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ClevelandKid

Using Viking Air to book Business/First class

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I originally posted this question a year and a half ago, but I am going to ask again in the hopes of getting more current information.

 

For those who have booked Business/First Class through Viking Air - did you feel the price was competitive to what you would get just booking it yourself?  Flying 10 hours to Europe or 16 hours (or more) to Pacific Rim countries make flying first class almost a requirement.

 

Thanks in advance

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1 hour ago, ClevelandKid said:

I originally posted this question a year and a half ago, but I am going to ask again in the hopes of getting more current information.

 

For those who have booked Business/First Class through Viking Air - did you feel the price was competitive to what you would get just booking it yourself?  Flying 10 hours to Europe or 16 hours (or more) to Pacific Rim countries make flying first class almost a requirement.

 

Thanks in advance

It depends.  Last summer we were quoted ridiculous price for the round trip to Barcelona and back from Bergen. We did much better by ourselves. In January we got a great price on the great flight back home from Buenos Aires but bought our own from home to Miami. At this time Viking Air is holding for us Business tickets for the price we can’t find but only one way and two days before cruise. If we add Business on the way back, price will double, so we had to buy return tickets ourselves for the 1/4th of the price Viking quoted us and on a top of it it is a domestic flight! Plus we loosing transfers both ways.

 

Shop around and see what’s available, then call Viking Air and talk to them. You never know.

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My recent experience was using Viking Air for Southeast Asia cruise from Atlanta.

 

Not sure of exact amounts, but we paid approximately $4200/pp which was 1300 for standard air plus 2900/pp for business class.

 

We also customized our flight selections which added an additional 1500/pp for the flights we wanted. 

Total hit for round trip business class with only one stop each way was around $5700/pp. The least expensive direct purchase option for the flights we wanted was $7000/pp, we do not have miles to supplement.

 

in our case Viking Air was a good choice.

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We booked Viking business class flights for our cruise this past April. I had researched flight prices through various sources and found Viking’s price to be lower or about the same. The access to the transfers to and from the ship tipped the scale towards Viking. After booking the flights I was able to go to the airline site and select seats and order meals. We are now in the process of purchasing business/first class again through Viking for our flights for the Australia cruise- again the pricing is slightly lower than what I’ve found elsewhere. We did consider a consolidater, but I’m more comfortable with Viking now. Because we are going early we won’t have the arrival transfer, but will for the  return flight. 

In the past when we’ve used Viking air I’ve researched flights, found the ones I preferred, and our travel agent arranged a 3-way call with the Viking Air people so I could talk with them about my preferences. This, too, worked out perfectly. I paid the additional price for Viking Air Plus, but I was fine with that as we were still slightly below the airline’s price and I knew exactly what I was getting.

Let me know if you have any questions.

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Maybe I'm lucky but I've always saved one to several thousand by booking with Viking Air.  It might help that I have a TA working with me on flights.

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We booked Viking business class flights for our cruise this past April. I had researched flight prices through various sources and found Viking’s price to be lower or about the same. The access to the transfers to and from the ship tipped the scale towards Viking. After booking the flights I was able to go to the airline site and select seats and order meals. We are now in the process of purchasing business/first class again through Viking for our flights for the Australia cruise- again the pricing is slightly lower than what I’ve found elsewhere. We did consider a consolidater, but I’m more comfortable with Viking now. Because we are going early we won’t have the arrival transfer, but will for the  return flight. 

In the past when we’ve used Viking air I’ve researched flights, found the ones I preferred, and our travel agent arranged a 3-way call with the Viking Air people so I could talk with them about my preferences. This, too, worked out perfectly. I paid the additional price for Viking Air Plus, but I was fine with that as we were still slightly below the airline’s price and I knew exactly what I was getting.

Let me know if you have any questions. 

 

I neglected to make it clear that our travel agent did work with us on the flights we are booking and she is handling the booking for us. We have a good working relationship and she is able to come up with good recommendations.

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17 hours ago, Krisval said:

I neglected to make it clear that our travel agent did work with us on the flights we are booking and she is handling the booking for us. We have a good working relationship and she is able to come up with good recommendations.

