Jump to content

Tips for New Viking Ocean Cruisers


Recommended Posts

2 minutes ago, Bejay219 said:

Couple of questions for 1st time Viking for Iceland - 

-do you need reservations for the "Kitchen Table", if so, on board? And what exactly is it. 

-for the Spa, do people wear their bathing suits from staterooms to the spa, or is it customary to change in the locker room? 

-if you are doing a back to back, how do you get your belongings from one room to another? Do you have to leave the ship to zero it out? 

-is the infinity pool heated in colder cruises? 

Thank you in advance! 

 

 

The Kitchen Table is treated as an excursion, so you would reserve it as you would other excursions.

I think the Infinity Pool is always heated.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, JeriGail said:

The Kitchen Table is treated as an excursion, so you would reserve it as you would other excursions.

 

 

 

There are two kinds of "Kitchen Table" experiences. One is a shore excursion that one books along with the other shorex. It is not offered on every itinerary or sailing of those that do offer it.

 

The other is an at-sea day activity; it is an abbreviated version of the shore excursion (no shopping trip😉). If it is going to be offered on your sailing it will be announced on board and you can sign up for it. There is a fee.

 

Both of these activities are popular and sell out very quickly because of the very limited space available.

Edited by Peregrina651
Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, Peregrina651 said:

 

 

There are two kinds of "Kitchen Table" experiences. One is a shore excursion that one books along with the other shorex. It is not offered on every itinerary or sailing of those that do offer it.

 

The other is an at-sea day activity; it is an abbreviated version of the shore excursion (no shopping trip😉). If it is going to be offered on your sailing it will be announced on board and you can sign up for it. There is a fee.

 

Both of these activities are popular and sell out very quickly because of the very limited space available.

In my humble opinion, 

food is food.

We’ve done the Kitchen Table.

It’s just another experience

you can write home about.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Spa question from Bejay219: I change clothes at the spa.  I think most, or possibly all, people do - unless they go from pool to spa area.  Viking is dignified but not stuffy.  But I doubt you'll be shamed, or otherwise bothered, if you choose to do something different.  There are plenty of lockers and towels in the spa area.  There's also a wringer if you want to wring out your bathing suit.  

 

Kitchen Table: I assume everyone knows this, but if not: The CHEF'S Table is different.  It DOES require reservations!

Edited by IWantToLiveOverTheSea
Link to post
Share on other sites
47 minutes ago, IWantToLiveOverTheSea said: 

 

Kitchen Table: I assume everyone knows this, but if not: The CHEF'S Table is different.  It DOES require reservations!

And doesn’t cost extra!

Link to post
Share on other sites
45 minutes ago, IWantToLiveOverTheSea said:

Kitchen Table: I assume everyone knows this, but if not: The CHEF'S Table is different.  It DOES require reservations!

 

I wish that hadn't chosen such similar names for the two different experiences. It is very confusing.

 

Chef's Table is the name of one of the alternative restaurants --and as Clay just, it doesn't cost extra

Kitchen Table is a "help the chef prepare the meal and then you get to eat it experience." -- for want of a better description. And it does cost extra.

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Bejay219 said:

Couple of questions for 1st time Viking for Iceland - 

-do you need reservations for the "Kitchen Table", if so, on board? And what exactly is it. 

-for the Spa, do people wear their bathing suits from staterooms to the spa, or is it customary to change in the locker room? 

-if you are doing a back to back, how do you get your belongings from one room to another? Do you have to leave the ship to zero it out? 

-is the infinity pool heated in colder cruises? 

Thank you in advance! 

 

 

Kitchen Table is the midships prep/cooking stations that is aft of both Manfredis & Chefs Table. They host shore excursions where you go ashore with the Chef, then assist with the prep on board. They also have "Cooking Classes" on sea days at 10:00 - you prep/cook a 3-course lunch, which is then served at the table. Both these are considered as Shore-ex and can be booked at the Purser's Desk

 

Chef's Table is one of the Alternative restaurants and requires reservations, although most nights we could walk up and get a table.

 

Spa - I changed in the locker room and believe most pax did the same, although did see a few heading to the fwd lifts that were still wet.

 

Back to Back - the housekeeping staff will normally assist in changing cabins. Whether the ship has to get a zero clearance is normally dictated by the shore authorities. Although with a different cruise line, most B2B's we did, new cards were delivered to the cabin the evening before and we were requested to scan out with the old card and scan in with the new card.

 

Tend to avoid cold climates, so can't comment on pool temps. However, in 4 months it was always comfortable.

Link to post
Share on other sites

“for the Spa, do people wear their bathing suits from staterooms to the spa, or is it customary to change in the locker room? l

 

I wear leggings, flip flops, and pool cover-up over swimsuit and leave outer wear on a lounger at the pool. I like to use the sauna after in the locker room and then will rinse off and use the wringer on my wet suit. I have seen many people wearing their robes to and from the locker room. But most will discreetly use the back stairs and elevators to go back to their room without looking too deshabille in the public areas!

