A common question from those who have not sailed before a lot has to do with cabin categories and might go like this; “What is the difference between all these categories of cabins?” Each cruise line has their own way of classifying cabins. Knowing the difference between each can help match travelers with accommodations that are appropriate for them and those they are sailing with, eliminating a bunch of problems before they start.
On Carnival Cruise Line, it’s a number and a letter like 4A. Princess uses two letters like BB or AC. Royal Caribbean uses a combination of both with designations like E2 or PR. Other lines use a variation of these.
- Inside cabins with beds, a bathroom, places to store clothes, a tv, a phone and maybe a refrigerator or desk but no view. You can’t see out of them.
- Oceanview cabins are for the most part the same as an inside cabin except that they have a porthole or window to look out of.
- Balcony cabins can be the same as the inside and Oceanview except they have a balcony attached that you can walk out onto.
- Suites are balcony cabins with more. That ‘more’ could be as simple as more space and that’s it. Suites can also come with more space and added amenities.
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- Great if you like to sleep in- very dark
- Even though dark you can still see outside and what the weather is- on the cabin tv via the bridge cam
- Starting prices can be misleading. All the cruise lines do this; advertize a really “cheap” deal then we go find out that it is in a cabin with bunk beds and that taxes are not included.
- Tend to be mostly on the lower decks. This could be good or bad depending on your outlook. No, the higher class guests are not on the higher decks…well except on Cunard. or so they say.
- May be “obstructed view” meaning they really don’t have much of a view of the ocean..if you look straight out. If you look more down you can often see past the lifeboat that is in the way otherwise to the ocean below
- Some may have picture windows, other portholes
- Great choice if claustrophobia is an issue- stay away from inside cabins
- The cruise lines add more and more of them because they are very popular
- Offer a private outside refuge on a day when the pool area might be very crowded
- Awesome place to watch the ship sail away and leave your real life behind
- Basic balcony cabin could be about the same as the inside or oceanview. except that there is a sliding glass door that opens to a wonderful world.
The point of all this is to be informed about the differences in cabin categories, which seem to be more all the time. Where that cabin is located can make a huge difference.
Also to know: the terms “cabin” and “stateroom” are interchangeable. Stateroom just sounds better, I suppose.
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Cover image- Flickr user Dan Moyle