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MomC

New to Viking—Final payment question

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I have just booked my first cruise with Viking.  I know this is the ‘ocean’ board but I can’t find the river cruise board. Thus I need your help.

 

i just booked a cabin for the Inaugural season of the Mississippi River cruise—November, 2022.

Final payment is due December 31–OF THIS YEAR!😯😯. That’s 23 months prior to our sail date.

 

is this normal for Viking or is this the result of the current situation and the lack of money that cruise companies are getting?  I know none of us knows this for certain but I would ask if this is normal, and what their final payment due date usually is.  Any other thoughts on this?  Some of you have sailed many times with Viking and I need your opinion.

 

Would  you make final payment 23 months in advance?

 

Thank you in advance.  Cruise Critic people are great sources of information.

 

Mom C

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3 hours ago, MomC said:

I have just booked my first cruise with Viking.  I know this is the ‘ocean’ board but I can’t find the river cruise board. Thus I need your help.

 

i just booked a cabin for the Inaugural season of the Mississippi River cruise—November, 2022.

Final payment is due December 31–OF THIS YEAR!😯😯. That’s 23 months prior to our sail date.

 

is this normal for Viking or is this the result of the current situation and the lack of money that cruise companies are getting?  I know none of us knows this for certain but I would ask if this is normal, and what their final payment due date usually is.  Any other thoughts on this?  Some of you have sailed many times with Viking and I need your opinion.

 

Would  you make final payment 23 months in advance?

 

Thank you in advance.  Cruise Critic people are great sources of information.

 

Mom C

 

Hello Mom C

There is a search function in the top right of this screen. Click inside the box, select 'this forum' and enter 'final payment' as your search. You will get lots of threads which discuss this issue, including many complaints about Vikings inflexible final payment date policies.

 

In Australia we are luckier than most and our final payment dates are often much shorter than in other locations. This is in part due to consumer protection legislation which restricts companies enforcing unreasonable final payment requirements here.

 

I will allow you to draw your own conclusions from what others have written in those threads - but there is no way I would pay 23 months early - regardless of how fabulous the cruise may look and sound and regardless of coronavirus or other issues muddying the waters.

 

We are big fans of Viking (4 ocean cruises completed in 4 years, and one booked for November which we don't think will proceed) but there are limits to what we would accept, and 23 months prior to departure is way too early in my opinion.

Regards, C99

 

 

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11 hours ago, MomC said:

I have just booked my first cruise with Viking.  I know this is the ‘ocean’ board but I can’t find the river cruise board. Thus I need your help.

 

i just booked a cabin for the Inaugural season of the Mississippi River cruise—November, 2022.

Final payment is due December 31–OF THIS YEAR!😯😯. That’s 23 months prior to our sail date.

 

is this normal for Viking or is this the result of the current situation and the lack of money that cruise companies are getting?  I know none of us knows this for certain but I would ask if this is normal, and what their final payment due date usually is.  Any other thoughts on this?  Some of you have sailed many times with Viking and I need your opinion.

 

Would  you make final payment 23 months in advance?

 

Thank you in advance.  Cruise Critic people are great sources of information.

 

Mom C

 

They don't have a specific discussion Board for the River Cruises, other than the one that discusses ports. However they have an individual Roll Call Board for Viking River, where they do have some general discussion. Unlike the Ocean Board where we start a new thread for each cruise, they tend to start a thread for each regions, each year. Here is a link

 

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/forum/851-viking-river-roll-calls/

 

With respect to payment dates, Viking do not follow the industry norms. Twenty three months is rather excessive, so with some negotiation you may be able to reduce it.

 

Would we personally pay 23 months ahead, is a difficult questions, as my heritage dictates I don't part easily with money. However, if it was a cruise we wanted, with a desired cabin location and at an acceptable price, I would negotiate later dates and accept the result of the negotiation.

 

Many others have suggested delaying the booking until a date you are comfortable making final payment; however, many Viking cruises sell out early, at least they did pre-COVID, so you then risk not getting the cruise. Viking website shows some of the 2022 cruises are already sold out.

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We booked our Mississippi cruise through a travel agent.  Our agent was able to negotiate a later payment date.  You should investigate contacting an agent and 'assign' you booking to them.  It does not cost you anything (depending on the agent) and you may get some on board credit from the agent.  We also got a $150 gift card from the agent from one of their promotions.  They can help you defer the payment date.

