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Could I get some comparisons of Oceania, HAL and Viking world cruises? Thanks!

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Sue, I know of very few people who have done World Cruises on both Holland and Oceania and as mentioned Viking is getting ready for their first World Cruise. Also when you say a comparison what exactly do you mean. Cost? Itinerary? Amenities?

 

This is one that you will need to do the research yourself. You can read about each World Cruise offering and ask specific questions on the Cruise Line Boards and here about the things that you want to know about.

 

Also do you want a comparison of the three cruise lines or of the world cruises.

 

In terms of the cruise lines Oceania and Viking are more upscale then Holland America.

 

With that said Oceania and Viking are more about ports and don't have big lecture programs whereas Holland would in comparison. These are things to think about for a World Cruise. You also will want to study which ships each line use for the World Cruise.

 

Keith

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We looked at all of them and based our choice on itinerary.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

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I agree with both the previous post for us. Itinerary is a big factor BUT on a WC there would be many interesting ports on all lines. and money of course; and the ship. Keith1010 good advice to check out the ships the lines are using for the WC. Oceania will not be using their larger (1250+) pax O class ship that I see you have been on previously but rather their R class ships which is the same size as then AZ ships you have been on. O has added a small "Artist's Loft" to the WC R ship. That is a very popular activity on their O class ships so they tucked in on the one R ship for the World Cruises. Os WC are very popular. HAL too is very experienced on WC and they have a great following.

 

When evaluating the ship and cabin choices unlimited funds would help otherwise have to trade this off for that. Some folks cannot imagine being in an inside cabin for that length of time and for others it is not a problem at all. I recall a discussion on CC a couple of years back where a very experienced traveller replied to that concern describing a little different attitude with world cruisers. She wrote that the whole ship becomes home and the cabin is simply like their bedroom.I like that thought, especially that there is no kitchen for us to cook in or clean

 

Good luck. I expect the research will be fun

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Don't forget to factor in inclusions in your comparisons. there will be a special package for those doing the full world cruises. Do they offer the visa service, luggage delivery, laundry, medical, gratuities, internet, free or fee specialty restaurants, shuttles in port cities, liquor, cost of non alcoholic drinks, etc., etc. Sometimes a cruise line that you thought may be out of your budget, ends up being very close. Check out dress code too -- open seating or fixed dining. Also, are there special events for world cruisers?

 

We based our first World Cruise on itinerary as well as port vs sea days. We didn't think about the ship that much, or the cruise line. What we ended up choosing was a very good fit for us.

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My friend and I did alot of research a year ago before booking our 2019 RTW cruise. We checked out all the lines that do world cruises and compared them for itinerary, direction of sailing, ships and types of cabins, ship culture, cost, included amenities, and ratio of port days to sea days.

 

Itinerary is most important to us, including which ports, direction (we wanted a westerly cruise) and more port days than sea days. 1 or 2 overnights in ports was a plus too.

 

Cost was also a big factor because we're just middle income retired nurses - not wealthy by any stretch of the imagination. We wanted a balcony (we enjoy spending time there), so we compared similar cabins on the different cruiselines. Along with this comparison, we noted which amenities were offered on each line and what services/amenities we would need for a long cruise. We found that most of the cheapest prices naturally came with fewer amenities (and usually more sea days than port days). So, we came up with an estimated cost of the amenities that we needed and added that on to the price of cruises that didn't include them.

 

Size of the ship really didn't make a difference to us, but it is nice that small ships can go to more ports. One thing we've grown tired of is formal nights and a formal ship culture. We were able to eliminate several lines based on a desire for a more casual experience. Since we are taking this cruise to see the world, we wanted port days to be at least 50% or more of the total days.

 

So.....after collecting all this data we chose Oceania. The cost was higher than others, but included amenities that were valuable to us: first class roundtrip airfare, 1-night precruise hotel stay, roundtrip transfers, 36 excursions per person, prepaid gratuities, onboard medical care, unlimited internet, unlimited laundry service, shoreside events in 5 ports, visa package, 8 daily complimentary fitness classes, art studio, all non-alcoholic beverages around the ship and in cabin refrigerator, no charge for specialty restaurants and luggage delivery service. None of these depends on what type of cabin you get. We will travel westerly and have a ratio of 60% port days to 40% sea days. 12 ports have 1 or 2 overnights. Will be gone for 161 days.

