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15 Things To Do As Soon as You Get to Your Cruise Cabin

31 Mar 2023

Seeing your cruise cabin for the first time is one of the most exciting parts of a Royal Caribbean cruise. Whether you’ve booked a tiny interior room or spacious suite, your cabin quickly becomes your home away from home on a cruise vacation.

When you enter your cruise cabin on embarkation day, however, there are a few things you should do as soon as possible, such as unpacking and putting away valuables.

While these mundane tasks may not seem like the best way to kick off a cruise vacation, getting your cabin organized right away means you can better enjoy your time onboard throughout the rest of your sailing.

From meeting your stateroom attendant to decorating your cabin door, here are 15 things to do as soon as you get to your cruise cabin.

Drop off your carry-on bag


Most cruisers drop their large suitcases off with the porters at the cruise terminal to avoid bringing heavy luggage onboard. However, you’ll want to use a carry-on bag—a backpack, carry-on suitcase, or purse—during the embarkation process.

In this carry-on you should keep your electronic devices, identification documents, and important necessities like medication. You want to carry all items you’ll need on the first day of your cruise with you in a carry-on bag, as your luggage may not arrive in front of your cabin door for several hours.

Related: The Ultimate Cruise Packing List

The downside of bringing a carry-on bag with you onboard, though, is that your cruise cabin may not be ready for several hours after your boarding time. Many passengers begin boarding at 11AM, for example, but their stateroom isn’t ready until 1:30PM.

This leads to an awkward wait time of lugging your carry-on bag with you around the ship. Therefore, once staterooms are ready, the first thing you should do is drop off your carry-on in your cabin and get rid of the extra weight.

Unpack your clothes


We always recommend unpacking your clothes on a cruise whether the sailing is three nights or fourteen nights. In a small cruise cabin, living out of your suitcase will leave your room feeling more cramped, as valuable space will be taken up by your luggage on the floor or couch.

Instead, unpack your clothes into your cruise cabin’s drawers and closets. Not only will your room feel more spacious, but unpacking helps you settle into your cabin, making it feel much more like home.

This is especially important if you have formal wear prone to wrinkles. Hanging these outfits in your closets immediately will lessen the time your clothing is squished in a suitcase!

Put away your suitcases

Luggage under bed

Speaking of suitcases, be sure to store your suitcases out of sight after unpacking. There is ample room in your cabin’s closets for suitcases, so there’s no need for them to be out in the open during your sailing.

You can also store luggage under your cabin’s bed. Cruise cabin beds have enough space underneath for most sizes of luggage, and this is one of the best ways to increase space in your room while keeping your suitcase hidden for the duration of your cruise.

Meet your stateroom attendant

Your stateroom attendant cleans your cabin once per day during a Royal Caribbean cruise, and we always advise passengers to meet their cabin attendant on embarkation day.

Meeting your stateroom attendant helps set a rapport with the crew member. You’ll usually see your stateroom attendant every day of the cruise as you pass through your cabin’s hallway, and a friendly introduction can go a long way in terms of service and helpfulness during your cruise.

Make special requests

If you have any special requests for your cruise cabin, we recommend letting your stateroom attendant know on the first day of your cruise. You can request things like extra pillows, extra towels, and having ice be restocked in your ice bucket each day.

If there are more than two people in your cabin, you might want to make requests regarding your sofa bed or pullman bed. Many stateroom attendants will convert the sofa bed back into a couch during daytime, for example, but if you would rather keep the bed down throughout the day, just let them know!

Inspect your stateroom

Once you arrive in your cabin, do a quick check to make sure everything is in working order. Check that the safe opens and closes correctly, that your mini fridge is cold, that your air conditioning is working properly, and that there are no issues opening and closing your doors and closets.

On one recent cruise, I noticed the closet door was off its track. Unable to open the closet, I made a quick call to maintenance and had the issue resolved within less than an hour.

On another occasion, I realized my virtual balcony wasn’t working. I neglected to call maintenance and spent the entire cruise with a broken television screen on my virtual balcony! Looking back, I wish I had called maintenance, as they likely could have fixed the issue quickly.

More often than not, everything will work perfectly in your cabin, but it’s still worth a check in case there are any issues.

Put drinks in the fridge

Emerald members and above in Royal Caribbean’s Crown & Anchor Society receive water bottles in their cabin on embarkation day. Emerald and Diamond members receive two bottles of water per person whereas Diamond Plus and Pinnacle members receive three per person.

When you enter your stateroom, you’ll find these water bottles on your desk or dresser. Be sure to put these water bottles in the fridge to make sure they are cold later on.

Additionally, if you've brought any wine, soda, or other non-alcoholic drinks onboard, this is a great time to put these drinks in the fridge, too.

Confirm bed configuration

Your king-sized cruise cabin bed can be split into two twin beds on request, and one thing to do immediately after getting to your cruise cabin is confirm your bed configuration. If you’re traveling with kids or a friend, you might prefer the bed to be separated into two smaller beds.

Most of the time, your beds will not be separated upon arrival to your cruise cabin. If this is the case, you’ll have to contact your stateroom attendant or housekeeping to put in your request and they will separate the beds as quickly as possible.

Check your onboard offers

If you’re a member of Royal Caribbean’s Crown & Anchor Society, you will receive a paper on your cabin desk listing onboard offers for your sailing.

Depending on your loyalty status, onboard offers may include coupons for beer, wine, and soda, discounts on laundry, and free play in the casino.

Knowing which freebies and coupons are offered can save you money during a cruise, so take the time to browse your onboard offer sheet as soon as you get to your cruise cabin.

Look at the daily schedule


In addition to checking your onboard offers, take a view minutes to browse the daily schedule of activities in the Royal Caribbean app. While browsing, you can add activities and events to your calendar to ensure you don’t miss out on anything while onboard.

Related: 15 free things to try on your next cruise

Plus, you can use this time to reserve entertainment and activities before they book up, such as comedy shows, AquaTheater performances, and a ride on the North Star observational pod.

Doing this while in your stateroom means you can take a quick break from the hustle and bustle onboard to plan out your cruise in a quieter space.

Sign in to your wifi package

ebook reader

If you reserved a Royal Caribbean wifi package, we recommend signing in to your wifi account once you get to your stateroom. If you’ve never had a wifi package before, you can find login instructions on a helpful sheet that will be on your cabin’s desk.

If you encounter any problems or errors when logging in to your wifi account, you can ask for help at the VOOM internet desk or Guest Services.

Put away your valuables

As soon as you get to your cruise cabin, put any valuables away in the safe or drawers. We advise placing your passport in the safe, as this is the first place crew members will look for a passport on the off chance you miss the ship at a port of call.

Plus, keeping valuables in safe spaces helps make sure you won’t misplace any expensive or special items throughout the cruise.

Place magnets on the wall

One of our favorite cruise cabin hacks—especially if you’re sailing in an interior cabin—is to use magnetic hooks on your stateroom walls.

Royal Caribbean cruise cabins are magnetic, and magnetic hooks provide extra storage space for items like hats, purses, and jackets. Although newer cruise ship cabins have an impressive amount of storage space, older cruise ships may lack storage.

Related: I tried the best inside cruise ship cabin hacks to see how well they worked

Because of this, many cruisers like to bring magnetic hooks to hang miscellaneous accessories. Placing magnetic hooks on the wall when you get to your cruise cabin can keep your cabin organized throughout the sailing.

Decorate your cabin door

Like your cruise cabin walls, the door to your cabin is magnetic. To make cruising more fun, many passengers enjoy decorating their cruise cabin door with magnetic decorations.

If you walk down any hallway on a cruise ship, you’ll find fun decorations on the door, whether anniversary and birthday decor, tropical magnets like palm trees, or more specific decorations stating a family’s name and sail date.

Decorating your cruise cabin door as soon as you get to your cabin can be a fun way to make your cabin feel more like home. As another plus, it makes finding your cabin a lot easier when walking through the long hallways on your ship!

Do your muster drill

eMuster on phones

Lastly, once you get to your cruise ship cabin, make sure to complete the mandatory muster drill. Royal Caribbean’s eMuster drill is a safety drill that all guests must complete before a ship can set sail on embarkation day.

The drill consists of three parts. The first two, watching a lifejacket safety video and listening to the emergency horn, can be done via the Royal Caribbean app or on your stateroom’s television.

If you haven’t completed the first two steps by the time you get to your cruise cabin, be sure to complete them as soon as possible. After the first two steps, leave your stateroom to head to your muster station on the ship, which will be indicated on the Royal Caribbean app.

Once your muster drill is completed, you can continue to enjoy your Royal Caribbean vacation!

I always stay in an inside cabin on a cruise ship. Here's why I actually like these rooms

10 Mar 2023

I almost always book an inside cabin when I cruise. Despite being the smallest, most basic cruise ship cabins, I find that I actually like these rooms.

Not only do inside cabins save me money, but I find they come with extra perks as well. From a quieter cabin to a perfect night’s sleep, I’ll never complain about cruising in a cozy inside room.

Inside cabins definitely aren’t for everyone, though. If you value the added space of a balcony or the exclusivity of a suite, a tiny, windowless room will not be the best choice. Likewise, having natural daylight in the room is a major plus for many cruisers, making an inside cabin a last resort.

Nonetheless, I continue to book inside cabins again and again when I cruise, and here’s why I actually like these rooms.

Inside cabins are the quietest cabins onboard

A few months ago, I stayed in a Boardwalk balcony cabin on Allure of the Seas. Although I appreciated the room’s extra space and balcony views, I found the cabin to be much too noisy for my liking.

The Boardwalk neighborhood is full of activity during both the day and evening, and it was much louder than I expected when I initially booked the cabin.

Related: Are Boardwalk Balcony cabins too loud?

The carousel, in particular, drove me a little crazy. My balcony was located directly two decks above the carousel, which played carnival-themed music for over ten hours each day! Even with the door closed, I couldn’t stop the muffled sound of music entering my cabin.

An inside room, on the other hand, is impressively quiet. On my recent cruise, I rarely heard any noise above, below, or adjacent to my cabin. If I heard noise, it was almost always the loud flushing sound of a cruise ship toilet!

