It sure is nice to have a balcony stateroom on a cruise. You gotta love those mesmerizing ocean swells, the warm sea breeze, those beautiful island vistas on the horizon, the occasional seagull flying by, and the soothing sound of the surf.
But balcony cabins on cruises can also be very expensive! Splurging on a veranda stateroom can be difficult to justify for those who are traveling on a budget. That’s why we have deeply investigated the many different ways of how to get a free balcony cabin upgrade on a cruise ship.
As we’ve taken dozens of cruises all around the world totaling over a half year at sea, we’ve been quite successful with these tactics used to score a free balcony upgrade. So we’re now revealing all our tips in this post to show what works to actually achieve a free cruise cabin upgrade.
In the earlier days of cruising, it was fairly commonplace to be able to walk onto a ship and ask Guest Relations if there were any free room upgrades on the cruise. Often you would actually get a positive response and be immediately switched to a coveted balcony cabin, with an upgraded room free of charge. Unfortunately, in today’s world of cruising, free cruise cabin upgrades at the port or when walking onto the ship have become nearly impossible to finagle.
But we’re here to show you that cruise cabin upgrades are absolutely possible. In fact, we’re living proof as we managed to score a free balcony upgrade on about half the cruises we take! It can just take a little work, know-how, and sometimes a bit of luck.
We’ve been fortunate to receive cruise cabin upgrades to balcony staterooms that were five times the cost of the little interior cabin we booked, for absolutely free! But it doesn’t always work. We’ve been denied upgrades in a fair share of instances too. Yet having been successful in scoring free balcony upgrades on about half of the many cruises we’ve taken – that’s pretty good odds!
Some may claim that free balcony upgrades on a cruise are impossible nowadays. But we’re here to show that cruise upgrades are still a very possible reality. In this post, we reveal our proven tactics detailing how to get these free balcony upgrades on a cruise!
Understand: Why It’s Difficult to Get a Free Cruise Cabin Upgrade
Before we go into all the details of our tips to get a free balcony cabin upgrade, first understand what’s going on behind the scenes to make getting a free cruise upgrade so difficult to accomplish.
Cruise lines are aggressively and strategically pricing their itineraries in attempts to fill every single cabin on their ship. Cruise lines are particularly interested in filling those higher-margin balcony staterooms. Inventory of staterooms on cruises is closely monitored, as sophisticated financial algorithms are utilized to adjust prices to lure passengers.
This is all done in a grand attempt to fill the ships to capacity. Often cruise lines are successful in filling their ships. As a result, sometimes there simply are no available balcony rooms to offer when the cruise ship is sailing away. So in many instances, these balcony staterooms may be completely occupied. Hence a cabin upgrade on a cruise is just not possible, whether free or paid.
Also, the cruise lines have gotten wise to passengers’ attempts to upgrade their staterooms for free. So if there are some balcony rooms available, and you inquire after boarding, you’ll likely be offered that balcony upgrade for an upcharge, not as a complimentary stateroom upgrade.
If there are any balcony staterooms still available in the weeks before embarking, many cruise lines will try to entice guests with special balcony upgrade deals that you can buy at discounted rates or bid for after you’ve already purchased a lesser stateroom. It’s a big attempt by the cruise lines to fill those balcony staterooms before you even step foot on the boat.
These can sometimes be decent deals that are certainly worth considering a nominal fee to ensure your upgrade. We’ll discuss that a bit more later. But we’re really here to show you how to score a cruise balcony upgrade, not for a fee, but for F-R-E-E!
Decide: Are Cruise Balconies Worth It?
Before divulging our 10 tactics on how to score a free cruise upgrade, each prospective cruise passenger reading this article should decide for themselves what a balcony stateroom is worth to them.
Is it worth your time while on vacation to attempt to seek out a free stateroom upgrade? Is it worth an extra hundred dollars to pay out of pocket to guarantee an upgrade before you sail? Only you can decide this for yourself.
After all, cruise passengers with interior staterooms can head up to the lido deck and enjoy the same views that others are enjoying from their balcony rooms. But by enjoying those views in public spaces, you don’t have the immediate access or the privacy that a balcony stateroom offers. You won’t be able to wake up to those fresh views and relax from the privacy of your stateroom balcony. It is nice to have a balcony stateroom on a cruise. But at what cost?
Is it worth a thousand dollars more to have a balcony stateroom? For some passengers, it’s worth the splurge. For us, the answer is “no.”
