All About All-Inclusives

September 23, 2010 at 1:13 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

Not having to pay is oh so nice

All-inclusive vacation packages are awesome.  If you’ve never done one, I highly, highly recommend it.  The last two vacations I’ve taken have been all-inclusive and at this point I don’t think I could do it any other way.

*Disclaimer: when I say ‘vacation’, I mean a venture to a beach where the primary focus is relaxation.  A ‘trip’, on the other hand, is typically a more activity-laden adventure with a focus on exploration.  I don’t even know if an all-inclusive ‘trip’ is possible, but for the purpose of this post I’m discussing ‘vacations’.

On the two all-inclusive vacations I’ve taken, pretty much everything was paid for in advance.  Plane tickets, resort room, all meals and all beverages (both alcoholic and non) are included in one fairly reasonable price.  Only having to worry about tipping makes things easier all around, though simply getting up and walking out of a restaurant or bar after you’re finished does take a bit of getting used to.  Conversely, getting back into the habit of paying for a bill at the end of an evening is a readjustment after vacation is over.

When I say all food and drinks are included in the package, I mean everything.  Every single day

To be honest, I'm surprised I didn't come home looking like this

there was a breakfast buffet, brunch buffet, lunch buffet and dinner buffet.  There was also a snack bar that had fruit, salads, sandwiches and nachos that was open 24 hours a day, in case you happened to find a 10 minute period where you couldn’t find a giant spread of food set out waiting.  Each buffet had an array of Mexican, Italian and American food, not to mention table after table of desserts and fruity drinks.  There was a suckling pig one night, which yours truly took a pass on, and each night had a different featured entrée.

Besides all of the buffets, our resort had four fancy shmancy restaurants only accessible with proper reservations.  These included a Japanese restaurant (pretty good, for someone who doesn’t eat much sushi), a steakhouse (again I passed), an upscale Mexican restaurant (amazing) and a gourmet restaurant (so awesome I wanted to live there).  Trust me when I say there was no shortage on food on our vacation.

We weren’t exactly lacking in the drink department as well.  There were bottles of vodka, rum, tequila and whiskey in our room that were there just for the hell of it – if we finished one, they’d simply bring us another.  Truth be told, though, we didn’t even touch those bottles because booze was so easy to be had everywhere else.  They even brought us up a bottle of champagne with a tray of chocolate strawberries on our first night there (this came with a note thanking the Mr. and Mrs. for staying…which was hilarious, as my mom hasn’t been a Mrs. in quite some time).  Drinks were served at the swim up bar in the pool, the random bars placed throughout the resort, by servers asking what you would like if you were simply laying by the pool, for breakfast at the buffet (there were various blenders full of fruit and a bottle of vodka nearby) and in the mini-fridge in our room.  Yup, besides having bottles of liquor at our disposal, we were able to order as much beer as we wanted and keep it on hand.  We absolutely took advantage of that.

Yup, pretty much the life

My family and I didn’t get sloppy drunk at any point in our stay but we did manage to have a great time with all those free drinks.  We probably had our biggest bender the night before our outdoor adventure, and in hindsight showing up slightly hung over for speed-boating, mule riding and zip-lining wasn’t the smartest thing in the world.  We managed though and were enjoying wine by dinner time.

If you have any doubt that an all-inclusive vacation is worth every penny…well, you obviously weren’t reading this post.  Two thumbs way up, and I’ll cheers to that!


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