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Ultimate World Cruise 245 days and all the parts. Ongoing review, questions, opinion


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17 minutes ago, Heidi13 said:

The person you quoted mentioned many more sea days. The difference, based on the new schedule we have, is 2 extra sea days.

 

Not what I would consider many more.

 

As the health and well-being of our guests and crew are always our top concern, we have cancelled our visits to Xiamen and Hong Kong, and will now visit Singapore instead.

Please see the revised portion of your itinerary below:

Date

Original Itinerary

Revised Itinerary

March 6, 2020

At Sea

At Sea

March 7, 2020

Xiamen

At Sea

March 8, 2020

Hong Kong

At Sea

March 9, 2020

Hong Kong

Singapore

 

Your are right, one day was already a sea day, but 3 sea days from Manila.

Edited by Insanityx4
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1 hour ago, Kathryn Ham said:

As Mubai "hop ons" we received this email from Viking.

 

As you may be aware, an outbreak of coronavirus, that causes respiratory illness, was detected in the city of Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. We are monitoring the situation closely and are heeding travel guidelines from the U.S. Department of State, the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization.

 

 

Please know the safety and security of our guests and crew is always our top priority. While your journey may not be in the general vicinity of the outbreak, as a precautionary measure, we have implemented enhanced health screenings (via a health care questionnaire) for all guests boarding our vessels within the next 90 days. Additionally, any guests who have traveled from or through mainland China within 14 days of the beginning of their trip with us, will not be permitted to embark the ship.

 

 

If you have any questions or concerns regarding your upcoming sailing, or have recently visited China within 14 days of your itinerary, please contact Reservations at 1-855-300-3970, Monday through Friday, 4:00 AM to 9:00 PM, and Saturday to Sunday, 5:00 AM to 7:00 PM, PT.

 

 

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

 

That is the “ generic” Viking email. 
We are doing British Isles in May, and also received that email. 
Just want everyone to travel safely, and stay healthy.-Jeannette😌 

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I don't know if any of these dates intersect with your stops in Aus / NZ or not, but you might notice that Alice Cooper is touring the area and you might find a night to do something totally different:

 

February 11: Adelaide, Australia at Entertainment Centre Feb 12- GOON SQUAD SHOW at Club Cherry
February 14: Melbourne, Australia at Rod Laver Arena
February 15: Sydney, Australia at Qudos Bank Arena. Feb 15 (after Sydney show) GOON SQUAD SHOW at Frankie’s Pizza
February 16: Sydney, Australia at ANZ Stadium- BRUSH FIRE BENEFIT w/ Queen & others.
February 18: Brisbane, Australia at Entertainment Centre
February 20: Auckland, NZ, The Trusts Arena
February 22: Christchurch, NZ, Horncastle Arena, Christchurch 

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The revised schedule, as per this morning's letter from the Captain is:

                   Original          Revised

 

5-Mar     Dep Manila     Dep Manila

6-Mar     At sea              At Sea

7-Mar     Xiamen           At Sea

8-Mar     HK                   At Sea

9-Mar     HK                   Singapore (04:00)

10-Mar   HK                   Singapore

11-Mar   At sea             Singapore

12-Mar   At sea             At sea

13-Mar   Saigon            Saigon

14-Mar   Saigon            Saigon

15-Mar   Saigon            Saigon

16-Mar   At sea             At sea

17-Mar   Cambodia      Cambodia

18-Mar   Bangkok         Bangkok

19-Mar   Bangkok         Bangkok

20-Mar   Koh Samui     Koh Samui (Dep 18:00)

21-Mar   At sea             At sea

22-Mar   Singapore      At sea

23-Mar   KL                   KL

 

Reason given is that China and HK have closed their ports until further notice. It add lots of extra miles heading down to Singapore for TAR, then back tracking north to Saigon, to pick up the rest of the itinerary, but in my opinion, a great decision by Viking, to pick Singapore over some of the alternatives.

