How to Choose the Right Stateroom for You

The better you can see the ocean,

the higher the room. And the higher the cost.

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How To Choose The Right Stateroom For You

Choosing the right stateroom for your cruise takes some time unless you’re willing to accept whatever the cruise line gives you. Most people are more choosy when it comes to cabin size and its location.  

Cabin Size:  

They tend to be small, a compact, miniature version of a hotel room with all the same furnishings: dresser drawers, closet, bed, nightstand, dressing table and bathroom. Many have a sitting area.

Most passengers find the rooms adequate, realizing the only times they'll be in them is to sleep or change clothes.

Unless the ship is in port, everyone tends to stay on deck in a lounge chair; use the swimming pool or one of the other exercise facilities.

Inside, Ocean View, Verandah (Balcony) or Suite?

These are the four basic stateroom types which are often divided into different categories. The higher the category, the higher the price.

Inside cabin:
These have no outside view at all and normally are the least expensive rooms on a ship. Yet they're often as spacious as the ocean view rooms. With a TV camera mounted on the bridge to act as their eyes, many experienced cruising passengers opt for inside rooms. They prefer to spend their money on shore excursions or save it to use on another cruise.

Inside cabins often are the same size and have the same configuration as an outside cabin. Drapes or curtains hung on one wall give the illusion of a window.  Interior decorators use mirrors to camouflage the size of a room so it may seem larger than it really is. 

If you plan to enjoy the ports of call and lounge by the pool during days at sea, an inside cabin may be perfect. Especially if you like to sleep in a very dark room.

Outside Cabin:
Also called an oceanview stateroom, these cabins have either a picture window or a small porthole. Other amenities are the same as an inside cabin. However, outside cabins may be larger than inside cabins, having anywhere from 20- to 30- square feet of added space.  The least expensive  cabins in this category have a partially obstructed view blocked by a lifeboat or other equipment.

Balcony/Verandah: These cabins usually have a sliding glass door from ceiling to floor that opens onto a small balcony containing 2 chairs and a table. Beware that your balcony may have a limited view. Ask your travel agent to be certain you're not disappointed.

It is difficult to know the exact size of a balcony stateroom since its square-footage also includes the open balcony area.  The inside of a verandah cabin may be no larger than the oceanview cabin below it.

Balcony cabins, like ocean view staterooms , sometimes have  a seriously obstructed view. Depending on a ship's design, part of the pool deck may extend out over the ocean so far that it cuts off part of the view for balconies closest to the uppermost deck.  On this kind of ship,, you are better off in a cabin several decks below the top deck.

Suite: The most expensive and they vary greatly in size and amenities. A bottle of champagne on ice will greet you upon arrival and you shouldn't have trouble unpacking considering all the roomy closets provided. Your bathroom may even include a Jacuzzi-style tub and a separate shower with imported soaps, lotions, and other toiletries.

Suites often include a small refrigerator stocked with bottled water and your favorite alcoholic beverages. Extras vary according to the cruise line but may include a private sun deck, separate sleeping area and a butler serving morning breakfast and hors devours in the afternoon.

Note: The higher above the waterline, the more a cabin is likely to feel movement in rough seas. Some of the most expensive cabins are on the highest decks. Staterooms at the bow of the ship also experience more rocking and rolling compared to those located aft.

Choosing The Most Convenient Location This is as important as the stateroom itself.

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