Metabolism reprogramming has been linked with the initiation, metastasis, and recurrence of cancer. The aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH) family is the most important enzyme system for aldehyde metabolism. The human ALDH family is composed of 19 members. ALDH1A3 participates in various physiological processes in human cells by oxidizing all-trans-retinal to retinoic acid. ALDH1A3 expression is regulated by many factors, and it is associated with the development, progression, and prognosis of cancers. In addition, ALDH1A3 influences a diverse range of biological characteristics within cancer stem cells and can act as a marker for these cells. Thus, growing evidence indicates that ALDH1A3 has the potential to be used as a target for cancer diagnosis and therapy.