128 American Cruise Lines Queen of the Mississippi Cruise Reviews

Our introduction to our trip was great! We brought our cousins from Cincinnati aboard for lunch. We realized that we were just below the Begals stadium and the Red Sox stadium! As we departed, then our trip on the Ohio river began! Our ... Read More
Our introduction to our trip was great! We brought our cousins from Cincinnati aboard for lunch. We realized that we were just below the Begals stadium and the Red Sox stadium! As we departed, then our trip on the Ohio river began! Our stateroom was the largest we have ever had, with enough room for more clothes than we brought with us. We loved the balcony, as we could open our side and join our friends in the next room. The four of us enjoyed having breakfast on the balcony one morning as we sailed down the Ohio and enjoyed the beautiful scenery and breeze. The tours planned by American Cruise Lines were great. We enjoyed the historic town of Maysville, Ky, even though I grew up 40 miles from there. We learned a lot about the town we didn't know. The old homes are beautiful, and the Miniature Museum was fascinating. Portsmouth, Oh was a neat town with lots of history. The murals on the flood walls are exceptional. Our tour guide was very knowlegable about the history of the area. Then on to Gallipolis, OH where the shops were very interesting. The townspeople in all of the ports were exceptionally friendly! When we arrived in Wheeling, WV, we were surprised at the size of the town. For years we had driven around it on the Interstate, never stopping to really see the town. The tour was quite interesting, court house where the state government was decided upon. All of the ports were clean, accessible, and had friendly people around the area. Our rooms were kept clean, our bed was comfortable, we had a great time, and returned very rested. We are taking another Am. Cruise Lines trip Nov. 2013In summing up the trip, we loved it. We played bridge each evening in one of the lounges. The cocktail hours each day were very nice with excellent hors d'euvres! The only criticism we have is that our soups were not good, but we understand that has been corrected by hiring a new chef :-) Thank you, American Cruise Lines for a great trip!! P.S. I noticed in one of the unfavorable reviews that one person was upset that she didn't see any wood on the Mississippi Queen. The American Cruise Lines made every effort to follow "Coast Guard" guidelines in building the Mississippi Queen and, therefore, it is fireproof as much as possible. We had the privilege of seeing this ship being built in Salisbury, MD. Even the ceilings are fireproof! Also the paddle does move and provides about 30% of the power. The ship also has side thrusters so that it can land easily. It sounds to us that the person who wrote the negative review needs to be on a Carnival Pary cruise. She infers that it is only for the ill and infame, but we don't consider ourselves in that catagory and had a wonderful trip!! Bellplayer Read Less
Sail Date September 2012
The Boat was dirty, bug infested, food was fair, service was terrible, speaker was clueless to anything about our destinations. Time in port was very short, if you got on 2nd bus for a tour, you missed out on most of the tour do to lack ... Read More
The Boat was dirty, bug infested, food was fair, service was terrible, speaker was clueless to anything about our destinations. Time in port was very short, if you got on 2nd bus for a tour, you missed out on most of the tour do to lack of time. Entertainment started out pretty good, by the end of trip it is not so good. People were nice, however, they were always apologizing for lack of serve or how dirty everything was. According to some of the crew we talked to, they just did not have enough staff and prior to us boarding, did not have enough time to clean up. The Boat advertised free Wi Fi, which really meant no Wi Fi. It was so poor, most of the time we were unable to send or receive until we got into port. Best part of this cruise was we met some very nice people and in each of the stops, found the town people very nice and friendly. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
I wanted to travel to upper Mississippi to 4 states I had not visited. The cruise was promoted as Fall Foliage on the Upper Mississippi. My group had been planning for this trip for over a year. The route was changed due to flooding, ... Read More
I wanted to travel to upper Mississippi to 4 states I had not visited. The cruise was promoted as Fall Foliage on the Upper Mississippi. My group had been planning for this trip for over a year. The route was changed due to flooding, and we were officially notified AFTER the boat left St Louis port. Management knew the situation and could have notified us before we flew from NC to St Louis the day before departure. The trip that was substituted was of lesser value/cost and the destination was of no interest to me, as I had already been several times to Nashville. The cruise lines has made no effort to compensate our group of 17 travelers. I was trapped on this boat to a destination that held no interest to me- not a very good taste to leave in a customer's grasp. The trip was the biggest disappointment in my travel history, and I have traveled quite a bit over the past 6-7 years. I will neither use nor recommend this company. Their interest is not customer satisfaction. This was a group of 17 people, and I believe American Cruise Lines should step to the plate and offer some compensation to this group, at least a monetary amount equal to the difference of the price of the trip that we paid for and the trip we were given. Letters have been written to management and they have not even bothered to respond. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
On July 7th this year, my wife and I boarded the American Cruise Line Queen of the Mississippi for what we thought was going to be a wonderful and relaxing Ohio River cruise experience as promise by the information advertised on the latest ... Read More
On July 7th this year, my wife and I boarded the American Cruise Line Queen of the Mississippi for what we thought was going to be a wonderful and relaxing Ohio River cruise experience as promise by the information advertised on the latest sales catalog and expecting a nice relaxing and adventurous cruise. Unfortunately, this cruise was the cruise from HELL. My wife and I are seasoned cruisers (Large Ships, European river cruising and American Cruise Line). This was the worse cruise we have ever taken as well as being taken to the cleaners by ACL. Before you book with American Cruise line please check out “American Queen Cruises”. www.americanqueensteamboatcompany.com Please read all the negative comments and you will find mine similar to the problem’s others had. We contracted ACL for 10 stops and a cruise itinerary that resulted in stopping at all of the schedules cities as advertised in their cruise catalog, instead we cruised the river for more than 5 days and missed stops and excursions in 4 cities and only 1 day in Louisville instead if 2. Other MAJOR Issues: Dining & Food served On the first day, ACL’s the head chef came to 0ur table and told everyone if you wanted something special cooked let him know and he would prepare it: THAT WAS LIE #1. On about the 5th day for lunch I requested shrimp and grits which is a staple served on the America (another ACL BOAT). Our server (who was really wonderful and professional) came and told me he did not know how to prepare it. 2 days later it was on the menu – this time our server told us was he did not have all the ingredients the first time. Let’s break this one out – Grits, served every day at breakfast (which I had every morning) – shrimp – served with a number of meals – Cajon spices – most soups he prepared had Cajon spices incorporated in them I guess if you are going to lie to ACL’s passengers at least he needs to get his lies straight. On this cruise, this was some of the worse meals I have ever had (this is my 10th cruise both in the US and Europe). I was unable to consume at least 5 meals served – the meals served were not fit for human consumption – other guests were also complaining about food coming out of the kitchen. In 2 of the cities we stopped at, my wife and I had to go off the ship and dine at the local establishments to get a quality meal. ACL’s cook (he was not a chef in any stretch of the imagination) put out some of the world’s worse meals I have ever had in my life. The cook was probably fired from a CCC level diner. Unethical & Lack of Integrity with ACL’s Personnel Upon going to our stateroom, we were greeted by Guest Services Manager in our stateroom. We had asked her to replace the Pinot Noir wine with a Merlot which she did. Towards the end of the cruise, July 16, when I had had enough of the poor food coming out of the kitchen. So, at lunch I asked our server for a simple cheeseburger. We were discussing the cheeseburger with our server when the Guest Services Manager came up in a huff and asked what the problem was. I explained all I wanted was a simple cheeseburger. The guest services manager became ugly and tried to bully me into eating what was severed on that meal. I immediately got up and went and searched for the Hotel Manager. I was explaining to him the situation and told him I wanted to file a complaint against the guest services manager for what she did and wanted it in her personnel file. About half way through our conversation. The Guest Services Manager stomped up to us and broke into our conversation and started shooting her moth off very rudely. That was the last straw. I called and filed a formal complaint with the Manger for the Ohio and