin with only a half window and it was fine. We didn't spend much time in our room. We had planned a post stay in Prague, the staff from viking helped us everyday plan our dinning and helped to map out things to do. . Our vacation was so easy all we did was booked our vacation with viking and the rest was taken care of for us. We really want to go on another river cruise next year. We haven't figured out which one to do next. I think that no matter which trip you choose you really can't go wrong. I highly recommend viking to everyone for their vacations. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
My husband and I recently took the Viking Romantic Danube cruise on the Atla from Nuremburg to Budapest with a group of friends. The small ship was satisfactory, but it was too cold in November to use the third deck for exercise, games, ... Read More
My husband and I recently took the Viking Romantic Danube cruise on the Atla from Nuremburg to Budapest with a group of friends. The small ship was satisfactory, but it was too cold in November to use the third deck for exercise, games, or viewing. Food and staff were adequate. The included morning excursions were enjoyable with excellent local guides. For those who don’t like to shop, there was nothing else to do in the afternoon unless purchasing an optional tour. There were before-dinner lectures but little to do after dinner other than sit in the bar lounge and listen to a singing pianist, except for two game nights and one night of two opera singers with a four-piece string accompaniment, all of which were enjoyable. There were very few TV stations, and the Internet was sporadic. The disastrous part of this cruise was booking it. We started almost a year earlier with Johnny at Viking because there was a “special” price and free airfare from the East coast until January 31. As we worked with him, we learned that Orlando is not on the East coast, but Philadelphia and New York are! We upgraded the nine-hour flight from Orlando to Frankfurt to premium economy for $900 each. We extended two days in Budapest for a deviation fee of $100 each. We were charged $400 each for the two-day hotel stay. We bought the travel insurance for $519 each. The total cost of the trip was $7,800. We decided to book as this was a group vacation. I left messages for Johnny every day for a week, and he never returned my calls. Finally on January 30 I called general reservations and was given another agent to book before the “sale” ended the next day. When I realized we were being charged $800 for two nights in a Budapest hotel, I called the Viking business office and spent a day cancelling it. I instead booked the four-star K and K Opera Hotel online myself for $80 a night. When we later tried to learn the flight dates and times, we were told we had to pay an extra $164 each from Air Plus, Viking’s “exclusive custom air department,” to find out ahead of time and receive “more desirable” flights. These flights were later changed without notifying us, from the agreed-upon 8 AM flight to a 6 AM flight. We learned of the change only after calling the airline to confirm our flight. Even though the cruise itself was adequate, it’s not worth the agony of booking, the unprofessional service, or the ridiculous costs of the add ons. This was not our first European river cruise, but Viking was a very difficult company to deal with. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2014
We have sailed on five different ocean cruise lines totaling approximately 135 days. This was our first river cruise. We booked a french balcony. We found the room very small and inconvenient. After two nights in the dining room we found ... Read More
We have sailed on five different ocean cruise lines totaling approximately 135 days. This was our first river cruise. We booked a french balcony. We found the room very small and inconvenient. After two nights in the dining room we found the noise intolerable and chose to eat dinner at the terrace bar. Unfortunately the terrace bar menu is extremely limited but we found the quieter setting more pleasant. During the cruise the sun deck was closed for four days due to low bridges and locks. This limited the space onboard for the passengers and we found there was not quiet palce other than our small room. We needed to do laundry onboard and found the prices outrageously expensive and took to doing laundry in our room. The dining staff and room stewards were outstanding in their service. I felt for the price paid for the cruise the company expected quite a large amount daily for tips for bus driver, tour guides, program director and ship staff. Based on this experience we will not take another river cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2014
We departed Amsterdam on June 10 for a Rhine, Main, Danube river cruise. It started off well, but when we reached Regensburg (day 9) we were told the river was low and we would not be able to leave Regensburg. On day 10, we took a bus to ... Read More