Yet it is absolutely worth our time to try to score a free balcony upgrade. And it may even be worth splurging on if we can score a cruise upgrade offer for a few hundred dollars more.
Here are some considerations to help you decide whether a balcony room may be worth it for your upcoming cruise.
Consider booking a balcony stateroom or paying to upgrade when:
- You’re cruising scenic areas (e.g., Alaska cruise, Panama Canal, etc.)
- This is a romantic trip (e.g., anniversary, honeymoon)
- You plan to spend lots of time in your stateroom
- Your itinerary includes many days at sea
- You are claustrophobic or agoraphobic
- You like to sunbathe
- You have mobility issues that prevent you from easily going to a public deck
- The price of a balcony room isn’t much more than an interior or oceanview cabin
Consider forgoing a balcony stateroom and trying for a free cruise upgrade when:
- You have a port-intensive itinerary with little time on the ship
- You spend little time in your stateroom
- You frequently use the ship’s amenities (pool, gym, bars, shows, games, lectures, movies, etc.)
- You’re the type of person who simply uses a hotel room to sleep at night
- Balcony prices are simply not within your travel budget
If you can’t justify spending for that balcony stateroom, then read on. With a bit of strategy and a little luck, a free cruise balcony upgrade could become a reality.
Our biggest piece of advice is this: be sure that you’ll be comfortable with whatever cabin class you book on your cruise. Then go ahead and use some of these tactics to attempt to score that free balcony upgrade.
How To Get a Free Cruise Stateroom Upgrade
1) Get a Free Balcony Upgrade Promotion and How to Find Them
Occasionally cruise lines will run special promotions on particular ships, itineraries, and/or destinations offering balcony staterooms at the same price as an outside or inside cabin. You can attempt to find these deals throughout the year but they can be common during “Wave Season” (around February – April) when cruise lines tend to be most aggressive with pricing and promotions.
Most commonly you’ll see one-category stateroom upgrades. This means you can book an oceanview stateroom for the price of an inside cabin, or book a balcony for the price of an oceanview. When such a promotion is coupled with an additional perk like a drink package, free gratuities, or a generous onboard credit – these can be fantastic deals to take advantage of.
Occasionally we see really good limited-time promotions in which inside cabins, outside cabins, and balcony staterooms are all at the same price. Of course, you choose the balcony! This is another way cruise lines use promotions to offer free balcony upgrades.
So how exactly do you find these balcony upgrade promotions?
If you happen to know a really good travel agent who specializes in cruises, they may already be aware of free room upgrade promotions right off the top of their head.
But cruise room upgrade promotions do change frequently and can often be complicated. Free upgrades on cruises often contain lots of asterisks since certain deals only apply to certain ships, dates, itineraries, etc. So you may just want to take a gander at exactly what each line’s current promotions are. Each major cruise line has a web page that is dedicated to listing their deals, potentially including free balcony stateroom upgrades.
Here are links to all of the major cruise lines’ promotion pages to check if they are currently offering any free balcony upgrade promotions:
- Carnival Cruise Line cruise deals
- Celebrity Cruises cruise deals
- Disney Cruise Line special offers
- Holland America Line cruise deals
- MSC cruise deals
- Norwegian Cruise Line cruise deals
- Princess Cruise Line cruise deals
- Royal Caribbean cruise deals
2) Monitor Price Drops After Purchase to Get a Free Balcony Upgrade
Even after purchasing a cruise, always be sure to continue monitoring that cruise’s prices. Unlike airline tickets, if the price of the cruise drops, you can actually make changes to your booking to upgrade your cruise cabin if there are price changes that are in your favor. Or you can even cancel your booking and re-book for any better deal you find.
For example, let’s say you booked a 7-day Caribbean cruise in which inside cabins were running $1,000 per person, and balcony staterooms were $1,800 per person. So you book the inside cabin because you don’t want to shell out the extra cash to have a balcony.
Even though you’ve already booked your cruise, keep watching those prices. If the price of a balcony stateroom was to suddenly drop to $1,000, then call your booking agent immediately! If you make this phone call before the final payment date, you should be able to switch to that balcony completely free!
Instances like this happen more often than you may realize. The cruise lines themselves will NOT notify you of these price drops. So it’s completely up to you to be vigilant of price fluctuations after purchasing your cruise cabin.
