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About molymoo

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    Cool Cruiser

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  • Location
    chicago area
  • Interests
    travel, reading, running
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  1. molymoo

    One service Viking is lacking

    I suppose it would be nice if Viking provided a texting app ... and I wouldn't be surprised if one day soon we find that they add it to the mix. I have AT&T service and use their International Day Pass plan which allows me to use my phone as I do at home in any of more than 100 countries for $10 a day ... no charge on days it is not used. It is a nice way to keep in touch with DH who is home with the pets. My daughter can text anytime and any place via the WIFI (she has T-mobile) so we can use that on sea days. I have used What's App and it's a great way to keep in touch when in countries that are not included in AT&T's plan (eg: Algiers) and sea days ... will have four of them this summer on the Midnight Sun!
  2. molymoo

    Tallinn on the Baltic’s cruise

    We booked an excursion while we were in Tallin but there was a shuttle. We spent some time on our own in the town after our tour and took the shuttle back to the ship. Not sure what time the shuttle started in the morning but it ran at regular intervals until shortly before we sailed away. Tallin is a lovely little city!
  3. molymoo

    Viking Jupiter Delivered

    Oops! My bad! 6/30 is correct ... forgot that the MVJ includes the London pre-extension which starts on 6/28. Okay, now that I have been corrected, we're still the only ones signed up for the M&M!
  4. molymoo

    Viking Jupiter Delivered

    Hey Jupiter fans ... we are on the 6/28 Midnight sun cruise and as of this posting we are the only ones signed up for the Meet & Mingle! Come on people ... free drinks and nibbles and a chance to touch base with other cruisers who frequent these boards and are friendly, thoughtful, intelligent, affable, perspicacious ... well you get the drift. We really don't want to be the only ones there!
  5. molymoo

    Purchasing Optional Excursions

    If you have researched and know what excursions you want then just book them all when it is time for you to do so. There is no advantage that I can think of for booking a few at a time ... and for an optional excursion you run the risk of it filling up if you hesitate. I generally book the optional ones first then go back and fill in with included ones if they are what we have decided we will do ... but this is all done in one session generally early in the day on the day we are allowed to.
  6. molymoo

    Viking Jupiter Delivered

    We're looking forward to getting acquainted with Jupiter on our Midnight Sun cruise 6/30! We have been on the Star and Sky so it will be fun to see the changes! I know they have the planetarium like Orion and apparently they have moved the omelette station from the middle of the world cafe to the end ... around the corner from the gelato. That might be an improvement during the busy times when there are several people waiting for custom orders.
  7. molymoo

    Viking Homelands - Recommended Excursions?

    We took this cruise in 2016 and the itinerary has changed slightly as have the choices for shore excursions. Stockholm: We took a walking tour of old town then visited an Ice Bar. The walking tour was great ... the ice bar was dumb ... probably why it is no longer an option! Helsinki: We took the excursion to the Fiskars Village and enjoyed it. It is a lovely little village with an interesting history ... we do, however, regret missing the city of Helsinki entirely. Tallin: We did the walking tour and chocolate workshop and while it was "okay" I found myself wishing the workshop would end so we could have some time to explore the lovely city a little more on our own. It is really a beautiful city and it was a beautiful warm and sunny day. All of our chocolate melted anyway! Gdansk: We did the tour that included the Amber Museum. It was nice, the museum was interesting and there was enough free time to satisfy our wanderlust. Berlin: We opted out of the trip to Berlin and did the Rostock tour. It was charming little city and we enjoyed the brewery as well. We spent a fair amount of extra time in the city and indulged in a little shopping while we were at it! Again it was a pretty nice day so we enjoyed the outdoor time! Copenhagen: We did the Coastal Copenhagen tour and had a great time. I believe it included lunch in a nice restaurant on the water. After the tour we returned to the city for an afternoon of wandering about. We enjoyed a glass beer al fresco at a cafe on the Nyhavn. Alborg: We LOVED our excursion here ... we did the Beer tour and despite the fact that we took some grief from some of our fellow passengers for indulging in this "walk" at 8:30 in the morning, we had a ball! The guide was knowledgeable and had a wicked sense of humor. The bars that we were slated to visit weren't technically open at that early hour but they welcomed us ... and a contingent of local chaps who apparently know that early morning libations can be had if you follow the "flag". This added another dimension to the tour that was priceless. The group we were with was a lot of fun and by the end there was singing and dancing ... and some mighty fine open faced sandwiches too! Stavanger: We did the Pulpit Rock cruise and it was okay ... the scenery was amazing and despite the rain we enjoyed out time on the water. I do regret the fact that we missed the city here ... my husband's family is from Norway and his grandfather grew up in Stavanger ... would have liked seeing some of the city he heard so much about growing up. Eidfjord: We did not have this stop on our cruise ... we were in Flam instead. We did, however take the Flam railway trip and enjoyed it very much. Not sure if they still do it but we took a bus back down the mountain and it was a twisty, curvy road that provided some white knuckle goose bumps on the way down. Bergen: We made the trip up to Ulriken then wandered about on our own for the afternoon. We ate lunch in the fish market where they prepared the fish on open grills and ranges. It was delicious! St. Petersburg: We had spend a fair amount of time in SPB on a previous trip so we opted for two lesser excursions while we were there ... I think a private tour would be your best bet here. Have a wonderful trip!
  8. I don't think most here have been "harsh" ... it's just that nothing in the story makes any sense from the perspective of (apparently) anyone here who booked a cruise onboard with a Viking cruise consultant. Additionally, the OP has made some serious allegations regarding the business practices and integrity of both the cruise consultant and Viking Cruise Lines: "I think this was well planned and (unlucky for us) well executed." "This is about a cruise ship company that try to fill all the rooms on their ships. It's all about the bottom line." "What I found from the experience was that this was no accidental mistake in booking by Viking Cruise. It was intentional. The itinerary my husband and I wanted was a popular one. The one that Viking booked us on was less popular. They were trying to fill their ships and changed our itinerary w/o telling us. They hoped that we didn't notice the difference between the two Asian itineraries. It was very deceptive." I guess the best we can take away from this is to (as is always best practice) read the fine print and get the documentation ... even if you have to be "rude". Oh, and be sure you see the cruise consultant BEFORE the cocktail hour!
  9. molymoo

