We have sailed to Alaska in everything from an inside cabin to a full suite. It is a wonderful cruise no matter how you do it!
We have enjoyed the balconies. When we cruised with my 91 y o aunt, the suite balcony was very convenient and we enjoyed it. Check out our trip report and pictures at Cruising to Alaska on HAL Zuiderdam
. But that was two suite balconies opened and joined together! It was not on one cramped single balcony.
OTOH we have found that a balcony is somewhat restrictive. It seems that the naturalist is always saying, "There is a whale," or an eagle, or a waterfall on the OTHER side of the ship! In general we like to be out and about the ship in the public areas in Glacier Bay. On our last cruise we got a great upgrade from standard inside to balcony, but we would not have booked one. I think the pictures at http://www.bully4.us/alaska2010.html
give you an idea of the cramped space on a normal balcony vs the wide open space in the public area.
Alaska is a pricey place to cruise. The premium for a balcony over a standard cabin is very large. There are many expensive shore excursions that are wonderful and should not be missed. For many, it is a once in a lifetime experience. Frankly for those people, I would suggest blowing the budget on a nice balcony cabin AND booking all the best excursions.
BUT -- when we go back for our ninth trip to Alaska next year, we will skip the balcony cabin and use the difference for shore excursions. Check the link in my sig below for more Alaska trip reports.