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mnjack

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Posts posted by mnjack

  1. Just checking in to see what was going on. Not terribly encouraging!  We booked a Lyon to Marseille cruise originally for March 2020. We cancelled moments before Viking did and rebooked for early April 2021.  This cruise was also cancelled and we have not yet rebooked - still sitting on our voucher(s). I don't want to have to rebook again so waiting for a bit more clarity on the Covid situation in Europe, and it hasn't happened yet! 

  2. Our April cruise has been officially cancelled. Looking forward to rescheduling, just not sure for when.  Got an email from Viking yesterday, that included this:

     

     

    For now, though, our scheduled cruise departures must wait – and we are extending our suspension of scheduled departures through May 31, 2021.

  3. We booked a cruise for 3/24/2020 and it wasn't officially cancelled by Viking until 2 weeks before that date. We decided we weren't going - and cancelled -  a few hours before Viking officially cancelled the cruise. Several months later we booked a replacement cruise.... for 4/4/2021!  Viking has cancelled all cruises through 3/30/2021. At this point I don't see how our 4/4 date is going to happen. France seems to be going in the wrong direction. We are just going to wait until it is officially cancelled, which could be days before the scheduled embarkation date. It is a little nerve-wracking because we were planning on an extended trip with time before and after the cruise in France and were going to book our own airfare. We haven't booked any air yet, mainly because we don't expect to go.  

  4. @thptrek , My friendly advice is to wait until the very last minute to cancel. We went through a similar analysis in Feb/March for our March 24, 2020 Viking Cruise. We decided based on information available that the risk was too great, so when Viking offered a 100% voucher for cancelled cruises we accepted what I felt was a generous offer. I thought if everyone insisted on a cash refund it could force the company into bankruptcy. After I accepted their 100% voucher offer - the very next day - Viking announced a 125% voucher offer on cancelled trips!  

     

    Now we are booked on the same cruise for April 2021, and I am wondering what the chances are..... 

  5. I am reading many stories similar to ours:  We were booked on 3/24 Lyons river cruise. After the 3/2 email/offer from Viking we leaned towards cancelling and taking the 100% voucher, which I considered extremely fair given the circumstances. Although I appreciated the offer of waiting until 24 hours before departure to cancel, it didn't seem fair to Viking to wait until the last day. So..... on March 10, I called Viking and following their instructions, sent an email requesting cancellation at around 5pm on March 10!!  We didn't even get a confirm email until after 5pm the next day, which was after they cancelled all cruises and offered the 125% voucher. I didn't receive any notice from Viking about this because we had already cancelled our cruise.  I sent Viking an email today asking if we could be considered for the 125% voucher. If they give it to us I will be thrilled - if not, I guess I can live with that. Either way, we are now unsecured creditors of Viking. 

     

     

  6. 32 minutes ago, Jchivers said:

    Viking just sent out a notice that they're relaxing their cancellation policy for booked passengers: you can cancel up to 24 hours before your flight and receive 100% refund (in the form of a travel voucher, good for 24 months).  

     

    This does help us (European river cruise in April)...basically, we can put off the go/no-go decision until the last moment.  

     

    Yes, just got the email. I think their offer is very generous. My plan was to go on the flights and the river cruise unless it was cancelled. Now I will have to make the decision myself. I am also a little worried that they may have to cancel our cruise if enough people cancel. Would they cruise if 50% cancelled? So even if we don't cancel, I won't be surprised if they cancel on us. Given the average age of their clientele (Our previous Viking river cruise seemed to me to be mostly Americans in their 70s) I think many will be likely to do what they think is the prudent thing and cancel.  

  7. I have a question about the Saturday September 8, 2018 4pm departure from New York..... at least I think it was the Gem

     

    We were flying from Charlotte to LaGuardia Saturday morning and the flight was delayed and then delayed more as we sat on the tarmac and the pilot explained they needed a part replaced and then explained that the part arrived but not the required seal to install it. Meanwhile, SIXTEEN passengers on that flight were trying to make their NCL cruise ship departing at 4pm and they were kind of freaking out, calling NCL to see if the ship would wait for them and if their pre-paid airport to ship transfer would still be available. It didn't look good and we couldn't help but overhear conversations with NCL customer service. We eventually took off (maybe 3 hours late?) but we were on the ground at Laguardia at 2:30 pm so at that point I liked their chances of making the 4pm departure. They actually got word from NCL that the ship's departure would be held up for them. So I was just wondering if everyone made the ship and are enjoying the cruise. My wife and I spent the weekend in NYC and had nothing planned until dinner Saturday so the late fight didn't stress us at all.

  8. I quizzed our Viking cruise director about the tips, because it was my first river cruise. He explained the independent contractor aspect, and that he alone got the tips from that particular envelope. The rest of the crew, including the captain, shared in the tips from the other envelope. I wish I had asked him if the other 51 (I think that was the number) share EQUALLY. So, I don't know how they divvy it up.

     

    When we checked out, I asked what the "recommended amount" worked out to, and they told me 168 euros (12 * 2 * 7) so I said put us down for 200. Then we put money in separate envelopes and handed them personally to the young man who took care of our cabin, the maitre d, who really looked after our special dietary interests, and a small amount to the piano player. My wife and I actually like to tip to show our appreciation for excellent service. I guess it's an American thing. My wife tends to be more generous than me. At the end of the day I can say that we are fortunate enough so that an extra $200 or so won't make a difference to us.

  9. I found bank ATMs (not the small private ATMs) in Budapest, Germany, Austria and Prague for small amounts of local currency. I used my Schwab ATM card because Schwab reimburses ATM fees and they gave me a great exchange rate.

     

    But the best deal was using a credit card, which was accepted everywhere. I used a Citi Mastercard that charges no foreign exchange fee, but the best part is they send me a text message that I receive immediately (even in Europe) that tells me the amount of US dollars charged on my card. The exchange rate was always mid market, and far better than what any vendor would give me. Most credit cards now can be set up with this text message feature. I love it!

  10. I was able to rent a bike from Nextbike (dotcom). I downloaded their app to my phone and when our Viking ship stopped at Durnstein Austria there was a Nextbike rack right where the ship docked. The app can be a little balky, but I actually got it to work, and my wife and I rode 2 bikes around for a little over an hour. I was charged (on my credit card) 1 Euro for mine, and 2 Euros for the 2nd bike. By far best bargain of the trip! That was the only time we rented bikes on this cruise.

     

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