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If I don't plan to spend a lot of time in my stateroom, what is the cheapest cabin I can book?


The most affordable way to get on the ship is to book an "inside guarantee." The rate is often a little lower than the rate for the lowest category on the ship and you could get a stateroom in any category. You will not receive a cabin number when you make your booking, it will be assigned as late as the day of sailing. You could receive the lowest category on the ship or the highest. However, your best bet to avoid unnecessary disappointment is to expect an inside cabin. The drawback is that you don't know where you'll end up; the bonus is you could end up with something better then you expected. It could be the front, back or middle, so if that's a concern to you, we recommend avoiding this pricing program. Since most cabins on today's ships only differ by the fact they're on a different deck and may be slightly different in size, many people don't mind taking a chance of where they end up, particularly if they are travelling on a budget. Most of our clients who take advantage of this deal are quite satisfied with their accommodations. If you seriously plan to spend little time in your cabin, then you might want to consider this option - it will save you money you can spend elsewhere on your holiday.

Is an ocean-view stateroom worth the extra money?

This is a matter of personal preference. Do you like to look outside every morning and see what it is like outside? Do you savour the idea of sitting out on your own private verandah sipping your morning coffee? Your answers to questions like these will help you decide if you should spend the extra money on an ocean-view stateroom.
One of the advantages of having an ocean-view cabin is that the natural light can make the space seem a lot larger. It also gives you some perception of time. In an inside cabin you have no idea what time it is! Some people feel this reason alone is worth the extra cost. If you want to know what the weather is like each day, it's a lot easier to tell when you have a window in your room. However, many ships have live cameras from the Bridge Deck that show you exactly what it's doing outside, all you have to do is turn on your TV.
Some people feel that a window isn't worth the extra expense for the little amount of time you actually spend in the cabin, and would rather spend the money on shore excursions or shopping. The choice is yours. Ocean-view cabins generally cost about $100 more per person for a 7 or 10 night Caribbean cruise and about $200 more per person for a European or Exotic itinerary. Discuss the advantages of both types of staterooms with your Cruise Connections agent.
The one itinerary where we highly suggest an ocean-view cabin is Alaska. With daylight hours approaching 20 - 22 hours in the peak season, it's wonderful to be able to enjoy it from your cabin.

What is the difference between staterooms on the lower decks and those up higher?

On today's newer ships, there are basically four types of cabins: Inside Cabins - these are cabins without windows; Ocean-view Cabins - basically the same size as inside cabins only they have port holes or picture windows. Deluxe Cabins - about the same size or slightly larger than an ocean-view cabin and may have a private balcony which adds to the overall square footage of the cabin; and Suites - significantly larger than other cabins on the ship and often with a private balcony. You will find the Deluxe Cabins and Suites on the higher decks of a cruise ship, so yes; there is a difference here. However, Standard Inside Cabins or Standard Oceanview Cabins are basically all the same on any deck.

What are my chances of getting upgraded?

It does happen, but not as frequently as people would like to believe. Most upgrades go to passengers who book early and buy the lowest category on the ship in the form of a "Category Guarantee." A "Category Guarantee" means that when you book your cruise, you are not assigned a cabin number; you are simply guaranteed that category or better. "Guarantees" are a great way to fill the ship with people looking for a good rate who don't care where their cabin is located. The cruise lines always sell more guarantees in a category than there are cabins in that category. For example, the lowest rate on Celebrity Cruise Line's Zenith is a category 12, inside cabin. There are approximately 6 category 12 cabins. However, on each sailing Celebrity will sell between 40 and 60 category 12 guarantees. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to see that 34 people are going to get a free upgrade. Usually these upgrades are given on a first-come-first-serve basis. Most upgrades are often from low inside cabins to higher inside cabins, or low ocean-view cabins to higher ocean-view cabins. Rarely do passengers get upgraded from inside to outside, but it does happen. But don't book an inside cabin expecting a free upgrade to an ocean-view because you will likely be disappointed. If you are assigned a cabin number when you deposit on your cruise your chances of an upgrade are very small. If you are travelling in a quad, your chances for an upgrade are very small as there are so few quad cabins on board. Cabin assignments on guarantees are usually made between a few weeks and the day of sailing. If you don't like the cabin they give you there usually isn't much luck of getting it changed, especially if the sailing is sold out. So, if you're afraid of being at the front, back, top, bottom or under the dining room, don't take any chances and book directly into a cabin assignment.

If I think the motion of the ship might affect me, where should I choose a cabin?

While motion sickness shouldn't be a major concern on today's ships, you should still know the best way to avoid it if possible. The best location on board to minimize the affect of the ship's motion is the middle of the ship. Cabins on the lower decks, closer to the bottom of the ship, are less affected by motion than those on higher decks. The higher you are, the greater the potential to feel a left to right rolling motion. Today's ships are fully stabilized making your cruise comfortable in virtually any location. As a matter of fact, if motion discomfort were such an issue, the premium suites on a ship wouldn't be at the top and near the front. To make sure you get the best cabin for you, book early. Additionally, motion sickness medications can also help relieve any symptoms you may have.

How many people will fit in my cabin?

Most cruise ship cabins are built to accommodate two passengers. However, there are many on each ship that can accommodate three and four guests quite easily. Carnival, Celebrity, and Disney all have ships that sleep five in one cabin. Royal Caribbean's newer ships feature family suites. These cabin categories are obviously very popular and sell out quickly, so book early if this is what you are looking for.