Jump to content
knitwitt44

1st Time Cruise Memphis to St. Louis September

Recommended Posts

Our first time on a river cruise leaving from Memphis in September.

 

Many questions, booked a bay window guarantee. Does that mean we can get a higher category .

 

How big is a bay window canin ? Dinner time at 5:15. Is that set? Can you come in later? What time do the Hip Hop usually start in the AM?

 

what is the weather like 2nd week in September?

 

Getting excited about the trip.

 

Thanks,

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Knitwitt44,

I don't understand why there is not more chatter on CruiseCritic about this cruise line! My husband and I just did the March 7th Memphis to New Orleans trip and it was fantastic! One of our best cruises ever.

I can only help you with a few of your questions. You have early seating. They let you come in from 5:15 to 5:30. At 5:35, they seat the people that would like to eat early that day. (who have late seating normally). We did that twice and had no problem getting a 2 tabletop. Our late seating began at 7:45 and there were lots of empty seats, so no problem getting a late seating! However, we did most of our dinners at the Front Porch cafe (buffet). Why? Because we could eat when we were hungry and the food was similiar to the dining rooms. Unfortunately for my waistline, the soft serve ice cream (with toppings) and cookies were available 24 hours a day! (and popcorn). As for lunch, I encourage you to look at the menu and buffet in the dining room, as well as what is offered at the Front Porch. We would look at all 3 and make our decision. It varied from day to day as to which was best. We never ate breakfast, so cannot help there.

As for the Hop-on, Hop-off bus. There is a kiosk at the shore excursion desk that you sign up and get tickets for what time you want to disembark. Our cruise, most started at 8:00 am. No need to go that early, as most places they stop do not open til 10 am or later! The admittance charges to these places are INCLUDED in your cruise price. No worries, these places will know you are off the steamboat because you will be carrying your ship daily with you! And, quite often, the places are close together and you end up just walking from stop to stop. However, there is a local tour guide on board from 8 am til noon that tells you all about the city and points out all the highlights. After lunch, the buses still make the rounds but there is no tour guide. We found we greatly enjoyed the tour guides and tried to do the hop-on, hop-off bus in the am and the premium shore excursions in the pm.

Since you are starting in Memphis, we can tell you the premium shore excursion to Graceland is well worth it. You get plenty of time at Graceland to do everything you could possibly want! We just left our carry on luggage on the bus as it was locked up. One of the best parts of this cruise is no security lines! They got us to the ship at 4 pm and we just walked on. You just walk on and off the boat. They do scan your card but NO security, x-ray machines that typically hold you up on ocean cruises.

Pro: normal TV channels on the flatscreen in your cabin (able to watch Walking Dead!), Verizon signal strong the entire trip, WiFi free but kinda slow sometimes, all staff were very friendly and helpful, riverlorian and civil war talks were very entertaining and interesting, free bottled water, free wine/beer at suppertime, free soft drinks anytime (fountain from the bars, no cans).

Con: some of the hop-on, hop-off stops aren't the most interesting. Can you believe that is the only con I can think off?!

If I can help with any other questions you may have, just ask. We are planning another cruise with American Queen steamboat this July!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you so much for your reply. You answered all my questions and we are really looking forward to a lovely, relaxing time. Hope it meets my expectations. One last question, how is the coffee? Love my coffee.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now I am really pleased we booked the trip! Decent coffee! We have been cruising over the last 12 years on line out of NYC. Done all the routes and recently disappointed with all the changes and not feeling a valued customer anymore. We don't want to travel to Europe so I starting looking at the USA and this cruise sounded so great. A bit expensive but we haven't gone away for 2 years so it is doable now. Really looking forward to it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with Cruzjunky's comments. We sailed from St. Paul to St. Louis last year with a group of friends and we had such a wonderful time that we booked Nashville to Memphis for this year. The pace was very relaxed and every crew member was extremely nice and helpful. The food was delicious and plenty available. The evening shows were very enjoyable. Hop On Hop Off bus was great. We took one of the optional extra cost tours and it was well worth the reasonable cost. I'm sure you'll have a wonderful time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi....we are from the UK and doing New Orleans to Memphis in a few weeks. As we are limited by luggage I need to know whether the American Queen supplies bathrobes in the cabins as most larger ships do.

Many thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Teefine, the answer to your question is yes, they do provide bathrobes in the staterooms. With that I should add, they did last year. You may want to send an email to American Queen to confirm my answer or a recent cruiser can confirm.

 

Enjoy your trip to the US and cruising on the Mississippi.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

These riverboat cruises sound wonderful. We were thinking about Sept. of 2017 or thereabouts. How soon should we book and how much is the deposit and which cabins are best? We were debating inside vs bay window.

Thanks for any help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
These riverboat cruises sound wonderful. We were thinking about Sept. of 2017 or thereabouts. How soon should we book and how much is the deposit and which cabins are best? We were debating inside vs bay window.

Thanks for any help.

I would look for the specials then book

 

we like the bay window cabins on deck 2 fairly quiet

the insides back up against the outside cabins so not sure if the walls are as thin up there or not

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With out a doubt I would get a bay window room. Unlike an ocean cruise there is always something to look at on the river or on the shore. Also there is no problem with privacy keeping the shades open. I think that you would regret not spending the little bit extra to get one of the outside rooms.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another factor in cabin selection - most of the insides are quite tiny!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It does sound like a bay window would be worth it. We've done inside on ocean cruises. Gave that up. I need a window. I like seeing outside, not that I am claustrophobic. Does this company typically run specials?

Thanks for the information

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Look on their website and oft times there are specials listed there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Our first time on a river cruise leaving from Memphis in September. ...........what is the weather like 2nd week in September?