Mississippi river. Nothing happened. Later that evening I noticed the Merlot was gone. A staff member came in our room and STOLE the wine. So, now ACL has a member of their staff entering a guest room (outside of housekeeping) without our permission and stealing our wine. So not only did they enter illegally but also committed theft. Cruise issues The regional manager for the Ohio and Mississippi river came on board and talked to the passengers during the cruise trying to explain that there were issues with the river and we were going to miss some of our stops and the schedule was going to change slightly. Several passengers inquired on what authority this decision was made. The regional manager for the Ohio and Mississippi tried to evade the question and point back to corporate. The passenger’s inquiring about the source of information were getting irritated and wanted a substantial answer. I observed the regional manager for the Ohio and Mississippi and watched him continually lie through his teeth to ACL’s paying passengers. He talked to us like we were dumb and stupid and would believe whatever we were told because as he said came from corporate. The passengers asking the questions were highly intelligent people So, is this the new ACL Company Model, take the passenger’s money, change the schedule on the fly, lie to the ACL guests, steal item’s out of their room, bully the guests, feed them food not served at any decent restaurant? There was another couple we met that had their air conditioner leak and drip water in their bed. ACL refused to correct the issue. Their solution – put a bucket in your bed to catch the water. Ships Amenities Cabins The cabins were very small and the bathrooms were the size of two port-a-potties next to each other. The shower was so tiny a large person could not fit into it. House keeping made the bed and replaced the towels and nothing else. This was the poorest house keeping service I have seen in all of our cruising. Cappuccino Machine in the Sky lounge. A paying passenger would expect little things like a Cappuccino Machine to be functional 24x7, especially in a lounge most used by them. The Cappuccino Machine in the Sky Lounge never worked from day one and then after 5 days of complaints the crew removed and never replaced it. When guests asked the crew about when the Cappuccino Machine would be fixed – their reply was “You can use the one in the Wheel House Lounge” -- Really, go down 2 decks because ACL can’t provide something as simple as a working Cappuccino Machine. Ship’s Maintenance Crews washing Sky Lounge in morning while cruising. A couple of days while cruising the passengers were unable to sit outside of the Sky Lounge because the crew was power washing the windows and getting the outside flooring material soaking wet, which basically made the area (a shaded area) totally unusable (unless you wanted wet feet– wet socks, water absorption footwear, etc.) until it dried hours later. 3 of the 5 days while cruising the crew had a very loud compressor going around the Shy Lounge and the deck above which made it very uncomfortable to relax. The burning question I have – why didn’t the crew do the window cleaning and maintenance while in port when most of ACL’s guest were on shore or excursions? Was it necessary to disturb and irate paying customers? Tours The tours were grossly misrepresented and some were missed. This is another example of how ACL defrauded the passengers. Final I brought all of the to the attention to the Senior executives of ACL. Neither did I hear back, they did not return my phone calls or offer us any compensation. They just wanted our money. One thing they made very clear to us and our credit card company who tried hard to get out money back – OUR LAWYERS ARE BIGGER THEN YOURS SO GOOD LUCK. So, once you give them your money it is gone for good. ACL is just a greedy corporation that care mire about revenue that their customers. Hell will freeze over before we will cruise with American Cruise Lines again!! Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
My husband and I choose this cruise to celebrate our 30th anniversary (2 weeks down the entire length of the Mississippi River). As experienced cruisers, we knew what we should expect from a cruise at this price point ($24k). I cannot ... Read More
My husband and I choose this cruise to celebrate our 30th anniversary (2 weeks down the entire length of the Mississippi River). As experienced cruisers, we knew what we should expect from a cruise at this price point ($24k). I cannot tell you how disappointed we were. The housekeeping was terrible, the food at times inedible, the "service" was laughable (the housekeepers and waitstaff were all kids from a hospitality training program) and the communication throughout the trip was inexcusably nonexistent. And to add insult to injury, they failed on the recovery. I wrote a detailed 5-page letter to the CEO (Charles Robertson) and the VP of Hotel Operations (Paul Taiclet) to give them feedback. Both called me to apologize for our bad experience. Mr. Robertson promised that I would hear from him again in a week or two. I never did. Mr. Taiclet followed up with a letter offering us 25% off a future cruise. Worthless to us as we would never spend another dime with this company. It was the worst value for our money that we have ever experienced in our travel all over the world. Save yourself from the same pain. Please don't book with this company!!! Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
Never take this cruise. They talk about some great tours and cancel many of them along the way. The food is not good, the service is mostly done by interns that are learning and it is super over priced for receiving close to nothing. ... Read More
Never take this cruise. They talk about some great tours and cancel many of them along the way. The food is not good, the service is mostly done by interns that are learning and it is super over priced for receiving close to nothing. Terrible and boring cruise up the Mississippi with almost know good entertainment or activities. The boat even crashed into a sand bar at night - took about 30 minutes of pushing back and forth to get off and woke everyone up- bent the paddle wheel and made them late to arrive in Memphis so they canceled the Memphis tour? If you want a good cruise go on a Viking River cruise. The difference is like a cubic to a diamond. Our only grace was we had planned a few days on our own in the start destination and the end destination so we saw those two locations and had fun there Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
We are experienced ocean cruisers who wanted to give river cruising a try, as well as stay in the USA. This was a round trip, New Orleans to New Orleans, on a paddle wheeler. The average age of the guests (about 185) was 75-80 with many ... Read More
We are experienced ocean cruisers who wanted to give river cruising a try, as well as stay in the USA. This was a round trip, New Orleans to New Orleans, on a paddle wheeler. The average age of the guests (about 185) was 75-80 with many in wheelchairs, or using walkers and canes. With no disrespect to the elderly (we are 65), we felt we were in a floating nursing home. The entertainment was boring, bingo in the evenings and sometimes a banjo player. Meal times were strictly scheduled and if you missed a meal or wanted to eat later, your only option was granola bars and bananas in the lounge. There was a complimentary cocktail hour at 5:30 which always involved a long time waiting in line for a drink. Otherwise there were no bars whatsoever. Our room was to the rear of the ship and it often shook loudly due to engine vibration. The captain and crew said there was nothing they could do and "nobody else ever complained". The food was very mediocre, sometimes even bad. The servers were very nice but inexperienced college kids who made many mistakes, forgot to bring coffee etc. In one instance I never received an entree until I complained. The staff kept encouraging us to order half portions if we weren't too hungry so as not to waste food. It was clear to all of us that they were trying to save money on food. The shore excursions were another disappointment, usually at an unattractive, dilapidated port with a visit to an old drugstore or other building that was converted to a gift shop trying to sell you overpriced souvenirs. Regarding pricing, this 7 night cruise cost us more than double what we would have paid on Royal Caribbean staying in a suite !!! We knew this when we booked but thought that, considering the price, it would be phenomenal. It was anything but. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
With just 24 hrs. Notice and no chance to respond, we were advised our cabin was being changed to a "slightly smaller" one on the same floor. when we boarded, we were shown to a single cabin stuffed to the walls with a queen ... Read More
With just 24 hrs. Notice and no chance to respond, we were advised our cabin was being changed to a "slightly smaller" one on the same floor. when we boarded, we were shown to a single cabin stuffed to the walls with a queen bed. since the boat was fully booked, we had no other choice but to grin and bear it. we have never in all our travels ever been downgraded!!!!! the food was adequate. the service spotty at best because the inexperienced help is only hired for 3 mos. And cannot sign up again for a year. this makes for mistakes in dining room orders, as well as service. also, our room was not cleaned for 2 of the 7 days. the leg on one of the beds was broken and went unrepaired. a fellow passenger was allowed to play his trumpet nightly after 9:30 p.m. passenger complaints were ignored for 2 days. having taken over 125 cruises (including 15 river cruises), this was our first and last acl cruise. be forewarned!! This is the trip from hell!!!!!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