 

Providing us the schedule change fully a month in advance is also excellent timely notification.

 

Weather update - we are currently about 17 hrs out of Sydney, with winds and seas picking up. Winds now 45 - 50 kts and seas 15' +. Speed is down to under 10 kts, so not too uncomfortable.

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We are Geoff & Sue Moore from Sydney and we will be joining the cruise in Mumbai. It is great reading all the comments on your wonderful journey so far. Can’t wait to see the ship arrive in Sydney in a few days time. Look forward to coming on board in April.

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On 2/2/2020 at 12:49 AM, Jukebo1x said:

Wow Collin!  I wish I knew all this in 2014, when we visited your Beautiful city. 
I totally agree with the Wonderful dairy products, photos of the Opera House & the Bridge. 
We enjoyed another cleaver activity (if it’s still available). It was lunch on a little train, in downtown Sydney. It was a hoot.-Jeannette😌

As a Sydneysider these are great recommendations especially the walk from Manly to Shelly Beach and back. Plenty of opportunities to have a swim and  a great coffee.

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2 hours ago, Heidi13 said:

Same here, especially when the cloxs go back and they last 25 hrs. Departing L/A we had 8 in a row, brilliant start to the cruise.😊

Looking forward to that on our transtlantic in October! I wouldn't want to do a TA the other way....

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We have found that loosing or gaining time is equally disruptive.  Going one direction we find ourselves sleeping in too late, and in the other up before dawn. So always seem to be tired.  #FirstWorldProblems

 

But in either direction it’s soooo much better than dealing with all of them at one time after a plane flight. And having a Real bed to stretch out on, meals served at a real table and a pool to swim in is soooo much better than any business class! 
 

 

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On 2/10/2020 at 4:42 AM, Heidi13 said:

Same here, especially when the cloxs go back and they last 25 hrs. Departing L/A we had 8 in a row, brilliant start to the cruise.😊

 

I just wanted to say how disappointed I am for you and all pax on board about the weather you are experiencing whilst in Australia. I know you left Sydney a few hours ago, where the weather was so-so at best - after missing Melbourne altogether.

 

As well as the torrential rain awaiting you in northern New South Wales and Southern Queensland you now have to deal with a cyclone which has developed west of Fiji.

 

This is not what you would have been hoping for, not expecting.

 

I hope things improve and I hope you enjoy Brisbane, despite the forecasts.

 

Interestingly North Queensland is predicted to have very hot temperatures when you arrive there in a few days time.

 

Cheers from us at Cooloongatta on the Gold Coast of Queensland, and best wishes to all for an enjoyable time whilst you are in our part of the world.

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11 hours ago, Little Monty said:

 

I just wanted to say how disappointed I am for you and all pax on board about the weather you are experiencing whilst in Australia. I know you left Sydney a few hours ago, where the weather was so-so at best - after missing Melbourne altogether.

 

As well as the torrential rain awaiting you in northern New South Wales and Southern Queensland you now have to deal with a cyclone which has developed west of Fiji.

 

This is not what you would have been hoping for, not expecting.

 

I hope things improve and I hope you enjoy Brisbane, despite the forecasts.

 

Interestingly North Queensland is predicted to have very hot temperatures when you arrive there in a few days time.

 

Cheers from us at Cooloongatta on the Gold Coast of Queensland, and best wishes to all for an enjoyable time whilst you are in our part of the world.

Thanks Little Monty,

 

Prior to arrival Sydney they were forecasting 10 continuous days of rain, but we actually lucked out, especially the first 2 days. Mostly overcast to broken overcast, but no rain. Last day not so lucky. On departure, they had the pool deckhead open for a group photo, during sailaway and the heavens opened.

 

Heading up to Brisbane, it isn't too bad, just some gentle rolling and occasional pounding, but nothing like we experienced prior to Sydney, crossing the Tasman and in the vicinity of the previous Cyclone. We haven't experienced anything like you did last year crossing the Tasman. Our max winds since leaving L/A have only been about 60 to 70 kts and worst seas about 20 feet.