Inside cabin on Mariner of the Seas

Cabins with balconies are more prone to noise, especially those located near the pool deck or within Central Park and the Boardwalk neighborhoods. You may find yourself hearing music, conversations, or activities happening from your balcony, which you won’t encounter when staying in an inside room.

Related: Avoid these mistakes when picking a cruise ship cabin

Of course, you can still encounter noise in inside cabins. Older cruise ships, for example, have thinner walls than Royal Caribbean’s newest ships, which may help noise travel from room to room. In addition, booking an inside cabin above or below a busy area of the ship—such as a nightclub or Adventure Ocean—can lead to increased noise levels.

In my experience, however, inside cabins have been more quiet than other staterooms.

Inside cabins are cheaper than other cabins, and this stretches my budget much further

Inside cabins are almost always the cheapest cabin you can book on a cruise. As someone who prefers cruising on a budget, this is the primary reason I book inside cabins.

I’ve been on 16 cruises, and I’ve spent 11 of them in inside cabins. By doing so, I’ve saved thousands of dollars. Had I spent every cruise in an oceanview, balcony, or suite, I probably would not have been able to cruise nearly as much as I have!

Related: I'm a budget cruiser. Here are 8 easy strategies I used on my recent Royal Caribbean cruise to save money

Booking an inside cabin means I can stretch my vacation budget further. On my recent cruise, I saved around $500 by sailing in an inside room instead of a balcony cabin. This $500 was put towards flights to Miami, shore excursions in port, specialty dining, and other incidental expenses during the cruise.

This isn’t to say I’ll never sail in other cruise cabins. Recently, in fact, I sailed in one of Royal Caribbean’s most expensive and luxurious suites, and it was certainly an experience I’ll cherish for a long time.

Related: I cruised in a suite for the first time. Here are 5 things I learned from the experience—and 3 I’d do differently next time

Additionally, I always reprice my cruise and email my travel agent about upgrade options before my sail date. Several times, I’ve been surprised to see upgrade options for as little as $90 from an inside to balcony cabin. It’s always worth asking if prices have gone down prior to your sail date.

I sleep the best in inside cabins, as there is no natural light in the room

There’s nothing quite like the sleep you’ll get in an interior room on a cruise ship. Having no window or balcony to the outside means these rooms are pitch black when you turn the light off. For most passengers, including myself, this leads to a fantastic night’s sleep.

Not only that, but taking a midday nap is easy when sailing in an interior cabin. I have a hard time napping at home, as I can never properly fall asleep with daylight shining through my window. In an inside room, though, I have no problem sleeping at any time of the day, whether 3AM or 3PM!

A post-port day nap is one of my favorite parts of cruising, and it’s even better when staying in an inside room!

Not all inside cabins lack outdoor views

Certain Royal Caribbean ships have a virtual balcony, which is a large, floor-to-ceiling television screen projecting a live feed from outside the ship. Having stayed in two virtual balcony cabins, I find these to be a nice way to get an outside view at a fraction of the cost of a balcony cabin.

I’ll admit the virtual balcony doesn’t necessarily make you feel like you’re looking at the scenery in real life, but it’s still a nice cabin feature. Being able to easily see what the weather is like outside, if you’ve left port yet, and if it’s day or night is helpful when staying in an inside room.

I don’t know if I’d pay extra for a virtual balcony in lieu of a normal inside cabin, but it’s still a nice option.

Voyager, Freedom, and Oasis Class ships offer a different type of interior cabin: a Promenade view room. These cabins have a window looking into the ship’s Royal Promenade, a hub of shopping, bars, and activities.

Related: Everything about Royal Caribbean’s Promenade View staterooms

Like other inside cabins, these rooms do not have a view of the outdoors, but they can be a nice middle ground between booking an inside cabin and an oceanview or balcony room.

Inside rooms “force” me to spend time in other areas of the ship

Voyager of the Seas sunset

Whenever I’ve cruised in a balcony room or suite, I find myself spending a significant amount of time in my cabin instead of exploring the ship. Instead of attending trivia, seeing a show, or watching live music, I frequently choose to hang out on my balcony instead.

There’s nothing wrong with spending time relaxing in my cabin, but I love how inside cabins almost force me to spend time elsewhere. Although inside cabins are cozy, there’s no view to admire outside, and I’d much prefer spending my day in other, more interesting areas of the ship.

On my recent cruise in an inside room, I only visited my cabin to sleep, shower, and change. Instead of spending time in my small cabin, I spent my days lounging in the Solarium, enjoying a drink at the Schooner Bar, and catching a show at the AquaTheater.

With so much to do on a Royal Caribbean cruise, I almost felt as if I would be missing out on the cruise experience by spending time in my cabin!

Should you book an inside cabin on a cruise ship?

First-time cruisers often struggle with picking the right cabin for their cruise. After all, no one wants to make a mistake on cabin choice and regret their decision once the cruise begins!

Thankfully, there’s no “wrong” cabin to book on a Royal Caribbean cruise. Regardless of whether you stay in the cheapest inside room or most expensive two-story suite, you can still have an amazing experience onboard.

If you’re considering booking an inside cabin, consider the following factors before making your reservation:


Most cruisers book inside cabins to save money. Most of the time, you can save a few hundred dollars by booking an interior stateroom.

Take a look at your travel budget before booking an inside cabin. Would you rather save money on your cabin in order to afford shore excursions, dining packages, and drink packages? Or would you prefer to cruise in an upgraded stateroom and skip pre-cruise add-ons?

Every passenger has a different budget, and ultimately you are the only person who can decide what splurges to allocate your budget toward.


Although inside cabins are usually cheaper than other cabins on your cruise ship, it’s not guaranteed. Before booking an inside cabin, be sure to check the price of oceanview and balcony rooms.

Depending on the sailing—and how far in advance you’re booking—you may be surprised to see upgraded staterooms priced similarly to an inside room.

Travel style

Are you the type of cruiser who loves being out and about on the ship? Or do you prefer getting alone time with a book and an ocean view?

If your goal when cruising is to experience as much as possible—from entertainment shows to activities and nightclubs—an inside cabin may work well for you. With so much happening around the ship at any given time, it’s unlikely you’ll spend much time in your cabin throughout the sailing.

If you’re a more introverted traveler, though, and would prefer a stateroom with a view, an inside room is probably not the best option. Although inside cabins are still comfortable, they aren’t the most exciting place to hang out if you plan to spend significant time in your cabin each day!

Still deciding which cabin to book for your cruise? Check out more of our tips & tricks:

I saved $100 by letting Royal Caribbean choose my cruise ship cabin location, and I would let them do it again

21 Feb 2023

On my recent Symphony of the Seas cruise, I decided to book a guarantee cabin and let Royal Caribbean assign my stateroom closer to the sail date. I saved $100 by doing so and would let them choose my cabin again in the future! 


I booked an interior guarantee for less than choosing my stateroom at the time of booking. When I received my cabin assignment, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that I got an accessible interior cabin, which meant that my cabin for my cruise was going to be much larger than a traditional interior stateroom. 

Here's why I'll choose to save my money next time and book another guarantee cabin.

What does it mean to book a guarantee cabin?


Guarantee staterooms are cheaper cabin options offered by Royal Caribbean (and most other cruise lines) in exchange for allowing them to assign your stateroom closer to the sail date. In other words, when you book your cruise vacation, you will not have the exact room assignment until later on, as you won't get to choose your cabin.  

Additionally, Royal Caribbean states that you will receive the stateroom category you booked or higher. There is always a slim chance that you could receive an upgrade. If, for instance, you booked an interior, you may find that you got an upgrade to an ocean view cabin. However, as cruises are booking up further in advance and sailing at full capacity nowadays, it is unlikely that this will happen. You should not book a guarantee cabin expecting an upgrade!

The purpose of guarantee cabins is to help fill in the gaps of unsold staterooms-- some rooms are less likely to get booked. 

I did not mind taking the chance of getting a cabin in a less desired location. While that meant that I may have had to walk further to and from my cabin or deal with some noise from the casino, theatre, or nightclub, I knew that I would still be on the same ship as everybody else and enjoying the same amenities. I don't spend much time in my stateroom; I'm always exploring the ship, listening to live music, hanging out on the pool deck, or off in port. 

Cabin assignment

Royal Caribbean states that guarantee rooms will be assigned at some point between 5-30 days before the cruise. This means that you could potentially be one week from embarking on your cruise vacation without knowing where your stateroom is located yet. 

Most of the time, rooms are assigned a few weeks before the cruise. Sometimes, though, people have not received their stateroom until a day or two before sailing. These instances, however, are rare!

Additionally, you will not be notified when Royal Caribbean assigns your stateroom. You will have to continuously log into the cruise line's website to check.

I booked my stateroom after the final payment date and was assigned a room fairly quickly-- I had one within two weeks of booking, or about 1.5 months before the cruise sail date. To me, I was surprised that I was given an accessible cabin so early. There was ample time for another cruiser, one who truly needed the benefits of an accessible room, to book it!

I spent the time leading up to my cruise wondering if this meant that my stateroom could change again at the last minute. This never happened, and I spent my week onboard Symphony of the Seas enjoying my oversized stateroom. As a solo traveler, this felt like I was royalty! 

Stateroom #6189 impressions


Since I looked up my stateroom in advance, I knew that it was an accessible cabin. As mentioned earlier, I was confused as to why this was assigned to a solo traveler over one month before the cruise. I knew that the cruise was pretty booked, so this probably all that was left when I booked the cruise.


This is usually how guarantee cabins are assigned, anyway. Cruisers who are willing to pay to select their staterooms choose the ones in more desirable locations to be near their favorite amenities or closer to family and friends. Those that have yet to be booked are what guarantee cruisers are given. 

The guarantee process itself was straightforward. I was assigned my cabin in a timely manner and had no issues with the room. 

What I did not know, however, was just how large my stateroom was going to be. The room was 258 square feet, so it was over 100 square feet larger than traditional interior staterooms! 