 

We will get quite a bit of OBC too - $3,000 each from our TA, $250pp from Oceania, $230pp spa credit, and I get $250 from owning NCL stock.

 

Hope that helps others who are also trying to choose a world cruise. No matter what, I'm sure we'll all come home with memories to last a lifetime! :hearteyes:

Edited by Go-Bucks!

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Thank you, Go-Bucks. Although I probably wouldn't choose Oceania (my priorities are different from yours), I like your method of rating the cruise lines.

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Keith, I guess we're most interested in not just cost, but value, And itinerary comparisons/pluses and minues for different world cruises.

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My friend and I did alot of research a year ago before booking our 2019 RTW cruise. We checked out all the lines that do world cruises and compared them for itinerary, direction of sailing, ships and types of cabins, ship culture, cost, included amenities, and ratio of port days to sea days.

 

Itinerary is most important to us, including which ports, direction (we wanted a westerly cruise) and more port days than sea days. 1 or 2 overnights in ports was a plus too.

 

Cost was also a big factor because we're just middle income retired nurses - not wealthy by any stretch of the imagination. We wanted a balcony (we enjoy spending time there), so we compared similar cabins on the different cruiselines. Along with this comparison, we noted which amenities were offered on each line and what services/amenities we would need for a long cruise. We found that most of the cheapest prices naturally came with fewer amenities (and usually more sea days than port days). So, we came up with an estimated cost of the amenities that we needed and added that on to the price of cruises that didn't include them.

 

Size of the ship really didn't make a difference to us, but it is nice that small ships can go to more ports. One thing we've grown tired of is formal nights and a formal ship culture. We were able to eliminate several lines based on a desire for a more casual experience. Since we are taking this cruise to see the world, we wanted port days to be at least 50% or more of the total days.

 

So.....after collecting all this data we chose Oceania. The cost was higher than others, but included amenities that were valuable to us: first class roundtrip airfare, 1-night precruise hotel stay, roundtrip transfers, 36 excursions per person, prepaid gratuities, onboard medical care, unlimited internet, unlimited laundry service, shoreside events in 5 ports, visa package, 8 daily complimentary fitness classes, art studio, all non-alcoholic beverages around the ship and in cabin refrigerator, no charge for specialty restaurants and luggage delivery service. None of these depends on what type of cabin you get. We will travel westerly and have a ratio of 60% port days to 40% sea days. 12 ports have 1 or 2 overnights. Will be gone for 161 days.

 

We will get quite a bit of OBC too - $3,000 each from our TA, $250pp from Oceania, $230pp spa credit, and I get $250 from owning NCL stock.

 

Hope that helps others who are also trying to choose a world cruise. No matter what, I'm sure we'll all come home with memories to last a lifetime! :hearteyes:

 

 

May I ask why the preference for a Westerly direction.

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For us, needing to do it from Australia, it is much simpler.

 

Who is offering one?

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May I ask why the preference for a Westerly direction.

 

Gaining hours rather than losing them.

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May I ask why the preference for a Westerly direction.

Most of the time you are gaining time between time zones instead of losing it.

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Keith, I guess we're most interested in not just cost, but value, And itinerary comparisons/pluses and minues for different world cruises.

 

However, you were also comparing 118 - 120 day cruises with your 161 day cruise, which may or may not have affected the comparisons. In any event, you did not explain how the results of the comparison affected your choice; i.e. the total overall cost.

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My friend and I did alot of research a year ago before booking our 2019 RTW cruise. We checked out all the lines that do world cruises and compared them for itinerary, direction of sailing, ships and types of cabins, ship culture, cost, included amenities, and ratio of port days to sea days.

................

 

So.....after collecting all this data we chose Oceania.

 

Thank you for the detailed explanation of your decision making process.

 

I am also looking at Oceania and have a thread going asking the wider question of the differences between Princess (which I have sailed on) and Oceania, which I have not. The thread is here: https://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.phpp=55010340#post55010340

 

For me, the atmosphere on board is important. I like Oceania's approach of smart casual dressing, without formal nights. Of course, that is but one of many factors.

 

Thanks also to YoHoHo for the comment that the perspective on a world cruise can be different, in that the whole ship becomes your home with the cabin only being a bedroom.

