After transferring stranded passengers out of Egypt, Viking River Cruises knew it could point people to its Facebook page to ascertain passenger support.
The river cruise line chartered an Airbus 320 and shuttled 91 cruise passengers from Cairo to Frankfurt.
"They’ve checked into their hotels and we’re told are now enjoying themselves at a cocktail party before dinner begins," Viking River Cruises posted on its Facebook page Feb. 1. "We’ve arranged flights for all to return home tomorrow. We greatly appreciate their patience and spirit—that of true travelers!"
The interesting thing, however, is that there are 51 comments, as of now, about this 21st century exodus from Egypt and the river cruise line generally.
The day is long gone when interested parties had to trust a travel company's own slant on how they navigated a crisis. Today, social media can be at least one barometer of passenger and customer sentiment, although it can't be viewed as the final word.
The Facebook comments about Viking River Cruises' actions regarding the crisis in Egypt are overwhelmingly positive.
Harriet Harris commented: "Thanks for taking care of your clients, Viking! I'm sure it's a HUGE mess for you as well as your clients who just wanted to enjoy."
The cool thing about Facebook and other social media, of course, is you can get a sense whether or not Harris is a shill for the cruise line. Her public Facebook profile indicates she is a retiree (and hopefully not from Viking River Cruises).
And, David Lynn, another retiree, chimes in on Facebook: "We will be doing our 4th Viking cruise this summer. What they have done in Egypt shows some of the types of good things we have experienced on a couple of our previous trips. Viking does it right!"
Of course, most of the comments appear to be from previous Viking River Cruises customers -- and not necessarily the impacted passengers, who likely will be making comments over the next few days.
Viking River Cruises, meanwhile, has cancelled all departures to Egypt through Feb. 28, and says it is trying to rebook passengers on those itineraries.