All Inclusive Holidays

Discussions relating to all inclusive style holidays
S.C. is ok for those who wont eat ""foreign food""

A.I is ok for those like my daughter who only moves between room-pool-bar-restaurant and never puts foot outside the hotel complex

we like the happy medium of H.B we won't cook or wash up on holiday we have breakfast then go out all day, come back shower and dress go to dinner, then depending on the hotel location go for a walk and try out different local bars [don't do British bars and themed bars] if ther are none close we will have a couple of evening drinks at the hotel bar and just chill
I'm definitely with you there Wizard. It's nice to know you have an evening meal if you want it but even then I'll sometimes eat out in local restaurants and during the day I'm always out and about soaking up the local atmosphere. The rising emphasis on AI has had a terrible effect on many local economies as the only ones making money out of it have been the tour operators. :cry:
Self catering or B/B for us.
We use the hotels as somewhere to sleep and wash etc.
If you decide to stay in the hotel all the time you see nothing of the country you're visiting.
As said above AI are devastating local amenities and if allowed to continue to grow will result in resorts with no restaurants or bars etc, in much the same way that big supermarkets have decimated the high streets at home.
Wizard HT Mod wrote:
S.C. is ok for those who wont eat ""foreign food""

I love to try the food of the country that I am staying in, which is the reason that I mostly stay SC if not on a touring holiday. I can then try out all of the different restaurants in the area.

I have stayed a few times HB but do find that although the food in the hotels was tasty with lots of choice there
was very little ethnic dishes to choose from.

I've never stayed AI as I like to be out and about so wouldn't take advantage of what I've paid for.
Possibly a difficult one - but not difficult for us

We have tried AI twice. Once with grandchildren, (in Tunisia) when it was ideal for them (not necessarily for us).

The other time was our very first attempt (SE Asia) and it was not the best experience. The food was OK but we were surrounded by people who didn't want to leave the hotel as they had paid for their food! Some thought that we were weird because we wanted to try out local and further flung places, despite having paid for all our food and drink in the hotel!

We now tend to go B&B as this provides the convenience of a breakfast, early in the day, but allows flexibility to eat out (which we tend to do).

I can honestly say that we now try to avoid hotels that even provide an AI option. The reason for this is that it seems that more and more people (especially Eastern Europeans, but also NW Europeans, appear to do nothing but gorge themselves and get as drunk as skunks as they have "paid" to do so). I also find (possibly excepting some Caribbean destinations) that food in AI hotels tends to be a lower standard and usually "buffet" style. Not to our taste.

The food also seems to be less likely to feature truly local dishes, the menu being tailored to the area from which the majority of guests come.

Every one to their own taste, of course, but in general terms AI is not for us. :cry:
we also love the ai holiday not that we ever get our monies worth as the wife don't drink at all and hardly eats much.
but we like the idea of once you have paid for your holiday you don't have to worry about the spending money.
if you run out halfway through the holiday you will always have food and drink available.
also you don't have to worry about walking around with cash on you or worry about losing it while sunbathing on beach etc..
I think we've only been AI once many years ago with friends. We popped into the town for a drink and friend's hubby moaned that the round had cost him X amount :roll:

We generally go S/C as I prefer private accommodation, however, I do like BB as you aren't waffling about half the morning going out for brekkie. We've stayed HB too and the only small problem there is that sometimes I can't be bothered getting 'ready' for the evening meal. When staying SC, if we fancy a quiet night in we usually pop and get a take away & chill.
I guess that depends on where you are thinking of going. With some destinations, hotels are in the middle of nowhere, so not much choice. I've stayed in a few 5* AI hotels in the Caribbean, but two of those were miles from anywhere, and much as the food was of a really good standard, as were the drinks, you really could have been staying anywhere!

I love Lanzarote, and our choice is a villa with pool. Not really hotel people. We much prefer to be able to do what I want, when we want, and relax during the day without hundreds of other tourists around us. Coffee, fresh fruit, yoghurt, croissant etc for brekkie, a snack for lunch made with some fresh produce, bread etc from the local supermarket, with the obligatory glass of local vino :D and then a drive out somewhere for dinner in the evening (hubby is tee total so driving not a problem).

The biggest thing for me though, is as has already been said, AI hotels are killing existing resorts and communities, and only the tour operators are making any money out of it. Once the resorts have been emptied of restaurants and shops because of it, the tour operators will pull out without a backward glance, leaving hotels up the creek without the proverbial paddle. The local economies need all the help they can get.
My friends love Lanzarote too Sunaddict & prefer a Villa so if you bump into Jenny and Mike from the North East on one of your trips say hello :cheers
We have done F/B,H/B,S/C and A/I. The problem with self-catering is that people do not cook whilst on holiday, Most people eat out and unfortunatly the cost of food and drink has gone up a lot in Europe,we find that the cost of A/I is cheaper than flight/accom./dining out/drinking etc.

As for the assumption that A/I is killing the local econemy,we land at a local airport (taxes paid),the airport staff and customs people are all local, travel to the resort on a local bus,the hotel staff are local,how many people can you keep employed?

