Viking is dropping 'Cruises' from its name

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Viking’s second expedition ship, the 378-passenger Viking Polaris, being floated out last year in Norway. The ship is expected to debut later this year.
Viking’s second expedition ship, the 378-passenger Viking Polaris, being floated out last year in Norway. The ship is expected to debut later this year. Photo Credit: Viking

Viking Cruises is dropping the word "cruise" from its name. 

Instead, the brand will go simply by "Viking" in as many consumer-facing touchpoints as possible, according to Viking chairman Torstein Hagen. 

"We've taken the word 'cruise' out of our name because 'cruise' has a number of bad connotations in regard to the gigantic ships, the places they visit [are] unpopular, the noise onboard, which is really not what our guests want to go for," Torstein said. 

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The rebranding attempts to further differentiate the Viking product, which offers river and ocean voyages, and now expeditions. The line defines itself by what it doesn't have, including kids, casinos and umbrella drinks. Its target market is people 55 and older who are curious and educated.

Viking has removed "cruises" from logos, direct mail, email marketing, its main URL, advertising, press material, onboard communications, branded giveaways and physical signage. The "Viking Cruises" term still exists as a URL and in social media handles.

Viking originally announced it would rebrand in January 2020, but progress has been slow. "Old habits die slowly," Hagen said, noting the word needs to be present online for internet searchability.

Viking Saturn floats out

Viking's ninth oceangoing ship, the Viking Saturn, was floated out Thursday. The 930-guest ship is expected to debut in April 2023, sailing itineraries in the Mediterranean and Northern Europe. Viking Neptune, a sister ocean ship, and the Viking Polaris expedition ship are due out later this year.

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