We just booked a "guarantee" cabin on the Radiance of the Seas for November. The many times we've sailed with RCI, we always picked our cabin. We were never upgraded. How do they usually handle a guarantee. Does early booking or Platenum member help? And when are you usually informed?
Is there any web site we can monitor this? Thanks for any information.
Guarantees can be confusing and how upgrades are decided can be a mystery. Below is a link to a story that CruiseMates Feature's Editor, Kuki, wrote. It has some great info on how guarantees work.
RCI will assign you a cabin in the category you paid for or possibly a better one. But you dont know where your cabin will be until rather close in. Kuki's article gives a great look at guarantees.
As for upgrades, this is always a murky subject. Upgrades are like craps or roulette, you just never know what the outcome will be and you can score bigtime or lose out.
How do cruise lines upgrade? A variety of ways. I do know for a fact that RCI uses a variety of methods.
1)They search the reservations for repeat cruisers. More cruises can equal a better upgrade...but not always!
2)They search for reservations from particular high producing agencies or agency groups (National Accounts or Key Accounts)
3)They push a button and let the res system do random "auto upgrades".
I almost never count on getting an upgrade. Heck, I write for a major cruise site and also work for a very large travel organization in which I work with the executive management from the major cruise lines on a day to day basis and I had trouble getting an upgrade on Celebrity even though it was not a full sailing. And I paid a published fare!
My advice, always book a cabin you'll be happy with at bare minimum. If you do get an upgrade, then consider it an extra perk. Never book a cabin you're not happy with and assume you'll get an upgrade to the category you'd like. And never book an guarantee if you wont be happy with a cabin all the way forward, aft or near an elevator bank.
I sail Princess a lot. In 13 cruises I've been upgraded once, about 20 years ago back when Pacific Princess was new. I don't particularly care since I always book a category I will be comfortable in. I would never book run of the ship. If it were a buxy sailing, I could be inside in the stern of the ship which would make me very unhappy indeed. If you picked a category you are comfortable in you can look forward to a terrific cruise.
we booked a run of ship on the grandeur last summer -- so i asked lots of questions similar to yours. RCI told me that a few weeks prior to sailing they take the remaining cabins and book you in the highest available for your category ( if you have inside guarantee for example). They go from mid ship to ends in each category level. The DATE that you book makes the difference. Tho i expect your repeat standing makes a difference, they said not. I think the run of ship is different in that you can get outside (we did-- but that must be rare because we were told we were lucky)
We managed to find out our cabin assignments the week prior to the sailing. so, they actually do try to give you the best category cabin they can, and i would guess that a november sailing might not be full, and you have booked early enough you would be high on their list.