Whilst they can be costly, an all-inclusive holiday allows you to enjoy your trip without the fear of spending a small fortune on extras.
Although these types of holidays are common these days, it wasn’t until 1950 that the all-inclusive option was introduced to the travel and hotelier industry. And surprisingly, this was not the invention of Americans, but a French man called Belgian Gerard Blitz who was trying new and innovate ways to get travellers to spend more money on his fleet of hotels. This trend progressed steadily over the years and is now one of the most popular holiday types for European holidaymakers.
Pros of All-Inclusive Holidays
Worried about quality of local restaurants, or what to do with the kids in the evening? Fear not, because with all-inclusive holidays it’s all been pre-arranged for you, in the comfort of your very own resort. For example, if you’re staying in a Five Star Resort in Dubai which is all-inclusive, you won’t need to consider food and drink costs when you’re there.
Staying within your budget during a holiday can be tricky, especially considering that you will likely want to splurge on yourself.
Enter the all-inclusive holiday! Yes, you might end up spending more on the hotel itself, but when you arrive at the resort you will safe in the knowledge that most food and drink will be free for your entire stay.
They’re deceptively cheap
As mentioned above, the advertised price for all-inclusive holidays will nearly always be more than half-board or B&B equivalents. Don’t let this put you off though, because the savings you’ll make back by not having to purchase lunch, dinner or drinks will nearly always make up for it.
They often include entertainment
Aside from the necessities such as food, drink and accommodation, all-inclusive resorts nearly always offer some form of entertainment. In many cases this entertainment will take the form of kids clubs, cinema showings, or evening shows, but some of the more opulent packages might include day trips to nearby popular destinations. However, this will vary from one company to the other, so be sure to check what’s included before you buy.
Cons of All-Inclusive Holidays
All is not necessarily rosy in the world of all-inclusive holidays however, and indeed they’re not for everyone. Here are some common drawbacks:
All-inclusive packages tend to provide a specific number of activities to engage in during your entire stay. In addition to that, the meals can become somewhat repetitive after the first week, especially if there’s only one restaurant on the resort. If the meal options are restricted to buffet-only, you will likely see the same old favourites popping up every few days!
Worse still, since you’ve already paid for your meals in advance, you will likely not want to venture out of the hotel complex for meals, meaning you could miss out on some fabulous local cuisine.
The small print
Not every all-inclusive is equal! For example, some of the more budget resorts won’t include a la carte dining within their all-inclusive packages, and it’s also becoming increasingly common for more expensive (usually imported) alcoholic beverages to carry a surcharge.
On the flip side, some of the more expensive all-inclusive resorts include extras such as massages, spa treatment and scuba-diving, so it’s definitely worth reading the small print before you book your next holiday.
Popular All-Inclusive Destinations in 2019
If you’re planning a holiday in 2019 and are looking for some inspiration, here are three of our favourite places to sit back, relax, and enjoy some all-inclusive goodness:
Known for its luxury, opulence and year-round sunshine, Dubai’s all-inclusive resorts are surprisingly affordable for what they deliver. For example, the Doubletree by Hilton resort in Spa Marjan Island currently has 5 night breaks from just 729 per person.
It will come as no surprise that holidaying in the Maldives isn’t a cheap endeavour, but if you’re looking for sheer serenity then it’s worth the asking price. Our favourite pick here is the Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu, with 7 night breaks starting from around 1,599 per person.
Turkey may not carry the same kudos as Dubai or the Maldives, but it is still our top pick for affordable luxury. Take the five star Side La Grande Resort, which currently has all-inclusive packages starting from just 204… including flights!