1. Home
  2. Cruise Lines
  3. American Cruise Lines
  4. American Cruise Lines Cruise Reviews
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
My wife and I sailed on the "American Constitution” on its October 6, 2018 Hudson River Cruise in Owner’s Suite 505. For background information, we have taken many ocean cruises, primarily on Regent and Silversea ships as ... Read More
My wife and I sailed on the "American Constitution” on its October 6, 2018 Hudson River Cruise in Owner’s Suite 505. For background information, we have taken many ocean cruises, primarily on Regent and Silversea ships as well as a number of European river cruises, primarily on Tauck ships. For 2018, we wanted to try an upscale North American cruise and our travel agent spoke well of American Cruise Lines. Late last year, with high expectations, we booked our Hudson River cruise in one of the best cabins on the new (April 2018) “American Constitution”. First, our positive comments: Itinerary and Navigation - well thought out as to stops and to timing of night vs. day ship movement relative to the scenery. Smooth comfortable sailing, docking, and departures with a noteworthy turnaround in a relatively tight spot in our sailaway from Kingston, NY. Crew - competent, polite, cheerful people in all areas of the ship. They are hard working and, at times, appear to be overworked due to short staffing. Fourteen-hour days, seven days a week, appear to be the norm. Turnover appears to be high. Dining - well-prepared and presented, along the lines of traditional American classics. The menus had good variety. Overall, I would characterize the dining as three-star (Mobil/Forbes, not Michelin). In my experience, four-star is possible on river ships. Shore Excursions - interesting, well-organized, well-guided, and held to schedule. Now, to our issues: Cabin Overall - good layout but with inexpensive furniture already starting to show wear (I fixed the sagging door of the refrigerator compartment with my pocket knife’s screwdriver). Comes across as mid-range motel quality. Layout would be better with a more ship-like row of built-in cabinets on the wall opposite the bed incorporating drawers, a desk surface, the minibar, and the closet. This would allow the elimination of the desk/dresser on the back wall of the bathroom in turn allowing the bathroom to be wider. Other potential improvements would include sheer curtains in addition to the blackout drapes to allow daylight into the cabin while preserving privacy. A full-length mirror should be included. Raising the minibar off the floor would allow easier access for older clientele. Thin walls make TV’s and conversation from next cabin quite audible. One evening at 11:30 P.M. I could clearly hear the baseball playoff game next door. I had to call to ask that it be turned down. Cabin Bathroom - the biggest single dissatisfier on the ship. Please see photo above. It’s just too small, particularly in the shower area. The shower is a narrow fiberglass module with a fixed-position, fixed-flow head. With the shower door closed, it was impossible for my petite wife to get away from the flow thus subjecting her to a hair-washing whether she wanted one or not. By contrast, to show what's possible and what we expected, pls. see above picture of the shower from our 2015 Rhine River cruise cabin on Tauck’s “M.S. Inspire”. Please note the tile finishes and the fact that the shower is about double the width of the one on the “American Constitution”. There is both a rainfall shower head (dark square on ceiling) and a handheld shower head with an adjustable-height mounting. The shower door is hinged at the wall and swings both ways. Shower flow and temperature can be adjusted from the doorway prior to getting in. There’s a fold-down seat for handicapped passengers on the right side. Partly visible in the reflection on the shower glass is the sink and countertop. Hygiene - the public bathrooms near the central stairwell on the ship are simply not cleaned frequently enough. My wife noticed dirty spots on the floor that had been there 24 hours earlier. This gives us rise to concern about the cleanliness of areas of the ship that passengers don’t see. We saw railings on the central stairway being cleaned only once. The only fixed hand sanitizer dispenser we noticed was at the entrance to the dining room, not at the bottom or top of the gangway or in the lounges. We were concerned about the silverware in the dining room being placed directly on plastic table mats that we weren’t sure were changed after every service. I think the ship is at some risk of a Norovirus outbreak without sanitation being improved. Supply Outages - on Wednesday, October 10, the ship ran out of milk, first 2%, then whole and skim. Big problem for tea drinkers. The coffee and tea supplies in the lounges on decks 3 & 4 often ran out of insulating sleeves and sometimes