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6 hours ago, Pushka said:

 

The cabin crew and in all but one restaurant were excellent on the Alaska cruise. However I’d like to see a huge improvement in all aspects of tender management - it was like Orion had never used its tenders before and which I know is not correct - and in communication with people. Certainly pre cruise, when everyone knew there were major issues but we heard nothing from Viking until a couple of days before departure. And I’d also suggest that unlike Celebrity Cunard and Princess, other than a small stand at Portside , there is nothing offered whilst still on land, like a drink or towel, hot or cold depending on the climate. There are no “welcome back” messages until you are back on board and trying then to deal with all the scanning and just get to a lift. Too late by then. Especially if you’ve just done the tender process. Also because we had to tender so much, we completely missed the somewhat hidden down ramp to get to the tender berth at Juneau. We had to ask a Juneau Port person where to find the small entrance to it. Why was there no Viking presence? A red flag? When we walked down the ramp there was no tender just yet and just a port person sitting near by. 

 

Yesterday we just booked a Celebrity Cruise in Aqua class. Yes there is a casino but we will just not go to it. Yes there will be photographers but we will just avoid them. There will probably be kids but there are plenty of places for them to go. Art auctions - not too bad on Celebrity and will simply avoid. No formal nights in Aqua class. We can already see and book excursions a year out as well as restaurants. We have already had a phone call from Celebrity about an issue we had with the booking - they called me in Australia from the US after I’d sent them an email the day before. Celebrity handles tenders very well. We know which ports will be tendered and can plan accordingly. There will be more people but there are plenty of places to hide. Spa is included in Aqua. And it has a dedicated restaurant that we like. We have therefore moved on. I’d like to try a more exclusive ship other than Viking next time but just not in the right financial space yet. 

 

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5 minutes ago, Hanoj said:

 

 

Try Oceania.   A class of luxury above Celebrity IMO.   No kids.   Small passenger count.   And Oceania has the the best cuisine at sea.   Overall better experience than Celebrity and Viking, IMO.  👍👍

Good luck.

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Just now, Kingofcool1947 said:

 

Try Oceania.   A class of luxury above Celebrity IMO.   No kids.   Small passenger count.   And Oceania has the the best cuisine at sea.   Overall better experience than Celebrity and Viking, IMO.  👍👍

Good luck.

I think that was for me but yes, Oceania is now in our sights when the finances and itinerary align. 

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12 hours ago, Kingofcool1947 said:

 

Try Oceania.   A class of luxury above Celebrity IMO.   No kids.   Small passenger count.   And Oceania has the the best cuisine at sea.   Overall better experience than Celebrity and Viking, IMO.  👍👍

Good luck.

 

I believe you are indeed mistaken about Oceania. 

No doubt they are a nice line - but they DO ALLOW Children.   That has kept us from trying it out since that and no casinos are on our high priority item list.  I wish they would change, but they seem to be doing OK as is. 

 

An interesting thing to do though is to go over and read many of the posts in the Oceania forums.  Definitely gives a different perspective.  Often if you read just one cruise line's posts you start to think many people dislike that line and then you begin to realize that many CC posters like to vent on their cruise lines.  Just human nature I guess - and perhaps given what we spend, we have certain expectations, no matter who the cruise line is.

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14 hours ago, Kingofcool1947 said:

 

Try Oceania.   A class of luxury above Celebrity IMO.   No kids.   Small passenger count.   And Oceania has the the best cuisine at sea.   Overall better experience than Celebrity and Viking, IMO.  👍👍

Good luck.

Oceania definitely permit kids and are actively promoting kids on some Alaska cruises.

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21 minutes ago, Heidi13 said:

Oceania definitely permit kids and are actively promoting kids on some Alaska cruises.

Right.  I recently received a brochure from them advertising "Kids sail free". 🍺

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I would choose not to book a cruise which has a promotion to attract families. However after cruising many times with Oceania, we have only seen two children and they belonged to one of the officers. For us, the magnificent food which I agree is probably the best at sea is the real drawcard. 

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We have sailed on one Oceania cruise (Riviera) and also sailed on Viking last June. Our Oceania cruise definitely had a few children. I rarely saw them, but I know they were onboard. That said, we definitely preferred Viking. We just found our cruise last year, Trade Routes of the Middle Ages, to be just perfect for us. Others may feel differently, but that is our opinion. We leave Friday to sail The Midnight Sun on the Viking Sun, so we will see what our experience is like the second time around.

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6 hours ago, CCWineLover said:

 

I believe you are indeed mistaken about Oceania. 

No doubt they are a nice line - but they DO ALLOW Children.   That has kept us from trying it out since that and no casinos are on our high priority item list.  I wish they would change, but they seem to be doing OK as is. 

 

An interesting thing to do though is to go over and read many of the posts in the Oceania forums.  Definitely gives a different perspective.  Often if you read just one cruise line's posts you start to think many people dislike that line and then you begin to realize that many CC posters like to vent on their cruise lines.  Just human nature I guess - and perhaps given what we spend, we have certain expectations, no matter who the cruise line is.

