The Hidden Costs of an All-Inclusive Vacation

When you’re looking into choosing an all-inclusive vacation, it’s a very exciting time. Will you choose your resort based upon the beach, activities, the food…it’s all very personal and there are many factors included in your decisions.

One of the most common ways to choose a vacation is the budget. All-inclusive vacations span vast price differences and while the price is listed, there are hidden costs that people need to be aware of outside of the resort cost.

The Hidden Costs of an All-Inclusive Vacation - Be aware of all the extra costs outside of the package you are buying.

1. Choosing Seats. Gone are the days when you could book your trip as a family and be sure you’d be sitting together. Most airlines these days don’t guarantee seat selection without paying an upgrade fee. Be sure that you look into this with your travel agent at the time of booking so you’ll know the costs.

2. Checked Baggage. Usually if you’re booking an all-inclusive vacation you are allowed one checked bag, but not always. Look into the fine print and be aware of that possible hidden cost.

3. Food. Passengers who are travelling internationally often have to arrive at the airport 3 hours early. Add this to the flight time and the time it takes to drive to your destination hotel and you’ll see that you need to budget for food during your travel. One way to save money is to bring dried foods and snacks with you through security.

4. Airport Parking and Transportation. Some all-inclusive vacations don’t include airport transportation to your hotel. This fee is one you want to know and pre-arrange before travel. Also account for parking at the airport you’re flying out of, this can add up!

5. Tips. There are many views on tipping at an all-inclusive resort, but it’s common to tip your drivers, maids, bartenders and serving staff while there. The amount you tip is up to you, but consider this while you’re planning.

6. Excursions. Spending a week at an all-inclusive resort is wonderful, but many of us enjoy taking excursions to experience more about the area. These excursions vary in price depending on the area you’re in and what the experience is. Factoring these in will save you regretting them when you arrive home.

7. Gift Shop Purchases. Hotel gift shops are tempting when you’re in the holiday mood, but they are usually higher priced than shops at home. Prepare by packing medications, sunscreens, hats etc before going and have a budget you’re comfortable with before you go.

These are some examples of hidden costs while you are at an all-inclusive resort, I’m sure there’s many more which I could list. The biggest tip I can give you is to pause while planning, don’t get caught up in the excitement before you factor in as many expenses as you can think of.


After facing her alcoholism and being involved in a car accident, Julie began writing at where you’ll find that this funky blogger takes the tired, unappetizing reputation about sobriety and turns it into a day at the circus. Jam-packed with ideas for food & drink recipes, travel tips and reviews, real stories of recovery, tips for sobriety, reflections on life and tons of ideas for leading a better (more creative, more enjoyable) life.

more by Julie »