It is important to note that free balcony upgrades using this method are only available if you make the switch before the cruise’s cancelation period, which tends to be around 60-90 days prior to the embarkation date. But this varies by the cruise line and itinerary.
Yet even if you notice the room prices change after the cancelation period, it is still absolutely worth calling your booking agent to inquire about. There’s a decent chance you still may be able to lock in that free balcony upgrade. This free upgrade is simply not a sure thing like it is prior to the cancelation date.
Yet we’ve successfully gotten a free cruise upgrade with this tactic! Balcony prices were slashed a few weeks before our sail date. Because we were already locked in to the cruise since the cancelation period had passed, there was no way to cancel and rebook. Furthermore, the cruise line had absolutely no obligation to honor an upgrade. But we called, were very nice, explained the situation, and pointed out that balcony cabins were now priced at the same price as our inside cabin. So the cruise line switched us to the balcony room, for free!
Another consideration is if the price of a balcony stateroom drops to within a reasonable range in which you are willing to pay the difference.
Continuing with the earlier example, let’s say those balcony staterooms dropped from $1,800 to a price of $1,100, which is now only $100 more than the $1,000 you initially paid for your inside cabin. In this case, you can usually pay that difference – $100 per person – and secure a balcony stateroom. Sure, it’s not free but it may be worth the extra $100 per person. Again, the cruise line may even permit you to make such changes after the cancelation period. So if you notice an instance like this, call your booking agent to inquire about the possibility.
You can check your cruise’s prices regularly to stay abreast of pricing drops. After booking a cruise, I recommend bookmarking a pricing page. Then take 10 seconds each day to monitor it for any price changes.
Alternatively, you can also consider using free cruise price monitoring services, which will alert you when prices change. There are a few different sites that offer free cruise price tracking and will alert you when prices change. Here are two you can try:
- CruiseWatch: The website allows you to select cruises to monitor and will send you email alerts on price changes based on the criteria you select.
- Cruiseline: Search and select your cruise, then set up a price alert. You will be emailed when prices change. Alternatively, you can also do this using Cruiseline’s Ship Mate Cruise App.
3) Use Credit Card Points To Get a Free Balcony Upgrade on a Cruise
There are so many great travel reward credit cards out there in which you can use points towards travel. And while it can be difficult and time-consuming to rack up enough points to pay for an entire cruise, it can be relatively quick and easy to accumulate enough points/miles to apply them towards the difference between your inside/outside cabin and a balcony stateroom.
Allow me to explain exactly how we did that to get a free balcony upgrade for free, paid for with points.
One of our favorite travel rewards credit cards is the Capital One Venture Card in which you get 2% cash back miles on all purchases to use towards any travel expenses. This includes cruise expenses. So you can redeem Capital One points to get balcony upgrades!
For example, months after booking an inside cabin on the Celebrity Eclipse for a transatlantic sailing, we noticed that the price between an inside and a balcony had dropped to only a $200 difference total ($100 per person).
So we called our booking agent to make this change to a balcony stateroom. This upgrade initially came with a $200 charge. We paid that $200 using our Venture Card. We then simply erased that charge off of our statement using 20,000 miles we had accumulated just from everyday spending. So ultimately, this gave us a balcony upgrade at absolutely no out-of-pocket cost to us.
We again successfully used this technique on our Norwegian Star cruise in which we had booked an inside cabin. The price for an outside cabin later dropped to a mere $20 per person ($40 total) more than the price of the inside we booked. So, again, we paid that meager difference but then used our miles to refund that amount, essentially giving us a free cruise cabin upgrade from an inside to an outside stateroom. (See screenshot of transaction below.)
This is perhaps the best surefire way to achieve a free balcony upgrade on a cruise and guarantee it, rather than rely on luck or chance.
At the last update to this article, Capital One is offering a new card member signup bonus offer of 75,000 miles with a referral offer. After qualifying for the offer, you can redeem those miles to cover $750 worth of cruise expenses, such as a balcony upgrade. So feel free to use our referral link here to get this Capital One Venture Card offer and see if you qualify for the card. It could be the key to unlocking a balcony upgrade for free!
Important Note: it only makes sense financially to accumulate credit card points to apply towards cruise upgrades if you can pay off your balance in full every month. Otherwise, this tactic is not for you, as the high-interest rates you’ll be incurring will likely exceed the benefit.