NEVER, EVER AGAIN! If you book a cruise after reading my review below, all I can say is “I warned you.” We booked back-to-back Mississippi River Cruises in August, 2015. First one was from St. Paul, MN to St. Louis, MO: the second ... Read More
NEVER, EVER AGAIN! If you book a cruise after reading my review below, all I can say is “I warned you.” We booked back-to-back Mississippi River Cruises in August, 2015. First one was from St. Paul, MN to St. Louis, MO: the second one from St. Louis to New Orleans. We had the same cabin for both cruises. As other travelers have mentioned, new passengers can come on board at 1030 a.m., but have to cool their heels in a lounge until the cabins are ready two hours later. Why not just push the boarding time back to 1230 and have the rooms ready? We got to our cabin, complete with an EIGHTEEN-inch TV. Really? 18-inch? My computer screen is larger. I had to clean the cobwebs off the sliding glass doors before my wife would go out on the “veranda”. Cobwebs and fingernail clippings on the floor of the veranda were good indications that this company doesn’t bother to clean the outside of the boat. On the second day we realized the crew only has one set of washcloths on board. You can’t get replacement washcloths until 330 p.m. each day, and bath towels are only available after 1030 a.m. For the first few days we told crew members, including the hotel manager, we needed replacement towels, and all said we would get them, but that didn’t happen. For first few days we had to go down and get our own. One day instead of two bath towels, we got two bathmats! Some days we got one washcloth and one hand towel per cabin. How much would it cost to have 2-3 sets on board? We had a Keurig-like coffee maker in our room but nothing to drink the coffee out of for first week. I decided to wait and see how long it would take before the steward noticed. It took a week. Other comments on the room: The cabin wasn’t vacuumed even once in the two weeks we were on board. The volume control on the wall for the public address system was stuck on full blast. Result: every time an announcement was made, I jumped about six inches off whatever I was resting on. While the wall switch supposedly gave us a choice of background music, etc., it was inoperable. The best thing about the room was Ivan Levashov’s painting of white irises. Amazing. Cruise staff told me that average age of passengers was 65-75. Not true by at least a decade. I know that American Cruise Lines has no control over who buys tickets, but the entertainment advertised should reflect that. We had World War 2 vets, Korean War vets (they wore hats advertising such), etc. One night’s entertainment was advertised as “Old Time Rock and Roll”, but the first tune we heard as we entered the room was “Bye Bye Blackbird”, followed by “I Fall to Pieces”, “In the Mood” and “Sentimental Journey”. Bluegrass another night act was not bluegrass music. I could go on and on, but that is illustrative. Even the cruise director admitted to me that they had “misrepresented” the entertainment. Some nights the talent advertised didn’t show up, and afternoon activities on three days included kite flying and BUBBLE BLOWING on the top deck. Be still my heart. PORTS OF CALL: Oh, boy! Where do I start? The ports they advertise only have a casual relationship with what you get. Personally, I don’t think three hours on land counts as a port call. Passengers are herded onto buses, sometime for three hours, with no breaks. Local tours too often are a tour bus driving up and down the streets of small towns, looking at the outsides of vintage houses and touring vacant lots and closed store fronts with the tour guide saying “This lot/store used to be……….” The highlight of a couple of tours was a stop at the top of a bluff overlooking the town. Almost every port call ended, like at Disneyland/ Disney World, at a gift shop. The first port of call was Red Wing, MN, home of the famous Red Wing Shoes, but we were there on a SUNDAY, when the factory and store are closed. Clearly American Cruise Line knows this. Result: a bus “tour” around this tiny town with a stop at a pottery-centered gift shop. We didn’t stop at Davenport, Iowa; Oak Alley, LA or Baton Rouge, LA, with no public acknowledgement of why. Instead we landed at tiny towns like Burlington, IA and St. Francisville, LA; both of which are ill equipped for and can not be considered an “attraction”. Don’t assume you are going to get to see Elvis’s bedroom at Graceland or the exhibits at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis where MLK, Jr. was killed. Didn’t happen. Also, excursion on another day was to a button museum. I couldn’t make this stuff up. ACL has no way of keeping track of which passengers are on the boat and who are not at any given stop. Consequently, for example, in Memphis, one passenger was left behind at the tour stop at St. Jude’s Hospital; a CREW member was left behind at the afternoon excursion, and a couple who had gone into town for dinner was left behind as the boat took off down the river at 7 p.m., instead of at the advertised time of 8 p.m. After sailing for 30 minutes, the boat had to turn around and go back to Memphis to pick the couple up. Crew error. When we told crew that we would be off the boat for one night, nothing (to my knowledge) was written down either upon our departure or return. A final insult was my wife and I being literally left in the parking lot in New Orleans as the shuttle to the airport drove away early. Again, crew error. Result: cruise director unsuccessfully chasing after shuttle on foot, followed by an 80-90 mph taxi ride to the airport to catch up with the bus which had our luggage. Most exciting and entertaining (although stressful) part of the trip. FOOD: Breakfast was well handled, but food to table for lunch and dinner occasionally had only a casual relationship with menu choices. Worst, the ice cream served was “soup” at every meal. Passengers complained on first half of cruise and ice cream was firm for next two days, followed by 10 days of melted ice cream. You could have consumed it with a straw. VALUE: For what we spent on two weeks with ACL on the Mississippi, we could have flown to Europe and had an all-inclusive river cruise or ocean cruise. Please note that ACL price doesn’t include tips or airline tickets. Those are on you. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
My wife and I took the 7 night ACL Queen of the Mississippi cruise from Memphis to New Orleans departing on May 23 of 2015. Not only was this the most expensive vacation the two of us have taken in our 33 years together, it was also ... Read More
My wife and I took the 7 night ACL Queen of the Mississippi cruise from Memphis to New Orleans departing on May 23 of 2015. Not only was this the most expensive vacation the two of us have taken in our 33 years together, it was also the most disappointing. I suppose we should have done more research before we booked on this boat but all of their literature led us to believe it would be a good trip for us. Unfortunately it turned out to be our worst vacation. I would recommend you look very carefully at this company and what they are offering before you spend your money. There were many things to dislike about this trip, a few of which I will talk about. First, we were greeted at the entrance to the dock by a young lady who took our luggage and boarding passes, told us our room was probably not ready yet (not unexpected as they off load arriving passengers at 8:30AM and begin boarding new passengers at 10:30AM), and showed us where to go to board the boat. There was no one at the gangway or on the boat to greet us when we boarded. I assumed we would go to the bar for a drink and snack while we waited for our room. I located the office and found a young employee named Robert being confronted by a woman who was also looking for the bar. Imagine my, and her, surprise when we were informed that there was no such thing on this boat! I had somehow concluded from the literature that there was a lounge with snacks and drinks available around the clock. The snacks turned out to be small bags of potato chips and packages of peanut butter or cheese crackers. Drinks consisted of coffee, soda, juice and water. Our cabin was OK. The carpet was dirty. The sliding door to the balcony was very difficult to open. I asked three times for it to be fixed and finally fooled with it myself and got it so my wife could open it. The TV in the room was smaller than my desktop computer monitor. I asked for an extra bath towel each of the first three days. Finally on the fourth day they began leaving one without my asking. Unlike the marketing literature pictures showing middle aged passengers lounging in luxury, with what one might conclude are alcoholic beverages, the average age of the passengers on this boat was well North of 80. Many walkers and wheelchairs. Not many partiers. There was a "cocktail hour" each day from 5:30 to 6:30. To me the term "cocktail" implies a drink with alcohol in it. Their liquor was so watered down you could not taste the gin or vodka and the brown liquor was tan, not brown. My friend Murray took to making them open a new bottle of scotch every time he got a drink. The "cocktail hour" ended each day with the "Hotel Manager", who Murray dubbed the " 'happy' Hawaiian" , singing to the herd that it was time to go to the dining room for dinner. The kids working in the dining room, the same kids who worked housekeeping and other duties, in general tried hard to deliver good service but the entire meal service was very disorganized. Never saw anyone who appeared to be in charge of the dining room. If asked, the kids would provide all the wine we wanted, including an extra bottle at the end of the meal. If you did not ask they generally tried to serve a really crappy Pinot Noir by the glass. I sent it away every time they tried it and ordered a slightly more acceptable bottle of Cabernet. The Pinot Grigio was acceptable. Several of my meals were lukewarm. The morning we departed the ship we arrived in the dining room at 7:05 AM. At about 7:20 I finally attracted the attention of one of the waitresses and we ordered breakfast. We had ordered a taxi for 8:05 to take us to the airport. The waitress never returned to the table again and we did not get our breakfast (or even a second cup of coffee). By the way, if you are crazy enough to take this trip and need a taxi, insist that they call a metered one. Otherwise you will get somebody's brother-in-law in a beater. We did exactly that to go to the French Quarter in New Orleans on Friday evening. The guy charged me $15 bucks. I flagged a real cab to return and the meter fare was less than $7.00. Entertainment was awful. The lecturer was OK. Afternoon activity consisted of an hours' worth of bingo one day, 45 minutes of banjo lessons one day, some stupid game show game one day and I don't even know what excitement they came up with the other days. The first two evenings they had a duo who played banjo and bass. They were OK but certainly not up to 1st class cruise standards. It went down hill from there, including a Gospel singer for an hour and I totally lost interest after that. By 9:00 or 9:30 PM it was all over and everyone was in their cabin! No bar to go to, no music, no nothing. I am an active 70 year old man married to an active 65 year old woman. We actually sat and played a game of Scrabble one night, just to keep from going totally nuts. What a shame, what a disappointment. They have a perfect venue here and have totally wasted it. My advice...run as fast as you can from this outfit. For what you pay for this trip you can take two really good trips to a Caribbean Island, or two very nice cruises on some other line. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
Lovely looking boat but that was all. Boarded with another 150 on tour - all from overseas - All English speaking - most if not all very disappointed. Meals were often served cold and tasteless. Took sometimes 1 hour before meal was ... Read More
Lovely looking boat but that was all. Boarded with another 150 on tour - all from overseas - All English speaking - most if not all very disappointed. Meals were often served cold and tasteless. Took sometimes 1 hour before meal was served and sometimes the delay was because orders had got misplaced - chaos happening in kitchen. Often items very not available or substituted without explanation. Despite having to order your menu your choices the day before they still ran short. People with dietary issues - I.e coeliac - had problems each meal time. Drinks - beer wine - were often served warm - glassware was often warm or cloudy!!! Accommodation very ordinary, some people reported mouldy shower curtains, bathrooms in need of a good scrub and stained carpets, others said towels were not replaced or supplies like toilet paper. We we squeezed into a single room despite having paid for an upgrade and were put right next the paddle wheel - thus no sleep due to the noise when boat was sailing overnight. Woke up to ants covering pillows one morning. One night 2 floors kept awake all night with a screeching noise coming through the PA - none of the crew could be found or responded to phone calls - apparently the crew were not affected and divert phones to voicemail at night. - a serious safety issue I would have thought! Public areas furniture looking vary tired - having been launched in 2012 - has had a very hard time. Laundry facilities shared with crew and down to one washer and dryer for the whole boat. Crew very friendly but very young and inexperienced - one moment they were serving you food , next they were out preparing food in the kitchen and by the time you finished they were cleaning your bathroom and making your bed. Entertainment was ok - the staff responsible were very dedicated. Side tours at ports were a mixed bag - some excellent others were poorly organised, not enough time or had no purpose. Got the impression from tour leader that management were not prepared to listen to complaints and our experience was not uncommon. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
I was told by a friend to write this review to help others who may be thinking of this particular cruise. My husband and I took a late season cruise on the Mississippi with another couple on an American Cruise line Queen of the ... Read More
I was told by a friend to write this review to help others who may be thinking of this particular cruise. My husband and I took a late season cruise on the Mississippi with another couple on an American Cruise line Queen of the Mississippi river boat. We went from Memphis to New Orleans in 7 days and it cost $10,800 for the two of us. First thing we were told was to go to the 2nd floor to “listen to music” and have warm cookies. But the first view of the inside of the boat showed chipped wood on “wainscoting”; there seems to be a lack of maintenance. On the second floor the band was sitting around on chairs with instruments strewn about in a room filled with about 20 or more full sized sofas and about 70 chairs – it looked like a storage area. The chairs and sofas were drab and stained. No cookies were there and the band played one piece and left. We went to our room and unpacked. My husband opened a drawer and found used napkins inside. At the informational meeting the managers were introduced and I went to the housekeeping manager asking about maintaining my insulin cold. She drew a blank even though the brochure assured that there was storage for insulin on board; she mentioned buying a cooler in Memphis and I assured her that my insulin needed 9 days of cold - a cooler would not work. She then went to find a small refrigerator for the room and installed it by moving furniture around. When the furniture was moved, an old piece of clothing was behind a cabinet. The boat’s service for both serving food and cleaning rooms was done by 18 to 21 year old persons – all very nice, bubbly and service oriented. Just ask and they would do it. But the poor kids would serve food at breakfast and then run to clean a certain number of rooms But how well can these young adults do both these same jobs – what 19/20 year old knows how to look for and find dirt or serve a table of 8 properly? At one meal we asked for more bread and the waitress threw the second bowl of bread into the old napkin filled empty bowl. And the food; my husband ate only fish and he found it delicious. As a meat eater I had trouble with dry overcooked meats; chicken seemed to have been boiled and have a sauce layered on top. All I can say about the food is that it was below average diner food. Maybe it’s because I come from a major city and am used to great food almost anywhere but for the price we paid, it was underwhelming. I’ve been on the European river cruises and the food was unforgettable so it’s not because you can’t use open fires or flames on a boat. And the Mississippi itself – it’s the ugliest river I’ve seen. Because it’s a flood plain, there are no real houses to see and no scenery. Now that I mention this trip to neighbors who come from the Midwest they say “Oh, we wondered why you would go there – didn’t you know how ugly it is?” And I ask them “Why didn’t you tell me?”   Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
We looked forward to taking a cruise on the "Queen of the Mississippi". We decided to go on the trip for our 25th wedding anniversary. The trip was from New Orleans to Memphis. What a HUGE disappointment, to say the least. First ... Read More
We looked forward to taking a cruise on the "Queen of the Mississippi". We decided to go on the trip for our 25th wedding anniversary. The trip was from New Orleans to Memphis. What a HUGE disappointment, to say the least. First of all, we traveled on only one z-drive engine so we had to go slow and we were in each port just long enough to go on their tour. The tour in Vicksburg gave us ONLY 15 mins. to view the gun boat AND the museum. We got to Memphis so late that the tour was in the dark and a waste of time - you could hardly see anything - it was a joke. The "authentic" paddle wheeler" was not working and two staff members told us that they were waiting for parts. Conversation with the owner stated that the wheel slows the boat down so they don't use it (it was disconnected from the hydrolic drive). He also said the boat missed a resupply stop becasue of the slow speed, therefore they ran out of some simple things such as reg milk, cranberry juice, etc. and dessert - we were offered only ice cream. The fish was NOT fresh and the lamb was gamey and some food was served COLD. The food should have been outstanding for the price you pay for the trip. This was by far the WORST trip we have ever been on and our warning to you is DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY!!! Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
Speechless...that is how we feel. Do not take the Mississippi River Trip!!! The river is too low. The company knew that before we departed. The informed us our first night on the river that we would not make it to Vicksburg. That was the ... Read More
