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The pros and cons of all-inclusive family vacation packages

Barcelo Maya Resort

For inexperienced travelers who aren’t quite sure how to book hotels, tours, and transportation in a foreign country, all-inclusive vacation packages have provided an easy option for going abroad. They have become very popular over the last several decades, but they are not without their disadvantages.

The best thing about an all-inclusive package is that you will know the price up front. You pay your one-time fee which includes food, lodging, transportation, and attractions, and the only money transactions you have to worry about beyond that are souvenirs and snacks. Unfortunately, because of these one-time fees, you are unable to customize your trip to match your budget. Many all-inclusive trips do not choose budget hotels and meals, so prices are usually higher than a self-engineered travel itinerary.

Barcelo Maya Resort
Barcelo Maya Resort

It is very easy to travel with all-inclusive family vacation packages. Simply view the schedule, listed day-by-day, purchase the package, and hop on your first flight. You will be directed through the itinerary in a very organized manner. Many have noticed, however, that the problem with this is a lack of flexibility once you arrive at your destination. Instead of wandering the streets and being free for last-minute changes in the plan, you are locked into the schedule that you’ve already paid for. Most all-inclusive packages cover the most popular and famous attractions, so you will see all the highlights, but may miss out on the more intimate details.

The rise of all-inclusive vacation packages has made it possible to eliminate all the gritty details of arranging a vacation. Simply buy a prepackaged tour that will guide you through all the highlights of your destination after a one-time payment. These vacation packages tend to work best for first-time travelers who want to familiarize themselves with a new country. Traveling with the experienced guide and tour group that is sometimes provided by the package can help you learn the ropes of the culture and operations of society in the destination.

When you decide to return for a second trip though, consider planning your own trip. You will feel more confident in your knowledge of the destination, and you can still retain the benefits of knowing the cost by maintaining a careful budget. But this time, instead of racing from one attraction to the next, sit back and relax in a cozy local cafe and take time to enjoy the destination just like a local might.

In short, here are the pros and cons of all-inclusive vacation packages:


– You know how much your trip will cost

– You don’t have to hassle with arranging your own schedule

– You will gain a familiarity with the destination


– Lack of flexibility

– More expensive

– Only see the most touristy attractions