We departed Amsterdam on June 10 for a Rhine, Main, Danube river cruise. It started off well, but when we reached Regensburg (day 9) we were told the river was low and we would not be able to leave Regensburg. On day 10, we took a bus to Passau (1.5 hours). While there, it was a religious holiday, so many shops were closed, and we were not allowed to hear the organ concert. (Also, we had to take an "optional" excursion previously because the town we docked in did not have any stores open on Sunday-the optional town had open stores-as long as you paid for the bus trip to get there). Anyway, back to our now "bus" tour...we took the bus back to Regensburg, and then found out we would have to take a bus to Vienna (5 hours away). This meant we could only do a short stop in Melk, and we could no longer go to Durnstein. In Vienna, we have had to take numerous bus trips-from our hotel to a far away restaurant for dinner; from downtown to a far away restaurant for lunch, back to the hotel-with no option to go directly back downtown, etc. There has been delayed communication about what is happening next, and the only way we can get the information is if we go to the large group meals in restaurants. This does not give us the opportunity to bypass the long, time wasteful bus rides. Today, we are going to Bratislava, but again, only for a short time. There is not enough time to go to the optional excursion to someone's home, as advertised. The bus rides are long and cramped. The restaurants have been extremely slow, and only some have been good. All in all, this is not what we paid for. Apparently there were similar problems last year-with floods rather than low rivers, but you would think Viking would have figured out how to deal with less than optimal river conditions better. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
The Good: The boat is kept in pristine condition. Stateroom adequate and comfortable. Great service from the crew. They really try. Some of the tour guides were excellent and interesting; a few not so. The Not So Good and ... Read More
The Good: The boat is kept in pristine condition. Stateroom adequate and comfortable. Great service from the crew. They really try. Some of the tour guides were excellent and interesting; a few not so. The Not So Good and Inadequate: The wi-fi is advertised but was almost non-existent. Very false advertising. Two of our devices never connected, yet did easily in hotels. Other devices were extremely slow and not available often. No excuses Viking: wi-fi is available these days everywhere, on buses, planes, etc. Wi-fi calling was not available at all on boat, yet available easily at all hotels. If Viking is reading this, you should reimburse us about 15 dollars for needed cell calling. Advertised TV is almost worthless, as there is really nothing to see, The "news" channels CNN and BBC International mostly run 2 or 3 day old feature stories over and over. No local TV including no soccer/football during World Cup. Unforgivable in Europe. Paid-for balcony (or even window) useless as 2 or 3 boats tied up in port and balcony touches other boat. Total waste of money and close to fraudulent as a room upgrade. Best I can say about the food is that it is plentiful but "plain." Some of the local specialties in Austria and Hungary raised the average a bit. Good breakfasts. Program Director was mostly annoying as he was primarily a sales-person for optional tours and $100 certificates for future cruises. Voice blasted at high volume during the sales pitches. Had to listen to sales talk in lounge before dinners as it was mixed with some needed information. Gratuities in literature spoken of as Viking gratuity "policy." A I see it the gratuity "policy" is mine and yours, not Viking's. Viking would not fly us USA to Florence, which was our first choice. Viking would not book us on the only non-stop from Rome to Nuremberg; wanted to route us through Paris or elsewhere at high cost and much wasted time. Therefore would not provide transfer from Nuremberg, though we met Viking rep at airport. Wanted Euro 60 for transfer. Took a cab for Euro 29. Viking transfer bus had 50-60 (?) empty seats. Viking changed our return flight while we were on the boat, because of a strike, but did not notify us. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
My wife and I sailed on the Viking Romantic Danube cruise April/May 2018. We did the pre-cruise excursion in Budapest and the post-cruise excursion in Prague. It was mostly good, but with a few issues. Here are the pros and cons: Pros: ... Read More
My wife and I sailed on the Viking Romantic Danube cruise April/May 2018. We did the pre-cruise excursion in Budapest and the post-cruise excursion in Prague. It was mostly good, but with a few issues. Here are the pros and cons: Pros: 1. Friendly and attentive staff. 2. Cabins were small but very well appointed. Storage space was more than adequate. 3. Food was uniformly good. I would not call it gourmet food, but always good quality and plentiful. 4. Cleanliness. I believe the captain mentioned that Atla was built in 2013. After five years, she still looks great and the crew kept the ship spotless. 5. Marco, our activities director, was excellent. We appreciated his sense of humor and he always kept us informed. Also, unlike with other ships, he seemed to be everywhere and also gave the impression he really enjoyed his job and passengers. 6. Enjoyed the ports. Budapest and Prague were favorites but we enjoyed all the stops. Especially enjoyed the abbey tours in Krems and Regensburg. 7. Service and logistics. Viking did a really good job of herding the cats (passengers) and kept things running smoothly and on-time. Reception desk service was usually prompt and efficient. 8, Post-cruise hotel (Art Nouveau) in Prague was truly excellent. Great location, beautiful rooms, fantastic breakfasts and friendly and professional staff. And now the cons: 1. Internet service. Having experienced the problems with expensive online access on ocean cruises, we were drawn to Viking’s promise of free Wi-fi service. However, access was extremely limited, slow, and not available for long perids of time. We could not send a single photo home while on the ship – had to wait to find decent Wi-fi in the ports. My advice to travelers who need reliable online access is to skip this ship and/or itinerary. 