This was my fourth AQ trip - Columbia/Snake River, Ohio River, lower Mississippi and this one on the upper Mississippi from St Louis to Minneapolis/St Paul, MN.
As always AQ trips start with an overnight in the embarkation port - this time St Louis where we were put up at the Hilton Ballpark, just across the street from the Cardinal's Stadium where they played both that night and the next day, which made for a "busy" hotel. After breakfast (on AQ) and check in for the voyage, most of us took an extra cost Premium Tour of St Louis and then were delivered to the "boat" in Alton IL as the boat could not tie up in downtown St Louis due to high water and construction. Remember - a cruise ship is called a "ship", but a river cruise ship is called a "boat". Our luggage, picked up from our hotel rooms, was on the bed in our cabins. So nice to not have X Ray and other inspections as on other lines going on the high seas.
Underway for Hannibal MO, a day "Riverboating, Clinton IA, Dubuque IA, La Crosse WI, Red Wing MN. We usually arrived in these towns about noon for a 5 hour stay. As always AQ's three "Hop On/Hop Off" busses accompanied us and provided tours at each stop. In addition there was usually one or more extra cost "Premium Tours available.
Food on AQ is outstanding at all meals but is a little "spicy" reflecting their New Orleans origins. New this year is "room service" for those desiring at all meals. Food is also available at a simpler buffet called the Front Porch, and snacks are available at all times. Additionally bottled water, sodas, various coffees and ice cream, are always available, and complimentary beer/wine are served at dinner. Food quality and service are outstanding. Both a menu and a buffet are offered at breakfast and lunch in the Dining Room, and a menu in the evening for dinner. Dress is "resort elegant" - in other words collared shirts for men, but ties and coats not needed
AQ offers a quality product, but as it is American owned and crewed (with US wages etc), their fares are significantly higher than on foreign owned, ocean going cruises averaging $450 per pers/per day
I cannot rate AQ high enough and am very surprised that the Queen's rating here on CC is only 66% favorable. Only recently has AQ introduced "single fares, as opposed to their double fare for singles in the past.