cups and some varieties of tea bags. In summary, we were quite disappointed with our experience. At more than $1000/person/day (roughly the same as Tauck’s best European river cruise cabins), our cruise was not a good value. What we expected on the ship was Four Seasons and what was delivered was closer to Holiday Inn. We left the ship in Yonkers two days before the end of the cruise. I spoke with both the Cruise Director and the Hotel Director prior to our departure from the “American Constitution”. While the Cruise Director was both interested and concerned about our reasons for leaving, her boss, the Hotel Director, did not seem to be, instead projecting an attitude best-described by the phrase “don’t let the door hit you on the way out”. With both of them, I quietly conveyed our concerns making it clear I was not angry, just disappointed. In addition, I e-mailed ACL's East Coast Hotel Director, Christopher Nailon, and ACL's owner, Charles Robinson, with my comments as noted above. After two weeks and one week, respectively, I've had no response. We think American Cruise Lines has a long way to go to truly fulfill its slogan of “Small Ship Cruising Done Perfectly”. In the meantime, save your money and avoid major disappointment. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
I had a wonderful time on the initial cruise on the American Song. The food was like a 5 star restaurant and there were plenty of choices available. The staff was friendly and very interested in making sure your every need was met. The ... Read More
I had a wonderful time on the initial cruise on the American Song. The food was like a 5 star restaurant and there were plenty of choices available. The staff was friendly and very interested in making sure your every need was met. The accommodations were first class and they addressed any concern immediately. The cabins were spacious and it had a surprisingly large bathroom. We took this trip as our honeymoon! Our honeymoon was celebrated by the staff by sending us champagne and chocolate covered strawberries. The onboard entertainment could use some improvements, but was adequate. I was extremely impressed that the owner and his sons visited us while we were onboard. He spoke to the group, addressed any concerns and agreed that they are working on improving the onboard entertainment. I was very impressed with this river boat cruise line. I hope to sail with them again and would recommend this cruise line to my friends and family. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
We had outstanding night time entertainment. We toured several 1800s port cities in the San Juan Islands including an underground tour of Port Angeles where the the level of the terrain had been raise about 10 feet putting the first floor ... Read More
We had outstanding night time entertainment. We toured several 1800s port cities in the San Juan Islands including an underground tour of Port Angeles where the the level of the terrain had been raise about 10 feet putting the first floor of all the buildings under ground.We visited Olympic National Park including Hurricane Ridge where we were snowed upon in early October. We learned about the serious impact on the area caused by the decreasing salmon runs. It's not just the loss of salmon. There are great efforts going to restore the salmon. We visited the outstanding Chihuly glass museum. Everyone should see it. Our ship was bright and clean with a super staff to care for our every need. We had twice a day housekeeping service in our nicely furnished cabins with a comfortable king sized bed. We had one sitting in the dining room for each meal at tables of 8 with great interaction between the guests. The meals were great. The weather was mostly overcast with rain on a couple of days. That did not stop the planned activities. We also had bright sun on a couple of days. It was a beautiful tour that anyone could enjoy. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We had a wonderful “small ship” experience on the American Cruiselines Queen of the Mississippi. The food was fabulous and the crew was top-notch. The ship was only a couple of years old, so rooms were comfortable size and bathrooms ... Read More