4) Wait Until After the First Port to Ask for a Free Cruise Cabin Upgrade
As already discussed, it is nearly impossible these days to walk onto a cruise ship and get a free cruise cabin upgrade by inquiring with Guest Services at the port or soon after boarding the ship. But it may still be worth trying. There is a simple strategy you can use to increase your odds of getting an affirmative response from Guest Relations.
Simply wait until after leaving the first port of call before asking for a free room upgrade.
Instead of being one of the hundreds of passengers queuing up at Guest Relations on the first day to address an issue or inquire about a free balcony upgrade, just be patient. You must understand that the guest relations desk is extremely busy on the first day of every cruise. They simply won’t have time to cater to your desire for free cruise cabin upgrades.
Even more importantly, cruises don’t really know their exact occupancy until after the first port of call. This is because of:
- possible no-shows and
- passengers who unexpectedly disembark early.
At embarkation, there are often prospective cruise passengers with delayed flights, illness, and other unfortunate circumstances who didn’t make it on the ship before it set sail. Sometimes these unlucky vacationers will try to fly to the ship’s first port to join the cruise. Or they may have decided to just abandon the cruise completely.
The ship won’t know what those prospective passengers ultimately chose to do until after leaving the first port. So their empty room will be held for them in the instance they were able to get a flight to join the ship at the first port.
Meanwhile, there may be other passengers who got on the cruise but had to disembark the ship at the first port due to medical issues, family emergencies, or other personal reasons.
These aforementioned circumstances all make for available staterooms that were not available on Day 1 of the cruise itinerary. So just wait until after leaving the first port of call before asking Guest Services if any free cabin upgrades on the cruise are available.
By waiting, there will be no line to wait in and your chances of actually scoring that balcony stateroom upgrade will be greatly improved. And because a day or two of the cruise has already ticked by, you likely won’t be charged for the cabin upgrade as you would on Day 1.
Whenever we inquire about a free cabin upgrade on a cruise, we always wait until after the first port.
And it works. We’ve been successful with this free balcony upgrade tactic three times. Most recently, on the Norwegian Bliss, we spent the first few nights in our small, inexpensive interior cabin. Then after we departed the beautiful Azore Islands, we simply asked Guest Relations if it would be possible to switch to a balcony cabin. Without any hesitation, he happily fulfilled our request and immediately showed us to our big new veranda stateroom located midship! No charge, no questions asked.
This method is still far from a sure thing, but it doesn’t hurt much to take five minutes out of your day to ask about this possibility. Remember to smile and be polite. You may even get to sail away from that first port in your upgraded balcony stateroom!
5) Why Book a “Guaranteed Stateroom” on a Cruise
Booking a guaranteed stateroom is a gamble. But it’s a gamble in which the cruiser has everything to gain and nothing to lose. When booking a guaranteed stateroom on a cruise you are “guaranteed” a room within the cabin designation you booked: inside, outside, balcony, or suite. By booking these staterooms you get the absolute lowest price for that category.
The gamble is that you could either end up in a very convenient location on the ship or find yourself in a less desirable cabin location like somewhere up in the bow or underneath a noisy area. Either way, you’ll be paying the lowest price. And since your specific cabin has not been assigned, there’s a small yet realistic chance of getting bumped up to a higher category. It’s happened to us!
During a Panama Canal Cruise on the Celebrity Infinity, we booked a cheap last-minute inside guaranteed cabin. We were instead assigned a big beautiful veranda stateroom on the Penthouse level. Really!
There was no congratulatory email (e.g., “You’ve been upgraded!”) When our stateroom was assigned, we simply noticed that it was a balcony rather than the interior room we booked. We were thrilled!
But this didn’t just happen to us. We spoke to a few other lucky cruisers on this voyage who reported the same circumstance.
It’s our theory that this is a pricing strategy that cruise lines use to fill the ship without publically lowering the value of their balcony staterooms. So go ahead and book that inside guaranteed room and you could get lucky. You can’t get any lower than an inside cabin, so you only stand to gain in this situation.
To try to seek out situations like this, look for cruises that have inside or outside guaranteed staterooms available but show no inventory of assigned rooms within those particular categories. This likely means that all of those interior and porthole rooms have been assigned, which means you may actually get an elusive upgrade when it comes to assigning your specific cabin.
It can be a time-consuming task to sleuth out by clicking through several cruise listings and pretending to go through the purchase process to see their cabin inventory. But your thorough detective work may pay off in the form of a free balcony upgrade.
