So you have chosen your cruise itinerary and the date you want to sail. Next question your agent will ask prior to booking is what kind of cabin would you like?
When contemplating this question, you must take two things into consideration. First is the location on the ship and secondly is the cabin type. Since there are so many options, it can become overwhelming. I will provide some points to consider when making this choice on an ocean cruise ship.
Cruise ships price their cabins based on what deck and area of the ship you are in so this can actually have an impact on your decision.
To be honest, location on the ship is often a personal preference. Many passengers enjoy the front of the ship for the expansive view from the balcony. Others feel it is important to be on either the port or starboard sides. And then other people don’t have any preference at all. For first time cruisers I often suggest that you choose a cabin that is located mid ship in order to combat any feeling of movement. The larger ships are built with technology now that includes high tech stabilizers so often this isn’t a serious concern. However if you don’t really know how you will assimilate to the movement of the ship, this is probably your best bet.
You also need to consider what deck you would like to be located on. Again, if you are a first time cruiser, I suggest you select a cabin in the middle deck range. This continues with the concept of stabilization. Depending on the ship, some higher decks can give you a feeling of slight sway. Lower decks can be less appealing if you don’t want to travel up many stairs or wait for elevators but keep in mind they can offer a cost savings if mobility is not a concern for you. While looking at the deck plan check about elevator locations, dining rooms, lounges or running tracks that are across from or above you, since sometimes you can have noise as a result.
The second thing to decide is what type of cabin you prefer. There are a myriad of cabin categories. For the purpose of this discussion I will classify them into 4 groups: Inside, Oceanview, Balcony and Suites. When making this decision, budget can once again be a factor.
Inside cabins are typically the most economical option on a cruise ship. They can be the perfect fit for those on a budget and that spend most of their time up on deck, participating in activities and generally just using the room for showering and sleeping. The rooms do not have any outside windows so for some this may be a deterrent as you don’t have any idea what is happening outside. For some they love the complete darkness for uninterrupted sleep!
Next are Oceanview cabins. Depending on the ship, the room size is usually the same as an Inside cabin however Oceanview cabins include a window. This can be a small porthole, a series of little windows or a large picture window. Best to ask what exactly the Oceanview is comprised of and decide if it is worth the additional expense. Often times cruise lines require the minimum purchase of an Oceanview cabin to be eligible for their promotions.
Balconies are a popular choice for those that enjoy having some private time on the ship. Rooms are generally larger and then have additional space in the form of a balcony. Having this secluded space can be ideal for relaxing quiet time, enjoying breakfast or a pre-dinner drink. Once passengers experience a balcony they very often continue to cruise in that cabin style.
The final cabin type is a Suite (see picture at the top of the post). Suites are perfect for people who want more living space in their room or enjoy entertaining other guests. Normally they are considerably larger including a seating area aside from the sleeping area. In some of the larger suite style cabins, you can have multiple bedroom areas and additional seating or dining areas. This cabin type can be ideal for families travelling together so everyone has a little more space.
As you can see, there are many things to consider when choosing a cabin category. Each cruise line offers different styles of rooms and a wealth of amenities specific to their offering. That is why it is best to consult a travel agent to help guide you in making a choice that will be perfect for you.
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