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We booked a 12 night cruise on Viking Spirit (3/26/19 - 4/7/19) this past April. Final payment date was 12/31/17. I contacted Viking to advise we would do our own airfare and to request an extension on the final payment date. Our original agent had left the company. The person we talked to said her supervisor would not allow an extension of the final payment date because we booked in April. They are certainly within their rights to do so.

We will assess whether to continue with this cruise over the next few days, but people should note the early final payment date has nothing to do with booking air tickets. In any event if it’s a go I will pay by credit card to protect against a financial disaster (Renaissance cratered within a short time after 9/11 due to passenger cancellations and bank debt from new ship building).

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We booked a 12 night cruise on Viking Spirit (3/26/19 - 4/7/19) this past April. Final payment date was 12/31/17. I contacted Viking to advise we would do our own airfare and to request an extension on the final payment date. Our original agent had left the company. The person we talked to said her supervisor would not allow an extension of the final payment date because we booked in April. They are certainly within their rights to do so.

We will assess whether to continue with this cruise over the next few days, but people should note the early final payment date has nothing to do with booking air tickets. In any event if it’s a go I will pay by credit card to protect against a financial disaster (Renaissance cratered within a short time after 9/11 due to passenger cancellations and bank debt from new ship building).

Your final payment date sounds good to me. We had final payment on 1/31/17 fo rour cruise in March 2018. I paid by echeck and got 3.3% discount. I do have travel insurance so good to go for our upcoming sailing.

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They should be willing to give you 6 months out. Agree that this is not acceptable. I would write to tellus@vikingcruises.com and try to get the prepayment time reduced. They are doing that for others and for agents.

 

The fact that they are “doing that for others and for agents” is the troubling part when their approach is not uniform.

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They should be willing to give you 6 months out. Agree that this is not acceptable. I would write to tellus@vikingcruises.com and try to get the prepayment time reduced. They are doing that for others and for agents.

 

Gonna disagree with you on this one. We sign a contract with Viking when we book and that is the time to negotiate the payment schedule. People with payments six month before the sail date negotiated that date at the time of booking. It is like hiring a contractor to do work on your home.You don't sit down and negotiate with the contractor, sign everything and then come back six weeks into the project, when a major payment that you agreed to is due and ask to re-negotiate the payment schedule.

 

It's okay to ask if they are willing to re-negotiate but unreasonable to expect that they will agree to it.

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The fact that they are “doing that for others and for agents” is the troubling part when their approach is not uniform.

 

Payment date is a bargaining chip.

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Gonna disagree with you on this one. We sign a contract with Viking when we book and that is the time to negotiate the payment schedule. People with payments six month before the sail date negotiated that date at the time of booking. It is like hiring a contractor to do work on your home.You don't sit down and negotiate with the contractor, sign everything and then come back six weeks into the project, when a major payment that you agreed to is due and ask to re-negotiate the payment schedule.

 

It's okay to ask if they are willing to re-negotiate but unreasonable to expect that they will agree to it.

 

Agree. I have two pending cruises which were booked more than a year in advance. When I booked, I asked for final payment to be no sooner than six months in advance. No problem. It needs to be negotiated when you book

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We booked October 2017 and our cruise is December 2018! Our final payment is 28th August 2018, with a $1000 deposit.

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We booked October 2017 and our cruise is December 2018! Our final payment is 28th August 2018, with a $1000 deposit.

 

For 2, right?

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Payment date is a bargaining chip.

 

Whatever. It made us look more closely at the cruise, anticipated weather, viability of ports and flight strategies; we ended up canceling. I had plenty of money sitting in a do nothing savings account but if j didn’t have to pay the balance now I probably would have let it ride. I’ve never canceled out on 20+ prior cruises on 10+ lines but I guess we were due. I’m sure Viking will find a replacement.

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Gonna disagree with you on this one. We sign a contract with Viking when we book and that is the time to negotiate the payment schedule. People with payments six month before the sail date negotiated that date at the time of booking. It is like hiring a contractor to do work on your home.You don't sit down and negotiate with the contractor, sign everything and then come back six weeks into the project, when a major payment that you agreed to is due and ask to re-negotiate the payment schedule.

 

It's okay to ask if they are willing to re-negotiate but unreasonable to expect that they will agree to it.

 

 

You make a good point. We should all negotiate this upon booking. That said, I think that they are asking something that is not customer friendly and might be missed by the person booking. I am sorry that the OP cancelled but I understand. A lot of money to commit so early.

 

Also reading on other boards that they are allowing some to renegotiate at a later date. They do not seem to be consistent. I hope that they will work to come up with a more reasonable, consistent payment plan.

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We told them at booking we wouldn’t book unless it wasn’t due until six month before the cruise. After a delay our cruise consultant said it was approved. So we didn’t have to pay off our cruise next April until this past October. I guess it could have also been due to us doing and explorer suite, but it’s far easier to get a better final payment day before you agree to the booking, because that’s when you have the most clout.

 

 

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In the UK, the final balance isn't due until 10 weeks before sailing, which is good, but we have to pay a non-refundable deposit of 25% of the total price at the time of booking, which is not so good.

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This is a terrible policy....unlike any other line we have been on before. Surely it must be costing them business..?? We are considering a cruise with Viking summer 2019, but re thinking that. Even a 6 mos negotiated due date is far out....There’s a lot of competition out there doing the exact same itineraries...geez...