2. Tours. We liked the fact that there was a free tour included every day and some of them were great (e.g. the Budapest and Passau walking tours). However, the quality of the guides varied quite a bit in knowledge, enthusiasm and English speaking skills. 3. Crowding. One of the reasons we chose Viking was to have a calmer and less-crowded experience than with the large ships. Yet with a full ship of 190 passengers, there were times it was difficult to find a seat in the lounge or on the sun deck. This was not as big of a problem as with ocean ships but still a bit irritating. 4. Entertainment. The piano player (Peter?) was good and his Tom Jones concert was superb, but the variety and quality of the entertainment was just okay. We certainly didn’t expect as much as what you get on an ocean cruise but I believe Viking can do a bit better. 5. Fitness. There is no fitness facility onboard, other than a small walking/jogging track on the upper deck. This was not a major issue for us due to all the walking we did while on tours, but could be an issue for others. 6. Pre-excursion hotel (Sofitel) in Budapest was disappointing. The room was small and the staff not particularly friendly. They seemed bewildered that an American traveler would require an adapter to use 110v current. My mistake for not bringing this but instead of loaning us the adapter (as they did at our Prague hotel), the gentleman at the business services office tried to sell one (which he wrongly claimed was a converter) for 22 Euros, about three times the cost of such an item on Amazon.com. Overall, we would rate the Viking experience as good, but not great. It met our expectations in most areas, but didn’t truly “wow” us. We are certainly open to cruising with Viking again, but they really need to fix the internet access issue. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2018
I chose this cruise because it was a great itinerary at a good time of year. I was told there is an elevator on the boat because I cannot walk stairs. There is indeed an elevator but it does not go to the top deck which was how many ... Read More
I chose this cruise because it was a great itinerary at a good time of year. I was told there is an elevator on the boat because I cannot walk stairs. There is indeed an elevator but it does not go to the top deck which was how many times one had to go to to get off the ship, consequently I was not able to go on any of the included tours. To be fair in my revue, the boat itself was lovely, the food very good and the staff could not be better. They even put a chair for me in the shower. My wife who was able to go on the included tours told me they were very good and comprehensive. We spent two nights in Budapest which is a lovely city with a very interesting history. We were put up at a very fine hotel and a tour of Budapest was included but again on the tour no seat was held for me on the bus so I was not able to go. I think the staff was not totally aware of how to deal with the handicapped. I took a private tour thru the hotel which I enjoyed very much. In conclusion this is a great trip and a very fine cruise line so long as you are in good shape Read Less
Sail Date: April 2016
Friends were going so I decided to join them. I had been in Budapest previously (started a Grand Circle Tour from there going north on Danube) and love that city. The ship was very nice. The food was excellent. The cruise director was ... Read More
Friends were going so I decided to join them. I had been in Budapest previously (started a Grand Circle Tour from there going north on Danube) and love that city. The ship was very nice. The food was excellent. The cruise director was only fair - I was disappointed that there was no narration while going through the Iron Gate and no commentary on the long day on the Danube. I had been most surprised that there was no river traffic and would have liked some information about the areas we were sailing past. The cabin was nicely set up and most comfortable. As the ship was not full, I thought it would have been nice to close down some tables and thereby having the others filled, and allowing more mixing with other passengers. The entertainment was good, but I would have liked a little more information about the places we were visiting - or something more informative that what we got. The places we stopped had very little to offer - and proof of that was that we had to take a 8 hour trip to get somewhere of interest one day. The other areas were OK, but surely nothing to write home about. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
Before we even left they changed our ship (Atla) because of low water. You would think that they would have told us this was an on going problem for months and maybe more problems with the low water along the way. After repacking and a 4 ... Read More
Before we even left they changed our ship (Atla) because of low water. You would think that they would have told us this was an on going problem for months and maybe more problems with the low water along the way. After repacking and a 4 hr. bus ride we got to the Jarl. Sure enough 2 days later they had to charter a private vessel to do the route our ship couldn't. I would have cancelled this trip had I known all these interruptions were going to take place. They tried to make it right but I really felt deceived. The shore excursions were ok, some of the guides and Viking staff never did a head count after a bathroom or shopping break. The food was mediocre and no choices for complimentary wine at lunch or dinner. It was red, white or beer. You can also forget about a table for two, there aren't any. Each evening the cruise director would have a briefing which seemed like an eternity and would cover the next day shore excursions. This was totally unnecessary because the hand book they supplied covered everything. On both ships we had an odor of urine in our cabin, cleaning didn't help and it was more of a maintenance problem than cleaning. After cruising with Croisieurope, Celebrity, and Regent, Viking doesn't come close. I would never cruise with Viking again and certainly would not recommend them. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2015
