Poll Position: Are Balconies Best?

August 20, 2012 | By | 9 Comments

Despite recent cabin advancements on newer ships, there are still basically four main stateroom types: insides, outsides, balconies and suites. We here at Cruise Critic often debate among ourselves which is best. Our recent poll, which drew more than 5,500 votes on the subject, put one type clearly ahead of all others when it comes to booking frequency.
What we asked: When I cruise, I usually book a/an ___.
What they said: Nearly 61 percent say they almost always book balcony cabins. Another 18 percent go with insides. A further 12 percent opt for oceanviews, and the remaining 10 percent go the suite route.
What it all means: While cabin choice certainly depends on a number of factors — like pricing and how much time each cruiser plans to spend in his or her cabin — it seems balconies are the clear winner here.
On Facebook, Cindy Bagwell sums it up thusly: “Depends on the cruise. Alaska would be balcony, Caribbean would be inside. If I make it for a European, that too would be balcony.”
Others, however, are stalwart. Jacki Liptak is a verandah advocate. She explains, “We cruise for the OCEAN and what better way to enjoy it than from your own personal space?”
Lyn Hammond, who books interior staterooms, says, “Inside…daily showers….afternoon rest…nightly sleep..only time I’m in the cabin. I live life on deck!” Shelley Treherne Chrystal and Pat Patterson agree. Shelley uses her savings to go on more cruises, and Pat uses his to supplement his bar tab. (We like how you think!)
Still others say they go with outsides, which offer views that are less expensive than those afforded by balconies, and suites for the extra perks.
What’s your favorite cabin type? Be sure to leave your comments below.
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    9 Responses to “Poll Position: Are Balconies Best?”

    1. Hilary williams
      August 20th, 2012 @ 4:02 pm

      I wish i could afford balconies all the time but i can only afford inside sadly

    2. Neta Platt
      August 20th, 2012 @ 4:02 pm

      We always get a suite. I am handicapped and we don’t have to get the accessible rooms but want the extra space for my electric scooter and just love having 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms.

    3. SharonB
      August 20th, 2012 @ 4:21 pm

      We always get an inside cabin. We are not in the room all that much anyway. I would rather have an inside cabin and be able to afford more cruises than have a balcony and only take one cruise a year or so.

    4. George Roberson
      August 20th, 2012 @ 4:27 pm

      I like the balcony cabins. They are normally bigger than the interior and oceanview cabins, plus I have my “private” outside space where I can kick back and enjoy the ocean when I feel the need to escape the crowds up on the decks. Oceanview is a waste of money, just get an interior cabin. No sense in looking out a window if you can’t get outside. If money is a concern, then interior cabin is the way to go. Got a NCL mini-suite reserved for Jan 2013, looking forward to it.

    5. Jon
      August 20th, 2012 @ 4:58 pm

      Not quite sure how relevant this survey is since the results seem to mirror the availability of cabin options on most boats. Most cabins on most ships are balcony cabins so it’s no surprise that most people book balconies. Either I’m missing something or this is lame.

    6. Michele
      August 20th, 2012 @ 7:15 pm

      George, since I like carnival ships just letting you know, they are all the same size, except for your balcony space. Sq footage is the same for all rooms, til you get to the suites.

      We enjoyed our balcony and booked early enough to get good savings. Oceanview was nice, at least you got to see outside, and that was Disney and the room is set up nice. The bed isn’t under the window so you can actually see out of it. Inside rooms would be good for the pricing.

    7. Roberta Gerlach
      August 20th, 2012 @ 8:05 pm

      We really like balconies, and will search for “obstructed views”, which really aren’t that bad, to economize. Having the option of opening a door and getting fresh ocean air is part of what we look forward to in our stateroom.

    8. Joleighva
      August 20th, 2012 @ 9:17 pm

      The cruise lines have put more balconies on their ships in response to demand, not the other way around. My biggest reason for getting a balcony cabin is that I love to sit out at night in my PJs and read a book when it’s nice and quiet and I can hear the ship slicing thru the water and the waves. The negative ions alone are worth the extra money. I’d rather only go once in a while and be comfortable the whole time, then crowd us into a tiny cabin with no natural light a couple times a year. We’re more about quality than quantity, and we spend as much time relaxing in our cabin and on our balcony as we do out and about! I think it’s the difference in how people relax. Some do it in the bar or a show. We do it in our room with (don’t tell) the balcony door open to get the fresh sea air…

    9. Gail
      August 22nd, 2012 @ 1:28 pm

      Michele: The inside rooms on the Valor were much smaller than on the Triumph – newer vs older ships. The outside and the Balcony rooms are similar in size to each other minus the balcony space. I know because I booked an inside on the Valor and was surprised when I checked in with 3 adults! I love my Balconies no matter where or when I am sailing.

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