We had a wonderful “small ship” experience on the American Cruiselines Queen of the Mississippi. The food was fabulous and the crew was top-notch. The ship was only a couple of years old, so rooms were comfortable size and bathrooms were clean and up to date. We had a room with a balcony, which offered space for a nice table and chairs for eating with a spectacular view, or to just enjoy the peacefulness of the river. Once on the ship we didn’t have to pay for another thing! Shore excursions at each stop were included at no additional charge and offered a variety of enrichment opportunities from museums, art and history to local flavor. At St. Louis, the boat docked right under the arch! All drinks on board were free, from soda and juices, to bottles of wine at each table for dinner. At the evening entertainment we were offered popcorn, ice cream sundaes and cookies and open bar. And then there were the cocktail parties every afternoon. We can’t say enough nice things about this trip. After 20+ cruises on Princess this trip was expected to be just a short fill-in. Boy, did we have a great time! With a passenger count of about 125 people, we experienced personalized service with an extremely happy crew. We booked another trip with American Cruiselines before we disembarked. Can’t wait to go again! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
My sister-in-law booked this cruise and invited my husband and I to join them. We have traveled numerous times together and have many of the same expectations and standards. Upon reading the itinerary we were excited for the ... Read More
My sister-in-law booked this cruise and invited my husband and I to join them. We have traveled numerous times together and have many of the same expectations and standards. Upon reading the itinerary we were excited for the adventure. Upon embarking, the ship smelled old! The flower arrangements were artificial and very dusty/old and tired looking. The main gathering room, The Chesapeake room, has dirty couches and broken blinds. The stateroom was one of “the larger” rooms with a king bed (actually two twins pushed together, VERY uncomfortable) was crowded. The TV was a 19” and hard to view from the bed. The brochure stated dvd’s were available, it failed to mention they were from the 1990’s and very few. Our cabin’s furniture was also very dated and soiled. Three small pillows were there, strange for a king sized bed. The bathroom was very small and cramped. On our preference sheet, we requested extra toiletries and a small fan, neither were provided. Actually, the ship RAN OUT of shampoo and they often did not replace the bar soap. On the third day of a seven day cruise, they couldn’t keep up with the towels. There were times we did NOT have ANY towels. I mentioned my concerns to hotel manager and he told me as he was walking away (over his shoulder) there isn’t any shampoo on the whole ship! He scolded me when I asked him for a replacement key and to keep it away from my cell phone. I mentioned it never worked and that it wasn’t near my phone, he just repeated my scolding louder. Tours were very disorganized and not ADA compliant. My husband had to lag behind to help other passengers as no cruise member did. The entertainment consisted of a banjo player (who was really pretty good) and several lectures! How is lecturing a bonus evening entertainment? The food was phenomenal! Jvon was our server and was fantastic, he kept us sane! There was NO room service so we never had breakfast on board. There was a coffee donut setup from 6-7 Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Friends had recommended this cruise line. AmericaCruise could not be blamed for the weather which was unsaleable. However, as we were could not go to Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard, Block Island, we were 2 days in New Bedfore and 2 ... Read More
Friends had recommended this cruise line. AmericaCruise could not be blamed for the weather which was unsaleable. However, as we were could not go to Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard, Block Island, we were 2 days in New Bedfore and 2 days in NewPort. The brochure stated most excursions were complimentary, but this is UNTRUE. The only complimentary excursion were walking tours. They ranged from $25 per person to $50 per person on NewPort to the Breakers. It was unexplainable why our name was not listed on any pay tour for 4 days although we had turned in the paperwork timely and correctly. When there was an opening for the $50 per person to the Breakers, the bus. My husband at that time, had had enough and complained why the crew did not schedule enough transportation for all the cruisers, not just 50. We debarked then, never to sail again on Americruse. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
We signed up for the American Cruise lines tour and stayed at their hotel pick, the Crowne Plaza, in downtown Seattle. Very nice hotel. Probably above our pay grade any other time. They let us unload our bags and then drive to the parking ... Read More
