I agree with buttons16...how many times are you going to visit Alaska? If this is a once in a lifetime opportunity...book the balcony! Alaska is beyond beautiful and we've been there many times and each time discovered something new and exciting. We've always had a balcony and never ever regretted it. Early morning as you sail through the 'inside' passage it's sooooo lovely and quiet. You can have breakfast or just hot coffee or coco as you watch beautiful scenery pass. Words can't describe it.
Excursions in Alaska are very very very expensive. We've had excellent experiences with some of the cheaper ones. (Jeep tours; meet/greet sled dogs etc.) Just research BEFORE you go to make sure that a particular excursion is worth it. Sometimes you can get the same or similar excursion when it overlaps with another. e.g. We got to see some of the Alaskan Klondike when we went to see the sledge dogs training camp because it was about a 2 hour drive into the Klondike Territories. Other's paid to go on a specific tour to see pretty much the same as we did. (only I dare say we had a lot more fun. It's also where we met for the first time the Alaskan State Bird face to face...the mosquito. This is no joke...their mosquitos are sooooo big!) So if you do a little research you might be able to go on one tour that overlaps another and save money that way.