Unexpected mishaps are almost always avoidable. Planning and preparation are key when it comes to your longed-for break, so avoid these seven rookie mistakes, and enjoy your dream All Inclusive vacation.
Many of these points are simply common sense, but in your eagerness to taste your first All Inclusive vacation, you might need a few little reminders, so that you don’t get caught by these rookie errors.
1. Not doing your homework
So your dream vacation is all about the relaxation – somewhere to get your Zen on and spend hours de-stressing with a great book, but you found yourself at a noisy, kid-filled party resort? Or the opposite, you finally have time to let your hair down and have some fun, staying up all night getting your groove on at the disco, and the resort you landed at is……too quiet? (cue the crickets)
Let’s face facts; the internet is the best tool you have at your fingertips. Research the resort, fine tune your wish list, whittle it down to the best place for you to visit. Read some all inclusive news and information about the resort you’d like to visit. A first time All Inclusive vacationer needs to be aware that preparation is the key to a happy holiday.
2. Not reading the reviews
There are reviews, and there are reviews. Some folk seem like wannabe travel critics, don’t they?! But, personal opinions are highly useful too, seeing real vacationer’s real photos, and discovering genuinely helpful comments, hacks and tips are just some of the advantages of reading the reviews. Don’t disregard them, listen to public opinion.
That said, beware those that glow too brightly (could be fake) or those that are overly critical (some folks just can’t be pleased no matter what)….the middle ground is where you’ll find that valuable intel you want to pay attention to.
3. Choosing the wrong resort ‘type’
All Inclusive Resorts often cater to specific demographics, which can generally be categorized as “Adults Only”, or “Family Friendly”, although some try to please both (with separate beach/pool areas, rooms, and restaurants exclusively for adults OR families) however some do a better job than others at keeping those areas truly separated.
Don’t wait until you’ve arrived to find that you and your kids have landed in a mostly adult, tranquil resort, or a romantic honeymoon location with few activities for the little ones. Oops. By that time, it’s too late to do anything about it except have a large cocktail, but the kids certainly won’t be happy, and your teen will pout up for a marathon sulking session. They would love some of the teen friendly all-inclusive resorts, of which there are many.
Just spend a little time when choosing, and check the resort type before you eagerly offer up that credit card.
4. Expecting too much from a ‘discount’ resort
Yay! You found a last minute deal with a really huge discount. That’s always a good thing.
BUT, remember that ‘budget’ resorts need to trim expenses somewhere in order to offer lower prices….there’s nothing wrong with that and by researching in advance and reading reviews, you’ll know what you’re getting. Start by writing down exactly what factors are important to you, ranking them by priority. Some folks love the beach and spend all day there, so they may not care about the pool or the room. For others, maybe they’d prefer to not track sand with them and a great pool and jacuzzi make the perfect vacay hangout…and there are those who just want to enjoy gourmet cuisine and top-tier entertainment, spending all day in town shopping…..by knowing what’s important to you, you can decide what is worth giving up to save money.
5. Not getting ‘covered’
You’ve budgeted for a nice vacation, don’t put that at risk! There are many things that can go wrong, before or during your trip….accidents, illness, job or schedule changes (or “they’ve called off the [destination] wedding!”), hurricanes, blizzards, etc….if you have to cancel, postpone, or extend your vacation for any reason at all (it happens!) – please make sure you have the right sort of insurance before you travel.
6. Not considering seasonal weather
We all love to imagine that our favorite beach destination is always sunny and pleasant. The reality is that even the loveliest destinations experience seasonal weather patterns that may mean a less-than-ideal vacation. In its favor, during hurricane season you might get a really great deal, and it can be a better, and less crowded time to take your annual vacation. But then again, while hurricanes are not common, it may also live up to its name and you may be caught in the eye of the storm. So, research the weather first, and the season of your chosen destination, and see whether this influences when you choose to go.
7. Not listening to the experts
Expert help is there to help you make the best choice, to answer all your questions, and to guide you towards a memorable vacation that you’ll surely want to repeat in the years to come. You may have questions such as “What’s really included at an all-inclusive resort?”
Find a travel advisor who has been in the business a long time, and ideally one who has been to the destinations you’re researching, then be sure to ask all of your questions before you book!