Is it worth it to stay at an all-inclusive resort?

Although the weather outside might not seem like it, summer is just around the corner and people are already starting to book summer travel plans. Planning a summer vacation for your family this far in advance offers many benefits including steep discounts from industries that are unsure what their summer capacities will look like (such as cruise lines), access to the best accommodations before they're fully booked, and cheaper airfare prices. Another option that you might want to consider is staying at an all inclusive resort. But, what does all inclusive resort mean?

If you're under a considerable amount of stress from work or life in general and don't feel like mapping out every aspect of your summer travel plans, then staying at an all inclusive resort might be a viable option. They're not as perfect as the advertisements try to portray, but they can help you save time and money on your next vacation. Continue reading to learn more about all inclusive resorts to determine if they're right for your travel goals.

What Does All Inclusive Resort Mean?

Little Time for Planning? No Problem.

If you have very little time in between work and family to plan out an entire vacation, then an all-inclusive resort could help you focus on more immediate concerns without sacrificing a fun experience later on. As implied by the "all-inclusive" description, you won't have to look around for places to eat and things to do at your destination because most of that will already be covered and readily available for you.

For some folks, this is one of the best ways to stretch your travel budget because you already know what the cost will be upfront, rather than arriving at your vacation spot and discovering new (and expensive) restaurants and activities you'd like to try.

Better Bargains Elsewhere

When you have your vacation planned out for you and all the amenities you could desire available in one convenient location, then obviously this will come at a price. As CNN points out, some all-inclusive resorts cost as much as $450 per person, per night, and you might still end up spending more money on top of that if you want to drink alcohol or go on day trips or try different activities in the area that are not covered by the resort itself. Although more budget-friendly, all-inclusive options exist, the fact remains that there are better travel bargains to be found outside of all-inclusive resorts.

For instance, staying with Airbnb would probably be much cheaper than a resort in many destinations. Sure, you might not have an incredible view or access to a private, resort guests-only beach, but Airbnb options are affordable and come with more "homey" amenities like a private kitchen where you can make your own meals to save money on dining out.

Safe & Luxurious

There are many different types of all inclusive resorts around the world, including family-friendly destinations, adults-only romantic getaways, booze-included (several "all-inclusive" reports stop short of offering unlimited alcohol), and solo traveler paradises. These swanky resorts are typically safe and come with on-site security patrolling the premises, safety deposit boxes in the rooms, and gated entrances to both indoor and outdoor amenities.

Quantity Over Quality

Since all inclusive resorts typically offer unlimited dining, the quality of the food might be lower than what you'd find beyond the resort where restaurants rely on happy, paying customers to stay in business. Although all inclusive resorts are improving, many of them still rely on buffet-style meal offerings to control their costs while ensuring that their guests have access to the unlimited amount that is promised by the "all-inclusive" description.

If you would prefer to try a wide variety of local dishes and venture beyond the confines of a resort, then staying at a hotel or Airbnb or bed-and-breakfast might be a better (and possibly more affordable) alternative to an all inclusive vacation.

Where Should You Stay?

Ultimately, the decision whether or not to stay at an all inclusive resort is up to you. Budget-conscious travelers would likely be better off seeking accommodations, transportation, and dining options elsewhere.

On the other hand, if you're pressed for time before your vacation and have little time to plan and book all your activities in advance, then an all inclusive resort package might be just what you need to de-stress without attending to every last detail of your trip.

What does all inclusive resort mean? Do you like staying in all inclusive resorts? Why do you like them or avoid them?

The post Should You Stay at an All Inclusive Resort? appeared first on Money Q&A.

RELATED: 6 rules to follow when online shopping (#5 is a must!)

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6 rules to follow when shopping online
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6 rules to follow when shopping online
1. Make sure that the website you are ordering from is secure
"Many websites will have a seal at the bottom stating that the website is indeed secure and will not make your information public under any circumstances. A site that has 'https://' at the beginning of their web address as well as a padlock symbol is typically a site to trust." -My Broken Coin
2. Search for product reviews beforehand
"Returning items to online stores can be a major hassle. So why not find out what others think of the product before you purchase it online? For example, before buying a new laptop, search for comments and complaints associated with the brand. If there are more negative reviews than positive, and the same problem is reoccurring, then it may not be a brand worth investing in. This will save yourself from buying something that would have to be returned to the store soon after receipt." -My Broken Coin
3. Look for promo codes before checking out
"Who doesn't like saving money, especially on necessities? Almost every retailer will have some sort of promotion available, so ensure you look for one before purchasing. You may not find every code useful or relevant to your purchase, but there are plenty out there that could save you money. So, before you check out ensure you search your retailer for voucher codes and see how much you could save." -My Broken Coin
5. Check and double check your shopping cart
"When shopping online, it's incredibly easy to get side-tracked and accidentally add things into your shopping cart. For example, you may double click on an item and not notice that you've order two of it until it's too late. As well as this, if you've visited a site before but abandoned your cart before purchasing, the site will sometimes have saved your items when you visit again. Thus, it's incredibly important that you double check what you're buying." -My Broken Coin
6. Track your order
"Many sites give you the option to track you orders. This is especially handy when you need your order by a specific date (before Christmas, in time for a birthday party, etc.). Stay on-top of your order's location at all times, including the cities that it is arriving in and departing from every day. A lot of online trackers go through FedEx or UPS and are typically very accurate." -My Broken Coin
4. Price-match whenever possible
"Price-matching and price-comparison is the one of the best strategies for saving money while shopping online, as you will be able to purchase items that you otherwise would not have been able to afford. Retailers are in constant competition with each other to offer the best price and product to customers, so find the one that's offering the best deal." -My Broken Coin
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