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bob brown

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  1. So I sent them an email, asking if they were planning to do the Autumn, Chicago to Montreal cruise, and they did answer, saying they would begin Great Lakes cruising in April, 2025.

    I will keep my booked Pearl Mist cruise for this year.

  2. Well after I booked this cruise, it now seems that my original ship may be doing the voyage after all, under the new Victory Cruise Lines...

    I will probably stick with the Pearl Mist, though, as it is probably a sure thing, and besides, I have already booked another cruise and train travel to get me home to Florida (on HAL and VIA Rail).🤷‍♂️

  3. 7 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

    Yes, the inefficiencies of the steam plant are continued with having a pair of z-drives hanging under the ship, only being used when necessary.  Further, as noted in the article, steam plant boilers are not the best at responding to rapid load changes (stopping the paddlewheel), and will tend to belch black smoke at these times, not endearing the ship to environmental causes.

    Maybe so, but environmentalists have long forgiven the occasional use of historic treasures like railroad steam locomotives, on fan trips, or historic regular operations…

  4. The American Queen, due to her relatively large size (for a riverboat), besides offering a classic heritage paddlewheel steamboat experience, also can offer more on board variety of venues and activities that a smaller boat can’t.


    As far as size goes, the modern design Viking Mississippi is pretty close, and is far more luxurious, so apparently there is a market for that…

    • Like 1
  5. 8 hours ago, Tom47 said:

    It took them years to agree to merge PS with ACL, after requests from cruise pax.  We cruised PS 1st time in 2019 and it was an issue then.   I doubt AQV will happen, but you can live in hope.

    If they want to keep most of AQV's customer's, it might be a good idea to make it happen.  Otherwise, some other player might enter the market, (besides Viking), and take some of them...


  6. 3 hours ago, Tom47 said:

    They have merged loyalty programs with ACL, parent company, about 4 months ago.

    That’s no help to me, as I haven’t sailed on either previously.  Now if they would “merge” their loyalty program with the former AQV, since they purchased some of their vessels, that would give me some “status”…😉

  7. 2 hours ago, goletans said:

    Thank you. I had missed this topic.

    I see that as usual with O it depends on who you talk to and when as perks change.

    For now I will assume that I will be able to request my free 14-day cruise 180 days before sailing and that my husband may also get the perk. However, he will not get an additional free cruise on his 20th. Any other benefits we may or may not receive is up in the air for now. Oceania will figure out how much we will pay for the sailing. We hope it will be a solid savings.

    I had long given up on 'O' doing what is "right", and accepted it is what it is;  but since this subject has resurrected, I will comment...


    If someone can take a friend on their "Milestone" free cruise, who say, has no history on "O", does that person, who begins cruising on 'O' on their own, now have to cruise 40 times to get their first "earned Milestone"?    That would seem to be how 'O' is interpreting their "fine print".


    Or...suppose someone else wants to take that person on their first Milestone cruise...would they have to pay to go on it, since they have already been on another person's Milestone?


    The "fine print" does not address all these possibilities.   The perk should be for an individual to use, and the status of the 'guest', should have no bearing on whether they can be a 'guest' of the Milestone awardee, or not.   Or simply change it to make it clear, the milestone cannot be 'shared'.

  8. 2 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

    ACL would not use the AQV ships in their Pearl Seas subsidiary, as this would eliminate their ability to bypass the PVSA.  The ships need to be US owned, and Pearl is not a US company.  Why initiate a US subsidiary to a non-US subsidiary, when they can operate US flag Great Lake ships directly under ACL.

    Okay...then just divert some of their new coastal ACL ships to cover the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence itineraries.  Then keep or get rid of the Pearl Seas ship.   🤷‍♂️

  9. I am still hoping ACL takes the opportunity to increase their presence on the Great Lakes and upper St. Lawrence via their Pearl Seas subsidiary, hopefully with a pair of new ships, to replace the former Victory pair...


    And sail into Chicago instead of Milwaukee on most sailings...

    • Like 1
  10. The American Queen is in a class by itself, not just for its steam propulsion, but also for its size.  Its size allows it to offer a level of on board entertainment and facilities that a smaller boat cannot.


    The modern Viking Mississippi probably comes closest in that regard…

  11. On 2/28/2024 at 1:47 AM, steamboats said:


    The American Queen is built in 1995, the American Empress in 2003. The American Countess and American Duchess are new. The Cape boats (Ocean Voyager / Ocean Navigator ex Cape May Light / Cape Cod Light) are also from the long ago Delta Queen Steamboat Company era.



    The American Countess and Duchess aren’t exactly new, either…rebuilt from former Iowa gambling boats…

  12. On 2/22/2024 at 9:03 PM, Tom47 said:

    We were on an ACL Columbia river cruise in 2022 and found the food very good.  Pearl Seas is owned by ACL and they have now merged loyalty programs..

    I am one of those displaced from an AQV booking for their Ocean Voyager Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway cruise this year that chose to try the Pearl Seas, Pearl Mist version of it.   Nice that I will be able to use that status on the ACL brand later...

    I am hoping that Pearl Seas will expand to fill the vacuum, and maybe with a new ship for that market, more like the two that Viking has...

  13. 15 hours ago, 3rdGenCunarder said:

    Is it just me (and the TV choices I make), but does it seem to anyone else that ACL is suddenly increasing their advertising? Maybe hoping to pick up passengers from AQV?

    I too have noticed recent ACL ads.  I am not sure if they are running more, to target former AQV customer's, or maybe I am just more aware of them now...🤷‍♂️

    • Like 1
  14. 12 hours ago, 0106 said:

    BTW, I have never see the commercials the two other times I watched on a ship.  Just the live stream of the game.

    The same for the two Superbowls I have seen on Oceania cruises.  Instead of the often entertaining commercials, they just kept repeating the same boring network "promo's", over and over and over...🥱

  15. I wish they would be more like their rival, ACL, as far as investing in new boats and ships, although I haven’t sailed with that line yet to compare their products.

    Due to AQV canceling my Great Lakes and St. Lawrence cruise this year, I will try ACL’s subsidiary, Pearl Seas Cruises, Pearl Mist for a similar itinerary.  Not sure if that will be a good measure of ACL or not, since the Pearl Mist is not a US registered ship, so a different crew experience…

  16. 17 minutes ago, Globalfish said:

    A similar article appears at https://www.travelweekly.com/River-Cruising/American-Queen-Voyages-cancels-February-sailings.


    Methinks that greedy venture capitalists took a long-standing company with a fine reputation and ran it right to the ground.  Not sure it can ever recover but wishing it the best.  The first step should be to get back to their roots on the Mississippi and chuck the expedition stuff (i.e. Alaska) and other “flotsam and jetsam.”

    Agree that they should not get into the Alaska market.  IIRC, they don't even own the expedition ship they use up there, but charter it from another company.  I would have liked them to stay on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence market, however...

  17. On 2/2/2024 at 7:37 AM, LDVinNC said:

    They have "encountered an occurrence"?  What does that mean?  Not sure that is even good English!

    So sad, we have loved AQV.

    Not sure if they ever restored the Z-drive

    that they lost on the American Queen, that caused our Red Wing to New Orleans cruise last October to need an escort tug the whole way....


    Could be that, or something else?:classic_unsure:

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