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lmentzer

Ruby - Balcony Selection

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I know there are lots of different opinions, but I'd like some personal ideas on which staterooms (with balcony) we should book or not book and why. We are taking the 15 day LA to Hawaii cruise. We are looking for convenience to the rest of the ship, needs to be fairly quiet, we're a little concerned with the privacy of the stepped balconies, and we like to spend time on the balcony so it needs to be comfortable (four of us in two adjoining or at least side by side cabins so we can open the partition). Is port or starboard better to see the Hawaiian ports we dock at. Suggestions?

Edited by lmentzer

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You should be aware when booking a balcony cabin that those located on Caribe deck generally have the largest balconies of any regular cabin on the ship at about 9'x9' vs 9'x5' for cabins on other decks. The interior of the cabin will be the same as other regular (non-suite) cabins. The balconies on Caribe deck are half covered so you can be out in the sun or in the shade as you desire.

 

Our preference is a cabin from about mid-ship toward the aft end for the smoothest ride. Cabins aft of the aft elevator are very quiet since there is very little hallway traffic.

 

Lew

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We always try to choose a Caribe Deck, Deck 10 balcony cabin in Cat. BD, which are in the aft section port and starboard. As stated these balconies are 9'x9' and half covered. There is a door in the divider between balconies that can be unlocked by the cabin steward. The door is only 2 ft. wide, and provides access between balconies. It does not create a double size balcony. Bring a bungie or some cord to hold the door open. All doors have hook & eye latches, but some are worn.

 

There are other balcony cat. cabins on other decks with the 9'x5' balconies. many of these cabins are higher Princess categories, BA, BB, BC. Princess can upgrade you to higher cat. For that reason we always have our booking marked no upgrade.

 

Port or Starboard makes little difference. Maui is a tender port what you see is dependent on the wind direction, not much to see from the ship in Hilo, as well as Honolulu, in Kauai the port is in a cove so the view is nice from either side, but I think port side might give you a view of Marriott Resort Hotel. Ships may dock in either direction depending on seas and wind.

The cabin area I mentioned is quiet. The crossing to Hawaii can be cool, and the seas can be a little choppy. You may not be able to spend as much time on your balcony as you might expect.

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We are booked in Feb for our 4th Hawaii cruise.

We have had aft balconies on Baja deck.

They are very nice, and quiet, but we now have bad legs which makes walking to the IC a bit far for us.

This time we booked on Riviera deck mid ship to be near our friends.

 

We spend a lot of time in our cabin, and DH loves his balcony. As mentioned before, Caribe's are larger and half covered. We do like those.

Dolphin deck has uncovered balconies, and those are not for us.

 

We have not had a Riviera balcony before, so I'm hoping there will be no noise from the Horizon court and pool above us. I also recommend not booking on the deck below the theaters.

 

As for which side, I have tried to out guess docking so we would be facing the Aloha tower, and I've been wrong all 3 times. :D

Using the balcony during the crossings is iffy. It can be pretty windy.

 

Patti

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If you are booking a regular balcony cabin and the size of the balcony is important to you, Caribe Deck would be a good choice. ;)

 

LuLu

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Caribe Deck balcony cabins are your best choice for balcony size and for a degree of privacy from the balconies above. Midship is probably the most convenient to the rest of the ship. But I prefer from the aft elevators to the back of the ship for the lack of foot traffic past your cabin door. They are also one category lower and therefore less expensive for exactly the same cabin.

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Take a look at Baja Deck stern facing balconies (only place where there are stern balconies adjoining). Not all Grand-class ships have these.

 

You can use the balcony most all the time as they are sheltered. We think the benefits outweigh the extra bit of walking -- even given that wife has foot and knee issues. We've done a side balcony to HI and didn't get anywhere near the enjoyment as when we had a stern facing balcony. Try to get B748 or B749 as you have somewhat more of a view to the side as well.

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Take a look at Baja Deck stern facing balconies (only place where there are stern balconies adjoining). Not all Grand-class ships have these.

 

You can use the balcony most all the time as they are sheltered. We think the benefits outweigh the extra bit of walking -- even given that wife has foot and knee issues. We've done a side balcony to HI and didn't get anywhere near the enjoyment as when we had a stern facing balcony. Try to get B748 or B749 as you have somewhat more of a view to the side as well.

 

 

We prefer aft either aft or side facing because of the proximity to the aft pool/HC etc.

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We prefer aft either aft or side facing because of the proximity to the aft pool/HC etc.

 

In complete agreement. And also, if you like Traditional seating for dinner, the dining room is just a few decks down.

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In complete agreement. And also, if you like Traditional seating for dinner, the dining room is just a few decks down.

 

Absolutely! ;)

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Thank you all. We went in to look and all the Caribe deck aft cabins were already taken. The Caribe deck mid-ship aft cabins only had two left, so without time to waste, we booked them. I see they are also all sold out now. I guess it's true, If you snooze you lose. Hopefully they will be great.

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Thank you all. We went in to look and all the Caribe deck aft cabins were already taken. The Caribe deck mid-ship aft cabins only had two left, so without time to waste, we booked them. I see they are also all sold out now. I guess it's true, If you snooze you lose. Hopefully they will be great.