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, LindaS272 said:

“for the Spa, do people wear their bathing suits from staterooms to the spa, or is it customary to change in the locker room? l

 

I wear leggings, flip flops, and pool cover-up over swimsuit and leave outer wear on a lounger at the pool. I like to use the sauna after in the locker room and then will rinse off and use the wringer on my wet suit. I have seen many people wearing their robes to and from the locker room. But most will discreetly use the back stairs and elevators to go back to their room without looking too deshabille in the public areas!

That's what we've observed, as well.  The majority of pax change in the locker rooms, but a healthy percentage do wear robes to and from and use the backstairs or elevators, just outside the spa.  In all our cruises, I've only seen one gentleman walk down the hall and onto the middle elevator in his bathrobe, and he definitely stood out.

 

A warning re the bathing suit ringer machine.  It works wonderfully well, but be SURE you have your suit pushed all the way down into it before using.  I didn't get mine properly placed, and managed to chew up one corner of it because it got caught.   100% user error, not the fault of the machine in any way.  Fortunately I had two suits on that trip, and from then on, I've been extra careful.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for all the great answers!  Usually cruise Celebrity, can't wait to experience Viking.  We signed up for Iceland the day it was announced and have been learning as much as we can so our trip will be a great experience. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

First time Virgin cruiser here - headed for the Star in December. Hope someone can straighten us out on a few things.

 

1.  "2 guaranteed priority reservations at each alternative restaurant: 70 days prior to departure". So is that 2 reservations per restaurant, i.e. 4 reservations total for the entire 14-day cruise?  And if we want to book more than our allotted "priority reservations", is there a date when that becomes possible or do we have to do that only once we're on board?

 

2.  Self-serve laundrettes...  are these the no-charge machines that have detergent pre-loaded in them or do we have to bring/buy that separately?

 

3.  Any word on whether Virgin will be requiring "official Virgin excursions only" as some other lines are doing, or do you think we'll be able to explore on our own at each port by December?

 

Thank you!

Edited by spryder
Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, spryder said:

1.  "2 guaranteed priority reservations at each alternative restaurant: 70 days prior to departure". So is that 2 reservations per restaurant, i.e. 4 reservations total for the entire 14-day cruise?  And if we want to book more than our allotted "priority reservations", is there a date when that becomes possible or do we have to do that only once we're on board?

 

Your cabin category gets to make 2 advanced reservations in each restaurant. You may make additional reservations once you are on board the ship.

 

23 minutes ago, spryder said:

2.  Self-serve laundrettes...  are these the no-charge machines that have detergent pre-loaded in them or do we have to bring/buy that separately?

 

No charge for detergent. On the Star you will have to have to hit a separate button on the dispenser.

 

There are a couple of laundry threads in the Viking Ocean forums (same forum this thread is located in). The search function will help you locate them. They are helpful because they have pictures of the equipment, etc.

 

48 minutes ago, spryder said:

3.  Any word on whether Virgin will be requiring "official Virgin excursions only" as some other lines are doing, or do you think we'll be able to explore on our own at each port by December?

 

Absolutely no way of knowing or predicting at this time.

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Squawkman said:

This is the Viking board - not Virgin.

I think he just made a typo. It's obvious he is on Viking Star. 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, spryder said:

First time Virgin cruiser here - headed for the Star in December. Hope someone can straighten us out on a few things.

 

1.  "2 guaranteed priority reservations at each alternative restaurant: 70 days prior to departure". So is that 2 reservations per restaurant, i.e. 4 reservations total for the entire 14-day cruise?  And if we want to book more than our allotted "priority reservations", is there a date when that becomes possible or do we have to do that only once we're on board?

 

2.  Self-serve laundrettes...  are these the no-charge machines that have detergent pre-loaded in them or do we have to bring/buy that separately?

 

3.  Any word on whether Virgin will be requiring "official Virgin excursions only" as some other lines are doing, or do you think we'll be able to explore on our own at each port by December?

 

Thank you!

 

Since none of the Virgin ships are called "Star", so I assume that was a typo.Here is some responses to your questions

 

1. We never reserve pre-cruise, unless a special occassion, so unfortunately can't give a definitive answer. Once on board you can make additional reservations, using a variety of means. I generally used the cabin telly, but you can call the reservation number, use the Viking App, or visit the host at the World Cafe (hopefully somebody can confirm this one)

 

2. Laundry machines are free and Viking provides detergent which is added by pressing a button, which on the Sun was located on the bulkhead adjacent to the entry door.

 

3. At present, the "Welcome Back" cruises maintain a Shore-ex bubble. Nothing posted as to how long this will last.

 

Enjoy your cruise, which hopefully will sail as planned.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi

We booked yesterday via a travel agent, who gave us our booking ref number for Viking.