 

Thanks for your insights, Krisval.   It helps to have a good travel agent.  May I ask who the travel agent is that you use?

Were they able to request specific flights (since our experience is Viking Air picks some strange flights and connections) that you wanted?  Did you factor in the extra costs to Viking for being able to get what you wanted?

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On 5/17/2019 at 10:14 AM, CCWineLover said:

 

Were they able to request specific flights (since our experience is Viking Air picks some strange flights and connections) that you wanted?  Did you factor in the extra costs to Viking for being able to get what you wanted?

I'm not Krisval , but we paid $50 pp extra for custom air and I gave our TA a list of preferred flights- 1st, 2nd, & 3rd choices in both directions and got our first choice for both.  We also paid $100 for deviation as we flew in a day early and stayed eight days after and left from Rome rather than Barcelona where we disembarked. We didn't have issue with the extra charges since are flights were fre...ahem, "included". 

 

As as others have reported the cost of biz varies, for us to change our included flights to biz was going to be the same cost as booking biz on our own, so we stayed with the included Econ flights but hot lucky and were able to upgrade with the airline using points and miles. 

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On 5/17/2019 at 10:14 AM, CCWineLover said:

 It helps to have a good travel agent.  May I ask who the travel agent is that you use?

 

PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT:

Before anyone answers that particular question, remember that naming TAs by name is against CC rules. It is among the biggest no-no's of our community and can get your posting privileges permanently suspended.

 

Guidelines: Travel Agent Recommendations

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59 minutes ago, Clay Clayton said:

I'm not Krisval , but we paid $50 pp extra for custom air and I gave our TA a list of preferred flights- 1st, 2nd, & 3rd choices in both directions and got our first choice for both.  We also paid $100 for deviation as we flew in a day early and stayed eight days after and left from Rome rather than Barcelona where we disembarked. We didn't have issue with the extra charges since are flights were fre...ahem, "included". 

 

As as others have reported the cost of biz varies, for us to change our included flights to biz was going to be the same cost as booking biz on our own, so we stayed with the included Econ flights but hot lucky and were able to upgrade with the airline using points and miles. 

Thank you for the insights. Very helpful.

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On 5/14/2019 at 6:06 PM, ClevelandKid said:

I originally posted this question a year and a half ago, but I am going to ask again in the hopes of getting more current information.

 

For those who have booked Business/First Class through Viking Air - did you feel the price was competitive to what you would get just booking it yourself?  Flying 10 hours to Europe or 16 hours (or more) to Pacific Rim countries make flying first class almost a requirement.

 

Thanks in advance

Last year we used Viking Air LAX to Athens returning via Rome along with Viking transfers. My TA worked everything and we were able to get all the dates and flights we wanted, including flying the new 787. After the fact it seemed the airfare was a little high. This year’s cruise I booked my own airfare, LAX to Stockholm, Bergen to LAX. One stop each way. Viking Air price was $4300 PP for business class. After a lot of research and watching fares I found KLM/Delta for $3200 PP in business class. One stop each way. Transfers in Stockholm will be around $75 for a taxi and in Bergen around $19 for the bus.  For us, this works and leaves a lot for the Silver Spirits package😊

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The cautionary tale I will bring to you is what will happen (and what *did* happen to us) should your flight get canceled if you booked through Viking Air.  DO NOT EXPECT Viking Air to lift a finger to get your business class accommodations reflected on re-booked flights.   Everything we got was due to our own work.  

 

And as far as the airline is concerned, your airfare was purchased in bulk and akin to having a travel agent book it.  So, you have no leverage to change your flights until the flight is canceled.   The airlines will prefer to accommodate people who booked through them instead of through Viking Air or some other resource.   

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I've always done better getting my own business class tickets rather than using Viking. One exception is Silversea who charges only $698 each way per person for a business class upgrade or Regent who includes it in their cruise fare. 

 

I'm planning on a crossing that begins in Europe and ends in South America. Airlines look at this as two separate one way tickets and won't consider it an "open jaw" round trip because you "arrive in one hemisphere" and depart from another one. Viking wants $4100p/p. Not sure what I'll do in this case. Last 10 or so trips I've managed business class for $3000 or less. ($4100 for Asia)

 

Would also appreciate suggestions. 

