These two new ships will enter service in 2021 and 2022 and will give the cruise line eight ships in their fleet. They will follow the same successful and award-winning design as the current ships ordered and in operation. As with the other sister ships, the new ships will be built according to the latest navigation regulations and equipped with the most modern safety systems, including the “Safe return to port” system.
The first ship built for Viking Ocean Cruises, Viking Star was delivered at the shipyard in Marghera in spring 2015. The second and the third ships, Viking Sea and Viking Sky, took the sea from the yard in Ancona, respectively, in early 2016 and early 2017. Viking will take delivery of the fourth ship, Viking Sun, in late 2017 and the fifth ship, Viking Spirit, in 2018. A sixth, yet-to-be-named ship will be delivered in 2019, marking Viking as the largest small ship ocean cruise line.
Viking is forecasted to have a dominant market share of the luxury ocean industry in 2020 of 23.9% (on a per berth basis according to Cruise Industry News). The additional vessels will add to this already impressive statistic.
Torstein Hagen, the Chairman and CEO of Viking Cruises, gave the following statement: “We set out to bring the destination back to cruising, and the cruising public has responded. These additional ships are needed to meet the demand we are experiencing.
Once only known for being the leading river cruise line, we are now equally known for upscale, inclusive ocean cruise experiences. As we celebrate our 20th year of operation in 2017, we are pleased to continue innovating and to introduce even more guests to The Viking Way of exploration.”
Hagen has stated in the past that his goal is for Viking to have 10 cruise ocean cruise ships. If Viking exercises the option for the additional two ships, it will give them that number.