Home > Compare Tour Operators > Tauck vs Viking River Cruises

Tauck vs Viking River Cruises

Compare the travel styles, pricing, destinations and popularity of Tauck and Viking River Cruises.

The Low Down

Tauck New to the Australian market in 2017, Tauck began operations in the US over 90 years ago. Offering premium river cruises, land tours, small ship cruises, family adventures and small group journeys around the world. You won't find too many Aussies and Kiwis on their trips yet, as they have only recently opened an office Downunder, but Tauck are renowned for the quality and inclusiveness of their trips, whether they are on land or water.
Viking River Cruises Cruising down the rivers of Europe you are sure to pass a Viking Longship on your travels. Viking boasts the most extensive fleet of river cruises vessels in Europe, and while their core market is the US, there are many clients from Australia that choose to cruise with them each year. In 2017 Viking launched their range of mid-sized ocean cruises - with just 930 guests this gives their ships greater maneuverability, allowing them to dock where the mega-liners cannot. Viking do not offer NZD pricing, so if you're a Kiwi wanting jump onboard then you'll need to pay in AUD or USD.

Stats

No. of Trips
176
No. of Departures
1,105
Avg. Trip Length
11 Days
Avg. Price Per Day
$901
Accommodation
4.5 - 5 Star
Budget
Premium / Luxury
No. of Trips
57
No. of Departures
2,879
Avg. Trip Length
11 Days
Avg. Price Per Day
$648
Fleet Size
64 Ships
Known For
Scandinavian Design
Ship Styles River Cruises
Regions Explored AsiaEuropeMississippiNile

In Their Own Words We asked the travel companies themselves why you should travel with them

Tauck
We believe that when you travel, you should never settle for ordinary. You deserve to travel in good company, with someone who cares. We believe that good value sells itself – you should get what you pay for, and then some, in one upfront price with virtually everything included. Leave your worries at home; we take on all the planning, all the logistics. To you, it’s peace of mind travel, to us, it’s 90+ years of integrity.

Wherever we travel, we’re all about taking you to explore the world’s treasures….discover people and cultures you may not have known existed…and experience extraordinary, life-changing moments. Since 1925, we’ve built our company on the personal referrals and recommendations of our guests. We can think of no higher testament to our journeys and commitment to customer satisfaction – and no better way to tell you what we do than through their words.
Viking River Cruises
A Viking river cruise is the discerning traveller’s dream. Whether you choose to visit Russia, Egypt, Asia or central Europe, our itineraries are designed to immerse you in the history and culture of each destination. With us, you could be exploring a local food market with our head chef one day and experiencing an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of a world-famous museum the next.

Our state-of-the-art ships take you right into the heart of each destination, and you won’t find any kids or ‘nickel and diming’ on board. In fact, our fares include everything you need - from meals, beverages and Wi-Fi to a culturally enriching shore excursion at every port of call. This unique combination of features has become affectionately known as ‘the Viking difference’.

Viking has 70 award-winning river ships sailing all over the world, and we can’t wait to welcome you on board to discover the Viking difference for yourself.