    British Isles Explorer Anyone?

    Just read Jazzbeau's review and it was awesome! They started in Bergen, we started in Greenwich(London). We also took the scenic train ride from Bergen to Oslo and spent some time there ... worth doing ... especially as flying into or out of Bergen can be hallenging ... it is a small airport and options are few. Oslo is easier ... just a thought! Jazzbeau and his DW took some private tours which sounded great but we stuck with the included and a few optionals along the way.
  10. molymoo

    British Isles Explorer Anyone?

    We did the British Isles Explorer itinerary last summer and loved it! We added the pre-extension in Edinburgh and enjoyed the extra time in the city. We did miss a stop in Ullapool because of weather/sea conditions and our cruise did not include Liverpool but went to Glasgow instead. That stop was disappointing but apparently that itinerary change was likely a "one time only". Scotland is a wonderful country and the "islands" (Shetland and Orkney) were fascinating. We loved our day in Dublin ... we took the walking tour then wandered off on our own and took the shuttle back to the ship. I could go on and on but if you have any specific questions just ask!
  11. Having booked three cruises with Viking while onboard another, this whole story just doesn't make any sense. There are so many things that allegedly took place that defy any measure of common sense or reality. I am guessing (like broker 1217) that there is a lot of pertinent information missing in this story. We'll never know ... but I will likely book another cruise when I'm onboard this summer. The process has always been above board for us and fully expect the same this time.
  12. molymoo

    Viking Ocean Cruise Automatic Gratuity

    Sorry guys ... hate to keep beating this "dead horse" but ... duquephart, it is obvious you DO have a problem with tipping and Viking IS upfront about their policy. Tipping IS entirely voluntary, it's just that if you want to be a jerk about it and not tip, you have to be upfront, admit it and own it!
  13. molymoo

    How do we to book excursions?

    I will add a tidbit to Peregrina's great information ... if there is an excursion you want that is "SOLD OUT" keep watching ... even after boarding! We had one we wanted at the Edinburgh stop last summer but it was "SOLD OUT" and stayed "SOLD OUT" until we boarded our plane. After a three day Edinburgh extension we checked MVJ in the stateroom the day we boarded and lo and behold the excursion was there! We booked it then and there and had a great time! Not sure what the glitch was but there you have it ... never give up. It was the trip to Rosslyn Chapel by the way ... fascinating!
  14. molymoo

    Has anyone had the beef tartare at Mamsen's?

    Manfredi's has a nice carpaccio on their appetizer menu. It is sliced very thinly and nicely seasoned. Not a big fan of tartare but have had it on occasion ... okay if the beef is very, very fresh. Mamsen's has so many other nice options I wouldn't bother with the tartare ... but to each his own ... and as Capt_BJ says "don't cost nothing"!
  15. molymoo

    Viking Orion -Reviews for excursions getting worse???

    If you have had three wonderful Viking Ocean Cruises I am sure that the one in May will be wonderful as well. The food, service and cabins don't change with the venue ... just the excursions which are subject to the unique conditions that each port "provides". Honestly I read reviews but take them with a "grain of salt". Some people are simply determined to find fault in anything that is different or "not what I'm used to". Embrace the adventure! Private tours are almost always an option as well.