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Posts posted by sippican

  1. I have an acquaintance who is very interested in cruising the Seine with our group next year. She is prone to seasickness and is hesitant to book fearing she'll be miserable, I've never heard of anyone feeling ill from motion on a river cruise, Although I've sailed on a river cruise and don't recall feeling any motion whatsoever, I'm a poor judge because I've ridden out some pretty rough ocean waters with no queasiness. 

    Has anyone been affected by motion sickness on a river cruise?


  2. 21 minutes ago, Wayfairers said:

    I’m looking at them for Japan (Tokyo, Naha, Omaezaki, Kobe, Fukuoka) and throughout South Korea.  Do you have a favorite guide at any of these?


    Sorry, no. We did Tokyo and Seoul on our own. Used a private guide on Jeju Island, and I don't recall the guide in Kobe. Just read the reviews for the guides/tours that are of interest to you. I've found them helpful, then correspond with the guide through the site.


  3. FWIW, I wanted to put my two cents in here. I have been to The Galapagos twice. Both times we sailed on the Xpedition. The first cruise it was at capacity, 100 passengers. The second time The Flora was sailing and the capacity on Xpedition had been reduced to 48 passengers. We loved the ship so much during the first cruise, that we decided to rebook. My clients have sailed Flora and absolutely loved it so I'm sure we would have also had we booked it. On Xpedition with lass than 50 passengers, it felt like a private yacht. We noticed no drop in the quality of the crew, guides or offered excursions (in fact, our wildlife viewing was better the 2nd trip). Having had two amazing trips,  I'd only choose Flora if it was much a better deal than Xpedition.

    I'd also like to address the misconception that this trip is only for those in good physical shape. Sure, you might miss out on a few activities if you are not a strong swimmer or hiker, but they do offer something for everyone every day. They even did a private zodiac tour for a 90 year old passenger one day! 

    I'm often asked when is the best time to go; which itinerary is the best, etc. The Galapagos are a year round destination. There is no best time. Each season has something different to offer. You'll see incredible things no matter which itinerary. We visited some of the same destinations both times, and they seemed completely new.

    I'm so glad we didn't put off this trip. And blessed we were able to go twice. 

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  4. On 5/25/2023 at 1:54 PM, mizLORInj said:


    Oh does that mean we'll be hearing the door open and close while the steward is in that closet early in the morning? 


    Also, these are all connecting cabins; hopefully it's quiet.  We had connecting cabin on Beyond in Feb and heard nothing from next door.   

     Have been in that cabin/ location on a number of sailings. In fact, that's my cabin of choice due to the balcony size. Never heard a thing from the closet. Honestly, I do not understand the reservations about having a connecting cabin. Has never, ever been a noise issue.

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  5. I just had clients return from the voyage last week. We chose Atlas over Viking for the pricing. They were excellent to work with from my standpoint, although it is complicated to work around their preferred vendor. Your personal ta can provide extra perks so if considering them, use a familiar ta if you have one. I have not heard back from my friends, but from the photos, look like they had a fantastic trip. (Other than airline snags which seem to be global)  I myself was booked on the Viking sailing that was cancelled due to the rogue wave incident. I requested a refund to decide whether to book with Atlas instead. I am wondering about their excursion offerings since those are the highlight. I know Viking offers more, all included; Special Ops boat, kayaking, sub. Also, comparing the actual number of activities for the duration of the cruise.


  6. 5 minutes ago, PompeySailor said:

    With this being a coastal thread CK

    So Oasis or Quantum class specific relative to concierges


    Passengers staying in Sky class suites will be contacted by Suite concierges 6-7 days before cruise 

    Star class - Genie

    Sea class- No


    For all non Oasis and Quantum class

    Only GS and above will be contacted by concierge 



    (some VP and one off cabins may also be included) but not JS




    We're sailing in a Sky Class, but I haven't sailed in RC suite class for quite awhile. We'll look forward to hearing from our concierge.


    • Like 1
  7. 7 hours ago, Heidi13 said:


    Yes, with everything else equal, a vessel with a deeper draught will be constrained before a shallower draught vessel. However, as I posted previously, any minimum under-keel clearance included in the Safety Management System is another key factor, especially if some companies provide guidance to the Masters and others don't.


    I knew the waters I sailed in extremely well, but I was still limited by the guidelines issued by the company. In these days of risk management and human factors, ship safety is much more involved than local knowledge.


    Geez I've really messed up today with the Viking fans. 

    Whatever it may be called, their ships are notorious for being unable to navigate low waters in the European rivers, while most other companies continue sailing. I guess I was given the incorrect reason for that - basically, I was told they sit lower in the water, closer to the bottom (is that clear enough). I will apologize for not knowing the correct rems.


    If you follow the river cruise boards during times of low waters, (and even flooding), perhaps you can enlighten ,me as to why this might be. There are tons of very upset Viking cruisers when this happens, especially when they sit in hotels and on buses, watching other ships sail by.

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  8. On 12/3/2022 at 5:10 PM, Heidi13 said:


    Sorry, but this is another incorrect assumption.


    The IMO Polar Code Chapter 12 requires specific training for all Masters and Deck Officers navigating in polar regions. This requirement was also incorporated into the STCW Code.


    The Viking Masters and Deck Officers may be new to the Viking ships, but they have the required experience and training to operate in these waters.


    Thank you for setting me straight - again! So are you contending that part of the Polar Code training is extensive active training on site in the polar regions. Of course, you cannot possibly contend that training equates to experience? Kind of like putting a well-trained med student right out of the classroom into the operating room.

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  9. Interesting discussion!

