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Overall this cruise was very good with a great ship, fantastic crew and some of the best food we've ever had on a cruise. The itinerary was just what we wanted with the focus on Norway. Ship left from Bergen went up the coast of Norway using an inside passage most of the time, cruising to Honningsvag, Norway and the North Cape then turning back south down the cost to the Shetland then Orkney islands, Edinburgh and ending in London. The stateroom was good size with a king bed and good size bathroom and good hanging and storage space. All the food and all the eating spaces on the ship were excellent. To a person the crew was excellent, very friendly, always helpful and pleasant especially our steward Asep. All of these exceeded our expectations. Main problems and why we gave 4 stars instead of 5 was the boarding process, the pre-cruise shore excursion experience and the shore excursion reservations. The boarding process was slow and poorly organized, partly due to some computer connection problems. The shore excursion reservation process was a complete disaster. Reservations were overbooked, disappeared after being made, linked reservations (with our travel partners) were ignored, the reservation system randomly split the excursions we were booked on so we were not on the same excursion, some "included" shore excursions were not available and confirmed reservations were lost or cancelled, some at the last minute. The first 2 days the lines on-board to see a shore excursion agent were hours long (I measured it) with some passengers VERY angry (I talked with many of them plus I was not happy). To guest services credit I went to them (shorter line) and over time they slowly resolved some of our issues. Keep in mind Viking is new to ocean cruising and this itinerary is new with some towns being fairly small so that may contribute to this problem, but the shore excursion on-line reservation system is very flawed in my opinion causing many of the problems. Our major issue was an "included" excursion that was not available even though were tried to make the reservation 1 minute after the website opened for reservations and was not available as we frequently re-checked the website and we and our travel agent worked hard with Viking representatives on the phone and via email. About a week before we left for the cruise we tossed in the towel and made our own excursion arrangements. Then the day before we left Viking sent an email saying the excursion was available on the web-site (Too late for us). We worked with the agents on-board for some consideration for this issue and our expense for the excursion we booked, but received nothing. Watch out "included" shore excursions may not be included! The excursions were in general OK with a few being very good to excellent. Overall this was still a fine cruise. We will probably use Viking ocean cruises in the future assuming that they will fix their reservation system. One after comment - Viking has "dumbed down" this cruise for 2017. They have substituted one port call for another (minor issue), deleted 2 Norway ports (On a cruise that is centered on Norway), adding an at-sea day (why?) and adding a day in London (which is easily done on one's own). Be aware.

Good Into the Midnight Sun cruise with problems

Viking Sea Cruise Review by racman

19 people found this helpful
Trip Details
Overall this cruise was very good with a great ship, fantastic crew and some of the best food we've ever had on a cruise. The itinerary was just what we wanted with the focus on Norway. Ship left from Bergen went up the coast of Norway using an inside passage most of the time, cruising to Honningsvag, Norway and the North Cape then turning back south down the cost to the Shetland then Orkney islands, Edinburgh and ending in London. The stateroom was good size with a king bed and good size bathroom and good hanging and storage space. All the food and all the eating spaces on the ship were excellent. To a person the crew was excellent, very friendly, always helpful and pleasant especially our steward Asep. All of these exceeded our expectations.

Main problems and why we gave 4 stars instead of 5 was the boarding process, the pre-cruise shore excursion experience and the shore excursion reservations. The boarding process was slow and poorly organized, partly due to some computer connection problems. The shore excursion reservation process was a complete disaster. Reservations were overbooked, disappeared after being made, linked reservations (with our travel partners) were ignored, the reservation system randomly split the excursions we were booked on so we were not on the same excursion, some "included" shore excursions were not available and confirmed reservations were lost or cancelled, some at the last minute. The first 2 days the lines on-board to see a shore excursion agent were hours long (I measured it) with some passengers VERY angry (I talked with many of them plus I was not happy). To guest services credit I went to them (shorter line) and over time they slowly resolved some of our issues. Keep in mind Viking is new to ocean cruising and this itinerary is new with some towns being fairly small so that may contribute to this problem, but the shore excursion on-line reservation system is very flawed in my opinion causing many of the problems. Our major issue was an "included" excursion that was not available even though were tried to make the reservation 1 minute after the website opened for reservations and was not available as we frequently re-checked the website and we and our travel agent worked hard with Viking representatives on the phone and via email. About a week before we left for the cruise we tossed in the towel and made our own excursion arrangements. Then the day before we left Viking sent an email saying the excursion was available on the web-site (Too late for us). We worked with the agents on-board for some consideration for this issue and our expense for the excursion we booked, but received nothing. Watch out "included" shore excursions may not be included!

The excursions were in general OK with a few being very good to excellent. Overall this was still a fine cruise. We will probably use Viking ocean cruises in the future assuming that they will fix their reservation system.

One after comment - Viking has "dumbed down" this cruise for 2017. They have substituted one port call for another (minor issue), deleted 2 Norway ports (On a cruise that is centered on Norway), adding an at-sea day (why?) and adding a day in London (which is easily done on one's own). Be aware.
racman’s Full Rating Summary
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