Viking has announced a second extension to its temporary global operational pause due to coronavirus pandemic.
Viking was the first cruise line to announce a suspension of its river and ocean voyages in early March when it halted service until 1 May 2020 as COVID-19 escalated its worldwide footprint and as countries began to close borders. In early April, Viking extended the pause until 30 June 2020. However, with the situation still uncertain, Viking has now confirmed that it won’t resume operations until September 2020 at the earliest.
In a letter to guests, Chairman Torstein Hagen said the current situation makes travel “complicated” and reiterated that being a private company, Viking has the flexibility “to do what is best for our guests and our employees”.
He said that the Viking has faced challenges before in its nearly 23 years of operation and “emerged stronger each time”.
Hagen was optimistic of “scientific advancements” being made around the world to overcome COVID-19, saying that “we have always had the highest standards for health and cleanliness — and are now developing additional protocols to make travelling with Viking even safer.” Details of which will be revealed soon.
He was also excited for the future, noting that businesses and some local borders in European countries are beginning to reopen.
Guests impacted by the extended cruise pause have been offered a 125% Future Cruise Voucher (valid for 24 months) that includes 100% of the monies already paid, plus an added value to enhance the trip, either as a longer itinerary, pre-/post-cruise extension or stateroom upgrade. For guests who have already used a voucher, that sum will be reinstated.
The voucher is fully transferable, allowing guests to gift it to someone else. It can be applied within the next 24 months to any river, ocean or expedition cruise. A full refund equal to the amount paid to Viking will be offered for guests who are unable to use the voucher.
Guests rebooking by 30 June are eligible for Viking’s Risk-Free enabling them to change their plans up to 24 hours prior to departure. Those who prefer the refund option are required to notify Viking by 12 June.
More details at https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/risk-free-guarantee.html