Cruise History – The Last Ocean Liners: When you could go around the world by taking a liner voyage and not a cruise!



 American Export Line’s SS CONSTITUTION

Courtesy of a wonderful website called LAST OCEAN LINERS

2224859182_9796daf399.jpgUntil the early 1970s, it was routinely possible to schedule extensive world journeys by transferring between three, four or more different ocean liners on point-to-point line voyages. The services were promoted to take advantage of a coordinated system of fares and schedules among cooperating shipping companies known as the “Interchange Lines.”

In January 1962, for example, one could begin at New York with an 11 day Atlantic crossing on American Export Lines’ Constitution (above) to Tenerife, Gibraltar and Naples. After visiting Italy, passengers caught the Asia of Lloyd Triestino outbound for 25 days via the Suez Canal to Pakistan, India, Singapore and Hong Kong.


Luncheon on deck aboard American President Line’s SS CLEVELAND – 1960s

ael6004.jpgThen the traveler could sail home across the Pacific for 19 days on American President Lines’ President Cleveland via Kobe, Yokohama and Honolulu to San Francisco. In those days fares for this alluring around the world voyage began at only US$935 in Tourist Class or US$1488 in First Class.

Here we survey a sample of the 1962 schedules and services of the Interchange Lines as they weaved together these romantic routes on splendid ships over exotic seas. Come along. It’s sailing hour, so let’s enjoy a pleasant journey back into the not-so-distant past when ocean liners could take you almost anywhere!

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About Michael L. Grace

During the mid-80s, Michael Grace worked as a writer on the TV Hit Series THE LOVE BOAT. He wrote many of the two hour special featuring great stars of the past, including Lana Turner, Claire Trevor, Anne Baxter, Ethel Merman, Alexis Smith, etc. The public’s access to these stars, in familiar dramas and comedies, made them want to go on a cruise. They could see the stars in an ordinary world as “regular” people. The phenomenally successful series was responsible for creating the cruise industry as we know it today. By the time he was writing for Love Boat, the great steamship companies and their liners were flying hand me down foreign flags, painted like old whores, scrapped or doing three day cruises to the Bahamas. He had sailed on over thirty ships and liners with his parents, aunt and grandmother in late 50s to early 70s. The very successful CRUISING THE PAST website has been an outgrowth of Michael’s strong interest in cruise and social history. Drawing on his own knowledge and a vast maritime and social history collection, he is able to produce a very successful website. Michael is part of the award winning team that created the internationally performed award winning musical SNOOPY, based on PEANUTS by Charles M. Schultz. He has written for television and films. Read more by going to "About" (on the above dashboard) and clicking "Editor"…