While the square footage of the room was larger, there was not really much more storage space. It was outfitted with the same amenities as other standard cabins, including two closets, a dresser, vanity area, and three bathroom shelves.


The two primary difference that I noticed were that the nightstands were larger than the ones I had in my last interior room onboard Symphony of the Seas, and the bathroom sink did not have a long shelf underneath it. The bathroom counter, however, was wider. 


There was not a glass shower door, either, but that was to be expected in this category of stateroom. I was a fan of the oversized cruise shower; I did not accidentally hit my arm on the door or shower wall!

My largest issue with the stateroom was the automatic door. I either had to forcefully shut it or wait for it to close on its own and let people passing by peer into my room. There were switches that were supposed to toggle this function on and off, but neither myself nor my stateroom attendant could figure them out.


Overall, this was such a minor issue that I came to appreciate the mini-workout I got trying to close my door, and for people who are utilizing every function of an accessible room, this would be useful!

I loved how I actually saved money to end up with a specious cabin! It was a comfortable place to call home for the week. 

Cabin location


My stateroom was located on deck 6 midship, and honestly, it was probably the most centrally located stateroom I have ever stayed in! Midship staterooms are great because they are never a far walk from the elevator or stairs, meaning you can navigate the ship quicker.

If there is one thing I could have changed about this location, I think I would have preferred to have been on a higher deck to be located, quite literally, in the middle of the ship. The Windjammer Marketplace was all the way on deck 16, so that meant I had quite a ways to travel to reach the buffet for breakfast or lunch.

That being said, the forward elevator bank was close by, and I was a short walk to my morning coffee at Café Promenade each morning. Plus, returning from port meant I only had to walk up three or four flights of stairs, as I usually never take the elevator since it's so crowded; I enjoyed being able to quickly return to my stateroom! 

The one downside was that it got pretty noisy at night from the events in the Royal Promenade. To me, though, that is not a dealbreaker. I always assume that I'll hear something in my stateroom. I'd much rather it be a little bit of vibrations from the music below than the dragging of pool chairs early in the morning. 

Overall thoughts on booking a guarantee stateroom


Guarantee staterooms are not for everybody. Whenever I cruised with my parents, for instance, they loved to be able to pick two staterooms close to one another-- we often ended up in connecting balconies!

For myself, though, I don't mind saving the money and letting Royal Caribbean choose my cabin. I figure that I can use the extra cash to book other experiences that will enhance my cruise vacation, such as shore excursions or specialty dining.

I know that even if I end up in a location that requires more walking or is a little noisy, I will still enjoy my vacation. And walking on a cruise is never a bad thing, right? 

I got lucky with my cabin and location. Guarantee cabins are the luck of the draw, but I think playing the game of chance is worth it, especially if you end up with a cabin like mine! After staying in a larger stateroom, it will be difficult to return to the standard sized ones! 

Sometimes, the price difference between choosing your own cabin and booking a guarantee is negligible. In that instance, I would probably opt to select my own cabin somewhere on deck 8, as I love being located near Central Park! 

If you're prone to seasickness or really do have a preferred location (i.e., close to Central Park or the Main Dining Room), it may be best for you to pay the difference. Choosing the ideal stateroom and location is one easy way to make sure that you start your cruise vacation as seamlessly as possible! The savings won't be worth it to someone who would fell ill all night or be kept awake by the activities nearby. 

We stayed in every type of cabin on a Royal Caribbean cruise—from a $670 inside cabin to $2600 suite—and here’s how they compared

14 Feb 2023

Choosing a cruise cabin is an important part of the planning process, but how do you decide which type of cabin to book? We booked every type of cabin on our recent Royal Caribbean cruise to see how they compare.

Everything from budget-friendly interior cabins to multi-bedroom suites are available on a Royal Caribbean cruise. Unsurprisingly, these cabins can come with drastically different price tags, from $50 per person, per night to well over $1000.

And whether you’re booking your first cruise or 50th, the type of cabin you book can make or break your cruise vacation. Some passengers prefer saving money by booking the cheapest cabin they can find whereas others prefer the privacy of booking a room with their own private balcony.

The Royal Caribbean Blog and Cruise Blog team recently sailed on Liberty of the Seas for a 3-night Bahamas cruise. With 9 staterooms to book, we decided to try as many types of cabins as possible to see how they compared.

These cabins ranged in price from $670 to over $2600, and we wanted to look at the advantages, disadvantages, and overall experience each team member had in their cabin to see which cabins were worth it—and which we’d skip next time.

Owner’s Suite

Total cost: $2,612

Staff member Jenna stayed in the Owner’s Suite on Liberty of the Seas during our 3-night sailing. As one of the biggest cabins on the ship, the Owner’s Suite was, undoubtedly, an incredible place to spend the weekend.

Like any cabin, though, it came with a few pros and cons.

Jenna noted the best benefit of the Owner’s Suite as the cabin’s ample space. With 624 square feet in the room and an 160 square foot balcony, the cabin is around 4 and a half times larger than the smallest interior cabins onboard!

Related: I stayed in a luxurious cruise ship suite for $870 per night—see what my room looked like on Royal Caribbean’s Liberty of the Seas

“With so much space, the Owner’s Suite worked perfectly as an entertaining space during our cruise,” Jenna mentioned. “We hosted our whole group for an after-dinner get-together two of the three nights of the cruise, and it was a lot of fun.”

In addition to the cabin’s size was the location, which Jenna found to be another huge benefit. Her Owner’s Suite was located right outside the elevator lobby, making it convenient to get anywhere onboard quickly.

Of course, suite benefits come with an Owner’s Suite, and these were a massive advantage of the added price tag.

“I loved going to the Suite Lounge each evening for drinks and appetizers. Having priority boarding was another plus, and added perks like a private breakfast at Chops Grille in the morning made our 3-night cruise extra special.”

Related: I cruised in a suite for the first time. Here are 5 things I learned from the experience—and 3 I’d do differently next time

There were a few cons to Jenna’s Owner’s Suite experience, however. The cruise’s short length of three nights combined with a port-intensive itinerary meant there was little time to spend in the cabin. Furthermore, the cabin came with a hefty price tag, which Jenna mentioned as a reason she would probably not book a suite for every cruise.

“After my first suite experience, I totally understand why suites are so popular on cruise ships: they add a level of luxury to a Royal Caribbean cruise that’s simply unattainable in a normal stateroom category.

“However, I felt that, while my weekend onboard was memorable, booking an inside, oceanview, or balcony cabin is perfectly fine with my travel style,” she continued. “I can easily save hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars by booking a lower-category room instead of a suite, and can put the savings toward other add-ons like shore excursions, dining packages, and spa treatments... or even a longer cruise itinerary!”

Junior Suite

Total cost: $1,439

Cruise Blog writer Chantal spent the weekend in a Junior Suite.

She found the cabin to be very spacious, with a large living space and balcony. Her walk-in closet was so large, in fact, that she joked how she could have rented it out in New York City!

Her main complaint with the Junior Suite, though, was the price versus benefits received. Chantal explained how she paid a premium for a Junior Suite compared to a regular balcony room, but did not receive any of the elusive suite benefits she would have received in a higher category suite.

Related: Royal Caribbean’s Junior Suites: What you need to know

Receiving double Crown & Anchor Society points for the sailing was a major plus, though, and the location was great. Despite being located right below the pool deck, Chantal mentioned she heard little noise.

The funniest part of her cabin experience? The bathroom. “It was like an Italian Nonna had sent her 60s era bathroom to the future! I say this lovingly as my husband is half Italian,” she joked. “Everything worked as it should but I remain puzzled by the design choice."

Ben & Jerry’s Sweet

Total cost: $753

Guest writer Allie stayed in one of Royal Caribbean’s most unique cabins during her Liberty of the Seas cruise: the Ben & Jerry’s Sweet. As the name implies, this cabin is located directly above the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream parlor on the Royal Promenade.

Technically a Promenade view interior room, this cabin’s view is partially blocked by a cow statue. Because of the obstructed views, guests in the Ben & Jerry’s Sweet receive complimentary Ben & Jerry’s vouchers each day and access to the Suite Lounge.

Allie mentioned Suite Lounge access as one of the best benefits of the Ben & Jerry’s Sweet. With complimentary drinks each evening during happy hour, breakfast, and hors d'oeuvres in the evening, it’s hard to beat the value you receive in the Ben & Jerry’s Sweet.

Related: A suite that’s sweet! I stayed in the weirdest cabin on Royal Caribbean—it included free ice cream and cow-themed decor

Of course, the free Ben & Jerry’s ice cream was a plus, too, but Allie noted that the crew members at Ben & Jerry’s didn’t always know how the vouchers worked.

“It seemed like most crew members didn’t know the protocol of what’s included in the Ben & Jerry’s Sweet. For example, I got different answers each day as to what the ice cream vouchers include, our cards didn’t work to get into the Suite Lounge initially, and there was a weird ambiguity with the cabin about whether we were actually suite guests or just received a few fun suite perks.”

In addition to ambiguity, Allie didn’t totally love the cabin’s location. She explained how, due to its location on the Royal Promenade, the room was noisy at night, especially during parties. And, if you wanted to keep the curtains opened to the Promenade below, there was little privacy in the room.

Regardless of these few cons, Allie wouldn’t hesitate to book the “suite” again.

“I’d do it again just for the happy hour and free ice cream!”


Total cost: $707

Social media strategist Nicole booked a balcony cabin on our 3-night cruise. Nicole’s cabin was room 1878, one of the new cabins added to Liberty of the Seas during the ship’s 2016 refurbishment.

With updated decor and furnishings, Nicole felt the updated room was a major plus of staying in her particular cabin.

“There was an updated closet system with plenty of storage and it felt larger than other balcony rooms we’ve stayed in.”

The location of her room had pros and cons, however. It was conveniently located near the elevators and close to the deck 12 running track and Solarium, but its location above the gym made the cabin slightly noisy. In addition, there was a security camera on their balcony, as it was the last balcony room before turning into oceanview cabins.

