by Kayla Becker
Choosing a cabin is one of the most important decisions you’ll make when planning your cruise. It’s your home away from home and — even if you plan to spend more time exploring the ship than in your room — the wrong location can impact how well you sleep which is, after all, the whole purpose of a cabin. Read on for the seven cabin locations you’ll definitely want to avoid.
1. Under the Pool Deck
Unless you can drift off to the sound of scraping of chairs and tables when the late-night clean-up crew comes in, don’t stay directly under the pool deck. (You’ll notice that area marked as “Lido” on a deck plan, so it’s easy to avoid.)
Case In Point: The aft portion of deck 14 on Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas is just under the main pool deck.
2. Near the Nightclub
When you’re trying to fall asleep so you’re fresh for that 8 am shore excursion, there’s nothing worse than music from the night club blaring through the walls. Avoid booking a cabin on a deck below, above, or next to a night club, as well as any venues that host live music.
Case In Point: Cabins on the aft end of Deck 14 of Norwegian Breakaway, for example, will land you directly under the thumping Spice H20 nightclub. And on many Carnival ships, some cabins on Deck 6 are directly above the Casino Stage, where a live band plays into the wee hours. It’s a fabulous place to hang out if you like the nightlife and wanna boogie, but much less fun to be by if you’re the early-to-bed type of cruiser.
3. “White Spaces” on Deck Plans
Just because they’re not labeled on a deck plan doesn’t mean there’s nothing there: these unmarked spots could be a laundry room, housekeeping room, ice machine, or engine room, where the cranking mechanics of the ship can drone on into the night.
Case In Point: On Regal Princess white space often represents a staircase that’s used by the crew, sometimes round-the-clock.
4. Forward Staterooms on Low Decks
Booking a cabin at the front of the ship on a lower deck can be a problem for two reasons: You could hear loud noises from the ship motoring through the water or even dropping anchor. Plus, being at the front of the ship is less stable, and therefore not ideal for seasick-prone passengers. Book a mid-ship cabin instead.
Case In Point: Watch out for anchor and motor noises on some Deck 4 cabins on Silver Wind.
5. Next to, Or In, Connecting Cabins
These cabins are designed to open up to each other, so there’s less sound proofing to keep noise from neighbors out — which isn’t ideal if you’re actually next door to strangers. In addition, the people staying in these cabins are usually families or friends — and you won’t know until you board whether they’re a quiet group.
Case In Point: Steer clear of connecting cabins on Royal Caribbean’s Oasis-class and on Disney ships, unless you’re an early riser and immune to the sound of children at daybreak
6. Below the Galley
Food preparation starts early and clean up ends late, so expect to hear pots and pans clanging if you’re in a cabin directly below the galley.
Case In Point: This is the case for some rooms on Deck 2 of Carnival Magic and Carnival Splendor.
Kayla Becker is a New York City-based contributor to ShermansCruise and the assistant editor for the site.