We signed up for the American Cruise lines tour and stayed at their hotel pick, the Crowne Plaza, in downtown Seattle. Very nice hotel. Probably above our pay grade any other time. They let us unload our bags and then drive to the parking garage. No place to park at Crowne Plaza unless you valet at $50 a day. As a side note, the cruises are set up more to fly in rather than drive in. We drove but be prepared for parking near the pier for $22 a day. We parked where the ship was leaving from and walked back to the hotel. Transportation may be required depending on the departure site. We stopped by Pikes Market on the way and had trouble finding a nice sit down restaurant that wasn't stuffed with people. (it was Friday) We later found out we should have headed for the wharf for many nice places to eat and watch the sunset. The hotel stay also included a bus tour of Seattle the next day which I felt was a bonus. We lucked out with the weather but not with the fall colors. Abnormally warm weather delayed the colors changing. Minor problem. We barely got rained on for 7 days. The ship christened in 2005 was clean and just the right size. There were about 80 guests and 20 crew. The small size was why we picked this cruise. There were a lot of seniors on board but not all. Entertainment was geared toward the older set. The dress code is apparently not set in stone but I did notice some changed attire for the cocktail hour and dinner. Food and drinks were great of course and included in the fare. The stops they had set up were great. We enjoyed them all. If we had to pick a favorite it would be Friday Harbor and the San Juan Islands. Great trip! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
As a first time river cruise client, we were anticipating a first class experience by the information provided in the ACL print, the cost associated with this booking and the communication with the sales staff prior to the trip. We were ... Read More
As a first time river cruise client, we were anticipating a first class experience by the information provided in the ACL print, the cost associated with this booking and the communication with the sales staff prior to the trip. We were super excited to travel the Columbia and Snake rivers to see the scenery and gain knowledge on US history. To say this cruise fell short is being kind! It should have been first class all the way! Upon arrival on the ship we noticed the majority of passengers were quite elderly. The greeting as we boarded was non- welcoming and non-informative. We are 66/67 so considered seniors but the demographics were more our parents’ age. When I mentioned this to the Hotel Manger she said that was the targeted clientele . She was correct in that activities etc were geared for them. They may not be able to advertise the demographics but it could be inferred in the literature in other ways. ****EVENING ENTERTAINMENT- from 8:15 to 9 with 4 evenings that were utterly awful! The 3 evenings that were ok, people wanted the entertainer to continue but they were not contracted to do so! Nothing to do after 9...not even able to get a drink! At 9 o’clock the ship was dead!! When I asked the Hotel Manager about this she said the staff has long days so they need to be finished by then! Really!? We are on vacation! In our opinion it should have been staffed later than 9! Nothing fun on the ship, not even music in the main areas! Nothing to give you the feel of where you were traveling. As we were traveling along the river it would have been great to know some of the things we were seeing...names of mountains, dams etc. just a daily paper with the names of the cities and dams. Announcements!? ****FOOD- I am gluten intolerant and had sent the information to the cruise line immediately in their forms and even discussed prior to booking. On level 4 where snacks were available, my only choice throughout the trip was apples, oranges and sometime bananas! I am not expecting to be catered to but even the chips were “Sun Chips” which are not GF! How is it in this day and age that granola bars, potato chips, corn chips, nuts, chocolates etc could have not been offered that are GF? Other people enjoy those foods without being GF! I also know there were others that were GF as well. It was the same snacks for all 7 days! I am sure others would have appreciated variety! For breakfast, I could have eggs with meats or one type of yogurt. In 7 breakfast meals only 3 days were a GF pastry offered, half the time nothing! No other GF items offered!! The left over banana bread was also offered for dessert at lunch and dinner!!! Bedsides Ice Cream I had two choices for dessert in 14 meals besides banana bread!! Meals on ships are suppose to be a treat. Taking the GF experience out of the equation, the food was AWEFUL!!! Last meal was good....I guess to send us off with a good feeling about the meals! *****ATTIRE - Several days before we left I called asking about the attire on the ship. I was told the dinner attire was no shorts, no jeans, no gym shoes. Men were to wear dress pants, dress shirts and even sport coats on cooler evenings. Women in dress slacks or dresses. We packed accordingly. This is also published on their website. People dined in the same clothes as they had worn all day walking around. Men were in crumbled shorts, gym shoes, sweat shirts and most women not much better. What a disappointment. ****EXCURSIONS- Pendleton