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After over 30 'ocean' cruises we were excited to experience our first river cruise. We chose Viking based partly upon their itinerary and partly upon their 'dominance' in the river cruise market. As I sit here after over two weeks aboard, I am sad to report that though there were good times, accentuated by many very devoted crew members, the 'Viking experience' left me sadly disappointed. This disappointment is primarily due to Viking's dominance in the river cruise market (lots of riverboats) and their policy of 'rafting up' while at port to save on docking fees. Let me explain... Viking has over 60 riverboats cruising the rivers of the world primarily in the European market. At any one port you can expect 3 or more Viking riverboats to be docked on any given day. To save on docking fees Viking 'rafts up' (ties their boats side to side) up to three vessels deep. This results in about one foot of space between balconies, thus NO view and NO privacy for 50% or 100% (if you are the middle of three boats) of the cabins. If you are in port for a couple of days this can be very unpleasant. Utilization of the balcony and the view you paid a premium for are gone. This Viking 'experience' isn't much mentioned in the brochure or the photos of the lovely European cities (which you cannot see from your blocked cabin). The resulting 'Viking experience' is more like paying a premium for the lowest price inside cabin. Lights on 24/7 to see or just move about in your cabin. While rafting is not unique to Viking, due to the number of Viking vessels on the rivers and canals of the world (68 and growing, as I understand), you are way more liable to wind up in this unpleasant scenario with them than any other riverboat cruise line. It is for this reason that I would recommend that before booking your next riverboat cruise you should seriously consider any other cruise line than Viking.

Before Booking with Viking, Please Consider This...

Viking Magni Cruise Review by Calif-BeachBum

10 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2018
  • Destination: Europe River
  • Cabin Type: Veranda Superior
After over 30 'ocean' cruises we were excited to experience our first river cruise. We chose Viking based partly upon their itinerary and partly upon their 'dominance' in the river cruise market. As I sit here after over two weeks aboard, I am sad to report that though there were good times, accentuated by many very devoted crew members, the 'Viking experience' left me sadly disappointed. This disappointment is primarily due to Viking's dominance in the river cruise market (lots of riverboats) and their policy of 'rafting up' while at port to save on docking fees. Let me explain...

Viking has over 60 riverboats cruising the rivers of the world primarily in the European market. At any one port you can expect 3 or more Viking riverboats to be docked on any given day. To save on docking fees Viking 'rafts up' (ties their boats side to side) up to three vessels deep. This results in about one foot of space between balconies, thus NO view and NO privacy for 50% or 100% (if you are the middle of three boats) of the cabins. If you are in port for a couple of days this can be very unpleasant. Utilization of the balcony and the view you paid a premium for are gone. This Viking 'experience' isn't much mentioned in the brochure or the photos of the lovely European cities (which you cannot see from your blocked cabin). The resulting 'Viking experience' is more like paying a premium for the lowest price inside cabin. Lights on 24/7 to see or just move about in your cabin.

While rafting is not unique to Viking, due to the number of Viking vessels on the rivers and canals of the world (68 and growing, as I understand), you are way more liable to wind up in this unpleasant scenario with them than any other riverboat cruise line. It is for this reason that I would recommend that before booking your next riverboat cruise you should seriously consider any other cruise line than Viking.
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Cabin Review

Veranda Superior
Cabin A
The cabin was a bit tight, but clean and well appointed. Would have been great if we didn't have to keep the blinds completely closed due to the proximity (and lack of privacy) because of being 'rafted' to another Viking ship while in port.
Upper Deck Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews