So, you are ready to take a cruise, but what type of accommodations are there on a cruise ship and what is best for your vacation? This can be a daunting question not just for the novice cruiser but even for those who are seasoned cruisers. Picking the best cabin for your cruise is very important. There are questions to consider; what is important to you? Do you want to stay in your cabin for most of the cruise or do you want to just sleep and shower and come back at the crack of dawn? There are categories and cabin types and perks and....As your trusted travel advisors we are here to spell it out for you.
There are 4 types of onboard accommodations on most cruise ships which is included in the price of your cruise:
Oceanview with Balcony
Cruise ship accommodations are not the same size as hotel accommodations. They do range from small to suite size and do vary not just per cruise line but sometimes per ship within a cruise line. The best way to think of ship cabins is they are designed for 2 guests and range from 120-200 square feet. There are ships who have cabins which can hold up to 3 or 4 people, but they are usually little to no larger. The top suites on a ship are larger, in fact they are much larger than a hotel but the price for those premium accommodations come with a premium price tag, but if you can snag one it is worth the money and the amazing views. One important thing to keep in mind when thinking about cabins on cruise ships; they are built to be efficient. A another note they are usually quite comfortable and meticulously kept clean several times a day by your room steward.
Interior (sometimes referred to as inside), oceanview or standard cabins with a balcony have 2 twin beds on the floor which your cabin steward can slide together to become the size of a queen or a king. How you would like the bed layout to be is specified before you board the ship. Your trusty travel advisor (that’s us) will make sure to take care of that for you. If your cabin is one which can hold additional passengers, those beds pull down out of the walls or the ceiling. We can tell you kids love it, but most adults would prefer connecting staterooms (rooms which have a door between the 2 cabins just like in hotel adjoining rooms). Interior cabins are located on almost every deck of the ship and are the least expensive cabins onboard, making them the most economical. There are no windows in the Interior or Inside cabins. It does get very dark in these cabins but bringing a trusty nightlight will solve that problem.
Oceanview (sometimes called outside) cabins are located around the perimeter of the ships passenger decks and will have a window or a porthole (round window). If there is a window (not a porthole) they are usually a nice size. Note there are oceanview cabins which have a view obstruction meaning often the lifeboats block the view fully or partially, but once again this is where a great travel advisor helps you avoid those staterooms, unless this does not matter to you. All ships will also have some cabins with portholes rather than windows. Portholes are small and round, so remember the view is not as large as with the window. These cabins are located in the front of the ship and maybe even in the back on the lower decks. The benefit to a porthole or oceanview cabin over an inside cabin is there is natural light coming in the cabin plus it is nice to look out and see what is happening outside in the world. Oceanview cabins are in the mid-price range however, the cabins with obstructed views and those will portholes are sometimes less expensive than the oceanview cabins with the larger window. These cabins are usually the same size as Interior/Inside cabins or maybe slightly larger.
Cabins with balconies are the most popular choice for accommodations. A balcony stateroom (sometimes called verandah stateroom) allows you to have a private personal balcony to sit on to enjoy the view. You are able to step out onto the balcony without going to a public deck space. There usually is not enough room for a lounge type chair, but there is usually a small table and 2 chairs to sit on. A note about balcony cabins; there can also be some staterooms with partial obstructions so trusting your travel advisor is a great way to not have anything blocking your amazing view. A plus to having a balcony cabin is sitting on that balcony to eat your breakfast, enjoy a glass of wine, or just breathe in the salt air. Well worth the money for sure!
Suites and mini-suites offer the most variety of room sizes, amenities and even facilities however, the choices will differ from cruise line to cruise line so know which cruise line suite and ship you are looking at. Some suites on some cruise lines allow you access to the spa accommodations allowing you to use the main spa facilities like the steam room or sauna. It’s a nice perk indeed. Suites will have queen or king-size beds and larger balconies. Some cruise lines offer a concierge or even a butler. They will have plush linens and bathrobes and amazing bath products and in-suite coffee, and the list goes on an on! Think luxury and pampering at its finest! Surprisingly there are suites which are the size of small apartments with more than one room and even large enough to hold pianos, wet bars and whirlpool tubs. Do not be fooled by the name suite because suites often accommodate only 2-3 guests!
No matter what cruise line you want to sail on there are accommodations to fit your budget. Cruise lines even offer perks to get you to sail with them, like smaller deposits or drink packages. There are questions we can help you ask to know which cabin will work best for this cruise vacation. We know which cruise line is offering the best deals and we have sailed with most of the cruise lines personally so we can lend you our first hand advice on which ones work best for your cruise vacation. Just ask us and we will find one to help you feel like a home away from home in no time.
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