Viking Sun

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#1
407 Posts
Joined Dec 2005
We recently returned from two weeks on the Viking Freya, Amsterdam to Budapest. Our agent just called to ask how it went and my wife gave a great report. We had a wonderful cruise and the ship and crew were terrific. He says they've had lots of complaints about the Sun.

Anyone know why? Is something wrong with the ship or are there crew issues?
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Alberta, Canada
#3
New York
346 Posts
Joined Feb 2001
I was on the Sun also in 2010 and never heard of any problems or complaints. Very clean and friendly service; it was a great trip.
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Frank & Pat
New York, NY
---------------
10/17 Viking Foresti - Chateau, Rivers & Wine
12/16 Viking Vili - Danube Waltz / Passau to Budapest
11/15 Viking Mani - Rhine Getaway / Burges to Basel
11/14 Viking Hermod / Viking Buri - Portraits of Southern France
11/13 Viking Prestige - Vineyards & Vistas / Trier to Bamberg
11/12 Viking Odin - Romantic Danube / Budapest to Nuremberg
11/11 Viking Schumann - Elegant Elbe / Prague to Berlin
10/10 Viking Sun - Rhine Getaway / Amsterdam to Basel (Lucerne)
11/09 Viking Pride - Romantic Danube / Nuremberg to Vienna
8/09 RCCL Explorer of the Seas / Bermuda
8/07 RCCL Western Caribbean
8/06 RCCL Spendour of the Seas /Greek Isles
6/05 RCCL Navigator of the Seas /Western Caribbean
6/04 RCCL Adventure of the Seas /Eastern Caribbean
6/03 CCL - Zenith /Bermuda
6/02 RCCL Grandeur of the Seas / Mediterrean
#4
Upstate NY
380 Posts
Joined Oct 2011
pflorio994,
I see from your post that you have been on 4 river cruises. We have been on 13 cruises so far (9 on Princess, 2 on RCCL, and 1 on Holland America), but have never been on a river cruise and are considering it.
Which one of the itineraries would you recommend for a first river cruise?
I assume you would recommend Viking over other lines because that is who you cruised with!!! Why Viking?
Any advice or suggestions? Like best time of the year to go?
Looking forward to hear back from you and anybody else willing to help us gathering info.
Thanks, Lise
#5
milwaukee wisconsin
538 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
Originally posted by top of the world
pflorio994,
I see from your post that you have been on 4 river cruises. We have been on 13 cruises so far (9 on Princess, 2 on RCCL, and 1 on Holland America), but have never been on a river cruise and are considering it.
Which one of the itineraries would you recommend for a first river cruise?
I assume you would recommend Viking over other lines because that is who you cruised with!!! Why Viking?
Any advice or suggestions? Like best time of the year to go?
Looking forward to hear back from you and anybody else willing to help us gathering info.
Thanks, Lise
My suggestion for you (as a first time river cruiser) would be to do a shorter 7/8 day cruise with additional days prior to sailing. You will find river cruising very different from ocean cruises. It's a smaller ship with only 100 - 200 cruisers with you. It's usually an older crowd with most in their 50s to 60s and some in their 70s and even 80s. There is not much to do on board in the evening other than an occasional demonstration/presentation by locals and the on board piano player. Socializing with your fellow cruisers is the greatest source of entertainment but know that most cruisers will be in their cabins by 10 PM or so.

I would suggest you do a bit of research on which cruise line you should select. There are close to a dozen European river cruise lines that you could chose from. Some high end and some not so high end. It depends upon your budget, your level of expectations and other factors that are important to you.

Our first river cruise was on the Rhine - Amsterdam to Basel. We went in late May and it was fantastic. The weather was warm, the scenery was lush/green and we got a taste of a handful of cities that we will surely go back to see.

