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We wanted to visit Japan and thought this Viking cruise best suited our requirements. We had used Viking several times before without any major problems.In the end wished we had used another company. Problems started on the first day when they delivered one of our cases to another cabin. Only found out when the fellow passenger delivered it to our cabin later in the day The staff I reported missing case to did not seemed bothered when I complained. Other problems experienced included : - being sent reminders several times to attend safety briefings when we actually attended and ship cards scanned. We had to point out they had a system problem and they eventually admitted several of the handheld scanners were out of order. Do not know what would have happened in a real emergency. -delivering our copy passports ( needed for Japan apparently) to wrong cabin. Not in envelopes so the fellow passenger could see all our details - fortunately do not think he was a money launderer. - wrong order for food at restaurant - but the staff seemed to blame me for the waiter inputting wrong information into their machine. - timing of leaving Hiroshima had to change by 6 hours to an earlier time - I think because the initial plan got timing of length of cruise to next port wrong but staff blamed issues at the port. - electronic information on app and TV screens said we were calling at Kiel ( Germany) not Keelung (Taiwan) - staff kept blaming IT staff at head office. - no diet Sprite ( or similar) available on this cruise -only diet coke which I do not drink. Drink menu caters to the alcohol drinkers and non drinkers and diabetics are second class customers .No real alternatives were offered. So basically kept to water . Beverage manager blamed problems with getting supplies.However he did not ask for suggestions of alternatives or come up with other ideas. No imagination! No wonder people put on weight on a cruise with so many high sugar drinks with no alternatives.. - very poor Wi-fi. Not a patch on Princess's latest offering. I would prefer to pay a little more rather than have an included rubbish service.We found people taking their laptops etc to be nearer to routers but not sure it made much difference. - the maintenance of some of the equipment on board fell short of what would be expected of a fairly new ship. One lift was out of order throughout the cruise, the 3D movie feature in the Explorers dome did not work, one coffee machine in the pool bar did not work , one passenger told us her air conditioning unit was leaking water, one laundry room was closed for part of the cruise putting pressure on the other laundry rooms. - the quality of waiting staff was very patchy. Sometimes waited ages to be served drinks, some staff were not happy and showed it and you felt they wanted to be elsewhere. - customer services staff not very interested in problems - one told me to take it up with head office and gave me a card with detail on and did not even try to refer me to her manager. So I e-mailed the London address and it was only then that customer services manager on board spoke to me and we ended up speaking most days about some problem or other. - attitude of Viking staff seems to be that they are always right and the customer is always in the wrong. This has been re-inforced by the response I got from customer services in UK after submitting an 8 page report. No offer of any gesture to try and keep me as a customer. Given the problems Viking have had recently with their ocean and river cruises I would have thought they would be trying harder. Our experience this time will mean that our future cruises will be with other companies.

Viking Far Eastern Horizon

Viking Orion Cruise Review by Leslie Winnard

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Trip Details
  • Sail Date: April 2019
  • Destination: Asia
We wanted to visit Japan and thought this Viking cruise best suited our requirements. We had used Viking several times before without any major problems.In the end wished we had used another company. Problems started on the first day when they delivered one of our cases to another cabin. Only found out when the fellow passenger delivered it to our cabin later in the day The staff I reported missing case to did not seemed bothered when I complained. Other problems experienced included :

- being sent reminders several times to attend safety briefings when we actually attended and ship cards scanned. We had to point out they had a system problem and they eventually admitted several of the handheld scanners were out of order. Do not know what would have happened in a real emergency.

-delivering our copy passports ( needed for Japan apparently) to wrong cabin. Not in envelopes so the fellow passenger could see all our details - fortunately do not think he was a money launderer.

- wrong order for food at restaurant - but the staff seemed to blame me for the waiter inputting wrong information into their machine.

- timing of leaving Hiroshima had to change by 6 hours to an earlier time - I think because the initial plan got timing of length of cruise to next port wrong but staff blamed issues at the port.

- electronic information on app and TV screens said we were calling at Kiel ( Germany) not Keelung (Taiwan) - staff kept blaming IT staff at head office.

- no diet Sprite ( or similar) available on this cruise -only diet coke which I do not drink. Drink menu caters to the alcohol drinkers and non drinkers and diabetics are second class customers .No real alternatives were offered. So basically kept to water . Beverage manager blamed problems with getting supplies.However he did not ask for suggestions of alternatives or come up with other ideas. No imagination! No wonder people put on weight on a cruise with so many high sugar drinks with no alternatives..

- very poor Wi-fi. Not a patch on Princess's latest offering. I would prefer to pay a little more rather than have an included rubbish service.We found people taking their laptops etc to be nearer to routers but not sure it made much difference.

- the maintenance of some of the equipment on board fell short of what would be expected of a fairly new ship. One lift was out of order throughout the cruise, the 3D movie feature in the Explorers dome did not work, one coffee machine in the pool bar did not work , one passenger told us her air conditioning unit was leaking water, one laundry room was closed for part of the cruise putting pressure on the other laundry rooms.

- the quality of waiting staff was very patchy. Sometimes waited ages to be served drinks, some staff were not happy and showed it and you felt they wanted to be elsewhere.

- customer services staff not very interested in problems - one told me to take it up with head office and gave me a card with detail on and did not even try to refer me to her manager. So I e-mailed the London address and it was only then that customer services manager on board spoke to me and we ended up speaking most days about some problem or other.

- attitude of Viking staff seems to be that they are always right and the customer is always in the wrong. This has been re-inforced by the response I got from customer services in UK after submitting an 8 page report. No offer of any gesture to try and keep me as a customer.

Given the problems Viking have had recently with their ocean and river cruises I would have thought they would be trying harder. Our experience this time will mean that our future cruises will be with other companies.
Viking Cruises, Community Team has responded
Thank you for sharing detailed comments about your April cruise with us, Mrs. Winnard. Feedback from seasoned Viking guests, such as yourself, is instrumental in our success and very much appreciated. While we regret to learn that aspects of your time on board did not meet expectations, your concerns have been carefully noted for internal review. Should you wish to discuss further, you are welcome to connect with us at TellUs@vikingcruises.com. We hope you’ll consider joining us for a future voyage, as it would be our pleasure to welcome you aboard again.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of The Independent Traveler, Inc.
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Cabin Review

Cabin 4100
Cabin was OK but access to wardrobe restricted due to position of bed side table.