Call a Cruise Specialist 1.800.460.4518
7 days a week*

Frequently Asked Questions

 

This section was designed to answer some of the frequently asked questions concerning small ship cruising with American Cruise Lines. Just click on one of the questions below to find an answer. If you do not find the answer you are looking for below or if you need more details, please do not hesitate to contact us at 1-800-460-4518.



General

Why small-ship cruising?
How do I book a cruise?
What is included in fare?
What is recommended for gratuity?
Is there a dress requirement?  
What accommodations are available for solo travelers?
Is there an elevator onboard?
Can you accommodate special diet requests?
Is there cellular service onboard?
What is the smoking policy?
How many passengers does the ship accommodate?
How old is the ship?

Pre-Cruise

What are your packing recommendations?
Is there a limit on how much luggage I can bring?
Does American Cruise Lines have special rates at certain hotels?
What airport should I plan to fly into?
Does American Cruise Lines provide transportation services to and from the ship?

Embarkation, Debarkation & Visitors

When should I plan to arrive for boarding?
How is luggage handled and are tags available?
How early can I disembark the ship?
What is the visitor policy?

On Board

What amenities are available onboard and in staterooms?
What public areas are featured on board?
Is there internet access on board?
What is the electrical voltage on board?
What is dining like aboard your ships?
Is there fitness equipment on board?
What shore excursions are offered and how do I sign up?
What can be expected for onboard entertainment?

 

General

 

Why small-ship cruising with American Cruise Lines?
With no more than 150 passengers on board, and designed to provide smooth travel through protected waterways, sheltered harbors and magnificent rivers, American Cruise Lines’ ships offer a perspective larger ships cannot. Your U.S.-flagged ship will provide you not only with comfort and convenience, but also the utmost in safety, complying with all new safety regulations – which older ships do not – and bring you to the best of America, up close to places of natural beauty, cultural and historical interest. And, with all departure ports in the U.S., you leave your passport (and worries) at home.  With a smaller amount of passengers onboard, we never overwhelm the local communities visited. A refreshingly relaxing atmosphere prevails onboard. This intimate ambiance is perfect for both congenial camaraderie and quiet relaxation.  Friendly, professional all-American crew members offer an extraordinary quality of gracious hospitality and personalized attention to discerning passengers. No matter which itinerary you choose with American Cruise Lines, you’ll experience the beauty, brilliance and thrill of cruising on a small ship. Return to Top.

How do I book a cruise?
American Cruise Lines cruise specialists are available to take your call seven days a week at 1-800-460-4518:

Monday - Friday: 8:00am - 8:30pm EST

Saturday: 8:00am - 7:00pm EST

Sunday: 10:00am - 6:00pm EST

 

You may also contact your travel agent or make a reservation through our website by clicking here. It is recommended that reservations are made as far in advance as possible to ensure the availability of the cruise and stateroom choice. Return to Top.

What is included in fare?
American Cruise Lines’ per person fare includes passage, dining service, snacks, complimentary cocktail parties and entertainment aboard the ship. Fares do not include shore tours (except for Alaska cruises), port charges and fees or gratuities. A fuel surcharge may be charged for a cruise not yet sailed. Return to Top.

What is recommended for gratuity?
Gratuity is entirely at your personal discretion. Tips are generally given to the Hotel Manager near the end of the cruise. They are then divided equally among the stewards and deckhands. Tips generally average about $125 per person for a seven-night cruise. Stewards and deckhands do not expect and cannot accept tips directly. Credit cards, personal or travelers checks, and cash are accepted. If you choose to pay by credit card, please contact the Hotel Manager at least one day before the end of your cruise. Return to Top.

Is there a dress requirement?
Casual resort attire is recommended both on the ship and ashore. For dinner, men’s clothing might include a sport shirt and slacks, with sport coat or sweater. Women might find a sweater and slacks, or dress appropriate. American Cruise Lines also recommends you bring comfortable walking shoes, a hat, light rain wear, and a jacket for cool evenings. Return to Top.
 
What accommodations are available for solo travelers?
American Cruise Lines welcomes solo travelers and features a select number of single occupancy staterooms available on its ships. One person occupying a double stateroom will be charged 150% or 175% of the double occupancy rate depending on the type of stateroom chosen. Return to Top.

Is there an elevator onboard?

Yes, all American Cruise Lines’ ships have elevator service to all decks. Return to Top.

Can you accommodate special diet requests?
American Cruise Lines will work to cater any dietary needs. Please tell your cruise specialist approximately two weeks prior to your cruise so that we may plan accordingly. Refrigeration is available to store insulin or other medications requiring protection. Return to Top.

Is there cellular service onboard?
Cell phones can be utilized onboard but service is not always available and can be spotty depending on weather and location and can also vary depending on your service provider. Return to Top.

What is the smoking policy?
Smoking is prohibited on the ships.  Return to Top.

How many passengers does the ship accommodate?
American Cruise Lines’ ships are small and intimate and only carry between 100 and 150 passengers. Return to Top.

How old is the ship?
American Cruise Lines is proud to feature the newest fleet in the industry and boasts an average ship age of only four years, with the exception of Queen of the West which was built in 1995 and renovated in 2011 by American Cruise Lines.  All ships are equipped with the latest in technology and safety features and meet all current environmental regulations. Return to Top.