I'm sure you will get a lot of opinions on when to go, where to go and which line to chose. I hope you get enough info so that you can decide those things.
#6
New York
346 Posts
Joined Feb 2001
Originally posted by top of the world
pflorio994,
I see from your post that you have been on 4 river cruises. We have been on 13 cruises so far (9 on Princess, 2 on RCCL, and 1 on Holland America), but have never been on a river cruise and are considering it.
Which one of the itineraries would you recommend for a first river cruise?
I assume you would recommend Viking over other lines because that is who you cruised with!!! Why Viking?
Any advice or suggestions? Like best time of the year to go?
Looking forward to hear back from you and anybody else willing to help us gathering info.
Thanks, Lise


I agree with Paulinda 100% river cruising is so different from ocean cruising. I also would recommend a 7 day cruise. The Danube is a very relaxing cruise (as you can see I am doing it again this November). The Rhine was hectic (lots of touring and castles) and the Elbe (I was not that enthused by Eastern Germany); but I did enjoy all of them. On all the tours, I saw how the cities grew since my bus tours of Europe back in the 80's.

I found Viking and really never looked into any other cruise lines. I found them very informative and their friendly atmosphere.

If this is your first time to Europe, I would suggest the Danube (with possibly a pre-/post- extension). I prefer to travel in early November - you see the cities dressing up for the holidays and it is really not too hot or too cold. If you travel too late in November, you can have water level problems (rivers too low). As for early Spring, you have problems with the servicing of locks in the rivers or flooding problems (when the rivers flood, the boats cannot travel under the bridges). You have to research the weather as well. I do not enjoy touring in the rain. On all 3 of the river cruises, I never had a day of rain, which was so amazing and lucky.

I recommend that you carefully read the itineraries and see what you really want to see and do. Whatever you decide - once you do a river cruise - you will do more.

Happy traveling,
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Frank & Pat
New York, NY
---------------
10/17 Viking Foresti - Chateau, Rivers & Wine
12/16 Viking Vili - Danube Waltz / Passau to Budapest
11/15 Viking Mani - Rhine Getaway / Burges to Basel
11/14 Viking Hermod / Viking Buri - Portraits of Southern France
11/13 Viking Prestige - Vineyards & Vistas / Trier to Bamberg
11/12 Viking Odin - Romantic Danube / Budapest to Nuremberg
11/11 Viking Schumann - Elegant Elbe / Prague to Berlin
10/10 Viking Sun - Rhine Getaway / Amsterdam to Basel (Lucerne)
11/09 Viking Pride - Romantic Danube / Nuremberg to Vienna
8/09 RCCL Explorer of the Seas / Bermuda
8/07 RCCL Western Caribbean
8/06 RCCL Spendour of the Seas /Greek Isles
6/05 RCCL Navigator of the Seas /Western Caribbean
6/04 RCCL Adventure of the Seas /Eastern Caribbean
6/03 CCL - Zenith /Bermuda
6/02 RCCL Grandeur of the Seas / Mediterrean
#7
2,503 Posts
Joined Feb 2005
We were on the Sun a few years back in Aquarium class--thanks to whomever coined that phrase. The plumbing noises were awful--all day and all nite we could hear toilets and showers. Were told it is a function of the river boats. At that time we had been on 11 river cruises nd neer encountered the problem. This is a European boat--no elevator. The CD was very,very new--her mother was a housekeeper and her sister an Assistant CD. The bright spot of the cruise was the extremely hard working crew. Dining room ran smoothly because of the Maitre'd Janos. He had also been on the Elbe with us and was excellent. The Sun at that time was one of the longest boats on the river and we did dock in some very out of the way places. No river cruise is perfect, but some experiences are better than others. Pat
#8
Woodland Hills, CA
763 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
Originally posted by MoneyGuy
We recently returned from two weeks on the Viking Freya, Amsterdam to Budapest. Our agent just called to ask how it went and my wife gave a great report. We had a wonderful cruise and the ship and crew were terrific. He says they've had lots of complaints about the Sun.

Anyone know why? Is something wrong with the ship or are there crew issues?
Dear MoneyGuy,

Welcome back from your cruise! Viking Freya truly is a terrific ship and we’re thrilled that you enjoyed your time on board.

