Frequently Asked Questions About Cruising

Upgrade Your Cruise Experience

Read our answers to some of your commonly asked questions regarding upgrading your cruise:

Upgrading to a balcony cabin on your next cruise unlocks a world of possibilities. Imagine waking up to a sunrise over the horizon, savouring a romantic dinner beneath the stars, or simply relaxing on your private verandah with a good book and the calming rhythm of the waves. Balcony cabins offer a connection to the sea, transforming your cruise from a voyage to a truly immersive experience. Plus, they provide much-needed extra space, a haven of tranquillity when you crave a break from the vibrant shipboard energy. So, for an unforgettable cruise filled with fresh air, breathtaking vistas, and the ultimate in relaxation, set sail with a balcony cabin.

Jobs on BoardCruise upgrades can be tempting, but consider these points before splashing out:

  • Cost vs. Value: Weigh the upgrade cost against the benefits. A balcony is more important in scenic destinations such as Alaska and the Fjords giving you access to places not easily visited by land, where you may only cruise by these natural attractions only seen from the ship. A balcony is less useful on a shorter city escape, for example. Think about how much you’ll use the extra space or perks (like priority boarding) to justify the price tag.
  • Your Priorities: Do you crave more space and a private balcony for relaxation? Or are you happy with a basic cabin and prefer to spend more on shore excursions or onboard activities? Decide what matters most to you.
  • Upgrade Type: Not all upgrades are created equal. A balcony might offer more return for your investment, or offer more tangible and visible benefits, while a slightly larger interior cabin might not be worth the extra cost, unless you’re planning on spending a lot of time in the cabin. Research the specific cabin categories before deciding.

Upgrading your cruise cabin after booking is usually possible, and there are a few ways to accomplish it.

Contact Whitestar Cruise & Travel or your Travel Agent who you initially booked with: This is the most straightforward approach. Contact them and request upgrade options and pricing. They can check availability in higher cabin categories and provide you with the necessary information. Lower fares have more restrictions and less flexibility, but upgrades can be requested and are subject to availability.

The best cabins are usually found in the prime locations on board. The best cabin may be a matter of personal preference, which will also take into account the size of the ship. Midships is usually considered the most stable location, and located on a mid-level to higher deck is often favoured. Ocean views are most popular, while balcony cabins and suites generally give you access to private balconies allowing for ocean views and fresh air.  Depending on your specific requirements and budget, the best cabins are also cruise line specific, example:

Britannia Oceanview

Positioned to offer sea views, Britannia Oceanview staterooms provide a private enclave from which to watch the world go by. Perfectly framed views are the backdrop to thoughtful features and luxurious amenities.

Britannia Balcony

Drink in sparkling sea views from your own private, outdoor space in one of Cunard’s Britannia Balcony staterooms. Guests dine in the Britannia Restaurant with a choice of early or late sitting, or open dining.

Britannia Club Balcony

Take advantage of prime sea views from your own private, outdoor space. Staterooms include additional thoughtful features, luxurious amenities and benefits such as priority embarkation and disembarkation. Dine in the intimate club Balcony at any time between 6:30 pm and 9 pm.

Princess Grill Suites

Delight in magnificent sea views that can be enjoyed from both in and outside your Princess Suite. Exclusive amenities include access to the Grills lounge and concierge service, Grills terrace as well as priority boarding and disembarkation. Guests dine at a reserved table in the exclusive single-seating Princess Grill Restaurant.

Queens Grill Suites

Retreat to an exclusive world of luxury with your own private residence at sea. Bold, striking colours and thoughtful designs bring each space in your suite to life. Exclusive amenities include a personal butler service, complimentary stocked mini bar and access to the Grills lounge and concierge service, Grills terrace as well as priority boarding and disembarkation . Guests dine at a reserved table in the exclusive single seating Queens Grill Restaurant.

Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) offers a variety of accommodation to cater to different budgets and travel styles. Here’s a breakdown of the main categories you’ll encounter:

Oceanview Cabin

  • Offering a porthole or window with a view of the ocean, oceanview cabins provide a step up from inside cabins while remaining budget-friendly.

Balcony Cabin

  • Balcony staterooms are a popular choice for cruisers who desire their own private outdoor space.

Club Balcony Suites & Balconies

  • Offering more space and premium amenities compared to standard balcony cabins, Club Balcony categories provide an elevated cruise experience.


  • NCL’s suite category encompasses a range of luxurious options, including Mini-Suites, Penthouses, and Family Suites.

The Haven Penthouse

  • The Haven offers a private, ultra-luxury experience and access to a private pool, sundeck, lounge, and butler service.
  • The Haven boasts luxurious suites with superior amenities, personalised service, and priority access to various onboard venues.

Viva Cruises offers several upgraded cabin options across their fleet, each designed to provide enhanced comfort and luxury for guests. Here are some of the key upgraded cabin types available:

  1. Ruby Deck Cabins: These cabins are slightly lower in the ship but offer high-quality accommodations with elegant furnishings and comfortable layouts. The Ruby Deck often includes balcony options, providing a private outdoor space for guests to enjoy the river views.
  2. Diamond Deck Cabins: Located on the top deck of the ship, these cabins offer the best views and often come with additional amenities.
  3. Junior Suites & Suites: These are the highest categories of cabins available on Viva Cruises ships. They feature more spacious living areas and enhanced amenities and often come with additional perks like complimentary Prosecco, a larger selection of toiletries, and a more extensive minibar selection. These cabins are perfect for those looking for extra comfort and luxury during their cruise.

These upgraded cabin options provide a range of choices for travellers looking for a more luxurious experience on their river cruise.

P&O Cruises offers several upgraded cabin options to enhance your cruising experience. Here are some of the key options:

  • Sea View Cabins:
    Sea view cabins include a window or porthole, natural lighting, and the same amenities as balcony cabins such as tea and coffee facilities and toiletries.
  • Balcony Cabins:
    These cabins provide a private balcony with floor-to-ceiling glass doors, daily steward service, in-cabin TV, telephone, hair dryer, safe, tea and coffee facilities, air conditioning, vanity writing desk, and beds that can convert to twin or king-size.
  • Mini-Suites:
    Mini-suites offer luxurious touches and services, including a comfortable robe and slippers, Champagne on arrival, a pillow menu, chocolates, and extra lounging space with floor-to-ceiling glass.
  • Suites:
    Suites are the most luxurious option, with exclusive touches and services, offering spacious accommodations with a whirlpool bath, butler service, larger dressing area, priority check-in and boarding, daily fresh fruit (on request), coffee machine, free room service, exclusive restaurant access, bathrobe and slippers, daily steward service, and more.

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