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Frequently Asked Questions

General Cruise questions

Do you offer cruises during the fall or winter?

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Our cruising seasons run from May through October. We do not have any public or private cruises available during late fall or winter.

How early should I arrive for my cruise?

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Customers should plan to arrive 30 minutes prior to departure to allow time to park and to check in at the ticket booth at 205 W. Highland Ave. Boarding will begin approximately 10 minutes prior to departure time.

What are the closest parking locations to your dock?

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Recommended Parking

130 E. State St. - Marcus Center Parking Ramp - This parking ramp is on the East side of the Milwaukee River. Take the Highland Ave. walking bridge to the West Side of the Milwaukee River, where you will find our boats.

1024 N. Doctor Martin Luther King Jr. Drive -Vern’s Parking. –1 block South of Edelweiss Dock on the South side of Usinger’s (After 5pm & weekends only)

There are other paid parking lots within a 1 block radius of our dock.

There is also street parking available on Highland Ave. and N. Doctor Martin Luther King Jr. Drive

How do I receive my tickets that I ordered online or over the phone? Will they be mailed to me?

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Tickets are not mailed out in advance. Customers should plan to arrive 30 minutes prior to departure to allow time to park and to check in at the ticket booth at 205 W. Highland Ave. to receive boarding passes. Boarding will begin approximately 10 minutes prior to departure time. All customers will receive an email confirmation for their records, but that is not required in order to check in.

What ages are eligible for the child's price for tours?

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Passengers that are 2-12 years old are eligible for the Child Price aboard the Historic Narrated Cruise. We do not offer a child priced ticket for any other cruises.

We do not require a paid ticket for infants and toddlers under the age of 2 pending availability. We do, however, require them to have a boarding pass. To ensure your child has a boarding pass free of charge, contact our ticket office at 414.276.7447 with your order information and we will adjust your reservation to include a boarding pass for your infant/toddler (one free infant/toddler pass eligibile per order). We cannot guarantee availability of infant/toddler passes as that number is based on vessel maximums and how many tickets have been purchased in advance. Infant and toddler passes available on select cruises.

Again, we cannot guarantee availability for your infant or toddler unless you communicate with us in advance.

Can someone under 21 attend our cruises?

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We are happy to announce that all of our cruises are now all ages events. You no longer need to leave any members of your party behind! Passengers may be carded before boarding and those 21+ hand stamped.

Do you cancel your cruises if it's raining?

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If it is raining we do not cancel our cruises. Our vessels have large enclosed cabins that allow passengers to be inside and covered for the duration of the cruise.  In the case of severe weather (which is rare), if we are told by the Coast Guard that it is unsafe to leave the dock for a cruise, we cancel our cruises and provide our customers with a full refund or rescheduled cruise ticket if they prefer.

If a customer chooses not to attend a scheduled cruise due to weather, we do not
allow refunds for any ticket cancelled within 5 days of cruise departure.

Can I use a coupon I found online?

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Some third party websites advertise coupons for our cruises. These are not sanctioned by Edelweiss and are, therefore, not valid. Any legitimate discounts would be advertised only through our newsletter and social media pages.

What if I can't make the cruise?

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We do have a 5 day/120 hour cancellation policy for all of our reservations, which allows you to cancel and be refunded or reschedule your cruise as long as it is done 5 days prior to your cruise date. Please call our direct line at (414) 276-7447 for more information.

Vessel Specifics

Can I bring food onto the boat?

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No, we do not allow any outside food or beverages to be brought onto the boats. All of our cruises have a bar available with soft drinks and alcoholic beverages for purchase. We offer a number of cruises that have food included with the ticket price. We are also located in the middle of downtown Milwaukee with an array of restaurants that you can patronize before or after your cruise.

I'm celebrating an occasion, can I bring a cake?

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We do not allow any outside food or beverage to be brought onto the boats.

Can I purchase drinks on board?

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Yes. Each vessel has a fully stocked bar on board with soft drinks and alcoholic beverages available for purchase along with a few snacks. We accept cash, credit card, or debit card. Please be aware that there is a 3% surcharge for credit card transactions.

Can I bring a purse or bag on board with me?

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Small purses are allowed but cannot be bigger than 5"x7"x1". Diaper bags or bags that are required out of medical necessity are allowed. All bags/purses, regardless of size, are subject to search.

