EXPEDITION - Assistant Expedition Leader


Viking has grown to be The World’s Leading River Cruise Line, with double-digit growth in recent years. With the launch of its ocean fleet in 2015, the company has also become the leader in small ship ocean cruising. With operational headquarters in Basel, Switzerland, Viking provides destination-focused itineraries designed for experienced travelers who have an interest in geography, culture and history. Each journey includes a shore excursion in every port, and an exclusive Viking Culture Curriculum program that provides deep immersion in the destination through performances of music and art, cooking demonstrations, informative port talks and carefully selected guest lecturers.


Viking currently operates a fleet of more than 80 vessels, state-of-the-art ships that have received numerous accolades since their launch from industry experts and travelers alike. Viking was voted the #1 River Cruise Line by Condé Nast Traveler in their 2018 Readers’ Choice Awards, and for the third year in a row, has been named the #1 Ocean Cruise Line* by Travel + Leisure readers in the World’s Best Awards 2018.



Viking Expeditions is a new arm of Viking Cruises to deliver expedition cruises in destinations previously not operated by Viking Cruises. We are currently building two bespoke expedition vessels, designed to be the perfect platform for delivering expeditions. Each vessel operates a fleet of Milpro Mk5 zodiacs, two offshore 13m RIBs, two U-boat Worx Cruise 7 submersibles, and a fleet of kayaks.  The vessels will also operate as credible, rigorous research platforms, with a 40sqm wet-lab onboard, a range of scientific instrumentation, and with resident field scientists year-round.  Viking expeditions are partnering with a suite of academic institutions, notably Cambridge University’s Scott Polar Research Institute, US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (NOAA GLERL), Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA) to collaboratively deliver a comprehensive research program.  

The Assistant Expedition Leader holds a key role on-board, working closely with the on board expedition Admin team, the Assistant Expedition Leader will assist in planning on executing the day to day logistics and manage the expedition team.




Professional Skills

    • Strong leader, team player and an inspiration to others
    • Ability to structure complex tasks
    • Good communicator, knowledgeable about expedition operations
    • Works well under pressure
    • Smart, presentable, friendly and excellent people skills
    • Excellent computer & Microsoft Office experience (Excel, Word, PowerPoint, etc)
    • English speaking and writing to a high standard




General Duties

  • Safeguard compliance with Viking SOPs, industry guidelines and regulations
  • Compile and send the Post Visit Reports (PVR) and any other operational forms necessary to the relevant entities
  • Ensure all equipment required for the excursions is prepared & loaded / offloaded, properly cleaned and maintained and bio-secured if operating in an area that it requires
  • Responsible for creating daily staff duty sheets in coordination with the Expedition Program Coordinator and Expedition Leader
  • Lead excursions and/or activities off the ship when necessary
  • Liaise with the relevant safety person
  • Elaborate / fill out daily toolbox chat with relevant data (i.e. coordinates, wind/swell conditions, etc…)
  • Lead pre and end of voyage safety meeting, being also responsible for the minutes of the meetings, filing them for on board access and sending them to the designated person in the Operations Management shore team
  • Designated by default as the “Camping Master”, leading the mandatory pre-camping informative briefing to guests, and all required logistics and duties (including equipment) before during and after the camping
  • In the absence of a training officer, the Assistant Expedition Leader is responsible to lead training sessions and keep training logs up to date, ensuring all staff are delivering to Viking Cruises’ high standards
  • Designated Bio-security officer in regions where legal requirements or Viking Cruises sees it fit
  • In the Arctic region, ensure that Firearm Maintenance and Safety Protocols are strictly followed to the highest standards
  • Socialize with guests on a regular basis with special care given to dining with different guests
  • Liaise and cooperate with third parties ashore: local communities, stakeholders, and suppliers
  • Liaise and provide strong guidance to on-board management for collaborative and efficient delivery of duties
  • Identify and carry-out training needs in the team
  • Represent Viking Cruises in industry organization working groups and committees
  • Convey insights about our destinations, it's history, culture, nature and wildlife in a credible but easy and entertaining way




Mindset and Values

  • Be well groomed and of professional personality and focused on delivering 100% satisfaction
  • Adhere to schedules, always setting good standards


Communication & Coordination

  • Report to the Expedition Leader and coordinate with other department heads as needed



•       Lead by example

•       Work with the Expedition Leader providing training and mentorship to the Expedition Team

•       Ensure a positive working environment


Your Profile

  • Previous experience in similar roles in the Expedition Cruise Industry operating in Antarctica, the Arctic or the North American Great Lakes areas.
  • Good administration & organization 
  • Proactive problem solving 
  • Teamwork and good communication 
  • Well organized, efficient and positive 
  • A leader 
  • Understand guest needs 
  • Good time management 
  • Reliable and pressure resistant 
  • Proactive in upholding Viking standards of excellence 
  • Enthusiastic team member 
  • Marine Radio Operator’s VHF license or equivalent 
  • Small boat license, RYA powerboat level 2 or equivalent/higher
  • Proven experience operating inflatable Zodiacs (Mark V with 60hp engines) or equivalent
  • Leisure craft skippering course D5LA (Advantageous) 
  • Wilderness First Responder Certificate or equivalent - Essential




Guidelines and Regulations

•       Implement Standard Operating Procedures & STAR Service Standards within the department.

•       Ensure appropriate appearance and clothing according to the updated Grooming Standards.

•       For work in Polar Regions: have passed the appropriate and most recent field staff online assessment of IAATO/AECO.

•       The company reserves the right to change/extend this job description if necessary, at any point of time during her/his employment.

“As for conditions — in terms of contracts, special benefits and vacations during the season — Viking is far above average within the industry.”

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