Pros and Cons of all inclusive

Jul 8th, 2003, 08:08 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 8
I think it depends on where you go. We stayed at the SpaPalace in Cancun and loved the all inclusive, then went to Atlantis in the Bahamas, didn't take it and were happy that we didn't. I think it all depends on where you go. If you want to really explore the cuisine and native culture, the all inclusive may not be the best choice. If you are planning on drinking and laying on the beach or by the pool..its def. the way to go.
kakes131 is offline  
Jul 8th, 2003, 08:25 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 445

Loved your Nevis story. That's the kind of experiences I hope I have on a vacation. Thanks for sharing.
Kath is offline  
Jul 10th, 2003, 01:43 PM
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"Out of a stay at an A/I a few meals outside the property shouldn't break anyone's bank...particularly on certain islands. "

I'd rather use that "paying twice" money and stay longer
liza is offline  
Jul 18th, 2003, 07:46 AM
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From today's travel section in Story on AI's.
mm is offline  
Jul 18th, 2003, 08:37 AM
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Posts: 475
Personally I think it depends on: the type of vacation you want, where you are going and the type of person you are. Normally my husband and I do non-AI because we are quite comfortable in different situations - we have travelled a lot. I would never do AI on Provo, St. Kitt's, St Martin, the BVI. I have done AI in Mexico (the deal was just too good to turn down). We did NOT spend our entire vacation at the resort and were very comfortable taking local transport (collectivos) to places we wanted to see. We have also done AI in Cuba. Basically I think AI is fine for people who want a decision free vacation or who are uncomfortable in unpredictable situations. I do not think choosing AI is a reflection on someone's character. Everyone should take the type of vacation they are comfortable with. Neither is "better".
JMM is offline  
Jul 18th, 2003, 08:38 AM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 45
It's an interesting article, but a little narrow and almost naive comparson.

First, it only compares raw dollars. There is little mention of comparable quality.

Second, it doesn't take into account the other methods of booking trips and the fluctuation in rates - either AI or traditional. One of the biggest issues with the AI vs. Traditional argument is the WIDE variation in prices quoted. There are instances of families of 3 paying 10K for a week at Beaches and others paying under 4K....and such stories. The point - the costs can often be dramatically higher at AI than the rates in the article depending on how and where you book.

Third, there are plenty of options for meals beyond the resort in most places. Most people on a traditional vacation eat OFF the resort property for many if not most of their meals. So unless they sampled the menus of the entire region, even the raw cost data is not truly comparable.

Fourth, there are also "packages" for diving and golf through local dive shops and courses where you can bundle more than one event for savings.

So if the comparison is an AI resort vs. an AI OPTION at a traditional resort, then maybe it's got some validity..... but I would argue differenty.
DAVECAROL is offline  
Jul 18th, 2003, 08:55 AM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 91
I like what EJ Crowe has to say. People like my folks like all-inclusive. Dear Mom is part of that generation that was taught to always get the best deal, KMart and WalMart thinking, and everything else be damned. Local cuisine be damned, they'd rather have a steak on the tour boat or resort than eat with the natives. Touring means a pre-packaged guided tour. I think my folks' thinking predominated with the over 50 crowd and intensifies with the "Greatest Generation" and the Fifties "Conformist Generation."
HuwMorgan is offline  
Jul 18th, 2003, 09:08 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 28,542
I think the biggest misconception about AIs is that they offer a good "deal." I just checked Sandals website after relatives told me they were going to one and I was very surprised about the prices (even with what they call a 40% discount). I could definitely book a trip in a very nice resort and pay for all my own drinks and food and it would be less expensive than Sandals. Unless I'm missing something, I don't think that they present a good value. There may be other reasons to go, but don't think you're saving money.
tom42 is offline  
Jul 18th, 2003, 09:36 AM
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Posts: 140
Tom42, I agree with you. Every trip I take I make comparisons and always come up with much better deals than major AI's have to offer.

Ever wonder why most cost conscious Europeans and tourists from other nations avoid AI's in the Caribbean?
andreaac is offline  
Jul 18th, 2003, 10:54 AM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 294
As others have said, it very much depend on the traveller and the AI. If the meals are mostly buffet, it tends to get old before the week is up. We recently completed an AI with the Golden Lemon in St.Kitts which was wonderful. We did not drink ourselves to death. It is an intimate place with daily breakfast, lunch and dinner included - these selections were made off a menu. Breakfast and lunch did not vary too much, but the dinner choices were set so they rotate through every 10 days - if you were staying for a week, the menu would be different each night for dinner.

We have also done Sandals, Barcelo resorts and others. It all depends on what you want and what you can afford at the time. Just like everything else - one size does not fit all. Many resorts are now offering packages that include 3 or 4 nights dinner - that allows you to go offsite for the other meals.....a nice compromise.
paulalou is offline  
Jul 18th, 2003, 11:04 AM
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 4,178
I don't think there's a right or wrong answer to AI. It all depends on your style of vacation.

Some people rarely leave their resort; they like to relax on the beach or by the pool all day. For them, AI probably makes sense, particularly if they drink.

Others like to roam around the island, eat out most of the time, explore. For these people, AI is probably a waste of money.

Rusty, which sounds more like you?

(My only personal complaint about AI comes from visiting a person at an AI resort -- the mixed drinks were watered down; the beer was warm and served in little plastic cups.)
Gekko is offline  
Jul 18th, 2003, 12:35 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I'm probably one of those people that likes to relax on the beach all day but I would not consider staying at a place like Sandals. For me, it comes down to atmosphere & service rather than cost. I'll gladly spend more even if I thought the total cost of the AI would be less. So I'm not so sure it's possible to make generalizations about what type of person goes to an AI or non-AI.
Patty is offline  

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