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Nautica Cabins

The Ultimate Guide to Cruise Ship Cabins

Welcome to the Ultimate Guide to Cruise Ship Cabins. On this page, you'll find all the tools and inspiration you need to book the perfect room, as well as tips on what you should (and shouldn't) do to ensure smooth sailing. Feeling lucky? We even offer ways to up your chances at snagging a free or low-cost cabin upgrade. Click on the links for more info, and swoon over some of the most attractive cabins and suites at sea.

Updated September 20, 2018

The Balcony Cabin on MSC Divina


Cruise Cabin Tips and Advice

How to Choose a Cruise Ship Cabin: What You Need to Know
From nailing down the lowest fares to combatting seasickness, we guide you through the process of selecting the perfect cruise ship cabin.

7 Cruise Cabin Hacks That Will Change the Way You Cruise Forever
Make the most of your cruise ship cabin, from expanding storage space to setting the mood, with these clever and easy hacks.

9 Things You Don't Know About Your Cruise Ship Cabin
Even the savviest cruisers find surprises in their cabins. Here are nine we've discovered after hundreds of sailings on ships of all types. 

Tips on Booking a Cruise Room for the Whole Family
Four people in one cabin? Connecting rooms or across the hall? Make sure you get the space you need for your family with these quick tips.

5 Ways to Get a Cruise Ship Cabin Upgrade
Free and low-cost cabin upgrades are rare, but not impossible. Use these strategies to increase your chances.

The 'Guarantee' Gamble: The Odds of an Upgrade When the Cruise Line Picks Your Cabin
Risk-takers could win big by booking a "guarantee" cabin at a low price. See what your chances are of scoring an upgrade -- or getting the worst room onboard.


Cabins for All Tastes

10 Best Cruise Ship Suites
Complimentary Champagne and canapes, please. Live the high life in one of our 10 favorite cruise ship suites.

Best Family-Friendly Cruise Ships Cabins
A number of cruise lines cater to families with dedicated cabins and kid-friendly features. Find out how Royal Caribbean, Carnival and others accommodate those with little ones in tow.

The Truth About Solo Cabins
Cruise lines are upping the ante for solo travelers. Weigh your options to find out which cabin is best for you.

The 9 Best Cruise Ship Inside Cabins … and 3 to Avoid
Not all inside cabins are dark and tiny; here are nine stylish, roomy options for cruisers on a tight budget. Just stay away from the last three

The Best Balcony Cabins for Your Next Cruise
Want some personal deck space? If you're looking for the best balcony cabin you can book -- without having to upgrade to a mini-suite or suite -- here are our five favorites across mainstream lines.

14 Unusual Cruise Ship Balcony Cabins
Cabins with odd-shaped balconies and non-ocean views are sometimes the most sought after. Check out 14 uncommon (but well-loved) balcony cabins.

What to Expect on a Luxury Cruise: Cabins
More space, pillow "menus" and higher quality amenities … find out what staying in a luxury cruise ship cabin is like.

What to Expect on a River Cruise: Cabins
On a river cruise, every room has a view, but layouts can vary. We break down what to expect in a river cruise cabin.

Best Ships for Cruisers with Disabilities
It's possible for cruisers with disabilities to enjoy a stress-free vacation. Find the cabin that's best for your needs.


Compare Popular Choices

The Haven Suite on Norwegian Escape


Cabin Etiquette

12 Things Not to Do in Your Cruise Room
Go easy on the perfume, and no hanky panky on the balcony. Enjoy a worry-free cruise by avoiding these 12 faux pas.

6 Tips for Keeping Your Cabin Steward Friendly
Build the best relationship with your cabin steward by following these six tips.   

10 Etiquette Tips for Sharing a Cruise Cabin
Sailing with someone new for the first time? Keep the peace with these 10 etiquette tips for sharing a room.

9 Things You Can Do on a Cruise Ship Balcony and 1 You Probably Shouldn't
Cruise ship balconies have more to offer than picturesque views and fresh air. Here are a few ways to enjoy your personal alfresco space on different cruise lines.


Inside Look: Cabin Service

What to Expect on a Cruise: Cabin Stewards
Cabin stewards are responsible for the upkeep of your room -- and those cute towel animals waiting on your bed. Here's a closer look at everything they do.

What Cruise Ship Butlers Will Do for You
Splurging on your next cruise? Consider butler service on one of these cruise lines.

A River Cruise with a Butler: We Try It on Uniworld and Scenic
River cruises are intimate as it is, but butler service goes the extra mile. We break down the experience for those who fancy a little more attention.

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Popular on Cruise Critic

Best Time to Cruise
It's one of the most common cruising questions: When is the best time to cruise Alaska, Australia, the Caribbean, Canada/New England, Hawaii, Europe or the South Pacific? The answer depends on many variables. For example, fall foliage enthusiasts will find September and October the best time to cruise Canada/New England, whereas families prefer to sail in summer when temperatures are warmer for swimming. The best time to cruise to Alaska will vary depending on your preferences for viewing wildlife, fishing, bargain-shopping, sunshine, warm weather and catching the northern lights. For most cruise regions, there are periods of peak demand (high season), moderate demand (shoulder season) and low demand (low season), which is usually the cheapest time to cruise. High season is typically a mix of when the weather is best and popular travel periods (such as summer and school holidays). However, the best time to cruise weather-wise is usually not the cheapest time to cruise. The cheapest time to cruise is when most travelers don't want to go because of chillier temperatures or inopportune timing (too close to holidays, the start of school, etc.). But the lure of cheap fares and uncrowded ports might make you change your mind about what you consider the best time to cruise. As you plan your next cruise, you'll want to take into consideration the best and cheapest times to cruise and see what jibes with your vacation schedule. Here's a when-to-cruise guide for popular destinations.
Secrets the Cruise Lines Don't Tell You
Cruise ship life can be a little mysterious. Your choices aren't always spelled out in black and white. The more you cruise, the more you pick up on the unofficial secrets the cruise lines don't tell you -- which give you more options, let you save money and generally allow you to have a better time onboard. Maybe it's knowing what your cabin steward is able to bring you or what the off-the-menu items are at the bar or dining room. Or perhaps it's a tip to getting a good deal on an onboard purchase. But why wait to figure these things out the hard way -- possibly after you've missed your chance? We trawled through all the great advice on Cruise Critic's Message Boards to bring you some of the worst-kept cruise secrets ... at least among our readers who love to share. But whether you're a first-time cruiser or an old sea dog, you might find there's something here you didn't already know.
What to Pack for a Cruise: A Beginner's Guide
There once was a not-so-savvy seafarer who didn't feel right unless she took two steamer trunks crammed with outfits on every cruise. This, she learned, was not a good idea. Besides incurring the wrath of her male traveling companion, who pointed out that he would have to wrestle with excess baggage through airport terminals and beyond, she quickly tired of cramming her belongings into tiny closets. The now savvy seafarer follows this packing rule: Thou shalt put into one's suitcase only that which will fit neatly in the allocated cabin storage space. Following that advice is getting easier because, for the most part, cruising has become a more casual vacation with relaxed dress codes. Plus, with airlines charging to check bags, it's just plain economical to pack light. To do so, you need to have a good sense of what you’re going to wear on a cruise so you don't pack your entire closet. If you're wondering what to bring on your next cruise, here are our guidelines for what you'll need to pack.