tour-Would you not think that going to a Western Steak House That you would be served bee? None of the three options met the theme! No beef offered! Since I am GF my only option was a salad! ! I had two salads!!! The tour in Pendleton was less than 10 minutes, not much force. The remaining time was for shopping!! Not worth $99pp. Falls trip- the ship was notified that we could only see the falls from below since there was work being done above. We spent 5-10 minutes viewing the falls from the ground and the remains 50+ minutes standing around waiting to get back on the bus or in the gift shop! There are other places to see in the area. Total waste of time!!! Trips had a zero level of physical activity besides getting on and off the bus! At the Maritime Museum only the admission was covered, not any of the film options...all of which were more than the admission. Not disclosed my ACL. ****STAFF - The wait staff in the dining room was wonderful, hard working, young and friendly people and the bus drivers were all quite informative and nice. Ian has a lot of knowledge and, for the most part, delivered history information well. Sometimes a little too demonstrative and lengthy on a point. *****VALUE- We feel that the trip was not worth the money. After the cruise we spent time at beautiful resorts, dining at high end restaurants and visiting sites. Our expenses were less than half of the daily rate and far nicer in every way!! MOST IMPORTANTLY...their customer service did not care about our dissatisfaction! It took them weeks to get back to me with the same info here that I provided to them. Then, it was a phone call asking me about our experience!!! WOW!!! NEVER EVER GO WITH AMERICAN CRUISE LINE...THEY ONLY WANT YOUR MONEY!!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We did the Mississippi river cruise with ACL the year before and had a great time. We prefer small ship cruises, especially river cruises. We took a couple of walks around the area of our embarkation port, which was in front of the ... Read More
We did the Mississippi river cruise with ACL the year before and had a great time. We prefer small ship cruises, especially river cruises. We took a couple of walks around the area of our embarkation port, which was in front of the hotel, and it was beautiful. We disembarked in Clarkston, WA and took a shuttle(a little expensive) to Spokane to fly home, which was one of many choices. Since we didn't fly home till the next day, we had time to walk from our hotel to one of many parks in the area and had lunch at a great seafood restaurant on the river. The ship was built in 2012 and in our opinion, in real good condition. We were informed the first day that WiFi would be slow and spotty, and it was. But we were going in out between mountains and in areas where there wasn't good reception. Our stateroom and bathroom was what we expected for the size we paid for. I wish it was bigger but my husband was happy with it. Plenty of drawers for our clothes and stuff, and the closet was big enough. It had sliding glass doors leading to a private balcony. Perfect. The room was cleaned twice a day and the stewards on our deck were awesome. The dining room was spacious, clean and had huge windows for the views. The dining staff were mostly young and first timers, but always pleasant and willing to learn from their mistakes. There were plenty of food choices at all the meals and the food was real good and presented beautifully. Before dinner there was cocktail hour, and before the nightly entertainment, there was a Late Night bar. The three lounges were all themed different, were comfortable, had good viewing windows and were always stocked with snacks, juices, coffee, and water. The upper deck was a good place to be when you wanted to be outside to sit, to hit a few golf balls, or take a few laps around for exercise. The tours every day were great and there were plenty of choices for all types of interests. And the onboard historian and entertainment were just as good if not better. A lot of the tours and onboard talks were hisorical and focused on the Lewis and Clark expedition. Most of the tours were included in the tour, but a few such as the jet boat tour and Pendleton mill tour were extra. The ship crew members from the Captain to the galley cew, went above and beyond to make us all feel special. They all smiled, had something nice to say, answered our questions and helped when needed. This not a cruise for kids. Or even teenagers, in my opinion. It is planned for adults who are in their 50s or older and want to explore and learn about the country in a little slower pace, like on a river boat. We are going on another cruise with American Cruise Line again, and also thinking about trying a different line later. Read Less
Already Booked?

Get to know who you’ll be sailing with

Find a Cruise

Email me when prices drop