Can you guarantee the specific boat my cruise will be on?

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No, we don't guarantee any specific vessels for our public cruises due to the fluid nature of capacity needs. The boat will be assigned day-of.

Are your vessels wheelchair/handicap accessible?

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Our vessels can accommodate manual wheelchair boarding. We recommend giving our reservations office a call so that we can give more specific information about departure time and accommodations for a wheelchair, walker, or handicap boarding. Weight restrictions and the width of our doorways prevent us from being able to accommodate motorized wheelchairs or scooters.

All vessels do have raised thresholds that require wheelchairs to be lifted over.

Are there restrooms on the boat?

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Yes, all of our boats have restrooms on board.

Are seats assigned and can I reserve seats?

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No. In fact, on most of our public cruises, we have fewer chairs than the maximum number of passengers. We have found that, rather than being assigned one seat, guests enjoy being able to move all about the vessel during their cruise; getting fresh air on one of the decks, heading upstairs for a different view, going to the bar for a refreshment, gathering around a table with friends, etc. Having fixed seating would prohibit this ease of movement. If you require a seat for the full duration of your cruise, please be sure to arrive well in advance of your departure time since seating on all areas of the boat is on a first come, first served basis.

Can I smoke on the boat?

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Smoking is allowed on the back/rear deck of Edelweiss II and Harbor Lady only. Smoking is allowed on the front/bow of Miss Wisconsin only. There is no smoking in any interior cabins of the vessels. Please be mindful of other passengers, especially children, if you choose to smoke during the cruise.

Milwaukee River Cruise Line does not allow any illegal substances to be smoked/consumed during any public or private cruises.

What is your concealed carry policy?

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There are no weapons or firearms of any kind allowed on our vessels.

Group ordering/Large ticket quantities

Do you offer group rates for your cruises?

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We feel that it's fair to keep our ticket prices affordable for parties of all sizes. Therefore, the prices of our cruises are the same for any size group. However, if you're looking for more of a private experience, read about our private charter tours here.

I'm planning a large party. What's the best way to organize my party and how do I purchase tickets?

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As the group organizer, you should be the first person to purchase your tickets for the cruise of your choice on the website. All of the guests in your party should reference your name in the "group organizer" field at checkout. We will adjust our manifests to ensure your guests will all be on the same boat should a cruise spread out to a second boat. An even simpler way is to have 1 person purchase all of the tickets in one order and settle up offline. Our cancellation policy is 72 hours prior to the cruise date, so the purchaser has until 3 days before the cruise to cancel and be refunded for any tickets that they don't need.

Is there a way to reserve tickets in advance without paying for them?

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No. The only way to reserve tickets is to purchase them in advance. We do have a 5 day cancellation policy for all of our reservations, which allows you to cancel and be refunded or reschedule your cruise as long as it is done 5 days prior to your cruise date.

How do I create a group?

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The new site allows for group notes to be added in the cart. If you are purchasing tickets for someone's event or organizing an event for multiple people, please make sure to add their name in the notes section of the cart and we will do our best to combine parties.

Site/Ordering Specifics

How do I use a paper gift certificate to buy tickets?

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With the introduction of our new egift cards, we've discontinued issuing paper gift certificates. If you have a physical gift certificate in your possession, please call (414) 276-7447 to redeem. We will work to reserve tickets on a cruise using your gift certificate information.

Do egift cards or gift certificates expire?

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No, they do not expire.

How can I see past cruises I've booked?

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If you created an account when you first purchased, you can log in and see your past cruises (cruises prior to May 1, 2023 will not be visible). If you did not, make sure to create an account the next time you book a cruise and it will connect. You can always call (414) 276-7447 to get past order information if needed.

I live outside of Milwaukee, WI but I'm being charged 7.9% sales tax. Why?

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Because of the in-person nature of the cruise; WI state, Milwaukee county, and City of Milwaukee taxes are applied to every online order no matter where the person ordering resides. The total rate for all three taxes starting 1/1/2024 is 7.9%. Due to webhost (Shopify) restrictions, this 7.9% will be listed as the customer's home state but will in fact be WI sales tax. **All sales are sourced in WI and all points of sale are at the business address. No goods are shipped to the customer and no services take place at the customer’s location, all services are performed exclusively on company premises and at the company location with the customer preset on-site.**

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