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We "sailed" with Viking October 12 through October 19, 2018. Our "Romantic Danube River Cruise" turned into the Danube Motor Coach Bus Tour. Due to low water levels on the Danube, which we now understand has been known by Viking for many months, we were motor coached to all our ports, except for Nuremberg (an industrial port with cargo "scenery"), Regensburg and Vienna. We never experienced the beautiful river sites of the Wachau Valley, the Danube bend, or actually much of the Danube River at all. In 8 days of our river cruise, we actually cruised approximately 7 daylight hours and most of that was going through locks on the Danube Canal. However, we did experience a boat hotel/restaurant experience on three different ships--the Tor, the Vilhjalm and the Idun--having to unpack and repack our luggage several times and in time for very early bus departures to our next city. A few of the "highlights" of our bus tour included: Very little leisure time to explore Passau, Vienna or Budapest. A lunch of overdone pot roast and tater tots at a Melk hotel restaurant. We became experts in European bus companies and rest stops. A bus driver who didn’t know what exit to take to Roth and had to turn around and go back several miles to find our ship. Our first tour guide didn’t have a charged audio system and had to try to shout out the interesting aspects of Regensburg. While waiting in the bus pickup area in Passau, my sister was struck and knocked down by a bicyclist. She and her husband spent the evening in the emergency room in Straubing. We were supposed to be docked in Passau. The supposed sight of a bomb near the location of our designated ship in Budapest, The Viking Var. Only problem was, the bomb was removed in July, our cruise was in October! The staff of the Viking IDUN in Budapest was very distressed and over whelmed by a daily turnover of guests. I can understand their frustration at having to disembark and embark an entire shipload of guests every day. It’s no wonder that they didn’t seem very excited to see us! The staff said they have been docked in Budapest for over five months. Our tour director, George, was pretty good in the beginning of the cruise but even his good humor was wearing thin by the end of the cruise. He was the Viking representative on our cruise and he was forced to smile and try to convince us that everything was fine and the low water levels were extremely rare. Again, Viking has known for many months about the low river levels and chose not to notify their customers/passengers in a timely, honest manner. After some online research and talking with other Viking passengers, we have also learned that Viking consistently performs misleading advertising and unethical business practices. At this point AAA Travel and Viking River Cruise company have lost my trust to adequately and responsibly represent their travel products. P.S. It is now two weeks after I notified Viking River Cruise of my disappointing motor coach tour of the Danube River. Other than a generic response, nothing!

Viking Danube Low Water Motor Coach Tour

Viking Tor Cruise Review by bhaese2864

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Trip Details
  • Sail Date: October 2018
  • Destination: Europe River
  • Cabin Type: Veranda Superior
We "sailed" with Viking October 12 through October 19, 2018. Our "Romantic Danube River Cruise" turned into the Danube Motor Coach Bus Tour. Due to low water levels on the Danube, which we now understand has been known by Viking for many months, we were motor coached to all our ports, except for Nuremberg (an industrial port with cargo "scenery"), Regensburg and Vienna. We never experienced the beautiful river sites of the Wachau Valley, the Danube bend, or actually much of the Danube River at all. In 8 days of our river cruise, we actually cruised approximately 7 daylight hours and most of that was going through locks on the Danube Canal. However, we did experience a boat hotel/restaurant experience on three different ships--the Tor, the Vilhjalm and the Idun--having to unpack and repack our luggage several times and in time for very early bus departures to our next city.

A few of the "highlights" of our bus tour included: Very little leisure time to explore Passau, Vienna or Budapest. A lunch of overdone pot roast and tater tots at a Melk hotel restaurant. We became experts in European bus companies and rest stops. A bus driver who didn’t know what exit to take to Roth and had to turn around and go back several miles to find our ship. Our first tour guide didn’t have a charged audio system and had to try to shout out the interesting aspects of Regensburg. While waiting in the bus pickup area in Passau, my sister was struck and knocked down by a bicyclist. She and her husband spent the evening in the emergency room in Straubing. We were supposed to be docked in Passau. The supposed sight of a bomb near the location of our designated ship in Budapest, The Viking Var. Only problem was, the bomb was removed in July, our cruise was in October!

The staff of the Viking IDUN in Budapest was very distressed and over whelmed by a daily turnover of guests. I can understand their frustration at having to disembark and embark an entire shipload of guests every day. It’s no wonder that they didn’t seem very excited to see us! The staff said they have been docked in Budapest for over five months. Our tour director, George, was pretty good in the beginning of the cruise but even his good humor was wearing thin by the end of the cruise. He was the Viking representative on our cruise and he was forced to smile and try to convince us that everything was fine and the low water levels were extremely rare.

Again, Viking has known for many months about the low river levels and chose not to notify their customers/passengers in a timely, honest manner. After some online research and talking with other Viking passengers, we have also learned that Viking consistently performs misleading advertising and unethical business practices.

At this point AAA Travel and Viking River Cruise company have lost my trust to adequately and responsibly represent their travel products.

P.S. It is now two weeks after I notified Viking River Cruise of my disappointing motor coach tour of the Danube River. Other than a generic response, nothing!
Viking Cruises, Community Team has responded
Thank you, bhaese2864, for taking the time to share your recent Viking experience with the cruising community. We are sorry to learn of your sister’s experience in Passau, and hope she has fully recovered from her accident. We recognize that you are one of the many affected by the itinerary changes implemented in response to the historically low waters that plagued Europe this year. Though Viking makes every effort to preserve the original program, we understand that the resulting deviations may fall below some guests’ expectations. All journey adjustments are made with our passengers’ best interests in mind, and accordingly we are committed to collecting and understanding all resulting feedback so that we may grow and enhance our product for more enjoyable future experiences. Your constructive comments have been recorded for review by our Executive Team, however should you like to share more we would be happy to continue the discussion at TellUs@vikingcruises.com if you haven’t reached out already. Thank you, and have a wonderful day.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of The Independent Traveler, Inc.
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Cabin Review

Veranda Superior
Cabin A 311
Small but adequate.
Upper Deck Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

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