Speechless...that is how we feel. Do not take the Mississippi River Trip!!! The river is too low. The company knew that before we departed. The informed us our first night on the river that we would not make it to Vicksburg. That was the jewel destination for many of the passengers. They said they would bus us to Vicksburg and show us a good movie. Only made it as far as St. Francis villee. We were told another of their boats was broken down in Natchez so we needed to turn around and head back to Baton Rouge. Uh oh, now we have engine trouble and must return to New Orleans. Lies. The crew told us they knew the truth when we boarded. The very sad thing is, they are heading out tomorrow with another boat load of unlucky passengers who have paid $10,000 for a trip to no where!! The crew was wonderful. Found out they were also told lies when they hired on. old they would make a minimum of $800.00 a week. Not true. These young people are working 16 hours a day...seven days a week. OK, I enjoyed my food very much. My husband however, asked for vegetarian meals...did not happen. He was served the garnishes from the meat entreesA couple of nights the entertainment was very enjoyable. Again the staff has been friendly, but the owners of this company are thieves. We were informed it took only 7 couples to pay for the trip. The rest pure profit. We are not part of the 1%. I work for a nonprofit organization and live a modest life. Maybe other passengers are comfortable with throwing thousands of dollars into the pockets of greedy corporate millionairs. I am not. I may return to the boat tomorrow to warn the passengers. Beware...beware...beware of the Queen of the Mississippi. *************************END OF REVIEW****************************** Community Manager's Note: We have received the following official response from American Cruise Lines Public Relations Team (www.americancruiselines). It appears in italics below the bolded line in its entirety. _______________________________________________ It is unfortunate to hear this individual had a dissatisfactory experience aboard Queen of the Mississippi. It was a difficult trip due to the historic low water levels on the Mississippi River and an unforeseen breakdown of another vessel in Natchez. The broken down vessel in Natchez was not an American Cruise Lines vessel, and not in any way connected to American Cruise Lines. That vessel did, however, prevent Queen of the Mississippi from docking in Natchez. Due to the inability to dock there, Queen of the Mississippi made two additional unscheduled stops before returning to New Orleans â€" one at Houmas House Plantation in Darrow, LA, and another stop at Laura Plantation in Vacherie, LA, both of which were very much enjoyed by passengers. The suggestion that 7 couples, or 9% of the passengers, pay for the trip is obviously inaccurate and we think most people will realize that. Although most of the passengers were very pleased with their cruise experience (in fact, a number of them rebooked their next cruise with us before leaving the boat), it is disappointing to hear that this individual did not. As far as we can tell, American Cruise Lines has the highest repeat rate of any cruise line in the industry. The River level and conditions have improved somewhat and Queen of the Mississippi is currently running on schedule and is expected to make all stops........American Cruise Lines (www.americancruiselines.com) ____________________________________ Read Less
Sail Date December 2012
American Cruise Lines -- Queen of the Mississippi -- St Louis roundtrip 9/15 Day 1: St Louis: Already had to clean the bathroom door something red all over NOT sure what it was and I'm not sure why they couldn't have ... Read More
American Cruise Lines -- Queen of the Mississippi -- St Louis roundtrip 9/15 Day 1: St Louis: Already had to clean the bathroom door something red all over NOT sure what it was and I'm not sure why they couldn't have cleaned it. Cabin - SMALL very small. The decor was BLAND and the room looked like a cheap hospital room right down to the square overhead fluorescent light. All that was missing was a monitor or two next to the bed. NO curtains just mini blinds. There was nothing private about the veranda you could see anyone on either side of you and hear all their conversations. Bathroom - don't even ask even smaller. The light in the shower was full of dead bugs which is not something you want to see first thing in the morning. NOW the good news.. WE are stranded in St Louis.. some thing has happened on the MS north of us and we can't leave.. Don't know how long we are here for or if we are even leaving. HATE it so far. They have told us nothing and from what we have heard from the crew the accident happened on Friday meaning that they knew about it before we boarded this morning. People have asked to get off and have been told that there would be an update by 9:30AM tomorrow. See note below about what time we left (7:30AM) so all those people were PISSED. They should have given us the chance to make other plans or updated us on what was going on. NOTHING ever came at any time. Day 2: St Louis -- To Chester: Well here it is day 2 and we finally set sail at 7:30AM. We are sailing south to NO WHERE until they can tell us if we can sail north to our ports of call. There are no updates. More or less rumor mill at the moment. As of last nights dinner I am the talk of the boat already. I GOT NOTHING to eat.. they ran out of food. And what they did serve everyone was HORRIBLE. You should hear the complaining and more complaining. For example: The menu said Oysters Rockefeller see the s at the end of the word OYSTER WELL you only got ONE oyster and it was so small it would fit on your finger nail. Desert was a joke too. Everyone was still talking about the CREAM PUFFS from Wal-Mart. Breakfast was good though Eggs Benedict but the quiche get ready for this, was the size of a half dollar.. It was that small. And if you wanted a ham and cheese omelet you could NOT have it. They used up the ham for the quiche.. Can you believe that one? NO HAM and we just left. THIS IS NOT WORTH THE MONEY WE PAID... We have seen nothing but muddy old man river and rusty barges and the level is so low it makes it even uglier. They make you pre order for lunch and dinner in the morning so they know how much to make for the day. YEP and I got nothing last night so that tells you how great that works out I will never suggest this at anytime for anyone, even mom is upset as are 90 % of the passengers right now. MUNITY!! Day 3: Chester: Well here we are still don't know anything!!! Stuck in Popeye town!! All we have heard thru the grapevine(rumor after rumor) is that we are leaving at 11:30AM but to where no one knows. At least the food as improved and I did get dinner last night. The one meal the do good is breakfast!! Update. Well we are now going DOWN river again.. Still going no where close to our ports of call I can't even begin to pronounce this next one. If I were suicidal in anyway I would have slit my wrists by now. I can't imagine that anyone is enjoying this. I don't know if I can stand another day of this.. all we do is sit around and wait for food and than everyone runs for that.. OK with this crowd they limp along to that but boy they don't miss a feeding.. Think the Dawn of the Dead or Night of the living dead movies and you have this crowd.. the smell of OLD is every where.. I have never felt so trapped.. I should have just worked from this trip we haven't gone anywhere.. What a waste of time and money.. I could have been laying on a beach or doing anything but this.. I mean we toured the Wal-Mart and McDonalds and saw 3 prisons.. I mean come on.. this is just horrible. PRAY for us.. Day 4: Chester to Cape Girardeau: Day 4 we are still heading south .. we are currently in Cape Girardeau MO home of Rush Limbaugh.. or as I like to say ANTIQUE row.. there is nothing here once again. We will be leaving at 11:30 PM for Paducah KY(Yes you are seeing that correctly KY) No one is happy about all this and we have no idea from hour to hour of what we are doing or why or anything. Now for your laugh of the day last nights entertainment.. Get ready.. Banjo guy.. BUT wait he didn't just play EVERYONE had to sing along.. YES. 40 minutes of pure He**.. I have finally figured out what this cruise is.. If you took an assisted living facility and placed it on a barge bottom and pushed it down the Mississippi you have it. These people are rude and circle food and booze like it is going out of style for some reason. They will knock you over to be first in the dining room and don't even block there way to the happy hour.. You know how other cruises go by so fast. NOT THIS ONE!!!! The only high points have been the guy doing Mark Twain and Dustin Fox the waiter we try to sit with everyday. And that is it. They have decided to give us all the tours now for free so we took the first one today what a BUST it was to a closed down mill and covered bridge under construction. Boring. Day 5: Cape Girardeau: See day 4 above Day 6: Cape Girardeau to Paducah: Well here we are now on the Ohio River trying to get to Paducah KY.. We have spent over 4 hours sitting at a lock ... than once we got in they decided to work on the lock doors and now we are TRAPPED inside of the lock.. I'm running out of words to use to describe how horrible this has been.. Now people are starting to get sick.. PLEASE god don't let it be norovirus.. but with our luck it probably will be I just wish they would turn us around and go back to St Louis and let us go home.. WE are all so bored there is nothing to do The boat is horribly decorated.. I told someone today.. That even Rhett and Scarlet would have asked to be let off .. NO grand staircase no wood nothing that would make you think you were on a paddle wheeler. Did