I have a confession to make: I like all-inclusives! It may come as a bit of a shock considering I travel most of the year and almost all of these trips are organized independently. However, when I want a week off from my job as a travel blogger, I head down to the Caribbean for a week of beaches and sun.
I have now been to the Caribbean on all-inclusive holiday five times, and while these trips are very different from my usual travel style, I have come to understand why they are such a great option for travellers who are pressed for time. So today I am highlighting a few reasons why you may want to consider an all-inclusive vacation for your next escape:
Less planning, more relaxing
One of the biggest pros of going on an all-inclusive vacation is the ease of travel. When you book a package, you don’t have to spend time searching for flights, browsing hotels, or coordinating airport pick-ups. Everything is taken care of for you, meaning you can start enjoying your trip sooner.
You can still explore
One of the arguments I always hear against all-inclusives is that “it’s not real travel”. I have to disagree. Yes, there are travellers who may choose to stay at the resort the whole time, but if you want to explore, there are plenty of opportunities for you to experience the destination.
On your first morning at a resort you usually attend a brief orientation meeting to help familiarize you with the services and activities available. This meeting also highlights some of the possible day trips you can go on, which may include a visit to a neighbouring city, a jeep safari around the island, or a day of snorkelling and beach hopping.
Plenty of activities to take part in
Resorts want to keep guests happy. For some travellers that means lounging under an umbrella with a daiquiri in hand, and for others it means having an active schedule. If you’re in the latter category you’ll be spoiled for options.
Do you want to learn to dance? Join the daily salsa and merengue lessons. Worried about staying fit? There is yoga, pilates, tai chi, meditation, aerobics, aqua fitness, and volleyball to choose from. Prefer something a bit more laid back? Enjoy a game of giant chess or ping pong.
While the idea behind an all-inclusive vacation is to unwind and relax, this doesn’t mean you have to spend the whole week alternating between the beach and the pool – unless you want to, of course.
Lots of water fun
And that’s not the end of the activities! Down at the beach you can bounce around on a banana boat, go on a catamaran outing, or take out a paddle boat. Also, most resorts offer a free intro to scuba diving in the pool, so if that’s something that interests you, you can give it a try and decide if you want to pursue it further.
Pools, pools, and more pools
Another thing I like about resorts is that they have plenty of pools for you to choose from. The last resort I stayed at had two different pool areas: one had more of a party feel with loud club music and a dance floor, while the other was intended for adults who wanted a quieter environment where they could read a book and go for a relaxing swim. It was nice having an option to join the party or simply unwind.
Oh, and both of these pool areas did have swim-up bars, so just because you want a quieter environment doesn’t mean you have to give up the drinks with the little umbrellas!
All meals and beverages are included
Yes, that also means drinks! One of the biggest expenses next to transportation and accommodations is food, however, the nice thing about an all-inclusive is that all your meals are already included in the price.
Most resorts have buffet-style meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner, plus you can also order little snacks like pizzas and grilled sandwiches throughout the day. For a little variety, resorts also offer a couple of a la carte dinners where you can dress up for a fancier evening.
Nightly live entertainment
Even though I was usually wiped by the end of the day – sunshine, beaches, and piña coladas will do that to you – the festivities did not end there. Once the sun went down the fun continued with live music, dancing, and drinks.
Have you been on an all-inclusive holiday?
What was your favourite part?