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Whatever you do before I would commit to a World Cruise of 100+ days I would sail not only on the cruise line I was considering but also on the ship.

 

I have sailed many World Cruises and on each one some people were on the cruise line and ship for the very first time but given the time commitment and the cost of the cruise I would want to be sure that I was happy with both ship and line before making such a big commitment.

 

Keith

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Thank you Smokeyham. I will check that out, though for us it's more a decision of HAL vs Oceania.

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Whatever you do before I would commit to a World Cruise of 100+ days I would sail not only on the cruise line I was considering but also on the ship.

 

I have sailed many World Cruises and on each one some people were on the cruise line and ship for the very first time but given the time commitment and the cost of the cruise I would want to be sure that I was happy with both ship and line before making such a big commitment.

 

Keith

Thank you Keith,

 

That is excellent advice!

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Another benefit of a shorter cruise to test out a ship is that, if the line offers a discount for on-board bookings, you can book the world cruise while on the shorter cruise and get the discount. Some will even let you take the discount if you’ve already booked the world cruise, provided your category isn’t sold out. I’ve done this twice, and it more than paid for the shorter cruise.

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My friend and I did alot of research a year ago before booking our 2019 RTW cruise. We checked out all the lines that do world cruises and compared them for itinerary, direction of sailing, ships and types of cabins, ship culture, cost, included amenities, and ratio of port days to sea days.

 

Itinerary is most important to us, including which ports, direction (we wanted a westerly cruise) and more port days than sea days. 1 or 2 overnights in ports was a plus too.

 

Cost was also a big factor because we're just middle income retired nurses - not wealthy by any stretch of the imagination. We wanted a balcony (we enjoy spending time there), so we compared similar cabins on the different cruiselines. Along with this comparison, we noted which amenities were offered on each line and what services/amenities we would need for a long cruise. We found that most of the cheapest prices naturally came with fewer amenities (and usually more sea days than port days). So, we came up with an estimated cost of the amenities that we needed and added that on to the price of cruises that didn't include them.

 

Size of the ship really didn't make a difference to us, but it is nice that small ships can go to more ports. One thing we've grown tired of is formal nights and a formal ship culture. We were able to eliminate several lines based on a desire for a more casual experience. Since we are taking this cruise to see the world, we wanted port days to be at least 50% or more of the total days.

 

So.....after collecting all this data we chose Oceania. The cost was higher than others, but included amenities that were valuable to us: first class roundtrip airfare, 1-night precruise hotel stay, roundtrip transfers, 36 excursions per person, prepaid gratuities, onboard medical care, unlimited internet, unlimited laundry service, shoreside events in 5 ports, visa package, 8 daily complimentary fitness classes, art studio, all non-alcoholic beverages around the ship and in cabin refrigerator, no charge for specialty restaurants and luggage delivery service. None of these depends on what type of cabin you get. We will travel westerly and have a ratio of 60% port days to 40% sea days. 12 ports have 1 or 2 overnights. Will be gone for 161 days.

 

We will get quite a bit of OBC too - $3,000 each from our TA, $250pp from Oceania, $230pp spa credit, and I get $250 from owning NCL stock.

 

Hope that helps others who are also trying to choose a world cruise. No matter what, I'm sure we'll all come home with memories to last a lifetime! :hearteyes:

 

You did EXCELLENT research and it sounds like you had a good TA. May I ask for the TAs contact information? Thanks

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You did EXCELLENT research and it sounds like you had a good TA. May I ask for the TAs contact information? Thanks

It's against forum rules to post TA info. And, this forum does not have a PM feature. So you're kinda stuck unless one of you posts an email.....

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Any comments about Cunard?

 

Hi Sue,

 

After all our research, we booked with Cunard. Dollar for dollar, this seemed like the best option. We had a booking with Oceania, but were placed on "wait list" and after a couple of months, I just cancelled that booking. We love the food on Oceania, but their older small ships are very slow (18 knots max) and have old technology (no azipods). They do more ports, which is nice.

 

Many people are intimidated by the formal nature of Cunard, but it does set an old school feel to their cruises. We find that dressing formal is not that cumbersome and like most things, we make it fun. There is much more going on as the ships are larger, newer, and offer additional venues compared to the smaller ships.

