American Cruise Lines to Double Fleet

American Cruise Lines ( has announced plans to double it’s fleet of US flagged passenger vessels. The Guilfort Connecticut based purveyor of near coastal themed cruises will soon be the largest US flagged operator- in terms of vessels operated.

Competitor Cruisewest is currently in the lead with 5 ships- having obtained several when Clippper went out of business. American Cruise Lines formerly had 3- but has announced the purchase of the Queen of the West sternwheeler from Ambassadors International- parent company of the now defunct Majestic America Line.

Press release here-

The purchase of the QOTW marks the beginning of West Coat operations for the company. The company plans 2 (?) more ships- the 104 passenger “Independence” scheduled for completion in 2010-, and their website references an unidentified vessel (or vessels) which will operate on the West Coast.

It is possible that the other vessel(s) are the Columbia Queen or the Empress of the North- which were also operated in the area until last year by former competitor Majestic America Line.This would put them at at least 6 vessels- giving them the most of any US flagged cruise operator.

This would put them at at east 6 vessels- giving them the most of any US flagged cruise operator.

The nature of small ship cruising largely precludes competition from foreign flag competition which has reduced the large ship US cruise industry to 1 vessel. NCL’s 920 foot “Pride of America” is the sole survivor of a fleet that once included 3 ships. The other two- “Pride of Hawaii” and “Pride of Aloha” were both withdrawn from the fleet and re-flagged as foreign vessels.


Looks like they might be hiring then, huh? Anybody know anything about working for them?


I haven’t worked for them- but know a decent amount about them. They absolutely will be hiring.

Please let me know what else I can tell you.

I see on your profile you have cruise experience (with whom?)

You should apply with them- and Cruisewest. As I’m sure you know- there’s high turnover- especially in the hotel/ F and B departments.

A lot of people who work as utility, cook, waiter, deckhand, etc… are college kids looking for a summer job- and don’t stay. (Less turnover for the mates, engineers, etc- but as the pay is lower than most- still fairly frequent)

If you have twic, mmd/mmc, bst etc.- and are willing to work ANY job to get started- it’s not a bad way to get a foot in the door.

I started as a utility galley (dishwasher) and I know a captain on here who started out cleaning up casino boats.

Many look down their noses at such jobs- but with the way the economy is- it’s not a bad idea.

If I had to choose between scrubbing pots (or making beds) on a ship for $800 a week- or not paying the bills- it would be a simple choice!:smiley:

Plus- if HR knows you have experience as a deckhand/qmed, whatever… and you are a good worker- a position will open up for you eventually.

Now is the time when American and Cruisewest start hiring for the Summer/Fall Cruise seasons…:slight_smile:

Hey, thanks for the info. I am really looking for a wiper position, and Capt. Kelly Sweeney is in the process of helping me as we speak. Might be heading up to Alaska to help get a processor ready to go. Still not 100% yet.

I actually contacted Cruise West last year and they offered me a deckhand position, but I already had a entertainment gig on a Cruise ship so couldn’t take it. If I remember right the contracts were upwards of 4months, right?

I know experience is experience, but since I am starting a bit late wouldn’t it be better to try and get a wiper position first? Thanks


Hopefully Captain Kelly can get you something- he’s pretty good:)

If not- I’m PM’ing you an email address for another processor- they might need a wiper.

Absolutely- if you can get on in the position you desire- go for it!:smiley:

But… many have had a hard time and have had to to take what they can get. This is especially true if you are entry level- OS, wiper, or utility galley/steward.

I think Alaska processing is a pretty good bet- lots of jobs- and lots of people not wanting them as much as other positions. One piece of advice- some processors hire welders to fill the wiper billet- so any certicifations in this may prove advantageous.

You’re an entertainer? What kind? Which ships have you worked? Are you a member of SEATU (Seafarers and Entertainers Allied Trade Union)?

I don’t have any experience with the entertainment side- but have never had a contract, per se, on a cruise ship. Employment was always “at will”. HR sometimes called our rotations contracts- because that was what they had on international ships. I do know that Cruisewest asks that you commit to a season- but doubt it’s legally binding.

Lastly- if you’re considering trying to get a wiper spot- on the Queen of West- when it was owned by Majestic America the wiper spots were called “Hotel Maintenance” and performed a lot of work outside the Engine Room/EOS- changing lightbulbs, responding to pax (passenger) requests etc.

Hope something here helps- check your PM box…