The concern raised about Viking Sun is surprising to hear. We take customer feedback very seriously and what we’ve been hearing from guests of Viking Sun is that they have enjoyed the ship and their overall trip. We are currently not aware of any issues with the ship itself or with the service provided by the crew. That’s why we would really like to speak with your travel agent and get a better understanding of the feedback they’ve received. We hope you will email us at [email protected] so that we may contact your travel agent and also answer any questions or concerns you may have about Viking Sun. We’d also welcome the chance to hear more about your trip aboard Viking Freya.

We hope you will choose to travel with us again very soon.

Sincerely,
Viking River Cruises
#9
372 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
We celebrated this New Year on the Viking Sun: last Rhine cruise of the 2011. The ship and crew are great and as others already said very clean and nice.
Do not listen to the travel agents: they just try to sell new ships as they are more expensive.
#10
Upstate NY
380 Posts
Joined Oct 2011
Thank you very much Paulinda and pflorio994 for the information. I started a file on river cruises and will hold on to your suggestions. I'll also keep reading the posts on cruise critic. We are also considering a cruise to Australia and New Zealand (not a river cruise there!) Not sure which one we'll do first.
So many cruises, so little time!...
pacmom... about the plumbing noises... could it matter where your cabin is located on the boat? Does anyone have an opinion about this?
#11
2,503 Posts
Joined Feb 2005
Top of the world---we have sailed on the lowest deck on most of our trips. The one on the Sun was the only one where we could hear the plumbing noises all the time. Also one morning we had no bathroom water--couldn't flush. The only public bathroom was up a flight and very small and very busy. Pat
#12
England
342 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by Viking River Cruises
Dear MoneyGuy,

Welcome back from your cruise! Viking Freya truly is a terrific ship and we’re thrilled that you enjoyed your time on board.

The concern raised about Viking Sun is surprising to hear. We take customer feedback very seriously and what we’ve been hearing from guests of Viking Sun is that they have enjoyed the ship and their overall trip. We are currently not aware of any issues with the ship itself or with the service provided by the crew. That’s why we would really like to speak with your travel agent and get a better understanding of the feedback they’ve received. We hope you will email us at [email protected] so that we may contact your travel agent and also answer any questions or concerns you may have about Viking Sun. We’d also welcome the chance to hear more about your trip aboard Viking Freya.

We hope you will choose to travel with us again very soon.

Sincerely,
Viking River Cruises
Why does Viking respond to complainers? Why not respond to those of us who have something positive to say? Please everyone who has read this thread, read the one on the River Cruises board entitled Just Returned from Rhine Discovery on Viking Sun - it gives you the most up to date review of our holiday from which we have just returned.

There are a number of posters on this board, myself included, who suspect that Viking Cruises are being taken for a ride by complaining customers. They go on a river cruise with Viking, they dont like it for whatever reason, they come on here, complain vociferiously and then Viking contact them, trying to smooth things over and maybe, I dont know, but maybe, offer them compensation. Why? A complainer isnt going to go back on board, so please Viking dont try and entice them or pander to their disputes online! Instead, please pay attention to those of us who love your cruises, your product and your customer service!!
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QM2 Norway June 2007, QM2 Western Med June 2008, QM2 North American Adventure July 2009, QV Canaries May 2010, QV Round Great Britain July 2010, QV Canaries April 2011, QV Adriatic Discovery August 2011, QE Canaries November 2011, QE New Year Getaway January 2012, QV Baltics May 2012, Viking Sun Rhine Discovery July 2012, Celebrity Constellation Wine Cruise September 2012, Viking Njord Romantic Danube June 2013, P&O Azura May 2014, Celebrity Eclipse Med Sept 2014

Still to come:

Celebrity Eclipse Canaries September 2015
#13
New York
346 Posts
Joined Feb 2001
Originally posted by phoebecat
Why does Viking respond to complainers? Why not respond to those of us who have something positive to say? Please everyone who has read this thread, read the one on the River Cruises board entitled Just Returned from Rhine Discovery on Viking Sun - it gives you the most up to date review of our holiday from which we have just returned.

