10 American Cruise Lines America River Cruise Reviews

For years I have wanted to do a small ship cruise in the USA. We embarked in New Orleans and disembarked in Memphis. The ship is small 185 passengers but this allows people to get to know each other. The cabins are much larger than on ... Read More
For years I have wanted to do a small ship cruise in the USA. We embarked in New Orleans and disembarked in Memphis. The ship is small 185 passengers but this allows people to get to know each other. The cabins are much larger than on ocean cruises and very nicely appointed. Dining is everyone at one time which is nice. It starts at 7:30 am for breakfast, 12:30pm for lunch and 6:30 for dinner. The food is outstanding with "different" and better recipes than the ocean cruise lines. Entertainment is a little lacking but understandable. Service was excellent. The ship is manned by mostly college aged people. They did an outstanding job and I was impressed. I do not believe I would do any part of the Mississippi river again but I think the Snake River would be interesting. The Mississippi lacked scenery for one thing and the river is mostly commercial traffic. The shore excursions provided at no cost by the ship were very interesting. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This cruise had been on our bucket list for the last couple of years. My husband and I with another couple had done European river cruises and thought that this would be similar. No way can ACL be compared with them. They may both be ... Read More
This cruise had been on our bucket list for the last couple of years. My husband and I with another couple had done European river cruises and thought that this would be similar. No way can ACL be compared with them. They may both be small boats as far as passengers but that is where the comparison stops. On this cruise the excursions were large bus trips where you stop only at highway rest areas. If you are on the wrong side of the bus you never see the point of interest. Dining options very limited and not up to other cruise lines. The young people in the dining room made the week with their friendly, helpful ways. The dining room itself needs an overhaul. The fabric chairs are stained as is the carpet. Our cabin was not luxury at all. Everything on the boat closes down at 9:00 pm, and no movies offered on the tv. I am sorry that this did not work out for us in our mid sixties, maybe we would have enjoyed it more fifteen years from now. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
WE spent 7 wonderful days and nights on the America. We enjoyed learning and seeing more about the MS River, including the 24 locks and their operation, everchanging scenery and wildlife, especially the high bluffs in Minnesota and the ... Read More
WE spent 7 wonderful days and nights on the America. We enjoyed learning and seeing more about the MS River, including the 24 locks and their operation, everchanging scenery and wildlife, especially the high bluffs in Minnesota and the bald eagles there. We started in St Louis, Missouri and finished in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Trip included a precruise night at the Drury Plaza Hotel, located right at the St Louis Arch which made touring the day before very easy and interesting. We went on a Mark Twain themed cruise so we had the pleasure of 2 nights of entertainment by Richard Garey as Mark Twain plus a walking tour in Hannibal Missouri. River experts were on board with us to point out interesting places as we went up the River. They also had several interesting presentations about the" Great River" and life and industries along it. Towns along the way that we visited included Davenport Iowa, Dubuque, Iowa, Red Wing, Minnesota and La Crosse, Wisconsin. Onboard food was superb and was served by a young,enthusiastic and very personable staff. Other shipboard personnel and managemenet were terrific, too. Staterooms are spacious and well appointed and the bathroom is roomy. Great cruise! Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
Timing and route. couldn't fault the staff and ship. Everything worked. Superb hard working crew and cruise director. Food as good as it gets and we have done 60+ such cruises since retiring 20 years ago . We did several optional ... Read More
Timing and route. couldn't fault the staff and ship. Everything worked. Superb hard working crew and cruise director. Food as good as it gets and we have done 60+ such cruises since retiring 20 years ago . We did several optional pay extra excursions and thought some over priced. additionally,would like to have heard more commentary on the "passing parade" given that we sailed more than 1600 miles amongst one of the great waterways of the world. note this is just a suggestion, not a criticism on what was truly a wonderful travel experience , great ship and superb all- american crew who looked after we guests who were allseniors as if we were family. After dinner musician entertainers were mostly themselves seniors who played the stuff relished by our own generation. as a former muscian i rate most of what i heard as "intrumental virtuoso". Well done american cruise lines. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Terrific cruise of “COMPLETE MISSISSIPPI” – August 4th thru 26th From New Orleans to Saint Paul MN (8 states in 22 days; 21 nights) on the paddle wheeler (fake) “America” operated by American Cruise Lines (ACL); launched in ... Read More
