Just off a recent sailing of Viking Ocean Cruises new Viking Star, it was easy to document and confirm: this is one great value for cruise travelers. Most cruise travelers that is. For some, Viking Ocean Cruises’ ships are just not set up to handle them. Let’s look at reasons to (and not to) sail with them.
Viking Ocean Cruises Are Not For Everyone
An easy list of travelers who will have little interest in sailing with Viking Ocean Cruises
- Families stay away. Viking Ocean Cruise ships are not family friendly if for no other reason that all cabins are double cabins, throwing the business for triples and quads to big ship cruise lines.
- Big Ship Activity Fans– Also, there are few mind-occupying amusement activities and nearly no top deck attractions. Inside there is no casino either.
Viking Ocean Cruises Could Be The Perfect Match
On the other hand, when matched with the right traveler, Viking Ocean Cruises has an experience quite difficult, if not inappropriate, to compare to other cruise lines, for a number of reasons.
- All Veranda Staterooms- every stateroom has a view and it’s a good one. There are no obstructed views on Viking Ocean Cruises.
- Beer and Wine Included with every meal and that actually means during meal times, dining or not. Upgrade to their Silver Spirits plan for almost anything, anytime and more benefits.
- Cultured Onboard Programming is evolving to include a partnership with the famed Metropolitan Opera which brings taped performances enjoyed with Dolby surround sound, backstage interviews and more. Munch Moments is an after-dinner cocktail hour that features exclusive rights to the artist’s works, projected on a giant led screen in the central atrium area
- Lightning Fast Internet, included in the Viking Ocean Cruises price, was being rolled out as I sailed and due to go live shortly. Promising the fastest Internet at sea, that means streaming video, FaceTime chats with your jealous friends back home and more.
- Multiple Dining Options include Manfredi’s (authentic) Italian, a rotating tasting menu at The Chef’s Table, a World Cafe buffet-like area with an open kitchen where we can see the food being prepared fresh before our eyes, a main dining room simply called The Restaurant with plenty of the highly-sought tables for two, a Pool Grill, snappy 24hour room service with a smile and more. All are included, none carry a cover charge, although they seem like they should
- The Explorer’s Lounge is a two-deck high area at the front of the ship where observation lounges are on other ships. Here we find comfy chairs, an eclectic array of loaner library books, a whole lot of conversation among guests and more. This will probably be one of your favorite places on the ship.
- Entertainment, usually something I can take or leave without any gain or loss of joy on any cruise line is just wonderful. Woven throughout the day that might mean a concert hall quality piano player in the comfy Living Room area, a one man band at night in the Explorer’s lounge or a truly authentic Rat Pack performance in the Torshaven nightclub that runs into late night.
- Expect the unexpected- to me, the mark of a good cruise ship operation is when they hit all the marks one would expect then go a bit further. Thats what we commonly found ourselves and/or overheard other passengers talking about. Mention you have a scratchy throat like having a cold coming on, and servers in the restaurant are there with honey and lemon-infused hot tea. Have a food allergy and find custom made dining options with you, personally, in mind.
- Past Guests Get Their Just Deserves– When other cruise lines are cutting back on what past guests get for their loyalty, Viking Ocean Cruises is pouring it on beginning with an additional $ discount regardless of any other promotional fare applied to your booking. Stacking benefits is back.
Growing Fleet Means This Will Stay– We saw it on most cruise lines at one point or another: they tried really hard to impress us so we would tell our friends. Word-of-mouth advertising is still king here and Viking Ocean Cruises tries really hard to make passengers want to tell their friends about the experience. Common: guests with the time extend their voyage when space is available to stay on for another cruise.
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