There are a number of posters on this board, myself included, who suspect that Viking Cruises are being taken for a ride by complaining customers. They go on a river cruise with Viking, they dont like it for whatever reason, they come on here, complain vociferiously and then Viking contact them, trying to smooth things over and maybe, I dont know, but maybe, offer them compensation. Why? A complainer isnt going to go back on board, so please Viking dont try and entice them or pander to their disputes online! Instead, please pay attention to those of us who love your cruises, your product and your customer service!!


Very well said. A satisfied Viking cruiser.
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Frank & Pat
New York, NY
---------------
10/17 Viking Foresti - Chateau, Rivers & Wine
12/16 Viking Vili - Danube Waltz / Passau to Budapest
11/15 Viking Mani - Rhine Getaway / Burges to Basel
11/14 Viking Hermod / Viking Buri - Portraits of Southern France
11/13 Viking Prestige - Vineyards & Vistas / Trier to Bamberg
11/12 Viking Odin - Romantic Danube / Budapest to Nuremberg
11/11 Viking Schumann - Elegant Elbe / Prague to Berlin
10/10 Viking Sun - Rhine Getaway / Amsterdam to Basel (Lucerne)
11/09 Viking Pride - Romantic Danube / Nuremberg to Vienna
8/09 RCCL Explorer of the Seas / Bermuda
8/07 RCCL Western Caribbean
8/06 RCCL Spendour of the Seas /Greek Isles
6/05 RCCL Navigator of the Seas /Western Caribbean
6/04 RCCL Adventure of the Seas /Eastern Caribbean
6/03 CCL - Zenith /Bermuda
6/02 RCCL Grandeur of the Seas / Mediterrean
#14
Woodland Hills, CA
763 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
Originally posted by phoebecat
Why does Viking respond to complainers? Why not respond to those of us who have something positive to say? Please everyone who has read this thread, read the one on the River Cruises board entitled Just Returned from Rhine Discovery on Viking Sun - it gives you the most up to date review of our holiday from which we have just returned.

There are a number of posters on this board, myself included, who suspect that Viking Cruises are being taken for a ride by complaining customers. They go on a river cruise with Viking, they dont like it for whatever reason, they come on here, complain vociferiously and then Viking contact them, trying to smooth things over and maybe, I dont know, but maybe, offer them compensation. Why? A complainer isnt going to go back on board, so please Viking dont try and entice them or pander to their disputes online! Instead, please pay attention to those of us who love your cruises, your product and your customer service!!
Dear phoebecat,

We did read your wonderful account of your recent Viking Sun cruise & also received your email — thank you for the kind words in both. We’re so happy to hear that you loved your cruise and sincerely hope that you and your father will be able to join us again next year.

Regarding your concern with our interaction here on Cruise Critic, we want to assure you that we do try to read all comments about Viking River Cruises, both the good and the bad. Sometimes we can’t always keep up with the speed of the conversations due to time zone differences, weekends, holidays, or any host of things that might mean we don’t catch a post as quickly as we’d like. But we do read them, we pay attention, and we take note of what our guests say they like, what works best, what else they would enjoy, or what didn’t meet their expectations. We want every guest to have a fabulous experience and we reach out to those who express concerns in an effort to better understand the situation and try to help. Each question or concern that comes to us — through whatever channel — is treated on an individual basis and we do not automatically provide one-size-fits-all compensation for those who voice some discontent online. The way we look at it there are a variety of ways to help a customer resolve an issue and compensation is just one of the possibilities. We also believe that the most efficient way to reach a resolution is with a phone call, which is why we often ask people to contact us via email at [email protected], so we can in turn arrange for a call from the Viking representative most able to help in that particular situation.

You mention that you’d like to see Viking pay more public attention to those who like yourself are sharing positive detailed accounts of their trips. Again, we want you to know that we are reading them and we are paying attention, but if this community would appreciate us joining the conversation more frequently, we’d be happy to do so (or at least try our best to do so).

Sincerely,
Viking River Cruises