Terrific cruise of “COMPLETE MISSISSIPPI” – August 4th thru 26th From New Orleans to Saint Paul MN (8 states in 22 days; 21 nights) on the paddle wheeler (fake) “America” operated by American Cruise Lines (ACL); launched in 2016; has 185 passenger capacity but we had only 137 passengers on board. The Cruise Critic's professional review (https://www.cruisecritic.com/reviews/review.cfm?ShipID=1182 ) was spot on but I would add my observations and opinions: • The itinerary was FANTASTIC for us (a photographer and an American history buff). DW shot about 300 photos on her phone and more on her professional camera (numerous eagles, herons, pelicans, cormorants, and others plus wonderful antebellum houses). Every port had interesting aspects; some were stunning! I loved the discussions (lectures) and the ports. The excursions were well done with very good local tour guides and with a Cruise Director or an Asst. CD accompanying on the buses (with restrooms). • Clientele is “older”! We had maybe 2 under 60 and several over 90. Many with mobility issues; the staff handled the situations well. Clientele was also “well-heeled”, well-traveled and congenial. • The formal entertainment was very enjoyable. The on-board “Riverorians” were terrific (better than Smithsonian’s lecturers on Regent Seven Seas Cruises) – discussions were about the Louisiana Purchase, cotton/slavery, Civil War, steam boats, immigration to the West, and controlling the Mississippi River water via dam/locks and dredging. Discussions were held in a spacious, comfortable, family room-like venue. The after dinner entertainment (about an hour) was music (jazz, Dixieland, blues, country, and “oldies”- that had some fantastic performers). • Cabin was best that we had on a river cruise – spacious, quiet, bright, with lots of storage drawers and a small but adequate closet. Bathroom is “cozy” but well-lit and well-ventilated with adequate storage and a nice shower with instant hot water. • Food (of course subjective) for us was good; baked goods were SUPERB, per my wife the baker and me the taster. Breakfast was better for me than what I had on "Luxury" cruises. Lots of complimentary wine (mostly California) and beer (some local) during lunch, “Happy-hour”, and dinner service. • Downsides? Yes! -The staff is American college “kids” for which service is surely not going to be a career. We came to expect at least one gliché per day in either dining or house-keeping. -The cruise is “pricey” as it is an American- registered boat that must meet all U.S. maritime regulations. - There is no Doctor or Nurse aboard. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Never on a cruise. Selected 4 day to "try out" a cruise. We enjoyed it throughly. The ship new, well appointed and easily accessed by elevators and stairs. Enjoyable sun decks on levels 4 and 5. Open seating dining room allowed ... Read More
Never on a cruise. Selected 4 day to "try out" a cruise. We enjoyed it throughly. The ship new, well appointed and easily accessed by elevators and stairs. Enjoyable sun decks on levels 4 and 5. Open seating dining room allowed chance to meet other travelers. The excursions to. several plantations was a positive experience, especially the Houmas Hosee were the tour guides were especially engaging to help understand the story of the time. Meals aboard the ship were plated, well presented and of moderate quantity which was helpful. Throughout the day the breakfast, lunch and dinner meals were augmented with warm cookies at 10 am, tea and sweets at 3 pm, cocktail hour and heavy h'odouvres at 5:30 followed by dinner at 6:30. If that wasn't enough, during entertainment, ice cream sundaes and popcirn were offered. No one went hungry. It was a great ship experience and this cruise line paid attention to all the small details to give us a great experience. Thanks. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
To be able to say that our New Orleans to New Orleans was a really great cruise when I came home with a sinus infection and my wife with Type A flu and bronchitis says something about the crew and the service that we received. I wish that ... Read More
To be able to say that our New Orleans to New Orleans was a really great cruise when I came home with a sinus infection and my wife with Type A flu and bronchitis says something about the crew and the service that we received. I wish that I could mention everyone that touched our lives in a positive manner, but that probably would be the whole crew list! The weather sucked, our health sucked and we still had a great time. The embarkation and disembarkation was smooth and carefree. Happy Hour was served with premium liquors and the hor d'oeuvers were some of the best we have ever had. The lounges were spacious, clean and well furnished with coffee, tea, and soft drinks available 24 hours a day. Our cabin was clean and well appointed; our cabin steward kept it that way. Our dining server was one of the best, if not the best, we have ever had and the meals he brought were first-rate. Our historian provided us with narratives about the history of the Mississippi River that were captivating and spot on. His wife, accompanied by him on the piano, entertained us during Happy Hour throughout the cruise and she had several solo sets that were extremely professional. On three nights, they had on-board special entertainment that was 5 star. We have sailed American Cruise Line twice and their other line, Pearl once and never have been disappointed. As of now, we have booked two in 2017 and 2018. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
