Following travel warnings issued by the U.S. State Department, Viking River Cruises moved swiftly to transport passengers who were in Cairo to Frankfurt, Germany, according to the company. All 91 guests are now safely in a Frankfurt hotel and will travel home to the United States tomorrow.
"Passenger safety is our #1 concern," said Torstein Hagen, chairman and CEO of Viking River Cruises. "Understanding the challenges on the ground, we chartered an Airbus 320 and transported 91 guests out of Cairo who had been in Egypt the previous 2-10 days. They flew to Frankfurt where their safe arrival was happily met by our staff. We have arranged for them all to return home to the U.S. tomorrow, weather permitting."
Amid the unrest in the region, the cruise line announced it has cancelled Egypt itineraries for all departures through February 28 and is working to rebook those scheduled to visit the destination.
"It was a lifelong dream for me to travel to Egypt," said 80-year-old Betty Stein of Lafayette Hill, Penn., and a Viking River Cruises guest. "While I didn’t get to see the Pyramids, I did get the opportunity to experience history in the making. The Egyptians were great, Viking was great and our Program Director was a doll. When we took off out of Cairo, we all broke out in a round of applause and we did it again when we landed in Frankfurt because we were happy to be safe."
Guest reaction to the company’s response has been positive as evidenced by the outpouring of support on the Viking River Cruises Facebook page, the company said.