 

Can't control the weather, so we enjoy this great ship and make the most of it.😊🍻

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42 minutes ago, Wendy The Wanderer said:

Considering what relief the rain has given to the Australian fire season, I think we should just all be thankful.

Apparently the downpour that Sydney experienced the day before we arrived extinguished about 1/3 of the fires. One of the guides mentioned that the water supply went from about 40% capacity to over 70% in a couple of days. Many locals said it was one of the worst rain storms they had seen, but nobody was complaining.

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2 hours ago, Heidi13 said:

Thanks Little Monty,

 

Prior to arrival Sydney they were forecasting 10 continuous days of rain, but we actually lucked out, especially the first 2 days. Mostly overcast to broken overcast, but no rain. Last day not so lucky. On departure, they had the pool deckhead open for a group photo, during sailaway and the heavens opened.

 

Heading up to Brisbane, it isn't too bad, just some gentle rolling and occasional pounding, but nothing like we experienced prior to Sydney, crossing the Tasman and in the vicinity of the previous Cyclone. We haven't experienced anything like you did last year crossing the Tasman. Our max winds since leaving L/A have only been about 60 to 70 kts and worst seas about 20 feet.

 

Can't control the weather, so we enjoy this great ship and make the most of it.😊🍻

That is good to know.

 

And yes, our crossing was an adventure. Thanks for remembering- I haven’t posted anything for 8 months or so but still read the Forum and have been following the WC. I just wanted to come back and say hello.

 

DW and I love your Blog.

 

Best wishes.

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22 hours ago, Heidi13 said:

Apparently the downpour that Sydney experienced the day before we arrived extinguished about 1/3 of the fires. One of the guides mentioned that the water supply went from about 40% capacity to over 70% in a couple of days. Many locals said it was one of the worst rain storms they had seen, but nobody was complaining.

Yes - the rain has been a blessing. The fire situation is now well in hand.

 

We are watching the ship arrive across Moreton Bay in bright sunshine. More good news.

 

The Brisbane Port schedule shows an 8am arrival was expected - so I assume there was a delay overnight. Hopefully they can delay departure so you get a full day in Brisbane. Enjoy.

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2 hours ago, Cleopatra99 said:

Yes - the rain has been a blessing. The fire situation is now well in hand.

 

We are watching the ship arrive across Moreton Bay in bright sunshine. More good news.

 

The Brisbane Port schedule shows an 8am arrival was expected - so I assume there was a delay overnight. Hopefully they can delay departure so you get a full day in Brisbane. Enjoy.

With the weather conditions, the pilots could not board safely during the hours of darkness, so pilot boarding was delayed until first light. Came aboard about 05:30, with us docking about 10:30. Departure is delayed until 21:00.

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Itinerary Change

 

Just had an announcement from Bevan the Cruise Director. It is no longer deemed safe to visit Singapore, so we have a major change to the itinerary, with a number of new ports and additional overnights. This segment will now end in Bali. The next segment is still being finalised, but will include new ports.

 

Just heading to the show, so will post the new itinerary later.

 

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Thanks for the update Andy.  Y'all are certainly having an adventure.  As you have said before, when you go to sea, things change.  The work Viking is doing behind the scenes must be massive.  As long as you all get home safely and see the world it will be a tale to tell for years.  There are lots of places out there and I look forward to seeing the updated itinerary.  All the best to all the World Cruisers..😎

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Thanks Jim - You and I certainly know the amount of work that goes into evaluating the risks and then when deemed excessive to planning and scheduling a new itinerary that creates no or minimal changes to the dates of TAR ports. Most of this is completed by Fleet Ops in HQ, but the ship's staff, provisions team and Viking Air also have huge extra work loads.

