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Viking River Cruises / august 6, 2018-august 20, 2018 amsterdam to budapest river cruise

1 United States Review updated:

Do not cruise with viking river cruises!!!

We booked and took a viking river cruise from august 6, 2018-august 20, 2018 from amsterdam to budapest.

This was not, in any way, the cruise we were promised via the expensive printed glossy viking brochures. This was a very, very expensive cruise for which we have saved all our lives to take and enjoy.

Our booking number is was 4782487.

We have called and spoken with viking customer service representatives over three times now and today again called to speak with an upper level customer service manager. The service agent I spoke with refused to allow us to talk to an upper level service manager.

This is far from "customer service".

We have been offered "future cruise vouchers" for future cruises which must be taken by september of 2019.

We are not wealthy people and to take another expensive cruise in not in our budget and therefore the future cruise vouchers are of no value to us.

We have asked for cash refund of our cruise for the cost of the cruise, outside of the airline fare and post cruise two day stay in budapest.

The cruise was a disaster as low water level on the rivers, which we were never ever notified of before we left for europe, did not allow for a "river" cruise.. Instead the trip consisted of three different boats, unpacking and packing up on almost no notice and then being bussed to these boats.

Viking knew full well of the low water conditions many weeks before this cruise but yet did nothing to let us know or give us any alternatives for a later cruise at a later date or refund our cruise prior to departure.

We were docked in industrial locations far from city centers and far from the "beautiful" sights promised in your glossy brochures. When we were docked in the promised cities, we were wedged in between two other viking cruise boats and therefore had no view from our staterooms other than to look directly into another boat stateroom.

The crew was so sick in the restaurants that they were taking turns resting and taking each other's shifts to recuperate. This however, resulted in passing their illnesses on to most of the passengers, including myself, my fiancee, tom paltani, my sister anne mccracken and my 82 year old mother, maria waring. As a matter of fact, we were all so very sick that we each spent several days of our lovely journey in our cabins preventing us from enjoying the sights and taking our excursions. We understand that there were even passengers who were so ill that they had to leave the cruise early and be flown back to the us for hospital care.

Additionally, we were not allowed to use the upper level deck of the boat during much of the cruise. The reason for this is still unknown to us.

The final parting gift viking gave us was being placed in our last stateroom which smelled of sewage, had no air conditioning and a toilet that wouldn't flush.

If we are not able to be allowed to even speak to someone who can actually resolve this dispute, we are forced to file a lawsuit to pursue legal remedy.

As of my conversation today with a lady in your customer service, in which I was refused any further communication with viking management on this matter, I have scheduled a meeting with my attorney for wednesday, october 3, 2018 at 10:00 to begin legal proceedings.

Should anyone from viking with a conscience and good business practice wish to contact us, our phone numbers are:

[protected] mary waring
[protected] tom paltani

  • Viking River Cruises Customer Care's Response, Oct 05, 2018

    Thank you for reaching out to us, Ms. Waring. Our records indicate that a member of our Customer Relations Department was in recent contact with you to discuss compensation for your concerns. Should you wish to resume our conversation and revisit your options moving forward, we welcome you to contact us at 1-877-523-0579. Have a great day.

  • Updated by Mary Waring, Oct 05, 2018

    I, Mary Waring, am the publisher of the above post “ Viking River Cruise - August 6-August 20th” regarding the Viking River Cruise which I and my fiancée, Tom Paltani took this summer.

    I am greatly offended at the above response posted by the customer service representative from Viking River Cruises above to my post and my conversation with her today.

    She called to offer me $500 cash ( hush money) along with the vouchers offered already offered in order for me to stop posting cruise reviews and ONLY if I would also sign acceptance as a settlement and agree to no longer post regarding this disaster of a trip.

    In offering the $500 she also lied to me point blank by telling me that no one else had been offered any more that the $500.

    I know this a blatant lie as I know of at least one other passenger that was offered more than this.

    I hope all of you reading this understand that I have been very communicative and patient with Viking to do the right thing by their so called “valued customers”.

    So far, there has been no satisfactory resolution whatsoever.

    Please avoid cruising with Viking River Cruises as you will avoid a $14, 000 costly mistake which we ourselves made.

    Mary Waring

Oct 1, 2018
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  • Al
      8th of Oct, 2018
    -1 Votes

    Mary. While sympathetic to what happened on your recent Viking River Cruise, you are missing so many points. I've river cruised with Viking twice on the Grand European Tour in 2015 and the European Sojourn April 2018. Flawless cruises, most enjoyable time.

    Posted in European and USA news sites, this year's low river water levels were disastrous to all river cruise and commercial shipping companies. All of them experienced delays lost shipping time, canceled trips.

    Weather is always changing; rain can come and go as we have seen in the USA with numerous drought areas. Mississippi River also suffers low water levels, same shipping as Europe experienced.

    All river traffic is controlled by Harbor Masters/River Management whose job it is to ensure traffic is stopped in low water areas to avoid a ship becoming stuck, blocking the river to those ships when can still navigate. Conditions can change by the hour. Viking, like all other river users, does as directed in using the river. Not the Captain's call to go or stay.

    As you never mentioned travel insurance, either it was offered to you or you already knew about it. It is also mentioned on the Viking River Cruise FAQ page. Your decision not to use it. With the travel insurance, you could have received reimbursement on the coverage selected. This is on you. Need to accept responsibility for your failure to use travel insurance.

    You insinuated someone receive a higher payment than $500 yet willfully failed to provide credible proof. This is an "Unsubstantiated Allegation" carrying zero credibility. Same for your "ONLY if I would also sign acceptance as a settlement and agree to no longer post regarding this disaster of a trip."

    Congress recently passed the "Consumer Review Fairness Act" which bans companies from contacting people to pull negative reviews, charging them, or threatening to sue, or the use of so-called "Hush Money." Federal Trade Commission is point for this act. Knowing this, again, your post lacks credibility.

    You were not allowed to use the upper deck, as the ship has to pass under low bridges. All top deck items, to include the Pilot House are lowered to allow clearance. Passengers are briefed on this during the initial on ship orientation. Or just ask a crewmember.

    "Docking" is and has been standard practice on the rivers for years. There are not enough docks to allow each river ship to have their own space. You only lose your balcony view for these short times. Every river cruise company does this when necessary. Deal with it.

    As an adult, you need to accept your part of the responsibility for what happened. Travel insurance could have made all the difference. Recommend you do not make this mistake again.

  • Du
      20th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    We are currently on a river cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam. Many if the exact same conditions are occurring as we speak. I am not happy! The top deck can't be used for the next four days, two of which I believe are cruising days, if we get them. I am trying to complain directly to Viking, but can't find the link to send an email to them. Also the internet is of course very sluggish! How did you make out in the end? I doubt I will ever go on another cruise!!
    Jane Cosgrove

  • Vi
      20th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    @Dutchie1990 We’re sorry to hear your journey isn’t going as planned, Jane, though we are glad to have this opportunity to connect with you. Though we are confident you will find the remainder of your trip enjoyable, we would be happy to receive your post-cruise comments at at the conclusion of your time aboard so that we may learn about your overall experience, start to finish. We look forward to hearing from you, and wish you a lovely evening.

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