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How does one get the Silversea $698pp each way business class upgrade?  Was never offered to me.  I'll mention it next time.

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1 hour ago, molemaui said:

I'm planning on a crossing that begins in Europe and ends in South America. Airlines look at this as two separate one way tickets and won't consider it an "open jaw" round trip because you "arrive in one hemisphere" and depart from another one. Viking wants $4100p/p. Not sure what I'll do in this case. Last 10 or so trips I've managed business class for $3000 or less. ($4100 for Asia)

 

Would also appreciate suggestions. 

You might want to look at the post over on the cruise air thread about an around the world ticket. 

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2 hours ago, philw1776 said:

How does one get the Silversea $698pp each way business class upgrade?  Was never offered to me.  I'll mention it next time.

Was offered last time we cruised. I've seen it quite a bit when I look into Silversea options. 

 

It could be a promotion-I'm not sure but it seems readily available. 

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1 hour ago, Clay Clayton said:

You might want to look at the post over on the cruise air thread about an around the world ticket. 

 

Thanks Clay! Hope our paths cross again. Enjoyed the crossing with you and Mike last year. 

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Who is this?  LOL.  It’s be so much easier if everyone on here had of missed the whole “don’t use your real name “ directive like I did! 😂

 

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I recently (3 June) booked business flights to Europe (RNO-BUD, AMS-RNO) on Viking for $2,000pp, on top of "included" coach airfare. We added one-night stopovers each way at LHR, for time-zone adjustment, and to get improved connections ($200pp). I requested certain AA and BA flights and got them all with no hassle. Comparable fare on AA website today is $4,689 (excluding stopovers). This is for our BUD-AMS "Grand European Tour" next April.

We are first time Viking cruisers, and I thought it was an excellent deal and a very smooth process - including a couple of tweaks I requested later.

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1 hour ago, What was that? said:

I recently (3 June) booked business flights to Europe (RNO-BUD, AMS-RNO) on Viking for $2,000pp, on top of "included" coach airfare. We added one-night stopovers each way at LHR, for time-zone adjustment, and to get improved connections ($200pp). I requested certain AA and BA flights and got them all with no hassle. Comparable fare on AA website today is $4,689 (excluding stopovers). This is for our BUD-AMS "Grand European Tour" next April.

We are first time Viking cruisers, and I thought it was an excellent deal and a very smooth process - including a couple of tweaks I requested later.

Good to see!  We're planning to use Viking air next year for the first time (this will be our fifth VO trip).  I've just been hesitant to try it, but after reading many positive posts, I'm gonna do it!

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My prime rule for booking air is to book as early as possible. Schedules and fares are generally posted by the airlines 330 days in advance of the travel date, so by booking early you have the best selection of fare and seat availability. I booked about 328 days in advance of our return date which is 25 April 2020, and I believe this contributed to the ease of the process, and our ability to get what we wanted. If you are booking your flights yourself - and since there seems to be no advantage to "round-trip" fares - you can book your flights separately on or shortly after the dates they each become available.

There are exceptions to this. A notable one for me is Alaska Airlines to Hawaii: they seem to book higher prices for the first week of availability, and then drop them to market prices in the second week, so wait until about 320 days in advance with them.

There are a few date-interval calculators on the internet so you don't have to strain your brain - I use DateAdd.

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38 minutes ago, moatenote said:

Good to see!  We're planning to use Viking air next year for the first time (this will be our fifth VO trip).  I've just been hesitant to try it, but after reading many positive posts, I'm gonna do it!

 

I think you'll have a good experience.  Do you work with a TA?

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27 minutes ago, zitsky said:

 

I think you'll have a good experience.  Do you work with a TA?

Yes, we work with a TA, who happens to be our next-door neighbor (this has its good points and not-so-good!).  I do most of the planning myself, but we get OBC from her that we can use when paying for optional VO tours or while on board.

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We booked our own business class flights for our trip to S. America next year as Viking wanted about $3000 more than what we found on our own.  We did book their 2 nights pre package with Viking to get the transfers between the airport & hotel and then from the hotel to the port.  The Viking representative confirmed that we will get those as we booked the 2 night pre cruise package.

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