Frequently Asked Questions for Viking Cruises
In general, crew members are accommodated in double cabins on board (if nothing else communicated). Most of the cabins are equipped with private shower, toilet and TV. The allotment of cabins is decided by the Hotel Manager on board. On your arrival day we will give evidence of the condition of your cabin. The employees themselves are responsible for all damages, which occur during the season. Bed linen and towels are available. Please bear in mind that when packing your suitcase, space in the cabins is limited for personal. items.
Arrival on the Ship
In order to guarantee a punctual and problem-free payroll deposit, it is absolutely essential that every employee has a bank account under his/her personal name. For this purpose, we require the account number, the name and address of bank, bank sort, code, Swift code and IBAN code. The bank changes for the transfer will be debited to the employee's account. We request that you immediately inform us about any possible changes to your bank account.
Behavior toward Guests
Cruising means service. An excellent service and politeness as well as discipline, order and cleanliness are crucial elements for the well-being of our passenger. In a harsh marked like today's, the soft question, the soft values are more important than the infrastructure. Service means also correct advice. If you cannot give the answer to a question, please refer the guest to the competent person or give him the following answer: "I'm afraid I can't give you an answer to this question, but let me see what I can do for you" It is prohibited to talk with passengers about internal matters.
To ensure a proper organisation and an efficient service, it is important to respect the official communication channels on board. Your first contact person on board is your direct superior or Department Manager, who reports to the Hotel Manager bears the highest instance for security matters on board is the captain. The Hotel Manager bears the highest responsibility for disciplinary matters. In case of problems, do not hesitate to contact your superior. Most of the problems can be solved quickly and efficiently through open communication.
Company Rules and Regulations
To keep our vessels in order and to ensure an efficient service, there are some rules we request you to read and respect carefully. The board rules will be forwarded to you together with your contract and are also attached with a leaflet. The board Rules have to be signed and handed over to the Hotel Manager on board on your arrival day. This is to confirm that you have read and accepted the rules and regulations as part of your contract.
If you have any questions relating to your employment contract, please contact your supervisor during the season or your responsible Human Resource Manger at Head Office in Basle during the in-between season.
Most of the ships of Viking River Cruises have a crew mess where all main meals can be taken. Thirty minutes before and during mealtime, smoking is strictly forbidden. Be sure that the crew mess is always cleaned and cleard up. If not otherwise communicate throught the Management, you may remain in the crew mess also in your spare time. At all cost, avoid unnecassary noise. On the ships without a crew mes, the meals are taken in the restaurant before the official service hours.
The emplozee is obligated to declare dutiable goods as well as bigger amounts of medicaments at the castoms. Please refer to lists avalible on board. The employee is fully responsible for any criminal consequences resuling from a contravention.
Please organise all of the documents that are required for registration in Luxemburg or France according to the checklist in good time. These absolutley must be sent to the Human Resource Department in Basel before the start of the contract. If this is not possible, they must be given alt latest to the Hotel Manager on board upon arrival on the ship. After arrival on board, an "Application for the Tax Card" must be filled out. Your Hotel Manager will inform you abour the details.
Crew members off duty (officers excepted) are not allowed to stay in the guest area. On most of the ships, there is a crew mess which doubles as day room. The reception is not a meeting-point. If you need to go to the reception, please make sure to wear your official uniform and to only use of official board language German or English.
Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points. This is a preventive system that is intended to guarantee the safety of foods and consumers. Viking River Cruises works according to this system. Its manner of operation and use is taught in trainings before and during the season.
Harassment at work
Harassment at work is a negative form of communication directed against a person and regularly committed by one or more persons over a long period of time. Harassment is not tolerated on the Viking River Cruises ships. On a ship where the same people meet every day and live together at such close quarters, there is no room for machinations. Colleagues who mob other people run the risk of receiving a warning. In case of repetition the termination of the contract will follow.
In the presence of guests, your appearance must be well-groomed and your working clothes clean and well ironed. If you have an infectious disease, you are obliged to advice your superior immediately. Well washed hands are of great importance. Clean hands, appliances, tool and raw material reduce the risk of infection considerably. Keep a critical eye on the people and things around you and report unhygienic situations to your Department Manager immediately. Personal Hygiene A daily shower, washing hands regularly, use of a deodorant and the discreet use of perfume counts to the personal hygiene as well as fresh breathe. Personal Appearance Viking River Cruises attaches high importance to a neat performance and appearance of its crew members. This means neat and tidy haircuts, a clean shave for men, discreet make-up for women, no Piercings and Tattoos as well as no chewing gum on duty.
If you are ill or had an accident and are unable to work, you must advise your Department Manager immediately, stating the reason and expected duration of your absence. Please check with your Hotel Manager in advance with regards to what has to be done exactly in case of an illness or accident and witch forms are needed for a doctor's visit. Important: If you fall ill during your holidays, please call our Human Resource Manager, who will discuss further actions with you.
On board, you have the possibility of washing your work and personal clothes free of charge. On most of our ships, you can give your clothes to the laundry. Your clothes, however, will not de ironed. On some ships, there is a separate washing machine at your disposal free of cost. Bed linen and towels are available on Board.
Loading/ Baggage Handling
In principle, all employees on board are obliged to help with the unloading of delivered goods. On the day of arrival and departure, the employees are expected to carry the baggage from and to the ship.
You will be served 2 meals a day plus breakfast. The meals will be taken in the crew mess or, where not available, in the restaurant. The main meals will be served with water. Between meals, you can buy drinks at your own expense. It is not allowed to store perishable food in your cabin.
