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  #1  
Old May 17th, 2013, 11:25 AM
editor@cruisecritic editor@cruisecritic is offline
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Default Viking River launches ocean cruising line

Interesting news last night out of Los Angeles as Viking revealed details for the long-planned (and long-teased) ocean cruise line. It has a lot in common with its river operation (and of course lots in common with what you'd expect from an ocean-bound cruise ship). Would you be tempted to try Viking's ocean operation? Check out the details here (and tell us below): http://www.cruisecritic.com/news/news.cfm?ID=5356.

Carolyn

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PS Viking's only marketing in North America at the moment -- will launch sales in the UK & AU in fall.
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  #2  
Old May 17th, 2013, 11:31 AM
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Carolyn, we were invited to this but family committments kept us from accepting the offer of a trip to the West coast. Am very anxious to see just what they offer in itineraries. Really hope this venture is not more than they can handle financially. Pat
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  #3  
Old May 17th, 2013, 12:52 PM
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Itineraries are pretty good. However I’d expect something more interesting: e.g. they start from Istanbus. Why Black See ports were not included? Or the Holy Land? We’ve been to almost all ports advertised but will definitely book something either next year or in 2015.
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  #4  
Old May 17th, 2013, 12:56 PM
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Hi, Pat. My understanding is that Viking did a round of financing this spring expressely aimed at the oceans' project so I think they're just fine....

Carolyn

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Originally Posted by pacmom View Post
Carolyn, we were invited to this but family committments kept us from accepting the offer of a trip to the West coast. Am very anxious to see just what they offer in itineraries. Really hope this venture is not more than they can handle financially. Pat
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  #5  
Old May 17th, 2013, 12:57 PM
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This is actually the only criticism I've heard about the oceans' product. I'm meeting with Viking later today, will ask for more explanation. I would imagine that with one ship they might be more limited (for instance Torstein Hagen definitely said he'd love to send one of the ships to Alaska at some point).

Carolyn

Quote:
Originally Posted by id est View Post
Itineraries are pretty good. However I’d expect something more interesting: e.g. they start from Istanbus. Why Black See ports were not included? Or the Holy Land? We’ve been to almost all ports advertised but will definitely book something either next year or in 2015.
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  #6  
Old May 17th, 2013, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by editor@cruisecritic View Post
... I would imagine that with one ship they might be more limited...
Swan Hellenic has 1 ship too but their itineraries look more across-the-board.
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2013 -- Viking Spirit 'Paris & the Heart of Normandy'
2014 -- Viking Schumann 'Elegant Elbe'
2014 -- AMA Waterways
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  #7  
Old May 17th, 2013, 03:14 PM
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This sounds very tempting. Will be interested to hear about what people think when the cruising starts.
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  #8  
Old May 17th, 2013, 03:27 PM
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If they deliver the product shown in the brochure, this looks like the perfect cruise line for us. The design of the ship is modern and elegant, the focus on regional cuisine is something all cruise lines should do, and the prices are reasonable for the all-inclusive amenities. It seems to be competing with Crystal and Regent; if they deliver that level of service at a lower price point they should do well.

I agree that the 2015 itineraries aren't that unusual. I assume this first year they are focused on getting the Viking Ocean name out and attracting cruisers from other lines who are familiar with these ports. I hope that beginning in 2016 we will start to see more unusual ports, as Viking Ocean has more ships to deploy and needs to interest repeat customers.

Already you can see the potential of the small-ship approach: Greenwich rather than Dover for London, and Rouen rather than Le Havre for Paris. And don't overlook the end of the first cruise segment: Baltic Sea cruises rarely include Norway, and certainly not in this depth. I also like the way they planned the four itineraries to link up so that you can have a 50-day Euro-centric "world cruise" (no stranger than Crystal's South America-only "world cruise").

This is a very promising beginning.
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  #9  
Old May 17th, 2013, 04:15 PM
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We are longtime Silversea (about 100 days) and Regent (over 100 days) cruisers.

After viewing Viking's video below and spending 30 min on the Ocean Cruise website, We booked the maiden, Viking Homelands (Bergen to Stockholm) besides Norway, Finland, Denmark, it includes Russia and Germany. Was the first to call Viking this morning--can't wait. Already recruited fellow ccr Harbormaster to join us. Viking Starr is stunning (infinity pool, OMG) full promenade jogging track on deck2 (interesting location) most alfresco dining areas at sea.

Carolyn, have sent Host Dan and LauraS an email with this request..would you please put Viking Ocean cruises under P-Z (had to post under other cruise lines for roll call too). Also, asked our TA (top seller of Viking River cruises) to recommend to the owner (Tor Hagen)/Viking leadership to consider a formal Cruise Critic and Viking Ocean cruise meet & mingle program. CC's Meet & Mingle is a wonderful program that will help build buzz prior to the VS's maiden season. Silversea just adopted the CC Meet & Mingle program this week (approached the President of Silversea a year ago and she did research for six months and agreed)



http://www.vikingcruises.com/oceans/...itinerary.aspx

About the ship:

http://www.vikingcruises.com/oceans/.../shiplist.aspx
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Last edited by WesW; May 17th, 2013 at 04:23 PM.
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  #10  
Old May 17th, 2013, 04:59 PM
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For us exciting news as we are getting burned out on larger ships and find the itinerary out of Instanbul interesting. That combined with the fact we really like the current Viking product which they are carrying over to the new venture bodes well for a future booking for us. One question I had was whether or not the current Viking Explorer Society program will apply to both river and ocean cruises and if there are any plans for expanding the benefits provided by the program.
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  #11  
Old May 17th, 2013, 05:24 PM
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Cruise Industry News has a nice write-up titled -- Viking Launches New Ocean Cruise Line.