 

Glad you got one. Better mark the booking no upgrade! ;)

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Thanks Colo Cruiser. I took advice, and when the booking confirmation came back it showed they could upgrade, so we called back and had it changed to no upgrade. That's what is so great about Trip Advisor. Good info is always provided.

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Thanks Colo Cruiser. I took advice, and when the booking confirmation came back it showed they could upgrade, so we called back and had it changed to no upgrade. That's what is so great about Trip Advisor. Good info is always provided.

 

 

 

You also have the option of marking the booking META upgrade only.

This would be from one category to another. IE Balcony to a mini, mini to a suite etc. ;)

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Since there are four of us in two staterooms, it wouldn't be good if one of us got upgraded to a mini and not the other, so we'll just stay where we are.

 

Another quick question which I can post a new thread or just get an answer from you. How much do they charge for internet and if purchased, can it be used throughout the ship or just in their internet room?

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Since there are four of us in two staterooms, it wouldn't be good if one of us got upgraded to a mini and not the other, so we'll just stay where we are.

 

Another quick question which I can post a new thread or just get an answer from you. How much do they charge for internet and if purchased, can it be used throughout the ship or just in their internet room?

 

Internet/wireless is available throughout the ship. Some areas have a stronger signal then others. Some areas don't have a signal at all. Someone recently posted a list of costs here on CC. They also have internet packages for purchase listed on the Princess website.

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I found the prices on another thread. Like the other cruise lines I've been on, the prices are terrible. I guess I'll do without. It's a shame because we usually like to blog throughout our trips, and that won't be possible at these prices. I would think the cruise lines would appreciate all the free publicity. My buddy is a computer geek (not me for sure) and he says it wouldn't be that expensive to set up free wifi. I know there are lots of people that would find that an attractive perk. It feels a little like the cruise line is just interested in squeezing a bit more money out of their passengers.

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I found the prices on another thread. Like the other cruise lines I've been on, the prices are terrible. I guess I'll do without. It's a shame because we usually like to blog throughout our trips, and that won't be possible at these prices. I would think the cruise lines would appreciate all the free publicity. My buddy is a computer geek (not me for sure) and he says it wouldn't be that expensive to set up free wifi. I know there are lots of people that would find that an attractive perk. It feels a little like the cruise line is just interested in squeezing a bit more money out of their passengers.

Princess provides this attractive perk starting at the Platinum Captain's Circle level (5 cruise credits or 50 days). They receive comp. internet in 3 levels from 150mins./pp for 7 day or less cruises, 250min./pp for 8 to 20 days and 500min.pp for 21+ days.

 

Blogs may be good or bad publicity for the line.

 

Free wi-fi is available in ports. Just ask the crew for locations.

 

Internet service isn't free to Princess. The ship has to pay for the satellite link up mins. as well as onboard labor to maintain the computer systems and the cafe hardware.

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I'm a newbie so sorry if a dumb question. Seems like many like a balcony on Caribe aft. We booked a guaranteed BE unobstructed balcony - no idea what statroom would be assigned but that was all that was available that my pocket book could afford. Our travel agent just sent me notice that we have been upgraded to a BD stateroom C743 - it is the last starboard balcony before aft - sorry if I butchered the terminology. I think it'll be great since we should have starboard and aft views - unless there is something (a wall?) that blocks our aft view. Here is a picture and if you click on it it becomes bigger. Thanks

stateroom.JPG.a494da92f266deab53767e041c2b2189.JPG

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Sorry to have to tell you, but there is a wall or bulkhead on the aft side of your balcony that will preclude any view aft; but you still have a wonderful view to starboard. That was a nice upgrade to Caribe Deck. You will love the balcony.

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for your reply - I wondered about that. I keep hearing good things about Caribe deck so I'm pleased. When I look at the BE balconys they seem to all be clustered at the very very front fore. Plus may have more experienced steward if we get the same one that services the 2 big suites next to us. At least we know our room.

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I'm a newbie so sorry if a dumb question. Seems like many like a balcony on Caribe aft. We booked a guaranteed BE unobstructed balcony - no idea what statroom would be assigned but that was all that was available that my pocket book could afford. Our travel agent just sent me notice that we have been upgraded to a BD stateroom C743 - it is the last starboard balcony before aft - sorry if I butchered the terminology. I think it'll be great since we should have starboard and aft views - unless there is something (a wall?) that blocks our aft view. Here is a picture and if you click on it it becomes bigger. Thanks

[ATTACH]354021[/ATTACH]

 

You will look out to the side. That blank area is a crew stairwell on each side of the ship.

Better mark it no upgrade, that's a great cabin. ;)

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Travel agent and I tried to change my "upgrade" and pointed out it was next to the staff stairwell. Unfortunately, we had the rudest person in the phoen - I was shocked. Basically I'm assigned the room since I paid for guaranteed balcony and zi have a balcony. I think the use of the word "upgrade" was so I'd just be happy. There was no talking around this....sigh....

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