Despite a few disadvantages, having a balcony cabin is a must for many cruisers, and Nicole didn’t regret booking a balcony cabin for her short cruise.


Three members of our group spent the weekend in oceanview cabins, each of whom had their own unique takeaways from the cabin experience.

Ocean-facing oceanview cabin: $785

Guest writer Marcy booked an oceanview cabin on deck 3, providing an unobstructed view of the ocean from her room’s private porthole.

Marcy enjoyed her cabin’s location, as it was located right near the elevator yet was surprisingly quiet. It provided easy access to the ice skating show in Studio B, and the cabin’s lower deck location wasn’t prone to any ship movement.

The main con of her cabin was the small size, but that is to be expected in an oceanview cabin unless she were to upgrade to a spacious oceanview cabin category. And, of course, Marcy missed having a balcony, but appreciated the outdoor views from her stateroom’s window.

Helipad oceanview cabin: $821

Guest writer Haley and Social Media Strategist Angie both stayed in oceanview cabins overlooking the ship’s helicopter pad.

Angie found her cabin to be quite spacious, with a lot of closet space and drawers. She enjoyed the deck 7 location as it was close to the Royal Promenade and other lower-deck activities, and found her stateroom attendant to be excellent.

Similarly, Haley found the cabin’s size to be adequate, noting there was extra space for getting ready in the evenings due to the ship’s interesting layout. The view of the helicopter pad was also a plus.

Related: Inside cabin vs. oceanview cabin: are the differences worth an upgrade?

However, she thought the angle of the room made the bathroom’s layout rather uncomfortable, and mentioned how the room lacked privacy due to facing the helipad.

“Make sure to close the curtains when not using that porthole,” she advised, “or else everyone can see directly into the prime changing spot in the room!”

Despite the two rooms being located just a few doors down from each other, Angie and Haley had contrasting experiences when it came to movement and noise in the cabin. Haley found the cabin to be quiet and did not encounter any issues with seasickness.

Angie, on the other hand, was woken up by the ship’s anchor at 6AM each morning when the ship docked, and said she could really feel the waves on the first night of the cruise when seas were rough.

This goes to show that your experience in a cabin can vary drastically from someone else’s even if you’re located right next door!

Promenade View Interior

Total cost: $758

Cruise Blog writer Hayley spent her weekend cruise in a Promenade view interior cabin, which looked into the ship’s Royal Promenade below.

Her cabin was identical to Allie’s Ben & Jerry’s ‘Sweet’, albeit without complimentary ice cream and suite lounge access. One of the major benefits of Hayley’s Promenade View Interior cabin was having two couches in the room.

“Having two couches in a small living room space meant more room to spread out than a standard interior room," she explained.

Her centrally-located cabin meant she didn’t feel any motion during the sailing while being close to the amenities and activities near the Royal Promenade. She found it interesting and fun to experience a unique type of cabin, and mentioned how she hadn’t seen anything similar on other cruise lines she’s experienced in the past.

The cons? Being on the Promenade meant the cabin could potentially be noisy during the evenings, but mentioned how most of the loud music seemed to end around midnight each night.


Total cost: $670

Staff member Elizabeth booked an interior cabin for her 3-night Liberty of the Seas cruise. 

For such a short cruise, Elizabeth decided against unpacking. Luckily, her stateroom had a couch where she and her cabin mate could place their carry-on suitcases with no issue, and without compromising floor space.

Outside of having no window or balcony, Elizabeth encountered a few disadvantages when staying in her interior cabin. First was wear and tear, and she explained how the room’s condition made her want to spend less time in the cabin.

Related: I tried the best inside cruise ship cabin hacks to see how well they worked

“Paint was chipping in our bathroom, and there was a hole in our shower hose. This isn’t exclusive to an interior stateroom, and could have happened in any cabin, but it just happened to be my experience.”

Booking a guarantee cabin meant Elizabeth could not pick her room location, and the room she was assigned to (#8401) was located in the ship’s aft. Because of this, she had a long walk down the hallway to reach her cabin.

“I think I’ll always opt for an interior stateroom on short weekend cruises,” she explained. “I’m glad we didn’t spend any more than we did. For three nights on a cruise with no sea days, it just didn’t feel necessary. We were literally only in the room to sleep. There wasn’t any real resting time like on longer cruises.”

Extra cost vs. extra space: what were our takeaways from staying in nearly every type of cabin on Liberty of the Seas?

It’s no question that every member of our group encountered different experiences onboard depending on which cabin they booked, but just how much did the cabin selection affect the overall cruise experience?

Here were our main takeaways after comparing our experiences in these cabin types.

Compare prices of all cabin types before booking

Before making a decision on which cabin to book, be sure to compare the price of the cabins against each other. We were surprised to see cabins in higher categories, such as Nicole’s balcony room, priced the same (or even lower) than interior and oceanview cabins.

Here’s an overview of what we paid for these 8 cabin types on our 3-night cruise. Prices show the total for 2 adults and include taxes, fees, and gratuities:

  • Owner’s Suite: $2,612
  • Junior Suite: $1,439
  • Ben & Jerry’s Suite: $753
  • Balcony: $707
  • Ocean-facing oceanview: $785
  • Forward-facing oceanview: $821 
  • Promenade view interior: $758
  • Interior: $670

It’s clear that some team members got much more value from their cabin than others. Nicole’s balcony cabin was $78 less than Marcy’s oceanview cabin, and she had access to a private balcony along with updated decor and furnishings.

In addition, Allie’s Ben & Jerry’s Suite was $5 less than Hayley’s regular promenade view interior cabin. Despite the cabins having the exact same size and layout, Allie received access to the Suite Lounge in addition to complimentary ice cream!

On the contrary, Jenna’s suite was four times more expensive than Elizabeth’s interior cabin, so she could have booked 4 separate cruises for the same price as one in her Owner’s Suite. Although it’s not so black and white when comparing the value of a suite versus an interior cabin, it’s important to consider how much value you’ll get from the suite before booking.

When cruising with a large group, you’ll spend little time in your cabin

One of our group’s main takeaways from our Liberty of the Seas cruise was that, when sailing with a large group, you’re unlikely to spend much time in your cabin.

From eating together in the Main Dining Room each evening to group activities onboard and in port, we found ourselves with little free time to hang out in our cabins. And even if we did have time to spend in our rooms, it was hard to justify sitting alone in our cabins when we could be having fun with the group elsewhere onboard!

Therefore, when booking a cruise cabin, be sure to consider who will be onboard with you. If it’s just you and your spouse, for example, you’ll likely spend more time in your cabin compared to sailing with your entire extended family!

In these cases, booking a cheaper category could be better than splurging on a balcony or suite so you don’t feel pressured to spend time in the cabin to “justify” the price you paid.

There’s no ‘best’ or ‘wrong’ cabin to book for a Royal Caribbean cruise

Like anything in life, a “perfect” cabin for one cruiser may not work well for another. Some passengers may love saving money by booking an interior cabin whereas others would rather not cruise at all than book an inside room!

On the flip side, some cruisers swear by booking a suite on every sailing whereas others don't find the extra space and added benefits a necessity.

If there’s anything we learned from our experience booking nearly every type of cabin on a Royal Caribbean cruise, it’s to always try something new! It’s easy to get in the habit of booking the same type of cabin over and over again, but on your next cruise, consider trying something new.

Whether you book a balcony for the first time or score a booking on the unique Ben & Jerry’s “Sweet”, you might be surprised to find a new favorite cabin on your next Royal Caribbean cruise.

Inside cabin vs. oceanview cabin: Are the differences worth an upgrade?

08 Feb 2023

Choosing between an inside cabin and an oceanview cabin for your next cruise? These budget-friendly cabins are both excellent options for a cruise vacation, but there are several differences to know about between the two cabins before booking one over the other.

While inside cabins are the cheapest cruise cabins available, many cruisers prefer the natural daylight and views provided in an oceanview cabin. Others, however, don’t mind the small size and darkness of an interior cabin provided it saves them money.

Let’s take a look at the differences between inside cabins and oceanview cabins on a cruise ship. From more space to better locations, this guide will help you decide if the differences are worth an upgrade from an inside cabin to an oceanview.

What is an inside cabin on a cruise ship?

Inside cabins on a cruise ship are cabins without a window, balcony, or porthole to the outside. They are located in the ship’s interior rather than along the ship’s perimeter and are, more often than not, the smallest cabins onboard.

Most inside cabins are around 170 square feet and can accommodate 2-4 guests depending on the room’s configuration. Aside from the lack of a balcony or window, inside cabins feature the same amenities as oceanview and balcony cabins, including:

  • King size bed (which can be separated to two single beds)
  • Plush chair or couch
  • Closet and drawer space
  • Vanity/desk area with a chair
  • Nightstands
  • Private bathroom with shower

These windowless cabins are usually the cheapest option onboard, making inside rooms a great option for those cruising on a budget. Many guests who book interior rooms choose to spend money elsewhere during their vacation, such as on drink packages or exciting shore excursions.

The majority of inside cabins on a cruise ship have no view outside the room, but there are two alternatives: virtual balcony and Promenade view inside cabins.

Virtual balcony inside cabins

While no inside cabins will have a window to the outdoors, new or amplified Royal Caribbean cruise ships may offer virtual balconies.

These interior rooms feature a floor-to-ceiling television screen with a live view of the outside. By booking an inside cabin with a virtual balcony, you can check the weather, watch the scenery, and have a better idea of what time of day it is outside.

It’s easy to get disoriented in a pitch black, windowless inside cabin, so many cruisers enjoy having the virtual balcony option.

Promenade view inside cabins

Promenade view cabins are interior cabins with a window facing the Royal Promenade on select Royal Caribbean ships. These staterooms are found on Voyager, Freedom, and Oasis Class ships. 

While you cannot see the ocean from these cabins, they offer nice people watching opportunities in the Promenade below and bring extra light into your room.

Related: Everything about Royal Caribbean’s Promenade View staterooms

Priced only slightly higher than interior cabins, Promenade view cabins make a nice “trade off” for those who don’t want to splurge on an oceanview or balcony, but want something nicer than a regular inside room.