Please check web site below for detail.

John



http://www.cruiseindustrynews.com/cr...ise-line-.html
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  #12  
Old May 17th, 2013, 07:00 PM
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War Eagle, believe the Viking referral program for River cruises works, another CC couple who had sailed Viking gave us a referral..as I understand we will both get a SBC from Viking.
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  #13  
Old May 17th, 2013, 08:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colonel(Ret.)Wes View Post
War Eagle, believe the Viking referral program for River cruises works, another CC couple who had sailed Viking gave us a referral..as I understand we will both get a SBC from Viking.
Colonel Wes, that too, but talking about expanding the overall loyalty program. Will be interesting to see what they do.
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  #14  
Old May 17th, 2013, 11:34 PM
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Post Viking Oceans Roll Calls

Just booked the Viking Star B2B Viking Homelands and Passage through Western Europe. The ship looks very exciting! As noted elsewhere on the thread, Viking Oceans needs an appropriate home. With two ships, it will be on a par with Azamara Club Cruises and should have equal status.

-- roy --
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  #15  
Old May 18th, 2013, 12:26 AM
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I'm really, really close to booking Stockholm to Bergen. Looks great to me.
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  #16  
Old May 18th, 2013, 07:00 AM
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JiminyC..either Stockholm to Bergen or Maiden are wonderful itineraries...but as the movie Titantic mentioned, imagine being the first VS guests to enjoy the luxurious linens in your suite, first guests to use the tableware in dining venues--maiden will be a special voyage.

Roy, Welcome to the maiden voyage. Now with Ida, I, Harbormaster/John & Kathy, we also have RachelG/George and Rachel, and Sue and Ron. Am betting our Maiden group will be about 20-40 folks by May 2015. Am working with our TA to gently nudge Viking leadership to adopt Cruise Critic for a formal Meet & Greet. Not withstanding this development, will take the lead--when we did the maiden crossing for Silver Spirit in Jan 2010--we jump started our wonderful maiden comraderie by having a cocktail hour at one of our pre cruise hotels. Am considering Viking pre stay, but need to do homework on Bergen hotels. We will arrive Bergen at least a full day early.

Propose that we have our meet & mingle the first night on board since we have numerous port days in a row. How about 6:30-7:00pm the first nite in the Explorer's lounge (upper level if available, deck 9)?

Also, heard back from CC Community Mgr, and asked her to give Viking their own thread identity on the P-Z ocean lines--she said stay tuned.

Ps..Roy, pls join our Roll call (other roll call thread) here:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1846021
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Last edited by WesW; May 18th, 2013 at 07:11 AM.
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  #17  
Old May 18th, 2013, 07:41 AM
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Also, thanks to Harbormaster/John and Kathy, enjoy this wonderful profile piece of the Viking star:

http://maritimematters.com/2013/05/v...star-to-shine/
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  #18  
Old May 18th, 2013, 09:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colonel(Ret.)Wes View Post
JiminyC..either Stockholm to Bergen or Maiden are wonderful itineraries...but as the movie Titantic mentioned, imagine being the first VS guests to enjoy the luxurious linens in your suite, first guests to use the tableware in dining venues--maiden will be a special voyage.

Roy, Welcome to the maiden voyage. Now with Ida, I, Harbormaster/John & Kathy, we also have RachelG/George and Rachel, and Sue and Ron. Am betting our Maiden group will be about 20-40 folks by May 2015. Am working with our TA to gently nudge Viking leadership to adopt Cruise Critic for a formal Meet & Greet. Not withstanding this development, will take the lead--when we did the maiden crossing for Silver Spirit in Jan 2010--we jump started our wonderful maiden comraderie by having a cocktail hour at one of our pre cruise hotels. Am considering Viking pre stay, but need to do homework on Bergen hotels. We will arrive Bergen at least a full day early.

Propose that we have our meet & mingle the first night on board since we have numerous port days in a row. How about 6:30-7:00pm the first nite in the Explorer's lounge (upper level if available, deck 9)?

Also, heard back from CC Community Mgr, and asked her to give Viking their own thread identity on the P-Z ocean lines--she said stay tuned.

Ps..Roy, pls join our Roll call (other roll call thread) here:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1846021
Colonel,

looking into this as well. Try Hotel Park Bergen or the Clarion Admiral, those are my favorites. Each in a great location, charming and reasonably prices.

Cheers!
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  #19  
Old May 18th, 2013, 09:17 AM
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WindrunnerII, thanks for the Bergen Hotel recommendations.

And please call me Wes.

ps..please do book, we are going to have a blast
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  #20  
Old May 18th, 2013, 01:24 PM
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Remember,you get what you pay for. What I read was the size of the ships was on a par with Azamara Nd Oceania, not the level of service.
Terri.
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