Recent Reviews

River cruising with Tauck from Germany to Vienna   1 , QLD, Australia, Dec 2019
Fantastic company and nice staff on board. We never had to ask for anything... it was all offered on a plate. Very good service and Global Journeys handled the booking and delivered all the required paperwork.
India without any hassle     0 , QLD, Australia, Nov 2019
Our experience was an intriguing and memorable holiday on our Portrait of India tour. From the moment we arrived until we boarded our plane to leave, we didn’t have to worry about a thing as everything was taken care of. The accommodation was superb and we visited some magnificent places and sites along with a couple of real surprises. The Taj Mahal ...read more and Varanasi were highlights along with lunch cooked cooked by a famous local in her home. Our tour guide was very interesting and informative throughout our journey and we would recommend this trip to our friends.
Falling for the fall colours     0 , NSW , Australia, Sep 2019
Jemma was highly professional booking our trip and keeping us informed with a Tauck hotel change. We were fortunate to explore towns that felt like you were on a movie set and experience the colours of autumn and how each of the states we went to had their own uniqueness. Denise, a local to the area, was our tour guide and she had years of experience ...read more as well as knowledge only residents would have. Staying overnight at Mount Washington Resort was a highlight as was the lobster dinner in Maine. Acadia Park was overrun with tourists and cruise ship passengers but I understand they are working on coming up with a solution. Tauck had great accommodation for the most part and meals were excellent. We were blessed with warm temperatures and only 1 day of rain and it certainly gave a great picture of New England overall.
Great overview of Cape Cod area     0 , NSW , Australia, Sep 2019
Another hassle free and highly professional booking with Jemma at Global Journeys. We had a wonderful tour director, Jenee, and driver, Peter, who worked well together and went the extra mile to throw a few extra stops in that weren't on the itinerary. Tauck was chosen as it stayed overnight at Martha's Vineyard and also had a flight to Nantucket from ...read more there which gave a whole new perspective from above. They also offered one night accommodation pre or post tour as part of the package. The accommodation was excellent as were the options to choose meals from menus rather than set dinners. It also left Boston straight away which had more time on Cape Cod and islands, as Boston was very easy to self explore pre and post trips. The pace was leisurely with no early departures, no long drives, and mostly 2 night hotel stays. I am glad we chose this tour company when compared to others.
Canadian Tauck Tour - out of this world!   1 , QLD, Australia, Jun 2019
Absolutely fantastic trip that ran like clockwork. 5 star accommodation and food. Cannot recommend more highly. Yes it is a bucket list destination and the price tag is higher than other tours, but as an example, we stayed in the a Fairmont lake lodge that the queen has stayed in.
Good introduction to Scandinavia   1 , VIC, Australia, May 2019
A very good introduction to the delights of Scandinavia. Accommodation was excellent, with 'rooms with a view' for Tauck guests, when available. However, we felt that visits to museums were too rushed - more time should be provided, for example at the Viking Ship museum in Oslo and the VASA ship museum in Stockholm.

We felt that touring Scandinavia ...read more as we did in late May, early June was just right. Plenty of snow on the mountains, lots of water in the waterfalls, not too many crowds, and day-time temperatures were not too hot.
We understand that Tauck is changing the Scandinavia tour for 2020 in an attempt to reduce the exposure of its guests to high temperatures in non-airconditioned hotels in the height of summer.
Great experience   3 , QLD, Australia, May 2022
We absolutely loved our Viking river cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam. The tours offered met our needs, the staff were lovely and the food delicious. I would not hesitate to recommend this cruise.
River Cruise in Russia   7 , QLD, Australia, Sep 2019
We have completed many coach tours and independent travel in Europe and the United States. Viking's Waterways of the Tsars was our first River Cruise - so it was a new country as well as a new travel style! There were 192 passengers on our trip, the majority from US and many seasoned cruisers! We had selected the "cheaper" window style cabin rather ...read more that a verandah cabin - it was quite spacious, provided plenty of storage and accommodated adequate river views when underway. We spent most of our on board time in scenic common areas. There were often 3-5 boats berthed alongside each other at river ports and it was often necessary to traverse several of these to access our boat, Akun.

September was "cool to cold" with beautiful Autumn coloured leaves in gardens and forests; skies were a little grey and the tourist season was drawing to a close... I would hate to be a visitor at its peak! We enjoyed having the same comfortable bed and the superb quality meals (small buffet or table service for Breakfast and Lunch; a la carte for dinner with choices from Local Specialties (this was a great way to sample traditional Russian foods) or Classic menu items. We immersed ourselves in the varied programs provided by Viking - there are no casinos or "stage shows" on board... and we did not miss them! The organisation was very efficient and professional; the staff were warm, friendly and helpful.

We travelled in the Moscow to St Petersburg direction and in retrospect I think this was the preferable direction - we had booked two extra nights, through Viking, in hotels both in Moscow and St Petersburg. It was great to have those extra nights especially in St Petersburg where the accommodation was very central and allowed lots of opportunities to explore independently. We weren't as confident and adventurous at the start of the trip! I hadn't expected the Viking river berths in both cities (3 nights at each) to be situated in such outer locations. Fortunately, the company offers many Included Tours in the program. We also selected several Optional tours. On a "free day" we travelled independently from the Moscow river berth to view Victory Park (the Great Patriotic War 1941-1945 Museum). We would recommend this if you have an interest in these tragic years of Russian History - the Viking program, as the name of the tour would indicate tends to focus more on the Tsarist history. We have visited many European cities and St Petersburg would now have to be our favourite city.

