Uniquely Different Viking Ocean Cruises: Features That Caribbean Travel Will Like

Looking forward to sailing in the Caribbean with Viking Ocean Cruises, we have yet to throw other cruise lines under the bus.  That’s not apt to happen either.  We have sailed just about every cruise line that visits the Caribbean multiple times and all have value.  It was not always that way though.  Fifteen years ago, when we lived in Kansas, we could book our airfare to Miami first, waiting to book the actual cruise later.  At the time, which cruise line really did not matter all that much as they all seemed destined to bring a rather similarly wonderful travel experience to market.  Cruising was hot and shipyards could not build ships fast enough to keep up with rabidly increasing demand.  But then the big ship segment of the cruise industry reached a tipping point of sorts.  More of the same did not satisfy a growing group of experienced cruise travelers who wanted more.  Fragmented, cruise lines began a quest to define their identity, differentiate themselves from one another and carve a unique niche of their own.  Today’s robust cruise industry has done just that.  Still an evolving work in progress, that effort continues today and opened the door for uniquely different to enter the marketplace.   So here we are, on the eve of Viking Ocean Cruises arrival in the familiar Caribbean, perhaps the young cruise line’s toughest test to date.  We believe they will pass with flying colors.  Here’s why.

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In this series counting down to the arrival of a Venice class cruise ship in the Caribbean, we have covered a variety of topics.  Most recently, we tapped the thorny issue of included beverages, something Caribbean cruise travelers have come to associate with islands, beaches and the like since day one.  Including beer and wine with meals onboard is a nice attraction but just a start of the more inclusive nature of a Viking cruise.  We’ve also highlighted included shore excursions at each port of call.  Not mentioned yet, there are alternative tours as well for those with more specific interests.  Those thoughtful additions take full advantage of what is offered at each port of call in a “well sure, if we’re going to be there, we sure should offer that” sort of exciting way that other cruise lines miss.

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Also included, Internet access for all.  It’s not high speed, although that is in the works, but it’s complimentary for everyone and fast enough to get the job done on just about everything but live streaming.  Continuing the ‘if you like , you will love Viking ocean theme’, each Viking ocean ship has wired internet terminals free to use as well.  Going further, a new Viking onboard app enables Viking Travelers to tour ships with their smartphone.  We won’t find that on an internet website description of the experience.  Viking likes to surprise us with little , a little something more than we bargained for.

Also not advertised, in the Caribbean that included internet access which also spills over the side of the ship and onto land around it,  enabling communication with friends and family along the way.  That might have be a side effect of a good quality system, not part of the master plan.  Still, it’s appreciated.   Perhaps also helping with the shared connection, only 930 passengers as opposed to many thousands.  That distinction also makes getting on and off the ship easier, elevating the embarkation and disembarkation to that of a luxury cruise line at a far lower price.  The idea: take Viking Travelers to the Caribbean in comfort  then enable them to enjoy it hassle-free.

By the time Viking is done with their first season in the Caribbean, look for the notion of “island cruising” to be redefined as well.  It’s just what they do.  They can’t help themselves.

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Also in this Live Viking Caribbean Event series:

PreCruise Countdown Posts – In Progress

Coming Soon, when the voyage is in progress

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Live Day By Day Reports From (coming soon)

New York City- getting there, transfer to the ship, sightseeing along the way, embarkation
At Sea- Exploring the ship and what to do on board
At Sea- Dining detailed
At Sea- Enterainment available onboard
San Juan, Puerto Rico
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Tortola, British Virgin Islands (Road Town)
St. John’s, Antigua
St. Lucia (Castries)
Bridgetown, Barbados
Guadeloupe (Pointe-a-Pitre)
St. Kitts (Basseterre)
St. Martin (Phillipsburg)
St.Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands  (Charlotte Amalie)
San Juan, Puerto Rico

Kotor, Montenegro With Viking Star - 39

Daily Flickr Photo Albums Posted Live From Viking Star (coming soon)

New York City
At Sea
At Sea
At Sea
San Juan, Puerto Rico
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Tortola, British Virgin Islands (Road Town)
St. John’s, Antigua
St. Lucia (Castries)
Bridgetown, Barbados
Guadeloupe (Pointe-a-Pitre)
St. Kitts (Basseterre)
St. Martin (Phillipsburg)
St.Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands (Charlotte Amalie)
San Juan, Puerto Rico

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Enjoying the Viking ocean cruise experience in the Baltics or Mediterranean was easy for us to compare; we have sailed in that part of the world before on multiple cruise lines. Still, the bulk of our cruise history is tagged to the Caribbean, from a variety of angles.  We sailed there as a family when the “kids” were in high school.  We returned later as a couple and I’ve done the Caribbean by myself too as a solo traveler.  As a travel agent, I booked a thousands of travelers just like us as well as group cruises ranging from celebrations like high school graduations, weddings, anniversaries and birthdays to neighborhood groups, multi-generational families, business incentives and at-sea training sailings.

This is the part of the world many of us know best and for Viking, the stakes are high.

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