Buy your air tickets on Tuesday afternoons. Fly during the middle of the week. Sign up for airfare alerts at FareCompare.com. In the current world travel climate ticket prices are going up daily. Do not wait for a sale. There will be none.
Pick what view you want from your seat on the plane; it could be left side land or right side water. And choose port or starboard for your ship cabin. A cabin facing west in the afternoon will be warmer due to all day sun, but it might be the land view.
When you enter your hotel room, walk around each room and look at the view. If everything is not just as you want it, go back to the front desk and politely request a different room to make your stay more enjoyable. It is your right, your money, and even your obligation to get exactly what you expected when you made your reservation. Hotels are eager to make you happy; upgrades are often given as an apology for your initial dissatisfaction.