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About Pushka

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  1. Unfortunately our only source of info is the media who take particular delight in trying to sensationalize the risks. The main risk to travellers remains at the airport. Everywhere else just avoid obvious large crowds.
  2. The only real issue for travellers is that if the airport gets shut down. And they seemed to have worked that out now.
  3. I just made two dinner reservations yesterday for a cruise in July. It seemed easy to do just using the cruise planner and clicking on ‘Specialty Restaurants.’
  4. I use the emotional connection with France to determine what I consider to be champagne. I can consume champagne without getting the least bit of a headache next day.
  5. Yes it is available but Celebrity makes it as hard as possible to get a glass. It isn’t available in all bars. A wily UK woman put me on to this on the Silly. And after a couple of days of being able to get a glass eventually I was told it was sold out. I didn’t believe it. It was the correct French Champagne and not the US variety that we don’t consider to be true champagne.
  6. Sunset verandahs are usually one of the first to sell out.
  7. The warnings are no different to many parts of the world where cruise ships still berth. Unless there is a general strike you just need to be aware and avoid large public gatherings for the purpose of demonstrations.
  8. We weren’t able to tender and only started boarding at 6pm and which took about 2 hours. Our muster wasn’t held until the next day which I’d read was not permissible and surprising given Vikings history of late re vessel issues.
  9. I posted to your question on the Viking Boards. We did Viking in Alaska, it was not the best experience and while there were no kids, no casinos, no photographers, and included excursions, we are going back to Celebrity. They had numerous significant service failures. Beautiful ships though. And we didn’t go on any of the included excursions. You will likely have to pay in full as soon as you book. You cannot book any of their excursions until 99 days out for suites and 77 days out for Deluxe verandahs. You cannot even see the excursions until around 120 days out. Our impression was that they think that people want to just let the cruise line do all the thinking. But in our Alaska cruise as a first itinerary for them, they didn’t get it right at all. Tenders were not handled well causing 90 minute delays. We had to tender four times while every other ship was berthed. They didn’t even tell us until the night before if the port was a tenders creating issues for private booked excursions as there was a delay of 90 minutes for non ship guests.
  10. I liked the itinerary. I liked the simplicity of the ships. My brother recommended them. I thought their marketing showed a high valued product. Lots of positives. Experience turned out to be a little different. I found the release of excursions to lower cabins to be particularly annoying and ended up booking private ones because Alaska being so busy I didn’t want to miss out on prize excursions. As it turned out, four were booked out prior to our cabin release and because of the nature of this excursions (fishing charter, private train carriage etc) Viking didn’t release any further places. Their logistics with regards to tenders were surprisingly poor which surprised me given they manage this process flawlessly in Europe and UK. But something went wrong in Alaska.
  11. If it’s a new itinerary to Viking I’d choose Celebrity. We’ve chosen Celebrity for the Med next year. Just found Viking a very disappointing first time experience for us and marketing didn’t live up to experience. Have cruised with Celebrity three times and happy to experience it again. We just avoid casinos and photographers and have never found the number of passengers and children to be an issue when we’ve cruised with Celebrity. Being able to see and book excursions from the very beginning of the booking process is a huge plus for Celebrity.
  12. On our Viking cruise we had four tender ports. I’d not sail on Viking in Alaska again as we were the only ship to have to tender in those ports. And their tender process for us was not good. Shame, the ship is lovely.
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