[Resolved] Viking River Cruises / included air travel

FL, United States

I am VERY dissatisfied with the air arrangements that Viking made. I have written to the CEO, but have not had the courtesy of even a phone call.
April 29, 2012

Torstein Hagen
Chief Executive Officer
Viking River Cruises
5700 Canoga Avenue # 200
Woodland Hills, CA91367-6569


Dear Mr. Hagen:

I am writing to seek your assistance regarding the air travel arrangements that were made in conjunction with the subject Booking Number. The travel route to our initial China destination, Shanghai, is from Chicago to San Francisco to Beijing to Shanghai. Total flight hours are nineteen (19) plus a total of more than five (5) hours of layover time in San Francisco and Beijing. Thus, we’ll be traveling more than twenty-four hours before we finally land in Shanghai and then we’ll have still more time before we are bedded down in our Shanghai hotel.

I think this is unconscionable for a company that espouses on the packaging for their Viking Explorer Society, “He who returns from a journey is not the same as he who left.” I ask, parenthetically, will the routing chosen by Viking change us in the way that you hope? My suspicion is that most of your travelers are not in their thirties and that many/most are near our ages, 74 and 71.

There are alternatives to this routing. For example, United offers both nonstop and one-stop flights. My suspicion is that Viking chose our routing without consideration of its guests and their ages.

I called Viking Thursday, April 26, to see if changes were possible and was told no, UNLESS I was willing to pay $300 per passenger ticket change ($600 total). I felt this was unacceptable and asked to speak to the clerk’s supervisor and was EVENTUALLY routed to the supervisor’s voice mailbox. I left a message, but have not received the requested return call.

Had I known that Viking would route us on such a circuitous path, requiring more than twenty-four hours of travel time, I would have made our reservations independent of Viking, or perhaps might have chosen a different tour company. We have traveled with Viking (Paris to Prague) in 2009 and found it to be a delightful and satisfying trip. However, I made my own air travel arrangements.

In summary, I am asking that you intercede on our behalf. The air travel arrangements made by Viking are hardly acceptable. At this late date we might be stuck with them, but the memory of traveling for more than twenty-four hours will also remain in our minds. Viking could have done it differently. The clerk I talked to could have been more cordial. The supervisor could have returned my call as requested in my voice mail. Please help.


Robert and Dian Hornick
Permanent Address
4706 Montego Pointe Way, #103
Bonita Springs, FL 34134
Cell: [protected] E-mail: [protected]@AOL.COM Trip Departure Address
11271 Lindbergh Lane
Poplar Grove, IL 61065
Cell: [protected] E-mail: [protected]@AOL.COM

  • Resolution statement

    Customer care service did everything in their power to resolve this complaint. All attempts to contact the complainant have failed. Therefore, this complaint has been annulled and must not be considered where image of the company in question and it's services are concerned.

  • Viking River Cruises Customer Care's Response, May 06, 2012

    Dear Mr. Hornick,

    Please accept our apologies for your disappointment and frustration — and for what appears to be a missed connection. We did receive your letter and a Viking representative left a message for you on May 1. We’re concerned that we may not have your most current phone number, as the one in our system is not the one listed here in your message. We will have a representative contact you at this listed number. For future reference, please know that you can also contact us directly at [protected]

    We look forward to having you and your wife join us in China in a few weeks.

    Viking River Cruises

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