Do I need a balcony?

Cabins with balconies cost a premium but Jo Hall has some persuasive arguments as to why you really do need one if your budget can be stretched.

Do I need a balcony?

When planning a cruise holiday, there are many things to consider including the ship, where to cruise and when. There are also decisions to be made about accommodation and for some people this can include whether or not they would prefer a stateroom with a private balcony. As seasoned cruisers know, balconies have many benefits; here’s why.

1. You have a private outdoor area
A private balcony gives you a quiet place to relax and enjoy the passing vistas and ports of call. They are particularly beneficial for scenic cruising, such as Alaska’s Inside Passage, or transiting somewhere unusual, such as the Suez Canal, when outside decks can become busy. Staterooms with balconies on deck corners, or aft on a ship, can also be quite deep, offering a combination of both covered and open areas.

2. They don’t have to be more expensive
In the past you had to pay a lot more for a stateroom with a balcony, largely because there weren’t many of them on ships. Today, however, more vessels are being built with more balcony staterooms, so the price for this outdoor space isn’t always all that much higher than the norm. Also, at times, deals come up offering upgrades from ocean views to balcony staterooms.

3. Extra space
If you’re travelling with someone who needs to spend more time in their stateroom than normal, such as a person with a health problem, or a very elderly cruiser, a balcony not only gives you additional space, but also allows you to enjoy the great outdoors while they relax inside. For some couples a balcony can also mean that they can enjoy their accommodation together while doing different things; one person can have a nap or watch television, while the other sits outside and reads a book.

4. They can help tame seasickness
Having a private open space with your stateroom, where you can breathe fresh air and watch the horizon, can help anyone who suffers from seasickness on a cruise. A balcony is also particularly beneficial on longer cruises, in case it takes time to find your sea legs.

5. Alfresco dining
Some cruise lines make a big deal about the romance of balcony dining, but you can also enjoy all your meals alfresco if your ship has room service. Imagine breakfast in port or at sea, a late lunch after a shore tour, or a romantic of dinner for two with the backdrop, and sound, of the ocean.

To find out more about cruising or to find the cruise of your dreams within your budget, visit


    To make a comment, please register or login
    Polly Esther
    1st Nov 2014
    Yes, then you can let your hair down Rapunzel.
    1st Nov 2014
    Our biggest benefit was that we could do a little washing each day and hang them out on our balcony to dry. Using ships laundry service was stupidly expensive
    1st Nov 2014
    A balcony also helps to make the cabin seem a bit more spacious. A good point made by Mike too, towels and swimmers were hung to dry on a line we had rigged out on the balcony. Would never cruise without a balcony, they just add so much pleasure to the cruise, no need to jostle with others on the main deck when trying to catch that glimpse of something special. During our cruise we were afforded close up views of a pod of dolphins which escorted us out of Nawiliwili Harbour when leaving Kaua'i and fabulous views of the Napali Coast not long after. Prior to that we had been able to sit out and enjoy some marvellous sunrises and sunsets. You can't do that from a basic cabin.
    1st Nov 2014
    Don't forget fresh air when you are in your cabin or sleeping when instant air-conditioning gets too much
    1st Nov 2014
    before we went on our first cruise we pondered over having a balcony. in the end we bought one and never ever regretted it.
    highlight of the cruise being able to sit outside and see the sea - relaxing 101%.
    never cruise without buying a balcony cabin.

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