I'd love to have a balcony on every cruise like we did last Thanksgiving. Since there are, however, some great deals on inside guarantees, has anyone gone back to an inside cabin after having a balcony? Is the balcony worth the extra? For instance, if the balcony cabin were only $100 or $200 more per person, I'd definitely go with it. At $300 or $400, I'm not as confident. At $500 or $600 per person, I'd start looking for another cruise.
I can understand your feelings. My wife and i never had an inside cabin. Our first cruise together was on our honeymoon (second marriage) on the old Meridian in 1995. Since then we have cruised celebrity six times and have moved up each time. After our first balcony on the Infinity I felt we can never go back and will be on the Millie this August with a aft balcony. Our feelings are that the kids are finally finished college and we are both professionals (not necessarily wealthy!!) and work in very stressful fields and deserve to treat ourselves well. We take two nice vacations a year and for our summer vacations (cruises mostly) we splurge ( suites at $4500 pp are a bit much mostly because we don't spend enough time in the cabin to make it worth it.) But we do things like have a stretch limo take us ti the airport and pick us up, etc. So after having a bigger cabin and a balcony alot of people would find it hard to go back.
After we were upgraded last year on the Infinity to Hawaii from an Inside Cat. 9 to a 1A with balcony, my husband is kind of bent on having a balcony. We just booked the Constellation transatlantic for April 2003 in a 2C. The price difference I believe was about $400 per person between the cheapest inside and the 2C. For 14 nights, we felt it was worth it, since we will be spending many days at sea, and might spend more time in the cabin than on your average port-intensive cruise.
Personally, I would choose an inside cabin on a nicer ship/line versus a balcony on a lesser ship/line. To me, as long as the beds are comfortable (and are not bunks like an inside upper/lower on the Norway - I'll never do that again!), I would decide how much I want to spend and go on the best cruise line/ship I could afford.
That's just me, of course - my husband is a balcony boy now.
Thanks for the insights. We're split in our opinion of whether a balcony is worth it. Right now, I'm waiting for our TA to call back with prices and we'll decide from there. Her opinion was that on the one New England/Canada cruise she went on, the balcony was not worth it since the weather was cool the whole time plus there weren't many days at sea. Of course the weather can be fickle in the fall--so we could hit a heat wave.
Our first cruise was in an inside cabin aft on deck 4 on the Meridian & we loved it. Next was an outside midships on Century & we said we'd never go back to an inside again. Then we booked a balcony on the Galaxy & we were hooked! Balconies for us from now on if available. This year we'll be on the Zenith so it's back to an outside cabin. I don't think we could ever go back to an inside, regardless of the difference in price. We just shop til we find a decent deal. Just my opinion.
On the other hand, being on a cruise in ANY cabin is better than sitting home wishing that you were on a cruise!!!
Well I guess I'll be the decenting voice here. I like the balcony but I prefer the inside cabin. The reason being is I like to sleep in when I'm on vacation. I really like having the dark room, especially if I want to take a nap in the middle of the day. I like the Balcony but I wouldn't pay extra for it.
How many sea days do you have? Some cruises visit 6 ports in 7 days. That's a really busy schedule so you'd spend very little time in your cabin. I love the balcony to watch the sunrise, have breakfast and hang out when the pool decks get too crowded. If the schedule is really tight, the only thing I'd do in the cabin is sleep.
Personally, I would probably book an inside and spend more on shore excursions, but my husband has balcony fever, and well, I kind of liked it myself.
Of course, he's already agreed to spend the $185 per person on the shore excursion to Paris on our transatlantic cruise in the spring, so I'm not going to complain about having a balcony again, that's for sure.
Now I just have to talk him into the Paul Gaugin to Tahiti for 2005 - definitely need a balcony for that one!
I've been in inside, outside and balcony cabins. Inside cabins are good if you require a very dark room to sleep or if you are a party animal and are unlikely to spend much time in your cabin (if you come back at 4am and want to sleep not much use having a sunlit balcony cabin). Outside are good if you are claustrophobic, there aren't any balcony cabins available, you like to look out at the sea and see the sun rise without leaving your cabin, you are on a longer cruise and likely to spend more time in your cabin and have days at sea. Balcony cabins are my favourite for longer cruises (10+ days) with days at sea in locations where you are likely to be able to sit outside and enjoy the fresh air. They allow you to have breakfast outside without having to line up at the buffet (have room service), you can always get a seat outside without having to fight with other "selfish" passengers who reserve every seat in sight, you can leave the door open at night and listen to the ocean, and if you suffer from motion sickness you can quickly access fresh air outside and feel a bit better. If it is a question of $20 a day or less I'd rather have the balcony if it is more I would like at outside, then inside. I will never pay the ridiculous prices on some of the more expensive ships but I do look for specials which allow me to sail on some of them for half price or less sometimes.
Also, some lines charge much higher prices for balcony cabins as they have very few, so it pays to look at some of the newer ships that have a much higher percentage of balcony cabins and don't charge that much more for them than for an inside cabin.