I tell you the best part.. the paddle wheel is a JOKE it isn't even hooked up.. so we really aren't sailing on a paddle wheeler.. Day 7: Cruising to St Louis: OK.. it is now 2PM and we are heading back up to St Louis. No idea when we will get back but assume sometime Friday.. Spent the day on a bus driving around looking at old run down houses and than on to the QUILT MUSEUM.. yes you heard me the Quilt museum.. I have to admit it was interesting, if I had to pay that would be a different story The high point was getting filmed for the local PBS station special.. just loved my comments on the quilts go figure.. In my spare time, and there is lots and lots of that, I have totally redecorated this boat in my head and will suggest a few changes when I get back. There is truly only one place on this NURSING HOME barge that even comes close to what you would have expected. So much wasted space for something so small Well I have to run .. the excitement continues this afternoon with KITE flying off the top deck.. YES kite flying and scenery watching( sounds like Alaska right) .. I will be forever scared by this cruise and it will take a lot of arm twisting before I would ever try small ship cruising(or as I like to call it) Assisted living cruising again.. Day 8: St Louis: Arrived back in St Louis sometime after 10PM or so. We were all so happy to get off the boat you have no idea. BUT guess what they forgot about the Alzheimer's run that closed down the road in front of the Arch. They had trouble getting the buses and taxis in to get us out. It just figures one last mess up. And the GUESS what bus to ride game was fun too. They must have moved our luggage around 5 times and had to go back and forth on what bus was going where so many times they finally had the bus drivers confused. Read Less
Sail Date September 2012
Boat and service was very good at first. But did not follow the itinerary and had to disembark a day early and was bussed 4 hrs to Pittsburgh. The itinerary called for cruising at night but captain would not. If they won’t follow the ... Read More
Boat and service was very good at first. But did not follow the itinerary and had to disembark a day early and was bussed 4 hrs to Pittsburgh. The itinerary called for cruising at night but captain would not. If they won’t follow the basic itinerary in ACL Cruise Guide then change it. Lost a full day aboard ship. Letter of complaint was not responded to. Sad. We did very much enjoyed the accommodations, food, service and would have liked to see the 3 ports we missed. Our dissatisfaction is with the home office and the captain. He claimed that the river was too high and strong current. But river heights were normal. He also claimed there was too much drift wood in the river. I and other passengers saw none. The trip should have started in Louisville in order to make it to Pittsburgh. This was our second cruise on ACL. The first was of Maine coast. Excellent Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We stayed at a hotel near the port in Memphis. The check-in process was smooth. The boat was in good condition and traveled on the river very well. Spending time on our balcony while going down the river was pleasant. The shore ... Read More
We stayed at a hotel near the port in Memphis. The check-in process was smooth. The boat was in good condition and traveled on the river very well. Spending time on our balcony while going down the river was pleasant. The shore excursions were very interesting and enjoyable The internet connection was slow, when available The meals were better on some days than others, but the one consistent thing was the food was served cold most of the time. Talking to the Kitchen Staff along with Management did not make a difference - their attitude was "you do not matter and take the meals as is". The Staff turned distant and aloof after our comments and complaints, making this cruise disappointing. Entertainment on the boat is nonexistent We enjoyed the time off the boat visiting the small cities This cruise is very expensive and did not live up to expectations Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
On day 1, we arrived at Lambert's Landing in St. Paul to find no boat at the dock. When we called the office to find out why, they said there was a last minute change and the boat had been docked in Red Wing, MN and that we would have ... Read More
On day 1, we arrived at Lambert's Landing in St. Paul to find no boat at the dock. When we called the office to find out why, they said there was a last minute change and the boat had been docked in Red Wing, MN and that we would have to find our own way there. No company rep nor a bus was at the dock to update us and transport us to Red Wing, though they did say they would pay for the taxi ride (I'm still waiting for reimbursement as the ship's staff said they were unable to refund directly to me). Our Uber driver agreed to take us there, and I tipped him generously because he would have to go back to the city empty. But the most irritating aspect of this is that the ship apparently hasn't been able to dock in St. Paul for quite some time, perhaps all season, and it wasn't a "last minute" change. And even if it was, they should have called us. We finally arrived at the ship at lunch time, and no one greeted us or apologized for the situation, or offered any reasons (or compensation) for the foul up. As we met other guests during the cruise, we found that others had been left in the lurch just as we had. Our cabin, no. 209, smelled strongly of mildew, and our towels (which we were encouraged to reuse) never dried out overnight; when I reported it on the mid-cruise questionnaire, a dehumidifier was delivered to our room; however the room steward didn't know how to empty it so I figured it out myself... I also reported how dirty our veranda was, and though they said they would clean it, that never happened. It was covered with spider webs and dead bugs, which made it unpleasant to sit out there. I don't understand why the room steward didn't have time to at least sweep it, because all she had to do in our room each day was make the bed (they don't change the sheets during the week), deliver dry towels, wipe down the shower and sink and empty the waste baskets. Though the Queen of the Mississippi is only in her 6th year of service, she is suffering from some deferred maintenance. There is chipped paint, dirty windows and balconies, scuffed upholstery, stained lamp shades, and stained carpets, all contributing to a general aura of shabbiness. There is simply no excuse for this level of neglect on a cruise for which you've paid nearly $10K for a week. We've been on 4 European river cruises (with Viking and Vantage) and several ocean cruises (with NCL and Cunard), and one thing they all have in common in constant maintenance. They're always pressure washing or painting or cleaning something, without interfering with the guest experience. ACL seems to have decided not to do this type of maintenance during the season. The room was quiet and spacious enough, with the typical tiny bathroom, but storage, both in the room and bathroom was more than adequate. Wifi was slow, and we usually had decent tv reception, though the screen is tiny. There were a few places along the river where we had no cell phone reception, but that was okay. I was pleasantly surprised at how smooth and quiet the boat is while cruising at night. Even when we were going through locks, I was rarely disturbed by noise or motion during the night. There are many lounges and decks on the ship, and you could easily find a place to socialize or sit quietly and read or contemplate the beautiful scenery. Cocktail hour at 5:30 each evening was also lively and fun, with generous pours of beer, wine and liquors. A nice assortment of hors d'ouevres was also offered each evening. After dinner, we enjoyed a variety of entertainers in the lounge; a guitar singer one night, a motown duo for 2 nights, a barbershop quarter another night. The onboard lecturer, Dale, was fun and entertaining and filled us with information about the Mississippi and each of the ports we visited and even conducted a few sing-alongs. At every port, except the first day in Red Wing, we docked very early in the morning and had the whole day to visit the town. We were warmly welcomed by local guides in each town, and they genuinely seemed happy to have us there. Fort Madison has recently been added to the itinerary, and they were especially gracious, though there was a scheduling issue and the visit to the old penitentiary was cancelled while we were actually on the bus on the way there. They have some kinks to work out in their tours. We had a nice dose of warm, mid-western hospitality at each port. Most of the tours were rather heavy on bus time rather than actual on-the-ground touring, but perhaps this is in deference to the rather advanced age of the typical traveler on this cruise. I wish they would use buses that have 2 doors, because waiting for all the people with canes and walkers to exit the bus at each stop was very time consuming. Food service varied from barely acceptable to very nice. We learned to get to the dining room promptly when they opened at 7:30 each morning; any later and you could wait a long time for your entree. They really should offer a buffet for breakfast, because the wait staff becomes quickly overwhelmed and they seem to not have enough short-order cooks in the galley. Lunch seemed a bit less hectic; perhaps because the limited number of entrees offered were pre-cooked and just needed to be plated. Dinner also featured uneven service. If you arrived promptly at 6:00 when they started to serve, you might get served quickly. But people are allowed