 

Our world cruise came in at less than $160 pp per day, which fits our limited budget well. We could never afford the luxury lines, and are usually limited to inside cabins, so it came down to Cunard or HAL. We have much more experience with HAL (ten cruises), compared to Cunard (two cruises), but have had issues with the older fleet of Holland America. (A/C problems; cabin quality...,). Not a deal breaker, but we got a much better price on Cunard.

 

Enjoy!

Kel:D

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Posted (edited)
We love the food on Oceania, but their older small ships are very slow (18 knots max) and have old technology (no azipods).

 

Why would this be a criteria for not sailing on a ship?? Apparently it was ok with you when you originally booked the Oceania world cruise.

 

Many people are intimidated by the formal nature of Cunard, but it does set an old school feel to their cruises.

Can you sail on Cunard and not dress formally? Can't imagine why not. Would they make you walk the plank?? :')

 

As far as the real total cost of a world cruise, the base cruise fare is just the start. You also need to add the cost of the many things that you'll need while traveling for months.....laundry, medical care, internet, excursions, visas, luggage delivery, taxes/fees, gratuities, OBC, airfare, etc. Some cruiselines include these things in the base cruise fare and others don't, so you'll need to add them onto the base fare if not included.

Edited by Go-Bucks!

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Well there's always the buffet option I suppose.

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Can you sail on Cunard and not dress formally? Can't imagine why not. Would they make you walk the plank?? :')

 

As far as the real total cost of a world cruise, the base cruise fare is just the start. You also need to add the cost of the many things that you'll need while traveling for months.....laundry, medical care, internet, excursions, visas, luggage delivery, taxes/fees, gratuities, OBC, airfare, etc. Some cruiselines include these things in the base cruise fare and others don't, so you'll need to add them onto the base fare if not included.

 

Hi GB,

 

We originally booked Oceania -- New York to Sydney for a great price. We were going to pick up a different ship to complete the route, but like I said, we were wait-listed and the price was really climbing -- didn't think they would ever move us off that list. We've cruised two different R-class ships and they are fine for port intensive cruises, but not ideal for the open ocean.

 

We booked "cruise only" with Oceania because all of their perks do not merit their larger price tag. On Cunard we got free gratuities and $750 ship board credit, all for $157 dollars per person per night. I would much rather have Oceania food, but Cunard is similar to HAL in that department. HAL would have been our second choice.

 

We will do the formal thing to eat in the dining room, as Cunard's buffet is less than stellar. Hard to do Cunard and not dress up.

 

Enjoy!

Kel:D

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R-class ships and they are fine for port intensive cruises, but not ideal for the open ocean.

 

 

We sailed on Insignia in December and it did fine on the ocean. It has stabilizers.

 

 

We booked "cruise only" with Oceania because all of their perks do not merit their larger price tag.

 

 

Actually they do....because you are going to have to spend money to buy them on other ships or on your own.

On Cunard we got free gratuities and $750 ship board credit, all for $157 dollars per person per night.

 

 

Is that for an inside cabin? An inside cabin on O is $36,000....minus the $19,000 in perks equals $17,000. Divide that by 180 days and the daily cost is $94.

 

 

We compared 10 cruiselines for a world cruise. The total value of the included perks from Oceania made the real cost much cheaper than appears at face value. You have to compare apples to apples.

Have fun on your cruise!! :D

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We compared 10 cruiselines for a world cruise. The total value of the included perks from Oceania made the real cost much cheaper than appears at face value. You have to compare apples to apples.

Have fun on your cruise!! :D

 

Is that for an inside cabin? An inside cabin on O is $36,000....minus the $19,000 in perks equals $17,000. Divide that by 180 days and the daily cost is $94.

No way the perks equal $17,000. ;p

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Is that for an inside cabin? An inside cabin on O is $36,000....minus the $19,000 in perks equals $17,000. Divide that by 180 days and the daily cost is $94.

No way the perks equal $19,000. ;p

 

I see you are on the Insignia for 161 days. Oceania is an excellent choice and I'm sure you will have a wonderful time. The ports are amazing! If you can get one of the 23 inside cabins, the price is sure better than the luxury lines. I love Oceania's food. (1/2 a year onboard I would gain 35 pounds!:o)

 

We are only sailing for 87 days and that's going to be a challenge for us. Cunard has many more at sea days and that's not ideal, but we will leave from San Francisco and return to NYC. No over seas flights. Not sure I could do 180 days on any ship?

