All-inclusive's

Old Aug 19th, 2005, 04:57 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 40
All-inclusive's

With all the restaurants in Barbados would I be making a mistake staying at an all-inclusive such as Almond Bay Village? It seems like it would be the least expensive way to go.
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Old Aug 19th, 2005, 09:50 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 221
No matter where you go, the decision between and AI or a non-AI hinges on a few crucial questions?

1. How much would you usually spend on food and alcohol per person on a typical vacation? Most travel planners assume the average traveler will spend about $100 pp per day on these. If you KNOW that you can keep it less than $50 - AI may not be cheaper. If you really like to let loose particularly at the bar on vacation, then AI is very nice and cost-effective.
2. How much time do you spend on-property versus off-property? If you would be eating 90% of your meals in the hotel anyway, then AI is nice. If you really only use the hotel to change clothes and sleep, then it's a waste of money. Or if the property is so isolated that there isn't a large selection of restaurants, then AI is nice.
3. How adventurous are you? Personally as a solo traveler, I HATE getting a cab, and going out to look for 3 meals a day so I love AI. But if sampling lots of different restaurants is your idea of a vacation, then AI will disappoint you. Or if you are a true gourmand, you don't want most AIs since they live and breathe the open buffet meals - quality is usually fine but not gourmet.
4. Do you want to know up-front what your trip will cost with few surprises? If yes go AI.

Once you know how you feel about these questions personally, you'll know whether AI is right for you. Some of us love them - some hate them. It's not an issue of "better" or "worse" - it's what YOU want out of YOUR trip.
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Old Aug 19th, 2005, 10:44 AM
  #3  
cdt
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 741
In addition to all the usual AI pros and cons (summarized nicely above), we recently discovered one other difference.

We had always had an anti-AI bias, and considering the amount we usually spend on hotels and meals, it was always cheaper for us to go non-AI when we priced various islands in the Caribbean.

In Feb. we took our first trip to the Yucatan and found an AI that was surprisingly inexpensive. One thing we noticed was that the guests socialized with each other a lot more than they do at non-AI's.

We kind of enjoyed this aspect of the AI experience.



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Old Aug 19th, 2005, 05:30 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 324
Not only do all inclusives include all the food and drink you want, but most include sports equipment, water/land sports, activities and entertainment. It is nice not having to think where we eat breakfast, lunch or dinner today and either take a taxi or rent a car to get there and also it is nice that I don't have to think can I afford that drink with dinner and it is very nice that and the end of your vacation there $00.00 balance on your hotel tab. Another thing is nice you basically know what your vacation will cost before you leave and it makes budgetting much easier. We have done both types of vacations, but prefer the relaxing and no worries that all inclusive vacation offers.
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Old Aug 20th, 2005, 01:05 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 793
I've been to Barbados 4 times and would never go AI. Too many great restaurants (great grocery stores too).

Have fun! Peace, Greenie
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