When booking a cruise, often a "guaranteed" stateroom is a lower pricing option for many, but what does it really mean?
You book into a category type (Interior Ocean View, Balcony, etc) but are not actually assigned a specific stateroom number until approximately one or two weeks prior to your cruise departure. For example, if you book an Oceanview Guarantee, you will receive an Oceanview stateroom, however you will never receive a lower category, such as an Interior. It is important to know that when you choose this category, you cannot pick a specific stateroom number or deck that it will be located on, the cruise line will choose for you.
Many cruisers prefer to pick a specific deck that might be a quieter location and may also prefer a specific location such as midship. When you choose a guarantee stateroom, there is a possibility you could have an obstructed view, or be in a less desirable location such as under the pool deck, dance clubs and/or activity decks.
When multiple friends and/or families are traveling together, they tend to prefer their staterooms to be in close proximity of each other. A guarantee category is not a good option if you prefer to stay together as a group since you cannot choose specific stateroom numbers. When you are interested in booking as a group, a Travel Advisor is able to reserve a block of staterooms in close proximity based on availability and will find the best options for you.
There are benefits of booking in guaranteed staterooms such as: receiving the lowest price for that category as long as you don't care what deck you will be staying on or have a particular location preference on the ship. Remember you and I have no control over the stateroom number and/or location assignment when you choose a guaranteed category. The cruise line will assign your stateroom prior to your sail date.
If you feel you would like to spend the extra money to choose your stateroom number and location, your Travel Advisor can assist with this, as well as review and apply the current promotions and Crown and Anchor member options. In the long run, this may actually save you even more money.
Your own interests are the focal point of cultivating just the right travel experience you deserve. You, your family and your friends are unique therefore your vacation should be as well! It is always best to consult with a Travel Advisor to discuss the options that will best meet your needs.