I was fortunate enough to spend this past weekend in Punta Cana and experienced some really fantastic resorts. Beautiful suites, huge lagoon-style pools, white sand beaches, evening entertainment, casinos, and top notch staff.
But maybe my favorite part of the trip? The incredible variety of restaurants and bars. Scallops, shrimp, lobster, swordfish, chateau briand, roast duck, the list goes on…not to mention top shelf drinks and wines (I know, it’s a tough job sometimes…)
It wasn’t until I got back and went out to dinner that I realized what I truly appreciated about my trip – the all-inclusive aspect! At an all-inclusive resort, I had my choice of any of the fantastic entrees on the menu, none of which had prices next to them. I could pick from four different house wines, or a handful of local beers, or even just a sparkling water…without worrying about them showing up on the bill later.
And it wasn’t just the cost – it’s the freedom of trying new things! I had no idea I hated mussels, but apparently I do – no worries, I’ll skip the rest of those and order a different appetizer of beef carpaccio! Never had a caipirinha, I’ll try one…oops, not for me…how about a mai tai? Nope, that didn’t work either…next?
The features of an all-inclusive, the ‘unlimited’ dining, snacks, and drinks are something you might take for granted…until it’s time to pay the bill at your local restaurant. Contrary to some perceptions, paying for an all-inclusive plan isn’t just for the alcoholic drinks; it’s also for incredible varieties of non-alcoholic mixed drinks, snacks day and night, and gourmet dining for breakfast, lunch, and dinner…the freedom to try new things.
So I ask…how in the world do people travel to the Caribbean/Mexico, and not go all-inclusive?