 

To ensure the safety of the passengers and crew, based on the current conditions, Viking have decided to bypass, in addition to China and HK, Thailand, Singapore and Philippines. Based on the rapidly changing situation with the virus, this again is a bold move by Viking, as it routes the ship further South and necessitates a significant itinerary change.

 

Date                 Itinerary #2                            New Itinerary

14-Feb             Brisbane                                Brisbane

15-Feb             At Sea                                    At Sea

16-Feb             Airlie Beach                          At Sea

17-Feb             Cairns                                    Noumea, New Caledonia

18-Feb             At Sea                                    Noumea, New Caledonia

19-Feb             Thursday Island                   At Sea

20-Feb              At Sea                                  At Sea

21-Feb              At Sea                                  Cairns, Queensland

22-Feb              Darwin                                 Cairns, Queensland

23-Feb              At Sea                                  Airlie Beach - Whitsundays

24-Feb              Komodo Is                          Townsville, Queensland

25-Feb              Bali                                        At Sea

26-Feb              At Sea                                   Thursday Island, Queensland

27-Feb              Samarang                            At Sea

28-Feb              At Sea                                   Darwin, Northern Territory

29-Feb              At Sea                                   Darwin, Northern Territory

1-Mar                Kota Kinabalu                     At Sea

2-Mar                Kota Kinabalu                     Komodo Island

3-Mar                At Sea                                   At Sea

4-Mar                Manila                                   At Sea

5-Mar                Manila                                   Semarang, Java

6-Mar                At Sea                                   Surabaya, Java

7-Mar                At Sea                                   At Sea

8-Mar                At Sea                                   Bali, Indonesia

9-Mar               Singapore                              Bali, Indonesia

 

Viking Air are reworking all flights for those who have booked through Viking and for those pax that elected to book their own flights, Guest Services will provide some assistance in them making the changes. Unfortunately, when booking your own flights for a cruise, you must be aware of and accept these risks.

 

A very interesting new itinerary, which will no doubt cost Viking a ton of extra fuel, as we criss-cross a number of ports, which is entirely based on berth availability. At this late stage, many ports are already full, so are not available.

 

Personally, we know that we will get off in London on May 2nd and part of the adventure is going to all these new ports that I haven't had the opportunity to research. These changes are completely outside Viking's control and at very short notice they have developed a reasonable revised itinerary.

 

Sadly, not everyone will agree.

 

This adventure confirms my expectation of every cruise, in that the itinerary is confirmed the day we disembark.😊

 

 

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What an adventure  unfolding for  everyone on board.  My thoughts are how does the ship  get resupplied,  how do the passengers doing a segment both  go and come on board going forward?

Then there is the crew, port personal and putting together some tours in new places on short notice.

So glad you are posting   the latest updates and sharing   this unqiue world cruise.

Cheers to everyone  on board.

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Thanks Andy.  I really don't know how they do it.  I suspect many cruisers have no maritime background so it is understandable that they don't realize the effort involved.  As you know, you can't just show up in a port and say I want a space to park my cruise ship.  And as Azulann says, just trying to get adequate supplies to a moving target.  All thanks and respect for all the hard working people ashore and afloat at Viking.  Y'all are sailing on a World Cruise like no other.🍸

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29 minutes ago, Azulann said:

What an adventure  unfolding for  everyone on board.  My thoughts are how does the ship  get resupplied,  how do the passengers doing a segment both  go and come on board going forward?

Then there is the crew, port personal and putting together some tours in new places on short notice.

So glad you are posting   the latest updates and sharing   this unqiue world cruise.

Cheers to everyone  on board.

You mention just a few of the many challenges experienced when these itinerary changes are required at short notice.

 

Passengers booked with Viking Air have no worries, as alternative flight arrangements will be issued on or before 21st Feb. Unfortunately, pax who elected not to employ Viking Air are realising the major risk and having to rebook their flights. However, Guest Services will provide assistance.

 

Pax booked on pre/post extensions have the option of changing to the new port or receiving a full refund.

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