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In the UK, the final balance isn't due until 10 weeks before sailing, which is good, but we have to pay a non-refundable deposit of 25% of the total price at the time of booking, which is not so good.

 

So US customers pay less up front to reserve ($500pp) but have to come thru with the balance earlier - 6 mos. Thus, the question comes down to whether you truly prefer the Viking experience or not. If you do, is getting better payment terms worth a cruise experience you don't like as much? Which is the more important criterion to you? We are each free to choose.

 

 

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This is a terrible policy....unlike any other line we have been on before. Surely it must be costing them business..?? We are considering a cruise with Viking summer 2019, but re thinking that. Even a 6 mos negotiated due date is far out....There’s a lot of competition out there doing the exact same itineraries...geez...

 

Viking is having no trouble filling its ships even with this payment policy, which is actually a lot better than it used to be. We paid in full 18 months in advance for our first cruise with Viking Ocean. I like the Viking experience and would continue to sail with with them even if the terms were payment in full at booking.

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Viking is having no trouble filling its ships even with this payment policy, which is actually a lot better than it used to be. We paid in full 18 months in advance for our first cruise with Viking Ocean. I like the Viking experience and would continue to sail with with them even if the terms were payment in full at booking.

 

 

 

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We have done both. Paid WAY too far in advance, and the 6 months in advance.

We are big Viking fans.....and i know they are selling out ships regardless of how we feel about this policy.....but from a budgeting and just good business standpoint, I am voting for no more than 6 months.

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We are looking at a Viking Star Med. Cruise in May, 2018. I spoke to Viking and they said goid chance they will negotiate final payment date but no later than 6 months before cruise but it has to be negotiated before you put down the depisit. Also there is a $100 per person cancelation fee from time of deposit until 121 days before the cruise. So deposit is not totally refundable.

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Unless you live in the UK, where the 25% (of the total price) deposit is non-refundable :(

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Whatever. It made us look more closely at the cruise, anticipated weather, viability of ports and flight strategies; we ended up canceling. I had plenty of money sitting in a do nothing savings account but if j didn’t have to pay the balance now I probably would have let it ride. I’ve never canceled out on 20+ prior cruises on 10+ lines but I guess we were due. I’m sure Viking will find a replacement.

 

 

When you cancelled, were you hit with a cancellation fee? We would like to change our booking to a year later but when reading the fine print at the back of the book, it says for any change you are charged a $500 p.p. fee. Would that money then go on to the new booking or would Viking keep it as some sort of extra for changing the booking?

 

We booked last year and we did pay out $1000 for deposit for the two of us, though we don't need to pay the full amount until 120 days before the cruise.

 

I have never come across a cruise line before, that charges so much for a change in the booking and I am wondering if it is better to cut our losses now and lose the $1000 deposit or persevere and change our cruise to another time, namely a few months later than we had booked. By the way, our cruise is fully booked and it isn't until April 2019.

 

Jennie

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When you cancelled, were you hit with a cancellation fee? We would like to change our booking to a year later but when reading the fine print at the back of the book, it says for any change you are charged a $500 p.p. fee. Would that money then go on to the new booking or would Viking keep it as some sort of extra for changing the booking?

 

We booked last year and we did pay out $1000 for deposit for the two of us, though we don't need to pay the full amount until 120 days before the cruise.

 

I have never come across a cruise line before, that charges so much for a change in the booking and I am wondering if it is better to cut our losses now and lose the $1000 deposit or persevere and change our cruise to another time, namely a few months later than we had booked. By the way, our cruise is fully booked and it isn't until April 2019.

 

Jennie

 

I am sorry to say it is my understanding in Australia that the deposit is lost if you change your cruise to a later date. Viking have a very restrictive deposit policy, compared to most other ocean cruise lines. I think it is a carryover of their river cruise policies where deposits with Viking, and many other companies, are non refundable (unless you take out their insurance at the time of booking)

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I am sorry to say it is my understanding in Australia that the deposit is lost if you change your cruise to a later date. Viking have a very restrictive deposit policy, compared to most other ocean cruise lines. I think it is a carryover of their river cruise policies where deposits with Viking, and many other companies, are non refundable (unless you take out their insurance at the time of booking)

 

Thanks for replying so quickly to my question. In other words, if we want to change our booking say to 2020 instead of April next year, we are hit with another deposit and we lose the first deposit! That seems to be a very unlawful practice.

 

Over the years I have changed a booking to another date when dealing with other cruise lines such as HAL, Princess, Celebrity, Cunard and Oceania and I have never been penalised.

 

I know that in the U.S. the following paragraph applies

 

In fact when you look up Viking Cancellation Policy on their website, this shown under the Australian Link and it reads

 

The following charges will apply (Broken out by days before departure) 121 days or more is $100 per person which is fair enough.

If we Aussies are being penalised and we lose our deposit because we need to change to another date for our cruise, then that will be the last time we ever deal with

Viking. I am sure that Seabourn, Crystal and Silverseas would be happy to have our business. I am only wanting to move our deposit to another cruise not cancel completely and yet the penalty works out to be as though I was cancelling out altogether.

 

I will phone Viking tomorrow and see what they say. As the ship is still being built, who knows if it will be ready anyway. They do seem to be building far too many ships at the one time and it does remind me of what happened to Renaissance way back in 2001.

 

Jennie

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