In addition to Promenade view inside cabins, Oasis Class ships also feature Central Park view and Boardwalk view inside cabins, which look into their respective neighborhoods.

What is an oceanview cabin on a cruise?

Oceanview cabins are a step up from an inside cabin on a cruise; they offer a private porthole with a view of the ocean.

This porthole window does not open (nor does it have a balcony) but the window provides natural sunlight to the cabin, which is a must-have for many cruisers. 

There are several types of oceanview cabins to book:

  • Standard oceanview cabin: 170-179 square feet
  • Spacious oceanview cabin: 211 square feet
  • Ultra spacious oceanview cabin: 293 square feet

The exact dimensions of an oceanview cabin can vary from ship to ship, although most are the same size as an inside cabin. This gives you enough space for a king size bed, vanity, and seating area, but leaves little walking space in the cabin.

Therefore, upgrading to a spacious oceanview or ultra spacious oceanview cabin can be a great option for those looking for more living space.

Related: I spent $250 to upgrade my cruise ship cabin: Was it worth it?

The majority of oceanview cabins overlook the ocean, but some have obstructed views. Oceanview cabins in the very front of the ship may overlook the ship’s helicopter pad whereas others may have an obstructed view caused by lifeboats.

A unique type of oceanview cabin to consider booking is the panoramic oceanview cabin. These cabins take “oceanview” up a notch by offering a floor-to-ceiling, panoramic view of the outside. Compared to the small porthole in other oceanview cabins, the view from a panoramic view cabin cannot be beat.

What are the major differences between an inside cabin and an oceanview cabin?


Many cruisers upgrade to an oceanview cabin believing the cabin will be larger than an inside room, but that isn’t necessarily the case.

Most oceanview cabins are the same size as inside rooms. If you prefer a larger cabin, you’ll have to book a spacious or ultra spacious oceanview cabin.

These cabins come with a higher cost than a standard oceanview room, so be sure to compare the price of these cabins with the price of a balcony before booking. You may be surprised to find a balcony cabin at a lower cost!


The biggest downside to cruising in an inside cabin is the lack of daylight.

Inside cabins are completely dark when you shut your cabin lights off. Without checking the clock, it’s impossible to know whether it’s 3AM, 8AM, or 12PM. Additionally, you won’t have any idea what the weather is like outside from your cabin.

Many cruisers combat the lack of daylight in inside rooms by purchasing a sunrise alarm clock. The light on these alarm clocks remains off during the night and gradually turns on during sunrise, which can help you keep a normal sleep schedule.

Related: I tried the best inside cruise ship cabin hacks to see how well they worked


Inside cabins are located all over a Royal Caribbean ship, from the lowest to highest decks. Oceanview cabins, on the other hand, have fewer location options.

Oceanview cabins are primarily found on a cruise ship’s lower decks closer to the ocean. It’s not safe to build balconies so close to the water, so cruise lines build oceanview rooms there instead.

Related: Avoid these mistakes when picking a cruise ship cabin

You can occasionally find oceanview cabins on higher decks, but they won’t be in the best locations. For example, you’ll find oceanview cabins in the very front of the ship overlooking the helicopter pad, but these rooms are prone to more motion than mid-ship cabins.

While there’s nothing wrong with booking an oceanview room on a lower deck, many cruisers prefer the flexibility of cabin location they can find with other stateroom categories.


It’s no surprise that oceanview cabins are more expensive than inside cabins, but just how much more will a room with a window cost?

Cruise pricing can vary drastically from ship to ship and sailing to sailing, but you can expect to pay around $25-40 more per night for a standard-sized oceanview cabin compared to an inside cabin.

As an example, let’s compare the price of a guarantee inside cabin versus a guarantee oceanview cabin on a 7-night Oasis of the Seas cruise.

  • For two adults in an inside cabin, the total price is $2834, or $404 per night.
  • For two adults in an oceanview cabin, the total price is $3034, or $433 per night.

The price difference between an inside cabin and an oceanview cabin is $200, or around $29 per night.

Pricing is always subject to change. It’s possible to find an oceanview cabin for around the same price as an inside cabin, but they may also be priced significantly higher.

Are the differences worth an upgrade?

An oceanview cabin can certainly be worth the upgrade from an interior cabin, but there are several factors to consider before booking the upgraded cabin.

Understand your travel style

Before booking an oceanview room instead of an inside cabin, consider your cruising style. If you plan on visiting your cabin only to sleep, shower, and change, you might want to book an inside cabin to save money.

The $30-50 a day extra you would spend on an oceanview cabin could be spent on other onboard activities such as specialty dining or a spa treatment.

Related: 45 ways to save money on a Royal Caribbean cruise

On the contrary, if you plan to spend significant time relaxing in your cabin throughout the sailing, an upgrade could be well worth the cost.

It is, of course, important to look beyond just the price when comparing oceanview and inside cabins. If you fear feeling claustrophobic or disoriented in an inside cabin, booking an oceanview room is your best bet.

Look at the price of balcony cabins

Alaska balcony

If you’ve decided to upgrade from an inside cabin, first compare the price between an oceanview and balcony cabin. While balcony cabins are usually significantly more expensive than oceanview cabins, you might be surprised to find a deal on a balcony room.

If a balcony is only $100-300 more total than an oceanview cabin, it may be better to upgrade from an inside cabin to a balcony cabin instead of an oceanview.

Related: Oceanview vs Balcony staterooms on a Royal Caribbean cruise

Consider the itinerary

If you’re cruising somewhere particularly scenic, such as Alaska or Norway, booking an oceanview room is recommended. You don’t want to miss a single moment of scenery outside, and time spent in an inside cabin means missing views of fjords, wildlife, and snow-capped mountains.

While you can still cruise in an inside room on these itineraries and view scenery from public spaces onboard, many passengers enjoy the privacy of viewing these destinations from their cabin.

A suite that’s sweet! I stayed in the weirdest cabin on Royal Caribbean – it included free ice cream and cow-themed decor

02 Feb 2023

Situated on deck 6 of Royal Caribbean’s Freedom-class ships is a promenade stateroom that’s unlike any other cabin onboard.

Ben & Jerry suite

Imagine a stateroom featuring cow-themed decor, vouchers for free ice cream and highly-coveted suite lounge access - all for the same price as every other inside promenade stateroom onboard.

Without a doubt, the Ben and Jerry’s suite is the weirdest stateroom onboard any Royal Caribbean ship; and I was lucky enough to experience this bizarre stateroom for myself onboard Liberty of the Seas last weekend.

Found on Liberty of the Seas, along with Freedom of the Seas and Independence of the Seas, the Ben and Jerry’s suite is the only inside cabin suite on any Royal Caribbean ship.

While cabin 6305 might look like a regular ol’ promenade stateroom from the hallway, most don’t realize this stateroom is perfectly situated right above the Ben and Jerry’s ice cream parlor. Open the cabin’s blinds and you’ll find a front row view of two life-size cow’s derriere (or should I say dairy-ere?)

Here’s what it was like staying in the weirdest Royal Caribbean stateroom.

Having never heard of the Ben and Jerry’s Sweet, I did some preliminary research to see what I could expect staying in the promenade “suite.” 

Legend has it that the cow-obstructed views were an oversight from Royal Caribbean during the construction phase of building the Freedom-class ships. Once it was discovered that these massive cows block most of the cabin’s promenade view, Royal Caribbean decided to add a few freebies for guests.

Alas, the Ben and Jerry’s Sweet was born!

After learning about this peculiar promenade stateroom, I found an older article on RoyalCaribbeanBlog that provided some pictures, videos and details about the Ben and Jerry’s suite.

Back in 2011, the Ben and Jerry’s suite appeared to be covered with cow-themed decor from head to toe. From bedsheets and pillows with cow-prints to mini cow trinkets and clocks, the Ben and Jerry’s suite was decked out with decor. The door of the suite even had a special plaque, which surely intrigued other guests onboard.

Booking the Ben and Jerry’s suite was the same price as every other promenade stateroom on Liberty of the Seas

Because of the cabin’s obscureness, it was difficult to find any updated or current photos of what to expect from the suite. With just 3 cabins existing in Royal Caribbean’s entire fleet, the Ben and Jerry’s suite is considered a hidden gem.

Although I’ve cruised many times on Royal Caribbean ships that feature promenade staterooms, or glorified inside cabins that have a window overlooking the lively promenade onboard, I’ve never actually booked one for myself.

I always worried that a promenade stateroom would be too noisy when trying to sleep at night, especially considering how busy the promenade is on any Royal Caribbean cruise. I was anxious to see whether I liked staying in a promenade stateroom and I was grateful to try out this cabin on a short, 3-night sailing.

For this cruise, I’d be sailing with my husband. I warned him about expecting obnoxious cow decor in the stateroom while in the same breath sharing that we would presumably be receiving suite lounge access and free ice cream with the stateroom.  

While boarding, I was confused whether we could board with other suite guests, as we didn’t receive any communication regarding the benefits of our room prior to boarding. As such, we boarded like everyone else so as to not potentially embarrass ourselves. 

Walking inside the stateroom for the first time after boarding, my husband looked to me and said “Uh, I don’t think this is the Ben and Jerry’s suite.” 

Expecting to see an obscene amount of cow-themed decor, we opened the door to cabin 6305 to see a stateroom that initially looked like every other promenade cabin. There was no plaque on the stateroom door like I had seen in older pictures and videos.

I gave a confused look to my husband and went inside the cabin further to investigate.

Once we were inside the promenade cabin, we quickly spotted a framed photo of a cow painting. The quirky artwork confirmed we were indeed in the Ben and Jerry’s suite!

I looked out the window to find the life-size cows right above the Ben and Jerry’s ice cream shop in the promenade. 

These massive cow structures blocked the majority of our promenade view - and it certainly made us laugh when seeing the cow posteriors for the first time.

On the stateroom vanity, we found a coupon that was titled “Ben & Jerry’s Sweet Guest” with small boxes to check for each complimentary treat. 