to wander in any time from 6:00 to 7:30, so one couple at a table might be finishing up dessert just as another couple joined the table. ACL should adopt the strategy utilized by the European cruise lines that we've traveled (Vantage and Viking), who seem to have figured this all out. Sometimes entrees were delivered lukewarm; sometimes the lettuce in the salad was soggy and appears to have been pre-dressed. Both the lunch menu and the dinner menu changed each day, and you had to make your selection in the morning at breakfast so the cooks could plan accordingly. The only item that was consistently good were the desserts, though one in our party complained that the tres leches cake was still frozen. Many on the wait staff are very young and inexperienced, and it was actually the first time serving for some of them. It was painful to watch one young man try to nervously balance a tray of drinks without dumping them down the back of a guest... We heard that they pulled quite a few from the staff to populate the new ship that is coming on line next week, leaving our ship with a very inexperienced crew. Similar to the beginning of the cruise, we were advised on the next-to-last day that we wouldn't actually dock in St. Louis (for reasons not divulged), and would instead dock in Alton, Illinois and be bused into St. Louis for our afternoon excursion. We sat in Alton all morning with nothing to do, no shuttle bus and no excursions or suggestions offered. It was a 30-45 minute drive each way, time we would have liked to spend enjoying the city rather than on a freeway. I do realize that the shipping lines can't be held responsible for the ever-changing conditions on the river that cause itineraries to be altered. What was lacking was their communication of such changes and the reasons for the changes. If they said high water or flooding made it too dangerous, everyone would have understood. They haven't been able to dock in St. Paul or St. Louis at all this season, so why are they still advertising this as a St. Paul to St. Louis tour? It's actually a Red Wing to Alton tour. Disembarkation was the smoothest part of the process. We had to put our tagged bags out at midnite, and the bus to the airport was scheduled at 7:30. We walked off the ship, identified our bags out on the tarmac, and got on the bus. The combination of inadequate communication, being stranded in St. Louis and having to make our own way to Red Wing, the smelly room, the dirty windows and balcony, the uneven food service, and the unprofessional service in general, added up to a less-than-exceptional experience for us. We are experienced travelers used to "going with the flow", but the negatives on this cruise somewhat outweighed the positives for us. Seeing the magnificent Mississippi River from the perspective of a grand river boat, and the quaint small towns along the way, was memorable and interesting, but the overall experience with the ship itself was rather disappointing. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
I almost didn't write this review as I feel that we were not the demographic that this cruise caters to and comparing it to our other cruises might be unfair. However, if we had known a few things upfront, we could have made a better ... Read More
I almost didn't write this review as I feel that we were not the demographic that this cruise caters to and comparing it to our other cruises might be unfair. However, if we had known a few things upfront, we could have made a better decision or been more prepared for what we got. The boat: The boat is very cute. The rooms are adequate in size but furnished in a drab and cheap-looking style. Bathrooms were very small in comparison but were functional. The closet is small, there are several drawers for storage, and there is no safe in the room. There is no refrigerator or water provided in the room but you can go to one of the lounges to get water at any hour. The outside seating areas are nice when sailing although I think more comfortable seating vs. the numerous rocking chairs would have been better. There are three lounges which were used for various activities such as bingo, river talks, evening entertainment, happy hour, etc. and were open all the time. The snack selection was not very good in the lounges as there were soft drinks and packaged snacks such as cheese crackers, fig newtons, and sun chips. Water and coffee were available but no iced tea and no healthy snacks. The cookies that were brought around twice a day were good and a nice touch. The crew: Most of the crew (interior staff) were college kids who were very enthusiastic and helpful but had little to no training. They would try to do anything that was asked of them but did not have the training to provide high-level service without being prompted--not their fault but don't expect much. They were super-nice people and we enjoyed meeting many of the crew members. Dining: What needs to be clearly stated here is that when the website states "Open seating dining allows you to dine where and when you want," what it really means is that every single passenger goes to the dining room at the same time since there is a short window of service and is squeezed into a room with tables that seat large groups of people with no option to sit as a couple. The way it was done is that passengers who came first might be on dessert and passengers who came a few minutes later would be forced to join them if there were empty seats. This was obvious chaos and didn't make a nice dining experience for everyone. Some folks probably really enjoy dining with strangers and that is fine but this could have been much better organized with options for passengers who aren't comfortable joining an already-in-progress table. I have to mention the food quality although this is a tricky subject. As someone who travels in search of the best restaurants and chefs, I feel qualified to say that the quality of the food was sadly very disappointing. It may not have been for some passengers but we found it to be uninspired and bland and some dishes seemed like an experiment of things that don't go together. Maybe the cooks were students in training also. Take that for what it's worth to you as I realize that everyone has different tastes and requirements for food and this may not be the opinion of some. Breakfast was probably the better meal and our room service (only offered at breakfast) was delivered promptly each morning. Dinner is at 5:30 pm and is over by 7:30. Happy hour was also disorganized with a long line for drinks and staff who were doing double duty and weren't really bartenders. Only a few knew how to properly mix drinks. They could have made it easier by having waitstaff take orders or having two lines and having the staff who didn't know how to make the drinks just pour wine and beer and soft drinks. But again, they were willing to try and were very polite and friendly. Entertainment: The evening entertainment that was provided was very enjoyable. It began at 8:15 and lasted about an hour. The first two nights were a musical and comedy show from the Riverlorians on board that gave educational talks in the afternoon and sang in the evenings. They were lovely people and were good singers and a lot of fun. We liked them a lot. The third night was a wonderful jazz duo with a piano player and a trumpet player. Both were amazing and we loved that they played songs we all knew as well as gave us tidbits of education about the music and the writers and famous performers of it. The last night was a cute show with the Victory Belles, three ladies who were performers based at the WWII museum in New Orleans and they did appropriate music for the time period and were very entertaining. Drinks, popcorn, and root beer floats were served. Daytime entertainment consisted of river talks, bingo, and such but that was fine for the size of the boat and the relaxing pace. Excursions and the cruise: One thing to know is that river cruises can change with the conditions of the river and excursions are sometimes changed or cancelled. The Mississippi is very high right now which prevented docking at some of our predetermined stops. This means we missed Oak Alley plantation but Rosedown Plantation was substituted in its place. It also meant that we docked for two nights at Baton Rouge and were bussed out to Houmas House on a longer drive than we would have been. I wish we would have been sailing at night instead of docked but I think that was largely beyond the control of the captain and crew. Both plantations were very nice with Houmas House being our favorite. Our guide there was wonderful and the owner was greeting guests on site which was nice. The grounds are spectacular. There wasn't any communication about these changes beforehand and I think there should have been but they did try to do as much as possible with the situation. Fellow passengers: As others have stated, most passengers are in the over 60-plus category with several over 80. We were younger but always enjoy meeting nice people and everyone was very nice. There is nothing for kids to do and excursions will not interest kids if they have no understanding of the history of the area. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
4 night cruise from New Orleans, enjoyed the ports very much, though not a lot of a variety of things to do at each one, to be expected on this itinerary. Visited a few very nice plantation houses, plus Baton Rouge. For those who have ... Read More
