Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Meetings at all-inclusive resorts: 5 things to watch

Recently looked at planning family event at an all-inclusive resort on an island, and another family member had quite the list of things to check. For those considering planning business or personal functions at an "all-inclusive", five things to watch:

1. Topless/clothing optional: Some locations "anything goes" even if local laws say no. From past experience at national conference in Hawaii, I'm not sure we're all meant to see each other in bathing suits, much less potential for more removed;
2. Getting sick from ice: Not unusual for ice, water, food to be problematic in some areas - decide what precautions you want/need;
3. Brands of liquor/beer: "Including liquor" may mean resort includes their own brands of local liquor and beer, not US brands. Pay more for premium and US brands;
4. Availability of health care: May be physician or nurse on premises, but what if more serious illness/injury occurs. What are local options?
5. Exclusion from best restaurants: "Including food" may limit choices of where on the property. If hoping for all food options, see what is/isn't included; or if reservations months in advance necessary if included.

Many all-inclusive resorts offer excellent beaches and facilities, vast array of social options for all age ranges, deluxe accommodations, superb staff, great pricing ... but if any of the above might be a deal-breaker, good to know and check before booking.

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