Which Staterooms to Book on a Carnival Cruise

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Booking a Carnival cruise is easy – just choose your itinerary and sailing date and you’re ready to go, right? Wrong! There are many stateroom options to choose from, and which cabin you book can have a big impact on your cruise vacation. So which Carnival cruise stateroom is right for you?

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How Staterooms Are All Different

Unlike standard hotel rooms in land-based resorts, different types of cruise ship staterooms can vary significantly in size, easy access to different parts of the ship, type of view, sleeping arrangements, and amenities, not to mention cost differences.

While there are no “bad” staterooms on any Carnival cruise ship, just how well a specific stateroom meets your needs and expectations depends on how well you understand the different cabin types available.

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Researching cabins before you book and choosing the cabin that best meets your cruise vacation desires will help you be sure to have a relaxing, comfortable room to call your own on the cruise.

Carnival Cruise Stateroom Types

With more than two dozen unique ships in the fleet, more vessels under construction, and upgrades always being implemented, the exact style, selection, and number of staterooms of any specific type varies between Carnival ships.

Furthermore, the availability of different staterooms will change based on sailing dates and when you book your cruise.

Interior cabins are found on all Carnival cruise ships, and while they lack any view of the ocean, they are more affordable for budget-conscious travelers. The lack of an exterior view makes these rooms darker, which is ideal for sensitive sleepers. This may not be as suitable for passengers with claustrophobia or similar conditions, however.

These cabins are typically located on lower decks, making them further from most cruise activities but also in potentially quieter areas of the ship. Some interior staterooms may also be found on upper decks, but their numbers are more limited.

Carnival Valor
Photo By: Russell Otway

Oceanview staterooms have broad windows that let in abundant natural light and provide stunning views of the ocean and ports of call.

Views can vary with window sizes, and some oceanview cabins do have obstructed views when railings or lifeboats block part of the view, but those obstructed view staterooms are generally slightly cheaper than open views. Oceanview staterooms can be found in nearly any area of the ship, from very far forward to aft-facing views.

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Porthole staterooms on Carnival cruise ships may be classified as either interior or oceanview rooms, depending on how staterooms are being listed on individual ships. Two small portholes are part of each of these cabins, and while they do provide some natural light into the room, their views are very limited.

These cabins are typically on lower decks and near the bow of the ship, which can make the ship’s motion more noticeable for passengers who may have motion sickness sensitivities. Noises of the ship raising and lowering anchors or bow lines are also more noticeable in these staterooms.

Balcony staterooms provide passengers with their own private oasis for enjoying sea breezes and stunning views, not to mention reserved chairs or loungers right on their own balcony.

There are different types of balcony staterooms, and all of them are worth a try – extended aft balconies with relaxing rear views, premium vista balconies with their oversized corner locations, and unique cove balconies closer to the waterline.

Carnival Valor Cabin
Photo By: Russell Otway

Suites are the ultimate in stateroom luxury, with more spacious layouts, upgraded décor, and centralized locations that minimize unpleasant motion and make it easier to access all the top spots on board the ship.

Suites also come with several VIP privileges that include priority boarding and other special touches to help you enjoy every minute of your cruise, but you will pay dearly for them as these cabins can be significantly more expensive than other stateroom options.

Havana staterooms are a unique option aboard the largest and newest Carnival ships, and feature fun tropical décor in refreshing hues. These exclusive cabins are also near the exclusive pool and bar reserved for these passengers, and include amazing features such as rain showers and cabana patios.

Havana staterooms are available in interior, oceanview, balcony, and suite layouts. Prospective passengers should note that all Havana stateroom occupants must be 12 years of age or older.

Also Read: Cruise Ship Cabins to Avoid (Stateroom Booking Tips)

Family Harbor staterooms are another type of Carnival specialty accommodation on larger ships. They are designed with families in mind, featuring whimsical nautical décor and more spacious layouts for multiple guests to relax. Additional amenities include extra options for young passengers, such as included babysitting services.

Carnival Valor
Photo By: Russell Otway

These rooms are adjacent to a specialized family lounge with features such as board games for use, video game consoles, snacks, movies, books, and more, providing an extra, convenient space for families with younger children to use. Family Harbor staterooms are available in interior, porthole, oceanview, balcony, and suite designs.

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Passengers interested in the ultimate pampering experience will want to consider booking a Cloud 9 Spa stateroom. These spa-adjacent staterooms not only feature upgrades to enhance relaxation such as soothing décor and relaxing colors, but also come with priority spa reservations to ensure you have your choice of treatments and appointment times.

Exclusive discounts are also offered for guests in these staterooms. From interior staterooms to suites, Cloud 9 staterooms are available in different categories.

How Staterooms Are All Alike

With so many stateroom options available on Carnival cruise ships, how do you choose which one is right for you?

Despite their differences, don’t forget that every stateroom – from the least expensive, basic interior cabin to the most luxurious specialty suite – has the same access to all the Carnival cruise experience has to offer.

Gourmet dining options, 24-hour room service, world-class entertainment, exotic ports of call, exciting onboard activities, and outstanding service are part of every Carnival cruise, no matter which stateroom you book.

By understanding the differences between the staterooms, you can take your cruise to the next level with accommodations that will make your voyage truly a once-in-a-lifetime cruise vacation.

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