4 night cruise from New Orleans, enjoyed the ports very much, though not a lot of a variety of things to do at each one, to be expected on this itinerary. Visited a few very nice plantation houses, plus Baton Rouge. For those who have cruised on the larger ships, this cruise will come as a bit of a shock. The ambiance is very low key, no fancy décor, with basically no activities and nothing to do while on the ship. After dinner for 3 nights a banjo player performed for an hour, that was it for the evening entertainment. Seeing this once was fine, but it got old fast, and I didn't need to see it all 3 nights. Other than that, after dinner there was nothing to do, no schedule activities. The daily happy hour at 5:30 with tasty snacks and open bar was a nice touch, as well as the daily fresh baked cookies, and always available snacks and beverages. The ship staff and crew are friendly, dining room service was fine too. The boat is small, which means no crowds, no lines, getting on and off simple. My overall rating would actually be "good" if that was offered between very good and average. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
We wanted to stay in the US this year for vacation and since we had not visited the states where the ship docked, we felt this would be a good fit. We are also interested in the Civil War and we thought that would make the cruise more ... Read More
We wanted to stay in the US this year for vacation and since we had not visited the states where the ship docked, we felt this would be a good fit. We are also interested in the Civil War and we thought that would make the cruise more interesting for us. The cruise was expensive, but we hoped it would be "top shelf" making it worth the money spent. There were no transfers offered from the airport to the hotel, but it was easy enough to ride Uber. We were disappointed, however, that the hotel chosen by the cruise line was in the suburban part of the city rather than the downtown where we could have walked around, visited museums, etc. Breakfast at the hotel was not included, but transportation to the boat the following day was. We were quite surprised when we boarded the ship and saw how worn out it looked. The décor was disappointing and the furniture dirty (especially dining room chairs), not comfortable), and basically needing to be replaced. The carpets looked like they needed a good cleaning. We were shocked to learn the ship is only 2 years old. It has not been well maintained. The food was good to mediocre, leaning more towards mediocre. We were never offered second helpings and, more often than not, reminded we could order "half" portions. Lunches always were made from leftovers of the dinner the night before. Selections were limited but, most disappointing, the food just wasn't very good in both taste and presentation. We enjoyed the Civil War lecturer but the "riverlorians" (never heard that word till this cruise) were a bit hokey. The entertainment was geared toward the older senior citizens and was not often well attended except for those that wanted to take advantage of the open bar. There was no wine selection. They only served Mondavi's Woodbridge wine which I do not think of as good quality. When I asked if I could have different wines, I was told there would be an upcharge to do so. Meanwhile, the bar was well stocked with good hard liquors which made the lack of wine choices all the more perplexing. The ports of call were good and all of the tours excellent. I also must comment that the ship's staff was attentive, friendly, and professional. Disembarking was really poor. We had paid for a tour of New Orleans and then transportation and drop off downtown. We arrived to board the bus 15 minutes early and were told there were no more seats. The explanation was, "someone must be on wrong bus." We were eventually placed on another bus (the one going to the airport) and did get a tour of the city. This is one time, however, when the tour guide wasn't very good or professional. I really went into this cruise with high hopes of doing more trips with this company but I most certainly will not after my first encounter. It is truly a niche market and I hope that other lines will join the market and offer more quality trips on the US rivers. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Our initial experience was bad in that the cruise line failed to pick us up at the hotel for transfer to the ship, taking our luggage but leaving us behind and then just shrugging this off with no real apology or effort to make the ... Read More
Our initial experience was bad in that the cruise line failed to pick us up at the hotel for transfer to the ship, taking our luggage but leaving us behind and then just shrugging this off with no real apology or effort to make the situation right. We felt this was very poor handling of the embarkation procedure and we could have easily missed the cruise just because of the cruise lines sloppy handling. We felt the cruise was greatly over priced and that the service, food and amenities offered were lacking for a cruise that cost more than a thousand dollars a day for each of us. The cabin was adequate but nothing extraordinary. The food was, for the most part, pretty ordinary and not up to what we expected for the price. We are veteran cruisers and have sailed with many lines, and would say as far as value received this cruise was a big disappointment. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
With last minute change to Nashville we were treated to a stay at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel as well as an evevning at the Grand Ole Opry. Great fun. Cruising the Cumberland River was a treat and with our Naturalist Steve Marking and ... Read More
With last minute change to Nashville we were treated to a stay at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel as well as an evevning at the Grand Ole Opry. Great fun. Cruising the Cumberland River was a treat and with our Naturalist Steve Marking and his lovely wife adding informative narrative as we went through the narrow waterway. The trip was enjoyable until we reached the lower Mississippi and a pattern developed as we would arrive in the morning and leave at 12:30, not allowing enough time to see all of the offered excursions or the towns, and only to arrive at the next port the same afternoon or early evening. We arrived at New Orleans the afternoon prior to disembarkation the next morning. The extra cost tour of Graceland was 1 hour short and most on tour were not able to see the entire exhibit. The planners need to review this trip. The fitness equipment was in need of maintenance and repair. The food was generally very good but by most ocean cruise standards very limited in scope and selection. The quality and presentation was excellent but I have never been served a half of a sandwich at lunch. The wait staff were just wonderful and made our meals even more enjoyable as well as the cruise staff who could not have been more accomodating. The entertainment was hit and miss. One group fair the next outstanding. But all in all it was a fun trip and we booked two cruises for next year. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Our first cruise with American was on the Columbia River. We were so pleased we signed up for another cruise before we left the Columbia. This most recent cruise was from Minneapolis/St Paul to St Louis in August, 2015. The food service ... Read More
Our first cruise with American was on the Columbia River. We were so pleased we signed up for another cruise before we left the Columbia. This most recent cruise was from Minneapolis/St Paul to St Louis in August, 2015. The food service was below average. Every single breakfast was a crap shoot. In 7 days we received a) the breakfast we ordered; b) warm or hot; and c) in less than 50 minutes exactly one time. We were nearly late for every tour. Lunches were mediocre. Dinners were quite nice, but taste was an ordinary cajun. The hotel manager seemed to be experienced, but she was largely unresponsive to complaints. John and Narda were standouts in service. Gustavo not so much. The BEST part of the cruise was the Mark Twain impersonator and the young, very capable couple both of whom entertained us every day. Both were worth the price of admission each day. The shore tours were poorly organized. For example, our first tour in Red Wing started at the Red Wing Retail store. Surprise! The store was closed. Go figure. Lacrosse was great as was Hannibal. St Louis was, well, St Louis. We won't go back. Avoid this cruise unless you are an entertainment fan. The Mark Twain impersonator and the young couple who cruised with us made the cruise for us. p.s. do not get a cabin forward on the starboard side, main deck. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Although we had a very lovely time, the dining room staff was very new and inexperienced. If you are traveling with friends and relatives, check in advance to see if you can dine with them ....We were unable to secure a table on a ... Read More
Although we had a very lovely time, the dining room staff was very new and inexperienced. If you are traveling with friends and relatives, check in advance to see if you can dine with them ....We were unable to secure a table on a regular basis for the six of us. The food was excellent and the staff was friendly and efficient It was a very expensive trip and I don't think it warranted the price. There are many advertisements in the mail offering discounted cruises, which is very annoying when you've already booked at full price. Look for the discounted trips. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
Queen of the Mississippi Ratings
Category Editor Member
Entertainment N/A 4.1
Public Rooms N/A 4.5
Fitness Recreation N/A 3.3
Family N/A 3.3
Shore Excursion N/A 4.2
Enrichment N/A 4.1
Service N/A 4.5
Value For Money N/A 4.0
Rates N/A 3.6

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