    I am wondering if anyone is even considering that the company is very new to expedition cruising, having only a partial season with Octantis under its belt. The crews are not seasoned veterans of those conditions.

    They have a huge customer base that will remain their loyal cheerleaders.

    The comparison to Carnival is a somewhat valid point. They cram more passengers onto their river boat ships, which are designed poorly (they have a lower beam which limits their capability to navigate low river conditions). They are the first line off the European rivers, placing their passengers on buses, while other companies continue to cruise. I wonder what cost cutting measures, if any, were considered during the construction of these ships? Pure speculation,


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  10. 1 hour ago, Pushka said:

    It has been confirmed by passengers on that sailing in a FB page. With copies of the emails advising. It's a private group so can't repost here. The repairs also can't be done in Ushuaia but needs to be completed in a larger facility on the SA continent. 

    This was posted prior to any official notification. The e-mail came last evening. I am also a member of that page as well as a TA. 

  11. 17 hours ago, Heidi13 said:


    For those of us not actually aboard the RHIB, until we know the facts, may I suggest using a more generic term of a "Zodiac incident" resulted in a pax sustaining a broken leg. An explosion can mean a multitude of things to different people, although I'll suggest most of us consider it a violent reaction that in a confined space, such as a RHIB, would result in greater injuries.


    I have both used Rigid Hull Inflatable boats (RHIB) from Zodiac and a number of other manufacturers, and managed a large service station for way too many years. RHIB's have way more risks than traditional lifeboats/tenders, which is why they are not used on regular cruises. So injuries have a much higher probability, which is why I trained my crews in these boats almost daily.


    The collars are pressurised PVC or PU, as most OEM's have moved on from Butyl. The collars are normally low pressure, from memory probably < 5 psi and have pressure relief valves in each compartment of the collar. The collars are also tested to 2x or 3x the working pressure, by blocking the relief valves during the annual test. If somebody punctured the inflatable collar, it is hardly an explosion. I also note on commercial boats, the entire collar will comprise 3 to 5 compartments, so if 1 fails, the remainder remain inflated.


    Only other potential is the fuel system, which is a closed system from the tank(s) to the outboard(s). I've seen lots of fuel leaks, but not even a fire, and certainly not an explosion, which requires a fuel/air mixture between the LEL & UEL.

     I chose to use the term as reported by passengers onboard (note the quotation marks).

  12. 37 minutes ago, Catlover54 said:

    So this ship had a malfunctioning Zodiak which led to the severe injury of a passenger, and lower windows that could not withstand a storm, which led to the death of another passenger and injury of others while hurrying back to get help for the first injured passenger.


    I wonder what else is wrong with this new ship (especially since we know that Covid consequences have created labor shortages and time crunches for companies to deliver products).


    Of course similar problems could occur on other lines, we just don't know about them, and in theory the odds of gettiing injured, much less killed, on an expedition remain miniscule.


    What do we know about the captain?


    Reports state it was a rogue wave that caused the damage, injuries and fatality. If you do a search, you will find that many other ships have suffered severe damage if they encounter one.  Yes, they were in a storm. Her sister ship was built by the same company during covid and crossed the Drake multiple times last season.


    Although Viking expeditions are a new endeavor for them, a very experienced company, Quark, suffered the loss of two passengers in a zodiac accident a few weeks ago in Antarctica. 


    Looking for someone or something to blame seems to be a fruitless venture but ceratainly questions worth asking.



    • Like 2
  13. 4 hours ago, TrumpyNor said:


    Latest  "official news":

    As Viking Polaris is a ship that is registered in Norway, there was a report here in a Norwegian newspaper less than 2 hours ago (01.00 PM European time), quoting somebody from Viking Line officially stating that unfortunately the wave caused one fatality (passenger) and four other passengers that were receiving medical threatment for non-lethal injuries. 

     Where did you get your information regarding the next cruise being cancelled? 

    As a TA booked to depart 12/6, there has been no such notification or information from Viking. Their official statement says the next sailing will go as planned.  (although that seems impossible).

  14. 2 hours ago, Chari910 said:

    There was an incident with the Zodiac a few days before the ship was hit with the rogue wave. 4 people were injured, one lady with a bad broken leg. They decided to leave Antarctica and head back to Ushuaia to off load the injured pax. Plans were made to cruise the Chilean Fjords until the last day of the cruise. En route, the waves were monstrous in the Drake Passage and then the ship got hit. Many cabins got destroyed from broken windows, sea water flooded the cabins. I do not know the fatality happened during the Zodiac incident or when the ship was hit. 


    It was reported that there was "an explosion" on the zodiac, which resulted in the woman's broken leg. Another passenger was thrown into the water but pulled in by crew. I have not read of any other injuries from that mishap. Since the woman was unable to be evacuated, the ship headed back  When the rogue wave struck, one passenger died and four more were injured.

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  15. 2 hours ago, Hazard10 said:

    There were two problems. The zodiac either burst or could have been pumped up too much? Someone was injured on that which meant the ship had to leave for Argentina early.


    This rogue wave incident is a separate issue that happened on the route back to Argentina.


    Yes, according to reports of those onboard the zodiac "explosion" resulted in a broken leg injury (another passenger was thrown into the water and pulled to safety). Evacuation by helicopter was not feasible so the ship needed to return to port so the injured woman could receive medical care. On the crossing, a rogue wave struck, destroying some cabin windows/walls on deck 2. several passengers were injured and one died.

    I am scheduled for the next sailing, which Viking claims will not be impacted! The government of Argentina is investigating. Some passengers have been unable to return to their cabins to retrieve any personal belongings.

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