There are a lot of people who go on holiday abroad who drink in the local UK owned bar,drink John Smiths or Strongbow, eat sunday roast with HP sause whilst reading the Sun newspaper, :rofl

I think that people should have the choise of the holiday type that they want,as every body has different tastes.

Alan :cheers
Of course people should have the choice of what type of holiday they want and nobody is suggesting otherwise. We are all different and not everyone wants to get too involved with local culture, preferring to stay around their hotel soaking up the sun with others of similar tastes. Those of us who prefer a different type of holiday may feel they are missing out, but we should all be free to spend our holidays how we want.
this subject always heads the same way!
we always go all inclusive, we also eat out and drink out, visit local attractions, use taxis, buses use local excursions.....the list goes on,we certainly support the local economy,
i agree with mobile fitter
i would only holiday in an all inclusive hotel so if there were none available in a town/country i would not be on holiday there.
not all people who go all inclusive stay around the hotel day and night.
not all people who go all inclusive stay around the hotel day and night.

But in that case surely it works out even more expensive.
paying for drinks and food outside when you have already paid for it inside?
its not all about money, we go on holiday to enjoy ourselves but having said that a few years ago we went to cypress and stayed at grecian sands a lovely hotel B&B only, we spent an absolute fortune eating and drinking out every day and tbh got sick of ;looking at menus day in day out to decide where to eat.the most expensive holiday overall i have ever taken
del949 most people who go AI dont cabin up in a hotel for their entire holiday
If holidaying in Europe or even the UK, I prefer the flexibility and the extra space that goes with SC even though I don't even do that much cooking. I like being able to have breakfast in my jammies on a balcony or terrace but it will have been assembled rather than cooked! :D crusty bread, jam, a bit of cheese and/or ham, fresh fruit and a pot of coffee. Bliss! Because breakfast will have been late, a coffee and a pastry late afternoon will keep us going until going out for dinner of an evening - after a G & T or two on our balcony or terrace.

But if we don't feel like going out for a meal then it's a variation on breakfast - what we have always referred to as a 'picky' tea! Some good bread, some olives and olive oil for dipping, some nice ham and cheese, a few tomatoes, bit of salad, a nice sliced avocado, some more fresh fruit etc. one of the delights of going on holiday for me is trying out the local dishes and having a wander round local markets as well. As I said, I don't cook but I do love assembling a meal from a deli counter. And all accompanied by a local wine :cheers

I have only done the AI thing once and that was in Cuba and to be honest I disliked it so much that I've never repeated the experience. For me the problem was as much the hotel, purposely chosen because it was one of the smaller ones on offer but still too big for me as it turned out, the other guests and the feeling of isolation from local Cuban life. By the end of my 3 night stay I was stir crazy, I missed being able to go out to local bars and hear good live music, to wander the streets and soak up the local atmosphere, poke around in back corners etc, sit in a cafe and watch the world walk by.

So it is with some trepidation that I have actually booked the next nearest thing. A friend and I after talking about it for a couple of years have just booked a week long cruise of the Norwegian fjords for early next July. It was a bargain price, we have both wanted to visit the fjords for some years and love the idea of the 24 hr daylight at that time of year. But I have warned her that I might be climbing the walls and be ready to jump ship by the time we get to Bergen!

One of the the benefits for me with SC is being able to eat when I want, get up late if I feel like and like SM sit on the balcony in my pjs with my croisant and coffee as I don't go out for breakfast and if in a hotel serving breakfast I don't have to keep to any timetable. I enjoy looking in the shops at different foods and although I don't go in for much cooking I have been known to prepare a meal of fresh fish that I couldn't resist buying that day in the local market.

I've not as yet been on an Ocean cruise, don't think I ever will it just doesn't appeal but have been on a couple of river cruises, the Nile and the Yangze, they were both full board. At least you will have some awesome scenery to look at SM, not just water.

Luckily we are all different, what is it they say 'one man's meat is another man's poison' . Long may it stay that way.
We have had all formats over the years , I don't prefer any particular one , they all have their good points and bad points , what type of board we choose really depends on where we are going or the type of accommodation .
Like Sunaddict we like Lanzarote and go SC in a private villa , we only go in the local shops for daily supplies and have a mental note of restaurants we like to dine at , I like the freedom of choosing when and where we eat , but then we will go AI when going to the Caribbean , and we've found that AI there is excellent with a high level of quality and variety of food and drink . Other holidays we will probably book RB and then look to eat at different places each night as we don't really want to dine in the same place every night .
I'm quite happy to pick and choose as I like having a variety over the year , as they say variety is the spice of life .
We like both as well, over the past five years of continental holidays we have had at least five villa with pool holidays, and a second holiday each year in an hotel. 3 were AI, 1 half board and 1 BnB. I don't really see them as mutually exclusive, they each give you different things, holidays aren't necessarily all about the food, but it seems to be the most oft discussed aspect on holiday boards.

In the UK we like chocolate box cottages for SC and country house hotels with gourmet food, preferably sourced locally.
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