The voucher said, “Enjoy a daily complimentary ice cream treat from your friends at Royal Caribbean International and Ben & Jerry’s. Present this voucher at the time of ordering.”

The voucher stated that the coupon was non-transferrable, non-refundable and non-replaceable if lost or stolen. Since the sailing was only 3-nights, the boxes for Treat 4 through Treat 7 were crossed out.

We also found a welcome sheet from the suite concierge welcoming us onboard, writing, “We're thrilled to welcome you to the Ben & Jerry's Sweet onboard Liberty of the Seas for what’s sure to be an unforgettable adventure. This one of a kind stateroom overlooks the Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream Shop on the Royal Promenade - and it comes with some pretty cool perks.”

The perks listed on the sheet included a free treat at Ben and Jerry’s on every day of our cruise for all guests staying in the stateroom, along with exclusive access to the Suite Lounge for continental breakfast and happy hour each evening from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm. 

I’ve only ever stayed in a junior suite onboard a Royal Caribbean cruise, which confusingly enough did not come with Suite Lounge access. We were excited to see what the Suite Lounge was all about and compare it to the Diamond Lounge.

Of course, we couldn’t wait too long to take the Ben and Jerry’s voucher for a spin.

Voucher in tow, my husband and I went to Ben and Jerry’s for a little ice cream treat after boarding and dropping off our luggage. 

Proudly displaying the voucher to the crew member working at Ben and Jerry’s, we inquired about what exactly our “complimentary treat” entailed. The crew member seemed a bit confused at first and didn’t entirely know what would be included. 

We told him that the description said in our room that we could each have a daily complimentary treat, but he still seemed unsure about what the voucher was all about. 

Eventually, he said we could pretty much have whatever we wanted, including any size of ice cream. I opted for a small Phish Food while my husband tried the Cookies and Cream.

After serving up our ice cream, he checked off Treat 1 on our voucher. We were surprised that using the voucher seemed to be confusing for the crew members, as there must be guests on each sailing that have this benefit.

Access to the suite lounge, including complimentary happy hour, was a huge benefit of the Ben and Jerry’s suite.

I’d look at a cow’s derriere (or are we saying dairy-ere?) each day of a cruise if it means I can enjoy complimentary happy hours each evening!

As I mentioned, I’ve never had access to the Suite Lounge. This gal is a cheap cruiser, so I normally stay in an inside cabin guarantee and enjoy my complimentary Diamond + drink vouchers.

We were giddy as we took out our SeaPass cards to enter the suite - I even took my phone out to film us waltzing into the Suite Lounge. We had big smiles until the card reader flashed red over and over again. We tried both cards until we finally accepted our fate that the cards were not going to let us in.

After waiting for someone else to enter, we rode their coat tails and spoke with the suite concierge who assured that he would fix our cards. We enjoyed a few drinks in the Suite Lounge before heading to dinner with others in our travel group.

I was surprised to find that the Suite Lounge has the same assortment of appetizers and snacks as the Diamond Lounge. I always assumed that the Suite Lounge would have a more desirable spread during happy hour, but this wasn’t the case when I went into both lounges on the same night. 

The following evening, our cards still didn’t work, so the concierge issued us brand-new cards to use. While we confirmed they worked for the lounge, we were unable to access our stateroom that night; my husband had to go get us new cards at guest services around midnight. 

With two SeaPasses in my lanyard, it was slightly frustrating to have these issues between the lounge and our stateroom - which were two of the most important places we needed access to!

Luckily by the last evening, we had access to the lounge and statement without any issues. 

The promenade stateroom was indeed noisy, especially at night and during certain events.

We felt there were two major drawbacks of the promenade stateroom: the noise and the privacy. On the plus side, the promenade stateroom feels pretty similar in size to an inside cabin, although it does have two seating booths around the window nook. It was also nice to have a view of something other than a blank wall or a giant mirror.

We had to be very mindful of the curtains being closed while changing, as it would be very easy to forget about onlookers in the promenade. Because the cows block most of the views from our window, we would forget that people could easily look into our window if we weren’t cautious of closing the blinds.

Another major drawback of the promenade stateroom was how noisy it can be in the evenings. I would argue that the promenade had loud music playing each evening until midnight. The final evening of our cruise, my husband tried to go to bed at a reasonable time because we had an early morning flight the following day.

While trying to fall asleep, the 70s disco inferno party started in the promenade. He said it sounded like a concert was taking place inside our cabin and that it was actually vibrating from the music.

He texted me that it was so noisy, “They might as well be performing in our stateroom!” To investigate, he got out of bed to open the curtains and see what was happening. He was taken aback to find the performers were literally standing next to the cows on the small platform right outside our window!

He said he couldn’t close the window quick enough, especially considering he was dressed to go to bed. 

We both agreed we would stay in the Ben and Jerry’s suite again, but probably not any other promenade stateroom.

The perks of the Ben and Jerry’s suite make this promenade stateroom worthwhile, but I don’t think I am sold on promenade staterooms in general. 

Of course, access to the Suite Lounge with complimentary, nightly happy hour is a huge perk of booking the weirdest cabin on a Royal Caribbean ship. Considering the Ben and Jerry’s suite doesn’t cost anything extra compared to other promenade staterooms, it’s truly a great deal.

As a sweets lover, it was a fun daily treat to have Ben and Jerry’s ice cream. It did feel as though the crew members at Ben and Jerry’s didn’t know the rules of the voucher or suite, as we always seemed to get different answers when inquiring.

For example, we asked about whether we could have a milkshake instead of ice cream and it wasn’t entirely clear. On the last day, the voucher was taken after I ordered my daily treat, but my husband hadn’t had the chance to get his.

It was great to have the free ice cream vouchers daily, but I certainly wouldn’t need to have daily ice cream on a longer cruise. The 3-night sailing was perfect for a daily ice cream treat after long days in the Bahamian sun.

Again, I’d happily look at a fake cow’s dairy-ere if it means I get free ice cream and complimentary happy hours with drinks each day. The noise and privacy of the promenade stateroom wouldn’t always be worth it, but the Ben and Jerry’s suite is a must if it’s available!

I stayed in a luxurious cruise ship suite for $870 per night—see what my room looked like on Royal Caribbean’s Liberty of the Seas

01 Feb 2023

After 10 cruises in interior cabins, I spent three nights in the opulent Owner’s Suite on Royal Caribbean’s Liberty of the Seas.

This cabin is one of the most spacious on the entire ship and comes with its own name: the Adagio Suite. At 624 square feet, the room’s size is nearly four times as big as the interior staterooms I typically book.

For 2 guests, the total price of our suite came out to $2,612 for a 3-night cruise, or right around $870 per night. This price includes taxes, fees, and gratuities, and we also received $100 onboard credit.

We originally booked the suite for $2,934, but our travel agent repriced the sailing a few months after booking and found a cheaper deal, saving us $322.

Let’s take a tour of my spacious cabin at sea complete with a bedroom, living room, dining room, and extra large balcony.

My suite was located on deck 10, right outside of the ship’s aft elevator lobby. The suite’s convenient location was one of the best perks of the cabin, as we never had to walk far to get from our cabin to anywhere onboard.

When I opened the door to my suite for the first time, I was immediately blown away by the cabin’s size and amenities.

The suite has one bedroom, where you’ll find a king bed, television, side tables, and storage space.

The bedroom is not separated from the rest of the suite by a wall, but you can close a curtain for more privacy.

There is a vanity and desk area in the bedroom which includes several outlets to charge your devices.

Like all cabins, you’ll find a safe in the Owner’s Suite in the drawers above the vanity.

Now let’s move to the living room.

The living room has a sectional couch, plush chair, coffee table, and end table. This space is great for entertaining or winding down after a busy day in port.

To watch television in the living room, you can simply swivel around the TV from the bedroom to the living room.

The living room is connected to a dining room.

This area features floor-to-ceiling closets, which are perfect for hanging dresses and suits for formal night. You’ll also find Royal Caribbean bathrobes inside the closet.

Next to the closet are additional drawers where you can store clothes, shoes, and other personal items. Like all Royal Caribbean cabins, there is a mini fridge available here as well.

Above the mini fridge is a Lavazza Espresso coffee maker and ice bucket. You’ll also receive a few complimentary water bottles in the suite, which will be placed near the coffee maker.

There is also a dining table perfect for enjoying in-suite meals. As a suite guest, room service is complimentary, including meals from the Main Dining Room menu.

Across from the dining room is a bathroom, and the Owner’s Suite bathroom is unlike any bathroom I’ve experienced in a cruise ship cabin before.

The bathroom has dual sinks, which is optimal for two guests getting ready at the same time.

It also features a standalone bathtub with jacuzzi controls.  Like all suites, the bathroom comes with upgraded Malin + Goetz shampoo, conditioner, and body wash.

In addition to the bathtub is a separate shower with a detachable shower head.

There is both a toilet and bidet in the Owner’s Suite bathroom.

Next let's head outside to the suite's balcony.

One of the best benefits of the Owner’s Suite is the large balcony. At 160 square feet, the balcony is three times larger than those in standard balcony cabins.

There are two balcony doors, one in the bedroom and the other in the living room.

The balcony offers unobstructed views of the outdoors. It’s located on the ship’s hump, meaning that the balcony sticks out further than other balconies onboard.

On the balcony is a dining table with two chairs, a perfect spot to enjoy breakfast and coffee in the mornings.

There are also two padded, reclinable lounge chairs, a notable upgrade from the standard chairs found on regular balconies.

While not cheap, the Owner’s Suite is nothing short of a spectacular cabin on Liberty of the Seas. For those looking for extra living space, upgraded amenities, and a more luxurious experience onboard, it is certainly worth the splurge.

I stayed in a $1,400 stateroom on Symphony of the Seas — see what my room on this cruise ship looked like

21 Jan 2023

I sailed onboard Royal Caribbean's Symphony of the Seas and stayed in the cheapest stateroom available. 


Making her grand entrance in 2018, Symphony of the Seas is the fourth ship in the cruise line's Oasis class and held the title of largest cruise ship in the world until the debut of the Wonder of the Seas in early 2022. 

