My first river cruise 12-2017

Old Feb 16th, 2017, 10:18 AM
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My first river cruise 12-2017

Greetings I am james a 37 year old army veteran from Florida and this will be my first river cruise, This month I booked Christmas in Germany December 22-29 , Cologne to Nuremberg on the Viking Longship Tor. I have a few questions but first I would like to say, I have read the reviews positive and negative an yes I have really read the negative postings of people saying beware. Things can go wrong on any vacation either by act of god, or issues that are the cruise line fault I beat to the tune of my own drum so to make judgment of Viking based off of just reviews without experiencing them first is not how I roll. I have had people say one cruise line is awful, such and such is the best I traveled with these lines and made up my own mind so lets not turn this thread into How I am making a mistake ect and no I am not a rep for Viking or know anyone from Viking ... with all that being said off to my questions.

Itinerary
Day 1 Cologne, Germany
Day 2 Cologne, Germany
Day 3 Koblenz, Germany
Day 4 Miltenberg, Germany
Day 5 Würzburg, Germany
Day 6 Bamberg, Germany
Day 7 Nuremberg, Germany
Day 8 Nuremberg, Germany

1. has anyone traveled on the Viking Tor?
2. has anyone traveled Cologne to Nuremberg? 2A. what month? 2B. if in the months of December, how was the experience

3. are there any hidden fee's, I am not talking about tips or the extra Excursions, I have one included in each port so I wont be buying any extra so I can explore on my own unless I see something that really catches my eye. I am a real history nerd and love culture.

4. Can someone tell me about the meals? I hear its like a buffet style
5. my Itinerary does not show times so about what time of the evening does the ship set out to the next stop?
6.. is there any other Info you think I should know?

Thank you
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Old Feb 19th, 2017, 03:44 AM
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You are far more likely to get replies at cruise critic on the Viking board.

Good luck.

Larry.
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Old Feb 19th, 2017, 01:23 PM
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Hi, James!

How wonderful to do a Christmas market cruise! I have heard good things about the Cologne and the Nuremberg Christmas markets.

1. We sailed on the Tor for half of our Nuremberg-Budapest cruise in July/August of 2015. The first half we were on the sister ship...water was shallow...so we switched over to Tor after a four hour bus ride. Loved the boat...room was compact...bathroom worked for we two women.

3. No hidden fees. We usually took the AM city tours and then left the group to explore in Vienna and Budapest.

4. Breakfast was always buffet style and there was a simple buffet out for lunch and dinner if you wanted to eat on the top deck. If you wanted to eat lunch and dinner in the dining room, then it wasn't buffet...usually a selection of several different entrees. Wasn't too impressed with the meals...but we enjoyed mealtime meeting and talking with people.

5. Call Viking about the arrival and departure times. I can't remember if I found them on the website. Make the people at Viking work for you! Be prepared for possible changes at the last minute. We had to moor in Regensburg for two nights and skip Passau, for instance.

6. Don't let Viking do your flights...do them on your own. We heard so many people complain about the way Viking routed them and the early departure times on the last morning. Some folks had to get up at 3AM to catch an early flight. We stayed on in Budapest and took a taxi from the boat to our hotel. Worked out well. Think about arriving in Cologne
at least a day or two early in case of flight delay and to deal with jet lag.

Have a great time!
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Old Feb 20th, 2017, 01:31 AM
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Great info to be sure. If you haven't thought about it consider travel insurance. It's always a good idea.
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Old Feb 20th, 2017, 06:20 AM
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thank you for the reply, Yes I have Travel INC,
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Old Feb 20th, 2017, 07:03 AM
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signed up on cruise critic , awaiting for admin to approve me
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Old Feb 20th, 2017, 07:27 AM
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Great!!
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Old Feb 21st, 2017, 03:04 AM
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debating if I want to do a post and extend 3 NIGHTS IN PRAGUE,
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Old Feb 21st, 2017, 03:47 AM
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Well I think you absolutely should. Prague is rated one of the best cities in Europe to visit. If you have a chance to do it then I would say definitely yes.
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Old Feb 21st, 2017, 04:02 AM
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being I have no roommate and going solo, it would be an extra 1250 dollars to add this on. being I have already spent 3793 not sure yet . chewing it over
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Old Feb 21st, 2017, 04:09 AM
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Is this thru Viking? If so can you get a better price on your own!
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Old Feb 21st, 2017, 04:17 AM
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yes, its 699 per person INCLUDED#8226;3 nights in Prague: Hilton Prague Hotel (or similar)
•3 breakfasts
•Guided City Tour
•Services of a Viking host
•Hotel & ship transfers

but since I am by myself I have to pay single supplement, They are doing my airfare for the simple fact its cheaper , really not worried about the messed up routes or times. I paid 295 dollars for adding air through Viking.
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Old Feb 21st, 2017, 04:19 AM
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I could pay the extra 1250 and just not worry about it, just a matter of something I have to think about even tho im leaning towards it
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Old Feb 21st, 2017, 06:09 AM
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Its up to you of course but Prague is a very well reviewed travel destination and I think other expenses like meals on your own are pretty reasonable there, much less that say Paris or London. I would be leaning your way too.
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Old Feb 21st, 2017, 06:37 AM
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Ill keep this thread or start a new thread and give a fair honest review as a first time river cruiser,
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Old Feb 21st, 2017, 06:41 AM
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only things that bothers me is the Christmas markets, since I am sail dec 22, I most likely will only see the one in Cologne and will miss the one in Nuremberg. after more detailed research they close by the 23rd and Christmas eve.
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Old Feb 21st, 2017, 06:50 AM
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I'll look f/w to your TR as so much has been written about Viking river cruises.

OTOH Viking Ocean cruises are getting rave reviews.

Larry. .
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Old Feb 26th, 2017, 10:24 PM
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Jimmy,

You will miss Christmas markets in several ports by sailing over Christmas. There are several markets in Cologne and this might make up for missing others. The main market at the Cathedral was packed in late November but others were not as crowded. If the markets are important to you is there any chance Viking will allow you to switch to an earlier sailing? You could also visit Prague before Cologne. It takes just over an hour to fly to Cologne from Prague. There will be a Christmas market in Prague and the city is lovely.

My husband and took a Viking Christmas Market cruise last December and thought everything was very well done, including the flights booked through Viking. They were exactly the airlines and departures we would have chosen. And we had right of refusal if we had not liked what they chose. Another year I took a cruise on AmaWaterways and thought Viking's cabin was more spacious and the bed far more comfortable. I would definitely sail with Viking again.

What does the cruise offer on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day?
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Old Feb 26th, 2017, 10:31 PM
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Oh and the only hidden fees I think you might encounter are drinks at the bar. Wine at dinner was enough for us so we did not run up a bill.

We took only one optional excursion and thought it was worth it. The included tours were generally good and we had sufficient time on our own.

The information Viking will send you tells about tipping for staff so you can budget for that prior to departure.
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