 

We spend most of our income on travel, but $80,000 is out of the question. Sounds like you spent some time researching, which is great, and I think you are getting a great deal. For sure, a trip of a lifetime.

 

Enjoy!

Kel:D

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Hi GB,

 

We originally booked Oceania -- New York to Sydney for a great price. We were going to pick up a different ship to complete the route, but like I said, we were wait-listed and the price was really climbing -- didn't think they would ever move us off that list. We've cruised two different R-class ships and they are fine for port intensive cruises, but not ideal for the open ocean.

 

We booked "cruise only" with Oceania because all of their perks do not merit their larger price tag. On Cunard we got free gratuities and $750 ship board credit, all for $157 dollars per person per night. I would much rather have Oceania food, but Cunard is similar to HAL in that department. HAL would have been our second choice.

 

We will do the formal thing to eat in the dining room, as Cunard's buffet is less than stellar. Hard to do Cunard and not dress up.

 

Enjoy!

Kel:D

 

What level cabin did you book? Do you have a feel for how Cunard is for solo travelers?

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I see you are on the Insignia for 161 days. Oceania is an excellent choice and I'm sure you will have a wonderful time. The ports are amazing! If you can get one of the 23 inside cabins, the price is sure better than the luxury lines. I love Oceania's food. (1/2 a year onboard I would gain 35 pounds!:o)

 

We are only sailing for 87 days and that's going to be a challenge for us. Cunard has many more at sea days and that's not ideal, but we will leave from San Francisco and return to NYC. No over seas flights. Not sure I could do 180 days on any ship?

 

We spend most of our income on travel, but $80,000 is out of the question. Sounds like you spent some time researching, which is great, and I think you are getting a great deal. For sure, a trip of a lifetime.

All the money for the cruise is coming from my 401K! I don't make much money, but I've always been a good saver. My frugality has paid off in a wonderful trip of a lifetime. :cool:

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What level cabin did you book? Do you have a feel for how Cunard is for solo travelers?

 

Hi Anne,

 

We booked the basic inside guarantee cabin. The cost was less than $13,000 per person and included $750 SBC and free gratuities. We booked this cruise last summer, 2017.

I travel with my wife, so I really don't have a feel for solo travel on any cruise line. I've heard they charge an additional 65% or 75% per cabin for single occupancy. In the grills and on certain voyages they charge 100% just like there are two people in the cabin. Perhaps you could find solo travelers over on the Cunard board to give you their experiences?

 

Good luck and enjoy!

Kel:D

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Can you sail on Cunard and not dress formally? Can't imagine why not. Would they make you walk the plank?? :')

 

As far as the real total cost of a world cruise, the base cruise fare is just the start. You also need to add the cost of the many things that you'll need while traveling for months.....laundry, medical care, internet, excursions, visas, luggage delivery, taxes/fees, gratuities, OBC, airfare, etc. Some cruiselines include these things in the base cruise fare and others don't, so you'll need to add them onto the base fare if not included.

 

Completely agree, you must add the cost of everything, especially on a World Cruise to compare options from different lines. Our 2015 Princess WC the base fare was about 65% of the base fare of our future 2020 WC on Viking Ocean, with the Viking cruise being 2 weeks longer. Cabins are comparable, both m'ships balcony, with Viking cabin about 100 sq feet larger.

 

My current estimates of total cost project the Viking cruise will be a few dollars cheaper per day. With Princess, everything was extra, except laundry & internet (Elite benefits). I believe we had a few hundred dollars OBC.

 

This is our first cruise with Viking Ocean, but laundry & internet are free for all, and we have $9K OBC, free drinks package, free tour in every port, free gratuities, free transfers & business class flights and free Visa's (provided we use their provider).

 

Yes, we could easily reduce the total daily cost of a non-inclusive cruise line, but we have no desire to fly long haul in economy, or spend weeks researching then applying for the many required Visas. Some Visas can be applied for online, but others require an actual visit to Embassy/Consulate.

 

Would be interested in others experiences that have completed multiple WC on all-inclusive v's non- all inclusive cruise lines.

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This is our first cruise with Viking Ocean....we have $9K OBC....