However, if using this tactic, just be sure that you are still comfortable with the stateroom category you book because it is still not a sure thing that you’ll get the free balcony upgrade. An upgrade may go to someone else in an assigned cabin, and then you’ll be assigned to the cabin that received the upgrade. But don’t lose hope. It is possible and we’re living proof of that.
6) Complain If You Have a Legitimate Reason
If you have a legitimate complaint, particularly with your cabin, it doesn’t hurt to see how the cruise may be able to help make up for the issue.
During a Carnival cruise, we had friends who unbeknownst to them were assigned a stateroom adjacent to the ship’s lively nightclub. After the DJ provided for a few sleepless nights on the fun ship, the passengers kindly addressed the issue with Guest Relations.
To help compensate for their misfortune, Guest Relations gave them a free cruise cabin upgrade to a suite with a balcony, that was far away from the thumping nightclub. Undoubtedly, they slept better.
Note: we do not condone or recommend coming up with false complaints to try to better your cruise stateroom situation. We were once at the Guest Relations desk and overheard a crabby lady who was making a huge stink about a little bit of dust on the top of her phone and some other very petty issues. It felt like she was trying to find complaints to get some sort of compensation for free. She was grasping at straws and being very rude about it. Don’t be that person.
But if you do have a genuine issue, be sure to address the problem. Don’t be afraid to speak up if you unexpectedly find your cabin to be in a noisy position. You could get a free upgrade to a balcony. Be kind and polite when explaining the issue to Guest Relations.
7) Celebrate Something!
Are you cruising as part of a honeymoon, anniversary, birthday, or something else special? Sometimes there’s a place for you to mention this when filling out the online check-in forms. Or perhaps just work it into conversation with a crew member. They’re always looking for ways to make passengers happy.
Although we’ve scored some choice tables in the main dining room using this method, we have never been successful at getting a free balcony upgrade on a cruise by name-dropping a celebration. Yet it’s not completely unheard of. You’ve got nothin’ to lose. So go ahead and put on that party hat – celebrate that special occasion and be sure to let the entire ship know! 😉
8) Apply Onboard Credit Toward a Balcony Upgrade
Many cruises have been generous lately in offering substantial sums of onboard credits during promotional cruise sales. Unfortunately, you cannot use that onboard credit to apply toward an upgrade before you set sail. But once you’re on the ship, onboard credit is fair game to use on a stateroom upgrade.
So if you have a large sum of onboard credit that you may not spend during your cruise, it’s worthwhile to inquire with guest relations how much a balcony upgrade would cost. Be clear in letting Guest Relations personnel know you’re willing to pay for the cruise cabin upgrade, even though you’ll ultimately be applying your free onboard credit to do so.
If there are balcony staterooms available, this upgrade while already on the ship may come at a reduced cost than what the difference was before the sailing. And now onboard the ship, your onboard credit absolutely can be applied to this upgrade. So if your onboard credit can cover the cost of the balcony upgrade, go for it! You will have just gone a roundabout way at nabbing a free balcony upgrade!
Score Onboard Credit during Your Cruise to Apply Toward a Balcony Upgrade
If you don’t have enough onboard credit to apply towards an upgrade, you can usually take advantage of a generous onboard credit offer for your current cruise by simply booking another cruise while on the ship.
For those who aren’t sure what future cruise or dates you may want to go on, just book a cruise at a date far enough out since you can always change it to something else later without penalty.
You will likely need to put down a deposit to capitalize on this free onboard credit. Yet if you’re planning to take another cruise on the same cruise line, sometime in the future – booking a cruise while on the ship is an excellent workaround to score onboard credit that you can then possibly turn into a free stateroom upgrade.
9) Increase Your Odds of a Free Cruise Cabin Upgrade
To achieve a free cruise cabin upgrade, you’ll need a bit of luck. But there are a few factors you can look for when booking a cruise that may increase your chances of actually landing the elusive balcony upgrade.
- Book an outside cabin – You may have a greater chance of getting a free balcony upgrade on a cruise by booking an outside cabin. Going from an interior stateroom to a balcony is a double upgrade. If balcony upgrades are available, chances are that outside staterooms will be considered for an upgrade before an interior cabin. Plus, if you really want to have a balcony that bad, ensuring that you’ll at least have a window is a decent consolation.