Be warned that the application for a Russian Visa is a time consuming exercise and can be costly. After obtaining the required "Invitation Letter" from Viking we were able to complete and submit our Visa application to the Russian Consulate online. Our passports were returned to us 20 days later. Our Viking booking included flights with Emirates as well as transfers to and from the airport, a stress free exercise.
Fantastic river cruise!   1 , NSW , Australia, Sep 2019
Viking never disappoints! This was a really interesting journey with excellent included excursions. It was a nice mix of people on the ship from different parts of the world. The food of course was of very high quality and the staff were lovely. Would highly recommend this river cruise.
Did not meet expectations.   1 , VIC, Australia, Sep 2019
I will be contacting Viking directly to voice my concerns as this trip did not meet expectations. The ship repair for change of generator at the start of our journey in Lyon was a concern which dampened our enthusiasm. The quality of wine offered in the the Silver Spirit package was considerably below expectations and some of the better champagnes were ...read more out of stock mid trip. The included excursions were padded out and not to the standard experienced on our previous cruise. Very disappointing. Please feel free to forward this to Viking - it would be appreciated.
Viking river cruise   2 , QLD, Australia, Aug 2019
Many thanks to Juliet (who has since left!) and Jodie for organising our holiday. All dealings with Global Journeys were excellent and I have recommended your services to many others. Whilst we enjoyed our river cruise with Viking, and it was reasonably priced, it wasn’t quite what we expected. Firstly, it wasn’t as relaxing as we thought it would be, ...read more as the included tours left around 8.30am most mornings, which meant getting ready and having breakfast quite early in order to board the coach on time.

Secondly, the walking tours were painfully slow so quite frustrating for those of us who are quite fit, even though they broke the groups into “classic” and “leisurely”. The city stays at both ends of the cruise were okay, but it did mean long days travelling in the coach to get to the destinations i.e. from Paris to the ship via Luxembourg then from the ship to Prague. The included tours were pleasant (apart from the snail pace!) but the optionals were rather overpriced in my opinion so we didn’t do any.

The ship itself was quite nice. Not luxurious, but tastefully decorated and our water level cabin was adequate for our needs. We had envisaged we wouldn’t be spending much time in there and we didn’t. We were travelling with my brother and his wife and we were the only Australians on board with predominantly Americans which we found a bit loud and demanding! One man actually apologised to us for his “fellow countrymen’s behaviour”.

The tour director was lovely with a wonderful sense of humour and the service onboard was excellent. The meals and included drinks were great although the portion sizes were way too big. We did write on our review sheet that perhaps they should offer a smaller sizing for those of us who don’t usually eat that much as it seemed a waste not to eat it so we did at the start, but towards the end just couldn’t as our waistlines were expanding too much! If we were to do another river cruise we would probably look at going with a company with more Australians, New Zealanders & Brits as the clientele...
Russian Surprise   0 , SA , Australia, Aug 2019
The booking procedure was seamless from selecting our holiday to the receipt of our travel documents. The airfares were organised by Viking Cruises as part of the package we chose. The major problem being the inability to pick our own seats on the plane.

The Waterways to the Tsars tour was well thought out and provided an extensive look into the ...read more past and present life of the Russian people. The local guides provided well thought out information, although we became a little tired of the Romanovs by the end of the cruise.

The on board staff were exemplary going about their tasks with a smile on their faces and were always helpful. A tremendous little touch was the gift of chocolates and a personal note from our cabin steward on the last day. The meals were OK and the ability to eat local food was a good touch. The only downside as far as the cruise was concerned was, free soft drink and alcohol was limited to meal times only and the local red wine was almost undrinkable. I was too tight to buy wine from the wine list.

The major downside happened on our way home. The plane from Moscow was an hour late leaving and we missed our connecting flight from Frankfurt to Singapore even though the plane was still in the terminal and the ground staff knew we were coming. This lead to extremely basic accommodation and meals and resulted in us having to halve our stay in Singapore and was a significant reason for our jetlag when we came home. All in all it was a good experience that could have been great if the air component had been better. I have grave doubts if I would ever fly with Lufthansa again.

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