Heidi,

 

I was looking on the Viking website and this is what they listed for OBC:

 

 

  • $2,000 per person shore excursions credit, which can be used toward optional shore excursions or overland tours.
  • $1,000 per person shipboard credit, which can be used toward spa services, onboard shops & beverages.

That would equal $6,000 total for 2 people, but really only $2,000 is OBC....the rest says it's only toward excursions (although, it seems strange that if you get a free tour in each port, why would you need thousands of dollars for tours??).

 

You've mentioned in many posts that you'll be getting $8-9K in OBC. That doesn't seem to add up and not what any other person could expect to get.

 

We will have $3,990 OBC each on Oceania ($7,980 for 2 people), but won't need much since everything we need is included in the cruisefare.

 

Does Viking include free medical care?

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We benefited from a Viking error. When I made the initial inquiry direct with Viking, the customer service agent inadvertently provided us an extra $1,000 each. This was included on their provisional invoice/booking form.

 

When I visited our travel agent to complete the booking, she noted the additional OBC was removed from the updated invoice. She called back to question. The following day a Viking Manager acknowledged their error and approved the additional OBC. Therefore, from Viking, we have US $8,000 OBC. Viking policy permits TA to provide a max of $500 pp in the currency of cruise payment. We are paying in CAN$, so our total OBC is US $8,800.

 

We are planning to use the OBC to complete the overland excursion to the Taj Mahal and probably the overland tour in Egypt. Both those tours would use up the entire OBC.

 

I believe Viking provided free medical on the 2018 WC, but it isn't included for 2019 or 2020.

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We benefited from a Viking error. When I made the initial inquiry direct with Viking, the customer service agent inadvertently provided us an extra $1,000 each.

We are planning to use the OBC to complete the overland excursion to the Taj Mahal and probably the overland tour in Egypt. Both those tours would use up the entire OBC.

 

I believe Viking provided free medical on the 2018 WC, but it isn't included for 2019 or 2020.

That's a great mistake in your favor...hope you enjoy the added OBC, especially the overland trip!

 

But, when you tell others about the benefits of a Viking world cruise, I think it's only fair to list the actual amount of OBC that someone will receive, which is $1,000pp. Since the $2,000 is for shore excursions only, it's really not OBC, although it is good for using as you are. So, a couple can expect $2,000 OBC together....not $8,000-9,000. And what you get from your TA also doesn't count as OBC from the cruiseline. Just trying to help those who are looking to compare world cruises and need accurate info to make their decisions. :D

 

Too bad Viking ended free medical care....that's really valuable on a long cruise and in areas that might have "ify" medical facilities/practitioners.

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That's a great mistake in your favor...hope you enjoy the added OBC, especially the overland trip!

 

But, when you tell others about the benefits of a Viking world cruise, I think it's only fair to list the actual amount of OBC that someone will receive, which is $1,000pp. Since the $2,000 is for shore excursions only, it's really not OBC, although it is good for using as you are. So, a couple can expect $2,000 OBC together....not $8,000-9,000. And what you get from your TA also doesn't count as OBC from the cruiseline. Just trying to help those who are looking to compare world cruises and need accurate info to make their decisions. :D

 

Too bad Viking ended free medical care....that's really valuable on a long cruise and in areas that might have "ify" medical facilities/practitioners.

 

Go-Bucks - Good points.

 

While the Viking website splits it up into shore-ex credits and gift shop/spa credits, on the invoice it shows as $3,500 gift shop and $500 spa credits pp. So in reality I consider it a lump sum that is applied to our onboard account. The TA credits are also available to anyone who uses a TA to book the cruise. Also on the My Viking area for booked pax it shows as a single amount, not split into separate amounts for shore-ex, gift shop or spa.

 

With everything else virtually all-inclusive, the significant OBC is definitely incentive to use ship tours over private tours.

 

The free medical would have been nice to save the hassle of submitting insurance claims post cruise and waiting for the cheque to arrive. However, we always take out significant medical insurance, especially when crossing into the US.

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The free medical would have been nice to save the hassle of submitting insurance claims post cruise and waiting for the cheque to arrive. However, we always take out significant medical insurance, especially when crossing into the US.

Even though we will have free medical on the ship, we also got travel insurance. If we need care while off the ship or need to be evacuated, we will have it covered by the insurance.

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