Travel SOS: should you upgrade your cabin to a balcony suite?

Ainslee wants to know if it’s worth upgrading her cruise ship cabin to a balcony suite.

Travel SOS: should you upgrade your cabin to a balcony suite?

Ainslee wants to know if it’s worth upgrading her cruise ship cabin to a balcony suite. In Travel SOS, Leon offers some convincing reasons to fork out the extra dough for a room with a view.

I am about to book my first cruise and I’m wondering if it’s worth shelling out the extra money for a balcony suite instead of a standard twin cabin. I’m going on an 11-night cruise, so I’m worried it might be pricey, but I also want to make sure I enjoy myself. Any advice?

A. The first thing I’ll say is: definitely worth the upgrade. Why? Well, the short story is that you’ll not regret having the extra space – especially having your own private outdoor area.

Think about it: you can dine al fresco, tan solo when the sun is on the right side of the ship, read a book on your own deckchair, watch the sun set at night and basically wake up, walk out to your private balcony and stretch your arms out to a new day every morning. Sounds good, right?

cruise ship balcony

Ships can be pretty hectic, too, and there’s no better place for some ‘you time’ than on your own private balcony. And a private open space with fresh air is great for combatting seasickness, if you do fall ill.

Have I sold you on the upgrade? I should get a commission! (Ed’s note: I don’t).

The good news is that the upgrades are often not that much more expensive than standard cabins. This is because there are usually as many, if not more, cabins with balconies than without. Also, keep an eye out on cruising websites and third-party deal sites for special offers and free upgrades. I can say though, if you see these deals, snap one up, because they typically sell out quickly.

So yes, my recommendation would be to upgrade to a balcony. You won’t regret having the extra space and privacy and if you don’t manage to snag one for free, then the extra outlay will be well worth it.

When was the last time you cruised? Did you have a balcony room? Have you ever cruised without one? How was your experience?



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    21st Oct 2017
    My wife and I cruise about 4 times a year, we have never booked a balcony, the author is correct in that quite often you can get a balcony upgrade quite cheaply you need to keep your eyes open I have seen them for the same price as an inside twin, I have never thought of booking one for us, we actually prefer an inside cabin we find that it's better for sleeping it is much darker in your cabin, also we prefer spending the extra money on a cabin position on the ship ie mid ship close to the lifts and not too high or too low, the balconies that you may be offered for free or at a reduced price are not usually in the best place on the ship and can sometimes have an obstructed view, so that's something to watch for, but there are benifits if you do want some privacy during the day for sun bathing or piece and quite while reading. Happy sailing whatever you decide
    21st Oct 2017
    In the case of river cruises not always worth it. We've done 2 in Europe and we spent almost no time in our cabins and in fact people who had balconies didn't either. They would have cost an extra 1-2 thousand. The boats often docked side by side so some balconies couldnt be used during this time. The lounges are lovely and in good weather the best views were on top deck. Its a more social experience if you dont closet yourself in your cabin. The majority of day time was spent sightseeing in the little riverside towns anyway.
    22nd Oct 2017
    I enjoyed having a balcony on a cruise in 2015 - Singapore to Hong Kong. Extra money but I think it was worth it.

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