It’s not easy deciding which cabin to book
Deciding which cabin to pick can be a daunting experience, especially if you need quiet to sleep. If you’re a first timer, you have no way of knowing which part of the ship would be the quietest, or the most convenient. I will endeavor to give you some basic tips on this subject to help you along, but keep in mind that there are no guarantees on how quiet your neighbors will be, so be sure to pack your earplugs and sound machine (and good humor), just in case.
First, a brief explanation of the rooms that may be available to you.
- An interior room is just that, it’s a room that’s on the inside of the ship, with no outside views. It’s also the least expensive room that you can book. It may be good for a first time cruiser who just wants to see how much you enjoy cruising. You can always go outside on a deck if you want to watch the ocean. The center of the ship can also move less than outside rooms, so there may be less issue with sea sickness for you. And I figure that any room on a cruise ship is better than no room on a cruise ship. But be sure to check the square footage, it varies greatly from ship to ship. Also, read carefully what kind of bed that your cabin has. Some interior cabins in the lowest category can only have pull down Pullman beds, and can be very small.
- An ocean view room is a room with a window, either a porthole, or a picture window, which is bigger. Sometimes your view of the ocean may be obstructed, but it will tell you that when you look at the room description on the cruise website. You’ll have a lot more light in a window room, and you can watch the ocean and see the ports as you cruise in. On the down side, you will get more of the ship’s movement on the outside of the ship.
- A balcony room is a room with a door, and a small balcony, usually with two chairs and a small table. These are great if you would like to always be able to relax and watch the ocean go by. I get a balcony cabin as often as I can, there’s nothing more relaxing in my opinion. I managed to upgrade cheaply on my second cruise from a window to a balcony, and I was immediately hooked.
- You can also get a junior suite, or a suite. I’ve never been able to afford one of them, but I’m sure they’re very nice with a lot more room.
Check out Deck Plan Genius
If you enjoy quiet, you will want to get a room away from the noisiest areas of the ship. Be sure to check out and study the ship’s deck plans before you book a room. You can find the deck plans on the ship’s website, or sites like DeckPlanGenius.com. Stay away from:
- Any room near the atrium area by the atrium elevators. The noise and vibrations of the music that the DJ plays will come straight up the atrium and through the halls to the rooms nearby. I wasn’t careful the last cruise that we booked, and I was miserable. The music from the DJ played until the wee hours of the morning. Even with earplugs and a pillow over my head, I could not get to sleep because I could still feel the vibrations of the music. I value quiet and don’t sleep well, so I should have been more careful in booking this cruise.
- Rooms right under a pool deck. You will hear the lounge chairs scraping as people sit, and as they are put away for the night and you’ll hear noise from the many parties that take place on the lido deck. We managed to book a balcony right under the lido pool deck once. Believe me, those chairs get moved around a lot, and very late.
- Rooms under or over the theater, casino, the buffet, and any lounge. You just don’t know ahead of time what kind of music they’ll be playing, and how loud it will be, or how loud the patrons will be.
- Rooms near Crew workstations, and self-service Laundromat areas will have noise from people going in and out, and congregating and talking.
- The best cabins are going to be the ones that are sandwiched between other cabins that are above and below your cabin.
Book early if possible
There are plenty of other rooms that won’t be close to the noise and action. You may want to book your cruise early for the best selection. I like to book through the cruise line so that I have control of what I get. I’ve never worked with a travel agent, but if you do, I’m sure that they will be able to advise you more on which rooms would be best if you enjoy quiet. Just remember, there is no guarantee of how quiet your neighbors will be, so be prepared. And you’ll enjoy your cruise anyway, even if your room isn’t the quietest room. I always do. Think about it, you’re not at work, you’re on a cruise! What could be better?