This is a fantastic cruise company for seniors or people who like a slower pace, (perfect for me, as I love taking photos). They accommodate physical disabilities as much as possible throughout the trip. Children were rare, but the crew ... Read More
This is a fantastic cruise company for seniors or people who like a slower pace, (perfect for me, as I love taking photos). They accommodate physical disabilities as much as possible throughout the trip. Children were rare, but the crew made a special effort to find activities and food they would enjoy. Special diets can be accommodated. The locations they stop include plantations, museums and national parks. There is time to go to the local towns, with shuttle service. You will never be hungry on this trip: breakfast, warm cookies at 10:00, lunch, Tea Time, Cocktails and hors d'oeuvres and dinner. Open seating in the dining room. Balcony for every stateroom. On board they have bingo, lectures, and evening entertainment. It was a Christmas trip to remember: carolers greeted us as we boarded, decorations, food, the opportunity to attend Christmas Eve service and even gifts! The crew was the most cheerful and attentive I have experienced with any cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
This was our third American Cruise in less than 2 years. This spring we cruised Puget Sound, and the year before the Florida Rivers. The only disappointment this time was the lack of sound proofing between our room, 511, and a crew ... Read More
This was our third American Cruise in less than 2 years. This spring we cruised Puget Sound, and the year before the Florida Rivers. The only disappointment this time was the lack of sound proofing between our room, 511, and a crew member. We were awakened each morning by his alarm clock, 527am, 447am, etc. We could almost hear what was being said on his TV. On the other side of us we could hear the neighbors voices and their TV. We hadn't experienced that on the other ships. America is a brand new ship, and didn't expect that, especially in a premium room. Very disappointing. I had gotten the idea from other passengers that they didn't hear anyone. Also, I thought the ship was full or I would have mentioned it to the Colin, the Hotel Manager. When I did tell him at the end of the cruise, he was sorry I hadn't come to him sooner, because he could have moved us. I was sorry too. The other disappointment was the din in the dining room. At a table for six I was unable to hear the person across from me without leaning way into the table, and I don't have a hearing problem. It was constant, and during the cruise there were others complaining about it. We are taking the Chesapeake Cruise on the maiden voyage of the Constellation next May and hope this problem will not occur again. We love your crews, food, itineraries. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
This trip was all that we expected and we enjoyed it very much. The America is a beautiful river boat. We found the boats tours very good--they gave us a good overview of life in the South along the River in the in the 1800's and ... Read More
This trip was all that we expected and we enjoyed it very much. The America is a beautiful river boat. We found the boats tours very good--they gave us a good overview of life in the South along the River in the in the 1800's and now. We stayed at the Roosevelt in New Orleans for a couple of nights pre-cruise and The Peabody in Memphis post-cruise which also added a lot to our trip. Don't miss the World War II museum in New Orleans and Graceland in Memphis. Some have written about the quality of service in the dining room--these are mostly college age young people and what they lack in experience they make up for with enthusiasm. We found the food very good and to American tastes. We are experienced ocean cruisers and found river cruising very enjoyable. If you reserve another cruise while on board they give you a 15% discount. We enjoyed this enough that we signed up for a 14 day East coast inland waterway cruise this Spring. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
America Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.4
Dining 4.0 4.3
Entertainment 4.0 4.0
Public Rooms 4.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 1.0 3.2
Family 1.0 3.2
Shore Excursion 4.0 4.1
Enrichment 5.0 4.1
Service 4.0 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.8

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