 

Pre-Cruise

 

What are your packing recommendations?
American Cruise Lines recommends you pack comfortable resort attire and the following:

  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Sunscreen
  • Hat
  • Light rain wear
  • Jacket for cool evenings
  • Camera
  • Photo identification

Return to Top

Is there a limit on how much luggage I can bring?
American Cruise Lines places no restrictions on luggage. However, it is recommended that you bring as few bags as necessary. Suitcases less than 10 inches high may be stowed under your bed. Return to Top.

Does American Cruise Lines have special rates at certain hotels?
American Cruise Lines works with leading hotels at all departure points and offers American Cruise Lines passengers a special discounted rate and complimentary parking for the duration of the cruise. Specific recommended hotels are listed in your pre-cruise booklet and vary depending on itinerary. Return to Top.

What airport should I plan to fly into?
All departure ports are located near major airports. Please reference your pre-cruise booklet for a list of airports recommended for travel to your particular cruise departure point. Return to Top.

Does American Cruise Lines provide transportation services to and from the ship?
Transportation to and from the airports and to the ship is available at an additional charge. Several of our partner hotels offer complimentary shuttles to the ship on the morning of your cruise. Return to Top.

 

Embarkation, Debarkation & Visitors

 

When should I plan to arrive for boarding?
Cruises depart at 1:30 p.m. or earlier if all passengers have arrived. Passengers may board after 10 a.m. It is recommended that passengers arrive no later than 12:30 p.m. Return to Top.

How is luggage handled and are tags available?
At boarding, crew members will be available to transfer your luggage to your stateroom. You will be receiving luggage tags with your boarding pass before your cruise. If you would like additional tags, your cruise specialist will be happy to send you more. If you have cruised with use before, please remove your old luggage tags. Return to Top.

How early can I disembark the ship?
Cruises sometimes return the evening before the last day of the cruise, and passengers, on most cruises, may stay onboard until 8:30 a.m. Breakfast is served on the last day of every cruise. Return to Top.

What is the visitor policy?
Guests are welcome to have visitors onboard. Please notify your Hotel Manager should you be expecting a visitor so proper accommodations can be prepared. Should you know about a visitor(s) prior to your cruise, please notify your cruise specialist. Return to Top.

 

On Board

 

What amenities are available in your staterooms?
American Cruise Lines’ staterooms, most at more than 220 square feet, are by far the largest in their class. The majority of staterooms have spacious private balconies and feature a roomy private hotel-like bath and a large, opening picture window, allowing you spectacular up-close views of landscape, ports, and sea. Each stateroom is tastefully designed with your comfort and convenience in mind and includes the following amenities:

  • Twin or King-sized bed
  • Twice-daily stateroom service
  • Remote-controlled satellite TV w/DVD player
  • Internet access
  • Individual climate control system
  • Writing desk & stationery
  • Hair dryer
  • Spacious closet and four-drawer dresser and dual night tables

Return to Top

What public areas are featured on board?
American Cruise Lines features various oversized lounges aboard each of its ships including Internet stations and a well-stocked library. An assortment of decks are available to guests including a lounge deck and observation deck. Binoculars, guides and additional reading materials are available throughout the ships.

Services such as spa, hair/beauty treatments and laundry are available in port and can be fully arranged by your hotel manager onboard. Additional services such as tee-time requests and special occasion setups are available upon request. Return to Top.

Is there Internet access on board?
Yes. American Cruise Lines’ ships feature free ship-wide Wi-Fi Internet access and complimentary computer access in its lounges. Depending on weather and location, Internet connection may at times be unavailable. Return to Top. 

What is the electrical voltage on board?
American Cruise Lines ships have 110-Volt outlets. Return to Top.

What is dining like aboard your ships?
American Cruise Lines offers open seating at every meal in the glass-enclosed Dining Salon on the Main Deck. The atmosphere is informal – seating is unassigned and dress is resort casual. Each table offers an incredible outside view and meals are cooked to order, making dining a great time to share your experiences with companions and build new friendships. Your masterfully skilled chef creates delectable feasts for each meal (menus announced well in advance). Carefully selected fresh seafood, meats and produce are often purchased in the regions we visit, allowing your chef to highlight the cuisine with local flavor. American Cruise Lines provides complimentary wine and beer during lunch and dinner service. A complimentary cocktail hour with full bar is hosted each evening before dinner. Glasses, ice, mixers, coffee and soft drinks are available at all times. For other liquor requests your Hotel Manager will assist you.  Return to Top.

Is there fitness equipment on board?
Yes, American Cruise Lines features new state-of-the-art fitness equipment in a designated exercise area aboard every ship. For exact details on the equipment available on your ship, please call your cruise specialist. Return to Top. 

What shore excursions are offered and how do I sign up?
Your onshore experience is as important as your onboard experience, so American Cruise Lines has taken special care to research and plan excursions at each port. With American Cruise Lines you will experience what makes each destination a special place. Your pre-cruise booklet that is mailed out to you offers a comprehensive list of tours that will take you to the finest local sites at each port and give you insight into the area’s culture, heritage and history. For additional information and pricing or for alternative activities available, your Cruise Director or onboard guest speaker will be happy to help. You may sign up for shore excursions onboard with the Cruise Director. Shore excursions typically cost $20 to $70 and can be paid onboard near the end of your cruise. American Cruise Lines is dedicated to making your onshore experience a true American adventure. Return to Top.

What can be expected for onboard entertainment?
Local experts, guest speakers, authors, historians and entertainers will join you aboard and onshore to further enhance your cruising experience. Return to Top.