What Exactly Is A Guarantee Cabin?
Everyone is looking for a deal, so it’s easy to be seduced by the offers that include free drinks, wifi, speciality restaurants, free parking, free flights and anything else that the cruise lines can think of to throw in. But if you are not particularly bothered about where your cabin is on the ship, you may find that you are better off getting a guarantee cabin. The word guarantee can be confusing. It does not mean you are guaranteed a particular room. So let’s take a look and see what it does mean. A guarantee cabin means that if you book a balcony cabin, you are guaranteed to get at least a balcony cabin. In other words you would not get an inside cabin. This sounds pretty straightforward but there are exceptions to the rule and here’s how to figure them out.
Check the Deck Plan
When you are booking your cruise, take a look at the deck plan. It is best to view this on the website of the cruise line itself to ensure you are looking at an up to date version. Check that the dates of the deck plan apply to the date you are sailing. In some cases you may only have one option, but if the ship is due to enter dry dock, there will be two sets of deckplans, before the refurbishment and after. Make sure you select the one that you will be cruising on. Familiarise yourself with the different categories of cabin on the ship and what they mean. This is where you will see what is classed as an upgrade. For example some cruise ships have suites that do not have a balcony. So you may have your heart set on a balcony, book your guarantee but get an amazing upgrade to a suite, only to find there is no balcony. You might find you can live without that balcony after all! This means that a guarantee inside is a bit pointless because you can’t get a lower cabin type than that, but it is going to be the cheapest cruise fare for that sailing, so well worth a try. The really important thing to remember about the guarantee cabin, is that you are agreeing to accept any cabin the cruise line gives you within that category or above. Expect it to be right at the back or right at the front of the ship because it probably will be. It might be noisy, it might be obstructed or have an overhang, but by booking a guarantee cabin you have agreed to accept whatever the cruise line offers you.
What If I Really Don’t Like The Cabin I’ve Been Given?
If you really don’t like the cabin you are in then I would suggest you check the prices of other cabins around 50 days prior to sailing. This is when the cruise lines generally reduce the prices and you may be able to upgrade to another cabin for a little bit extra.
I’ve Been Told I Might Get A Free Upgrade
Yes that is true. There are cases where people have booked a guarantee inside and ended up in a balcony cabin. It does happen. But don’t take it personally if it doesn’t happen to you and don’t expect it. In most if not all cases the selection is purely at random.