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So long as their customers are willing to provide interest free loans the practice will continue.

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Viking has always had final payments well prior to the cruise, much earlier than ‘the norm’. We have a Great Lakes cruise set for May 2022 and our final payment is due May 2021, a year ahead. My previous Euro river cruises had final payments due about a year ahead and my Viking Ocean was 6 months ahead. 

 

If you think this is not right, then don’t make the reservation and wait until you are ready to make a final payment closer to the actual cruise. Doesn’t matter if we think it’s right or wrong, its how Viking is doing business, especially now. But I am surprised a final payment is 2 years ahead.....weird. 

 

Den

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The  Viking system default payment date for a 2022 cruise is December 31 of the year you book - or 2020. A Viking agent or TA could change it. I booked a 2022 cruise on May 1. I forgot to mention to my Viking agent the final payment date. When I received the booking document and saw 12/31/20, I immediately emailed him - it was changed within 2 minutes. Because I have other cruises booked, it was changed to 6 months. I believe a first time cruiser gets 12 months, but don’t hold me to that.

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2 hours ago, Squawkman said:

The  Viking system default payment date for a 2022 cruise is December 31 of the year you book - or 2020. A Viking agent or TA could change it. I booked a 2022 cruise on May 1. I forgot to mention to my Viking agent the final payment date. When I received the booking document and saw 12/31/20, I immediately emailed him - it was changed within 2 minutes. Because I have other cruises booked, it was changed to 6 months. I believe a first time cruiser gets 12 months, but don’t hold me to that.

Actually, a Viking agent told me something similar.  I am a first time Viking cruiser and am taking advantage of a promotion where final payment is due 5 months before sailing.  When we were talking, I mentioned that the final payment schedule was a deterrent when I considered Viking in the past.  I was told that since I will be a Viking cruiser, any future sailing can have a more flexible payment schedule. 

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12 hours ago, gskimmel said:

Actually, a Viking agent told me something similar.  I am a first time Viking cruiser and am taking advantage of a promotion where final payment is due 5 months before sailing.  When we were talking, I mentioned that the final payment schedule was a deterrent when I considered Viking in the past.  I was told that since I will be a Viking cruiser, any future sailing can have a more flexible payment schedule. 

Did you have a code that the promo applied to or where did you see this promo? I have a back to back in Australia and New Zealand in March of 2022 that I am very interested in, but the latest I can get them to move the final payment date back to, is Feb of 2021. I have an issue with having Viking hold my $26000 interest free for 13 months. I explained this to them yesterday, and their answer was it allows them to provide us more excursions and a better experience than other lines.....

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14 minutes ago, clojacks said:

Did you have a code that the promo applied to or where did you see this promo? I have a back to back in Australia and New Zealand in March of 2022 that I am very interested in, but the latest I can get them to move the final payment date back to, is Feb of 2021. I have an issue with having Viking hold my $26000 interest free for 13 months. I explained this to them yesterday, and their answer was it allows them to provide us more excursions and a better experience than other lines.....

No code.  It's the promo going on now where they are also giving shipboard credit.  My cruise leaves Feb 2021 and final payment is due end of Aug.

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3 minutes ago, gskimmel said:

No code.  It's the promo going on now where they are also giving shipboard credit.  My cruise leaves Feb 2021 and final payment is due end of Aug.

 Interesting....I was interested in booking under the same current offer of ship board credit, and am also a first time Viking cruiser (as we just cancelled our Oct 2020 River Cruise), but the most they would move the date, was 2 months from the original Dec 2020 date. As I said, that much money in their hands for 14 months is a deal breaker for me.

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Posted (edited)

Over the years Viking has facilitated on their payment in advance policy. Our first Oceans five years ago required full payment 2+ years prior.  That was after a river cruise prior where that wasn’t the case. Our last Oceans was 6 months in advance. Their promotions sometimes offer 6 months prior, and sometimes 12 or more. I received in the mail today a prior customer package that did not mention later full payment, but did offer the ability to cancel during a very short window prior to sailing with a FCC.
 My point is that their promotions vary. Right now, DH and I are still SIP. I am itching to book a trip, but for us, paying in full, far in advance, with the current pandemic is not an option for us.  We look forward to sailing again. I think everyone has to determine their personal comfort zone for future travel, and what they are willing to financially put out and when. I am thinking that there is no ‘right’ nor ‘wrong’ answer. 

Edited by Vineyard View

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