 

 

I am mistaken.  To clarify my comments:

On my recent Alaska cruise, I was told there was one child aboard.   The captain’s.  😀.  I never saw or heard the child.  Do not know age or sex.

Fortunately, I am not allergic to well behaved children.  And, ship casinos do not bother me, since I do not gamble.  My gripe are smokers who camp out in the ship casino.  👎 Oceania HVAC takes care of the smoke.

 IMO,  for me,  Oceania delivers an overall exceptional and consistent cruise experience.   And IMO,   as advertised,  “the finest  cuisine at sea”.    The cuisine is that good.   👍👍

YMMV.

Happy cruising.  😀

Edited by Kingofcool1947
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15 minutes ago, Steve Q said:

We have sailed on one Oceania cruise (Riviera) and also sailed on Viking last June. Our Oceania cruise definitely had a few children. I rarely saw them, but I know they were onboard. That said, we definitely preferred Viking. We just found our cruise last year, Trade Routes of the Middle Ages, to be just perfect for us. Others may feel differently, but that is our opinion. We leave Friday to sail The Midnight Sun on the Viking Sun, so we will see what our experience is like the second time around.

I think you have made a very important point. We have only sailed with Viking, and our three ocean cruises ( including Trade Routes) and one river with them have been practically perfect. I do imagine that there are at least a few other small ship cruise lines that we would enjoy, but so far Viking does everything exactly the way we want it to be. The key is, everyone's view of a great vacation is not the same, and that is probably a good thing!

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1 hour ago, Kingofcool1947 said:

 

 

I am mistaken.  To clarify my comments:

On my recent Alaska cruise, I was told there was one child aboard.   The captain’s.  😀.  I never saw or heard the child.  Do not know age or sex.

Fortunately, I am not allergic to well behaved children.  And, ship casinos do not bother me, since I do not gamble.  My gripe are smokers who camp out in the ship casino.  👎 Oceania HVAC takes care of the smoke.

 IMO,  for me,  Oceania delivers an overall exceptional and consistent cruise experience.   And IMO,   as advertised,  “the finest  cuisine at sea”.    The cuisine is that good.   👍👍

YMMV.

Happy cruising.  😀

I agree and also have taken an Alaska cruise with O along with many other O cruises.  I have never seen any children on board an O cruise and if they were there, must have been hidden.

Service was our main issue with our Viking Ocean cruise. It even came down to asking for a glass of wine and to see that the waiter at the bar never returned. Maybe a one off..but not for that kind of money.  Don't get me started on the dress code that not is enforced. UGH!

Aesthetics only go so far....I will take the finer cuisine, better service, and a more refined passenger demographic and happy I am fortunate to have the choice.

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1 hour ago, TrulyBlonde said:

I agree and also have taken an Alaska cruise with O along with many other O cruises.  I have never seen any children on board an O cruise and if they were there, must have been hidden.

Service was our main issue with our Viking Ocean cruise. It even came down to asking for a glass of wine and to see that the waiter at the bar never returned. Maybe a one off..but not for that kind of money.  Don't get me started on the dress code that not is enforced. UGH!

Aesthetics only go so far....I will take the finer cuisine, better service, and a more refined passenger demographic and happy I am fortunate to have the choice.

 

@TrulyBlonde have you cruised on both classes of the Oceania ships? The smaller ships intrigue me. I’m very reluctant to try anything with more than the 930 passengers on Viking’s ships. 

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11 minutes ago, Hanoj said:

 

@TrulyBlonde have you cruised on both classes of the Oceania ships? The smaller ships intrigue me. I’m very reluctant to try anything with more than the 930 passengers on Viking’s ships. 

Yes, in fact I spent close to a month on Insignia for a South America cruise, the smaller R ship. Also, Regatta for Alaska. Riviera is the larger version (O ship) and is superb, too.

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12 hours ago, TrulyBlonde said:

I agree and also have taken an Alaska cruise with O along with many other O cruises.  I have never seen any children on board an O cruise and if they were there, must have been hidden.

Service was our main issue with our Viking Ocean cruise. It even came down to asking for a glass of wine and to see that the waiter at the bar never returned. Maybe a one off..but not for that kind of money.  Don't get me started on the dress code that not is enforced. UGH!

Aesthetics only go so far....I will take the finer cuisine, better service, and a more refined passenger demographic and happy I am fortunate to have the choice.

Not sure how a dress code makes or breaks a cruise being good,but then maybe I’m not refined enough to go back to cruising on Oceania😀

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1 hour ago, caskale said:

Not sure how a dress code makes or breaks a cruise being good,but then maybe I’m not refined enough to go back to cruising on Oceania😀

I was brought up to follow the rules and have enough respect to abide by them. If it states, no jeans, teeshirts, sneakers, why not comply? 

If you don't mind spending your money on poor service that is your choice. I do not like to spend my $$$ on beds not being turned down or room cleaned in a timely manner, disappearing waitstaff, dirty dishes sitting in front of me and have to ask that they be cleared. 