Before starting the job, each employee must have a medical health certificate that is not older than 3 months and attests that the employee is in a food state of health and 100% able to work in the future position. No specific health checks are necessary. The certificate must be filled out in German or English language and given to the Hotel Manager upon arrival in the ship.
The costs of this medical examination are payable by the employee.
Misuse of Alcohol
Drunkenness is a serious offence against the board rules and may affect the security of our guests. Drunkenness is a reason for a dismissal without notice.
Mobile Phones and MP3 Player
Every employee will get his own personal nametag, which he will have to carry visibly on his uniform while on duty. In case of loss, the nametag is chargeable to the employee.
To always keep you informed about in -house reforms and changes, a newsletter is written and sent to the ships on a regular basis. You can actively participate in the creation of these newsletters. Your Hotel Manager will tell you how.
Remember that the walls between the cabins are very thin and not sound-proofed. Think of your neighbors and guests who are having a rest and reduce the volume accordingly. Midnight is rest-time! The use of stereo sets on board is strictly forbidden. Remember that some of your colleagues work at night and must take their well-deserved sleep during the day!
The Operation Manager is responsible for the operative process on the ships. He is the connecting link between the Vice President, Hotel Operation in Basel and the Hotel Manager on the ship. He is responsible for the monitoring
For security reasons, you must leave your passport at the reception for safekeeping while you are on board. Thos allows an easier handling of formalities at the customs.
Post, Telephone, Fax, E-mail
Every ship is equipped with a telephone, fax and e-mail. These appliances may be used for business purposes only. In most of Viking River Cruising areas, there are plenty of internet cafés and phone booths for private telephone calls. In addition, all ships have a post address where letters and small parcels can be sent to. This address can be obtained at the reception.
After the conclusion of the contractually stipulated trail period, you will have a conversation with your supervisor in which your strengths and weaknesses are evaluated and possible measures for continuing to work together are determined. At the end of the season, there will be a final employee qualification. This serves as the basis for a further working relationship in the following season.
Reference / Employment Certificatea
Every employee has, according to his length of service, the right to receive a testimonial or employment certificate. The content of this testimonial is based on the reference given by the Department Manager, Hotel Manager, Corporate Executive Chef and Operation Manager.
Due to the fact that your working place is situated on a ship, there will be some special safety regulations on board.
The transfer of the salary to your private bank account will take place at latest on the 5th of the following month. There is no provision for cash or check payments. There is the possibility if receiving an advance payment in the ship up to a maximum of 50% of the previously worked monthly workdays. Please address the corresponding inquiries to your Hotel Manager. They will be subsequently examined.
In general, each employee will spend the entire season on the boat which he had been assigned to in the beginning of the season. However, there are exceptional cases like high and low tide, employees who are injured or on holiday, where employees must be transferred to other ships on a temporary basis.
On excursions, it is important to ensure that, in your spare time, you do not go ashore before the guests have left the ship. You must be back on board at least thirty minutes before the ship departs (or according to your superior's instructions). Whenever you enter or leave the vessel, you must enter your name in the check-out book at the reception.
On all vessels, smoking in public areas is strictly prohibited. On some vessels, there is a place on the outer deck (outside the guest area) defined as "smoking corner". Thirty minutes before and during the official meal-times, the crew mess is considered a non-smoking area! Smoking in the presence of guests is forbidden without exception.
Every vessel has an official sundeck, the use is reserved exclusively for our passengers. However, most of the ships also have a sundeck for the crew, where you can take a sunbath. The respective rules will be communicated in board.
In order to guarantee smooth and efficient operations on a river cruise ship, teamwork is an indispensable requirement. Mutual goals can only be achieved if everyone moves in same direction. We place great value on cooperation functioning not only within the individual departments but also in general in relation to all departments.
Tips are an expression of the personal satisfaction of our guests. Soliciting tips from the guests is therefore prohibited. There are differences in the amount of tips from shop to ship. Viking River Cruises wants to expressly make you aware that tips are not part of your salary. The tips are divided in equal parts among the entire crew.
All employees are obliged to wear their official Viking uniform. Uniform must be kept clean and undamaged. Uniform pieces provided by Viking River Cruises AG (also have a look to the separate uniform) have to be returned completely clean and undamaged. Lost or damaged uniform pieces will be charged to the employees.
The exact number of your vacation days is stipulated in your contract. In the event of a high booking volume, vacation requests may be rejected. The days accumulates are, of course, to be reduced during the navigation period. "Holidays wishes" will be considered in a case by case basis.
Please lock up your cabin when you leave and do not keep large amounts of money or valuables. Valuables can be given to the hotel Manager for safekeeping. Viking River Cruises decline any responsibility for objects stolen from the cabin.
Visitors: non-employees must not enter or stay on Viking ships (except for the passage for guests and employees to ships lying alongside) without the Hotel Manager's permission. Family members and friends are allowed to stay on board only after prior consultation with the Hotel Manager. When entering the shop, they will have to leave an official document (passport, driving license) at the reception and are required to leave the ship by 11 p.m. "Ship-jumping": The visit of two or more vessels lying alongside one another, is, of course, allowed. When entering or leaving the ship, you will have to check in and out by entering your name in the book at the reception. However, all employees must be back on their vessels by 11.p.m.
Please refer to the separate uniform regulations, which working utensils you have to bring in board.
The work and duty schedule lies within the responsibility of the Department Manager, Hotel Manager and Operation Manager. The working hours may vary according to work volume. During the season, there nay be ship changes at short notice ordered by the Operation Manager.