Symphony of the Seas sailing away

For $1,400 (including port fees and gratuities), I stayed in a guaranteed cabin, which means that I wasn't assigned my cabin until a few weeks prior to departure.  


This was my first time sailing in an interior stateroom. I've had balcony cabins on all of my previous cruises, so I was nervous as to how I'd adjust to no natural light at all. 

Read moreInterior vs Balcony staterooms


My interior cabin on Symphony of the Seas was only 149 square feet; however, it was one of the most contemporary feeling staterooms I have stayed in.


As I was sailing alone, I opted to keep the two beds together. While this was perfectly fine for me, I could see why a family might want to separate them into two twin-sized beds to help make the space feel more open and create a pathway in the middle of the stateroom. 


There were a total of four American outlets in the stateroom: three by the desk and one by the left side of the bed, where there was also a light switch present. As a solo traveler, this was plenty of power for me! I also appreciated being able to turn off all the stateroom lights from the comfort of the bed. 


Plus, the desk area also had one European outlet socket, as well as two USB plugs. 


There was a telephone located on the other nightstand, but I would have preferred if it was hung somewhere in the room! The phone was so large that it made that a non-functioning nightstand. There was just enough room for a phone and pair of glasses.


Surprisingly, there was an abundance of storage in this cabin. The dresser contained three empty drawers, a fourth that contained a box of tissues and room service information, and fifth that was home to the hairdryer.


There were also two closets, one on each side of the rather large couch. One had five free shelves, with the sixth being occupied by the safe. There were two additional drawers at the bottom. 


The other closet was just for hanging garments and contained eighteen hangers.  


Above the desk was a single glass shelf. I didn't find it to be that wide, but it was a great place to keep my sunglasses and other miscellaneous items throughout the week. When I first entered my stateroom, the desk was full of details regarding my cruise vacation, such as showtimes, Crown & Anchor information, as well as two masks. 


The large mirror above the desk was illuminated with a ring light, which was a great touch to this interior stateroom. It also provided great lighting for my makeup each morning!


Inside the dresser's large cabinet was a mini-fridge. I found that my drinks were always kept cold, despite it saying that it was a cooler and not a refrigerator. It had three selves that could be moved and adjusted according to your preferences, as well as a single shelf on the side. 


As expected, the bathroom inside of my cruise stateroom was small; however, I found it to be modern and clean. There was a shocking amount of counter space, as well as three shelves to the side of the mirror. Additional storage was available underneath the sink, too. On the back of the door were two hooks for wet towels and swimsuits. 


Inside of the shower, there's a soap dispenser that distributes Royal Caribbean's signature bath scent: Salt + Breeze. I was disappointed that there was only one small ledge in of the shower. If I was traveling with one more person, it would have been a tight squeeze to fit all of our products there. 


The water pressure inside of my cabin was neither awful nor great; it was just okay. I did have issues with the temperature that never got resolved. In the mornings, it was nearly impossible to get any hot water. Sometimes, I had to wait twenty-five minutes for the water to heat up to lukewarm! In the evenings, I had the opposite problem: the temperature was scalding hot.


At the entrance, there was a key slot that powered on all the electricity within the cabin to preserve energy. My room steward left a key in there all week, though. Additionally, there was a magnet that I placed on the exterior of my door which alerted the staff when I wanted my room to be tended to. If I wanted to be left alone, there was an option for that, too. 


My stateroom was located on the forward of deck 7 in a "secret" hallway full of other interior cabins in between the port and starboard sides of the ship. It felt like a maze when I was first trying to locate my stateroom. However, I appreciated how there wasn't another cabin door directly next to mine.


I am used to having a cabin located near the mid-ship when sailing, so being located all the way at a single end was a new experience for us. While the forward elevator bank was somewhat close, the aft was quite a walk from where I was located. 


For $200 each day, I was satisfied with my interior stateroom. I was worried that the lack of natural sunlight would cause me to feel cramped, sleep in on accident, or that I would just flat out miss waking up to an ocean view.


If I was sailing with another person, the cost would have dropped to a little over $125 per person, per day, including all taxes, port fees and gratuities. Now that I know what a great value interior staterooms can be, I'll consider them more for my personal travels!


I spent $250 to upgrade my cruise ship cabin: Was it worth it?

11 Nov 2022

You’ll almost always find me in an interior cabin on a Royal Caribbean cruise. While the opposite of luxurious, I never mind my small, windowless rooms, especially if it means I can save money on cruise fare.

Nonetheless, I just disembarked a 4-night cruise in a Spacious Ocean View cabin on Liberty of the Seas. Wanting to “treat myself” but also try something new, I upgraded my cabin for $248 extra on top of the $779 I originally paid for an interior cabin. This brought my total cruise cost to $1027.

I always love trying new ways to cruise with Royal Caribbean, so when I realized I could upgrade to a Spacious Ocean View cabin for a reasonable price, I figured I would give it a try.

I had never sailed in an ocean view room before, so I was curious to see how my cabin experience would differ from an interior or balcony cabin. The price of an ocean view cabin is usually between interior and balcony cabins, but I had two main questions:

  • Would an ocean view cabin be that different from an interior to justify the extra cost?
  • If I’m upgrading to an ocean view, is it better to spend a little more to upgrade to a balcony?

With extra room and scenic views out the porthole window, was this upgrade worth it? Let’s find out.

Royal Up vs standard upgrade

Many cruisers look to Royal Caribbean's stateroom bidding program, RoyalUp, when hoping to upgrade their cruise ship cabin. I have used RoyalUp once before (without any luck), but I’ve since realized it’s better to first contact your travel agent about the cost to upgrade without bidding.

Related: Royal Caribbean’s RoyalUp guide, tips, and tricks

RoyalUp allows guests to bid on higher stateroom categories with the hope of winning the bid and upgrading at a lower cost.

What I’ve realized, however, is that the minimum bids on RoyalUp are not always cheaper than upgrading your stateroom directly through Royal Caribbean or a travel agent.

When I asked my travel agent how much it would cost to upgrade from my interior cabin, for example, I was surprised to see such reasonable prices. The Promenade View Interior and Guarantee Ocean View cabins were actually cheaper than the original price I paid for my interior stateroom.

Meanwhile, if I had placed a bid on a Guarantee Ocean View through RoyalUp, I would have had to bid a minimum of $30 per person for the weakest bid possible.

Initial impressions

As soon as I walked into our cabin, I was pleased to see it was quite spacious, although I was a bit surprised that the room was the same size as a balcony cabin.

For some reason I expected this cabin to be even more spacious than a balcony room, but this is probably reserved for the Ultra Spacious Ocean View cabins.

Regardless, compared to the tiny interior rooms I usually stay in, our ocean view cabin felt huge! The interior cabins on Freedom Class ships are tiny, and while I’ve stayed in this size stateroom with guests before, it’s definitely a tight squeeze.

Related: I tried the best inside cruise ship cabin hacks to see how well they worked

Our cabin was equipped with many amenities, including:

  • King bed (that we later separated to two twin beds)
  • Desk and vanity area
  • Wardrobe
  • Couch and side table
  • Television
  • Mini fridge

There was ample storage in the room, from drawers on both sides of the vanity to our nightstand and a spacious wardrobe. There were also shelves on the side of the vanity near our bed which I found useful throughout the cruise.

There was also storage located behind the mirrors in the vanity and bathroom which could easily be overlooked, so we took advantage of this, too.

The best part of our cabin, of course, was the porthole window. This window was larger than I expected, although I was surprised that we had a “balcony” outside the window.

Because this room is on deck 7 as opposed to the majority of ocean view cabins on decks 2 and 3, the porthole overlooked a non-usable balcony before reaching the ocean.

Pros of our cabin upgrade

More space

An obvious benefit of staying in our Spacious Ocean View cabin was having more space. We never ran into each other in the cabin and had no shortage of storage space.

We didn’t even utilize most of the storage, in fact, because there was more than enough room to keep our suitcases on the floor of the cabin without having to unpack for a short cruise.

I spent more time than usual in my cabin

On a short 4-night cruise, I never expect to spend much time in my room. Between attending onboard events and filming videos around the ship for the Royal Caribbean Blog YouTube channel, I usually spend little time relaxing in my cabin.

This week, however, I spent more time than usual in my cabin. I have a few hours of computer work to do each day, for example, which I usually do from a public area onboard when staying in an interior room. Unsurprisingly, I don’t love working in a room without windows.

Related: Can you work remotely from a cruise ship in 2022? I put it to the test.

With an ocean view room, I spent these hours working next to my private porthole window instead. 

Our itinerary also changed due to weather and we ended up with two sea days instead of just one. This meant we had extra time to enjoy our stateroom (take naps) during the cruise.

Great option for a first-time cruiser

I sailed on Liberty of the Seas with my cousin Keli, and she had never been on a cruise before. I thought having an ocean view cabin as opposed to an interior was nice for my cousin's first cruise. 

While I’ve brought many first-time cruisers onboard in interior rooms and we’ve had a great experience, I thought Keli would appreciate being in a more comfortable room with a window.

And it worked, because she’s already looking forward to sailing again in the future!

Cons of our cabin upgrade

Stateroom location

One drawback of our upgraded stateroom compared to the interior room we originally booked was the location.

Our ocean view cabin was located in the very aft of the ship, so this location wasn't as convenient as somewhere closer to the elevators and stairwells. We spent a lot of time walking back and forth to our cabin down a long hallway.

Plus, because it was at the ship's aft, I felt a little more movement than I normally would as we sailed through the Caribbean. Our upgraded cabin location wasn't a dealbreaker, but I would probably take the location more into consideration next time I upgrade my stateroom.

The one plus of our stateroom was that it was located on deck 7, so we rarely had to take the elevators as we were located only a few decks from all the main attractions onboard.

Spending money on a cabin upgrade instead of other activities

Looking back, we probably could have stayed in our interior cabin and used the $248 we spent on a cabin upgrade for other cruise add-ons.

For around $120 per person, for example, we could have booked an Unlimited Dining Package for our 4-night cruise. Dining at specialty restaurants once (or more) every day could have enhanced our cruise experience more than a little more space in our cabin.