 

Hi,

Have just stumbled across this thread - we are also on the Memphis to St Louis trip departing Memphis September 12th.

I tried to start a Roll Call thread for this trip, but no one has responded, so maybe this is the best place to exchange information.

 

We are a retired couple from England, UK. Flying in to Atlanta Sept. 1st, pick up a rental car then 3 days in apartments in Chattanooga and Nashville before we come to Memphis.

 

Does anyone know which hotel is used for the cruise pre-night accommodation? We have an apartment for 4 days in Memphis before that and will drop off our rental car at the airport at midday and get a cab to the hotel. Then it's over to AQ to organise everything for us!

 

We've done only one river cruise before in Europe, after many years of ocean cruising, so this is something we are greatly looking forward to.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We are on this trip too. Coming from NYC Sept 10. The hotel is Shearaton Downtown Memphis and we were told to book the extra directly with the hotel which we did but they couldn't find the block booking from the American queen yet. I will check back next week. I suggest you book the extra night now because it may get booked up. Hope to see you on the boat.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good to hear from you - was wondering whether anyone else is monitoring Cruise Critic. Usually (for ocean cruises) there's a very active Roll Call which starts up to a year ahead of the sailing, so I was surprised to find nothing for our Mississippi trip.

 

The pre-cruise night that comes with the booking is for Sunday 11th September and we have an apartment booked up to that Sunday morning, so no need for us to add on any extra hotel night(s). But thanks for telling me the hotel name - I now need to discover if they have a hotel shuttle to/from the airport so we can get back after dropping off our rental car.

 

This is going to be a totally new experience for us, so I've been researching as much as I can about the ship and how the cruise works. I was pleased to discover today that at each stop, they provide a Hop-on Hop-off bus to take us around the local sights. That makes life easier. Saves all the research and planning for independent exploration which we usually do on ocean cruises.

 

The whole atmosphere on the ship sound splendid - classy quality.

 

Will be interesting to see if anyone else spots this thread.

 

By the way - what are you doing at the end of the cruise? Only asking because we will be going direct to St Louis airport after breakfast and I'm wondering about the best way to get there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We, too, are taking an ocean cruise this years. Various reasons mainly the changes of extra charges all over the place. We usually travel out NYC port because my guy hates to fly so this is a big adventure for us. I know there is a shuttle from the hotel to the dock. We will probably take the Graceland Tour which gives you 5 hours in tacky Graceland and then, down to the dock.

 

 

I am told we will totally enjoy the experience. Excellent food, good side trips included, etc.

 

We will be leaving from the St. Louis airport, too. I don't know if the American Queen provides a bus to the airport so we will probably take a cab when we hit port. We can share a cab with you if you wish.

 

We should get together on board for a drink or something. We are both retired and in our early seventies. I also love the Brits. Best people in the world!

 

I didn't see a roll call but we could connect some how. My name is Susan and significant other is Les. Keep in touch so we can get together.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Susan and Les.

I am Chris and my wife is Dawn. We are from Bristol in England.

We have visited your country a number of times - family in Tucson (Az) and San Fransisco. We've been to NYC a couple of times - for a few days on our way to visit family in Kingston (On) in Canada and for another few days before joining a cruise. Last year we did a cruise from Venice, Italy which ended in Ft Lauderdale and we then rented an RV and toured Florida Keys, Georgia, the Carolinas and Virginia, ending in DC for a week. We love meeting Americans - always so friendly and welcoming! And your weather is usually much better than an English summer.............

 

Yes, will be good to meet up on board or even at the Sheraton.

 

I believe that AQ offer a bus to the airport which is combined with a 4½ hour tour. Not for us as we need to be at the airport by about 10.30am to check in. But we can chat about options when we meet.

 

By the way we are booked in cabin 412.

 

We are off on a 2 week cruise on Emerald Princess next Saturday - the Baltic ports including a visits to Copenhagen (Denmark), Stockholm (Sweden), Helsinki (Finland) and Gdansk (Poland) as well as 2 days in Russia - St. Petersburg. Should be fun.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you have seen more of the U.S. than I have! It is a great country. I was in England twice. In London for a few days on business and another time a few days in London and then, Dover for a cruise to Sweden, Norway, St. Petersburg, Germany. A wonderful cruise.

 

I live in Brooklyn Heights which is just across the East River. I use to be a Big Apple Greeter which is a group of New Yorkers who volunteer their time and give walks to tourists all over NYC. This is a free organization and I always enjoyed taking Brits on a walk over the Brooklyn Bridge and then through the historic neighborhood of Brooklyn Heights.

 

It would be nice together. As of yet,we haven't a cabin assigned since we booked an E guarantee but I am sure we will be on the boat. If not, oooops! Les will be very annoyed.

 

We haven't booked our air yet but intend to catch a 10:00AM or later. So, there will be a good chance we can catch a car or taxi to share if you wish.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In 2005 when we last visited NYC I arranged for a Big Apple Greeter guided walk over the Brooklyn Bridge and through Brooklyn Heights...... What a small world. Maybe it was you ...!

 

Our flight is booked for 12.30 pm.

 

I didn't mention that we are mid / early 70s. Two children - one lives in Spain with our 2 grandchildren and the other in New Zealand. So we travel a lot. Les wouldn't enjoy 27 hours on a plane to NZ.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When we got off the AQ in St Louis a few years ago, AQ did provide a bus directly to the airport. I think it was $25/pp.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Forgot to say that the bus left the boat quite early - maybe 7:30 and we were at the airport by a bit after 8. That was when the port was actually St. Louis, though. Now that it is Alton IL the bus ride to the airport will no doubt take longer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Q&A with Daniel Skjeldam, CEO Hurtigruten
      • Win a 7-Night Romantic Danube Luxury River Cruise with AmaWaterways
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Community Contests
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×