I was on the Emerald Princess in Europe for 12 days in May. My husband and I and our 11 year old son. We had an inside cabin on Dolphin Deck. We had the two bottom beds moved together for form a queen bed and our son slept in the bunk bed on one side of the room. The bunk was always open. We spent very little time in our cabin, basically changing our clothes and sleeping or watching a movie before going to bed after a very exhausting and fun day. If we had to use both bunks, I admit it would be a tight squeeze. There is a lot of storage space in the inside cabin however the bathroom is very small. The last time we cruised with both kids (10 and 15) at the time we opted for a balcony cabin and we were happy because we had the queen bed against the balcony door and a bunk bed above a sofa couch bed (boys drew straws). That was very comfortable for 4 people. Only issue I have for you is that with an 8 year old you would not want to leave that child by themselves in cabin with a balcony.