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Glorybe

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About Glorybe

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Vancouver
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Oceania
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Europe

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  1. Viking Ukraine Refunds for 2020 cruise cancellation by client: I have received a full refund (minus $100 kept as a future travel credit with Viking) for the Sept 2020 Ukraine river cruise. I requested a refund through my travel agent who notified Viking about our cancellation. We cancelled just prior to the 120 days before sailing when full refunds without penalty would be given to clients who cancelled their cruises. We received the refund about a week after our request. So glad about the ease of getting this refund, but sad we had to cancel. It seemed like a good river cruise.
  2. RE: Cancelling the Viking Ukraine cruise prior to the company cancelling the cruise resulted in an unsatisfactory refund: How many days before your departure date did you notify Viking you wanted to cancel the booking? The Terms and Conditions document we received with our statement for our mid-September Ukraine river cruise shows a scheduled ladder of refunds that will be given according to the number of days prior to the departure that the cancellation was made. For example, 120 days cancellation notice prior to departure shows a 100% refund while 29 days or less results in no refund. These are considered "cancellation charges". When I read further into the document, it also states that the Ukraine cruise is "third party" provider - that Viking just sold the tickets ( "acts solely as a US sales and marketing agent for the carrier of the ship and services are purchased from third party providers) for the Ukraine company who is providing the cruise. I am wondering if the third party provider will have different policies about refunds due to cancellations from those that Viking is currently espousing for its European river cruises. Our travel agent is terrific in helping us make travel decisions by communicating with the various companies for us with whom we have made bookings and in informing us about these companies' current policies about refunds, cancellations, future travel credits, etc. Can you ask your travel agent to intercede on your behalf?
  3. I would be interested to know what you enjoyed seeing in Kyiv. Did you see these sights during free time, or a pre-post stay? Did you walk or use public transportation to these sights/ease of use of buses?
  4. In your readings about tours to Chernobyl, did you read about radiation levels still a problem in that area or about concerns for visitors' health/safety? I too am interested in a Chernobyl tour, but I was wondering if radiation effects are still a concern?
  5. What is the minimum amount of Ukrainian money that I should buy for this Dnieper River cruise? Did you exchange your money for UKrainian money when you arrived (we will arrive in Kiev)? Thanks for a reply.
  6. I would like to know what currency you used to tip crew/staff on Viking Sineus - Ukraine money, Euros, US $. Also, what is the expected currency when paying tips to the crew/staff of the Viking Sineus ?
  7. Arriving at the Kiev airport - What was your experience like in terms of going thru passport and customs inspection after retrieving your luggage? Long wait lines? We will be arriving in the afternoon - around 2ish - on a Sunday in September, perhaps very tired after a 15 hour flight.
  8. When does Viking want passengers to be on the Viking Sineus on departure day? Our departure day will be a Sunday, Sept 13. One flight we are thinking of taking lands Sept 13 at 1:30pm in Kiev airport. We should be ready to leave the airport by 2:30 and could be on the Viking ship by 3ish. We will be doing our own transfers as we won't be buying air with Viking. This will be a long flight for us - 17 hours. Should we consider instead arriving on Sept 12 and booking a hotel overnight? We would then most likely stay at the Hilton in Kiev. What hotel did you use for a pre or post cruise stay in Kiev? Day 1- 3 are in Kiev. Day 1 includes the welcome dinner. We like to get the info given during that welcome talk, but may be too sleepy to attend. Day 2 and Day 3 start off with sightseeing, probably in the morning with PM free or with choice of optional excursions. Thanks for your suggestions.
  9. Good to know about the temperatures you had in September as that is the month we will be there in 2020. Knowing what to pack to be comfortable is always a concern. Was there rain during your visit?
  10. You might want to have a look at a weather website like accuweather to see the historical temperatures in the various months. I find it uncomfortable travelling in Europe in the months of July and August because of the heat and the hotels inconsistent application of AC so I avoid those months. We have booked Viking's September 2020 cruise leaving Kiev and then decided to take the Vienna extension at the end of the cruise to pass the time - a few days - until our Moscow to Stalingard cruise started with Scenic. In September, I think the temperatures will be in the low 20's in this region.
  11. We taking the Moscow to Stalingrad cruise Sept 2020 after our Kiev to Bucharest cruise. I was interested in your comment about Moscow's many museums as I would like to visit some on my own too. Has anyone visited these Moscow museums OYO? State Historical Museum opposite the Kremlin; Borodino Battle Museum Panorama; and the Musee de la Grande Guerre Patriotique near Victory Park. I would appreciate comments about the displays being worthwhile my effort to get there especially in understanding the exhibits when I don't read the language. Should I just select 1 museum like the State Historical Museum which is near the Kremlin - no subway required as Viking will get us to the Kremlin area I am sure. This will be our second visit to Moscow (first time with Scenic cruises) so I am keen to do some OYO visits.
  12. In Odesa shuttle buses. Do you remember the drop off/pick up address in the center of the Odesa, or the proximity to a building or attraction? I would find that helpful in order to see what the attractions are around the drop off/pick up point.
  13. Thanks for that info as I don't think I would want to attend an opera.
  14. I am not clear if the Opera in Odessa is included as a Viking excursion (ie no additional charge), or is the night at the Opera an optional excursion (need to pay for it). Thanks for your many replies to this forum!
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