Viking River Cruises Dedicates a Couple of Longships to Chinese Travelers
Viking Cruises has begun operating a couple of Longships under its river brand exclusively for Chinese travelers. While the line only plans to introduce two new riverboats for English speakers in 2017, it is currently banking heavily on the ever-growing China outbound market now and into the future.
When the Viking Ocean Cruises brand brought over its Viking Star to the Caribbean for the first time, company founder and chairman, Torstein Hagen, outlined at a press briefing: “We will have Longships redesigned and recommissioned for Mandarin speakers …,” adding that there will be, “… top notch Chinese food, only Mandarin spoken, the same way we do it with the North American market. And this could be a big market too, but it will have nothing to do with the ships that are operating for the North American market. But it is a way of continuing to grow the company.”
“It’s been a project we’ve been working on for quite awhile,” said Viking executive Jeff Dash, dating back to 2009 when Viking first devised a business plan related to China. After establishing the ocean brand, the company began to revisit the Chinese river project late last year.
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