We just completed a 7 night cruise on the Viking Atla one of the new long ships. This was our 3rd booked river cruise with Viking. We also booked both the pre and post cruise extension. We began with 2 nights in Budapest. Our hotel did ... Read More
We just completed a 7 night cruise on the Viking Atla one of the new long ships. This was our 3rd booked river cruise with Viking. We also booked both the pre and post cruise extension. We began with 2 nights in Budapest. Our hotel did have a Viking representative to give advise but they also offered excursions for Budapest before the cruise began. We researched both Budapest and Prague, the post cruise extension so we did not go with their optional excursions. They were helpful though in providing specific information that helped us do our own thing. After 2 & 1/2 wonderful days in Budapest we made our way to the cruise ship. The transfer to the boat was not very convenient as we had to check out 2 & 1/2 hours before they would pick us up. We had several places still to see so we made our way to the ship ourselves. Viking did take our luggage though. Our cabins weren't ready when we arrived but they had a very nice buffet lunch available on the lounge. The ship did a night cruise on the Danube in Budapest. The city is all lit up at night so this was real nice. We started with a city tour of Budapest the next morning. We met up with the boat a little outside of Budapest. We ran into some bad weather the next couple of days. Lots of rain and much cooler than expected. I realize that Viking can't control the weather. I just feel they weren't exactly honest with us. Up River between Passau and Regensburg is Deggensdorf. The water was much higher than normal and there was a bridge there the boat couldn't pass under. Instead of docking the the medieval city of Regensburg we were taken by bus. We lost most of our free time. Finally we had some dry days and we were told we would be back on schedule. We still didn't make it even as far as Regensburg and the next day there was an even longer bus ride to Nuremberg. Our boat we thought would meet up with us in Nuremberg but that didn't happen. We had another bus ride back to the boat. Our trip ended a bit short of Nuremberg. We were taken to Prague and our post cruise extension was absolutely wonderful. It did include a city tour or Prague which was very nice. I believe they had to have known that we would not be able to really get back on schedule. That's the real problem I have. Due to the number of locks we went through and the other River traffic we never caught up. They kept telling us we would but never did. Maybe they didn't want to have to deal with everybody complaining. These river cruises are very expensive and it's so nice to dock right in the towns you are visiting. You can get off during your free time and see more things in the town. I could have taken a land tour for a lot less money if I wanted to spend all that time on a bus. Again I realize that the weather can't be controlled. On the ship the service was excellent and the food was wonderful. Absolutely no complaints about either. The only other thing I'd like to speak about is the entertainment on these River boat cruises. There's not a lot of variety. They do have a piano player and the cruise director was a bit of a comedian. A couple of nights they did bring on some local performers that were quite good. It would be nice to do this more nights. Overall the river cruise was a bit of a disappointment but our pre trip time in Budapest and post cruise in Prague were wonderful. If you can I highly recommend doing those. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2014
It is apparent that Viking Cruises are meant for an average age of about 65. As 46 and 48 year olds, we found it disappointing that there were not many passengers around our age. We lost power overnight, for 12 hours and the Viking ... Read More
It is apparent that Viking Cruises are meant for an average age of about 65. As 46 and 48 year olds, we found it disappointing that there were not many passengers around our age. We lost power overnight, for 12 hours and the Viking corporate office offered us a voucher for money off a future cruise. We informed them we do not intend to take another cruise like this for perhaps 15 years, and would prefer to have our bill reduced from the cruise we just took, or to be reimbursed a few hundred dollars. This is common practice at hotels when we are inconvenienced the way we were on the Atla. We had no running water, so no showers, no flushing toilets. In addition, the emergency lighting in all cabins was on all night long. Viking corporate refused our request and once again offered only a voucher for future cruise that we don't intend to take. If you are looking for an experience like the commercials show, with lovely scenery passing by, do NOT take the Amsterdam/Antwerp/Amsterdam cruise. You will either be cruising at night, or be docked with a ship parked next to you every single day. We had sailing scenery only twice out of a 9 day trip. Totally not worth paying for the balcony we thought we'd enjoy. Wifi speed is non-existent, ironically one of the modern windmills in the middle of nowhere was having 4G installed on one of the days we visited. It takes forever to connect, and is sketchy at best. Food was fine, nothing to write home about. The crew was the best part, friendly and always doing their best. Keep in mind the ships are small. No gym and very limited opportunity for exercise. Walking tours were interesting, but we would have liked more time in many of the places. However, due to the general age of the passengers, the tours are no longer than 2 hours. These cruises are definitely targeted toward 60 and up, although some of the more active people at those ages were also unhappy about the pace. Most disappointing was Viking's unwillingness to compensate us for what was an extremely un-vacation-like night during an extremely expensive vacation. Cannot recommend them. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2013
We would give this cruise mixed reviews. By far, the best aspect of the week was our tour director, Marianne. She was friendly, knowledgeable, energetic and extremely helpful in all regards. Flights/connections- Our port of entry was ... Read More
We would give this cruise mixed reviews. By far, the best aspect of the week was our tour director, Marianne. She was friendly, knowledgeable, energetic and extremely helpful in all regards. Flights/connections- Our port of entry was Amsterdam. We arrived just in time for dinner so we had limited time to do a walking tour of Amsterdam...a must if you have never been there. We had Viking arrange our flights and we would have preferred to have arrived earlier so that we would have had more time to wander around the town. I realize that is difficult for them as they are busy doing the disembarkation/arrival process. Excursions- We felt that the extra excursions were overpriced for what they offered. The Alsasc wine tour provided very small tastings of about 4 wines. The cask room was interesting. Due to the time of year (November) we did not tour the actual vineyards. We were also very disappointed with the Black Forest excursion. The scenery and church that we toured were beautiful. We thought we were then going to a quaint village where they made cuckoo clocks. Instead, we were dumped at a major tourist trap on the side of the highway. A small corner of the store had a bench where a small demonstration of cuckoo clock making was described. The clocks, while beautiful, were pricy. Our biggest disappointment with the regular excursions was that they felt rushed. In particular, we were rushed in Heidelberg. Traffic was slow due to regular traffic congestion and road construction. The castle tour was interesting...not much to see, but interesting. We then had a long trip back down to the city due to the traffic congestion. Our tour guide was quiet during the bus ride. Once we got to town, we stood out in the cold weather while she gave a prolonged art history review of Heidelberg. Very interesting but could have easily be done while on the bus. When she finished, she informed us that we needed to be back to the bus in 45 minutes. None of us had eaten lunch and we were expected to eat and tour in 45 minutes time. We also had limited time in Strasbourg. After a lengthy tour of the church, we had limited time in what I felt was one of the most beautiful cities. Food- While the food was good, we felt that the food was far superior on the river cruise that we took with another company. The offerings for breakfast were exactly the same each day. I did like that they had a fish dish for supper and they were all expertly prepared. The German lunch buffet was also excellent. Room/Cabin- As the Atla is a new ship, the rooms were more than comfortable. As stated in another review, it would have been nice to have more options on the TV. As we were cruising in mid-November, it was too chilly to be on the top deck and we probably spent more time in our cabin and would have liked more options. Follow up- We completed the evaluation on board at the end of the week. One of the boxes I checked was that I would like a Viking representative to contact me. Well, that was 2 months ago and I have not been contacted. Read Less
7 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
Sail Date: April 2018
Wanted to try a river cruise based on TV advertisements. This was my first river cruise and probably my last river cruise because of the cabin space. I enjoyed all the excursions which were very educational despite even though it was a ... Read More
Wanted to try a river cruise based on TV advertisements. This was my first river cruise and probably my last river cruise because of the cabin space. I enjoyed all the excursions which were very educational despite even though it was a holiday so some places were not available to tour, the meals was great, and staff was friendly and went above and beyond to make it an enjoyable experience and I met lots of people but was disappointed in the size of the cabins and lack of an opportunity to exercise. Because of the small size and limited spaced to move about the cabin my sciatic pain flared up and I got no relief even with the walking excursions because of the cobblestone streets and slow pace of the tours. I tried 3 times to go on deck to walk but the crew was always cleaning it early in the mornings. My next cruises will be on a larger ocean cruise ship. Read Less
Viking Atla Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.6
Dining 4.0 4.5
Entertainment 3.0 4.0
Public Rooms 5.0 4.6
Fitness Recreation 1.0 3.3
Family 1.0 3.3
Shore Excursion 4.0 4.5
Enrichment 4.0 4.2
Service 4.0 4.8
Value For Money 3.0 4.2
Rates 4.0 5.0

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