Does anyone know how long I need to wait before I can set up an account with Viking...the website just says that it doesn't recognise my booking?

We are due to leave on the 19th June and want to sort a few trips out

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, rachiem said:

Hi

We booked yesterday via a travel agent, who gave us our booking ref number for Viking.

Does anyone know how long I need to wait before I can set up an account with Viking...the website just says that it doesn't recognise my booking?

We are due to leave on the 19th June and want to sort a few trips out

 

 

 

 

You should have been able to use it almost immediately.

 

Go back to your TA and ask for a copy of your Viking invoice -- the one that Viking produces, not the one that your travel agent produces. The TA should have it as a pdf file so sending it to you should be a simple process. The invoice will contain your booking number -- plus a whole lot of helpful information, some of which will not be available on MVJ.

Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, Peregrina651 said:

You should have been able to use it almost immediately.

With one exception: if a provisional booking has been made by their TA and a booking number issued by Viking, the booking will not be accessible on MVJ until the deposit is paid.  At least that’s how it worked when we booked Iceland.  I can’t remember that happening before.

Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, MarkTapley said:

With one exception: if a provisional booking has been made by their TA and a booking number issued by Viking, the booking will not be accessible on MVJ until the deposit is paid.  At least that’s how it worked when we booked Iceland.  I can’t remember that happening before.

 

Yup, I assumed that all was paid for.  I should know better than to assume.

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Peregrina651 said:

 

You should have been able to use it almost immediately.

 

Go back to your TA and ask for a copy of your Viking invoice -- the one that Viking produces, not the one that your travel agent produces. The TA should have it as a pdf file so sending it to you should be a simple process. The invoice will contain your booking number -- plus a whole lot of helpful information, some of which will not be available on MVJ.

To add to Peregrina's reply, there's a lot of info provided in the Guest Statement (aka Invoice) that you won't find anywhere in the MVJ (just checked mine to confirm).  In addition to the financial part (inc final payment date) it provides:  a detailed cruise itinerary (port arrival and departure, whether the port is a "tender port" -- little red anchor means it is), earliest embarkation time, the dates when reservations for specialty dining and main dining are open (the MVJ onboard experience section displays the exact date and time when reservations for the main dining open), and date when excursions are open for booking.  In the case of the latter, the excursions open for viewing about  4 to 6 weeks before.  You can also use MVJ to email a copy of the invoice to you.  Open the menu (three horizontal bars top left), select "Account", "Request Invoice", and press the dark blue rectangle.  Assuming Viking has your email address -- the invoice will be sent to you.

Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, CharTrav said:

(the MVJ onboard experience section displays the exact date and time when reservations for the main dining open), and date when excursions are open for booking.  In the case of the latter, the excursions open for viewing about  4 to 6 weeks before.

How many on the Welcome Back cruises have had excursion excursions available to view weeks in advance? Our excursions for Malta (Sept 12) are supposed to be able to book June 27. MVJ is not showing any excursions currently.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, LindaS272 said:

How many on the Welcome Back cruises have had excursion excursions available to view weeks in advance? Our excursions for Malta (Sept 12) are supposed to be able to book June 27. MVJ is not showing any excursions currently.

i based what I wrote regarding 4-6 wks from pre-covid days. no idea what the experience will be for the welcome back cruises this summer. I still stand by the dates given on the guest statement. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, CharTrav said:

i based what I wrote regarding 4-6 wks from pre-covid days. no idea what the experience will be for the welcome back cruises this summer. I still stand by the dates given on the guest statement. 

 

Char, your answer is the textbook answer and the right answer for a thread of a general nature such as this.  

 

But Viking is not making those deadlines right now.  They are very far behind scheduling the shorex for the Welcome Back cruises.  It is very frustrating but it is not surprising considering the hurdles they are facing as the entire tourism industry restarts.  

 

Hopefully, things will return to normal as the industry moves toward full capacity.  

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, Peregrina651 said:

 

Char, your answer is the textbook answer and the right answer for a thread of a general nature such as this.  

 

But Viking is not making those deadlines right now.  They are very far behind scheduling the shorex for the Welcome Back cruises.  It is very frustrating but it is not surprising considering the hurdles they are facing as the entire tourism industry restarts.  

 

Hopefully, things will return to normal as the industry moves toward full capacity.  

 

as I've written before,  you and others who are doing the welcome back cruises this Summer are the brave ones. Chickenhearts like me salute your bravery and willingness to deal with the unavoidable uncertainties of this period of re-start.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Thank You for 25 Years - Click for Fun Stuff!
      • Forum Assistance
      • ANNOUNCEMENT: American Queen Steamboat Company - Celebrate Your Freedom
      • Q&A: Cruise Insurance with Steve Dasseos of TripInsuranceStore.com - June 2021
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • Canadian Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...