We asked travel experts for their best destinations and tips when choosing an all-inclusive resort. According to our advisor members, the best locations for all-inclusive resorts are overwhelmingly Mexico and the Caribbean. But how do you choose the one that's perfect for you?
Here are some essential tips to help you make the right decision:
1. Research Resort Specializations:
Not all resorts are created equal. Dionne Evans, Owner and Luxury Travel Advisor of Travel by DAE, says to “make sure it offers the right environment for you to have the vacation experience you want.” Are you going for a family vacation, a romantic getaway, or an adventure-filled escapade? Research resorts that specialize in your preferred travel style, ensuring a tailored experience that caters to your unique needs and desires.
2. Identify Your Budget and Length of Stay:
Budget and duration go hand in hand. Taunya Kunz, Certified Travel Agent at Epic World Travel Experts, says some resorts are perfect for a quick 4-5 night getaway, while others, especially high-end options, may require more vacation days due to their remote locations. Plan accordingly to make the most of your precious time away.
3. Evaluate Inclusions and Exclusions:
Arica Price, Owner of Escape from Corporate, highlights the need to delve into the details of what's included in your all-inclusive package beyond just food and drinks. Seek out resorts offering exceptional perks like guided tours and wellness sessions. Beware of hidden fees for premium activities and dining that could impact your budget and expectations.
4. Find out if the resort is a 4 or 5-star property:
Quality is paramount, especially when it comes to dining. Ensure your chosen resort aligns with your expectations by considering its star rating and guest reviews. As Mike Weingart, President of Air Land Sea Consultants, wisely notes, "you generally get 4-star food at 4-star resorts."
5. Check for Renovations:
To avoid unpleasant surprises upon arrival, Sonia Bhagwan, Owner of Dreaming of Sun - Dream Vacations, says to check for renovations during your travel dates. Consult both the official website and the resort's front desk to ensure your vacation won't be disrupted.
Bhagwan also says to always confirm the resort is on a swimmable beach to avoid any any unfortunate surprises upon arrival. Some all inclusives may say they’re beachfront, but the beach is considered dangerous or “unswimmable.”
7. Quality of Accommodations:
Families require comfortable and spacious accommodations. Look for resorts that offer suites, 24-hour room service, and kid-friendly amenities like cribs, baby monitors, and special menus. Some resorts even cater to those with allergies or special needs, ensuring a stress-free stay for everyone, says Karen Shelton, President & Owner of My Path Unwinding Travel.
All in all, these essential tips will help you book your trip, but the best way to ensure your all-inclusive vacation is everything you’ve dreamed about is to work with a travel advisor. Trust the experts who know all the ins and outs and can choose the perfect resort for you.