All-inclusive resorts can get a bad rap. The business model is associated with warm places and the type of vacation, such as honeymoons or spring break at college, where a guest travels from afar to lie motionless on a beach chair. In this stereotype, the food is generally uninspired and served buffet style, and the drinks are fruity, frozen, and possibly sweetened. Even as deals change – and die-hard travelers can find all-inclusive packages that allow them to take a safari in southern Africa, ride a horse in Patagonia, take a helicopter ride through Alaska – the prospect choosing the right one, and feeling that you are getting your money’s worth, has become more and more daunting.
It helps to understand how an all-inclusive makes money. All business is based on predictions of human behavior, and these stations survive by making calculations and adjustments. “It’s through trial and error, and you just change to meet the needs of people wherever you can,” says Michael Overcast, owner of Tordrillo Mountain Lodge in Alaska. “What’s important to us is that people feel that they are getting value from it, and it really comes through with the feedback at the end of the trip and the tip to the employees.” Keyboard Warriors can have a huge impact on the entire industry, but particularly in this sector, says Elizabeth Fettes, Director of Marketing and Sales at Karisma Hotels & Resorts. “All-inclusive packages rely heavily on reviews,” she says. “[With] the higher the revision, you are naturally going to have a higher premium rate, and this is going to affect your bottom line.
In some ways, these places work like any other hotel. “You have your overhead and you have your calculations and you know roughly what your annual percentage of food will be for x, y, and z, and that’s what you base your rates on and work from there,” explains Rebecca Platt. , Director of Sales and Marketing for the BodyHoliday and Rendezvous resorts in Saint Lucia. Customers just need to beware of hidden charges. “While that doesn’t apply to my resort here in St. Lucia, I’ve worked with resorts in past lives where… you don’t see where there are different levels of all-inclusive packages,” she continues. “You’re going to get a fantastic rate to start with, but when you actually get to the resort, well, yes you can include that, for the extra amount x dollars.”
Along with inclusivity levels, food and drink upgrades are another place resorts can cash in. [they were] supposed to consume. Or when they go out to dinner in town, ”says Claudia Perez, director of sales and marketing at Marquis Los Cabos Resort & Spa. Her colleague Casandra Luna, associate director of sales at the resort, mentions one-off promotions, which keep guests coming back for full price, and packages where hotels can earn extra money. “Packages with transportation, romantic spa services, anything that isn’t fully inclusive, that’s where we get the income,” she says.