We also could have put this cost toward shore excursions, drinks, internet, and other onboard spending.

Only a 4-night cruise

Spending $248 on a cabin upgrade would have spread out further on a 7-night cruise compared to just 4 days. This brought the nightly cost of the upgrade to $62, whereas it would only be $35 per night on a weeklong cruise.

Next time I upgrade my cabin, I’ll calculate the nightly price of the upgrade to help justify whether or not it’s worth it.

Obstructed view

This con didn’t bother me too much, but our “ocean view” actually looked out toward a balcony not in use, so we didn’t have the panoramic view of the ocean we would have gotten in a smaller, cheaper ocean view cabin.

Was the upgrade worth the cost?

I am still torn whether our cabin upgrade was worth the extra cost or not. While $248 isn't a lot of money in the grand scheme of our cruise vacation, we could have put the money toward other onboard experiences.

That being said, I truly enjoyed having a larger stateroom with gorgeous ocean views from the porthole. There's no doubt this room was better than an interior cabin, and I could have spent my entire day reading in bed next to our cabin's window.

Overall I would lean toward the upgrade being worth it rather than a waste of money. While I’ll probably continue to sail in interior staterooms for the lowest cruise fare possible, it’s nice to treat yourself every once in a while!

I tried the best inside cruise ship cabin hacks to see how well they worked

31 Aug 2022

Staying in an inside cabin on a cruise ship means you're probably saving lots of money compared to a balcony cabin (or suite), but it also means a lot less living space than usual.

Inside cabin

For a lot of cruisers, that tradeoff is well worth it given the low prices an inside room usually costs. But that doesn't mean there aren't at least a few tricks for maximizing the space.

I've seen plenty of articles and videos over the years talking about easy ways to get more space out of a smaller cabin. Since I was booked in an inside cabin for a cruise on Mariner of the Seas, I picked out the best sounding tips to get an idea of how well they work.

I combed over a lot of cabin hacks, and settled on 10 of them from two really informative sources: Cruise Tips TV and Life Well Cruised.

Inside cabin on Mariner of the Seas


Both of these ladies are cruise packing, planning, and travel hack experts. I figured if they shared them, these tips had to have some sense of usefulness.

In looking over the list, I was skeptical about some tips being actually useful.  I had no doubt they worked as intended, but would I actually find them such a benefit that I would not only recommend it, but adopt it in my own strategy.

After going through the cabin hacks, I had to purchase a number of items. Luckily, all of them were available on Amazon and I was able to get every single item in this article for just around $130 total with shipping. 

Amazon package

Given that they can be re-used over and over again from cruise to cruise, it's not much of an investment to try out.

I decided to rate each one from one of these labels:

  • Worth it
  • Meh/Indifferent
  • Not practical

Please note that I linked to each item on Amazon which contains an affiliate link. This affiliate link costs you absolutely nothing extra, but I make a small commission if you purchase it.

Let's see how they went!

Luggage under the bed trick

Luggage under bed

This is a cabin hack that works on any kind of cabin, not just inside rooms.

Did you know there's enough room under your bed to put your luggage underneath it?

This is actually a trick I've been using for years, and it works everytime. After unpacking, shove your empty luggage under your bed and it's out of sight until you need it when you have to pack.

The only downside to this trick is if you either have a lot of luggage and/or your bags are oversized. Stacking the smaller bags inside the larger ones helps a lot, and I've found no issues with any of the luggage we ever had in getting it under the bed.

Conclusion: Worth it

The perfect outlet extender

Even on the newest cruise ships, power outlets in your cabin are at a premium. Juggling devices with which to plug in and which to leave unplugged is not a fun game.

An appropriately named "Cruise ship power strip" by Cruise On seemed to be the perfect fit and it promises that it was designed to get around cruise ship rules that prohibit anything with a surge protector. The product description claims it is fully cruise compliant.

It takes up one outlet space and offers 3 new outlets along with 2 USB plugs.

I've been using a USB hub up until now, but never had something for extra plugs too.

I left the power strip in my checked luggage and sure enough it made it through and my bags were delivered without incident.

Other than the fact the outlets are upside down for some reason on Mariner of the Seas, it worked as expected.

Not only would I recommend it, I would suggest buying two so that you can get enough USB plugs along with the outlets.

Conclusion: Worth it

Night light motion sensor

In addition to inside cabins being super small and inexpensive, they're also very dark.

Since there's no outside light, trying to navigate the room without lights on can be a challenge, such as when you wake up from sleeping and need to get to the bathroom.

The workaround I've always employed is to leave the bathroom light on, but that lets more light out than I would care for. I enjoy the pitch blackness of an inside room when it comes to sleep!

The night light not only offers lighting, but it will only come on when someone moves around.

The light itself pivots on its base in almost any direction, so you can position it.

It's powered by 3 AAA batteries and has LED lights that are activated when motion is detected. The base is magnetic too, so that means you can attach it to any wall or door in your cabin.

It worked as intended and gave me just enough light once the lights were out if I got out of bed. I positioned it near the bathroom so it wouldn't pick me up moving around in bed.

Conclusion: Worth it

Sunrise alarm clock

Sunrise alarm clock

The idea is to not only have an alarm clock, but a light that will come on slowly to let you know there's daylight out.

Since you have no windows in your cabin, it's hard to know when you wake up on your own if it's 3am or 3pm. If you're like me, opening your eyes to check what time it is can be a dangerous game because you might end up waking up too much and find it difficult to go back to sleep.

The sunrise alarm clock has a gradual light, with two alarms and even has noise you can sleep to: birds, running water, white noise, and more.

There are 7 different light setting too, so you can choose the color you like.

As advertised, the light was off when I went to sleep and on when I woke up. The nice thing about this is when I woke up earlier than my alarm, I could sense no light without opening my eyes.

While it worked as intended, at this point in my life, I rarely sleep without an alarm set whether I am in a balcony or inside room. In my mind, if my alarm didn't go off yet, then it's not time to get up.

The benefit of this light would be if I woke up on my own a half hour early, I could more easily determine if I could just get about and go rather than turn over and try to fall back asleep. This is also common when nature calls in the morning.

I think this might be better for my kids, who seem to think noon is too early to get up while on a cruise.

Conclusion: Meh/Indifferent

Fridge magnets

There are two kinds of magnets that make the list, and this one is more of a general purpose magnet.

The idea is since the walls are metal, you can put magnets up to get certain other items off the desk, couch, or floor and free up that space.

Things like hats, coverups, important paperwork and more would be ideal. In fact, these have clips to them (rather than hooks) so they can "grab" items that cannot otherwise be hung.

My only problem is the magnets I bought are rather underpowered. I needed two to be able to keep my hat on without the magnets sliding down.

Otherwise, this is a great cabin trick for any kind of room because the couch and desk end up the catch-all for all of our junk. It won't work for everything, but every little bit helps.

Conclusion: Worth it, but I need to find stronger magnets.

Laundry hamper

Another cabin trick I've used in the past is to buy a cheap laundry hamper.

You can find pop-up laundry hampers that are easy to pack and keep your dirty laundry more organized.

For years, we just picked a corner of the cabin and designated it "laundry corner" and tossed all the dirty laundry there. By the end of the cruise, it was a mountain of dirty laundry.

A laundry hamper means there's less of a mountain and just like one you have at home, it does the trick.

Before buying it on Amazon, you should check if there's one at your local dollar store since this is a commonly sold item at those stores.

While a pop-up laundry hamper won't result in any less dirty clothes, it will help keep them better organized.

Conclusion: Worth it

Over the door hanging shoe organizer

I've seen the shoe organizer trick for years and always thought it sounded better than it was.

The idea is you get a plastic shoe organizer to hang over the back of your bathroom door and put all sorts of things in one of the pockets.

You could fit shoes, snacks, sunglasses, sunscreen and something else that starts with the letter "s".

Because the pockets are designed for shoes, they are large enough to hold a lot of small items. 

It certainly did the trick for me and when I took the time to put a lot of things in there just to get a nice photo for this article, I realized I had gotten rid of a lot of little things off my desk.  I suppose that's an endorsement.

Conclusion: Meh/indifferent

Curtain divider

This was an interesting idea to get a shower curtain with magnetic hooks and get a divider for the room.

If you are sharing a cabin, privacy is always going to be at a premium. Royal Caribbean's cabins have a curtain in the middle, but it only goes a bit of the way. Frankly, I'm not sure why they exist in inside rooms unless someone is going to lay on the couch very still.

You hang the magnetic hooks from the ceiling (which is also metallic) and then attach the shower curtain.

The particular shower curtain I bought was more see-through than I thought, so it would not give total privacy if someone needed to change.

It also only went about 75% of the way across. When combined with the Royal Caribbean curtain, then it worked, but I would check if there was a longer and more opaque curtain next time.

If you shared a cabin and had the beds split, putting the curtain between the beds might give just enough privacy so you can feel like you have your own space.

Conclusion: Meh/indifferent

Outside TV channel

Rather than purchasing a sunrise alarm clock, a no-cost hack is to leave your cabin TV on and tuned to the channel that has a view from the ship's bridge.

The idea is you'll know when it's day time when the light show on TV illuminates the room.

This may work for some people, but wasn't good for me because I don't like the amount of light the TV emits even at night.

Moreover, the channel changes between the bridge view and a map view. Moving back to map view means more light than when it's on bridge view.

If you can sleep despite light from the TV, then it could work for you.

Conclusion: Not practical

Bed configuration

I never considered the layout of the bed can help with providing more space.

Whether you are sailing solo or sharing the cabin with someone else, having the beds separated can actually create more space.

By asking your stateroom attendant to split the bids, you'll now get a walkway in the middle of the room between the beds. This extra space makes it much easier to get around your bed because when the bed is together, you have to move to the walls to get in and out of bed.

The only problem with this hack is you are giving up the luxury of having a larger bed by keeping it together. Personally, I prefer to keep the bed together to have a larger bed, but there's no doubt this trick works.

Conclusion: Worth it

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