We looked forward to our first Viking ocean cruise after a lovely Viking River Cruise earlier this year. We’ve traveled extensively on other ocean cruise lines and were extremely disappointed in this 48 day cruise. Starting with Embarkation, the tone of the cruise was set. Viking booked the cheapest airfare with a 3-1/2 hour layover at DFW airport which is a haven for storm-related delays. We were delayed 8 hours arriving at the ship at 3:30am. No one was at the port entrance to let us in so we waited for 45 min with our luggage until we gained access. We had to cancel our paid excursion that started at 8 am because we didn’t get to sleep until 5 am. The itinerary said we had two days in San Juan. We ended up with 1/2 day due to the delays. We aren’t home yet but they booked our return flight in the cheapest seat possible on an 11 hour red eye next to the bathroom with seats that don’t recline. We had to pay $200 Extra to get reclining seats!!
Three missed ports. 1st Recife because they had to go slower coming out of the Amazon due to water level (although announced water level was the same going in as going out about 650 ft). 2nd was Puerto Madryn because there was some storm near the Falklands the captain was trying to avoid. Yet I searched every maritime weather report and could find nothing within 1000 of miles. The 3rd was Puerto Montt. The captain said it was too rough to tender passengers. Yet as I sit here I’ve watched all of the Holland American passengers, who arrived in port after us, get tendered to shore as we sail off to who knows where.
Poorly executed excursions. Most of the excursions that we wanted to book were sold out even though I we went online literally the first minute with my choices ready. We spent $6000 on excursions and were extremely disappointed. All the buses in the Amazon were filthy, stinky and none had A/C in the 90 F 99 % humidity weather. The excursions throughout were a stretch to provide anything halfway interesting. Their description of what you will see on paid excursions is false advertising. They quoted seeing certain waterfalls or type of penguins on one excursion when I asked the guides they said it was on the another one.
Response from VikingS, Community Team
First leg of cruise (26 days) was in Penthouse Veranda and next 22 days in Penthouse Jr Suite. The cabins were comparable to other cruises but brochure price for upgraded suites are not worth the value.
The tour to see the King penguins was sold out so instead we had to pay total of $700 to do two other penguin tours which if the other wasn't sold out it would have only cost $200. It makes you wonder if they strategically sell out to get more money. Still only saw about three sickly king penguins.
Took a cab to see museum and tried to shop but All stores had boarded up business windows due to protests.