We all have choices and I choose not to cruise with Viking anything again.

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5 minutes ago, TrulyBlonde said:

I was brought up to follow the rules and have enough respect to abide by them. If it states, no jeans, teeshirts, sneakers, why not comply? 

If you don't mind spending your money on poor service that is your choice. I do not like to spend my $$$ on beds not being turned down or room cleaned in a timely manner, disappearing waitstaff, dirty dishes sitting in front of me and have to ask that they be cleared. 

We all have choices and I choose not to cruise with Viking anything again.

Saw many rule breakers on Oceania, bringing their own alcohol into restaurant,saving chairs around the pool area and staff not doing anything about it. Then a so called refined passenger challenging me to meet him onshore to sort it out. Rather turn my own bed down least I know where my hands have been lol

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2 hours ago, TrulyBlonde said:

 

We all have choices and I choose not to cruise with Viking anything again.

 

Everyone entitled to their opinions. Only question I have is:

 

why are you still visiting, reading, and posting on Viking forums then?

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5 minutes ago, CCWineLover said:

 

Everyone entitled to their opinions. Only question I have is:

 

why are you still visiting, reading, and posting on Viking forums then?

This is CC and I read all of the threads that I cruise, cruised on, or others I may have an interest in.  What part of Critic bothers you? You have to take the good with the bad and if it is all seen through rose colored glasses, what would be the point? I hope my information and experience is helpful when cruisers are making choices. 

Edited by TrulyBlonde
typo
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4 minutes ago, TrulyBlonde said:

This is CC and I read all of the threads that I cruise, cruised on, or others I may have an interest in.  What part of Critic bothers you? You have to take the good with the bad and if it is all seen through rose colored glasses, what would be the point? I hope my information and experience is helpful when cruisers are making choices. 

Did not mean to hit your nerve!  Trust me. I have no issue with anyone posting anything. I enjoy hearing from all sides.  I was just curious that is all.  Like many I have had both good and not so good things on Viking and others.  

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12 minutes ago, Peregrina651 said:

Of course you had to ask to have your dishes cleared if people at the table were still eating; it is considered impolite to do so in many places.

 

My DH and I dine alone and our plates were empty. This was in the World Cafe and the new attendant was clearly not trained properly. He did get better as the cruise progressed. I asked him if this was his 1st cruise and he stated it was. I always greeted him with a smile and he did the same with me. It was not his fault, but clearly a management one.

Is it impolite to not get fresh towels in the evening and no turn down service? How about ordering a glass of wine and having it never arrive. Impolite too.  I could go on. 

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Wow. I’ve been on 3 VO cruises and have enjoyed every minute of them with excellent service and food. I’m no newbie to travel. I have spent a life time traveling the world and I love experiencing new places and people. Regarding Viking, I guess my needs are simple and I find cruising a true luxury knowing that for the next several weeks a professional crew will be pampering me by cleaning my stateroom, cooking and serving delicious meals, taking care of tour logistics, and going above and beyond when I have made a special request. I come home a refreshed and energized person. Sorry you haven’t experienced the same. Maybe I’ve just been lucky 3 straight times

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35 minutes ago, TrulyBlonde said:

My DH and I dine alone and our plates were empty. This was in the World Cafe and the new attendant was clearly not trained properly. He did get better as the cruise progressed. I asked him if this was his 1st cruise and he stated it was. I always greeted him with a smile and he did the same with me. It was not his fault, but clearly a management one.

Is it impolite to not get fresh towels in the evening and no turn down service? How about ordering a glass of wine and having it never arrive. Impolite too.  I could go on. 

 

We've been very pleased with the service from our cabin stewards on both our VO cruises (just concluded on the Star and one year earlier on the Sea). Viking, like many hospitality companies, is seeking to be more “green” and not clean towels needlessly, for example. There was a small sign on a bathroom wall instructing guests to leave towels on the floor if wanting them replaced. Worked great once I overcame my aversion to leaving towels on the floor. This approach seems to be common now. 

 

As for wait staff service, we’ve noticed slower and less consistent service when seated outside the World Cafe. We’ve also become accustomed to clarifying our instructions before the server leaves our table.  There have been times, on Viking and elsewhere, I received exactly what I requested, but it wasn’t what I intended because the mistake was mine. I give wait staff the benefit of the doubt and will only bring something to a supervisor’s attention if egregious, or there’s a pattern of behaviors that need correcting. 

 

I like to meet inexperienced staff and to help them gain confidence. No matter what we’ve done, or do, most of us had to start somewhere - often at the beginning. 

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OK...I provided my opinion and experience with VO.  After 30 cruises I do have a fairly good idea of how things are supposed to be run. Happy all of you did not experience what we did. This relates to the price point for Viking and I feel you get better service and food elsewhere. That's the bottom line. Enjoy, because I have enjoyed all 30 of mine. Viking has room for improvement and feedback is important. 

Ciao,

Contessa

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