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Caution if considering Viking River Cruises

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My parents purchased a Viking River cruise to leave in April 2017. My mother had to have a 7 hour emergency surgery on 03/23/17, doctors informed her that she absolutely cannot travel. It would be life-threatening especially out of the country, and they would be happy to provide a letter stating that fact for her. Unfortunately this is the first time she has not purchased any type of insurance with her cruise. They did pay in full for their cruise with a credit card. I called Viking to ask them if there was anyway I could change, not cancel, but change their booking to another time and I was told absolutely not they are totally out of luck will lose all the money, and will not receive any type of refund nor can they pay a fee and change their booking. I do understand that insurance was not purchased but I am totally and completely baffled by the inability from Viking to take into consideration a life-threatening situation and not letting someone change the booking. I clearly am not happy about the situation and was not happy speaking with the agent Katie on the phone. When I asked who I need to go ahead and speak with above her about this I was told a manager. She put me on hold and when she came back on the phone she said she had spoke with manager and there was nothing they could do because of the situation and cancellation policy. I totally lost my temper (yelled at her, which I should not have) and just hung up out of total frustration. I do understand they have policies in place, but also feel extenuating circumstances should be taken into consideration. Life threatening medical emergencies with a doctors documentation should fall into that category. I am still getting nowhere with Viking, and you can rest assured that my parents will not be traveling with Viking ever again if I cannot get a resolution. You can also be assured I will share this with everyone I know and talk to you regarding the lack of customer service and compassion shown by this company. I am sure I will get a whole explanation about the cancellation policy and insurance, but do not even want to have Viking respond if that is what they are coming back with. I would truly appreciate talking with the manager but was not given that opportunity. I would highly caution people like my parents (or anyone) considering a Viking cruise who have worked hard and saved so they could enjoy these types of trips during retirement to find another cruise line or option. Thanks to Viking for making a stressful situation that much worse.

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