My travel agent told me to complete a PIF. What is that, and how do I take care of it?
The Passenger Information Form (PIF) enables us to create your reservation, produce travel documents. You should complete a PIF for each person traveling in your party as soon as you can. For your convenience, you can fill out the form online using the link below:
Click here to complete your PIF(s)
We plan to go a few days early and then make our way to the ship. Can you please provide the docking location?
Certainly. A PDF with port location information can be accessed here.
I would like stay in touch with family, friends and associates back home. What do you recommend?
A list of ship phone numbers can be found here; you can obtain the phone number for your ship and provide it to your contacts in case of emergency. If you would like to make or receive phone calls on a non-emergency basis, you should know that your mobile phone may not work overseas.
Is there internet access on board? Are there computers, or should I bring my laptop?
For your convenience, all Viking ships have internet access. Our ships in Europe, Russia and Ukraine have free wi-fi, so you can bring your laptop and get online at any time. Alternatively, each ship has a few computers for guest use; there are desktop machines in Russia for use free of charge, and laptops in Europe that guests may use at no additional charge. Guests who bring laptops to Russia may wish to bring a LAN cable for use in their stateroom; this may work a bit better than the wireless LAN in rural areas along the river.
In China, there is an internet café with desktop stations for guest use free of charge. There is no onboard wireless network in China so you will not be able to get internet service on your own computer on the ship, although you may be able to do so in hotels.
In Egypt, there are two computers on board each ship that can be used for a nominal fee based on amount of usage. The ships also offer shipwide wireless internet access for guests who bring their own computer.
Please note that shipboard service may be unreliable during certain parts of the journey. The internet connection functions via cellular service or satellite, and there may be times when reception is not possible and/or when the connection is quite slow. For this reason, we recommend only checking and sending email. We do not recommend surfing the Web or downloading large files.
What is the electrical voltage in the stateroom? What kind of converters will I need for my computer/curling iron/camera battery charger?
Electricity on the ships is 220V. Our European and Russian ships have the German Schuko safety plug, which has two pins. In China the ships have a 3-pin blade safety plug; if you have an adapter with just the two slanted blades that will work fine. Some of these plugs are grounded and some are not. For more details and pictures of the plugs, click here. Each stateroom will have one or two 115V razor plugs available, generally in the bathroom.
What is the local currency where we are going? Will I be able to exchange money on board? What forms of payment are accepted on the ship?
Local currency depends on the region where you will be traveling—most of Europe uses the euro, in Russia it is the ruble, in Ukraine it is the hryvnia, in China it is the renminbi (whose basic unit is the yuan) and in Egypt it is the Egyptian pound. Your ship will be unable to exchange money, so plan on bringing some currency with you and exchanging it for local currency at a bank or currency exchange office, or getting cash as needed at ATMs. If you are planning on using an ATM, you should verify with your bank that your ATM card and PIN will work overseas.
Items you purchase on board, together with any optional excursions you purchase, will be added to your shipboard account. You may settle your account in cash (local money, US dollars or euros) or with a credit card (sorry, the ship is unable to accept travellers checks).
More detailed information is available in the On the Ship section; select Monetary Considerations from the menu at the right.
We are considering purchasing the beverage package; it would be useful to know what the by-the-glass beverage prices are.
A typical bar menu from our ships, including a range of cocktails, premium wines and beers, can be found here. (For your convenience, here is a link to details about what is covered by the beverage package and package prices.) Water, tea and coffee are included with meals, and many ships have a 24-hour coffee station or in-room coffeemaker (China). Bottled water is supplied daily in your stateroom. You may purchase a beverage package before your trip or on board.
Will we be able to have laundry done on board? What are the prices?
Laundry service is available on board; unfortunately clothes cannot be dry cleaned. Typical lists of laundry charges are available here—please note that prices are subject to change.
Europe laundry list
China laundry list
Russia laundry list
Ukraine laundry list
Can you accommodate my dietary needs?
In most cases we can. Every meal has vegetarian options on the menu, and our chefs are able to prepare low-salt or gluten-free cuisine. If you require a liquid diet or strictly kosher foods, you may have your products shipped to your cruise ship and we will be more than happy to serve your special meals. Please be sure to make your requirements known when you make your reservation so we will be fully prepared when you begin your journey.
Guests requiring special diets such as vegetarian, low salt, diabetic or low cholesterol meals must alert Viking River Cruises one month prior to departure and inform the Maitre d’ when on board. The chefs will make reasonable efforts to accommodate these requests.
Are the staterooms on the ship air-conditioned?
Are the ships nonsmoking? Are there smoking areas?
All Viking ship interiors and staterooms are nonsmoking. Each ship has an outdoor smoking area.
Will there be a hair dryer in my stateroom or should I bring one? What about shampoo, etc.?
Your ship has hair dryers for guest use. Most staterooms are equipped with a hair dryer; if there isn’t one in your stateroom, you can request one at reception and it will be provided to you. Your stateroom amenities include shower gel, shampoo, body lotion, shower cap and vanity kit.
Are there refrigerators in individual staterooms?
Our renovated Russia ships and our newest ship in Europe, Viking Legend, have individual refrigerators in most staterooms. Staterooms on the Egypt ships have a small refrigerator/mini-bar. For other ships, if you would like something (such as medications) kept refrigerated, please inform Reception Desk staff and we will take care of it for you.
Is there fitness equipment on board?
Most Viking ships do not have fitness equipment; there is a small gym aboard Viking Century Sun and a few of our European vessels have exercycles. Our guests enjoy getting their exercise during each day’s shore excursions. Some ships feature walk-around promenade decks, so guests can take a stroll or “power walk.”
Will the ship be able to accommodate a disabled passenger? What about the shore excursions?
Viking River Cruises welcomes disabled guests but wishes all guests to understand that challenges will exist on board and during shore excursions. Some ships have elevators and some do not; some ships have split-level decks and/or significant thresholds that could make movement difficult. Motorized scooters are not typically suited on international cruises and cannot be accommodated. Shore excursions may require movement over cobblestones or up and down stairs; accordingly, a physically challenged guest will require the services of a responsible adult since crew availability is severely limited in most circumstances.
Guests who have any medical, physical or other special needs should check the fleet information on our website to gain an understanding of the layout of any particular ship, and should contact Viking River Cruises, Inc., at 1800 829 138 directly with additional questions and to obtain a copy of our Policy Statement.
I would like to read up a little on the area in which we will be travelling. Do you have recommended reading lists?
We do offer recommended reading lists for each of our itineraries. To access the lists, go to the On the Ship section and select Recommended Reading from the menu at the right. You will be taken to a list of itinerary names; these are links to customized reading lists. For example, click here to view the reading list for Grand European Tour.
When will we receive our final documents?
Tickets, vouchers and other travel documents will be issued approximately 3 weeks prior to departure. If you need to receive your documents sooner, we can accommodate you for a $25 early processing fee. If you will be away from home or need your documents sent to a different location for any reason, please be sure that we know where to send them.