- Book unpopular itineraries & dates: Less attractive dates for cruising will likely have a higher number of unoccupied balcony staterooms, which will certainly increase your chances. Book cruises when kids are in school and a week or two before or after major holidays. Also, oft-snubbed routes like repositioning cruises, which contain a higher number of sea days, tend to have a much higher chance of getting the upgrade. The low price of the repositioning cruise itself is an indication that there are many unsold rooms still available. We’ve been most successful with free balcony upgrades on repositioning cruises. (Read more about repo cruises here: Repositioning Cruises: Your Ultimate Guide to Cruising One-Way.)
- Book a ship with more balconies – Many of the newest megaships are going balcony crazy with a very high percentage of their cabin inventory consisting of balcony staterooms. These ships with higher balcony ratios simply have a greater number of balconies to fill. Hence a balcony upgrade can be more likely.
- Be loyal – Loyalty tends to pay off in dividends when cruising. If a certain category of staterooms is full, a cruise line may just decide to reward some of their more frequent passengers rather than a complete newbie. While we certainly wouldn’t recommend being loyal to a cruise line for this reason, it could be helpful to know that you may be at the top of the pecking order. Also, always be sure to join the cruise line’s loyalty program even if it’s your first time. It costs nothing and you get rewarded with benefits.
10) Get Lucky!
When it comes to cruise cabin upgrades, sometimes you just need some luck on your side.
Once, a few days into a Royal Caribbean transatlantic cruise, we received a phone call notifying us that there was an electrical repair that needed to be made to the lighting of our inside stateroom. For the trouble of asking us to change rooms, they reassigned us to a complimentary balcony stateroom.
We almost couldn’t believe it. Without even trying, we had just got completely lucky and scored a free balcony upgrade!
Every once in a while, luck may just be on your side for a free balcony upgrade on a cruise. Don’t count on this to happen, but know that strange instances like a repair issue are possible. Are you feeling lucky?
Bonus Tip) Bid on a Stateroom Upgrade Before Your Cruise
Most major cruise lines have begun offering a silent bidding process to allow cruise passengers to make an offer to upgrade their stateroom in the month leading up to their cruise embarkation day.
If your specific cruise is eligible for an upgrade, you will typically get emailed within 30-60 days of your sailing. You can then put in a bid for how much you’re willing to spend to get upgraded to your desired room. Don’t worry, you only pay if your bid is accepted.
Select the minimum bid if that’s within an affordable amount for you. Selecting a higher amount will increase the chances of your bid being accepted. But you’re paying for it, so only bid what you can afford and what it’s worth to you.
Pro tip: use a cruise booking website to do a mock booking simply to see the availability of balcony staterooms on your exact sailing. If there are loads of balcony cabins left, bidding the minimum amount could likely prove to be a winning bid. You stand a good chance of scoring a great deal by bidding the minimum amount allowed. But if you see that your sailing is nearly booked full, then you may want to consider bidding higher than the minimum amount.
While these cruise room upgrades by bidding aren’t free, they can prove to be excellent value if a minimum bid is accepted. You can ultimately get these paid upgrades for free by using credit card points, as we outlined in tip #3.
Here is a list of how to make a paid upgrade for each of the major cruise lines:
- Carnival – no upgrade bidding program but you can purchase a cabin upgrade (more info)
- Celebrity MoveUp – bid on an upgrade within 30 days of the cruise (official info)
- Disney – no bidding program but you can pay for upgrades before you sail (official info)
- Holland America – no bidding program but HAL has been known to email upgrade offers as an upsell
- Norwegian Upgrade Advantage Program – bid on an upgrade (program FAQs and full terms)
- Princess Upgrade – bid on an upgrade (official info)
- MSC Bid Upgrade Program – bid on an upgrade
- Royal Caribbean RoyalUp – bid of an upgrade (official info)
Recap: How to Get a Free Balcony Upgrade on a Cruise
The free cruise upgrade tips we’ve listed have worked for us or we’ve witnessed firsthand. So give them a try! With a little effort combined with a fair amount of luck, you may be sailing away with the wind in your face on a beautiful veranda stateroom. Keep an eye out for dolphins!
We wish you the best of luck in your search for a free cruise cabin upgrade and hope one of these methods may work out to get you out of that small inside cabin and into that sought-after balcony stateroom.
If it’s worked for you or you have your own tips to get a free balcony upgrade on a cruise, do let us know in the comments below.
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Publishing note: this article on How to Get a Free Balcony Upgrade on a Cruise was last updated November 2023.