Viking will temporarily suspend river and ocean cruise operations until May 1, 2020 in response to the coronavirus COVID-19 situation.
The announcement was made today in a video and a letter sent from Viking Chairman Torstein Hagen to currently booked guests.
"An increasing number of ports, including Venice, Monte Carlo and Bergen, have temporarily closed to cruise ships; major attractions such as the Vatican and other museums have been closed; and some countries are imposing restrictions on public gatherings and visitors," Hagen writes.
"In recent days we have had an experience where a river cruise guest in Southeast Asia was exposed to COVID-19 while in transit on an international airline. While this guest is not exhibiting symptoms, she has been placed in quarantine. Separately, the remaining 28 guests will also be quarantined."
Hagen goes on to say that Viking has made the decision to temporarily suspend operations of our river and ocean vessels embarking from Mar. 12 to April 30, 2020. "This is a decision we made with a heavy heart, but with present circumstances what they are, we are unable to deliver the high-quality Viking experience for which we are known," Hagen said.
New options for affected guests
Guests whose cruise falls within this window of suspended operations are being offered the choice of a Future Cruise Voucher valued at 125 per cent of all monies paid to Viking or a refund equal to the amount paid.
Guests will have 24 months to use their Future Cruise Voucher to make a new reservation on any river, ocean or expedition cruise. For additional flexibility, guests unable to use their voucher, will automatically be sent a refund equal to the original amount paid to Viking after the voucher expires. These Future Cruise Vouchers will also be fully transferable.
Viking's reservations team is currently in the process of issuing Future Cruise Vouchers of 125 per cent of all monies paid to Viking.
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